Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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Bailiff (law)
(850 words)

A bailiff (German: Gerichtsvollzieher) in his capacity as a court official is responsible for  enforcing the decisions and writs of execution of a court of law. The existence of the office depends on two fundamental decisions of the legal order. On the one hand, the office of the bailiff is an expression of the state’s monopoly on violence. Private individuals, in particular the victorious party in litigation, may not enforce their rights personally; only the state power - personified by the bailiff, among other offici…

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Oestmann, Peter, “Bailiff (law)”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 27 February 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_019973>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20160321

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