Montesquieu

It is not enough to have dealt with poli­ti­cal liberty in rela­tion to the cons­ti­tu­tion : we must exa­mine it in its rela­tion to the citi­zen.

I have said that in the first case it is defi­ned by a cer­tain dis­tri­bu­tion of the three powers ; but in the second we must consi­der it from a dif­fe­rent point of view. It consists in secu­rity, or in the opi­nion one has of one’s secu­rity.

It can hap­pen that the cons­ti­tu­tion will be free, and the citi­zen not. The citi­zen might be free, and the cons­ti­tu­tion not. In these cases, the cons­ti­tu­tion will be free by right and not in fact, the citi­zen will be free in fact and not by right.

Only the dis­po­si­tion of the laws and even of the fun­da­men­tal laws cons­ti­tu­tes free­dom in its rela­tion to the cons­ti­tu­tion. But in the rela­tion to the citi­zen, ethos, man­ners, and recei­ved exam­ples can give rise to it, and cer­tain civil laws favor it, as we shall see in the pre­sent book.

Moreover, in most sta­tes, free­dom being more cons­trai­ned, contes­ted, or cru­shed than their cons­ti­tu­tion requi­res, it is well to speak of the par­ti­cu­lar laws which in each cons­ti­tu­tion can assist or contest the prin­ci­ple of the liberty to which each of them lends itself.