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themselves, that they cannot extricate themselves. Merchants, who have given credit, are now suffering, and that naturally creates ill-will and hard words. His Majesty and the ministry show every personal respect and civility which we have any right to expect. The Marquis de la Fayette writes, that he had always heard his Majesty was a great dissembler, but he never was so thoroughly convinced of it as by the reception given to the American Minister. I wish their conduct with regard to our country was of a piece with that which they have shown to its representative. The Marquis of Carmarthen and Mr. Pitt appear to possess the most liberal ideas with respect to us, of any part of the ministry. With regard to the negroes, they are full and clear that they ought to be paid for; but, as to the posts, they say the relinquishment of them must depend upon certain other matters, which you know they were not at liberty to explain in private. conversation ; but it is no doubt they mean to keep them as a security for the payment of the debts, and as a rod over our heads. They think we are as little able to go to war as they are. The budget has not yet been officially opened. A generous treaty has been tendered them, upon which they are now pondering and brewing. The fate of the Irish propositions has thrown weight into the American scale ; but there are so many bones of contention between us, that snarling spirits will foment into rage, and cool ones kindle by repeated irritation. It is astonishing, that this nation catch at every straw which swims, and delude themselves with the bubble that we are weary of our independence, and wish to return under their government again. They are more actuated by these ideas in their whole system toward us, than by any generous plans, which would become them as able statesmen and a great nation. They think to effect their plans by prohibitory acts and heavy duties. A late act has passed, prohibiting the exportation of any tools of any kind. They say they can injure us much more than we can them, and they seem determined to try the experiment. Those, who look beyond the present moment, foresee the consequences, that this nation will never leave us until they drive us into power and greatness that will finally shake this kingdom. We must struggle hard first, and find many difficulties to encounter, but we may be a great and a powerful nation if we will. Industry and frugality, wisdom and virtue, must make us so. I think America is taking steps towards a reform, and I know her capable of whatever she undertakes. I hope you will never lose sight of her interests ; but make her welfare your study, and spend those hours, which others devote to cards and folly, in investigating the great principles by which nations have risen to glory and eminence ; for your country will one day call for your services, either in the cabinet or field. Qualify yourself to do honor to her.
You will probably hear, before this reaches you, of the extraordinary affair respecting the Cardinal Rohan. It is said that his confinement is in consequence of his making use of the Queen's name to get a diamond necklace of immense value into his hands. Others say it is in consequence of some reflections cast upon the character of the Queen ; others suppose that the real fact is not known. I send you one newspaper account of the matter, and have not room to add more than that I am Your affectionate mother,
TO MRS. CRANCH.
London, 30 September, 1785. MY DEAR SISTER, Your kind letters of July and August are before me. I thank you most sincerely for the particular manner in which you write. I go along with you, and take an interest in every transaction which concerns those I love ; and I enjoy more pleasure from those imaginary scenes than I do from the drawingroom at St. James's. In one, I feel myself your friend and equal. In the other, I know I am looked down upon with a sovereign pride, and the smile of royalty is bestowed as a mighty boon. As such, however, I cannot receive it. I know it is due to my country, and I consider myself as complimenting the power before which I appear as much as I am
complimented by being noticed by it. With these ideas, you may be sure my countenance will never wear that suppliant appearance, which begs for notice. Consequently, I never expect to be a Court favorite. Nor would I ever again set my foot there, if the etiquette of my country did not require it. But, whilst I am in a public character, I must submit to the penalty ; for such I shall ever esteem it.
You will naturally suppose that I have lately been much fatigued. This is very true. I attended the drawing-room last week, upon the anniversary of the coronation of their Majesties. The company were very brilliant, and her Majesty was stiff with diamonds; the three eldest Princesses and the Prince of Wales were present. His Highness looked much better than when I saw him before. He is a stout, well-made man, and would look very well if he had not sacrificed so much to Bacchus. The Princess Elizabeth I never saw before. She is about fifteen ; a short, clumsy miss, and would not be thought handsome if she was not a princess. The whole family have one complexion, and all are inclined to be corpulent. I should know them in any part of the world. Notwithstanding the Eng. lish boast so much of their beauties, I do not think they have really so much of it as you will find amongst the same proportion of people in America. It is true that their complexions are undoubtedly fairer than the French, and in general their figure is good. Of this they make the best ; but I have not seen a lady in England who can bear a comparison with Mrs. Bingham, Mrs. Platt, and a Miss Hamilton, who is a Philadelphia young lady. Amongst the most celebrated of their beauties stands the Duchess of Devonshire, who is masculine in her appearance. Lady Salisbury is small and genteel, but her complexion is bad ; and Lady Talbot is not a Mrs. Bingham, who, taken altogether, is the finest woman I ever saw. The intelligence of her countenance, or rather, I ought to say, animation, the elegance of her form, and the affability of her manners, convert you into admiration; and one has only to lament too much dissipation and frivolity of amusement, which have weaned her from her native country, and given her a passion and thirst after all the luxuries of Europe.
The finest English woman I have seen is the eldest daughter of Mr. Dana, brother to our Mr. Dana; he resides in the country, but was in London with two of his daughters, when I first came here. I saw her first at Ranelagh. I was struck with her appearance, and endeavoured to find who she was ; for she appeared like Calypso amongst her nymphs, delicate and modest. She was easily known from the crowd, as a stranger. I had not long admired her, before she was brought by her father and introduced to me, after which she made me a visit, with her sister, who was much out of health. At the