Call for papers – Law and Language in the Middle Ages


Law and Language in the Middle Ages

10 -11 September 2015
At the Royal Academy in Copenhagen, Denmark

 Keynote Speaker:
Prof. Bruce o’Brien, The University of Mary Washington

We are happy to announce the upcoming interdisciplinary conference on medieval legal history and therefore invite colleagues whose research touches upon aspects of law and language in the Middle Ages to submit proposals for papers of 20 minutes’ duration. A title and an abstract of 200-250 words should be sent by e-mail to one or more members of the organising committee (see e-mail addresses below).

Deadline for proposals is 1 February 2015.

The final programme will be published soon thereafter. All proposals and presentations should be in English. The papers will be published.

Suggested thematic strands are:

The relationship between law and legal practice in a linguistic context, the similarities / dissimilarities in terminology and practice, the problems and possibilities of translating laws from this region into modern English or other modern languages, ‘Germanic’ legal language, law and language in the North Sea area, the relationship between Latin and vernacular in the legal texts, adoption and application of legal language in other domains. The list is by no means exhaustive and other proposals touching on the main theme of law and language are most welcome.

The conference:

The conference is held at the Royal Academy for Science and Letters, H.C. Andersens Boulevard 35, in the centre of Copenhagen

Registration fee for non-speakers will be € 100 or 750 Danish Kroner payable upon arrival at the conference. The fee includes lunch on Thursday and Friday, the conference dinner on Thursday, and the closing reception on Friday, and all drinks and snacks. Speakers are of course exempt from paying the conference fee.

Please use the registration form which will be available on the conference web page in winter 2015: Deadline for non-speakers’ registration is 1 September 2015. The Academy lecture room can only contain a limited number of participants so please do not hesitate to register.

The conference is sponsored by: the Carlsberg Foundation and Ingeniør, kaptajn Åge Nielsens Familiefond

If you have any queries, or want to submit a proposal, please feel free to use any of these addresses: Helle Vogt (, Jenny Benham ( or Per Andersen ( ).

 The Organising Committee:

  • Helle Vogt, associate professor, The Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen
  • Jenny Benham, lecturer, Cardiff School of History, Archaeology and Religion, Cardiff University
  • Per Andersen, professor, The Department of Law, University of Aarhus

More information can be find here.

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26 – 28 januari 2015 Conference: ”Space of Action: Donations & Inheritance – Strategies, Relations and Historical Development from Late Roman Period until Modern Times”

Den 26 – 28 januari 2015 hålls konferensen ”Space of Action: Donations & Inheritance – Strategies, Relations and Historical Development from Late Roman Period until Modern Times” på Centre för Advanced Studies (CAS) i Oslo. Ansvarig för konferensen är det arvsrättsliga forskningsnätverket ”Foundations and space of action of Nordic inheritance law:
Strategies, relations and historical development c. 1100 – 2020″.

Programmet återfinns här, och information kring praktiska spörsmål finns här.

Varmt välkomna!

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The Max-Planck Summer Academy for Legal History, July 27-August 7, 2015

Max Plank

The Max-Planck Summer Academy for Legal History, offered by the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History (MPIeR), provides an in-depth introduction to methods and principles of research in legal history. Although its main focus is on European legal history, there is special emphasis on global perspectives on legal history. It addresses a selected group of highly motivated early-stage researchers, usually PhD candidates, working on a research project with an interest in the basic research of historical formation and transformations of law and other normative orders.

The academy consists of two modules and lasts two weeks; the first week provides an introduction to the study of sources, methodological principles, as well as theoretical models and controversial research debates on basic research fields of legal history (module 1). During the second week the participants discuss a special research theme and develop their own approach to the theme (module 2).


The next Summer Academy will take place from July 27 until August 7, 2015.


The classes and lectures will take place at the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History and in other buildings of the Frankfurt University Campus.

Course aim

The overall aim of the Max Planck Summer Academy for Legal History is to provide PhD candidates with an expertise on the methods and principles of legal history and to equip them with the ability to apply this knowledge to their research projects and other research in legal history or related disciplines.

