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Browsing: Diary of John Quincy Adams, Volume 1


Docno: ADMS-03-01-02-0007-0004-0014

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1785-02-21

21st.

All dined at the Marquis de la Fayette. There was a considerable company, mostly composed of Americans. We saw two of the Marquis's children; he has three; but the other is out at nurse at Versailles. His son is called George Washington: about 4 years old, a very pretty child: the Legislature of the State of Connecticut have lately made his father and him, citizens of that State. The Marquis's youngest daughter is named Virginia. Madame is a very agreeable woman, and has a pleasing countenance: She is extremely fond of her husband and children, which is a most uncommon circumstance: especially as when they were married, neither of them was more than 12 years old: She told my father that Mrs. Jay, did not like the french Ladies. “Ni moi, non plus.” And that if Monsr. le Marquis goes to America again, she will go with him.1 The Marquis brought with him from America, a young Gentleman, of the age of about 14: his name is Colwel2 and his father was barbarously murdered by the British, during the War in New Jersey.
1. Anastasie Louise Pauline de Lafayette, later Comtesse de Latour-Maubourg; George(s) Washington de Lafayette, godson of Washington, and later a soldier and politician; Marie Antoinette Virginie de Lafayette, later Marquise de Lasteyrie; Marie Adrienne Françoise de Noailles de Lafayette, wife of the Marquis (Lafayette in the Age of the American Revolution: Selected Letters and Papers, 1776–1790, ed. Stanley J. Idzerda and others, Ithaca, N.Y., 1977– , I:xliv-xlv, 477–478; Hoefer, Nouv. biog. générale).
2. John Edwards Caldwell, son of Rev. James Caldwell of Elizabethtown, N.J., whom Lafayette had educated in a French boarding school. Caldwell later returned to the United States, where he was a philanthropist in New York city and a founder of the American Bible Society (Louis Gottschalk, Lafayette, 4:142, 161–162; Nicholas Murray, “A Memoir of the Rev. James Caldwell, of Elizabethtown,” N.J. Hist. Soc., Procs., 1st ser., 3:88 [May 1848]).

Docno: ADMS-03-01-02-0007-0004-0015

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1785-02-22

22d.

My father went to Versailles. Mr. Short went with him to be presented at Court. Variable Weather: much Snow in the morning, fair weather at noon, and Stormy again, in the Evening. The Duke of Dorset said to my father, while they were passing from one chamber to another “what nonsensical business all this noisy parade is!” My father said it was curious that a person like him, who had from his Childhood been brought up to it, should speak in that manner of it: “I have always hated it,” replied the Duke, “and I have avoided it whenever I possibly could.” Thus { 226 } it is almost universally. People who pass all their lives in Pomp and Parade, are as much averse to it, as any body; and yet they do not abolish it; and nothing is more difficult than laying aside established customs, though every body agrees, that they are absurd.
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2014.
http://www.masshist.org/apde2/