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in others from want of education, to be careful of our brats in that point. They are all well. Moll is as great a charmer as her mother, and will prove as great a sharper. Dear thing, how
I love you!
LETTER CCXCIII. To Lady STEELE.
July 24, 1717.
lamentable condition you are in, with relation to the place, and other matters, therein described with great wit and spirit. But your letter is an argument against what you say, to wit, that it is impossible to write for a polite part of the world in that neighbourhood. The King is at Hampton-court; and I design next week to go thither, with a petition for a small grant, to make myself easy,
If I succeed, as I am encouraged to expect, our labour for ourselves will be very much shortened, and I have little more to care for but to enjoy the pleasure of being, dear Prue, your most affectionate husband, and most obedient, humble servant,
Rich. STEELE. As I was going to close this, I hear the voice of Mrs. Keck talking to Molly. But she is so great a Prue, that she comes and goes without seeing me, though I am in the house. But I have sent her word I am writing, and the gives her service.
LETTER CCXCIV. To Lady STEELE.
July 26, 1717. HAVE your kind letter, which expresses
your fears that I do not take care of myself as to catching cold, and the like. I am careful enough when I am awake; but in the night the cloaths are kicked on the floor, and I am exposed to the damp till the coolness awakes me This I feel at present in my arms and legs, but will be carefully tucked up hereafter. I wait with impatience for the receipt of money out of the Treasury, to make further payments. I believe, when I have it, I shall wholly turn off my coach-horses; for, since I'am at my study whole days together, it is, I think, a fenseless thing for me to pay as if I was padding all that while, and Thewing myself to the world. I have sent your inclosed to Mrs. Keck. She came into the dining-room to me when I sent away Jaft letter, and we had some tea; and, instead of such chat as should naturally arise between a great gallant and a fine lady, she took upon her to tell me, that I did spend my money upon my children, but that they onght to be better accommodated as to their dress, and the like. She is, indeed, a very good Prue; and, though I divert myself with her gravity and admonition, I have a sincere respect for her. I was last night
fo much enamoured with an author I was reading, and some thoughts which I put together on that occasion, that I was up till morning, which makes me a little restive to-day. Your daughter Moll has stole away my very heart : but doubt not but her brother and fifter will recover their share when we are all together, except their mother robs them all of him who is, dear Prue, entirely yours,
LETTER CCXCV. To Lady STEELE.
MY DEAR WIFE,
[July 27, 171.7.) READ your kind letter with a great deal of
pleasure, and promise myself as much happiness as ever man knew in woman when we meet again. I hope it will please God to pro. sper our little affairs in such manner as that we may pass the remainder of our days in tranquil. lity: that is a state I have never yet known, but it is very much in your power to contribute towards pofseffing it for the future. You mistake, when you say I wish to see Wales out of any suspicion; I assure you, I design that journey only out of curiosity, to see what, by your favour, will one day be in my posterity, if it shall please God to continue our children to us. They are now all three in good health, and I hope to tell you before this day fennight that I have N4
paid Betty's schooling.
As to the persons you mention in your letter, I shall conduct myself to. wards them as you shall advise. I cannot yet answer you as to the 2001. you speak of to be ready three inonths hence, but shall do all I can. I place the utmost of the happiness of this life in you, and earnestly exhort you to meet ine with the same disposition to be pleasing to me, as I have to manifest myself, in little as well as great occafions, your most affectionate and faithful husband and fervant,
LETTER CCXCVI. To Lady STEELE.
July 29, 1717.
always glad when you write a great but do not hurt your eyes to scribble longer than is easy to you,
Your kind expression is the most welcome and pleasing thing which could possibly arrive at me. Mr. Glanvill * of
I am deal ;
* William Glanvill, efq. one of the clerks of the Treasury, and receiver of the revenues of the First-fruits office. He died in the January following, and was buried at Wooton in Surrey, where the following concise epitaph, dictated by himself, preserves his memory :
(Vicesimo secundo die Januarii)
Anno salutis reparatæ
Requiescant donec veniat Redemptor. 'The substance of his charitable will may be seen in Aubrey's “ Surrey,” vol. II. p. 144.
the Treasury asked me the other day, “how my “ wonderful girl did?” There is, it seems, a lady of his acquaintance who visits Betty at school, and cries her up for a greater wit than her father--that is not much—but than her mother either. I am every day walking about the offices to get our salaries paid, that I might go into the country, and particularly the Bath, whence you shall direct me further, that is, command
But, if I find my limbs easy to me, I believe I shall vigorously pursue my jour. ney to the dearest of women to the most affectionate of men.
Poor, dear, angry, pleased, pretty, witty, filly, every thing, Prue, yours ever, Rich. STEELE.
To Lady STEELE.
(July 31, 1717.] OURS of the 27th came to hand. I am
very far from being insincere in my resolves about parting with insignificant people. I am ready to burst with indignation against my own folly, and melt with gratitude for your goodness in bearing so long as you have. I am in purgatory till it is otherwise, and am really in danger of falling into the contrary extreme of being too near and reserved. God Almighty grant that we may meet together in such dispositions as to enjoy with our little ones the only