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Magna Carta - part 2

60 second histories

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A description of the basic principles of the Magna Carta, the clauses within it and how it forms the basis of our laws today.

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Magna Carta means Great Charter. The charter was signed by King John at Runnymede in the year twelve fifteen as a practical solution to the political crisis he faced with his Barons. The barons believed that King John’s demands for higher taxes had become unreasonable and that he acted without regard for justice. The basic principle of the Magna Carta was that everybody, including the King, should be subject to the law and that principle formed one of the most important parts of the Magna Carta stating that the King had to accept that he should run the country according to the law. Other important clauses were that the King must guarantee the freedom of the church. He must not imprison a free man without trial and must stop unfair taxes. He must not ask for extra taxes and was to let merchants travel around the country to buy and sell merchandise without having to pay large taxes. There are over sixty different clauses in the Magna Carta covering many diverse subjects and it formed the basis of some of the laws you have today.
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