Know your pre-American American history. Scotland's "Declaration of Arbroath."

"...for, as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is in truth not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom – for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself."
- Scotland's "Declaration of Arbroath," April 6, 1320, declaring Scotland's independence from England.  You can read the Fergusson translation of the original Latin here.

It was one of first times in history men declared the powers of the state to be limited and subservient to the interests of the individual.  Some 450 years later, it would help inspire the wording of the United States' own Declaration of Independence.