Thomas Jefferson Papers

Charles Clay to Thomas Jefferson, 24 April 1819

From Charles Clay

Petty Grove Ap. 24. 19

(C. Clay to Mr Jefferson.)

your Ale was Vinose on the Palate but Rather Ventose on the Stomac, your Man brings you some Potoooooooo, & a few sprouts Asparagus—I thank you for Your directions & observations on the assignments, but they Require so much1 writing, that I dread the task with My Cramped System of Nerves

accept Assurances of great esteem & tenders of Friendship

RC (ViU: TJP-ER); dateline at foot of text; addressed: “Mr Jefferson poplar <Grove> Forest”; endorsed by TJ without date of receipt.

vinose is an archaic spelling of “vinous,” while ventose means “windy” or “flatulent” (OED description begins James A. H. Murray, J. A. Simpson, E. S. C. Weiner, and others, eds., The Oxford English Dictionary, 2d ed., 1989, 20 vols. description ends ). potoooooooo: “potatoes.”

In his last will and testament of 12 Nov. 1819, Clay described the abovementioned assignments as “deeds in trust (of Several Special obligations and Sums thereon due me) to Certain of my friends for the benefit of my younger Sons, as they Shall Severally attain the age of twenty one years” (Bedford Co. Will Book, 5:172; see also Clay to TJ, 26 [Apr.] 1819).

1Manuscript: “s much.”

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