Charter (1215 A.D.)
King John of England,
the youngest son of Henry II, was known for his violent bursts of temper. Due to this he
soon annoyed his barons of English-ruled Anjou and Poitiers and lost control of the land.
Back in England he taxed his barons heavily and ignored many of their rights. They soon
rebelled, and demanded that John should confirm their ancient rights. They forced the king
to place his seal on the Magna Carta, a document that limited the king's rights to tax the
barons and to punish any man without a fair trial. This document did not recommend equal
rights for ordinary people - in fact it scarcely mentioned them at all. However it was the
first time for an English king to come under the control of the law.