A fine clear morning and cold. I went to the Office and from thence attended a Meeting of the Proprietors of the Middlesex Canal. Directors principally attend. Election of Officers. Motion made by George Hallett that the number of Directors be cut down, and fuller powers conferred upon them. Question how far this was practicable without certain forms—committed to a Committee Mr. Hallett and myself chosen—and adjourned to next Monday.
Back to Office. N. Curtis there about the Mortgages which I have not done yet. The Mortgagor himself not quite prepared. Wrote an application to the Trustees of the Athenaeum for their coins for the use of which I am to make them a Catalogue,1 and took it down, then home. Sophocles.
Afternoon, read Miss Baillie’s tragedy of de Montfort. The comedy of the Trial is an utter failure. This is perhaps the most successful of her pieces and has been tried on the stage, but it shows most strikingly the error of her principle. For the one passion is thrown out so exclusively and so strongly that it becomes disagreeable as well in its excess as its want of relief. After all that play will be the best which strikes most home to the heart the truth of human life. Evening Lockhart, after which reading Potter’s Archaeology.
The application to the Trustees of the Boston Athenaeum (LbC, Adams Papers) derives from the librarian’s denial of CFA’s request to consult the institution’s collection of Roman brass coins on the ground that the coins were “unassorted and undescribed.”