Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 5

Monday. 25th.

Wednesday. 27th.

Tuesday. 26th. CFA Tuesday. 26th. CFA
Tuesday. 26th.

Weather quite cold. At the Office after another business delay with Conant, the Tenant at Weston. Received by Mail, a copy of Mr. Appleton’s Speech from Mr. Everett. Affairs at Washington still remain in a very doubtful state. I studied the Intelligencer and finished the volume of Gouverneur Morris. On the whole, so far I have derived a very mixed idea of his character. That he had a great deal of talent is I think quite clear. That he was an intriguer is also pretty evident. Above all he had a very great idea of his power in political foresight which events will not fully justify. A man of common observation after considering attentively the course of events will hazard half a dozen distinct conjectures as to results, and the probability will be that in some of them he will be right. If it does so turn out, he forgets those in which he has failed, and forthwith sets up as an oracle, on the strength of his success. Morris predicted a military Government for France, but he also insisted upon the weakness and exhaustion of the Revolutionary government. He foretold the result of the French struggle, but he was outrageously mistaken in regard to our own. With him the United States were ruined when the Judiciary bill was repealed, the new Bank was to throw every thing into confusion, and Mr. Madison had destroyed our prosperity. These are the dreams of a party visionary. Seventeen years have shown their utter futility.

Athenaeum and a walk. Afternoon Anquetil. Evening at home. Tried two or three books but disliked them all. Alison on Taste. Glad to have a quiet evening.