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Schrage, E. (Ed.) (2008). Ius quaesitum tertio. Duncker & Humblot.
Schrage, Eltjo J. H.. Ius quaesitum tertio. Duncker & Humblot, 2008. Book.
Schrage, E (ed.) (2008): Ius quaesitum tertio, Duncker & Humblot, [online]


Ius quaesitum tertio

Editors: Schrage, Eltjo J. H.

Comparative Studies in Continental and Anglo-American Legal History, Vol. 26


Additional Information

Book Details



This volume is the third one in a series of publications composed by (more or less) the same academic working group. It follows the publications "Unjust Enrichment: The Comparative Legal History of the Law of Restitution" (1995, 2nd edition 1999 <978-3-428-07982-7>) and "Negligence: The Comparative Legal History of the Law of Torts" (2001 <978-3-428-10516-8).

The authors of this volume focus on contracts in favour of third parties. They examine two distinct, but closely related topics: The unfolding and gradual withering away of the Roman law maxim Alteri stipulari non potest and (more general) the creation of contractual rights in favour of third parties. This too has its roots in Roman law, yet it developed a life of its own, remaining a highly controversial subject in modern European legal systems. Behind these themes arises the question of whether or not there is any rule restricting contracts to reciprocal relationship.

Table of Contents

Section Title Page Action Price
Table of Contents V
DAVID J. IBBETSON and ELTJO J. H. SCHRAGE: Ius quaesitum tertio. A Comparative and Historical Introduction to the Concept of Third Party Contracts 1
Roman Law 2
Refusal of a Right of Action to Third Parties 3
Refusal of a Right of Action to the Stipulator 6
The Foundations of Mediaval Law 7
The Medieval Ius Commune 7
Iura Propria in the Middle Ages 9
The Early Modern Synthesis of Theory and Practice 14
Post-Grotius 20
England 26
The Modern Law 29
Common Themes 32
Generality and Specificity 32
Third-Party Rights and Other Legal Rules 32
Practice and Theory 33
SIR JOHN BAKER: Privity of Contract in the Common Law before 1680 35
Formal contracts under seal 38
Accountability 40
Assumpsit 41
Appendix: Some cases summarised from the plea rolls 57
JAN HALLEBEEK: Ius Quaesitum Tertio in Medieval Roman Law 61
I. Introduction 61
II. Justinianic law 64
1. The maxims of Roman law 64
a) alteri stipulari nemo potest 64
b) per extraneam personam nihil adquiri posse 65
c) neque stipulari neque emere vendere contrahere, ut alter suo nomine recte agat, possumus 66
2. Exceptions to the basic rules 67
a) The promisee has an interest; the promisee has an action 67
b) Addition of a penalty clause; the promisee has an action 69
c) Specific exceptional cases where the third party has an action 69
III. The glossators 73
1. The scholarly approach in general 73
2. Listing the exceptions 74
3. The doctrine of Martinus 75
4. The mainstream glossators and the Accursian Gloss: Martinus’ doctrine rejected 77
5. A general rule for the pact to restore the dowry to a third party 79
6. The stipulatio mihi recipienti suo nomine 81
7. The servus publicus in medieval context 83
8. Conclusions 84
IV. The commentators 85
1. General approach and cocial context 85
2. Extending the number of cases where the third party beneficiary has an action 85
a) The son under paternal control and the curator in medieval context 86
b) The servus publicus in medieval context 86
c) The donatio sub modo 89
d) The pactum appositum in rei traditione 93
3. Extending the number of cases where the stipulatio alteri has effect for the parties themselves 97
a) Bartolus: the third party as procurator ad recipiendum and the interesse superveniens 97
b) The formula mihi recipienti suo nomine 99
c) A natural obligation confirmed by oath 101
V. Conclusions 104
HARRY DONDORP: Ius Quaesitum Tertio in Medieval Canon Law 109
I. Introduction 109
II. Agency acknowledged? 111
III. Agency rejected 112
IV. Contracts in favour of a third party acknowledged? 114
V. Three different interpretations of Laurentius’s gloss 115
VI. New law with regard to third party rights 116
VII. Contracts in favour of a third rejected 117
VIII. An Alternative: a promise under oath 119
IX. An alternative remedy: denuntiatio 122
X. Contracts in favour of a third party acknowledged? 124
XI. Promises directed to an absent promisee 127
XII. Conclusions 130
Epilogue 131
NEIL G. JONES: Aspects of Privity in England: Equity to 1680 135
I. The Dutton v. Poole-type cases 135
1. The cases 136
2. The basis for relief 142
a) Sambrooke v. Ramsey: a mixed approach 142
b) Lord Nottingham’s cases: agreement 144
c) Lord Nottingham’s cases: reliance 146
d) Lord Nottingham’s cases: trust 147
II. The marriage agreement cases 150
1. Fifteenth-century marriage agreements 150
2. Covenants to stand seised 151
3. Seventeenth-century marriage agreements 154
a) Agreement 154
b) Trust 158
III. The ‘Trust of a Promise’ 159
IV. Trusts as contracts? 162
1. Unilateral trust 164
2. Consent 168
3. Conscience and justified reliance 170
V. Conclusion 172
LAURENT WAELKENS: Ius Quaesitum Tertio, Dutch Influences on Grotius 175
DAVID J. IBBETSON and WARREN SWAIN: Third Party Beneficiaries in English Law: From Dutton v. Poole to Tweddle v. Atkinson 191
Sealed Deeds and the Parties-only Rule 192
The Action of Assumpsit 196
