I have twenty things still to say; for you have unlocked all our bosoms. And yet I intended not to write above ten or a dozen lines when I began; only to tell you, that I would have you take your own way, in your subjects, and in your style. And if you will but give me hope, that you are in the way I so much wish to have you in, I will then call myself your affectionate sister; but till then, it shall only barely be your correspondent,
B. DAVERS. You’ll proceed with the account of your Kentish affair, I doubt not.
MY DEAR GOOD LADY,
What kind, what generous things are you pleased to say of your happy correspondent! And what reason have I to value myself on such an advantage as is now before me, if I am capable of improving it as I ought, from a correspondence with so noble and so admired a lady! To be praised by such a genius, and my honoured benefactor’s worthy sister, whose favour, next to his, it was always my chief ambition to obtain, is what would be enough to fill with vanity a steadier and a more equal mind than mine.
I have heard from my late honoured lady, what a fine pen her beloved daughter was mistress of, when she pleased to take it up. But I never could have presumed, but from your ladyship’s own motion, to hope to be in any manner the subject of it, much less to be called your correspondent.
Indeed, Madam, I am very proud of this honour, and consider it as such a heightening to my pleasures, as only that could give; and I will set about obeying your ladyship without reserve.
But, first, permit me to disclaim any merit, from my own poor writings, to that improvement which your goodness imputes to me. What I have to boast, of that sort, is owing principally, if it deserves commendation, to my late excellent lady.
It is hard to be imagined what pains her ladyship took with her poor servant. Besides making me keep a book of her charities dispensed by me, I always set down, in my way, the cases of the distressed, their griefs from misfortunes, and their joys of her bountiful relief; and so I entered early into the various turns that affected worthy hearts, and was taught the better to regulate my own, especially by the help of her fine observations, when I read what I wrote. For many a time has her generous heart overflowed with pleasure at my remarks, and with praises; and I was her good girl, her dear Pamela, her hopeful maiden; and she would sometimes snatch my hand with transport, and draw me to her, and vouchsafe to kiss me; and always was saying, what she would do for me, if God spared her, and I continued to be deserving.