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[88] into my own hands. I shall go to Cambridge with a cartload of resolves, and I believe with enough of the firmness of a man to abide by a five-hundredth part. Law, classics, history, and literature; all of them shall meet my encounter. Methinks I must read some of the Greek tragedians. . . .

Your friend truly,

C. S

To Charlemagne Tower, Waterville, N. Y.

Boston, Monday Evening, Aug. 29, 1831.
my dear friend,—. . . I can fully sympathize in your feelings arising from the severance from your studies.1 Yet I see in it much room for hope. Your mind will be brought at once into the hard conflict of the world. You will transact business; and get initiated into those perplexities which, sooner or later, all of the sons of Adam must meet. You will confirm yourself in a knowledge of the world, and wear off the academic rust with which exclusive students are covered. Time will allow you, I know (for I know you will lose no time), to prosecute your law with profit; and you will find in your newly assumed cares a grateful change, perhaps, from the abstract speculations in which Blackstone and Kent and Fearne will engage you. And more than all, you will have the consciousness that you are forwarding the wishes of your father, and giving up your time, perhaps, that it may be added to his days.

It is now two days before Commencement. I am stiff in the determination to commence the coming year in the study of law at Cambridge. . . . I intend to give myself to the law, so as to read satisfactorily the regular and parallel courses, to take hold of some of the classics,—Greek, if I can possibly gird up my mind to the work,—to pursue historical studies,—to read Say and Stewart;2 all mingled with those condiments to be found in Shakspeare and the British poets. All empty company and association I shall eschew, and seek in the solitariness of my own mind the best (because the least seducing from my studies) companion. Can I hold fast to these good determinations? I fear much the rebellious spirit of the mortal. However, I will try. I must endeavor to redress by future application my past remissness. The latter part of this year has been given up to unprofitableness. I have indeed studied, or passed my eyes over books; but much of my time, and almost my whole mind, have been usurped by newspapers and politics. I have reached in anxiety for the latest reports from Washington, and watched the waters in their ebb and rise in different parts of the country. No more of this though. With Boston I shall leave all the little associations which turned aside my mind from its true course.


1 Tower had been obliged to suspend his studies in order to take charge of the mercantile business of his father, who was then ill.

2 J. B. Say's ‘Treatise on Political Economy,’ and Dugald Stewart's ‘Elements of the Philosophy of the Human Mind.’

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