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receives by it, since it has prevented his suffering a much greater, no more than a man who is pushed down out of the way
of a bullet, can with reason take as an affront, either the blow he falls by, or the dirt he rises with.
“ But indeed I have very little uneasiness upon me for fear of any injury the author's credit and reputation may receive from any imperfection or uncorrectness in these following tracts; since the persons from whom I had them, and in whose hands I have reason to believe the author left them, when his affairs called him out of this kingdom, are of so much worth themselves, and have so great a regard for the author, that I am confident they would neither do nor suffer any thing that might turn to his disadvantage. I must confess I
another account under some concern, which is, lest some of the following papers are such as the author perhaps would rather should not have been published at all; in which case, I should look upon myself highly obliged to ask his pardon : but even on this supposition, as there is no person named, the supposed author is at liberty to disown as much as he thinks fit of what is here published, and so can be chargeable with no more of it than he pleases to take upon himself.
“ From this apology I have been making, the reader may in part be satisfied how these papers came into my hands; and to give him a more particular information herein will prove little to his use, though perhaps it might somewhat gratify his curiosity, which I shall think not material any farther to do, than by assuring him, that I am not only myself sufficiently convinced that all the tracts in the following collection, excepting two, before both of which I have in the book expressed my doubtfulness, were wrote by the same hand; but several judicious persons who are well acquainted with the supposed author's writings, and not altogether strangers to his COD
versation, have agreed with me herein, not only for the reasons I have before hinted at, but upon this account also, that there are in every one of these pieces some particular beauties that discover this author's vein, who excels too much not to be distinguished, since in all his writings such a surprising mixture of wit and learning, true humour and good sense,
every as sets him almost as far out of the reach of imitation, as it does beyond the power of censure.
“ The reception that these pieces will meet with from the public, and the satisfaction they will give to all men of wit and taste, will soon decide it, whether there be any reason for the reader to suspect an imposition, or the author to apprehend an injury; the former, I am fully satisfied, will never be, and the latter I am sure I never intended: in confidence of which, should the author, when he sees these tracts appear, take some offence, and know where to place his resentment, I will be so free as to own, I could without much uneasiness sit down under some degree of it, since it would be no hard task to bear some displeasure from a single person, for that for which one is sure to receive the thanks of every body else.”
The contents of this volume of genuine and acknowledged Miscellanies shall here be given :
1.6 A Discourse of the Contests and Dissentions be. tween the Nobles and Commons in Athens and Rome," 1701; 2. “ The Sentiments of a Church of England Man,” 1708 ; 3. “ Argument to prove that the abolishing of Christianity," &c. 1708 ; 4.“ A Project for Advancement of Religion,” 1709; 5. “ Meditation on a Broomstick,” 1704; 6.“ Various Thoughts, moral and diverting,” 1706; 7. “ Critical Essay upon the Faculties of the Mind,” 1707 ; 8. “ Predictions for the year 1708;" 9. “ Account of Partridge's Death,” 1708 ; 10.
“ Vindication of Bickerstaff,” 1709; 11. “A famous Prediction of Merlin,” 1709; 12. “ Letter on the Sacramental Test,” 1708. The Poems were, “ Verses in a Lady's Ivory Table-book ;" “ Frances Harris's Petition;" “ Ballad on Lady Betty Berkeley's adding a stanza to a former Ballad;" “ Van's House;" “ The Salamander ;” “ Baucis and Philemon;" “ To Biddy Floyd ;" “ The History of Van's House;" “ Grub street Elegy on Partridge;" "Apollo outwitted;" “Description of the Morning ;" “A City Shower;" and “ The Virtues of Sid Hamet's Rod.”
In 1712, Swift deviated from his accustomed habit, by affixing his name to a favourite project, in a “ Letter to the Lord Treasurer;" and in 1714 he had prepared for the press a “History of the four last years of the Queen;" on which he had bestowed much attention, but which the decease of his Royal Mistress threw wholly into the shade, nor, after that period, was he at all solicitous for acquiring reputation as an author.
