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Monday, May 22, 2017

The Rights of Englishmen 6: Magna Carta Is The Beginning of English Oligarchy

"[I]t takes hundreds of years to civilize and uncivilize people; this is why blacks are still behaving in social patterns that are clearly distinct from both native whites and immigrant whites, and if history is a reliable guide, they will for at least another 800 years even if there are no absolute genetic bars to it.

"Most non-Anglo Americans have a very retarded and romantic attitude about immigration because their grandparents or great-grandparents were immigrants. First, they don't understand how those nineteenth and early twentieth waves of immigration immigration harmed the USA for the obvious reason that they don't understand the Constitution or the English Common Law any better than their immigrant forebears from Germany, Ireland, Italy, and Scandinavia did. They may have the emotional attachment to the flag and the pledge of allegiance--the latter only created in 1892--but they are not genuine Americans in the sense of having been born in a tradition of sovereign rebellion."

-Vox Day, Immigrants and the economy

I daresay that most whites--even the Anglo-Saxon ones--could care less about the Constitution and English Common Law.  Seriously.  Most people just give the former lip service, and most American Anglo-Saxons are hardly aware of the latter.  I wonder when the day will come when we can isolate the Anglo-Saxon gene that enables all of us English people to understand English Common Law.

Now, if we are going to talk about a retarded and romantic attitude towards history, let's take another look today at the origin of the Rights of Englishmen. Let us peer into the past and deconstruct just what happened with that romantic Anglo-Saxon notion of where English Common Law stems from. Let us take a second look at the signing of the Magna Carta by King John of England.

The extortion of King John by the local politburo

In my last discussion about this topic, I just barely touched on how the barons who held King John hostage were acting against the authority of their government's institution.  They did not seek to work within the bounds of their government's power.  The English barons who forced King John to sign the Magna Carta transformed their government into something new, and this act diminished their government's authority.

What they actually did was spawn the first English oligarchy.

Is the oligarchical control by an untouchable political class the rebellious tradition that we should admire?  Is it only white English people who have the genetic information in their cells that enable them to fully appreciate bureaucracy, corruption, and leaderlessness?

Webster Tarpley on the Magna Carta

To help us explore more of what spawned from the events surrounding the Magna Carta, we have the rare treat of dissecting this issue with Webster Tarpley.  It's been a while since I've listened to this avid socialist.  But it seems that, as I discussed earlier this week, a broken watch is right at least twice a day.

I disagree with Tarpley on a lot of what he says. But if there's one thing that man and I can agree on, it's that we both hate oligarchies and corruption.  

On the 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta, Tarpley was a guest on the Jeff Rense Show.  And for the first 20 minutes we were treated to a presentation of what, technically, occurred on that fateful day in England when Bad King John was brought to heel.

Tarpley bluntly argues that the Magna Carta was a fraud the way most people understand it.  The circumstances that surround its passage were a revolt--not of the people--but of feudal barons.  And, according to Tarpley, typically it was the barons that a peasant had to fear, more so than the king, for they were a class of aristocrats who directly affected the commoner.  It is the local boss who has the potential to enact aggression and criminal energy at you, moreso than the king.

Furthermore, Tarpley argues that it was a good thing when the king had the ability to come down hard on the local feudal nobility.  Otherwise, peasants would be completely "exposed to the depredations and the ravaging of the local guy."

As for the Magna Carta itself, this document hides the fact that the English-speaking world is an oligarchy.  A convenient narrative exists that gives cause to English pride, thus masking the true events throughout English history that have led to the oligarchical mess we live in now.

Furthermore, the document is often edited, censored, and sanitized.  Typical textbooks frequently leave out Clause 61.  This clause is the primary threat the Magna Carta holds up to the king in order to extort demands from him.

Magna Carta's Clause 61        

What does Clause 61 say?  It says that the barons--not peasants--are allowed a panel of twenty-five men; basically, they are a politburo.  If any of these barons are "offended in any respect" or transgresed against, this politburo comes to the king and demands some sort of redress within a 40-day window.  If the king fails to make such a redress, and the barons insist that they are aggreieved, then this poliburo of barons can order their peasants to wage private warfare against the king, seizing castles, lands, possessions, or whatever they find convenient.  Clause 61 further allows the peasants to kill anybody except the king, the queen, and their descendants.  And once the barons are satisfied, they may then resume their "normal obedience" to the king.

The king is not allowed to prohibit the culmination of power among the barons.  The barons may be creating armies against the king in order to enact Clause 61, but the king can only sit there and watch them do so.  Furthermore, the king has to help the barons recruit these private armies to assail the king "to the utmost of his power."

Tarpley argues that this threat from the nobles--incessant private warfare--is the anchor that oligarchy has utilized throughout English-speaking history.

