2 Main Idea Towns and villages were developing… feudalism was weakening… These changes led to more centralized government and the development of nationsEngland and France were the first nations in Europe to develop a strong, unified government
3 Invasions in EnglandThe island of Britain had been invaded for centuriesWilliam the Conqueror: claimed the English crown and invaded EnglandWon the Battle of Hastings, changing English historyUnited the lands and laid the foundation for centralized government in England
5 England’s GovernmentOver the next two centuries, English kings had two goals:Expand control of French lands!Strengthen their own power over the nobles & the ChurchHenry II: strengthened the justice system by sending out royal judges to every part of England at least once a year
6 English Government, cont. The concept of a jury emerges… jury trials became a way to settle disputesCase by case, the rulings of England’s royal judges became known as common law; our legal system is based on this!Parliament, a legislative (law-making) group, was created; England and many other countries still use this system
7 The Magna CartaRichard the Lion Hearted, son of Henry II, took the throne, followed by his younger brother “John Softsword”John Softsword was a terrible leader & abused his power!Nobles revolted and forced him to sign the most famous document in English history: The Magna Carta
8 Magna Carta, continued LIMITS THE KING’S POWER! Everyone must obey laws, even the kingGuarantees basic political rights, including: no taxation without representation and a jury trialSet up basic legal rights for England & the United States!
9 Beginning of Democracy England and France were beginning to establish democraciesBased on centralized government that would be able to govern widespread landCommon law & court systems were a first step toward increased central government powerHowever, before England & France could move forward in this direction, they had to deal with a century of turmoil… including religious disputes, plague, and war!