Page images
PDF
EPUB

and the introduction, already noticed, of the 'inventory,' by far the most important development was that effected by Justinian's assimilation of legacies and fideicommissa. When Gaius wrote, prescribed forms were still required for the former, which were also recovered by different remedies; but, by requiring the observance of certain evidentiary solemnities in the creation of fideicommissa, by freeing legacies from the trammels of language, and by the abolition of the formulary procedure, later emperors had removed many of the distinctions between them, and such as had remained were swept away by Justinian's ordinance, that in future the rules and remedies of each should apply to both indifferently, which also presented an opportunity for constructing one consistent enactment from the provisions of the senatus consulta Trebellianum and Pegasianum, the latter of which had half undone the judicious rule introduced by the former for the assimilation of fideicommissarii to directi heredes. Many unreasonable prohibitions, such as those of legacies to incertae personae, poenae nomine, and post mortem heredis, were also abolished by Justinian, whose changes in connection with the querella inofficiosi testamenti, both before and after the publication of the Institutes, are noticed in the notes to Title 18.

LIBER SECUNDUS,

DE RERUM DIVISIONE,

SUPERIORE libro de iure personarum exposuimus : modo videamus de rebus. quae vel in nostro patrimonio vel extra nostrum patrimonium habentur. quaedam enim naturali iure communia sunt omnium, quaedam publica, quaedam universitatis, quaedam nullius, pleraque singulorum, quae variis ex causis cuique adquiruntur, sicut ex subiectis apparebit.

Et quidem naturali iure communia sunt omnium haec: aer et aqua profluens et mare et per hoc litora maris. nemo igitur ad litus maris accedere prohibetur, dum tamen villis et monu- 1 mentis et aedificiis abstineat, quia non sunt iuris gentium, sicut et mare. Flumina autem omnia et portus publica sunt: ideoque ius piscandi omnibus commune est in portubus

Tit. I. By res extra patrimonium seems to be meant a thing which is legally incapable of being owned by a private person, i.e. it does not cease to be in patrimonio by not having, or by ceasing to have, a private owner. Extra patrimonium is thus equivalent to extra commercium : but in the former the res is viewed as incapable of private dominium, in the latter rather as incapable of acquisition by a private person. Having drawn the distinction, Justinian proceeds to classify res extra patrimonium under four heads.

81. Cf. Plautus, Rud. 4. 3. 36'mare quidem commune certo'st omnibus, Cicero, pro Rosc. 26 'quid tam est commune, quam spiritus vivis, mare fluctuantibus, litus eiectis ?' Seneca, benef. 4. 28, Ovid, metam. 6. 349. The seashore up to the line of the highest tide in flood or storm (hibernus=per hiemem, vel ventis excitatus), § 3, was communis because incapable of appropriation, though if by driving piles one erected a building upon any part of it he acquired property in the structure (but not in the soil, $ 5 inf.) so long as it stood. This, however, could not be done without a decretum of the praetor, Dig. 41. 1. 50. The modern doctrine that the seashore between high and low tide belongs to the state is derived from Celsus, Dig. 43. 8. 3.

2 fluminibusque. Est autem litus maris, quatenus hibernus

fluctus maximus excurrit. Riparum quoque usus publicus 3 est iuris gentium, sicut ipsius fluminis : itaque navem ad eas 4 appellere, funes ex arboribus ibi natis religare, onus aliquid in his reponere cuilibet liberum est, sicuti per ipsum flumen navigare. sed proprietas earum illorum est, quorum praediis

haerent : qua de causa arbores quoque in isdem natae eorun5 dem sunt. Litorum quoque usus publicus iuris gentium est,

sicut ipsius maris : et ob id quibuslibet liberum est casam ibi imponere, in qua se recipiant, sicut retia siccare et ex mare deducere. proprietas autem eorum potest intellegi nullius esse,

sed eiusdem iuris esse, cuius et mare et quae subiacent mari, 6 terra vel harena. Universitatis sunt, non singulorum veluti

quae in civitatibus sunt, ut theatra stadia et similia et si qua alia sunt communia civitatium.

§ 2. Res publicae seem to be divisible into two classes, (1) Things which belong to and are used by the state as by a private person : e.g. public slaves, money, stores, etc.: these are not properly extra patrimonium nostrum. (2) Things which are publico usui destinatae, (i.e. not communes generally, but only to cives), e.g. roads, harbours, public rivers (i.e. 'Alumina perennia' Dig. 43. 12. 3) and their beds. The banks of public rivers were private property, subjected by the law to a kind of servitude in favour of all members of the state, $ 4 inf.

§ 6. Universitas here seems to be used as equivalent to civitas, i.e. a Roman city or municipium. Taken in this sense, res universitatis are analogous to res publicae, and are divisible in the same manner. Such property only of a provincial city as is municipum usui destinatum is extra patrimonium : a res publica is a thing which any civis may use : a res universitatis is one which may be used as of right only by the members of the universitas.

Taken in its widest sense, universitas is equivalent to the juristic person' of modern writers. For the definition and characteristics of juristic persons in general reference may be made to Holland's Jurisprudence p. 225 sq. : those recognised by Roman law may be subdivided into universitates personarum and universitates bonorum. [The latter should not be confounded with so-called universitates rerum (distantium), such as a flock of sheep, which have no independent legal existence apart from the elements which go to make them up.]

