John Adams was a great man in many different ways and for a long period of time. He was a lawyer, statesman, diplomat, and politician. In the early days of the American Revolution he became one of the most prominent of our Founding Fathers and a leading champion of independence.
Adams was a
delegate to the Continental Congress and played a main role in persuading
Congress to declare independence. He
assisted Thomas Jefferson in the drafting of the Declaration of
Independence. He was a diplomat in
Europe and was a major negotiator of the peace treaty with Massachusetts . He was also mainly responsible for obtaining
loans for the Colonists from Great Britain
John was the main writer of the Massachusetts Constitution in 1780, which ended slavery in
however, he was in Europe when the US
Constitution was drafted. He was a good
judge of character: in 1775 he nominated George Washington to be the
commander-in-chief of the American armed forces and nominated John Marshall to
be Chief Justice of the 25 years later. United
President Adams and his wife Abigail retired to
founded an accomplished family of politicians, diplomats and historians. He resumed his friendship with Massachusetts Jefferson, and they both passed away on July 4,
1826. The following Adams quotes show the kind of man he was.
"A desire to be observed, considered, esteemed, praised, beloved, and admired by his fellows is one of the earliest as well as the keenest dispositions discovered in the heart of man."
"A government of laws, and not of men."
"Abuse of words has been the great instrument of sophistry and chicanery, of party, faction, and division of society."
"All the perplexities, confusion and distress in
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." America
"As much as I converse with sages and heroes, they have very little of my love and admiration. I long for rural and domestic scene, for the warbling of birds and the prattling of my children."
"Because power corrupts, society's demands for moral authority and character increase as the importance of the position increases."
"Democracy … while it lasts is more bloody than either aristocracy or monarchy. Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There is never a democracy that did not commit suicide."
"Facts are stubborn things; and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations, or the dictates of our passions, they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence."
"I always consider the settlement of
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." America
"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy."
cannot be preserved without general knowledge among the people." Liberty