Using documents, glosses, legal commentaries, and the first paleographical study of manuscripts since the mid-nineteenth century, the authors of this book trace the circulation of the Corpus Iuris Civilis from late antiquity until the early twelfth century. They demonstrate that only the Novels found any significant readership in the early Middle Ages, and that Justinian’s Institutes, Code, and Digest emerged from obscurity only in the mid-eleventh century, when they were taken up by northern-Italian specialists in Lombard law. Separate chapters then consider the evidence for the textual history and reception of the Institutes, Code, and Digest. Included in the volume are plates of all of the most important early manuscripts of Justinian’s works, most of which have never been published before.
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