Ancient law reading group

‘The laws have something to say about everything’
Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics 5.1 (1129b)

We are interested in looking at any ancient legal texts (loosely defined) still extant. A different legal text shall be considered in each meeting, with all approaches (e.g. philosophical, legal, socio-historical, philological, literary) welcome and encouraged. We are particularly interested in any points of comparison and contrast between the legal thought (and implications thereof) of different societies. In order to enable immediate engagement from participants (and to minimise preparation beforehand), the sessions would focus on the close reading of a short excerpt with the session leader orchestrating the discussion and introducing the participants to the linguistic and methodological issues of his/her own field.

We are interested in texts from societies and legal cultures such as:
Ancient Greece
Ancient Judaism
Ancient Near East
Biblical Law
Early Canon Law
Early Islam
Celts, Gauls and other neighbouring cultures of Rome
This list is purely indicative, and is by no means exhaustive.

The reading group will not formally begin until semester 1 of the academic year 2014-15, but at this stage we hope to gauge interest and to design a programme based on the research specialisms of any interested parties. If you are interested, please contact and