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Thomas Jefferson - A Character Sketch
Washington and Jefferson
by Ellis, Edward S. (A.M.)


Dr. James Schouler says: "That Jefferson did not enter into the rhapsodies of his times which magnified the first President into a demigod infallible, is very certain; and that, sincerely or insincerely, he had written from his distant retreat to private friends in Congress with less veneration for Washington's good judgment on some points of policy than for his personal virtues and honesty, is susceptible of proof by more positive testimony than the once celebrated Mazzei letter. Yet we should do Jefferson the justice to add that political differences of opinion never blinded him to the transcendent qualities of Washington's character, which he had known long and intimately enough to appreciate with its possible limitations, which is the best appreciation of all. Of many contemporary tributes which were evoked at the close of the last century by that great hero's death, none bears reading so well in the light of another hundred years as that which Jefferson penned modestly in his private correspondence."

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