John Adams

1735 - 1826

A Quote by John Adams on liberty and mankind

Property is surely a right of mankind as real as liberty.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: Dissertation on the Canon and the Feudal Law, 1765

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A Quote by John Adams

I read my eyes out and can't read half enough. . . . The more one reads the more one sees we have to read.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: letter to Abigail Adams, December 28, 1794.—Adams papers, Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston, Massachusetts.

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A Quote by John Adams on country, death, determination, and survival

The die was now cast; I had passed the Rubicon. Swim or sink, live or die, survive or perish with my country was my unalterable determination.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

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A Quote by John Adams on america, constitution, honor, ignorance, nature, and virtue

All the perplexities, confusions, and distresses in America arise, not from defects in their constitution or confederation, not from a want of honor or virtue, so much as from downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit, and circulation.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: letter to Thomas Jefferson, August 25, 1787.—The Works of John Adams, ed. Charles Francis Adams, vol. 8, p. 447 (1853).

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A Quote by John Adams on life, nature, society, and violence

Resistance to sudden violence, for the preservation not only of my person, my limbs, and life, but of my property, is an indisputable right of nature which I have never surrendered to the public by the compact of society, and which perhaps, I could not surrender if I would.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: John Adams, Boston Gazette, Sept. 5, 1763,reprinted in 3 The Works of John Adams 438 (Charles F. Adams ed., 1851).

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A Quote by John Adams on constitution, government, ideas, laws, men, and work

"A government of laws and not of men." Adams published articles in 1774 in the Boston, Massachusetts, Gazette using the pseudonym "Novanglus." In this paper he credited James Harrington with expressing the idea this way. Harrington described government as "the empire of laws and not of men" in his 1656 work, The Commonwealth of Oceana, p. 35 (1771). The phrase gained wider currency when Adams used it in the Massachusetts Constitution, Bill of Rights, article 30 (1780).-Works, vol. 4, p. 230.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: "Novanglus Papers," no. 7.—The Works of John Adams, ed. Charles Francis Adams, vol. 4, p. 106 (1851).

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A Quote by John Adams on constitution, laws, mind, and order

By the former of these (canon law), the most refined, sublime, extensive, and astonishing constitution of policy that ever was conceived by the mind of man was framed by the Romish clergy for the aggrandizement of their own order.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: Dissertation on the Canon and the Feudal Law, 1765.

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A Quote by John Adams on inventions, laws, passion, and success

Numberless have been the systems of iniquity contrived by the great for the gratification of this passion in themselves; but in none of them were they ever more successful than in the invention and establishment of the canon and the feudal law.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: Dissertation on the Canon and the Feudal Law, 1765.

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A Quote by John Adams on christianity, citizenship, good, and men

This oration will be read five hundred years hence with as much rapture as it was heard. It ought to be read at the end of every century, and indeed at the end of every year, forever and ever. (Regarding: Whatever makes men good Christians, makes them good citizens.)

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: Speech at Plymouth, Dec. 22, 1820.

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A Quote by John Adams on agriculture, architecture, children, history, liberty, mathematics, music, order, painting, philosophy, poetry, politics, sons, study, and war

I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.

John Adams (1735 - 1826)

Source: Letter to Abigail Adams, May 12, 1780.

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