John Adams to John Quincy Adams
Philadelphia April 8. 1777
My dear Son
I received your Letter of 23d. March, and was very much pleased with it, because it is a pretty Composition and your Mamma Assures me it is your own.
The History, you mention of Bamfylde Moore Carew, is worth your Reading altho he was a very wicked Man, because it serves to shew you, what a Variety there is in the Characters of Men, and what Odd, whimsical and extravagant Effects are produced by great Talents, when misapplied, and what Miseries, Dangers and Distresses Men bring themselves into, when they depart from the Paths of Honour, Truth and Virtue.
You, my Son, whom Heaven has blessed with excellent Parts, will never abuse them to bad Purposes, nor dishonour yourself by any Thing unworthy of you. So wishes your1
LbC (Adams Papers); at foot of text: “Mr. J.Q.A.” RC recorded as in possession of Philip D. Sang, Chicago, 1960; not seen by the present editors.
1. LbC breaks off thus at foot of page.