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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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1712. CONSTITUTION (French), Amendments contemplated.—
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3 occurrences of jefferson cyclopedia
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1712. CONSTITUTION (French), Amendments contemplated.—

No plan [of a
constitution] is yet reported; but the leading
members [of the National Assembly] (with
some small differences of opinion) have in
contemplation the following: The Executive
power in a hereditary King, with a negative on
laws, and power to dissolve the legislature; to
be considerably restrained in the making of
treaties, and limited in his expenses. The Legislative
is a House of Representatives. They
propose a Senate also, chosen on the plan of
our Federal Senate by the Provincial Assemblies,
but to be for life, of a certain age (they
talk of forty years), and certain wealth (four
or five hundred guineas a year), but to have
no other power against the laws but to remonstrate
against them to the Representatives, who
will then determine their fate by a simple majority.
This, you will readily perceive, is a
mere council of revision, like that of New York,
which, in order to be something, must form an
alliance with the King, to avail themselves of
his veto. The alliance will be useful to both,
and to the nation. The Representatives to be
chosen every two or three years. The Judiciary
system is less prepared than any other part of
the plan; however, they will abolish the parliaments,
and establish an order of judges and
justices, general and provincial, a good deal
like ours, with trial by jury in criminal cases
certainly, perhaps also in civil. The provinces
will have Assemblies for their provincial government,
and the cities a municipal body for
municipal government, all founded on the basis
of popular election. These subordinate governments,
though completely dependent on the
general one, will be entrusted with almost the
whole of the details which our State governments
exercise. They will have their own judiciary,
final in all but great cases; the Executive
business will principally pass through their
hands, and a certain local legislature will be
allowed them. In short, ours has been professedly
their model, in which such changes
are made as a difference of circumstances rendered
necessary, and some others, neither necessary
nor advantageous, but into which men will
ever run, when versed in theory and new in the


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practice of government, when acquainted with
man only as they see him in their books, and not
in the world.—
To James Madison. Washington ed. iii, 97. Ford ed., v, 108.
(P. Aug. 1789)