“The thing is mine”: Extracting the terminology of the Roman law of “ownership” from Justinian’s Digest

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


Our paper investigates the evolution of the concept of “ownership” in Roman law using computational semantic methods. The work is based on a relational database of Justinian’s Digest (533 CE) arranging more than twenty thousand text units excerpted from hundreds of otherwise lost legal works in a Python environment and shared on GitHub (mribary/pyDigest). We present a thematic tree-map of Roman law based on hierarchical clustering of sections. We use computational methods for terminology extraction and distributional semantic word representations to show how the semantic landscape associated with “ownership” changed over time.
Period19 Jun 2020
Event titleDigital Classicist London Seminars: Summer 2020
Event typeSeminar
LocationLondon, United KingdomShow on map
Degree of RecognitionNational


  • Roman law
  • computational linguistics
  • Digest