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Letter from John Dickinson to Arthur Lee



Fairhill, July 7, 1775.

DEAR SIR: Before this comes to hand, you will have received, I presume, the Petition to the King. You will perhaps at first be surprised that we make no claim, and mention no right. But I hope, on considering all circumstances, you will be of opinion that this humility, in an address to the Throne, is at present proper.

Our rights have been already stated, our claims made; war is actually begun, and we are carrying it on vigorously. This conduct, and our other publications, will show that our spirits are not lowered. If Administration be desirous of stopping the effusion of British blood, the opportunity is now offered to them by an unexceptionable Petition, praying for an accommodation. If they reject this application with contempt, the more humble it is the more such treatment will confirm the minds of our countrymen to endure all the misfortunes that may attend the contest.

I do not know what is thought in London of the several engagements near Boston; but this you may be assured of, that every one of them has been favourable to us, and particularly that of Bunker' s Hill, on the 17th of last month, when a mere carnage was made of the Royalists, though they gained the intrenchments.

I am, dear Sir, your very affectionate humble servant,