Latest Issue

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…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect