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					A Story of Law in Rome
              A Story of Law in Rome


creation of the republic

  -- period of concern: 510 B.C. - 287 B.C.

   Patricians
  -- Rome called its aristocrats “Patricians.”
  -- Julius Cesar was from a patrician family called the
  “Julians.” Claudius was a “Claudian.”

  Plebeians
   --- ordinary working people. (merchants, shopkeepers,
   laborers).
      Roman Society
                                                   Father of the Country.

               Patricians                           Their DUTY was to
                                                    govern


                                              Laborers, Shopkeepers,
            Plebeians                         Merchants, “Regular
                                              People” – roughly, the
                                              middle and lower class.


      Slaves




1/18/2007                   (C) Copyright Sean Wilson. 2007.                3
             A story of “law” in Rome


The rise of “law” and republic
  -- over time, plebs want more rights
  -- resort to strikes, shutting down the economy

Plebeian uprisings

You didn’t have any place to shop. You couldn’t get goods
manufactured. Traders had no one to trade with. No clothes were
getting cleaned. Kids are not getting watched. Can’t go to war with
55 generals and no foot soldiers.

Source -- Frances Titchener (Paraphrased)
             A story of “law” in Rome


The rise of “law” and republic
  --- the net result of these strikes was to get their own
  political assembly.
  Plebeian Assembly
  -- at first, didn’t have any law making authority; it was more
  like a union hall.
  -- could organize their people and officially petition the
  Patrician Senators for relief of their grievances
             A story of “law” in Rome


The rise of “law” and republic
  --- the net result of these strikes was to get their own
  political assembly.
  Plebeian Assembly
  -- at first, didn’t have any law making authority; it was more
  like a union hall.
                                             Question:
  -- could organize their people and officially petition the
  Patrician Senators for relief of their grievances think the
                                     What do you
                                    first major reform was
                                       that the Plebeian
                                    Assembly demanded?
 What do you think
   the first major    0
reform was that the   0
Plebeian Assembly     0
    demanded?
             A story of “law” in Rome


“State the Law”
   -- one of the first reforms that the Plebeian Assembly wants
   is for the Patricians in the Senate to State the law.


                                           Question:
                                             Why?
Why
      0
      0
      0
Creation of Positive Law

The first thing the plebs wanted: we want to know what the laws are.
Write them down. (Today it is reversed: ignorance of the law is no
excuse). In Antiquity, there is a pattern that emerges in the polities:
autocratic ruler, after some time, is forced to create a law. Without it,
the person rules on a whim. Today the king is in a bad mood and says
the penalty for stealing is death; tomorrow it is just a whipping. We
have to create “rules.” Next step: the rule has to be written down.
Patricians: “you don’t have to worry about the law; that’s our business:
you just ask us and we will tell you.” Plebs fight to get rules written
down. The law then stands apart from the Ruler (immutable). But this
wasn’t enough: just because a Magistrate said “the law is” you didn’t
know for sure. So they demanded: post the law. Law had to be
formulated, written down and posted (published).

Source -- Frances Titchener (Paraphrased)
 Basic Ideas:


The Rulers




                 The
                Ruled
      Basic Ideas:

                                           1. Whim (arbitrary)?
     The Rulers                                           Senseless?


       2. Will (convenience)?
-- not stable or predictable (from the
standpoint of the people who must
comply) compliance?
                                             The
                                            Ruled



                               Laws apply only to the governed!
                                         -- no universality. (Castes)
                                            in your place.
      Basic Ideas:

                                           1. Whim (arbitrary)?
     The Rulers                                           Senseless?


       2. Will (convenience)?
-- not stable or predictable (from the
standpoint of the people who must
comply) compliance?
                                             The
                                            Ruled

       Question:
                               Laws apply only to the governed!
  If the law has to be
 POSTED, what does                       -- no universality. (Castes)
this do to any of these                     in your place.
       problems?
If the law has to be
   POSTED, what        0
does this do to any    0
of these problems?     0
   compliance?         yes!
                      -- you can now say: “hey,
                      that’s not the law.” Or,
                      “hey, I followed the law.”

    senseless?       ??
                      -- Only if that’s a problem
                      for the rulers or for
                      compliance

in your place?   not yet!
                 -- Only asking for law to be
                 posted, that’s all

				
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Description: Lecture 1 slides in Philosophy and Development of Legal Judging. This lectures covers the power of government to state or prescribe the law.