James Madison Papers

To James Madison from John Taylor, 25 September 1793

From John Taylor

Bowling Green Sepr. 25. 1793

Dr. Sir

Yours of the 20th. is this instant handed to me.

Had you been present, & wielding the pencil of a Hogarth, you might have depicted a lively sensation of human nature, on having the approbation it relates, announced to it.

The approbation of the good, is only inferior to a consciousness of having served mankind, in the pleasurable emotions it excites.

The emendation of the paper, is not only permited, but highly approved of, by me.

But I observe that Freneau is publishing extracts from it.1 This is both unwise and indelicate. Unwise, as mutilated anticipations, will weaken its effect, if it should appear in a pamphlet. Indelicate, as in that event, the performance will exhibit the ludicrous aspect, of a compilation from his news papers.

Instantly on the receipt of yours from Albermarle,2 notifications were dispersed, and in five days; resolutions were formed by a very numerous meeting. They are in some papers, and will appear in others.3 I hope you will approve of them. I wish they may differ enough from those of Stt.,4 to avoid a suspicion of their being coined in the same mint. I was obliged to come forward in a speechification. But, as I thought best, the chairman fathered & conducted, the whole business. Be happy.

J. T.

RC (DLC). Addressed by Taylor to JM at Orange, “Care of Mr: J. Blair, Fredericksburg.” Docketed by JM.

1On 11 and 14 Sept. the Philadelphia National Gazette published anonymous extracts from Taylor’s Enquiry into the Principles under the title “Brief Reflections on Several Subjects.”

3On the Caroline County resolutions, see Resolutions on Franco-American Relations, ca. 27 Aug. 1793, Editorial Note.

4On the Staunton resolutions, see ibid.

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