Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Vergennes, 20 October 1786

To Vergennes

Paris Octr. the 20th. 1786


I have the honor of communicating to your Excellency the copy of a treaty of amity and commerce concluded between the United States of America and his late Majesty the King of Prussia, in the two languages in which it was written, each of which was agreed to be equally original. The exchange of ratifications was made but a little before the death of the King. This circumstance with the delays which have attended the printing and transmitting the copies of the treaty to me have prevented my making an earlier communication of it to your Excellency as a confidence and respect [due to the friendly dispositions which His Majesty the King has been always graciously pleased to shew towards us.]1

I have the honor to be with sentiments of the most perfect respect and esteem, your Excellency’s most obedient & most humble servant,

Th Jefferson

RC (Arch. Aff. Etr., Corr. Pol., E.-U., xxxii); in Short’s hand, including signature; at foot of text: “(Test: W. Short sec.).” PrC (DLC); lacks complimentary close. Enclosure: Copy of the printed text of the Treaty with Prussia—not the broadside described in JCC description begins Worthington C. Ford and others, eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, Washington, D.C., 1904–37, 34 vols. description ends , xxxi, 962, No. 533; nor, evidently, was it one of the texts printed by Adams, which was “only in French” (Adams to TJ, 11 Sep. 1786).

1For the text in brackets (supplied), the letter of this date to Stael de Holstein reads: “we bear to the nation whom you so worthily represent here and with which we have the honor of being allie[d].”

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