Magna Carta

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Magna Carta

n. Latin for "Great Charter," it was a document delineating a series of laws establishing the rights of English barons and major land owners, which limited the absolute authority of the King of England and became the basis for the rights of English citizens. It was signed reluctantly by King John on June 15, 1215, at Runnymede, at a table set up in a field under a canopy and surrounded by the armed gentry. The Magna Carta was confirmed by John's son, Henry III, and in turn by Henry's son, Edward I. As John Cowell would write four centuries later: "although this charter consists of not above thirty seven Charters or Lawes yet it is of such extent, as all the Law wee have, is thought in some form to depend on it." Essentially a document for the nobility, it became the basis of individual rights as a part of the English Constitution, which is generally more custom than written documents. It is also spelled: Magna Charta.

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

Magna Carta

the ‘Great Charter’ of liberties, signed by King John at Runymede, 15 June 1215 One of the foundations of the notion of the rule of law. The barons made it clear that the king operated under legal constraints. Two clauses, 39 and 40, were developed to become a basis of the liberty of the subject to the present: ‘No freeman shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possession, or outlawed or exiled or deprived of his standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgment of his equals or by the law of the land’ (Clause 39); ‘To no one will we sell, to no one deny or delay right or justice’ (Clause 40).
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006
References in periodicals archive ?
While Paul VI intended Sacrosanctum Concilium to be the magna carta of his reform, this did not happen.
The senator said the Magna Carta of Women mandates the adoption of special measures for the incremental increase of women in third level positions in the civil service until a 50-50 gender balance is achieved.
The CHR spokesperson added that Albayalde citing pregnancy and extended maternity leave to justify the 10 percent limit "goes against the spirit and intent of the Magna Carta of Women in prohibiting all forms of discrimination against women and of the maternity leave law in recognizing women's gender specific needs.
"The new high-quality replicas will allow many more scholars and visitors to access the documents, and increase the number of people who can learn about how the Magna Carta influenced the way we live today and its historical significance."
Among those at the celebration were senior members of the Royal Family, the Archbishop of Canterbury and Lord Dyson, Master of the Rolls and chairman of the Magna Carta Trust.
Students also took a closer look at the Magna Carta of 1215, who it directly 'protected', why it took so long to establish it in law and debate its 'features and flaws'.
The Magna Carta established for the first time that everyone, even the king, had to obey the law.
London's British Library will put the last remaining versions of the Great Charter - which limited the powers of the crown and paved the way for the British constitution - on display in the Magna Carta: Law, Liberty, Legacy exhibition.
IT is the historic document on which Britain's freedoms are built - and next year the Magna Carta will be 800 years old.
And Tesco will be the first to sell loaves in weights outlawed by the Magna Carta in 1215.
THE anniversary of the Magna Carta has been named as the surprise choice for a new national day to celebrate Britishness.
Moyer, Jr., co-founders of the American Bar Association Central and East European Law Initiative, were recognized for CEELI's contribution to advance the principles of the Magna Carta. D'Alemberte is a former ABA president and is currently president of Florida State University.