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I sincerely lamented, even in the Commission; I should rather say Omission. I am exceeding sorry to find you have so great a Quarrel with London. I speak fincerely, when I say, I propose little Pleasure there without you. I said in my last Letter, we might contrive to meet there, as hitherto; I think we have contrived not to do it, and if we were to meet, I can't but fancy we might make it agreeable to each other. I shall go thither immediately after Christmas, and should be glad to wait on you at Whitchurch, and from thence to London. You certainly conclude me happy, in having Mr. GRAVES so near me, and with Reason. I Thould think my Scheme of Friendship complete, if you was as near; but without that Circumstance, it is far from being so. Sir T. HEAD and Mr. Graves spent three Days with me last Week to my great Satisfaction,
I have had a Swelling in my Foot, which they tell me is the Gout—God forbid !-but 'tis certainly like it. I intend to go into a Milk Diet immediately, for I am terribly alarmed. If it should prove so, I shall think it a very hard Fate, having been no Drinker, and even E 2
Multitudes of those escape it: but Fortune favours the Brutes.
It was not our Mr. Powys's Landau, for he was at Home, and besides has never a one. I believe Mr. GRAVES and I shall return Sir G—'s Favour foon, and spend about a Week with him. How shall we all wish for you to be with us! That I shall, I can be upon my Bible Oath ; and for the rest, I think I can answer in the affirmative. My Brother is at Whitchurch at present, who is a constant Companion to me while he stays, but I fear that will not be long: but Mr. Graves I design to see often, both for Health and Pleasure.
What with going to London this Winter, and Bristol in the Summer, as I have laid my Scheme for the future, I shall make Whitchurch not quite so tedious to me;
and above all, the Thought of waiting upon you, both in Oxfordshire, and at the Leafowes, vaftly brightens my future Prospect. My Father and Mother desire to join with me in all Civilities to you—But I beg you would believe I furpafs most People (notwithstanding your appa
rent Merit) in the extreme Regard I have for you, when I subscribe myself,
Your most sincere Friend,
My Duty to Lord Dm. I wish his Lordship would favour me with some Franks. I should look upon it as an Honour, and a Piece of Good-nature. A Frank, you know, would convey them,
L E T T E R XVI.
Mr. WHISTLER to W. SHENSTONE, Esq.
modelling my little Habitation; and the more so, to bring it to some kind of Perfection, in order to receive you. I have been building up, pulling down, planting, rooting up, turning Round to Square, and Square to Round. In short, I don't know, but some E 3
prudent People would say, I have been playing the Devil. Indeed, (as in other Things in Life) my Fancy is fo confined by the Smallness of my Poffefsions, that ny Scheme is not very expensive: 'tis all in the Lilliputian Stile, and must be so. Though I have tried to give it what Air of Magnificence it is capable of, Į fuppose it will strut - like many of those unfortunate Heroes who happen not to be four Feet and a Half high.
Did Lady LUXBOROUGH approve my Senti. ment of enjoying Things beft by Reflection ? ! still maintain my opinion, and endeavour to juftify it thus : What we enjoy by Reflection we have pure, nay, heightened by our own Fancy, at the same Time no Inconvenience attends it; on the contrary, the Pleasure is more poignant by the Contrast. The Thought of an IceHouse in the Summer is refreshing, and the Imagination of July is a Cordial in Froit and Snow; besides, you well know Hope is the very Hartshorn of Life, that enlivens every Thing, and particularly attends imaginary Pleasures, but vanishes whenever they become real--By Reflection, I mean Imagination in general.
I have sent you Stanzas on Flowers. If Lady LUXBOROUGH likes them, I shall be proud of hitting the Pallate of a Lady of so high a Taste. I have likewise enclosed another Copy of Verses though I am in Doubt, whether I did not send them to you last Summer; they were done then. I know you don't love Translations, but I have nothing new besides. I, set about them merely as an Exercise one Night, when I was dull and alone, not intending any Thing but tearing them afterwards, for I knew it was a worn-out Subject-But a fatherly Affection took place, and I did not care for murdering it, though it was a Bastard produced unawares.
N. B. I beg that nothing of mine may ap
pear in Print,
I admire those two Lines of Lady WORTLEY's very much. It is a natural yet uncommon and agreeable Thought. I am pleased with the Compliment you make me, in faying you always with me with you to partake any Pleasure, and imagine how any Thing extraordinary would