of the offence.” 1 In other cases, again, the degree of guilt is determined by the station of the person robbed.? Among the Gaika tribe of the Kafirs, for instance, the fine by which a theft is punished “is fixed according to the rank of the person against whom the offence is committed, confiscation of property being the general punishment imposed for offences against chiefs.": Among many other peoples theft or robbery committed on the property of a chief or king is treated with exceptional severity. Sometimes difference in religion affects the criminality of the thief. According to modern Buddhism, “to take that which belongs to a sceptic is an inferior crime, and the guilt rises in magnitude in proportion to the merit of the individual upon whom the theft is perpetrated. To take that which belongs to the associated priesthood, or to a supreme Buddha, is the highest crime." But the commonest and most important personal distinction influencing the moral valuation of theft and robbery is that between a tribesman or fellow-countryman and a stranger.

Among uncivilised races intra-tribal theft is carefully distinguished from extra-tribal theft. Whilst the former is forbidder, the latter is commonly allowed, and robbery committed on a stranger is an object of praise.“

The Tehuelches of Patagonia, “although honest enough as regards each other, will, nevertheless, not scruple to steal from any one not belonging to their party. ”? The Abipones, who never took anything from their own countrymen, “ used to rob and murder the Spaniards whilst they thought them their enemies." 8 Among the Mbayas the law, Thou shalt not steal, “ applies only to tribesmen and

1 Laws of Manu, viii. 337 sq.

2 Crawfúril, op. cit. iii. 115. (Java. nese). Desoignies, in Steinmetz, Rechtsverhältnisse, p. 281 (Msalala). Maclean, Compendium of Kafir Laws and Customs, p: 143.


Decle, Three years in Savage Africa, p. 73. Post, Afrikanische Jurispru. dene, ii. 91. Laws of Ethelbirht, 4, 9 (Anglo-Saxons).

llardy, Manual of Budhism, p. 483.

3 Brownlee, in Maclean, op. cit. p.

Cf. Tylor, Primitive Society,' in
Contemporary Review, xxi. 715 sg.;
Anthropology, p. 413 sq.

i Musters, op. cit. p. 195.
8 Dobrizhoffer, op. cit. ii. 148.

I 12.

