"A martial nobility and stubborn commons, possessed of arms, tenacious of property, and collected into constitutional assemblies form the only balance capable of preserving a free constitution against the enterprise of an aspiring prince."
Edward Gibbon
(1737-1794) English historian and Member of Parliament
The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire 53 (Modern Library Ed. 1983)
Bookmark and Share  
Reader comments about this quote:
If he means by the first phrase militias made up of sovereign freemen, then I agree with Gibbon.
 -- Anon     
    Sort of makes you wonder why Prince "O" and his merry band are wiorking night and day to disarm us.
     -- jim k     
    Oops, working , not "wioking".
     -- jim k, Austin     
    Today's aspiring Prince might be seen as Obama...but really, who is pulling his strings? The same group that has been pulling the strings of our leader's and undermining our rights since before the revolution. The international banker's / the owner's of the central banks, are the enemies of freedom.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
    J Carlton, I agree, Obama is the puppet.
     -- jim k, Austin     
    Coming from a member of Parliament, the quote is an altruism proven by history.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
    In the West today it's the "moneyed corporations," as Jefferson identified them with ultimate loathing who rule, not government. That means Congress, various Parliaments and courts of law, even City Hall receive their marching orders from penthouse suites too, not just the White House. Change Gibbon's final word to the acronym CEO for a more accurate and meaningful update of his observation.
     -- John L. Mann, Kalamazoo     
    jim k, they've all been puppets pretty much since Lincoln...maybe longer. I've researched the whole thing back to 1750's Europe.
     -- J Carlton, Calgary     
    Carlton and Mann are both clearly stating what is going on, The sad part, we have 2 generations of adults who have supported nothing but their beer belly or 6pack and their next immediate gratification so have no respect for freedom and wouldn't recognize it if it bit them on the butt. Look at who is doing the fighting at the tea parties...those of us who are old and have learned a little history in our lives...or lived it. Please join us. Liberty lost; country lost.
     -- Abby, hb     
    A true historian, processed of proper facts, figures and intuitive details can provide the balance capable of preserving a constitution against oppositional forces.
     -- Fredrick William Sillik, Anytown     
    Rate this quote!
    How many stars?

    What do YOU think?
    Your name:
    Your town:

    More Quotations
    Get a Quote-A-Day! Free!
    Liberty Quotes sent to your mail box.
    RSS Subscribe
    Quotes & Quotations - Send This Quote to a Friend

    © 1998-2024 Liberty-Tree.ca