Marcus Antistius Labeo
Marcus Antistius Labeo (d. 10 or 11 AD) was a prominent jurist
A jurist or jurisconsult is a professional who studies, develops, applies, or otherwise deals with the law. The term is widely used in American English, but in the United Kingdom and many Commonwealth countries it has only historical and specialist usage...

 of ancient Rome
Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome was a thriving civilization that grew on the Italian Peninsula as early as the 8th century BC. Located along the Mediterranean Sea and centered on the city of Rome, it expanded to one of the largest empires in the ancient world....


He was the son of Quintus Antistius Labeo, a jurist who caused himself to be slain after the defeat of his party at Philippi
Philippi was a city in eastern Macedonia, established by Philip II in 356 BC and abandoned in the 14th century after the Ottoman conquest...

. A member of the plebeian nobility, and in easy circumstances, the younger Labeo early entered public life, and soon rose to the praetor
Praetor was a title granted by the government of Ancient Rome to men acting in one of two official capacities: the commander of an army, usually in the field, or the named commander before mustering the army; and an elected magistratus assigned varied duties...

ship; but his undisguised antipathy to the new regime, and the somewhat brusque manner in which in the Senate
Roman Senate
The Senate of the Roman Republic was a political institution in the ancient Roman Republic, however, it was not an elected body, but one whose members were appointed by the consuls, and later by the censors. After a magistrate served his term in office, it usually was followed with automatic...

 he occasionally gave expression to his republican sympathies - what Tacitus
Publius Cornelius Tacitus was a senator and a historian of the Roman Empire. The surviving portions of his two major works—the Annals and the Histories—examine the reigns of the Roman Emperors Tiberius, Claudius, Nero and those who reigned in the Year of the Four Emperors...

 calls his incorrupta libertas - proved an obstacle to his advancement, and his rival, Ateius Capito
Gaius Ateius Capito (jurist)
Gaius Ateius Capito was a Roman jurist in the time of emperors Augustus and Tiberius and consul suffectus in the year 5.-Life:...

, who had unreservedly given in his adhesion to the ruling powers, was promoted by Caesar Augustus to the consul
Consul was the highest elected office of the Roman Republic and an appointive office under the Empire. The title was also used in other city states and also revived in modern states, notably in the First French Republic...

ate, when the appointment should have fallen to Labeo; smarting under the wrong done him, Labeo declined the office when it was offered to him in a subsequent year.

From this time he seems to have devoted his whole time to jurisprudence
Jurisprudence is the theory and philosophy of law. Scholars of jurisprudence, or legal theorists , hope to obtain a deeper understanding of the nature of law, of legal reasoning, legal systems and of legal institutions...

. His training in the science had been derived principally from Trebatius Testa
Trebatius Testa
Gaius Trebatius Testa was a jurist of ancient Rome, whose family, and himself, originated from Elea.He was a protege of Cicero; Cicero dedicated his Topica to Trebatius, and recommended Trebatius as a legal advisor to Julius Caesar...

. To his knowledge of the law he added a wide general culture, devoting his attention specially to dialectics, philology
Philology is the study of language in written historical sources; it is a combination of literary studies, history and linguistics.Classical philology is the philology of Greek and Classical Latin...

 (grammatica), and antiquities, as valuable aids in the exposition, expansion, and application of legal doctrine. Down to the time of Hadrian
Hadrian , was Roman Emperor from 117 to 138. He is best known for building Hadrian's Wall, which marked the northern limit of Roman Britain. In Rome, he re-built the Pantheon and constructed the Temple of Venus and Roma. In addition to being emperor, Hadrian was a humanist and was philhellene in...

 his was probably the name of greatest authority; and several of his works were abridged and annotated by later hands.

While Capito is hardly ever referred to, the dicta of Labeo are of constant recurrence in the writings of the classical jurists, such as Gaius
Gaius (jurist)
Gaius was a celebrated Roman jurist. Scholars know very little of his personal life. It is impossible to discover even his full name, Gaius or Caius being merely his personal name...

, Ulpian
Gnaeus Domitius Annius Ulpianus , anglicized as Ulpian, was a Roman jurist of Tyrian ancestry.-Biography:The exact time and place of his birth are unknown, but the period of his literary activity was between AD 211 and 222...

 and Iulius Paulus; and no inconsiderable number of them were thought worthy of preservation in Justinian
Justinian I
Justinian I ; , ; 483– 13 or 14 November 565), commonly known as Justinian the Great, was Byzantine Emperor from 527 to 565. During his reign, Justinian sought to revive the Empire's greatness and reconquer the lost western half of the classical Roman Empire.One of the most important figures of...

's Digest. Labeo gets the credit of being the founder of the Proculian sect or school, while Capito is spoken of as the founder of the rival Sabinian one; but it is probable that the real founders of the two scholae were Proculus
Proculus was a Roman usurper, one of the "minor pretenders" according to Historia Augusta; he took the purple against Emperor Probus in 280....

 and Sabinus
Sabinus may refer to:* several ancient Romans; see Sabinus * Sabinus of Seville, 3rd century bishop of Seville, Spain* Sabinus , 4th century historianSaint Sabinus may refer to:* Saint Sabinus , Roman martyr...

, followers respectively of the methods of Labeo and Capito.

Labeo's most important literary work was the Libri posteriores, so called because published only after his death. It contained a systematic exposition of the common law. His Libri ad Edictum embraced a commentary, not only on the edicts of the urban and peregrine praetors, but also on that of the curule aediles. His Probabilium lib. VIII., a collection of definitions and axiomatic legal propositions, seems to have been one of his most characteristic productions.
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.