A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.
close
-
The Adams Papers Digital Edition is undergoing active maintenance while we work on improvements to the system. You may experience slow performance or the inability to access content. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. We will endeavor to return to full capabilities as soon as possible.

Browsing: Adams Family Correspondence, Volume 3


Search for a response to this letter.

Docno: ADMS-04-03-02-0225

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1780-03-01

Abigail Adams to John Adams

[salute] My Dearest Friend

I had scarcly closed my packet to you when I received your Letters dated Ferrol and Corunna. I am happy indeed in your safe arrival and escape from the danger which threatned you.

“Alas how more than lost were I,

Who in the thought already die.”

I feel glad that you have determined to proceed by land tho so tedious and expensive a journey. I grow more and more apprehensive of the dangers of the sea, tho I have really no Right to Quarrel with old Neptune, since he has 3 times safely transported my Friend. Tho he has grumbled and growld, he has not shewn the extent of his power.
I hope you will meet with so much pleasure and entertainment in your journey, as will be some [comp]ensation1 for the fatigues of it, and the recital amuse me whenever you can find opportunity to communicate it.
The sailors you relieved at Corunna passt through this Town, and told their story at Brackets, where a Number of persons collected 40 dollors for them. I wished they had called upon me, I should have been glad to have assisted them.
Enclosed are a few journals received yesterday. Am rejoiced to hear my Charles behaves so well, but he always had the faculty of gaining { 293 } Hearts, and is more mournd for in this Neighbourhood than I could have believed if I had not heard it. Adieu most affectionately your
[signed] Portia
RC (Adams Papers); addressed: “To The Honble. John Adams Esqr. Paris”; endorsed: “Portia Recd, and ansd. 17. May,” to which CFA added “1780.” Enclosed “journals [of Congress]” not found.
1. MS torn by seal.

Docno: ADMS-04-03-02-0226

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1780-03-02

Abigail Adams to John Quincy Adams

[salute] My dear son

I cannot close the packet, without acknowledging the recept of your Letter, and thanking you for it.
You have great reason for thankfullness to your kind preserver, who hath again carried you through many dangers, preserved your Life and given you an opportunity of making further improvements in virtue and knowledge. You must consider that every Moment of your time is precious, if trifled away never to be recalled. Do not spend too much of it in recreation, it will never afford you that permanant satisfaction which the acquisition of one Art or Science will give you, and whatever you undertake aim to make yourself perfect in it, for if it is worth doing at all, it is worth doing well.
I have written to you several times since your absence, and as you are seperated from me I must endeavour to supply my absence by continuing to you all the advise I am capable of giving you. To know that you attend to it will be ample satisfaction to your ever affectionate
[signed] AA
1. MS reads: “March 2 11780,” which has hitherto been read (erroneously, the editors believe) as “March 21 1780.”

Docno: ADMS-04-03-02-0227

Author: Adams, Abigail
Recipient: Thaxter, John
Date: 1780-03-02

Abigail Adams to John Thaxter

[salute] Dear sir

I must attempt a few lines to you (tho very much troubled with whitlows upon my fingers) in reply to your favours from Ferrol and Corruna, which gave me much pleasure and entertainment.
I rejoiced at your safety after the hazard you run of a spacious Grave.
I think myself fortunate in having received all the Letters that my { 294 } Friends have written since their absence, by which means I follow them through all their various stages, and partake in their pleasures and sympathize in their Dangers.
I have ever thought that in the seperation of near and Dear Friends, and you know I have often experienced it, that the one who was left behind was the greatest sufferer, for the Mind must necessarily accompany the Body, and while that is in motion, it feels a kind of rotation too. Diversity of objects take of the attention, whilst the Lonely Being who is left behind, has no other amusement but to sit down and brood over the dangers and hazards to which the other may be exposed, the Hair Breadth Scapes, to which they are incident. Anticipated evils have often as much power over the mind as real ones. To guard against this imbecility of the mind an ancient Author observes “that sufficient unto the day was the Evil thereof.”
You have given me an agreable account of the country through which you passt, but not a word of the Dulcinas. There is surely a language common to all Countries by which a young Gentleman of your age and penetration might have discoverd some of the charms and accomplishments of the fair inhabitants.
I dare say the parisian Ladies will rouse you from that Apathy in which you have so securely slumberd all your days. I would not have you an Infidel to their power, yet whilst you bow before it; guard against being conquered by it, reserve that triumph for some fair American, who will

“charm by accepting, by submitting sway.”

I have had the pleasure of making your Friends very happy by forwarding your Letters to them from time to time, and I have enclosed under cover to Mr. Adams a Number for you.
I hope you will continue to entertain me as you have leisure and opportunity with a recital of all you meet with worth communicating to your affectionate Friend
[signed] AA
RC (MB); addressed: “To Mr. John Thaxter Parris”; endorsed twice by Thaxter: “Mrs. Adams 2. March 1780. R[eceived] 17. May.”