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Bishop has never been in Spain! Monsieur de Fuentes? is a halfpenny print of my lord H**** His wife homely, but seems good-humoured and civil. The son does not degenerate from such high-born ugliness—the daughter-in-law was sick, and they say is not ugly, and has as good a set of teeth as one can have, when one has but two and those black. They seem to have no curiosity, sit where they are placed, and ask no questions about so strange a country. Indeed the ambassadress could see nothing ; for Doddington 3 stood before her the whole time, sweating Spanish at her, of which it was evident, by her civil nods without answers, she did not understand a word. She speaks bad French, danced a bad minuet, and went awaythough there was a miraculous draught of fishes for their supper, as it was a fast-but being the octave of their Fête-Dieu, they dared not even fast plentifully. Miss Chudleigh desired the gamblers would go up into the garrets~"Nay, they are not garrets it is only the roof of the house hollowed for upper servants—but I have no upper servants.” Every body ran up: there is a low gallery with bookcases, and four chambers practised under the pent of the roof, each hung with the finest Indian pictures on different colours, and with Chinese chairs of the same colours. Vases of flowers in each for nosegays, and in one retired nook a most critical couch!
The lord of the festival 4 was there, and seemed neither ashamed nor vain of the expense of his pleasures. At supper, she offered him Tokay, and told him she believed he would find it good. The supper was in two rooms and very fine, and on all the sideboards, and even on the chairs, were pyramids and troughs of strawberries and cherries; you would have thought she was kept by Vertumnus. Last night, my lady Northumberland lighted up her garden for the Spaniards: I was not there, having excused myself for a head-ache, which I had not, but ought to have caught the night before. Mr. Doddington entertained these Fuentes's at Hammersmith; and to the shame of our nation, while they were drinking tea in the summer-house, some gentlemen, ay, my lord, gentlemen, went into the river and showed the ambassadress and her daughter more than ever they expected to see of England.
* The ambassador from Spain, landed at Dover 230 May 1760. (Ed.] 3 Afterwards lord Melcombe. He had been minister in Spain. [Or.] The well-known George Bubb Doddington, created baron Melcombe, of Melcombe Regis, whose diary, which has been pronounced an admirable picture of himself and an instructive lesson to future statesmen,' was originally published at Salisbury in 1784, 8vo., and has since been frequently reprinted. (Ed.]
* The duke of Kingston. [Or.]
I dare say you are sorry for poor lady Anson. She was exceedingly good-humoured, and did a thousand good-natured and generous actions. I tell you nothing of the rupture of lord Halifax's match, of which you must have heard so much ; but you will like a bon-mot upon it—They say, the hundreds of Drury have got the better of the thousands of Drury.6
The pretty countess' is still alive, was thought actually dying on Tuesday night, and I think will go off very soon.
I think there will soon be a peace: my only reason is, that every body seems so backward at making war. Adieu, my dear lord !
I am your most affectionate servant.
To the Hon. H. S. CONWAY.
Strawberry-hill, June 28, 1760. The devil is in people for fidgeting about! They can neither be quiet in their own houses, nor let others be at peace in theirs ! Have not they enough of one another in winter, but they must cuddle in summer, too? For your part, you are a very priest : the moment one repents, you are for turning it to account. I wish you was in camp-never will I pity you again. How did you complain when you was in Scotland, Ireland, Flanders, and I don't know where, that you could never enjoy Park-place! Now you have a whole summer to yourself, and you are as junkettaceous as my lady Northumberland. Pray, what horse-race do you go to next? For my part, I can't afford
5 Lady Elizabeth, daughter of Philip Yorke earl of Hardwicke, and wife of George, first lord Anson the celebrated circumnavigator, died June 1st, 1760. [Ed.)
6 Lord Halifax kept an actress belonging to Drury-lane theatre. And the marriage broken off was with a daughter of sir Thomas Drury, an heiress. [Or.]
7 0f Coventry. [Or.]
to lead such a life: I have Conway-papers to sort; I have lives of the painters to write; I have my prints to paste, my house to build, and every thing in the world to tell posterity.—How am I to find time for all this? I am past forty, and may not have above as many more years to live; and here I am to go here and to go there-Well, I will meet you at Chaffont on Thursday; but I positively will stay but one night. I have settled with your brother that we will be at Oxford on the 13th of July, as lord Beauchamp is only loose from the 12th to the 20th. I will be at Park-place on the 12th, and we will go together the next day. If this is too early for you, we may put it off to the 15th : determine by Thursday, and one of us will write to lord Hertford.
