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Respectfully Quoted: A Dictionary of Quotations. 1989.

NUMBER: 1597
AUTHOR: Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826)
QUOTATION: In truth, the abuses of monarchy had so much filled all the space of political contemplation, that we imagined everything republican which was not monarchy. We had not yet penetrated to the mother principle, that “governments are republican only in proportion as they embody the will of their people, and execute it.” Hence, our first constitutions had really no leading principles in them. But experience and reflection have but more and more confirmed me in the particular importance of the equal representation then proposed.
ATTRIBUTION: THOMAS JEFFERSON, letter to Samuel Kercheval, July 12, 1816.—The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, ed. Paul L. Ford, vol. 10, p. 37 (1899).
SUBJECTS: Republic