In short, dear Sir, I wish you not to lose your time; that is, either ,not reply, or set your mark on your answer, that it may always be read with the rest of your works.
(338) Now first collected.
(339) “An Examination of the Fifteenth and Sixteenth Chapters of Mr. Gibbon’s History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. By Henry Edward Davis, B.A. of Baliol College, Oxford.” He was born in 1756 and died in 1784, at the early age of twenty-seven. He was a native of Windsor, and is believed to have received a present from George the Third for this production.-E.
At last, after ten weeks I have been able to remove hither, in hopes change of air and the frost will assist my recovery; though I am not one of those ancients that forget the register, and think they are to be as well as ever after every fit of illness. As yet I can barely creep about the room in the middle of the day.
I have made my printer (now my secretary) copy out the rest of Mr. Baker’s Life; for my own hand will barely serve to write necessary letters, and complains even of them. If you know of any very trusty person passing between London and Cambridge, I would send it to you, but should not care to trust it by the coach, nor to any giddy undergraduate that comes to town to see a play; and, besides, I mean to return you your own notes. I Will Say no more than I have said in my apology to you for the manner in which I have written this life. With regard to Mr. Baker himself, I am confident you will find that I have done full justice to his work and character. i do not expect You to approve the inferences I draw against some other persons; and yet, if his conduct was meritorious, it would not be easy to excuse those who -were active after doing what he would not do. You will not understand this sentence till you have seen the Life.
I hope you have not been untiled or unpaled by the tempest on New-year’s morning.(340) I have lost two beautiful elms in a row before my windows here, and had the skylight demolished in town. Lady Pomfret’s Gothic house in my street lost one of the stone towers, like those at King’s Chapel, and it was beaten through the roof The top of our cross, too, at Ampthill was thrown down, as I hear from Lady Ossory this morning. I remember to have been told that Bishop Kidder and his wife were killed in their bed in the palace of Gloucester in 1709,(341) and yet his heirs were sued for dilapidations. Lord de Ferrers,(342) who deserves his ancient honours, is going to repair the castle at Tamworth, and has flattered me that he will Consult me. He has a violent passion for ancestry—and, consequently, I trust will not stake the patrimony of the Ferrars, Townshends, and Comptons, at the hazard-table. A little pride would not hurt our nobility, cock and hen. Adieu, dear Sir; send me a good account of yourself Yours ever.