Friday, May 27, 2011

W 76

76.  Charny asks:   A man at arms takes another in a deed of war and the master says to his prisoner that he will set a ransom, and the prisoner offers a thousand ecus and his master agrees.   And when the prisoner is put to ransom and agreed with his master, another friend of the prisoner's master comes and begs that he will give him possession of the prisoner to deal with at his pleasure, and the master grants his request and releases the prisoner from his oath and makes him give his oath to him to whom he has granted him.  And the one to whom he has given the prisoner  imposes on him a ransom of 4000 ecus, and the prisoner who has no choice agrees and pays them so that he has acquitted himself of the 4000 ecus and his faith.  So the prisoner comes and pursues his first master to give him the surplus over the 1000 ecus which he had given as a ransom, which surplus amounted to 3000 ecus.  And the first master responds that these agreements were never written down or sworn, and the prisoner say that [the other agreement] had no force, for it was between him and the other.   Many good arguments are made on one side or the other.   How will it be judged by the law of arms?  

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