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and so I was taken in: the rest, and the · Balloon' and MS. poem, are to be read comfortably at Mrs. Crewe's villa at Hampstead, as soon as finished.
Madame d'Arblay to Dr. Burney.
Westhamble, Dorking, April 25, 98. “ Bouder," my dearest Father? - But I am sure you do not think it, therefore I will not disgrace myself with a defence. But I have intended writing every day, and the constant glimmering hope thạt to-morrow I should hear, with the idea that you were always packing up and removing, have made another to-morrow and to-morrow always keep off to-day. Indeed, that is the cruel trick of to-morrow, which does more mischief to one's fair resolves than any philosophy of to-day ever rectifies.
I delight in the account of your conviviality; nobody was ever so formed for society, in its best state, as my dearest father.
How interesting is your account of M. Clery! I should like extremely to meet with him. If your list is not closed of scrip, my chevalier begs you will have the goodness to trust him with the 6s. and enter his name. Your description of him is just what his conduct had made my mind describe him.
I am very glad to hear of your sweethearts, old and new, but of Mrs. Garrick chiefly. I rejoice Mrs. Carter is so well again. Does Lady Rothes tell you how nearly we are neighbours? We see her house whenever we see our own; it is a constant object. But we have not yet
been very sociable, for the weather would not do for my carriage, though hers, before she went to town, kindly found its way to us three times.
Pray, when next you can indulge me, tell me how the dinner went off at Lady Inchiquin's, and if she seems happy. All you find time to name of those my old connexions is peculiarly interesting to me.
I have some hope the public affairs may now wear a better aspect, from the tremendous danger so narrowly escaped of utter destruction, and so notorious as to defy the plausibility and sophistry of contest.
We have had papers, through dear Charles, up to Monday, and the King's message made me thrill through every vein; but the sign of Mr. Sheridan seconding Dundas struck me as a good to undo many an evil. M. d'A. thinks it will show the Carmagnols the species of friends who were to abet them, beyond all the speeches of all the ministers; for if even the opposition, even the supporters of the war being our aggression, and the Republic so glorious, &c., point out the real aim of our enemies,—that our money and credit is all they want, that their pretences of giving us liberty, &c., are incapable of duping even their admirers,—surely they must see that their chance of reception here, through our own means, is shallow and unfounded. No
late news from our Susan.
I am so little generous or noble that I feel almost vexed, instead of glad, that the twelfth book is finished ; for I had made a sort of regale to myself that something should have been written of it in our chaumière. Don't forget what we build upon this summer: we shall dare you with our fare and tackle, our Alex, and our prospects—with our true joy in your sight; and your own view of my virtuous companion at the daily cultivation of
his garden will supply to your kind paternal heart all deficiencies, and make you partake of our pleasure. Adieu, most dear Sir! My mate embraces you with cor
Madame d'Arblay to Dr. Burney.
Westhamble, June 7, '98. INDEED, my dearest Father, M. Clery's book has half killed us; we have read it together, and the deepest tragedy we have yet met with is slight to it. The extreme plainness and simplicity of the style, the clearness of the detail, the unparading yet evident worth and feeling of the writer, make it a thousand times more affecting than if it had been drawn out with the most striking eloquence. What an angel-what a saint, jet breathing, was Louis XVI.!—the last meeting with the venerable M. de Malesherbes, and the information which, prostrate at his feet, he gives of the King's condemnation, makes the most soul-piercing scene, and stopped us from all reading a considerable time; frequently, indeed, we have been obliged to take many minutes' respite before we could command ourselves to go on. But the last scene with the Royal Family, the final parting, is the most heartbreaking picture that ever was exhibited.
How much we are obliged to you for it, dearest Sir, infinitely as it has pained and agitated us! It arrived by the very same messenger that took my last letter to you, with an account of our sweet. Susanna. How interested it leaves one for the good writer, the faithful, excellent, modest M. Clery! I want a second part; I want to know if he was able to deliver the ring and seal-if he saw any more the unhappy Queen, the pious Princess
Elizabeth, the poor Madame Royale whom he left painting, and that fair lovely blossom the sweet Dauphin. I feel extremely dissatisfied to be left in the dark about all this.
I shocked not to see your name in the subscription, after an interest such as you have both felt and shown for this worthy man; it is infinitely provoking you knew not in time of the publication. M. d'Arblay is vexed, too, not to have his own name there, in testimony of respect to this faithful creature, who will be revered to his last hour by whoever has any heart for fidelity, gratitude, and duty.
Have you Mr. Twining still? O that he would come and mortify upon our bread and cheese, while he would gladify upon our pleasure in his sight! The weather now is such as to make bare walls rather agreeable, and without he would see what he loves in fair views, and what he so strikingly denominates “God's gallery of pictures;” and our one little live piece would not, I think, excite in him much black bile. If he is still with you, do speak for us.
Madame d'Arblay to Mrs. Phillips. AFTER sundry abortive proposals of our new brother in-law, Mr. Broome, for our meeting, he and Charlotte finally came, with little Charlotte, to breakfast and spend a day with us. He has by no
means the wit and humour and hilarity his “Simkin's Letters' prepare for ; but the pen and the tongue are often unequally gifted. He is said to be very learned, deeply skilled in languages, and general erudition, and he is full of information upon most subjects that can be mentioned. We talked of India,
and he permitted me to ask what questions I pleased upon points and things of which I was glad to gather accounts from so able a traveller.
Another family visit which took place this summer gave us pleasure of a far more easy natnre, because unmixed with watchful anxiety; this was from Charles and his son, who, by an appointment for which he begged our consent, brought with him also Mr. Professor Young, of Glasgow, a man whose learning sits upon him far lighter than Mr. Broome's! Mr. Young has the bonhomie of M. de Lally, with as much native humour as he has acquired erudition : he has a face that looks all honesty and kindness, and manners gentle and humble; an enthusiasm for whatever he thinks excellent, whether in talents or character, in art or in nature; and is altogether a man it seems impossible to know, even for a day, and not to love and wish well. This latter is probably the effect of his own cordial disposition to amity. He took to us, all three, so evidently and so warmly, and was so smitten with our little dwelling, its situation and simplicity, and so much struck with what he learned and saw of M. d'Arblay's cultivating literally his own grounds, and literally being his own gardener, after finding, by conversation, what a use he had made of his earlier days in literary attainments, that he seemed as if he thought himself brought to a vision of the golden age,—such was the appearance of his own sincere and upright mind in rejoicing to see happiness where there was palpably no luxury, no wealth.
It was a most agreeable surprise to me to find such a man in Mr. Professor Young, as I had expected a sharp though amusing satirist, from his very comic but sarcastic imitation of Dr. Johnson's Lives,' in a criticism upon Gray's Elegy.'