Quotable – Sarah Vowell

Washington, fuming, spotted Lee. Uninterested in Lee’s excuses for calling off the attack, Washington yelled, “Go to the rear, sir.” As Lee rode off, Washington let rip a spew of profanity.  

General Charles Scott of Virginia, who had served with both Washington and Lee in the French and Indian War, claimed to hear the whole thing, getting a kick out of His Excellency’s meltdown: “Yes, sir, he swore on that day till the leaves shook the trees. Charming! Delightful! Never have I enjoyed such swearing, before or since. Sir, on that memorable day, he swore like an angel from Heaven.”


The scene of Washington cussing out Charles Lee was for some reason not included in the series of bronze illustrations of the Battle of Monmouth on the monument at the county courthouse. Even though it was the most New Jersey-like behavior in the battle, if not the entire war.

Sarah Vowell, Lafayette in the Somewhat United States

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.