Adams Papers

From John Adams to François Barbé-Marbois, 1 March 1780

To François Barbé-Marbois

Paris March 1st. 1780

Dear Sir

You advised me to take my Son with me, to Europe, and I followed your Advice, and went further and brought his Brother to bear him Company, and went further still and brought a Grandson of our Friend Dr. Cooper. I thought the more of our Youth I brought here for an Education, the more the Acquaintance between the Countries would be extended, and the Connections strengthened. They are all learning French as fast as possible at a Pension.1

These young Gentlemen are likely to be under Obligations to this Country for more than their Education. I reveal no Secrets of Government. I have none. But the Bruit of Paris is that there is a strong Armament preparing at Brest, which is to be employed in the best possible Manner for our Relief. God grant it.

I had the Honour to dine this day with Comte Sarsefield, in company with the Comte de la Luzerne, the Viscount Sarsefield,2 and a great deal of other good Company: but I am very sorry I had not the Honour to bring Letters from the Chevalier and You to your Friends.

I presume, e’er this You speak English like a Philadelphian, that is with a great deal of Purity, Ease and Fluency. My affectionate Respects to the Family if you please.

I am with great Esteem, Sir, your Friend and Servant

John Adams

RC in John Thaxter’s hand (Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, Fonds français, vol. 12768;) endorsed: “John Adams [Paris?] du Congres.”

1JQA, CA, and Samuel Cooper Johonnot were enrolled in the pension academy of M. Pechigny and his wife in Passy (Adams Family Correspondence description begins Adams Family Correspondence, ed. L. H. Butterfield and others, Cambridge, 1963–. description ends , 3:272–273).

2These were Guy Claude, Comte de Sarsfield, JA’s friend and correspondent; Jacques Hyacinthe, Vicomte de Sarsfield, Guy Claude’s brother; and César Henri, Comte de La Luzerne, the brother of the French minister to the United States (vol. 6:85; François Alexandre Aubert de La Chesnaye-Desbois and ——Badier, Dictionnaire de la noblesse, Paris, 3d edn., 1863–1876, 19 vols., 18:292; Hoefer, Nouv. biog. générale description begins J. C. F. Hoefer, ed., Nouvelle biographie générale depuis les temps les plus reculés jusqu’ à nos jours, Paris, 1852–1866; 46 vols. description ends ).

Index Entries