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penetration to tell, to what, or from what Princie ples, Parties, or Sentiments, Moral, Political, or Theo. logical, I may have been converted, or perverted, in all that time. I beseech your Lordship to consider, the Injury a Man of your high Rank and Gredit
may do to a private Person under Penal Laws, and many other disadvantages, not for want of honefly or conscience, but merely perhaps for having too weak a head, or too tender a heart *. It is by these alone I have hitherto liv'd excluded from all posts of Profit or Truft: As I can interfere with the views of no man, do not deny me, iny Lord, all that is left, a little Praise, or che common Encouragement due, if not to my Genius, at leaft to niy Industry.
Above all, your Lordship will be careful not to wrong iny Moral Character, with Those + under whose Protectiou I live, and thro' wliose Lenity alone I can live with Comfort. Your Lordship, I am confi. dent, upon consideration, will think, you inadvertently went a little too far when you recommended to THEIR perufal, and strengthened by the weight of your Ap. probation, a Libcl, mean in its reflections upon my poor figure, and scandalous in those on my Honour and Integrity: wherein I was represented as “an Enemy 6 to Human Race, a Murderer of Reputations, and a
• See Letter to Bishop Atterbury, Lett. iv.
Monster marked by God like Cain, deserving to " wander accurs d thro' the World."
A strange Picture of a Man, who had the good for. tune to enjoy many friends, who will be always remember'd as the first Ornaments of their Age and Country; and no Enemies that ever contriv'd to be heard of, except Mr John Dennis, and your Lordship: A Man, who never wrote a Line in which the Religion or Government of his Country, the Royal Family, or their Ministry, were disrespectfully mentioned; the Aniinosity of any one Party gratify'd at the expence of another; or any Censure past, but upon known Vice, acknowledg'd Folly, or aggreffing Impertinence. It is with infinite pleasure he finds, that some Men who seem ashamid and afraid of nothing else, are so very sensible of his Ridicule: And'tis for that very reason he resolves (by the grace of God, and your Lordthip's good leave) That, while he breathes, no rich or noble knave Shall walk the world in credit to his grave.
This he thinks, is rendering the best Service he can to the Public, and even to the good Government of bis Country; and for this, at least, he may deserve fome Countenance, even from the GREATEST PERSONs in it. Your Lordship kuows or WHOM I speak. Their Names I should be as forry, and as much asham'd, to place near yours, on such an occasion, as 1 should be to see Tou, my Lord, placed so near their PERSONS, if
could ever make so ill an Use of their Ear * as to afperse or mifrepresent any one innocent Man.
This is all I shall ever ask of your Lordship, except your pardon for this tedious Letter. I have the honour to be, with equal Respect and concern,
Your truly devoted Servant,
* " Close at the eas of Eve."-Ep. to Dr Arbuthnot.
L E T T E R S
TO AND FROM
Dr JONATHAN SWIFT, &c.
From the Year 1714 to 1737
L E T T E R I.
Mr Pope to Dr SWIFT.
June 18. 1714. HATEVER Apologies it might become W
me to make at any other time for writing to you, I shall use none now, to a man who has own'd himself as fplenetic as a Cat in the Country. In that circumstance, I know by experience a letter is a very useful, as well as amusing thing: If you are too busied in State-affairs to read it, yet you may find entertainment in folding it into divers figures, either doubling it into a pyramidical, or twisting it into a serpentine form: or, if your disposition should not be so mathematical, in taking it with you to that place where men of studious minds are apt to sit longer than ordinary; where, after an abrupt division of the paper, it may not be unpleasant to try to fit and rejoin the broken lines together. All these amusements I am no
Stranger to in the Country, and doubt not but (by this time) you begin to relish them, in your present contemplative situation.
I remember a man, who was thought to have some knowledge in the world, used to affirm, that no people in town ever complained they were forgotten by their Friends in the country: but my increasing experience convinces me he was mistaken; for I find a great inany here grievously complaining of you, upon this score. I am told further, that you treat the few you correspond with in a very arrogant style, and tell them you admire at their insolence in disturbing your meditations, or even inquiring of your retreat : but this I will not positively assert, because I never received any such insulting Epistle from you. My Lord Oxford says you have not written to him once since
you went: but this perhaps may be only policy, in him or you: and I, who am half a Whig, must not entirely credit any thing he affirms. At Button's it is reported you are gone to Hanover, and that Gay goes only on an Embassy to you. Others apprehend fome dangerous State treatise from your retirement ; and a Wit, who affects to imitate Balsac, fays, that the Ministry now are like those Heathens of old, who received their Oracles from the Woods. The Gentlemen of the Roman Catholic persuasion are not unwilling to credit me, when I whisper, that you are gone to meet some Jesuits commissioned from the Court of Rome, in order to settle the most convenient methods to be taken for the coming of the Pretender. Dr Arbuth