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Well, Doctor, what have we got? A republic or a monarchy? A republic, if you can keep it

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Source Notes: Source: The response is attributed to BENJAMIN FRANKLINat the close of the Constitutional Convention of 1787, when queried as he left Independence Hall on the final day of deliberationin the notes of Dr. James McHenry, one of Marylands delegates to the Convention.McHenrys notes were first published in The American Historical Review, vol. 11, 1906, and the anecdote on p. 618 reads: A lady asked Dr. Franklin Well Doctor what have we got a republic or a monarchy. A republic replied the Doctor if you can keep it. When McHenrys notes were included in The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787, ed. Max Farrand, vol. 3, appendix A, p. 85 , a footnote stated that the date this anecdote was written is uncertain.

A bit about Benjamin Franklin ...

Benjamin Franklin (January 17, 1706 April 17, 1790) was one of the most prominent of Founders and early political figures and statesmen of the United States. Considered the earliest of the Founders, Franklin was noted for his curiosity, ingenuity and diversity of interests. His wit and wisdom is proverbial to this day. More than anyone he shaped the American Revolution despite never holding national elective office. As a leader of the Enlightenment he had the attention of scientists and intellectuals all across Europe. As agent in London before the Revolution, and Minister to France during, he more than anyone defined the new nation in the minds of Europe. His success in securing French military and financial aid was decisive for American victory over Britain. He invented the lightning rod; he invented the notion of colonial unity; he invented the idea of America; historians hail him as the "First American". The city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania will mark Franklin's 300th Birthday in January 2006, with a wide array of exhibitions, and events citing Franklin's extraordinary accomplishments throughout his illustrious career.

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