(327) See Walpole’s Memoires of George the second, vol. ii., p. 458-E.
* * * * * Having thus told you all I know, I shall add a few words, to say I conclude you have known as much, by my not having heard from you. Should the post-office or secretary’s o(fice set their wits at work to bring to light all the intelligence contained under the above hiatus, I am confident they will discover nothing, though it gives an exact description of all they have been about themselves.
My personal history is very short. I have had an assembly and the rheumatism-and am buying a house-and it rains-and I shall plant the roses against my treillage to-morrow. Thus you know -what I have done, suffered, am doing, and shall do. Let me know as much of you, in quantity, not in quality. Introductions to, and conclusions of, letters are as much out of fashion, as to at, etc. on letters. This sublime age reduces every thing to its quintessence: all periphrases and expletives are so much in disuse, that I suppose soon the only way of making love will be to say “Lie down.” Luckily, the lawyers will not part with any synonymous words, and will, consequently preserve the redundancies of our language—Dixi.
I have finished the life of Mr. Baker, will have it transcribed, and send it to you. I have omitted several little particulars that are in your notes, for two reasons; one, because so much is said in the Biographia; and the other, because I have rather drawn a character of him, than meant a circumstantial life. In the justice I have done to him, I trust I shall have pleased you. I have much greater doubt of that effect in what I have said of his principles and party. It is odd, perhaps, to have made use of the life of a high churchman for expatiating on my own very opposite principles; but it gave me so fair an opportunity of discussing those points, that I very naturally embraced it. I have done due honour to his immaculate conscience, but have not spared the cause in which he fell,-or rather rose,-for the ruin of his fortune was the triumph of his virtue.
As you know I do not love the press, you may be sure I have no thoughts of printing this life at present; nay, I beg you will not only not communicate it, but take care it never should be printed without my consent. I have written what presented itself; I should perhaps choose to soften several passages; and I trust to you for Your own satisfaction, not as a finished thing, or as I am determined it should remain.