Tocqueville says that the superiority of American women is the chief cause of the power and prosperity of American democracy. That superiority is the result of an education that treats women as capable of freedom, but the use of that freedom is to maintain the bonds that restrict women to the household. The present article examines the role of the family and women in the new political science Tocqueville thought necessary for the defence of democratic liberty. It is argued that as the primary influence of democracy upon the family for Tocqueville has been to eliminate the authority of fathers who were the “arbiters of mores” and thereby the defenders of liberty in aristocracy, so democratic liberty depends for him above all upon the new role of women as the makers of mores. Through the agency of women, otherwise fragile religion constitutes an effective limit to the authority of the majority, but what makes it possible for religion to operate through women is their exclusion from the world of commerce, and what maintains this exclusion is the strict conjugal morality that women themselves defend in America. How far the role of women as guardians of democratic liberty might be justified is shown to depend for Tocqueville upon arguments for it that are other than those commonly accepted by American men.