Medieval Law

Medieval Law

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This course examines the development of the various legal systems to which people in western Europe had recourse between the fourth century and the fourteenth century. Topics to be covered include the shift from oral to written law, the problems small communities faced in dealing with transgressors, the competition between various authorities for jurisdiction, the ways in which Judaeo-Christian values and beliefs affected the orientation of medieval law, the use of procedures such as ordeals and inquisitions, the evolution of ideas about natural rights, and how law reflects the massive social and political reorganization of the west that occurred after the Roman Empire.


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