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Iconic Magna Carta is 807 years old on 15th June. And it’s worth remembering that legal translation as we know it in the 21st century might never have existed without the medieval ‘Great Charter’.

Why’s that? Because the UK legal system, plus legal systems all over the world, might not be what they are today, if this historic power shift away from absolute monarchy hadn’t been drawn up and agreed back then.

The UK Parliament explains, Magna Carta… was the first document to put into writing the principle that the king and his government was not above the law. It sought to prevent the king from exploiting his power, and placed limits of royal authority by establishing law as a power in itself. 

“Although the idea of England as a community with a law of the land independent of the will of the king was implicit in custom before 1215, Magna Carta gave this concept its first clear expression in writing.”

You’d probably need legal translation if you were to try and read a copy of Magna Carta now. It was written in Latin, for consumption by a hierarchy that generally spoke English, French and Latin fluently.

But unsurprisingly, legal translation is more commonly needed in the offices of contemporary Solicitors these days for a spectrum of other documentation.

Examples of Legal Translation Requirements in 2022 

Legal translation services are available to law firms with language barriers to overcome, (not usually for Latin, we hasten to add!). They can be used for a broad range of quick and routine jobs, to more long-winded and complex assignments. For example –

  • Routine Legal Translation – Documents like birth, death and marriage certificates
  • Complex Legal Translation – Lengthier and more gruelling contracts, court papers and witness statements


At Accutranslate, we regularly provide expert, reliable and confidential legal translations to a range of top law firms in Manchester and further afield. Get in touch if you need help, too, on –

Magna Carta, UK Parliament