WiSLica and Piotrków Statutes of 1346-47

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WiŚLica and Piotrków Statutes of 1346-47

 

a Polish law code, also known as the Statutes of Casimir the Great. It was issued by the Polish king Casimir III separately for Little and Great Poland. The Great Poland statute was adopted at the feudal assembly in Piotrkow in 1346 and consists of 34 articles. The Little Poland statute was adopted at the assembly in Wislica in 1347 and consists of 59 articles. Both statutes were written in Latin.

The Wiślica and Piotrków Statutes were codified on the basis of Polish customary law. However, in the Little Poland statute this law was adapted to new economic and political conditions, and the statute therefore acquired validity for the state as a whole. The Wiślica and Piótrkow Statutes reflected the transition from rent in kind to money rent and the desire of the central authorities to end feudal fragmentation and to unify the law with a view to strengthening manorial property. For example, the right to dispose of apportioned land was extended and the conditions for obtaining ownership of property by prescription were laid down. The Wislica and Piotrkow Statutes also abolished the right of mortmain and established the terms under which peasants could leave their villages. Many articles deal with court procedures and criminal law. As the Wislica and Piotrkow Statutes were applied, new redactions arose, adding to and modifying the original text. The Complete Codex of the Statutes of Casimir the Great was promulgated in the 1420’s. In the 15th century the statutes were translated into Russian because they were valid not only in Poland but also in Galician Rus’, which Poland had seized.

REFERENCES

Statuty Kazimierza Wielkiego w opracowaniu O. Balzera. Poznari, 1947.
Hube, R. Ustawodawstwo Kazimierza Wielkiego, Warsaw, 1881. (Prawo polskie z XIV w.)
Roman, S. Geneza statutów Kazimierza Wielkiego. Krakow, 1961.

Z. M. CHERNILOVSKII