What Does The 'Law Of The Twelve Tables' Mean?


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Sudipa Sarkar answered
Law of the twelve tables was the most primitive codification of ancient Roman law. It was treated in 451-450 B.C. The ancient laws were supposedly written at the demand of the plebeians. They felt that their legal rights were hampered, because in that time the judgement were taken according to unwritten custom preserved within a group of few learned patricians. So, the judgement could not be perfect, the plebeians understood that fact. The law of the twelve tables was not a liberalizing of old custom.

The makers of the twelve tables recognized the privileges of the patrician class as well as the patriarchal family. They also worked on the validity of reliance for unpaid debt. They also pointed the intervention of religious custom in civil cases. The knowledge of the twelve tables and its contents helped as reference in later on judicial writings.

Law of the twelve tables was a prime legal source and it were outmoded by later revolutionizes in Roman law. But law of the twelve tables was never formally eliminated. The law of twelve tables would be ever recognized as a milestone of modern laws.

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