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[Philadelphia,] Monday morning,
MY DEAREST FRIEND.
I HAVE just received from the post office your letter of the 20th by Briesler, who went to carry one for you. I write by every post, i. e., by Monday's and Thurs day's, which are the only ones on which mails are made up for any place beyond New York, and the only ones on which letters arrive here from any place be yond that city.
Mrs. Adams, your new daughter, behaves prettily in her new sphere. I dined with them one day, and promised to take my lodgings with them the next time. Mrs. Adams showed me an elegant bed, which she politely said she had made up for me. As to the details in which you say the ladies excel us, I have not patience. I, who have the patience of Job, have not patience to write letters in the style of Grandison and Lovelace. You would admire to see with what serenity and intrepidity I commonly sit and hear. Not all the froth can move my contempt, not all the sedition stir my indignation, nor all the nonsense and delirium excite my pity. If dignity consists in total insensibility, I believe my countenance has it. B., however, tells me he can always perceive when I don t like any thing. It must be by reasoning from what he knows to be my opinion. My countenance shows nothing, for the most part. Sometimes I believe it may be legible enough. The reflections upon peace, by Madame de Stael, are not here.
The President and Presidentess always send their regards to you. Madame invites you to come next summer to Mount Vernon and visit the federal city. I am almost afraid to write it to you for fear it should turn your head, and give you thoughts and hopes of accepting the invitation. I told Madame la Presidente that, after the year 1800, when Congress should sit at Washington, and that city became very great, I thought it not impossible that you and your sister Cranch might seriously entertain such a project, for the sake of making a visit to Mount Vernon as well as seeing Mrs. Cranch's grandchildren.
Always write me how Mrs. Briesler and her children are. It makes the good man's countenance shine so bright when I tell him of it, that I take a great pleasure in reading these paragraphs to him. My mother I am anxious to hear of. My duty to her, and love, compliments, &c., &c., to whom you please.
- John Adams
- Letters of John Adams, Addressed to His Wife. Edited by His Grandson, Charles Francis Adams, Volume II, 1841