« AnteriorContinua »
I keep it to lengthen ? I have not yet seen Stella's mother, because I will not see Lady Giffard ; but I will contrive to get there when Lady Giffard is abroad. I forgot to mark my two former letters ; but I remember this is number 3, and I have not yet had number 1 from MD; but I shall by Monday, which I reckon will be just a fortnight after
first. I am resolved to bring over a great deal of china. I loved it mightily to-day. What shall I bring ?
16. Morning. Sir John Holland, comptroller of the household, * has sent to desire my acquaintance ; I have a mind to refuse him, because he is a Whig, and will, I suppose, be out among the rest ; but he is a man of worth and learning. Tell me, do you like this journal
way of writing? Is it not tedious and dull ? Night. I dined to-day with a cousin, a printer, where Patty, Rolt lodges, and then came home, after a visit or two ; and it has been a very insipid day. Mrs Long's misfortune is confirmed to me; bailiffs were in her house ; she retired to private lodgings; thence to the country, nobody knows where : her friends leave letters at some inn, and they are carried to her; and she writes answers, without dating them from any place. I swear it grieves me to the soul. +
17. To-day I dined six miles out of town, with Will
* Sir John Holland had some reason for apprehension, being a keen Whig, and a distinguished manager for the Commons on the impeachment of Sacheverell. He succeeded Sir Thomas Felton as comptroller of the household, 23d March 1709-10.
+ Mrs Ann Long, once a celebrated beauty and toast of the Kit-cat Club, was sister to Sir James Long, and niece of Colonel Strangeways. She was a particular friend of Swift; who entered into a whimsical treaty with her, capitulating upon the condi
Pate, the learned woollen draper. * Mr Stratford went with me : six miles here is nothing: we left Pate after sunset, and were here before it was dark. This letter shall go on Thursday, whether I hear from MD or no. My health continues pretty well; pray God, Stella may give me a good account of hers: and I hope you are now at Trim, or soon designing it. I was disappointed to-night; the fellow gave me a letter, and I hoped to see little MD's hand ; and it was only to invite me to a venison pasty to-day : so I lost my pasty into the bargain. Pox on these declining courtiers ! Here is Mr Brydges, the paymaster-general, desiring my acquaintance; but I hear the queen sent Lord Shrewsbury to assure him he may keep his place; and he promises me great assistance in the affair of the first-fruits. Well, I must turn over this leaf to-night, though the side would hold another line ; but pray consider this is a whole sheet: it holds a plaguy deal, and you must be content to be weary; but I will do so no more. Sir Simon Harcourt is made attorney-general, and not lordkeeper.
18. To-day I dined with Mr Stratford at Mr Ad
tions of their acquaintance. Through her own imprudence, and the unkindness of her friends, she fell into narrow circumstances, contracted some embarrassing debts, and retired to Lynn, in Norfolk, under the assumed name of Smythe, where she died soon afterwards. Her death is noticed in this Journal, 25th December 1711, and is deeply lamented by Swift.
* Will Pate, for whom Swift composed an epitaph, was a tradesman of such a turn for letters, as to be called the Learned Woollen Draper. He was educated at Trinity-Hall, Cambridge, and took the degree of Bachelor of Arts. He died in 1746, and was buried at Lee, in Kent. Swift mentions Pate more than once in this Journal.
dison's retirement near Chelsea ; then came to town; got home early, and began a letter to the Tatler, about the corruptions of style and writing, &c.; and having not heard from you, am resolved this letter shall night. Lord Wharton was sent for to town in mighty haste, by the Duke of Devonshire ; * they have some project in hand; but it will not do, for every hour we expect a thorough revolution, and that the parliament will be dissolved. When you see Joe, tell him, Lord Wharton is too busy to mind any of his affairs; but I will get what good offices I can from Mr Addison, and will write to-day to Mr Pratt; and bid Joe not to be discouraged, for I am confident he will get the money under any government; but he must have patience.
19. I have been scribbling this morning, and I believe shall hardly fill this side to-day, but send it as it is ; and it is good enough for naughty girls that will not write to a body, and to a good boy like Presto. I thought to have sent this to-night, but was kept by company, and could not; and, to say the truth, I had a little mind to expect one post more for a letter from MD. Yesterday at noon died the Earl of Anglesea, † the great support of the Tories ; so that employment of vice-treasurer of Ireland is again vacant. We were to have been great friends, and I could hardly have a loss
* William Cavendish, second Duke of Devonshire, distinguished as a steady adherent to Whig politics.
+ John Annesley, Earl of Anglesea, a young nobleman of high promise, and rising in favour at court. He was made vice-treasurer of Ireland a few weeks before his decease. He died of a fever, on the 8th September 1710.
that could grieve me more. The Bishop of Durham * died the same day. The Duke of Ormond's daughter was to visit me to-day at a third place by way of advance, and I am to return it to-morrow. † I have had a letter from Lady Berkeley, begging me for charity to come to Berkeley Castle, for company to my lord, who has been ill of a dropsy; but I cannot go, and must send
my excuse to-morrow. I am told, that in a few hours there will be more removals.
20. To-day I returned my visits to the duke's daughters ; the insolent drabs came up to my very mouth to salute me; then I heard the report confirmed of removals; my Lord President Somers; the Duke of Devonshire, lord steward; and Mr Boyle, secretary of state, are all turned out to-day. I never remember such bold steps taken by a court : I am almost shocked at it, though I did not care if they were all hanged. We are astonished why the parliament is not yet dissolved, and why they keep a matter of that importance to the last. We shall have a strange winter here between the struggles of a cunning provoked discarded party, and the triumphs of one in power ; of both which I shall be an indifferent spectator, and return very
* It was not the Bishop of Durham, but of St David's, Dr George Bull, who died that day. He was raised to the prelacy, April 29, 1705.
7 “When I lived in England,” says the Dean to Miss Hoadley,
once every year I issued out an edict, commanding, that all ladies of wit, sense, merit, and quality, who had an ambition to be acquainted with me, should make the first advances at their peril.”—Letter, dated 4th June 1734. See his Capitulation with Mrs Long.
* See the Journal hereafter, October 20, 1710.
peaceably to Ireland, when I have done my part in the affair I am intrusted with, whether it succeeds or not. To-morrow I change my lodgings in Pall Mall for one in Bury Street, where I suppose I shall continue while I stay in London. If any thing happens to-morrow, I will add it.
Robin's Coffeehouse. We have great news just now from Spain ; Madrid taken and Pampeluna. I am here ever interrupted.
21. I have just received your letter, which I will not answer now; God be thanked all things are so well. I find you have not yet had my second : I had a letter from Parvisol, who tells me he gave Mrs Walls a bill of twenty pounds for me, to be given to you ; but you have not sent it. This night the parliament is dissolved : great news from Spain; King Charles and Stanhope are at Madrid, and Count Staremberg has taken Pampeluna. Farewell. This is from St James's Coffeehouse. I will begin my answer to your letter to-night; but not send it this week. Pray, tell me whether you like this journal way of writing.-I do not like your reasons for not going to Trim.
Parvisol tells me he can sell your horse. Sell it with a pox? Pray let him know that he shall sell his soul as soon. What? sell any thing that Stella loves, and may sometimes ride ? It is hers, and let her do as she pleases: pray let him know this by the first that you know goes to Trim. Let him sell my gray and be hanged.