Strangely enough, however, Tarpley thinks that the foundation of America is a rejection of English oligarchy.  I think Tarpley's opinion is wrong.  The colonists' support of the Whig merchant classes in the late 1700s was actually an intensification and solidification of oligarchical rule in the United States.  When America was begun, our Founders were welcoming oligarchy with open arms.

That aside, Tarpley is spot on with his assessment of this document that has led to those famous Rights of Englishmen that supposedly only white English speakers are genetically capable of appreciating.  It was an occasion that enabled the constant threat of endless private warfare from the aristocratic class.  And so, I ask you, is that really something worth celebrating?


For those of you who do not have time or the ability to listen to YouTube, however, I have typed out the transcript below.  But first, I want to make a few things clear.  

One, Tarpley ridicules Ron Paul voters in this interview.  What can you expect?  He's a democrat.  I voted for Ron Paul in the 2008 and 2012 Republican primaries.  Yet, I still have an ability to listen to this man.  I highly recommend you put away any emotional hangups you might have, exercise a little intellectual comity, and hear what the man has to say.  

Two, he goes over the 61st clause of the Magna Carta, and he inserts some interpretations of the language.  For clarity, I've highlighted Tarpley's interpretations in red.  

Three, yesterday I posted the entirety of the Magna Carta.  This original version that I've posted includes the politically incorrect 61st clause.  So now, you have the ability to view it in its entirety for yourself.  The document truly is a historical gem.

* * *    
From the Jeff Rense Show:
Tarpley: I would like to take advantage of this occasion. We're having the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta.
Rense: Ah yes. Happy Magna Carta!
Tarpley: My main point is that this is a fraud, in the way most people understand it. Meaning that it is not at all what you think it is. As people know, it is touted as the beginning of democracy, it's the roots of this wonderful Anglo-Saxon supremacy of the English-speaking peoples, that we have liberty, and the mother of parliaments, and all these things. And this is historically very wrong. And it gives you a very wrong impression about what was going on.

Rense: Let's compare the Magna Carta and the Constitution.

Tarpley: Uhm, that's not the way to do it. Let's go right into it. These are really not comparable. This is apples and oranges.

The first thing you have to realize is that this is a revolt of feudal barons. It's in 1215. Eight hundred years this week, I think. I think the queen has been cavorting--the Queen of England--around this issue. It is a statement of rights of feudal barons. It does not, really, apply very much to the average person. It is of, by, and for the feudal nobility, the titled aristocrats. But they're very much a group of brigands.

For the average person, you have to understand that in the structure of medieval society, if you were a peasant, or if you were a merchant sending some horseloads/donkeyloads of product, if you were somebody in the town, the most dangerous person for you is not the king at all. The king is, perhaps, far away. He's quite weak.

The person you have to watch out for is the local feudal baron. The duke. The count. The earl. Whatever it is. The local guy--that's your enemy.

Rense: Always played by Basil Rathbone.
Tarpley: Well, not in this commemoration. Because they try to make these people look good.

So, the idea is the local feudal baron--and indeed, if the king is giving the feudal baron a hard time, that's good for you. Because that removes some of the pressure. It diverts some of the aggression and some of the criminal energy of the local feudal baron. So, really, the idea of giving more power to the local feudal barons is a monstrosity. This is not going to help anybody.

And you have to think about this. It's often said that, despite the historiography you see in the English-speaking world, if you were a peasant, a townsman, an artisan, a tradesman in the city, you'd probably be better off under a strong king who's coming down hard on the feudal nobility, rather than being exposed to the depredations and the ravaging of the local guy. He's the roving bandit. The guy in your neighborhood is gonna come and rip you off and go off to the next village.

Now, here's the thing. This document, therefore, is completely misunderstood, and it's designed to do what? It's designed to hide the fact that the English-speaking world is an oligarchy. Talk about democracy! This is a step toward democracy. "Telling the king that he is not above the law." Well, alright, that's fine in general. But what law? What law are we talking about? We have to look into this.

The other side of this is this "anti-state" business. I'm sure all the Paul-tards--Ron Paul, Rand Paul, all these characters--they're out there celebrating the wonderful Magna Carta, because that's how they see the world. It's that "bad, big government" that's been beaten back.

Now, this process is helped along. Because the document itself is bowdlerized. What you see--if you see it at all--you're probably going to see an edited, censored, sanitized version. And this is what I'd like to focus on.

This is widely known. If you even get a decent quality textbook, it probably won't have the parts that I'd like to just read briefly, because they're a bit short. So, they show you this thing, and it looks good. You read it--
Rense: What does the word "bowdlerized" mean?
Tarpley: Bowdler was a guy who presented Shakespeare, and he cut out a lot of the stuff. Anything he thought was off-color--
Rense: Ah, I see. A name. Like Tarpleyized.

Tarpley: Yeah. You know, like boycott. Captain Boycott.

