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LETTER X. To Mrs. SCURLOCK.
Aug. 22, 1707* If my vigilance, and ten thousand wishes for
your welfare and repose, could have any force, you last night flept in security, and had every good angel in your attendance. To have my thoughts eyer fixed on you, to live in conftant fear of every accident to which human life is liable, and to send up my hourly prayers to avert them from you; I say, Madam, thus to think, and thus to suffer, is what I do for her who is in pain at my approach, and calls all my tender sorrow impertinence. You are now before my eyes, my eyes that are ready to flow with tenderness, but cannot give relief to my gushing heart, that dictates what I am now faying, and yearns to tell you all its achings. How art thou, oh my soul, stolen from thyself! how is all thy attention broken ! My books are blank paper, and my friends intruders.
I have no hope of quiet but from your pity : to grant it, would make more for your triumph. To give pain, is the tyranny, to make happy, the true empire, of beauty. If you would consider aright, you
* This date is in part cut out, and supplied with “Aug. 9, “ 1671." Over “ Madam," at the beginning, Mrs., S. has written “ Andromache,” and substituted " Madam” for “dear Mrs. Scurlock” at the end.
would find an agreeable change, in dismissing the attendance of a slave, to receive the complaisance of a companion. I bear the former, in hopes of the latter condition. As I live in chains without murmuring at the power which inflicts them, so I could enjoy freedom without forgetting the mercy that gave it. Dear Mrs. Scur. lock, the life which you bestow on me shall be no nore my own. I am, your inost devoted, most obedient servant,
LET TER XI.
To Mrs. SCURLOCK.
Chelsea, Aug. 25, 1707.
every gesture and motion I make. I have ftole a moment, while he is in next room, to tell the charmer and inspirer of my soul I am her devoted, obedient servant, Rich. STEELE.
To Mrs. SCURLOCK.
My deareft Creature, Thursday, Aug. 27, 1707.
BEG the favour of you to let me pass this
day in your company. I have contrived my bufiness fo, that I have till eight at night, at my own disposal. I can come in a coach; and Mrs. Warren being in the way, may let me in without 4.
obfervation. My loved creature, do not deny this request, nor think I am capable of being allowed that liberty without a true sense of your goodness to me in it. Your generous condescension in all your carriage towards me, shall always give you a powerful and lasting influence upon the thoughts and actions of him who hopes to be, Madan, your most obliged and grateful husband,
To Mrs. SCURLOCK.
Aug, 29, 1707. I
FEAR it will be an hour later than usual
that I wait upon you to night; for I have an appointnient which will detain me, and which concerns both you, and, Madam, your most obliged, most obedient humble servant,
To Mrs. SCURLOCK.
Aug. 30, 1707 BEG pardon that my paper is not finer, but
I am forced to write from a coffee-house where I am attending about bufiness. There is a dirty crowd of busy faces all around me, talking of money ; while all my ambition, all my wealth, is, love! Love, which animates my
heart, sweetens my humour, enlarges my soul, and affects every action of my life. It is to my lovely charmer I owe, that many noble ideas are continually affixed to my words and actions; it is the natural effect of that generous passion, to create in the admirer fome fimilitude of the object admired. Thus, my dear, am I every day to improve from so sweet a companion. Look up, my fair one, to that Heaven which made thee such, and join with me to implore its influence on our tender innocent hours, and befeech the Author of love, to bless the rites he has ordained, and mingle with our happiness a jult sense of our transient condition, and a refig. nation to His will, which only can regulate our minds to a steady endeavour to please Him and cach other. I am for ever your faithful servant,
LETTER XV. To Mrs. SCURLOCK.
Dear, lovely Mrs. SCURLOCK,
Saturday-night [Aug. 30, 1707). HAVE been in very good company,
where your health, under the character of the woman I loved best, has been often drunk; so that I may say I am dead drunk for
your fake, which is more than “ I die for you."
R. Sreele. LETTER
LETTER XVI. To Mrs. SCURLOCK.
Sept. 1, 1707 *. T is the hardest thing in the world to be in
all who speak to me find me out, and I must lock myself up, or other people will do it
A gentleman asked me this morning,“ What “ news from Lisbon ohi? and I answered, “ She “ is exquisitely handsome.” Another defired to know “ when I had been last at Hamptoncourt?" I replied, “It will be on Tuesday come
se’nnight.”. Pr’ythee allow me at least to kiss your hand before that day $, that my mind may be in some composure. || Oh love !
A thousand torments dwell about thee,
Yet who would live, to live without thee? Methinks I could write a volume to you ; but all the language on earth would fail in faying how much, and with what disinterested pasfion, I am ever yours,
* The date of this letter is altered to Sept. 25, 1671;” and Mrs. S. has remarked on it, “ The two next were written after che day for our marriage was fixed.” + Altered by Mrs. S. co .“ Holland.”
Altered to “Windsor;" and the reply in the next line is shanged to, " She designs to go with me.”
§ Altered to “ the appointed day.” ll Thicle owo words and the following couplet are struck out.