Extract from Thomas Jefferson’s First Inaugural Address

All too will bear in mind this sacred principle, that though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will, to be rightful, must be reasonable; that the minority possess their equal rights, which equal laws must protect, and to violate would be oppression.

MS (DLC 110: 18836–7). Transcription based on text published in Washington National Intelligencer, 4 Mar. 1801, and Jefferson’s manuscript (DLC 110: 18836–7). Published in PTJ, 33:134–52.
Date Range
March 4, 1801
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