John AdamsJohn Adams, (1735-1826) Founding Father, 2nd US President

John Adams Quote

“If Aristotle, Livy, and Harrington knew what a republic was, the British constitution is much more like a republic than an empire. They define a republic to be a government of laws, and not of men. If this definition is just, the British constitution is nothing more or less than a republic, in which the king is first magistrate. This office being hereditary, and being possessed of such ample and splendid prerogatives, is no objection to the government's being a republic, as long as it is bound by fixed laws, which the people have a voice in making, and a right to defend.”

John AdamsJohn Adams
~ John Adams

Novanglus, in Boston Gazette, 6Mar1775, Adams Papers, V II, p. 314

Ratings and Comments

Klacee Klaver, Carl Junction MO

i think this is a great quote that tells what I need for the competition!

  • Reply
Sneha    1/6/07

extremely huge .too big long

Me Again
  • Reply
Me Again    8/28/07


helorat, Milton

I guess he finally figured out he was mistaken, it just took awhile.

Mike, Norwalk

A good observation of the principle, missed the actual application.

E Archer, NYC

It just goes to show the many varying definitions of a republic -- even among the founders.


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