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Browsing: Diary of Charles Francis Adams, Volume 2


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

Author: CFA
Date: 1827-03-10

Saturday. March 10th [–Tuesday, 20 March].1

From an entire inability to make any exertion, I have hitherto delayed giving any account of what has passed during the week. Troubled { 111 } as I have been in mind about it, it has been out of the question to sit down coolly and describe my feelings. Even now it is more than I can do. I shall give only a short sketch of what has passed without many remarks or reflections which I have had in plenty. I went on passing my time very pleasantly with Abby until Tuesday Morning, when upon my return from a first sitting to a miniature portrait which I have directed on her account, I received a letter from Mr. Everett covering a Note from Abby, which entirely changed the face of affairs. They had received upon the preceding day letters from Mr. Brooks. The one to her upon this subject makes it a request that she will suspend her decision for the present. This, after what has passed, surprises us all very much. She in consequence declined seeing me until the return of post would bring letters of a more decisive character. In the mean time they started for Harper’s ferry in order to avoid remaining here. My own situation has been an extremely painful one in consequence of this doubtful state of affairs. I do not yet know what course it will be proper for me to take, and until I do, it would be needless and highly painful to form conjectures. While I cannot but think that Mr. Brooks has acted inconsistently, and with little regard to his daughter’s feelings, I am not much disposed to fall into a fault myself by becoming angry. I shall say no more about this until the final answer comes, when it will be proper for me to take my course. But my feelings have entirely unnerved me for this week.
The feelings which dictated these lines vanished upon the return of Mr. Everett three days after they were written. He sent me an extract from a letter of Mr. B.’s which had arrived one day after the preceding letter, withdrawing his request for a delay and giving his full consent.2 So that I might have been spared a week’s pain. But there is a providence in all things and I am not without belief that it has been exerted in these cases. From the 13th to the 16th my time was delightfully spent. On Thursday, we had a pleasant little dinner consisting of Mr. and Mrs. Everett and Abby, Mr. Webster and Mr. Bartlett. But I was destined to three days severe bodily suffering, owing to an abscess which formed in the inside of my Mouth and which produced inflammation and great pain. It was occasioned by a decayed tooth which a dentist had attempted to extract but had only succeeded partially. On Sunday evening Dr. Huntt came and lanced the gum which gave me immediate relief. I was much provoked at the loss of time as Abby goes on Wednesday. Monday and Tuesday were spent almost entirely in attention to her as it was to be a separation of some time. I have heard of no more difficulties in the case.
{ 112 }
1. From D/CFA/5. CFA spent the morning of 10 March at home, sorting newspapers; he rode with his mother; then he spent the evening with his family, playing cards (D/CFA/1).
2. Upon further reflection, P. C. Brooks wrote Edward Everett: “We now give our full consent to Abby to act her pleasure.” Everett promptly sent the good news to CFA, with his congratulations (Brooks to Everett, 2 Mar. 1827, Everett MSS, MHi; Everett to CFA, 13 Mar. 1827, Adams Papers).
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2014.
http://www.masshist.org/apde2/