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Magna Carta

1215 - 1215

The original Magna Carta was a hotchpotch of traditional grievances and particular complaints about the tyrannical kingship of John, with one or two genuinely innovative ideas thrown into the mix. Many of its more specific clauses quickly became obsolete, and most of its provisions only affected the highest levels of society.

Nonetheless, the principles behind its provisions, especially the idea that the king should not arbitrarily take his subjects property, made the Charter an important symbol of good government during the Middle Ages.