The Impact of the Magna Carta
Have you ever wondered where our past leaders got the idea for the
American Constitution? The rights of freedom, equality, and justice for all, which
are held sacred, were not always guaranteed for all citizens. Many were
deprived of life, liberty, and the right to own property. Others were denied public
trials and the lower class were looked upon as inferior. The Magna Carta also
known as the "Great Charter," was signed by King John of England in 1215. It
was the document that changed the lives of millions of people around the world.
It caused long-range, long lasting, and long-term effects on society. The Magna
Carta guaranteed nobles certain rights, limited the kings power, and provided a
cornerstone for further documents that support human rights and freedom for all.
King John signed the Magna Carta in 1215. It was revised in 1216 and
then later in 1217.
The last version, written in 1225, became law and was
confirmed in Parliament. It stated the customary enactment and was enforced in
the courts of law. It also confirmed existing privileges and liberties (Holt 1). The
Magna Carta established the idea that nobles had certain rights and that the
king had to respect the law. It consisted of over 60 clauses. Many of them
declared human rights and over 30 were about the relations of the king and his
subjects. The document guaranteed the liberties of small and large property-
owners. It also broke the feudal compact and gave nobles the right to public
trials (Bryant 275). The charter declared that the English church should be set
free and that no free man should be outlawed, imprisoned, or exiled without a
lawful judgment by his peers or by the law (Holt 2). The Magna...