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Justinian's Legal Code

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss legal ideas developed under Byzantine emperor Justinian I in the C6th AD, which influenced the evolution of law in much of Western civilisation.

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the ideas brought together under Justinian I, Byzantine emperor in the 6th century AD, which were rediscovered in Western Europe in the Middle Ages and became very influential in the development of laws in many European nations and elsewhere.


Caroline Humfress
Professor of Medieval History at the University of St Andrews

Simon Corcoran
Lecturer in Ancient History at Newcastle University


Paul du Plessis
Senior Lecturer in Civil law and European legal history at the School of Law, University of Edinburgh

Producer: Simon Tillotson.

Available now

43 minutes

Last on

Thu 17 Nov 2016 21:30


Caroline Humfress at the University of St Andrews

Simon Corcoran at Newcastle University

Paul du Plessis at the University of Edinburgh

The Roman Law Library

Annotated English translation of the Justinian Code by Fred H. Blume – George W. Hopper Law Library

Corpus Juris Civilis – Wikipedia



Harold J. Berman, Law and Revolution: The Formation of the Western Legal Tradition (Harvard University Press, 1983)

Peter Birks and Grant MacLeod, Justinian’s Institutes (Duckworth, 1987)

John Cairns and Paul Du Plessis (eds.), The Creation of the Ius Commune: From Casus to Regula (Edinburgh University Press, 2010)

Gilbert Dagron, Emperor and Priest: The Imperial Office in Byzantium (Cambridge University Press, 2003)

J. A. S. Evans, The Age of Justinian: The Circumstances of Imperial Power (Routledge, 2000)

Bruce Frier (ed.), The Codex of Justinian, 3 vols. (Cambridge University Press, 2016)

John Haldon (ed.), A Social History of Byzantium (Wiley-Blackwell, 2008)

Wilfried Hartmann and Kenneth Pennington (eds.), The History of Byzantine and Eastern Canon Law to 1500 (Catholic University America Press, 2012)

David Johnston (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Roman Law (Cambridge University Press, 2015)

David Johnston, Roman Law in Context (Cambridge University Press, 1999)

Randall Lesaffer and Jan Arriens, European Legal History: A Cultural and Political Perspective (Cambridge University Press 2009)

Michael Maas (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to the Age of Justinian (Cambridge University Press, 2005)

Cyril Mango (ed.), The Oxford History of Byzantium (Oxford University Press, 2002)

John Moorhead, The Roman Empire Divided: 400 – 700 (Longman, 2001)

O. F. Robinson, The Sources of Roman Law: Problems and Methods for Ancient Historians (Routledge, 1996)

Aldo Schiavone, Jeremy Carden and Antony Shugaar, The Invention of Law in the West (Harvard University Press, 2012)

Peter Stein, Roman Law in European History (Cambridge University Press, 1999)

Warren Treadgold, A History of the Byzantine State and Society (Stanford University Press, 1997)

Alan Watson (ed.), The Digest of Justinian, 4 vols. (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1985)



Role Contributor
Presenter Melvyn Bragg
Interviewed Guest Caroline Humfress
Interviewed Guest Simon Corcoran
Interviewed Guest Paul du Plessis
Producer Simon Tillotson


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