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Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Magna Carta as Compromise

Magna Carta and the Holocaust | Podcast | History Extra

David Starkey: Think about Magna Carta not as some kind of sainted origins of the English Constitution, but a product of crisis, of revolution narrowly averted, and of the thing that we've all become so contemptuous of, which is the political process.

Which is compromise. Which is wheeler-dealing. Which is not getting quite everything that you want. Which is about recognising that your opponents may have a point.

Now we've become very contemptuous of all of those things. It is very dangerous to be contemptuous of those things, cos that's the root of a Robbespierre or a Lenin. English history is a very different lesson: it's a lesson of this perpetual compromise. Perpetual accommodation.
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