Article

Roman Law

Paul du Plessis

in Classics

ISBN: 9780195389661
Published online December 2009 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780195389661-0031
Roman Law

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The present understanding of Roman law is essentially as a thought experiment based on the snippets of texts collected in a 6th-century compilation of legal sources known as the Corpus Iuris Civilis, ordered by the Roman emperor Justinian. These snippets, which were stripped of their original context, represent the intellectual pinnacle of Roman legal thought of the first three centuries of the Common Era. Since the rediscovery of this compilation toward the end of the 12th century, this collection of texts has provided jurists with a treasure trove of terms and concepts that have been used with great effect to construct much of the private law of western Europe and elsewhere. Most modern discussions of Roman law employ the following periodization: Ancient Roman law (753–250 BCE); Republican Roman law (250–27 BCE); Classical Roman law (27 BCE-284 CE); Post-classical Roman law (3rd-5th centuries CE); and Justinianic Roman law (527–565 CE).

Article.  7054 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Classical Art and Architecture ; Classical History ; Classical Literature ; Classical Philosophy

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