Forms of Imposed Protection in Legal History, Especially in Roman Law

8 Pages Posted: 25 Oct 2010

See all articles by Laurens Winkel

Laurens Winkel

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: October 22, 2010


Imposed protection can be traced in Roman law in several forms: the application of the criterion of good faith (bona fides) by the judge, especially in contractual relations. Outside this sphere a special legal remedy for the defendant was introduced through the exceptio doli, introduced in 69 BC. Imposed protection is also visible in early family law since the Law of the XII Tables (450 BC), pertaining to children and women. Further legal measures were taken in the form of protective statutes (leges, e.g. Lex Cincia against impulsive donations) and in the form of decisions of the Senate (Senatus Consulta), e.g. the SC Vellaeanum protecting women and the SC Macedonianum protecting sons. In their turn the rules concerning mistake of law do have protective elements for groups of persons, women, minors, farmers and soldiers. All these legal principles stemming from Roman law spread over Europe in the long process of the reception of Roman law and became a part of living law until this very day.

Suggested Citation

Winkel, Laurens, Forms of Imposed Protection in Legal History, Especially in Roman Law (October 22, 2010). Erasmus Law Review, Vol. 3, No. 2, 2010, Available at SSRN:

Laurens Winkel (Contact Author)

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