What Is a Medieval Charter?

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A medieval charter is the ancient equivalent of a modern-day will or deed. These charters recorded property, rights and grants. Medieval charters are very detailed. They help present-day historians discern familial relationships and customs of that time period and can shed light on language differences, depending on the age.

There are several different kinds of modern charters, all with similar meanings to the original medieval charter. The institutional charter is generally reserved for educational institutions. The congressional charter is employed by the U.S. Congress concerning the purpose of a group, and the municipal charter is used by state governments and other local governing bodies to state objectives and responsibilities.