{{courseNav.course.mDynamicIntFields.lessonCount}} lessons The tone is the emotional quality of the speaker, which might be angry, sad, confused, or any other type of feeling. Select a subject to preview related courses: Adams also uses descriptions of Jefferson to set the proper tone early in the letter. Jefferson is from Virginia, and Adams believed that a Virginian ought to write the document. READ MORE: Two Presidents Died on the Same July 4: Coincidence or Something More? Not even George Washington, and he had good reason to be angry with Jefferson. Adams explains that Jefferson, although he kept quiet when Congress was in session, was vocal in smaller committees and was known for being a powerfully persuasive speaker. 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As secretary of state in George Washington’s cabinet, Jefferson was driven by a fear of a powerful central authority and gravitated toward the new Republican Party. Adams begins his letter by explaining Jefferson's positive qualities. The two founding fathers, who share a special place in American history, had a long, complicated relationship over the course of their lives. John Adams (October 30, 1735 July 4, 1826) was a politician and the second President of the United States. When you think about important dates in the history of America, what comes to mind? The correspondence began with a New Year's Day letter from Adams to Jefferson in 1812. Jefferson is an excellent writer, better than Adams. An intellectual dialogue of the highest plane achieved in America, the correspondence between John Adams and Thomas Jefferson spanned half a century and embraced government, philosophy, religion, quotidiana, and family griefs and joys. While the letters themselves contain a number of matters not relevant for the summary, Cappon brings out the deep issues of the letters of the particular time period in helpful introductions at the beginning of each chapter. John Adams wrote a letter explaining why he asked Thomas Jefferson to write the Declaration of Independence. As a critic of the Adams presidency, Jefferson was an obvious candidate on the Democratic-Republican ticket to oppose the Federalists. The close friendship between Thomas Jefferson and John Adams began when they met at the 1775 Continental Congress in Philadelphia. Silk, a professor of religion and director of the Leonard E. Greenberg Center for the Study of Religion in Public Life at Trinity College, writes in Smithsonian about two letters written by Adams in January 1794, soon after Jefferson’s return to Monticello. Over the next 14 years, he and Jefferson would exchange 158 letters, writing for posterity as much as for each other. 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