Well! Quebec is come to life again. Last night I went to see the Holdernesses, who by the way are in raptures with Park—in Sion-lane: as Cibber says of the Revolution, I met the Raising of the Siege; that is, I met my lady in a triumphal car, drawn by a Manks horse thirteen little fingers high, with lady Emily,
et sibi Countess Ne placeat, ma'amzelle curru portatur eodemMr. M **** was walking in ovation by himself after the car ; and they were going to see the bonfire at the alehouse at the corner. The whole procession returned with me; and from the countess's dressing-room we saw a battery fired before the house, the mob crying, “ God bless the good news !”—These are all the particulars I know of the siege : my lord would have shewed me the journal ; but we amused ourselves much better in going to eat peaches from the new Dutch stoves.
The rain is come indeed, and my grass is as green as grass ; but all my hay has been cut and soaking this week, and I am too much in the fashion not to have given up gardening for farming, as next I suppose we shall farming, and turn graziers and hogdrivers.
8 Quebec, which had been taken from the French by Wolfe in 1759, was besieged by them in the spring of the following year with an army of 15,000 men, under the command of the Chevalier de Levis, assisted by a naval force. They were, however, repulsed by general Murray, who was supported by lord Colville and the fleet under his command ; and on the night of the 16th May raised the siege very precipitately, leaving their cannon, small arms, stores, &c. behind them. [Ed.]
I never heard of such a Semele as my lady Stormont' brought to bed in flames. I hope miss Bacchus Murray will not carry the resemblance through, and love drinking like a Pole. My lady Lyttelton is at Mr. Garrick’s and they were to have breakfasted here this morning; but somehow or other they have changed their mind. Good night!
To GEORGE MONTAGU, Esq.
Strawberry-hill, July 4, 1760. I am this minute returned from Chaffont, where I have been these two days. Mr. Conway, lady Ailesbury, Lady Lyttelton, and Mrs. Shirely are there ; and lady Mary is going to add to the number again. The house and grounds are still in the same dislocated condition; in short, they finish nothing but children ; even Mr. Bentley's Gothic stable, which I call Houynhm castle, is not rough-cast yet.
We went to see More-park,' but I was not much struck with it, after all the miracles I had heard Brown had performed there. He has undulated the horizon in so many artificial molehills, that it is full as unnatural as if it was drawn with a rule and compasses. Nothing is done to the house ; there are not even chairs in the great apartment. My lord Anson is more slatternly than the Churchills, and does not even finish children. I am going to write to lord Beauchamp, that I shall be at Oxford on the fifteenth, where I depend upon meeting you. I design to see Blenheim, and Rousham, is not that the name of Dormer's ?) and Althorp, and Drayton, before I return—but don't be frightened, I don't propose to drag you to all or any of these, if you don't like it.
Mr. Bentley has sketched a very pretty Gothic room for lord Holderness, and orders are gone to execute it directly in
9 Henrietta Frederica, daughter of Henry Count Bunan, married 16th August 1759, David, seventh viscount Stormont; and, on the 18th May 1760, gave birth to a daughter, lady Elizabeth Mary, at Warsaw. [Ed.]
1 The seat of lord Anson, formerly the residence of the duke of Monmouth. It is now the property of the marquis of Westminster. [Ed.]
Yorkshire. The first draught was Mason's; but as he does not pretend to much skill, we were desired to correct it. I say we, for I chose the ornaments. Adieu!
P. S. My lady Ailesbury has been much diverted, and so will you, too. Gray is in their neigbourhood. My lady Carlisle says, he is extremely like me in his manner. They went a party to dine on a cold loaf, and passed the day ; lady A. protests he never opened his lips but once, and then only said, “ Yes, my lady, I believe so."
To GEORGE MONTAGU, Esq.
Strawberry-hill, July 19, 1760. Mr. Conway, as I told you, was with me at Oxford, and I returned with him to Park-place, and to-day hither. I am sorry you could not come to us; we passed four days most agreeably, and I believe saw more antique holes and corners than Tom Hearne did in threescore years. You know my rage for Oxford ; if King's-college would not take it ill, I don't know but I should retire thither, and profess jacobitism, that I might enjoy some venerable set of chambers. Though the weather has been so sultry, I ferretted from morning to night, fatigued that strong young lad lord Beauchamp, and harrassed his tutors till they were forced to relieve one another. With all this, I found nothing worth seeing, except the colleges themselves, painted glass, and a couple of croziers. Oh, yes; in an old buttery at Christ-church I discovered two of the most glorious portraits by Holbein in the the world. They call them Dutch heads. I took them down, washed them myself, and fetched
2 Isabel Byron, eldest daughter of William, fourth lord Byron, the second wife and widow of Henry, fourth earl of Carlisle. (Ed.]
Tom Hearne the learned antiquary, born at White Waltham, Berks, 1630; died at Oxford, 10th June 1735, whose industrious researches into the affairs of by-gone times are recorded in the well known epigram
• Pox on’t,' says Time to Thomas Hearne,