Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 4

Tuesday. 3d.

Thursday. 5th.

Wednesday. 4th. CFA


Wednesday. 4th. CFA
Wednesday. 4th.

Morning excessively cold again. As this is the day fixed by the new System for the Political Year to begin and as business was not done by most People,1 I thought I would remain at home. Accordingly I sat down and occupied my morning in reading Gibbon which has for some days past been suspended. His Chapters upon the Christian Religion are worth studying not so much for the matter as the skilful manner of Attack. Took a short walk to the Office and met Mr. Geitner who paid me his Rent. Returned home and spent the Afternoon quietly. Finished the Treatise de Officiis and a large half of Cato Major or the defence of Old Age. A beautiful trifle thrown off without any effort. Such is the power of Art seconding a happy Nature. In the evening I read to my Wife part of the Canterbury Tales. Afterwards, I read the seventeenth book of Homer’s Iliad and finished the third volume of Gibbon, besides the usual Spectators. On the whole a pretty lazy day for an uninterrupted one.


Whether “Election Day” would be observed according to the usage of former years upon the convening of the General Court despite the change in the political calendar was a matter of uncertainty. The closing of businesses was not uniform; however, the public procession to the Old South Church, the ceremonies on the Common, &c., were carried out much as before (Boston Daily Advertiser & Patriot, 4 Jan., p. 2, col. 1; 5 Jan., p. 2, col. 1).