The views of Hamilton, Madison and Jay expressed in this landmark work have had a lasting effect on U.S. Constitutional law. Eighty-five of the essays were almost entirely written by Hamilton and Madison, and probably only five were written by Jay. Most of the individual essays appeared under the collective pseudonym "Publius" in New York newspapers and journals from October 27, 1787 to early June 1788. The first edition was published anonymously and printed by the M'Lean brothers, who collected and published the first 36 essays as Volume I in March, 1788, with the final 49 essays in Volume II in May of the same year, along with the text of the Constitution. The essays were intended to encourage ratification of the proposed constitution by New York State, but were immediately recognized as the most compelling commentary on the most radical form of government the world had seen. Hamilton's essays especially express a strong concern for the rights of property over the natural rights of "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness," as outlined by Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence.
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