Thomas Jefferson Papers

From Thomas Jefferson to Francis dal Verme and Others, 13 July 1788

To Francis dal Verme and Others

Paris July 13. 1788.


The readiness with which you were so kind as to shew me what was most worth seeing in Milan and it’s neighborhood when I had the honour of seeing you there, encourages me to address to you two of my young countrymen who will pass thro’ Milan in a tour they are taking. The one is Mr. Rutledge, son of Governor Rutledge of South Carolina, the other Mr. Shippen of Philadelphia nephew of Mr. Lee late President of Congress. Their good sense, information and merit will do justice to any attentions your goodness will induce you to shew them.1 The object of their journey being principally information, I will particularly ask of you to point out what is most worthy their notice and to procure them the facilities of seeing it. The sentiments you were so kind as to express towards my country as well as your natural goodness induce me to take the present liberty, and the rather as its furnishes me occasion of renewing to you assurances of the sincere esteem and profound respect with which I have the honour to be Dear Sir Your most obedient & most humble servt,

Th: Jefferson

PrC (DLC); at foot of text: “M. le Comte del Verme.” As promised in his letter to Shippen on 19 June 1788, TJ on this date wrote other letters of introduction to Gaudenzio Clerici of Milan, Giovanni Fabbroni of Florence, André de Sasserno of Nice (in which he noted Mr. and Mrs. Sasserno’s kindnesses to himself), Stephen Cathalan of Marseilles, and Geismar of Frankfort. Since these vary only in phraseology (with the exception of the last), they are not printed here; but see TJ to Geismar, following. The RC’s were evidently enclosed in TJ to Rutledge and a duplicate set (evidently composed of second PrC’s) was enclosed in TJ to Shippen, both of this date. PrC of the letter to Clerici is in DLC; PrC’s of the letters to Fabbroni, Sasserno (in French), and Cathalan are in MHi.

Shippen and Rutledge, on the advice of Lafayette, had assumed military rank and uniforms as being safer and more economical, but TJ did not refer to them as “Captain” Shippen and “Captain” Rutledge as Short did in a letter of 31 May 1788 (Shepperson, John Paradise and Lucy Ludwell, p. 311).

1The corresponding sentence in the letter to Sasserno reads: “Ils meritent bien, par les qualités du coeur et de l’esprit, toutes les attentions que vous aurez la complaisance de leur faire, et ils auront besoin de vos conseils pour leur route.

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