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Anglo Saxon Statutes in United Kingdom

This issue under the Ruling of the Anglo Saxons

Collections of Statutes

Anglo Saxon Statutes and Medieval Law

Anglo Saxon Statutes and Legal History

Legal Materials

(Compiled by the University of South Caroline Gould School of Law) Attenborough, F. L., ed. and trans. The Laws of the Earliest English Kings. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000.

Abstract: Contains the Anglo-Saxon laws to the end of the reign of Aethelstan (939), including the Kentish Laws; the laws of Ine and of Alfred; Treaties with the Danes; the laws of Edward the Elder and of Aethelstan. Text in Anglo-Saxon with English translation in parallel.

Bede, the Venerable Saint, Bertram Colgrave, and Roger A. B. Mynors , eds. Bede’s Ecclesiastical History of the English People; Historia Ecclesiastica Gentis Anglorum. Oxford Medieval Texts. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1969.

Notes: Wheelocke edition also available online on Early English Books Online (subscription database)Abstract: Parallel Latin text and English translation with English notes. Reprinted in 1992. Extends from BC 55 to AD 731, the date of its compilation. Libri V, Anglo-Saxon laws.

Canute, King of England, and Janus L. A. Kolderup-Rosenvinge , eds. Legum Regis Canuti Magni Quas Anglis Olim Dedit, Versionem Antiquam Latinam Ex Codice Colbertino … Havniae: J.H. Schulz, 1826.

Abstract: Anglo-Saxon with Latin translation.

Cook, Albert S., ed. Extracts From the Anglo-Saxon Laws. New York: H. Holt and Co, 1880.

Dammery, Richard J. E., ed. The Law-Code of King Alfred the Great. 2 Vols. Cambridge: University of Cambridge, 1990.

Abstract: PhD thesis. Vol. 2 is a collated text of the code based on CCCC173.

Eckhardt, Karl A., ed. Leges Anglo-Saxonum, 601-925. Bibliotheca Rerum Historicarum, Corpus Iuris Europensis, 13. Gottingen: Musterschmidt, 1974.

Abstract: Text in German and Anglo Saxon; notes in Latin. A translation of the laws from Aethelberht to Aethelstan.

Flower, Robin, and A. H. Smith, eds. The Parker Chronicle and Laws; (Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, Ms.173) a Facsimile. Early English Text Society. Original series, 208. London: Oxford University Press, 1941.

Abstract: Facsimile from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, ca. AD 450-1100.

Grant, Raymond J. S., ed. Laurence Nowell, William Lambarde, and the Laws of the Anglo-Saxons . Costerus. n.s., 108. Amsterdam ; Atlanta, GA: Rodopi, 1996.

Griffiths, Bill, ed. and trans. An Introduction to Early English Law. Norfolk: Anglo-Saxon Books, 1995.

Abstract: English translations of the law codes of Aethelberht of Kent, Alfred, and the short codes of the reigns of Edmund and Aethelred. Includes a listing of individual law codes from the TwelveTablets, Rome, ca. BC 450 to Quadripartitus , ca. AD 1114

Hearne, Thomas, Ernulf , Bishop of Rochester, and Leonard Hutton, ed. Textus Roffensis. Accedunt, Professionum Antiquorum Angliae Episcoporum Formulae, De Canonica Obedientia Archiepiscopis Cantuariensibus Praestanda. Oxford: E Theatro Sheldoniano, 1720.

Abstract: Text in Latin with parts in Anglo-Saxon. Created during the reign of Henry I, it is primarily a register or chartulary of Rochester Cathedral. However it also contains Laws of the Anglo-Saxon Kings, including the earliest written laws in any Germanic language, those of King Ethelbert of Kent (d. 616).

Hickes, George, ed. Linguarum Vett. Septentrionalium Thesaurus Grammatico-Criticus Et Archaeologicus. 3 Vol. Oxford: Theatro Sheldoniano, 1703.

Abstract: A Latin translation of Aethelberht’s and Hlophere and Eadric’s laws, based on de Lait’s 1640 edition of which no extant copies remain.

Lambarde, William, ed. Archaionomia Sive De Priscis Anglorum Legibus Libri. London: Joannis Daij, 1568.

