Extract from Thomas Jefferson to Rev. William Smith

The succession to Dr Franklin at the court of France, was an excellent school of humility. on being presented to any one as the Minister of America, the common-place question, used in such cases, was ‘c’est vous, Monsieur, qui remplace le Docteur Franklin?’ ‘it is you, Sir, who replace Doctor Franklin?’ I generally answered ‘no one can replace him, Sir; I am only his successor.’

RC (PHi). Published in PTJ, 19:113.
Thomas Jefferson
William Smith
Date Range
February 19, 1791
Quotes by and about Thomas Jefferson
Quote Category