Note on a decision by the German Federal Supreme Cour (BGH), dated 8 December 2022, IX ZB72/19, KTS 2023, 540-546.

Case note on a decision dealing with jurisdiction over bvankruptcy proceedings under art. 3 of the European Regulation 12015/848on Insolvfency Proceedings and under sec. 3 of the German Insolvcency Code (Insolvenzirdnung). The decision by the Federal Court also deals with the consequences of Brexit for the jurisdiction of British courts. My note takes a look at the German decision and the parallel English case Barings (UK) Ltd & Ors v Galapagos SA, [2022] EWHC 1633 (Ch).

“Ulpianus scripsit”? Using Artificial Intelligence for authorship attribution of ancient Roman law texts, Milan Law Review 4/1 (2023) 56-69.

  • Also published in Francesca Biondi, Roberto Sacchi (eds.), Dialogo transdisciplinare e identità del giurista, Milan 2023, 1-14.

This article contains a report on my experiments with the use of artificial intelligence for the attribution of Roman legal texts to their respective authors.After training, a Support VFector Machine (SVM) can attribute texts from the Digest to the correct author with an accuracy of about 50%. while this is fasr from satisfactory, it is much better than mere guessing.The aplpication of the same technique to texts from the work known as Ulpianii regulae supports the assumption that the work was not authored by Ulpian, but by an otherwise unknown classical jurist.

Methodischer Einfluss von Ciceros Topica auf die klassische Jurisprudenz in den Digesten [Methodological Influence of Cicero's Topica on Classical Jurisprudence in the Digest], in: Wolfram Buchwitz, Matthias Ehmer (eds.), Ciceros Topica und sein Programm De iure civili in artem redigundo [Cicero's Topica and his project De iure civili in artem redigundo]. Berlin 2023 , 247–265.

Cicero's small treatise on finding topics of argumentation contains a lot of examples that resemble the hypothetical cases discussed by ther classical Roman jurists. The extent to which Cicero influenced the thinking of the Classical jurists is unclear. My paper argues that despite notable similarities, the jurists thought and argued in a different way. To them,the design of hypothetical cases and the analysis of possible legal solutions to those cases was the essential part of argumentation.

Handbuch des Römischen Privatrechts [Handbook of Roman Private Law] (edited with Ulrike Babusiaux, Christian Baldus, Wolfgang Ernst, Franz-Stefan Meissel und Johannes Platschek), 3 Bände, Tübingen 2023.

The Handbook of Roman Private Law is the result of a common effort of a large group of authors. The three volumes of the Handbuch contain an overview of all aspects of Roman Private Law and the current state of research in the field in 112 chapters.
My own contributions to the Handbook:

  • § 18. Das testamentum per aes et libram und andere Formen letztwilliger Verfügungen [The testamentum per aes et libram and other forms of dispositions upon daeth], Bd. 1, 518-5532.
  • § 52. Erbfähigkeit [Capacity to inherit], Bd. 1, 1280-1310 .
  • § 53. Testamentarische Erbfolge [Testate succerssion], Bd. 1, 1311-1328. 
  • § 75. Vadimonium und andere Prozesstipulationen [Vadimonium and other formal promises in the context of legal proceedings], Bd. 2, 1972-1987.
  • § 98. Fideikommisse und ihre Durchsetzung [Fideicommissa / trusts upon death and their enforcfement], Bd. 2, 2691-2712.


Saisine, seisin und Gewere [Saisine, seisin, and gewere], in: Nils Jansen und Sonja Meier (Hg.), Iurium itinera. Historische Rechtsvergleichung und vergleichende Rechtsgeschichte. Reinhard Zimmermann zum 70. Geburtstag am 10. Oktober 2022 [Historical Comparative Law and Comparative Legal History. Essays Presented to Reinhard Zimmermann on the Occasion of his 70th Birthday on 10 October 2022], Tübingen 2022, 845-868.

My contribution to Reinhard Zimmermann's festschrift focusses on the origins of the Gewere which is often cited as a fundamental concept of ancient German or Germanic propwerty law. I discuss the emergence of Gewere and of the pralell term seisin / saisine in English and French customary law. The second part of the essay is dedicated to the question whether early modern authors were still aware of the historical connection between French saisdine and German Gewere.

Der Pestfloh-Professor. Zur Ginsengwurzel-Entscheidung des Bundesgerichtshofs [The rat flea professor - On the German Federal Supreme Court's decision in the Ginseng Root  case], in: Stephan Meder (Hg.), Geschichte und Zukunft des Urheberrechts III, Göttingen 2022, 81-99.

The so-called Ginseng Root case of the German Federal Supremwe Court (BGHZ 36, 363) is a landmark decision concerning the possibility to obtain monetary compensation for the infringement of personalty rights. This paper explores the historical context of the decision.It traces the biographies of the plaintiff in the case, Heinrich Brandweiner, who was a professsor of International Law and Church Law at the University of Graz, and of the East German pharmacologist Heinrich Hofmann, for whom Brandweiner brought back the ginseng roots from Korea which gave the case its name. The Ginseng Root Case and the career of Heinrich Brandweiner provide an occasion to revisit the long history of the assertion that to bring a claim for money based on the violation of one's honour is in itself a dishonourable act.

Rechtsmittel, in: Albrecht Cordes u.a. (Hg.), Handwörterbuch zur deutschen Rechtsgeschichte, 2. Auflage, Bd. 5, 29. Lieferung, 2022, Sp. 1214-1219.

This short article explains the concept of "Rechtsmittel" (legal remedy) and its restricted scope in modern German priocedural law. The modern concept was only developped in the 1870s. The article alöso gives an overview of the history of remedies against judicuial decisions in Germany. 

Rechtsgeschäft, in: Albrecht Cordes u.a. (Hg.), Handwörterbuch zur deutschen Rechtsgeschichte, 2. Auflage, Bd. 5, 29. Lieferung, 2022, Sp. 1166-1171.

"Rechtsgeschäft" (negotium iuridicum, legal act) is obne of the central concepts of the "Gerneral Part of Private Law" as it was developped by Germ,an legal scholars ("pandectists") of the 19th century. The article traces the concept to its oriogins in 18th century natural law thinking and  its transplanmtation into foreiogn legal systems from Europe to Eastern Asia (法律行為).

"Ait senatus ...". Senatsbeschlüsse in Ulpians Großkommentar zum Edikt ["The senate says ..." Decrees of the senate in Ulpian's great commentary on the praetor's edict], in: Pierangelo Buongiorno, Sebastian Lohsse (Hg.), Darstellung und Gebrauch der senatus consulta in der römischen Jurisprudenz der Kaiserzeit. Acta Senatus, Bd. 12, Stuttgart 2022, 243-264.

This paper analyses the way in which the classical Roman jurist Ulpian deals with decrees of the Roman senate in his monumental commentary on the edict of the praetor. In many cases, a decree opf the senate is only mentioned in passing or used to construct a hyxpothetical case. Only a few decrees are made the subject of an in-depth commentary of their own which Ulpian embeds in the commentary on the edict, like e.g. the SC Iuventianum (D. - 6d).


Das römische Familienfideikommiss [The fidecommissum (entail) in favour of  the family in Roman law], in: Lisa Isola, Klauselgestaltungen in römischen Testamenten. Akten einer Internationalen Tagung zum römischen Testamentsrecht (6.-7. .November 2020, Wien/online), Wien 2021,  120-126.

Like the Engklish entail, the fidecommissum familiae of the Ius Commune was a device which enables a wealthy individual to make sure that the property remained undivided in the hands of a  designated family members in the future. The paper analyses the antecedents of the fidecommissum quod familiae relinquitur. We ask the question whether classical Roman law made it possible for a testator to bind several future generations. On the basis of Mod. 9 reg. D. 31.32.6 , we argue hat this was possible.

