Roman Law and the Idea of Europe available for pre-order

We are happy to announce that the culmination of the Reinventing the Foundations of European Legal Culture 1934-1964 project, the collected volume Roman Law and the Idea of Europe (edited by Kaius Tuori and Heta Björklund) will be published by Bloomsbury on 27 December 2018. The book will be available via Open Access on Bloomsbury Collections, and it is now also available for pre-order.

Roman law is widely considered to be the foundation of European legal culture and an inherent source of unity within European law. Roman Law and the Idea of Europe explores the emergence of this idea of Roman law as an idealized shared heritage, tracing its origins among exiled German scholars in Britain during the Nazi regime. The book follows the spread and influence of these ideas in Europe after the war as part of the larger enthusiasm for European unity. It argues that the rise of the importance of Roman law was a reaction against the crisis of jurisprudence in the face of Nazi ideas of racial and ultranationalistic law, leading to the establishment of the idea of Europe founded on shared legal principles.

With contributions from leading academics in the field as well as established younger scholars, this volume will be of immense interests to anyone studying intellectual history, legal history, political history and Roman law in the context of Europe.

Archival sources available

During the Reinventing the Foundations of European Legal Culture 1934-1964 project, we have accumulated archival material from a number of archives. These include private correspondence, notes, and drafts of publications. We are working together with the data management team of the University of Helsinki as well as the respective archives to make as much as possible of the material publicly available at Zenodo (

Zenodo enables safe storage of research data. The research data is stored safely for the future in same cloud infrastructure as research data from CERN’s Large Hadron Collider and using CERN’s battle-tested repository software Invenio, which is used by some of the world’s largest repositories such as INSPIRE HEP and CERN Document Server. In addition, Zenodo assigns all publicly available uploads a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) to make the upload easily and uniquely citeable. Zenodo further supports harvesting of all content via the OAI-PMH protocol. Zenodo is integrated into reporting lines for research funded by the European Commission via OpenAIRE.

Meanwhile, we are happy to share the archival material with other researchers. If you’re interested in the archival material we have, please see our Archival sources page to see from which archives we have material and how to contact us.

Ville Erkkilä’s thesis defence

Mr. Ville Erkkilä (MA) will defend his doctoral thesis, The Conceptual Change of Conscience: Franz Wieacker and German Legal Historiography 1933-1968, in a public examination on 13 October 2017 at 12 noon. The defence will take place at the Faculty of Law of the University of Helsinki, in lecture hall IV (Suomen Laki -sali, Porthania, Yliopistonkatu 3). The opponent will be Dr. Udi Greenberg (Dartmouth College). The defence is open to the public. The thesis is available in E-Thesis.

Dr. Beggio at Symposium anlässlich des 85. Geburtstags von Prof. Gunter Wesener

Dr. Tommaso Beggio will give a presentation on “Paul Koschaker und das Streben nach einem zeitgemäßen Mos italicus als Reaktion auf die Krise des römischen Rechts” at Symposium anlässlich des 85. Geburtstags von Prof. Gunter Wesener on 12 June, 2017. The symposium will take place at Festsaal des Meerscheinschlössls (Mozartgasse 3, 8010 Graz). See the programme: Symposium anlässlich des 85. Geburtstags von Prof. Gunter Wesener.

Kaius Tuori’s “Emperor of Law” book launch

Welcome to the book launch Kaius Tuori’s book “Emperor of Law: The emergence of Roman Imperial Adjudication” (OUP 2016) Wednesday 22.3. at 16-18 at the University of Helsinki in Unioninkatu 37 faculty room (1st floor). Comments from Janne Pölönen, Tommaso Beggio and Jacob Giltaij. Refreshments will be served.

More on the book from the OUP blog. The first online review of the book is also out here.

“Conceptual Change in History” conference

The FoundLaw project, in collaboration with the Oulu Centre for Theoretical and Philosophical Studies of History, is organizing a “Conceptual Change in History” conference at University of Helsinki, September 22-24, 2016. Keynote speakers of the conference are Theodore Arabatzis (University of Athens), Jaakko Husa (University of Lapland), Sinai Rusinek (Van Leer Jerusalem Institute), Benjamin Straumann (New York University), and Paul Thagard (University of Waterloo). The conference is open to the public and there is no registration fee. If you wish to attend, please send an e-mail to by September 14th, 2016. For more information, see the event page.

Lecture: Tommaso Beggio

Dr. Tommaso Beggio will give a lecture, titled “Paul Koschaker und die Reform des romanistischen Rechtsstudiums in Deutschland”, on May 10th, 2016. The lecture is organized by Die Heidelberger Rechtshistorische Gesellschaft and will be held at the Institut für geschichtliche Rechtswissenschaft, University of Heidelberg.