DEAR MR. NILES 12/30/04
Dear Mr. Niles, The American Revolution was not a common event. Its’ effects and consequences have already been awful over a great part of the globe and when and where are they to cease?
But what do we mean by American Revolution? Do we mean the American war? The Revolution was effected before the war commenced. The Revolution was in the minds and hearts of the people. A change in their religious sentiments of their duties and obligations.
While the king and all in authority under him, were believed to govern, in justice and mercy according to the laws and Constitution derived to them from God of nature, and transmitted to them by their ancestors. They thought themselves bound to pray for the king and queen and all the royal family and all the authority under them, as Ministries ordained by God for their good.
But when they saw those powers renouncing all the principles of authority and bent upon the destruction of all securities of their lives, liberties and properties, they thought it their duty to pray for the Continental Congress and all thirteen state congresses.
There might be, and were others who thought less about religion and conscience but had certain habitual sentiments of allegiance and loyalty derived from their education, but believing allegiance and protection to be reciprocal, when protection was withdrawn, they thought allegiance was dissolved.
Another alteration was common to all. The people of America had been educated in the habitual affection for England as their Mother-Country; and while they thought her a kind and tender parent (erroneously enough however, for she never was such a mother,)no affection could be more like Lady Macbeth, “to dash their brains out” it is no wonder if their filial affections ceased and were changed into indignation and horror.
This radical change in the principles, opinions, sentiments and affections of the people, was the real American Revolution…..
Sir your humble servant, John Adams 2/13/1818