Review of Riedlberger, P., Prolegomena zu den spätantiken Konstitutionen. Nebst einer Analyse der erbrechtlichen und verwandten Sanktionen gegen Heterodoxe (Stuttgart-Bad Cannstatt 2020), IVRA 69 (2021)  614-625.

PCR-Tests und Jurisprudenz [PCT Tests and Legal Scholasrship], ZInsO 2021, 1413-1421.

A reply to the article by Jacobi, ZInsO 2021, 823. On the basis of medical and biological literature, we show how PCR tests function and why they constuitute a valid basis for measures to contain the Covid-19-pandemic.

Juristische Herausforderungen der Künstlichen Intelligenz aus der Perspektive des Privatrechts [Artificial Intelligence: Challenges for Private Law], in: Hans-Georg Dederer, Yu-Cheol Shin (Hg.), Künstliche Intelligenz und juristische Herausforderungen, Tübingen 2021, 15-42.

The paper discusses issues of liability created by the use of technologies like machine learning and neural networks: Who is responsible for erroneous food orders placed by an "intelligent fridge"? Who is liable for damage caused by a care robot or an autonomous vehicle? Who is at fault if a chat robot uses racist slurs? We answer these questions on the basis of our form conviction that any approach which treats "intelligent" machines as people is wrong.


Customary Mechanisms of Family Protection. Late Medeival and Early Modern Law, in: Kenneth Reid, Marius de Waal, Reinhard Zimmermann (Hg.), Mandatory Family Protection, Oxford 2020, 39-77.

The article gives an overview of the restrictions on testamerntary freedom in medieval and early modern law. The focus is on French customary law (esp. the Coutume de Paris) and Saxon Law (esp. the law of the Saxon Mirror and the law of Magdeburg).

Leo von Petrażycki und der Fruchtbegriff des BGB [Leon Petrażycki and the Concept of Fruit in the German Civil Code], in: Tomasz Giaro (Hg.), Leo von Petrażycki und die Rechtswissenschaft der Gegenwart, Warszawa 2020, 325-339.

  • Polish version: Leon Petrażycki i pojęcie pożytku według niemieckiego kodeksu cywilnego, in: Tomasz Giaro (redakkcja naukowa), Leon Petrażycki i współczesna nauka prawa, Warszawa 2020, 313-326.
  • Russian version: Томас Рюфнер, Лев Петражицкий и понятие доходов по германскому гражанскому кодексу, in: Ярослаw Турпуковский (научный редактор), Лев Петражицкий и современная юриспрудензия, Warszawa 2020, 335-350.

In his monumental work Die Lehre vom Einkommen [The Doctrine of Income] (2 vols, Berlin 1893-1895), the Polish scholar (later professor at the universities of St. Petersburg and Warsaw) Leon Petrażycki (usually called Leo von Petrażycki in German publications) levelled harsh criticism at the provisions on fruit (fructus) in the draft of the German civil code. The article revisits Petrażycki's critique of the German code in light of the subsequent development of this area of the law.

A statuto appellare - Normenkontrolle im Ius Commune [Appealing against a statute: judicial review of statutory law in the Ius Commune], in: Kerstin von der Decken, Angelika Günzel (Hg.), Staat - Religion - Recht, Festschrift für Gerhard Robbers zum 70. Geburtstag, Baden-Baden 2020, 91-110.

On the basis of a decision by the Royal Swedish Tribunal at Wismar from 1657, we demonstrate that the history of judicial review did not start with the famous American case of Marbury v. Madison. Judicial review has roots going back to the theory of statutory law developped by medieval scholar Bartolus of Saxioferrato. It was practiced by the Parlement de Paris and by the Imperial Chamber Court in the Holy Roman Empire.

Die Verfassung der Freiheit - Der Beitrag des Privatrechts zur Entwicklung der demokratischen Ordnung [The Constitution of Liberty - On the Contribution of Private Law to the Developement of the Democratic State], in: Thomas Raab, Antje von Ungern-Sternberg (Hg.), Akademische Festveranstaltung "Demokratie Hoch Drei", Rechtspolitisches Forum Nr. 81, Trier 2020, 49-79.

This paper, which was given at the occassion of the triple constutional jubilee in 2019 (1849 - 1919 - 1949), shows (1.) how concepts of private law like society, agency/representation, and solidarity became part of the discourse of constitional law, and (2.) how the German civil code functioned as a 'substitute constitution' and bill of rights between 1900 and 1919.

Tipping the Scales of Justice: Roman Law as a Resource in Medieval Legal Discourse, in: Martin Endreß, Lukas Clemens, Benjamin Rampp (Hg.), Strategies, Dispositions and Resources of Social Resilience. A Dialogue between Medieval Studies and Sociology, Wiesbaden 2020, 219-229.

Taking a consilium (legal opinion) by Baldus de Ubaldis on issues of debasement of money as an example, we demonstrate the application of the conceptual ramework of resilience theory to problems of legal history.

Marillen, Marken und Moneten - Friedrich Torberg als Zeuge im Streit um die »Original-Sachertorte« [Apricots, Trademarks - and Money. Friedrich Torberg takes the Witness Stand in the Litigation Regarding the "Original Sacher Cake"], in: Stephan Meder (Hg.), Geschichte und Zukunft des Urheberrechts II, Göttingen 2020, 155-167.

The paper discusses the legal protection afforded to 'original' versions of certain goods. It also illustrates the cultural and historical background of the litigation regarding the famous Sacher Cake in Austrian Courts.

Das Corona-Moratorium nach Art. 240 EGBGB [The Corona Moratorium under Art. 240 EGBGB], JZ 2020, 443-448.

This article discusses the provisional rules of private law which were enacted early in 2020 in order to mitigate the economic effects of the pandemic.

La cause du contrat. Rapport allemand [The Cause of Contract. German Report], in: Pascal Ancel/André Prüm (Hg.), Réformer le droit des contrats ? Analyse comparée autour du droit luxembourgeois, Bruxelles 2020, 239-246.

An overview of the (limited) role of the doctribne of causa (Rechtsgrund) in German law.


Kommentierung von §§ 320 - 322 BGB [Commentary on sections 320 to 322 of the German Civil Code] in: Beate Gsell u.a. (Hg.), beck-online.Großkommentar zum Zivilrecht. Stand: 15. April 2019.

First published online in April 2019; since then, updated quaterly.


Substance of Medieval Law. The Development of Private Law, in: Heikki Pihlajamäki, Markus Dubber, Mark Godfrey (Hg.), The Oxford Handbook of European Legal History, Oxford 2018, 309-331.

An overview of the development of the Ius Commune through the Mioddle Ages. Among the areas discussed is the evolution of Freedom of Testation, the receprion of Roman slaven Law, and the development of contract law.

Commentaries on 12 articles in: Nils Jansen, Reinhard Zimmermann (eds), Commentaries on European Contract Laws, Oxford 2018, (102  pages in total).

  • Art. 6:111 - Fundamental Non-Performance, pp. 899 - 911.
    Historical and critical / comparative commentary on Art 6:11 of the Principles of European Contract Law (PECL) which concerns unforessen changes of fundamental circumstances. We explain the traditional doctrine of the clausula rebus sic stantibus and its various incarnations in the modern legal systems of Europe.
  • Art. 8:103 - Fundamental Non-Performance, pp. 1110 - 1120.
    Art. 8:103 defines the term 'Fundamental Non-Performance'. Our commentary disdcusses the historical dvelopment of the rules concerning the contractual rules on non-performance in European private law.
  • Kommentierung von Art. 8:108 - Excuse Due to an Impediment, S. 1164 - 1177.
    We trace the history of the rules on excuses for non-performance in the continental Ius Commune, where liability for non-performance traditionally requires fault, and in the Common law, where fault is not required in the contractual context.
  • Art. 18:101 - Contracts Covered, in: Nils Jansen, Reinhard Zimmermann (Hrg.), Commentaries on European Contract Laws, Oxford 2018, S. 1961 - 1972.
    An outline of the emergence of sale of goods as a special contrctual type to be distinguished from the sale of land.
  • Art. 18:204 - Overview of Buyers' Remedies for Lack of Conformity, S. 2015 - 2021.
    The commentary focusses on the question whether the liability of the seller for defectsof the thing sold should subject to a special regime (as it was for a long time in the continental tradition) or whether it should be treated as an instance of non-performance of a contractual obligation.
  • Art. 18:301 - 307 - Passing of Risk, S. 2022 - 2072.
    An extensive commentary on the rules fopr the passing of risk under contracts of sale and their historical development. The commentary is based on the rules contained in the Convention on the International Sale of Goods and the proposed EU Sales Law (CESL) .


