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of venison I sent to London ; 'twas mighty fat and good, and eight people at dinner ; that was bad. and I were going to take the air this afternoon, but not together; and were both hindered by a sudden rain. Her coaches and chaises all went back, and the guards too: and I scoured into the market-place for shelter. I intended to have walked up the finest avenue I ever saw, two miles long, with two rows of elms on each side. I walked in the evening a little upon the terrace, and came home at eight : Mr Secretary came soon after, and we were engaging in deep discourse, and I was endeavouring to settle some points of the greatest consequence; and had wormed myself pretty well into him, when his under secretary came in (who lodges in the same house with us) and interrupted all my scheme. I have just left him ; 'tis late, &c.
2. I have been now five days at Windsor, and Patrick has been drunk three times that I have seen, and oftener I believe. He has lately had clothes that have cost me five pounds, and the dog thinks he has the whip hand of me; he begins to master me; so now I am resolved to part with him, and will use him without the least pity. The secretary and I have been walking three or four hours to-day. The Duchess of Shrewsbury asked him, was not that Dr Dr, and she could not say my name in English, but said Dr Presto, which is Italian for swift. *
Whimsical enough, as Billy Swift says. I go
* The Duke of Shrewsbury, while residing at Rome for his health, married Adelheid, daughter of the Marquis of Paleotti of Bologna, who was descended by the mother's side from Robert Earl of Leicester, the favourite of Queen Elizabeth. As the duke only returned to Britain shortly before his being made Lord Chamberlain, his duchess had little time to become familiarly acquainted with the English language.
to-morrow with the secretary to his house at Buckleberry, twenty-five miles from hence, and return early on Sunday morning. I will leave this letter behind me locked
up, and give you an account of my journey when I return. I had a letter yesterday from the Bishop of Clogher, who is coming up to Dublin to his parliament. Have you any correspondence with him at Wexford ? Methinks I now long for a letter from you, dated Wexford, July 24, &c. O Lord, that would be so pretending; and then says you, Stella can't write much, because it is bad to write when one drinks the waters; and I think, says you, I find myself better already, but I cannot tell yet, wtheher it be the journey or the waters. Presto is so silly to-night ; yes he be ; but Presto loves MD dearly, as hope saved.
3. Morning. I am to go this day at noon, as I told you, to Buckleberry; we dine at twelve, and expect to be there in four hours ; I cannot bid you good night now, because I shall be twenty-five miles from this
paper to-night, and so my journal must have a break ; so good morrow, &c.
4, 5. I dined yesterday at Buckleberry, where we lay two nights, and set out this morning at eight, and were here at twelve ; in four hours we went twenty-six miles. Mr Secretary was a perfect country gentleman at Buckleberry ; he smoked tobacco with one or two neighbours ; he inquired after the wheat in such a field ; he went to visit his hounds, and knew all their names; he and his lady saw me to my chamber just in the country fashion. His house is in the midst of near three thousand pounds a year he had by his lady, who is descended from Jack Newbury, of whom books and ballads are written ; and
there is an old picture of him in the house. *
She is a great favourite of mine. I lost church to-day; but I dressed, and shaved, and went to court, and would not dine with the secretary, but engaged myself to a private dinner with Mr Lewis, and one friend more. to London to-morrow; for Lord Dartmouth, the other secretary, is come, and they are here their weeks by turns.
6. Lord-treasurer comes every Saturday to Windsor, and goes away on Monday or Tuesday. I was with him this morning at his levee, for one cannot see him otherwise here, he is so hurried : we had some talk, and I
*“ Sir Henry Winchescombe, father of Mrs Saint John, afterwards Lady Bolingbroke, had a very handsome fortune, that descended to him from a person famous in our old story, by the familiar name of Jack of Newbury. This person, whose name was John Winchescombe, was a clothier of that town, in the reign of Henry the Eighth; it is said that in those days he kept a hundred looms at work, and that, to show his duty to his king, and his love to his country, he marched with a hundred of his workmen, well clothed, at his own expence, to Flodden Field, against the Scots ; and that being satisfied with having a share in the glory of that victory, which cost the King of Scots his life, he returned with his little army to his native town, and resumed his former statior. He was also a benefactor to the church ; and, as the people of Newbury formerly showed his house, so they still point to the pulpit and the tower, which were of his erecting. Mr St John, upon this marriage, had the family estates both of the father and grandfather, in Wiltshire, Surry, and Middlesex, settled upon him; the good effect of which he felt in his old age, though a great part of what his lady brought him was taken away by his attainder.”BIOGRAPHIA Brit. article Saint John. The history of Jack of Newbury was written by Thomas Deloney, a maker of ballads and popular story books, and with his other works was long a favourite among
common people of England,
told him I would stay this week at Windsor by myself, where I can have more leisure to do some business that concerns them. Lord-treasurer and the secretary thought to mortify me; for they told me, they had been talking a great deal of me to-day to the queen, and she said, she had never heard of me; I told them, that was their fault, and not hers, &c. and so we laughed. I dined with the secretary, and let him go to London at five without me; and here am I all alone in the prebendary's house, which Mr Secretary has taken ; only Mr Lewis is in my neighbourhood, and we shall be good company. The vice-chamberlain, * and Mr Masham, and the green cloth, have promised me dinners. I shall want but four till Mr Secretary returns. We have a music meeting in our town to-night. I went to the rehearsal of it, and there was Margarita and her sister, and another drab, and a parcel of fiddlers ; I was weary, and would not go to the meeting, which I am sorry for, because I heard it was a great assembly. Mr Lewis came from it, and sat with me till just now: and 'tis late.
7. I can do no business, I fear, because Mr Lewis, who has nothing or little to do here, sticks close to
I dined to-day with the gentlemen ushers, among scurvy company; but the queen was hunting the stag till four this afternoon, and she drove in her chaise above forty miles, and it was five before we went to dinner. Here are fine walks about this town. I sometimes walk up the avenue.
8. There was a drawing-room to-day at court : but so few company, that the queen sent for us into her bed
* Thomas Coke, Esq.
chamber, where we made our bows, and stood about twenty of us round the room, while she looked at us round with her fan in her mouth, and once a minute said about three words to some that were nearest her, and then she was told dinner was ready, and went out. I dined at the green cloth, by Mr Scarborow's invitation, who is in waiting. It is much the best table in England, and costs the queen a thousand pounds a month while she is at Windsor or Hampton Court ; and is the only mark of magnificence or hospitality I can see in the queen's family: it is designed to entertain foreign ministers, and people of quality, who come to see the queen, and have no place to dine at.
9. Mr Coke, the vice-chamberlain, made me a long visit this morning, and invited me to dinner, but the toast, his lady, was unfortunately engaged to Lady Sunderland. - Lord-treasurer stole here last night, but did not lie in his lodgings in the castle; and after seeing the queen, went back again. I just drank a dish of chocolate with him. I fancy I shall have reason to be angry with him very soon : but what care I ? I believe I shall die with ministries in my debt. This night I received a certain letter from a place called Wexford from two dear naughty girls of my acquaintance; but faith I won't answer it here, no in troth. I will send this to Mr Reading, supposing it will find you returned ; aud I hope better for the waters.
10. Mr Vice-chamberlain lent me his horses to ride about and see the country this morning. Dr Arbuthnot, the queen's physician and favourite, went out with me to show me the places : we went a little after the queen, and overtook Miss Forester, a maid of honour, on her palfrey, taking the air : we made her go along with us.