4 Ellis, Tour through Hawaii, p. 429 sq. Ellis, Ewe-speaking Peoples of the Slave Coast, p. 225 (Dahomans).

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allies, not to strangers and enemies."i The high standard of honesty which prevailed among the North American Indians did not refer to foreigners, especially white men, whom they thought it no shame to rob or cheat.? "A theft from an individual of another band,” says Colonel Dodge, “is no crime. A theft from one of the same band is the greatest of all crimes.” 3 Among the Californian Indians, for instance, who are proverbially honest in their own neighbourhood, “a stranger in the gates who seems to be friendless may lose the very blankets off him in the night.”Among the Ahts thieving" is a common vice where the property of other tribes, or white men, is concerned.” 5 Of the Dacotahs we read that, though the men think it undignified for them to steal even from white people, “they send their wives thus unlawfully to procure what they want. Of the Greenlanders the old missionary Egede writes :-“If they can lay hands upon any thing belonging to us foreigners, they make no great scruple of conscience about it. But, as we now have lived some time in the country amongst them, and are look'd upon as true inhabitants of the land, they at last have forborne to molestus any more that way. Another early authority states, “If they can purloin or even forcibly seize the property of a foreigner, it is a feather in their cap" ;8 and, according to Dr. Nansen, it is still held by the Greenlanders " to be far less objectionable to rob Europeans than their own fellow-countrymen." 9 Many travellers have complained of the pilfering tendencies of Eskimo tribes with whom they have come into contact.10 Richardson believes that, in the opinion of an Eskimo, “ to steal boldly and adroitly from a stranger is an act of heroism.” 11 Of the Eskimo about Behring Strait Mr. Nelson writes :-“Stealing from people of the same village or tribe is regarded as wrong. . . . To steal from a stranger or from people of another tribe is not considered wrong so long as it does not bring trouble on the community.” I Tylor, in Contemporary Review, land, ii. 335 sq. Cf. Idem, Eskimo The Chukchi 1 and Koriaks 2 consider theft reputable or glorious if committed on a stranger, though criminal if committed in their own communities. The hill people of the Central Provinces of India, whilst observant of the rights of property among themselves, do not scruple to plunder those to whom they are under no obligation of fidelity. The Bataks of Sumatra, who hardly ever steal among themselves, are expert at pilfering from strangers when not restrained by the laws of hospitality, and think it no moral offence to do so. tribes in the Malay Archipelago likewise hold it allowable to plunder the same stranger or traveller who, when forlorn and destitute, would find a hospitable reception among them.“ “ The strict honesty," says Mr. Melville, which the inhabitants of nearly all the Polynesian Islands manifest towards each other, is in striking contrast with the thieving propensities some of them evince in their intercourse with foreigners. It would almost seem that, according to their peculiar code of morals, the pilfering of a hatchet or a wrought nail from a European is looked upon as a praiseworthy action. Or rather, it may be presumed, that bearing in mind the wholesale forays made upon them by their nautical visitors, they consider the property of the latter as a fair object of reprisal." 6 In Fiji theft is regarded as no offence at all when practised on a foreigner. The Savage Islanders consider theft from a tribesman a vice, but theft from a member of another tribe a virtue. Of the Sandwich Islanders, again, we are told that they stole from rich strangers on board well loaded ships, whereas Europeans settled among them left their doors and shops unlocked without apprehension. Speaking of the honesty of the Herbert River natives, Northern Queensland, Mr. Lumholtz adds :-" It is, of course, solely among members of the same tribe that there is so great a difference between mine and thine ; strange tribes look upon each other as wild beasts.” 10 The aborigines of West Australia “would not consider the act of pillaging base when practised on another people, or carried on beyond the limits of their own tribe.”

Life, p. 159.54 ? Thid. p. 716.

10 Murdoch, "Ethnological Results * Dhulge, op. cil. p. 79.

of the Point Barrow Expedition, in • Puuers, Tribes of California, p. Ann. Rep. Bur. Ethn. ix. 41. See. 4109

mann, Voyage of Herald," j. 65; Sproat, op. cil. p. 159. Cf. Macfie, Armstrong, Discovery of the North. I'mniiriser Island and British Colunbia, West Passage, p. 196 (Western Es.

kimo). * Fistman, acoal, p. xvii.

" Richardson, Arctic Searching Ex: Egerle, op. cit. p. 124 sq.

pedition, i. 352. Cranz, op. cit. i. 175. See also 12 Nelson, in Aun. Rer. Bur. Ethn. 1)alager, op. cit. p. 69.

Jansen, First Crossing of Green.

" 12

xxi. 716.



xviii. 293.

Among the For tribe of Central Africa “it is not considered i Georgi, op. cit. iii. 183.

(Micronesians). 2 Ibid. iii. 170.

Krasheninnikoff, 7 Williams and Calvert, op. cit. p. op. cit. p. 232. 3 Hislop, op. cit. p. 1.

8 Thomson, Savage Island, p. 94. 4 Marsden, op. cit. p. 389.

von Kotzebue, op. cit. iii. 255. 5 Crawfurd, op. cit. i. 72.

10 Lumholtz, Among Cannibals, p. 6 Melville,· Typee, p. 295, n. 1.

148. also Williams, Missionary Enterprises, 11 Chauncy, in Brough Smyth, op. cit. p. 530 (Samoans); Hale, op. cit. p. 73

" 11




ii. 278 sq.



right to rob strangers, but the chiefs wink at this offence, and the stranger runs but a poor chance of obtaining justice. Of the Mandingoes Caillié observes that, whilst they do not steal from each other, “their probity with respect to others is very equivocal and in particular towards strangers, who would be very imprudent to shew them any thing that might tempt their cupidity.” 2 When an Eastern Central African is plundered by a companion, he may be heard exclaiming, “ If you had stolen from a white man, then I could have understood it, but to steal from a black man

