Thomas Jefferson

(1743-1826 / Shadwell, Virginia)

Thomas Jefferson Quotes

  • ''It was one of the rules which above all others made Doctr. Franklin the most amiable man in society, "never to contradict any body."''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, November 24, 1808, to his grandson, Thomas Jefferson Randolph. The Family Letters of Thomas Jefferson, p. 364, eds. E.M. Betts and J.A. Bear, Jr. (1966).
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  • ''Nothing is so engaging as the little domestic cares into which you appear to be entering, and as to reading it is useful for only filling up the chinks of more useful and healthy occupations.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, February 2, 1791, to his daughter, Martha Jefferson Randolph. The Family Letters of Thomas Jefferson, p. 71, eds. E.M. Betts and J.A. Bear, Jr. (1966).
  • ''I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than those attending too small a degree of it.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, December 23, 1791, to Archibald Stuart. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, vol. 22, p. 436, ed. Julian P. Boyd, et al. (1950).
  • ''The bloom of Monticello is chilled by my solitude.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, March 27, 1797, to his daughter, Martha Jefferson Randolph. The Family Letters of Thomas Jefferson, p. 142, eds. E.M. Betts and J.A. Bear, Jr. (1966).
  • ''If we are made in some degree for others, yet in a greater are we made for ourselves.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, May 20, 1782, to James Monroe. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, vol. 6, p. 185, ed. Julian P. Boyd, et al. (1950). Written, in the midst of controversy, following his decision not to serve again as governor of Virginia.
  • ''We mean to exhibit ourselves here on New Year's day in homespun [clothing].''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, December 19, 1808, to his grandson, Thomas Jefferson Randolph. The Family Letters of Thomas Jefferson, p. 372, eds. E.M. Betts and J.A. Bear, Jr. (1966).
  • ''You will perceive by my preaching that I am growing old: it is the privilege of years, and I am sure you will pardon it from the purity of it's motives.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, November 25, 1785, to Thomas Mann Randolph. The Papers of Thomas Jefferson, vol. 9, p. 60, ed. Julian P. Boyd, et al. (1950).
  • ''Tranquility is the old man's milk.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, June 24, 1797.
  • ''There is not a single crowned head in Europe whose talents or merit would entitle him to be elected a vestryman by the people of any parish in America.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, May 2, 1788, to George Washington, from Paris.
  • ''Exercise and application produce order in our affairs, health of body, cheerfulness of mind, and these make us precious to our friends.''
    Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826), U.S. president. Letter, March 28, 1787, to his daughter, Martha Jefferson. The Family Letters of Thomas Jefferson, p. 34, eds. E.M. Betts and J.A. Bear, Jr. (1966).

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