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happiness, than can be found in fuch a family. The rest of my acquaintance are tolerably happy in their various ways of life, whether court, country, or town; and Mr Cleland is as well in the Park, as if he were in Paradise. I heartily hope, Yorkshire is the same to you; and that no evil, moral or physical, may coine near you.
I have now but too much melancholy leisure, and no other care but to finish my Essay on Man: There will be in it one line that may offend you (I fear), and yet I will not alter or omit it, unless you come to town and prevent me before I print it, which will be in a fortnight in all probability. In plain truth, I will not deny mytelf the greatest plealure I am capable of receiving, because another may have the modesty not to share it. It is all a poor poet can do, to bear testi. mony to the virtue he cannot reach: besides, that, in this age, I see too few good Examples not to lay hold on any I can find. You see what an interested man I
LET TER XLVI.
Sept. 7. 1733. OU cannot think how melancholy this place
Y makes meos every part of this wood puts into
poor Mr Gay, with whom I past once a great deal of pleasant time in it, and another friend who is
• Mrs B.
near dead, and quite lost to us, Dr Swift. I really can find no enjoyment in the place; the same fort of uneasiness as I find at Twit'nam, whenever I pass near my Mother's room.
I've not yet writ to Mrs *. I think I should, but have nothing to say that will answer the character they consider me in, as a Wit: besides, my eyes grow very bad (whatever is the cause of it) I'll put them out for nobody but a friend; and, I protest, it brings tears into them almost to write to you, when I think of your state and mine. I long to write to Swift, but cannot. The greatest pain I know, is to say things so very short of one's meaning, when the heart is full.
I feel the going out of life fast enough, to have little appetite left to make compliments, at best useless, and for the most part unfelt, speeches. 'Tis but in a very narrow circle that Friendship walks in this world, and I care not to tread out of it more than I needs must; knowing well, it is but to two or three (if quite so many) that any man's welfare, or memory, can be of consequence: The rest, I believe, I may forget, and be pretty certain they are already even, if not before-hand with me.
Life, after the first warm heats are over, is all down. hill: and one almost wishes the journey's end, provided we were sure but to lie down easy, whenever the Night shall overtake us.
I dream'd all last night of-, She has dwelt (a little more than perhaps is right) upon my spirits : I faw a very deserving gentleman in my travels, who
has formerly, I have heard, had much the same misfortune; and (with all his good-breeding and sense) still bears a cloud and melancholy cast, that never can quite clear up, in all his behaviour and conversation. I know another, who, I believe, could promise, and eafily keep his word, never to laugh in his life. But one must do one's best, not to be used by the world as that poor lady was by her sister ; and not seem too good, for the fear of being thought affected, or whimsical.
It is a real truth, that to the last of my moments, the thought of you, and the best of my wishes for you, will attend you, told or untold: I could wish you had once the constancy and resolution to act for yourself, whether before, or after I leave you (the only way I ever shall leave you) you must determine ; but reflect, that the first would make me, as well as yourfelf, happier; the latter could make you only so.
L E T T E R XLVII.
From Dr ARBUT HNOT.
Hampstead, July 17. 1734.
nor of that of the Lady you inention. I have nothing to repay my friends with at present, but prayers and good wishes. I have the satisfaction to find that I am as officiously serv'd by my friends, as he that has thousands to leave in legacies; besides the assurance of their sincerity. God almighty has made my bodily distress
as easy as a thing of that nature can be. I have found some relief, at least some times, from the air of this place. My nights are bad, but many poor creatures have worse.
As for you, my good friend, I think since our first acquaintance there have not been any of those little suspicions or jealousies that often afice the sincerelt friendships; I am sure, not on ny side. I must be lo fincere as to own, that though I could not belp valuing you
for those Talents which the world prizes, yet they were not the foundation of my friendihips ; they were quite of another fort; nor shall I at present offend you by enumerating them: And I make it my Last Request, that
will continue that Noble Disdain and Abhorrence of Vice, which you seem naturally evdued with, but still with a due regard to your own safety; and study more to reform than chastise, tho' the one cannot be effected without the other.
Lord Bathurst I have always honour'd, for every good quality that a person of his rank ought to have: Pray,give my respects and kindest wishes to the family. My venison stomach is gone, but I have those about me, and often with me, who will be very glad of his present. If it is left at my house, it will be transmitted safe to me.
A recovery in my case, and at my age, is impossible; the kindest wish of my friends is Euthanasia. Living or dying, I shall always be
Yours, &c. VOL.
L E T T E R XLVIII.
July 26. 1734.
your letter, which has all those ge. puine marks of a good mind by which I have ever distinguish'd yours, and for which I have so long loved you. Our friendship has been constant; becaufe it was grounded on good principles, and therefore not only uninterrupted by any Distrust, but by any Vanity, much less any Interest.
What you recommend to me with the folemnity of a Last Request, hall have its due weight with me. That disdain and indignation against Vice, is (I thank God) the only disdain and indignation I have: It is sincere, and it will be a lasting one. But sure it is as impossible to have a just abhorrence of Vice, without hating the Vicions, as to bear a true love · for Virtue, without loving the Good. To reform and
not to chastife, I am afraid, is impoffible; and that the best Precepts, as well as the best Laws, would
of small use, if there were no Examples to inforce them. To attack Vices in the abstract, without touching Persons, may be safe fighting indeed, but it is fighting with Shadows. General propofitions are ob-fcure, misty, and uncertain, compar'd with plain, full, and home examples: Precepts only apply to our Reafon, which in most men is but weak: Examples are pictures, and strike the Senses, nay raise the Passions, and call in those (the strongest and most general of