Toni Morrison. "In recognition of a distinguished lifetime of extraordinary contributions to American letters."
Richard Rorty. "In recognition of his influential and distinctively American contribution to philosophy and, more widely, to humanistic studies."
Elliott Carter. "In recognition of a lifetime dedicated to innovative compositions that have transformed the musical sensibilities of composers, musicians, and attentive publics in the United States and abroad. His compositions reveal peerless mastery of contemporary and earlier music, as well as pervasive appreciation of poetry, literature and other arts."
Bernard M. W. Knox. "In recognition of the role this brilliant classicist has played throughout the English-speaking world by presenting, in his writings, his teaching and the power of his example, the civilizations of Greece and Rome, and by offering a lucid reminder of where we come from, an inspiring vision of what we may become."
Frederick H. Burkhardt. "In recognition of a lifetime of extraordinary service and distinguished achievement: As exemplary leader, serving successively as president of Bennington College and the American Council of Learned Societies; As public servant, championing the cause of libraries, international cultural exchanges, and area studies; As philosopher, teacher and mentor, whose definitive edition of the works of William James was a landmark contribution; As editor, guiding light and presiding inspiration of the monumental series on The Correspondence of Charles Darwin, described as "one of the triumphs in scope and excellence of postwar publishing in England"; As an individual whose humanity, scholarship, dedication and generosity exemplify the highest ideals of the Jefferson Medal and the American Philosophical Society."
Bernard Lewis. "In recognition of his pioneering work in Ottoman-modern Turkish studies, on Race and Colour, and on Muslim views of Europe; of his fundamental role in refining and promoting the writing of Islamic History; and of his contribution in explaining the Middle East to generations of students and to large audiences in the West."
I. M. Pei. "In recognition of his distinguished accomplishments as a seminal, creative architect; his fulfillment in the contemporary world of Vitruvius' injunction to combine in one's work utilitas, firmitas, venustas; and the elegant, spiritual, uplifting genius embodied in his buildings across the globe."
Helen Hennessey Vendler. "In recognition of sustained distinguished accomplishment as a scholar and critic of English literature, as a particularly insightful and lucid interpreter of poets and poetry to wide lay as well as academic audiences, and as a notably conscientious and effective mentor of generations of undergraduate and graduate students."
Daniel J. Boorstin. "In recognition of a distinguished American historian whose career has included the publication of no less than 20 major studies, several of them multi-volumed; more than a decade of vigorous and effective service as Librarian of Congress; editorial duty with a variety of scholarly journals; not to mention frequent lecturing in Asia and Europe as well as in this country; and trusteeship of scholarly and cultural organizations."
Albert O. Hirschman. "In recognition of the author's pioneering work in development economics, a work full of compassion for those living in adversity; the man of letters who uncovered the moral and psychological preconditions for the rise of capitalism; the foe of totalitarianism who in the 1940s helped scores of refugees in Europe escape the Nazis; the deeply learned and adventurous scholar who is always prepared to cross borders in search of new ground."
Roland M. Frye. "In recognition of a brilliant scholar of English literature from Shakespeare to Milton, who saw literature in the context of its underlying religious thought and who with consummate skill interpreted the writings of important literary figures in the context of the human experience of their times - and a though a layman, a moving spirit in the Center for Theological Inquiry from the earliest days."
Homer Thompson. "In recognition of a life which has fostered Greek archaeology through distinguished publications and encouragement of generations of practitioners; a scholar whose unique vision of the whole subject and understanding of the central civic space of ancient Athens, the Agora, led him to open the site and expose its entire history from earliest times into the Byzantine age."
George F. Kennan. "In recognition of a distinguished leader who brought the benefits of a brilliant mind to government and whose pertinent experience enriched his contributions to scholarship, who crafted the containment policy, wrote perceptively about American foreign policy, effectively promoted understanding of Russia and the Soviet Union, and provided intelligent, courageous, and persuasive criticisms of the War in Vietnam and the nuclear arms race."
Arthur Link. "In recognition of the dedication, confidence, and achievement of an extraordinary historian, teacher, and editor, whose premier general history, remarkable biography, sixty-nine volume edition of the papers of Woodrow Wilson, and other important writings have promoted a clearer understanding of American history."
King Juan Carlos I on behalf of Spain. "In recognition of courageous actions which brought democracy to her inhabitants, and for bestowing the legacy of liberty, articulated by Thomas Jefferson in the Declaration of Independence, upon countless generations."
Bernard Bailyn. "In recognition of an extraordinary life of scholarship and an address, "Jefferson and the Ambiguities of Freedom," presented at the meeting celebrating the 250th anniversary of the founding of the Society and the birth of its third president, Thomas Jefferson."
Warren E. Burger. "In recognition of distinguished public service and an address, "The Decline of Professionalism," presented at the meeting celebrating the 250th anniversary of the founding of the Society and the birth of its third president, Thomas Jefferson."
John Hope Franklin. "In recognition of an inspiring life of scholarship and an address, "The Social Sciences for the New Century," presented at the meeting celebrating the 250th anniversary of the founding of the Society and the birth of its third president, Thomas Jefferson."
Peter Paret. "In recognition of an impressive life of scholarship and an address, "Jefferson and the Birth of European Liberalism," presented at the meeting celebrating the 250th anniversary of the founding of the Society and the birth of its third president, Thomas Jefferson."
Hanna Gray. "In recognition of vital leadership in the academic world and effectively articulating the value of scholarship to the common good on many occasions including the meeting celebrating the 250th anniversary of the founding of the Society and the birth of its third president, Thomas Jefferson."
Daniel Patrick Moynihan. "In recognition of a distinguished career of public service, and his role in gaining congressional approval of the medal which commemorates the 250th anniversary of the founding of the Society and of the birth of its third president, Thomas Jefferson."