Recipient: Lovell, James
[To James Lovell]
July 9. 1778
[salute] My Dear Friend
I had yesterday the honour of receiving the Dispatches from Congress which were sent by the Saratoga from Baltimore, arrived at Nantes, convoyed in by the Boston Captain Tucker, who has returned from a short cruise and has brought2
in four Prizes, and those by the Spy, from New London arrived at Brest; and the inexpressible Pleasure of your private Letters by the same Vessells.
You acquaint me that you had written to me before Eight or nine times, which has given me some Anxiety, as these Letters are the first I have received from you or from any Member of Congress, since my Arrival in France.
The Ratification of the Treaty gives universal Joy to this Court and Nation, who seem to be sincerely and deeply rejoiced at this Connection between the two Countries.
There is no Declaration of War, as yet, at London or Versailles: but the Ships of the two Nations are often fighting at Sea, and there is not the smallest doubt but War will be declared, unless Britain should miraculously have Wisdom given her to make a Treaty with The Congress like that which France has made. Spain has not made a Treaty: but be not deceived, nor intimidated: All is safe in that quarter.
The Unforeseen dispute in Bavaria has made the Empress Queen and the King of Prussia, cautious of quarrelling with Great Britain, because her connection with a Number of the German Princes, whose Aid, each of those Potentates is soliciting, makes her Friendship, or at least her Neutrality in the German War which is threatened, of importance to each. But this will do no hurt to America.
The Brest Fleet alone is greatly superiour to Keppells, who seems to discover much dread of them. Indeed they are in excellent order, well manned and eager for Battle.
You have drawn so many Bills of Exchange upon Us, and send Us so many Frigates, every One of which costs Us a vast Sum of money; so many Merchandizes and Munitions of War have been sent, whether arrived or not; and We expect so many more Draughts upon Us, that I
[ running head ] Passy & Paris, July 1778
assure you, I am very uneasy concerning our Finances here. We are labouring to hire Money and have some prospect of Success, but I am afraid not for such large Sums as will be wanted.
I find it less difficult to learn French than I expected, but I have so many Persons to converse with, and so many papers to read and write in English that I can scarce obtain a few minutes every day to study my Lesson, which I should otherwise do like a good Lad.
Let me intreat you to omit no Opportunity of writing me. Send me All the Newspapers, Journals, &. and believe me your Friend and Servant
[signed] John Adams
[addrLine] Mr. Lovell.