The Magna Carta had the most evidence of traditional democratic ideals. It shows the roots of liberty, freedom, equality, etc. The Declaration of the Rights of Man does show some traces of it but not nearly as much as the Magna Carta does. The Magna Carta influenced the Constitution of the United States. The Declaration of Rights of Man gave the impression that the people had certain rights, but under circumstances, they may be denied. Both, the Magna Carta and the Declaration of the Rights of Man strongly influenced our forefathers but the Magna Carta presented more ideas and was more important for the history of democracy.
The Magna Carter was made on June 15, 1215. King John of England agreed to it after a long quarrel between the English barons. The English barons had captured London but couldn’t defeat Johns’s’s whole army. The two sides halted the fighting and tried to negotiate. They met at Runnymede, a meadow near Windsor, and came up with the Magna Carter.
The Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen was made by the National Assembly on August 26, 1789. This happened a little over a month from the Storming of the Bastille, which started the French Revolution. The ideas presented in the Declaration of the Rights of Man were partly from the pamphlet made by Abb Sieys called What is the Third Estate? The king at that time, Louis XVI signed this document but ignored it.
The Magna Carta and the Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen were very different.
In the Declaration of the Rights of Man, the first article states: Men are born and remain free and equal in rights. Social distinctions may be founded only upon the general good. In the Magna Carta, sections 6, 7, and 8 give women some freedom. In the Declaration of the Rights of Man, they give no rights to women. The Magna Carta displays some powers for women, which is very important in the history of democracy. The fifth amendment guarantees: No person shall … be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law, and the sixth states… the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury. Written 575 years earlier, Magna Carta declares: No freeman shall be taken, imprisoned, … or in any other way destroyed … except by the lawful judgment of his peers, or by the law of the land. To no one will we sell, to none will we deny or delay, right or justice. (http://www.nara.gov/exhall/charters/magnacarta/magmain.html) This is evidence that the Magna Carta gave the people justice and liberty. In the Declaration of the Rights of Man, Article 17 states Since the property is an inviolable and sacred right, no one shall be deprived thereof except where public necessity, legally determined, shall clearly demand it, and then only on condition that the owner shall have been previously and equitably indemnified. This article is very unstable. They give themselves room to break the rule. If they find themselves violating the law, they can fall back on that last part. This does not reflect the history of democracy.
Both, the Magna Carta and the Declaration of the Rights of Man strongly influenced our forefathers but the Magna Carta presented more ideas and was more important for the history of democracy. The Magna Carta influenced our country in the Constitution. The Declaration of the Rights of Man was unreliable and it gave nobles and the higher classes the ability to squeak past the law. Even though the Magna Carta was written in the 13th century, and the Declaration of the Rights of Man was written in the 18th century, the Magna Carta had more democratic ideas in it than the Declaration of the Rights of Man. The Declaration of the Rights of Man was merely a copy of the American Bill of Rights but they left some holes in it for people to break the law. The Magna Carta presented democratic ideals and was more important for the history of democracy.