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[001] [in the county] or perhaps outside it with intent to defraud, and [if] the distrainor has
[002] lands and chattels within the county, let the king's serjeant take twice the number of
[003] the taker's beasts and retain them until the beasts so driven away have been brought
[004] back. But what if the taker has neither land nor chattels within the county? What
[005] then? Since the authority of the sheriff does not extend to the other county and
[006] [if] it is done fraudulently in order to escape his authority, let recourse then be
[007] had to the king's authority; let this writ issue:

The writ of attachment [to show] why a man seized beasts and drove them outside the county.

[009] ‘The king to the sheriff, greeting. Because A. has made us secure etc. (or ‘If A.
[010] has made you secure etc.’) put B. by gage and safe pledges to be before our justices
[011] at Westminster on such a day to show why he took the said A's beasts in such a
[012] county and drove them from that county (where the same B. has neither lands
[013] nor chattels,1 though he has fees) into your county, placing them fraudulently
[014] beyond the power of our sheriff of such [a county],2 and there detains them against
[015] our peace, as A. says.’ A writ will also issue if the lord has done this to aggrieve
[016] his tenant, when [though] he has a fee and a chief court to which the tenant owes
[017] suit within the county where the tenant lives, he drives them out of the county
[018] arbitrarily and fraudulently, not of necessity because of the lack of a court. The
[019] writ then runs as follows: ‘to show why he seized the beasts of the said A. in such
[020] a county where the same B. has lands and tenements and a chief court and drove
[021] them etc. (as above).’ But if he does so of necessity, because he has no court in
[022] the first county, fraud must not be imputed to him.3

When the sheriff or the king's serjeant has viewed the beasts without hindrance.

[024] When the sheriff or the king's serjeant has viewed the seized beasts without
[025] hindrance and gainsaying, let him cause them] 4to be released to the plaintiff at
[026] once and give both parties a day at the next county court, that the seizor of the
[027] beasts [whose seizure cannot be denied against the record of the sheriff or the
[028] serjeant, whether it is lawful or unlawful] may show the reason why they were
[029] lawfully seized and then the plaintiff, if he can, that they were seized unlawfully. At
[030] which county court no essoin for the seizor should lie de jure, since a wrongful taking
[031] and detainer against gage and pledges may be regarded as a kind of robbery in
[032] breach of the king's peace, something more serious than a5 disseisin. When both
[033] parties are present in the county court, let the seizor then declare that his seizure
[034] was lawful and in accordance with the judgment of his court, for a service which
[035] the said plaintiff,


1. ‘catalla’

2. ‘talis loci’

3. Infra iii, 154

4. Continued from 442, n. 5; the preceding words a connective

5. ‘una’ for ‘nova,’ or omit, as Fleta, ii, ca. 47: ‘plus quam disseisina’

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