cod. 03329

Academic year 2018/19
1° year of course - First semester
Academic discipline
Storia del diritto medievale e moderno (IUS/19)
Type of training activity
54 hours
of face-to-face activities
9 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

The course offers an overview of developments and transformations of
law over the centuries of the Middle Ages, with the aim to highlight the
essentially historical character of the legal phenomenon and to
emphasize the importance of an appropriate historical perspective of
existing law. More specifically, the course aims to develop the legal
sensitivity and to widen the cultural horizons of the students, drawing
attention to the need to problematize the uncritical assumptions of
dogmatic disciplines. The aim of the course is therefore to develop in the
students of law a critical awareness, in order to warn them against the
risk of considering necessary, immutable and final the existing legal
solutions, instead of seeing their inevitably contextual, dynamic and
particular character. On the other hand, the course aims to show the
meaningful persistence of consolidated and shared intellectual models
with which lawyers - both past and present - build up, interpret and
modify the legal experience of their time.


No exam is required for examining History of Italian law

Course unit content

The subject of this course concerns the examination of the various legal
experiences (pertaining to the field of both private and public law) from
the end of the Ancient World to the Modern and Contemporary Age, with specific reference to the sources (legislative, doctrinal, documentary, judicial), as well as to institutions and jurists. Special attention will be given to the creation of
the University in the Middle Ages, as a model for the organization of
scientific teaching in the following centuries. Appropriate emphasis will
be given, therefore, to studying the evolution of literary forms and
methods of teaching in the schools of Glossators and Commentators, as
well as the development of the main hermeneutical approaches in the
legal field. Classical canon law, including the legislative activity of the
popes and the procedural techniques used in the medieval ecclesiastical
courts, will be illustrated as well. Then we will proceed to examine the changes introduced by Humanism, with the birth of the two different traditions of the mos gallicus and mos italicus. We will then focus on the Enlightenment and its consequences on the world of law, studying jusnaturalism and legal positivism. We will also examine the phenomenon of the codification and the experience of Pandectism. We will illustrate, then, the latest developments in the historical evolution of the legal phenomenon during the twentieth century. Some insights will be dedicated to the study of the jurisdiction during the Ancien Régime, as well as in the revolutionary period, in the Napoleonic age and liberal age. We will also briefly examine some of the most significant constitutional charters of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Full programme

- - -


In order to prepare for the exam it is recommended to use the following textbooks:

A. Padoa Schioppa: Storia del diritto in Europa. Dal Medioevo all'età contemporanea, Il Mulino, Bologna 2016;

A. Errera: Lineamenti di epistemologia giuridica medievale. Storia di una rivoluzione scientifica, Giappichelli Editore, Torino 2006;

A. Errera: Forme letterarie e metodologie didattiche nella scuola bolognese dei glossatori civilisti: tra evoluzione ed innovazione, in Studi di storia del diritto medioevale e moderno, vol. I, Monduzzi Editore, Bologna 1999, pp. 33-106;

P. Alvazzi del Frate: Il costituzionalismo moderno. Appunti e fonti di storia del diritto pubblico, Giappichelli Editore, Torino 2007.

Teaching methods

The course is divided into frontal lessons conceived in the way of active learning, with oral presentation of the subjects that are the object of the teaching. Each lesson will be 60 minutes. During the lessons, however, teaching materials will be used in the form of slides projected during the lessons. Slides will also be available for students attending and non-attending, in the form of files on an online computer support that will be available on the website www.monduzzieditoriale.it. Part of the lessons will be of a seminar character and aimed at the thematic study of individual highlights of the course.

Assessment methods and criteria

The summary appraisal of the learning consists of a final oral examination consisting of an oral question to determine to what extent, on a scale from 0 to 30, the student is able to highlight the essentially historical dimension of the phenomenon to emphasize the importance of a proper historical framing of existing law, to know and to enhance the diachronic perspective of current law, and to conceive the study of the legal phenomenon on the basis of the true understanding of its historical thickness. For the attendants there is also an intermediate test, halfway through the course, by writing an open written questionnaire on three questions, each with a score from 0 to 10 (with increasing merit value), so the final result will be expressed by a swing score between 0 and 30. The score of the written intermediate test will contribute to the formation of the final vote, which will be expressed from 0 to 30 and will be assigned to the outcome of the final oral exam on the single part of the program after the written intermediate test is written. The written intermediate test keeps its value until the beginning of the next academic year, ie up to the summer (included) of the academic year in which the course is held: this means that the intermediate test result will be done approximately in October or November, and can be considered valid until the July appeal for the next solar year. In any case, the student who has completed the written intermediate test with a score that he or she does not intend to accept will still be able to complete the entire oral examination throughout the program at the end of the lesson course, giving up both the exemption value of the the first part of the program allowed by the intermediate test, and its relative score. To this end, the student will obviously have to demonstrate that he has studied and understood the notions of the history of law that were given during the frontal lessons, which are contained in the texts recommended for the preparation of the exam and that are summarized in the form of didactic schemes of synoptic value in teaching support slides.

Other information

- - -