Books Six, Seven, and Eight of “Codex Theodosianus”


This manuscript dating from the sixth century contains books six to eight of the Codex Theodosianus (Theodosian code), the collection of laws compiled between 429 and 438 by two commissions on behalf of the Byzantine emperor Theodosius II (401‒50, reigned as Eastern Roman emperor from 408 to 450). The code was promulgated in February 438 and came into effect on January 1, 439. It consists of a shortened version, in 16 books, of all the imperial laws that had been issued since 312. Only the text of books six to 16 has survived. The Codex Theodosianus is the most important source for the knowledge of Roman law. The manuscript presented here, highly damaged in places, is a personal copy that belonged to Florus of Lyons (died 860), a theologian, canonist, poet, exegete, and liturgical author of two important works: De divina psalmodia and De actione missae. The manuscript is on parchment, with a natural parchment binding, and written in an uncial script, which was used by Latin and Greek scribes in Europe from the fourth to the eighth centuries. Designated Latin 9642 in the collections of the National Library of France, it is one of the major manuscript sources for this important text.

Last updated: August 15, 2017