Professor David Ibbetson

Subject: Law

Department/institution: President – Clare Hall

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Research interests:

David Ibbetson has been President of Clare Hall since 2013. He combines his college duties with holding the Regius Professorship of Civil Law at the University. Before taking up the chair in 2000, he taught at Oxford, and was a Fellow of Corpus Christi College between 2000 and 2013.

His 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, Professor Ibbetson 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)


It is a matter of real pride for me and for all of us that we are members of a college which should play such a central part in the university of the future