9th g. IX . MARCH 29, 1902.] NOTES AND QUERIES.
who called his famous bastard Robert Fitzroy. Robert, who was the eldest of all Henry I.'s sons, by his marriage with Mabel, daughter and heiress of Robert FitzHamon, the builder of Tewkesbury Abbey, became the owner of vast possessions in Normandy, Wales, and England. Chief among these was the honour of Gloucester, which Henry formed into an earldom for his sou. That Fitz is not always a sign of illegitimacy appears to be illus- trated by the case in point : Gloucester's father-in-law was FitzHamon ; while his own lawful son and heir, the second earl, was surnamed William FitzCount.
A. R. BAYLEY.
NOTES ON BOOKS, &c.
Tribal Custom in Anglo-Saxon Law. By Frederic Seebohm, LL.D. (Longmans & Co.)
THIS scholarly and important work is modestly announced as an "essay supplemental" to 'The English Village Community' and ' The Tribal Sys- tem in Wales' of the same author. The three works are, indeed, spoken of by him as a " trilogy." In this third and presumably conclud- ing portion the Anglo-Saxon laws are studied from the point of view of tribal custom. So established an authority upon the subjects with which he deals is Dr. Seebohm that the task of the reviewer scarcely extends beyond registering his decisions. In his opening pages he developes his previous con- clusions as regards Cymric tribal custom, especially as regards the "gwely," or family unit of tribal society, and " the methods of payment of the galanas, or death-fine for homicide in lieu of the blood-feud between kindreds." In the first chapter an account is given of the wer-geld of the conti- nental tribes and the currencies in which this death-fine was paid. The Cymric death-fines were reckoned in cows ; the " eric " fine of the Breton laws was stated in cumhals, or female slaves, lesser payments being in cows or heifers, these being all equated with silver. Anglo-Saxon wer-gelds were generally in silver marks, ores, and orlugs, and those of continental German tribes in gold solidi. In the East a hundred head of cattle was a cus- tomary wer-geld. A hundred camels between two Meccan tribes is the price of freedom from the blood-feud; while, according to the laws of the Manu, one of the highest of the twice-born Brahman class might purge himself for the involun- tary slaying of one of the warrior class by a pay- ment to the priests of 1,000 cows and a bull. One hundred cows and a bull served for the death of one of the agricultural or trading class, and ten cows and a bull for one of the servile class. Lycaon, a son of Priam and Laothoe, taken and ultimately slain by Achilles, was redeemed by Ee'tion of Imbros for a "great sum " (see ' Iliad,' xxi. 39), which great sum Lycaon declares to have been a hundred oxen (ib. t 71), and was ransomed as a king's son for three hundred oxen. In the Mosaic law the redemption of a man dedicated by vow to the service of the
sanctuary was "fiftv shekels of silver: that is the light mina of silver/' It is obviously impossible to follow further these questions of monetary systems or to deal with matter which, apart from context and argument, is as devoid of intelligibility as of interest. Very clearly established by these uav- ments are the solidarity of kindred under tribal law and the family character of the system of land- holding. The constitution and working of the gwely are fully explained, and the liability in case ot homicide of the wider kindred is shown. Chap- ter iii. is of great interest, showing the evidence of 'Beowulf on tribal custom, regulating feuds, &c In 'Beowulf is shown the depth of the tribal feeling that homicide can only be expiated by revenge and feud, and that it is a hard thing for a father to abstain from revenge on his son for acci- dental fratricide. There is, however, no feud within kindred when one kinsman slays another, and the punishment must be left to fate or chance. Accidental homicide is not even followed by exile. Murder within the kindred ' breaks the tribal tie and is followed by outlawry." The wer-gelds of the Burgundian and Wisigothic laws occupy the fifth chapter. Succeeding chapters treat of Franks, the tribes conquered by the Merovingian kings or by Charlemagne ; of the oldest Scandinavian laws ; of Scotland ; of Anglo-Saxon custom from Norman, Danish, and Viking points of view ; and the laws of the Kentish kings. The conclusion from the study of the currencies in which wer-gelds were paid is that there was a pretty general correspondence in the amount of the wer-gelds of the tribes of Western Europe, tenaciously adhered to by them, whether remaining in their old homes or settled in newly conquered countries. The amount of the fine seems not to have been a matter of race. Cymric and German customs were singularly similar. The normal wer-geld of the full freeman was 200 gold solidi, representing 100 head of cattle, an amount too large for the individual to pay, and possible only as a " payment from one group of kindred to the other. In the solidarity of kinsmen is found the strongest instinct" which everywhere moulded tribal society. We have dealt with one or two points only in a book claiming and repaying the closest study, a work of highest authority, and in- dispensable to the student of the origin of primitive communities.
History of the Conquest of Peru. By William H.
Prescott. Edited by John Foster Kirk. 3 vols.
(Bell & Sons.)
AN indispensable supplement or companion to the 'History of the Conquest of Mexico 1 of the same author, Prescott's 'History of the Conquest of Peru ' deserves and obtains a place with that work in "Bonn's Standard Library." To the inclusion of Prescott's earlier work in that admirably selected and in its line unequalled collection we drew attention 9 th S. viii. 315. What was there said concerning his 'Mexico' is also true of his 'Peru.' While equally unsatisfactory from the point of view of ethnology and kindred subjects, both are models of historical composition. They may be perused with unbroken delight, and though no longer in the full sense authoritative, and certain to be replaced by later compilations, they will long maintain their places on the shelves of the student and in the affection of the reader. The edition reprinted is that of John Foster Kirk, Prescott's secretary, whose notes do much to atone for Pres-