So, the Magna Carta 1215. Runymeade. This is extorted from the king by these feudal barons. And here's the enforcement part. There were all these wonderful provisions. What is the "enforcement part"? Well, brace yourself, because the enforcement part says there's gonna be, essentially, a politburo of four barons who are gonna watch the king like a hawk. These guys would probably be in the court. So, a standing committee of four. And then, they're part of a larger group of 25 predatory feudal barons.

This is the now famous suppressed paragraph 61 of the wonderful Magna Carta.
So King John says: "We have granted all these things for the kingdom" and so forth, but now, here's how we're gonna enforce it. "We give and grant to the barons" [--not you. You could be a bourgeois, you could be an artisan, you could be a journeyman, an apprentice, a peasant, be a monk--no, no! Only the barons! We give this to the barons.] "The barons shall elect 25 of their number to keep and cause, to be observed with all their might--" [We'll see what that means!] "--the peace and liberties granted and confirmed to them by this charter."

Now, the remedy is civil war. Bloody, destructive, civil war. Essentially private war.

Rense: Works every time!
Tarpley: Private war by these feudal barons against King John. To be specific: "If we [we, the king] our chief justice, our officials, or any of our servants offend in any respect against any man [that is, any man who's got a baron on his side], or transgress any of the articles of the peace or of this security, then, if the offense is made known to us, 4 of the said 25 barons [this is the politburo], they shall come to us (or in our absence from the king they can come to the chief justice) to declare the grievance and claim immediate redress. If we--or in our absence abroad, the chief justice--make no redress within 40 days [in the judgement of these barons] reckoning from the day that the offense was declared to him, the four barons shall refer the matter to the rest of the 25 barons, who may distrain upon [that means, 'come after you'] and assail us in any way possible."
In other words, the barons, if they declare themselves "aggrieved" (the majority of the 25)--they can start attacking the king and all of his institutions. All the crown apparatus.

So, they can "assail us in any way possible with the support of the whole community of the land [In other words, they can order their peasants to also attack the king with the support of the whole community of the land] by seizing our [the royal] castles, lands, possessions, or anything else." [Now, what this means is they can kill anybody. Kill.]  "Except [there are several exceptions] our own person, and the persons of the queen and our children."
So, you get to wage private warfare.  You can kill anybody in the king's court. You can kill the archbishop. You can kill the cardinal. You can kill the adviser. You can kill the accountant--you can kill any royal official, any member of the court, except the king, the queen, and the descendants of them.

"Until the barons have secured such redress as they have determined upon. After having secured the redress, they may then resume their normal obedience to us." And he says, I am prohibited [the king is prohibited] from preventing the barons from creating these armies in advance, making people swear oaths of allegiance, not to the king but to the barons, and indeed, I have to help the barons to recruit these private armies. "The 25 barons shall swear to obey all of the above articles faithfully [Oh, my heart is breaking from the wonderful faith of the barons.], and shall cause them to be obeyed by others to the best of their power. We will not seek to procure from anyone, either by our own efforts or those of a third party [some foreign king] anything by which any of these concessions or liberties might be revoked or diminished."

So that's it. Now, you have to put this in perspective. What is the principle problem? What is the main abuse of medieval civilization? It's simple. It's private warfare. Incessant private warfare. The knights, what do they do all the time? They start quarrels, and they fight. And the 1200s, that's the High Middle Ages. This whole system is reaching its completion and its collapse. But, the private warfare is the principle problem.

Now, you can see how really monstrous this is. They're pretending that this is a step towards democracy. What it does is to anchor that oligarchy which we see in Britain all the way down to our own time. The City of London comes out of this in some ways. An oligarchy. In those days, it's a military oligarchy, today it's a financial one.

The American Revolution is a way of saying, "No! We don't want this system with oligarchs and the kings they can control. That's the British system. The French have absolutism; Louis XIV gives an order, and the count gets his head chopped off, which is often a good thing. In England, oh no! You can't do that. The king is weak. The king is a Dodge. He's like the Dodge of Venice. He can't do anything on his own. Now, that's a couple of hundred years after all of this.

Rense: It is a very interesting word, Dodge. Almost like stooge or dupe. A cross between dupe and stooge.

Tarpley: It's the Venetian dialect.

So, I wanted to put this forward. I have seen this thing at the National Archives. It's all so interesting. Who is willing to tell you the truth about this thing? Well, unfortunately, the Federal Government line on this thing--and this is at the National Archives and Records administration (downtown, that big building, and then in Silver Spring, Maryland)--they simply omit paragraph 61. It's just not there.
The Constitution Society, to their credit, they have paragraph 61. Fordham University, the Jesuits have paragraph 61. Good for them. So, you get the idea. When you look at a source, see if they've got paragraph 61. And then you can get this text--the whole of paragraph 61 is on the front page of Tarpley.net. I'd like to send it to you, Jeff. Maybe you can put it up for the wonderful anniversary year, here.
CNN, National Public Radio--they don't publish the text one way or the other that I know of. But what they do is this "hype job" --that it's a wonderful thing, that it's the wonderful roots of our wonderful democracy. And never a word about oligarchy.

