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HOND. DEAR BROTHER, I have the dear content of receaving your most obliging lines. All the thanckes I can give, I entreat you will take, as interest for what I owe. The whole summe I confesse
myself not able to pay ; but though I looke upon your kyndnis as-now aryved to a non plus ultra, and am delighted in giving it the wellcome, yet I find one distast, and must complayne, why you dispence onely comforts, and conceile
I must share of all. Your good nature, I am sure, can not be ignorant of the great satisfaction is found in suffering wth our frinds : Na, it puts downe all joyes (I meane temporall) wherin they are not concerned; and why then, not a word of thos poore sweet children, that have the rickets, or any other suffering of yours? Indeed you must not deale so with me. See, how redily I lay clame to the
privilege your kindnis gave me, of confidently asking any thing of you. This is my request, and in this is included all my desyres; except your beleefe, I shall ever, ever retayne my sisters hart to you and yours.
I have obeyed you, my picture is drawen by the best payneter; one, that hath the esteem of drawing much to the life. But still my hardest taske is to performe, why lest I must tell you, it cost 40 shillings. * O the shame! Did not your commands give countnance, and content; sence, tis as much the picture of your kyndnis, as of me; and thus methinckes tis cheape. I have rite to my brother Harry, to inquire for it, of Mr Foster, who lives at the Venetian imbassidors; for thither I shall direct it, with a few pittyfull toakens for your children. But, if you looke upon them, with that kindnis, they are sent, they will expresse what words canuot, without wronging Your most affectionat, though unworthy sister,
* Equivalent to 101. or 121. at the present time. This portrait of Mrs Winefrid Thimelby is at Tixall,
My Lady Mary Weston presents her humble servis. Next time you rite, thanck her for me. For my obligations are very many, and great.
Sep. 12. HOND. DEARE BROTHER, How strangely kynd are you, in coveting my empty lynes, sence all my store of selfe love could never flatter me into the deceat of the least satisfaction in them, further then as I consider them seede of yours;* but now, you please to give incouragement another way; for your desyre gives worth :, which great truth cannot be denyed; but give me leave to ad another.. I ever found shame and pitty greatest paynes; and truely you put me to both. Whats my shame every line can tell you : consequently my pitty; though more obscurely rit, for selfe love is never willingly unmasked. All
* She says above (letter xlii.),
66 So carfull selfe love make me to soe my secde, in hope to reape the pleasing fruit of your answer.”
this whyle I say nothing; my bisinis is begging, with all importunity, I request, as you love my peace, and patience, beleeve I have enoufe to pay all thos great and many debts I owe your kyndnis ; but so fast sealed up, that death can onely open. If I meet you not just then, what matter? You know who will be ready to receive all that is dew to you; and with her helpe, I may be able to convaye somethinge towards my discharge, tell we can meete.
Is it not strange, I shuld have nothing to say for Keat: my sylence speaks your love ; fot wear I not assured she inioyes the best father, I shuld conceive itt my duty to wooe for the best chyld; but your car cuts of all myne: yet I wod faine know more perticulers concerning her health, and if she grow. I am strangely idyed in the hopes you give us, that her meanes will be recovered.
Sweet Jesus grant itt so. How willingly shall I singe a nunc dimittis, when I see Keat as happy as my self, I mean as contented, for true hapinis consists in goodnis;* and wheresover she
semita certé Tranquillæ per virtutem patet unica vitæ.
Jud. Sat, X