I am glad you are undeserved about the controversial piece in the Gentleman’s Magazine, which I should have assured You, as you now know, that it was not mine. I declared, in my Defence,(466) that I would publish nothing more about that question. I have not, nor intend it. Neither was it I that wrote the prologue to the Count of Narbonne, but Mr. Jephson himself. On the opposite page I will add the receipt for the diet-drink: as to my regimen, I shall not specify it. Not only you would not adopt it, but I should tremble to have you. In fact, I never do prescribe it, as I am persuaded it would kill the strongest man in England, who was not exactly of the same temperament with me, and who had not embraced it early. It consists in temperance to quantity as to eating—I do not mind the quality; I am persuaded that great abstinence with the gout is dangerous; for, if one does not take nutriment enough, there cannot be strength sufficient to fling out the gout, and then it deviates to palsies. But my great nostrum is the use of cold water, inwardly and outwardly, on all occasions, and total disregard of precaution against catching cold. A hat you know I never wear, my breast I never button, nor wear great-coats, etc. I have often had the gout in my face (as last week) and eyes, and instantly dip my head in a pail of cold water, which always cures it, and does not send it anywhere else. All this I do, because I have so for these forty years, weak as I look; but Milo would not have lived a week if he had played such pranks. My diet-drink is not all of so Quixote a disposition; any of the faculty will tell you how innocent it is, at least. In a few days, for I am a rapid reader when I like my matter, I will return all your papers and letters; and in the mean time thank you most sincerely for the use of them.
(466) Hannah More, in a letter to Mrs. Boscawen, says, “Many thanks for Mr. Walpole’s sensible, temperate, and humane pamphlet. I am not quite a convert yet to his side in the Chatertonian controversy, though this elegant writer and all the antiquaries and critics are against me: I like much the candid regret he every where discovers at not having fostered this unfortunate lad, whose profligate manners, however, I too much fear, would not have done credit to any patronage. Mrs. Garrick read it, and was more interested than I have ever seen her."-E.
I was so impatient to peruse all the literary stores you sent me, my dear Sir, that I stayed at home on purpose to give up a whole evening to them. I have gone through all; your own manuscript, which I envy Mr. Gough, his specimen, and the four letters to you from the latter and Mr. Steevens. I am glad they were both satisfied with my reception. In truth, you know I am neither formal nor austere, nor have any grave aversion to our antiquities, though