Among the Masai the warriors and old men have a profound contempt for a thief, but “cattleraiding from neighbouring tribes they do not consider stealing." The Wafiomi and Shilluk e regard theft or robbery committed on a stranger as a praiseworthy action, though they never or rarely practise it on members of their own people. The Barea and Kunáma? and the inhabitants of Saraë consider it honourable for a man to rob an enemy of his tribe. The Kabyles of Djurdjura, who demand strict mutual honesty from members of the same village, see nothing wrong in stealing from a stranger. Among the Bedouins “travellers passing without proper escort from or introduction to the tribes, may expect to lose their beasts, goods, clothes, and all they possess. There is no kind of shame attached to such acts of rapine. . . . By desert law, the act of passing through the desert entails forfeiture of goods to whoever can seize them.” 10 Indeed, the Arab is proud of robbing his enemies, and of bringing away by stealth what he could not have taken by open force.11 The Ossetes “distinguent . . . le vol commis au préjudice d'une personne étrangère à la famille, et le vol commis au préjudice d'un parent. Le premier, à proprement parler, n'est pas un acte criminel ; le second, au contraire, est tenu pour un délit." 12

Similar views prevailed among the ancient Teutons. Robberies,” says Caesar, “ which are committed beyond


! Felhin, Notes on the For Tribe of Central Africa,' in Proceed. Roy. Sx. Edinburgh, xiii. 234.

Bianco, p. 83.

Munzinger, Ostafrikanische Studien, p. 531.


? Caillie, op. cit. i. 353. Cf. Mungo Park, op. cit. p. 239 sq.

* Macdonald, Africana, i. 182.

* Hlinile, op. cit. p. 104. Cf. Johnson, Kilima-njaro Expedition, p. 419.

Baumann, Durih Massailand, p. 179.

6 Petherick, Travels in Central Afriia, ii. 3. Beltrame, n Fiume

8 Ibid. p. 386.
9 Kobelt,

Algerien und Tunis, p. 223.

18 Blunt, op. cit. ii. 204 sq.
11 Burckhardt, Bedouins and Ilahibys,
P: 90.

12 Kovalewsky, Coutume contemporaine, p. 343.

of 1745.



the boundaries of each state bear no infamy, and they avow that these are committed for the purpose of disciplining their youth and of preventing sloth.

The same was the case with the Highlanders of Scotland until they were brought into subjection after the rebellion

Regarding every Lowlander as an alien, and his cattle as fair spoil of war,” says Major-General Stewart, "they considered no law for his protection as binding. Yet, except against the Lowlanders, or a hostile clan, these freebooters maintained, in general, the strictest honesty towards one another, and inspired confidence in their integrity. .. In the interior of their own society, all property was safe, without the usual security of bolts, bars, and locks.” 3 In the Commentary to the Irish Senchus Mór it is stated that, whilst an ordinary thief loses his full honour-price at once, committing theft in another territory deprives a person of only half his honour-price, until it is committed the third time. Throughout the Middle Ages all Europe seems to have tacitly agreed that foreigners were created for the purpose of being robbed. In the thirteenth century there were still several places in France in which a stranger who fixed his residence for a year and a day became the serf of the lord of the manor." In England, till upwards of two centuries after the Conquest, foreign merchants were considered only as sojourners coming to a fair or market, and were obliged to employ their landlords as brokers to buy and sell their commodities; and one stranger was often arrested for the debt, or punished for the misdemeanour, of another. In a later age the old habit of oppression was still so strong that, when the State suddenly wanted a sum of money, it seemed quite natural that foreigners should be called upon to

1 Caesar, De bello Gallico, vi. 23.

2 Tylor, in Contemporary Review, xxi. 716.

3 Stewart, Sketches of the Character, &C., of the Highlanders Scotland, p. 42 sq.

4 Ancient Lares of Ireland, i. 57.
5 Cf. Marshall, International Vani-

ties, p. 285.

6 Beaumanoir, Les coutumes du Beauz'oisis, xlv. 19, vol. ii. p. 226.

? Chitty, Treatise on the laws of Commerce and Manufailures, i. Izi. Cf. Cibrario, Della economia politica dei medio tv, i. 192.

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