Roman Law Institutions [Matricole pari] (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Tommaso Dalla Massara
Tommaso Dalla Massara
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
1° periodo di lezioni dal Sep 28, 2020 al Dec 14, 2020.

Lesson timetable

Go to lesson schedule

Learning outcomes

The course aims at introducing the students to the knowledge and comprehension of the foundations of private law, i.e. the fundamental concepts and legal rules governing private law relationships between individuals and corresponding remedies. Moreover, the students will familiarize with the methodological tools that are needed to analyse and solve private law cases with success. The students will acquire the ability to analyse and approach the basic legal issues concerning private law relationships between individuals and corresponding remedies, as well as to autonomously formulate judgments and arguments, on a basic level, with regard to cases, issues and legal situations submitted to their analysis and to critically adapt them to the changes in the context.


General part
- Sources of Roman Law (the study of A. BURDESE, Manuale di diritto privato romano4, Torino, 1993 is recommended).
- Private legal procedure.
- Individuals and family (this part can be studied - in an abridged version - also in Diritto privato romano2, a cura di A. Schiavone, Torino, 2010).
- Facts, acts and legal act.
- Obligations and contract law.
- Rights in rem.
- Donations.
- Inheritance law.

Special part: L. GAROFALO, Fondamenti e svolgimenti della scienza giuridica. Nuovi saggi, Torino, 2015

The programme provides the possibility of choosing between two groups of essays:
I) Homo liber e homo sacer: due archetipi dell’appartenenza.
Sull’eccezione di dolo generale.
II) Principi e ordinamento romano: una riflessione sulle orme di Fritz Schulz.
L’arbitraggio sul prezzo.

Each student is required to study the special part programme provided for his or her own a.i. of attendance, with the possibility - at his or her own free choice - of opting for current a.i. programme.
Considering that the objective of the course is to provide an institutional preparation, the teaching method aims at promoting learning through frontal lessons that present each legal feature taking into account their inseparable logical and systematic correlation.
In line with the expected learning outcomes, the approach to some practical cases as final moments of the analysis will not be neglected. In this regard, please consider the preparation course for the 'Moot Court Competition. Roman Law and Civil Tradition'. This is an integrative didactic activity in the frame of the 'Laboratorio Romanistico Gardesano' project, established by the Convention signed in 2015 between the Universities of Verona, Brescia, Trento and Milano 'Statale'. This integrative didactic activity primarily aims at the selection of the team of students that shall participate to the moot court competition (held every year in June, at Palazzo Feltrinelli - Gargnano, BS), but it is anyway open to all interested students, and recommended to all students enrolled in the course of Institutions of Roman Law that intend to enhance their ability to apply legal reasoning to the specific case.
Any conferences and/or seminars of interest for the topics dealt with, tutoring activities and optional workshops related to the course will be reported from time to time during the lectures.
Students who wish to study parts of the programme on institutional texts of Roman law written in German, French or English can contact the lecturer during the lessons.
ERASMUS students are kindly requested to contact the teacher at the beginning of the course in order to agree on the programme of the exam, consisting in the discussion of a written paper, written in English or in Italian, on a specific subject.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
A. Lovato, S. Puliatti, L. Solidoro Maruotti Diritto privato romano - seconda edizione Giappichelli, Torino 2017
M. Marrone Istituzioni di diritto romano Palumbo, Palermo 2006
A. BURDESE Manuale di diritto privato romano (Edizione 4) Utet- Torino 1997

Assessment methods and criteria

Objectives of the examination
Assessing the knowledge of the substantive and procedural institutions of private Roman law.

Contents and methods of carrying out the assessment tests
The examination will take place for all both in written form limited to the general part (with the submission of five open questions to which the student must answer in the total maximum time of twenty-five minutes), and by interview, in which, after a brief illustration and commentary on the written test, the knowledge of the general part as well as of the special part will be further examined.

Valuation criteria and explanation of the final mark
The final evaluation is expressed in thirtieths (30/30). The evaluation between 18 and 20 corresponds to a sufficient, yet low and basic, knowledge of the contents; the evaluation between 20 and 25 shows a more than sufficient / discreet knowledge of the contents; the evaluation between 25 and 29 shows a good or very good knowledge of the contents together with commendable critical skills. The evaluation between 30 and 30 cum laude corresponds to a very good or excellent knowledge together with high critical, analytical and connection skills. The study of the special part will also be taken into account in the evaluation of the critical capacity.

Language used in the final exam: Italian