I am sorry to learn that an uneasiness has grown up between the Chevalier Yrujo and yourself. as far as is within my own observation I can bear witness in favor of both that I have never heard either say a word to the prejudice of the other … [Yrujo’s] worth & candour being known to us would facilitate affairs between the two governments … and I observed your conduct on all subsequent occasions to have been in the same spirit.
To Joseph Yznardi, Sr., January 10, 1802
Patrick Lee’s Explanation
Wise leaders seek to mend fences between feuding parties.
Yrujo had been Spain’s minister to America, recalled at President Adam’s request over a disagreement Yrujo had with Adams’ Secretary of State Pinckney. Yznardi functioned both in Spain’s diplomatic corps and as one of Jefferson’s wine merchants.
Learning that Yrujo’s recall had caused a breach between the two respected Spaniards, Jefferson was eager to help mend the rift. He did that in a way that affirmed his regard for both men, testifying:
1. He never heard either say an ill word about the other.
2. Yrujo’s character would be an asset in America’s dealings with Spain.
3. Yznardi demonstrated “the same spirit” as Yrujo.