Diary of Charles Francis Adams, volume 4

Tuesday. 17th.

Thursday. 19th.

Wednesday 18th. CFA


Wednesday 18th. CFA
Wednesday 18th.

Heavy rain with more Wind. I read a little of the Peruvian Letters. Went to the Office, and from thence to the Athenaeum where I lounged an hour without any profit. Returned and devoted a short time to Gibbon. Interrupted in this by a visit from my good friend Mrs. Armstrong whose face I never expected to see again. And indeed I can scarcely say I wanted to. My progress in Gibbon is slow but I hope to be able to persevere in finishing it.

Mr. Brooks dined with us. Not much to be obtained from dinners where the parties are dull. I felt but little disposed to make exertion and he seemed not very lively. Afternoon short, filled up with reading Spanish as I have transferred my Italian to the morning. I find the latter on the whole much the easiest language of the two. It is not filled with so many strongly idiomatic expressions and I think the Dictionary I have is better. But in this I think that there is great room for improvement.

Evening quiet at home. I read a few Chapters in the Bible to my Wife, an exercise designed to be regular, but from some reason or other often omitted. Finished the first division of Paley’s work upon Christianity. It is remarkable for perspicuity and logic.

I have felt today a little depression of spirits. Now and then I am subject to them a little. They always show themselves in a kind of regret that I am not making the most of my time and abilities. Yet I 282have no opportunities. I know I ought to seek them. Have I not? When I reflect how much I am favoured in my situation I know I ought not to allow myself to repine, but I trust it is only from anxiety to support a mighty responsibility to my name, and therefore may be forgiven.