And again, I'm sure all the Paul-tards are drooling because of the Magna Carta. "It TELLS the government! It's the first attempt to fight back against big government!" Yeah, but, unfortunately, what they're proposing that is "an antidote to big government" is worse, far worse, than big government.

And that's the other thing. You look at European history. This is 1215. So, the 25 barons can run wild over England. If you look at the origins of the actual modern state--
Rense: 1215. Okay.

Tarpley: 1215. 800 years ago this week. And they have a date on there and everything. You can check it.

The three models you wanna have in hand (and maybe four, if we wanna push it) in terms of the modern state are simply an attempt to prevent private warfare. It's most explicit with King Henry VII. The Earl of Richmond. The guy who kills Richard III in the play. And the fact that the British are attempting to rehabilitate Richard III is a very bad sign. In other words, somebody there is saying: "Well, if we're gonna have our full program of tyranny, we'd better rehabilitate Richard III through Shakespeare's play. Richard III is synonymous with tyranny. So, we'd better get rid of that bad omen! We've got to make them understand that Richard III is a national hero!" No! The national hero is the Earl of Richmond, King Henry VII. The first Tudor.

Now, don't confuse King Henry VII, the good Tudor, with King Henry VIII the bad Tudor. Henry VIII was a psychopath, monster, glutton, sex maniac, warmonger--just terrible.

Rense: Sounds like a typical nightly news subject.

Tarpley: But, anyway, the good one is Henry VII. And Henry VII actually says at one or two points: "What we need is a big policeman. We need a big cop with a big club! And if any of these barons try to start private warfare, we're gonna punch them up." The point of that is that England--the idea of founding a modern state in England had proven impossible until the end of the Hundred Years War.

Now this takes us from the 1340s to 1453 or 1455 thereabouts. That's the Hundred Years War between France and England. This is a very bad thing for European historical development. I think you can probably make a case that it's the Venetians who want this war to take place, because this coincides with the time that the Venetians are fighting it out with the Genoese. And they realize that if anybody comes into that on the side of the Genoese, then that's going to be very bad for the Venetians.

So the Venetians make sure that France, above all--which is the one that might come in on the side of Genoa--they make sure that France is fully tied up with England for a hundred years. And, indeed, the Venetians are able to wipe out the Genoese. So that's the prelude to this. But then, the English knights from this Hundred Years War, when they get finished with the war, they go back to England. And they have the Wars of the Roses--Lancaster vs York--which is, once again, a huge private warfare. The Lancastrians want the crown. No, York says "we get the crown." And it turns out to be Henry Tudor.

So, it means that you can't have a stable monarchy--a decent government in England--until a lot of these feudal nobles have essentially wiped each other out in this war. That is similar in France. It's a little bit earlier (20 years earlier). We have Louis XI of Valois. And Louis XI is the founder of the French state, and he can do that (among other things) because the barons essentially get themselves mowed down in that same Hundred Years War on the French side.

But the model for all this is John Galiatso Visconte of Milan. A little bit before 1400. Say 1380 or 1390.

Rense: Did you major in this in college?

Tarpley: No. But I've studied it. What I'm telling you is accurate.

So 160-170 years after this awful Magna Carta, you have a prototype of the modern state with John Galiatso Visconte of Milan. And you gotta remember, the poet Dante is present at the creation of this in 1310--less than a hundred years after this monstrosity. You've got the beginnings of a modern state--when the Holy Roman Emperor, Henry of Luxembourg, comes down through the Alps, meets Dante and other supporters, and they install the first Visconte, which turns into this prototype of the modern state. That is it in a nutshell.

That is the positive course of history, and the Magna Carta is a monstrosity.

* * * 


KNOW THAT BEFORE GOD, for the health of our soul and those of our ancestors and heirs, to the honour of God, the exaltation of the holy Church, and the better ordering of our kingdom, at the advice of our reverend fathers Stephen, archbishop of Canterbury, primate of all England, and cardinal of the holy Roman Church, Henry archbishop of Dublin, William bishop of London, Peter bishop of Winchester, Jocelin bishop of Bath and Glastonbury, Hugh bishop of Lincoln, Walter Bishop of Worcester, William bishop of Coventry, Benedict bishop of Rochester, Master Pandulf subdeacon and member of the papal household, Brother Aymeric master of the knighthood of the Temple in England, William Marshal earl of Pembroke, William earl of Salisbury, William earl of Warren, William earl of Arundel, Alan de Galloway constable of Scotland, Warin Fitz Gerald, Peter Fitz Herbert, Hubert de Burgh seneschal of Poitou, Hugh de Neville, Matthew Fitz Herbert, Thomas Basset, Alan Basset, Philip Daubeny, Robert de Roppeley, John Marshal, John Fitz Hugh, and other loyal subjects:

