Change of paradigms in Roman Law
Do we see shifts in Roman law, and is there a connection with “Grundauffassungen” which make these shifts paradigmatic? The contributions in this book make clear indeed that there were what we call paradigms (“Grundauffassungen”), and that shifts occurred – in society, in economy, in culture, in intellectual life –, between the end of the Republic and the Early Principate, which had profound implications for law and within law; and that even law itself as an intellectual creation underwent paradigmatic changes.
Four contributions deal with changes in the law of contracts: Fiori points out that there was a drive to specify contracts, after which a certain return to a general model occurred; Sirks focuses on the rise of the concept of conventio behind the contracts, while Schermaier analyses the resulting effect of the introduction of error on contractual theory. Santucci, again, considers how economic changes resulted in a change in the idea of partnership. Regarding the family, Babusiaux shows how in succession law the civil and the praetorian succession systems fused, thus equating emancipated children with non-emancipated, while Platschek uncovers a weakening of paternal power. Reichard’s contribution on the stipulatio Aquiliana demonstrates the change on the theoretical level of Roman jurisprudence.