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Browsing: Diary of John Quincy Adams, Volume 2


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Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0003-0001-0023

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1788-01-23

23d.

I took a violent cold by our party last night, and as I felt rather unwell, and extremely indolent; I did nothing at the office.
Amory very unwell with a cholic, to the great affliction of Miss F. I suppose.
I pass'd the evening at Dr. Swett's. Mrs. and Miss Cazneau were there. We had some agreeable, and entertaining conversation, but singing soon came on to the Carpet, and then the usual nonsense succeeded.
I believe I will try one of these days and see if I cannot stop the career of this same singing at least for one evening. I even got quit this time with singing once; In order not to appear singular, I was in the common way urging Miss Cazneau to sing; she told me she would upon condition that I should sing first. I humm'd over a tune; but avoided claiming the fulfilment of Miss C's promise, and so she would not sing; which happened very much to my satisfaction. A Short time before nine I left them.

Docno: ADMS-03-02-02-0003-0001-0024

Author: Adams, John Quincy
Date: 1788-01-24

24th.

Mr. Atkins returned from Boston, but brought me no letters which is somewhat surprizing to me. The quaternity pass'd the evening at Putnam's lodging's. Little left us however at about 8 o'clock. Townsend came in soon after, and between 9 and 10, I walk'd with him. I began yesterday upon another attempt, to ascend Parnassus; and this time I am determined to take it leisurely. I have frequently made a trial of my strength in this way; but my patience has always been overcome, after proceeding but little. I have I suppose begun an hundred times to write poetry. I have tried every measure and every kind of strophe but of the whole, I never finish'd but one of any length, and that was in fact but the work of a day.1 It is contained in a former volume of this Journal. I fear I shall end this Time, as I always do.
The convention are now proceeding in the examination of the proposed constitution by sections: but we cannot yet presume how the scale will turn.
1. Presumably this was “A ballad, founded on fact,” which was written into JQA 's entry for 7 July 1787 (above).
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