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King John signs the Magna Carta
Magna Carta on display
The public are being given a rare chance to look at one of the most important documents in English history. Hereford cathedral's copy of the Magna Carta goes on display over the summer.
Hereford cathedral's copy of the Magna Carta is going on display in a special exhibition running until Monday 31 August.
The Great Charter of Liberties, or Magna Carta, agreed between King John and his barons at Runnymede in 1215, is one of the most famous documents in history.
The exhibition has taken more than a year to prepare, with the security of the priceless document being a key concern.
The Hereford Magna Carta is on display in the Mappa Mundi and Chained Library Exhibition at Hereford Cathedral.
The Magna Carta is considered the foundation of English common law, containing a famous clause that helped to establish the right of the freedom of the individual or habeas corpus:
Part of The Magna Carta
"No free man shall be arrested, imprisoned, dispossessed, outlawed, exiled or in any way victimised, or attacked except by the lawful judgment of his peers or by the law of the land."
Hereford Cathedral Archivist Rosalind Caird says their copy is one of the most significant early versions of this historic document:
"Although most people will always link Magna Carta and King John with the date 1215, the charter agreed at Runnymede was only the beginning of the story.
"Magna Carta went through a number of revisions and reissues before being enshrined in English statute law in 1297.
"The most significant revision of Magna Carta was issued by Henry III in 1217, and Hereford Cathedral is fortunate to possess the finest surviving 1217 version."
last updated: 15/06/2009 at 09:47