Adams Papers

From William Smith Shaw to Abigail Smith Adams, 22 January 1799

Philadelphia Jan 22d [1799] Tuesday Eve

My dear Aunt

I have sat down to enclose to you the dispatches of Mr. Gerry—The Secy’s report I will send you when published. It will not be relished by the Jacobins.

I have lately been reading a most enchanting poem called Joan of Arc by a Mr Southey. It has some faults in respect to its diction and versification but not withstanding these blemishes, it abounds in beauties and excellencies of the highest order. His conceptions are frequently bold and lofty, his imagery rich and beautiful and his language and versification <and his lan> with some few exceptions elegant, energetic and harmonious. I am sure you would be delighted with it. It is to be bought at Nancredes Boston.

Congress have been employed to day on a bill further to suspend the intercourse between the U.S. & France. In this bill there is a section authoizeing the president to renew the commercial intercourse between the U S, and any island belonging to France which shall clearly disavow & refrain from the agressions, depredations and hostilities which have been made against the property of U.S. Nicholas wished to have this section scratched out, which occasioned a warm debate in the house—but it was negatived by a large majority.

With Esteem and respect I am my dear Aunt / your

Wm S S.

MHi: Adams Papers.

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