University of Virginia Library

7299. REPUBLIC, Definition of.—[further continued].

On this view of the import
of the term republic, instead of saying,
as has been said, “that it may mean anything
or nothing”, we may say with truth and
meaning, that governments are more or less
republican, as they have more or less of the
element of popular election and control in
their composition; and believing, as I do, that
the mass of the citizens is the safest depositary
of their own rights, and especially, that
the evils flowing from the duperies of the
people are less injurious than those from the
egoism of their agents, I am a friend to that
composition of government which has in it
the most of this ingredient. And I sincerely
believe * * * that banking establishments
are more dangerous than standing armies;
and that the principle of spending money to
be paid by posterity, under the name of funding,
is but swindling futurity on a large
To John Taylor. Washington ed. vi, 608. Ford ed., x, 31.
(M. 1816)