Morning mild but cloudy and rain. I went to the Office and was occupied as usual. Finished Mr. Sparks’ book. He is a writer who has gained reputation by the absence of every thing that can interest any body. He is not a bit more attractive than an old Almanack. Yet having got hold of the subject of the American Revolution, he interests people through that and makes money. Gouverneur Morris lived a life which might have been made vastly amusing.
Went to the Athenaeum. Learnt that the body of Mr. Dehon had been found in the harbour. Poor man. Life’s fitful fever is over. He is before another and a final tribunal.
Afternoon read Cardinal de Retz. He is composing a Manual for an Intriguer. He affects a candour in judging of himself which he does not feel, and claims a merit which he does not deserve. His principle was a sham. His life a disgrace.
Evening, finished the first volume of Madame de Genlis’ “parvenus.” I wonder what could have given her books so much success. To me they are intolerably tedious. A letter in the life of Gouverneur Morris gives some insight into her own character. Another intriguer. Finished Mrs. Child’s book. Afterwards, Read German which continues exceedingly difficult.