The Twelve Tables of Rome

  Rome’s first law code was called the Twelve Tables and outlined laws related to marriage, inheritance, certain crimes and their punishments, appeal rights, and the rights of families. [1] These laws, much like the preamble of the United States, were memorized by generation after generation. [2] Some of the laws within the Twelve Tables would be argued as barbaric by today’s standards, such as “A dreadfully deformed child shall be quickly killed.” [3] However, other laws within the tables could be compared to modern day laws of our society. For example, “A man might gather up fruit that was falling down onto another man’s farm.” [4] In the case of Lane v. W.J. Curry and Sons heard in the Supreme Court of Appeals found that “litter in the form of fruit belongs to the tree owner while attached to the tree and can be claimed after it falls.” [5]

 




Footnotes:

  1. D. Brendan Nagle, The Ancient World: a Social and Cultural History, 8th ed. (New Jersey: Pearson, 2013), 179.
  2. Ibid.
  3. Oliver J. Thatcher, The Library of Original Sources (Milwaukee: University Research Extension Co., 1901), pp. 9-11.
  4. Ibid.
  5. UT Agricultural Extension, “Tree Owners Rights and Responsibilities”.

Bibliography:

Nagle, D. Brendan, and the University of Southern California. The Ancient World: a Social and Cultural History. 8th ed. New Jersey: Pearson, 2013.

Oliver J. Thatcher, ed., The Library of Original Sources (Milwaukee: University Research Extension Co., 1901), Vol. III: The Roman World, pp. 9-11.

UT Agricultural Extension. “Tree Owners Rights and Responsibilities.” Accessed June 8, 2017. https://extension.tennessee.edu/publications/Documents/SP687.pdf.

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