wer-gild
Morphological Analysis
Wordclass: Noun
Gender: Neuter
In the OE text, the length is:indicated by acute accentsindicated by macronsnot indicated.
wer-gild
were-gild, es; n. [The word seems interchangeable with wer (q. v.), which in the later laws is the more frequent form.] The price set upon a man according to his degree Twelfhyndes mannes wergyld bið six ceorla wergyld, L. O. 13; Th. i. 182, 21. Ceorles wergild (weregild, 1. 20) is .cc. and .lxvi. þrimsa, ðæt bið .ii. hund sciłł. be Myrcna lage, L. Wg. 6; Th. i. 186, 11. Norðleóda cynges gild .xxx. þúsend þrymsa, fífténe þúsend þrymsa bið ðæs wergildes (wæres, 1. 16), 1; Th. i. 186, 2. (The wergilds for other ranks are given in the sections of this article.)Ceorles wergild is on Myrcna lage .cc. sciłł. Ðegnes wergild is syx swá mycel, ðæt bið .xii. hund sciłł. Ðonne bið cynges ánfeald wergild .vi. þegna wer be Myrcna lage, ðæt is .xxx. þúsend sceatta, and ðæt bið ealles .cxx. punda. Swá mycel is ðæs wergildes on folces folcrihte be Myrcna lage, L. M. L. ; Th. i : 190, 2-7. Cyninges horswealh, se ðe him mæge geǽrendian, ðæs wergield bið .cc. sciłł., L. In. 33; Th. i. 122, 14. I. when a person was wrongfully slain the wergild of the slain man could be claimed from the slayer. Cf. wer, I Gif man leúd ofsleá an þeófðe, licge bútan wyrgelde, L. Wih. 25; Th. i. 42, 13. Se .vii. nihta móna is gód on tó fixianne, and æðeles monnes wergild an tó manianne, Lchdm. iii. 178, 14. I a. for those who were concerned in the receiving of the wergild see wer, I a, and the following :-- Gif man his mæn freólse gefe, . . . freólsgefa áge his erfe ænde wergeld, L. Wih. 8; Th. i. 38, 16. (See also the cases quoted under IV.) I b. as too II. in case of certain crimes the criminal's wergild was exacted as a penalty, v. wer, III Gif frí man wið fríes mannes wíf geligeþ, his wergelde ábicge, L. Ethb. 31; Th. i. 10, 6. Forgielde hé hine selfa be his wergilde, L. Alf. pol. 7; Th. i. 66, 12. II a. the payment of the wergild is in some cases an alternative, v. wer, III b :-- Sí þreóra án for his feore . . . wergild, éce þeówet, hengenwítnung, L. Eth. vii. 16; Th. i. 332, 18. Þolige hé lífes oþþe wæregildes (were-, v. 1. ), L. C. S. 62; Th. i. 408, 23. Wealde se cyniug þreóra ǽnes; oþþe hine man cwelle, oþþe ofer sǽ selle, oþþe hine his wergelde áliése, L. Wih. 26; Th. i. 42, 17. Hé hine be his wergilde áliése, oþþe be his were geswicne, L. In. 15; Th. i. 112, 2. Hé bið feorhscyldig, nimþe him se cyning álýfan wille ðæt man wergylde álýsan móte, L. Eth. vii. 15; Th. i. 332, 15. II b. of the uses to which wergild paid as a fine in religious matters (cf. L. E. G. 2; Th. i. 168, 1-3) could be applied see the following :-- Gif for godbótan feohbót áríseþ, ðæt gebyreþ rihtlíce . . . tó godcundan neódan (these are enumerated in the section); hwílum be wíte, hwílum be wergilde (at times the feohbót is in the form of wergild), L. Eth. vi. 51; Th. i. 328, 4-10. III. the wergild served as a standard by which other matters might be regulated, v. wer, IV Se ðe on ðære fóre wǽre ðǽr mon monnan ofslóge, getriéwe hine ðæs sleges, and ða fóre gebéte be ðæs ofslegenan wergielde. Gif his wergield sié .cc. sciłł., gebéte mid .l. sciłł., and ða ilcan riht dó man be ðám deórborenum, L. In. 34; Th. i. 124, 1. Twelfhyndes mannes áð forstent .vi. ceorla áð, for ðam . . . his wergyld bið six ceorla wergyld, L. O. 13; Th. i. 182, 21. Gif hé hine selfne triówan wille, dó ðæt be cyninges wergelde, L. Alf. pol. 4; Th. i. 64, 2. Gif hé ládian wille, dó ðæt be ðæs cynges wergilde, oþþe mid þryfealdan ordále, L. Eth. v. 30; Th. i. 312, 7. Gylde ðam cyninge be his weregilde (wer-, v. l. ), L. C. S. 67; Th. i. 410, 17. In the following case the wergild seems to have suggested the amount of a bequest to the church :-- Hió (the testator's wife ) gebrenge æt Sancte Petre mín twá wergild, gif ðet Godes wille seó ðæt heó ðæt færeld áge, Chart. Th. 481, 10. IV. instances of the payment of wergild are the following. The two young princes Æþelred and Æþelbriht were slain by Thunor, and to their sister eighty hides of land was given as wergild, Lchdm. iii. 424-6. In the war between Ecgfriþ and Æþelred the former's brother was slain. Theodore brought about peace between them 'ðæt nǽniges mannes feorh tó lore wearþ, ne máre blódgyte wæs for ðam ofslægenan cyninges bréðer, ac hé mid feó wiþ hine geþingode, ðæt heora sib wæs,' Bd. 4, 21; S. 590, 24. In 687 Mul, Ceadwalla's brother, was burnt in Kent : in 694 'Cantware geþingodon wiþ Íne, and him gesaldon xxx m., for ðon ðe híe ǽr Mul forbærndon, Chr. 694; Erl. 42, 15. [O. Frs. wer-geld, -ield : O. H. Ger. wer-, weri-gelt fiscus, pretium. Cf. Icel. mann-gjöld; pl.] Cf. leód, leód-gild; and see Kemble's Saxons in England, vol. i. c. x, Grmm. R. A. 650.
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