On-line version ISSN 2411-7870
Print version ISSN 1021-545X
GAMAUF, Richard. And then there were three: Drittschadensliquidation nach dem ersten Kapitel der lex Aquilia?. Fundamina (Pretoria) [online]. 2014, vol.20, n.1, pp.322-335. ISSN 2411-7870.
Gai. 3,212, IJ. 4,3,10 and D. 9,2,22,1 (Paul. 22 ed.) deal with the killing of a member of a group of slaves or animals falling under the first chapter of the lex Aquilia. In such cases, the damages exceeded the highest value of the dead slave or animal because the plaintiff was awarded compensation for the devaluation of the remaining slaves or animals as well. This article deals with the question whether the Roman jurists applied this solution only when the unit had one owner or also when the slaves or animals belonged to different owners, as in the societas-case dealt with by Celsus in D. 17,2,58 pr. (Ulp. 31 ed.). None of the relevant texts excludes such an interpretation a priori. since unitary ownership of the whole group of slaves or animals is never mentioned as a prerequisite. If the parts of such a unit belonged to different partners of a societas (and no co-ownership existed with regard to the societas' assets), the only way of holding the wrongdoer responsible for all the losses caused by his unlawful act was by granting the plaintiff compensation for the devaluation of the surviving slaves or animals owned by his partners. Without compensation for his partners' losses not even a successful plaintiff would have been able to obtain full indemnification since he had to share his gains from the proceedings regarding his slave or animal with his partners in the societas. Such an interpretation would have had practical benefits because the standard examples cited in the legal sources in such cases (twins, quadrigae, musicians, or actors) were all valuable luxury items and there is evidence that such ensembles sometimes belonged to more than one person.