This book examines the way in which law worked in practice in later seventeenth century northern England. It is an historical reconstruction, a detective story. The participants, robbers, burglars, coin-clippers and Daniel Fleming, the Justice who prosecuted them, come alive in the documents. We learn about the inter-section between the criminal law and ordinary life in the period.

The table of contents is as follows.

Introduction: the Rediscovery of Violence

1. 'A Black and Terrible Troop'

2. 'The Stoutest Deed that ever Man Did'

3. Clippers and Coiners

4. Raising the Hue and Cry

5. 'Insolent and Formidable Felons'

6. Burglars and Assailants

7. Highway Robbers

8. Pickpockets and Thieves

9. Accomplices and Neighbours

10. Final Trials and Legends

Conclusion: English Violence in Context