Das porträt von Giovanni Arnolfini und seiner frau im rechtshistorischen Spiegel betrachtet
Velden, Bastiaan David van der
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The wide range of academic writings in response to the famous Jan van Eyck portrait of the Arnolfini couple in the London National Gallery is considered by art historians as an indication of the painter’s stupendous achievement. Not only in the history of art, also for the history of Private International Law in the period 1400-1450 the story of this couple reveals interesting new insights. The Luchese Arnolfini couple lived in Bruges in Flanders and traded in the Bruges-ParisLondon triangle. The assessment of notarial documents discloses how these merchants coped with Private International Law issues. These demonstrate the way practicing jurists dealt with cross border issues was different from law as described in the academic writings by Bartolus de Saxoferrato and Baldus de Ubaldis. It seems that the 1400-1450 praxis and customs in Lucca were already at that time more in line with the later theories on the choice of law in contracts described in the sixteenth century by Dumoulin.