A universitas personarum (or corporation) is an aggregate of natural persons forming an ideal whole, regarded by the law as a 'person' distinct from its members for the time being, because its existence does not cease along with theirs, and invested with rights and subject to duties, other than those of the individuals, taken singly, of which it is com

Nullius autem sunt res sacrae et religiosae et sanctae : quod enim divini iuris est, id nullius in bonis est. Sacra sunt, quae 7 rite et per pontifices deo consecrata sunt, veluti aedes sacrae 8 et dona, quae rite ad ministerium dei dedicata sunt, quae etiam per nostram constitutionem alienari et obligari prohibuimus, excepta causa redemptionis captivorum. si quis vero auctoritate sua quasi sacrum sibi constituerit, sacrum non est, sed profanum. locus autem, in quo sacrae aedes aedificatae sunt, etiam diruto aedificio adhuc sacer manet, ut et Papinianus scripsit. Religiosum locum unusquisque 9

posed : so that legal relations can subsist between it and them and any number of them no less than between it and other persons generally. Such corporations may be exemplified by the state (Dig. 49. 14, Cod. 10. I), ecclesiastical bodies (Dig. 28. 3. 6. 7), and commercial associations, 'coliegia pistorum, fabrorum,' etc. (Dig. 3. 4. 1. pr.)

Universitates bonorum are juristic persons not necessarily supported by any natural person : they are so much property, or masses of rights and duties (Güterinbegriff) personified and regarded as capable of perpetuating their separate existence and fictitious unity indefinitely, e.g. the treasury or fiscus : foundations such as churches, hospitals, and almshouses : hereditates iacentes, i.e. inheritances on which no heir has yet entered, and the 'estate' or universitas iuris of a citizen lying in captivity with the enemy, Dig. 3. 5. 19. 5. Savigny's dictum as to the origin of corporations (which is stated by Mr. Poste, Gaius p. 156) seems untrue in the face of Dig. 34. 5. 20, from which it may be argued that persons could always incorporate themselves for lawful purposes without the special assent of the sovereign.

$ 7. When it is said that res sacrae, religiosae, and sanctae are res nullius, what is meant is rather that they were nullius in bonis, i.e. extra patrimonium. Res nullius, in the more technical sense, are those things which 'fiunt singulorum'by occupatio, $ 12-18 inf.

8. Res sacrae could become so only by being dedicated under public authority by a priestly ceremony (for which in the pagan time see Cic. pro domo 47, Ovid, Fast. 1. 610, Valer. Max. 5. 10) in the later period the imperial sanction seems to have been sufficient, Dig. 5. 3. 50. 1 ; 11. 7. 8. pr. By consecration they ceased to be in commercio and became inalienable, though in Justinian's time moveable res sacrae might be sold for the purpose mentioned in the text (cf. Gregor. ep. 6. 13, Socrates, trist. eccl. 7. 21) and also for the support of the poor in time of famine, and for payment of the debts of the church, Cod. 1. 2. 21, Nov. 120. 10. If sacred ground was captured by the enemy, it became profanum, though by a kind of postliminium it could recover its former character, Dig. 11. 7. 36.

§ 9. Gaius (ii. 4) describes res religiosae as things'quae dis manibus

sua voluntate facit, dum mortuum infert in locum suum. in communem autem locum purum invito socio inferre non licet: in commune vero sepulcrum etiam invitis ceteris licet inferre. item si alienus usus fructus est, proprietarium placet nisi consentiente usufructuario locum religiosum non facere. in alienum locum concedente domino licet inferre : et licet

postea ratum habuerit, quam illatus est mortuus, tamen 10 religiosus locus fit. Sanctae quoque res, veluti muri et portae,

quodammodo divini iuris sunt et ideo nullius in bonis sunt. ideo autem muros sanctos dicimus, quia poena capitis constituta sit in eos, qui aliquid in muros deliquerint. ideo et legum eas partes, quibus poenas constituimus adversus eos qui contra

leges fecerint, sanctiones vocamus. 11 Singulorum autem hominum multis modis res fiunt: qua

rundam enim rerum dominium nanciscimur iure naturali, quod, sicut diximus, appellatur ius gentium, quarundam iure civili. commodius est itaque a vetustiore iure incipere. palam est autem vetustius esse naturale ius, quod cum ipso genere humano rerum natura prodidit: civilia enim iura tunc coeperunt,

relictae sunt :' here little seems to be expressed by the term except ground used for buriai, though there is reference to moveable res religiosae in Bk. iv. 18. 9 inf., and Dig. 48. 13. 1. As is said in the text, soil could be made religiosus by its full owner burying a corpse in it, or (Dig. 11. 7. 4) being buried in it himself: hence, as Gaius points out (ii. 7), provincial soil could not properly become religiosus because it could not be owned ex iure Quiritium by a private person : however, ‘pro religioso habebatur.' Ground which had thus become divini iuris was to a certain extent private property, as in the case of family burialplaces : it was extra patrimonium only in the sense that it could not be diverted from the purpose to which it had been devoted.

§ 10. Under the older law res were made sanctae by a religious ceremony: 'sanctum ... a sanguine hostiae ... nihil enim sanctum apud veteres dicebatur, nisi quod hostiae sanguine esset consecratum aut conspersum' Isidor. orig. 15. 4, the result being 'ut violari sine poena (maiore) non possent'Aelius, Gall. apud Festum, 'sancire est confirmare et irrogatione poenae ab iniuriis defendere' Isidor. I. c. It is probably the retention of the penalty without the ceremony of consecration which makes Gaius (ii. 8) speak of them as 'quodammodo divini iuris.'

§ 11. Having excluded the consideration of res which cannot be the private property of individuals, Justinian proceeds to point out the various modes in which ownership over res singulae (corporales) can be acquired. Before passing on to these, it is necessary to note briefly the

« PreviousContinue »