The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 2, July 1898 - April, 1899 Page: 30
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30 Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
English and Spanish peoples manifested themselves here and the
changes in the English ,Common law by the Anglo-Americans were
much greater and more fundamental than those wrought by the
Spanish-Americans in the Spanish Civil law.
Texas furnished a meeting place and battle ground for these
two peoples and their institutions. The Spanish-American and
the 'Spanish Civil law were in possession of the territory. The in-
vasion was by the Anglo-American and the Common law. Between
the peoples, the struggle was sharp, short, and decisive. The Anglo-
American was victorious. Between the systems of jurisprudence,
the contest was protracted and the result a compromise. The
Common law ultimately prevailed, but its victory involved the loss
of some of its most cherished doctrines.
The founders of the government of Texas were free to choose
the materials for their structure from whence they would. Their
sympathies were with the Common law, but the Civil law had been
in force; and marital relations, land titles, and other rights perma-
nent in their nature had grown up under it. 'Sudden and radical
changes would have been prejudicial, if not impracticable, and the
Texans, in their wisdom, declined to 'disturb too violently existing
institutions. On the contrary, they adopted many of the Civil law
doctrines, modifying them to suit their purposes and conditions,
and retained them as part of the permanent jurisprudence 'of the
Thus it will be seen that our Texas law rests upon the Common
law of England, as adapted to American conditions by the several
States of the Union prior to the Texas Revolution and upon the
ancient Roman law, as modified in its transmission through Spain
and her American dependencies, and is formed, to a large extent,
from selections from each. In most instances, these selections
were -wisely made and the result is a blending in one homogeneous
whole of much that is 'best in each of the two great sources from
which the material was taken.
The peculiarities of the system thus established embrace matters
both of substantive and -adjective law. The most interesting re-
late to the first of these divisions--the law regulating substantive
rights; but these are apart from our present purpose, which con-
cerns only so much ,of the adjective law-nor law of procedure-as is
involved in the development of the judicial system.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 2, July 1898 - April, 1899, periodical, 1898/1899; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101011/m1/34/: accessed September 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.