So Help Me God: The U.S. Presidents in Perspective

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Nova Science Publishers, Jan 1, 1996 - Political Science - 173 pages
For much of British history, kings and queens have taken oaths on the Bible as they were coronated. Symbolically,perhaps, President George Washington swore on an open Bible, establishing a new American tradition. For Washington, the Bible was opened at random, and many of his successors followed suit. Others have chosen specific verses or books of the Bible. The reasons for a particular choice are as varied as the men who have occupied the office. interestingly enough, more than twice as many have chosen Old Testament verses as New Testament ones, and the Psalms have been used more than any other book. Perhaps the position of the Psalms at the center of many Bibles explains the choice; triumphant Presidents choosing joyful texts is another explanation.

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