Imperial Adjudication in Late Antiquity : Evolutions and Perceptions in the Light of Documentary Evidence

Faculty/Professorship: History and Culture of Late Antiquity 
Author(s): Andriollo, Luisa 
Title of the Journal: Studia Historica : Historia Antigua
ISSN: 0213-2052
Publisher Information: Salamanca : Ed. Univ. de Salamanca
Year of publication: 2020
Volume: 38
Issue: 0
Pages: 245-272
Language(s): English
DOI: 10.14201/shha202038245272
This paper explores the functions of recorded proceedings in late antique court administration, focusing on documentary records related to imperial adjudication. Verbatim records of verdicts uttered by the emperor on individual cases are on the whole scarcely attested; they become particularly rare from the mid-3rd century AD, and are no longer preserved after the 4th century. The author scrutinizes the causes and meaning of such a state of evidence. After an in-depth analysis of the extracts of proceedings included in the Theodosian and Justinian codes, parallel literary and non-literary sources on imperial jurisdiction in the 4th and 5th centuries are considered. The discussion highlights changes occurred in the function, circulation and reception of minuted records. These reflect evolutions which affected not only judicial procedure, but also the understanding of the imperial role, the forms of institutional communication, and late antique legal thinking.
GND Keywords: Byzantinisches Reich; Byzanz; Gerichtsbarkeit; Geschichte 300-600
Keywords: Imperial jurisdiction, late antique bureaucracy, records of proceedings, Theodosian Code, Justinian Code
DDC Classification: 930 History of ancient world & archaeology  
RVK Classification: NH 8450   
Open Access Journal: Ja
Type: Article
Release Date: 25. February 2022