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Corpus Juris Civilis
See H. F. Jolowicz, Historical Introduction to the Study of Roman Law (2d ed. 1952) and Roman Foundations of Modern Law (1957); A. T. Von Mehren, The Civil Law System (1957).
(Digesta or Pandekta), the main part of the Byzantine codification of law, known by its final name as the Compendium of Civil Law (Corpus juris civilis). The Digest was compiled by a commission of jurists directed by Tribonian and was published in 533 during the reign of Emperor Justinian. The Digest has a total volume of about 120 printed sheets. It is a systematic collection of fragments from the works of the classical Roman jurists. It is divided into 50 books, each of which is divided into titles that consist of fragments (or leges). The best-known jurists cited in the Digest are Quintus Mucius Scaevola, Labeo, Proculus, Priscus, Celsus, Julianus, Pomponius, Gaius, Papinian, Paulus, Ulpian, and Modestinus. About 70 percent of the Digest consists of excerpts from the works of the five most important jurists (Papinian, Paulus, Ulpian, Gaius, and Modestinus), whose works were made obligatory by Roman law 426.
The basic content of the Digest is private law, regulating property, family, inheritance, and obligatory legal relationships. Criminal and procedural law is contained in the so-called terrible books (47th, 48th, and part of the 49th). The Digest also presents some general problems of the history and the theory of law and of certain institutions of public law.
The Digest is the most important, and sometimes the only, source of information about ancient and late Roman law. In the 18th and 19th centuries it served as the primary source for the reintroduction of Roman law and played an important part in the development of the bourgeois theory of law and civil law.
REFERENCEPereterskii, I. S. Digesty lustiniana. Moscow, 1956.
Z. M. CHERNILOVSKII
Some news readers and electronic mail programs provide commands to "undigestify" a digest, i.e. to split it up into individual articles which may then be read and saved or discarded separately.
digest(1) A compilation of all the traffic on a news group or mailing list. Digests can be daily or weekly.
(2) Any compilation or summary. See cryptographic hash function.