Whatever manuscripts you lend me, I shall be very grateful for. They entertain me exceedingly, and I promise you we will not have the shadow of an argument about them. I do not love disputation, even with those most indifferent to me. Your pardon I most sincerely beg for having contested a single point with you. I am sure it was not with a grain of ill-humour towards you: on the contrary, it was from wishing at that moment that you did not approve though I disliked—but even that I give up as unreasonable.
You are in the right, dear Sir, not to apply to Masters for any papers he may have relating to Mr. Baker.(292) It is a trumpery fellow’, from whom one would rather receive a refusal than an obligation.
I am sorry to hear Mr. Lort has the gout, and still more concerned that you still suffer from it. Such patience and temper as yours are the only palliatives. As the bootikins have so much abridged and softened my fits, I do not expect their return with the alarm and horror I used to do, and that is being cured of one half the complaints. I had scarce any pain last time, and did not keep my bed a day, and had no gout at all in either foot. May not I ask you if this is not some merit in the bootikins? To have cured me of my apprehensions is to me a vast deal, for now the intervals do not connect the fits. You will understand, that I mean to speak a word to you in favour of the bootikins, for can one feel benefit, and not wish to impart it to a suffering friend? Indeed I am yours most sincerely.
(289) John second Earl of Lauderdale, who, having distinguished himself-by his zealous and active exertions in the royal cause during the civil wars, was, after the restoration created in May 1672, Marquis Of March and Duke of Lauderdale, in Scotland.-E.
(290) Sir John Dalrymple, author of “Memoirs of Great Britain and Ireland.” Edinburgh, 1771-1773-1788; 3 vols. 4to.-E.
(291) James M’Pherson, the editor of Ossian, who had published a “History of Great Britain from the Restoration in 1660 to the Accession of the House of Hanover,” 1775, 2 Vols. 4to — and also “An Introduction to the History of Great Britain and Ireland.” London, 4to. 1771.-E.
(292) The papers which Masters possessed he himself eventually published, in 1784, under the title of,, Memoirs of the Life and Writings of Thomas Baker, from the Papers of Dr. Zachary Grey: with a Catalogue of his Manuscript Collections. By R. Masters."-E.
I did think it long, indeed, dear Sir, since I heard from you, and am very sorry the gout was the cause. I hope after such long persecution you will have less now than you apprehend. I should not have been silent myself, had I had any thing to tell you that you would have cared to hear.