Letter to William Smith, circa 18 December 1835

  • Source Note
  • Historical Introduction
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I have received your letter and purused it with care, I have not entertained a feeling of malice, against you, I am, older than your and have endured, more suffering, having been mar[r]ed by mobs, the labours of my calling, a series of persecution, and inguries, continually heaped upon me, all serve to debilitate, my body, and it may <​be​> that I cannot boast of being stronger, than you, if I could, or could not, would this be an honor, or dishonor to me,— if I could boast like David of slaying a Goliath, who defied the armies of the living God, or like Paul, of contending with Peter face to face, with sound arguments, it might be an honor, But to mangle the flesh or seek revenge upon one who never done you any wrong, can not be a source of sweet reflection, to you, nor to me, neither to an honorable father & mother, brothers, and sisters, and when we reflect, with what care our parents and with what unremiting diligence our parents, have strove to watch over us, and how many hours, of sorrow, and anxiety, they have spent over our cradles and bedsides, in times of sickness, how careful we ought to be of their feelings in their old age, it cannot be a source of sweet reflection to us to say or do any thing that will bring their grey hairs down with sorrow to the grave,
In your letter you asked my forgivness, which I readily grant, but it seems to me, that you still retain an idea, that I have given you reasons to be angry or disaffected with me,
Grant me the privilege of saying then, [p. 84]
I have received your letter and purused it with care, I have not entertained a feeling of malice, against you, I am, older than you and have endured, more suffering, having been marred by mobs, the labours of my calling, a series of persecution, and inguries, continually heaped upon me, all serve to debilitate, my body, and it may be that I cannot boast of being stronger, than you, if I could, or could not, would this be an honor, or dishonor to me,— if I could boast like David of slaying a Goliath, who defied the armies of the living God, or like Paul, of contending with Peter face to face, with sound arguments, it might be an honor, But to mangle the flesh or seek revenge upon one who never done you any wrong, can not be a source of sweet reflection, to you, nor to me, neither to an honorable father & mother, brothers, and sisters, and when we reflect, with what care and with what unremiting diligence our parents, have strove to watch over us, and how many hours, of sorrow, and anxiety, they have spent over our cradles and bedsides, in times of sickness, how careful we ought to be of their feelings in their old age, it cannot be a source of sweet reflection to us to say or do any thing that will bring their grey hairs down with sorrow to the grave,
In your letter you asked my forgivness, which I readily grant, but it seems to me, that you still retain an idea, that I have given you reasons to be angry or disaffected with me,
Grant me the privilege of saying then, [p. 84]
Page 84