English Bill of Rights
DOI link for English Bill of Rights
English Bill of Rights book
The English Bill of Rights was enacted by Parliament in the wake of the "Glorious Revolution," which removed James II and brought William and Mary to power in 1688. The document provides for the defense of individual liberties by asserting the political independence of the House of Commons and limiting the arbitrary use of executive authority by the king. Under the declaration of parliamentary prerogatives, English kings were prohibited from acting unilaterally to raise a standing army, collect taxes, or rescind existing statutes. Furthermore, under the act, monarchs were prohibited from interfering with Parliament's core legislative functions. The act prohibited monarchs from manipulating the election of the House of Commons or prosecuting members for statements made during open debate. The Declaration of Independence, which provides the moral justification for a political separation from England, echoes Parliament's complaints against the Stuart monarchs.