[Boston—Friday, 6 November 1863]

Friday. Nov. 6. Came Lucy Larcom to pass the night looking sadder for her long experience of affliction but still gleaming with her own peculiar sunshine. Mr Fields had been suffering with neuralgia ever since the dinner on Tuesday evening to the Organ Builders. That was a brilliant occasion, the Governor surpassing himself in talk and Holmes and Fields (J.T.) both reading charming lyrics. But it was too much for a man already ill with influenza; therefore he could not attend us to Alden’s lecture upon Dionysus, the Greek Christ. All he said was pure and noble. He noticed the fact that Theodore Parker was the only man among the moderns who had spoken of the Deity as both Father and Mother “what was conscious speech with him was unconscious thought with the ancients.” We had some talk of the poets afterward. Alden almost underates Tennyson now, once he lived on him. We concluded there should be masterful essays on the poets written every ten years thus marking the changes and growth of opinion. We read Browning’s poem on “Wordsworth”—“A lost leader.” We read Mr Beecher’s private letters from England to Theodore Tilton before we slept, not without tears.

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