PRIMARY DOCUMENT

Madison’s Amendments to the Declaration of Rights (May 29–June 12, 1776)

SUMMARY

At the Fifth Constitutional Convention, state legislator James Madison proposed these amendments to George Mason‘s Virginia Declaration of Rights. The first (“A” below) was rejected and his phrasing “free exercise of religion” in the second (“B” below) replaced “fullest Toleration” to imply the protection of all religious practices, not merely the toleration of religions outside of Anglicanism.

 

 

FULL TEXT

A

That Religion or the duty we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, being under the direction of reason and conviction only, not of violence or compulsion, all men are equally entitled to the full and free exercise of it accordg to the dictates of Conscience; and therefore that no man or class of men ought, on account of religion to be invested with peculiar emoluments or privileges; nor subjected to any penalties or disabilities unless under &c

B

18. That religion, or the duty which we owe to our Creator, and the manner of discharging it, can be directed only by reason and conviction, not by force or violence; and therefore, that all men are equally entitled to enjoy the free exercise of religion, according to the dictates of conscience, unpunished and unrestrained by the magistrate, Unless the preservation of equal liberty and the existence of the State are manifestly endangered; And that it is the mutual duty of all to practice Christian forbearance, love, and charity towards each other.

CITE THIS ENTRY
APA Citation:
Madison, James. Madison’s Amendments to the Declaration of Rights (May 29–June 12, 1776). (2021, April 22). In Encyclopedia Virginia. https://encyclopediavirginia.org/entries/madisons-amendments-to-the-declaration-of-rights-may-29-june-12-1776.
MLA Citation:
Madison, James. "Madison’s Amendments to the Declaration of Rights (May 29–June 12, 1776)" Encyclopedia Virginia. Virginia Humanities, (22 Apr. 2021). Web. 12 May. 2021
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