Ius, iudex, iurisdictio: Die Terminologie des römischen Prozessrechts in der Spätantike [Ius, iudex, iurisdictio]: the Terminology of Procedural Law in Late Antiquity], in: Iris Colditz, Benjamin Jokisch, Maria Macuch (Hg.), Transferprozesse in spätantiken Rechtssystemen. Rezeption, Transformation und Rekontextualisierung von Rechtsbegriffen, Wiebaden 2017, 105-120.

When the cognitio-process replaced the formulary procedure, the meaning of fundamental terms of art of Roman procedure law like iusiudexiurisdictio, or litis contestatio had to change. The need to translate Latin terms into Greek led to additional shifts in the terminology. Our paper discusses these terminological changes and analyses the extent to which the structures of the old procedural law were 'sublated' in the terms of art of late Roman/Byzantine procedural law.

Pandektistik und Prozessrecht [Pandectism and Procedural law], in: Hans-Peter Haferkamp, Tilman Repgen (Hg.), Wie pandektistisch war die Pandektistik? Symposion aus Anlass des 80. Geburtstags von Klaus Luig, Tübingen, 2017, 241-255.

This paper uses several examples to analyze the extent to which the so-called Pandectists influenced the development of the law of civil procedure in 19th century Germany.

Untertanenprozess und class action [Subjects' litigation and Classs Action], in: Wolfgang Hau, Hubert Schmidt (Hg.), Trierer Festschrift für Walter Lindacher, München 2017, 359-371.

This paper discusses the development of class actions in the common law - and especially in the United States - in historical and comparative perspective. An important historical root of modern class actions was collective litigation between lords and tenants in Medieval and Early Modern England. Similar litigation occurred in other European countries, especially in Germany where the term 'Untertanenprozesse' is often used for litigation of this type. The paper analyzes, why such proceedings did not cause the courts in continental Europe to develop mechanisms of collective litigation similar to the class action of the common law.

Rapport de synthèse: Verbraucherschutz von Diokletian bis Kehnnedy [, in: Bernd Kannowski, Martin-Schmidt-Kessel (Hg.), Geschichte des Verbraucherrechts, Jena 2017, 149-170.
Elabarated version of my concluding remarks at the end of a congress on the Hiostory of Consumer Protection Law: The paper draws a line from the firstattempts to protect the weaker party in a contractual relationship in late Roman law, to Canon Law and modern law. The temporary popularity of the notion of consumer protecxtion in Nazi Germany is noted.


Actio, in: Oxford Classical Dictionary, 5th edition, available only online.

A discussion of the concept of actio (lawsuit) in Roman law. The focus is on the actions of private law.

Continental Jurists and the English Common Law, Glossae. Journal of European Legal History 13 (2016) 626-635 (online verfügbar)

This paper analyzes the small number of texts from the time of the European Ius Commune in which continental jurists discuiss the English Common law. The survey of texts from the likes of Jacques de Révigny, François Hotman, and Christian H. S.  Gatzert shows that English law was almost completely ignored by continental lawyers for a long time.

Imperial Cognitio Process, in: Clifford Ando, Paul du Plessis, Kaius Tuori (Hg.), The Oxford Handbook of Roman Law and Society, 2016, 257-269.

A book chapter on the emergence and development of the so-called cognitio-process. The term 'cognitio process is commonly used to refer to a number of innovations in the Roman law of of civil procedure that were introduced since the early imperial period. The focusis on ciovil procedure. We try to show that the changes to the procedures for summons, trial and enforcement of subject did at first not constitute a new model of civil procedure. They developed independently. Only in Late Antiquity, the various innovations became elements of a new system of civil procedure which replaced the old Formulary Procedure.

Art. Nießbrauch, in: Albrecht Cordes u.a. (Hg.), Handwörterbuch zur deutschen Rechtsgeschichte, 2. Auflage, 24. Lieferung , 2016, Sp. 1932-1934.

Article on the concept of usufruct and the historical development of this legal institution from its Roman law orogin up to its codification in the German civil code (§§ 1030-1089 BGB).

Money in the Roman Law Texts, in: David Fox, Wolfgang Ernst (Hg.), Money in the Western Legal Tradition, Oxford 2016, 93–109.

An overview of the texts on the law of money contained in the justinianic codifications.

Kollektiver Rechtsschutz im Schiedsverfahren [Class Arbitration], in:  Jens Kleinschmidt, Herbert Kronke, Thomas Raab, Gerhard Robbers, Karsten Thorn(Hrg.), Strukturelle Ungleichgewichtslagen in der internationalen Streitbeilegung. Symposium in Gedenken an Bernd von Hoffmann, 2016, 167-191.

A discussion of the development of class arbitration in US law with special regard to the decisions of the Supreme Court in  Oxford Health Plans LLC. v. Sutter, 133 S. Ct. 2064 (2013) and  American Express Co. v. Italian Colors Restaurant, 133 S. Ct. 2304 (2103).


Wohnrecht für Paccia Trophime. Juristisches und Philologisches zu D. 33, 2, 34 pr. [A Life Estate for Paccia Trophime. Legal and Philological Remarks on Dig. 33, 2, 34 pr.], in: Karlheinz Muscheler, Reinhard Zimmermann (Hg.), Zivilrecht und Steuerrecht, Erwerb von Todes wegen und Schenkung. Festschrift für Jens Peter Meincke zum 80. Geburtstag, München 2015, 321-333.

Exegetical analysis of Dig. 33, 2, 34 pr. We come to the conclusion that the text from the Digest does not deal with two women called Pactia und Trophime, but only with one person by the name of Paccia Trophime who receives a right to live (live estate) in a certain apartment under the testament which is discussed in the source text.

Intestate Succession in Roman Law, in: Kenneth Reid, Marius de Waal, Reinhard Zimmermann (eds.), Intestate Succession, Oxford 2015, 1-32.

An extensive overview of the Roman law of intestate succession from the Twelve Tables to  Justinian's novel 118. The chapter concludes with a few remarks on the impact of Roman law on the medieval and Early Modern Ius Commune.


Possession of incorporeals, in: Eric Descheemaeker (ed.), The consequences of possession, Edinburgh 2014, 171 – 184.

This book chapter questions whether it is appropriate to apply the traditional rules on the protection of possession to incorporeal objects such as patents, eights of use under a lease contract, or internet domains. The focus is on a comparison of Austrian and German law. Under Austrian law, the general rules of property law are, in principle, applicable  to corporeal and incorporeal objects alike, whereas German law  takes a more restrictive approach.

Kanonisches Recht in Byzanz und Bologna [Canon Law in Byzantium and Bologna], in: Nils Jansen, Peter Oestmann (Hg.), Rechtsgeschichte heute. Religion und Politik in der Geschichte des Rechts. Schlaglichter einer Ringvorlesung [Legal History Today. Religion and Politics in Legal History. A Lecture Series, Tübingen 2014, 28 - 47.

