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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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7500. REVOLUTION (French), American revolution and.—
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7500. REVOLUTION (French), American revolution and.—

Celebrated writers of
France and England had already sketched good
principles on the subject of government; yet
the American Revolution seems first to have
awakened the thinking part of the French nation
in general from the sleep of despotism in
which they were sunk. The officers, too, who
had been to America, were mostly young men,
less shackled by habit and prejudice, and more
ready to assent to the suggestions of common
sense, and feeling of common rights, than
others. They came back with new ideas and
impressions. The press, notwithstanding its
shackles, began to disseminate them; conversation
assumed new freedoms. Politics became
the theme of all societies, male and female,
and a very extensive and zealous party was
formed, which acquired the appellation of the
Patriotic Party, who, sensible of the abusive
government under which they lived, sighed for
occasions of reforming it. This party comprehended
all the honesty of the kingdom, sufficiently
at leisure to think, the men of letters,
the easy Bourgeois, the young nobility, partly
from reflection, partly from mode; for these
sentiments became matter of mode, and as such,
united most of the young women to the party.—
Autobiography. Washington ed. i, 69. Ford ed., i, 96.