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other. 'My mother is highly displeased with you, and says you are a very idle girl; my aunt is of the same opinion; and I woulu fain, like a loving brother, excuse you if I could. Pray, for the future, take carc to deserve a better character, and, by writing soon and often, put it in my power to say what a good sister I have; for be assured, you will always find me
Your affectionate Brother.
P.S. Due respects of every one here to all friends in the country.
The Sister's Answer.
kind reproof, and promise never to be so negligent again. I write to beg my mother's pardon, and to desire her to intercede for me with my aunt, on this my promise of amendment. Continue, my dear bro. ther, to be my advocate, in all my unintended imperfections, and I will never err voluntarily for the future; in order that I may be as worthy as possible of your kind instructions, and shew myself what I truly am, and ever will be,
Your affectionate and obliged Sister
From the Daughter to her mother, in excuse for
her negtect: HONORED MADAM, I AM ashamed that I have staid to be reminded of my duty by any one, but more especially
that I should put my brother to so disagreeable a task, as it must be to one of his sensibility. I shall not endeavour to vindicate my silence, for that might aggravate the crime; though my time has been strangely taken up by the kind attention and favor of your good friends here, particularly my aunt Boulton: yet well I know, that my duty to so indulgent a parent ought to precede all other considerations. All I beg, therefore, is, that you will be so good as to forgive me, on promise of amendment; and procure forgiveness also of my aunt, and all friends. Believe me, Madam, when I assure you, that no diversions here or elsewhere, shall make me lose sight of the duty I owe to so good a mother, and such kind relations, and that I ever shall be
Your grateful and dutiful Daughter.
Dr. Johnson to Miss Jane Langton, Daughter of
his intimate and dear Friend Bennet Langton, Esq. then a very young Lady.
MY DEAREST Miss JENNY, I AM sorry that your pretty letter has been so long without being answered; but when I am not well, I do not always write plain enough for young ladies. I am glad, my dear, to see that you write so well, and hope that you mind your pen, your book, and your needle, for they are all necessary : your books will give you knowledge and make you respected; and your needle will find you useful employment when you do not care to read. When you are a little older, I hope you will be very diligent in learning arithmetic; and, above all, that through
your whole life, you will carefully say your prayers, and read your bible.
I am, my dear,
Your most humble Servant.
Dr. Johnson to Miss Susannah Thrale, on Study,
Religion, &c. DEAREST Miss Susy, WIEN you favoured me with your letter, you seems to be in want of materials to fill it, having met with no great adventures, either of peril or delight, nor done or suffered any thing out of the common course of life.
When you have lived longer, and considered Inore, you will find the common course of life very fertile of observation and renection. Upon the common course of life must our thoughts and our conversation be generally employed. Our general course of life must denominate us wise or foolish; happy or miserable: if it is well regulated, we pass on prosperously and smoothly; as it is neglected, we live in embarrassment, perplexity, and uneasi.
Your time, my love, passes, I suppose, in devotion, reading, work, and company. If your devotions, in which I earnestly advise you to be very punctual, you may not perhaps thiuk it proper to give me an account ; and of work, unless I under. stood it better, it will be of no great use to say much ; but books and company will always supply you
with materials for your letters to me, as I shall always be pleased to know what your are reading, and with what you are pleased; and shall take great delight in knowing what impression new modes or new characters make upon you, and to
observe with what attention you distinguish the tempers, dispositions, and abilities of your companions.
A letter, may be always made out of the books of the morning, or talk of the evening; and any letters from you, my dearest, will be welcome to
From an elder to a younger Brother, representing
to him the fatal Consequences attendant on Extravagance.
YOU must imagine, if you give yourself time to reflect, that your misfortunes affect me alnjost as much as my own; which, you are sensible, are not a few: but then you know very well, that mine are owing to unavoidable accidents, and not to wilful profusion. This consideration supports me under them; but what I have suffered on your account, has not been occasioned by my own indiscretion.
While our parents were living, they not only supplied you with every thing necessary and convenient, but even indulged you in extravagance. What they left behind them is now devolved to me; and both nature and prudence direct me to make the best ise of it that I am able. I own I am inclincd to serve you to the utmost of my power : but, my dear brother, which way can I do it effectually The many supplies you received from our indulgent parents were absolutely thrown away; because, through your own misapplication of them, they gave you no real assistance. And
And pray what measures can I take to relieve you? Had you made a proper use of your friends readiness to serve you, you had been happy long since; but, to speak
freely, your present distress, is wholly owing to your own folly. - The fortune you had, with good management, would have afforded you a comfortable subsistence for life; whereas you have squandered it away in less than two years. Were I able and willing to give you as much more,
what have I to suppose
would be a better æconomist for the future? All I have in the world, at your rate of living, would support you but a few years; and as I think it my duty to take care of ny own family, I must not injure them by relieving you, Were I to send
money you require, what other end could it answer than to lengthen your credit, and involve you still farther into debt? This has always been the case, hitherto, when I have assisted you; and, therefore, it is now high time to withdraw my favours. Nevertheless, when I am sufficiently convinced of your reformation, you may depend on receiving all reasonable assist ance from
Your affectionate Brother.
From a Gentleman to his Son, against Loquacity.
DEAR CHARLES, THERE is something in your behaviour, since your return from London, which is unpleasant to mc; and I must frankly tell you, that I do not think you are at all mended by travelling. You have, by keeping company with coxcombs, and mistaking ceremony for politeness, contracted a habit of not only talking much, and in a frothy inanner, but of sacrificing every thing to compliments : even your sincerity is offered up to it; and you seem to think yourself obliged, in point of good manners, to agree with every thing that is