Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 8

256 Friday 28th. CFA Friday 28th. CFA
Friday 28th.

Rain all day. Morning to town. At home rest of the day.

I felt extremely unwell this morning, but determined to go to town notwithstanding. The weather was not propitious but I was on the whole favored by a change of wind so as to have the rain behind me both ways. I did not regret my going as I transacted the business upon which I came and went over much of my accounts. But they do not agree and I am driven to an examination of the difficulty, which is tedious.

Home to dine without any appetite. Afternoon, some of the epigrams of Martial, but I shall never be able to read him connectedly so I propose to go over Tacitus. I have now read at least once nearly all of the Latin classical writers, and I mean to go over them again. Texier, whose book I like much, because it imparts clear ideas.

My father, Mrs. John Adams and Miss Cutts spent the evening with us. My Wife was better.

Saturday 29th. CFA Saturday 29th. CFA
Saturday 29th.

Fair day. At home. Ride. Evening at the Mansion.

I was better this morning but still far from feeling well. Occupied myself at home pretty steadily in writing upon the Report of the Merchants’ Convention of the Southern States. The subject opens up very well, and I hope to make something of it. Yet the labour that it must cost is hardly compensated by evanescent publication of a single newspaper. The Courier gives me a silent admission and no other press allows even that. Such is the spirit of the age.

Read a little of Lessing and Le Comte after dinner. Some exercise working and a ride accompanied by my father round my favorite road by Milton. The weather was fair and the country is now in it’s full perfection. The crops are all favorable and the frequent rains have preserved the verdure in it’s freshness. The scenery around here in this season is certainly exquisite. I cannot describe the effect it has upon me. Evening at my father’s for a short time.

Sunday 30th. CFA Sunday 30th. CFA
Sunday 30th.

Fine day. Exercises as usual. Evening at home.

I felt better today. Time devoted as usual; partly to my daughter Louisa and partly to reading Tuckers Light of Nature. The Author is a pleasant, good natured, easy tempered writer, but does not appear to 257me to see so far into a Millstone as he thinks he does. His study is without system which is bad for a metaphysical reasoner.

Attended divine service and heard Mr. Lunt preach in the morning from Ecclesiastes 1. 18. “He that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.” This sermon was not exactly in the sentiment of the text but it recommended that moral and religious basis without which learning is but a miserable guide. Afternoon Psalm 139. 7. “Whither shall I go from thy spirit? Or whither shall I flee from thy presence.” The omnipresence of the deity.

Read a Sermon of Bishop Atterbury. 2. Corinthians 13. 5. “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves.” Three classes of men the good, the bad and the middling, to the latter of whom this sensible sermon is addressed, presenting certain tests by which their condition may be ascertained by themselves. Read some of Le Comte.

In the evening, my father, Mr. and Mrs. Appleton and Mr. Frederick Whitney spent an hour which prevented my going to meet my Wife at Mrs. Miller’s as I had intended.