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Bizarre Laws

Updated on August 4, 2009

I came across this old book at home about strange, ancient laws. Some of them were so strange as to be hilarious so I decided to take look at strange existing or strange laws at present in force. There was much hilarity to be found when I decided to search for strange, weird and bizarre laws, I thought I’d share some with you. Some of them may simply be on the books and not be enforced, some laws people have simply forgotten to repeal.

Bizarre British Laws:

In an article of the BBC the British public was polled on some really silly British laws, and those polled were asked to rate which was the most ridiculous.

Apparently there is a law prohibits dying in the houses of parliament, which most number of people rated as the absurdest. How do you avoid that I wonder and if you do die in the Houses of Parliament, how I wonder would you be punished?

Then the next one on the list is that It could be regarded an act of treason to place a postage stamp bearing the British king or queen's image upside-down. I would frequently be guilty of that one.

One really stupid law says eating mince pies on Christmas Day is banned (and here I thought we all were supposed to eat mince pies on Christmas as part of the celebrations!).

And this is one is really great: In the UK, a pregnant woman can legally relieve herself anywhere she wants. I wonder how she would do it though, squat on the street perhaps!

The head of any dead whale found on the British coast automatically becomes the property of the King, and the tail of the Queen. Hmmm they were making sure that a dead whale would not lead to squabbling among their ruling monarchs, lest it lead to disharmony and ultimately divorce!

It is illegal not to tell the tax man anything you do not want him to know, but legal not to tell him information you do not mind him knowing. All I can say is Ha ha ha, but I don’t kind of understand the logic!

It is illegal to enter the Houses of Parliament wearing a suit of armour. There can’t be much danger of that happening surely!

Here are super Australian ones:

It is illegal to roam the streets wearing black clothes, felt shoes and black shoe polish on your face as these items are the tools of a cat burglar. Fashion victims beware!

It is illegal to read someone's tarot, or give them a psychic reading, as these are forms of witchcraft, presumably putting a lot of people out of business!

Taxi cabs are required to carry a bale of hay in the trunk. Also bars are required to stable, water and feed the horses of their patrons. Obviously someone forgot to repeal these laws when horse drawn carriages were replaced by motorized vehicles.

You must have a neck to knee swimsuit in order to swim at Brighton Beach. Hmm I suppose they would really frown upon going topless then?

It is illegal to wear hot pink pants after midday Sunday. This one completely flummoxed me. What can I say, except ‘BIZARRE!’

Bizarre American Laws:

In Baltimore, Maryland, it is illegal to take a lion to the movies. I don’t think I have seen too many lions sitting outside movie halls waiting for their owners to finish their movie, have you?

In Oxford, Ohio, it is unlawful for a woman to appear in public while unshaven. This includes legs and face. Hmm I think the feminists might have something to say about this one, and the bearded lady too.

In the grand city of Ottumwa, Iowa, it is illegal for any man, within the corporate city limits, to wink at any female with whom he is "unacquainted." I wonder if the lawmakers took a leaf out of the Saudi Arabian law books.

Wyoming prohibits fat people (defined as 100 pounds overweight) from swinging on swings or using other playground or park equipment. Not very politically correct!

Single women in California are prohibited from entering a place of business where men can be observed standing before mirrors, exhibiting themselves in a semi-naked state while lifting weights. LOL! No unisex gyms then.

Some Appalachia towns have ordinances requiring a person to take a bath the night before coming into town, and to carry on their person a signed statement by two reliable witnesses. People must really not be bathing very much if the law required them to do so!

Here’s a really funny one about pets: pets are prohibited from "snarling" or "growling" at police, mail, or pizza delivery persons. At Anglo-American common law, the offending pet would be dressed up like a human and publically executed. Any animal rights activists listening?

There is a whole bunch of weird ones from Louisiana: If you bite someone with natural teeth, that is assault, but if you do that while wearing dentures, that is aggravated assault. This is the first time I heard of dentures being a weapon.

Then you can’t gargle in public or catch lizards at night. If a couple is shopping for a bed you can’t test it out by having sex on it. I suppose some people need to have it spelt out! It is illegal to rob a bank and then shoot the teller with a water gun- I wonder what is worse the robbery or adding insult to injury by indicating that you fooled the teller into thinking you had a real gun! For some reason you are also not allowed to wear an alligator costume. This one totally escapes me!

And there are some really great laws pertaining to alcohol consumption: You can’t use the word “refreshing” to portray alcohol; apparently you can call it energizing or bracing or whatever! In Ohio, the law states that it is illegal to get a fish drunk and in Fairbanks, Alaska, it is against the law to give a moose any kind of alcohol. It beats me why anyone would want to! Pennsylvania law prohibits a man from buying alcohol without a note of permission from his wife. No need for his to join the Alcoholics Anonymous then!

I am sure a lot of this is pure myth, and most of these ridiculous laws must have been struck off the statutes (hopefully); however to think that this was once the law, is, as I said, pretty bizarre...


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    • danielchakraborty profile image

      Daniel Chakraborty 7 years ago from Bangalore

      nice hub hehe

    • Reena Daruwalla profile image

      Reena Daruwalla 8 years ago from INDIA

      LOL! Thanks for the info Earnest.

    • earnestshub profile image

      earnestshub 8 years ago from Melbourne Australia

      For a long time in Australia you were allowed to pee while standing alongside the inside front tyre of your car!

      A hangover from Westminster laws from England.

    • andromida profile image

      syras mamun 8 years ago

      Great to know all these bizarre laws.I have no clue why there is a law for " wearing hot pink pants after midday Sunday".lol.I thoroughly enjoyed your hub.thanks Reena.

    • countrywomen profile image

      countrywomen 8 years ago from Washington, USA

      Really funny laws. Similar to the law on dying in Parliament. I find the suicide law to be funny too. Where attempt is punishable and commission goes scot-free. Thumbs up. :D

    • Reena Daruwalla profile image

      Reena Daruwalla 8 years ago from INDIA

      Some of them really had me in splits as well :). You know what they say about the law being an ass...

    • Enelle Lamb profile image

      Enelle Lamb 8 years ago from Canada's 'California'

      My goodness! Some of those are too funny! I def liked the Alaskan one OL