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Writings: Autobiography/Notes on the State of Virginia/Public & Private Papers/Addresses/Letters

4.22 of 5 stars 4.22  ·  rating details  ·  945 ratings  ·  25 reviews
Now fully represented in this Library of America volume is the most comprehensive testimony of the writings of our third president and foremost spokesperson for democracy. Thomas Jefferson, a brilliant political thinker, is perhaps best known for the Declaration of Independence, but he was a man of extraordinarily wide interests.

He was exceptionally controversial in his ow
Hardcover, 1600 pages
Published August 15th 1984 by Library of America (first published 1984)
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We should not be so hasty to charge the historical figures of yesterday by the moral standards of today. Without Jefferson's Declaration of Independence, human society would be so much worse off, in so many ways. To besmirch his memory as is most constantly done with the usual tagline "...but he owned slaves!" is ignorant and only proves that whoever is talking probably has never even read his work.
Just as someone claiming Benjamin Franklin was an "atheist" only proves the same point, when Fran
Thomas Jefferson was quite the rennaisance man. Planter, architect, politician, inventer. He was also a radical, an admirer of the French revolution, believer that each generation must have its own revolution. But, his writing style comes across as flowery, dense, and pedantic. Contrast Franklin, whose writing style seems modern, to the point, funny, salty, and wise. Without question, one would want to hand out with Franklin rather then be lectured by Jefferson.
Book Lover
Watched the John Adams movie and was inspired to pull this book from my library book shelf and dust it off again. I can't think of anyone today being as accomplished so early in life as the men of the revolutionary time. It just amazing that someone could accomplish so much so quick. Also, I didn't realize how much detail was in the Declaration of Independence concerning the transgressions of Great Britain, specifically King George and Parliment.
John McCreery
This should be mandatory reading for Politicians and voters. When he states that his most values accomplishments include "the demolition of the church establishment, and freedom of religion.(p702)" you know you are getting gold from the principal architect of American democracy. No commentary is substitute for this; the man's own writing! Wonderful.
Dan Rundquist
I won't fill this page with my opinions about Jefferson's work. So much has already been written about that and there is little new to contribute. This book is a condensed series of writings by Jefferson. It is by no means anywhere close to the entire volume of his work, but that said it is intended (I think) to provide the reader with the most salient samples of this great statesman's life and work. In that, it excels. (I also have the multi-volume complete works and it will take some time to g ...more
Rick Marker
T.J. has long been one of my political heroes. What is so incredible is that not only knew many subjects, languages and sciences, he became well respected for his opinions on many topics of they day. He was a master at knowing human nature and how we react to different laws of man and nature.
Many historians refer to him as a Deist which depends on how one defines Deism. However, Jefferson himself calls himself a Christian and we know he was not an orthodox Christian, but as a scientist in the
Joshua Hruzik
This selected collection of Jefferson's writings is fruitful both for academic and private purposes. Covering most of his important correspondence and supplementing additional works such as his autobiography and notes, this would be the first choice for a detailed study of Jefferson's mind.
All this details are printed on thin and acid free paper, protected by a strong hardcover.
The impressive and detailed index of this collection makes a quick issue oriented search for every one's means possible
It is certainly hard to judge the value of the content of Jefferson's writing because regardless of personal opinion, its impact has been so largely felt. It cannot be disregarded because so much of an American's present reality is dictated by things found in these pages. Therefore, I will not argue for or against the philosophies found in this book but rather on the amalgamation of this anthology which I found to be most effective and a good summary of Jefferson's writing and opinion.
Jilali Mahyawi
Raudha will not find the world such as Thomas Jefferson Aaroad that these faces are real-life original, which he lost one of the United Ahram and symbols, even though we did not Naqralkther them but always Out of our wisdom and our analysis give accurate results with ourselves and give the vote
Finally, I say Do you find the nations are like those who are the writers and the spring and Nsmah .......
This thorough collection of original letters, addresses, and autobiography paints a vivid picture of Thomas Jefferson and the values of liberty, security and democracy he stood for. Highly recommended for anyone wanting to learn more about America's beginnings and a great advocate of the principles we must cherish.
