Magna Carta and Parliament

What touches all should be approved by all

 Edward I in summoning parliament in 1295

In the years between the sealing of Magna Carta in 1215 and the circulation of the Inspeximus issue in 1297, the ancestor of modern parliament evolved.

Magna Carta formalised the concept that the monarch needed his subjects’ assent to impose taxes raising money for particular purposes, and reinforced the idea that grievances could be addressed as a condition for the agreement of the supply of money to the king. Those who had traditionally been called on to advise the king: the nobility, the church and the courts, were joined, when summoned by the king, by representatives of shires and cities and boroughs, or communes (‘the commons’), at conferences that came to be known as ‘parliaments’.

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