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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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8901. WAR, Paroles.—
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8901. WAR, Paroles.—

By the law of nations,
a breach of parole can only be punished
by strict confinement. No usage has permitted
the putting to death a prisoner for this
cause. I would willingly suppose that no
British officer had ever expressed a contrary
purpose. It has, however, become my duty
to declare that should such a threat be carried
into execution, it will be deemed as putting
prisoners to death in cold blood, and shall be
followed by the execution of so many British
prisoners in our possession. I trust, however,
that this horrid necessity will not be introduced
by you, and that you will, on the contrary,
concur with us in endeavoring, as far
as possible, to alleviate the inevitable miseries
of war by treating captives as humanity and
natural honor require. The event of this contest
will hardly be affected by the fate of a
few miserable captives in war. [507]
Ford ed., ii, 511.
(R. March. 1781)


Addressed “To the Commanding Officer of the
British Force at Portsmouth”. That officer was
Major-General Benedict Arnold.—Editor.