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George Washintgon

President George WashingtonCharacter, temperament, political acumen, and great insight into the meaning of democracy and freedom, and of liberty, were somehow distilled in George Washington.  They came together in such unique proportion that the United States would be assured of its ascendency among nations and of the elevation of its creative form of government to become the standard for others to follow.  The fulfillment of the office of the presidency cannot be other than a reflection of the character of the man holding the office and of the times in which he serves.  In no instance is this more clearly revealed than it is with George Washington in his second term.

The British, The French and their emissaries bore down on George Washington during his second administration.  During the Revolution the British had been his enemy and had considered him a traitor, whereas the French had rescued the rebel who was the Commander-in-Chief of the Revolutionary forces.  They sent funds and men to assist the American Revolution, sufficient in the minds of some, to have brought down the French Empire.  The French General Rochambeau planned the Battle of York and he, in fact, was probably the strategist of that great success.  The French fought side by side with the American forces, and Lafayette was like a son to Washington.  But all of this faded into memory as Washington's second term began.  The adversity encountered by Washington after his second inaugural came no less from the British, from the French, from the rapidly developing Democratic - Republican party, from a revolt of distillers in Western Pennsylvania, and from those who opposed his Jay Treaty with England.

Washington, that imposing patrician of six feet three inches, had hands which Lafayette said were the largest he had seen.  His complexion was fair, but florid; his weight was above 220 pounds.  Washington was a man who endeavored to conceal his sensitivity to public criticism and to control his tendency to be enraged by attacks against him.  He projected dignity and self-confidence, but he held himself aloof in a way which impressed all who came into his presence.



The image of a 2D painting of George Washington was acquired through public domain