« AnteriorContinuar »
made him doubt a little he was in the wrong ; the poor man tells me, it will almost undo him if he fails. I called this morning to see Will. Congreve, who lives much by himself, is forced to read for amusement, and cannot do it without a magnifying glass. I have set him very well with the ministry, and I hope he is in no danger of losing his place. I dined in the city with Dr Freind, not among my merchants, but with a scrub instrument of mischief of mine, whom I never mentioned to you, nor am like to do. You are two little saucy Wexfordians, you are now drinking waters. You drink waters ! you go fiddlestick. Pray God send them to do you good ; if not, faith next summer you shall come to the Bath.
3. Lord Peterborow desired to see me this morning at nine. I had not seen him before since he came home. I met Mrs Manley there, who was soliciting him to get some pension or reward for her service in the cause, by writing her Atalantis, and prosecution, &c. upon it.* I seconded her, and hope they will do something for the poor woman. My lord kept me two hours upon politics : he comes home very sanguine; he has certainly done great things at Savoy and Vienna, by his negotiations : he is violent against a peace, and finds true what I writ to him, that the ministry seeins for it. He reasons well ; yet I am for a peace. I took leave of Lady Kerry, who goes to-morrow for Ireland ; she picks up Lord Shelburne and Mrs Pratt at Lord Shelburne's house. I was this evening with lord-treasurer. Tom Harley was there; and whispered me that he began to doubt about Sterne's business. I told him he would find he was in the wrong. I sat two or three hours at lord-treasurer's. He rallied me sufficiently upon my refusing to take him into our club; told a judge who was with us, that my name was Thomas Swift. I had a mind to prevent Sir H. Bellasis * going to Spain, who is a most covetous cur ; and I fell a railing against avarice, and turned it so, that he smoked me, and named Bellasis. I went on, and said it was a shame to send him ; to which he agreed, but desired I would name some who understood business, and do not love money, for he could not find them. I said, there was something in a treasurer different from other men ; that we ought not to make a man a bishop
* There was something very diverting in the prosecution of Mrs Manley here alluded to. Being a person of light conditions, she wrote a sort of licentious private history, under the colour of a ro
This work, which she called the ATALANTIS, made free with the characters, and disclosed the intrigues, of several persons of consequence, not forgetting her own. For this the printer was apprehended ; but Mrs Manley courageously appeared before the Court of King's Bench, and took the whole burden on her own shoulders. She underwent a sharp examination by Lord Sunderland; but maintained, with unaltered constancy, that the whole work was mere invention, without any sinister allusion to real characters. When Lord Sunderland pointed out particulars which were irreconcileable with this account, she said, that if these bore any resemblance to real incidents, she must have come by them through inspiration. And when his Lordship urged that the anec
dotes were not of a nature usually suggested by divine impulse, the lady coolly answered, that there were evil angels as well as good, who might possess equal powers of inspiration. In short, there was no making any thing of Mrs Manley, who at length was set at liberty, after several fruitless examinations. * Sir Henry Bellasis was member for Durham. He this
year appointed a commissioner to inquire into the number and quality of the English forces in Spain and Portugal, and to examine the army accounts.
who does not love divinity, or a general who does not love war; and I wondered why the queen would make a man lord-treasurer who does not love money. He was mightily pleased with what I said. He was talking of the first-fruits of England; and I took occasion to tell him, that I would not for a thousand pounds any body but he had got them to Ireland, who got them for England too. He bid me consider what a thousand pounds was. I said, I would have him to know I valued a thousand pounds as little as he valued a million.- Is it not silly to write all this? : But it gives you an idea what our conversation is with mixed company. I have taken a lodging in Suffolk Street, and go to it on Thursday; and design to walk the Park and the town, to supply my walking here : yet I will walk here sometimes too, in a visit now and then to the dean. When I was almost at home, Patrick told me he had two letters for me, and gave them to me in the dark; yet I could see one of them was from saucy MD. I went to visit the dean for half an hour; and then came home, and first read the other letter, which was from the Bishop of Clogher, who tells me the Archbishop of Dublin mentioned, in a full assembly of the clergy, the queen's granting the first-fruits ; said it was done by the lordtreasurer ; and talked much of my merit in it: but reading your's, I find nothing of that. Perhaps the bishop lies, out of a desire to please me. I dined with Mrs Vanhomrigh. Well, sirrahs, you are gone to Wexford, but I'll follow you.
4. Sterne came to me again this morning, to advise about reasons and memorials he is drawing up; and we went to town by water together; and having nothing to do, I stole into the city to an instrument of mine, and then
went to see poor Patty Rolt, who has been in town these two months with a cousin of hers. Her life passes with boarding in some country town as cheap as she can, and when she runs out, shifting to some cheaper place, or coming to town for a month. If I were rich I would ease her, which a little thing would do. Some months ago I sent her a guinea, and it patched up twenty circumstances. She is now going to Berkhamstead, in Hertfordshire. It has rained and hailed prodigiously to-day, with some thunder. This is the last night I lie at Chelsea ; and I got home early, and sat two hours with the dean, and eat victuals, having had a very scurvy dinner. I'll answer your letter when I come to live in town. You shall have a fine London answer : but first I'll go sleep, and dream of MD.
London, July 5. This day I left Chelsea for good, (that's a genteel phrase,) and am got into Suffolk Street. I dined to-day at our society, and we are adjourned for a month, because most of us go into the country. We dined at lord-keeper's with young Harcourt, and lordkeeper was forced to sneak off, and dine with lord-treasurer, who had invited the secretary and me to dine with him ; but we scorned to leave our company, as George Granville did, whom we have threatened to expel. However, in the evening I went to lord-treasurer, and, among other company, found a couple of judges with him. One of them, Judge Powel, an old fellow with grey hairs, was the merriest old gentleman I ever saw, spoke pleasant things, and laughed and chuckled till he cried again. I staid till eleven, because I was not now to walk to Chelsea.
6. An ugly rainy day. I was to visit Mrs Barton, then called at Mrs Vanhomrigh's, where Sir Andrew
Fountaine and the rain kept me to dinner ; and there did I loiter all the afternoon, like a fool, out of perfect laziness, and the weather not permitting me to walk. But I'll do so no more. Are your waters at Wexford good in this rain ? I long to hear how you are established there, how and whom you visit, what is your lodging, what are your entertainments. You are got far southward; but I think you must eat no fruit while you drink the waters. I eat some Kentish cherries t'other day, and I repent it already. I have felt my head a little disordered. We had not a hot day all June, nor since, which I reckon a mighty happiness.-Have you left a direction with Reading for Wexford ? I will, as I said, direct this to Curry's, and the next to Reading ; or suppose I send this at a venture straight to Wexford ? It would vex me to have it miscarry. I had a letter tonight from Parvisol, that White has paid me most of my remaining money; and another from Joe, that they have had their election at Trim, but not a word of who is chosen portrieve.* Poor Joe is full of complaints, says he has enemies, and fears he will never get his two hundred pounds; and I fear so too, although I have done what I could. I'll answer your letter when I think fit, when saucy Presto thinks fit, sirrahs. I an't at leisure yet; when I have nothing to do, perhaps I may vouchsafe. O Lord, the two Wexford ladies ; I'll go dream of you both.
7. It was the dismallest rainy day I ever saw. I went to the secretary in the morning, and he was gone to Windsor. Then it began raining, and I struck in to
* For which office Mr Joseph Beaumont's father was a candidate.