Famous Quotations / Quotes
Famous Quotes about Liberty
 

 
Famous quotes, quotations, sayings, phrases, idioms, proverbs, and axioms about Liberty and the Responsibility that comes with it. 
 


The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations

A classic since 1953 with over 20,000 quotes from over 3,000 authors.


Famous Last Words

Apt Observations, Pleas, Curses, Benedictions, Sour Notes, Bons Mots, and Insights from People on the Brink of Departure


Stretch Your Wings

Famous Black Quotations for the Young


American Quotations

An exhaustive collection of profound quotes from the founding fathers, presidents, statesmen, scientists, constitutions, court decisions


The Oxford Dictionary of Humorous Quotations


Last Words of Saints and Sinners

700 Final Quotes from the Famous, the Infamous, and the Inspiring Figures of History


America's God and Country: Encyclopedia of Quotations

Contains over 2,100 profound quotations from founding fathers, presidents, constitutions, court decisions and more


The Law

This 1850 classic is an absolute must read for anyone interested in law, justice, truth, or liberty. A most compelling and revolutionary look at The Law.


Bartlett's Familiar Quotations

A Collection of Passages, Phrases, and Proverbs Traced to Their Sources in Ancient and Modern Literature (17th Edition)


The Stupidest Things Ever Said by Politicians

Rise up, America -- and laugh out loud at the greatest gaffes that no spin doctor could possibly fix!


The 776 Even Stupider Things Ever Said

Another great collection of stupidity


Quotable Quotes

Wit and Wisdom for All Occasions from America's Most Popular Magazine


The Most Brilliant Thoughts of All Time

You don't have to be a genius to sound like one. Here's a collection of the most profound and provocative wit and wisdom in the English language in two lines or less.


2,715 One-Line Quotations for Speakers, Writers & Raconteurs

Invaluable sampler of witticisms, epigrams, sayings, bon mots, platitudes and insights chosen for their brevity and pithiness.


Phillips' Book of Great Thoughts Funny Sayings

A stupendous collection of quotes, quips, epigrams, witticisms, and humorous comments for personal enjoyment and ready reference.


Quick Quips and Quotes; 532 Things I Wish I Had Said

Quick Quips and Quotes is the Ultimate Collection of one liners.


Bartlett's Book of Anecdotes

The ultimate anthology of anecdotes, now revised with over 700 new entries.


Quotations for Public Speakers

A Historical, Literary, and Political Anthology


Liberty - The American Revolution

This compelling series traces the events leading up to the war and America's fight for freedom.


Founding Fathers

The story of how these disparate characters fomented rebellion in the colonies, formed the Continental Congress, fought the Revolutionary War, and wrote the Constitution


Libertarianism: A Primer

David Boaz, director of the Cato Institute, has written a simple introduction to Libertarianism inteneded to appeal to disgruntled Democrats and Republicans everywhere.


The Libertarian Reader

Classic and Contemporary Writings from Lao-Tzu to Milton Friedman


Thomas Paine: Collected Writings

All the classics: Common Sense / The Crisis / Rights of Man / The Age of Reason / Pamphlets, Articles, and Letters

Quotes are organized by Name and Category.

If you'd like, join us on the Liberty Tree Daily Quotes emailing list for a daily dose of Liberty Quotes in your mail box. Leave us your email address to subscribe.
Email:

Here's the Daily Quotes Log to date.


Cryptograms!
Do you like cryptograms? We've got thousands!

Authors
Indexed quotes by Author or Speaker.

Categories
Browse quotes by category or select from the list below.

Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/friendship">Friendship Quotes</a>]Friendship Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/frugality">Frugality Quotes</a>]Frugality Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/fundamentals">Fundamentals Quotes</a>]Fundamentals Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/gambling">Gambling Quotes</a>]Gambling Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/generosity">Generosity Quotes</a>]Generosity Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/genius">Genius Quotes</a>]Genius Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/genocide">Genocide Quotes</a>]Genocide Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/globalism">Globalism Quotes</a>]Globalism Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/glory">Glory Quotes</a>]Glory Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/gmo">GMO Quotes</a>]GMO Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/god">God Quotes</a>]God Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/gold">Gold Quotes</a>]Gold Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/goodness">Goodness Quotes</a>]Goodness Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/goodwill">Goodwill Quotes</a>]Goodwill Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/gospel">Gospel Quotes</a>]Gospel Quotes
Show details for [<a href="/quotes_about/gossip">Gossip Quotes</a>]Gossip Quotes
Hide details for [<a href="/quotes_about/government">Government Quotes</a>]Government Quotes
A FramerUnder every government the [last] resort of the people, is an appeal to the sword; whether to defend themselves against the open attacks of a foreign enemy, or to check the insidious encroachments of domestic foes.  Whenever a people ... entrust the defence of their country to a regular, standing army, composed of mercenaries, the power of that country will remain under the direction of the most wealthy citizens.
Lord ActonGovernment by idea tends to take in everything, to make the whole of society obedient to the idea. Spaces not so governed are unconquered, beyond the border, unconverted, a future danger.
Lord ActonThe danger is not that a particular class is unfit to govern. Every class is unfit to govern.
Lord ActonI cannot accept, your canon that we are to judge pope and king unlike other men, with a favorable presumption that they do no wrong. If there is any presumption, it is the other way against holders of power ... Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
Lord ActonPower tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.
Lord ActonWhenever a single definite object is made the supreme end of the State,
be it the advantage of a class, the safety of the power of the country,
the greatest happiness of the greatest number, or the support of any
speculative idea, the State becomes for the time inevitably absolute.
Henry Brooks AdamsI would rather starve and rot and keep the privilege of speaking the truth as I see it, than of holding all the offices that capital has to give from the presidency down.
John AdamsAll good government is and must be republican. But at the same time, you can or will agree with me, that there is not in lexicography a more fraudulent word... Are we not, my friend, in danger of rendering the word republican unpopular in this country by an indiscreet, indeterminate, and equivocal use of it? [...] Whenever I use the word republic with approbation, I mean a government in which the people have collectively, or by representation, an essential share in the sovereignty... the republican forms in Poland and Venice are much worse, and those of Holland and Bern very little better, than the monarchical form in France before the late revolution.
John AdamsGovernment is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, the people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government; and to reform, alter, or totally change the same, when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it.
John AdamsThey define a republic to be a government of laws, and not of men.
John AdamsThe only foundation of a free Constitution, is pure Virtue, and if this cannot be inspired into our People, in a great Measure, than they have it now. They may change their Rulers, and the forms of Government, but they will not obtain a lasting Liberty.
John AdamsEach individual of the society has a right to be protected by it in the enjoyment of his life, liberty, and property, according to standing laws. He is obliged, consequently, to contribute his share to the expense of this protection; and to give his personal service, or an equivalent, when necessary. But no part of the property of any individual can, with justice, be taken from him, or applied to public uses, without his own consent, or that of the representative body of the people. In fine, the people of this commonwealth are not controllable by any other laws than those to which their constitutional representative body have given their consent.
John AdamsThe moment the idea is admitted into society that property is not as sacred as the law of God, and that there is not a force of law and public justice to protect it, anarchy and tyranny commence.
John AdamsThere is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.
John AdamsWere I to define the British constitution, therefore, I should say it is a limited monarchy, or a mixture of the three forms of government commonly known in the schools [monarchical, aristocratical, and democratical] ... And it is [the] reservation of fundamentals, of the right of giving instructions, and of new elections, which creates a popular check, upon the whole government which alone secures the constitution from becoming an aristocracy, or a mixture of monarchy and aristocracy only.
John AdamsThere is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with power to endanger the public liberty.
John AdamsA question arises whether all the powers of government, legislative, executive, and judicial, shall be left in this body? I think a people cannot be long free, nor ever happy, whose government is in one Assembly.
John AdamsFear is the foundation of most governments; but it is so sordid and brutal a passion, and renders men in whose breasts it predominates so stupid and miserable, that Americans will not be likely to approve of any political institution which is founded on it.
John AdamsStatesmen, my dear Sir, may plan and speculate for liberty, but it is religion and morality alone, which can establish the principles upon which freedom can securely stand. The only foundation of a free Constitution is pure virtue, and if this cannot be inspired into our People in a greater Measure than they have it now, they may change their rulers and the forms of government, but they will not obtain a lasting liberty.
