Introduction: Rome - a historical sketch

As this chapter is a historical introduction, it may not be actively assessed in an exam, so there are no specimen questions, but if it is then the following guidance notes may provide some support:

  1. It is important to get an overview of the 3 main periods (Monarchy, Republic, Empire).
  2. For each of these periods, concentrate on the state of the law and the main legal changes which occurred during each period.
  3. As for the Republic and the Empire, both cover long periods of time. The most important periods for the purposes of legal development are the late Republic and early Empire.
  4. Given that much of our information is drawn from Justinian’s compilation, an appreciation of Justinian’s Empire is important.
  5. Finally, when preparing this chapter, think of the broader relationship between law and society.
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