The Chilean Civil Code does not include the “Testament in Case of Epidemic” among the special testaments. At first, Andrés Bello was in favor of introducing this testamentary typology in the Chilean legal system, as shown by the Civil Code projects of 1841-45 and 1851 but convinced that could not guarantee the freedom of the testator, he did not insert it in the project of 1853 project, nor in the definitive Civil Code, promulgated in 1855. This article wants to propose that this decision by Andrés Bello was influenced not only by legal considerations, but also by his low perception of epidemic risk, due to his total confidence in medical science, in general, and in particular due to the efficacy of smallpox’s vaccine. In fact, after providing a brief historical overview of the Testament in Case of Epidemic, the article will try to show that Andrés Bello’s works as a medical publicist led him to translate several articles on different topics related to medicine and hygiene, and to develop the idea that medical science was aimed at eradicating infectious diseases from the world, thus turning the Testament in Case of Epidemic into an obsolete and unjustified legal tool.
|Translated title of the contribution||Historical explication of the absence of the Testament in Case of Epidemic in the Chilean Civil Code of 1855|
|Number of pages||20|
|State||Published - Jan 2022|