[Boston—Tuesday, 8 March 1864]

Tuesday March. 8. Long, quiet days. Reading Horace, Plutarch’s morals &c. Sunday night Chaucer and Browning aloud to J.T.F. whose eyes are weak. Longfellow has written a new poem on the sea.

Visit from Mr Bartol and Mr Scudder in the evening. The latter stayed some time talking about Alden in his days of poverty. How he would keep the worst from his wife, how when he had used his last cent one day he came to talk over his prospects. Mr S. advised him to write and ask after the fate of his “Eleusinian” papers and in the meantime he shared with him the small portion of his own salary which he could spare. He did not see Alden again until the last day of the month when he came in after banking hours with a check from Ticknor & Fields in his hand but without ten cents to buy a loaf of bread for supper. What should he do. His friend had only two cents; he was expecting his pay also on the morrow. “I’ll tell you” said S— “go and raise some money.” (Mr S. could not see that this was Greek to me but he continued in a way which explained.) “well Alden went home, took part of his spoons to the pawn-broker, got some money which he divided with me and so we went on merrily until the next morning when all was right. I think he did not see so low a point afterward.”


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