Konrád Ota, Statute of

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Konrád Ota, Statute of

 

one of the earliest codifications of Czech feudal law.

The statute was promulgated in 1189 by Prince Konrad Ota. Three redactions of the statute are known, dating from 1222, 1229, and 1237. In addition to incorporating modified Czech customary law, it was based on several German legal acts, such as the Imperial Peace of 1152, and probably on the Bible. The statute guaranteed the inviolability of feudal landed property, abolished the distinction between benefices and hereditary estates, and established the legal and other privileges of feudal lords. In criminal law, the statute introduced strict punishments for thieves and those who harbored them, permitting the killing of a thief caught in the act. The statute significantly broadened the authority of court officials at the expense of the old forms of informal justice, such as arbitration. The statute was an important step in the overall revision of old customary law, particularly in the judicial sphere.

REFERENCES

Prameny k dějinám státu a práva československu, part 1. Prague, 1957.
Naše ndrodní minulost v dokumentech, part 1. Prague, 1954.