[Boston—Sunday, 5 March 1876]

Sunday March 5. Have been weak and ill for a day or two, although I went to Sunday School this afternoon. I read two or three lines from Crabbe describing Mrs Fry of whom I had been speaking. Luly Dresel smiled—Why do you smile Luly I said—“I don’t know, but I think it is because it is too real—that is just the way it really was, and in poetry I want something different”—There’s the young romanticist.

We stayed at home and read and talked together. Leigh Hunt came up in connection with the Cowden Clarke’s and we again reread some of his most delightful fancies. Dear J. is reading busily but I sometimes wish he might have just such opportunities to lecture as he could fulfil here about he could easily bear something more of business yet he never complains.

The news from Washington of the dishonesty of Secretary Belknap comes like an awful blow upon the whole country. What next? We think and look blankly towards Grant. Sumner seems to us more a prophet than ever before, even to us who believed in him.

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