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contradicted in this city, for the honour of my
friend M-y: all which shews the absurdity of York credulity and nonsense. Besides, the account is full of falsehoods
first, with regard to the place of my birth, which was at Clonmel, in Ireland; the story of a hundred pounds to Mrs. W—, *) not true, or of a pension promised; the merit of which I disclaimed, and indeed there are so many other things so untrue, and unlikely to come from me, that the worst enemy I have here never had a suspicion
The good old man was vexed to see a pedantic medicine-monger take the lead, and prevent that pleasantry which good wit and good wine might have occasioned, by a discourse in the unintelligible language of his profession, concerning the difference between the phrenitis and the paraphrenitis and the concomitant categories of the mediastium and pleura.
“Good-humoured Yorick saw the sense of the master of the feast, and fell into the cant and jargon of physic, as if he had been one of Radcliffe's travellers. "The vulgar practice,' says he, savours much of mechanical principles; the venerable ancients were all empirics, and the profession will never regain its ancient credit, till practice falls into the old track again. I am myself an instance; I caught cold by leaning on a damp cushion, and after sneezing and sniveling a fortnight, it fell upon my breast; they blooded me, blistered me, and gave me robs and bobs, and lohocks and eclegmata; but I grew worse; for I was treated according to the exact rules of the College. In short, from an inflammation it came to an ADHESION, and all was over with me. They advised me to Bristol, that I might not do them the scandal of dying under their hands: and the Bristol people for the same reason consigned me over to Lisbon. But what do I? why I considered an adhesion is, in plain English, only a sticking of two things together, and that force enough would pull them asunder. I bought a good ash pole, and began leaping over all the walls and ditches in the country. From the height of the pole I used to come souse down npon my feet like an ass, when he tramples upon a bull dog, but it did not do. At last - when I had raised myself, perpendicularly over a wall, I used to fall exactly across the ridge of it upon the side opposite to the ad. hesion. This tore it off at once, and I am as you see. Come, fill a glass to the memory of the empiric medicine.' If he had been asked elsewhere about this disorder (for he really had a consumptive disorder,) he would have answered, that he was cured by Huxham's decoction of the bark and elixir of vitriol."
* The Widow of Mr. Sterne's predecessor in the living of Coxwould.
and, to end all, Dı. Hill owns
I shall be down before May is out. I preach before the judges on Sunday my Sermons come out on Thursday after, and I purpose the Monday, at furthest, after that, to set out for York. I have bought a pair of horses for that purpose. My best respects to your Lady
I am, Dear Sir,
P.S. - I beg pardon for this hasty scrawl, having just come from a concert where the D. of York performed. I have received great notice from him, and last week had the honour of supping with him.
TO. DR. WARBURTON, BISHOP OF
York, June 9, 1760. Not knowing where to send two sets of my Sermons, I could think of no better expedient than to order them into Mr. Berenge's hands, who has promised me that he will wait upon your Lordship with them, the first moment he hears you are in town. The truest and humblest thanks I return to your Lordship, for the generosity of your protection, and advice to me; by making a good use of the one, I will hope to deserve the other: I wish your Lordship all the health and happiness in this world, for I am
Your Lordship's most obliged and
P.S. I am just sitting down to go on with Tristram, &c. the scribblers use me ill, but they have used my betters much worse, for which may God forgive them.
· TO THE REV. MR. STERNE.
Prior-Park, June 15, 1760. REVEREND SIR, I HAVE your favour of the 9th instant, and am glad to understand you are got safe home, and employed again in your proper studies and amusements. You have it in your power to make that, which is an amusement to yourself and others, useful to both: at least you should, above all things, beware of its becoming hurtful to either, by any violations of decency and good manners: but I have already taken such repeated liberties of advising you on that head, that to say more would be needless, or perhaps unacceptable.
Whoever is, in any way, well received by the public, is sure to be annoyed by that pest of the public, profligate scribblers. This is the common lot of successful adventurers; but such have often a worse evil to struggle with, I mean the over officiousness of their indiscreet friends. There are two Odes, as they are called, printed by Dodsley. Whoever was the author, he appears to be a monster of impiety and lewdness yet, such is the malignity of the scribblers, some have given them to your friend Hall; and others, which
* Intitled, “Two Lyric Epistles: one to my Cousin Shabdy, on his coming to Town; and the other to the Grown Gentlewomen, the Misses of * **" 4to.
is still more impossible, to yourself; though the first Ode has the insolence to place you both in a mean and a ridiculous light. But this might arise from a tale equally groundless and malignant, that you had shewn them to your acquaintances in MS. before they were given to the public. Nor was their being printed by Dodsley the likeliest means of discrediting the calumny.
About this time, another, under the mask of friendship, pretended to draw your character, which was since published in a Female Magazine (for dulness, who often has as great a hand as the devil, in deforming God's works of the creation, has made them, it seems, male and female,) and thence it was transferred into a Chronicle. * Pray have you read it
know its author?
But of all these things, I dare say Mr. Garrick, whose prudence is equal to his honesty or his talents, has remonstrated to you with the freedom of a friend. He knows the inconstancy of what is called the Public, towards all, even the best intentioned, of those who contribute to its pleasure or amusement.
He (as every man of honour and discretion would) has availed himself of the public favour, to regulate the taste, and, in his proper station, to reform the manners, of the fashionable world; while, by a well-judged economy, he has provided against the temptations of a mean and servile dependency on the follies and vices of the great.
In a word, be assured there is no one more sincerely wishes your welfare and happiness, than,
W. G. * The London Chronicle, May 6, 1760. Sentimental Journey, etc,
TO MY WITTY WIDOW, MRS. F
Coxwould, August 3, 1760. MADAM, WHEN a man's brains are as dry as a squeez'd orange,
and he feels he has no more conceit in him than a mallet, 'tis in vain to think of sitting down, and writing a letter to a lady of your wit, unless in the honest John-Trot-Style of yours of the 15th instant came safe to hand, &c.; which, by the bye, looks like a letter of business; and you know very well, from the first letter I had the honour to write to you, I am a man of no business at all. This vile plight I found my genius in was the reason I have told Mr.
-, I would not write to you till the next post, hoping by that time to get some small recruit, at least of vivacity, if not wit, to set out with; but upon second thoughts, thinking a bad letter in season to be better than a good one out of it, this scrawl is the consequence, which if you will burn the moment you get it, I promise to send you a fine set essay in the style of your female epistolizers, cut and trim'd at all points. God defend me from such, who never yet knew what it was to say or write one premeditated word in my whole life, for this reason I send you this with pleasure, because wrote with the careless irregularity of an easy heart. Who told you Garrick wrote the medley for Beard? 'Twas wrote in his house, however, and before I left town. – I deny it, I was 'not lost two days before I left town. I was lost all the time I was there, and never found till I got to this Shandy-castle of mine. Next winter I intend to sojourn amongst you with more decorum, and will neither be lost nor found any where.