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  1. #1
    Do I dare to eat a peach?
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    Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    PURSUIT OF PUNCTUATION An excerpt from the National Archives’ official transcript of the Declaration of Independence. A scholar is arguing that the period after “the pursuit of happiness” — shown in an 1823 engraving — does not appear on the 1776 parchment original.

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness[. <<<the questionable period] — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.” Credit National Archives - open source
    The period creates the impression that the list of self-evident truths ends with the right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” [the scholar] says. But as intended by Thomas Jefferson, she argues, what comes next is just as important: the essential role of governments — “instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed” — in securing those rights.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/03/us...pendence.html?

  2. #2
    Oranje rareboy's Avatar
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    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    And we thought the Oxford comma was a problem.

    I suspect though, that Jefferson would be more worried about what the three branches are doing with the constitution generally these days though......

    Happy 4th btw!!

  3. #3

    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    Quote Originally Posted by rareboy View Post
    And we thought the Oxford comma was a problem.

    I suspect though, that Jefferson would be more worried about what the three branches are doing with the constitution generally these days though......

    Happy 4th btw!!
    Since the Declaration says that Democracy and self determination are rights, the period or lack thereof does not seem significant.

  4. #4
    Virginia Is for Lovers Alnitak's Avatar
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    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    We had already been independent for two days

    Happy 4th!!

  5. #5
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    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    The m-dash effectively acts as a semicolon (the period being optional). No change.
    Last edited by mightbe; July 4th, 2014 at 09:48 AM.

  6. #6
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    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    Quote Originally Posted by Alnitak View Post
    We had already been independent for two days

    Happy 4th!!
    "The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more."

    -John Adams, in a letter to his wife, Abigail

  7. #7
    Fantasize it's Fun
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    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    Never under estimate the power of the period.

  8. #8
    Virginia Is for Lovers Alnitak's Avatar
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    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    You will notice that the declaration was first published without any names. The signers had a reasonable chance of losing the war, and their lives. The British were advancing on New York City at the time and it wouldn't be long until most of New Jersey and Philadelphia were captured. It wasn't until 1777 that Congress authorized maybe the only female printer in the states, Mary Goddard of Baltimore, to publish their treasonous offense. I own faithful reproductions of both publications, but several of the originals are still around today.

  9. #9
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    Re: Whither The Period in the Declaration of Independence

    constitutional scholarly is one of my hobbies, i try to infer what these men were trying to say when they first established the usa. for the declaration of independence i know very little, so if anyone out there can say what it really means, in modern terms?
    http://forum.justusboys.com/forum/signaturepics/sigpic30903_2.gif

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