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2402-02-doc 3 Passing away of Professor Eric Dirix

It is with great sadness that I read the announcement below about the passing away of Eric Dirix. He was professor emeritus at the University of Leuven and a justice in the Belgian Court of Cassation (Supreme Court) for more than 20 years. His significance for private law in Belgium, but also for the Netherlands, is enormous. His publications and contributions to reform of private law legislation in Belgium are impressive. Eric Dirix was also active internationally. He was a judge in the Benelux Court of Justice (Cour de Justice Benelux), chairman of the Leuven Interuniversity Center for Comparative Law and Membre associé of the Académie Internationale de droit comparé. Personally, I have always appreciated our collegial conversations. These do back to the early 1980s, when I discussed the legal value and legal consequences of gentlemen’s agreements at a conference in Antwerp (which was my first ‘foreign’ invitation as a scholar). We saw each other periodically at academic meetings, exchanged literature, lectured several times together in Belgium. Many foreign insolvency colleagues will know Eric from INSOL International meetings. I was very pleased that he, seven years ago, joined the board of the Foundation Bob Wessels Insolvency Law Collection. The foundation has benefited greatly from his calm input, who not only showed great sympathy for making literature available digitally, but also active with his contribution to the Foundation’s annual PhD workshop. In addition, everyone benefited from his enormous reading and his prudent and profound comments. We both had a legal history hobby: Rembrandt’s bankruptcy in the midst of 17th century Holland. I was very pleased with his positive review of my book on the subject in Tijdschrift voor Privaatrecht (2021, p. 1848 et seq.). After a lecture for a large number of lawyers and judges in December 2022 in Antwerp, his response was endearing. Nevertheless, he was critical and pointed out 2 topics that also deserved attention. This is the preferred approach among true (cross-border) colleagues. He acted in his own way, engaging, with great knowledge of the subject and always gentle person. I will miss him. I extend my deepest sympathy to his family.