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The European codification project has gathered pace rapidly in recent times. This new book considers the codification project in light of a series of broader analytical frameworks - comparative, historical and constitutional - which make modern codification intelligible. This new reading renders the European codification project (currently being promoted through the common frame of reference and the optional sales law code proposal) vulnerable to constitutionally grounded criticism, traceable to normative considerations of private law authority and legitimacy. Leone Niglia reconstructs the European codification project as a complex structure of government-in-the-making that embodies a set of contingent worldviews, excludes alternatives, challenges the plurality of private laws and entrenches conflicts that pertain not only to form (codification, de-codification, recodification) but also to dilemmas implicated in determining the substantive orientation of European private law. The book investigates the position of the codifiers and their discontents in the shadow of the codification strategy pursued by the European Commission - noting a new turn in the struggle over the configuration of private law that has taken place since the age of codification.