Charles Sumner, 1811 - 1874
Daguerreotype by Southworth & Hawes (ca. 1850)
Born: 6 January 1811, Boston, Massachusetts
Died: 11 March 1874, Washington City
Biography from Wikipedia
Additional quotes from Wikiquote. Wikiquote entries are "sourced" and may include items longer than those included here, particularly for poets, lyricists, and dramatists.
Charles Sumner quotes:
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- I have fought a long battle with slavery; and I confess my solicitude when I see any thing that looks like concession to it. It is not enough to show me that a measure is expedient: you must show me also that it is right. Ah, sir — can any thing be expedient which is not right? From the beginning of our history the country has been afflicted with compromise. It is by compromise that human rights have been abandoned. I insist that this shall cease. The country needs repose after all its trials: it deserves repose. And repose can only be found in everlasting principles. It cannot be found by inserting in your constitution the disfranchisement of a race." permalink
last speech in the Senate (9 March 1866)
- I have never known a man who was sensual in his youth, who was high-minded when old. permalink
- The age of Chivalry has gone. An age of Humanity has come. The Horse, whose importance more than human, have the name to that early period of gallantry and war, now yields his foremost place to Man. In serving him, in promoting his elevation, in contributing to his welfare, in doing him good, there are fields of bloodless triumph, nobler far than any in which Bayard or Du Guesclin conquered. permalink
"The Scholar, the Jurist, the Artist, the Philanthropist" speech at Harvard University (27 August 1846)
- The true greatness of a Nation cannot be in triumphs of the intellect alone. Literature and art may widen the sphere of its influence ; they may adorn it; but they are in their nature but accessaries. The true grandeur of humanity is in moral elevation, enlightened and decorated by the intellect of man. The truest tokens of this grandeur in a State are the diffusion of the greatest happiness among the greatest number, and that passionless God-like Justice, which controls the relations of the State to other States, and to all the people, who are committed to its charge. permalink
"True Grandeur of Nations" speech at Boston (4 July 1845)
- To make a law final, so as not to be reached by Congress, is, by mere legislation, to fasten a new provision on the Constitution. Nay, more; it gives to the law a character which the very Constitution docs not possess. The wise fathers did not treat the country as a Chinese foot, never to grow after infancy; but, anticipating Progress, they declared expressly that their great Act is not final. According to the Constitution itself, there is not one of its existing provisions — not even that with regard to fugitives from labor — which may not at all times be reached by amendment, and thus be drawn into debate. This is rational and just. Sir, nothing from man's hands, nor law, nor constitution, can be final. Truth alone is final. permalink
"Freedom National, Slavery Sectional" speech in the Senate (27 July 1852)
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