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Trothplight is a system for recording contracts in a pre-literate society. A physical token was manipulated or exchanged before witnesses. Surviving instances in Western society are the engagement ring and the practice of swearing upon a Bible. In literate societies written contracts have replaced trothplight. [1]

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  1. Green, Richard Firth (2002). "Trothplight". A Crisis of Truth: Literature and Law in Ricardian England. The Middle Ages Series. University of Pennsylvania Press. p. 512. ISBN   0812218094.