Magna Carta and the Rule of Law

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2015-06-07
  • Publisher: Natl Book Network
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2015 marks the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta, widely recognized to be a pillar of liberty, major source of the modern concept of executive accountability, and foundation of the rule of law in the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Commonwealth countries. Magna Carta and the Rule of Law, is a comprehensive and insightful new book from the American Bar Association. It takes a fresh look at Magna Carta and its impacts on various issues and the rule of law in light of contemporary legal concerns.

It includes an examination of the following aspects of Magna Carta; historical background, importance to constitutionalism and the rule of law, impact on the United States Constitution, executive power, role as a foundation for women's rights and individual rights (such as habeas corpus), relevance to international law, and much more.

This fascinating book was written by a distinguished international group of scholars and features a foreword by Former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.

Author Biography

Daniel Barstow Magraw is a Senior Fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute, and a professorial lecturer at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

Andrea Martinez is an Associate with the International Justice Initiative at the Foreign Policy Institute at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

Roy E. Brownell II is an attorney residing in Washington, D.C.

Table of Contents

Foreword xi
Sandra Day O'Connor
Acknowledgments xix
List of Illustrations xxi
About the Authors xxiii
Chapter 1
Introduction: Magna Carta and the Rule of Law 1
Daniel B. Magraw, Andrea Martinez, and Roy E. Brownell II
I. Introduction 1
II. Explanation of Terminology and Translations 7
A. Use of Numbers and “Chapter” for Parts of Magna Carta 7
B. Identification of Different Versions of Magna Carta 7
C. Use of Different Translations 8
D. Name and Spelling of Magna Carta 9
III. The Chapters in This Book 9
A. Chapter 2: “The Making of Magna Carta:
The Historical Background” 9
B. Chapter 3: “Magna Carta and Sovereign Immunity:
Strained Bedfellows” 10
C. Chapter 4: “Magna Carta and the United States
Constitution: An Exercise in Building Fences” 10
D. Chapter 5: “Magna Carta in Supreme Court Jurisprudence” 10
E. Chapter 6: “Magna Carta and Executive Power” 11
F. Chapter 7: “Magna Carta and Habeas Corpus” 11
G. Chapter 8: “Magna Carta and Religious Freedom” 12
H. Chapter 9: “Magna Carta and International Law” 12
I. Chapter 10: “Magna Carta Unchained: The Great
Charter in Modern Commonwealth Law” 12
J. Chapter 11: “Magna Carta, Civil Law, and Canon Law” 13
K. Chapter 12: “The Charter of the Forest: Evolving
Human Rights in Nature” 13
mcg26974_00_fm_i-xxiv.indd 5 7/16/14 4:06 PMvi Contents
IV. Themes Running Through This Book 13
A. Everyone Is Subject to the Law and Can Be Made
So by Virtue of a Written Instrument 13
B. Dynamism and Adaptability 14
C. Mythic Magna Carta 15
D. Resilience in the Face of Vacillating Treatment 16
E. Rule of Law and Enduring Relevance and
Persuasiveness of Magna Carta 16
Chapter 2
The Making of Magna Carta: The Historical Background 17
Ralph V. Turner
I. Tyrannical Angevin Monarchy 17
II. King John 20
III. Framing a Baronial Reform Program 27
IV. The Road to Runnymede 31
V. Magna Carta 1215 34
VI. Subsequent Issues of Magna Carta 42
VII. Magna Carta in Early Modern England and North America 44
Further Reading 47
Chapter 3
Magna Carta and Sovereign Immunity: Strained Bedfellows 49
Diane P. Wood and Danieli Evans
I. English Law before Magna Carta 51
II. English Law in the Wake of Magna Carta 54
III. Remedies against the Sovereign in the Colonies and
the Early Republic 65
A. Colonial Law 65
B. State Constitutions 68
C. Early Constitutional Law 70
IV. The Emergence of Contemporary Sovereign Immunity 75
V. Conclusion 78
Chapter 4
Magna Carta and the United States Constitution: An Exercise in Building Fences 81
Michael Dillon
I. English Foundations 82
II. Common Opinions and Initial Comparison 86
III. More Detailed Comparison 91
IV. Creating the Myth of Magna Carta 98
V. America's Use of Magna Carta 105
VI. Epilogue: The 21st Century 109
mcg26974_00_fm_i-xxiv.indd 6 7/16/14 4:06 PMContents vii
Chapter 5
Magna Carta in Supreme Court Jurisprudence 111
Stephen J. Wermiel
I. Overview 111
II. Using Magna Carta for Philosophical and Historical
Reflection 116
A. General Philosophical and Historical Discussion 117
B. Limiting Government Power 118
III. Turning to the Cases 121
