Hanover, Germany: 1712. Unique. Pamphlet. Highly curious and politically motivated legal edict, produced in Hanover [Holy Roman Empire], regulating prices of various forms of execution, and also the regulations for the salaries that may be charged by hangmen. On behalf of Duke Georg Ludewig of Braunschweig und Lüneburg, the present edict sought to control "excessive" execution fees. Georg Ludewig, the Duchy of Brunswick-Lüneburg (Hanover), was also known as George I, King of Great Britain and Ireland, beginning two years later in 1714. This edict, interestingly enough, was issued during the War of the Spanish Succession in Europe.
The Duke is basically calling out the local states within the region for delinquency and organizing of unauthorized fees for executions. Once regulations and set fees were established, with different fees for different methods, including strangulation (1 Thaler 24 Marien Groschen), decapitation (ditto), hanging, etc. The edict states there should be a limited payment for assistants, nails, chains, but not for tools - unless said tools were broken in service (sic). Overheads are claimable if caused by delay, but limits are imposed on "hospitality" (sic). Section VI gives special notice on the execution of deserters and concessions to those in the military. The edict was enforced by threat of punishment (sic). *Unknown to David Murray, "Lawyers' Merriments." An interesting glimpse into 18th century early German state law, labor, and politics. No copies held outside Germany [WorldCat]. Very Good. [Hanover] January 16, 1712. Single folio broadside (320 mm x 205 mm). Printed on one single sheet, recto and verso watermarked pages, handsome heading and ornamented versals in common blackletter Fraktur typeface on common rag [could be flax] deckle-edge paper. Legible date of decree. Evidence of two early folds, likely folded into fourths and page four [verso] is lightly stained [with coffee, tea?]. Untrimmed and printed for travel and distribution, however, in exceedingly good condition. Item #9073