Abbildungen der Seite

day as ever shone upon the earth since the destruction of Sodom, -- and peradventure your Honour may have got a good hearty dinner to-day, and eat and drank your intellectuals into a placidulish and a blandulish amalgama to bear nonsense, so much for that.

'Ti as cold and churlish just now as (if God had not pleased it to be so) it ought to have been in bleak December, and therefore I am glad you are where you are, and where (I repeat it again) I wish I was also.

Curse of poverty and absence from those we love! they are two great evils which embitter all things

and yet with the first I am not haunted much. As to matrimony, I should be a beast to rail at it, for my wife is easy

but the world is not and had I staid from her a second longer, it would have been a burning shame - else she declares herself happier without me but not in anger is this declaration made but in pure sober good sense, built on sound experience she hopes you will be able to strike a bargain for me before this time twelvemonth, to lead a bear round Europe: and from this hope from you, I verily believe it is that you are so high in her favour at present

She swears you are a fellow of wit, though humorous; a funny, jolly soul, though somewhat splenetic; and (bating the love of women) as honest as gold how do you like the simile? Oh, Lord! now are you going to Ranelagh to-night, and I am sitting sorrowful as the prophet was, when the voice cried out to him, and said, “What doest thou here, Elijah ?" -- 'Tis well the Spirit does not make the same at Coxwould for, unless for the few sheep left me to take care of, in this wilderness, I might as well, nay better, be at Mecca. -- When we find we


can, by a shifting of places, run away from ourselves, what think


of a jaunt there, before we finally pay a visit to the vale of Jehosaphat ? As ill a fame as we have, I trust I shall one day or other see you face to face - so tell the two colonels, if they love good company, to live righteously and soberly, as you do, and then they will have no doubts or dangers within or without them

present my best and warmest wishes to them, and advise the eldest to prop up his spirits, and get a rich dowager before the clusion of the peace

why will not the advice suit both, par nobile fratrum?

To-morrow morning (if Heaven permit) I begin the fifth volume* of Shandy I care not a curse for the critics I'll load my vehicle with what goods he sends me, and they may take 'em off my hands, or let them alone I am very valorous

and 'tis in proportion as we retire from the world, and see it in its true dimensions, that we despise it no bad rant! God above bless you! You know I am Your affectionate cousin,


[ocr errors]

What few remain of the Demoniacs, greet

and write me a letter, if you are able, as foolish as this.

[blocks in formation]

Coxwould, Sept. 21, 1760. I RETURN to my new habitation, fully determined to write as hard as can be, and thank you most cordially, my dear lady, for your letter of congratulation

* Alluding to the first edition.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


upon my Lord Fauconberg's having presented me with the curacy of this place — though your congratulation comes somewhat of the latest, as I have been possessed of it some time. I hope I have been of some service to his Lordship, and he has sufficiently requited

'Tis seventy guineas a-year in my pocket, though worth a hundred – but it obliges me to have a curate to officiate at Sutton and Stillington. Tis within a mile of his Lordship's seat and park. 'Tis a very agreeable ride out in the chaise I purchased for my wife. - Lyd has a poney which she delights in.

Whilst they take these diversions, I am scribbling away at my Tristram. These two volumes are, I think, the best. I shall write as long as I live, 'tis, in fact, my hobby-horse; and so much am I delighted with my uncle Toby's imaginary character, that I am become an enthusiast. — My Lydia helps to copy for

and my wife knits, and listens as I read her chapters. -- The coronation of his Majesty (whom God preserve!) has cost me the value of an ox, which is to be roasted whole in the middle of the town, and

my parishioners will, I suppose, be very merry upon the occasion. You will then be in town and feast your eyes with a sight, which 'tis to be hoped will not be in either of our powers to see again for in point of age we have about twenty years the start of his Majesty. -- And now, my dear friend, I must finish this and, with every wish for your happiness, conclude myself your most sincere well-wisher and friend,



[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]



Paris, Jan. 31, 1762. MY DEAR FRIEND, Think not, because I have been a fortnight in this metropolis without writing to you, that therefore I have not had you and Mrs. Garrick a hundred times in my

head and heart heart! yes, yes, say you but I must not waste paper in badinage this post, whatever I do the next. Well! here I am, my friend, much improved in my health, for the time, as ever your friendship could wish, or at least your faith give credit to by the bye, I am somewhat worse in my intellectuals, for my head is turned round with what I see, and the unexpected honours I have met with here. Tristram was almost as much known here as in London, at least among your men of condition and learning, and has got me introduced into so many circles ('tis comme à Londres). I have just now a fortnight's dinners and suppers upon my hands. - My

application to the Count de Choiseul goes on swimmingly, for not only M. Pelletiere (who, by the bye, sends ten thousand civilities to you and Mrs. Garrick) has undertaken my affair, but the Count de Limbourg

the Baron d'Holbach, has offered any security for the inoffensiveness of my behaviour in France 'tis more, you rogue! than you will do. This Baron is one of the most learned noblemen here, the great protector of wits, and the Scavans who are no wits keeps open house three days a week his house is now, as yours was to me, my own

he lives at great expense. 'Twas an odd incident when I was introduced to the Count de Bissie, which I was at his Sentimental Journey, elc.


[ocr errors]

desire -- I found him reading Tristram -- this grandee

does me great honours, and gives me leave to go a private way through his apartments into the Palais Royal, to view the Duke of Orleans's collections, every day I have time. - I have been at the doctors of Sorbonne. - I hope in a fortnight to break through,

or rather from the delights of this place, which, in the sçavoir vivre, exceeds all the places, I believe, in this section of the globe.

I am going, when this letter is wrote, with Mr. Fox and Mr. Maccartny, to Versailles -- the next morning I wait upon Mons. Titon, in company with Mr. Maccartny, who is known to him, to deliver your commands. - I have bought you the pamphlet upon theatrical, or rather tragical, declamation; I have bought another in verse worth reading, and you will receive them, with what I can pick up this week, by a servant of Mr. Hodges, whom he is sending back to England.

I was last night with Mr. Fox to see Mademoiselle Clairon, in Iphigéne she is extremely great would to God you had one or two like her

what a luxury, to see you with one of such powers in the same interesting scene but 'tis too much. Ah! Preville! thou art Mercury himself. – By virtue of taking a couple of boxes, we have bespoke this week, The Frenchman in London, in which Preville is to send us home to supper, all happy I mean about fifteen or sixteen English of distinction, who are now here, and live well with each other.

I am under great obligations to Mr. Pitt, who has behaved in every respect to me like a man of goodbreeding, and good-nature. -- In a post or two, I will write again. Foley is an honest soul. I could writo

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »