Material relating to the history of law will be found in a number of our collections. Resources include a range of early legal texts (manuscript and printed) dating from the medieval period.
The following collections are of particular interest:
- Civil and Canon Law: 262 volumes of commentaries, largely on civil, but partly also on canon law. Mainly 16th-century Italian works, with some other continental printers represented
- Hunterian: includes many medieval manuscript and early printed editions of civil and canon law texts
- Murray: wide ranging library of a 19th century Glasgow lawyer; includes many examples of early legal texts and some publications relating to19th century Scottish cases (including ephemera relating to the collapse of the City of Glasgow Bank in 1878)
- Old Library: books from the Library, acquired before 1800, reflecting the University curriculum, including sections on law
Other relevant material is dispersed throughout other collections. To search across all our collections, by name or keyword, please use the rare books search (for printed material) and the manuscripts search (for unpublished material including notebooks, papers, photographs and drawings).
Our holdings of historical Acts of Parliament and other parliamentary papers are incomplete. However, many of these are available online: see the Maps, Official Publications and Statistics Unit for more advice.
Web resources relating to the history of law:
- transcription of a 16th century manuscript of The Practiques of Sir Richard Maitland of Lethington (MS Gen 1333)
- 15th century manuscript of Bartolo da Sassoferrato's commentary on the Infortiatum (Book of the Month: January 2005)