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Magna Carta - part 1

60 second histories

This video covers:  A description of how William Marshal, first Earl of Pembroke, rode to Runnymede in 1215 to witness King John sign the Magna Carta and explains why the Magna Carta was needed.

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I’m William Marshal, first Earl of Pembroke. I rode with King John to Runnymede on the nineteenth of June in the year twelve fifteen, to witness King John sign the Magna Carta. Although I stayed loyal, I didn’t believe he was a good king; he inherited the throne from his brother King Richard I, the Lionheart, who had already imposed heavy taxes in order to spend on his crusades to the Holy Land. King John was a poor leader and because he fought and lost many battles in France he lost much of the land we had owned there too. It was because of these expensive wars, that King John demanded even more money from the Barons who became very unhappy with his leadership. He also refused to give people a trial if they were accused of a crime. Do you know the King even fell out with the Pope in Rome which led to our churches closing for seven years which meant of course that no one could get married or have a Christian burial – we were all going to hell. Well, in the end the Barons got together and drew up the Magna Carta and I was one of those who made sure the King signed it.
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