Our nation's first president is not usually thought of as a man of words. Unlike the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials in the nation's capital, the Washington monument is inscribed with no words for the benefit of posterity. Yet Washington was keenly aware of the power and importance of language. From the time of his entrance into the public arena at the age of twenty to his death forty-seven years later, he produced a steady stream of letters, reports, memoranda, addresses, messages, and speeches designed to express his views and to persuade people to them. Here, collected in an elegant volume, is the authoritative selection of Washington's thoughts and observations culled from his public discourse and private correspondence. As we read his comments on subjects as diverse as government, foreign policy, religious freedom, friendship, character, and relations between the sexes, we find that his words are often as applicable to our own time as they were to his.