This guide is intended for students and researchers studying the legal history of the common law tradition at the University of Oxford, although students and researchers from any field may find it useful.
Use this guide to find out about sources and commentary for Anglo-American or common law legal history, including ebooks, ejournals, and databases.
Navigate through this guide by clicking on the pertinent tab in the range you can see above this box (below the main title of this guide).
Separate Law Bod guides exist which may help you further in this and related studies.
Principal Online Resources for holders of an Oxford SSO.
Digital resources on the free web
The Law Bod is Oxford University's principal repository of printed sources for the history of the laws of England, and the past and present members of the United Kingdom.
Manuscripts and copies of incunabula - regardless of subject content - however are in the care of the Bodleian Special Collections in the Weston Library.
The Law Bod also has the principal collection for legal history research for those countries which are part of the common law tradition of law as a result of colonial history: the current members of the Commonwealth and the United States.
Below are some key resources for study & research in this area: please use other pages in this guide to discover more.
Great Britain is the default for the landmass of the British Isles so
Justices of the peace -- Great Britain may well include works on the JPs pre 1707 as well as after 1801!
However it is worth trying England as well ...
Books with a shelf mark which begins Legal Hist are on Floor 2. The Legal Hist section has the biggest concentration of works on the history of the common law, or the Anglo-American legal tradition both primary sources - such as year-books, Selden Society publications - and textbooks and monographs: from modern editions of eg Glanvill & Bracton onwards.
However since 2010, the Law Library has been reclassifying its monographs from the UK, Australia, Canada, Ireland, NZ and USA to Moys. Therefore SOLO searches may reveal useful titles with a shelf mark which begins with a K. These are also shelved on Floor 2.
Introductions in print
For an introduction to the genesis and distinguishing features of the original common law of England (and its companion casebook)
The context for the development of modern law:
Opportunities to learn, meet, and network!
Legal History Research Methods
See the chapter 'Historical Research in Law' by David Ibbetson in the Oxford Handbook of Legal Studies (link below)