Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 7

Friday. 25th. CFA Friday. 25th. CFA
Friday. 25th.

Morning clear and pleasant. I went to the Office. Thence to read the papers which still continue to give doubtful accounts of the Election. Accounts which are not very encouraging. I must do as well as I can. Mr. Walsh came in and talked. The money pressure is very great and promises for aught I see to continue a good while. Received a letter from my Mother1 which appeared to be in very good spirits.

Home Livy. Afternoon reading Grahame and a book half Novel half Journey called the Desultory Man.2 On the whole I spend my time very unprofitably with the exception perhaps of the half hour I devote 137to the instruction of my child Louisa, which gives me pleasure. Evening passed partly with my Wife and partly in reading Grahame. Mr. Walsh dined with me and consumed a large slice of the afternoon.


Probably an unintended repetition from the preceding entry.


G. P. R. James, The Desultory Man, 2 vols., N.Y., 1836.

Saturday 26th. CFA Saturday 26th. CFA
Saturday 26th.

Morning taken up for the most part in transacting business with Mr. W. Spear who brought his account for work done on my cellar and so forth. He also brought me a return of wood sold which so far as it goes is a gain.

After settling with him, Mr. A. H. Everett came in and talked politics. He has had a letter from Pearce1 who is discussing all the Cabinet Offices. Mr. Van Buren’s Administration will probably be marked by the characteristics of his own mind. Caution, and expedients. No greatness. I cannot feel any great degree of respect for him and cannot help showing it in my opinions. This leads now to a difference between Mr. Everett and myself, and we talk upon subjects rather guardedly. I pity him for he is a beggar for Office, and therefore must wear a collar round his neck. My feelings in respect to political Affairs are those of intense disgust, and that at all parties which surround me with very little exception.

Home and then to dine with Mr. Brooks. Nobody there but Edward. Conversation upon Money of which I am as tired as I am of politics. Home. Afternoon very short. Read Grahame. Evening, with my Wife who grows better, and the Desultory Man.


Dutee J. Pearce, Democrat and representative in Congress from R.I. ( Biog. Dir. Cong. ). See also vol. 6:234 and below, entry for 31 Jan. 1837.

Sunday 27th. CFA Sunday 27th. CFA
Sunday 27th.

Morning fine though cold. Our season does not begin quite so threateningly as it did last year. I read Grahame in the morning and then attended divine service. Heard Mr. Frothingham from John 14. 11. “Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father in me; or else believe me for the very works sake.” This was an examination of the doctrine of Mr. Ripley and an elaborate argument to prove that the evidence of the Saviour’s character was to be found both in the doctrine and the works, but the works most especially proved the supernatural character which the doctrine could not prove. My mind is clearly made up on this point.


Walk with Mr. Walsh and he dined with me. Afternoon Psalms 34. 19. “Many are the afflictions of the righteous but the Lord delivereth him out of them all.” A consoling topic to those who feel distress, for myself I have no right to apply it excepting perhaps as an encouragement to exertion.

Read a discourse of Dr. Barrow from John 5. 37. “And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me.” A sort of general summary of the argument of the preceding Sermons, showing the character of Christ from prophecy, from his doctrine, from his works in which last he goes over much of the controverted topic in theology of the present hour. Evening at home. My Wife seemed better today. Grahame with whom I now mean to persevere.