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John Adams to Abigail Adams

27 Dec. 1796

My Dearest Friend Philadelphia Decr 27. 1796

The inclosed extract of a Letter which I have Seen, from a Gentleman who dined with you last Summer is so unexpected to me, that I Send it as a curiosity.

"All Men have Confidence in Mr Adams’s Abilities and Integrity. for my own Part, I thank God that We are at length to be governed by Talent and Science, and no longer by the blind Adoration and mysterious influence of a name."

The Sting at the retiring Hero, hurts me. Science, in Some of its Branches, may not have been possessed in any eminent Degree: but Talents of a very Superiour kind are his—I wish I had as good. and Science of himself and others, beyond almost any Man he has shewn all his Life—I never shall attain so much of that most necessary and Useful Science.

The Compliment upon me is as flattering as it was unexpected: and gives me some hopes that I may be so fortunate as to be Supported in some degree by the Author of it—

But the Support of Such Speculators is not long to be depended on—They involve them selves in Such Difficulties that they cannot in the End Support themselves.

Dined Yesterday with Col Pickering—He has no Letters from the Hague so late as 30 of september the Date of Thomas’s to Dr Welsh.

Mr Dallas has cleared up his Character, entirely by Authentic Certificates from the Bank: but the People Say here that while he exculpates himself he inculpates his Patron, who has been more grossly charged and is not exonerated.

There is a Dissolution of Principle, Conduct and Decorum, of a very portentous aspect. Worse in this City than in any other Part of the Union.

yours

J.A

RC (MHi: Adams Papers).
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