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Browsing: Diary of John Adams, Volume 2

Docno: ADMS-01-02-02-0009-0003-0007

Author: Adams, John
Date: 1779-04-23

Ap. 23. Fryday.

A violent Wind, and Rain.

Docno: ADMS-01-02-02-0009-0003-0008

Author: Adams, John
Date: 1779-04-24

24. Saturday.

The same.

Docno: ADMS-01-02-02-0009-0003-0009

Author: Adams, John
Date: 1779-04-25

Ap. 25. Sunday.

Fair Weather again. My Time has been employed since I have been on board, in writing Answers to my Letters from Paris, Bourdeaux, Passy &c. and in assisting my Son to translate into English which he does in writing Ciceros first Phillippic against Cataline—which we have gone more than half thro. He is also translating into English the french Preface of the Abbey D'olivet, to his Translation of the Phillippics of Demosthenes and the Catalinaires of Cicero.1—Are these classical Amusements becoming my Situation? Are not Courts, Camps, Politicks and War, more proper for me?—No, certainly classical Amusements are the best I can obtain on board Ship, and here I can not do any Thing, or contrive any Thing for the public.
A Boat came on board to day with a Custom house Officer to examine and give an Acquit a Caution2 for a Chest of Tea, which is on board belonging to somebody, I know not whom.
I have been here so long that I find the Cabin to be rather a triste sejour. It is dull to be here alone.
Tullys offices and orations are an agreable Amusement but toujours Tully, is as bad as toujours Perdreaux and infinitely worse than toujours “Sa femme,” alluding to the Anecdote of H[enri] 4. which I was told by the Abbey Reynalle.
1. JA purchased “D'Olivets Phillippics” on 19 April at Nantes for 2 livres, 10 sous (Personal Receipts and Expenditures, printed at the end of 1778, above).
2. An acquit á caution was a customhouse bond.

Docno: ADMS-01-02-02-0009-0003-0010

Author: Adams, John
Date: 1779-04-26

Ap. 26. Monday.

Spent the Morning in translating with my Son the Carmen Seculare, and the Notes.
There is a Feebleness and a Languor in my Nature. My Mind and Body both partake of this Weakness. By my Physical Constitution, I am but an ordinary Man. The Times alone have destined me to Fame —and even these have not been able to give me, much. When I look in the Glass, my Eye, my Forehead, my Brow, my Cheeks, my Lips, { 363 } all betray this Relaxation. Yet some great Events, some cutting Expressions, some mean <Scandals> Hypocrisies, have at Times, thrown this Assemblage of Sloth, Sleep, and littleness into Rage a little like a Lion. Yet it is not like the Lion—there is Extravagance and Distraction in it, that still betrays the same Weakness.
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, 2018.