The authors studied 10 men charged with patricide, including 2 men charged with both patricide and matricide and compared them with 10 schizophrenic patients who did not commit any crime. Eight patients who committed patricide were diagnosed as suffering from schizophrenic illness and 2 patients received a diagnosis of personality-disorder. Seven schizophrenics who committed patricide and both personality-disordered patients had a cruel and unusual relationship with their father. All were single at the time of patricide. The EMBU inventory revealed fathers to be more punitive than mothers and fathers favoured siblings more than the patients. Mothers were more overprotective and tolerant than fathers. Patricide patients' fathers were more punitive and shaming than control patients' fathers, and control patients' fathers were more stimulating and depriving than patricide patients' fathers. Patricide patients' mothers were more overinvolved and tolerant than control patients' mothers. A sense of relief was felt following the patricide rather than remorse. In contrast, the majority of patients in the control group described their father and mother as kind and affectionate. The EMBU inventory did not reveal any significant difference between father and mother.