The Works of John Adams, Second President of the United States

John Adams

Editore: Forgotten Books
Formato: PDF
Testo in en
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Dimensioni: 24,54 MB
  • EAN: 9780243818822
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Ranks, titles, and etiquettes, and every species of punctilios, even down to the visits of cards, are of infinitely more import ance in Europe than in America, and therefore congress cannot be too tender of disg'racing their ministers abroad in any of these things, nor too determined not to disgrace themselves Con gress will, sooner or later, find it necessary to adjust the rank of all their servants, with relation to one another, as well as to the magistrates and officers of the separate governments. For example, if, when congress abolished my commission to the King of Great Britain, and my commission for peace, and issued a new commission for peace, in which they associated four other gentlemen with me, they had placed any other at the head of the commission, they would have thrown a disgrace and ridicule upon me in Europe, that I could not have withstood. It would have injured me in the minds of friends and enemies, the French and Dutch, as well as the English. It is the same thing with States. If Mr. Jay and I had yield ed the punctilio of rank, and taken the advice of the Count de Vergennes and Dr. Franklin, by treating with the English or Spaniards, before we were put upon the equal footing that our rank demanded, we should have sunk in the minds of the Eng lish, French, Spaniards, Dutch, and all the neutral powers. The Count de Vergennes certainly knows this; if he does not, he is not even a European statesman; if he does know it, what inference can we draw, but that he means to keep us down if he can; to keep his hand under our chin to prevent us from drowning, but not to lift our heads out of water?