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ftrike me I like it, because I know it is a natural, and thereby, a fincere Thought by my own Heart. I am fo far gone that Way, that I can hardly enjoy any Thing extraordinary, without my Friends are with me, especially thofe whom I know it would particularly ftrike: but next to gratifying a Friend, is the obferving, how new and extraordinary Objects work upon a natural Genius; I'll fuppofe it a Ge nius; I think it is one of the highest Entertainments in Life; when I can meet with fuch, and have an Opportunity, I love to read a Play to them, though I know I run the Hazard of being laughed at for my Pains; but I don't care, the Pleasure pays me for all the malicious foolish People can fay, and you know the natural Criticifms of Sir ROGER DE COVERLEY were not thought unworthy the Notice of the British Spectator. For my Part, I have of ten thought that it is one of the Amufements of the Supreme Being, who planted firft the Paffions in us, to obferve the Workings and Effects of them. A public Audience gives me Pleafure upon Truft, for though I know no one there, I always conclude there are fome Geniuffes.
I am of your Opinion, with Regard to Mrs. at prefent; for I think, if her Heart be really engaged, which I very much doubt, Dishonour in Love is the blackest of all dishonest Actions, and of the worst Confequence-But his precurfive Steps were the Extremity of Folly, conducted with the Extremity of Folly; but he may be happy (and I wish he may be happy) in any State of Life. I. think our Vifits to DICK J- are fatal; his own Mother lay a dying when we were at Henley. I am very glad to hear you have had fo many Amusements. It is always agreeable to me, whenever I hear you have met with a flowery Meadow in your fublunary Walk. If I have any Tafte, your Hercules is an elegant and truly poetical Poem, and fuperior to L's if it is not, I refign my Taste, for I'll pin it upon your Poem. I don't pretend to Criticism; but my Paffion for SHAKESPEARE, MILTON, POPE, &c. has made me believe, that I have fome natural Tafte for Beauty. I am much obliged to you for the two genteel Copies of Verfes; they are very pretty, and much to my Fancy. As for Odes,
you have expreffed my Senfe of them all on that of Dr. AKENSIDE; they perplex and fret one more than they please, and may be defcribed by the Title of one of SHAKESPEARE'S Plays, viz. Much Ado about Nothing.
I have no News to fend you from hence, that will be in the leaft entertaining to you. I am in Hopes Mr. GRAVES will fettle at Whitchurch about Whitfuntide. I have been much out of Order for this Week, by a Cold that I caught in attending my Works; and my Foot gives me ugly Apprehenfions at prefent. I continually please myself with the Thoughts of feeing you at Whitchurch; but would never have you make an Inconvenience of what I would have be a Pleafure to youI'd have you choose your own Time, that you may be quite unembarraffed: for my Part, I think the fooner the better; only I would beg the Favour of one Line to prevent all ill Accidents. I think 'tis a Method which fhould ever be ufet; and I wonder at my own Imprudence, and my own Good Fortune laft Time I came to the Leafowes. I long to fee you, and fhall be all this Summer at Whitchurch,
church, ready to receive you. Indeed, if I fhould have the Gout, as I fomething fear it, I would let you know, for that would interrupt all our Pleasure. I beg my Compliments to Mr. DOLMAN: you have likewife the Compliments of this Place. With Wishes to fee you, and Compliments grounded upon the utmoft Sincerity, I am,
Whitchurch, April 13.
yours to an Excefs,
Mr. WHISTLER to W. SHENSTONE, Efq.
Dear Mr. SHENSTONE,
OU fee that I am as eager to answer your
if my Letter gave you Pain, I affure you, that yours has equally perplexed me.
in great Hopes, you have mifinterpreted my Senfe, in Regard to Mr. G; and by as much as I can recollect, I believe you have. He always fpeaks of you with the utmost Respect in your Abfence, and is much less fevere even upon what he calls your little Faults, than when you are prefent: all that I hinted at, was fome little Shynefs he lately fhewed to me, on the Account which you and I have often mentioned. I have heard you fay, you have experienced the fame from him on the like Score. But you could not poffibly be now included, being abfent; no, I affure you, I. only spoke of myfelf; and his Fault towards me would have been imperceptible, but to the Delicacy of Friendship; nor been have worth communicating, but to one whom my Love would animate against the like Failing. I declare to you, the Sentence which included Mr. G's Name, was the only one which regarded him; what followed, though I confefs that gave Rife to it, was only to fhew my different Sentiments, and I own my Efteem for Friendfhip carried me a great Length. I have been very particular to fatisfy you, as well as to juftify Mr. G-, and by that Means to juf