James Madison Papers

James Madison to John M. Patton, March 1834


Dr. Sir

Recd. yours of Mar 27. ackg. mine of Mar 24. 34. The latter marked confidenl. 1st. from the moral certainty that what is communicated to a few, goes into conversation, and that what goes into conv soon expands beyond the Confidential limits and finally into inferences & conjectures as to the kindred questions of party. 2. because a reference to my age becomes an answr. to all argts. & opinions. 3. because mistakes can not under my circumstances be explained, or fallacies refuted, witht. my becoming a party to public discussion, where fairly on the list of a non-combatant. 4 because, as far as my opinions were applicable, as in the case of the Bank & the power of removal from office they were alread in print; or as on the other subjects particularly touched in the letter, they were not sufficiently developed, for a just view of them. 5 I might add that besides my great age, and cripling Rheumatism, I am labouring under a new malady, which is more obstinate than was at first supposed. My present physical condn. if not involving a mental sympathy which I ought not to proclaim if my friends do not, must apologize for the remarks which I am venturing to add to my former letter.

Draft (DLC).

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