Thomas Paine Common Sense - Quote Analysis

Thomas Paine Common Sense - Quote Analysis
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Common Sense Monarchs

Common Sense by Thomas Paine

Lesson Plans by Matt Campbell

Thomas Paine's political pamphlet, Common Sense, was an enormously impactful document of the Revolutionary Era. It stoked the fires of revolution and provided intellectual ammunition to revolutionaries across the colonies. Learn more and engage students with premade activities with Storyboard That!

Common Sense

Storyboard Description

Thomas Paine Common Sense Quote Analysis activity - Have students select quotes from Common Sense and describe and illustrate the meaning of them.

Storyboard Text

  • Direct Quote
  • “Men who look upon themselves born to reign, and others to obey, soon grow insolent; selected from the rest of mankind their minds are early poisoned by importance; and the world they act in differs so materially from the world at large, that they have but little opportunity of knowing its true interests, and when they succeed to the government are frequently the most ignorant and unfit of any throughout the dominions.”
  • Meaning of Quote
  • I'm sorry but the king is too busy this month with his feasts, plays, and parties.
  • Our crops are dying and we are being invaded... we need help from the king!
  • “Small islands, not capable of protecting themselves, are the proper objects for kingdoms to take under their care; but there is something absurd, in supposing a continent to be perpetually governed by an island.”
  • Kings, or any leaders that are guaranteed the right to rule, quickly become detached from their subjects and the society they govern.
  • The colonies are being invaded by the French! What should we do!?
  • No problem. I'll send a letter of request to the king... I'll let you know his reply... in four months
  • Four months!?!
  • “A long habit of not thinking a thing wrong, gives it a superficial appearance of being right, and raises at first a formidable outcry in defense of custom. But the tumult soon subsides. Time makes more converts than reason.”
  • It doesn't make sense to have the island of Britain ruling over the continent of America from thousands of miles away. In order to run a country decisions have to be made quickly and a continent cannot wait on a foreign king.
  • I can't wait to get money for losing my tooth!
  • Just because people have done things a certain way doesn't mean it is the correct way to do it. People become comfortable with the tradition of an activity rather than the purpose of it.
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