In 1210, when the German castle Ordensritterburg was besieged by Slavic invaders, the castle fell and its inhabitants, including the Lord, were slaughtered. However, the Lord’s infant son was saved by one of the castle’s Hovawarts. In spite of being wounded itself, the dog dragged the tiny child to a neighboring castle, and thus saved the boy’s life.
This young boy, Eike von Repkow, grew up to become a legendary figure in the history of German law. He later published the Sachsenspiegel, the oldest Code of Law to survive from medieval Germany. Not surprisingly, the Hovawart is mentioned with praise. The Schwabenspiegel, a law text published in 1274 and based on Eike von Repkow’s Sachsenspiegel, lists the Hovawart among the dogs you have to replace and pay restitution for if they are killed or stolen.