Abraham Lincoln, Definition of Democracy, August 1,1858, in Roy P. Basler, ed., The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln (8 vols., New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1953), 2: 533, http://quod.lib.umich.edu/l/lincoln/.
Transcription adapted from The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln (1953), edited by Roy P. Basler
Adapted by Matthew Pinsker, Dickinson College
The following text is presented here in complete form, as it originally appeared in print. Spelling and typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.
[August 1, 1858?]
As I would not be a slave, so I would not be a master. This expresses my idea of democracy. Whatever differs from this, to the extent of the difference, is no democracy.