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to give laws unto a people; to institute magistrates and officers over them; to punish and pardon malefactors; to have the sole authority of making war and peace, and the like, are the true marks of sovereignty, which Henry II had not in the Irish countries, but the Irish lords did still retain all these prerogatives to themselves." (38) The native Irish lords had continued to govern themselves according to Brehon law, to appoint their own magistrates, to pardon and punish wrong doers, and to make war and peace on each other "without any controlment." (39) They were, at best tributaries and not subjects and vassals of the English king because they continued to exercise the rights and marks of sovereignty independently from the English crown.
For, as long as they were out of the protection of the law, so as every Englishman might oppress, spoil, and kill them without controlment, how was it possible they should be other than outlaws, and enemies to the Crown of England?
(4) The account of the Red Lion affray is taken from the Controlment Roll, Public Record Office: KB29/219 mbs 150-2.