« PoprzedniaDalej »
To WILLIAM HAYLEY, Esqr.
Weston, Jan. 29, 1793.
MY DEAREST HAYLEY,
I truly sympathize with you under your weight of sorrow for the loss of our good Samaritan. But be not broken-hearted my friend ! Remember the loss of those we love is the condition on which we live ourselves; and that he who chuses his friends wisely from among the excellent of the earth, has a sure ground to hope concerning them when they die, that a merciful God has made them far happier than they could be here, and that we shall join them soon again. This is solid comfort, could we but avail ourselves of it; but I confess the difficulty of doing so. Sorrow is like the deaf adder, “ that hears not the voice of the charmer, charm he never so wisely;" and I feel so much myself for the death of Austen, that my own chief consolation is, that I had never seen him. Live yourself, I beseech you, for I have seen so much of you, that I can by no means spare you, and I will live as long as it shall please God to permit. I know you set some value or me, therefore let that promise comfort you, and give us not reason to say, like David's servants ". We know that it would have pleased thee more if all we had died, than this one, for whom thou art inconsolable.” You have still Romney, and Carwardine, and Guy, and me, my poor Mary, and I know not how many beside; as many, I suppose, as ever had an opportunity of spending a day with you. He who has the most friends, must necessarily lose the most, and he whose friends are numerous as yours, may the better spare a part of them. It is a changing, transient scene: Yet a little while, and this poor dream of life will be over with all of us— The living, and they who live unhappy, they are indeed subjects of sorrow.
To SAMUEL ROSE, Esqr.
Weston, Feb. 5, 1793.
In this last revisal of niy work (the Homer) I have made a number of small improvements, and am now more convinced than ever, having exercised a cooler judgment upon it, than before I could, that the translation will make its way. There must be time for the conquest of vehement and long-rooted prejudice; but without much self-partiality, I believe, that the conquest will be made; and am certain, that I should be of the same opinon, were the work another man's. I shall soon have finished the Odyssey, and when I have, will send the corrected copy of both to Johnson.
To Lady HESKETH.
Feb. 10, 1793.
My pens are all split, and my ink-glass is dry; i
In vain has it been, that I have made several attempts to write, since I came from Sussex ; unless more comfortable days arrive than I have confidence to look for, there is an end of all writing with me. I have no spirits :—when Rose came, I was obliged to prepare for his coming by a nightly dose of laudanum-twelve drops suffice; but without them, I am devoured by melancholy.
A propos of the Rose! His wife in her political notions is the exact counterpart of yourself loyal in the extreme. Therefore, if you find her thus inclined, when you become acquainted with her, you must not place her resemblance of yourself to the account of her admiration of you, for she is your likeness ready made. In fact, we are all of one mind, about government matters, and notwithstanding your opinion, the Rose is himself a Whig, and I am a Whig, and you, my dear, are a Tory, and all the Tories now-a-days call all the Whigs Republicans. How the deuce you came to be a Tory is best known to yourself: you have to answer for this novelty to the shades of your ancestors who were always Whigs ever since we had any.
Feb. 17, 1793. MY DEAR FRIEND,
I have read the critique of my work in the Analytical Review, and am happy to have fallen into the hands of a critic, rigorous enough indeed, but a scholar, and a man of sense, and who does not deliberately intend me mischief. I am better pleased indeed that he censures some things, than