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John Bartlett (1820–1905). Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. 1919.

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John Adams. (1735–1826)
    Yesterday the greatest question was decided which ever was debated in America; and a greater perhaps never was, nor will be, decided among men. A resolution was passed without one dissenting colony, that those United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States.
          Letter to Mrs. Adams, July 3, 1776.
    The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epocha in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward for evermore.
          Letter to Mrs. Adams, July 3, 1776.
Patrick Henry. (1736–1799)
    Cæsar had his Brutus; Charles the First, his Cromwell; and George the Third [“Treason!” cried the Speaker]—may profit by their example. If this be treason, make the most of it.
          Speech in the Virginia Convention, 1765.
    I am not a Virginian, but an American. 1
          Speech in the Virginia Convention, September, 1774.
    I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience. I know no way of judging of the future but by the past. 2
          Speech in the Virginia Convention, March, 1775.
Note 1.
I was born an American; I will live an American; I shall die an American!—Daniel Webster: Speech, July 17, 1850. [back]
Note 2.
See Burke, Quotation 36. [back]