Quotes by 18th-century Women
The political Liberty of a Citizen is the Peace of Mind arising from the Consciousness, that every Individual enjoys his peculiar Safety; and in order that the People might attain this Liberty, the Laws ought to be so framed, that no one Citizen should stand in Fear of another; but that all of them should stand in Fear of the same Laws....
I was amongst the virtues like the great Turk in his seraglio of women, and I chose to dwell with that virtue which looked the fairest in my eyes and gave me at that season most pleasure. In short, I made wives of them: I first admired them, then made them my own property, and if they would not submit to my will, I again turned them off and divorced them.
The education of the present race of females is not very favorable to domestic happiness. For my own part, I call education, not that which smothers a woman with accomplishments, but that which tends to consolidate a firm and regular system of character; that which tends to form a friend, a companion, and a wife.
When in company with literary women, make no allusions to 'learned ladies,' or 'blue stockings,' or express surprise that they should have any knowledge of housewifery, or needle-work, or dress; or that they are able to talk on 'common things.' It is rude and foolish and shows that you really know nothing about them, either as a class or as individuals.
I have been a slave myself — I know what slaves feel — I can tell by myself what other slaves feel, and by what they have told me. The man that says slaves be quite happy in slavery — that they don't want to be free — that man is either ignorant or a lying person. I never heard a slave say so.
I shall be told, I know, that Mathematics render the attention peculiarly close (appliquee); but they do not habituate to collect, to appreciate, to concentrate; the attention they require is, so to speak, in a straight line; the human mind acts in mathematics as a spring tending in one uniform direction.