Page:Democracy in America (Reeve, v. 1).djvu/13

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debasing and democratic turbulence of party-spirit, affecting to compass the ends of the State to which he belongs, but from the quiet exercise of functions nearer home.

The translator of these pages had at one time some thoughts of curtailing the chapters in which the author describes the system of local administration in America, as somewhat redundant to the English reader. He has however retained them entire, from a belief that the time is fast approaching when it will not be less necessary to defend the local institutions which have subsisted for nearly a thousand years in our own country, than it is to advocate their advantages as the most probable remedy of the ills of France. Another reason—a purely historical one—led him to adopt this course. The English reader will probably be struck with the revival in the United States of the more ancient parts of our Constitution, whilst the Feudal or Norman element is totally excluded, except in a few cases which may be quoted as anomalies.