Quotation: "Good wine is a necessity of life for me."
"Good wine is a necessity of life."
"Wine is a necessity of life for me."
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Earliest appearance in print, attributed to Jefferson: Albert Ellery Bergh and Andrew Adgate Lipscomb, eds., The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (Washington, DC: Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1905), 19:231.
Comments: This misquotation can be attributed mainly to a mistaken transcription which appeared in the Lipscomb-Bergh edition of Jefferson's writings, published in 1905. The editors transcribed Jefferson's statement to his agent Thomas Appleton as follows:
"Perhaps I may trouble you annually to about the same about, this being a very favorite wine, and habit having rendered the light and high flowered wines a necessity of life with me."1
This transcription had several errors. The modern transcription reads as follows:
"perhaps I may trouble you annually to about the same amount, this being a very favorite wine, and habit having rendered the light and high flavored wines a necessary of life with me."2
Many modern secondary sources have altered the quotation even further; it most frequently appears as "good wine is a necessity of life (for me)." This version dates to at least 1973.3