27 November 1789: Lafayette seeking for spies

Friday 27.—(…) Go …to Van Staphorst’s. Tell him the Objections brought by de Moustiers to the Negotiation which Mr. Necker has proposed in Holland. He tells us a Proposition made to him by Lafayette to act as a Spy for Discovery of Intrigues of the Aristocratic Party, by which, says Lafayette, a civil War may be prevented. We advise Van Staphorst to decline this honorable Mission. Parker adds that it should be declined verbally so as to leave no written Trace of the Negotiation. I leave them together and return Home to dress. The Count de Luxembourgh comes in and tells me a great Deal of News which I forget as fast as I hear it. He has a World of Projets too but I give him one general Opinion upon the Whole, that he and his Friends had better take Measures for influencing the next Elections. While he is with me La Caze, Payne and Appleton come in. (…) Talk with Payne about his Bridge. Towards three I go to Dinner at the Louvre. My friend [Mme Flahaut] tells me that the Bishop [d’Autun] had sent her Word he would call after the Assemblée, upon which she had invited him to dine with me. He comes in and we press him hard to stay Dinner but he is engaged. After Dinner we pass two Hours together in perfect Delight. My amiable friend is wound up to a Delirium of Enjoyment. (…) This has been a clear cold Day, the Evening somewhat milder.

A diary of the French revolution, by Gouverneur Morris, 1752-1816. Ed. by Beatrix Cary Davenport. Vol. 1 (Boston, 1939), p. 314-315.


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