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TOPIC: Liberty Quotes

Quotes:


"Posterity! you will never know how much it cost the present generation to preserve your freedom! I hope you will make a good use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in Heaven that I ever took half the pains to preserve it."

Source: A letter to Abigail Adams; Philadelphia, Saturday evening, 26 April, 1777
Author: Adams, John
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We, when mounting the stage of existence, found ourselves the legal inheritors of these fundamental blessings. We toiled not in the acquirement or establishment of them--they are a legacy bequeathed us, by a once hardy, brave, and patriotic, but now lamented and departed race of ancestors. Theirs was the task (and nobly they performed it) [was] to possess themselves, and through themselves, us, of this goodly land; and to uprear upon its hills and its valleys, a political edifice of liberty and equal rights; 'tis ours only, to transmit these, the former, unprofaned by the foot of an invader; the latter, undecayed by the lapse of time and untorn by usurpation, to the latest generation that fate shall permit the world to know.
This task of gratitude to our fathers, justice to ourselves, duty to posterity, and love for our species in general, all imperatively require us faithfully to perform.
How then shall we perform it? At what point shall we expect the approach of danger? By what means shall we fortify against it? Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never!--All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest; with a Buonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a thousand years.
At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide."

Source: The Perpetuation of Our Political Institutions: Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois January 27, 1838 (Spelling is as in address)
Author: Lincoln, Abraham
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"Wear none of thine own chains; but keep free, whilst thou art free."

Source: Some Fruits of Solitude, vrs 189 (1693)
Author: Penn, William
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"The truth is, all might be free if they valued freedom, and defended it as they ought."

Source: Article in the Boston Gazette, October 14, 1771
Author: Adams, Samuel
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"If men through fear, fraud or mistake, should in terms renounce and give up any essential natural right, the eternal law of reason and the great end of society, would absolutely vacate such renunciation; the right to freedom being the gift of God Almighty, it is not in the power of Man to alienate this gift, and voluntarily become a slave."

Source: The Rights of the Colonists; The Report of the Committee of Correspondence to the Boston Town Meeting, Nov. 20, 1772
Author: Adams, Samuel
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"The natural liberty of man is to be free from any superior power on earth, and not to be under the will or legislative authority of man, but only to have the law of nature for his rule."

Source: The Rights of the Colonists; The Report of the Committee of Correspondence to the Boston Town Meeting, Nov. 20, 1772
Author: Adams, Samuel
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"Among the natural rights of the Colonists are these: First, a right to life; Secondly, to liberty; Thirdly, to property; together with the right to support and defend them in the best manner they can. These are evident branches of, rather than deductions from, the duty of self-preservation, commonly called the first law of nature."

Source: The Rights of the Colonists; The Report of the Committee of Correspondence to the Boston Town Meeting, Nov. 20, 1772
Author: Adams, Samuel
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"All men have a right to remain in a state of nature as long as they please; and in case of intolerable oppression, civil or religious, to leave the society they belong to, and enter into another."

Source: The Rights of the Colonists; he Report of the Committee of Correspondence to the Boston Town Meeting, Nov. 20, 1772
Author: Adams, Samuel
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"Men must be ready, they must pride themselves and be happy to sacrifice their private pleasures, passions and interests, nay, their private friendships and dearest connections, when they stand in competition with the rights of society."

Source: Letter to Mercy Warren, April 16, 1776
Author: Adams, John
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"Without Freedom of Thought, there can be no such Thing as Wisdom; and no such Thing as publick Liberty, without Freedom of Speech; which is the Right of every Man, as far as by it, he does not hurt or controul the Right of another: And this is the only Check it ought to suffer, and the only Bounds it ought to know.
This sacred Privilege is so essential to free Goverments, that the Security of Property, and the Freedom of Speech always go together; and in those wretched Countries where a Man cannot call his Tongue his own, he can scarce call any Thing else his own. Whoever would overthrow the Liberty of a Nation, must begin by subduing the Freeness of Speech; a Thing terrible to Publick Traytors."

Source: Silence Dogood (letter), No. 8 Thu, Jul 9, 1722 (Printed in The New-England Courant) quoted as written.
Author: Franklin, Benjamin
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"That Men ought to speak well of their Governours is true, while their Governours deserve to be well spoken of; but to do publick Mischief, without hearing of it, is only the Prerogative and Felicity of Tyranny: A free People will be shewing that they are so, by their Freedom of Speech."

Source: Silence Dogood (letter), No. 8 Thu, Jul 9, 1722 (Printed in The New-England Courant)
Author: Franklin, Benjamin
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"Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote freedom to err and even to sin. If God Almighty has given the humblest of His creatures the freedom to err, it passes my comprehension how human beings, be they ever so experienced and able, can delight in depriving other human Beings of that precious right."

Source: Young India (English weekly journal) Dec. 3, 1931 Pg. 31 (Edited by Gandhiji)
Author: Gandhi, Mohandas
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"It is my certain conviction that no man loses his freedom except through his own weakness."

Source: India's case for Swaraj by Mahatma Gandhi, Edited by W. P. Kabadi: Yeshanand &Co., Bombay, 1932; Pg. 209
Author: Gandhi, Mohandas
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"Many politicians of our time are in the habit of laying it down as a self-evident proposition that no people ought to be free till they are fit to use their freedom. The maxim is worthy of the fool in the old story who resolved not to go into the water till he had learnt to swim. If men are to wait for liberty till they become wise and good in slavery, they may indeed wait forever."

Source: Essay on Milton, Edinburgh Review August 1825, pg. 333
Author: Macaulay, Thomas
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