Declaration of Independence 1776

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Declaration of Independence (1776)


the declaration adopted on July 4 of that year by the Second Continental Congress, a body composed of representatives from the British colonies during the War of Independence in North America (1775-83), which was a bourgeois revolution.

The declaration was drafted for the most part by T. Jefferson and reflected republican and democratic ideals. It proclaimed the separation of the colonies from the mother country and the establishment of a new independent state—the United States of America. The declaration replaced the prevailing theory of the divine source of authority by the idea of the sovereignty of the people. It proclaimed the right of the people to revolution, the equality of all persons before the law, and the inalienable right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” Under pressure from the slaveowners, however, the clause in the draft declaration condemning slavery was excluded. The declaration had great historical significance, since it was regarded as a call to struggle against absolutism under the feudal order. K. Marx referred to it as “the first declaration of human rights” (see K. Marx and F. Engels, Soch., 2nd ed., vol. 16, p. 17).


Konstitutsii i zakonodatel’nye akty burzhuaznykh gosudarstv XVII-XIX vv. Moscow, 1957.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
MAJOR events in lifetime of Preston Twin elm tree: English Civil War 1642-1651; Charles I executed 1649; Great Fire of London 1666; US Declaration of Independence 1776; French Revolution 1789; Napoleon crowned emperor of France 1804; Battle of Waterloo 1815; First World War 1914-1918; Second World War 1939-1945; fall of Berlin Wall 1989; 9/11 terror attacks 2001

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