Inspiration and wisdom from divine felines

349 Quotes About George Washington

Wikipedia Summary for George Washington

George Washington (February 22, 1732 – December 14, 1799) was an American political leader, military general, statesman, and Founding Father who served as the first president of the United States from 1789 to 1797. Previously, he led Patriot forces to victory in the nation's War for Independence. He presided at the Constitutional Convention of 1787, which established the U.S. Constitution and a federal government. Washington has been called the "Father of His Country" for his manifold leadership in the formative days of the new nation.

Washington's first public office was serving as official Surveyor of Culpeper County, Virginia, from 1749 to 1750. Subsequently, he received his initial military training and a command with the Virginia Regiment during the French and Indian War. He was later elected to the Virginia House of Burgesses and was named a delegate to the Continental Congress, where he was appointed Commanding General of the Continental Army. He commanded American forces, allied with France, in the defeat and surrender of the British during the Siege of Yorktown. He resigned his commission after the Treaty of Paris in 1783.

Washington played a key role in adopting and ratifying the Constitution and was then twice elected president by the Electoral College. He implemented a strong, well-financed national government while remaining impartial in a fierce rivalry between cabinet members Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton. During the French Revolution, he proclaimed a policy of neutrality while sanctioning the Jay Treaty. He set enduring precedents for the office of president, including the title "Mr. President", and his Farewell Address is widely regarded as a pre-eminent statement on republicanism.

Washington owned slaves, and, to preserve national unity, he supported measures passed by Congress to protect slavery. He later became troubled with the institution of slavery and freed his slaves in a 1799 will. He endeavored to assimilate Native Americans into the Anglo-American culture but combated indigenous resistance during instances of violent conflict. He was a member of the Anglican Church and the Freemasons, and he urged broad religious freedom in his roles as general and president. Upon his death, he was eulogized as "first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen". He has been memorialized by monuments, art, geographical locations, including the national capital, stamps, and currency, and many scholars and polls rank him among the greatest U.S. presidents. On March 13, 1978, Washington was promoted to General of the Armies.

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Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company.


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To enlarge the sphere of social happiness is worthy of the benevolent design of a Masonic institution; and it is most fervently to be wished, that the conduct of every member of the fraternity, as well as those publications, that discover the principles which actuate them, may tend to convince mankind that the grand object of Masonry is to promote the happiness of the human race.

Letter to the Grand Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, January 1793.


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It is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God,. to obey his will, to be grateful for his benefits , and humbly to implore his protection and favor... beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions; to enable us all, whether in public or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually to render our National Government a blessing to all the people by constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed.


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I can only say that there is not a man living who wishes more sincerely than I do, to see a plan adopted for the abolition of it -- but there is only one proper and effectual mode by which it can be accomplished, and that is by Legislative authority: and this, as far as my suffrage will go, shall never be wanting.


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Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. Experience has taught us that it is much easier to prevent an enemy from posting themselves than it is to dislodge them after they have got possession, and when the freedom of speech is taken away then dumb and silent we may be led, like sheep to the slaughter.


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Harmony, liberal intercourse with all Nations, are recommended by policy, humanity and interest. But even our Commercial policy should hold an equal and impartial hand: neither seeking nor granting exclusive favours or preferences; consulting the natural course of things; diffusing and diversifying by gentle means the streams of Commerce, but forcing nothing; establishing with Powers so disposed; in order to give trade a stable course.



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Our conflict is not likely to cease so soon as every good man would wish. The measure of iniquity is not yet filled; and unless we can return a little more to first principles, and act a little more upon patriotic ground, I do not know when it will-or-what may be the issue of the contest. Speculation-peculation-engrossing-forestalling-with all their concomitants, afford too many melancholy proofs of the decay of public virtue; and too glaring instances of its being the interest and desire of too many, who would wish to be thought friends, to continue the war.


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In a free and republican government, you cannot restrain the voice of the multitude. Every man will speak as he thinks, or, more properly, without thinking, and consequently will judge of effects without attending to their causes.


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No pecuniary consideration is more urgent, than the regular redemption and discharge of the public debt: on none can delay be more injurious, or an economy of time more valuable.

~Message to the House of Representatives, 3 December 1793.



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Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause: And I was not without hopes that the enlightened and liberal policy of ⟨the present⟩ age would have put an effectual stop to contentions of this Kind.


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The foundations of our national policy will be laid in the pure and immutable principles of private morality, and the preeminence of free government be exemplified by all the attributes which can win the affections of its citizens, and command the respect of the world.


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I regret exceedingly that the disputes between the protestants and Roman Catholics should be carried to the serious alarming height mentioned in your letters. Religious controversies are always productive of more acrimony and irreconcilable hatreds than those which spring from any other cause; and I was not without hopes that the enlightened and liberal policy of the present age would have put an effectual stop to contentions of this kind.

Letter to Sir Edward Newenham, 22 June 1792.




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Do not conceive that fine Clothes make fine Men, any more than fine feathers make fine Birds. A plain genteel dress is more admired and obtains more credit than lace and embroidery in the Eyes of the judicious and sensible.



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To place any dependence upon Militia, is, assuredly, resting upon a broken staff ... If I was called upon to declare upon Oath , whether the Militia have been most serviceable or hurtful upon the whole; I should subscribe to the latter.


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My manner of living is plain. I do not mean to be put out of it. A glass of wine and a bit of mutton are always ready; and such as will be content to partake of them are always welcome. Those, who expect more, will be disappointed, but no change will be effected by it.


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My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute my success in life to the moral, intellectual, and physical education I received from her.


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Discipline is the soul of an army. It makes small numbers formidable; procures success to the week, and esteem to all.





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