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DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
LELAND STANFORD JUNIOR UNIVERSITY

CIVIL GOVERNMENT IN THE
UNITED STATES CONSIDERED
WITH SOME REFERENCE

TO ITS ORIGINS

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BOSTON, NEW YORK, AND CHICAGO
HOUGHTON, MIFFLIN AND COMPANY

Cbe Riverside Press, Iambridge

594403

Copyright 1890,
BY JOHN FISKE.

All rights reserved.

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The Riverside Press, Cambridge, Mass., U. S. A.
Electrotyped and Printed by H. O. Houghton & Company.

Dedication.

This little book is dedicated, with the author's best wishes and sincere regard, to the many hundreds of young friends whom he has found it so pleasant to meet in years past, and also to those whom he looks forward to meeting in years to come, in studies and readings upon the rich and fruitful history of our beloved country.

PREFACE.

SOME time ago, my friends, Messrs. Houghton, Mifflin & Co., requested me to write a small book on Civil Government in the United States, which might be useful as a text-book, and at the same time serviceable and suggestive to the general reader interested in American history. In preparing the book certain points have been kept especially in view, and deserve some mention here.

It seemed desirable to adopt a historical method of exposition, not simply describing our political institutions in their present shape, but pointing out their origin, indicating some of the processes through which they have acquired that present shape, and thus keeping before the student's mind the fact that government is perpetually undergoing modifications in adapting itself to new conditions. Inasmuch as such gradual changes in government do not make themselves, but are made by men and made either for better or for worse — it is obvious that the history of political institutions has serious lessons to teach us. The student should as soon as possible come to understand that every institution is the outgrowth of experiences. One probably gets but little benefit from abstract definitions and axioms concerning the rights of men and the nature of civil society, such as we often find

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