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I must have liberty
Withal, as large a charter as the wind,
To blow on whom I please, for so fools have.
- William Shakespeare, As You Like It
(Jaques at II, vii)
So every bondman in his own hand bears
The power to cancel his captivity.
- William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
(Casca at I, iii)
Why, headstrong liberty is lashed with woe.
There's nothing situate under heaven's eye
But hath his bound, in earth, in sea, in sky.
- William Shakespeare, The Comedy of Errors
(Luciana at II, i)
Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it.
- George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman
Liberty, like chastity, once lost, can never be regained in its original purity.
- Henry Wheeler Shaw (used pseudonyms Josh Billings and Uncle Esek)
If vice and corruption prevail, liberty cannot subsist; but if virtue have the advantage, arbitrary power cannot be established.
- Algernon Sidney (Sydney)
The only rational liberty is that which is born of subjection, reared in the fear of God and the love of man.
- William Gilmore Simms
Liberty is quite as much a moral as a political growth,--the result of free individual action, energy, and independence.
- Samuel Smiles
My country, 'tis of thee,
Sweet land of liberty, Of thee I sing.
Land where my fathers died!
Land of the Pilgrims' pride!
From ev'ry mountainside,
Let freedom ring!
- Rev. Samuel Francis Smith, America,
first stanza of song also known as My Country 'Tis of Thee
Deep in the frozen regions of the north,
A goddess violated brought thee forth,
- Tobias George Smollett,
Ode to Independence (l. 5)
Liberty is not the right of one, but of all.
- Herbert Spencer
Behold! in Liberty's unclouded blaze
We lift our heads, a race of other days.
- Charles Sprague, Centennial Ode (st. 22)
Give me the centralism of liberty; give me the imperialism of equal rights.
- Charles Sumner
Liberty must be a mighty thing; for by it God punishes and rewards nations.
- Madame Anne Sophie Swetchine (Soimonoff)
Nature gives liberty even to dumb animals.
- Tacitus (Caius Cornelius Tacitus)
Liberty is given by nature even to mute animals.
[Lat., Liberatem natura etiam mutis animalibus datam.]
- Tacitus (Caius Cornelius Tacitus), Annales
[That form of] eloquence, the foster-child of licence, which fools call liberty.
[Lat., Eloquentia, alumna licentiae, quam stulti libertatem vocabant.]
- Tacitus (Caius Cornelius Tacitus),
De Oratoribus (46)
America, my friends, is the only country in the world actually founded on liberty--the only one. People went to America to be free.
- Margaret Thatcher
By the side of these religious men I discern others whose looks are turned to the earth more than to Heaven; they are the partisans of liberty, not only as the source of the noblest virtues, but more especially as the root of all solid advantages; and they sincerely desire to extend its sway, and to impart its blessings to mankind. It is natural that they should hasten to invoke the assistance of religion, for they must know that liberty cannot be established without morality, nor morality without faith; but they have seen religion in the ranks of their adversaries, and they inquire no further; some of them attack it openly, and the remainder are afraid to defend it.
- Alexis de Tocqueville,
Democracy in American
(vol. 1, introductory chapter)
Liberty, not communism, is the most contagious force in the world.
- Earl Warren
Interwoven is the love of liberty with every ligament of the heart.
- George Washington
Liberty, when it begins to take root, is a plant of rapid growth.
- George Washington
If the true spark of religious and civil liberty be kindled, it will burn.
- Daniel Webster,
in an address in Charlestown, Massachusetts, Bunker Hill Monument
I shall defer my visit to Faneuil Hall, the cradle of American liberty, until its doors shall fly open, on golden hinges, to lovers of Union as well as of Liberty.
- Daniel Webster, Letter,
when refused the use of the hall after his speech on the Compromise Measures
God grants liberty only to those who love it, and are always ready to guard and defend it.
- Daniel Webster, Speech
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