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add also, that there is some diversity of circumstances between a monarchical and democratical constitution in this respect.

I should have great pleasure in extending these reflections, if time would permit, although your penetration and sagacity would render them unnecessary. The honor conferred upon me by the American Philosophical Society, in electing me a member on the 16th of January, lays me under the pleasing obligation of expressing my gratitude through you, the worthy President of the Society. Desirous of reciprocating in some manner this act of courtesy, I proposed you as an honorary member of the Royal Academy of History, of which I am President. The proposal was responded to by universal acclamation; the Academy feeling in the highest degree honored by having on its list the name of a man so eminent in the world of letters, and so distinguished for the part he has acted in a Revolution, the most memorable in the history of modern times. I am, &c .

Count De Campomanes.

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The sentiments of the Emperor towards the United States of America make me foresee the satisfaction, which his Majesty will have to enter into reciprocal . suitable, and advantageous connexions with them. I have not the least doubt, but that measures will be instantly taken on this subject to concert with you, Sir, and with the appointed Ministers Plenipotentiary; and, as soon as the answer from my court shall come, I shall instantly communicate it to you. I have the honor to be, &c.

De Mercy Argenteau.

TO MESSRS. SEARS AND SMITH.

Duty on Slaves imported into the French Islands.

Passy, 4 August, 1784.

Gentlemen, Upon the receipt of yours relating to your cargo of slaves at Martinico, I endeavoured to inform myself what was the law in such cases; and I found, that by an arret du Conseil iPEtat du Roi, of the 28th of June, 1783, there is a duty laid, of one hundred livres per head, on all negroes imported in foreign ships, and this duty is granted and is to be paid as a premium to the French importers of negroes, as an encouragement to their own African trade. Under these circumstances I am advised, that it cannot be expected that a general national law should be set aside in favor of a particular foreign ship; especially as the King, if he forgives the duty to the stranger, must thereby do injustice to his own subjects, to whom he had promised the produce of that duty, unless he pays it to them out of his own money, which we cannot decently request him to do. I do not, therefore, see any

TO COUNT DE MERCY ARGENTEAU.*

Pasay, 30 July, 1784.

Sir, I have the honor to communicate to your Excellency an extract from the instructions of Congress to their late Commissioners for treating of peace, expressing their desire to cultivate the friendship of his Imperial Majesty, and to enter into a treaty of commerce for the mutual advantage of his subjects and the citizens of the United States, which I request you will be pleased to lay before his Majesty. The appointing and instructing Commissioners for treaties of commerce with the powers of Europe generally has, by various circumstances, been long delayed, but is now done; and I have just received advice, that Mr. Jefferson, late Governor of Virginia, commissioned with Mr. Adams, our minister in Holland, and myself, for that service, is on his way hither, and may be expected by the end of August, when we shall be ready to enter into a treaty with his Imperial Majesty for the above purpose, if such should be his pleasure. With great and sincere respect, &c .

B. Franklin.

FROM COUNT DE MERCY ARGENTEAU TO B. FRANKLIN.

Translation.

Paris, 30 July, 1784.

Sir, I have received the letter you did me the honor to write to me this morning, and I shall lose no time to transmit the contents to my court.

* Austrian Ambassador at the Court of Versailles.

The sentiments of the Emperor towards the United States of America make me foresee the satisfaction, which his Majesty will have to enter into reciprocal . suitable, and advantageous connexions with them. I have not the least doubt, but that measures will be instantly taken on this subject to concert with you, Sir, and with the appointed Ministers Plenipotentiary; and, as soon as the answer from my court shall come, I shall instantly communicate it to you. I have the honor to be, &c.

De Mercy Argenteau.

To Messrs. Sears And Smith. Duty on Slaves imported into the French Islands.

Paasy, 4 August, 1784.

Gentlemen, Upon the receipt of yours relating to your cargo of slaves at Martinico, I endeavoured to inform myself what was the law in such cases; and I found, that by an arret du Conseil iTEtat du Roi, of the 28th of June, 1783, there is a duty laid, of one hundred livres per head, on all negroes imported in foreign ships, and this duty is granted and is to be paid as a premium to the French importers of negroes, as an encouragement to their own African trade. Under these circumstances I am advised, that it cannot be expected that a general national law should be set aside in favor of a particular foreign ship; especially as the King, if he forgives the duty to the stranger, must thereby do injustice to his own subjects, to whom he had promised the produce of that duty, unless he pays it to them out of his own money, which we cannot decently request him to do. I do not, therefore, see any possibility of your avoiding payment . I hare the honor to be, Gentlemen, &.c.

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B. Franklin.

TO MBS. MARY HEWSON.

Invites her to come to Paris.

Pussy, 15 August, 1784.

Dear Friend,

I received your kind letter of July 20th. I wish you had executed your project of taking a little trip to see me this summer. You would have made me very happy, and might have bathed your children here, as well as at Southampton, I having a bath in my house, besides the river in view. I like your monthly account of them, and in return send you my daughter's account of my grandchildren in Philadelphia. You will see she expected me home this summer; but my constituents have sent me a new commission, and I must stay another winter. Can you not come and pass it with me here?

Temple, who proposes to have the pleasure of delivering this to you, will explain to you how you may be accommodated, and, if you can resolve to come, will conduct you. Except being at home, which I begin now to fear I never shall be, nothing could give me greater pleasure. Come, my dear friend, live with me while I stay here, and go with me, if I do go, to America. Yours most affectionately,

B. Franklin.

P. S. My love to the dear children, particularly my godson, for whom Temple has a little present of French books.

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