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Letter from Abigail Adams to John Adams, 15 December 1798

My dearest Friend

I last Evening received yours of Novbr. 28th. If oceans do not rool between us, mountains have arrisen. The late sevear Snow Storm has shut me in, as close as a mouse in a trap, and that so early in the Season, that no probability appears, of any comfortable travelling this winter. The Banks are so high, so hardly compacted together that they will not be removed untill Spring; I am well persuaded, so that I must sigh at Quincy, and you at Philadelphia, without being able to afford each other any personal comfort, or Genial warmth. You say you are fractious; you will have causes enough for vexation I doubt not. The Military arrangment is an ample Feild if you had no other; I see by the paper of to day, that Genll. Brooks has resignd. It reminds me of a story of a certain Irishman who observing that his outer rows of corn were not so good as his others determined that in future he would have no outer Row. It is very difficult so to place the outer row as to satisfy those which succeed, but nothing tends so much to render a Man Fractious as living without Females about him. Even tho sometimes they may be glad to lie low and let the Sand fly over they know how to temper the wind to the Shorne Lamb and to Sooth into good humour the jaring Elements. You see I am willing to keep up my self concequence as well as the honour and dignity of the Sex. I have an Authority in point. Our minister at Berlin in his last Letter speaking of his Wife says, "her

Lovely disposition and affectionate heart, afford me constant consolation amidst all the distresses, cares and vexations which the publick concerns as well as my private affairs so thickly strew in my way."

I hope you can Sleep a nights. I find it such a comfort to have my rest returning to me, that I know not how to prize it sufficiently. It restores the little indispositions of the day but I find tranquility of mind so necessary to my rest, that a little matter agitating me is sufficient still, to rob me for the night of that Slumber which is indispensable for my Health.

Brother Cranch is getting better. He sees a fullfillment of the prophecies in the report of the Prussians being permitted to pass through the Dardenills an Event he has been long looking for, that once obtaind the Door will never be closed untill the Turks are driven out and their citys destroyed, according to holy writ.

I shall write to Mrs. Otis from whom I received a kind Letter last Evening, next week, but I rememberd you warnd me against writing much yet it is all my amusement. I want to know how the world passes,tho I cannot gain admittance now into the Cabinet.

Remember me to all my old Friends and acquaintance who inquire after me, and tell them that I very much regret, that I have it not in my power to shew them those attentions which I should take pleasure in manifesting, if my Health had permitted me to have accompanied you to Philadelphia. A Good repose to you. I hope I shall enjoy the Same. Ever yours,

A Adams

[Envelope -- see page image]

[Endorsement -- see page image]

Cite web page as: Letter from Abigail Adams to John Adams, 15 December 1798 [electronic edition]. Adams Family Papers: An Electronic Archive. Massachusetts Historical Society. http://www.masshist.org/digitaladams/
Original manuscript: Adams, Abigail. Letter from Abigail Adams to John Adams, 15 December 1798. 3 pages. Original manuscript from the Adams Family Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society.
Source of transcription: Adams Papers Editorial Project. Unverified transcriptions.
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