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Oxford English Classics. ***
BOSWELL'S LIFE OF JOHNSON.
IN FOUR VOLUMES.
BIBLIOTHEQUE S. J.
SAMUEL JOHNSON, LL, D.
HAVING left Ashbourne in the evening, we stopped to change horses at Derby, and availed ourselves of a moment to enjoy the conversation of my countryman, Dr. Butler, then physician there. He was in great indignation because lord Mountstuart's bill for a Scotch militia had been lost. Dr. Johnson was as violent against it. “I am glad,” said he, “ that parliament has had the spirit to throw it out. You wanted to take advantage of the timidity of our scoundrels :” (meaning, I suppose, the ministry.) It may be observed, that he used the epithet scoundrel, very commonly, not quite in the sense in which it is generally understood, but as a strong term of disapprobation; as when he abruptly answered Mrs. Thrale, who had asked him how he did, “ Ready to become a scoundrel, madam ; with a little more spoiling, you will, I think, make me a complete rascal a :”—he meant, easy to become a capricious and self-indulgent valetudinarian; a character for which I have heard him express great disgust.
Johnson had with him upon this jaunt, Il Palmerino d'Inghilterra, a romance praised by Cervantes; but did not like it much. He said, he read it for the language, by way of preparation for his Italian expedition.-We lay this night at Loughborough.
On Thursday, March 28th, we pursued our journey. I mentioned that old Mr. Sheridan complained of the ingra
a Anecdotes of Johnson, p. 176.