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your end in profit and reputation : Yet I am angry at some bad Rhymes and Triplets, and pray in your next do not let me have so many unjustifiable Rhymes to war and gods. I tell you all the faults I know, only in one or two places you are a little obfcure; but I expected you to be fo in one or two and twenty. I have heard no soul talk of it here, for indeed it is not come over; nor do we very much abound in Judges, at least I have not the honour to be acquainted with them. Your Notes are perfectly good, and so are your Preface and Efsay. You were pretty bold in mentioning Lord Bolingbroke in that Preface. I saw the Key to the Lock but yesterday: I think you have changed it a good deal, to adapt it to the prefent times *. 1. God be thanked I have yet no Parliamentary bufiness, and if they have none with me, I shall never seek their acquaintance. I have not been very fond of them for some years paft, not when I thought them tolerably good, and therefore if I can get leave to be abfent, I shall be much inclined to be on that fide, when there is a Parliament on this : but truly I must be a little eafy in my mind before I can think of Scriblerus.. : You are to understand that I live in the corner of a vaft- unfurnished house ; my family consists of a steward, a groom, a helper in the stable, a footman, and an oldi maid, who are all at board-wages, and when I do not dine abroad, or make an entertainment (which haft is very rare) I eat a mutton-pye, and drink half a pint of wine: My amusements are defending my small dominions against the Archbifhop, and endeavouring to reduce' my rebellious
* Put these two laft observations together, and it will appear, that Mr. Pope was neither wanting to his friends for fear of party, nor would insult a miniftry to humour his friends.
Choir. Perditur hæc inter misero lux. I desire you will present my humble service to Mr. Addison, Mr. Congreve, and Mr. Rowe, and Gay. I am, and will be always, extremely yours, &c.
Mr. Pope to Dr. SWIFT,
June 20, 1716.
out bearing a testimony from-me of the conftant esteem and affection I am both obliged and inclined to have for you. It is better he should tell you than 1, how often you are in our thoughts and in our çups, and how I learn to sleep less * and drink more, whenever you are named among us. I look upon a friend in Ireland as upon a friend in the other world, whom (popishly speaking) I believe constantly well disposed towards me, and ready to do me all the good he can, in that ftate of leparation, though I hear nothing from him, and make addrefles to him but very rarely: A protestant divine cannot take it amiss that I treat him in the same manner with my patron Saint,
1 I can tell you nó news, but what you
will not suffi ciently wonder at, that I suffer many things as an author militant; whereof in your days of probation, you have been a sharer, or you had not arrived to that triumphant state you now deservedly enjoy in the Church. As for me, I have not the least hopes of the Cardinalat, tho’ I suffer for my Religion in almost every weekly paper. I have begun to take a
Alluding to his constant custom of sleeping after dinger.
pique at the Psalms of David (if the wicked may be credited, who have printed a scandalous one * in my name.) This report I dare not discourage too much, in a prospect I have at present of a post under the Marquis de Langallerie t, wherein if I can but do some signal service against the Pope, I may be considerably advanced by the Turks, the only religious people I dare confide in. If it should happen hereafter that I should write for the holy law of Mahomet, I hope it may make no breach between you and me; every one must live, and I beg you will not be the man to manage the controversy against me. The Church of Rome I judge (from many modern symptoms, as well as ancient prophecies) to be in a declining condition; that of England will in a short time be scarce able to maintain her own family: fo Churches sink as generally as Banks in Europe, and for the same reason; that Religion and Trade, which at first were open and free, have been reduced into the Management of Companies, and the Roguery of Directors.
I don't know why I tell you all this, but that I always loved to talk to you ; but this is not a time for any man to talk to the purpose. Truth is a kind of contraband commodity, which I would not venture to export, and therefore the only thing tending that dangerous way which I shall say, is, that I am, and always will be, with the utmost fincerity,
* In Curl's Collection.
+ One who made a noise then, as Count Bonnival has done fince.
From Dr. Swift, to Mr. Pope.
Aug. 30, 1716.
before any other question relating to your health or fortune' or fuocess as a Poet, F enquired your principles in the common form, Is he Whigi or
ca Tołyle. I am sorry to find they are not to
1 * Milton.
And who are all these enemies you hint at? I can only think of Curl, Gildon, Squire Burnet, Blackmore, and a few others whose fame I have forgot ; Tools, in my opinion as necessary for a good writer, as pen, ink, and paper. And besides, I would fain know whether every Draper doth not fhew you three or four damn'd pieces of stuff to set off his good one? However, I will grant, that one thorough Bookselling-Rogue is better qualified to vex an author, than all his cotemporary fcriblers in Critic or Satire, not only by stolen Copies of what was incorrect or unfit for the public, but by downright laying other mens dulness at your door. I had a long design upon the Ears of that Curl, when I was in credit, but the Rogue would never allow me a fair stroke at them, although my penknife was ready drawn and fharp. I can hardly believe the relation of his being poisoned, although the Historian pretends to have been an eye-witness : But I beg pardon, Sack might do it, although Rats-bane would not. I never saw the thing you mention as falsely imputed to you ; but I think the frolicks of merry hours, even when we are guilty, should not be left to the mercy of our best friends, until Curl and his resemblers are hang’d.
With submisfion to the better judgment of you and your friends, I take your project of an employment under the Turks to be idle and unnecessary. Have a little patience, and you will find more merit and encouragement at home by the fame methods You are ungrateful to your country; quit but your own Religion, and ridicule ours, and that will allow you a free choice for any other, or for none at all, and pay you well into the bargain. Therefore pray do not run and disgrace us among the Turks, by telling them you were forced to leave your native home, because we would oblige you to be a Christian; whereas we will make it appear to