and procured it. I also obtained a copy of Goethe's ‘Werther’ in German (through Mr. William S. Shaw's connivance) from amongst Mr. J. Q. Adams's books, deposited by him, on going to Europe, in the Athenaeum, under Mr. Shaw's care, but without giving him permission to lend them. I got so far as to write a translation of ‘Werther,’ but no farther. I was thus occupied through the summer and autumn of 1814. It was all very agreeable. I enjoyed my pursuits and mode of life very much. I had been much in whatever was most agreeable and intellectual in the society of Boston for four years, and was really familiar with it. A few agreeable young men came every Saturday evening to my study in my father's house, and we occupied ourselves entirely with reading and writing Latin, and repeating passages we had committed to memory, ending the evening with a little supper, which was often a hasty-pudding frolic. When I say that Alexander and Edward Everett, Edward T. Channing, Nathan Hale, William Powell Mason, and Jacob Bigelow constituted this symposium, it is plain that it must have been pleasant and brilliant. The first nucleus of it, for two years, was Hale, Bigelow, Channing, and myself. We kept our records in Latin poetry and prose, but we so abused one another that I afterwards destroyed them. At this period I very much frequented the families of Mr. Stephen Higginson, Mr. S. G. Perkins, Mr. Richard Sullivan, Mr. William Sullivan, Dr. John C. Warren, Senior, and Mr. William Prescott. But my first real sight and knowledge of the world was in the winter of 1814-15, when I made a journey to Virginia,—then a serious undertaking,—and for three months was thrown much on my own resources, in the Atlantic cities, as far south as Richmond. I was provided with excellent letters to each city. Among the rest, the elder President Adams gave me several, that introduced me to persons very interesting and important in public affairs. When I visited him in Quincy, to receive these letters, I had a remarkable interview with him, which at the time disturbed me not a little. I was then twenty-three years old, and, though I had seen him occasionally, there was no real acquaintance between us. It was a time of great general anxiety. The war of 1812 was then going on, and New England was suffering from it severely. The Hartford Convention, about which I had known a good deal, from Mr. William Sullivan and Mr. Harrison G. Otis, was then in session. Mr. Adams was bitterly opposed to it. Mr. George Cabot, who was my acquaintance, and in some degree my friend, was its President.
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