The Correspondence of Thomas Jefferson

By Subject


Having had the honor of communicating to you in my letter of the last of July, my purpose of returning from the office of Secretary of State, at the end of the month of September, you were pleased, for particular reasons, to wish its postponement to the close of the year. That term being now arrived, and my propensities to retirement becoming daily more and more irresistible, I now take the liberty of resigning the office into your hands. Be pleased to accept with it my sincere thanks for all the indulgences which you have been so good as to exercise towards me in the discharge of its duties. Conscious that my need of them has been great, I have still ever found them greater, without any other claim on my part, than a firm pursuit of what has appeared to me to be right, and a thorough disdain of all means which were not as open and honorable, as their object was pure. I carry into my retirement a lively sense of your goodness, and shall continue gratefully to remember it. With very sincere prayers for your life, health and tranquillity, I pray you to accept the homage of the great and constant respect and attachment with which I have the honor to be, dear Sir, your most obedient, and most humble servant.

to George Washington, 31 December 1793