Summary Chapter 15
Tom is fascinated with the foreign ambassadors until the meeting becomes dreary. He says what he is supposed to but finds acting like a king an uncomfortable fit. Even recreation is tiresome because of the long ceremonies and restrictions. He enjoys visits from Humphrey.
As time goes on, he becomes more accustomed to his life.
He dreads the fourth day, where he will have to dine by himself in public. People will watch him, and no one will cover for his mistakes. His captivity is an oppressive burden.
Tom notices a mob outside the gates and wishes to know what is going on. A page returns to say that they are following prisoners to an execution. Tom orders that the prisoners be brought before him. He recognizes one prisoner who saved a drowning boy in his area. However, the man is guilty of poisoning someone. Tom does change the manner of execution from being boiled alive to a simple hanging. He asks Hertford to change the law that states poisoners must be boiled.
Tom asks about the details of the case. When he learns the man supposedly poisoned somebody at the same time Tom had witnessed him save a drowning boy, Tom orders for him to be released.
A woman and child are charged with witchcraft because they supposedly called up a storm. Tom inquires and finds out that their own house was swept away by the same storm. Tom says that if the woman called up the storm that swept away her house, she is obviously mad and therefore blameless. The child is too young to sell her soul legally to the Devil by English law. Tom has them released.
The court is impressed with his wisdom.