Thomas Jefferson Quotes & Wallpapers

Thomas Jefferson
Total Quotes: 2107


If you want something you've never had, you must be willing to do something you've never done. Thomas Jefferson
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Nobody can acquire honor by doing what is wrong. Thomas Jefferson
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Man was destined for society. His morality, therefore, was to be formed to this object. He was endowed with a sense of right and wrong merely relative to this. This sense is as much a part of his nature, as the sense of hearing, seeing, feeling; it is the true foundation of morality.... The moral sense, or conscience, is as much a part of man as his leg or arm. It is given to all human beings in a stronger or weaker degree, as force of members is given them in a greater or less degree. It may be strengthened by exercise, as may any particular limb of the body. Thomas Jefferson
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It look like the lord just work for wite folks cause ever sens i wasn nothin but a litle boy i been on my on haulin water to the fiel on that ol water cart wit all them dime bukets an that dipper just hittin an old dorthy just trottin and trottin an me up their hittin her wit that rope... Thomas Jefferson
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Planting is one of my great amusements, and even of those things which can only be for posterity, for a Septuagenary has no right to count on any thing but annuals. Thomas Jefferson
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It may be regarded as certain that not a foot of land will ever be taken from the Indians without their own consent. Thomas Jefferson
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The greatest good we can do our country is to heal its party divisions and make them one people. Thomas Jefferson
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I love peace, and am anxious that we should give the world still another useful lesson, by showing to them other modes of punishing injuries than by war, which is as much a punishment to the punisher as to the sufferer. Thomas Jefferson
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The failure of one thing is repaired by the success of another. Thomas Jefferson
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Independence can be trusted nowhere but with the people in mass. They are inherently independent of all but moral law. Thomas Jefferson
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The same prudence which in private life would forbid our paying our own money for unexplained projects, forbids it in the dispensation of the public moneys. Thomas Jefferson
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I suppose, indeed, that in public life, a man whose political principles have any decided character and who has energy enough to give them effect must always expect to encounter political hostility from those of adverse principles. Thomas Jefferson
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The natural aristocracy I consider as the most precious gift of nature for the instruction, the trusts, and government of society. And indeed it would have been inconsistent in creation to have formed man for the social state, and not to have provided virtue and wisdom enough to manage the concerns of the society. May we not even say that that form of government is the best which provides the most - for a pure selection of these natural aristoi into the offices of government? Thomas Jefferson
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It would reduce the whole instrument to a single phrase, that of instituting a Congress with power to do whatever would be for the good of the United States; and as they would be the sole judges of the good or evil, it would be also a power to do whatever evil they please . . . . Certainly no such universal power was meant to be given them. It [the Constitution] was intended to lace them up straightly within the enumerated powers and those without which, as means, these powers could not be carried into effect. Thomas Jefferson
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The example of changing a constitution by assembling the wise men of the state, instead of assembling armies, will be worth as much to the world as the former examples we had give them. The constitution, too, which was the result of our deliberation, is unquestionably the wisest ever yet presented to men. Thomas Jefferson
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During the course of administration, and in order to disturb it, the artillery of the press has been levelled against us, charged with whatsoever its licentiousness could devise or dare. These abuses of an institution so important to freedom and science are deeply to be regretted, inasmuch as they tend to lessen its usefulness and to sap its safety. Thomas Jefferson
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He who is permitted by law to have no property of his own, can with difficulty conceive that property is founded in anything but force. Thomas Jefferson
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I could think of no worse example for nations abroad, who for the first time were trying to put free electoral procedures into effect, than that of the United States wrangling over the results of our presidential election, and even suggesting that the presidency itself could be stolen by thievery at the ballot box. Thomas Jefferson
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Nothing can now be believed which is seen in a newspaper. Truth itself becomes suspicious by being put into that polluted vehicle. Thomas Jefferson
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I wish it were possible to obtain a single amendment to our Constitution. I would be willing to depend on that alone for the reduction of the administration of our government; I mean an additional article taking from the Federal Government the power of borrowing. Thomas Jefferson
