Benjamin Franklin Papers
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To Benjamin Franklin or William Temple Franklin from Madame F. Pechigny, 10 May 1781

Madame F. Pechigny to Franklin or William Temple Franklin3

ALS: American Philosophical Society

passy le 10 may 1781

Oserois je vous demander monsieur en quoi jai pu demeriter au près de vous et si les personnes que vous mavez fait la grace de me procurer ont eu a se plaindre de ma maison, j’apprend avec la plus vive douleur que vous mavez retiré la protection dont vous mhonoriez autrefois, en placant chés le sieur usson un pensionnaire que vous étiez le maitre de me procurer.4 Soyez je vous supplie assuré monsieur que linteret nentre pour rien dans ma démarche, je suis seulement vivement penetrée de ce que vous mavez retiré votre confiance et votre amitié dont personne ne sentois mieux le prix que celle qui ne Cessera jamais d’etre avec la plus grande consideration et lattachement le plus assurée

Votre très affectionnee servant

F. PECHIGNY

Les maitres darmes, de danse, de violon de musique, de mathematiques, ne sont que de 12 l.t. par mois, si vous trouviez mon pensionnat trop cher, jen aurois passé et jen passerez dans tous les tems par tout ou vous voudrez je receveray toujours la loi de vous a cet egard.5

Addressed: A Monsieur / Monsieur franklin en / son hotel / a passy

Notations in different hands: Pechigny May 10. 81 / Woodmason Caslon Stock-Buckle Razor Shoes Stockings Plated Buckles Watch Buttons

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

3Although the letter is seemingly addressed to BF, the intimate tone of the closing suggests that it may instead have been written to WTF, whose flirtation with the schoolmaster’s wife George Fox alluded to in his letter to WTF of Sept. 26, 1780: “Foulke informed me that Madame Pechigny has been very ill— God grant that it may not be owing to the Shock which her Virtue— Modesty &c receivd from a certain procedure. I tremble for her when I think of your vicinity, & her remains of former beauty. One thing only can save her, your very numerous engagements of the same Nature.” APS.

4Together with her husband, Mme Pechigny ran a pension or maison d’institution at Passy attended by Samuel Cooper Johonnot, JA’s two sons, and possibly Jesse Deane. The Adams boys had accompanied their father to Amsterdam the previous summer; Johonnot’s father, recently arrived at Paris, decided to send his son to join BFB at school as indeed BF had recommended; and Deane was soon to leave to continue his education at Brussels: XXXIII, 449n; XXXIV, 96, 139–40; Taylor, J. Q. Adams Diary, I, 34–5n, 66; Adams Correspondence, III, 272–3n; Deane Papers, IV, 303, 393–4, 442–3. For a description of the pensions d’education, of which there were several at Passy, see Luc-Vincent Thiery, Le Voyageur à Paris (8th ed., Paris, 1790), part two, pp. 145, 149–50.

5A year earlier JA had negotiated successfully with M. Pechigny an accomodation in the school’s program for his sons and Johonnot: Adams Correspondence, III, 347–8.

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