The “ Drapier's Letters” were presented singły to the public as they came out. The copy of “Gulliver's Travels,” which in 1726 was transmitted to the press through the medium of Mr. Pope, is thus alluded to by the Dean, in a letter to Mr. Pulteney, May 12, 1735 : “ I never got a farthing by any thing I writ, except once about eight years ago, and that by Mr. Pope's prudent management for me.” The sum which was received for Gulliver is stated to have been 300l. ; and on the publication of three volumes of their joint Miscellanies, which were left wholly to the disposal of Mr. Pope, the profit was 1501. *
* These particulars were communicated in 1749 to Dr. Birch by Mr. Faulkner; who added, that “ Dr. Swift had long conceived a mean opinion of Mr. Pope, on account of his jealous, peevish, avaricious temper."
In July, 1732, the Dean gave to Mrs. Pilkington the following loose assignment, the original of which is in the hands of the present editor :
“ Whereas several scattered papers, in prose and verse, for three or four years last past, were printed in Dublin, by Mr. George Faulkner, some of which were sent in manuscript to Mr. William Bowyer, of London, printer; which pieces are supposed to be written by me, and are now, by the means of the Reverend Matthew Pilkington, who delivered or sent them to the said Faulkner and Bowyer, become the property of the said Faulkner and Bowyer: I do here, without specifying the said papers, give up all manner of right I may be thought to have in the said papers, to Mr. Matthew Pilkington aforesaid, who informs me that he intends to give up the said right to Mr. Bowyer aforesaid. Witness my hand, July 22, 1732.
JONATH. SWIFT. From the Deanery House in Dublin, the
day and year above written,”
“ Pursuant to an assignment, dated the 22d day of July, 1732, granted to me by the Rev. Doctor Swift, of several pieces in prose and verse, supposed to be written by him, which pieces were printed by Mr. Faulkner in Dublin, and Mr. Bowyer in London, most of which pieces were conveyed to them by me; I do hereby give up all manner of right which is conveyed to me by the said assignment to Mr. William Bowyer, of London, printer, as empowered by the Rev. Dr. Swift aforesaid.
In witness whereof, I have set my hand, this 5th day of October, 1732.
MATT. PILKINGTON.” Four volumes of the Dean's Miscellanies were published by Mr. Faulkner in 1734; and speedily reprinted in England. These were followed in both kingdoms by several other single volumes. But the earliest regular edition was in twelve volumes, 8vo. 1755 (reprinted in 1767) under the respectable name of the late Dr. John HAWKESWORTH, who thus very properly introduced them :
“ The Works of Dr. Jonathan Swift were written and published at very distant periods of his life, and had passed through many editions before they were collected into volumes, or distinguished from the productions of contemporary wits, with whom he was known to associate.
« The Tale of a Tub, the Battle of the Books, and the Fragment, were first published together in 1704; and the Apology, and the notes from Wotton, were added in 1710; this edition the Dean revised a short time before his understanding was impaired, and his corrections will be found in this impression.
“Gulliver's Travels were first printed in the year 1726, with some alterations which had been made by the person through whose hands they were conveyed to the press; but the original passages were restored to the subsequent editions.
Many other pieces, both in prose and verse, which had been written between the years 1691 and 1727, were then collected and published by the Dean, in conjunction with Mr. Pope, Dr. Arbuthnot, and Mr. Gay, under the title of Miscellanies. Of all these pieces, though they were intended to go down to posterity together, the Dean was not the author, as appeared by the title pages:
* From a corrected copy then in the hands of the late Deane Swift, Esq.
+ See the joint Preface of Pope and Swift in vol. xxiii.
I“At all adventures, yours and my name shall stand linked friends to posterity, both in verse and prose.”
Pope to Swift, March 23, 1727–8.