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Dear Gay,
No words can tell you the great Concern I feel

for
you;

you it was not, and is not Jeffen'd, by the immediate Apprehension. I have now every day lain under of losing my Mother. Be ar sur'd, no Duty less than that, should have kept me one day from attending your Condition : I would come and take a Room by you at Hampstead, to be with you daily, were the not still in danger of Death. I have conftantly had particular Accounts of you from the Doctor, which have not ceasd toʻalarm me yet. God preserve your Life, and restore your Health. I really beg it for my own fake, for i fcel z I love you more than I thought, in Health, tho' I always lov'd you a great deal. If I am so unfortunate as to bury my poor Mother; and yet have the good Fortune to have my Prayers heard for you, I hope we may live most of our remaining days together. If, as I believe, the Air of a better Clime as the Southern Part of France, may be thought useful for your Recovery, thither I would go with you infallibly; and it is very probable we might get the Dean with us, who is in that abandon'd state already in which I shall shortly be, as to other Cares and Duties. Dear Gay, be as chearful as your Sufferings will permit: God is a better Friend than a Court: Even any honest Man is a better. I promise you my entire Friendship in all Events, heartily praying for your Recovery,

Your, &c.

Do not write, if you are ever so able: The Doctor tells me all.

Dear

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Dear Sir, I AM glad to hear of the progress of your Reco

very, and the oftner I hear it the better, when it becomes easy to you to give it me.

I so well re: member the Consolation you were to me in my Mother's former Illness, that it doubles my Concern at this Time not to be able to be with

you, or you

able to be with me. Had I lost her, I wou'd have been no where else but with you during your confinement. I have now past five Weeks without once going from home, and without any company but for three or four of the Days. Friends rarely stretch their kindness so far as ten Miles. My Lord Bolingbroke and Mr Bethel have not forgotten to visit me : The rest (except Mrs Blount once) were contented to send messages. I never pass’d la melancholy a Time, and now Mr Congreve's death, touches me nearly. It is twenty Years that I have known him. Every Year carries away something dear with it, till we out-live all Tendernesses, and become wretched Individuals again as we begun. Adieu! This is my Birth-day, and this is my Reflection upon it.

With added Days if Life give nothing new,
But, like a Sieve, let ev'ry Pleasure thro';
Some Foy ftill loft, as each vain Year runs o'er/
And all we gain, some fad Reflettion more!

Is this a Birth-day ? --'Tis, alas! too clear,
'Tis but the Funeral of the former Year.

I am,

Your's, &c.

Deat

Twick’nam, July 21. Dear Gay, You

OU have the same share in my memory

that good things generally have ; I always know (whenever I reflect that you should be in my mind; only I reflect too feldom. However, you ought to allow me the Indulgence I allow all my Friends, and if I did not, They would take it) in confideration that they have other avocations; which may prevent the Proofs of their remembring me, tho' they preserve for me all the Friendship, and Good--will which I deserve from them. In like manner I expect from you, that my past life of twenty - years may be set against the omiffion of (perhaps) one month: And if you complain of this to any other, 'tis you are in the spleen, and not I in the wrong. If you think this letter {plenatick, consider I have just receiv'd the News of the death of a Friend, whom I esteem'd almost as many years as you; poor Fenton : He died at Easthamstead, of Indolence and Inactivity ; let it not be your Fate, but use Exercise. I hope the Duchess will take care of you

in this respect, and either make you gallop after her, or teize you enough at home to serve instead of Exercise abroad. Mrs Howard is so concern'd about you, and so angry at me for not writing to you, and at Mrs Blount for not doing the same, that I am piqu’d with Jealousy and Envy at you, and hate you as much as if you

Place at Court; which you will confefs a proper cause of Envy and Hatred, in any Poet-militant, or unpension’d. But to set matters even, I own I love you ;

I am as I ever was, and just as I ever shall be,

Your's, &c.

Dear

had a great

and own,

Twickenham, Oet. 16, 1727. Dear SIR, I HAVE many years ago magnify'd in my own

mind, and repeated to you, a ninth Beatitude, added to the eight in the Scripture; Blessed is he. who expects nothing, for he fball never be disappointed. I could find in my heart to congratulate you on this happy dismission from all Court-Dependance; I dare say I shall find you the Better and the Honester Man for it, many years hence ; very probably the healthfuller, and the chearfuller into the bargain. You are happily rid of many cursed Ceremonies, as well as of many ill and vicious Habits, of which few or no men escape the Infection, who are hackeny'd and tramelled in the ways of a Court. Princes indeed, and Peers (the Lackies of Princes) and Ladies (the Fools of Peers) will smile on you the less; but Men of Worth, and real Friends, will look on you the better. There is a thing, the only thing which Kings and Queens cannot give you, (for they have it not to give) Liberty, which is worth all they have; and which, as yet, I hope Englishmen need not ask from their hands. You will enjoy That, and your own Integrity, and the satisfactory Consciousness of having not merited such Graces from them, as they bestow only on the mean, servile, flattering, interested, and undeserving. The only Steps to their favour are such complacencies, such compliances, such distant decorums, as delude them in their Vanities, or engage them in their Passions. He is their Greates favourite, who is their Falleft: and when a man, by such vile Gradations, arrives at the height of Grandeur and Power, he is then at best but in a circumstance to be hated, and in a condition to

be

be hanged, for serving their Ends: So many à Minister has found it!

I believe you did not want Advice, in the. Letter you sent by my Lord Grantham. I presume you writ it not, without: And you cou'd not have better, if I guess right at the person who agreed to your doing it, in respect to any Decency you ought to observe : for I take that person to be a perfect Judge of Decencies and Forms. I am not without fears even on that person's account : I think it a bad Omen : but what have I to do with Court-Omens ? - Dear Gay, adieu. I can only add a plain, uncourtly Speech : While you are no body's Servant, you may be any one's Friend ; and as such I embrace you, in all conditions of Life. While I have a shilling, you shall have fixpence, nay eight-pence, if I can contrive to live upon a groat. I am faithfully

Your, &c.

Aug. 18, Dear Gay, IF my Friendship were as effectual as it is sincere,

you would be one of those people who would be vastly advantag'd and enrich'd by it. I ever honour'd those Popes who were most famous for Nepotism ; 'tis a sign that the old fellows loved Somebody, which is not usual in such advanced years. And I now honour Sir Robert Walpole, for his extensive Bounty and Goodness to his private Friends and Relations. But it vexes me to the Heart when I reflect, that my Friendship is so much less effectual than theirs; nay so utterly useless that it cannot give you any thing, not even a Dinner,

M

At

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