Adams Papers

To John Adams from Philip Mazzei, 23 December 1782

From Philip Mazzei

Amsterdam, 23 Decr. 1782.


I am obliged to trouble your Excellency about a letter Mr. Lynch writes me to have sent me from Nantes the 10th. of October last,1 under cover to your Excellency as well as the two preceding, which were delivered to me unsealed by Mr. Dumas. I don’t recollect which motive Mr. Dumas told me had been the occasion of it; and as the same, or any other motive, may have occasioned the abovesaid letter being mislead, I beg the favour of your Excellency to desire that it may be searched, & delivered to me. Your Excellency would do me a favour to order that it may be likewise delivered to me Baretti’s dictionary, which was sent to your direction, by Mr. Lynch, along with the dictionary of Crusca.2 I am sorry to find that I am still in a great need of an English dictionary. Had I succeeded to explain myself with clearness, in the letters I sent to your Excellency, where I meant to signify that I was a perfect stranger in this Country, I should not perhaps have had the mortification to read, in the answer you did me the honour to write me the 26. ulto.,3 that I must have been introduced to some of the Houses in Holland who have most connections with America. In expectation of the honour of your Excellency’s commands, I am with profound respect, / Sir, / Your Excellency’s most Obet / & most Humble Servant

Philip Mazzei

RC (Adams Papers).

1Mazzei wrote again on 26 Dec., in the meantime having received a copy of the 10 Oct. letter mentioned here from Mark Lynch, a Nantes merchant. On 26 Dec. Mazzei reiterated his request that the documents enclosed in Lynch’s letter be forwarded to him (Adams Papers).

2Probably Giuseppe Marco Antonio Baretti, A Dictionary of the English and Italian Languages, London, 1771, and Accademia della Crusca, Florence, Compendio del vocabolario degli Accademici della Crusca, 5 vols., Florence, 1739, but see Mazzei’s letter of 2 Feb. 1783, below. Copies of both works are in JA’s library at MB (Catalogue of JA’s Library description begins Catalogue of the John Adams Library in the Public Library of the City of Boston, Boston, 1917. description ends ).

3For JA’s letter of 26 Nov., see Mazzei’s of 2 Nov., note 3, above.

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