Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 8

Monday 20th. CFA Monday 20th. CFA
Monday 20th.

Fine day. Morning reading. Division of time. Evening at the house.

I made arrangements today for the ordinary division of my studies. I propose to begin with an examination of the subject of currency in 238order to furnish a Review of the work of Mr. Tucker which shall answer. It is a little singular that I should have undertaken to write two Pamphlets upon the subject having done so little in the way of examination of what had been written before. Yet if I had read all I have since I should not probably have expressed my own thoughts so distinctly nor enunciated the propositions which I still believe to be the only safeguards of our Banking system. Read today Mr. Locke’s paper upon lowering the value of interest and raising coin1 and several chapters of Tucker. In the Afternoon, began Lucan’s Pharsalia.2

My division of time is now designed to be as follows. In the morning, composition and study of Tucker. One hour of German. After dinner, Lucan, and resuming Grimm.3 But this I do not suppose I shall be able to fall into immediately. Evening at my father’s. Walk in the fields with my boys.

1.

“Considerations of the Consequences of Lowering the Interest and Raising the Value of Money,” 1691, is in vol. 5 of Locke’s Works at MQA.

2.

There are three editions in Latin of Lucan’s Pharsalia at MQA: London, 1751, Zweibrücken, 1783, and London, 1820; the last was CFA’s copy.

3.

CFA had read in Baron Frédéric Melchior de Grimm’s Correspondance several times over the years, finding Grimm satisfying as a critic; see vol. 6:120–121; entry for 9 Nov. 1837, above.

Tuesday 21st. CFA Tuesday 21st. CFA
Tuesday 21st.

Fine day though cool. To Boston. Afternoon at home. Evening, visit Mr. Lunt.

I went to town today but found myself much wanting in occupation. A few commissions seemed all that I had to do. Nothing new. Returned late having two Tenants in Mr. Ladd and Mr. Apthorp.

After dinner, Lucan book 1, l. 1–250 rather correcting of what I read more carelessly yesterday. There is vigor in the style and an exuberance of imagery with occasional extravagance of language. Read also a little of Grimm.

It is difficult at first to plant oneself regularly to an entirely new train of occupations. Perhaps it is not the best plan but I had become exceedingly tired of my Winter ones and wanted new. Evening walk with my father to see Mr. and Mrs. Lunt.

Wednesday. 22d. CFA Wednesday. 22d. CFA
Wednesday. 22d.

Rainy with cold, raw east wind. At home all day. Evening at the house.

It was a very cold disagreeable day and although wanting fires ex-239ceedingly I could not summon resolution enough to order one which made me peevish and uncomfortable. I am very doubtful whether the Stoical system is useful to the temper. I know mine goes on the most easily when I am externally comfortable.

Worked upon Tucker and finished Locke upon raising the value of Money, i.e. depreciating it.1 A very clear minded man.

After dinner Lucan finishing the first book, but I executed nothing very heartily. Evening at the Mansion house where was nothing new.

1.

CFA’s meaning here, badly expressed, would seem to be, “Locke upon lowering the interest rate and increasing the supply of money, i.e. depreciating it.” See entry of 20 May, above.