Benjamin Franklin Papers

From Benjamin Franklin to the Abbé Martin Lefebvre de La Roche, [21 October 1778]

To the Abbé Martin Lefebvre de La Roche6

AL: Bibliothèque Nationale; copy: Duke University Library

[October 21, 1778]7

M. Franklin n’oublie jamais aucune Partie ou Me. Helvetius doit être. Il croit même, que s’il etoit engagé d’aller à Paradis ce matin, il ferai Supplication d’ètre permis de rester sur terre jusqu’à une heure et demi, pour reçevoir l’Embrassade qu’elle a bien voulu lui promettre en le rencontrant chez M. Turgot.

Addressed: A Monsr. / Monsieur l’Abbé de la Roche / Auteuil

[Note numbering follows the Franklin Papers source.]

6One of the habitués of Madame Helvétius’ circle, about whom JA remarked, “These Ecclesiasticks … have as much power to Pardon a Sin as they have to commit one, or to assist in committing one”: Butterfield, John Adams Diary, IV, 58–9. Born in 1738, de La Roche had been chaplain and librarian to the Duc de Deux-Ponts. By 1778 he lived in a pavilion on the grounds at Auteuil, along with Cabanis and—occasionally—the abbé Morellet. They all became close friends of BF.

7We presume this is in answer to the reminder BF had received earlier in the day about the dinner at Hébert’s.

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