vaþi (OSw) vathe (ODan) vaþi (OGu) váði (ON) noun

Literally ‘danger; accident; harm’. In the laws primarily contrasted to vili ‘will’, a distinction presumed to be influenced by canon law. Definitions and examples of deeds characterized as committed by vaþi differ, but generally, harm done by animals, inanimate objects, particularly those under no direct control of their owner, as well as by dependent people — women, minors, the insane — were seen as done by vaþi. Whether a deed was done by vaþi or by vili had legal consequences; a deed done by vaþi was less severely punished — if punished at all — and was seen as a breach only against the victim, not against society.


accident ODan ESjL 2, 3
ODan JyL 2, 3
ODan SkBL
ODan SkKL 9
ODan SkL 96, 102, 108, 168, 172
ODan VSjL 26
OGu GL A 23
ONorw EidsL 37.4
OSw ÄVgL Vs
OSw BjR
OSw DL Mb, Bb
OSw HL Mb
OSw KrL Äb Bb Hb SmbII
OSw MEL Bb DbII SmbII
OSw MESt Äb Kmb Skb Eb Hb SmbI SmbII
OSw ÖgL Eb, Db, Vm
OSw SdmL Kkb, KgbBb, Mb
OSw UL Kkb, Äb, Mb
OSw VmL Kkb, Äb, Mb
OSw YVgL Utgb, Add

accidental act OSw DL Mb
OSw UL Mb, Blb

danger OIce Grg Vís 108
injury OGu GL A 27
ONorw GuL Mhb

misadventure OGu GL A 18
OSw HL Äb, Mb
OSw KrL Eb DbII
OSw MEL Eb DbII
OSw MESt DbII

Expressions:

handlös vaþi (OSw) handløs vathe (ODan)

handless accident ODan ESjL 2 SkL 102, 205

misadventure OSw HL Mb

misadventure without interference by someone OSw HL Mb

unforeseen accident OSw MEL DbII

mæþ vaþa (OSw) mæþ uaþæ (ODan)

accidentally, by accident ODan SkL 172 OSw UL Kgb, Äb, Mb, Blb VmL Äb, Mb, Bb ÖgL Bb

by accident OSw HL Mb MESt Eb ÖgL Bb

by misadventure OSw HL Äb

without intent OSw MEL SmbII

Refs:

Descheemaeker 2009, 70−73; KLNM s.v.v. förbrytelse, vådaverk; Tamm and Vogt, eds, 2016, 300

Citation
  • ‘vaþi’. A Lexicon of Medieval Nordic Law.

  • http://www.dhi.ac.uk/lmnl/nordicheadword/displayPage/5765
    (02/23/2024)