Quotations by Adams, Samuel


In regard to religion, mutual toleration in the different professions thereof is what all good and candid minds in all ages have ever practiced, and, both by precept and example, inculcated on mankind.

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Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
“The Rights of the Colonists” (1772)
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Added on 22-Sep-16 | Last updated 22-Sep-16
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In regard to religion, mutual toleration in the different professions thereof is what all good and candid minds in all ages have ever practiced, and both by precept and example inculcated on mankind.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
“The Rights of the Colonists” (20 Nov 1772)
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Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 14-Jul-15
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As neither reason requires nor religion permits the contrary, every man living in or out of a state of civil society has a right peaceably and quietly to worship God according to the dictates of his conscience.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
“The Rights of the Colonists” (20 Nov 1772)

Full text.

Added on 16-Sep-08 | Last updated 16-Sep-08
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It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
(Spurious)

Frequently attributed to Samuel or John Adams, but not found before the 1990s. See here and here for more information.
Added on 23-Mar-15 | Last updated 23-Mar-15
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The liberties of our Country, the freedom of our civil constitution are worth defending at all hazards: And it is our duty to defend them against all attacks. We have receiv’d them as a fair Inheritance from our worthy Ancestors: They purchas’d them for us with toil and danger and expence of treasure and blood; and transmitted them to us with care and diligence. It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation, enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle; or be cheated out of them by the artifices of false and designing men.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
Essay (written as “Candidus”), The Boston Gazette (14 Oct 1771)
Added on 17-Sep-08 | Last updated 17-Sep-08
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We must not conclude merely upon a man’s haranguing upon liberty, and using the charming sound, that he is fit to be trusted with the liberties of his country. It is not unfrequent to hear men declaim loudly upon liberty, who, if we may judge by the whole tenor of their actions, mean nothing else by it but their own liberty, — to oppress without control or the restraint of laws all who are poorer or weaker than themselves.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
Essay, The Advertiser (1748)
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Added on 16-Jul-08 | Last updated 29-Sep-16
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The public cannot be too curious concerning the characters of public men.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
Letter to James Warren (4 Nov 1775)
Added on 19-Jul-16 | Last updated 19-Jul-16
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It requires time to bring honest men to think & determine alike even in important matters. Mankind are governed more by their feelings than by reason. Events which excite those feelings will produce wonderful effects.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
Letter to Samuel Cooper (30 Apr. 1776)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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One battle would do more towards a Declaration of Independence than a long chain of conclusive arguments in a provincial convention or the Continental Congress.

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
Letter to Samuel Cooper (30 Apr. 1776)
Added on 1-Feb-04 | Last updated 1-Feb-04
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Were the talents and virtues which heaven has bestowed on men given merely to make them more obedient drudges, to be sacrificed to the follies and ambition of a few? Or, were not the noble gifts so equally dispensed with a divine purpose and law, that they should as nearly as possible be equally exerted, and the blessings of Providence be equally enjoyed by all?

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
Speech, State House of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (1 Aug 1776)
Added on 28-Jul-08 | Last updated 28-Jul-08
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If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animated contest of freedom — go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen!

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) American revolutionary, statesman
Speech, State House of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (1 Aug 1776)
Added on 19-Aug-08 | Last updated 19-Aug-08
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