The Correspondence of Thomas Jefferson

By Subject


The revolution which has taken place in Geneva is a remarkable and late event. With the loss of only two or three lives, and in the course of one week, riots begun at first on account of a rise in the price of bread were improved and pointed to a reformation of their constitution, and their ancient constitution has been almost completely re-established. Nor do I see any reason to doubt of the permanence of the re-establishment.

There has been a riot in Brittany begun on account of the price of bread but converted into a quarrel between the noblesse and Tiers Etat. Some few lives were lost in it All is quieted for the present moment. In Burgundy and Franchecompte the opposition of the nobles to the views of government is very warm. Everywhere else, however, the revolution is going on quietly and steadily and the public mind ripening so fast that there is great reason to hope a good result from the States-General. Their numbers -- about twelve hundred -- give room to fear, indeed, that they may be turbulent.

to John Jay, 1 March 1789