Perhaps the most hilarious addition to the list as the name denotes exactly what it entails. Like humans, animals in medieval times could be accused and sentenced for criminal offences enshrined in civil law. Animals eligible for trials included dogs, cockroaches, mice, snails and most importantly cats, who were associated with bad luck and the Devil. Punishments ranged from imprisonment, to execution and even to excommunication: that’s right, you heard it here, cockroaches and other such insects were eligible for excommunication from the Catholic Church. Why these trials occurred and for what purpose is up to debate, as it is a question most historians believe will never truly be answered.
Animal Court (2/5)
Submitted to "Most Unusual Traditions of Medieval Britain"