Page:Democracy in America (Reeve, v. 1).djvu/41

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out restraint to its instinctive propensities; and to exhibit the course it prescribes to the Government and the influence it exercises on affairs. I have sought to discover the evils and the advantages which it produces. I have examined the precautions used by the Americans to direct it, as well as those which they have not adopted, and I have undertaken to point out the causes which enable it to govern society.

It was my intention to depict, in a second part, the influence which the equality of conditions and the rule of democracy exercise on the civil society, the habits, the ideas, and the manners of the Americans; I begin, however, to feel less ardour for the accomplishment of this project, since the excellent work of my friend and travelling companion M. de Beaumont has been given to the world[1]. I do not know whether I have succeeded in making known what I saw in America, but I am certain that such has been my sincere desire, and that I have never, knowingly, moulded facts to ideas, instead of ideas to facts.

Whenever a point could be established by the aid of written documents, I have had recourse to the original text, and to the most authentic and ap-

  1. This work is entitled Marie, ou l'Esclavage aux Etats-Unis.