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date: 14 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Comparative law developed in Great Britain in the second half of the nineteenth century. The discipline focused mainly on imperial problems of foreign law and the assimilation of the laws of the different dominions of the Empire. Despite an interest in evolutionary jurisprudence, British scholars generally did not view the discipline as involving a search for universal principles. Through the twentieth century, there was a tendency to focus on comparison of the common law with the civil law, especially that of France. The discipline started to be significant in the universities with the expansion of legal education after the Second World War. Some aspects of the discipline developed into more anthropological studies, others remained more traditionally academic, while British membership of the European Economic Community (EEC) and more global pressures engendered interest in issues such as legal transplants and mixed systems, even if British scholars have traditionally been sceptical of unification of laws as an aim.

Keywords: British Empire, comparative legislation, French law, legal education, legal transplants, mixed systems

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