Crumpets? – England

After our long week under the hot sun of Israeli, we were overjoyed at the thought of visiting a cooler democracy. We were supposed to meet near the Whaling Wall at 6 A.M. sharp, as to avoid the scotching hot sun. UnfortunatelyAmbra,Victoriaand I, who were sharing a room, had partied a little to much the night before. In fact,Victoriapartied so hard she was locked up in jail;    we had promised to bail her out in the early morning. Unluckily, Ambra and I were barely disturbed by our whining alarm clock this morning. I awoke to the sound of a bird chirping. The heat enveloped me and as I was startled awake by the sun, I realized that it was high in the sky and we had over slept. I shot out of bed and jumped on the next one over. After getting ready in frenzy, we sat down and contemplated on what to do.

At that moment of panic, my ghost tour guide Zeus appeared at our door. To our delight,Victoriawas by his side! He informed us that he was going to fly us toEngland. Relieved, we collected our bags and waited for his instructions. In a blink of an eye, we were soaring over the Middle East and then theMediterranean. We flew like birds and soon enough we were inLondon.

We thanked Zeus profusely and met up with our class which was still touring theWindsorCastle. The castle was lush, rich with vegetation. It had the built of a fort, surrounded with a sturdy wall. The tour guide told us that the castle is the oldest residential castle. It is also the most famous inEngland. Concluding the tour, Mrs. Hamilton lead us toBuckinghamPalace, the official residents for the monarchy. This castle was not as spacious as theWindsor; it also had a more modern style. The castle is also more open to the people and located closer toLondon.

After lunch we proceeded to theTowerofLondon. The tower is tall, comprised of a square building with towers on each corner. It was built with Medieval architecture. The tower has served many purposes, but is currently where the crown jewels are kept. The building is easily located near the entrance ofLondon. Next, we moved on toSt.JamesPalace, primarily the place of work for royalty. The building is modern, tall, built of red bricks, featuring a clock at the top, known as “Big Ben”. We were enjoying the cool weather as we toured our last location,WestminsterPalace. The building is fairly modern, and is used for public ceremonial events. TheWestminsterPalaceis one of  the many choices for royalty to get married, among many other important events.

The next morning, we were fortunate enough to join  Parliament at breakfast. We witnessed William and Mary signing the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights was to ensure rule by law. This was the official beginning ofEnglandbecoming a constitutional monarchy. Aside from that, their crumpets were superb.

After we were full of knowledge and crumpets, we continued our journey to theMuseumofLondon. The exhibit explained the differences and hardships with previous English government.Englandwas the first county to make it painfully clear that they would not tolerate a leader that would not obey rule by law. They proved this by putting King Charles on trial, for his disregard of the law. He was found guilty in the trial; shortly after he was brutally decapitated.

We returned to our hotel with images of Kings being decapitated running through our minds. We then realized, that we had handled enough of England’s brutal history, for one trip. Next up wasFrance!

England’s Contributions to Democracy:

Rule by law

Freedom of speech

English Bill of Rights/Magna Carta (influenced the American Bill of Rights)

The right to a jury trial (idea of trial by jury)

Habeas corpus (prisoners have rights)

King Charles’ execution solidified rule by law

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