Adams Papers
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From John Adams to Thomas Digges, 17 December 1780

To Thomas Digges

17th. Decr. 1780

I regularly recieve the Newspapers, but have not recieved the Books or Pamphlets of any kind.

If a Majority of the People your Way think America still theirs, they are a Majority of Ideots. They might as sensibly think Gascoigne and Guienne still theirs1—poor deluded Fools! how I pity them!

Sir Jo. Y. is pelting the Dutch with Memorials, in the Stile of Bernard’s Speeches and Hillsboroughs Letters.2 The Dutch hate War. They will not be Aggressors, but your Ministry have War in their Hearts against Amsterdam, if not the whole Republick. The Ministry laboured to divide the People of Boston from their Leaders, the People of Massachusetts from Boston, and the other Colonies from Massachusetts, until they united all in one independent Sovereignty, which will be an Example in Arms, Arts, Liberty and Glory, for the Admiration and Envy of the rest of Mankind. They are now labouring to divide the People of Amsterdam from the Regency, the other Cities of Holland from Amsterdam, and the other six Provinces from Holland. That Ministry have no other Maxims of Government than Corruption and Division: but they take their Measures so awkwardly, every where but in England, that they produce Union. They will do so in this Case, and presently the 7 United Provinces will be as independent as the 13 United States of America.

LbC in John Thaxter’s hand (Adams Papers); directed to: “Mr. Timothy D. Ross.”

1The provinces of Guienne and Gascogne formed Aquitaine, which had come under English rule in the mid-12th century, but had been governed by France since the mid-15th century.

2For an earlier comparison of Sir Joseph Yorke and the British ministry to Bernard and Hillsborough in the same context, see JA’s letter of 16 Nov. to the president of Congress, and note 4 (No. 20, above).

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