Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from Philip Mazzei, 18 November 1793

From Philip Mazzei

Pisa, 18 9bre, 1793.

Most dear Sir

I received your last, dated 7 Jany. 1792, in Warsaw, and answer’d it the 23d. of May, inclosed to Mr. Short in Paris. I sent him a copy of it in Holland, on the 11th. of Feby. last, and a second copy, with some additions, I directed to you, via London, the 19th. of May. Mr. Short moved so rapidly from one Country to another (by what I have understood) that I doubt whether any one of my letters ever reached him. I never received an answer from him, nor do I Know where he now is. Hoping however, that my second copy, via London, is come to hand, I shall not for the present repeat the contents of it. This is only meant to inform you, that I have been obliged to have recours to our Friends Vansstaphorst in Holland for assistance in my distressed situation, and that they have been so good as to lend me 2,251:13:—: florins, Holland Currency; in consequence of which, I beg you to remit to them whatever sum, or sums of money you may collect from any Kind of the little property I have still remaining in America, as I have offered it to them for their security, having nothing else so certain1 to offer. I hope soon to hear from you, and remain for ever, most Dr. Sr., your most Ob. and most Affe. Fr. [ & Serv.]

Ph. M.

Dft (DLC: Mazzei Papers); at foot of text: “Ths. Jefferson Esqre”; two words illegible. Recorded in SJL as received 10 June 1794.

Mazzei’s letters to TJ of the 11th. of Feb. and the 19th. of May 1793, recorded in SJL as received from Pisa on 23 Jan. 1796 and 6 Sep. 1793, respectively, and the missing Dupl and Tripl of his 23 May 1792 letter recorded in SJL as received on the same dates, have not been found. In regard to these letters, Mazzei wrote the following note on the address cover of TJ’s letter to him of 7 Jan. 1792:

“Jefferson, 7 Genn: 1792
 rispta. 23 Maggio
 la copia 11 Febbr. 1793
 2da. copia 19 Maggio 1793 per Braccini,
  per Londra.

In questa confermo il contenuto nella sopradda.; parlo della missione ai pirati Affricani, che potrebbe riuscire, perché io non potrei esservi sospetto; gli chiedo dei materiali per un 2do. supplemento, pensando io di stampar l’originale del mio libro, e qual che ora costituisca il carattiere di cittadino, e l’escluda; gli chiedo; suoi ordini per servirlo di qui, e che mi mandi dei semi di Squackes piccoli di più sorte.

18 9bre 1793

La copia è qui inclusa.” The Editors supply the following translation:

“Jefferson, 7 Jan. 1792
 Answer 23 May
 Copy 11 Feb. 1793
 2d. copy 19 May 1793 per Braccini,
  per London.

In this letter I confirm the contents of the aforesaid letter; I discuss the mission to the African pirates, which could well succeed, because I could not be suspected; I ask him for materials for a second supplement, since I am thinking of printing the original of my book, and what now constitutes the character of a citizen, and what excludes it; I ask him for his orders so that I may serve him from here, and that he send me the seeds of several sorts of small squashes.

18 Nov. 1793

The copy is enclosed here.” Concerning Mazzei’s book, see Howard R. Marraro, “Unpublished Mazzei Letters to Jefferson,” WMQ description begins William and Mary Quarterly, 1892– description ends , 3d ser., i (1944), 381n.

1Preceding two words interlined.

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