John AdamsThere never was yet a people who must not have somebody or something to represent the dignity of the state.
John AdamsNip the shoots of arbitrary power in the bud, is the only maxim which can ever preserve the liberties of any people. When the people give way, their deceivers, betrayers, and destroyers press upon them so fast, that there is no resisting afterwards. The nature of the encroachment upon the American constitution is such, as to grow every day more and more encroaching. Like a cancer, it eats faster and faster every hour. The revenue creates pensioners, and the pensioners urge for more revenue. The people grow less steady, spirited, and virtuous, the seekers more numerous and more corrupt, and every day increases the circles of their dependents and expectants, until virtue, integrity, public spirit, simplicity, and frugality, become the objects of ridicule and scorn, and vanity, luxury, foppery, selfishness, meanness, and downright venality swallow up the whole society.
John Adams[You have Rights] antecedent to all earthly governments:
Rights, that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws;
Rights, derived from the Great Legislator of the universe.
John AdamsThe dignity and stability of government in all its branches, the morals of the people, and every blessing of society depend so much upon an upright and skillful administration of justice, that the judicial power ought to be distinct from both the legislative and executive, and independent upon both, that so it may be a check upon both, and both should be checks upon that.
John AdamsWhen I went home to my family in May, 1770, from the town meeting in Boston, which was the first I had ever attended, and where I had been chosen in my absence, without any solicitation, one of their representatives, I said to my wife, "I have accepted a seat in the House of Representatives, and thereby have consented to my own ruin, to your ruin, and to the ruin of our children. I give you this warning, that you may prepare your mind for your fate." She burst into tears, but instantly cried out in a transport of magnanimity, "Well, I am willing in this cause to run all risks with you, and be ruined with you, if you are ruined." These were times, my friend, in Boston, which tried women's souls as well as men's.
John AdamsWe have no government armed in power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Our Constitution was made only for a religious and moral people. It is wholly inadequate for the government of any other.
John Adams[N]o good government but what is republican...
the very definition of a republic is
'an empire of laws, and not of men.'
John AdamsPublic virtue cannot exist in a nation without private, and public virtue is the only foundation of republics. There must be a positive passion for the public good, the public interest, honor, power and glory, established in the minds of the people, or there can be no republican government, nor any real liberty: and this public passion must be superior to all private passions.
John AdamsEvery citizen must look up to the laws, as his master, his guardian, and his friend; and whenever any of his fellow citizens, whether magistrates or subjects, attempt to deprive him of his right, he must appeal to the laws; if the aristocracy encroach, he must appeal to the democracy; if they are divided, he must appeal to the monarchical power to decide between them, by joining with that which adheres to the laws; if the democracy is on the scramble for power, he must appeal to the aristocracy, and the monarchy, which by uniting may restrain it. If the regal authority presumes too far, he must appeal to the other two. Without three divisions of power, stationed to watch each other, and compare each other's conduct with the laws, it will be impossible that the laws should at all times preserve their authority, and govern all men.
John AdamsThe poor people, it is true, have been much less successful than the great. They have seldom found either leisure or opportunity to form a union and exert their strength; ignorant as they were of arts and letters, they have seldom been able to frame and support a regular opposition. This, however, has been known by the great to be the temper of mankind; and they have accordingly labored, in all ages, to wrest from the populace, as they are contemptuously called, the knowledge of their rights and wrongs, and the power to assert the former or redress the latter. I say RIGHTS, for such they have, undoubtedly, antecedent to all earthly government, Rights, that cannot be repealed or restrained by human laws, Rights, derived from the great Legislator of the universe.
John AdamsThe United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature; and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. Although the detail of the formation of the American governments is at present little known or regarded either in Europe or in America, it may hereafter become an object of curiosity. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the influence of Heaven, more than those at work upon ships or houses, or laboring in merchandise or agriculture; it will forever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses.
John AdamsGovernment is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men; therefore, the people alone have an incontestable, unalienable, and indefeasible right to institute government; and to reform, alter, or totally change the same, when their protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness require it.
John AdamsLiberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people, who have... a right, an indisputable, unalienable, indefeasible, divine right to that most dreaded and envied kind of knowledge, I mean the characters and conduct of their rulers.
John Quincy AdamsThe highest glory of the American Revolution was this; it connected, in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity.
Samuel AdamsHe therefore is the truest friend to the liberty of his country who tries most to promote its virtue, and who, so far as his power and influence extend, will not suffer a man to be chosen into any office of power and trust who is not a wise and virtuous man...The sum of all is, if we would most truly enjoy this gift of Heaven, let us become a virtuous people.
Samuel AdamsThe 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 received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors:
they purchased them for us with toil and danger and expense 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 to be cheated out of them
by the artifices of false and designing men.
