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been very much taken up of late, by our Family being at Home: but that Excuse lay no Stress upon; for I shall never let any, either Business or Pleasure hurry you from my Thoughts. Ill Health can be my only just Apology; and though I cannot say I have been fick, I can assure you, I have not been well for fome Time past. Put my Condition in the best Light, I am very much in the Vapours, and so much, as that you or Mr. GRAVES alone can cure me : a Letter from you will
go a great deal towards it; though I long for one, I can hardly go on with this Letter, which is the Means to procure it ; like one sinking into a fainting Fit, who can't collect Strength of Mind or Body, to reach so much as the Hartshorn to his Nose, which stands at his Elbow. I shall be at Oxford in a short Time, and spend as many Days there as I can pass agreeably, and then take my Leave of it. If the Town be healthy, I shall go to London the Beginning of the Winter, and stay there just as long as it smiles on me. But all Things seem to frown in the Absence of my Friends, and I wish I don't think the Smiles of the Town impertinent without them.
I wish I wish I could be sometimes pleased with less than you, without I could have you always. Pray write foon, and raise my Spirits, for I really am forced now to conclude for Want of them,
yours, &c. &c.
Service to Mr. DarmaI fincerely hope he is well,
LET TER XIII.
Mr. WHISTLER to W. SHENSTONE, Esq.
one, you advised me to read. History : accordingly, as I am always proud to follow your Advice, I pitched upon Burger's History
of his own Times. I was over Head and Ears engaged in the Disputes between Cavaliers, Protesters, Resolutioners, and God knows who, when I received your last. Though Burner values himself particularly on private Intelligence, I had a greater Curiosity, and entertained far greater Hopes of Pleasure, in breaking open your Letter; nor was I at all deceived: I think you wrote, if possible, more agreeably than usual ; it raised my Spirits, and at the same Time did more than all King CHARLES's Statesmen could do: set up an abfolute Monarchy in my Breast in a Moment, and made you Sovereign there.
Mr. Powys had a Child christened yesterday; it was attended to Church by half a Dozen Coaches. The great Mr. Pointz was one of the Godfathers, and Mrs. TOWNSHEND, now an Inhabitant of your Parts, the Godmother, by Proxy. Mrs. Powys went out on Pleasure to the last, and if her Horses had not been good, and her Coachman dexterous to ply them with the Whip, she had been brought to Bed in her Coach, as once before the had like to have been at the Play-House,
Alas ! for our poor Friend COB!
Who shall now fit with Countenance serene,
As to what you mentioned about your Poem ; you can't think me such a Barbarian, as that I should expect you should follow my Advice in every Particular; I rather think you did me an Honour in doing it at all. I know the great Critics have been long endeavouring to be absolute; but I think it very unreasonable even in them—and I believe you, as well as myself, have too much Spirit to submit to it. If I can any. Ways assist you, by any little Observations, you shall have my Thoughts, and make use of them at your Pleasure, for I am very fond of that Rule, of doing as one would be done by.-- Little Miss L- out-does Tom TINSELL'S Widow,
If the Town is not vastly unhealthy indeed, (for I must not regard little Discouragements,
as my Affairs are at present) I shall spend moft Part of the next Winter at London. You are very friendly, to propose to me the most agreeable Scheme in the World: but I can't poffibly see the Leafowes this Summer. I believe it is you, not Mrs. ARNOLD, who have all the Wit of your Country; and if all Things naturally attract there alike, in that Refpect you will prove a very dangerous Neighbour. I long to see you as much as you can do to see me : but all I can do now, is to tell you so, and that I am, by Honour, Friendship, and every other Obligation,