Magna Carta Essay Research Paper Medieval EssayIn

Magna Carta Essay, Research Paper

Medieval Essay

In the year 1215, the Magna Carta, one of the most important documents

in history was signed by King John of England. The Magna Carta proclaims

rights that have become a part of English law and are now the foundation of the

Constitution of every English-speaking nation. It is the most significant event in

the development of the modern world because it has given Americans today the

rightful liberties of due process, common law, and rule of law. Although the

Battle of Hastings in 1066 established the English language and united the

Anglo Saxons and the Normans into a new people, the Magna Carta in 1215 is

more crucial in the shaping of our world today. Our country is now a successful

democracy that relies on the Magna Carta for the protection of all people s


King John was disliked for punishing his enemies without trial, and the

signing of the Magna Carta took away his power to do so. Article 39 stated: No

freeman shall be taken, or imprisoned, or disseized, or outlawed, or exiled, or in

any way harmed–nor will we go upon or send upon him–save by the lawful

judgment of his peers or by the law of the land. Due process, also known as the

law of the land, guarantees that everyone has the right to a fair trial by jury. In

the United States it appears in the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution and

allows people the right to be present at trial and the right to be heard in his or

her own defense. Without due process, innocent people could be accused,

criminals could go unpunished, and our country would not have any just


The Magna Carta also established common law which replaced the old

feudal rules, which had allowed different lords to follow separate laws. Common

law is one law that applies to everyone without exception. This helped take

away power from the king and hastened the decline of feudalism. Today it is an

important concept in our democracy and supports the belief that all people are

equal. People are not to be discriminated against because of race or social


Rule of law also took away power from the king because it means that the

law is the highest power in the land and everyone must follow it. The king,

queen, lords, and the Church did not have control over what the law stated, and

they too had to abide by the law. Today our president, vice president, mayor,

and other public officials have to accept the laws of the United States

Constitution and demonstrate them. There is no special treatment. Rule of law

enables an equal and just system that has proven successful.

These are only a few ways that the Magna Carta of 1215 has influenced

and changed the way we live today. Its impact is stronger than that of the Battle

of Hastings in 1066, although this event did lead to the formation of the United

States when the Normans and Saxons crossed the Atlantic to found the

colonies. However, 1066 did not help form the way we live today. This is why

the Magna Carta is the most important. The rights it brought our country are

ones that we respect and rely on for our safety and prosperity.


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