James Madison


James Madison Quotes

  • ''What is the structure of government that will best guard against the precipitate counsels and factious combinations for unjust purposes, without a sacrifice of the fundamental principle of republicanism?''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. "Majority Governments" (1833). The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 525, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
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  • ''Any reading not of a vicious species must be a good substitute for the amusements too apt to fill up the leisure of the labouring classes.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Madison to W.T. Barry, August 4, 1822. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 444, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''Learned institutions ought to be favorite objects with every free people. They throw light over the public mind which is the best security against crafty and dangerous encroachments on the public liberty.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Madison to W.T. Barry, August 4, 1822. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 438, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''It is due to justice; due to humanity; due to truth; to the sympathies of our nature; in fine, to our character as a people, both abroad and at home, that they should be considered, as much as possible, in the light of human beings, and not as mere property.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Speaking of the slaves in Virginia. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 514, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''Whenever a youth is ascertained to possess talents meriting an education which his parents cannot afford, he should be carried forward at the public expense.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Madison to W.T. Barry, August 4, 1822. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 439, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''A popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Madison to W.T. Barry, August 4, 1822. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 437, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''What spectacle can be more edifying or more seasonable, than that of Liberty and Learning, each leaning on the other for their mutual and surest support?''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Madison to W.T. Barry, August 4, 1822. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 440, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''It is certain that every class is interested in [educational] establishments which give to the human mind its highest improvements, and to every Country its truest and most durable celebrity.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Madison to W.T. Barry, August 4, 1822. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 438, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''In republics, the great danger is, that the majority may not sufficiently respect the rights of the minority.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Speech at the Virginia Convention, 1829. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 512, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).
  • ''The essence of government is power, and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse.''
    James Madison (1751-1836), U.S. president. Speech at the Virginia Convention, 1829. The Mind of the Founder: Sources of the Political Thought of James Madison, p. 512, ed. Marvin Meyers, Indianapolis (1973).

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