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mind, and did not feel myself at all inclined to be angry, nor even much to wonder. There is an awkwardness and a difficulty in writing to those whom distance and length of time have made in a manner new to us, that naturally gives us a check when we would otherwise be glad to address them. But a time, I hope is near at hand, when you and I shall be effectually delivered from all such constraints, and correspond as fuently as if our intercourse had suffered much less interruption. You must not suppose, my dear, that, though I may be said to have lived many years with a pen in my hand, I am myself altogether at my ease on this trei mendous occasion. Imagine rather, and you will come nearer to the truth, that when I placed this sheet before me, I asked myself more than once, how shall I fill it? One subject indeed presents itselfthe pleasant prospect that opens upon me of our coming once more together, but that once exhausted, with what shall I proceed? Thus I questioned myself; but, finding neither end inor profit of such questions, I bravely resolved to dismiss them all at once, and engage in the great enterprise of a letter to my quondam Rose, at a venture. - There is
great truth in a rant of Nat. Lee's, or of Dryden's, I know not which, who makes an enamoured youth say to his mistress,
“And nonsense shall be eloquence in love!" For certain it is, that they who truly love one another are not very nice examiners of each other's style or matter; if an epistle comes it is always welcome, though it be, perhaps, neither so wise, : nor so witty, as one might have wished to make it. And now, my cousin, let me tell thee how much I feel myself obliged to Mr. Bodham, for the readiness he expresses to accept my invitation. Assure Irim, that stranger as he is to ine at present, and
natural as the dread of strangers has ever been to me, I shall yet receive him with open arms because he is your husband, and loves you dearly ; that consideration alone will endear him to me, and I dare say that I shall not find it his only recommendation to my best affections. May the health of his relation (his mother, I suppose) be soon restored, and long continued, and may nothing melancholy of what kind soever, interfere to prevent our joyful meeting. Between the present moment and September, our house is clear for your reception, and you have nothing to do but to give us a day or two's notice of your coming. In September we expect Lady Hesketh, and I only regret that our house is not large enough to hold all together, for, were it possible that you could meet, you would love each other.
Mrs. Unwin bids me offer you her best love. She is never well, but always patient and always cheerful, and feels beforehand that she shall be lothito part with you.
My love to the dear Donnes of every náme. Write soon-no matter about what.
1m. Cowper, Esq. to Lady Throckmorton.
April 16, 1792. My Dear LADY, I THANK you for your Tetter, as sweet as it was short, and as sweet as good news could make it. You encourage a hope that has made me happy | ever since I have entertained it; and if my wishes can hasten the event, it will not be long suspended. As to your jealousy,' I mind it not, or only to be pleased with it; I shall say no more on the
It is very
subject at present than this, that,, of all ladies living, a certain lady (whom I need not name) would be the lady of my choice for a certain gentleman, were the whole sex submitted to my. election." What a delightful anecdote is that which you tell me of a young lady detected in the very act of stealing our Catherina's praises ; is it possible that she can survive the same, the mortification of such a discovery? Can she ever see the same company again, or any company that she can suppose, by the remotest possibility, may have heard the tidings? If she can, she must have an assurance equal to her vanity. A lady in London stole my solig on the Broken Rose, or rather would have stolen and have passed it for her own. But she too was unfortunate in her attempt; for there happened to be a female cousin of mine in the company who knew that I had written it. Aattering to a poet's pride, that the ladies should thus hazard every thing for the sake of appropriating his verses. I may say with Milton, " that I am fallen on evil tongues, and evil days,” being not only plundered of that which belongs to me, but by being charged with that which does not. Thus it seems (and I have learned it from more quarters than one) that a report is, and has been sometime current in this and the neighbouring counties, that, though I have given myself the air of declaiming against the slave trade in the Task, I am in reality a friend to it; and last night I received a letter from Joe Rye, to inform me that I have been much traduced and calum. niated on this account. Not knowing how I could better or more effectually refute the scandal, I have this morning sent a copy to the Northampton paper, prefaced by a short letter to the printer, specifying the occasion. The verses are in honour of Mr. Wilberforce, and sufficiently expressive of my
present sentiments on the subject. You are a wicked fair one for disappointing us of our expected visit, and therefore, out of mere spite, I will not insert them. I have been very ill these ten days, and, for the same spite's sake, will not tell you what has ailed me.
But, lest you should die of a fright, I will have the mercy to tell you that I am recovering
Mr. Robert Burns (the Poet) to Mr. TVilliam
Dumfries, Jan. 22, 1792. I SIT down, my dear Sir, to introduce a young lady to you, and a lady in the first ranks of fashion too. What à task! to you—who care no more for the herd of animals called young ladies, than you do for the here of animals called young gentlemen ; to you---who despise and detest the groupings and combinations of fashion, as an ideot painter that seems industrious to place staring fools and unprincipled knaves in the foreground of his picture, while men of sense and honesty are too often thrown in the dimmest shades. Mrs. Riddel, who will take this letter to town with her, and send it to you, is a character that, even in your own way, as a naturalist and a philosopher, would be an acquisition to your acquaintance. The lady too is a votary of the muses, and as I think myself somewhat a judge in my own trade, I assure you that her verses, always correct, and often elegant, are much beyond the common run of the lady poetesses of the day She is a great admirer of your book, and hearing me say that I was acquainted with you, she begged
to be known to you, as she is just going to pay her first visit to our Caledonian capital. I told her that her best way was to desire her near relation and your intimate friend, Craig dárroch, to have you at his house while she was there; and lest
you might think of a lively West Indian girl of eighteen, as girls of eighteen too often deserve to be thought of, I should take care to remove that prejudice. To be impartial, however, in appreciating the lady's merits, she has one unlucky failing; a failing that you will easily discover, as she seems rather pleased with indulging in it, and a failing that you will as easily pardon, as it is a sin which very much besets yourself—where she dislikes or despises, she is apt to make no more a secret of it than where she esteems and respects.
I will not present you with the unmeaning compliments of the season; but I will send you my warmest wishes and most ardent prayers, that fortune may never throw your subsistence to the mercy a knave, or set your character on the judgment of a fool; but that, upright and erect, you may walk to an honest grave, where men of letters shall say, here lies a man who did honour to
science ; and men of worth shall say, here lies a · man who did honour to human nature.