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Magna Carta - Preface

Magna Carta (Illustration) Awesome Radio - Narrated Stories Biographies Civil Rights Famous Historical Events Geography Law and Politics Social Studies Ethics Medieval Times Government

Runnymede - made famous in the early 13th century as the place where King John agreed to the Magna Carta (the "Great Charter") - is not far from Windsor Castle.  Image of Runnymede by Wyrdlight, online courtesy Wikimedia Commons.  License:  CC BY 3.0

 

At Runnymede, at Runnymede,
Your rights were won
At Runnymede!

Rudyard Kipling 
Popular British writer of stories and
poems 1865-1936.

King John (Lackland) was a bad king. At least, that’s how history remembers him.

According to legend, he gave Robin Hood (also called Robin Longstride and Robin of Locksley) - the heroic archer of Sherwood Forest who died a treacherous death - a terrible time. 
 
He tried to steal the throne from his brother, Richard the Lionheart, while Richard was out of the country.
 
He was a lousy son to his mother, the famous Eleanor of Aquitaine (once portrayed by Katherine Hepburn).
 
Yet ... King John gave his barons (and ultimately the world) the Magna Carta, one of the greatest legal documents ever written and a cornerstone of modern national constitutions.
 
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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5120stories and lessons created

Original Release: Jul 01, 2000

Updated Last Revision: Nov 09, 2016


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