Aurea Gemma <Gallica> 3b.55-57
Table of contents -- Next section -- Previous section -- Edition
Main menu


[3b.56] However much more favorable natural right is than the laws of nations, so much more worthy is liberty than servitude. For nature has granted liberty to all men, whom the law of nations alone has drawn into the yoke of servitude. Thus, since the servile condition is burdensome and onerous, it seems no small thing to liberate a man from it and to present him with the privilege of liberty.

[3b.57] This will to decide these things for myself has arisen within me, that I should release my serf Louis from all obligation of servitude and bestow him with all manner of liberty. Thus I, H., remit from the repertoire of my lordship whatever right I had in him, retaining only this much for myself, that he shall help me gratis one day each year in cultivating vineyards. He shall receive a just wage for any other days he serves me. For when anything is done for kindness' sake, it should be done so that no contradiction whatsoever is allowed. We wish that this, our donation, be written down on the present page and be corroborated by the impression of the royal seal and the subscription of witnesses.

© Steven M. Wight, Los Angeles 1998
Scrineum © Universitą di Pavia 1999