Dear sir, I had extreme satisfaction in receiving your letter, having been in great pain about you, and not knowing where to direct a letter. Favre(926) told me, you had had an accident, did not say what it was, but that you was not come to town.(927) He received all the letters and parcels safe; for which I give you many thanks, and a thousand more for your kindness in thinking of them, when you was suffering so much. It was a dreadful conclusion of your travels; but I trust will leave no consequences behind it. The weather is by no means favourable for a recovery, if it is as severe in England as at Paris. We have had two or three days of fog, rather than thaw; but the frost is set in again as sharp as ever. I persisted in going about to churches and convents, till I thought I should have lost my nose and fingers. I have submitted at last to the season, and lie a-bed all the morning; but I hope in February and March to recover the time I have lost. I shall not return to England before the end of March, being determined not to hazard any thing. I continue perfectly well, and few things could tempt me to risk five months more of gout.
I will certainly bring you some pastils, and have them better packed, if it is possible. You know how happy I should be if you would send me any other commission. As you say nothing of the Eton living, I fear that prospect has failed you; which gives me great regret, as it would give me very sensible pleasure to have you fixed somewhere (and not far from me) for your ease and satisfaction.
I am glad the cathedral of Amiens answered your expectation; so has the Sainte Chapelle mine; you did not tell me what charming enamels I should find in the ante-chapel. I have seen another vast piece, and very fine, of the Constable Montmorenci, at the Mar`echale Duchesse de Luxembourg’s. Rousseau is gone to England with Mr. Hume. You will very probably see a letter to Rousseau, in the name of the King of Prussia, writ to laugh at his affectations. It has made excessive noise here, and I believe quite ruined the author with many philosophers. When I tell you I was the author, it is telling you how cheap I hold their anger. If it does not reach you, you shall see it at Strawberry, where I flatter myself I shall see you this summer, and quite well. Adieu!
(926) A servant of Mr. Walpole’s left in London.
(927) In disembarking at Dover, Mr. Cole met with an accident, that had confined him there three weeks to his bed.