Molmutine Laws

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The Molmutine Laws were established in Britain by King Dunvallo Molmutius (Welsh Dyfnwal Moelmud), according to Geoffrey of Monmouth. Dyfnwal Moelmud is referred to in Welsh tradition, predating Geoffrey's work, as a lawmaker but there are no native sources for Geoffrey's elaboration of that tradition.

One of the Molmutine Laws, according to Geoffrey's account, declared that the temples of the gods and cities should act as sanctuaries from death. Furthermore, anyone who flees to a temple for being accused of a crime must be pardoned by the accuser upon departure from the temple. This law soon included all roads leading to temples and all farmers were declared safe from such crimes.

According to Geoffrey's account, King Molmutius borrowed many of his laws from the Trojans who settled in Britain before him. One such Trojan/Molmutine law allowed the reign of queens.

Iolo Morganwg's triads[edit]

At the end of the 18th century or beginning of the 19th, antiquarian forgerer Iolo Morganwg claimed to have found a long list of Welsh triads giving the laws. They include.

'There are three tests of civil liberty; equality of rights; equality of taxation; freedom to come and go.

'Three things are indispensable to a true union of nations; sameness of laws, rights and language.

'There are three things free to all Britons; the forest, the unworked mine, the right of hunting.

'There are three property birthrights of every Briton; five British acres of land for a home, the right of suffrage in the enacting of the laws, the male at twenty-one, the female on her marriage.

'There are three things which every Briton may legally be compelled to attend; the worship of God, military service, the courts of law.

'There are three things free to every man, Briton or foreigner, the refusal of which no law will justify; water from spring, river or well; firing from a decayed tree, a block of stone not in use.

'There are three classes which are exempt from bearing arms; bards, judges, graduates in law or religion. These represent God and His peace, and no weapon must ever be found in their hands.

'There are three persons who have a right of public maintenance; the old, the babe, the foreigner who can not speak the British tongue.'

'There are three things free to a country and its borders; the roads, the rivers and the places of worship. These are under the protection of God and His peace.' (In this law originated the term 'The King's Highway.')