07 October 2020

BOOK: Phillip HELLWEGE (Ed.), Professional Guilds and the History of Insurance - A Comparative Analysis (Berlin: Duncker & Humblot, 2020). ISBN 978-3-428-18071-4, 99.90 EUR


Duncker & Humblot is publishing “Professional Guilds and the History of Insurance - A Comparative Analysis”.


German literature claims that modern insurance (law) has three roots: marine insurance, the co-operative protection provided by medieval and early modern guilds, and state-run insurance schemes. By contrast, English scholars suggest that there is only one root for modern insurance (law): marine insurance (law). The literature on the developments in other European countries follows similar narratives. It seems that in these countries, guilds have had no influence on the formation of insurance. The aim of the present volume is to test these different narratives. More specifically, the objective is to assess from a comparative perspective (i) whether it is possible to analyse in terms of insurance the support offered by medieval and early modern professional guilds to members in need and (ii) whether guild support had a lasting impact on the development of modern insurance and insurance law. To this end, the present volume covers various European countries followed by a comparative analysis.


Prof. Dr. Phillip Hellwege M.Jur. (Oxford) ist seit 2010 Inhaber des Lehrstuhls für Bürgerliches Recht, Wirtschaftsrecht und Rechtsgeschichte an der Universität Augsburg. Zuvor war er von 2003 bis 2010 wissenschaftlicher Referent am Max-Planck-Institut für ausländisches und internationales Privatrecht in Hamburg. 2015 erhielt er einen Consolidator Grant des European Research Council (ERC) für ein auf fünf Jahre angelegtes Projekt zur vergleichenden Geschichte des Versicherungsrechts in Europa. Seine Forschungsschwerpunkte liegen im Bürgerlichen Recht, im Europäischen Privatrecht, in der Historischen Rechtsvergleichung sowie in der Geschichte des Wirtschaftsrechts und des Versicherungsrechts.


Phillip Hellwege: Introduction

Dirk Heirbaut: Mutual Aid in the Craft Guilds of the Late Medieval and Early Modern Southern Netherlands (Belgium)

Maarten Prak: Guilds and Mutual Aid in the Northern Netherlands

Phillip Hellwege: Professional Guilds and the History of Social Security and Insurance in the German-Speaking World

Patrick Wallis: Guilds and Mutual Aid in England

Martin Sunnqvist: Scandinavia

David Deroussin: Guilds, Confraternities and Mutual Assistance in France

Marina Gazzini: Guilds and Mutual Support in Medieval Italy

José A. Nieto Sánchez and Victoria López Barahona: Guilds, Confraternities and Mutual Support in Medieval and Early Modern Spain

Jakub Pokoj: Guilds and Mutual Protection Schemes in Poland in the Medieval and Early Modern Periods

Balázs Rigó: Guild Support in Hungary (1307–1872)

Phillip Hellwege: Comparative Analysis

List of Contributors



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