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I could write a quire about the different lawyers and the appearance of the court, and more about the different judges, of whom I have seen considerable, having supped and dined with them once en famille, as it were,—if I may apply that term where there is no family. All the judges board together, having rooms in the same house and taking their meals from the same table, except Judge McLean, whose wife is with him, and who consequently has a separate table, though in the same house. I dined with them yesterday, being Sunday. Judges Marshall, Story, Thompson, and Duval were present, who, with myself, made up the company, with two waiters in attendance. Sunday here is a much gayer day than with us. No conversation is forbidden, and nothing which goes to cause cheerfulness, if not hilarity. The world and all its things are talked of as much as on any other day. Judge Marshall is a model of simplicity,—‘in wit a man, simplicity a child.’ He is naturally taciturn, and yet ready to laugh; to joke and be joked with. Judge Thompson is a kind-hearted man, now somewhat depressed from the loss of his wife. Judge Duval is eighty-two1 years old, and is so deaf as to be unable to participate in conversation.

I have spent considerable time in the Senate, to the floor of which I received an introduction from Mr. Webster; in other words, he gave me a card which gives me access at all times to the floor. The Senate is now employed entirely upon the deposits. This subject is directly before them by means of Mr. Webster's great report as Chairman of the Finance Committee, which appeared before I left Boston, and also through the various memorials which are pouring in from every part of the country. The presentation of one of these memorials gives occasion for some introductory remarks, descriptive of the sufferings of the country and of the memorialists, which often draws out a reply or counter-statement, and not unfrequently leads on an animated discussion. I was present at one last Tuesday, in which Mr. Clay took part. His eloquence was splendid and thrilling. Without notes or papers of any kind, he seemed to surrender himself entirely to the guidance of his feelings. He showed feeling; to which, of course, his audience responded. There was not one there whose blood did not flow quickly and pulse throb quickly as he listened. He delivered a violent attack upon Jackson, and a vehement exhortation to the people to continue their memorials and remonstrances. His language, without being choice, is strong; but it is his manner, or what Demosthenes called action,—action, action,—which makes him so powerful. The opposition have now a majority of numbers in the Senate and much the heaviest weight of talents. Van Buren sits like a martyr under the volleys of abuse that are poured upon his master and his followers. In the House there has been little to attract attention.

For the first two days I was in Washington I boarded at Brown's Hotel, where I was dropped by the stage. Since then I have taken private lodgings.

Affectionately, your son,

1 Gabriel Duval, 1752-1844. He resigned Jan., 1835.

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