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Mercy wrote early drafts of this 1300+ page book near the time of the events described, and completed the work about four years before it appeared. She explains the delay was due to health problems, temporary bouts of blindness, and grief at the death of her only son. Mercy writes in the third person even when dealing with events involving her immediate family. James Otis (early advocate of the rights of the colonies) was her brother, and James Warren (speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives) was her husband. She was a close friend of John Adams, but differed sharply with his policies as President. In the wake of the French Revolution, Adams lost faith in democracy, while Mercy remained a staunch supporter of democracy, despite the risks.
According to Wikipedia: “Warren, Mercy (1728-1814), American writer, sister of James Otis, was born at Barnstable, Mass., and in 1754 married James Warren (1726-1808) of Plymouth, Mass., a college friend of her brother. Her literary inclinations were fostered by both these men, and she began early to write poems and prose essays. As member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives (1766-1774) and its speaker (1776-1777 and 1787-1788), member (1774 and 1775) and president (1775) of the Provincial Congress, and paymaster-general in 1775, James Warren took a leading part in the events of the American revolutionary period, and his wife followed its progress with keen interest. Her gifts of satire were utilized in her political dramas, The Adulator (1773) and The Group (1775); and John Adams, whose wife Abigail was Mercy Warren’s close friend, encouraged her to further efforts. Her tragedies “The Sack of Rome” and “The Ladies of Castile,” were included in her Poems, Dramatic and Miscellaneous (1790), dedicated to General Washington. Apart from their historical interest among the beginnings of American literature, Mercy Warren’s poems have no permanent value. In 1805 she published a History of the American Revolution, which was colored by somewhat outspoken personal criticism and was bitterly resented by John Adams (see his correspondence, published by the Massachusetts Historical Society, 1878). James Warren died in 1808, and his wife followed him on the 19th of October 1814.”

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