Brian Mumford
Not a book I plan on reading straight through. It's a collection of his writings and correspondence with others. I like to pick it up once in a while and read a letter of his. You can search by topic, so I like to get Jefferson's spin on things from time to time.
I read a great deal of this book but not all of it. I flipped through it and read the essays I was interested and skipped the others. I love how curious Jefferson was and how much time he spent learning on his own. I think he was a very interesting man.
Jul 18, 2009 Art rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone wanting to know Founders!
Recommended to Art by: Prof. Daniel Tucker
Shelves: founding-papers
Mr. Jefferson believed in principles to help guide us on the path of right. However Mr. Jefferson was quite the politian. I have mixed feelings about Mr. Jefferson, whereas, It is good to read his writings.
Thank you, Professor Tucker!
Mark Noce
Great ideas and words of the enigma himself, Thomas Jefferson. He paints himself in all the glory and drawbacks that a full human being is. Interesting read if you want to get into the mindset of early Americans.
Craig J.
Thomas Jefferson : Writings : Autobiography / Notes on the State of Virginia / Public and Private Papers / Addresses / Letters (Library of America) by Thomas Jefferson (1984)
A short-cut to falling out of love with one of my heroes. Almost impossible to read because of his egotism, sure he was an amazing man but I wouldn't invite him to dinner.
The essential reference shelf book for Jefferson, our brilliant political chameleon. Well done.
Alex Winston
Aug 20, 2008 Alex Winston is currently reading it
1500 page monster featuring tons of Jefferson. I'm about a third of the way through it.
nonfiction,history,political science,philosophy,enlightenment
"I wonder when I'm going to get past this first query..."
It reads much better than expected...
Come on, what is not to love.
Apr 07, 2012 Marfy added it
Shelves: american-history
The essential Jefferson.
David Melbie
Dec 11, 2010 David Melbie rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Americans
Recommended to David by: Picked myself
Edina Auditore
Absolute must-read.
Patty marked it as to-read
May 22, 2015
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  • The Debate on the Constitution : Federalist and Antifederalist Speeches, Articles and Letters During the Struggle over Ratification, Part Two: January to August 1788 (Library of America)
  • James Madison: Writings
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  • Speeches and Writings, 1859-1865
  • Collected Writings: Common Sense/The Crisis/Rights of Man/The Age of Reason/Pamphlets/Articles & Letters
  • Writings
  • Writings
  • American Revolution: Writings from the War of Independence
  • History of the United States of America During the Administrations of Thomas Jefferson
  • American Speeches: Political Oratory from the Revolution to he Civil War
  • Memoirs and Selected Letters
  • Robert Morris: Financier of the American Revolution
  • Adams-Jefferson Letters
  • The Idea of America: Reflections on the Birth of the United States
  • Washington
  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Autobiographies
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More than a mere renaissance man, Jefferson may actually have been a new kind of man. He was fluent in five languages and able to read two others. He wrote, over the course of his life, over sixteen thousand letters. He was acquainted with nearly every influential person in America, and a great many in Europe as well. He was a lawyer, agronomist, musician, scientist, philosopher, author, architect ...more
More about Thomas Jefferson...
The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution of the United States The Jefferson Bible: The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth (Little Books of Wisdom) Autobiography of Thomas Jefferson Declaration of Independence, Constitution of the United States of America, Bill of Rights and Constitutional Amendments Notes on the State of Virginia

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“Whereas it appeareth that however certain forms of government are better calculated than others to protect individuals in the free exercise of their natural rights, and are at the same time themselves better guarded against degeneracy, yet experience hath shewn, that even under the best forms, those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny; and it is believed that the most effectual means of preventing this would be, to illuminate, as far as practicable, the minds of the people at large, ....whence it becomes expedient for promoting the publick happiness that those persons, whom nature hath endowed with genius and virtue, should be rendered by liberal education worthy to receive, and able to guard the sacred deposit of the rights and liberties of their fellow citizens, and that they should be called to that charge without regard to wealth, birth or accidental condition of circumstance.” 231 likes
“All should be laid open to you without reserve, for there is not a truth existing which I fear, or would wish unknown to the whole world.” 155 likes
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