The Law Merchant 200
Equity 201
The Rule under Pressure 205
DAVID DEROUSSIN: La stipulation pour autruide l’ancien droit français au XIXème siècle, ou comment se débarrasser d’une tradition gênante 215
I. Les actes pour autrui dans le droit coutumier médiéval français 219
II. Les hésitations tardives de l’ancien droit français 222
1. Le fondement de la prohibition 222
2. Les tempéraments à la prohibition 224
III. Audace jurisprudentielle et doctrinale sous l’empire du Code civil 228
1. Les dispositions du Code 228
2. Restrictions doctrinales et jurisprudentielles au principe de la prohibition (XIX–XXème s.) 229
3. L’analyse de la nature juridique de la stipulation pour autrui 231
a) La prohibition de la stipulation pour autrui, entre protection du consentement et objet du contrat 231
aa) Le consentement et la présomption de porte fort 231
bb) La recherche d’un autre fondement 235
b) La situation juridique du tiers bénéficiaire de la stipulation 237
aa) La théorie de l’offre 237
bb) Le recours aux règles de la gestion d’affaires 240
4. La faveur envers la stipulation pour autrui 244
a) La recherche de moyens de validation des actes pour autrui 244
b) Quelques exemples de stipulations pour autrui valables 246
MARTIN PENNITZ: Ius quaesitum tertio: German Legal Doctrine and Practice in the 18th and 19th Century 251
I. Introduction 251
II. Attempts to establish rights of third parties from the late 17th century 254
III. „Case law” in the territories based on the ius commune and German customary law 263
IV. Territorial Law Codes and the legal practice based on these codifications 268
V. Legal doctrine and practice during the second half of the 19th century 275
VI. The formation of a “real” third party beneficiary contract in the course of the Drafting Process of the German Civil Code (BGB) 283
VII. Conclusion 285
MARTIN J. SCHERMAIER: Contracts for the Benefit of a Third Party in German Law 289
I. The German approach 289
1. “. . . that the third party acquires the right directly” 289
2. Differences between agency, assignment and delegation 291
3. Agency and contracts for the benefit of third parties 292
II. Modern practice and its history 293
1. Cases of § 328 BGB 293
a) Insurance contracts 293
b) Maintenance contracts 295
c) Trusts 295
d) Savings accounts in the name of third parties 296
e) Quality assurance and product liability 298
f) Contract for the carriage of goods 299
g) Other contracts 300
2. The remnants of the Ius Commune tradition 301
a) Assignment theory 301
b) Affirmation theory 303
III. New horizons: the contract with protective effect for third parties 306
1. Obligation to perform and third party protection 306
2. The rise and fall of the “weal and woe” case law 309
3. The floodgates burst open . . . 311
4. The expert opinion cases 313
5. The theoretical basis of third party protection 314
a) Weaknesses of tort law 314
b) The expansion of contract law 315
c) A “third way” of imposing liability in German law? 317
6. Third party protection in the absence of third party rights: the realisation of third party loss 320
IV. Individual questions 322
1. Claims for breach of contract? 322
2. Rescission of a contract for the benefit of third parties 323
3. The effect on third parties of limitation clauses 326
V. Epilogue 329
Provisions on Third Party Rights in the BGB 329
WARREN SWAIN: Third Party Beneficiaries in English Law, 1880 – 2004 331
Dunlop v. Selfridge and the confirmation of the privity rule 332
The parties only rule and the law of contract 333
Privity of contract reasserted 336
The growing list of exceptions 339
The parties only rule and the law of tort 343
The parties only rule and the law of property 349
Reform of the privity rule 352
Concluding remarks 355
HECTOR L. MACQUEEN and W. DAVID H. SELLAR: Scots Law: Ius quaesitum tertio, Promise and Irrevocability 357
Stair and earlier developments 357
Stair’s Institutions 357
Canon law and Scots law before Stair 361
After Stair 369
Kames 369
The nineteenth century 372
The Sandeman analysis: irrevocability a condition of a third party right? 374
The view of Gloag in 1914 375
Carmichael v. Carmichael’s Executrix 376
a) The facts 376
b) The House of Lords: Dunedin v Stair 377
The neo-civilian counter-attack 380
Conclusion 383
EDGAR DU PERRON: Third Party Stipulations in Modern Dutch Law 385
Introduction 385
Burden on the third party 388
Legal basis 388
Agreement between the parties 389
Unknown and non-existent beneficiary 389
Acceptance 389
Revocation 391
Effects 392
DANIEL VISSER and SAMANTHA COOK: Contracts for the Benefit of Third Parties in South Africa – Investigating an Alternative Approach 395
Introduction 395
I. The Nature of Contracts for the Benefit of Third Parties 396
1. When Does the Right of the Third Party Arise? 398
2. How, When and by Whom can the Third Party’s Right be Enforced; and When and under What Circumstances can the Right be Revoked or Varied? 402
3. Do Corresponding Obligations Arise from the Contract for the Benefit of a Third Party and, if so, When do these Arise? 405
II. Evaluating the Current State of the Law 406
III. An Alternative Approach – Reasonable Expectations 407
IV. Typical Cases 410
1. Insurance 410
2. Himalaya Clauses 416
3. Pre-Incorporation Contracts 422
4. Trusts inter vivos 427
Conclusion 432