Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 4

Wednesday. 6th.

Friday. 8th.

Thursday. 7th. CFA Thursday. 7th. CFA
Thursday. 7th.

This was the day assigned according to custom, to the observance of a day of fasting.1 A practice which has gone out of vogue with the occasions that called it forth. Perhaps in producing humility it may produce benefit, but the doctrine that the mere act of self mortification is meritorious in the sight of God, is somewhat exploded. Surely he is not disposed to look harshly upon the moderate use of human enjoyments.

I attended Divine Service in the Morning and heard Mr. Frothingham deliver a Sermon upon the comparative merits of the past and the present. It was written with unusual clearness even for him, and 24though I believed the doctrine to be totally erroneous, yet I was rather more interested by the errors than usual.

After service, I took an agreeable stroll. The weather was warm and the grass was green, this being the day usually devoted by the boys to their games, the Common was filled with them and presented a gay and beautiful scene.

Afternoon, read Cicero and reviewed the Oration for Sylla. One thing is remarkable in all his works, that a second reading is better than the first. My Wife was not well and our reading progressed very little in the evening. I read the Spectator, and finished the Appendix of Parry.

1.

Boston Daily Advertiser, 3 March, p. 1, col. 1; 7 April, p. 2, col. 2. See also vol. 3:209.