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letters that had been kept so long in store;? and rejoice at Miss Rasay's advancement, and wish Sir Allan success.

“I hope to meet you somewhere towards the north, but am loth to come quite to Carlisle. Can we not meet at Manchester? But we will settle it in some other letters.

“Mr. Seward,a great favourite at Streatham, has been, I think, enkindled by our travels with a curiosity to see the Highlands. I have given him letters to you and Beattie.

He desires that a lodging may be taken for him at Edinburgh, against his arrival. He is just setting out.

"Langton has been exercising the militia. Mrs. Williams is, I fear, declining. Dr. Lawrence says he can do no more. She is gone to summer in the country, with as many conveniences about her as she can expect; but I have no great hope. We must all die : may we all be prepared ! “I

suppose Miss Boswell reads her book, and young Alexander takes to his learning. Let me hear about them; for everything that belongs to you, belongs in a more remote degree, and not, hope, very remote, to, dear Sir,

“ Yours affectionately,


1 Since they have been so much honoured by Johnson, I shall here insert them :U TO MR, SAMUEL JOHNSON.

Sunday, Sept. 30, 1764.
" You know my solemn enthusiasm of mind. You love me for it, and I respect myself for
it, because in so far as I resemble Mr. Johnson. You will be agreeably surprised when you
learn the reason of my writing this letter. I am at Wittemberg, in Saxony. I am in the
old church where the Reformation was first preached, and where some of the Reformers lie
interred. I cannot resist the serious pleasure of writing to Mr. Johnson from the tomb of
Melancthon. My paper rests upon the grave-stone of that great and good man, who was
undoubtedly the worthiest of all the Reformers. He wished to reform abuses which had been
introduced into the Church; but had no private resentment to gratify. So mild was he, that
when his aged mother consulted him with anxiety on the perplexing disputes of the times,
he advised her to keep to the old religion. At this tomb, then, my ever dear and respected
friend, I vow to thee an eternal attachment. It shall be my study to do what I can to render
your life happy; and if you die before me, I shall endeavour to do honour to your memory;
and, elevated by the remembrance of you, persist in noble piety. May God, the father of all
beings, ever bless you, and may you continue to love
Your most affectionate friend and devoted servant,


Wilton-house, April 22, 1775.
"Every scene of my life confirms the truth of what you have told me, there is no certain
happiness in this state of being. I am here, amidst all that you know is at Lord Pembroke's•
and yet I am weary and gloomy. I am just setting out for the house of an old friend in
Devonshire, and shall not get back to London for a week yet. You said to me last Good
Friday, with a cordiality that warmed my heart, that if I came to settle in London, we should
have a day fixed every week to meet by ourselves and talk freely. To be thought worthy of
such a privilege cannot but exalt me. During my present absence from you, while, notwith-
standing the gaiety which you allow me to possess, I am darkened by temporary clouds, I
beg to have a few lines from you—a few lines merely of kindness, as a viaticum till I see you
again. In your 'Vanity of Human Wishes,' and in Parnell's 'Contentment,' I find the only
sure means of enjoying happiness; or, at least, the hopes of happiness. I ever am, with
reverence and affection, most faithfully yours,

JAMES BOSWELL." 9 William Seward, Esq., F.R.S. editor of " Anecdotes of some Distinguished Persons,"




June 24, 1777. “This gentleman is a great favourite at Streatham, and therefore you will easily believe that he has very valuable qualities. Our narrative has kindled him with a desire of visiting the Highlands after having already seen a great part of Europe. You must receive him as a friend, and, when you have directed him to the curiosities of Edinburgh, give him instructions and recom. mendations for the rest of his journey. I am, dear Sir,

“Your most humble servant,


Johnson's benevolence to the unfortunate was, I am confident, as steady and active as that of any of those who have been most eminently distinguished for that virtue. Innumerable proofs of it I have no doubt will be for ever concealed from mortal eyes. We may, however, form some judgment of it from the many and very various instances which have been discovered. One, which happened in the course of this summer, is remarkable from the name and connection of the person who was the object of it. The circumstance to which I allude is ascertained by two letters, one to Mr. Langton, and another to the Reverend Dr. Vyse, rector of Lambeth, son of the respectable clergyman at Lichfield, who was contemporary with Johnson, and in whose father's family Johnson had the happiness of being kindly received in his early years.


June 29, 1777. “I have lately been much disordered by a difficulty of breathing, but am now better. I hope your house is well.

“You know we have been talking lately of St. Cross, at Winchester; I have an old acquaintance whose distress makes him very desirous of an hospital, and I am afraid I have not strength enough to get him into the Chartreux. He is a painter, who never rose higher than to get his immediate living, and from that, at eighty-three, he is disabled by a slight stroke of the palsy, such as does not make him at all helpless on common occasions, though his hand is not steady enough for his art.

"My request is, that you will try to obtain a promise of the next vacancy from the Bishop of Chester. It is not a great thing to ask, and I hope we shall obtain it. Dr. Warton has promised to favour him with his notice, and I hope he may end his days in peace.

“I am, Sir, your most humble servant,


&c., in four volumes 8vo., well known to a numerous and valuable acquaintance for his literature, love of the fine arts, and social virtues. I am indebted to him for several com. munications concerning Johnson.-BOSWELL.

This gentleman, who was born in 1747, and was educated at the Charter-house, and at Oxford, died in London, April 24, 1799.—MALONE.



July 9, 1777. “I doubt not but you will readily forgive me for taking the liberty of requesting your assistance in recommending an old friend to his Grace the Archbishop as Governor of the Charter-house.

