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Rechtswissenschaftliche Fakultät Lehrstuhl Alonso

History of European Legal Science

(Vst.-Nr. 1620)

History of European Legal Science

The foundations of today's private law were largely laid from the twelfth century onwards within the "learned law" tradition, when the young European Universities, like Bologna, began to study the decisions of the ancient Roman jurists and Emperors, as compiled by Justinian in the later called Corpus Iuris Civilis. The legal concepts, structures and methods developed in a scholarly environment by these learned lawyers shaped also the legal practice ("reception") in most of Europe ("ius commune"). Through multiple incarnations and reinventions, this Romanistic tradition managed to survive in one form or another the tectonic shifts that marked the political history of Europe up to the modern era and, starting at the end of the 18th century, provided the basic material for the creation of the national codifications of civil law and for legal dogmatics.


The lectures will be held by Prof. Alonso on Wednesdays, 8:00-9:45 according to the following schedule:





Lecture will not take place!

Lecture cancelled!


General Introduction

HELS Slides 1 (PDF, 6 MB)


Historical Introduction: Middle Ages

HELS Slides 2 (PDF, 3 MB)


Historical Introduction: Humanism

HELS Slides 3 (PDF, 4 MB)


Historical Introduction: Enlightenment and Codification


Historical Introduction: Enlightenment and Codification


Transfer of Ownership/Sale

HELS Slides 4 (PDF, 1 MB)


Easter Holiday


Transfer of Ownership/Sale


Transfer of Ownership/Sale

HELS Slides 5 (PDF, 1 MB)


Transfer of Ownership/Sale

Q & A on Students' Topics at 18:15 via Zoom
(Link here (PDF, 20 KB))


No lecture

Q & A on Students' Topics at 18:15 via Zoom
(Link here (PDF, 20 KB))


No lecture

Q & A on Students' Topics at 18:15 via Zoom
(Link here (PDF, 20 KB))


Presentation of Students' Papers

31.05.2023 Presentation of Students' Papers
Wednesday, 08:00 - 13:45 Uhr (room: KOL-F-109)
Lecture-related slides conf. table above
The Course highlights the historical dimension of European private law and introduces the deep significance of historical development for a better understanding of the dogmatics of modern private law. Within the course, the students will receive an exemplary introduction into topics and sources relevant for the historical development of private law. The course aims at enabling them to independently understand and present the dogmatic development of a legal institution from its historical roots to our modern legal systems. 
Certificate of achievement

The certificate of achievement consists of regular active participation in the course and the writing of a 15-page paper (excl. titlepage, bibliography, list of abbreviations etc.) together with its oral presentation on May 24th or May 31th.

Weiterführende Informationen


Podcasts of the lectures will be recorded and uploaded. Please note that the availability of podcasts can't be guaranteed as technical difficulties may occur. 


Link to the podcasts

Meeting: Distribution of Topics for the Final Paper (compulsory)

The meeting will take place on Wednesday 19th of april at 18:00 over Zoom. Please find the Zoom Link in the following document.