Monday, 9 November 2009

Thomas Jefferson's 'Three Greatest Men'

This is a letter from Thomas Jefferson to John Trunbull, dated February 15, 1789. In Jefferson's opinion "the three greatest men that ever lived, without any exception" were Bacon, Newton and Locke. Locke of course provided the philosophical meat for the Declaration of Independence (written by Jefferson). I post this now because I have just watched two hours of the magnificent 'John Adams', HBO's dramatisation of David McCullogh's biography. Apart from a few rather irritating bits of token (anachronistic) feminism it is almost faultless. Other than the central performances I particularly liked Tom Wilkinson as Franklin (a well-written part) and whomsoever played Jefferson (again, a finely made portrait).

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