Magna Carta | tutor2u Law

Tony Fox on the History blog has posted on the Magna Carta online - thanks for the heads up on this one Tony!

The following passage from Magna Carta is still good law today:

“No free man shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possessions, or outlawed or exiled, or deprived of his standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgement of his equals or by the law of the land.”

This has been used by Parliament in the fourteenth century to guarantee the right to trial by jury and by judge Sir Edmund Coke in the fifteenth century to defend the freedom of the individual against the King. In 1689, the English Bill of Rights was drawn up, relying heavily on Magna Carta. Some more key passages of Magna Carta include:

“In future no official shall place a man on trial upon his own unsupported statement, without producing credible witnesses to the truth of it.”


“To no one will we sell, to no one deny or delay right or justice.”

There’s a very quick video clip on this here. A good summary of the rights granted by the document can be found here

For extension-type material, Time magazine from 1969 has an interesting article on Magna Carta here.

Magna Carta makes a great starting point for discussions about juries, police powers, and anything to do with individual freedom.

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