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Letter: a response to Linda Colley on constitutions

This is a response to Linda Colley’s article in the May issue of Prospect

The case for an unwritten constitution gets rather short shrift from Professor Colley, who points out that between 1720 and 1820 there was something of a boom in written constitutions, and that persisted as unified new nations were constructed, such as Germany and Italy, or as former colonies became independent states. What she does not say is how many of those new written constitutions were abandoned, discarded or twisted into shapes their creators would not have recognised.

England’s unwritten constitution was built on a framework of…

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