Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 2

Monday. 19th.

Wednesday. 21st.

Tuesday. 20th. CFA


Tuesday. 20th. CFA
Tuesday. 20th.

Wrote to my Father before breakfast.1 I then went to the Office where I passed the morning, with the exception of a short call at Mrs. Frothingham’s. The afternoon was spent there. Abby was in a fretful humour, and for the first time I discovered trouble in this quarter. But it is useless to forebode. “I have set my life upon a cast, And I will stand the hazard of the die.”2 In the evening we went to Mrs. Gorham’s accompanied by George. 185This young man feels disposed to admire this lady’s daughter, but I apprehend he will find small encouragement. He wants a fashionable exterior, to the semblance of which he attempted to shape himself and became in consequence “grotesque.” But I am severe. Abby was not in good temper and I came home a little melancholy. Midnight.


CFA wrote that his father’s letter concerning his allowance (see entry for 17 Nov., and note, above) was “perfectly satisfactory.” Acknowledging in principle that he and his brothers should be treated equally, he claimed that his special situation obliged him to incur expenses totaling five hundred dollars a year more than those required of JA2 and that GWA “has often told me his average expenses here had been nearly twelve hundred a year.” “But I do not feel disposed to argue upon this subject any further . . . ,” he concluded; “in writing ... to you I did not wish to have any further allowance made. The intention . . . was merely, to be perfectly candid as to my situation. I will still attempt to keep within the limit first prescribed i.e. $800 a year” (CFA to JQA, 20 Nov. 1827, Adams Papers).


Shakespeare, Richard the Third, Act V, Scene iv, lines 9–10.