The canon law of the Christian churches is based on norms (canons) enacted by the councils of Late Antiquity. This paper looks at the interpretation of these early canons by medieval jurists. It compares the methods applied and the results achieved by the byzantine canonists Alexios Aristenos, Johannes Zonaras and Theodoros Balsamon with those of the Western legal scholarship which started from Bologna. The study is based on three examples: can. 17 of the first council of Nicaa (325) and canon 3 and can. 7 of the council of Chalcedon (4521).


Der US-Supreme Court stärkt die Zuständigkeit der US-Bundsegerichte für Sammelklagen [The US Supreme Court Strengthens Federal Jurisdiction Over Class Actions], 59 Recht der Internationalen Wirtschaft 337-340 (2013).

Case note on The Standard Fire Insurance Co. v. Knowles.

Der Prozess Jesu. Nach jüdischem Recht hätte es keine Kreuzigung gegeben [The trial of Jesus Christ. Under Jewish law, crucifixion would not have been legal], Legal Tribune Online 29.03.2013.

Short article on the occasion of Good Friday discussing the narrative of the trial of Jesus Christ contained in the gospel from the legal historian's point of view.


Corpus Iuris Civilis. Text und Übersetzung. Band V. Digesten 28- 34 [Corpus Iuris Civilis. Text and Translation. Vol. V. Digest Books 28 - 34], Heidelberg 2012 (ed. with  Rolf Knütel, Berthold Kupisch and Hans Hermann Seiler).

  • Contains: Translations of D. 28, 3-5 (pp .30-95); D. 29, 3 (pp. 203-206); D. 29, 5-7 (pp. 222-253 and D. 34, (pp. 597-704) drafted by myself.

Fifth volume of the new German translation of the Justinianic cpodification founded by Okko Behrends,  Rolf Knütel, Berthold Kupisch und Hans Hermann Seiler. The texts contained in this volume are mostly concerned with the law of testamentary succession.

 Fourteen articles in: Roger S. Bagnall et al. (eds.), The Encyclopedia of Ancient History, Hoboken N.J. 2012:

  • Antestatio, p. 451.
  • Centumviri, p. 1413.
  • Cognitor, pp. 1603 f.
  • Denuntiatio, p. 2037.
  • Formula, p. 2718.
  • In ius vocatio, p. 3436.
  • Litis contestatio, p. 4115.
  • Litis denuntiatio, pp. 4115 f.
  • Manus iniectio, pp. 4271 f.
  • Mors litis, p. 4595.
  • Quinquevirale iudicium, p. 5713.
  • Recuperatores, p. 5751.
  • Reus, p. 5811.
  • Testimonium, pp. 6624 f.

Short articles on ancient Roman law, mostly concerning civil procedure.

Review of: Nils Jansen. The Making of Legal Authority (2010), ZRG Rom. Abt. 129 (2012) 917-921.


Joachim Ermann (5.3.1955-31.5.2011, ZRG Rom. Abt. 129 (2012) 993.

An obituary for Joachim Ermann, lawyer and scholar of Roman law.

Sieben Fragen zum EU-Kaufrecht. Oder: Was man heute schon über den Kommissionsvorschlag für ein Gemeinsames Kaufrecht wissen sollte [Seven Questions on the EU Sales Law. Or: What you should know today about the Draft Regulation on a Common European Sales Law], ZJS 2012, 476-484.

This is a brief survey of the Draft Regulation on a European Sales Law. It outlines the most important provisions of the draft, discusses possible bases of the EU's competence to enact the regulation and demonstrates the potential effects of  the new Sales Regulation and the substantive differences between the Regulation and current German law using the celebrated cases of the "Trier Wine auction" and of the BGHZ  162, 119 (buyer curing defects  of the thing sold on his own).

Five contributions to: Jürgen Basedow, Klaus J. Hopt, Reinhard Zimmermann, Andreas Stier (Eds.), The Max Planck Encyclopedia of European Private Law, 2 Vols, Oxford 2012:

  • Historical School, I 830-835;
  • Lease, II, 1041-1045
  • Possession, II,1293-1297;
  • Simulation, II, 1562-1565;
  • Unsolicited Goods, II, 1747-1751.

The five articles are edited translations of the corresponding articles in the Handwörterbuch des Europäischen Privatrechts, published in 2009.

Pulcherimus Papinianus, oder: Von der Schönheit des römischen Rechts [The most beautiful Papinian, or: On the beauty of Roman Law], Mitteilungsblatt des Deutschen Altphilologenverbandes, Landesverband Nordrhein-Westfalen 1/2012, pp 926.
This paper is the written version of a paper delivered at a continuing education conference for teachers of Lsatin. It gives an overview of the life and work of the famous jurists of the famous Roman jurist Papinian.  Two texts from the Digest, D. 35, 1, 101 pr. and D. 21, 2, 64 pr.-2 are used as examples of Papnian's legal genuis.

Historische Bemerkungen zur Regel male captus bene detentus [Some Historical Remarks on the Rule Male Captus Bene Detentus], in: Matthias Ruffert (Hg.), Dynamik und Nachhaltigkeit des Öffentlichen Rechts. Festschrift für Professor Dr. Meinhard Schröder zum 70. Geburtstag [Dynamics and Sustainability of Public Law. Essays for Professor Meinhard Schröder on the Occasion of His 70th Birthday], 2012, 85-105.

Since antiquity, lawyers have been discussing the question, how a criminal court should deal with the case of an accused who was brought to court by means of an illegal abduction from a teritory under foreign jurisdiction. According to the widespread maxim male captus bene detentus ("taken badly, but lawfully detained"), the illegality of the arrest does not prevent the court from inflicting punishment on the accused. In my paper, I show that this practice was foreign to Roman law and to the continental legal tradition. The jurists of the ius commune emphasized that a person who was illegally abducted from a foreign country has to be released at once (Captus in territorio alieno ante omnia relaxari debet). Only if the arrest suffered from other (less grave) defects, the rule male captus bene detentus was used (at least from the 16th century onward) and applied. In the case of abductions from abroad, English and American  courts were the first to hold the the abduction constituted no bar for criminal proceedings against the victim of the abduction. The maxim male captus bene detentus was probably not used in this context before the Eichmann case.


Risarcimento del danno e restituzione dell'arrcchimento nelle relazioni contrattuali [Damages and Unjustified Enrichment Claims in Contractual Relationships], in: Letizia Vacca (Hg.), Il danno risarcibile. Congresso internazionale ARISTEC, Baia delle Zagare 14-16 giugno 2007  [Damages. Internatrional Congress of ARISTEC, Baia delle Zagare,  June 14 to 16, 2007], 2011, 155-170.

§ 285 of the German Civil Code (BGB) is often and rightly characterised in legal literature as a claim for unjustified enrichment in the context of a contractrual relationship. However, to the extent that a similar claim is recognised in other European legal systems  (cf. French Code Civil, Art. 1303; Italian Codice civile, Art. 1259) it is usually caegorized as a claim for damages. § 285 BGB and it categorisation by German doctrine appear thus to be a German specialty. In this paper,  I analyze a number of Roman texts (D. 16, 3, 1, 47; D. 17, 1, 10, 8; D. 18, 4, 21; D. 47, 2, 14 pr.; D. 47, 2, 81 pr.) and conclude that the roman jurists were already familiar with the notion that a contract does not only oblige one party to make good any damage done to the other party, but may also create an obligation to pay over a benefit which according to the contract should belong to the other party.

