Adams Papers

To John Adams from Marie-Joseph-Paul-Yves-Roch-Gilbert du Motier, marquis de Lafayette, 5 January 1787

Paris january the 5th 1787

My dear Sir

I Expected to write to You By [col.] Franks, But as His departure Has Been daily differed, I will not delay Any longer My Hearty Wishes of an Happy New Year to You, Mrs Adams, Mrs Smith, Your Sons, the Adoptive one I will write to By in Bye—May this New Year Afford You, and Your worthy family and friends Every kind of public and personal Satisfaction! Had I Been less Acquainted with the forms of a Republican Government, and the tempur of the Good Citizens of America, I would Have Been Greatly Alarmed at the late Accounts of disturbances in Some States, Which, However, in Spite of My Reasonings, Gave me Some Momentary Uneasiness. A letter from You to Mr jefferson did us Great deal of Good—I Hope the federal, Councils will take No measures that May Alarm the people Against federa1 ideas—and from the wisdom, the Great Sense, and the patriotism of the people, I flatter myself, the More so when I Remember old times, that Good will Come from a Temporary Evil, and that the very things in which the Ennemies of America Now Have the impudence to glory and Confide, will turn out to the Greater fame, and Advantage of the United States.

The Empereur of Morocco is a lovely Boy—I wish the Algerians Could do the Same—I Confess my old ideas do Still [. . .] to my fancy. Could we not Agree in a third Proposal Which Has Been Spoken of to you By an other Opportunity?

I dare Say You Have Been pleased to Hear of the Meeting of an Assembly at Versailles to debate Severa1 matters of the Utmost importance to this kingdom—It is not what we Call the Etats Generaux, But an Assembly of Notables Appointed By the King, who does not take in Any Man Holding a place at Court—It Consists of 140 Members, and perhaps a few more—A Number of Arch Bishops and Bishops for the Clergy—Six and thirty Members for the Noblesse, among whom are two Acquaintances and a friend of Yours, Count d’estaing, the duke de la Rochefoucaud and Your Humble Servant—It is Not ascertained if the princes of the Blood will Be at our Head, or in the King’s Suite—There will Be the first president and procureur General from Every parliament, three more from the Parliament of Paris, and some Conseillers d’etat, and intendants—Thirty towns will Send their Mayors. It is on the 29th that the Assembly meet, for one Month at least, and probably for a longer time—Our letters say that the king wants to Communicate to us His views for this Soulagement des peuples, Arrangement des finances, et Reformation de plusieurs abuse. This is Certainly a Noble, patriotic Measure which does great Honour to the king and may do much good to this Country.

Pray, what is Become of doctor Gordon? I know He is in England, But Have Not Heard from Him—I wish to know when His History Comes out, and to Enlist myself Among the Subscribers

Adieu, My dear Sir, Most affectionately and Respectfully / Yours


MHi: Adams Papers.

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