John Adams Letters document,


Passy, 27 November, 1778.


MR. BROWN is here, and I cannot miss the opportunity by him to write you a line. I know not how often you receive letters from me, so many are taken or sunk ; but I write as often as I can.

I have received some letters from you, which will occasion your name to be classed with Mrs. Macaulay and Madame Dacier, for aught I know. Johnny is very well. Stevens had a fall yesterday, which hurt him a little, but not very badly. He is in a good way this morning. The things enclosed, which were a present to me, you will do as you please with. Europe is the dullest place in the world. No news but the lies which the emissaries of England are making and spreading in every part. We get no news from Congress, or any part of America. By hints in some letters which I have heard of, I expect that the first vessel will bring us news of some new regulations of Congress concerning foreign affairs. It is said that Congress has determined to have but one commissioner at this court. If this is true, as I sup pose it is, as it comes from Mr. D., I am uncertain what is to be done with me. It is said that I am to be sent to some other court, and that the Doctor is to be here alone. If this should be the case, I should be puzzled what to do. The motives of Congress are very good to save expenses, but this motive will not have its effect, if I am to be maintained here in idleness, or sent upon my travels to other countries, where I shall not be received, which will be the most painful situation imaginable to me. In this case I should be at a loss whether to return home immediately, or wait until I could write to Congress and obtain leave. Some of my friends here are of opinion that I ought not to return without leave. I would not take any step that should give any just cause of of fence to Congress or the people. But I cannot eat pensions and sinecures. They would stick in my throat. I wish some honest vessel would arrive and resolve my doubts.

John Adams