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Arbitration in early-modern France (16th-18th cent.): A difficult position between the King-legislator's 'voluntarist' policy and a reactionary Judiciary

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The early-modern French monarchy incorporated arbitration within its system of judicial rationalisation. Faced with the constraints of the Ordinance on the Reform of Justice Administration, the sovereign regional courts (Parlements) multiplied the formal requirements imposed on arbitration proceedings so as to better control it. As a result, its field of application was reduced. In spite of the monarchy's efforts to rehabilitate arbitration, it was largely abandoned by litigants, who preferred to resort to settlement by agreement, which they perceived as a both less restricting and more effective substitute for ending their disputes.

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