Adams Papers

From John Adams to Thomas Digges, 7 November 1780

To Thomas Digges

Novr. 7th 17801


Yours of the 24. 27 and 31. Ultimo came altogether last night. The Note in that of 27 is of <much Use> much Importance to me. I wrote, Sometime ago, to see if any Thing could be done by Way of Exchange.2

If a certain Sett, are governed wholly by Passion, it must be confessed they have as constant a gale of it, as a Tempest so furious, will in the ordinary course of Nature admit of. C’en est fait—as you Say. There are Letters here for a certain Friend,3 can you find out what is to be done with them?

I will bring my Boys acquainted with the young Gentleman you mentioned in a former Letter,4 whose father does them much honour. Will you, indulge the Feelings of a Father so far as to send me Lillys Grammar and Clarks latin Exercises,5 for the use of these young folks. Have you Seen the Publication of the Burgomasters?6 what do the wise ones think of it?

The English nation Seems in a fine Way. Such Characters as my Lord Hilsborough and Loughborough, with a long list of &cas. shooting up, perpedicularly, in Government, and Burke, Pownal, Hartley &c. unable to obtain Seats even in the Commons. People and Government Seem wonderfully cordial and harmonious.

With great Esteem


LbC (Adams Papers); directed to: “W. S. C.”

1The date is in John Thaxter’s hand.

2For Digges’ letter of 24 Oct., not printed, and the note in his letter of 27 Oct., see that letter, and note 1 (above). For JA’s letter regarding Henry Laurens’ exchange, see that of 14 Oct. to Benjamin Franklin (above).

3Presumably Henry Laurens.

4Probably the son of Richard Champion; see Digges’ letter of 26 Sept., and note 7 (above).

5These were William Lily, A Short Introduction of Grammar . . . of the Latin Tongue, and John Clarke, An Introduction to the Making of Latin; comprising . . . the Substance of Latin Syntax, both of which were standard texts, with numerous editions. Digges’ letter of 14 Nov. (below), indicates that he was sending off the books, but JA’s letter of 17 Dec. (below) reported that they had not yet arrived. In fact, JA may never have received them because of the outbreak of the Anglo-Dutch war in December. For copies of Lily and Clarke owned by JQA, but probably not obtained through Thomas Digges, see Worthington C. Ford, ed., A Catalogue of the Books of John Quincy Adams Deposited in the Boston Athenaeum. With Notes on Books, Adams Seals and Book-Plates, by Henry Adams, Boston, 1938.

6For this, see JA to the president of Congress, 27 Oct., No. 18, note 3 (above).

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