The Pravosudie Mitropolich'e

Lo, this is the Metropolitan's Just Judgment.


1. Cut off the head of a man who dishonors the Grand Prince; and for a lesser prince, or estate steward, or millenariuses, or okol'nichie, or boyar, or servitor, or abbot, or priest, or deacon, they judge the dishonor payment according to [the victim's] property and service [record].

2. For the prince's steward the dishonor payment is one gold grivna, and the same for the [prince's] lieutenant.

3. If they judge someone to pay in gold for a dishonor, then the judges receive no part of that payment, but they divide the judge's fees.

4. And for this reason a man may be divorced from his wife:

The first cause: if a man discovers his wife with another man, and metes out punishment against her, then divorce them.

The second cause: if a woman plots against her husband with poison.

The third [cause]: if [a woman] sleeps apart from her husband.

The fourth [cause]: if [a woman] goes to a feast with other people.

The fifth [cause]: if [a woman] goes to festivals without her husband.

The sixth [cause]: if she orders [someone] to rob her husband.

The seventh [cause]: if someone plots against her husband, and she knows about it, but does not tell [him].

On account [of any of the above] divorce them after an investigation [that confirms one of these causes].

5. [The compensation] for [theft of] a dove is 9 kunas, for a duck 30 kunas, for a goose 30 kunas, for a swan 30 kunas, for a crane 30 kunas, for a cat 3 grivnas, for a dog 3 grivnas; for a mare 60 kunas; for a bull 3 grivnas; for a cow 40 kunas; for a three-year-old cow 30 kunas; for a two-year-old cow 1/2 grivna; for a calf 5 kunas; for a ram 1 nogata, for a pig 1 nogata, for a sheep 5 kunas; for a stallion 1 grivna; for a foal 6 nogatas.

6. The person who finds something does not share it with the person who preceded him [along a road or through a field]; but if the person who precedes [another finds something, then] he shares it with the one who follows.

7. If someone rapes a girl, or abducts [her], and the girl is a boyar's daughter or [a boyar's] wife, then [the guilty party is to pay] her five gold grivnas for the offense; if she be the daughter of lesser boyars, [then he is to pay her] one gold grivna; [if she be the daughter] of "good" people, [then the offender is to pay her] 30 silver grivnas; if [she be the daughter] of the well-to-do [then he is to pay her] three rubles. And for the abductions [he is to pay] one grivna to the bishop, and the prince punishes [him].

8. If some [serious] illness afflicts [a man's wife], either blindness or some lengthy illness, then for that [reason he may] discard her; likewise, [a woman may discard her] husband [for the same reason].

9. If someone cuts another's beard or [the hair off his] head, [then he is to pay the victim] 12 grivnas, and the prince punishes [him].

10. And you, judges, judge the words and not the hearts [of witnesses?]: what is fitting [material for] a trial is what comes out of a man's mouth.

11. For [harming a man's] eye [the offender is to pay] to the man half the sum that protects a person's life, [i.e.,] 40 grivnas.

12. And murderers are to be punished according to [the regulations of the Byzantine law code,] the Procheiros Nomos: mutilate him and sell [him into slavery]; and if he flees, give his house over to plunder.

13. And do not tie up, nor punish, nor hang a thief [captured] without the physical evidence of the theft.

14. If they kill a man in a tavern, then [they are to pay the victim's kin] one nogata for the dishonor.

15. For false seizure of another's land [the perpetrator is to pay] 100 grivnas.

16. For taking justice into your own hands pay 2 rubles.

17. [The thief is to pay] the rural judge a fee in accordance with the [value] of the physical evidence of the theft, and the same [amount] to the person who filed suit.

18. If a witness [himself] be accused [of a crime], and he tells the judge about this accusation, then he may serve as a witness [all the same].

19. And the thief [?] himself is to hold any documents [deriving from litigation], and do not give [such documents] to people for defense.

20. And a judge himself is to represent [in court] his own bishop, and he is not to send a copy from the trial [to the bishop for confirmation].

21. And if someone's slave or a thief with physical evidence [of the theft] be captured on someone else's patrimony, conduct him to his own judge and judge him [there].

22. And concerning what happened three years [or more] before, do not seek a trial; nor seek [a trial] for what happened under another prince or rural judge.

23. In matters of monastery governance, a monk [can be] a witness for his own abbot, but on another matter he may not testify.

24. If someone kills a dog or cat, the fee is one grivna, and [the perpetrator is to provide] a dog in place of the dog [that he killed], and a cat in place of the cat [he killed].

25. If someone brags [of his superiority over] another, then let him win the argument there, and that is his trial.

26. If a thief flees from his bailiff, and he was not yet convicted, then the bailiff need not pay any fee; but if [the thief] was [already] convicted, then [the bailiff must bear] the fee; if [the thief] flees, then the bailiff is responsible [not only] for the fee, but [also] for the value of the suit.

27. Children cannot be witnesses for their father but [they may be] witnesses against their father.

28. A priest, abbot, or deacon may not be a witness, except in a clerical case for someone of their own rank [lit., except for their own brother]: an[other] abbot, priest, and deacon.

29. And if a hired worker stands in court [and says that] he does not wish to remain with his lord, then there is no offense in this, but he is to give [his lord] twice the advance [that the lord made to him; if he flees from his lord [without having made such a payment], return him to his lord in full slavery.

30. If a lord kills his full slave, this is not murder, but he [the lord] is responsible before God. But if [a lord kills his] semi-slave or hired worker, then that is murder.

31. A thief or [a person] convicted [of crime] may be a litigant [at court], but may not be a witness.

32. If a man marries another woman without having separated from his former wife, then the man is guilty [of adultery]: take the second [lit., young] wife into a [church] house [i.e., a convent], and [the man] is to live with his first [lit., old] wife.

33. If someone fornicates with livestock, [he is to pay] 12 grivnas; if a father-in-law [fornicates] with his daughter-in-law [he is to pay] 100 grivnas; if a man's brother fornicates with his brother's wife [he is to pay] 30 grivnas; [if a man fornicates] with his sister, [he is to pay] 30 grivnas; [if a man fornicates] with his stepmother [he is to pay] 40 grivnas. If two brothers [copulate] with one woman [they are to pay] 100 grivnas, and the wench [shall enter a church] house. And [they all shall do] penance according to [canon] law.

34. If someone has two wives, [he is to] pay 40 grivnas, and whichever [wife] is false [i.e., whichever wife he married most recently] [shall enter] a convent, and the man shall live with his first wife according to the law. And if he shall treat her badly, then it is fitting to punish him.

35. If a wife beats her husband, [she is to pay] 3 grivnas.

36. If two women fight, [exact] 1 grivna from the guilty one [who started the fight?].

37. If a monk or nun deserts his or her vocation, then the bishop metes out punishment to them.

38. And neither the prince nor a rural judge is to interfere in whatever happens within a monastery or among monastery personnel; the bishop [alone] has jurisdiction over them.