Applications have to be submitted by March 1st, 2015 in electronically form only (max. 10 MB) to

You will find more information here!

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New book: ”How Nordic are the Nordic Medieval Laws – Ten Years Later”

Foto 2014-12-02 10 27 35

The volume contains the proceedings from the conference ”How Nordic are the Nordic Medieval Laws – Ten Years After?” which was held at the Carlsberg Academy (Copenhagen) in May 2013.

This was the 10th in the line of conferences known as The Carlsberg Academy Conferences on Medieval Legal History. The main theme of the conference was a return to the topic raised at the first conference held back in 2003: the Nordic medieval laws as seen in a European context. In the 10 years since then, the interpretation of the Nordic laws have changed from a specific Nordic to a more common European perspective, understanding the Nordic laws as part of a common European tradition. Thus, the traditional interpretation that the Nordic medieval laws were an expression of an ancient Nordic culture has been undergoing change since the first Carlsberg conference. This book sums up the current stage of research.

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Seminarium: Iura novit curia and the application of law in early modern and modern courts.

Här kommer en påminnelse om höstens seminarieserie i rättshistoria i Stockholm som ägnas åt den processrättsliga utvecklingen i Europa och Sverige. Måndagen den 24 november 2014  är det dags för det femte och sista tillfället för denna gång. Peter Oestmann, professor i rättshistoria vid Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität, Münster, leder då ett seminarium på temat Iura novit curia and the application of law in early modern and modern courts.

Prof. Dr. Peter Oestmann

Observera att tiden för seminariet är ändrad i förhållande till vad som tidigare annonserats. Seminariet äger rum klockan 15.00-17.00.   

Plats: Stockholms universitet, Fakultetsrummet på plan 8 i C-huset (Södra husen).

Tid: 15.00-17.00 (Obs ny tid!)

Språk: engelska

Välkommen att i förväg anmäla ditt deltagande till Adam Croon ( eller tel. 08-16 21 31). Anmälan är frivillig.

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Världens första deklaration om mänskliga rättigheter?

I Under Strecket i dagens Svenska Dagbladet omtalas boken The Cyrus Cylinder: The King of Persia’s Proclamation from Ancient Babylon. Under Strecket finns här och bokens förläggare här.

Kung Kyros’ proklamation för över 2 500 år sedan garanterade religions- och tankefrihet, rätten att fritt förflytta sig och välja sin vistelseort, skydd mot konfiskation, rätten till liv, personlig säkerhet, arbete och lön, förbud mot tvångsarbete och slaveri.

De mänskliga fri- och rättigheter som är högaktuella idag har en lång historia bakom sig.


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Höstens seminarieserie i rättshistoria vid Stockholms universitet

Höstens seminarieserie i rättshistoria vid Stockholms universitet ägnas åt den processrättsliga utvecklingen i Europa och Sverige.

Fredagen den 24 oktober 2014  är det dags för det tredje seminariet. Remco van Rhee,  professor i europeisk rättshistoria och komparativ civilprocessrätt vid Maastricht universitet, föreläser då över ett ämnet Superior Courts in the Dutch Republic (1581-1795): An Independent ”Judiciary” controlled by the ”Executive”:

At first glance, the administration of justice in the Dutch Republic (1581-1795) was firmly in the hands of the courts of law. However, when viewed more closely, it appears that those in power possessed various instruments to influence the manner in which legal disputes were decided. This had several consequences, also as regards the superior courts in the land. It appears that the superior courts functioned within an environment in which they could often not be regarded as truly superior: they were subject to other powers, notably within the context of their jurisdiction and as a result of specific legal remedies that were available against ‘final’ judgments. The present paper will explore the position of especially the superior courts of the provinces of Holland and Zeeland, notably the High Council of Holland & Zeeland (Hoge Raad van Holland en Zeeland) and the Court of Holland and Zeeland (Hof van Holland en Zeeland).

Det fullständiga programmet för höstens seminarieserie och praktisk information återfinns här:
Seminarieserie i rättshistoria hösten 2014 – program

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