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by your filence) yet I hope you are not one of those heterodox, who hold them to be totally insenfible of the good offices and kind wishes of their living friends, and to be in a dull state of sleep, without one dream of those they left behind them. If you are, let this letter convince you to the contrary, which assures you I am still, tho' in a state of feparation, Your, &c.
P.S. This letter of deaths, puts me in mind of poor Mr. Betterton's ; over whom I would have this sentence of Tully for an epitaph, which will serve him as well in his Moral, as his Theatrical capacity,
Vitæ bene actæ jucundiffima est recordatio.
LET TER XIV.
June 24, 1710. VIS very natural for a young friend, and a. young lover, to think the
persons they love have nothing to do but to please them; when perhaps they, for their parts, had twenty other engagements before. This was my case, when I wonder'd I did not hear from you ; but I no sooner receiv'd your short letter, but I forgot your long filence : and so many fine things as you said of me could not but have wrought a cure on my own fickness, if it had not been of the nature of that, which is deaf to the voice of the charmer. 'Twas impoflible you could
have better tim'd your compliment on my philosophy; it was certainly propereft to commend me for it just when I most needed it, and when I could leaft be proud of it; that is, when I was in pain. 'Tis not easy to express what an exaltation it gave to my spirits, above all the cordials of my doctor ; and 'tis no compliment to tell you, that your compliments were sweeter than the
weetest of his juleps and syrups. But if you will not believe so much,
Pour le moins, votre compliment
Et renvoyé mon lavement. Nevertheless I would not have you entirely lay afide the thoughts of my epitaph, any more than I do those of the probability of my becoming (e're long) the subject of one. For death has of late been very familiar with some of my fize; I am told my Lord Lumley and Mr. Litton are gone before me; and tho' I may now without vanity, esteem myself the least thing like a man in England, yet I can't but be sorry, two heroes of such a make should die inglorious in their beds ; when it had been a fate more worthy our fize, had they met with theirs from an irruption of Cranes, or other warlike ani. mals, those ancient enemies to our Pygmæan ancestors! You of a superior species little regard what befals us homunciones sesquipedales ; however, you have
no reason to be fo unconcern'd, fince all physicians agree there is no greater fign of a plague among men, than a mortality among frogs. I was the other day in company with a lady, who rally'd my perfon so much, as to cause a total subversion of my countenance : fome days after, to be revenged on her, I presented her, among other company, the following Rondeau on that occasion, which I desire you to show Sappho.
You know where you did despise
You know where.
You, 'tis true, bave fine black
You know where.
This fort of writing call’d the Rondeau is what I never knew pra&tis'd in our nation, and, I verily believe, it was not in use with the Greeks or Ro. mans, neither Macrobius nor Hyginus taking the least notice of it. "Tis to be observ'd, that the vulgar spelling and pronouncing it Round O, is a manifest corruption, and by no means to be allow'd of by critics. Some may mistakenly imagine that it was a sort of Rondeau which the Gallick foldiers VOL. VIII.
fung in Cæsar's triumph over Gaul-Gallias Cæfar fubegit, &c. as it is recorded by Suetonius in Julio, and so derive its original from the ancient Gauls to the modern French : but this is erroneous; the words there not being ranged according to the Laws of the Rondeau, as laid down by Clement Marot. If you will say, that the song of the soldiers might be only the rude beginning of this kind of poem, and so confequently imperfect, neither Heinfius nor I can be of that opinion; and so I conclude, that we know nothing of the matter.
But, Sir, I ask your pardon for all this buffoonery, which I could not address to any one so well as to you, since I have found by experience, you most eafily forgive my impertinencies. "Tis only to show you that I am mindful of you at all times ; that I write at all times; and as nothing I can say can be worth your reading, so I may as well throw out what comes uppermost, as ftudy to be dull. I
L E T T E R XV.
Froin Mr. CROMWELL.
July 15, 1710.
transcribe this elegy: I have changed the situation of some of the Latin verses, and made some interpolations, but I hope they are not absurd, and
foreign to my author's sense and manner ; but they are referr’d to your censure, as a debt ; whom I esteem no less a critic than a poet: I expect to be treated with the same rigour as I have practis'd to Mr. Dryden and you.
Hanc veniam petimusque damusque viciffim. I desire the favour of your opinion, why Priam, in his speech to Pyrrhus in the fecond Æneid, says this to him,
At non ille, fatum quo te mentiris, Achilles. He would intimate (I fancy by Pyrrhus's answer) only his degeneracy: but then these following lines of the version (I suppose from Homer's history) seem absurd in the mouth of Priam, viz.
He cheard my forrows, and for sums of gold
L E T T E R XVI.
July 20, 1710. Give you thanks for the version you sent me of
Ovid's elegy. It is very much an image of that author's writing, who has an agreeableness that charms us without correctness, like a mistress, whose faults we fee, but love her with them all. You have