A. Due Process 121
B. Trial by Jury 125
C. Speedy Trial 129
D. Habeas Corpus 131
E. Right to Travel 132
F. Right to Bear Arms 133
G. Cruel and Unusual Punishment 134
H. Excessive Fines 134
I. The Right to Petition the Government 136
J. Land Ownership and Navigable Waters Control 137
IV. Other References to Magna Carta 138
A. Antitrust 138
B. Church and State 138
V. Distinguishing Magna Carta: Freedom of Speech 139
VI. Conclusion 140
Chapter 6
Magna Carta and Executive Power 141
Louis Fisher
I. Blackstone's Prerogative 142
II. Breaking with the British Model 143
III. Creating a Republic in America 145
IV. Enumerated and Implied Powers 147
V. Inherent Powers 150
VI. Inherent Powers Rejected 152
VII. Limits on Executive Power 159
VIII. Procedural Safeguards 160
IX. Deportation and Exclusion Proceedings 161
X. Executive Concessions 165
XI. Habeas Corpus 168
XII. Conclusions 171
mcg26974_00_fm_i-xxiv.indd 7 7/16/14 4:06 PMChapter 7
Magna Carta and Habeas Corpus 173
Justin Wert
I. Habeas Corpus and Magna Carta: Linkages 174
II. Habeas Corpus and Magna Carta in the New World 177
III. Habeas Corpus in Antebellum America 179
IV. Civil War, Reconstruction, and the Gilded Age 188
V. 20th Century and Beyond 189
VI. Conclusion 190
Chapter 8
Magna Carta and Religious Freedom 193
Tore Lindholm
I. Introduction: The Notion of Religious Freedom 193
II. Whether the Original Magna Carta of June 1215
Protected Religious Freedom 197
III. Magna Carta and Religious Freedom in England from
1215 to 1948 206
A. The Case of Jews 207
B. The Case of Catholics 208
C. The Case of Puritans and Other Non-Anglican
Protestants 209
D. Sir Edward Coke (1552–1634) and Oliver Cromwell
(1599–1658) 210
E. William Penn (1644–1718) 211
F. Religious Freedom in 18th- and 19th-Century England 214
IV. Freedom of the Church: Tweaking Magna Carta in America 216
A. Hosanna-Tabor v. E.E.O.C. 220
B. Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. 223
V. The Character of Salvific Knowledge and Its
Public Ramifications in a Pluralist Democracy 225
Chapter 9
Magna Carta and International Law 227
Larry May
I. Fundamental Rights and Jus Cogens Norms 228
II. The Domestic and International Rule of Law 231
III. A System of Law through Trials 234
IV. Ancient Liberties and Centralized Courts 237
V. Due Process in International Law 241
VI. Final Thoughts 245
viii Contents
mcg26974_00_fm_i-xxiv.indd 8 7/16/14 4:06 PMChapter 10
Magna Carta Unchained: The Great Charter in Modern Commonwealth Law 247
David Clark
I. Introduction 247
II. Status in Britain 253
III. As a Statute in Commonwealth Countries 255
IV. Legal Myths 257
V. Trial by Jury 258
VI. Not a Supreme Law 260
VII. Idea of a Constitutional Presence 262
VIII. Adapted to Modern Circumstances 264
IX. Origin of a Modern Argument 266
X. Exceptions Made to Magna Carta 267
XI. Survivals: Chapter 29 268
XII. Property 272
XIII. Transformation in Modern Bills of Rights 273
XIV. Personal Liberty 275
XV. Due Process and Procedural Fairness 276
XVI. Conclusion 279
Chapter 11
Magna Carta, Civil Law, and Canon Law 281
Thomas J. McSweeney
I. Introduction 281
II. Magna Carta, the Ius Commune, and the Historians 283
III. Borrowing Style 285
IV. Canon Law and the Politics of Church Reform 291
V. Influence from Legal Practice 301
VI. Conclusion: Canon Law, Common Law, and 1215 304
Chapter 12
The Charter of the Forest: Evolving Human Rights in Nature 311
Nicholas A. Robinson
I. Introduction: The Forest Charter in a Nutshell 317
II. 13th-Century Society: The Crucible for Forging the
Forest Charter 324
III. The Creation of the Forest Charter 334
IV. Substantive Provisions of the Forest Charter 339
V. Evolution: A Forest Charter for Each Generation 345
A. The Forest Charter from 1400 to 1850 346
B. Evolution and Ecology: The Science and Ethics
of Nature Conservation 357
C. The Forest Charter Reemerges: The Selden
Society and Legal Historians 359
D. Forest Charter “Liberties” in the 20th Century 361
Contents ix
mcg26974_00_fm_i-xxiv.indd 9 7/16/14 4:06 PMVI. A Case Study of the New Forest: Contemporary
“Liberties of the Forest” 367
VII. Conclusion: The Once and Future “Liberties of the Forest” 372
Coronation Charter of Henry I 379
Articles of the Barons 383
1215 Magna Carta 389
King's Writ 399
Pope Innocent III: Papal Bull Declaring That Magna Carta Is Null & Void 401
1216 Magna Carta 405
1217 Magna Carta 413
1217 Carta de Foresta (Charter of the Forest) 421
1225 Magna Carta 425
Confirmatio Cartarum 1297 (Confirmation of the Charters) 433
United States Constitution 435
United States Bill of Rights 447
Chronology of Magna Carta and Related Events 451
Glossary 455
Index 459

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