This essay series explores Italy’s unique contribution to the rich inheritance of Western civilization, offering a defense of the West’s political and cultural achievements. Find previous installments here and here.
Formia, Italy — When the American struggle for independence was beginning to look like a fool’s errand, John Adams left for Paris to help Ben Franklin secure a military alliance with the French. His ten-year-old son, the future president John Quincy, was with him when they sailed from Massachusetts in February 1778.
During the journey, Adams helped his son translate a famous address by Cicero in which he accused a Roman senator,