What led to the signing of the Magna Carta?
replied to: hello543
Replied to: What led to the signing of the Magna Carta?
King John who reigned England from 1199 to 1216, was useless as a King, his main jobs were to dispense fair justice and defend the Kingdom, he did neither.
Plus he was hopeless at handling money, so was always in need of more. This led eventually to a clash with his Barons, it was one thing to unfairly Tax and cheat the lower classes, however King john also did the same to the Barons and the Clergy.
Things came to a head on 15th June 1215, when the Barons demanded he agree to a Charter (Magna Carta means Great Charter in Latin) restricting the King's power. However the Charter was so restrictive that even the Pope said it was illegal, and within 6 weeks it was ignored.
However King John did one correct thing in his life and died in October 1216. His son Henry III was only 9, the person elected by the other Barons to be in charge of the boy King was William 'Earl Marshall' and he was foursquare behind Magna Carta, he had a couple of clauses removed and this time the Pope agreed with the Charter, so it was renewed.
And 2 of the clauses are still in force today. The one guaranteeing our freedoms, and the right to fair Justice.