Medieval Law Quiz: Could You Avoid Being Punished?

In medieval England, what was the penalty for stealing a loaf of bread?



Hand amputation


Amputation was a common medieval punishment for theft, with the severity of the crime often determining the severity of the punishment.

What law did King Edward II of England enact regarding armor in 1322?

Ban on wearing armor in parliament

Mandatory armor for all men

Armor tax for nobles

Free armor for knights

King Edward II made it illegal to wear armor in parliament as a measure to reduce the threat of violence among members.

In 14th century France, what was forbidden to do in a vineyard?

Singing loudly

Walking at night

Carrying a weapon

Eating grapes

Eating grapes directly from the vine was often forbidden to protect the owner’s produce, especially during the harvest season.

How were disputes over land typically settled in medieval Scandinavia?


Judges’ decision

King’s decree

Community vote

Duels were a legally sanctioned method to resolve disputes, including those over land, in medieval Scandinavian societies.

What was the punishment for poaching royal game in medieval England?

Community service

Fines and imprisonment



Poaching royal game was considered a severe offense, often punishable by death, especially if the poached animal was a deer or boar.

In medieval Venice, what was prohibited during nighttime?

Selling fish


Wearing masks


Wearing masks at night was banned in Venice to prevent anonymity and reduce the occurrence of nocturnal crimes.

What unique law did medieval Iceland have regarding shipwrecks?

All wrecks are royal property

Locals could claim salvage rights

Ships must be burned

Wreckage used for community buildings

In medieval Iceland, locals had the right to claim salvage from shipwrecks, a vital source of wood and other materials.

In medieval Germany, what was required to open a bakery?

Royal permission

Church blessing

Guild membership

Town mayor approval

Membership in a local baker’s guild was necessary to open and operate a bakery, ensuring quality and adherence to regulations.

What was outlawed in late medieval Florence to curb violence?

Public gatherings

Carrying knives


Drinking alcohol in streets

Carrying knives and other weapons was outlawed in many parts of medieval Europe, including Florence, to reduce public violence.

Which activity was taxed in medieval Hungary to fund military expenses?

Baking bread

Brewing beer

Sewing clothes

Building houses

Brewing beer was often taxed in medieval societies as a way to raise funds for various public expenditures, including military efforts.

In medieval Paris, what were butchers prohibited from doing on Sundays?

Selling meat



Attending church

In medieval Paris, butchers were often prohibited from selling meat on Sundays as part of observing the Sabbath, which was a day of rest and worship.

What was the penalty for adultery in medieval France?

Public shaming




In medieval France, adultery could be punishable by death, reflecting the era’s harsh moral and legal codes that treated it as a severe offense.

In medieval England, who was responsible for maintaining bridges?

Local farmers

The church


All citizens

In medieval England, the responsibility of maintaining bridges often fell to the church, reflecting its integral role in community infrastructure and welfare.

What law concerning bread quality was enacted in 13th-century England?

Weight regulation

Price fixing

Quality inspection

All of these

In 13th-century England, laws were enacted to regulate the weight, price, and quality of bread to prevent fraud and protect consumers.

Wife selling

Husband exile

Public announcement

Church decree

In medieval Scandinavia, publicly announcing the end of a marriage was one way to legally dissolve it, highlighting the community’s role in marital affairs.

What medieval law did King Louis IX of France establish about gambling?

Ban in royal court

Tax on winnings

Gambling for nobles only

Legal in taverns

King Louis IX of France established a law that banned gambling in the royal court to maintain decorum and prevent disputes.

In 12th-century Germany, what was the penalty for damaging a tree in a royal forest?



Hand amputation


In 12th-century Germany, damaging a tree in a royal forest could result in hand amputation, emphasizing the importance of conservation and royal property.

During the medieval period in Italy, what was the tax on salt known as?

Salt duty


Salina tax

Halite fee

The tax on salt in medieval Italy was known as the gabelle, which was a significant source of revenue for local governments.

In medieval England, what was a common punishment for arson?





In medieval England, arson was punishable by execution, reflecting the severe consequences of endangering a community with fire.

What requirement was placed on medieval London bakers?

Mark bread with stamps

Sell only at market

Use specific grains

Bake daily

In medieval London, bakers were required to mark their bread with stamps to indicate source and ensure accountability, aiding in quality control and regulation.

Medieval Misstep?

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Squire in Training

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Law Lord of the Land

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