Dear madam, As I hear Lady Blandford has a return of the gout-, as I foretold last night from the red spot being not gone, I beg you will be so good as to tell her, that if she does not encourage the swelling by keeping her foot wrapped up as hot as possible in flannel, she will torment herself and bring more pain. I will answer that if she will let it swell, and suffer the swelling to go off of itself, she will have no more pain; and she must remember, that the gout will bear contradiction no more than she herself(108) Pray read this to her, and what I say farther—that though I know she will not bear pain for herself, I am sure she will for her friends. Her misfortune has produced the greatest satisfaction that a good mind can receive, the experience that that goodness has given her a great many sincere friends, who have shown as much concern as ever was known, and the most disinterested; as we know her generosity has left her nothing to give. We wish to preserve her for her own sake and ours, and the poor beseech her to bear a little pain for them.
I am going out of town till Monday, or would bring my prescription myself. She wants no virtue but patience; and patience takes it very ill to be left out of such good company. I am, dear Madam, Your obedient servant, Dr. Walpole.
(107) Now first printed.
(108) It has already been stated, that Lady Blandford was somewhat impatient in her temper.-E.
Sir, I have received from Mr. Dodsley, and read with pleasure, your Remarks on the History of Scotland,” though I am not competently versed in some of the subjects. Indeed, such a load of difficult and vexatious business is fallen upon me by the unhappy situation of my nephew, Lord Orford, of whose affairs I have been forced to undertake the management, though greatly unfit for it, that I am obliged to bid adieu to all literary amusement and pursuits; and must dedicate the rest of a life almost worn out, and of late wasted and broken by a long illness, to the duties I owe to my family. I hope you, Sir, will have no such disagreeable avocation, and am your obliged servant.
(109) Now first collected.
Dear Sir, We have dropped one another, as if we were not antiquaries, but people of this world-or do you disclaim me, because I have quitted the Society? I could give You but too sad reasons for my silence. The gout kept entire possession of me for six months; and, before it released me, Lord Orford’s illness and affairs engrossed me totally. I have been twice in Norfolk since you heard from me. I am now at liberty again. What is your account of yourself? To. ask you to come above ground,