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The Jeffersonian cyclopedia;

a comprehensive collection of the views of Thomas Jefferson classified and arranged in alphabetical order under nine thousand titles relating to government, politics, law, education, political economy, finance, science, art, literature, religious freedom, morals, etc.;
3 occurrences of jefferson cyclopedia
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1135. CAPITOL (United States), Wisdom of Inscription.—
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3 occurrences of jefferson cyclopedia
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1135. CAPITOL (United States), Wisdom of Inscription.—

But a question of more importance is whether there should be
one at all? The barbarism of the conflagration
will immortalize that of the
nation. It will place them forever in
degraded comparison with the execrated
Bonaparte, who, in possession of almost
every capitol in Europe, injured no one. Of
this, history will take care, which all will
read, while our inscription will be seen by
few. Great Britain, in her pride and ascendancy,
has certainly hated and despised us beyond
every earthly object. Her hatred May
remain, but the hour of her contempt
is passed and is succeeded by dread; not a
present, but a deep and distant one. It is the
greater as she feels herself plunged into an
abyss of ruin from which no human means
point out an issue. We have also more reason
to hate her than any nation on earth. But
she is not now an object for hatred. She is
falling from her transcendant sphere, which
all men ought to have wished, but not that
she should lose all place among nations. It
is for the interest of all that she should be
maintained nearly on a par with other members
of the republic of nations. Her power
absorbed into that of any other, would be an
object of dread to all, and to us more than
all, because we are accessible to her alone and
through her alone. The armies of Bonaparte
with the fleets of Britain would change the
aspect of our destinies. Under these circum


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stances should we perpetuate hatred against
her? Should we not, on the contrary, begin
to open ourselves to other and more rational
dispositions? It is not improbable that the
circumstances of the war [1812] and her own
circumstances may have brought her wise men
to begin to view us with other and even with
kindred eyes. Should not our wise men, then,
lifted above the passions of the ordinary citizen,
begin to contemplate what will be the
interests of our country on so important a
change among the elements which influence
it? I think it would be better to give her
time to show her present temper, and to prepare
the minds of our citizens for a corresponding
change of disposition, by acts of
comity towards England rather than by commemoration
of hatred. These views might be
greatly extended. Perhaps, however, they are
premature, and that I may see the ruin of
England nearer than it really is. This will be
matter of consideration with those to whose
councils we have committed ourselves, and
whose wisdom, I am sure, will conclude on
what is best. Perhaps they may let it go off
on the single and short consideration that the
thing can do no good, and may do harm.—
To James Monroe. Washington ed. vii, 42. Ford ed., x, 66.
(M. 1816)

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