The Remnant Trust Annual Lecture entitled, “More than Magna Carta: Medieval Law and the American Experiment” by Dr. Bruce Brasington, Professor of History at West Texas A&M University; given on April 25, 2018 at Texas Tech University. Co-sponsored by The Institute of the Study of Western Civilization.
Three years ago, the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta was celebrated. While the Great Charter, one of the most prized volumes in The Remnant Trust, rightly deserves its place in the canon of the western legal and political tradition, there are other texts, and other ideas, that played a crucial role as well. The lecture will examine a single example which is found in various books owned by The Trust. This example concerns a maxim originating in the Roman law, quod omnes tangit, ab omnibus approbetur (that which concerns all must be approved by all). Beginning in the Middle Ages, this phrase became a key argument used by those who sought to limit the power of government. Central to this presentation will be how writers dur-ing the English Civil War and the Founding of the United States used the phrase. It is his hope that this presentation will remind us of the rich heritage of freedom The Trust preserves and shares; no less should it call us to bring those ideas of freedom, limited government, and historical awareness to our own day.