Law and Empire, AD 193–455: The Projet Volterra

To promote the study of Roman law and its afterlife in a full social, political, legal and intellectual context, particularly by the analysis of the transmission of legal understanding and by the publication of an electronic database of legal texts
Project status

Chair: Professor Michael Crawford FBA 
Project Director: Dr Benet Salway 
Secretary: Dr Simon Corcoran 

The general aims of the Projet Volterra (named in honour of the memory of Edoardo Volterra (1904–87), the distinguished scholar of Roman Law) are to promote the study of Roman legislation in its full social, political and legal context. As part of this, the area of Roman imperial legal pronouncements was identified as one in which current scholarship was less than adequately served in terms of Regesten, repertoria and bibliographical aids. Within this field the area of later imperial legislation was felt to be particularly poorly exploited by scholars in general.

The project is working to produce a database in an electronic medium which would act not only as a Regest but also contain the basic texts of imperial legal pronouncements (where the ipsissima verba of the issuer(s) survive) from whatever provenance, be it an epigraphic, papyrological, juristic or literary source, details relating to each text's transmission (including their fate during successive codifications), the texts of ancient scholia upon them and an annotated bibliography of relevant modern scholarly output. While in no sense providing entirely new editions, the text of laws included in the database are critical, including the checking of original manuscript readings where appropriate.

Projet Volterra: [email protected]

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