+ (1) FIRST, THAT WE HAVE GRANTED TO GOD, and by this present charter have confirmed for us and our heirs in perpetuity, that the English Church shall be free, and shall have its rights undiminished, and its liberties unimpaired. That we wish this so to be observed, appears from the fact that of our own free will, before the outbreak of the present dispute between us and our barons, we granted and confirmed by charter the freedom of the Church's elections - a right reckoned to be of the greatest necessity and importance to it - and caused this to be confirmed by Pope Innocent III. This freedom we shall observe ourselves, and desire to be observed in good faith by our heirs in perpetuity.

 TO ALL FREE MEN OF OUR KINGDOM we have also granted, for us and our heirs for ever, all the liberties written out below, to have and to keep for them and their heirs, of us and our heirs:

(2) If any earl, baron, or other person that holds lands directly of the Crown, for military service, shall die, and at his death his heir shall be of full age and owe a `relief', the heir shall have his inheritance on payment of the ancient scale of `relief'. That is to say, the heir or heirs of an earl shall pay £100 for the entire earl's barony, the heir or heirs of a knight l00s. at most for the entire knight's `fee', and any man that owes less shall pay less, in accordance with the ancient usage of `fees'

(3) But if the heir of such a person is under age and a ward, when he comes of age he shall have his inheritance without `relief' or fine.

(4) The guardian of the land of an heir who is under age shall take from it only reasonable revenues, customary dues, and feudal services. He shall do this without destruction or damage to men or property. If we have given the guardianship of the land to a sheriff, or to any person answerable to us for the revenues, and he commits destruction or damage, we will exact compensation from him, and the land shall be entrusted to two worthy and prudent men of the same `fee', who shall be answerable to us for the revenues, or to the person to whom we have assigned them. If we have given or sold to anyone the guardianship of such land, and he causes destruction or damage, he shall lose the guardianship of it, and it shall be handed over to two worthy and prudent men of the same `fee', who shall be similarly answerable to us.

(5) For so long as a guardian has guardianship of such land, he shall maintain the houses, parks, fish preserves, ponds, mills, and everything else pertaining to it, from the revenues of the land itself. When the heir comes of age, he shall restore the whole land to him, stocked with plough teams and such implements of husbandry as the season demands and the revenues from the land can reasonably bear.

(6) Heirs may be given in marriage, but not to someone of lower social standing. Before a marriage takes place, it shall be' made known to the heir's next-of-kin.

(7) At her husband's death, a widow may have her marriage portion and inheritance at once and without trouble. She shall pay nothing for her dower, marriage portion, or any inheritance that she and her husband held jointly on the day of his death. She may remain in her husband's house for forty days after his death, and within this period her dower shall be assigned to her.

(8) No widow shall be compelled to marry, so long as she wishes to remain without a husband. But she must give security that she will not marry without royal consent, if she holds her lands of the Crown, or without the consent of whatever other lord she may hold them of.

(9) Neither we nor our officials will seize any land or rent in payment of a debt, so long as the debtor has movable goods sufficient to discharge the debt. A debtor's sureties shall not be distrained upon so long as the debtor himself can discharge his debt. If, for lack of means, the debtor is unable to discharge his debt, his sureties shall be answerable for it. If they so desire, they may have the debtor's lands and rents until they have received satisfaction for the debt that they paid for him, unless the debtor can show that he has settled his obligations to them.

* (10) If anyone who has borrowed a sum of money from Jews dies before the debt has been repaid, his heir shall pay no interest on the debt for so long as he remains under age, irrespective of whom he holds his lands. If such a debt falls into the hands of the Crown, it will take nothing except the principal sum specified in the bond.

* (11) If a man dies owing money to Jews, his wife may have her dower and pay nothing towards the debt from it. If he leaves children that are under age, their needs may also be provided for on a scale appropriate to the size of his holding of lands. The debt is to be paid out of the residue, reserving the service due to his feudal lords. Debts owed to persons other than Jews are to be dealt with similarly.

* (12) No `scutage' or `aid' may be levied in our kingdom without its general consent, unless it is for the ransom of our person, to make our eldest son a knight, and (once) to marry our eldest daughter. For these purposes ouly a reasonable `aid' may be levied. `Aids' from the city of London are to be treated similarly.

+ (13) The city of London shall enjoy all its ancient liberties and free customs, both by land and by water. We also will and grant that all other cities, boroughs, towns, and ports shall enjoy all their liberties and free customs.

