« AnteriorContinuar »
I. VIRTUE AND VICE.
Vice shuddered at his presence, and Virtue always felt his fostering hand. General HENRY LEE, Dec. 26, 1799.
Opinions, subject to the caprice of the world and to time; opinions, weak and changeable, the inheritance of humanity, vanish in the tomb; but glory and virtue live for ever. M. FONTANES, 1800.
Soldiers, magistrates, people, all love and admire him; all speak of him in terms of tenderness and veneration. Does there, then, exist a virtue capable of restraining the injustice of mankind; or are glory and happiness too recently established in America, for Envy to have deigned to pass over the seas?
The Marquis DE CHASTELLUX.
VIRTUE AND HAPPINESS.
There is no truth more thoroughly established, than that there exists, in the economy and course of nature, an indissoluble union between virtue and happiness, between duty and advantage, between the genuine maxims of an honest and magnanimous policy, and the solid rewards of public prosperity and felicity.
HUMAN HAPPINESS AND MORAL DUTY.
The consideration, that human happiness and moral duty are inseparably connected, will always continue to prompt me to promote the progress of the former by inculcating the practice of the latter.
MORALITY AND CIVIL GOVERNMENT.
It is substantially true, that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government.
TALENTS, WITHOUT VIRTUE.
Without virtue, and without integrity, the finest talents and the most brilliant accomplishments can never gain the respect, and conciliate the esteem, of the truly valuable part of mankind.
IGNORANCE AND WICKEDNESS.
There is more of wickedness than ignorance mixed in our Councils. Ignorance and design are difficult to combat. Out of these proceed illiberal sentiments, improper jealousies, and a train of evils, which oftentimes, in republican governments, must be sorely felt, before they can be removed.
Ignorance being a fit soil for design to work in, tools are employed, which a generous mind would disdain to use; and which nothing but time, and their own puerile or wicked productions, can show the inefficacy and dangerous tendency of. I often think of our situation, and view it with concern.
GOOD SENSE AND HONESTY.
These are qualities too rare and too precious, not to merit particular esteem.
THE MOST ENVIABLE OF TITLES.
I hope I shall always possess firmness and virtue enough, to maintain, what I consider the most enviable of all titles, the character of an "Honest Man."
COMMON SENSE AND COMMON HONESTY.
It appears to me, that little more than common sense and common honesty, in the transactions of the community at large, would be necessary to make us a great and happy nation; for, if the general government lately adopted shall be arranged and administered in such a manner, as to acquire the full confi
dence of the American people, I sincerely believe they will have greater advantages, from their natural, moral, and political circumstances, for public felicity, than any other people ever possessed.
In all matters of great national moment, the only true line of conduct is, dispassionately to compare the advantages and disadvantages of the measure proposed, and decide from the balance.
CONVENIENCE AND FRIENDSHIP.
I can never think of promoting my convenience at the expense of a friend's interest and inclination.
CONVENIENCE AND DUTY.
Whilst I am in office, I shall never suffer private convenience to interfere with what I conceive to be my official duty.
It is to be lamented, that great characters are seldom without a blot.