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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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7751. SECESSION, War with France and.—
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7751. SECESSION, War with France and.—

It is quite impossible when we consider
all the existing circumstances, to find any reason
in its favor [war against France] resulting
from views either of interest or honor, and
plausible enough to impose even on the weakest
mind; and especially, when it would be undertaken
by a majority of one or two only. Whatever,
then, be our stock of charity or liberality,
we must resort to other views. And those so
well known to have been entertained at Annapolis,
and afterwards at the grand [Philadelphia] convention, by a particular set of men,
present themselves as those alone which can
account for so extraordinary a degree of impetuosity.
Perhaps, instead of what was then
in contemplation, a separation of the Union,
which has been so much the topic to the eastward
of late, may be the thing aimed at.—
To James Madison. Washington ed. iv, 222. Ford ed., vii, 220.
(Pa., March. 1798)