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[enacted, by statute 33 Henry VIII. c. 8, all witchcraft and sorcery to be felony without benefit of clergy. And again by statute 1 Jac. I. c. 12, that all persons invoking any evil spirit; or consulting, covenanting with, entertaining, employing, feeding or rewarding any evil spirit; or taking up dead bodies from their graves to be used in any witchcraft, sorcery, charm or enchantment; or killing or otherwise hurting any person by such infernal arts ;-should be guilty of felony and suffer death : and that if any person should attempt, by sorcery, to discover hidden treasure, or to restore stolen goods, or to provoke unlawful love, or to hurt any man or beast, (though the same were not effected,) he, or she, should suffer imprisonment and pillory for the first offence, and death for the second. These Acts long continued in force, to the terror of all antient females in the kingdom: and many poor wretches were sacrificed thereby to the prejudice of their neighbours and their own illusions; not a few having, by some means or other, confessed the fact at the gallows. But all executions for this dubious crime are now at an end: our legislature having at length followed the wise example of Louis the fourteenth in France ; who thought proper by an edict to restrain the tribunals of justice from receiving informations of witchcraft (1). And accordingly it was enacted, by 9 Geo. II. c. 5, that no prosecution should for the future be carried on against any person for witchcraft, sorcery, enchantment, or conjuration; or for charging another with any such offence(i).] But, by the same statute, persons pretending to use witchcraft, tell fortunes, or discover stolen goods by skill in any occult or crafty science-were made punishable by imprisonment: and by 5 Geo. IV. c. 83, s. 4, persons
(h) Voltaire, Siècl. Louis 14, c. 29; Mod. Un. Hist. xxv. 215.
(i) This Act is said to have passed, in consequence of an old woman being drowned at Tring, in
Hertfordshire, by her too credulous neighbours, who suspected her of witchcraft. — (Christian's Blackstone.)
using any subtle craft, means, or device, by palmistry or otherwise, to deceive his majesty's subjects,—are to be deemed rogues and vagabonds; and to be punished with imprisonment and hard labour (k).
VII. [A seventh species of offenders in this class, are all religious impostors ; such as falsely pretend an extraordinary commission from heaven; or terrify and abuse the people with false denunciations of judgments. These, as tending to subvert all religion, by bringing it into ridicule and contempt, are punishable by the temporal courts with fine, imprisonment, and infamous corporal punishment(?).]
VIII. Simony may also be considered as an offence against religion, by reason of the sacredness of the charge which is thereby profanely bought and sold. Its nature and the penalties to which it is subject having been already described, when we treated of the endowments and provisions of the Church (m), it will be unnecessary to recur to them in this place, and we shall pass on to consider
IX. [Profanation of the Lord's Day, (commonly, but improperly, called sabbath breaking,) which is another offence of the class now in question. It is unquestionable that the keeping one day in seven holy, as a time of relaxation and refreshment, as well as for public worship, is of admirable service to a state, considered merely as a civil institution. It humanizes, by the help of conversation and society, the manners of the lower classes ; which would otherwise degenerate into a sordid ferocity, and savage selfishness of spirit. It enables the industrious workman to pursue his occupation in the ensuing week with health and cheerfulness; and it im
(k) As to rogues and vagabonds, vide post, chap. XII.
(1) Hawk. P. C. b. 1, c. 5, s. 3. (m) Vide vol. II. pp. 719--722.
