This year marks the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta. To join celebrations across the globe, the University of Minnesota Law Library has mounted a new exhibit, “Magna Carta, 800 Years: Rights and the Rule of Law,” open through December in the Stefan A. Riesenfeld Rare Books Research Center. Drawing on the strengths of the Riesenfeld Center and the Arthur C. Pulling Rare Books Collection, the exhibit includes more than 75 rare printed books and pamphlets related to the Great Charter and its influence in the Anglo-American legal tradition.
Items on display include notable early printed editions of Magna Carta, copies of the Petition of Right and English Bill of Rights, works by Edward Coke, trials, and documents related to the Levellers. Showcasing early America are rare copies of Thomas Paine's Common Sense, works by James Otis and John Dickinson, and the first US session laws with an unratified version of the Bill of Rights. In the nineteenth century, key speeches and trials chronicle the fight for equal protection under law; and items related to due process and human rights bring the Great Charter into the contemporary world. Through the exhibit we invite visitors to explore Magna Carta's great history and its continuing relevance.
The exhibit is on display through December 15, 2015, at the Law Library's Riesenfeld Center. For more about exhibit items, please stay tuned to our blog and follow us on Tumblr.