17th century English activist, advocate of "freeborn" rights and of a written constitution


John Lilburne - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"John Lilburne (1614?-August 29, 1657), also known as Freeborn John, was an Agitator in England before, during and after the English Civil Wars of 1642-1650. In his early life he was a Puritan, though towards the end of his life he became a Quaker. His works have been cited in opinions by the United States Supreme Court. ..."


1614, in Greenwich, England


29 Aug 1657, in Eltham, Kent, England


Freeborn John Lilburne 1615-57
British Civil Wars, Commonwealth and Protectorate, 1638-60
John Lilburne
Spartacus Educational


The Bill of Rights, by Hugo Lafayette Black, New York University Law Review, Apr 1960
Relates background stories that led to adoption of the Bill of Rights, including John Lilburne and religious persecution in colonial America
"John Lilburne, a Puritan dissenter, ... found out the hard way that a citizen of England could not get a court and jury trial under English law if Parliament wanted to try and punish him in some kind of summary and unfair method of its own. ... His chief defense was that the Parliamentary conviction was a nullity ..."
Related Topic: U.S. Bill of Rights


An Agreement of the Free People of England: Tendered as a Peace-Offering to this distressed Nation, 1 May 1649
"We the free People of England, ... Agree to ascertain our Government, to abolish all arbitrary Power, and to set bounds and limits both to our Supreme, and all Subordinate Authority ... we are agreed ... That the Supreme Authority ... shall be and reside henceforward in a Representative of the People consisting of four hundred persons, but no more ..."
Related Topic: England