Agriculture ... is our wisest pursuit, because it will in the end contribute most to real wealth, good morals & happiness.
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with all the defects of our constitutions, whether general or particular, the comparison of our governments with those of Europe are like a comparison of heaven & hell. England, like the earth, may be allowed to take the intermediate station.
it is really an assembly of demi-gods.
in architecture, painting, sculpture, I found much amusement.
one who loves the arts, must be well disposed to those who practice them.
the Count de Moustier will find the affections of the Americans with France, but their habits with England. chained to that country by circumstances, embracing what they loathe, they realize the fable of the living & dead bound together.
the people can not be all, & always, well informed. the part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. if they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty. we have had 13....
wonderful is the effect of impudent & persevering lying.
I considered the British as our natural enemies, and as the only nation on earth who wished us ill from the bottom of their souls. and I am satisfied that were our continent to be swallowed up by the ocean, Great Britain would be in a bonfire from one end to the other.
a bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth, general or particular, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference.
I think our governments will remain virtuous for many centuries; as long as they are chiefly agricultural; and this will be as long as there shall be vacant lands in any part of America. when they get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, they will become corrupt as in Europe.
as to the new Constitution I find myself nearly a Neutral. there is a great mass of good in it, in a very desireable form: but there is also to me a bitter pill, or two.
Je m’empresse de répondre au désir que tu as la bonté de me témoigner de recevoir tout de suite de mes nouvelles, je suis charmée d’apprendre par la tienne les circonstances qui m’ont privée de la recevoir plutôt, et que ton amitié pour moi n’est pas changée plus que la miene à ton égard, je me...
the people ... are the only sure reliance for the preservation of our liberty.
I thought My Dr Jefferson we had made an agreement to write to each other once every week—just before I left London I wrote you a letter of 5 pages, (therefore you can not complain of its shortness) & have not received any answer whatsoever—I have puzzled my brain for some days past to find...
Abscence my Dr Jef certainly enhances the value of those we love & makes us more anxious for their welfare—since I left Paris I do not remember anything to have afforded me so much real satisfaction as your last letter—I began to be very uneasy at your long silence fearing it might be...
Il mia cara sorella spero che portate béne—surprised really astonished at my own cleverness, you must give me credit my Dr Jef for half a hundred good things I could have said, or more properly speaking wrote in this letter, had I not treasured up all the wit I am mistress of, in one corner of my...
I am really quite ashamed to think that I have received your letter above ten days & have not as yet made you the least answer, but I rely on your goodness for pardon, I assure you my silence did not proceed from neglect; but from want of time & paresse. I cannot be so charitable as you,...
I cannot let pass this opportunity my Dr Jef without just writing you a few lines to hope you are well as I am at present—n’est pas une phraze bien tournée—spirituelle surtout—I recollect you would not believe that now & then people advertize for a wife, to prove the veracity of—I can’t get...
I am More and More pleased with Mr jefferson. His abilities, His Virtues, His temper, Every thing of Him Commands Respect and Attracts Attention. He Enjoys Universal Regard, and does the Affairs of America to perfection it is the Happiest choice that Could Be Made.
Je te prie de recevoir chere jef bien-aimée amie ce petit present je voudrois que ce fût par la main des Graces qu’il tu te fut presenté mais ce ne sont que celles de l’amitié puisse-t-il te faire autant de plaisir que s’il si tu l’eut reçu—par les premieres
the precept however is wise which directs us to ‘try all things, & hold fast that which is good.’
we are now vibrating between too much & too little government, & the pendulum will rest finally in the middle.
you know that nobody wishes more ardently to see an abolition not only of the trade but of the condition of slavery: and certainly nobody will be more willing to encounter every sacrifice for that object.
Mr. Jefferson is in my opinion without exeption the wisest and most amiable man I have seen in Europe.