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[001] son of Walter de Lincoln, concerning land in Grimsby.1 By the law of England he will
[002] also have for his life whatever may accrue, namely, in services and the like and in
[003] wardships and reliefs. But if land or an inheritance accrues after the death of his
[004] wife, it will belong to the heirs, if they are of full age, or2 to the chieflords as guardians
[005] if they are under age, also the wardship, because by this law he may retain nothing
[006] more than what accrued during the life of his wife, as [in the roll] of the eyre of William
[007] of Ralegh in the county of Bedford, at the end of the roll.3 That the child uttered a
[008] cry must be proved because though it may well be that it uttered a cry and proof may
[009] fail, it may well be that it never uttered a cry because it died in the womb, so that it
[010] never came [alive] into the light of day, or died at the moment of birth.4 [For that
[011] reason, though it is said that it was baptized and buried as a christian, that is to no
[012] avail unless it uttered a cry and that is proved.]5 And [because] though it dies at
[013] birth and does not utter a cry, midwives are wont to attest that it was born alive,6 in
[014] fraud of the true heir. And though born naturally deaf and dumb, it ought nevertheless
[015] to utter a cry, whether male or female, for we call them either Eves or Adams
[016] how many soever are born of Eve. Baptism and burial by themselves therefore do not
[017] suffice.

Of a supposititious child.

[019] But what shall be said if the wife has in fact not given birth but a child is substituted
[020] who utters a cry. If that is proved the exception falls.

If it is a monster and for a cry utters a roar.

[022] If when the mother has given birth the child declines to a monster, and when it ought
[023] to utter a cry utters a roar, it then seems that the exception ought not to be good,
[024] because the child is a monster since it is not born in the likeness of a man. But I do
[025] not call a child a monster though nature has given it too few or too many members:7
[026] too few, as where fingers are lacking or the like; too many, as where there are too
[027] many fingers or joints, as six or more where there ought to be no more than five,
[028] 8<or if nature has given it useless members, or if it is bent or hump-backed or its
[029] limbs are twisted.>9 <And note that this exception lies both in a possessory action, as


1. Not in B.N.B.

2. ‘vel’

3. Not in B.N.B.

4. Om: ‘ita quod . . . emiserit’

5. Cf. supra 360

6. ‘protestare’; om: ‘et legitimum . . . probare’

7. Supra ii, 31, 203-4

8. Supra i, 422

9. Ibid.

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