Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In Anglo-Saxon and ancient Teutonic law, a kind of fine for manslaughter and other crimes against the person, by paying which the offender freed himself from every further obligation or punishment. The fine or compensation due by the offender varied in amount according to his rank or station and that of the person killed or injured, and also according to the nature of the injnry. It was in general paid to the relatives of him who had been slain, or, in the case of a wound or other bodily harm, to the person who sustained the injury; but, if the cause was brought before the community the plaintiff received only part of the fine, the community, or the king when there was one, receiving the remainder.
- n. alternative spelling of wergeld.
“Last week a poster by the name of "wergild" had this to say about the "progress" under McDaniels. wergild wrote: denver is 20th in a 32 team nfl in scoring. so let's count up the mistakes the self appointed genius has made since taking over as dictator:”
“The church placed its own members on the wergild scale.”
“The leader of the recent excavation, Martin Carver, argues that the value of grave goods might represent the ‘wergild’ man-price of the occupant.”
“Carver argues that the wergild for a nobleman was 480 oxen, roughly equivalent to 7 oz 200 g of gold.”
“In some particulars they were less enlightened than the laws of King Liutprand of Lombardy: they kept the old wergild, ordeals, trial by combat, and punishment by mutilation; and decreed death for relapse into paganism, or for eating meat in Lent- though here the priest was allowed to soften the penalty.”
“In 1914, when Archduke Franz Ferdinand was killed, the Austro-Hungarian empire had no choice but to send an ultimatum to Serbia, demanding wergild for the Archduke, or promising war as the alternative.”
“They could ask for wergild, which was paid in cash, or they could take vengeance, which was paid in blood.”
“Hugh's very old-fashioned – he doesn't want wergild.”
“Guest gave him the one wergild (a hundred of silver), which Howard received in the skirt of his cloak; and then Thorbiorn paid one wergild slowly, coin by coin, and said he had no more money; but Guest bade him pay it all.”
“In the second year Biargey again urged Howard to try for a wergild.”
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