Magna Carta (1215) to Henry IV (1399)

1215
King John agreed to Magna Carta which stated the right of the barons to consult with and advise the king in his Great Council

1236
Earliest use of the term Parliament, referring to the Great Council

1254
Sheriffs were instructed to send elected representatives of the counties (knights of the shire) to consult with the king on taxation

1258
At a Parliament at Oxford, the nobles drafted the "Provisions of Oxford" which calls for regular Parliaments with representatives from the counties

1265
Simon de Montfort, in rebellion against Henry III, summoned a Parliament which included for the first time representatives of both the counties and towns

1278
The Clerk of the Parliaments began to compile the Rolls of Parliament, the records of proceedings, particularly the petitions and acts passed

1295
Model Parliament was made up of nobles and bishops, and two representatives for each county and for each town - the model for future Parliaments

1327
From this date representatives of the counties (knights of the shire) and of the towns (burgesses) were always summoned together to Parliament

1332
Knights of the shire and burgesses met together and were called the Commons

1341
The Commons met separately from the Upper House for the first time

1352
The Commons began to meet in the Chapter House of Westminster Abbey

1362
A statute established that Parliament must approve of all taxation

1376
In the Good Parliament the Commons, led for the first time by an elected Speaker, prosecuted, or impeached, before the lords some of the king's advisors

1397
Commons moved from Chapter House of Westminster Abbey to its Refectory

1399
Parliament deposed Richard II and Henry IV's reign started

Biographies

You can access biographies of

King John
Simon de Montfort
Henry III
Richard II

from the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography for free, online, using your local library card number (includes nine out of ten public libraries in the UK) or from within academic library and other subscribing networks.

Also within Living Heritage