oa Fundamina : A Journal of Legal History - Du droit romain dans une jurisprudence testamentaire de la Cour d'Appel de Chişinău
The research we conducted on Romanian jurisprudence on wills led us to a very interesting decision of the Chişinău (presently, Republic of Moldavia) Court of Appeal delivered in 1925. The region called Bessarabia reunited with Romania in 1918, but the Romanian Civil Code was extended to that territory only in 1928. Therefore, the judges in this case had to identify the laws in force at that time through an historical analysis of the consequences of the first Russian occupation of the province in 1812 on the administration of justice. Then, in terms of Bessarabian law they made an in-depth analysis of Roman law in order to solve the problem. My main purpose is to analyse the conclusions drawn by the judges in 1925. Did the Russian occupation really allow the Hexabiblon of Harmenopoulos (1345) and the Manual of Andronache Donici (1814) as sources of Bessarabian law after 1812? Is the Roman-law analysis conducted by the Court an appropriate one?
However, beyond the several questions that this study raises, its main interest lies in the fact that twentieth century judges still found it useful and necessary to go back to Roman law sources to clarify and interpret the legal texts of Harmenopoulos and Donici on which they based their decision.
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