The Letters of Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford — Volume 4 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,055 pages of information about The Letters of Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford — Volume 4.

Letter 374 To The Miss Berrys.  Berkeley Square, Sunday, March 27, 1791. (page 486)

Though I begin my despatch to-day, I think I shall change my post-days, as I hinted from Tuesdays to Fridays; not only as more commodious for learning news for you, but as I do not receive your letters generally but on Mondays, I have less time to answer.  I have an additional reason for delay this week.  Mr. Pitt has notified that he is to deliver a message from the King to-morrow, to the House of Commons on the situation of Europe; and should there be a long debate, I may not gather the particulars till Tuesday morning, and if my levee lasts late, shall not have time to write to you.  Oh! now are you all impatience to hear that message:  I am sorry to say that I fear it will be a warlike one.  The Autocratrix swears, d-n her eyes! she will hack her way to Constantinople through the blood of one hundred thousand more Turks, and that we are very impertinent for sending her a card with a sprig of olive.  On the other hand, Prussia bounces and buffs and claims our promise of helping him to make peace by helping him to make war; and so, in the most charitable and pacific way in the world, we are, they say, to send twenty ships to the Baltic, and half as many to the Black Sea,-this little Britain, commonly called Great Britain, is to dictate to Petersburg and Bengal and cover Constantinople under those wings that reach from the North Pole to the farthest East!  I am mighty sorry for it, and hope we shall not prove a jackdaw that pretends to dress himself in the plumes of imperial eagles!

If we bounce abroad, we are more forgiving at home:  a gentleman who lives at the east end of St. James’s Park has been sent for by a lady who has a large house at the west end,(759) and they have kissed and are friends; which he notified by toasting her health in a bumper at a club the other day.  I know no circumstances, but am glad of it; I love peace, public or private:  not so the chieftains of the contending theatres of harmony.  Taylor, in wondrous respectful terms and full of affliction, has printed in the newspapers an advertisement, declaring that the Marquis’s honour the Lord Chamberlain(760) did in one season, and that an unprofitable one, send orders (you know, that is tickets of admission without paying) into the Opera-house, to the loss of the managers of four hundred pounds--servants, it is supposed, and Hertfordshire voters eke:  and moreover, that it has been sworn in Chancery that his lordship, not as lord chamberlain, has stipulated with Gallini and O’Reilly that he, his heirs and assigns, should preserve the power of giving those detrimental orders in perpetuity.  The immunity is a little new:  former chamberlains, it seems even durante officio, have not exercised the privilege—­if they had it.

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The Letters of Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford — Volume 4 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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