Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 5

Tuesday. 27th.

Thursday. 29th.

Wednesday. 28th. CFA Wednesday. 28th. CFA
Wednesday. 28th.

Another cloudy, cheerless morning. I accompanied Mr. Brooks to town. Passed some time at the Office reading Jefferson’s book and then spent an hour at the Artists Gallery. I paid some attention to the pictures of Doughty. His Landscapes are in a peculiar style and characteristic to a great degree of American Scenery. There is too much sameness in them. A sheet of Water, bright blue sky and vapoury clouds with high and peaked mountains are the main features. Most of them perfectly wild and almost solitary. He has a good deal of merit. His execution is good and his colouring though gay is not perhaps too much so for his scenes. But he wants the sunny warmth and fertile cultivation which gives one a fancy to dwell upon the spots that are represented.

Returned to Medford. Afternoon devoted to Mandeville. I felt some inconvenience from a cold. Ovid, Acontius to Cydippe and her reply which makes the last of twenty five heroic epistles. I shall be glad to get upon something of a different description, although it be only a variety of the same species. Evening, Hume’s Essay upon the subject of the Human Mind. Liberty and Necessity that long disputed and never to be decided question. He defines necessity to be a power restraining human action in certain limits and is thus a Necessitarian.