Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors

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Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors

  • Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors
  • The Crimes of Poor Tudors
  • The Punishments of Poor Tudors
  • The Execution methods
  • Minor Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors
  • Tudor History, facts and interesting information about Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors

Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors

Tudor Crime and Punishment

Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors
Tudor England and the crimes and punishments of the poor Tudors. Tudor England was split into two classes consisting of royalty, nobles and courtiers and the second class consisted of everyone else, the poor Tudors. Tudor Crimes and Punishments varied according to class. Crimes committed in the 15th and 16th century were met with violent and cruel punishments which were were witnessed by many hundreds of people and such events as exciting days out.

The Crimes of Poor Tudors
Many of the crimes committed by commoners, the poor Tudors, were through sheer desperation and abject poverty. The most common crimes were:

  • Theft
  • Cut purses
  • Begging
  • Poaching
  • Adultery
  • Debtors
  • Forgers
  • Fraud
  • Murder
  • Treason and Rebellion
  • Heresy

The Crimes of Poor Tudors
The punishments for above crimes were all very harsh. There were various forms of execution and even the minor punishments included amputation.

  • Theft - Theft for stealing anything over 5 pence resulted in hanging, even small crimes such as stealing birds eggs could result in the death sentence.
  • Poaching - Poaching at night resulted in the punishment by death, whereas poaching during the day time did not
  • Begging - Begging was a serious crime during the Tudor era. The Tudor government made begging a crime and therefore illegal and 'poor beggars' As their punishment 'poor beggars' would be beaten until they reached the stones that marked the town parish boundary. The beatings given as punishment were bloody and merciless and those who were caught continually begging could be sent to prison and even hanged as their punishment
  • Treason, Rebellion and Heresy - All such crimes resulted in a death sentence

The Punishments of Poor Tudors
The punishments for above crimes were all very harsh. There were various forms of execution and even the minor punishments included amputation.

  • Hanging
  • Burning at the stake
  • The Pillory and the Stocks
  • Public whipping
  • Branding with hot irons
  • Pressing with heavy stones
  • Ducking stools - especially for those women accused of witchcraft
  • Boiling in oil water or lead (usually reserved for poisoners )
  • Starvation
  • Cutting off various items of the anatomy - nose, hands, ears etc
  • The Gossip's Bridle or the Brank
  • The Drunkards Cloak

Click here for information regarding full details of Middle Ages Torture and Executions

The Punishments of Poor Tudors - Executions
The execution methods were by burned alive at the stake and being hung, drawn and quartered. Being burnt at the stake was a terrible death which was feared by everyone. Tudor Executioners sometimes showed mercy by placing gunpowder at the base of the stake which helped the victims to a less painful death. The only other relief from the excruciating pain was if the victim died of suffocation through smoke inhalation and lack of oxygen. The most dreadful punishment of being Hung, Drawn and Quartered was described by William Harrison as follows:

"The greatest and most grievous punishment used in England for such as offend against the State is drawing from the prison to the place of execution upon an hurdle or sled, where they are hanged till they be half dead, and then taken down, and quartered alive; after that, their members and bowels are cut from their bodies, and thrown into a fire, provided near hand and within their own sight, even for the same purpose."

Minor Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors
Minor crime and punishment in small Tudor towns were dealt with by the Justice of the Peace. Many crimes during the Tudor era were due to a crime committed and the law broken due to the desperate acts of the poor. Every town parish was responsible for the poor and unemployed within that parish. The Justice of the Peace for each Tudor town parish was allowed to collect a tax from the wealthy inhabitants. This was called the Poor Rate which was used to help the poor during the Tudor period.

Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors
Each section of this Tudors website addresses all topics and provides interesting facts and information about Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors. The Sitemap provides full details of all of the information and facts provided about the fascinating subject of the Tudors!

Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors

  • Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors
  • The Crimes of Poor Tudors
  • The Punishments of Poor Tudors
  • The Execution methods
  • Minor Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors
  • Tudor History, facts and interesting information about Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors

Crimes and Punishments of Poor Tudors

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