Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

a false report, that I had not been so well for some days as she left me. I took the opportunity of showing her your letter, and she desired me to make her compliments to your ladyship, and tell you, she keeps no servant about lady Elizabeth, while she is at school, and at her return will think it necessary to have a person of a middle age about her. Such a one she now has about her little boy ; a pretty sort of woman, who speaks French and English equally well, is grave and properly be. haved, and, I believe, hopes for lady Elizabeth's place, when her little angel of a master goes into the hands of the men. His mamma took him away with her on Saturday, after lending him to me for a month (though she is excessively fond of him), because she sees he is the joy of my life. He has some faint resemblance (though not a good one) of his poor uncle ; but his openness and mildness of temper are the very same. Her eldest boy too is a very sensible and good one. He and lady Greville dine with me from Eton every Sunday ; they are here at present for two or three days, on account of their being holidays. I have bardly left myself room to make Mr. Cowslad's conipliments, and subscribe myself, dear madam, your, &c.

[ocr errors][merged small]

LETTER LVI.

COUNTESS OF HERTFORD TO DR. BURNET, Occasioned by some Meditations the Doctor sent her, upon

the Death of her Son, Lord Beauchamp.

SIR,

I am very sensibly obliged by the kind compassion you express for me, under my heavy affiction. The meditations you have furnished me with, afford the strongest motives for consolation that can be offered to a person under my unhappy circumstances. The dear lamented son I have lost, was the pride and joy of my heart; but I hope I may be the more easily excused for having looked on bim in this light, since he was not so from the outward advantages he possessed, but from the virtues and rectitude of his mind. The prospects which flattered me, in regard to him, were not drawn from his distinguished rank, or from the beauty of his person; but from the hopes that his example would have been serviceable to the cause of virtue, and would have shown the younger part of the world, that it was possible to be cheerful without being foolish or vicious, and to be religious without severity or melancholy. His whole life was one uninterrupted course of duty and affection to his parents; and when he found the hand of death upon him, his only regret was to think on the agonies which must rend their hearts; for he was perfectly content to leave the world, as his conscience did not reproach him with any presumptuous sins, and he hoped his errors would be forgiven. Thus he resigned his innocent soul into the hands of his merciful Creator, on the evening of his birth-day, which completed him nineteen. You will not be surprised, sir, that the death of such a son should occasion the deepest sorrow; yet, at the same time, it leaves us the most comfortable assurance, that he is happier than our fondest wishes and care could have made him, which must enable us to support the remainder of years, which it shall please God to allot for us here, without murmuring or discontent, and quicken our endeavours to prepare our. selves to follow to that happy place, where our dear valuable child is gone before us. I beg the continuance of your prayers, and am, sir, your, &c.

LETTER LVII.

MR. WARBURTON TO DR. DODDRIDGE.

DEAR SIR,

Cambridge, April 4, 1739. I write to you amidst a strange mixture of entertainments and study between the college-halls and libraries. The necessity of consulting books only to be met with here, has brought me to Cambridge ;

but my long nights in company make my mornings by myself so very short, that I am likely to return as wise as I came; which will be in a few days.

Before I left the country, I had the pleasure of receiving your Family Expositor. My mother

and I took it by turns. She, who is superior to me in every thing, aspired to the divine learning of the improvements, while I kept grovelling in the human learning in the notes below. The result of all was, that she says she is sure you are a very good mạn, and I am sure you are a very learned one. I sat down to your notes with a great deal of malice, and determined resolution not to spare you.

And let me tell you, a man who comments on the Bible affords all the opportunity a caviller could wish for. But your judgment is always so true, and your decision so right, that I am as unprofitable a reader to you as the least of your flock.

A friend of mine, Dr. Taylor.of Newark, (M. D.) who bas seen your book, desires to be a subscriber. If you will be so good to order a book to be left for him at Mr. Gyles's, he has órders to

pay for it.

I have taken the liberty to inclose two or three papers of proposals, just now offered to the public by my friend Dr. Middleton, for bis Life of Tully. I am, dear sir, your very affectionate friend and þrother,

LETTER LVIII.

FROM THE SAME TO THE SAME.

DEAR SIR,

Feb. 14, 1712-3. I SHOULD not have been so long in making my best acknowledgments for your last kind letter, had not my absence from home, and a late un. happy domestic affair, prevented me and engrossed all my thoughts—the misfortunes of an excellent sister and her children, by her husband's ill success in trade, yet attended to with the utmost honesty and sobriety; so that, to his own ruin, he has been a considerable benefactor to the public while in trade, and his creditors at last no losers, but himself undone. I do not know whether this be an alleviation or aggravation of the misfortune. But I can tell you with the utmost truth, that I share with this distressed sister and her children (who all live with me) the small revenue it has pleased God to bless me with, with much greater satisfaction than others spend theirs on their pleasures. I do not know how it is, but though I am far from being a hero, yet I find Brutus expresses my exact sentiments, when he says to Cicero, Aliter alii cuin suis vivunt. Nihil ego possum in sororis meæ liberis facere, quo possit expleri voluntas mea, aut officium. But yon will reprove me, I know, for this false modesty in apologising for this comparison; and say, where is the wonder, that a man who pretends to be a Christian should not come behind a Pagan, how great soever, in the performance of moral duties. However this may be, I can assure you my only concern on this occasion was for an incomparable mother, whom I feared the misfortunes of a favourite daughter would have too much affected. But, I thank God, religion,—that religion which you make such amiable drawings of in all your writings,-- was more than a support to her. But I ask pardon for talking so long of myself. This is a subject I never choose to talk of; yet I could not forbear men

« НазадПродовжити »