Derecho Romano PDF Free Download


In the annals of legal history, few legal systems have left as profound and enduring a mark as the Roman legal system. Derecho Romano, or Roman law, is a fascinating subject that delves into the jurisprudential heritage of ancient Rome. In this article, we will explore the intricacies and legacy of Derecho Romano, shedding light on its origins, key principles, and enduring influence on modern legal systems.

The Origins of Derecho Romano

1. Ancient Foundations

Derecho Romano finds its roots in the ancient city of Rome, dating back to the 8th century BCE. It evolved over centuries, influenced by Greek, Etruscan, and other legal traditions.

2. The Twelve Tables

One of the earliest recorded legal codes, the Twelve Tables, laid the foundation for Roman law. These tables were displayed publicly, ensuring legal transparency and accessibility.

Key Principles of Roman Law

3. Equity and Justice

Roman law emphasized the concept of “ius civile,” which aimed to provide equitable solutions to legal disputes. This emphasis on fairness shaped legal thought for generations.

4. Property Rights

Property rights were sacrosanct in Roman law. The concept of “dominium” established clear guidelines for ownership and transfer of property.

5. Contracts and Obligations

The Romans were meticulous in their contractual dealings. “Lex contractus” governed the formation and enforcement of contracts, setting the stage for modern contract law.

The Influence of Derecho Romano

6. Medieval Europe

Roman law experienced a revival in medieval Europe, serving as the basis for legal systems in many countries. The “Corpus Juris Civilis” of Emperor Justinian was instrumental in this resurgence.

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7. Civil Law Traditions

Derecho Romano’s impact is evident in civil law systems worldwide. Nations like Germany, France, and Italy integrated Roman legal principles into their legal frameworks.

8. The Common Law Connection

Even common law systems, such as the one in the United Kingdom, bear traces of Roman law. Concepts like “stare decisis” (precedent) and “habeas corpus” (legal protection against unlawful detention) have Roman origins.

Modern Applications

9. Civil Rights

Roman legal thought laid the groundwork for modern civil rights. Concepts of legal equality and individual freedoms can be traced back to Roman jurisprudence.

10. Family Law

Roman law also influenced family law, shaping notions of marriage, divorce, and parental rights that persist in contemporary legal systems.

11. Property and Contracts

Property and contract law, heavily influenced by Roman principles, remain integral to modern economies and business transactions.


In conclusion, Derecho Romano, the ancient Roman legal system, is an enduring testament to the ingenuity and sophistication of the Roman civilization. Its principles have left an indelible mark on the legal systems of today, from the foundations of justice to the intricacies of property and contract law.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Que: Is Derecho Romano still relevant in today’s legal world?
Absolutely. Many legal concepts derived from Roman law continue to shape modern legal systems.

Que: How did the Twelve Tables influence later legal codes?
The Twelve Tables set a precedent for legal transparency and accessibility, serving as a model for subsequent legal codes.

Que: Can we see Roman law in the U.S. legal system?
Yes, the U.S. legal system, though primarily common law, has incorporated Roman legal concepts, particularly in areas of property and contract law.

Que: Were Roman legal proceedings similar to modern court trials?
While there are similarities, Roman legal proceedings had distinct characteristics, such as the absence of lawyers and a more active role for judges.

Que: What can we learn from Roman law today?
Roman law teaches us about the importance of justice, equity, and the enduring legacy of legal principles in shaping society.

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