Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 3

Diary. May 1830Monday. 17th.

Wednesday. 19th.

Tuesday. 18th. CFA Tuesday. 18th. CFA
Tuesday. 18th.

Morning cloudy and dull but subsequently cleared up. At the Office rather earlier than usual expecting to see a man on Mr. New’s business. He came but I got little satisfaction from him. My head is now somewhat puzzled as to the proper course to take. Nearly all the morning went in translating Aeschines which is a solemn piece of 240labour. Called for a moment on Mr. Brooks and having become sick of the monotony of my occupation, I sat down and tried at a draught of a political paper upon the present state of affairs. Wrote half a page three times over and did not like the result much. Afternoon at home. Considerable progress in the Oration for Ctesiphon. Came to the noble passage, called the Adjuration—A style of eloquence truly heroic.

At last, I received this evening a letter from my Father with a Note from my Mother giving some intimation of my probable residence this Summer.1 The two do not agree in their Account of the arrangements for their Journey. And I am in a puzzle between them. But experience has taught me there is no knowing what will happen, from any discussion of it in our family a week beforehand, and I shall on that account pay but little serious attention to Quincy until another letter comes. Evening, as my wife reads Moore’s Life of Byron,2 I take out the good parts of Don Juan, both for the beauty of the poetry and as an illustration of the work.

1.

JQA to CFA, 13 May (Adams Papers); the letter from LCA is missing. JQA announced his intent to leave Washington on 25 May and to arrive at Quincy by the 29th; LCA would follow, traveling more at leisure.

2.

Thomas Moore, Letters and Journals of Lord Byron, with Notices of his Life, 2 vols., London, 1830.