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Accursius (statue at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence )

Accursius (* 1182 / 85 (in Bagnolo all'Impruneta district of Impruneta ) at Florence , † 1260 / 63 in Bologna ) belonged to the group of so-called glossators .


Accursius studied at the University of Bologna Law . One of his teachers was Azo . From around 1215 Accursius worked there himself as a law teacher.

He wrote the so-called Glossa ordinaria (summary of the glosses written up to that point ). It comprises about 97,000 marginal notes and was the most detailed of all summaries. He wanted to create a complete explanation of the Justinian Corpus Iuris Civilis , which reproduces the legal work in a uniform and consistent manner. In practice, the Glossa ordinaria partially attained legal force and stood in front of the text of the Corpus Iuris Civilis : Anyone who invoked the legal text to argue against the Glossa ordinaria could be countered that it was presumptuous to believe that one could understand the text better than Accursius ("Quidquid non agnoscit glossa, non agnoscit curia" - what the Glossa ordinaria does not recognize, the court does not recognize). With Accursius and his monumental work, which was completed around 1230, the glossator school activity ends. Accursius' work was taken up in legal practice until the 18th century.

The first name "Franciscus" ascribed to the Accursius in later sources, like other epithets ("Bonus", "Azoninus"), has no historical basis. Several of his sons also worked as lawyers. Among them, Franciscus (* around 1225), who also worked at the English royal court under Edward I , is the most important. To distinguish him from his father he is called Franciscus Accursii , i. H. Franciscus (son) of Accursius. Dante counts Franciscus among the sodomites in hell (Inferno V, 109).

Burial place

Accursius' tomb in the Basilica of San Francesco in Bologna.

Accursius' tomb is outside the Basilica San Francesco in Bologna. There he lies in a mausoleum with his son Franciscus. Next to it lies his pupil Odofredus in a similar tomb.


  • Corpus iuris civilis: Digesta Justiniani . Infortiatum. With the Glossa ordinaria des Accursius and with Summaria des Hieronymus Clarius. Venice: Baptista de Tortis, 1495. Digitized edition of the University and State Library Düsseldorf (only Infortiatum; Accursius and later notes)
  • Corpus iuris civilis: Justiniani Institutiones . With the glossa ordinaria of the Accursius . Michael Wenßler, Basel 31. V. 1476, or rather around 1477 ( digitized version )
  • Corpus iuris civilis: Justiniani Institutiones. With the glossa ordinaria of the Accursius . Basel: Nikolaus Keßler, 1487/88 ( digitized version )
  • Corpus iuris civilis Iustinianei, cum commentariis Accursii, scholiis Contii et D. Gothofredi lucublationibus ad Accursium. Lyon: 1627. Digitized edition Lyon 1627 of the University Library Heidelberg (Accursius and later notes)
  • Reprint of the Glossa ordinaria Accursii in: Corpus glossatorum juris civilis. Vol. 7: Accursii Glossa in Digestum vetus, Torino: 1969; Vol. 8: Accursii Glossa in Digestum infortiatum, Torino: 1968; Vol. 9. Accursii Glossa in Digestum novum, Torino: 1968; Vol. 10: Accursii Glossa in Codicem, Torino: 1968; Vol. 11: Accursii Glossa in Volume, Torino: 1969.


Web links

Commons : Accursius  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Uwe Wesel : History of the law. From the early forms to the present . 3rd revised and expanded edition. Beck, Munich 2006, ISBN 3-406-47543-4 . Pp. 317-320 (319).