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in the notes have, when possible, been sedulously compared. It is nevertheless felt, that, owing to the exceeding brevity of the author's style and the great compression of his matter, his exact meaning may not have been everywhere apprehended; such occurrences however it is hoped are rare, and for them the translator throws himself upon the indulgence of the public, in the full assurance that they will not impute them to any dispo. sition on his part to slur over the difficulties he may have had to encounter.
The notes and references at the foot of the body of the work are all (with two or three obvious exceptions marked with an asterisk) taken from the 9th German Edition, and whilst for any variation between the notes in that edition and those in the present translation the translator is alone responsible, he does not guarantee the accuracy or relevancy of the references themselves. It may be assumed that the frequent revisions of the author and the care of the last German editor leave nothing to be desired on this head.
The notes and illustrations forming the appendix to the present volume are intended for two purposes, viz. ; first, to assist the English student in understanding the text, and second to enable him to compare the Roman with our own jurisprudence. The notes of the first class have been translated or abridged from the works referred to in each case; the selection has been made mainly with a view to illustrate principles of general importance and not to explain matters which, although mentioned or referred to in the text, are not of such a nature as to interest the majority of English students; nevertheless, it is hoped that no explanation has been omitted which is necessary to enable a person with the Corpus Juris at his elbow readily to understand the text. The notes of the second class are not intended as essays on the English law, but only to serve as guides to
the student, and to enable him to compare the most important principles in the body of the work with those which are recognised in our own jurisprudence.
For reasons which may be gathered from the earlier part of this preface, it has taken no little time and labour to collect the materials for some of these notes and to arrange them in their present shape ; but both time and labour have been expended willingly, in the hope that the results may prove serviceable to those who, anxious to discover the most important general principles of our law, are at a loss where to search for them. The authorities which are referred to, are such as the writer has met with during his own studies. He does not profess to have succeeded in obtaining those best suited to his purpose, by ransacking the reports from the Year-books downwards ; doubtless, persons of greater experience and knowledge could have made a better and more ample selection, and upon some future occasion the nucleus now formed may be expanded by further labour into a systematic arrangement of the general principles of English Law.
The analytical table of contents is not a translation of the corresponding portion of the German edition, but is wholly new, and has been framed for the express purpose of presenting to the eye a full outline of this portion of the author's system. The index also is entirely new. The aim of the translator has, in short, been to render the present volume complete in itself, and thereby to increase its utility not only as an introduction to the remainder of Thibaut's work (consisting of the Roman Law of Property, Obligations, Marriage, and Succession), but also as an introduction to the study of Jurisprudence generally.
LIST OF WORKS to which the translator has himself constantly
referred, and which will be found useful to students of Civil Law and Jurisprudence.
1. A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, edited by William Smith, Ph. D. London: Taylor and Walton, 1842. [The articles on Roman Law are from the pen of Mr. George Long. ]
2. Erörterungen über die bestrittensten Materien des Römischen Rechts in Zusätzen zu Thibaut's Pandecten System 7te aufl. Herausgegeben von J. R. Braun. Stuttgart, 1831. [Referred to as Braun or Braun's Erör.]
3. Erörterungen einzelner Lehren des Römischen Rechts. Ein Commentar zu der Sten aufi, des Pandekten Rechts von A. F. J. Thibaut. Herausgegeben von Dr. H. Froben. Stuttgart, 1836. [Referred to as Froben or Froben's Erör.]
4. Versuche über einzelne Theile der Theorie des Rechts von A. F. J. Thibaut. 2te verb. Ausg. Jena, 1817. 2 vols.
5. Civilistische Abhandlungen von A, F. J. Thibaut. Heidelb. 1814.
6. Lehrbuch des heutigen Römischen Rechts von Dr. F. Mackeldey, 12te Ausg. von Dr. K. F. Rosshirt. Giessen, 1842. 2 vols.
8. Leitfaden für Pandekten Vorlesungen von Dr. K. A. von Vangerow. Marb. u. Leipzig, 1848, 3 vols. [An extremely useful work in which difficult questions are very ably discussed.]
9. System des heutigen Römischen Rechts von F. C. von Savigny. Berlin, 1840—1849. 8 vols.
10. Explication historique des Instituts de l'empereur Justinien. Par M. Ortolan, 4ème éd. Paris, 1847. 2 vols.
ANALYSIS OF CONTENTS.