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Irnerius (ûrˌnērˈēəs), c.1055–c.1130, Italian jurist and founder of the law school (c.1088) at Bologna, which became the center of legal scholarship in Europe. Though little is known of his early life, it is generally agreed that he became a professor of rhetoric and dialectic at an early age. Later he turned to law. His interlinear glosses to the Corpus Juris are recognized as major contributions to the interpretation of Roman law. Attribution to him of other commentaries on philosophy and the theory of law is still much disputed.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



Born circa 1055–60; died before 1130. Founder of the Bologna school of jurists known as the glossators.

Irnerius did a good deal of work on the interpretation of the texts constituting the Justinian Code and compiled a collection of juridical cases (exercises) for students of law. He also compiled a systematic guide to Roman law.


Summa Codicis des Irnerius. Edited by Herman Fitting. Berlin, 1894.
Questiones de juris subtilitatibus. Edited by Herman Fitting. Berlin, 1894.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Irnerius of Bologna and his glossators--it was not until 1882 that
("Irnerius, at the beginning of the twelfth century, opened the
The topics include Irnerius and the Roman law of Justinian, the beginning of university teaching and groundwork for corpus iuris canonici, territorial laws and various social categories and institutions, perfecting and consolidating the system, and justice and its institutions.
(63) Those customs and laws, however, were also influenced by Germanic and Frankish as well as Roman law, which itself was undergoing a revival at the University of Bologna under Irnerius and Peter's contemporary, Gratian.
(28) The focus at Bologna was Roman Law (Irnerius taught there between 1116 and 1140) (29) and by about 1140, Canon Law.
The key figures include Irnerius, who first taught and commented on Roman Law at Bologna from ca.
Not only was canon law studied, but the revival of the Roman civil law with which the name of Irnerius is associated made available, with critical comment, the inheritance of Justinian's legal system.
Bologna owed its preeminence as a center of law not only to Irnerius and Gratian but to its political connections with the papacy.