An original Magna Carta from the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford will be on view on Level 2 of the Art of the Americas Building during the annual celebration of BritWeek. The Great Charter granted by King John on 15 June 1215 at Runnymede near Windsor, and reissued throughout the 13th century during the succeeding reigns of Henry III and Edward I, set key limitations upon royal authority. A landmark in the history of democracy, it remains to this day an important symbol of freedom and the rule of law. The ideas expressed in Magna Carta found especial resonance in America, paving the political road to the Charters of Freedom.
Only seventeen surviving original manuscripts of Magna Carta are known today, dating from 1215 to 1297. A manuscript of the 1217 charter, issued in the name of King Henry III, will be displayed at LACMA.
This exhibition is organized by the Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford, as part of Brit Week 2011, and is made possible by Qualcomm and John Wiley and Sons.
Image: Magna Carta, Issue of November 1217: the original charter sent from King Henry III to the county of Gloucestershire. © Bodleian Libraries, University of Oxford.