Growth of Royal Power in England

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  • William the Conqueror
  • Hi! I am William the Conqueror and I introduced the Domesday Book.
  • Domesday Book
  • Henry II
  • I am Henry II. I expanded the system of royal justice, laid the basis for common law, and I began the jury system.
  • In 1066, William of Normandy became the king of England when he won the Battle of Hastings against Harold. William had a complete census taken in 1086 to learn more about his kingdom. The census taken resulted as the Domesday Book. The Doomsday helped William and later English monarchs build an efficient system of tax collecting.
  • John
  • You must be stopped! You bastard of a king!
  • How dare you peasants treat me like this?! Your own king for god's sake!
  • The Domesday Book was the result from the census taken in the kingdom. A census is the counting of people and property for the purpose of taxation.
  • Magna Carta
  • King Henry II inherited the throne in 1154. He broadened the system of royal justice and found ways to expand customs into law. The decisions of the royal courts became the foundation of English common law. Henry II also developed an early jury system.
  • Edward I
  • I am king Edward the first. I summoned Parliament so it could check, or limit, the power of the monarch
  • Henry's son, John, was a clever, greedy, cruel, and untrustworthy ruler. Johan faced three powerful enemies during his reign: King Philip II of France, Pope Innocent III, and his own English nobles. When John angered his own nobles with oppressive taxes and other abuses of power, they forced in to sign the Magna Carta, a document that affirmed the king's feudal rights.
  • The Magna Carta contained two very important ideas that in the long run would shape government traditions in England. First, it asserted that the nobles had certain rights. Second, the Magna Carta made it clear that the monarch must obey the law.
  • In 1295, Edward I summoned Parliament to approve money for his wars in France. He had representatives of the "common people" join with the lords and clergy. Much later, this assembly became known as the Model Parliament because it set up the framework for England's Legislature. Later English monarchs summoned Parliament for their own purposes.
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