Adams Papers

From Abigail Smith Adams to Anonymous, 15 June 1798

June 15 1798

<My Dear Madam>

You and I my dear Madam have trod together through one Gloomy Scene of War, Havock and desolation, and have see our Country rise Superior to <the> oppression and despotism. We have seen it take a Rank amongst the Nations, and at this period it exhibits the phenominon of the Sole remaining Republic, which is not engulphd in the Gormindizing and insatiable Grasp of that power which like the Grave, cries Give, Give, whilst the departed wealth, opulence & Liberty of Batavia, the cruelly oppressd Genevea, Genoa, all Itally, & the partioned and Barterd Venice, with the Barberously sacrificed Switzerland & Bern—Cry to us with <the voice of a> an awefull warning voice, to behold their fate, and to secure ourselves by a direct opposite conduct to that which has proved fatal to them.

I would hope that the destroying Angle may not be commissiond to visit us with wrath, and that the contaminating principles and abominations which have deluged Europe in Blood and renderd it a Golgotha, may not yet have taken Root in our land, That they have been imputed, scatterd, transplanted and sown <but> so successfully as to produce noxious plants, venomous Shoots and poisonous fruits, we have daily experience. But may our Gaurdian Genius pluck them up and cast them forth, not only as cumberers of the Ground, but as those abominable things which his Soul hateth, and may we yet be that happy Land saved of the Lord.

Hastning to that period which in Scripture is termd the Life of Man, and having every thing at Stake, Reputation & honour, Life, Liberty and Property, all devoted to the publick, is it possible to have a wish, a desire which is not interwoven with the present & future prosperity, freedom and independance of United America, of the Brothers, the children, the Relative & Kindred of Him whom they have placed over them as <at>their Head to lead and Guide them. He has told them that he would not be the Instrument to become tutulary or to Surrender their Liberty to any power on Earth, and that he did <oes> not hold himself accountable to <a>any Grand Head, sovereign power or directory upon Earth, for those communications which he conceives it his Duty to lay before the <Legis> National Legislators of his own Country. With these Sentiments he will live & with these sentiments he will like the Brave <ayoy> avoyer Steigner of Bern meet death if decreed to him.

The stay of our Envoys in Fance is protracted to an allarming degree for their personal Safety, and I had almost said for <our> National honour. The decree of Directory, respecting Nutrals, and the declaration of Talleyrand that we could only buy it off ought to have been the Signal for the departure of our Envoys. The cup of Humiliation was full. What has since happend, are its overflewings. They have bourn it, but the indignation of their Country spurns it. I inclose to you the last <dispatches> dispatch. Heaven Grant it may be the last.

The Testimonial of Boren approbation of the Executive which have pourd in from all Quarters of the union are a <pleasing> gratefull reward for the Labourious & and hazardeous exertions in the publick service, and whilst the rising Generation upon whom the hopes and expectation of all America is fixed for their Security and defence, are zealous and sincere with their profferd Lives and fortunes <in defence of the freedoms of their country>. their Fathers may be permitted to repose, having performed their Routine of <duty> active duty and spend their Remnant of days in devout Suplications for the Success of their Ospring. with the Presidents & my kind / regards I am madam yours—

MHi: Adams Papers.

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