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Spring 2024 Seminar

Legal History Seminar: Continental Legal History

Pre/Co-requisites: Concurrent registration in Continental Legal History, or equivalent preparation is required, as is the ability to read simple Latin prose. For JD1L students, permission of the instructor is required in order to enroll.

Exam type: No Exam

Around the year 1100 a small group of men in Bologna began to study Roman law with an intensity not witnessed in the previous centuries. About a generation later a somewhat different group began to do the same thing with canon law. The combined product of these two studies, known as the ius commune (“the common law”), became an essential part of the training of any respectable European jurist, and the influence of the ius commune on subsequent developments, up to and including the codifications of the 19th century, is very large indeed. This seminar will introduce students to the techniques of reading and analyzing works in the ius commune of the medieval and early modern periods with the goal of enabling students to write a series of short papers on some part of the ius commune (which then may be combined into a longer paper).

Offered concurrently in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences as History 2080. Multilithed materials. Students taking  this seminar should sign up for an hour of independent written work with Professor Donahue.