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New FrontiersLaw and Society in the Roman World$
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Paul J. du Plessis

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780748668175

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748668175.001.0001

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Law, Agency and Growth in the Roman Economy

Law, Agency and Growth in the Roman Economy

(p.176) (p.177) Chapter 9 Law, Agency and Growth in the Roman Economy
New Frontiers

Dennis P. Kehoe

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter analyses the economic consequences arising from the Roman law agency, with a specific focus on the role played by a specialized group of agents, that is, tutors, or guardians who managed the property fatherless children, wards, or pupils. Tutorship was an institution that affected a significant portion of the property in the Roman Empire, since a large portion of Roman children lost their fathers by puberty, and many more before they reached the age of full majority. To protect the financial interests of socially important group, Roman law imposed very stringent requirements on tutors, which encouraged them to pursue very risk-averse strategies in investing the wealth belonging to their pupils and managing their wealth. The chapter explores the likely consequences of the legal rules surrounding tutorship for the Roman economy in general.

Keywords:   Agency, Law and Economics, Tutorship, Investment, Roman Economy

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