Mr. Widener inventories and analyzes an unusual collection of 319 volumes of Roman law, canon law, and European law formed by the Texas Supreme Court. He reviews the collection's contents, origins, history, use, and destiny. He argues that this seemingly exotic collection was probably the handiwork of Chief Justice John Hemphill (1803-1862) as an attempt to introduce civil law principles into a common law system, an attempt that was only partially successful. He concludes with reflections on institutional collections of rare law books. Earlier versions were presented at Lund University (June 2007), the University of Kansas (August 2000), and the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (September 1997), and published as "El derecho hispano y neorromano en la antigua biblioteca de la Corte Suprema de Texas, 1854-1944: un estudio de procedencia," Anuario Mexicano de Historia del Derecho 10 (1998), 797-827.
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