Chapter 15 des US Bankruptcy Code in der Praxis [Chapter 15 US Bankruptcy Code in legal practice], in: Herbert Kronke, Karsten Thorn (Hg.), Grenzen überwinden - Prinzipien bewahren. Festschrift für Bernd von Hoffmann zum 70. Geburtstag am 28. Dezember 2011 [Transgressing Borders - Conserving Foundations. Essays for Bernd von Hoffmann on the occasion of his 70th birthday on December 28, 2011], 2011, 843-855.
An overview of US court decisions applying the new Chapter 15 of the Bankruptcy Court. Chapter 15 contains a a cpomplete framework for the international coordination of insolvency proceedings based on the UNCITRAL Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvency. We analyze, inter alia, the following cases: In re JSC BTA Bank, 434 B.R. 334 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. 2010), Micron Technology, Inc. v. Qimonda AG (In re Qimonda AGH Bankruptcy Litigation), 433 B.R. 547 (E.D. Va. 2010), Fogerty v. Petroquest Resources, Inc. (In re Condor Ins., Ltd.), 601 F.3d 319 (5th. Cir. 2010) und O'Sullivan v. Loy (In re Loy), 432 B.R. 551 (E.D. Va. 2010). The analysis shows that the concerns regarding the vagueness of some of the new  provisions, which we already voiced in our paper at 26 Zeitschrift fuer Wirtschaftsrecht [ZIP] 1859-1865 (2005) were not completely unfounded.

Begründung vertraglicher und vorvertraglicher Schuldverhältnisse im deutschen Recht [The Formation of Contractual and Pre-Contractual Obligations in German Law], in: Yu-Cheol Shin and Reinhard Zimmermann (Eds.), 50 Jahre Koreanisches Zivilgesetzbuch [50 years Korean Civil Code], 2011, 99-134.

An overview of the formation of contracts and of pre-contractual obligations in German law with some comparative remarks on Korean law.

Bologna und das Rechtsstudium. Fortschritte und Rückschritte in der europäischen Juristenausbildung [Bologna and the study of Law. Advances and Setbacks in European Legal Education]  (edited with Christan Baldus and Thomas Finkenauer), 2011.

  • Contains: Historischer Überblick: Studium, Prüfungen, Berufszugang der Juristen in der geschichtlichen Entwicklung, 3-31.
  • Contains: Die Bologna-Reform aus Hochschullehrersicht, 281-284 (with Christian Baldus and Thomas Finkenauer)

This volume contains up-to-date-reports on the development of legal education in various European (and some Extra-European) countries. It shows that in many countries, the Bologna model does not work well for law.

 My historical overview traces the history of legal education from Roman law to the 20th century. More in-depth historical information can be found in the historical contributions to the 2008 volume "Juristenausbildung in Europa zwischen Tradition und Reform [Legal Education in Europe Between Tradition and Reform]" (see below).

Lösung vom Mietvertrag bei gesteigertem Mobilitätsbedürfnis - Zulässigkeit von Zeitmietverträgen nach der "Studentenbuden"-Entscheidung des BGH [Right of Withdrawal from Residential Lease Contract  for Tenants with an Increased Need for Flexibility - On the Legality of Fixed Term Leases under the Federal Court's Decision on Student's Leases , in: Markus Artz, Ulf Börstinghaus (Eds.), Festschrift 10 Jahre Mietrechtsreformgesetz [Festschrift 10 Years Landlord and Tenants Law Reform Act], 2011, 828-837.

The chapter discusses a recent decision in which Germany's highest civil court declared invalid a clause in a lease agreement which fixed excluded the tenant's right to give notice for the first two years. While such clauses are gernerally accepted unless they bind the tenant for more than four years, the clause was invalidated in the case at bar because the tenant was a student who according to the court had an increased need to flexibly change his domicile.

Testamentary Formalities in Roman Law, in: Kenneth G.C. Reid, Marius de Waal, Reinhard Zimmermann (Eds.), Testamentary Formalities, 2011, 1-26.

Overview of the Roman law of testamentary formalities in a volume dedicated to the comparative analysis of that area of the law.

Savigny und der Sachbegriff des BGB [Savigny and the concept of "thing" in the [German] Civil Code], in: Stefan Leible, Matthias Lehmann, Herbert Zech (Eds.), Unkörperliche Güter im Zivilrecht [Incorporeal Things in Private Law], 2011, 33-48.

Friedrich Carl von Savigny played a crucial role in the re-formulation of the concept of "thing" during the 19th century. The definition now contained in s. 90 of the civil cide, which restricts the notion of "thing" to tangible objects can be traced back to his teachings. My paper traces the development and shows, how Savigny came to break with the wider concept of "thing" that porevailed from Roman jurist Gaius to the Austrian civil code. The paper also argues that some traces of the older conception can still be found in modern law. 


Eigentum und Vermieterstellung. Zur analogen Anwendung von § 566 BGB [Ownership and Landlordship. On the Analogous Application of BGB § 566], in: Thomas Lobinger, Reinhard Richardi, Jan Wilhelm (Eds.), Festschrift für Eduard Picker zum 70. Geburtstag, 2010, 681-693.

If an apartment or a house is sold, the new owner is forced by BGB § 566 to assume the role of landlord vis-a-vis the tenants accepted by the former owner. The new owner is not allowed to evict the tenants even though he is not a party to the original contract of lease. Problems arise when a non-owner has concluded the contract. This occurs e.g. when the owner of the property allows a caretaker to conclude lease contracts in their own name. According to the results of my paper, BGB § 566 should be applied to the contractual relationship between the owner and the landlord. Consequently, the new owner will acquire the previous owner's position vis-a-vis the person who took on the landlord's role (e.g. the cretaker).

Handeln für andere in den Urkunden des Genueser Notars Giovanni Scriba [Agency in the Notarial Deeds of Genoese notary Giovanni Scriba], in: Jan Dirk Harke (Ed.), Drittbeteiligung am Schuldverhältnis [Third Parties in the Law of Obligations  2010, 109-139.

The notarial deeds drafted by Giovanni Scriba in 12th century Genoa are important sources for our knowledge of medieval legal practice. In this paper, I analyze several deeds to verify the claim that direct representation was already accepted in practice when the jurists at Bologna still held that it was impossible. The result is that there are few if any traces of the concept of direct representation in Scriba's deeds.

Antritt der Erbschaft unter unsicheren Voraussetzungen: D. 29, 2, 21, 3 [Entry upon an Inheritance under Uncertainty: Dig. 29, 2, 21, 3], 127 ZRG Rom. Abt.  286-295 (2010).

Analysis of a source text that has attracted little .attention in recent scholarship. Dig. 29, 2, 21, 3 deals with a complicated case. A person has been conditionally instituted as heir. The same person is appointed as substitute heir for another person by the same testator under another condition. According to my analysis, the following case is at the centre of the text: The appointed heir knows definitely that he will take under the appointment as substitute heir, but he is unaware whether he will also take under the appointment as primary heir.

Die gesetzesgleiche Geltung des kanonischen Rechts in der Spätantike [The Equalization of Church Canons with Imperial Statutes in Late Antiquity], 127 ZRG  96 Kan. Abt. 96 (2010) 1-37.

According to the prevailing opinion among legal historians, Emperor Justinian I. or even one of his predecessors already formally raised the canons of the church to the same rank as imperial laws. The sources usually cited for this assumption are critically analyzed. None of the supports the traditional view: None of the Christian Emperors of late antiquity including Justinian made the step of giving church laws the same dignity as laws enacted by the Emperor himself.

The Roman Concept of Ownership and the Medieval Doctrine of Dominium Utile, in: John W. Cairns, Paul J. du Plessis (Eds.), The Creation of the Ius Commune. From Casus to Regula, Edinburgh Studies in Law, Vol. 7, Edinburgh 2010, 127-142.

Famous jurist Bartolus of Saxoferrato defines ownership as the right of complete disposal over a corporeal thing. My paper aims to find out, how this definition was compatible (in the view of Bartolus and other medieval jurists) with the realities of medieval property law, which was characterized by the division of ownership between the dominium directum of the feudal lord and the dominium utile of the vassal..

Review of B. Laubach, Lateinische Spruchregeln zum Unterhaltsrecht, 2004, 207 Bonner Jahrbücher 474-476 (2007).


