OF THE CAUSES, GENERATION, AND DEFINITION OF A COMMONWEALTH
....Lastly, the agreement of these creatures is natural; that of men is by covenant only, which is artificial: and therefore
it is no wonder if there be somewhat else required, besides covenant, to make their agreement constant and lasting; which
is a common power to keep them in awe and to direct their actions to the common benefit.
The only way to erect such a common power, as may be able to defend them from the invasion of foreigners, and the injuries
of one another, and thereby to secure them in such sort as that by their own industry and by the fruits of the earth they
may nourish themselves and live contentedly, is to confer all their power and strength upon one man, or upon one assembly
of men, that may reduce all their wills, by plurality of voices, unto one will: which is as much as to say, to appoint one
man, or assembly of men, to bear their person; and every one to own and acknowledge himself to be author of whatsoever he
that so beareth their person shall act, or cause to be acted, in those things which concern the common peace and safety; and
therein to submit their wills, every one to his will, and their judgements to his judgement. This is more than consent, or
concord; it is a real unity of them all in one and the same person, made by covenant of every man with every man, in such
manner as if every man should say to every man: I authorise and give up my right of governing myself to this man, or to this
assembly of men, on this condition; that thou give up, thy right to him, and authorise all his actions in like manner. This
done, the multitude so united in one person is called a COMMONWEALTH; in Latin, CIVITAS. This is the generation of that great
LEVIATHAN, or rather, to speak more reverently, of that mortal god to which we owe, under the immortal God, our peace and
defence. For by this authority, given him by every particular man in the Commonwealth, he hath the use of so much power and
strength conferred on him that, by terror thereof, he is enabled to form the wills of them all, to peace at home, and mutual
aid against their enemies abroad. And in him consisteth the essence of the Commonwealth; which, to define it, is: one person,
of whose acts a great multitude, by mutual covenants one with another, have made themselves every one the author, to the end
he may use the strength and means of them all as he shall think expedient for their peace and common defence.
And he that carryeth this person is called sovereign, and said to have sovereign power; and every one besides, his subject.
The attaining to this sovereign power is by two ways. One, by natural force: as when a man maketh his children to submit
themselves, and their children, to his government, as being able to destroy them if they refuse; or by war subdueth his enemies
to his will, giving them their lives on that condition. The other, is when men agree amongst themselves to submit to some
man, or assembly of men, voluntarily, on confidence to be protected by him against all others. This latter may be called a
political Commonwealth, or Commonwealth by Institution; and the former, a Commonwealth by acquisition. And first, I shall
speak of a Commonwealth by institution.