Morning clear and pleasant. I went to the Office where after arranging my Accounts and crediting my Tenant Miss Oliver for the Money she has at last paid, I sat down to read Enfield whom I pursued with perseverance enough to finish the sketch of the Italic School, and the doctrines of Epicurus, which seem by no means so unreasonable as one would suppose from imagining those to be his which now bear his name. Pleasure is the chief good in life. Who denies it. But No syllogism should be formed upon this basis until the word Pleasure is defined. Epicurus explained it very correctly, his followers made it a Cloak for the indulgence of their Passions. And he has borne the public condemnation of Centuries for their Crimes. Such is the Justice of posterity.
Took a walk and returned home. The air was fine though cold. After dinner I continued and finished the Oratoriae Partitiones of Cicero, and began a review of it. It wants interest but is a valuable Summary of the whole doctrine. I know not why I should read Vossius beside who only borrows the same substance, but I did continue him in the evening. And read Spain to my Wife. Afterwards the Tatler.
Morning clear and pleasant. Went to the Office as usual and was busy in writing my Journal, and drawing up my Accounts. Obtained the Dividend upon my fathers Stock in the Life Office which is steady and high. These two late receipts re-establish pro tempore my Father’s Affairs. I am prepared to meet the larger demands upon him occasioned by his repairs at Quincy. I began the Second Volume of Enfield also, with the History of Philosophy among the Romans, and was rather surprised at the estimate which is formed of Cicero and of Cato. But it agrees with my natural feelings. Took a walk, where I was met by Edmund Quincy who is a terrific pedestrian.
After dinner, continued the review of the Partitiones Oratoriae but I scarcely yet understand the full distinction which is drawn between the different portions of Oratory. First comes the general division, between the qualities of the Orator, those of the Oration, and what is called the question. These are each subdivided so as to produce confusion. I am not fully master of the ramifications. Read French and the book upon Spain to my Wife, who is yet scarcely able to listen, after which I continued the second book of Vossius upon the different affections. After which read two numbers of the Tatler.