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Junius was the pseudonym of a writer who contributed a series of letters to the London Public Advertiser (published by Harry Sampson Woodfall) from January 21, 1769 to January 21, 1772.


Letters of Junius (1769-1772)

  • One precedent creates another. They soon accumulate and constitute law. What yesterday was fact, today is doctrine.
    • Dedication to the English Nation (added the collection of letters published in 1772)
  • The liberty of the press is the palladium of all the civil, political, and religious rights of an Englishman.
    • Dedication to the English Nation (added the collection of letters published in 1772)
  • The submission of free people to the executive authority of government, is no more than a compliance with laws which they themselves have enacted.
    • No. 1 (January 21, 1769)
  • Loyalty, in the heart and understanding of an englishman, is a rational attachment to the guardian of the laws.
    • No. 1 (January 21, 1769)
  • I believe there is yet a spirit of resistance in this country, which will not submit to be oppressed; but I am sure there is a fund of good sense in this country, which cannot be deceived.
    • No. 16 (July 19, 1769)
  • We owe it to our ancestors to preserve entire those rights, which they have delivered to our care: we owe it to our posterity, not to suffer their dearest inheritance to be destroyed.
    • No. 20 (August 8, 1769)
  • When the constitution is openly invaded, when the first original right of the people, from which all laws derive their authority, is directly attacked, inferior grievances naturally lose their force, and are suffered to pass by without punishment or observation.
    • No. 30 (October 17, 1769)
  • There is a moment of difficulty and danger at which flattery and falsehood can no longer deceive, and simplicity itself can no longer be misled.
    • No. 35 (December 19, 1769)
    • This letter is of great significance in the history of freedom of the press. The publisher was prosecuted for seditious libel, and the jury brought a verdict of "guilty of printing and publishing only." After a second trial, the publisher was freed on payment of costs.
  • They [the Americans] equally detest the pageantry of a king, and the supercilious hypocrisy of a bishop.
    • No. 35 (December 19, 1769)
  • There is a holy mistaken zeal in politics as well as in religion. By persuading others, we convince ourselves.
    • No. 35 (December 19, 1769)
  • The least considerable man among us has an interest equal to the proudest nobleman, in the laws and constitution of his country, and is equally called upon to make a generous contribution in support of them — whether it be the heart to conceive, the understanding to direct, or the hand to execute.
    • No. 37 (March 19, 1770)
  • We lament the mistakes of a good man, and do not begin to detest him until he affects to renounce his principles.
    • No. 41, to Lord Mansfield (November 14, 1770)
  • The injustice done to an individual is sometimes of service to the public. Facts are apt to alarm us more than the most dangerous principles.
    • No. 41, to Lord Mansfield (November 14, 1770)
  • An honest man, like the true religion, appeals to the understanding, or modestly confides in the internal evidence of his conscience. The imposter employes force instead of argument, imposes silence where he cannot convince, and propagates his character by the sword.
    • No. 41, to Lord Mansfield (November 14, 1770)
  • The government of England is a government of law. We betray ourselves, we contradict the spirit of our laws, and we shake the whole system of English jurisprudence, whenever we entrust a discretionary power over the life, liberty, or fortune of the subject to any man, or set of men, whatsoever, upon a presumption that it will not be abused.
    • No. 46 (25 May, 1771).
  • If individuals have no virtues, their vices may be of no use to us.
    • No. 59 (October 5, 1771)
  • The temple of fame is the shortest passage to riches and preferment.
    • No. 59 (October 5, 1771)


  • Oppression is more easily endured than insult.
  • How much easier is it to be generous than just.
  • Notable talents are not necessarily connected with discretion.
  • The integrity of men is to be measured by their conduct, not by their professions.
  • The subject who is truly loyal to the Chief Magistrate will neither advise nor submit to arbitrary measures.

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