Morning at the Office, engaged in writing an answer to my father and in doing it I could not help writing also a short Note to my Mother.1
On opening my Intelligencer I was struck with the notice under the marriage head. Johnson Hellen to Jane E. Winnull. The die is cast, and my mother has only an additional trial. I regret it most on her account, for though Johnson was once a friend of mine, I have seen too long the victorious progress of his evil qualities not to have been warned of the result. May a similar misfortune never come nearer home in the family. I have no design to forebode. Amused myself for the hour which remained after copying and sending my letter, in reading the Life of Dryden together with his tragedy of All for Love.2
It is not so good as I expected, the beautiful passages hardly redeeming the general character of the piece, and yet it is called his best. Evening, engaged in reading some numbers of the Spectator. This was Abby’s Birth day and she is twenty one.
2. CFA’s copy of the Poetical Works of John Dryden, 4 vols., London, 1811, is in the Stone Library, as is JQA’s set of the Dramatick Works, 6 vols., London, 1735.