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The two enemies of the people are criminals and government, so let us tie the second down with the chains of the Constitution so the second will not become the legalized version of the first. Thomas Jefferson
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with respect to the distribution of your time the following is what I should approve. from 8. to 10 o'clock practise music. from 10. to 1. dance one day & draw another. from 1. to 2. draw on the day you dance, and write a letter next day. from 3. to 4. read French. from 4. to 5. exercise... Thomas Jefferson
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Cultivators of the earth are the most valuable citizens. They are the most vigorous, the most independent, the most virtuous and they are tied to their country and wedded to its liberty and interests by the most lasting bands. Thomas Jefferson
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I find the pain of a little censure, even when it is unfounded, is more acute than the pleasure of much praise. Thomas Jefferson
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Where the preamble declares, that coercion is a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, an amendment was proposed by inserting "Jesus Christ," so that it would read "A departure from the plan of Jesus Christ, the holy author of our religion;" the insertion was rejected by the great majority, in proof that they meant to comprehend, within the mantle of its protection, the Jew and the Gentile, the Christian and Mohammedan, the Hindoo and Infidel of every denomination. Thomas Jefferson
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Let us, then, fellow citizens, unite with one heart and one mind. Let us restore to social intercourse that harmony and affection without which liberty and even life itself are but dreary things. And let us reflect that having banished from our land that religious intolerance under which mankind so long bled, we have yet gained little if we counternance a political intolerance as despotic, as wicked, and capable of a bitter and bloody persecutions. Thomas Jefferson
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Civil officials have no business meddling in private religious affairs. Thomas Jefferson
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The merchants will manage [commerce] the better, the more they are left free to manage for themselves. Thomas Jefferson
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No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is, therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions. Thomas Jefferson
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I... [am] convinced [man] has no natural right in opposition to his social duties. Thomas Jefferson
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The man who loves his country on its own account, and not merely for its trappings of interest or power, can never be divorced for it, can never refuse to come forward when he finds that she is engaged in dangers which he has the means of warding off. Thomas Jefferson
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Most codes extend their definitions of treason to acts not really against one's country. They do not distinguish between acts against the government, and acts against the oppressions of the government. The latter are virtues, yet have furnished more victims to the executioner than the former. Real treasons are rare; oppressions frequent. The unsuccessful strugglers against tyranny have been the chief martyrs of treason laws in all countries. Thomas Jefferson
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A government regulating itself by what is wise and just for the many, uninfluenced by the local and selfish views of the few who direct their affairs, has not been seen, perhaps, on earth. Or if it existed for a moment at the birth of ours, it would not be easy to fix the term of its continuance. Still, I believe it does exist here in a greater degree than anywhere else; and for its growth and continuance... I offer sincere prayers. Thomas Jefferson
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A free government is of all others the most energetic. Thomas Jefferson
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But every difference of opinion is not a difference of principle. Thomas Jefferson
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I am a real Christian - that is to say, a disciple of the doctrines of Jesus Christ. Thomas Jefferson
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The two principles on which our conduct towards the Indians should be founded are justice and fear. After the injuries we have done them, they cannot love us. Thomas Jefferson
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It is better to tolerate the rare instance of a parent refusing to let his child be educated, than to shock the common feelings and ideas by forcible asportation and education of the infant against the will of the father. Thomas Jefferson
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The executive, in our government is not the sole, it is scarcely the principle, object of my jealousy. The tyranny of the legislature is the most formidable dread at present and will be for many years. That of the executive will come in its turn, but it will be at a remote period. Thomas Jefferson
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Equal and exact justice to all men, of whatever state or persuasion. Thomas Jefferson
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Nothing is more certainly written in the book of fate than that these people are to be free. Nor is it less certain that the two races, equally free, cannot live in the same government. Nature, habit, opinion has drawn indelible lines of distinction between them. Thomas Jefferson
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I have sometimes asked myself whether my country is the better for my having lived at all? I do not know that it is. I have been the instrument of doing the following things; but they would have been done by others; some of them, perhaps, a little better. Thomas Jefferson
