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Browsing: Diary of Charles Francis Adams, Volume 1


Docno: ADMS-13-01-02-0003-0010-0008

Author: CFA
Date: 1824-09-08

Wednesday. September 8th. IX.

Arose and breakfasted, the day bleak and rainy. I consequently remained at home throughout. I spent the morning in reading the novel of the Inheritance and finished it, having been pretty assiduous, since my commencement. It is an amusing book, abounding in light touches of nature but too prosing. Much of the dialogue might be condensed without trouble and less of Miss Waddel, Miss Larkinses and Miss Pratt would be agreable. The close also is too abrupt. We are not made to partake enough of Gertrude’s feelings, and poor Lyndsay appears to be rather rewarded as a faithful servant than an affectionate lover. She is the most natural character for a woman in the book and has but little to recommend her in the mean time. The fact is, women as they are, are generally commonplace. Virtue is not a subject to write novels with, as it must be confessed, virtuous women are insipid and vicious ones disgusting. The style of fashion which surrounds her reminds me of the only fashionable woman I know, which is my mother. The most pleasing woman without hesitation, I will say it, that in this country I have ever met with. Could I meet with such a woman in future life, I think I might be tempted to depart from my rule of life. It appears to me I see others so foolish in their choice, it would be better for me to leave a choice in the hands of my parents, who would judge better for me than I could. I have been exceedingly addicted to castle building of late, the worst thing that can possibly befal a young man. Much company here this morning to see my father, in spite of all the rain.
In the afternoon, I wrote my Journal and the rest of the time was spent in the delightful company of my mother. She is not well today, but as lively as possible. My Grandfather uncommonly strong. I also finished my letter to John,1 making about six pages in all and I hope he will be satisfied. If he reads it all, I shall think him more patient { 318 } than I now believe him to be. We were all engaged to go to Mrs. Quincy’s this Evening but the rain was so exceedingly heavy that we all determined not to go. Monsieur Degrand came out in the middle and had as usual a talk with my Father. I spent the Evening upstairs with my Grandfather and my Mother, as usual, and had a pleasant time. I am sometimes in a very cheerful state when I hear the Storm, particularly when I have a pleasant family circle, but although this is just passable, I was satisfied and retired early. X:20.
1. Missing.