Samuel AdamsIn short, it is the greatest Absurdity to suppose it in the Power of one or any Number of Men, at the entering into Society, to renounce their essential natural Rights or the Means of preserving those Rights, when the grand End of civil Government, from the very Nature of its Institution, is for the Support, Protection and Defense of those very Rights: The principal of which, as is before observed, are Life, Liberty, and Property.
Samuel AdamsThe Legislative has no Right to absolute arbitrary Power over the Lives and Fortunes of the People: Nor can Mortals assume a Prerogative not only too high for Men but for Angels, and therefore reserv’d for the Exercise of the Deity alone.
Samuel AdamsIf ever a time should come, when vain and aspiring men shall possess the highest seats in Government, our country will stand in need of its experienced patriots to prevent its ruin.
Samuel AdamsAll Men have a Right to remain in a State of Nature as long as they please: And in case of intolerable Oppression, civil or religious, to leave the Society they belong to and enter into another. When Men enter into Society, it is by voluntary Consent, and they have a Right to demand and insist upon the performance of such Conditions and previous Limitations as form an equitable original Compact.
Samuel AdamsGovernors have no Right to seek and take what they please; by this, instead of being content with the Station assigned them, that of honorable Servants of the Society, they would soon become Absolute Masters, Despots,and Tyrants. Hence, as a private Man has a Right to say what Wages he will give in his private Affairs, so has a Community to determine what they will give and grant of their Substance for the Administration of public Affairs.
Samuel AdamsAnd that the said Constitution be never construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press,  or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States, who are peaceable citizens, from keeping their own arms; or to raise standing armies, unless necessary for the defense of the United States, or of some one or more of them; or to prevent the people from petitioning, in a peaceable and orderly manner, the federal legislature, for a redress of grievances; or to subject the people to unreasonable searches and seizures of their persons, papers or possessions.
Jonathan H. AdlerThrough the rapid proliferation of laws reaching every corner of human existence, “the government is manufacturing more criminals now than ever before.” The list of illegal activities includes more minutiae than one would think possible. Beer-makers are barred from listing alcohol content on bottles, and liquor distilleries cannot advertise on TV. Filling one’s own prairie pothole can land a property owner in jail, as can protecting private property from unlawful intruders. Placing handbills in neighbors’ mailboxes is strictly prohibited, and attempting to sell nectarines of an improper size is a federal offense. Companies are no longer allowed to give salaried professionals partial days off without pay, and in Texas it is a crime to call oneself an interior designer without the government’s permission. It is perhaps easier to recount all that remains legal than all that is now prohibited.
Arnold Ahlert[A] deep-rooted culture of incompetence and corruption has made it virtually impossible for government to function fairly and efficiently. And because most government employees are shielded by layers of protection, they couldn't care less. Never before in the history of this nation has there been a greater divide between a self-serving federal leviathan and millions of Americans... 'Government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem,' Ronald Reagan reminded us during his inaugural address in 1981. Nothing's changed since then, with one exception: It's gotten far worse.
Alabama, Declaration of Rights Article I Section 35That the sole object and only legitimate end of government is to protect the citizen in the enjoyment of life, liberty, and property, and when the government assumes other functions it is usurpation and oppression.
Woody AllenWe stand today at a crossroads: One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other leads to total extinction. Let us hope we have the wisdom to make the right choice.
American Jurisprudence (Second)Daniel Webster, James Otis, and Sir Edward Coke all pointed out that the mere fact of enactment does not and cannot raise mere statutes to the standing of law. Not everything can be considered the Law of the Land.
American Library AssociationWhy is Intellectual Freedom Important? Intellectual freedom is the basis of our democratic system. We expect our people to be self-governors. But to do so responsibly, our citizenry must be well informed. Libraries provide the ideas and information, in a variety of formats, to allow people to inform themselves.
Fisher AmesMr. Madison has introduced his long expected amendments... The rights of conscience, of bearing arms, of changing the government, are declared to be inherent in the people.
Fisher AmesThe happiness of a people, and the good order and preservation of civil government, essentially depend on piety, religion, and morality.
Amnesty InternationalThe USA was founded in the name of democracy, equality and individual freedom, but is failing to deliver the fundamental promise of protecting rights for all.
AnacharsisThe forum [is] an established place for men to cheat one another, and behave covetously.
Maxwell AndersonWhen a government takes over a people’s economic life it becomes absolute, and when it has become absolute it destroys the arts, the minds, the liberties and the meaning of the people it governs.
Tom AndersonThe Original Sin which brought us to the brink of bankruptcy and dictatorship was the Federal Income Tax Amendment and its illegitimate child, Federal Aid.
Gaius Petronius ArbiterWe trained hard, but it seemed that every time we were beginning to form up into teams, we would be reorganized. I was to learn later in life that we tend to meet any new situation by reorganizing; and a wonderful method it can be for creating the illusion of progress while producing confusion, inefficiency, and demoralization.
AristotleIf liberty and equality, as is thought by some are chiefly to be found in democracy, they will be best attained when all persons alike share in the government to the utmost.
AristotleTo the size of the state there is a limit, as there is to plants, animals and implements, for none of these
retain their facility when they are too large.
AristotleMan is by nature a political animal.
Richard ArmeyThe people themselves, not their government, should be trusted with spending their own money and making their own decisions.


(c) Copyright 1999-2023
Privacy Policy and Terms of Use