It is illegal for a husband to beat his wife with a stick larger in diameter than his thumb.

The “Rule of Thumb” originated in Rome, under the rule of Romulus, in approximately 753 BC. It dictated how large of a stick that a husband could use to beat his wife. Almost 1000 years later, women briefly had “rights” if their beatings were unjustified. However, those rights were short-lived, lasting only about 100 years.

We found what appears to be a direct quote in this book that “Since the Jasper husband is accountable for his wife’s misbehavior, he has the legal right to chastise her with a stick no larger around than his thumb.”

However, a search of current Jasper, Alabama municipal code does not turn up a current law on the books.