According to legal historian Harold Berman, modern law is based on three elements that come from medieval roots:
1. The discovery of the legal writings compiled under the Roman Emperor Justinian and other Roman codes served as the foundation upon which to build a legal system. It provided the basic legal vocabulary.
2. The scholastic method of analyzing and synthesizing Roman law served as the means to develop the system and introduce new concepts unknown to the Romans.
3. The teaching of law in the universities of Europe created a Western legal tradition. It brought together over generation the legal scholars—teachers and students—from all over Europe. In effect, it gave rise to the legal profession of lawyers.