Jefferson wrote to Nicolas Dufief, January 20, 1804:
"I am desirous to obtain two copies of the New Testament in Greek or Greek & Latin, both of the same edition exactly; and two others in English, both also of the same edition."
Jefferson wrote to Rev. Joseph Priestley, January 29, 1804:
"You have undertaken the task of comparing the moral doctrines of Jesus with those of the ancient Philosophers ... You cannot avoid giving, as preliminary to the comparison, a digest of his moral doctrines, extracted in his own words from the Evangelists, and leaving out everything relative to his personal history and character. It would be short and precious.
With a view to do this for my own satisfaction, I had sent to Philadelphia to get two Testaments Greek of the same edition, & two English, with a design to cut out the morsels of morality, and paste them on the leaves of a book, in the manner you describe as having been pursued in forming your Harmony. But I shall now get the thing done by better hands."
Jefferson wrote to Methodist minister Rev. Henry Fry, May 21, 1804:
"At the time of his death he (Priestley) had just finished a work which I am anxious to see printed. It was a comparative view of the morality of Jesus & of the ancient philosophers."
Jefferson wrote to Rev. Henry Fry, June 17, 1804:
"At my request Dr. Priestly wrote a comparative view of the moral doctrines of Jesus and of the ancient philosophers, which he finished just before his death. It is not yet printed, nor have I seen it."