This publication by the CNRS is the proceedings of the conference “Napoleon and the law. Law and justice during the Consulate and the Empire”, which took place in the context of the Chaire Napoléon (created in partnership with ICES and the Fondation Napoléon), at La Roche-sur-Yon (in the Vendée region of France), from 14-16 March 2017.
Contents (in French)
Presentation of the authors (in French)
Presentation by the publisher:
There are few periods in history when law has been so much at the centre of human thought and state action as it was during the Consulate and the Empire. This “return of the jurists” – Cambacérès, Roederer, Merlin de Douai, Boulay de la Meurthe, etc – led by a head of state who was not one, made it possible to settle the major questions, to put the ideas into practice, to write the Napoleonic Code and the codes, to stabilise the institutions, to restructure the judicial organisation and much more besides, such as magistrates’ uniforms or the redevelopment of the Palais de Justice in Paris. The task was considerable and for the most part perennial: in spite of the necessary adaptations, the legacy of this prolific “decade” still lives on in the heart of French and European legal systems.
In the light of recent research, thirty European historians and jurists take a new look at this history, make a new assessment of it and discuss from their various viewpoints the modernity or timeliness of the Napoleonic roots of our law.