Thomas Jefferson

About Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson (April 13, 1743 – July 4, 1826) was an American founding father, the principal author of the Declaration of Independence, and the third President of the United States.

Ten Rules for Good Living

By |2019-04-12T21:58:57-05:00April 12th, 2019|

Editor's Note: Thomas Jefferson wrote several lists of advice about the virtuous life to his children, grandchildren, and the children of friends. The final list, which he called "A Decalogue of Canons for observation in practical life," was sent during his retirement years from his beloved home of Monticello to Thomas Jefferson Smith, the son [...]

Natural Aristocracy

By |2019-04-18T11:18:24-05:00May 1st, 2018|

For I agree with you that there is a natural aristocracy among men. The grounds of this are virtue and talents. Formerly bodily powers gave place among the aristoi. But since the invention of gunpowder has armed the weak as well as the strong with missile death, bodily strength, like beauty, good humor, politeness and [...]

Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom

By |2019-03-26T14:35:46-05:00January 16th, 2018|

Editor’s Note: Thomas Jefferson considered his authorship of the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom one of his three greatest accomplishments; he dictated that his gravestone should acknowledge this fact next to his authorship of the Declaration of Independence and his founding of the University of Virginia. Drafted in 1777, the statute was  first introduced into [...]

How to Love and Cherish Our Friends

By |2019-02-12T17:57:26-05:00September 27th, 2017|

"Every human being, my dear, must thus be viewed according to what it is good for, for none of us, no not one, is perfect; and were we to love none who had imperfections this world would be a desert for our love. All we can do is to make the best of our friends: [...]

First Inaugural Address

By |2019-03-28T20:45:22-05:00April 13th, 2016|

FRIENDS AND FELLOW-CITIZENS, Called upon to undertake the duties of the first executive office of our country, I avail myself of the presence of that portion of my fellow-citizens which is here assembled to express my grateful thanks for the favor with which they have been pleased to look toward me, to declare a [...]

The Tendency of all Governments

By |2016-11-26T09:52:11-05:00January 30th, 2013|

And this is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from principle in one instance becomes a precedent for a second; that second for a third; and so on, till the bulk of the society is reduced to be mere automatons of misery, and to have no sensibilities left but for sinning and suffering. [...]

Peace: A Friendly Relationship

By |2016-11-26T09:52:16-05:00May 5th, 2012|

“Always a friend to peace, and believing it to promote eminently the happiness and prosperity of nations, I am ever unwilling that it should be disturbed, until greater and more important interests call for an appeal to force. Whenever that shall take place, I feel a perfect confidence that the energy and enterprise displayed [...]

Thomas Jefferson Coffee Mug: Life Without Books?

By |2016-11-26T09:52:21-05:00September 30th, 2011|

Drinking my morning Mocha from my new Thomas Jefferson coffee mug: “I cannot live without books.” If you also cannot live without books, visit The Imaginative Conservative Bookstore to find books on the American Founding and Conservatism. We hope you will join us in The Imaginative Conservative community. The Imaginative Conservative is an on-line journal for those who seek the True, the [...]

On the Constitution

By |2016-11-26T09:52:21-05:00September 17th, 2011|

On every question of construction carry ourselves back to the time when the constitution was adopted, recollect the spirit manifested in the debates and instead of trying what meaning may be squeezed out of the text or invented against it, conform to the probable one in which it was passed. -Thomas Jefferson to William [...]

Prohibiting Public Debt

By |2016-11-26T09:52:21-05:00September 17th, 2011|

I wish it were possible to obtain a single amendment to our Constitution. I would be willing to depend on that alone for the reduction of the administration of our government to the genuine principles of its Constitution; I mean an additional article, taking from the federal government the power of borrowing. — Jefferson to [...]

The Value of Books

By |2016-11-26T09:52:22-05:00September 15th, 2011|

Monticello Library Books constitute capital. A library book lasts as long as a house, for hundreds of years. It is not, then, an article of mere consumption but fairly of capital, and often in the case of professional men, setting out in life, it is their only capital. Pick up literary ‘capital’ [...]

On Public Debt

By |2016-11-26T09:52:22-05:00September 8th, 2011|

‎”We are ruined, Sir, if we do not over rule the principles that ‘the more we owe, the more prosperous we shall be,’ ‘that a public debt furnishes the means of enterprise,” that if ours should be once paid off, we should incur another by any means however extravagant.”– to James Monroe, 1791 For [...]

Thomas Jefferson on Guns & Exercise

By |2016-11-26T09:52:22-05:00September 6th, 2011|

by Thomas Jefferson A strong body makes the mind strong. As to the species of exercise, I advise the gun. While this gives a moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball, and others of that nature, are too violent for the body, [...]

The Right to Bear Arms and Tyranny in Government

By |2016-11-26T09:52:23-05:00August 25th, 2011|

Thomas Jefferson “The strongest reason for people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government.” For more on the American Founding and civil liberties visit The Imaginative Conservative Bookstore. We hope you will join us in The Imaginative Conservative community. The Imaginative Conservative is an on-line journal [...]