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Source Notes: Source: Attributed to ALEXANDER HAMILTON, in a political argument with Thomas Jefferson.David S. Muzzey, An American History, p. 192 .For similar expressions of this idea going back to Horace, see Bartletts Familiar Quotations, 15th ed., p. 108, no. 19 and footnotes , and The Home Book of Quotations, ed. Burton Stevenson, 9th ed., p. 148384, section 7 .
Alexander Hamilton (January 11, 1755 or 1757 July 12, 1804) was an American politician, statesman, journalist, lawyer, and soldier. One of the United States' most prominent and brilliant early constitutional lawyers, he was an influential delegate to the U.S. Constitutional Convention and the principal author of the Federalist Papers, which successfully defended the U.S. Constitution to skeptical New Yorkers. He also put the new United States of America onto a sound economic footing as its first and most influential Secretary of the Treasury, establishing the First Bank of the United States, public credit and the foundations for American capitalism and stock and commodity exchanges. Alexander Hamilton died in a duel with fellow politician Aaron Burr.