* (14) To obtain the general consent of the realm for the assessment of an `aid' - except in the three cases specified above - or a `scutage', we will cause the archbishops, bishops, abbots, earls, and greater barons to be summoned individually by letter. To those who hold lands directly of us we will cause a general summons to be issued, through the sheriffs and other officials, to come together on a fixed day (of which at least forty days notice shall be given) and at a fixed place. In all letters of summons, the cause of the summons will be stated. When a summons has been issued, the business appointed for the day shall go forward in accordance with the resolution of those present, even if not all those who were summoned have appeared.

* (15) In future we will allow no one to levy an `aid' from his free men, except to ransom his person, to make his eldest son a knight, and (once) to marry his eldest daughter. For these purposes only a reasonable `aid' may be levied.

(16) No man shall be forced to perform more service for a knight's `fee', or other free holding of land, than is due from it.

(17) Ordinary lawsuits shall not follow the royal court around, but shall be held in a fixed place.

(18) Inquests of novel disseisin, mort d'ancestor, and darrein presentment shall be taken only in their proper county court. We ourselves, or in our absence abroad our chief justice, will send two justices to each county four times a year, and these justices, with four knights of the county elected by the county itself, shall hold the assizes in the county court, on the day and in the place where the court meets.

(19) If any assizes cannot be taken on the day of the county court, as many knights and freeholders shall afterwards remain behind, of those who have attended the court, as will suffice for the administration of justice, having regard to the volume of business to be done.

(20) For a trivial offence, a free man shall be fined only in proportion to the degree of his offence, and for a serious offence correspondingly, but not so heavily as to deprive him of his livelihood. In the same way, a merchant shall be spared his merchandise, and a husbandman the implements of his husbandry, if they fall upon the mercy of a royal court. None of these fines shall be imposed except by the assessment on oath of reputable men of the neighbourhood.

(21) Earls and barons shall be fined only by their equals, and in proportion to the gravity of their offence.

(22) A fine imposed upon the lay property of a clerk in holy orders shall be assessed upon the same principles, without reference to the value of his ecclesiastical benefice.

(23) No town or person shall be forced to build bridges over rivers except those with an ancient obligation to do so.

(24) No sheriff, constable, coroners, or other royal officials are to hold lawsuits that should be held by the royal justices.

* (25) Every county, hundred, wapentake, and tithing shall remain at its ancient rent, without increase, except the royal demesne manors.

(26) If at the death of a man who holds a lay `fee' of the Crown, a sheriff or royal official produces royal letters patent of summons for a debt due to the Crown, it shall be lawful for them to seize and list movable goods found in the lay `fee' of the dead man to the value of the debt, as assessed by worthy men. Nothing shall be removed until the whole debt is paid, when the residue shall be given over to the executors to carry out the dead man s will. If no debt is due to the Crown, all the movable goods shall be regarded as the property of the dead man, except the reasonable shares of his wife and children.

* (27) If a free man dies intestate, his movable goods are to be distributed by his next-of-kin and friends, under the supervision of the Church. The rights of his debtors are to be preserved.

(28) No constable or other royal official shall take corn or other movable goods from any man without immediate payment, unless the seller voluntarily offers postponement of this.

(29) No constable may compel a knight to pay money for castle-guard if the knight is willing to undertake the guard in person, or with reasonable excuse to supply some other fit man to do it. A knight taken or sent on military service shall be excused from castle-guard for the period of this servlce.

(30) No sheriff, royal official, or other person shall take horses or carts for transport from any free man, without his consent.

(31) Neither we nor any royal official will take wood for our castle, or for any other purpose, without the consent of the owner.

(32) We will not keep the lands of people convicted of felony in our hand for longer than a year and a day, after which they shall be returned to the lords of the `fees' concerned.

(33) All fish-weirs shall be removed from the Thames, the Medway, and throughout the whole of England, except on the sea coast.

(34) The writ called precipe shall not in future be issued to anyone in respect of any holding of land, if a free man could thereby be deprived of the right of trial in his own lord's court.

(35) There shall be standard measures of wine, ale, and corn (the London quarter), throughout the kingdom. There shall also be a standard width of dyed cloth, russett, and haberject, namely two ells within the selvedges. Weights are to be standardised similarly.

(36) In future nothing shall be paid or accepted for the issue of a writ of inquisition of life or limbs. It shall be given gratis, and not refused.

(37) If a man holds land of the Crown by `fee-farm', `socage', or `burgage', and also holds land of someone else for knight's service, we will not have guardianship of his heir, nor of the land that belongs to the other person's `fee', by virtue of the `fee-farm', `socage', or `burgage', unless the `fee-farm' owes knight's service. We will not have the guardianship of a man's heir, or of land that he holds of someone else, by reason of any small property that he may hold of the Crown for a service of knives, arrows, or the like.

(38) In future no official shall place a man on trial upon his own unsupported statement, without producing credible witnesses to the truth of it.

+ (39) No free man shall be seized or imprisoned, or stripped of his rights or possessions, or outlawed or exiled, or deprived of his standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against him, or send others to do so, except by the lawful judgement of his equals or by the law of the land.

