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Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 14 January 1794

My dearest Friend

I had Yesterday the Pleasure of yours of January 5 [Abigail to John, 05 January 1794] . I will send, to Mr. Adams a Check upon the Branch Bank for two hundred Dollars as soon as I can get Thomas to transact the Business for me.

I am glad to find that you have had Applications for the Farms I wish you to hear that you had enquire their Characters and Circumstances.

We are all of are here, very much concerned for Cheesman. He has not been heard of.

I have not seen Americus nor Barnevelt. But in the former the latter had to deal with a Man who is the least of a Gentleman of any one in Boston. I hope the latter will not forget that he is one.

Our Son will find the Envy of his Friends, the bitterest Drop in the Cup of Life. He must have a Care however not to give them Advantages by his indiscreet Exultations, nor by any unmanly humiliations. Let him take no improper Notice of what he must see and feel. I could entertain even you with a long History of my own Sufferings in this Way.

I have read of a People in Antiquity called the Ephesini who passed a fundamental Law in these Words "Let none of Our Citizens excell others in merit, if he does let him live else where and with others." For this horrible decree Heraclitus pronounced them all worthy of dying in the prime of Life.

These are Vices to which Democratical Governments are more peculiarly liable than any others. Our Son must expect to smart under them all his Life.

Yours affectionately,

[Endorsement -- see page image]

Cite web page as: Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 14 January 1794 [electronic edition]. Adams Family Papers: An Electronic Archive. Massachusetts Historical Society. http://www.masshist.org/digitaladams/
Original manuscript: Adams, John. Letter from John Adams to Abigail Adams, 14 January 1794. 3 pages. Original manuscript from the Adams Family Papers, Massachusetts Historical Society.
Source of transcription: Adams Papers Editorial Project. Unverified transcriptions.
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