Notes: Also available online in Early English Books Online (subscription database)Abstract: The first published collection of Anglo-Saxon laws with their Latin translation printed in parallel columns. ( Second edition by Abraham Whelock, 1644, appended to his edition of Bede’s Ecclesiastical History)

More Bibliography

Stearns, John M., ed. The Germs and Developments of the Laws of England : Embracing the Anglo-Saxon Laws Extant From the Sixth Century to A.D., 1066, As Translated into English Under the Royal Record Commission of William IV., With the Introduction of the Common Law by Norman Judges After the Conquest, and Its Earliest Proferts in Magna Charta . Clark, N.J.: The Lawbook Exchange, 2007.

Abstract: Reprint of 1889 edition. Contents: Laws of Aethelberht, Hlothhaed and Eadric, Wihtraed, Ine, Alfred, Edward the Elder, Treaty of Edward and Guthrum, forms of oaths, wer-gilds, and definitions of ranks.

Thorpe, Benjamin, and R. Price, eds. & trans. Ancient Laws and Institutes of England; Comprising Laws Enacted Under the Anglo-Saxon Kings From Aethelbirht to Cnut, With an English Translation of the Saxon; the Laws Called Edward the Confessor’s; the Laws of William the Conqueror, and Those Ascribed to Henry the First; Also, Monumenta Ecclesiastica Anglicana, From the Seventh to the Tenth Century; and the Ancient Latin Version of the Anglo-Saxon Laws. With a Compendious Glossary, Etc. 2 Vols. London: Commissioners of the Public Records, 1840.

Notes: Also available online in HeinOnline and Modern Economy (subscription databases)Abstract: Contains the earliest recorded Anglo-Saxon laws – enactments or dooms made by King and Witan from ca. 601 up to and including the laws of Henry I. Vol. 1, Secular laws; Vol. 2, Ecclesiastical laws. Contains a concordance. Begun by R. Price and completed after his death by B. Thorpe. Reprinted in 2003.

Thorpe, John, ed. Registrum Roffense: or, A Collection of Antient Records, Charters, and Instruments of Divers Kinds, Necessary for Illustrating the Ecclesiastical History and Antiquities of the Diocese and Cathedral Church of Rochester. London: W.& J Richardson, 1769.

Abstract: Includes a law record of the reign of Henry I and the laws of several of the Anglo-Saxon Kings, particularly of the four kings whose laws are omitted by Lambarde, together with the Anglo-Saxon form of oaths. Text in Latin.

Turk, Milton H., and Alfred, King of England, ed. The Legal Code of Aelfred the Great. Halle: M. Niemeyer, 1893.

Abstract: Text in English and Anglo-Saxon. Laws of Alfred the Great, AD 871-901.

Whittaker, W. J., ed. The Mirror of Justices. The Selden Society (SS), 7 for 1893. London: Quaritch, 1895.

Abstract: “A transcript and translation of the Mirror which was known in manuscript to lawyers of the 16th and 17th centuries, and believed to be a collection of genuine Anglo-Saxon law. It’s authenticity and early date were later disproved by Palgrave. It may be based on a number of legal documents collected by Andrew Horne, Chamberlain of London on the occasion of the London Eyre of 1321.”

Wilkins, David, ed. Leges Anglo-Saxonicae Ecclesiasticae & Civiles. London: R. Gosling, 1721.

Abstract: Contains errors in the Latin translation. The first edition of the Anglo-Saxon laws to draw comparisons to other early Germanic laws.

Bibliographies of English Law History

  • Maxwell, William H. A Legal Bibliography of the British Commonwealth of Nations. Volume 1: English Law to 1800. London: Sweet and Maxwell, 1955-
  • Beale, Joseph H. A Bibliography of Early English Law Books. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1926.
  • Winfield, Percy H. The Chief Sources of English Legal History. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1925.


See Also

  • Lordship Rights (in this legal Encyclopedia)
  • Uses (in this legal Encyclopedia)
  • Status (in this legal Encyclopedia)
  • Law Merchant (in this legal Encyclopedia)
  • Ancient Law (in this legal Encyclopedia)

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  • Article Name: Anglo Saxon Statutes
  • Author: Anthony J. Bland
  • Description: This issue under the Ruling of the Anglo Saxons Collections of Statutes Anglo Saxon Statutes and Medieval Law Anglo Saxon [...]

This entry was last updated: May 10, 2017


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