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Litis contestatio
(653 words)

[German version]

A. Term

In Roman legal language, lis is the expression for a dispute, in particular when it is taken to court. Litis contestatio (LC) thus refers to the ‘witnessing’ of such a dispute (Fest. p. 34,50 L.). The instigation of a claim (action) and defence (repudiation of action) in front of witnesses determined the course of a (civil) law suit. Until the predominance of the imperial cognitio procedure around AD 300, LC was the crucial point [1. 77] in the entire proceedings.

Cite this page
Schiemann, Gottfried (Tübingen), “Litis contestatio”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 20 June 2021 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1574-9347_bnp_e707680>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510



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