Skip to main content

The Tarlton Law Library is open at this time with access limited to current UT Law students, faculty, and staff. Members of the UT Austin community unaffiliated with the law school may contact the Circulation Desk (, 512-471-7726) for assistance with accessing library resources. Online reference services are also available. Please see the Tarlton Reopening FAQs and the Texas Law Fall 2020 Reopening Plan for additional details

Tarlton Law Library logo Texas Law Home Tarlton Law Library Home
Today's Operating Hours:
The Peregrinus

An Origin Story

Sources regarding the origin of the Peregrinus agree that the creature was born in Professor Simkins’ equity class around 1900, and that Russell Savage, class of 1902, Russell Savage 1902 Notebook pages with drawing of Peregrinusfirst drew the beast. The stories also agree that the term itself came from the Praetor Peregrinus, a traveling Roman law official. Beyond these points there is some disagreement. A version attributed to Professor Simkins in the 1924 book The Peregrinusings claims that the invention of the Peregrinus was merely the end result of the students’ running joke about the term “Peregrinus.” Another claims that Professor Simkins was covering Roman law in class, and called on a drowsy student to explain what a Peregrinus was. Startled, the student stated that he did not know, unless it was some kind of animal. Soon afterwards, an inspired classmate, Russell Savage, drew the first incarnation of the Law School’s "patron saint" on a chalkboard.