Voltaire's Philosophical Dictionary
The Philosophical Dictionary
Selected and Translated by H.I. Woolf
New York: Knopf, 1924
Scanned by the Hanover College Department of History in 1995.
Proofread and pages added by Jonathan Perry, March 2001.
EXTRACT FROM SOME NOTES FOUND AMONG A LAWYER'S PAPERS, WHICH MAYBE MERIT
LET the punishments of criminals be useful. A hanged man is good for
nothing, and a man condemned to public works still serves the country,
and is a living lesson.
Let all laws be clear, uniform and precise: to interpret laws is almost
always to corrupt them.
Let nothing be infamous save vice.
Let taxes be always proportional.
Let the law never be contradictory to custom: for if the custom be good,
the law is worthless.
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