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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 11

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Docno: ADMS-06-11-02-0193-0002

Author: Dumas, Charles William Frederic
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1781-04-14

C. W. F. Dumas to John Adams: A Translation

[salute] Sir

Although I have still not seen anyone, I am nevertheless taking up my pen to have the honor to tell you, after much deliberation since we left each other, that it seems to me that you cannot pass up, in order to avoid all blame and enmity in coming here for the démarche in question, an initial visit to the French ambassador in order to inform him verbally of your latest commission and letters of credence and of the absolute necessity that this information be conveyed by you directly and immediately to those to whom these letters are addressed. Therefore, by not making the actual démarche, and its essential details, subject to any other viewpoints and objectives other than yours alone, you will conserve the friendship and personal good offices (we must distinguish this from ministerial duties, for which there needs to { 259 } be an order from his court) that will render you the only person in this case, for the present time, to acknowledge and attest openly to them. Whereas an omission of this diplomatic courtesy, and the cool reception which would inevitably follow vis-à-vis those here who defer more and more to the opinion of the ambassador, and whereas he does not have any knowledge of your mission, etc., this would certainly produce an injurious and mortifying effect and destroy, or at least delay for some time, what we want to advance. This, sir, is what I believe to be positive advice, not only for your subsequent personal approval, but also for the good of the cause, and a strategy that will have no bad consequence nor, as you say, a precedent.
I received news from Paris: “We are sending a squadron to Texel. It will be well commanded. We are beginning to hope that the five ships of the line, and the 2,000 men that we sent to the Cape, will arrive before Johnstone, who does not have enough forces anyway to measure up to our five vessels.”
I have the honor to be with very great respect, sir, your very humble and very obedient servant
[signed] Dumas

Docno: ADMS-06-11-02-0194-0001

Author: Cerisier, Antoine Marie
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1781-04-15

From Antoine Marie Cerisier

[salute] Monsieur

Nous recumes, il y a quelques jours, les Gazettes Anglaises que j'ai l'honneur de vous envoyer. Comme elles ne peuvent être pour notre comptoir, j'ai présumé que c'était une partie de celles que nous avons demandés pour vous. Je vous supplie de ne pas trouver mauvais, si j'ai tardé si longtems de vous les envoyer; nous avons attendu que quelquun vînt les reclamer, et pensé que vous viendriez peut-être en cette ville dans peu.
Je serais bien flatté de savoir ce que vous pensez des derniers nos. du politique Hollandais.1 Je serais encore plus charmé si vous aviez quelques observations à me faire dont je puisse profiter pour les nos. suivans. Ne pourriezvous pas insinuer à Mr. Luzac d'en faire quelque mention dans Sa Gazette, afin que l'ouvrage fût demandé hors de ce pays.
Quelquun a observé que je n'etois ni bon Anglais, ni bon français et que j'étois encore meilleur Américain que Hollandais. Ce que je sais c'est que j'ai les principes de la liberté trop profondément gravés dans le coeur, pour jamais trahir la cause où je crois l'avoir trouvée et pour jamais déguiser mes sentimens.
J'ai l'honneur avec respect & vénération De votre Excellence Le très humble & très obéissant serviteur
[signed] A. M. Cerisier
{ 260 }