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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 13


Docno: ADMS-06-13-02-0221

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Dana, Francis
Date: 1782-09-29

To Francis Dana

[salute] Dear sir

I received yesterday your favor of 26th. Augst: OS. with Duplicates and Triplicates of a former letter and one original.1 These shall be sent by different vessells, as you desire. I agree to your Condition to make a minute of the postage, but you may inclose your letters to any one of the six following Gentlemen at Amsterdam and direct them to charge the postage to the U. S. viz Wilhem or Jan Willink, Nicholas or Jacob Van Staphorst, or de la Lande & Fynje.
I am so anxious abt. John's Education, that it gives me great { 499 } pleasure to learn that he is coming here: tho' at the same time, it grieves me to take him from you, whose situation must be lonely and disagreable. I dare not take upon me to advise you to quit that Stage, tho' I lament the policy, which has tied your hands. It is a bit of that web, in wh: you and I, and every honest American, in Europe, has been long entangled. I broke thro' it, as the Whale goes thro' a net. You would have done the same in my situation, and I could not do it in yours. If I had transmitted to Congress the advice, exhortations and remonstrances I received, and asked their Instructions, I should have been forbidden to stir, and should have been here sprawling with hands and feet in the air, pegged, like Ariel, in a rifted Oak; this Republic would at this moment have been seperately at peace, and American Independence would never have been acknowledged by any Power in Europe, except France, untill England should have done it.
I am at present, as you wish me, i: e: as happy as I ever can be in Europe. I am well accommodated and have an oppo. of living in an habit of Civilities with the French and Spanish Ambassadors, as well as with some principal People of this Country. The Ministers of Prussia, Sardinia and Leige are sociable. The Envoy from Portugal and the Chargè des affaires of Sweden are sometimes so. Russia and Denmark are stiff and distant; but they do neither honor, nor service to themselves, or their Courts by it.
My loan in in Cash, at least a million and an half of Gueldres. The Treaty is all agreed: is now copying and will be signed next week. It is very little different from that with France. Mr: Charles Storer is now with me, as well as Mr: Thaxter. It is not certain that he will go home with the Treaty. He seems to have an inclination to stay a little longer.
Can you give me a brief sketch of the Dispute in the Crimea, and a probable guess, whether it will terminate in a War, between the Empress and the Porte? Was it stipulated in the last Treaty of Peace, that the Crimea should be independent, and that the late Kan should be the Sovereign? Is his Expulsion suspected to have been effected by any intrigues of the Turks, or any other Power? Or is it only the effect of the Levity of the Tartars?2
Pray what foreign Ministers are at the Court of St. Petersbourg? And what are their sentiments of our States? The French or Dutch Ambassador can sound them and tell you. Here the whole Corps Diplomatique is unanimously of opinion that our Independence is decided.
{ 500 }
I presume that my Son is already on his journey, or voyage, for which reason I don't write him.
[signed] Adieu.
RC in Charles Storer's hand (MHi: Dana Family Papers); endorsed: “Mr: Adams's Letter Dated 29th. Septr: 1782 Recd 7/18 Octr: Houses in Amsterdam Loan.”
1. Of [6 Sept. N.S.], above. For the enclosures, see note 1 to that letter.
2. The deposed khan of the Crimea was Shahin Girai, whose rule over the Crimea had been guaranteed by the 1774 Treaty of Kutschuk-Kainardji. A Russian puppet, he was deposed in favor of his brother and forced to flee in June 1782 when a revolt against his despotic rule broke out. Catherine II was unwilling to accept an outcome that diminished her prestige and influence in the Crimea and offered the Ottoman Empire an opportunity to increase its own at her expense. She soon dispatched an army to restore the khan and incidentally to make final the annexation of the Crimea to the Russian empire (Murphy, Vergennes, p. 333–334).

Docno: ADMS-06-13-02-0222

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Lafayette, Marie Joseph Paul Yves Roch Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de
Date: 1782-09-29

To the Marquis de Lafayette

[salute] My dear General

I Should have written you, Since the 29 of May, when I wrote you a Letter that I hope you recd, if it had not been reported Sometimes that you was gone and at other times that you was upon the Point of going to America.1
This People must be indulged, in their ordinary March which you know is with the Slow Step. We have however at length the Consent of all the Cities and Provinces, and have adjusted and agreed upon every Article, Word, Syllable, Letter and Point, and Clerks are employed in making out five fair Copies for the Signature which will be done this Week.
Amidst the innumerable Crowd of Loans which are open in this Country, many of which have little Success, I was much afraid that ours would have failed. I have however the Pleasure to inform you, that I am at least one Million and an half, in Cash, about Three Millions of Livres which will be a considerable Aid to the operations of our Financier at Philadelphia, and I hope your Court, with their usual Goodness will make up the rest that may be wanting.
I am now as well Situated as I ever can be in Europe. I have the Honour to live, upon agreable Terms of Civility with the Ambassaders of France and Spain; and the Ministers of all the other Powers of Europe, whom I meet at the Houses of the French and Spanish Ministers as well as at Court, are complaisant and Sociable. Those from Russia and Denmark are the most reserved. Those from Sardinia and Portugal are very civil.
{ 501 }
The Ministers of all the neutral Powers consider our Independance as decided. One of those even from Russia Said so not long ago and that from Portugal Said it to me within a few Days. You and I have known this Point to have been decided a long time: But it is but lately, that the Ministers of neutral Powers, however they might think, have frankly expressed their opinions, and it is now an Indications that it begins to be the Sentiment of their Courts, for they dont often advance faster than their Masters in expressing their sentiments upon political Points of this Magnitude.
Pray what are the Sentiments of the Corps Diplomatick at Versailles? What Progress is made in the Negotiation for Peace? Can any Thing be done before, the British Parliament, or at least the Court of St. James's, acknowledge the Sovereignty of the United States absolute and unlimited?
It would give me great Pleasure to receive, a Line from you, as often as your Leisure will admit.

[salute] With great Esteam I have the Honour to be, Sir your most obt.

1. This letter was in response to Matthew Ridley's suggestion in his first letter of 20 Sept., above. According to JA's first letter to Ridley of 29 Sept., below, he received both of Ridley's 20 Sept. letters on the evening of the 28th. Note, however, that JA's last letter to Lafayette was dated 21 May, above, rather than the 29th.
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/