Even in Germany, the citadel of feudalism, the progress of the new ideas and 오피사이트 the influence of the Roman law had spread to such an extent that in the Golden Bull of Charles IV., in 1356, there is a provision allowing the torture of slaves to incriminate their masters in cases of sedition against any prince of the empire;1604 and the form of expression employed shows that this was an innovation. Liége, which at that period formed part of the empire, furnishes us with a case in 1376 which shows not only that torture then was an habitual resource in procedure, but also that it was applied as illogically there as we have seen it in Paris. The young wife of a burgher named Gilles Surlet was found one morning strangled in bed. The husband, as though conscious of innocence, at once presented himself to the authorities asserting with fearful oaths his ignorance of the crime. A servant girl of the household was then arrested, and she, without torture, immediately confessed that she had committed the murder; but the judges, not satisfied with this, submitted her to the question, when she denied her guilt with the most506 provoking constancy. Suspicion then grew against the husband, and he was duly tortured without extorting a confession, though at the same time he declared that the girl was innocent; and on being taken back to his cell he strangled himself during the night. The chronicler does not record what was the fate of the girl, but the body of Gilles was treated as that of a murderer—it was dragged to the place of execution and broken on the wheel, while the superstitious did not fail to note that on this dreary transit it was accompanied by a black hog, which refused to be driven away until the gallows was reached.1605

In Corsica, at the same period, we find the use of torture fully established, though subject to careful restrictions. In ordinary cases, it could only be employed by authority of the governor, to whom the judge desiring to use it transmitted all the facts of the case; the governor then issued an order, at his pleasure, prescribing the mode and degree to which it might be applied.1606 In cases of treason, however, these limitations were not observed, and the accused was liable to its infliction as far and as often as might be found requisite to effect a purpose.1607

The Italian communities seem to have still at this period preserved some limitations on the application of torture. In Milan, in 1338, it could be only employed in capital cases where there was evidence or public repute; it could only be ordered by the lord of the city, his vicar, the podestà, and the criminal judges, and even these were heavily fined if they used it illegally or elsewhere than in the accustomed torture-chamber; the abuse of torturing witnesses had already been introduced, but the judge was warned that this could be done only when the witness swore to having been personally present and then varied in his testimony or gave false evidence. Torture, moreover, could only be inflicted once unless new507 evidence supervened.1608 In the statutes of Mirandola, revised in 1386, it could not be employed in cases which did not involve corporal punishment or a fine of at least twenty-five lire; nor even then unless the podestà submitted all the evidence to the accused and gave him a sufficient and definite term in which to purge himself.1609 In Piacenza, about the same period, torture was guarded with even more careful restrictions. There is no indication that witnesses were exposed to it. Every effort to obtain testimony was to be exhausted, and the accused was to be afforded full opportunities for defence before he could be subjected to it, and then there must be sufficient indications of guilt, mere rumor being inadequate to justify it. Moreover, except in cases of high treason, theft, highway robbery, assassination, and arson, a single judge could not order it, but the case had to be submitted to all the judges and the podestà, who determined by a majority in secret ballot whether it should be employed. If any of these formalities were omitted, the confession extorted was invalid, and the judge was mulcted in a fine of a hundred lire.1610

The peculiar character of Venetian civilization made torture almost a necessity. The atmosphere of suspicion and secrecy which surrounded every movement of that republican despotism, the mystery in which it delighted to shroud itself, and the pitiless nature of its legislation conspired to render torture an indispensable resource. How freely it was administered, especially in political affairs, is well illustrated in the statutes of the State Inquisition, where the merest suspicion is sufficient to authorize its application. Thus, if a senatorial secretary were observed to be more lavish in his expenditures than his salary would appear to justify, he was at once suspected of being in the pay of some foreign minister, and508 spies were ordered on his track. If he were then simply found to be absent from his house at undue hours, he was immediately to be seized and put to the torture. So, if any one of the innumerable secret spies employed by the inquisitors were insulted by being called a spy, the offender was arrested and tortured to ascertain how he had guessed the character of the emissary.1611 Human life and human suffering were of little account in the eyes of the cold and subtle spirits who moulded the policy of the mistress of the Adriatic.

The rude mountaineers of the Valtelline preserved to a later date their respect for the ancient guarantees of the law. In their statutes as revised in 1548 torture is indeed permitted, but only in case of persons accused of crimes involving the penalty of blood. In accusations of less heinous offences and in matters concerning money, it was strictly forbidden; and even in cases where it was allowed it could not be employed without the assent of the central authority of the territory. When proceedings were had by inquisition, moreover, all the evidence was submitted to the accused, and a sufficient delay was accorded to him in which to frame a defence before he could be ordered to the torture. Thus were avoided the worst abuses to which the system had been made subservient long before that time in all the surrounding regions.1612

Other races adopted the new system with almost equal hesitation. Thus in Hungary the first formal embodiment of torture in the law occurs in 1514, and though the terms employed show that it had been previously used to some extent, yet the restrictions laid down manifest an extreme jealousy of its abuse. Mere suspicion was not sufficient. To justify its application, a degree of proof was requisite which was almost competent for condemnation, and the nature of this evidence is well exemplified in the direction that if a judge himself509 witnessed a murder, he could not order the homicide to be tortured unless there was other testimony sufficient, for he could not be both witness and judge, and his knowledge of the crime belonged to his private and not to his judicial capacity.1613 With such refinements, there would seem to be little danger of the extension of the custom.

In Poland, torture does not make its appearance until the fifteenth century, and then it was introduced gradually, with strict instructions to the tribunals to use the most careful discretion in its administration.1614 Until, at least, the seventeenth century, there remained in force laws of Casimir the Great promulgated in the fourteenth, prohibiting any prosecution not brought by a proper accuser, in whose presence alone could the matter be heard, thus showing that the inquisitorial process found no foothold in the Polish courts.1615 In Russia, the first formal allusion to it is to be found in the Ulagenié Zakonof, a code promulgated in 1497, by Ivan III., which merely orders that persons accused of robbery, if of evil repute, may be tortured to supply deficiencies of evidence; but as the duel was still freely allowed to the accused, the use of torture must have been merely incidental.1616 From another source, dating about 1530, we learn that it was customary to extort confessions from witches by pouring upon them from a height a small stream of cold water; and in cases of contumacious and stubborn criminals, the finger-nails were wrenched off with little wooden wedges.1617 Still, torture makes510 but little show in the subsequent codes, such as the Sudebtnick, issued in 1550, and the Sobornoié Ulagenié, promulgated in 1648.1618 In fact, these regions were still too barbarous for so civilized a process.