North America - Volume 2 By Anthony Trollope 

 -   Those of my readers who may be desirous of examining
this matter for themselves, are referred to the Articles of - Page 70
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Those Of My Readers Who May Be Desirous Of Examining This Matter For Themselves, Are Referred To The Articles Of Confederation And The Constitution Of The United States.

The latter alone is clear enough on the subject, but is strengthened by the former in proving that under the latter no State could possess the legal power of seceding.

But they who created the Constitution, who framed the clauses, and gave to this terribly important work what wisdom they possessed, did not presume to think that it could be final. The mode of altering the Constitution is arranged in the Constitution. Such alterations must be proposed either by two-thirds of both the houses of the general Congress, or by the legislatures of two-thirds of the States; and must, when so proposed, be ratified by the legislatures of three-fourths of the States, (Article V.) There can, I think, be no doubt that any alteration so carried would be valid - even though that alteration should go to the extent of excluding one or any number of States from the Union. Any division so made would be made in accordance with the Constitution.

South Carolina and the Southern States no doubt felt that they would not succeed in obtaining secession in this way, and therefore they sought to obtain the separation which they wanted by revolution - by revolution and rebellion, as Naples has lately succeeded in her attempt to change her political status; as Hungary is looking to do; as Poland has been seeking to do any time since her subjection; as the revolted colonies of Great Britain succeeded in doing in 1776, whereby they created this great nation which is now undergoing all the sorrows of a civil war.

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