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pletion of the Work: which I wish were now your only answer to any of them : except you will make use of that short and excellent one you gave me in the story of the reading-glass.
The world here grows very busy. About what time is it you think of being amongst us? My health, I fear, will confine me, whether in town or here, so that I may expect more of your company as one good resulting out of evil. · I write, you know, very laconically. I have but one formula which says every thing to a friend, “ I am yours, and beg you to continue “ mine." Let me not be ignorant (you can prevent my being so of any thing, but first and principally) of your health and well being; and depend on my sense of all the Kindness over and above all the Justice you shall ever do me.
I never read a thing with more pleasure than an additional sheet to a Jervas's preface to Don Quixote. Before I got over two paragraphs I cried out, Aut Erasmus aut Diabolus ! I knew you as certainly as the ancients did the Gods by the first pace and the very gait. I have not a moment to express myself in, but could not omit this which delighted me so greatly.
á On the origine of the books of Chivalry.
My My Law-suit with L. is at an end.---Adieu ! Believe no man can be more yours. Caļl me by any title you will but a Doctor of Oxford; Sit tibi cura mei, fit tibi cura tuin
Jan. 18, 1742: T Am forced to grow every day more laconic 1 in my letters, for my eyesight grows every day shorter and dimmer. Forgive me then that I answer you summarily. I can even less bear an equal part in a córrespondence than in a conversation with you. But be assured once for all, the more I read of you, as the more I hear from you, the better I am instructed and pleased. And this misfortune of my own dulness, and my own absence, only quickens my ardent wish that some good fortune would draw you nearer, and enable me to enjoy both, for a
art of our lives in this neighbourhood; and in such a situation, as might make more beneficial friends, than I, esteem and enjoy you equally.--I have again heard from Lord * * and another hand, that the Lord a I writ to you of, declares an intention to serve you. My answer (which they related to him) was, that
he he would be sure of your acquaintance for life if once he served, or obliged you ; but that, I was certain, you would never trouble him with your expectation, tho' he would never get rid of your gratitude._Dear Sir, adieu, and let me be sometimes certified of your health. My own is as usual; and my affection the same, always yours.
Twitenham, March 24, 1743. I Write to you amongst the very few I now deI fire to have my Friends, merely, Si valeas, valeo. 'Tis in effect all I say: but it is very literally true, for I place all that makes my life desirable in their welfare. I may truly affirm, that vanity or interest have not the least share in any friendship I have; or cause me now to cultivate that of any one man by any one letter. But if any motive should draw me to flatter a great man, it would be to save the friend I would have him ferve from doing it. Rather than lay a deserving person under the necessity of it, I would hazard my own character and keep his indignity. Tho' in truth, I live in a time when no measures of conduct influence the success of one's applications, and the best thing to trust to is chance and opportunity..
I only mean to tell you, I am wholly yours, how few words so ever I make of it---A greater pleasure to me is, that I chanced to make Mr. Allen so, who is not only worth more than intrinsically; but, I foresee, will be effectually more a comfort and glory to you every year you live. My confidence in any man less truly great than an honest one is but small.
I have lived much by myself of late, partly thro' ill health, and partly to amuse myself with little improvements in my garden and house, to which possibly I shall (if I live) be soon more confined. When the Dunciad may be published I know not. I am more desirous of carrying on the best, that is your edition of the rest of the Epistles and Essay on Criticism, &c. I know it is there I shall be seen most to advantage. But I insist on one condition, that you never think of this when you can employ yourself in finishing that noble work of the Divine Legation ( which is what, above all, iterum iterumque monebo a ) or any other useful scheme of your own. It would be a satisfaction to me at present only to hear that you have
.Either his friendship for | ing, was the conjuring him the Editor, or his love of Real to finish the last Volume ; ligion, made him have this which, indignation, as he very much at heart; and al- | supposed, at the scurrilities molt the last words he said of a number of nameless to the Editor as he was dy- | fcriblers, had retarded.
supported supported your health among these epidemical disorders, which, tho' not mortal to any of my friends, have afflicted almost every one.
June 52 I Wish that instead of writing to you once in I two months, I could do you some service as often; for I am arrived to an age when I am as sparing of words as most old men are of money, though I daily find less occasion for any. But I live in a time when benefits are not in the power of an honest man to bestow; nor indeed of an honest man to receive, considering on what terms they are generally to be had. It is certain you have a full right to any I could do you, who not only monthly, but weekly of late, have loaded me with favours of that kind, which are most acceptable to veteran Authors; those garlands which a Commentator weaves to hang about his Poet, and which are flowers both of his own gathering and and painting too; not blossoms springing from the dry Author.
It is very unreasonable after this, to give you a second trouble in revising the a Esay on Homer.
a The Editor did revise and correct it as it now stands in the last edition.