Die Geschäfte des Herrn Marius Paulus. Winkelzüge und Standesethik in D. 17,1,6,7 [The Business Affairs of Mr. Marius Paulus. Hack Lawyering and Professional Ethics in Dig. 17,1,6,7], in: Holger Altmeppen u.a. (Hg.), Festschrift für Rolf Knütel zum 70. Geburtstag [Studies in Honor of Rolf Knütel in Honour of His 70th Birthday], Heidelberg 2009, 987-1023.

A thorough analysis of Digest 17,1,6,7, a text traditionally quoted as supporting the existence of a prohibition against lawyers' contingency fees in Roman law. The text can only be interpreted correctly, once it is realised that the words maiores fructus allude to fructus duplio (doubling of the fruits) in the context of the cautio pro praede litis et vindiciarum. On that basis, it is shown that Dig. 17,1,6,7 does not concern the legality of contingency fees, but with a case where a lawyer, in obvious violation of all standards of professional ethics, represents both parties in a proceeding.

Five Contributions to: Jürgen Basedow, Klaus J. Hopt, Reinhard Zimmermann (Hg.), Handwörterbuch des Europäischen Privatrechts [A Handbook of European Private Law], 2 Vols., Tübingen 2009.

  • Besitz [Possession], I, 196-200
  • Historische Rechtsschule [Historical School of Law], I, 829-833
  • Miete und Pacht [Lease and Hire], II, 1061-1066
  • Scheingeschäft [Simulation], II, 1346-1349
  • Unbestellte Waren [Unsolicited Goods], II, 1527-1531.

Review of W. Kaiser, Authentizität und Geltung spätantiker Kaisergesetze, 2007, 126 Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung für Rechtsgeschichte (Romanistische Abteilung)  514-524 (2009).

Von der lex Aquilia zu § 823 BGB - wie die Römer zum dritten Mal die Welt eroberten [From the lex Aquilia to BGB s. 823 - How the Romans conquered the word for the third time], Annales Carolini 2008, XXV-XXXIV.

Print version of a paper given on the occasion of the awards ceremony of the Certamen Carolinum 2008. My paper takes the lex Aquilia as an example to explain the importance of Roman law for the modern law of Germany and other European countries.


Eine Freilassungsurkunde des Notars Lamberto di Sambuceto [A Deed of Manumission Drawn up by Notary Lamberto di Sambuceto] , in: Hans-Georg Hermann u.a. (Eds.), Von den Leges Barbarorum bis zum ius barbarum des Nationalsozialismus. Festschrift für Hermann Nehlsen zum 70. Geburtstag [From the Laws of the Barbarian Tribes to the Barbaric Law of National Socialism. Essays in honour of Hermann Nehlsen on the occasion of his 70th birthdary], 2008, 173-197.

In this contribution to Hermann Nehlsen's Festschrift, I analyze a deed of manumission which was drawn up in 1302 by notary Lamberto di Sambuceto and records the manumission of a female slave by her Genuese master. The central question is to what extent the rules of ancient Roman law are reflected in this medieval document.

Review of: J. Platschek, Studien zu Ciceros Rede für P. Quinctius, 2005, 125 Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung fuer Rechtsgeschichte (Romanistische Abteilung)  766-774 (2008).

Traditio und Kaufpreiszahlung in Ius Commune und Common Law [Traditio and payment of the puchase price in the Ius Commune and the Common Law], in: Eva Jakab, Wolfgang Ernst (eds.), Kaufen nach Römischem Recht. Antikes Erbe in den europäischen Kaufrechtsordnungen [Sale in Roman law. Acient heritage in the sales laws of Europe], Berlin, Heidelberg 2008, 233-252.

My contribution takes a look at transfer of possession (traditio) and payment of the purchase price insofar as they were—in the course of legal history—regarded as requirements for the passing of ownership in the thing sold from the seller to the buyer. It is my goal to show that traditio and payment played an important role in the development of the law of sales both within the framework of the continental Ius Commune and in the English Common Law. The extent to which the evolution of the law has taken a parallel course in this area of the law is quite surprising.

Five Contributions to Mathias Schmoeckel, Stefan Stolte (eds.), Examinatiorium Rechtsgeschichte [Legal History Exam Preoparation Guide], Köln/München 2008:

  • Kodifikation[Codification], 104-105.
  • Friedrich Carl von Savigny, 180-181.
  • Reich/Weltstaat[Empire/World State], 213-215.
  • Abhängige Arbeit: Von der antiken Sklaverei zum Kündigungsschutzgesetz[Dependent Labor: From Slavery in the Ancient World to the Employment Protection Act], 257-262.
  • Historische Rechtsschule[The Historical School of Law], 370-371.

The book edited by Schmoeckel and Stolte aims to provide students with a source of basic knowledge in legal history  for the First State Exam.  The book  consists of small articles on  important topics which are organised under the headings "20 Gesetze [20 Statutes]", "20 Rechtsfragen [20 Legal Issues]", "20 Juristen [20 Jurists]", "20 Herrschaftsformen [20 Forms of Domination]", "20 Wege der Rechtsfindung und Durchsetzung [20 Ways of Finding and Enforcing the Law] and "20 Schulen und Epochen [20 Schools and Epochs]". Although codification is not really a legal issue but rather a way of organising legal information, my short article on codification is included in the chapter on 20 legal issues. The chapter on famous jurists contains my small biography of German legal scholar Friedrich Carl von Savigny. The chapter on forms of domination features not only my survey of the old and long-lived utopia of a universal empire or world state, but also my account of the legal regulation of labor, which begins with slavery as the prevalent form of labor organization in ancient Rome and ends with modern labor law. Finally, I present the German Historical School of Law as one of the 20 schools and epochs, thus complementing my article on Savigny, the School's founder.

Juristenausbildung in Europa zwischen Tradition und Reform [Legal Education in Europe Between Tradition and Reform] (edited with Christan Baldus and Thomas Finkenauer), 2008.

  • Contains: Introduction, 1-5 (with Thomas Finkenauer).

This volume contains the contributions of a conference which took place in Trier in 2007. The first part brings several studies on the history of legal education in Europe from antiquity to modern times. The second part consists of papers on the current situation of legal education in numerous countries within and outside Europe. In the final part, conclusion for the current discussion on a reform of legal education ion Germany are drawn.

Inkrafttreten der EuGVVO, Zuständigkeitsvereinbarung und Zuständigkeit am Erfüllungsort [Coming into Force of the Regulation on Jurisdiction and the Recognition and Enforcement of Judgments, Jurisdiction Clauses and Jurisdiction at the Place of Delivery], 16 Zeitschrift für Europäisches Privatrecht 165-175 (2008).

Critical note on a decision of the Italian Corte Suprema di Cassazione (Nr. 20887 of 27 September 2006), which focussed on the issue of jurisdiction at the place of delivery under art. 5 Nr. 1 Lit. b) of the Regulation in the case of a "contract of sale involving the carriage of goods" .


Review of: U. Falk, Consilia. Studien zur Praxis der Rechtsgutachten in der frühen Neuzeit, 2006, 29 Zeitschrift für Neuere Rechtsgeschichte [ZNR] 313-315 (2007).


«间接占有与善意取得 » [张双根译 王洪亮校], 载于 «中德私法研究» 2006年第2卷, 41页及其后 [Indirect Possession and Bona Fide Purchase, Review for Sino-German Private Law, 2/2006, 41—56 (translated by Zhang Shuanggen, corrected by Wang Hongliang)].

This paper in Chinese discusses the issues of the German Supreme Court's well known Fraesmschinen case (BGHZ 50, 45). After a survey of the discussion in Germany, a proposal for the Chinese legislator is presented.

