John's Anger after Signing Magna Charta
All this time John Lacklands cruelty and savageness were making the whole kingdom miserable; and at last the great barons bear it no longer. They met together and agreed that they would make John swear to govern by the good old English laws that had prevailed before the Normans came. The difficulty was to be sure of what these laws were, for most of the copies of them had been lost. However, Archbishop Langton and some of the wisest of the barons put together a set of laws-some copied, some recollected, some old, some new-but all such as to give the barons some control of the king, and hinder him from getting savage soldiers together to frighten people into doing whatever he chose to make them. These laws they called Magna Charta, or the great charter; and they all came in armor, and took John by surprise at Windsor. He came to meet them in a meadow named Runnymede, on the bank of the Thames, and there they force him to sign the charter, for which all Englishmen are grateful to them.
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Charlotte M. Yonge Young Folks' History of England (Boston: D. Lothrop & Co., 1879) 101