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    • Adams, John
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The Preliminaries of Peace and an Armistice, were Signed at Versailles on the 20 and on the 21. We went again to pay our Respects to the King and Royal Family upon the Occasion. Mr. Jay was gone upon a little Excursion to Normandie and Mr. Laurens was gone to Bath, both for their health, so that the signature was made by Mr. Franklin and me. I want an Excursion too. Thus drops the Curtain upon...
Your kind Letters of Oct. 25. and November 13 came to hand but to day. A Packet from you is always more than I can bear. It gives me a great Pleasure, the highest Pleasure, and therefore makes me and Leaves me Melancholly, like the highest Strains in Music. I have written you many times and Ways, that I have written to Congress a Resignation, and that I expect the Acceptance of it by the first...
Your two Letters concerning Mr. T yler are never out of my Mind. He is of a very numerous Family and Connection in Boston who have long had great Influence in that Town and therefore if his Education has been regular to the Bar, as it must have been if he followed his Studies regularly, under two Such Masters as Mr. Dana and Mr. Angier, if he has been admitted and Sworn with the Consent and...
The Peace, which Sets the rest of the World at Ease, increases, I think my Perplexities and Anxiety. I have written to Congress a Resignation, but I foresee there will not be a Speedy decision upon it, and I Shall be left in a State of Suspence that will be intolerable. Foreseeing this, I am determined not to wait for an Acceptance of my Resignation, but to come home without it, provided it...
“A Court,” as John Dryden informed me, before Experience, “is a place of forgetfulness for well deservers. It is infectious even to the best Morals to live always in it. It is a dangerous Commerce where an honest Man is sure at the first of being cheated; and he recovers not his losses, but by learning to cheat others. The undermining Smile becomes at length habitual; and the drift of his...
Dryden, whom I have always loved to read now and then, because I learn something from him, informs me, if I did not know it before, that “it hath been observed in former times that none have been so greedy of Employments, and of managing the Publick, as they who have least deserved their Stations. But such only merit to be called Patriots, under whom We see their Country flourish. I have...
L’Ambition dans l’oisiveté, la Bassesse dans l’orgueil, Le Desir de s’enrichir Sans travail, l’Aversion pour la vérité; la flatterie, la Trahison, la Perfidie, l’Abandon de tous Ses Engagemens, le mépris des devoirs du Citoyen, la Crainte de la Vertu du Prince, l’espérance de Ses foiblesses, et plus que tout cela le ridicule perpétuel jetté sur la vertu, forment, je crois, le caractère du plus...
I read in a great Writer, Montesquieu that “l’honneur, en imposant la loi de servir, veut en être l’arbitre; et, s’il se trouve choqué, il exige ou permet qu’on se retire chez Soi.” C’est une des Règles suprêmes de l’honneur, Que lorsque nous avons été une fois placés dans un rang, nous ne devons rien faire ni souffrir qui fasse voir que nous nous tenons inferieurs à ce rang même.” These being...
On the 30 Nov. our Peace was Signed. On the 28. March We dont know that you have Yet heard of it. A Packet Should have been Sent off. I have not yet received the Ratification of the my Dutch Treaty. I know not when I Shall be able to embark for home. If I receive the Acceptance of my Resignation, I Shall embark in the first ship, the first good ship I mean, for I love you too well, to venture...
It is now compleatly five Years, Since I first arrived in Europe, and in all that time I was never more impatient to hear from you and from America in General, than I am now and have been for some months. Not a Word, Since the Beginning of January, except a Line from your Unckle, and Scarcely any Thing Since the 26 of Oct. when I arrived in Paris. I have no intimation of the Arrival of my...
There is at length a Ministry in England composed of Kings Friends and Peoples Men, which will effervesce, and throw out a great deal of fixed Air like Potash and Lime Juice. Mr. Laurens and Mr. Hartley are to be here in a few days to enter upon the definitive Treaty, but it is now probable there will be a Congress under the Mediation of the two imperial Courts at least respecting the Terms...
It Seems as if Providence had ordered many Things for the last Months, in Such a manner as to put my Patience and Resignation to the Tryal. I dont know whether Jobs Tryals were more Severe. 1. Mr. John who was to have been at the Hague by Christmas has been detained at Stockholm, Copenhagen and Hamborough at which last Place he was on the 4. of this month, you may imagine my Anxiety about him....
