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Roman Law, Scots Law and Legal HistorySelected Essays$
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William Gordon

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780748625161

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748625161.001.0001

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Legal Tradition, with Particular Reference to Roman Law☼

Legal Tradition, with Particular Reference to Roman Law☼

(p.362) 27 Legal Tradition, with Particular Reference to Roman Law
Roman Law, Scots Law and Legal History

William M Gordon

Edinburgh University Press

This article re-assesses the view that the Roman jurists were particularly strong traditionalists as argued by Schulz and others but challenged by Nṏrr. Other explanations can be found for retention of institutions and slow change in the law, such as the absence of easy procedures to make changes. Apparently static rules, such as the ceremony of mancipatio, may have been avoided in practice by the use of documents alleging performance of it. There is in any case a good deal to be said for gradual and considered change as opposed to rapid legislative change, an approach praised by Stair. The important point is to adhere to sound tradition but avoid being thirled to that tradition for its own sake.

Keywords:   Tradition, Traditionalism, Roman jurists, Stair

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