This is all I have yet to say; for I have had no adventure, no accident, nor seen a soul but my cousin Richard Walpole, whom I met on the road and spoke to in his chaise. To-morrow I shall lie at Chantilly, and be at Paris early on Thursday. The Churchills are there already. Good night— and a sweet one to you!
Paris, Wednesday night, July 10.
I was so suffocated with my inn last night, that I mustered all my resolution, rose with the alouette this morning, and was in my chaise by five o’clock I got hither by eight this evening, tired, but rejoiced; I have had a comfortable dish of tea, and am going to bed in clean sheets. I sink myself even to my dear old woman(43) and my sister; for it is impossible to sit down and be made charming At this time of night after fifteen posts, and after having been here twenty times before.
At Chantilly I crossed the Countess of Walpole, who lies there to-night on her way to England. But I concluded she had no curiosity about me-and I could not brag of more about her-and so we had no intercourse. I am wobegone to find my Lord F -* * * in the same hotel. He is as starched as an old-fashioned plaited neckcloth, and come to suck wisdom from this curious school of philosophy. He reveres me because I was acquainted with his father; and that does not at all increase my partiality to the son.
Luckily, the post departs early to-morrow morning I thought you would like to hear I was arrived -well. I should be happy to hear you are so; but do not torment yourself too soon, nor will I torment you. I have fixed the 26th of August for setting out on my return. These jaunts are too juvenile. I am ashamed to look back and remember in what year of Methuselah I was here first. Rosette Sends her blessing to her daughter. Adieu! Yours ever.
(43) Madame du Deffand; who, in her letter to Walpole of the 12th of June, had said, “Je sens l’exc`es de votre complaisance; j’ai tant de joie de l’esp`erance de vous revoir qu’il me semble que rien ne peut plus m’affliger ni m’attrister.”—E.
I do not know where you are, nor where this will find you, nor when it will set out to seek you, as I am not certain by whom I shall send it. It is of little consequence, as I have nothing material to tell you, but what you probably may have heard.
The distress here is incredible, especially at court. The King’s tradesmen are ruined, his servants starving, and even angels and archangels cannot get their pensions and salaries, but sing, “Woe! woe! woe!” instead of Hosannahs. Compi`egne is abandoned; Villiers-coterets and Chantilly(44) crowded, and Chanteloup(45) still more in fashion, whither every body goes that pleases; though, when they ask leave, the answer is, “Je ne le defends ni le permets.” This is the first time