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Roman law forms the basic framework for civil law, the most widely used legal system today, and the terms are sometimes used synonymously.The historical importance of Roman law is reflected by the continued use of Latin legal terminology in many legal systems influenced by it, including common law.Modern scholars tend to challenge the accuracy of Roman historians.
After eight years of political struggle, the plebeian social class convinced the patricians to send a delegation to Athens, to copy the Laws of Solon; they also dispatched delegations to other Greek cities for like reason.
In 451 BC, according to the traditional story (as Livy tells it), ten Roman citizens were chosen to record the laws (decemviri legibus scribundis).
The decemvirate of 451 is believed to have included the most controversial points of customary law, and to have assumed the leading functions in Rome.
Furthermore, the question on the Greek influence found in the early Roman Law is still much discussed.
A second decemvirate is said to have added two further tablets in 449 BC.
The new Law of the Twelve Tables was approved by the people's assembly.Flavius is said to have published around the year 300 BC the formularies containing the words which had to be spoken in court to begin a legal action.Before the time of Flavius, these formularies are said to have been secret and known only to the priests.The fragments which did survive show that it was not a law code in the modern sense.It did not provide a complete and coherent system of all applicable rules or give legal solutions for all possible cases.The jurist Sextus Pomponius said, "At the beginning of our city, the people began their first activities without any fixed law, and without any fixed rights: all things were ruled despotically, by kings".The first legal text is the Law of the Twelve Tables, dating from the mid-5th century BC. Terentilius Arsa, proposed that the law should be written, in order to prevent magistrates from applying the law arbitrarily.Roman law also denoted the legal system applied in most of Western Europe until the end of the 18th century.In Germany, Roman law practice remained in place longer under the Holy Roman Empire (963–1806).This was achieved in a gradual process of applying the scientific methods of Greek philosophy to the subject of law, a subject which the Greeks themselves never treated as a science.Traditionally, the origins of Roman legal science are connected to Gnaeus Flavius.