This thesis deals with a subject, which increases in its importance and explosiveness steadily; with the guardianship, respectively the cura. In the change of time, the cura has developed from a pure family affair to a state matter, and today it`s on the way back to a pure family affair. The thesis does its beginning in Roman law, at the guardianship rules for adult mentally ill persons and for spendthrift. In the second chapter some Austrian and German land rights and land- and police orders of the 16th and 17th century, the “Gerhabschaftsordnung” of 1669, the Codex Theresianus and its revisions, the Codex Maximilianeus Bavaricus Civilis of 1756, the General Land law of the Prussian States of 1794, the French Code civil of 1809, the Austrian General Civil code of 1811 and the German Civil code of 1900 will be discussed, with the focus on their guardianship regulations. The rules of the Austrian incapacitation order of 1916 up to the “Guardian Law Amendment Act of 2006” and the relevant rules in the German, Swiss and French law are the theme of the third part of this thesis. In the fourth and final chapter is taken an outlook to the future to planned changes in the Austrian guardianship law and the German care law.