Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 1

Wednesday. September 15th. IX. CFA Wednesday. September 15th. IX. CFA
Wednesday. September 15th. IX.

Arose, day extremely warm, indeed the three last have been as hot as any part of the summer. We feel it the more too, as it so immediately follows extremely cold weather for the season. I did nothing this morning from languor and as my mother was going to Boston, I determined to take advantage of the conveyance to go as far as Neponset. I played billiards here for a great while but with less relish than usual. My feelings within these two days past have become extremely irritable and my nerves very weak. I do not know how it arose, but I 325spoke snappishly to the family and was surly. It is exceedingly unpleasant to be conscious that you are disagreable and not be able to avoid it. Suffice it to say that I became tired of billiards much sooner than I have any other day since I have been here.

I therefore directed my course home at a little after three having lost my dinner. The walk was exceedingly hot, the sun being in his power yet. I met my father and uncle going to the Governor’s1 to dine, my father appeared to be surprised. I found a surprising difference in myself today and other days, I was weak and very much fatigued at what usually is nothing at all. Indeed I was obliged to rest once and lie down before I got home. Having arrived I found myself in no condition to do any thing so I neglected the writing of my Journal today. My head throbbed painfully and my nerves were in such a state that my arms and feet shook when taken from their support. Indeed I have seldom felt more uncomfortably. I tried to take a little quiet but the children put my rest to flight once or twice, and excited my nerves as much as ever. I did manage however in the course of the Evening to become more composed, although I had to act with some feverish symptoms. Indeed I became somewhat alarmed being afraid I should have an attack similar to the one two years ago.

I sat with my Grandfather all the Evening. He asked me some questions concerning the match between George and Mary, he hardly seems satisfied with it, as I believe he had fixed his heart on a connexion with the Quincys. A thing which would receive more opposition on our part. My mother did not return until near nine and the rest of the family dropped in at intervals. I retired soon, took warm water for my feet and tried to sleep but I could not succeed. IX.


William Eustis.

Thursday. September 16th. VII. CFA Thursday. September 16th. VII. CFA
Thursday. September 16th. VII.

Arose feeling quite unwell as I had no rest whatever during the night, and I found myself in a fair way to obtain the dysentery. I therefore took some medicine and determined to remain in the house all day. In the morning I reviewed the twenty five first pages of Paley’s Moral Philosophy, which we studied during the last term. I can merely at the present moment look over it to refresh my memory, at some time in future I shall look over it critically and make my own comments upon it in writing. I then went and wrote my Journal for the day before yesterday which I had not written on account of my indisposition. I could hardly do it today for I was in considerable pain 326all the morning. The heat of the weather which continued had made me extremely languid, and was not favourable to my health. After dinner, which to me was a mere form, I laid down in the hall and slept for three hours which refreshed me considerably. I then went and made my Journal as usual.

My father and mother went to Boston to dine with Mr. Winthrop, one of the Boston great men. They are perpetually engaged in Boston, so that though nominally a visit to my Grandfather, it is rather an engagement in Boston all the time. I did nothing else of importance today, after tea I went to sit with my Grandfather but found Mr. Beale and Mr. Marston in company. I could not help thinking how extremely flat, the life of the former gentleman would be to me and still I doubt not but he is much—much happier than it will ever be my fate to be. I have no doubt but the most contemptible plodder is the happiest man, speaking generally, but for my own part I had rather be what I am. Mr. Marston as prosy as usual. I then went down stairs and spent a little while in the parlour with Elizabeth, the rest of the ladies having gone out to the worthy Mr. Apthorps.1 They soon after arrived as did my father and mother, but there was no supper table set tonight. I wished to have some conversation with my mother but I felt so sick and out of spirits that I could not. Indeed I have seldom spent a more disagreable day. My sickness being of such nature as to pain me, weaken me, and reduce my spirits all at the same time. I retired early. X:10.


Possibly George H. Apthorp, of Quincy, whose surname suggests that he was a member of the wealthy Boston merchant family (Pattee, Old Braintree and Quincy , p. 238).