Talk:Laws that forbid the carrying of arms...(Quotation)

From Thomas Jefferson Encyclopedia

There are two small errors in the transcription from Jefferson's "Legal Commonplace Book".


 "le leggi più importanti del codice"

should be

 "le leggi più sacre dell´umanità e le più importanti del codice"

and "consequenza" should be "conseguenza".

These are not Jefferson's mistakes. You can see the image of the original on this page.

Jefferson did leave out some text, presumably intentionally. As David Thomas Konig notes in Influence and Emulation in the Constitutional Republic of Letters,

Jefferson was always quick to identify rights, but it is significant that in copying from Dei Delitti e delle Pene he chose to omit Beccaria's reference to bearing arms as a "libertà personale" (a personal liberty) from his commonplaced entry. Instead, he continued with Beccaria's argument about the diminished ability of disarmed victims to defend themselves and his call for "[una] ragionata meditazione degli' inconvenienti, ed advantaggi di una decreto universale" ("a rational contemplation of the disadvantages and advantages of a universal law").[12]

His note 12 reads:

Manuscript of Legal Commonplace Book, Library of Congress, item #828, citing Dei Delitti e delle Pene [Of Crimes and Punishments] (1766), chap. 40. (My translation.) Nevertheless, the omitted words (and the rest of an omitted thirty-nine word passage) have been inexplicably attributed to Jefferson. See Randy E. Barnett and Don B. Kates, "Under Fire: The New Consensus on the Second Amendment," Emory Law Journal 45 (1996): 1215.
Good eye, KHirsch. Thanks for letting me know. I was using Chinard's transcription, so I'm guessing that's where the error occurred. Perhaps Chinard was a little tired when he skipped that phrase... I'll fix the transcription in the main article. --ABerkes 15:03, 23 February 2009 (EST)