Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 8

242 Wednesday 29th. CFA Wednesday 29th. CFA
Wednesday 29th.

Clouds but it afterwards cleared. At home all day. Time as usual.

I devoted my morning to the continuation of Tucker and the review. I am by degrees hammering out the thing into shape but as yet with no great energy. I believe there never was a man who worked so much to so little purpose. Yet courage does not fail me hitherto. As long as I am blessed at home, literary occupation is no more than a healthy amusement.

Read the beginning of Lessing’s play of Nathan the Wise. After dinner finished the third book of Lucan’s Pharsalia, and continued working upon Grimm who is a kind of standby.

Walk with my father to see Mr. Whitney and from thence to Mrs. T. B. Adams where the family were spending the evening.

Thursday. 30th. CFA Thursday. 30th. CFA
Thursday. 30th.

Cleared at last. At home. Time distributed as usual. Evening to see Edmund Quincy.

I continued the work upon Tucker which spreads itself as I go. It now appears to me as if I could make something respectable out of it. But I was interrupted by the man who has this day finished my wall and then by going to the Bank.

I believe I have now got through with all of the serious undertaking about my place. Since I commenced it has involved me in about double the expense originally contemplated and has created a great deal of anxiety. That is now beginning to wear off. I at present look forward with a hope of rest to my labour and of enjoyment of it’s result.

Last Summer was perhaps the period of all my life of the most unalloyed pleasure, the greater part of it gained in the quiet of this residence. Ambition here seems to me a dream and the contention and rivalry of social life a vanity fair. Perhaps this is a wrong feeling to nourish inasmuch as we are all of us in duty bound to some individual action. I hope I am conscious of this and will not suffer my indolence to get the better of me.

Lessing, Nathan the Wise. I cannot judge of it well until I finish it. Lucan, Pharsalia. Book 4. 1–235. I spent some time on my ground.

Evening with my father to see Mr. and Mrs. Edmund Quincy who are at the place of his father for the Summer season. He seems to be getting better pretty rapidly. Walk home. Bright starlight.