Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Forster

Faculty of Law / Civil Law, Comparative Legal History and Legal Philosophy

Contact Details

wolfgang.forsterspam prevention@uni-tuebingen.de


72074 Tübingen

Tel.: +49 7071 297 2551


About Ambiguity

Legal studies have always had to deal with the phenomenon of ambiguity, and, consequently, ambiguity itself became a legal concept. Likewise, the insight that ambiguity can be employed intentionally, and that ambiguities within legal texts can be useful, is not a new one. However, in German legal methodology, the discussion is framed and restricted by the traditional concept of a “gap” and the allowed possibilities of its filling. The approach of our Graduate Training Group offers a new perspective for historical and methodological studies.



After studying law in Munich and completing the First and Second State Examinations in law, Wolfgang Forster received his doctorate in 2000 with a study concerning the legal philosophy of Karl Christian Friedrich Krause. In 2005, he qualified as professor with his habilitation thesis on the history of bankruptcy law (Konkurs als Verfahren. Francisco Salgado de Somoza in der Geschichte des Insolvenzrechts). Having been Professor of Civil Law and Legal Philosophy at the University of Gießen since 2007, Wolfgang Forster joined the University of Tübingen in October 2011.



Besides topics in Civil Law, especially concerning the conjunction of family law with inheritance law and the general rules of German contract law, Wolfgang Forster specializes in German and European legal history with a focus on the early modern period. His studies include questions of legal philosophy, e.g. in his recent treatment of the problem of “acceptio personae” in Domingo de Soto’s thought.



Besides courses in Civil Law, Wolfgang Forster’s teaching covers German and European Legal History, Legal Philosophy and the Methodology of Law. In collaboration with Prof. Jan Thiessen, he teaches the special studies area “Modern and Contemporary Legal History”.


Publications on "Ambiguity"

  • Forster, Wolfgang (2016). "Die Toleranzgarantie für Kaufmänner und Seeleute im spanisch-englischen Friedensvertrag von 1604." Duldung religiöser Vielfalt – Sorge um die wahre Religion. Toleranzdebatten in der Frühen Neuzeit. Eds. Sascha Salatowsky and Winfried Schröder. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner. 243-257.



For a full list of publicaitons, click here.