Die Rezeption des römischen Sklavenrechts im Gelehrten Recht des Mittelalters [The Reception of the Roman Law of Slavery into the Learned Law of the Middle Ages], in: Thomas Finkenauer (Ed.), Sklaverei und Freilassung im römischen Recht [Slavery and Manumission in Roman Law]. Symposium für Hans Josef Wieling zum 70. Geburtstag [Slavery and Manumission in Roman Law. Symposium on the Occasion of Hans Josef Wieling's 70th Birthday], Berlin, Heidelberg, 2006, 201—221.

According to Jean Bodin, Europe was free of slaves (»affranchie d'esclaves«) by 1250. In truth, however, slavery continued to exist in Europe throughout the Middle Age. It is therefore likely that in the context of the general renaissance of Roman law, the rules of slave law which had been developped by the Roman jurists were the object of renewed attention. This article is based on examples from the writings of glossators Placentinus and Accursius and of Bartolus, Baldus and Angelus de Ubaldis, all members of the school of consiliators. The paper explores, if these writings confirm the hypothesis that the Roman law of slavery was applied to the reality of medieval slavery.


Das Verhältnis von Gewährleistungs- und Interventionsklage (Art. 6 Nr. 2 EuGVVO/EuGVÜ) zum Hauptprozess [The relationship between third party proceedings (Art. 6 no. 2 of the Regulation on Jurisdiction and the Recognition and Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters) and the main proceeding, 25 Praxis des Internationalen Privat- und Verfahrensrechts [IPRax] 500—503 (2005).

A note on the ECJ's decision in GIE Réunion européenne et al. v. Zurich España, No. C-77/04 (26 May 2005). I criticize the ECJ's decision because—unlike Jacobs, AG in his opinion—the Court failed to clarify the circumstances under which a third party proceeding can be brought under art. 6 no. 2 of the EC regulation.

Neues internationales Insolvenzrecht in den USA [New Provisions on International Insolvencies in the USA], 26 Zeitschrift fuer Wirtschaftsrecht [ZIP] 1859-1865 (2005).

  • Reprinted in: Mitteilungsblatt der Arbeitsgemeinschaft für Internationalen Rechtsverkehr im Deutschen Anwaltverein 1/2006, 76—82.

An introduction to the provisions of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005 regarding cross-border cases. The statute, which makes far-reaching changes to many branches of US bankruptcy law, came into force on October 17, 2005. The new rules for international bankruptcies are an implementation of the UNCITRAL Model Law on Cross-Border Insolvencies. As I argue in my article, this implementation is insatisfactory in a number of ways.

Sammelklagen werden erschwert [Class Actions Are Becoming More Difficult], Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, March 3, 2005 at p. 25.

A short report on the US Class Action Fairness Act of 2005. The aim of this piece of legislation is to prevent abuse of class actions by creating federal jurisdiction over most such proceedings.

Review of: A. Wittwer, Vertragsschluss, Vertragsauslegung und Vertragsanfechtung nach europäischem Recht (2004), 2 Zeitschrift für Gemeinschaftsprivatrecht - European Community Private Law Review 26-27 (2005).


Berücksichtigung der im EU-Ausland zahlbaren Einkommenssteuer bei der Berechnung der Pfändungsfreigrenzen - EuGH, Urteil v. 29. April 2004 in der Rechtssache C-224/02 (Heikki Antero Pusa/Osuuspankkien Keskinäinen Vakuutusyhtiö) [Taking into Account Income Tax Payments in Other Member States when Calculating the Attachable Portion of Debtor Income - Pusa v. Osuuspankkien Keskinäinen Vakuutusyhtiö, No. C-224/02 (ECJ, April 29, 2004)], 1 Zeitschrift für Gemeinschaftsprivatrecht - European Community Private Law Review 293-296 (2003/2004).

In Pusa the ECJ set out the requirements for national legislation regarding the attachable portion of a judgment debtor's income. Generally such legislation provides for a calculation of the attachable portion based on the debtor's net income after the deduction of income tax. According to the ECJ, the applicable law must also provide for the case that income tax is not deduced in the forum state but must be paid by the debtor in another EU member state. My analysis in this article aims to show that sections 850 sqq. of Germany's Civil Procedure Code (ZPO) do not meet the ECJ's requirements.

Das Gerichtswesen im Bonner Legionslager [Jurisdiction in the Roman Fort at Bonn], in: Mathias Schmoeckel, Norbert Schloßmacher (eds.), Stätten des Rechts in Bonn [Places of Law in Bonn], Bonn (Stadtarchiv und Stadthistorische Bibliothek Bonn) 2004, 12-17.

This article discusses not only the jurisdiction which the commander of the Roman fort exercised over the soldiers under his command, but also the administration of justice among the inhabitants of the civil settlements which developped around the fort.

Staaten können in Amerika leichter verklagt werden [Suing Foreign States in US Courts Becomes Easier], Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung , July 14, 2004, at 19.

A brief explanation of the US Supreme Court's decision in Republic of Austria v. Altmann, No. 03-13 (June 7, 2004). In this decision, the Supreme Court approved the application of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA, 28 U.S.C. 1602 to 1611) to lawsuits based on facts that occurred before the FSIA's enactment in 1976 and even before the US Department of State adopted its restrictive approach to foreign sovereign immunity in 1952.

Keine Planungssicherheit mehr im US-Mietrecht? [A loss of reliability in US landlord-and-tenant-law?] , 50 Recht der Internationalen Wirtschaft 141-144 (2004).

This is a comment on In re PPI Enterprises (U.S.), Inc., 324 F.3d 197 (3d Cir. 2003), a case which has drawn great attention in the US and even in Germany. The issue was whether a corporate debtor can use voluntary chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings to reduce its liability under a long-term real property lease even if its assets are sufficient to cover its debt and it is able to fulfill its obligations to all creditors as they come due.


Review of: I. Kroppenberg, Die Insolvenz im klassischen römischen Recht (2001), 93 JRS 306-307 (2003).

Review of: B. Noordraven, Die Fiduzia im römischen Recht (1999), 93 JRS 305-306 (2003) .

Review of: Matthäus von Krakau, De contractibus. Edited by Matthias Nuding (2000), 120 Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung fuer Rechtsgeschichte (Kanonistische Abteilung) 676-682 (2003).

§§ 90-103. Sachen und Tiere [§§ 99-103. Of Things and Animals], in: Mathias Schmoeckel, Joachim Rückert, Reinhard Zimmermann (eds.), Historisch-kritischer Kommentar zum BGB, Bd. 1. Allgemeiner Teil. §§ 1-240 [Historical and Critical Commentary on the Civil Code. Vol. 1. General Part. §§ 1-240], Tübingen (Mohr Siebeck) 2003, 306-353.

My contribution to the novel Historical and Critical Commentary (Historisch-kritischer Kommentar, HKK) deals with the provisions on property within the General Part of Germany's Civil Code. The definitions of "Thing" and "Animal" (§§ 90, 90a), those of "Fungible Thing" and "Consumptible Thing" (§§ 91, 92), the provisions on fixtures (§§ 93-98), and the final sections on fruit and proceeds (§§ 99-103) are each treated separately. A short overview of the history of each subject before 1900 is followed by a study of the way in which the provisions of the Civil Code have influenced legal practice and vice versa since the Civil Code was enacted. The paper comes to the sobering conclusion that BGB §§ 90-103, which were created by the drafters of the Code in order to provide a uniform definitorial framework for the Special Parts of the Code, did not perform well. Today, the terms defined in §§ 90-103 are either irrelevant for all practical problems or they are given different meanings in different contexts.

Richter - schlechte Dichter? [Do judges make bad poets?], 11 Zeitschrift fuer Europaeisches Privatrecht 475-476 (2003).

A short introduction to Justice J. Michael Eakin's rhyming opinion in Porreco v. Porreco, 811 A.2d 566 (Pa. 2002) with references to other judicial decisions in verse from Germany and the US.

Fuer Beklagte ist in Amerika das Risiko gesunken [The risk for defendants in America has decreased], Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung , April 16, 2003, at 23.

