A Problem with the
I have often heard my grandfather say that he considered moral deformity as rare as personal deformity.
Ellen Randolph Coolidge, Memoirs 1
For several years after Rebecca Burwell's marriage Jefferson seems to have been hostile to all women, if one is to believe certain diatribes he copied into his notebooks. Extracts from Latin poets and from Paradise Lost (telling title!) berated the female sex for its lack of goodness, fidelity, and intelligence. From Thomas Otway's The Orphan; or, The Unhappy Marriage he copied the following:
I'd leave the world for him that hates a woman,
Woman the fountain of all human frailty!
What mighty ills have not been done by woman?
Who was't betray'd the capitol? A woman.
Who was the cause of a long ten years war,
And laid at last old Troy in Ashes? A woman.
Destructive, Damnable, Deceitful woman!
And in one of his several scrapbooks he pasted "To My Coy Mistress," a translation of a bitter Spanish lyric:
Ah Chloe, too well does your Corydon know
That your bosom, so fair yet so frigid resembles