Approver’s Procedural Position in English Criminal Trial Between the 12th and 16th Centuries

Paweł Złamańczuk

The paper analyses the procedural position of the approver in the English criminal trial between the 12th and 16th centuries. The medieval prototype of King’s evidence was the approver – a self-confessed felon who accused his accomplices of complicity in his crime. He was required to prove the truth of his accusation, either in trial by battle or by verdict of the jury. In the late 15th century, approvers seem to have become increasingly uncommon. The 16th century saw the development of a practice which historians refer to as “appeachment”. Unlike approvement, appeachment did not involve trial by battle, nor did it require accomplices to be convicted.
Słowa kluczowe: approver, abjuration of the realm, benefi t of clergy, pardon, sanctuary, trial by jury, trial by battle

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