What is Magna Carta?


this may look like a plain unassuming

piece of parchment but is actually one

of the most famous documents in the

world magna carta meaning than great

charter has inspired people across the

centuries from Thomas Jefferson to

Mahatma Gandhi but why was the Charter

originally created and what does it

actually say let us take you back to

medieval England it's the Year 1215 and

the ruler is King John many people

believe that King John was one of the

worst kings in history he imprisoned his

former wife he starved his opponents to

death he allegedly murdered his own

nephew and pulled the beards of the

Irish chief King John had imposed heavy

taxes on his bounds in order to pay for

his expensive Foreign Wars if they

refused to pay he punished them severely

or seized their property

the Baron's demanded that King John obey

the law when he refused they captured

London and John was forced to negotiate

the two sides met at Runnymede in June

1215 the result of the negotiations was

written down by the Kings Clark's into

the document we know as Magna Carta

although most of the charters clauses

dealt with medieval rites and customs

Magna Carta has become a powerful symbol

of Liberty around the world the most

famous clause which is still part of the

law today

for the first time gave all three men

the right to justice and a fair trial no

man shall be arrested or imprisoned

except by the judgment of their equals

and by the law of

Laing - no one will we sell however this

clause was not as liberal as it sounds

the charter only applied to freemen the

vast majority of people in 1215 were

unfree peasants who were ruled over by

their landowners and although Magna

Carta was intended to create peace

between King John and his rebellious

barons England was plunged into civil

war after the Pope declared the charter

invalid when King John died of dysentery

in 1216 9 you old Henry the 3rd took to

the throne to keep the peace Magna Carta

was reissued several times during the

13th century until it was finally made

part of English law Magna Carta has

lived on for 800 years and is echoed in

the United States Declaration of

Independence and the Universal

Declaration of Human Rights

perhaps Magna Carter's most important

legacy is that everyone including our

leaders must obey the law what started

out as a document of specific complaints

from a group of Barons has turned into

an international symbol of Liberty

without which we might not have the

rights we value so much today