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Lake George is without comparison, the most beautiful water I ever saw; formed by a contour of mountains into a basin... finely interspersed with islands, its water limpid as crystal, and the mountain sides covered with rich groves... down to the water-edge: here and there precipices of rock to checker the scene and save it from monotony. Thomas Jefferson
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The idea is quite unfounded that on entering into society we give up any natural rights. Thomas Jefferson
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The human character, we believe, requires in general constant and immediate control to prevent its being biased from right by the seductions of self-love. Thomas Jefferson
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The general (federal) government will tend to monarchy, which will fortify itself from day to day, instead of working its own cures. Thomas Jefferson
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The law of self-preservation is higher than written law. Thomas Jefferson
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Music furnishes a delightful recreation for the hours of respite from the cares of the day, and lasts us through life. Thomas Jefferson
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The worst day in a man's life is when he sits down and begins thinking about how he can get something for nothing. Thomas Jefferson
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The people of every country are the only safe guardians of their own rights. Thomas Jefferson
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I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend. Thomas Jefferson
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I am an Epicurean. I consider the genuine (not the imputed) doctrines of Epicurus as containing everything rational in moral philosophy which Greek and Roman leave to us. Thomas Jefferson
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That government is the strongest of which every man feels himself a part. Thomas Jefferson
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It is in our lives and not our words that our religion must be read. Thomas Jefferson
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We are not to expect to be translated from despotism to liberty in a featherbed. Thomas Jefferson
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It is more dangerous that even a guilty person should be punished without the forms of law than that he should escape. Thomas Jefferson
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An injured friend is the bitterest of foes. Thomas Jefferson
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Taste cannot be controlled by law. Thomas Jefferson
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I am not fully informed of the practices at Harvard, but there is one from which we shall certainly vary, although it has been copied, I believe, by nearly every college and academy in the United States. That is, the holding the students all to one prescribed course of reading, and disallowing exclusive application to those branches only which are to qualify them for the particular vocations to which they are destined. We shall, on the contrary, allow them uncontrolled choice in the lectures they shall choose to attend, and require elementary qualification only, and sufficient age. Thomas Jefferson
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Though the will of the majority is in all cases to prevail, that will, to be rightful, must be reasonable. Thomas Jefferson
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Having always observed that public works are much less advantageously managed than the same are by private hands, I have thought it better for the public to go to market for whatever it wants which is to be found there; for there competition brings it down to the minimum value. Thomas Jefferson
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If once the people become inattentive to the public affairs, you and I, and Congress and Assemblies, Judges and Governors, shall all become wolves. It seems to be the law of our general nature, in spite of individual exceptions. Thomas Jefferson
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We generally learn languages for the benefit of reading the books written in them Thomas Jefferson
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Our duty to ourselves, to posterity, and to mankind, call on us by every motive which is sacred or honorable, to watch over the safety of our beloved country during the troubles which agitate and convulse the residue of the world, and to sacrifice to that all personal and local considerations. Thomas Jefferson
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Every day is lost in which we do not learn something useful. Man has no nobler or more valuable possession than time. Thomas Jefferson
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The contest is not between us and them, but between good and evil, and if those who would fight evil adopt the ways of evil, evil wins. Thomas Jefferson
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But friendship is precious, not only in the shade, but in the sunshine of life, and thanks to a benevolent arrangement the greater part of life is sunshine. Thomas Jefferson
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Reading, reflection and time have convinced me that the interests of society require the observation of those moral precepts only in which all religions agree (for all forbid us to steal, murder, plunder, or bear false witness), and that we should not intermeddle with the particular dogmas in which all religions differ, and which are totally unconnected with morality. Thomas Jefferson
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never trust a man who won't accept that there is more than one way to spell a word Paraphrased Thomas Jefferson
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A democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine. Thomas Jefferson
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