800th anniversary of the Magna Carta

In 2015 Royal Mail launched a Special Stamp set to mark the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta, the foundation stone of the rule of law whose influence has extended around the world.

To commemorate this milestone, Royal Mail worked closely with the Magna Carta 800th Committee to produce a six-stamp set commemorating the Magna Carta itself, as well as major charters, bills and declarations that have developed the rule of law in the centuries since around the world.

Meaning ‘The Great Charter’, it was reluctantly granted by King John of England in Runnymede on 15 June 1215, as a practical solution to the political crisis he faced. Written in Latin on a single parchment and comprising a total of 63 clauses, the Magna Carta established for the first time, that the King was subject to the law rather than above it. By its terms, the King was committed to upholding the rule of law and ensuring that justice was done equally to every free man “by the lawful judgement of his equals or by the law of the land”.