Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 8

Sunday. April 1st. CFA Sunday. April 1st. CFA
Sunday. April 1st.

A clear morning with a cold Northwest wind blowing pretty hard. My Wife went out notwithstanding to ride and I accompanied her, before service. Attended as usual and heard Dr. Frothingham preach from 2. Acts 42. “And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread and in prayers.” A communion sermon to which I should have listened very attentively if my boy had not troubled me. Walk. Met Mr. Walsh who dined with me.

Afternoon, Mr. Muzzy of West Cambridge from Mark 9. 23.“If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth.” Faith is a favourite topic with Unitarian preachers who as a class believe less than almost any Sect of Christians. They consider faith only in its 17more limited applications to credibility, or to the qualities of humanity. Mr. Muzzy seemed to complain of the want of it in the actions of men, the doubt of human virtue and disbelief in progress.

The discourse which I read today from Buckminster was the third of a series on the same subject, and particularly upon it’s importance as well as a cause of fear as of consolation. There is one very eloquent passage in it, but on the whole the series has disappointed me. Evening at home. Read Eckhel, and Condillac.

Monday 2d. CFA Monday 2d. CFA
Monday 2d.

Morning clear but quite cold. I went to the Office and became very soon engaged in my usual Quarterly accounts, which would have kept me had not J. Q. Adams come in, and mentioning his being about to go to Quincy alone, I determined to accompany him. In this way I may gain something in regard to my arrangements which must now be rapidly making. I found Kirk and got him to prepare for me my horse and chaise to return, then to the Painter’s whom I could not find after all. This is always the way in the country. Notified him however to meet me on Wednesday and after stopping to look at my place I came back and thence home which I did not however reach until after my dinner hour. Afternoon coins. Evening, a game or two of backgammon with my Wife, and then, Menagiana.1


A copy of Gilles Ménage, Menagiana, ou Bons mots recontres agreables, pense’es judicieuses et observations curieuses, Amsterdam, 1713, is in MQA.

Tuesday. 3d. CFA Tuesday. 3d. CFA
Tuesday. 3d.

Our weather begins to grow favourable. Today was pleasant enough. I went to the Office and was occupied very much in bringing up my Accounts which are as usual upon quarters a little troublesome. I was also engaged in going round upon my labour of finishing my work for my house. This is a little tedious to me as I had felt as if I had nearly finished, and my indolence has certainly very much increased within a year.

Home where I found a man from Weston lying in wait for me seeking the Farm. It took me until dinner time to get rid of that. Mrs. Angier dined with us. Afternoon I went on with my work upon coins which is tedious enough. There is not much to delight in when we are watching the progress of barbarism. Evening Mr. Brooks and T. K. Davis came and took tea, and passed the evening. Conversation amusing and instructive.