Samuel Adams

Samuel
Adams
1722
1803

American Statesman, Political Philosopher, Pamphleteer, Member of the Continental Congress, One of the Founding Fathers of the United States

Author Quotes

Tyrants alone, says the great Vatel, will treat as seditious, those brave and resolute citizens, who exhort the people to preserve themselves from oppression, in vindication of their rights and privileges...

The restraining us from erecting Stilling Mills for manufacturing our Iron the natural produce of this Country, Is an infringement of that right with which God and nature have invested us, to make use of our skill and industry in procuring the necessaries and conveniences of life.

The sum of all is, if we would most truly enjoy the gift of Heaven, let us become a virtuous people; then shall we both deserve and enjoy it. While on the other hand, if we are universally vicious and debauched in our manners, though the form of our Constitution carries the face of the most exalted freedom, we shall in reality be the most abject slaves.

The supreme power cannot justly take from any man any part of his property, without his consent in person or by his representative? Now what liberty can there be where property is taken away without consent?

The Supreme Ruler of the Universe, having been pleased in the course of His providence to establish the independence of the United States of America?we ought to be led by religious feelings of gratitude and to walk before Him in all humility according to His most holy law.

The truth is, every man in power will be adulated by some sort of men in every country, because he is a man in power.

The Utopian schemes of leveling, and a community of goods, are as visionary and impracticable as those which vest all property in the Crown. [These ideas] are arbitrary, despotic, and, in our government, unconstitutional.

The People here are indeed greatly tenacious of their just Rights & I hope in God they will ever firmly maintain them.

The people of this Province, behold with indignation a lawless army posted in its capital, with a professed design to overturn their free constitution.

The publick Liberty must be preserved though at the Expense of Lives!

The only true basis of all government is the laws of God and nature. For government is an ordinance of Heaven, designed by the all benevolent Creator.

The people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government and to reform, alter, or totally change the same when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it. And the federal Constitution - according to the mode prescribed therein [Article V] - has already undergone such amendments in several parts of it as from experience has been judged necessary.

The People are recollecting the Achievements of their Ancestors and whenever it shall be necessary for them to draw their Swords in the Defence of their Liberties, they will shew themselves to be worthy of such Ancestors.

The necessity of the times, more than ever, calls for our utmost circumspection, deliberation, fortitude, and perseverance.

The nation will at length revert to justice. But before that time comes, it is to be feared they will be so accustomed to bondage, as to forget they were ever free.

The natural liberty of man, by entering into society, is abridged or restrained, so far only as is necessary for the great end of society, the best good of the whole. In the state of nature every man is, under God, judge and sole judge of his own rights and of the injuries done him. By entering into society he agrees to an arbiter or indifferent judge between him and his neighbors; but he no more renounces his original right than by taking a cause out of the ordinary course of law, and leaving the decision to referees or indifferent arbitrators. In the last case, he must pay the referees for time and trouble. He should also be willing to pay his just quota for the support of government, the law, and the constitution; the end of which is to furnish indifferent and impartial judges in all cases that may happen, whether civil, ecclesiastical, marine, or military.

The necessity and importance of a legislative in being, and of its having the opportunity of exerting itself upon all proper occasions, must be obvious to a man of common discernment.

The Man who is conscientiously doing his Duty will ever be protected by that Righteous and all powerful Being, and when he has finished his Work he will receive an ample Reward.

The fears and jealousies of the people are not always groundless: And when they become general, it is not to be presum'd that they are; for the people in general seldom complain, without some good reason.

The first point of justice?consists in piety; nothing certainly being so great a debt upon us as to render to the Creator and Preserver those acknowledgments which are due to Him for our being and the hourly protection He affords us.

The hand of Heaven appears to have led us on to be, perhaps, humble instruments and means in the great providential dispensation, which is completing. We have fled from the political Sodom; let us not look back, lest we perish and become a monument of infamy and derision to the world. For can we ever expect more unanimity and a better preparation for defense; more infatuation of counsel among our enemies, and more valor and zeal among ourselves? The same force and resistance, which are sufficient to procure us our liberties will secure us a glorious independence and support us in the dignity of free, imperial states. We cannot suppose that our opposition has made a corrupt and dissipated nation more friendly to America, or created in them a greater respect for the rights of mankind. We can therefore expect a restoration and establishment of our privileges, and a compensation for the injuries we have received, from their want of power, from their fears, and not from their virtues. The unanimity and valor, which will effect an honorable peace, can render a future contest for our liberties unnecessary. He who has strength to chain down the wolf is a madman if he let him loose without drawing his teeth and paring his nails.

The importance of piety and religion; of industry and frugality; of prudence, economy, regularity and an even government; all? are essential to the well-being of a family.

The Legislative has no right to absolute, arbitrary power over the lives and fortunes of the people; nor can mortals assume a prerogative not only too high for men, but for angels, and therefore reserved for the exercise of the Deity alone.

Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy that did not commit suicide.

Revelation assures us that "Righteousness exalteth a Nation" - Communities are dealt with in this World by the wise and just Ruler of the Universe. He rewards or punishes them according to their general Character. The diminution of publick Virtue is usually attended with that of publick Happiness, and the publick Liberty will not long survive the total Extinction of Morals.

Author Picture
First Name
Samuel
Last Name
Adams
Birth Date
1722
Death Date
1803
Bio

American Statesman, Political Philosopher, Pamphleteer, Member of the Continental Congress, One of the Founding Fathers of the United States