Re: Kinslaying outlaws

From: Trotsky <TTrotsky_at_3kz7buDsnlA2kjtBZ0ytHR-qyp9QDKZVgeMeei5x6X9rzNRxDQ0oBs4z2G35cdMRVQ0>
Date: Sat, 22 Sep 2012 09:59:19 +0100

Andrew Larsen wrote:
> But that brings up another interesting issue. Germanic kinship was reckoned on both sides, with a man being related to both his father ad mother's kin equally. But isn't a Heortling bloodline defined by which parent is the over-spouse? The under-spouse moves into the over-spouse's stead and their children join the over-spouse's bloodline. That would mean that the children are kin to the over-spouse but not the under-spouse, and could therefore kill a relative on the under-spouse's side without it being kinslaying. Or am I misunderstanding Heortling traditions here?

That would be how I'd interpret it, yes. It would still be a Bad Thing, but not a chaos-inducingly Bad Thing. As I see it, part of the reason that kinslaying is so terrible is that Heortling society has no legal mechanism for dealing with it - precisely because it's so unimaginably awful. If I wrong someone, my bloodline pays theirs reparations and that (assuming it's accepted, and we don't just feud over it) removes the stain of the wrong. Because it occurs within the bloodline, kinslaying is a wrong that can't be righted, and, IMO, that's why it attracts Chaos.

In the case of a member of a patrilineal bloodline killing a member of his mother's family, the killer's bloodline can pay a wergild to the wronged one. The problem can be sorted, or at least feuded over (which is a socially acceptable alternative, if not always a bright idea), and therefore doesn't generate the utter violation of social and legal norms that brings Chaos. It's still very bad, and you shouldn't do it, but, IMO, it doesn't bring chaos.

Gamer and Skeptic

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