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A network of legal transfer

The public international law education of Zhu Qiwu under the wings of Wang Tieya, Huang Zhengming and Humphrey Waldock

Li Chen


Legal transfer is a critical part of China’s intellectual history of legal education. Beginning in the late nineteenth century, waves of young ambitious Chinese students embarked on arduous journeys to the Western countries to obtain modern legal education, particularly in the area of public international law. One such prominent Chinese legal scholar is Zhu Qiwu, who received his public international law education at the Graduate School of National Central University in Chongqing and the Oxford University Faculty of Law in the 1940s. This article seeks to use Zhu as an example of this dynamic legal transfer process, and examines his educational background both in China and in the UK. In the process, this paper will also explore the resulting network of exchange of legal thoughts formed amongst Zhu and his teachers, Wang Tieya, Huang Zhengming and Humphrey Waldock. In particular, it will reveal how an early article of Wang had planted the seed of a research topic pertaining to the relationship between treaty and municipal laws in Zhu’s mind during his days at the National Central University, which Zhu then took to Oxford and painstakingly watered to fruition in the form of his Oxford doctoral dissertation in 1949. Zhu’s doctoral dissertation made significant contribution to the body of Chinese legal scholarship in that era, but it was never published. This paper thus takes this opportunity to bring to light its main structure and contents.

Marcin W. Bukała


The aim of the article is to highlight some crucial aspects of the just price concept and the differences between the medieval foundations and the late scholastic views on the topic. The paper refers especially to Wim Decock’s discourses on the ideas of ‘fairness in exchange’ in the book Theologians and contract law, The moral transformation of the ius commune(ca. 1500-1650)(Leiden 2013). The discussion concerns chiefly such issues as: role of Thomas Aquinas’s concepts (1), value in economic exchange (2), relativity in exchange (3), the distinction between furtum and turpe lucrum (4), changing views on the common good in the scholastic ethics of economic life, e.g. in the discussion of ‘Merchant of Rhodes’ casus (5).

Paolo Angelini


The Serbian version of the Syntagma of Blastares was included in the tripartite codification enacted by the emperor Stephan Dušan in 1349. After the translation from Latin into Greek (6th century), and then from Greek into Serbian (14th century), Justinian’s legislation again obtained the force of law. Through the Byzantine version, Roman law was transplanted and adopted in the new born Serbian-Greek Empire. The Serbian version of the Syntagma of Blastares must be considered as a sort of Lex Romana Serborum, because in some cases the Roman law was literally translated, while in others it was epitomised. However, its contents were always in conformity with Justinianic law.

Understanding the Sources of Early Modern and Modern Commercial Law

Courts, Statutes, Contracts, and Legal Scholarship


Edited by Heikki Pihlajamäki, Albrecht Cordes, Serge Dauchy and Dave De ruysscher

The contributions of Understanding the Sources of Early Modern and Modern Commercial Law: Courts, Statutes, Contracts, and Legal Scholarship show the wealth of sources which historians of commercial law use to approach their subject. Depending on the subject, historical research on mercantile law must be ready to open up to different approaches and sources in a truly imaginative and interdisciplinary way. This, more than many other branches of law, has always been largely non-state law. Normative, ‘official’, sources are important in commercial law as well, but other sources are often needed to complement them. The articles of the volume present an excellent assemblage of those sources.

Anja Amend-Traut, Albrecht Cordes, Serge Dauchy, Dave De ruysscher, Olivier Descamps, Ricardo Galliano Court, Eberhard Isenmann, Mia Korpiola, Peter Oestmann, Heikki Pihlajamäki, Edouard Richard, Margrit Schulte Beerbühl, Guido Rossi, Bram Van Hofstraeten, Boudewijn Sirks, Alain Wijffels, and Justyna Wubs-Mrozewicz.