The revision was then placed before the Bundesrat through the Imperial Chancellor. This body reported it to its Judiciary Committee, which was directed to examine it and modify it where necessary. The Committee made several modifications and returned it to the Bundesrat, which thus had before it, as a final text, the draft of the Second Commission as modified by the Judiciary Committee. The draft was sent up by the Imperial Chancellor to the Reichstag, which, after some debate over the method to be followed in its discussions, appointed a Committee representing all political parties. By this Committee were made the few reforms of a legal nature which originated in the Reichstag. In committee of the whole all political parties held to the principles which had been discussed and adopted by their delegates in committee. The discussion in committee of the whole was merely upon certain broad questions of a social and religious character. Thus approved, the draft was reported back to the Bundesrat, which in turn gave it its sanction.77
2:Conclusions. From a study of the evolution of legal institutions, and of the examples of legislation to which we have just referred, certain conclusions may be drawn as to the best method to pursue in future codification.
First, a preliminary commission should study at leisure the underlying principles upon which the codification is to rest. A permanent commission on codification may then be created, which will be divided into sections corresponding either to the usual divisions of the law, or to the specific institutions, according as one or the other basis is adopted for carrying out the codification. This commission should be composed of jurists and technical men interested in the particular subject to be codified. If the sections of the commission are constituted according to specific institutions-as we believe they should be - every interest falling within the program of a particular section should be represented there.
The sections should thoroughly investigate, each within its own sphere, the defects and deficiencies of the existing system, duly considering their gravity, and giving ear to the results of the various relevant sciences.
77 For greater detail, cf. Saleilles, "Introduction a l'etude du droit civil allemand," no. iii; and "Introduction" to the French trans, of the German Civil Code, nos. ix-xvi.
They should investigate how the problem has been met in other countries, and what obstacles there are to the introduction of a type or types of legal institutions existing elsewhere. They should hear the opinion upon the proposed reforms of those particular groups of society whose peculiar interests cause them to work for or against it, and upon the direction which the reform should take. Lastly, they should define to what point the institutions should be regulated by the legislature and what matters are proper to be left to the regulation of the courts or of the groups interested. Sometimes it is a simple matter to procure all this information,78 particularly in matters relating to sociological questions, because in almost all countries there exists, within some department of the Government, a permanent bureau whose function is investigation, especially of matters relating to labor, and which reports its findings to the Government.
78 As an example: the author presented to the First Latin-American Medical Congress, which met at Santiago, Chile, in 1901, a paper upon "Mental Incapacity in Medical Jurisprudence and in Comparative Legislation." He there indicated the reforms which he believed necessary in Chilian law to place it abreast of medical and economic science and to give it the benefit of the work that has been done in comparative legislation. The reforms proposed were: 1. The word lunacy ("demen-cia"), the pathological sense of which is restricted, should be replaced in the Civil Code, Book I, title xix, by the words "mental derangement," which are more general. 2. Legal incapacity to act by reason of mental incapacity should be adjudged not only for those whose mentality is entirely deranged, but also for those whose faculties have been only sufficiently disturbed to render them incapable of caring for their property. 3. The provisions of the Law of 1856, similar to those of the French Act of 1832 relating to lunatics in institutions, should be incorporated in the Code. 4. The incapacity of the insane ought to be relative, not absolute. This would permit them alone, or their heirs, to plead the invalidity of their acts; it would give them the right to ratify their acts; and it would also render their acts unassailable after the lapse of the prescriptive period. 5. The deaf and mute who is not insane, even though he cannot make himself understood by writing, ought not to be incapacitated by effect of law. 6. The incapacity of the spendthrift should be relative and limited to acts of alienation of his property; he should retain full capacity for acts of management. 7. The feebleminded ought to be assimilated to the spendthrift, as also confirmed drunkards and victims of alcoholism. 8. Individuals who are incapacitated by reason of illness from caring for their property ought to be placed under a guardian with respect to their property, upon their request. Such a guardianship of their property would not cause them to lose their civil capacity but they could perform no act of management or of alienation without their guardian joining.
After these investigations have been concluded the law should be drafted, and it should be given wide publicity in order to subject it to criticism from various sources. After a certain period has elapsed since publication, the draft, revised or not by the sections responsible for it, should be presented to the legislature, where it will be discussed by a committee representing all parties. The legislature should be limited to approving or disapproving the work as a whole.
After the draft has become the code, or one of the future codes, by virtue of legislative approval, the same commission would continue its investigations; and at certain intervals, every five or ten years for example, it would prepare a report and a draft upon the new legal principles which the legislature should sanction, and upon those principles which should continue to form part of the regulation falling within the authority of the courts and of determined economic groups.
3:Congress of Latin Countries on Comparative Legislation. We have concluded our investigation of the underlying principles and governing ideas which we believe should control the new codification, as also indeed the method of accomplishing it.
To France, we think, it falls to complete a work which the German Civil Code but partly realized. Thus will she continue during this century the influence which she exercised upon codification during the past. But this result can only be obtained by the rise of a scientific movement in France, of such a character as will render it peculiarly efficient. The "Societe d'Enseignement Sup6rieur," the "Societe d'Etudes
Legislatives," and the "Societe de Legislation Com-paree" should invite all Latin countries to send representatives to a congress. That the idea is feasible is shown by the fact that South American countries have already convened several times, and it should not be difficult for the Latin countries of Europe to do so. At this congress representatives of each country would report upon the legal institutions which their own law had borrowed from France, wherever the results had not been wholly satisfactory. The reasons of the failure would be given, native institutions would be explained, and the reasons leading to their adoption, as also the results obtained. The preparation and discussion of each report would form the best work on the comparative law of Latin countries. This alone would justify the congress. Such a work would necessarily take the form of a compilation; it could not originate from a single jurist, as is usually imagined.
Law as a science would not be alone in profiting by the work of such a congress; the world of affairs would also share. It would be quite possible to come to agreement over the general principles of a uniform legislation for all Latin countries. Harmony would be relatively easily obtained. The political, economic, and social conditions of the countries are so broadly alike as to permit of their bending to such a uniformity. If agreement on every point is not possible, at least an understanding could be reached to lessen or do away entirely with those legislative differences due merely to accident, or to formulate uniform rules of private international law. The findings and resolutions of such a congress, with all the preparatory work, would be a fruitful source of information to the courts of Latin countries, pointing out the direction which the transformation of institutions was taking and how the changes might be furthered. At all events the scientific interest in a congress of this kind cannot be denied. It would mark a stage in the renascence of Latin culture and usher in a new era of progress in law in general.
Such, then, is the new impulse which we would wish to see imparted to the study of law, and the new conception of interpretation and of future codification.
Once this triple reform is realized in teaching, interpretation, and codification, the law would at least translate the true social needs of the period and the ideal of justice to which it aspires. Law would receive that moral assent without which rules cannot truly be effective. Law, justice, and equity would become synonymous, so far as that is possible. Legislator, jurist, and judge would each contribute a part toward realizing the aim of private law - to regulate the relationships between individuals in accord with the material needs and the moral ideas of contemporary society.