If Congress when they revoked my Commission had appointed another to make a Treaty of Commerce with Great Britain, We should have had the Business all done on the 30 of Nov. Shelburnes Ministry would not have been condemned in the H. of Commons, and the definitive Treaty would have been signed before now and I Should be ready to embark for the Blue Hills, where I must go to recover my health,...
No News yet from America! We Yesterday, exchanged Full Powers with Mr. Hartley, and have agreed to meet at my House, every Evening at Six o Clock, untill We Shall have finished. This looks as if We were under Weigh, and I hope We shall reach Port. But cannot guess, how Soon. My Residence in Holland has given me many faithfull Remembrancers, and among the Rest the Scurvy. I walk every day,...
Here I am, out of all Patience. Not a Word from America. The British Ministry, lingering on. Mr. Hartley uncertain what to do. No Regulation of Commerce agreed on. No definitive Treaty of Peace, Signed, nor likely to be Signed very Soon. My Spring Passage home lost. To embark in July or August, would be the worst Season of the whole Year—on Account of Heat and Calms. I dont See a Possibility...
What would I not give for an Arrival from America? or for certain Advice from London of the Appointment of a Ministry, or for the Arrival here of a Minister to Sign the definitive Treaty? What would I not give for an Arrival from America or for Advice from London what the Ministry intend to do? Mr. Hartley is now here but We advance slowly to the definitive Treaty. I can now have no hopes of...
Day after day, Week after Week, Month after Month, roll away and bring Us no News. I am So weary of this idle useless Time, that I dont know what to do with myself. I dont wonder that People who have So much more of Such Time, than has fallen to my Share, have recourse to Play for dissipation. I find myself in the Same Situation with my Lord Chesterfield who Says in one of his Letters, that he...
The Legion of Lauzun has arrived, and We hope has brought the Orders of Congress, for Us, but We have not yet received them, and are as much at a Loss as ever. I know not whether my Resignation is accepted, and consequently can give you no Conjecture, when I Shall be able to get away. As the Spring and Summer Passage is lost, I cannot now embark before September or October, or November....
No Letters from you Since last December. Write by the Way of England Holland, France Spain all the Winds of Heaven. You may desire Mr. Storer to inclose your Letters to the Care of his Connections in London. Letters come now by that Way very well. I know not when I shall see you. I begin to fear it will not be, till next year. Yet I am in constant hopes every Moment of receiving from Congress...
Not a Line from you since December. Congress has not cutt off our heads for making Peace, and that is some Comfort. I am not in health and dont expect to be, untill I can get home. But when will this be? We are all at as great Uncertainty as We have been these six Months. Yet one should think it cannot be long before the Treaty is finished. You must not cease to write to me, untill I arrive at...
We have had for a Fortnight or Three Weeks a Succession of Hot Weather, attended with an unusual Fog, that has been worse for me to bear than were ever the extreamest heats of Philadelphia. My Scorbutic Habit is very ill fitted to bear it. But all this is not so tedious as the mournfull Silence of every Body in America. Not a Line from you or any Body near you Since Christmas. Congress have...
No Letter from you, yet. I believe I shall Set off Tomorrow or next day, for the Hague, and Shall bring John with me back to Paris in about 3 Weeks. There will be an Interval, before the Signature of the definitive Treaty, and Several publick Concerns oblige me to go to the Hague for a Short time. When I get my Son with me, I shall be ready to go to any Place, where I may embark for home, as...
Last Saturday, I left Paris, and on Tuesday arrived, at the Hague. To Day I am come to this Town. I Shall return to Paris in a Fortnight. So as to make my whole Absence about three Weeks. Soon after my Return I expect the definitive Treaty will be Signed, but in this I may be mistaken. My Son is with me in good health. I had a tender Meeting with the dear Companion of my Voages and Journeys,...
I have received your two favours of 7 May and 20 June. I had received no Letter from you for so long an Interval that these were really inestimable. I always learn more of Politicks from your Letters, than any others. I have lost all my Correspondents in Congress. I wrote to Mr. Jackson and Gen. Warren Supposing they were Members. Mr. Gerry is there now, to my Great Joy. Beg of him to write to...
I have not received my Letters of Recall from Holland and therefore must disappoint you and my self. I have requested them anew and Suppose I shall receive them about Christmas, but whether I do or not, I shall come home, at latest in the first Spring ships, unless I should receive Some new Commission in Europe, which is not likely. I am unalterably determined not to stay in Holland where I...