You just may have broken the law – and there are plenty more bizarre rules out there that still apply here, at least in parts of England, today.
1. No walking cows down the street in daylight
The Metropolitan Streets Act states that “cattle are not to be driven through streets within certain hours.”
Oxbridge explains: “back in 1867, section seven of the act forbade cattle lovers and farmers alike to walk their prized livestock during the day.
“Unless given permission from the Commissioner of Police himself, if you were caught rallying your precious bovines down the street between 10am and 7pm, you would have been committing a crime.”
2. It’s illegal to enter the House of Parliaments wearing a suit of armour
A 1313 statute forbidding bearing of armour, forbids Members of Parliament from entering the House while wearing armour.
This particular statute was put into place after a period of political turmoil.
3. It’s LEGAL to shoot a Scotsman under certain circumstances
According to The Fact Site, and only in York, the law states that it is legal to shoot a Scotsman with a crossbow upon seeing one, except for on Sundays.
However, any Scotsman caught drunk or with a weapon can still be shot on a Sunday, except with a bow and arrow.
Similarly, in Chester it is legal to shoot a Welsh person with a crossbow, as long as it is within the city walls and is done after midnight.
4. Using a phone to pay at a drive-through while your car is still running
You could be fined for this… according to Oxbridge, “the law is incredibly strict about the using phones behind the wheel of a car.
“Even if you’re tapping a contactless pad with your phone at a drive-through to pay for a meal.
“If your engine is running and your handbrake is unlocked, you’re using your phone while managing a car and this is against the law.
“The penalty for breaking this law is £200 and six points on your license.”
Maybe that Big Mac isn’t worth it!
5. It’s treason to misplace a postage stamp
Placing a postage stamp bearing the monarch’s head upside down on an envelope is considered as act of treason.
Also, defacing or destroying anything bearing a likeness of the monarch is illegal.
This means that burning paper money, bending coins or tearing a postage stamp is against the law.
6. It’s against the law to shake a carpet in London
You’ll have to find another way to dust off that carpet, because simply shaking it is a criminal act.
Under the Metropolitan Police Act of 1839, it’s illegal to beat or shake a mat, carpet, or a rug in the streets of London.
The only time you may beat them, is before 8am.
7. It’s illegal to handle salmon in suspicious circumstances
This is a recent law – making it even crazier.
But under the Salmon Act of 1986, it is an offence to receive or dispose of salmon under suspicious circumstances.
Officers have a right to investigate if they reasonable believe that the salmon has been illegally fished.
8. Paying a lump sum for your facial hair
King Henry VIII imposed a beard tax that every man must pay to wear facial hair.
He introduced a beard tax that lined his pockets and filled his dinner table. Moreover, the higher your social standing, the more you had to cough up. What if you cannot pay? Shave it away. Thus, beards became a symbol of status and money.