Constitution Vocabulary

  1. Annapolis Convention
    This is a convention that was meant to overhaul the confederation; it recommended a meeting the following year to create the constitution.
  2. Constitutional Convention
    This is the convention in which the Constitution was written and a new government was formed.
  3. Alexander Hamilton
    He was the dominant figure during Washington’s administration; he also was a figure in the Constitutional Convention.
  4. Checks & Balances
    This is the system in which the three branches of government check each other’s powers, and assure they are balanced; no one branch can overcome the other two.
  5. James Madison
    He proposed the Virginia plan for the constitution, which became the basis for it; he also was a leader in the Democratic-Republican Party.
  6. The Great Compromise
    This is where the House of Representatives and senate were created, for the representation of each state.
  7. Senate
    One of the legislative houses where each state has two delegates.
  8. House of Representatives
    This is the second house where representation is based on a state’s population.
  9. 3/5th Compromise
    This is where the slaves were counted as 3/5th a free man for the representation of slave states in the House of Representatives.
  10. Commercial Compromise
    This is most likely where the slave trade was allowed to continue without interference for 20 years.
  11. Ratification
    This is the act of confirming an act and putting it into effect.
  12. Electoral College System
    This is the system in which only a few electors choose the president based on the popular vote of an elector’s state.
  13. Federalists
    This is the name given to the people who supported ratification of the Constitution.
  14. Anti-Federalists
    Those who opposed ratification of the Constitution.
  15. The Federalist Papers
    A series of essays that explained the meaning and virtues of the Constitution, in order for it to gain support.
  16. Bill of Rights
    These are the first 10 amendments to the Constitution, it was added to satisfy states who wanted a document with individual rights to be added to the Constitution.
  17. Executive Branch
    This is the branch which signs the bills from the Legislative branch to law, it included departments of treasury, state and war.
  18. Cabinet
    This is the advisors of the president.
  19. Henry Knox
    He was a Massachusetts Federalist General that was appointed Secretary of War by Washington.
  20. Edmund Randolph
    He was the one that presented the Virginia plan at the Constitutional convention.
  21. Legislative Branch
    The branch of government that makes the bills or laws.
  22. Judicial Branch
    The branch of government that evaluates the laws and makes sure they are constitutional.
  23. Congress
    This is the name given to the two houses of the legislative branch.
  24. Judiciary Act 1789
    This act provided the Supreme Court with six members, with one chief justice, thirteen district courts, and three circuit courts of appeals. The act also gave the Supreme Court to have the final decision in cases involving the constitutionality of state laws.
  25. Federal Courts
    These are courts that have federal judges and deal with federal laws.
  26. National Debt
    The entire debt of the nation.
  27. National Bank
    A bank that aids in the stability of the nation’s banking system.
  28. Tariffs
    Taxes imposed on goods, either being exported or imported.
  29. Excise Taxes
    These are taxes paid when someone buys certain goods.
  30. Edmond Genêt
    He was the French diplomat sent to the United States to get support for the French in a war between France and Great Britain.
  31. Jay Treaty 1794
    This is the treaty that ended hostilities between the U.S. and Great Britain when Great Britain began seizing American Ships.
  32. Proclamation of Neutrality 1793
    A proclamation that made the U.S. neutral in the French and British conflict.
  33. Pinckney Treaty 1795
    This is a treaty made with the Spanish which gave the U.S. what it desired, such as a new Florida boundary and free access to the Mississippi.
  34. Battle of Fallen Timbers
    This was a battle between Natives and the Americans in the Northwest Territory, in which the Americans won.
  35. Whiskey Rebellion 1794
    This is a rebellion of farmers who were burdened by the excise tax.
  36. Public Land Act 1796
    This act allowed public land to be surveyed and disposal by public sale.
  37. Federalist Era
    This is the era in which the Federalists controlled the government.
  38. Democratic-Republican Party
    This is the opposing party of the federalists who believed in a less centralized government and more power for the states; believed in strict interpretation of the constitution.
  39. Two Term Tradition
    This is the tradition established by Washington, where presidents serve 2 terms.
  40. John Adams
    He was a Federalist and was the second president of the United States. He was involved in an undeclared war with France.
  41. XYZ Affair
    This is where three French agents demanded a loan and a bribe for France before negotiations began between the U.S. and France to prevent war.
  42. Alien & Sedition Acts
    These are four acts passed to control the activities of foreigners during impending crisis between France and the U.S. The acts were also meant to destroy Jeffersonian Republicanism. The Sedition act allowed imprisonment of those who criticized the government.
  43. Nullification
    This is the act of nullifying or overriding a law or act.
  44. Kentucky & Virginia Resolutions
    This is where Madison and Jefferson wrote resolutions that argued that states had the duty to nullify laws that were unconstitutional. These resolutions put the issue nullification to the national stage.
Card Set
Constitution Vocabulary