a type of legal system, often synonymous with"English common law," which is the system of england and wales in the uk, and is also in force in approximately 80 countries formerly part of or influenced by the former british empire. English common law reflects biblical influences as well as remnants of law systems imposed by early conquerors including the romans, anglo-saxons, and normans. Some legal scholars attribute the formation of the english common law system to king henry ii (r.1154-1189). Until the time of his reign, laws customary among england's various manorial and ecclesiastical (church) jurisdictions were administered locally. Henry ii established the king's court and designated that laws were "Common" to the entire english realm. The foundation of english common law is "Legal precedent" - referred to as stare decisis, meaning "To stand by things decided." in the english common law system, court judges are bound in their decisions in large part by the rules and other doctrines developed - and supplemented over time - by the judges of earlier english courts.