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Extract from Thomas Jefferson to Edward Carrington, 16 Jan. 1787 [Quote]

I am persuaded myself that the good sense of the people will always be found to be the best army. they may be led astray for a moment, but will soon correct themselves. the people are the only censors of their governors: and even their errors will tend to keep these to the true principles of...

Extract from Thomas Jefferson to Edward Carrington, 16 Jan. 1787 [Quote]

the basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter. but I...

Extract from Thomas Jefferson to Edward Carrington, 16 Jan. 1787 [Quote]

under pretence of governing they have divided their nations into two classes, wolves & sheep. I do not exaggerate. this is a true picture of Europe. cherish therefore the spirit of our people, and keep alive their attention. do not be too severe upon their errors, but reclaim them by...

Extract from Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, 30 Jan. 1787 [Quote]

societies exist under three forms sufficiently distinguishable. 1. without government, as among our Indians. 2. under governments wherein the will of every one has a just influence, as is the case in England in a slight degree, and in our states in a great one. 3. under governments of force: as...

Extract from Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, 20 Dec. 1787 [Quote]

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.

Extract from Thomas Jefferson to Lucy Ludwell Paradise, 1 June 1789 [Quote]

I am much indebted to you for your attention to my commission about the books, and am well pleased that those which went above the prices I noted, were not purchased. sensible that I labour grievously under the malady of Bibliomanie, I submit to the rule of buying only at reasonable prices, as to...

Extract from Thomas Jefferson to James Madison, 6 Sept. 1789 [Quote]

I set out on this ground, which I suppose to be self evident, ‘that the earth belongs in usufruct to the living:’ that the dead have neither powers nor rights over it. the portion occupied by any individual ceases to be his when himself ceases to be, & reverts to the society.

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