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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.;

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2655. ENGLAND, Jefferson and.—[further continued] .
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2655. ENGLAND, Jefferson and.—[further continued] .

The English newspapers
suppose me the personal enemy of their
nation. I am not so. I am the enemy to its
injuries, as I am to those of France. If I
could permit myself to have national partialities,
and if the conduct of England would
have permitted them to be directed towards
her, they would have been so. * * * Had
I been personally hostile to England, and
biased in favor of either the character or
views of her great antagonist, the affair of
the Chesapeake put war into my hand. I
had only to open it and let havoc loose. But
if ever I was gratified with the possession of
power, and of the confidence of those who had
entrusted me with it, it was on that occasion
when I was enabled to use both for the pre


Page 302
vention of war, towards which the torrent of
passion here was directed almost irresistibly,
and when not another person in the United
States, less supported by authority and favor,
could have resisted it. And now that a definitive
adherence to her impressments and Orders
of Council renders war no longer unavoidable,
my earnest prayer is that our government
may enter into no compact of common
cause with the other belligerent, but keep
us free to make a separate peace, whenever
England will separately give us peace and future
security. But Lord Liverpool is our witness
that this can never be but by her removal
from our neighborhood.—
To James Maury. Washington ed. vi, 53. Ford ed., ix, 349.
(M. April. 1812)