- A state too expensive in itself, or by virtue of its dependencies, ultimately falls into decay; its free government is transformed into a tyranny; it disregards the principles which it should preserve, and finally degenerates into despotism. The distinguishing characteristic of small republics is stability: the character of large republics is mutability.
- Among the popular and representative systems of government I do not approve of the federal system: it is too perfect; and it requires virtues and political talents much superior to our own.
- Let us give to our republic a fourth power with authority over the youth, the hearts of men, public spirit, habits, and republican morality. Let us establish this Areopagus to watch over the education of the children, to supervise national education, to purify whatever may be corrupt in the republic, to denounce ingratitude, coldness in the country's service, egotism, sloth, idleness, and to pass judgment upon the first signs of corruption and pernicious example.
- Flee the country where a lone man holds all power: It is a nation of slaves.
- How will I ever get out of this labyrinth?
- I swear before you; I swear on the God of my parents; I swear on them; I swear on my honor and I swear on my country that I shall not give rest to my arm nor respite to my soul until I have broken the chains that oppress us by the will of the Spanish power.
- If my death contributes to the end of the parties and the consolidation of the Union, I shall go quietly to my grave.
- If Nature is against us, we shall fight Nature, and make it obey.
- In the course of history, there have been three radicals: Jesus Christ, Don Quixote, and... me.
- It is harder to maintain the balance of freedom than it is to endure the weight of tyranny.
- Legislators could certainly do with a school of morals.
- Morals and lights are our first necessities.
- The art of victory is learned in defeat.
- The freedom of the New World is the hope of the Universe.
- To do something right it must be done twice. The first time instructs the second.
- The United States seems destined by Providence to plague the American continent with misery in the name of liberty. (1829)
- The Ignorance the people live in leads them to commit mistakes against their own happiness
- Nations will march towards the apex of their greatness at the same pace as their education. Nations will soar if their education soars; they will regress if it regresses. Nations will fall and sink in darkness if education is corrupted or completely abandoned