Lucan is in poor forwardness. I have been plagued with a succession of bad printers, and am not got beyond the fourth book. It will scarce appear before next winter. Adieu! Sir. I have received so much pleasure and benefit from your correspondence, that I should be sorry to lose it. I will not deserve to lose it, but endeavour to be, as you will give me leave to be, your, etc.
(12) The life of Edward Earl of Clarendon, etc. Dr. Johnson, in the sixty-fifth number of the Idler, has also celebrated the appearance of this interesting and valuable work.-C.
(13) Mr. Walpole had early taken up this opinion; witness that gross line in his dull epistle to Aston, written in 1740, “The lustful Henrietta’s Romish shade;” but we believe that no good authority for this imputation can be produced: there is strong evidence the other way: and if we were even to stand on mere authority, we should prefer that of Lord Clarendon to the scandalous rumours of troublesome times, which were, we believe, the only guides of Mr. Walpole.-C.
(14) Nor for impugning it; for, the very fact, brought to light in later times, of Charles’s having, with great secrecy and mystery, reconciled himself to the church of Rome on his deathbed, proves that up to that extreme hour he was not a Papist.-C.
You must wonder I have not written to you a long time; a person of my consequence! I am now almost ready to say, We, instead of I In short, I live amongst royalty—considering the plenty, that is no great wonder. All the world lives with them, and they with all the world. Princes and Princesses open shops in every corner of the town, and the whole town deals with them. As I have gone to one, I chose to frequent all, that I night not be particular, and seem to have views; and yet it went so much against me, that I came to town on purpose a month ago for the Duke’s levee, and had engaged brand to go with me, and then could not bring myself to it. At last, I went to him and the Princess Emily yesterday. It was well I had not flattered myself with being still in my bloom; I am grown so old since they saw me, that neither of them knew me. When they were told, he just spoke to me (I forgive him; he is not out of my debt, even with that) — she was exceedingly gracious, and commended Strawberry to the skies. To-night, I was asked to their party at Norfolk House. These parties are wonderfully select and dignified one might sooner be a knight of Malta than qualified for them; I don’t know how the Duchess of Devonshire, Mr. Fox, and I, were forgiven some of our ancestors. There were two tables at loo, two at whist, and a quadrille. I was commanded to the Duke’s loo; he was sat down: not to make him wait, I threw my hat upon the marble table, and broke four pieces off a great crystal chandelier. I stick to my etiquette, and treat them with great respect; not as I do my friend, the Duke of York. But don’t let us talk any more of Princes. My Lucan appears to-morrow; I must say it is a noble volume. Shall I send it you—or won’t you come and fetch it?