[prints on the minds of the people that sense of their duty to God so necessary to make them good citizens, but which yet would be worn out and effaced by an unremitted continuance of labour without any stated times of recalling them to the worship of their Maker. Accordingly, the laws of King Athelstan forbade all merchandizing on the Lord's day, under very severe penalties (n); and by the statute 27 Henry VI. c. 5, no fair or market shall be held on Good Fridays or on any Sunday, except the four Sundays in harvest or for necessary victual, on pain of forfeiting the goods exposed to sale (o). Again, by statute 1 Car. I. c. 1, no persons shall assemble, out of their own parishes, for any sport whatever upon this day; nor in their parishes shall use any bull, or bear, baiting, interludes, plays, or other unlawful exercises or pastimes,- on pain that every offender shall pay three shillings and fourpence to the poor.] Also, by statute 29 Car. II. c. 7, no tradesman, artificer, workman, labourer, or other person whatever, is allowed to do any work of their ordinary calling upon the Lord's day,—works of necessity and charity only excepted,- on pain that every person, of fourteen years, so offending, shall forfeit five shillings. And, by the same Act, no person shall publicly expose to sale any wares whatever upon the Lord's day, upon pain of forfeiting the goods; nor any drover, or the like, travel or come into his inn or lodging, upon pain of forfeiting twenty shillings; nor any person serve or execute any process, (except for treason, felony or breach of the peace): and such service or execution, if made, shall be void to all intents and purposes whatever (p). Moreover, by (n) C. 24.
of the then next session), no prose(0) The exception as to Sundays cution under this statute of Car. 2 in harvest time is repealed by 13 & is to be instituted unless by the 14 Vict. c. 23.
written consent of the chief officer (P) By the 34 & 35 Vict. c. 87 of police, or of two justices, or a (continued by the 36 & 37 Vict. stipendiary magistrate. There are c. 76, to 1st Sept. 1874, and the end also enactments with the same ob
21 Gco. III. c. 49, any house which shall be used for public entertainment or public debate on the Lord's day, and to which persons shall be admitted by the payment of money, shall be deemed a disorderly house : and subject to the punishment which the law provides in the case of houses of that description (7). And, lastly, there are
7 enactments prohibiting under a penalty the sale of intoxicating liquors in public-houses and other licensed premises within certain hours, on any Sunday, Christmasday, or Good Friday, unless to a lodger in the house, or to a bonâ fide traveller (r). ject of securing the proper observ- nash, ibid. 596; Peate v. Dicken, ance of Sunday, which refer to 5 Tyr. 116; Scarfo v. Morgan, 1 H. carriers (3 Car. 1, c. 1); to fish-car- & H. 292; Beaumont v. Brengeri, riages (2 Geo. 3, c. 15); to bakers 5 C. B. 301. (34 Gco. 3, c. 61; 50 Gco. 3, c. 73, (7) As to disorderly houses, vide s. 3; 1 & 2 Gco. 4, c. 50, s. 11; 3 post, c. XII. As to the construction Gco. 4, c. cxvi. s. 16); to watermen of this enactment in reference to (11 & 12 Will. 3, c. 24, s. 13; 7 & 8 the holding of religious services, Geo. 4, c. lxxv.); to killing game
thic admission to which is by money, (1 & 2 Will. 4, c. 32, s. 3). And sec Baxter v. Langley, Law Rep., sec, as to the construction of statute 4 C. P. 21. 29 Car. 2, c. 7, Sandiman 1. Breach, (1) Sec 35 & 36 Vict. c. 94, s. 2+, 7 Barn. & Cress. 96; R. v. Whit- ct sup. vol. III. p. 199.
OF OFFENCES AGAINST THE LAW OF NATIONS.
[ACCORDING to the method marked out in the preceding chapter, we are next to consider the offences more immediately repugnant to that universal law of society, which regulates the mutual intercourse between one state and another: those, at least, which are particularly animadverted on, as such, by the English law.
The law of nations, to which we have before had occasion briefly to advert (a), is a system of rules, established by universal consent, among the civilized inhabitants of the world (1); in order to decide all disputes, to regulate all ceremonies and civilities, and to ensure the observance of justice and good faith, in that intercourse which must frequently occur between two or more independent States, and the individuals belonging to each: being founded upon this general principle, that different nations ought, in time of peace, to do to one another all the good they can : and in time of war, as little harm as possible, without prejudice to their own real interests. And as none of these States will allow a superiority in the other, therefore neither can dictate or prescribe the rules of this law to the rest ; but such rules must necessarily result from those principles of natural justice, in which all the learned of every nation agree, and to which all civilized States have assented.
In arbitrary States this law, whenever it contradicts or is not provided for by the municipal law of the country, (a) Vide sup. vol. 1. p. 24.
(1) Sp. L. b. 1, c. 7.