Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-684899dbb8-x64cq Total loading time: 0.423 Render date: 2022-05-16T09:34:01.400Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true }

1 - From Claves Curiae to Senators of the College of Justice: Changing Rituals and Symbols in Scottish Courts

from FOUNDATION AND CONTINUITY

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  25 October 2017

Get access

Summary

INTRODUCTION

The early history of Scots law is insufficiently documented to allow much insight into the use of symbols and rituals in practice. There are hints as to what there may have been. For example, keepers of relics were involved in particular procedures in pursuit of stolen goods. From this we can infer that certain ritual or symbolic practices were likely. As over much of Europe, the rituals surrounding the ordeal and the judicial duel were practised, until the Church ceased co-operation with the former, the latter lasting in some circumstances until quite late in the Middle Ages.

Although there is a lack of evidence directing attention to symbolic communication before actual courts in Scotland, it is possible to consider how the very constitution of a court in the Middle Ages was in itself a symbolic communication, instructing those who attended or observed not only in the law and its procedures, but also in its values. This chapter will accordingly discuss aspects of the ceremonies involved in constituting a court in Scotland in the Middle Ages, focusing on a sixteenth-century description of what were called the claves curiae, the “keys of the court”, necessary for its proper constitution. Analysis of this will then be followed by that of a later description of a ceremony of admission as a lawyer, a ceremony rich in ritual and symbolism. This description permits appreciation of the significant change in Scottish legal culture: a change that created a court dealing in the learned law of the ius commune, in the proceedings of which much was reduced to writing, deliberations were secret, and legal professionals were much more clearly in charge.

Type
Chapter
Information
Law, Lawyers, and Humanism
Selected Essays on the History of Scots Law, Volume 1
, pp. 3 - 21
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Print publication year: 2015

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×