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The Magna Carta

Book Overview: 

Magna Carta is the most significant early influence on the long historical process that has led to the rule of constitutional law today. Magna Carta was originally created because of disagreements between the Pope, King John and his English barons over the rights of the King. Magna Carta required the king to renounce certain rights and respect certain legal procedures and to accept that the will of the king could be bound by law.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .med and without fear, by land or water, preserving his allegiance to us, except in time of war, for some short period, for the common benefit of the realm. People that have been imprisoned or outlawed in accordance with the law of the land, people from a country that is at war with us, and merchants - who shall be dealt with as stated above - are excepted from this provision. (43) If a man holds lands of any `escheat' such as the `honour' of Wallingford, Nottingham, Boulogne, Lancaster, or of other `escheats' in our hand that are baronies, at his death his heir shall give us only the `relief' and service that he would have made to the baron, had the barony been in the baron's hand. We will hold the `escheat' in the same manner as the baron held it.

(44) People who live outside the forest need not in future appear before the royal justices of the forest in answer to general summonses, unless they are actually involved in proceedings or are sureties f. . . Read More

Community Reviews

My husband saw this text in my armload of library books.
Why are you reading that? he asked.
Because it's my right, I retorted. My God-given right.

An interesting read. There was a lot about daily life in the eleventh, twelfth and thirteen century but I picked up this book to read about the Magna Carta. While it was fascinating to read about the religion of the time and the crusades, it was not why picked up this book. Therefore, it could be 10

This is an interesting read.

It does not focus on the politics of 1215, except in brief in the last chapter or so, but looks at what England itself was like in John's reign, and why there was a need felt for such a radical document.

It also, incidentally, indicates why when John was succeeded by a reg

The Magna Carta signed in 1215 was a complete failure—at the time. It was meant to secure peace between the notorious King John and the various nobles arrayed against his overbearing rule—it failed within a short time. The actual Magna Carta is surprisingly easy to read and understand, although you

Mid 4. The authors provide a social and cultural snapshot of England in the year 1215, and the genesis of this most vaulted of constitutions - the Magna Carta. Firstly, they set the date in context by commenting that at this time Genghis Khan captured Peking and the Crusades were at their height. It

This is a great book but I can only do one chapter a month … it's hard to get too involved with the 13th century when I know the catastrophic 14th is waiting in the wings to wipe it all out. Plague! Cold! War! Famine! I'm watching all these sweet busy little people in the 13th century knowing there'

Magnificent look at ~13th century England, nicely compartmentalized into palatable headings (e.g., Hunting in the Forest, The Church, King John, etc.) describing each and their influence on the creation of the Magna Carta or how the document influenced them. Fascinating to see nascent attempts to pu

In 1215 in a place called Runnymede, a beleaguered king signed his name to what was originally called the Charter of Liberties. We know it better as Magna Carta, the Great Charter. Its impact is with us today, and not only in England. It is a document that enshrines liberty, that provided the world

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