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MAGNA CARTA


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Author Topic: MAGNA CARTA  (Read 947 times)
Bianca
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« on: December 06, 2007, 08:00:38 pm »








Roman Catholic Church



Wikisource has original text related to this article:

An essay on the pope's response to the Magna Carta.

At the time of Johnís reign there was still a great deal of controversy as to how the Archbishop of Canterbury was to be elected, although it had become traditional that the monarch would appoint a candidate with the approval of the monks of Canterbury.

But in the early 13th century, the bishops began to want a say. To retain control, the monks elected one of their numbers to the role. But John, incensed at his lack of involvement in the proceedings, sent John de Gray, the Bishop of Norwich, to Rome as his choice. Pope Innocent III declared both choices as invalid and persuaded the monks to elect Stephen Langton. Nevertheless, John refused to accept this choice and exiled the monks from the realm. Infuriated, Innocent ordered an interdict (prevention of public worship ó mass, marriages, the ringing of church bells, etc.) in England in 1208, excommunicated John in 1209, and encouraged Philip to invade England in 1212.

John finally backed down and agreed to endorse Langton and allow the exiles to return. To completely placate the pope, he gave England and Ireland as papal territories and rented them back as a fiefdom for 1,000 marks per annum. This surrender of autonomy to a foreign power further enraged the barons.





Taxes



King John needed money for armies, but the loss of the French territories, especially Normandy, greatly reduced the state income, and a huge tax would have to be raised in order to attempt to reclaim these territories. Yet, it was difficult to raise taxes because of the tradition of keeping them at the same level.

Novel efforts to raise income included a Forest law, a set of regulations about the kingís forest, which were easily broken and severely punished. John also increased the pre-existing scutage (feudal payment to an overlord replacing direct military service) eleven times in his seventeen years as king, as compared to eleven times in twice that period covering three monarchs before him. The last two of these increases were double the increase of their predecessors. He also imposed the first income tax, which rose what was, at the time, the extortionate sum of £70,000.
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