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David Ibbetson

College positions:
Emeritus Fellow, Honorary Fellow
Faculty of Law
Contact details:

Professor David Ibbetson

David Ibbetson was President of Clare Hall between 2013 and 2020.

He holds the Regius Professorship of Civil Law at the University. Before taking up the chair in 2000, he taught at Oxford, and was subsequently a Fellow of Corpus Christi College between 2000 and 2013.

Professor Ibbetson’s research is in the broad field of legal history, concentrating on the English common law in the late-sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. As Professor of Civil Law, he teaches and writes about Roman law, and is interested in the way in which Roman law influenced (and influences) English law, as well as the way in which Roman law related to other early legal systems (in Greece, Anatolia, Mesopotamia, India, China…). If a single question lies behind much of his research, it is why Roman law and English law have proved to be so successful.

Select publications

  • ‘Authority and Precedent’, in M Godfrey, Law and Authority in British Legal History, (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016)
  • ‘Damages in Trespass at Common Law’, in R Gamauf, Symposium zum 80. Geburtstag von Herbert Hausmaninger (Vienna: Manz, 2016)
  • ‘Edward Coke, Roman Law, and the Law of Libel’, in L Hutson, Oxford Handbook of English Law and Literature, 1500-1700 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017)