A short note on the US Supreme Court's decision in State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. v. Campbell, No. 01-1289 (April 7, 2003), which introduces strict limits on jurors' discretion in imposing punitive damages.

Review of: M. J. Maass, Die Geschichte des Eigentumsvorbehalts, insbesondere im 18. und 19. Jahrhundert (2000), 25 Zeitschrift fuer Neuere Rechtsgeschichte 140-142 (2003).

Review of: H. Wicke, Respondeat Superior (2000), 25 Zeitschrift fuer Neuere Rechtsgeschichte 115-117 (2003).


Zustellung per E-Mail im US-amerikanischen Zivilprozess [Service by E-Mail in U.S. Civil Procedure Law], 48 Recht der Internationalen Wirtschaft 616-620 (2002).

The paper discusses the decision in Rio Properties, Inc. v. Rio International Interlink, 284 F.3d 1007 (9th Cir. 2002). The focus is on the implications of the case for entities domiciled in Germany: Will it be possible to serve defendants in Germany by E-Mail according to the rules laid down in Rio Properties? Will plaintiffs in Germany be able top serve American defendants through the internet? Can U.S. judgments in proceedings that were initiated by E-Mail service be enforced in Germany?


Lis Alibi Pendens under the CMR [2001] LMCLQ 460-465.

Case note on the English Court of Appeal's decision in Merzario v. Leitner [2001] EWCA Civ. 61; [2001] 1 Lloyd's Rep. 490. The decision is mostly concerned with the construction of CMR, Art. 31(2).

Anmerkung [Case Note], OLG Hamm, Judgment of 12/14/2000, 2 U 58/00 (reported: 56 Juristenzeitung 765 [2001]), 56 Juristenzeitung 768-771 (2001).

A case note on an appellate decision reversing a previous regional court holding that no binding contract was formed at an online auction (see below). My note focuses on an additional issue which was first dealt with on appeal: Does a contract formed at an online auction entail an obligation to deliver specific goods or does it merely create a generic obligation?

Symposium Schuldrechtsmodernisierung 2001, 54 Neue Juristische Wochenschrift 424-426 (2001) (with Beate Gsell).

Report on a conference in November 2000, which was organized by Prof. R. Zimmermann and Prof. W. Ernst in order to discuss the proposed modernisation of Germany's law of obligations.

Amtliche Überschriften für das BGB [Official Captions for the Civil Code], 34 Zeitschrift für Rechtspolitik 12-14 (2001).

A short discussion of the official captions for the single provisions of Germany's Civil Code that are contained in the proposal for an Act to Modernise the Law of Obligations.

Verjährung bei Mängeln eines Bauwerks nach dem Diskussionsentwurf eines Schuldrechtsmodernisierungsgesetzes [Prescription of claims for defects of buildings under the proposed Act to Modernise the Law of Obligations], 5 Zeitschrift für Immobilienrecht 16-20 (2001).

This short article deals with § 196 of Germany's Civil Code as amended by the recently published proposal for an Act to Modernise the Law of Obligations. The proposed new § 196 contains special provisions for the prescription of claims for defects of buildings. My criticism focusses on the use of Fertigstellung (completion) of the building as a starting point for the prescription period in § 196 I 2. The article ends with a proposed amendment to § 196.


Review of: M. Bauer, Periculum emptoris (1998), 68 Tijdschrift voor Rechtsgeschiedenis - The Legal History Review 578-580 (2000).

Virtuelle Marktordnungen und das AGB-Gesetz [Rules for Virtual Marketplaces and the Statute on Unfair Contract Terms], 3 MultiMedia und Recht 597-601 (2000).

The article deals with the question to what extent the Terms of Use of virtual marketplaces (e.g. auction sites) are subject to judicial review under Germany's Act on Standard Business Terms (AGBG). The question is a hard one especially when the Terms of Use contain clauses aiming to regulate not just the relationship of each user to the provider of the marketplace but also the relationship between users who are contracting on that marketplace.

Verbindlicher Vertragsschluß bei Versteigerungen im Internet [Conclusion of Binding Contracts at Internet Auctions], 55 Juristenzeitung 715-20 (2000).

This article comments upon a recent decision of the Landgericht (Regional Court) Muenster (55 Juristenzeitung 730 (Landgericht Muenster 2000)) regarding online auctions. The Muenster Court dismissed the claim of a successfull bidder at an online auction against the seller on the grounds that the bidding mechanism of online auctions did not result in the formation of a binding contract between the seller and the highest bidder at the end of the auction.

In this article, both the 19th century discussion of the nature of a sale by auction and the legislative history of § 156 of the German Civil Code (BGB) are reviewed. The historical background of today's law compels the conclusion that a binding contract was formed in the case at hand.

Review of: Richard Helmholz, Reinhard Zimmermann, Itinera Fiduciae. Trust and Treuhand in Historical Perspective. Berlin 1998, 164 Zeitschrift für das gesamte Handelsrecht und Wirtschaftsrecht 323-328 (2000).

Vertretbare Sachen? Die Geschichte der res, quae pondere numero mensura constant [Fungible Things? The History of res, quae pondere numero mensura constant]. Schriften zur Europäischen Rechts- und Verfassungsgeschichte, Bd. 31. Berlin (Duncker & Humblot) 2000.

  • The book has been reviewed by: Tilman Repgen, 69 Tijdschrift voor Rechtsgeschiedenis - The Legal History Review 407-409 (2001); Thomas Finkenauer, 25 Zeitschrift fuer Neuere Rechtsgeschichte 118-120 (2003); Ralph Backhaus, 120 Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung für Rechtsgeschichte (Romanistische Abteilung) 262-266 (2003); Christian Baldus, 49 Labeo 212-216 (2003).

This is the printed version of my doctoral dissertation. It traces the concept of fungible things from its origins in Roman law to today's German Civil Code (BGB). The concept was not clearly distinct from the neighbouring categories of 'object of a generic obligation' and 'consumptible thing' in Roman and medieval law. These three concepts were separated by the pandectist doctrine in the 19th century. In the Civil Code, the words "vertretbare Sachen" (fungible things) are used in the context of loan for consumption, barter, contract for work, assignation and partnership. My book is an attempt to show that the construction of "vertretbare Sachen" creates problems in every section of the Code in which these words are contained. These problems arise, because the shift in meaning that had been effectuated by the pandectists was not completely taken into account by the drafters of the Civil Code.


BRAGO-Gebuehren für die Zwangsvollstreckung im Ausland [BRAGO fees for the execution of a judgment abroad], [1999] Das Juristische Büro 453-455.

This article discusses issues arising from the application of the German statute on attorney's fees (BRAGO) in cases where a German attorney assists his client in efforts to execute abroad on a judgment obtained in a German court.

Review of: Linda Fowler-Magerl, Kanones. (CD-ROM), 116 Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung fuer Rechtsgeschichte (Kanonistische Abteilung) 564-569 (1999).


Eine nicht alltaegliche Freilassung - Bemerkungen zur Inschrift FD III 2,243 [An unusual manumission - Remarks on the Inscription FD III 2,243], 114 Zeitschrift der Savigny-Stiftung fuer Rechtsgeschichte (Romanistische Abteilung) 369-377 (1997).

Explanation of an inscription from Delphi, which records the manumission of a female slave by means of a ficticious sale to the god Apollon.

Datenbanken für die rechtshistorische Forschung [Databases for Research in Legal History], 5 Zeitschrift fuer Europäisches Privatrecht 511-517 (1997) (with Thomas Weiten).

Review of several databases for legal historians: ROMTEXT, BIA, FIURIS, DRANT


Juristische Forschung im Cyberspace [Legal Research in Cyberspace], 3 Zeitschrift fuer Europaeisches Privatrecht 876-881 (1995).

An overview of the German legal database JURIS and of legal ressources on the internet.