John Adams Quotes

- Notable John Adams Quotes Index -

Born: October 30, 1735, Braintree, Massachusetts
Birth Country: USA
Died: Quincy, Massachusetts, U.S., July 4, 1826
Occupation: 2nd President of the United States

1.
A government of laws, and not of men.
- John Adams

2.
Abuse of words has been the great instrument of sophistry and chicanery, of party, faction, and division of society.
- John Adams

3.
All the perplexities, confusion and distress in America arise, not from defects in their Constitution or Confederation, not from want of honor or virtue, so much as from the downright ignorance of the nature of coin, credit and circulation.
- John Adams

4.
Because power corrupts, society's demands for moral authority and character increase as the importance of the position increases.
- John Adams

5.
Fear is the foundation of most governments.
- John Adams

6.
Great is the guilt of an unnecessary war.
- John Adams

7.
Here is everything which can lay hold of the eye, ear and imagination - everything which can charm and bewitch the simple and ignorant. I wonder how Luther ever broke the spell.
- John Adams

8.
I always consider the settlement of America with reverence and wonder, as the opening of a grand scene and design in providence, for the illumination of the ignorant and the emancipation of the slavish part of mankind all over the earth.
- John Adams

9.
I must not write a word to you about politics, because you are a woman.
- John Adams

10.
I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.
- John Adams

11.
In politics the middle way is none at all.
- John Adams

12.
Let us tenderly and kindly cherish, therefore, the means of knowledge. Let us dare to read, think, speak, and write.
- John Adams

13.
Liberty cannot be preserved without general knowledge among the people.
- John Adams

14.
Liberty, according to my metaphysics is a self-determining power in an intellectual agent. It implies thought and choice and power.
- John Adams

15.
My country has contrived for me the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived or his imagination conceived.
- John Adams

16.
Old minds are like old horses you must exercise them if you wish to keep them in working order.
- John Adams

17.
Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.
- John Adams

18.
Power always thinks it has a great soul and vast views beyond the comprehension of the weak.
- John Adams

19.
Power always thinks... that it is doing God's service when it is violating all his laws.
- John Adams

20.
The essence of a free government consists in an effectual control of rivalries.
- John Adams

21.
The happiness of society is the end of government.
- John Adams

22.
The Hebrews have done more to civilize men than any other nation. If I were an atheist, and believed blind eternal fate, I should still believe that fate had ordained the Jews to be the most essential instrument for civilizing the nations.
- John Adams

23.
There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.
- John Adams

24.
When people talk of the freedom of writing, speaking or thinking I cannot choose but laugh. No such thing ever existed. No such thing now exists but I hope it will exist. But it must be hundreds of years after you and I shall write and speak no more.
- John Adams

25.
While all other sciences have advanced, that of government is at a standstill - little better understood, little better practiced now than three or four thousand years ago.
- John Adams

Quotes by John Adams

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