+ (40) To no one will we sell, to no one deny or delay right or justice.

(41) All merchants may enter or leave England unharmed and without fear, and may stay or travel within it, by land or water, for purposes of trade, free from all illegal exactions, in accordance with ancient and lawful customs. This, however, does not apply in time of war to merchants from a country that is at war with us. Any such merchants found in our country at the outbreak of war shall be detained without injury to their persons or property, until we or our chief justice have discovered how our own merchants are being treated in the country at war with us. If our own merchants are safe they shall be safe too.

* (42) In future it shall be lawful for any man to leave and return to our kingdom unharmed and without fear, by land or water, preserving his allegiance to us, except in time of war, for some short period, for the common benefit of the realm. People that have been imprisoned or outlawed in accordance with the law of the land, people from a country that is at war with us, and merchants - who shall be dealt with as stated above - are excepted from this provision.

(43) If a man holds lands of any `escheat' such as the `honour' of Wallingford, Nottingham, Boulogne, Lancaster, or of other `escheats' in our hand that are baronies, at his death his heir shall give us only the `relief' and service that he would have made to the baron, had the barony been in the baron's hand. We will hold the `escheat' in the same manner as the baron held it.

(44) People who live outside the forest need not in future appear before the royal justices of the forest in answer to general summonses, unless they are actually involved in proceedings or are sureties for someone who has been seized for a forest offence.

* (45) We will appoint as justices, constables, sheriffs, or other officials, only men that know the law of the realm and are minded to keep it well.

(46) All barons who have founded abbeys, and have charters of English kings or ancient tenure as evidence of this, may have guardianship of them when there is no abbot, as is their due.

(47) All forests that have been created in our reign shall at once be disafforested. River-banks that have been enclosed in our reign shall be treated similarly.

* (48) All evil customs relating to forests and warrens, foresters, warreners, sheriffs and their servants, or river-banks and their wardens, are at once to be investigated in every county by twelve sworn knights of the county, and within forty days of their enquiry the evil customs are to be abolished completely and irrevocably. But we, or our chief justice if we are not in England, are first to be informed.

* (49) We will at once return all hostages and charters delivered up to us by Englishmen as security for peace or for loyal service.

* (50) We will remove completely from their offices the kinsmen of Gerard de Athée, and in future they shall hold no offices in England. The people in question are Engelard de Cigogné', Peter, Guy, and Andrew de Chanceaux, Guy de Cigogné, Geoffrey de Martigny and his brothers, Philip Marc and his brothers, with Geoffrey his nephew, and all their followers.

* (51) As soon as peace is restored, we will remove from the kingdom all the foreign knights, bowmen, their attendants, and the mercenaries that have come to it, to its harm, with horses and arms.

* (52) To any man whom we have deprived or dispossessed of lands, castles, liberties, or rights, without the lawful judgement of his equals, we will at once restore these. In cases of dispute the matter shall be resolved by the judgement of the twenty-five barons referred to below in the clause for securing the peace (§ 61). In cases, however, where a man was deprived or dispossessed of something without the lawful judgement of his equals by our father King Henry or our brother King Richard, and it remains in our hands or is held by others under our warranty, we shall have respite for the period commonly allowed to Crusaders, unless a lawsuit had been begun, or an enquiry had been made at our order, before we took the Cross as a Crusader. On our return from the Crusade, or if we abandon it, we will at once render justice in full.

* (53) We shall have similar respite in rendering justice in connexion with forests that are to be disafforested, or to remain forests, when these were first a-orested by our father Henry or our brother Richard; with the guardianship of lands in another person's `fee', when we have hitherto had this by virtue of a `fee' held of us for knight's service by a third party; and with abbeys founded in another person's `fee', in which the lord of the `fee' claims to own a right. On our return from the Crusade, or if we abandon it, we will at once do full justice to complaints about these matters.

(54) No one shall be arrested or imprisoned on the appeal of a woman for the death of any person except her husband.

* (55) All fines that have been given to us unjustiy and against the law of the land, and all fines that we have exacted unjustly, shall be entirely remitted or the matter decided by a majority judgement of the twenty-five barons referred to below in the clause for securing the peace (§ 61) together with Stephen, archbishop of Canterbury, if he can be present, and such others as he wishes to bring with him. If the archbishop cannot be present, proceedings shall continue without him, provided that if any of the twenty-five barons has been involved in a similar suit himself, his judgement shall be set aside, and someone else chosen and sworn in his place, as a substitute for the single occasion, by the rest of the twenty-five.

(56) If we have deprived or dispossessed any Welshmen of lands, liberties, or anything else in England or in Wales, without the lawful judgement of their equals, these are at once to be returned to them. A dispute on this point shall be determined in the Marches by the judgement of equals. English law shall apply to holdings of land in England, Welsh law to those in Wales, and the law of the Marches to those in the Marches. The Welsh shall treat us and ours in the same way.

