Morning clear and warm. Finished Horace’s Art of Poetry with great pleasure to myself. On the whole, I know nothing in its way 110superior to it. The beautiful passages of the different ages of Man might be compared with Shakspeare’s to some advantage. And the very judicious advice seems to have exhausted the most of what Aristotle left undone. At the Office, occupied in copying my Fathers Bible Letter No. 8. One of these takes me two hours and a half steady writing. So that while they last I shall not do much else. Went to the Athenaeum, but the Book I want has been spirited away. So that I wasted the time.
Afternoon at home. Continued the Letters of Cicero and closed the Ninth Book. Among them a remarkable one upon the doctrine of the Stoics as to obscene words. A discussion rather curious than useful. But it is very curious as a matter of language. There is a great deal of lively wit in these letters. Perhaps they are the best models extant. I passed the Evening with my Wife and walked with her. Afterwards, read the first book of Milton’s Paradise Regained.1 It wants interest. Why? Afterwards the Spectator.