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The Marquis de la Fayette, who loves to be employed in our affairs, and is often very useful, has lately had several conversations with the ministers and persons concerned in forming new regulations respecting the commerce between qur two countries, which are not yet concluded. I thought it therefore well to communicate to him a copy of your letter which contains so many sensible and just observations on that subject. He will make a proper use of them, and perhaps they may have more weight as appearing to come from a Frenchman, than they would have if it were known that they were the observatious of an American. I perfectly agree with you in all the sentiments you have expressed on this occasion.
I am sorry for the public's sake that you are about to quit your office, but on personal considerations I shall congratulate you. For I cannot conceive of a more happy man, than he who having been long loaded with public cares, finds himself relieved from them, and enjoying private repose in the bosom of his friends and family,
With sincere regard and attachment, I am ever, dear-siry yours, &c.
To B. VAUGHAN, Esg.
England, a free port, &c.
Passy, March 1784. You mention that I may now see verified all you said about binding down England to so hard a peace. I suppose you do not mean by the American treaty; for we were exceeding favorable in pot insisting on the reparations so justly due for the wanton burnings of our fine towns and devastations of our plantations in a war now universally allowed to have been originally unjust. I may add that you
will also sec verified all I said about the article respecting the royalists, that it will occasion more mischief than it was intended to remedy, and that it would have been better to have omitted all mention of them. England might have rewarded them according to their merits at no very great expense. After the harnis they had done to us, it was imprudent to insist on our doing thein good.
I am sorry for the overturn you mention of those beneficial systems of commerce that would have been exemplary to maukind. The making England entirely a free port would have been the wisest step ever taken for its advantage.
I wish inuch to see what you say a 'respectable friend of mine has undertaken to write respecting the peace. It is a pity it has been delayed. If it had appeared earlier it might have prevented much mischief, by securing our friends in their situations; for we know not who will succeed them, por what credit they will hold.
By my doubts of the propriety of my going soon to London, I meant no reflection on my friends or yours." 'If I bad any call there besides the pleasure of seeing those whom I love, I should have no doubts. If I live to arrive there I shall certainly embrace your kind invitation, and take up my abode with you. Make my compliments and respects áce ceptable to Mrs. Vaughan.
I know not what foundation there can be for saying that I abuse England as much as before the peace. I am not apt, I think, to be abusive : of the two I had rather be abused.
Enclosed are the letters you desire. I wish to hear from you more frequently, and to have through you such new pamphlets as you may think worth my reading. I ain ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,
To David Hartley, Esg.
Change in administration-Hereditary great officers of
MY DEAR FRIEND,
Passy, Jan. 7, 1784. 1...,ny! 9. I have this moment received your favor of the 25th past, acquainting me with the change in administration. I am not sure that in reforming the constitution, which is sometimes, talked of, it would not be better to make your great officers of state hereditary than to suffer the inconvenience of such frequent and total changes. Much faction and cabal would be prevented by having an bereditary first lord of the treasury, an hereditary lord chancellor, privy seal, president of council, secretary of state, first lord of the admiralty, &c. &c. It will not be said that the duties of these offices being important, we cannot trust to nature for the chance of requisite talents, since we have an hereditary set of judges in the last resort, the house of peers; an here. ditary king, and in a certain German university, an hereditary professor of mathematics. - We have not yet heard of the arrival of our express in America, who carried the definitive treaty. He sailed the 26th of September. As soon as the ratification arrives, I shall iminediately send you word of it.
With great esteem I am ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,
TO THE HON, JOHN JAY, New York,
Passy, Feb. 8, 1785. I received by the Marquis de la Fayette your kind letter of the 13th of December. It gave me pleasure on two other accounts, as it informed me of the public wel. fare, and that of your, I may almost say our dear little family; for since I had the pleasure of their being with me in the same house, I have ever felt a tender affection for them, equal I believe to that of most fathers. I did hope to have heard by the last packet of your, having accepted the secretaryship of foreigu affairs, but was disappointed. I write to you now therefore only as a private friend ; yet I may mention respecting public affairs, that as far as I can perceive, the good disposition of this court towards us continues. I wish I could say as much for the rest of the European courts. I think that their desire of being connected with us by treaties is of late much abated ; and this I suppose occar sioned by the pains Britain takes to represent us everywhere as distracted with divisions, discontented with our governments, the people unwilling to pay taxes, the congress unable to collect them, and many desiring the restoration of the old government. The English papers are full of this stuff, and their ministers get it copied into the foreign papers. The moving about of the congress from place to place, has also a bad effect, in giving color to the reports of their being afraid of the people. I hope they will soon settle somewhere, and by the steadiness and wisdom of their measures dissipate all those mists of misrepresentation raised by the remaining malice of ancient enemies, and establish our repu
tation for national justice and prudence as they have done for courage and perseverance.
It grieves me that we have not been able to discharge our first year's 'payment of interest to this court, due the beginning of last month. I hope it will be the only failure, and that effectual measures will be taken to be exactly punctual hereafter. The good paymaster, says the proverb, is lord of another man's purse. The bad one, if he ever has again occasion to borrow, must pay dearly for his carelessness and injustice.
You are happy in having got back safe to your country. I should be less unhappy, if I could imagine the delay of my congé useful to the states, or in the least degree necessary. But they have many equally capable of doing all I have to do here. The new-proposed treaties are the most important things; but two can go through them as well as three, if indeed any are likely to be completed, which I begin to doubt, since the new ones make little progress, and the old ones, which wanted only the fiat of congress, seem now to be rather going backward; I mean those I had projected with Denmark and Portugal. : My grandsons are sensible of the honor of your remembrance, and present their respects to you and Mrs. Jay. I add my best wishes of health and happiness to you all, being with sincere esteem and affection, dear sir, your most obédient humble servant,
To BARON MASERES. Results of the American contest--State of America--The loyalists---Confiscation of estates.
Passy, June 26, 1785. I have just received your friendly letter of the 20th instant. I agree with you perfectly in the opinion, that