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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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7815. SENATE (United States), John Adams's opinions.—[continued].
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7815. SENATE (United States), John Adams's opinions.—[continued].

President Adams and I
got on the Constitution; and in the course of
our conversation he said, that no republic
could ever last which had not a Senate, and a
Senate deeply and strongly rooted, strong
enough to bear up against all popular storms
and passions; that he thought our Senate as
well constituted as it could have been, being
chosen by the Legislatures; for if these could
not support them, he did not know what
could do it; that perhaps it might have been
as well for them to be chosen by the State
at large, as that would insure a choice of distinguished
men, since none but such could be
known to a whole people; that the only fault
in our Senate was that it was not durable
enough, that, hitherto, it had behaved very
well; however, he was afraid they would give
way in the end. That as to trusting to a
popular assembly for the preservation of our
liberties, it was the merest chimera imaginable;
they never had any rule of decision
but their own will, that he would as lieve be
again in the hands of our old committees of
safety, who made the law and executed it at
the same time; that it had been observed by
some writer * * * that anarchy did more
mischief in one night than tyranny in an age;
and that in modern times we might say with
truth, that in France, anarchy had done more
harm in one night, than all the despotism of
their kings had ever done in twenty or thirty
years. The point in which he views our
Senate, as the Colossus of the Constitution,
serves as a key to the politics of the Senate,
who are two-thirds of them in his sentiments,
and accounts for the bold line of conduct they
The Anas. Washington ed. ix, 189. Ford ed., i, 277.
(Nov. 1798)