Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from D. L. Morel, 1 August 1806

philadelphia august the 1st. 1806.

Please your Excellency.

To have conceived the project of offering your excellency, as a weack homage of my unbounded respect and veneration, the dedication of the publication of a work, the purport of which is to display the very spring of a free government, may be considered as unheard boldness; to be dared to do that without his knowlege would be viewed as an unpardonable temerity; and to expect his agreement seems to me so far distant of his eminently displayed soberness and modesty, that I am at a loss how to extricate my self of so tearing a perplexity.

my reflexions on the social compact, I know, though intended for the advantage of the american union, could be considered as vain and superfluous, should america be certain of being headed by men as strongly impressed with the desire of the general happiness, as your excellency. but the natural propensity to sucessive usurpations calls some means to prevent, rather than to stop or extirpate them; the last more or les convulsive must be prevented. such is the purport of a publication I respectfully beg leave to dedicate to your excellency.

to enable your your excellency to judge the principles of my writing, I take the liberty to join to my humble supplication a pamphlet containing the most promiment strictures of my work, of Which the author has made an attentive perusal.

may be your excellency will judge how friend I have always been of the american union, and be convinced that I have been always directed by my feelings, if he deems proper to waste some of his leasure in perusing the translation of a memorandum I have had the honor to present in february 1792 to the congress, in french language, by the favour of Mr. Mullenberg. he will find in it the first sketchs of a project your excellency is now pursuing With a success promising an incalculable advantage to america. when a foreigner my love to american government Was only in embryo, since seven years I am admitted to the honor of citizenship its energy is excedingly increased.

consigned till now in my papers no individual got a communication of the above memorandum, his success was resting on the steeps of the congress: but respecting to my publication, to have a desired effect it wants to be diffused, and without the help of an eminent patronage, uncertain will be its success, and may be abortive will be my undertaking.

the consideration, therefore, of the public wealth is the very motive directing my respectful supplication for’ the patronage of your excellency, and the non refusal of my dedication. however not dignifed and unworthy your eminent station, and great deal more your personal virtues, proceeding from an isolated refugee; every true americain will consider it as the tocken of the feelings every honest man must entertain for the public friend to mankind and especially to america.

the inclosed proposals I have deemed necessary, to give your excellency some Knowledge of the distribution and purport of the publication.

I beg your excellency to consign here the expression of the unlimited respect and veneration with which i have the honor to be

of your excellency

The most humble respectful and obedient servant

D. L. Morel

DLC: Papers of Thomas Jefferson.

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