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History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empir

To the gradual study of the Code and Pandects


[Footnote

93: Apud Homerum patrem omnis virtutis, (1st Praefat. ad Pandect.) A line of Milton or Tasso would surprise us in an act of parliament. Quae omnia obtinere sancimus in omne aevum. Of the first Code, he says, (2d Praefat.,) in aeternum valiturum. Man and forever!]

[Footnote 94: Novellae is a classic adjective, but a barbarous substantive, (Ludewig, p. 245.) Justinian never collected them himself; the nine collations, the legal standard of modern tribunals, consist of ninety-eight Novels; but the number was increased by the diligence of Julian, Haloander, and Contius, (Ludewig, p. 249, 258 Aleman. Not in Anecdot. p. 98.)]

[Footnote 95: Montesquieu, Considerations sur la Grandeur et la Decadence des Romains, c. 20, tom. iii. p. 501, in 4to. On this occasion he throws aside the gown and cap of a President a Mortier.]

[Footnote 96: Procopius, Anecdot. c. 28. A similar privilege was granted to the church of Rome, (Novel. ix.) For the general repeal of these mischievous indulgences, see Novel. cxi. and Edict. v.]

Monarchs seldom condescend to become the preceptors of their subjects; and some praise is due to Justinian, by whose command an ample system was reduced to a short and elementary treatise. Among the various institutes of the Roman law, [97] those of Caius [98] were the most popular in the East and West; and their use may be considered as

an evidence of their merit. They were selected by the Imperial delegates, Tribonian, Theophilus, and Dorotheus; and the freedom and purity of the Antonines was incrusted with the coarser materials of a degenerate age. The same volume which introduced the youth of Rome, Constantinople, and Berytus, to the gradual study of the Code and Pandects, is still precious to the historian, the philosopher, and the magistrate. The Institutes of Justinian are divided into four books: they proceed, with no contemptible method, from, I. Persons, to, II. Things, and from things, to, III. Actions; and the article IV., of Private Wrongs, is terminated by the principles of Criminal Law. [9811]

[Footnote 97: Lactantius, in his Institutes of Christianity, an elegant and specious work, proposes to imitate the title and method of the civilians. Quidam prudentes et arbitri aequitatis Institutiones Civilis Juris compositas ediderunt, (Institut. Divin. l. i. c. 1.) Such as Ulpian, Paul, Florentinus, Marcian.]

[Footnote 98: The emperor Justinian calls him suum, though he died before the end of the second century. His Institutes are quoted by Servius, Boethius, Priscian, &c.; and the Epitome by Arrian is still extant. (See the Prolegomena and notes to the edition of Schulting, in the Jurisprudentia Ante-Justinianea, Lugd. Bat. 1717. Heineccius, Hist. J R No. 313. Ludewig, in Vit. Just. p. 199.)]

[Footnote 9811: Gibbon, dividing the Institutes into four parts, considers the appendix of the criminal law in the last title as a fourth part.--W.]

Chapter XLIV: Idea Of The Roman Jurisprudence.--Part V.

The distinction of ranks and persons is the firmest basis of a mixed and limited government. In France, the remains of liberty are kept alive by the spirit, the honors, and even the prejudices, of fifty thousand nobles. [99] Two hundred families [9911] supply, in lineal descent, the second branch of English legislature, which maintains, between the king and commons, the balance of the constitution. A gradation of patricians and plebeians, of strangers


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