Adams Papers
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To John Adams from Benjamin Franklin, 30 November 1780

From Benjamin Franklin

Passy Nov. 30. 1780


I have had a severe Fit of the Gout which has confined me six Weeks; but it is now going off, and I flatter myself that it has done me a great deal of Good.

I have just received a Letter from Dr. Ezra Stiles, of which the inclosed is an extract. Please to communicate it to Mr. Searle, and then give it to M. Dumas if you judge it proper for Publication.1 I have also a large and particular Account of Arnolds Treachery. There is not time to transcribe it for this Post, but you shall have it per next. I have the honour to be with great Esteem Sir Your Excellency’s most obedt & most humble Servant

B Franklin

Enclosed is a Letter for you which came by the same Ship.2

RC (Adams Papers).

1The enclosed extract has not been found, but it was from Stiles’ letter to Franklin, dated 10 Oct. at Newport. An extract from this letter, containing Stiles’ commentary on Benedict Arnold and his treason, appears in The Literary Diary of Ezra Stiles, ed. Franklin Bowditch Dexter, 3 vols., N.Y., 1901, 2:473–474. A somewhat longer extract, presumably submitted by JA, appeared in the Gazette de Leyde of 15 December. There Jean Luzac took issue with Stiles’ characterization of Maj. John André as “the Seducer,” attributing it to the author’s attachment to the American cause. According to Luzac, impartial observers mourned André’s loss as a victim “des fureurs de la Guerre.”

2Probably Arthur Lee’s letter of 28 Sept. (above), which JA answered on 6 Dec. (2d letter, below).

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