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Daniel Webster Quotes


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One country, one constitution, one destiny.
[America]
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One may live as a conqueror, a king, or a magistrate; but he must die a man. The bed of death brings every human being to his pure individuality, to the intense contemplation of that deepest and most solemn of all relations - the relation between the creature and his Creator.
[Death]
 

Our profession is good if practised in the spirit of it; it is damnable fraud and iniquity when its true spirit is supplied by a spirit of mischief-making and money-getting. - The love of fame is extinguished; every ardent wish for knowledge repressed; conscience put in jeopardy, and the best feelings of the heart indurated by the mean, money-catching, abominable practises, which cover with disgrace some of the modem practitioners of law.
 

Philosophical argument, especially that drawn from the vastness of the universe, in comparison with the apparent insignificance of this globe, has sometimes shaken my reason for the faith that is in me; but my heart has always assured and reassured me that the gospel of Jesus Christ must be a divine reality.
 

Political and professional fame cannot last forever, but a conscience void of offence before God and man is an inheritance for eternity. Religion, therefore, is a necessary, an indispensable element in any great human character. There is no living without it. Religion is the tie that connects man with his Creator, and holds him to his throne. If that tie is sundered or broken, he floats away a worthless atom in the universe, its proper attractions all gone, its destiny thwarted, and its whole future nothing but darkness, desolation and death. A man with no sense of religious duty is he whom the Scriptures describes in so terse but terrific a manner, as “living without hope and without God in the world.” Such a man is out of his proper being, out of the circle of all his duties, out of the circle of all his happiness, and away, far, far away from the purposes of his creation.
[Religion]
 

Real goodness does not attach itself merely to this life - it points to another world. Political or professional reputation cannot last forever, but a conscience void of offence before God and man is an inheritance for eternity.
[Goodness]
 

Sink or swim, live or die, survive or perish, I give my hand and my heart to this vote.
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Suppose your candidate for fame pursues unremittingly the object of his love, through every difficulty and over every obstacle, till at last he overtakes her ladyship, and is permitted to kiss the hem of her garment on mount immortality, what will the dear-bought damsel boot him? If he take her to his bosom, she has no flesh and blood to warm it. If he taste of her lip, there is no more nectar in it than there are sunbeams in a cucumber. - Every rascal who has been bold and fearless enough, Nimrod, Cataline, and Tom Paine, all have had a smack at her before him: They have all more or less become famous, and will be remembered much longer than better men.
[Fame]
 

Thank God! I - I also - am an American!
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The clear conception, outrunning the deductions of logic, the high purpose, the firm resolve, the dauntless spirit, speaking on the tongue, beaming from the eye, informing every feature, and urging the whole man onward, right onward to his object, - this, this is eloquence; or rather it is something greater and higher than all eloquence; it is action, noble, sublime, godlike action.
[Eloquence]
 

The contest for ages has been to rescue liberty from the grasp of executive power.
 

The criminal law is not founded on the principle of vengeance; it uses evil only as the means of preventing greater evil.
 

The farmers are the founders of civilization and prosperity.
[Agriculture]
 

The home of freedom, and the hope of the down-trodden and oppressed among the nations of the earth.
[America]
 

The law is made to protect the innocent by punishing the guilty.
 

The law: it has honored us; may we honor it.
[Law]
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The longer I live the more highly do I estimate the Christian Sabbath, and the more grateful do I feel to those who impress its importance on the community.
[Sabbath]
 

The love of religious liberty is a stronger sentiment, when fully excited, than an attachment to civil freedom. Conscience, in the cause of religion, prepares the mind to act and to suffer, beyond almost all other causes. It sometimes gives an impulse so irresistible, that no fetters of power or of opinion can withstand it. History instructs us, that this love of religious liberty, made up of the clearest sense of right and the highest conviction of duty, is able to look the sternest despotism in the face, and, with means apparently inadequate, to shake principalities and powers.
[Liberty]
 

The materials of wealth are in the earth, in the seas, and in their natural and unaided productions.
 

The morning itself, few inhabitants of cities know anything about. Among all our good people, not one in a thousand sees the sun rise once in a year. They know nothing of the morning. Their idea of it is that it is that part of the day which comes along after a cup of coffee and a piece of toast. With them, morning is not a new issuing of light, a new bursting forth of the sun, a new waking-up of all that has life from a sort of temporary death, to behold again the works of God, the heavens and the earth; it is only a part of the domestic day, belonging to reading newspapers, answering notes, sending the children to school, and giving orders for dinner. The first streak of light, the earliest purpling of the east, which the lark springs up to greet, and the deeper and deeper coloring into orange and red, till at length the "glorious sun is seen, regent of the day" - this they never enjoy, for they never see it. I never thought that Adam had much the advantage of us from having seen the world while it was new. The manifestations of the power of God, like his mercies, are "new every morning" and fresh every moment. We see as fine risings of the sun as ever Adam saw; and its risings are as much a miracle now as they were in his day - and, I think, a good deal more, because it is now a part of the miracle, that for thousands and thousands of years he has come to his appointed time, without the variation of a millionth part of a second. I know the morning - I am acquainted with it, and I love it. I love it fresh and sweet as it is - a daily new creation, breaking forth and calling all that have life and breath and being to a new adoration, new enjoyments, and new gratitude.
 


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