Alfonso X, Relief Portrait

Alfonso X, the "Wise" (1221-1284) King of Le'acute and Castile. Author of the Royal Code, a compilation of local legislation for general use. Originator of The Seven Parts, the code used as a basis for Spanish jurisprudence.

Edward I, Relief Portrait

Edward I (1239-1307) King of England. Founded the parliamentary constitution of England. Eliminated the divisive political effects of the feudal system.

Gaius, Relief Portrait

Gaius (c. 110-180) Roman jurist. Author of numerous works, the most noted being the Institutes, a complete exposition of the elements of Roman law that were the foundation of Roman civil law.

George Mason, Relief Portrait

George Mason (1726-1792) American political leader. Drafted the Virginia Constitution and Declaration of Rights in 1776; was a member of the constitutional convention of 1787; led opposition to the ratification of the Constitution until the Bill of Rights was added.

Gregory IX, Relief Portrait

Gregory IX (c. 1147-1241) Medieval pope. Author of a compilation of decretals (i.e., authoritative decisions) on canon law; during a critical period he was instrumental in maintaining the remnants of Roman law.

Hammurabi, Relief Portrait

Hammurabi (fl. c. 1792-1750 B.C.) King of Babylonia. Author of the Code of Hammurabi, which is recognized in legal literature as one of the earliest surviving legal codes.

Hugo Grotius, Relief Portrait

Hugo Grotius (1583-1645) Dutch statesman. Advocate-General of Holland and Zeeland; author of On the Law of War and Peace, the first treatise on international law.

Innocent III, Relief Portrait

Innocent III (1161-1216) Medieval pope. Student of canon and civil law, who, like Gregory IX, preserved the remnants of Roman law during the Dark Ages.

Jean Baptiste Colbert, Relief Portrait

Jean Baptiste Colbert (1619-1683) French finance minister and controller general under Louis XIV. Codified commercial, maritime, and colonial ordinances; reformed the French legal system.

Justinian I, Relief Portrait

Justinian I (c. 483-565) Byzantine emperor. Appointed Tribonian to compile and consolidate the Roman legal code into the Justinian Code, which he supplemented with a collection of rulings and precedents.

Lycurgus, Relief Portrait

Lycurgus (c. 900 B.C.) Semimythical Greek legislator. Traditional author of laws and institution of Sparta.

Maimonides, Relief Portrait

Maimonides (1135-1204) Jewish philosopher of Cordova, Spain. Compiled a systematic exposition of the whole of Jewish law as contained in the Pentateuch and in Talmudic literature.

Moses, Relief Portrait

Moses (c. 1350-1250 B.C.) Hebrew prophet and lawgiver. Transformed a wandering people into a nation; received the Ten Commandments.

Napoleon I, Relief Portrait

Napoleon I (1769-1821) Emperor of France. Appointed a commission to draw up the Code Civil, a combination of tradition and Roman law that influenced the legal systems of European and American states during the 19th century.

Papinian, Relief Portrait

Papinian (c. 146-212) Roman jurist. Author of fifty-six books about legal questions and decisions, extracts from which were influential in the development of the Justinian Code.

Robert Joseph Pothier, Relief Portrait

Robert Joseph Pothier (1699-1772) French jurist; author of the Digest of Pandects of Justinian, a classic study of Roman law; author of several treatises on French law, which were incorporated in the French Code Civil.

Saint Louis, Relief Portrait

Saint Louis (1214-1270) King Louis IX of France. Author of the Mise of Amiens, a judgment on a dispute between Henry III and rebellious English barons.