Imágenes de páginas

walk through the flowery meads; but the hay-making nymphs are perfect drabs, nothing so clean and pretty as farther in the country. There is a mighty increase of dirty wenches in straw hats since I knew London. I staid at home till five o'clock, and dined with Dean Atterbury : then went by water to Mr Harley's, where the Saturday club was met, with the addition of the Duke of Shrewsbury. I whispered Lord Rivers, that I did not like to see a stranger among us : and the rogue told it aloud: but Mr Secretary said, the duke writ to have leave : so I appeared satisfied, and so we laughed. Mr Secretary told me the Duke of Buckingham had been talking to him much about me, and desired my acquaintance. I answered, it could not be : for he had not made sufficient advances. Then the Duke of Shrewsbury said, he thought that duke was not used to make advances. I said I could not help that; for I always expected advances in proportion to men's quality, and more from a duke than other men. The duke replied, that he did not mean any thing of his quality ; which was handsomely said enough ; for he meant his pride : and I have invented a notion to believe that nobody is proud. At ten all the company went away ; and from ten till twelve Mr Harley and I sat together, where we talked through a great deal of matters I had a mind to settle with him, and then walk


John Sheffield, Duke of Buckingham, was one of the proudest men of his time, and, for his Spanish stiffness, was called, in the libels of Charles II.'s court, Don John. Notwithstanding Swift's high tone, he had made some advances to the Duke of Buckingham, by calling upon him. The neglect of this civility probably nettled him. At least, it is certain he never could endure the duke, though the professed friend of his friend Pope.


ed, in a fine moonshine night, to Chelsea, where I got by one. Lord Rivers conjured me not to walk so late ; but I would, because I had no other way; but I had no money to lose.

20. By what lord-keeper told me last night, I find he will not be made a peer so soon: but Mr Harley's patent for Earl of Oxford is now drawing, and will be done in three days. We made him own it, which he did scurvily, and then talked of it like the rest. Mr Secretary had too much company with him to day; so I came away soon after dinner. I give no man liberty to swear or talk b-dy, and I found some of them were in constraint, so I left them to themselves. I wish you a merWhitsuntide, and pray

tell me how you pass away your time : but faith, you are going to Wexford, and I fear this letter is too late ; it shall go on Thursday, and sooner it cannot, I have so much business to hinder me answering yours. Where must I direct in your absence ? Do you quit your lodgings?

21. Going to town this morning, I met in the Pall Mall a clergyman of Ireland, whom I love very well, and was glad to see, and with him a little jackanapes of Ireland too, who married Nanny Swift, uncle Adam's daughter, one Perry ; perhaps you may have heard of him. His wife has sent him here to get a place from Lownds; because my uncle and Lownds married two sisters, * and Lownds is a great man here in the treasury: but by good luck I have no acquaintance with him : however he expected I should be his friend to Lownds, and one word of mine, &c. the old cant. But I will not go two yards to help him. I dined with Mrs Vanhomrigh, where I keep my best gown and periwig to put on when I come to town and be a spark.

* Gay addressed some humorous verses, “ To my very ingenious and worthy Friend William Lownds, Esq., Author of that celebrated Treatise in folio, called The Land-Tax Bill.”

22. I dined to-day in the city, and coming home this evening, I met Sir Thomas Mansel and Mr Lewis in the Park. Lewis whispered me, that Mr Harley's patent for Earl of Oxford was passed in Mr Secretary St John's office; so to-morrow or next day I suppose he will be declared Earl of Oxford, and have the staff. This man has grown by persecutions, turnings out, and stabbing. *

What waiting, and crowding, and bowing, will be at his levee ? yet, if human nature be capable of so much constancy, I should believe he will be the same man still, bating the necessary forms of grandeur he must keep up. 'Tis late sirrahs, and I'll go sleep.

23. Morning. I sat up late last night, and waked late to-day ; but will now answer your letter in bed before I go to town, and will send it to-morrow; for

perhaps you mayn’t go so soon to Wexford.—No, you are not out in your number : the last was Number 14, and so I told you twice or thrice ; will you never be satisfied ? What shall we do for poor Stella ? Go to Wexford, for God's sake : I wish you were to walk there by three miles a-day, with a gond lodging at every mile's end. Walking has done me so much good, that I cannot but prescribe it often to poor Stella. Parvisol has sent me

* It would have been difficult for Harley to have maintained his place on the narrow isthmus which he occupied, assailed by the violent Tories as indifferent to their interest, and by the Whigs as the friend of France. But the assault of Guiscard made his enemies ashamed to wage their last accusation, and gave him all that popular favour which the English nation never fail to extend to those who have suffered in their cause.

a bill for fifty pounds, which I am sorry for, having not written to him for it, only mentioned it two months ago; but I hope he will be able to tell you what I have drawn upon him for ; he never sent me any sum before but one bill of twenty pounds, half a year ago. You are welcome as my blood to every farthing I have in the world : and all that grieves me is, I am not richer, for MD's sake, as hope saved. I suppose you give up your lodgings when you go to Wexford ; yet that will be inconvenient too : yet I wish again you were under the necessity of rambling the country till Michaelmas, faith. No, let him keep the shelves, with a pox; yet they are exacting people about those four weeks, or Mrs

have the shelves, if she please. I am obliged to your dean for his kind offer of lending me money. Will that be enough to say ? A hundred people would lend me money, or to any man who has not the reputation of a squanderer.* O faith, I should be glad to be in the same kingdom with MD, however, although you were at Wexford.

But I am kept here by a most capricious fate, which I would break through, if I could do it with decency or honour.–To return without some mark of distinction, would look extremely little : and I would likewise gladly be somewhat richer than I am. 1 I will say no more, but beg you to be easy, till fortune take her course, and to believe that MD's felicity is the great end I aim at in my pursuits. And so let us talk

Brent may

* Dean Sterne's offer of his purse had not apparently been made in a way conciliatory to Swift's pride, who seems studiously to undervalue the obligation.

+ This is the first distinct hint which Swift gives of expectations of preferment; and it is very cautiously expressed.

no more on this subject, which makes me melancholy, and that I would fain divert. Believe me, no man breathing at present has less share of happiness in life than I: I do not say I am unhappy at all, but that every thing here is tasteless to me for want of being where I would be. And so a short sigh, and no more of this. Well, come and let's see what's next, young women. Pox take Mrs Edgworth and Sterne : I will take some methods about that box. What orders would you have me give about the picture ? Can't you do with it as if it were your own ? No, I hope Manley will keep his place ; for I hear nothing of Sir Thomas Franklin's losing his. Send nothing under cover to Mr Addison, but to Erasmus Lewis, Esq., at my Lord Dartmouth's office at Whiteball. Direct your outside so.--Poor dear Stella, don't write in the dark, nor in the light neither, but dictate' to Dingley ; she is a naughty healthy girl, and may drudge for both. Are you good company together? and don't you quarrel too often ? Pray, love one another, and kiss one another just now, as Dingley is reading this; for you quarrelled this morning just after Mrs Marget had poured water on Stella's head : I heard the little bird say so.

Well, I have answered every thing in your letter that required it, and yet the second side is not full. I'll come home at night, and say more; and to-morrow this goes for certain. Go, get you gone to your own chambers, and let Presto rise like a modest gentleman, and walk to town. I fancy I begin to sweat less in the forehead by constant walking than I used to do ; but then I shall be so sunburnt, the ladies won't like me.

Come, let me rise, sirrahs, Morrow.–At night. I dined with Ford to-day at his lodgings, and I found wine out of my own cellar, some of my own

« AnteriorContinuar »