Mr. Adams to Mr. Seward.
Sir: I have to acknowledge the reception of despatches from the department numbered from 1598 to 1610, inclusive, together with a copy of a volume entitled the Tribute Book, intended for this legation.
The event of the past week is the death of the King of Belgium. This, considering his age and infirmities, can scarcely be regarded as unexpected. It has, however, been looked forward to with some uneasiness, on account of the peculiar internal condition of that kingdom, and a certain consciousness of the parties originally making the settlement of the Crown, of its insecurity, if not sustained by the personal character of the monarch. There has been a vague floating impression that the decease of Leopold would be the signal of immediate complications in Europe. Hence the quiet manner in which his successor has been recognized has been at once construed as putting an end to every danger. These conclusions appear to be equally precipitate. The true test of the stability of Belgium will be found in the capacity of the new sovereign to meet the responsibility to which he is called. This can be proved only by time. Meanwhile, no change in the relative position of the great European powers will be perceptible to the outward eye.
I have the honor to be, sir, your obedient servant,
Hon. William H. Seward, Secretary of State, Washington, D. C.