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the copiousness and fluency of expreffion which she became mistress of by this ingenious practice, that she could fill four fides of letter paper with what other people exprefs upon the back of a card: Clemens once, in the exultation of his heart, put a bundle of these manufcripts into my hands, which he confeffed he did not clearly understand, but nevertheless believed them to be the most elegant things in the lan-` guage; I fhall give the reader a sample of two of them, which I drew out of the number, not by choice, but by chance; they were carefully' folded, and labelled at the back in Sappho's own hand as follows, Mufidorus to Sappho of the 10th of June; underneath fhe had wrote with a pencil these words:
HAPPY ALLUSION TO THE SUN!
KING DAVID NOT TO BE COMPARED TO MU
Here follows the note, and I cannot doubt but the reader will confefs that its contents deserve all that the label expreffes.
"June the 10th 1785.
"As foon as I arose this morning, I di"rected my eyes to the eaft, and demanded "of the fun, if he had given you my good"morrow: This was my parting injunction "laft night, when I took leave of him in the "weft, and he this moment plays his beams "with fo particular a luftre, that I am fatisfied "he has fulfilled my commiffion, and faluted "the eyelids of Sappho: If he is described to "come forth as a bridegroom out of his chamber, "how much rather may it be faid of him, "when he comes forth out of your's? I fhall "look for him to perform his journey this day "with a peculiar glee; I expect he will not "fuffer a cloud to come near him, and I shall (c not be furprized, if through his eagerness to "repeat his next morning's falutation, he should "whip his fiery-footed feeds to the weft some "hours before their time; unless indeed you "fhould walk forth whilft he is defcending, "and he fhould delay the wheels of his chariot
to look back upon an object fo pleasing. "You fee therefore, moft amiable Sappho, "that unless you fulfil your engagement, and "confent to repeat our ufual ramble in the cool "of the evening, our part of the world is "likely to be in darkness before it is expected,
"and that nature herself will be put out of
<c SAPPHO IN REPLY TO MUSIDORUS."
"If nature holds her courfe till Sappho forfeits her word to Mufidorus, neither the "fetting nor the rifing fun fhall vary from his "appointed time. But why does Mufidorus "ascribe to me fo flattering an influence, when, "if I have any intereft with Apollo, it must be "to his good offices only that I owe it? If he "bears the meffages of Mufidorus to me, is it "not a mark of his refpect to the perfon who "fends him, rather than to her he is fent to? "And whom fhould he fo willingly obey, as "one whom he fo copioufly infpires? I fhall "walk as ufual in the cool hour of even-tide,
liftening with greedy ear to that discourse, "which, by the refined and elevated sentiments "it infpires, has taught me to look down with "filent pity and contempt upon those frivolous "beings, who talk the mere language of the "fenfes, not of the foul, and to whofe filly "prattle I neither condefcend to lend an ear, or "to subscribe a word. Know then that Sappho "will referve her attention for Mufidorus, and "if Apollo fhall delay the wheels of his chariot
"to wait upon us in our evening ramble, be"lieve me he will not ftop for the unworthy' "purpose of looking back upon Sappho, but "for the nobler gratification of liftening to "Mufidorus."
The evening walk took place as usual, but it was a walk in the dufty purlieus of London, and Sappho fighed for a cottage and the country: Mufidorus feconded the figh, and he had abundance of fine things to say on the occafion: Retirement is a charming subject for a fentimental enthufiaft; there is not a poet in the language, but will help him out with a description; Mufidorus had them all at his fingers ends, from Hesperus that led the Starry hoft, down to a glow-worm.
The paffion took so strong a hold of Sappho's mind, that the actually affailed her father on the subject, and with great energy of perfuafion moved him to adopt her ideas: It did not exactly fuit Clemens to break up a very lucrative profeffion, and fet out in fearch of fome folitary cottage, whofe romantic fituation might fuit the fpiritualized defires of his daughter, and I am afraid he was for once in his life not quite fo refpectful to her wishes, as he might have been: Sappho was fo unused to contradiction,
diction, that she explained herself to Mufidorus