5:30 PM, Jun 15, 2015 • By ERIN MUNDAHL
On June 15, 1215, a band of frustrated and rebellious nobles forced King John to sign a “Great Charter” at Runnymede, a swampy field twenty miles west of London. At the time, few would have suspected the importance of the document, which was annulled by the Pope a mere nine days later.
On Monday, another British monarch visited Runnymede, this time to honor the historic significance of the document signed there.
“Runnymede is an ancient and resonant meeting place and it is fitting that we should assemble again here where the Great Charter was sealed 800 years ago,” Queen Elizabeth said in a written statement.
“The story of the British monarchy is intertwined with that of Runnymede and Magna Carta. The values of Magna Carta are not just important to the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth, but across the world. Its principles are significant and enduring.”
The document itself, some 3,500 words written in Latin by the Archbishop of Canterbury, lacks the resonant eloquence of, say, the Declaration of Independence. Yet, it lays out the foundations of the system of English common law, due process, and natural rights, which form the foundation of both the American and British legal systems.
Here’s wishing it a happy birthday and continued relevance.
The 'Thatcher Effect' in action.8:35 AM, May 8, 2015 • By DOMINIC GREEN
Friday morning, David Cameron returned to Downing Street as Britain's prime minister. After a campaign of unsurpassed tedium, the General Election came alive last night with the first exit poll, and a Conservative victory out of nowhere. For weeks, the incumbent Conservatives and the Labour opposition had been neck and neck.
7:49 AM, Jan 23, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Westminster Abbey announced on Twitter that it's flying its flag at half staff after the death of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia.
"The Abbey flag is flying at half mast as a mark of respect following the death of King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, King of Saudi Arabia," the church tweeted.
A catalyst for civilization and good governance.10:05 AM, Jan 20, 2015 • By KEVIN R. KOSAR
Today, America bids farewell to the Magna Carta. The 800-year old document returns home to Lincolnshire, England, after six months in America. It landed at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts in July, and spent the past few months at the Library of Congress.
Oct 6, 2014, Vol. 20, No. 04 • By THE SCRAPBOOK
Hilary Mantel is a bestselling British novelist whose works—mostly historical fiction, or novels and stories with contemporary political overtones—are better known in Great Britain than here. Which is surprising, since the 62-year-old Dame Hilary has a knack for self-publicity.
Before the trenchesSep 8, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 48 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The Great War did not begin in the trenches, in rain, mud, and dark futility. At first, the fighting was out in the open under blue skies and late summer sunshine. There were bugles and drums, and sometimes the troops even sang when they charged. French officers leading these attacks wore white gloves.
On the whole, Europe welcomed the war. One of England’s finest young poets, Rupert Brooke, wrote in gratitude
Are the Tories already doomed?Jun 23, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 39 • By ANDREW STUTTAFORD
A time bomb does not have to be elegant; it just has to be lethal, primed, and in the right place when the moment comes. Britain’s next general election is set for May 7, 2015. That is likely the day when David Cameron will pay the full price for failing to have defused the revolt on his right.
The English version of civility. Feb 24, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 23 • By SARA LODGE
Two truths tend to strike people around middle age: Money buys less than it once did, and manners are in decline.
Is it ethical to make three-parent babies?Sep 2, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 48 • By BRENDAN P. FOHT
The decision by the British government earlier this summer to approve a suite of new technologies that would make possible the creation of human embryos with three genetic parents has brought a long-simmering and seemingly obscure bioethical debate into the public eye, raising questions not only about the future of human reproductive technologies but also about some practices that have been with us for decades.
The European Union’s coming attack on the Anglo-Saxon financial sector Jul 1, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 40 • By ANDREW STUTTAFORD
Take a visit to the cyber-belly of the beast, to a website run by the European Commission, the EU’s bureaucratic core, and you will be told that “the financial sector was a major cause of the [economic] crisis and received substantial government support.” Soon it will be payback time, in the form of Europe’s new Financial Transaction Tax (FTT), set to be levied at a rate of 0.1 percent on equity and debt transactions, and 0.01 percent on trades in derivatives. It will ensure that the financial sector “makes a fair and substantial contribution to public finances.”
The Chelsea Flower Show celebrates its centennial. Jun 17, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 38 • By SARA LODGE
In his short story “The Occasional Garden,” Saki pinpoints a subject dear to the British heart, but also key to its social anxieties. Elinor Rapsley is about to receive a lunch visit from a woman whom she detests, Gwenda Pottingdon. Gwenda’s garden is the envy of the neighborhood; Elinor’s is a barren wasteland. Gwenda is coming on purpose to crow over Elinor’s pathetic pansies while describing her own rare and sumptuous roses.
Hosted by Michael Graham.4:00 PM, Apr 8, 2013 • By TWS PODCAST
THE WEEKLY STANDARD podcast with William Kristol on the rise of Margaret Thatcher and the lessons for today's GOP.
Mar 25, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 27 • By PHILIP TERZIAN
The American position on the Falkland Islands in the South Atlantic should be obvious.
The elder brother of Charles I, in pictures and memory.Feb 4, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 20 • By SARA LODGE
Henry IX is one of the most interesting monarchs Britain never had.