* (57) In cases where a Welshman was deprived or dispossessed of anything, without the lawful judgement of his equals, by our father King Henry or our brother King Richard, and it remains in our hands or is held by others under our warranty, we shall have respite for the period commonly allowed to Crusaders, unless a lawsuit had been begun, or an enquiry had been made at our order, before we took the Cross as a Crusader. But on our return from the Crusade, or if we abandon it, we will at once do full justice according to the laws of Wales and the said regions.

* (58) We will at once return the son of Llywelyn, all Welsh hostages, and the charters delivered to us as security for the peace.

* (59) With regard to the return of the sisters and hostages of Alexander, king of Scotland, his liberties and his rights, we will treat him in the same way as our other barons of England, unless it appears from the charters that we hold from his father William, formerly king of Scotland, that he should be treated otherwise. This matter shall be resolved by the judgement of his equals in our court.

(60) All these customs and liberties that we have granted shall be observed in our kingdom in so far as concerns our own relations with our subjects. Let all men of our kingdom, whether clergy or laymen, observe them similarly in their relations with their own men.

* (61) SINCE WE HAVE GRANTED ALL THESE THINGS for God, for the better ordering of our kingdom, and to allay the discord that has arisen between us and our barons, and since we desire that they shall be enjoyed in their entirety, with lasting strength, for ever, we give and grant to the barons the following security:

The barons shall elect twenty-five of their number to keep, and cause to be observed with all their might, the peace and liberties granted and confirmed to them by this charter.
If we, our chief justice, our officials, or any of our servants offend in any respect against any man, or transgress any of the articles of the peace or of this security, and the offence is made known to four of the said twenty-five barons, they shall come to us - or in our absence from the kingdom to the chief justice - to declare it and claim immediate redress. If we, or in our absence abroad the chiefjustice, make no redress within forty days, reckoning from the day on which the offence was declared to us or to him, the four barons shall refer the matter to the rest of the twenty-five barons, who may distrain upon and assail us in every way possible, with the support of the whole community of the land, by seizing our castles, lands, possessions, or anything else saving only our own person and those of the queen and our children, until they have secured such redress as they have determined upon. Having secured the redress, they may then resume their normal obedience to us.

Any man who so desires may take an oath to obey the commands of the twenty-five barons for the achievement of these ends, and to join with them in assailing us to the utmost of his power. We give public and free permission to take this oath to any man who so desires, and at no time will we prohibit any man from taking it. Indeed, we will compel any of our subjects who are unwilling to take it to swear it at our command.

If-one of the twenty-five barons dies or leaves the country, or is prevented in any other way from discharging his duties, the rest of them shall choose another baron in his place, at their discretion, who shall be duly sworn in as they were.

In the event of disagreement among the twenty-five barons on any matter referred to them for decision, the verdict of the majority present shall have the same validity as a unanimous verdict of the whole twenty-five, whether these were all present or some of those summoned were unwilling or unable to appear.

The twenty-five barons shall swear to obey all the above articles faithfully, and shall cause them to be obeyed by others to the best of their power.

We will not seek to procure from anyone, either by our own efforts or those of a third party, anything by which any part of these concessions or liberties might be revoked or diminished. Should such a thing be procured, it shall be null and void and we will at no time make use of it, either ourselves or through a third party.

* (62) We have remitted and pardoned fully to all men any ill-will, hurt, or grudges that have arisen between us and our subjects, whether clergy or laymen, since the beginning of the dispute. We have in addition remitted fully, and for our own part have also pardoned, to all clergy and laymen any offences committed as a result of the said dispute between Easter in the sixteenth year of our reign (i.e. 1215) and the restoration of peace.

In addition we have caused letters patent to be made for the barons, bearing witness to this security and to the concessions set out above, over the seals of Stephen archbishop of Canterbury, Henry archbishop of Dublin, the other bishops named above, and Master Pandulf.

* (63) IT IS ACCORDINGLY OUR WISH AND COMMAND that the English Church shall be free, and that men in our kingdom shall have and keep all these liberties, rights, and concessions, well and peaceably in their fulness and entirety for them and their heirs, of us and our heirs, in all things and all places for ever.

Both we and the barons have sworn that all this shall be observed in good faith and without deceit. Witness the abovementioned people and many others.

Given by our hand in the meadow that is called Runnymede, between Windsor and Staines, on the fifteenth day of June in the seventeenth year of our reign (i.e. 1215: the new regnal year began on 28 May).

* * *

One final thought.  In the beginning of this post, I cited Vox Day as he spoke about the true colonial descendants of America as having been born and raised within a tradition of rebellion.  To that boast, I will only offer this as my retort:
"Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins — or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom — Lucifer."
— An epigraph from Saul Alinsky, in his Leftist book, Rules for Radicals

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