The name that the advocates of the Constitution gave to themselves during the debates over its ratification. The most famous essays published during that period are known collectively as the Federalist papers. They were written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay (though at the time they were published under the penname Publius). Although the Federalist papers are the best known collection today, there were in fact many Federalists writing essays at this time. ("Federalist" was also the name of a political party originating in the Washington Administration.)

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