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Animal Trials
Animal Trials

Animal Trials

LAW

150 Pages, 5 x 8

Formats: Cloth

Cloth, $18.95 (US $18.95) (CA $24.95)

Publication Date: June 2013

ISBN 9781843913825

Rights: US, CA, AU & NZ

Hesperus Press (Jun 2013)

Price: $18.95
 
 

Overview

An edited version of the text Criminal Prosecution and Capital Punishment of Animals—omitting much of the legal analysis and concentrating on an extraordinary range of trialsTo try an animal in a court of law for "crimes" and then sentence it to imprisonment or death seems barbaric, but for hundreds of years until the mid-19th century this practice was commonplace in Europe, and became the subject of a book called Criminal Prosecution and Capital Punishment of Animals. They include: an eight-month trial of a flock of weevils, for damaging vines—although the insects were found guilty, the sentence is unknown because the foot of the relevant parchment was eaten by insects. A pig tried found guilty of strangling and killing a baby in its cradle—the sentence was death and the pig was hanged. A group of rats who were summoned to court for eating the local barley, but failed to turn up—their defense counsel successfully argued that they had probably not received the summons and should be let off. There were even trials of inanimate objects, such as a Russian bell put on trial for abetting insurrection. It was found guilty and exiled to Siberia.

Author Biography

Edward Payson Evans (1831–1917), a historian, linguist, and associate of Ralph Waldo Emerson, taught at the University of Michigan before moving to Germany, where he became a specialist in Oriental languages and German literature.