University of Virginia Library

3493. GOVERNMENT, Despotic.—

the powers of government, legislative, executive


Page 386
and judiciary, result to the legislative body[under the first Virginia Constitution].
The concentrating these in the same hands is
precisely the definition of despotic government.
It will be no alleviation that these
powers will be exercised by a plurality of
hands, and not by a single one. One hundred
and seventy-three despots would surely
be as oppressive as one. Let those who doubt
it turn their eyes on the Republic of Venice.—
Notes on Virginia. Washington ed. viii, 361. Ford ed., iii, 223.