Arose this morning rather late, and after breakfast set myself looking around to obtain some book to read in order to avoid ennui which at this time might otherwise have come upon me—and also that I might not waste my time. Lord Bacon attracted my attention and I formed the resolution of reading a few of his essays every day for this winter.1
I also made the same determination as to an atlas, which it had been long my purpose to examine. In consequence I appropriated an hour and a half succeeding breakfast for the study of two of the maps, every day except Sundays and great days. The house was very quiet today, No one being busy except Madame who has just begun making artificial flowers for the “fete” of the 8th. We all trust to her taste in matters of this kind knowing that to be an infallible guide to beauty and effect.