Crrime and punishment paper 1 revision

  • Created by: boooooomy
  • Created on: 25-05-13 11:41

The Roman Empire



· Praetorian Guard –protected Emperor – only used in emergency

· Urban Cohort – job was to stop riots – did not patrol

· Vigiles – prevented and put out fires. Patrolled streets at night


Other Crimes

Attacks on the Emperor (execution)

Refusing to worship Emperor as a god (execution in the Colossseum)

Patricide (killing father) – execution by being tied in a sack of snakes and thrown into river to drown

Rebelling against Empire (like Spartacus) – execution by crucifixion

Trials and juries


· For crimes like burglary citizens were expected to catch the criminal and bring him to a magistrate. A judge would decide the case

· For more serious crimes a jury would decide guilt

· Under Roman law any citizen could bring a case to court

· The defendant was innocent until proven guilty

· The defendant had the right to present evidence

Ideas about punishment


· The Romans had laws to cover every possible crime, from               assassination of the Emperor to polluting the streets and the River Tiber.

· The Romans believed in deterring crime by harsh punishments – how you were punished depended on how important you were.

· Prisons were not used as punishment but only to hold those awaiting trial or execution

The Middle Ages

Common Crimes

Most common crime was theft of money, food and belongings

Violent crime was rare

Under the Normans the Forest laws made poaching a serious offence

Selling poor quality goods, underweight bread

Violent crime – 18%


Saxons created tithings who were 

responsible for keeping the peace

Hue and cry was most usual method of

chasing offenders

Villages were appointed as constables

Sheriffs were appointed by the King

Other Crimes

Treason still very serious – men like William Wallace were hung, drawn and quartered, many of those     involved in the Peasants Revolt were hanged

Heretics (people who refused to follow the official beliefs of the Church) were burnt at the stake

Trials and juries

At a Saxon trial there were no lawyers and a jury would swear an oath


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