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sures and delights that one is over-run with in those places, I wonder how any body hath health and spirits enough to support them: I am heartily glad the has, and whenever I hear so, I find it contributes to mine. You see I am not free from dependance, tho’ I have less attendance than I had formerly; for a great deal of my own welfare still depends upon hers. Is the widow's house to be dispos’d of yet? I have not given up my pretensions to the Dean ; if it was to be parted with, I wish one of us had it; I hope you wish fo too, and that Mrs. Blount and Mrs. Howard wish' the same, and for the very
same reason that I wish it. All I could hear of you of late hath been by advertisements in news-papers, by which one would think the race of Curls was multiplied; and, by the indignation such fellows show against you, that
you have more merit than any body alive could have. Homer himself hath not been worse us'd by the French. I am to tell you that the Duchess makes
you her compliments, and is always inclin'd to like any thing you do; that Mr. Congreve admires, with me, your fortitude: and loves, not envies, your performance, for we are not Dunces. Adieu.
L ETTER XVIII.
April 18, 1730. F my friendship were as effectual as it is
sincere, you would be one of those people who would be vastly advantag‘d and enrich'd by it. I ever honour'd those Popes who were most famous for Nepotism, 'tis a sign that the old fellows loved Somebody, which is not usual in such advanced years. And I now honour Sir Robert Walpole for his extensive bounty and goodness to his private friends and relations. But it vexes me to the heart when I reflect, that my friendship is so much less effectual than theirs; nay so utterly useless that it cannot give you any thing, not even a dinner at this distance, nor help the General, whom I greatly love, to catch one fish. My only confolation is 'to think you happier than myself, and to begin to envy you, which is next to hating you (an excellent remedy for love.) How comes it that Providence has been so unkind to me (who am a greater object of compassion than any fat
man alive) that I am forced to drink wine, while you riot in water, prepar'd with oranges by the hand of the Duchess of Queensberry? that I am condemn’d to live by a highway fide, like an old Patriarch, receiving all guests, where my portico (as Virgil has it)
Mane Jalutantum totis vomit ædibus undam, while
you are wrapt into the Idalian Groves, fprinkled with rose-water, and live in burrage, balm, and burnet, up to the chin, with the Duchess of Queenfberry ? that I am doom'd to the drudgery of dining at court with the ladies in waiting at Windsor, while you are happily banish'd with the Duchess of Queensberry ? So partial is fortune in her dispensations ! for I deserv'd ten times more to be banish'd than you, and I know fome Ladies who merit it better than even her Grace. After this I must not name any, who dare do so much for you as to send
their services. But one there is, who exhorts me often to write to you, I suppose, to prevent or excuse her not doing it herself; she seems (for that is all I'll say for a courtier) to wish you mighty well. Another, who is no courtier, frequently mentions you, and does certainly wish you
well--I fancy, after all, they both do so.
I writ to Mr. Fortescue and told him the pains you took to see him. The Dean is well; I have had many accounts of him from Irish evidence, but only two letters these four months, in both which you are mention'd kindly: he is in the north of Ireland, doing I know not what, with I know not whom. Mr. Cleland always
speaks speaks of you: he is at Tunbridge, wondering at the superior carnivoracity of our friend : he plays now with the old Duchess, nay dines with her, after she has won all his money.
Other news I know not, but that Counsellor Bickford has hurt himself, and has the strongest walking-staff I ever saw. He intends speedily to make you a visit with it at Amesbury. I am my Lord Duke's, my Lady Duchess's, Mr. Dormer's, General Dormer's, and
L E T T E R XIX.
Sept. 11, 1730. May with
great truth return your speech, that I think of you daily ; oftener indeed than is consistent with the character of a reasonable man, who is rather to make himself easy with the things and men that are about him, than uneasy for those which he wants. And you, whose absence is in a manner perpetual to me, ought rather to be remembred as a good man gone, than breathed after 'as one living. You are taken from us here to be laid up in a more blessed state with spirits of a higher kind: such I reckon his Grace and her
Grace, since their banishment from an earthly court to a heavenly one, in each other and their friends ; for, I conclude, none but true friends will consort or associate with them afterwards. I can't but look upon myself (so unworthy as a man of Twitnam seems, to be rank'd with such rectify’d and sublimated beings as you) as a separated spirit too from Courts and courtly fopperies. But, I own, not altogether so divested of terrene matter, nor altogether fo spiritualized, as to be worthy admission to your depths of retirement and contentment. I am tugg’d back to the world and its regards too often ; and no wonder, when my retreat is but ten miles from the Capital. I am within ear-shot of reports, within the vortex of lies and censures. I hear sometimes of the lampooners of beauty, the calumniators of virtue, the jokers at reason and religion. I presume these are creatures and things as unknown to you, as we of this dirty orb are to the inhabitants of the planet Jupiter; except a few fervent prayers reach you on the wings of the post, from two or three of
your zealous votaries at this distance; as one Mrs. H. who lifts up her heart now and then to you, from the midst of the Colluvies and sink of hu. man greatness at W-r; one Mrs. B. that faricies you may remember her while you liv'd in your mortal and too transitory state at Petersham; VOL. VIII.