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Chapter

Cover Borkowski's Textbook on Roman Law

1. Introduction: Rome—A Historical Sketch  

This chapter provides a historical sketch of Rome. It has been written to provide a contextual basis for the study of Roman private law. The history of Rome is traditionally divided into three main periods based on the dominant constitutional structure in Roman society during these three periods. These are the Monarchy (eighth century bc–510 bc), Republic (509–27 bc), and Empire (27 bc–ad 565). Scholars of Roman law tend to refine this division even further. Thus, to the scholar of Roman law, the period from the founding of Rome in the eighth century bc–c. 250 bc is regarded as the ‘archaic’ period of Roman law. The period thereafter, from c. 250 bc–27 bc, is generally described as the ‘pre-classical period’ of Roman law.For scholars of Roman law, the ‘classical’ period, c. first three centuries AD, and the Justinianic period, c. sixth century AD, are the most important, owing to the compilation of ‘classical’ Roman law by order the Byzantine Emperor, Justinian, in the sixth century.

Chapter

Cover Public Law

8. Government of the United Kingdom  

This chapter examines the people and processes that comprise government in the UK. It considers the constitutional and legal status and role of the monarchy (the King), ministers (the Prime Minister, Secretaries of State, and other ministers), civil servants (politically neutral officials responsible for supporting ministers to implement policies), as well as holders of appointed public offices (such as regulatory bodies that operate independently of ministers). A key question is where does government get its legal power from (legality)? In general terms, those who govern have such powers as are conferred by Acts of Parliament, prerogative powers (in the case of some ministers and the King), and the common law. Another key question is about legitimacy: government bodies must implicitly or expressly make a claim that their powers to govern ought to be accepted, and that claim must be accepted by most of the people most of the time.

Chapter

Cover Public Law

9. Government and Accountability  

This chapter examines the people and processes that comprise government in the UK. It considers the constitutional and legal status and role of the monarchy, ministers, civil servants, as well as holders of appointed public offices. It then turns to one of the central features of a good constitution, namely that it provides opportunities for those who exercise public power to be ‘held to account’ or ‘accountable’ for their decisions and conduct.

Chapter

Cover Public Law Directions

3. The features and sources of the UK constitution  

This chapter examines the characteristics of the UK constitution. The main features of the UK constitution are that it is uncodified; flexible; traditionally unitary but now debatably a union state; monarchical; parliamentary; and based on a bedrock of important constitutional doctrines and principles: parliamentary sovereignty, the rule of law, separation of powers; the courts are also basing some decisions on bedrock principles of the common law. Meanwhile, the laws, rules, and practices of the UK constitution can be found in constitutional statutes; judicial decisions; constitutional conventions; international treaties; the royal prerogative; the law and custom of Parliament; and works of authoritative writers. The chapter then looks at the arguments for and against codifying the UK constitution.

Chapter

Cover Public Law Concentrate

1. Introduction to constitutional law  

Each Concentrate revision guide is packed with essential information, key cases, revision tips, exam Q&As, and more. Concentrates show you what to expect in a law exam, what examiners are looking for, and how to achieve extra marks. This chapter discusses the definition of constitutional law and the characteristics of the British Constitution. Constitutional law looks at a body of legal rules and political arrangements concerning the government of a country. A constitution may take the form of a document or set of documents which declare that a country and its chosen form of government legitimately exists. The British Constitution is largely unwritten, flexible in nature, and based on absolute parliamentary sovereignty. The UK is also a unitary state. There is a central government, as well as devolved legislative and executive bodies in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, and England. It is also a constitutional monarchy. This means that the head of state is a king or queen and that they exercise their powers in and through a parliamentary system of government in which the members of the executive are accountable to a sovereign parliament.

Chapter

Cover Public Law Directions

2. How the UK constitution has developed  

This chapter discusses the historical development of the UK constitution. The key to understanding the evolution of the British constitution is to imagine it being shaped by a dynamic ebb and flow of power between the key players—the monarch, Parliament, the Church, governments, judges—to determine the issue of where supreme power and authority would ultimately settle and reside. In the case of the UK, supreme authority settled in the monarch in Parliament, while political power resided with the executive. The chapter then argues that the constitution is fluid and changing, despite the received view that it has evolved slowly and peacefully without invasion or violent revolution. Despite fluctuations in power, and changes in Britain’s territorial composition and external alliances, there has always been a sense that the constitution is based on the collective memory of ancient laws and principles that fundamentally protect the people and cannot be changed.

Book

Cover Public Law Concentrate
Each Concentrate revision guide is packed with essential information, key cases, revision tips, exam Q&As, and more. Concentrates show you what to expect in a law exam, what examiners are looking for, and how to achieve extra marks. Public Law Concentrate looks at all aspects of constitutional law including sources, rule of law, separation of powers, role of the executive, constitutional monarchy, and the Royal Prerogative. It also discusses parliamentary sovereignty and the changing constitutional relationship between the UK and the EU together with the status of EU retained and converted law under the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 as amended by the 2020 Act, the Agreement on Trade and Cooperation effective from 1 January 2021, and the European Union (Future Relationship) Act 2020. Also covered are: administrative law, judicial review, human rights, police powers, public order, terrorism, the constitutional status of the Sewel Convention, legislative consent motion procedure, use of secondary legislation by the executive to amend law and make regulations creating criminal offences, especially under the Coronavirus Act 2020 and the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984, the separation of powers implications of Henry VIII Clauses, the constitutional role of the Horuse of Lords in scrutinizing and amending primary legislation, the Speakers’ Ruling in the House of Commons on Points of Order and the Contempt of Parliament Motion, whip system, back bench revolts, confidence and supply agreements in government formation, and current legislative and executive devolution in Northern Ireland. The book additionally examines the continuing impact of the HRA 1998 and the European Court of Human Rights on parliamentary sovereignty and the significance of the 2021 Independent Review of the HRA.