“His name is De Groot; he was born at Gloucester. I have known him many years. He has all the common claims to charity, being old, poor, and infirm in a great degree. He has likewise another claim, to which no scholar can refuse attention; he is by several descents the nephew of Hugo Grotius ; of him, from whom perhaps every man of learning has learnt something. Let it not be said that in any lettered country a nephew of Grotius asked a charity and was refused. I am, Reverend Sir, your most humble servant,



July 22, 1777. “IF any notice should be taken of the recommendation which I took the liberty of sending you, it will be necessary to know that Mr. De Groot is to be found at No. 8, in Pye-street, Westminster. This information, when I wrote, I could not give you; and being going soon to Lichfield, think it necessary to be left behind me. More I will not say. You will want no persuasion to succour the nephew of Grotius. I am, Sir,

Your most humble servant,

« Sam. JOHNSON.”


Lambeth, June 9, 1777. “ I have searched in vain for the letter which I spoke of, and which I wished, at your desire, to communicate to you. It was from Dr. Johnson, to return me thanks for my application to Archbishop Cornwallis in favour of poor De Groot.' He rejoices at the success it met with, and is lavish in the praise he bestows upon his favourite, Hugo Grotius. I am really sorry that I cannot ind this letter, as it is worthy of the writer. That which I send you enclosed," is at your service. It is very short, and will not perhaps be thought of any consequence, unless you should judge proper to consider it as a proof of the very humane part which Dr. Johnson took in behalf of a distressed and deserving person. I am, Sir, Your most obedient humble servant,

“W. VYSE."3

1 Through the benevolent intercession of Dr. Johnson, aided by Dr. Vyse, poor De Groot was admitted as a gentleman pensioner into the Charter-house, where he died in 1779.-ED.

? The preceding letter.-BOSWELL.

3 Dr. Vyse, at my request, was so obliging as once more to endeavour to recover the letter of Johnson, to which he alludes, but without success; for April 23, 1800, he wrote to me thus :-“ I have again searched, but in vain, for one of his letters, in which he speaks, in his own nervous style, of Hugo Grotius.-De Groot was clearly a descendant of the family of Grotius, and Archbishop Cornwallis willingly complied with Dr.Johnson's request.”—Maloxx,



Bolt-court, Fleet-street, July 7, 1777. “To the collection of English Poets I have recommended the volume of Dr. Watts to be added; his name has long been held by me in veneration, and I would not willingly be reduced to tell of him only that he was born and died. Yet of his life I know very little, and therefore must pass him in a manner very unworthy of his character, unless some of his friends will favour me with the necessary information. Many of them must be known to you: and by your influence perhaps I may obtain some instruction. My plan does not exact much; but I wish to distinguish Watts, a man who never wrote but for a good purpose. Be pleased to do for me what you can. I am, Sir,

“ Your humble servant,




Edinburgh, July 15, 1777. “ The fate of poor Dr. Dodd made a dismal impression upon my mind.




“I had sagacity enough to divine that you wrote his speech to the Recorder, before sentence was pronounced. I am glad you have written so much for him; and I hope to be favoured with an exact list of the several pieces when we meet.

“I received Mr. Seward, as the friend of Mr. and Mrs. Thrale, and as a gentleman recommended by Dr. Johnson to my attention. I have introduced him to Lord Kames, Lord Monboddo, and Mr. Nairne. He is gone to the Highlands with Dr. Gregory; when he returns I shall do more for him.

“Sir Allan Maclean has carried that branch of his cause, of which we had good hopes: the President and one other Judge only were against him. I wish the House of Lords may do as well as the Court of Session has done. But Sir Allan has not the lands of Brolos quite cleared by this judgment, till a long account is made up of debts and interest on the one side, and rents on the other. I am, however, not much afraid of the balance.

Macquarry's estates, Staffa and all, were sold yesterday, and bought by a Campbell. I fear he will have little or nothing left out of the purchase-money.

I send you the case against the negro, by Mr. Cullen, son to Dr. Cullen in opposition to Maclaurin's for liberty, of which you have approved. Pray read this, and tell me what you think as a Politician, as well as a Poet, upon this subject.

"Be so kind as to let me know how your time is to be distributed next autumn. I will meet you at Manchester, or where you please; but I wish you would complete your tour of the cathedrals, and come to Carlisle, and I will accompany you a part of the way homewards.

“I am ever most faithfully yours,


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July 22, 1777. “ Your notion of the necessity of an early interview is very pleasing to both my vanity and tenderness. I shall, perhaps, come to Carlisle another year ; but my money has not held out so well as it used to do. I shall go to Ashbourne, and I purpose to make Dr. Taylor invite you. If you live awhile with me at his house, wo shall have much time to ourselves, and our stay will be no expense to us or him. I shall leave London the 28th ; and, after some stay at Oxford and Lichfield, shall probably come to Ashbourne about the end of your Session; but of all this you shall have notice. Be satisfied we will meet somewhere.

“What passed between me and poor Dr. Dodd, you shall know more fully when we meet.

“Of law-suits there is no end; poor Sir Allan must have another trial, for which, however, his antagonist cannot be much blamed, having two judges on his side. I am more afraid of the debts than of the House of Lords. It is scarcely to be imagined to what debts will swell, that are daily increasing by small additions, and how carelessly in a state of desperation debts are contracted. Poor Macquarry was far from thinking that when he sold his islands he should receive nothing. For what were they sold ? And what was their yearly value? The admission of money into the Highlands will soon put an end to the feudal modes of life, by making those men landlords who were not chiefs. I do not know that the people will suffer by the change ; but there was in the patriarchal authority something venerable and pleasing. Every eye must look with pain on a Campbell turning the Macquarrys at will out of their sedes avidæ, their hereditary island.

“Sir Alexander Dick is the only Scotsman liberal enough not to be angry that. I could not find trees where trees were not. I was much delighted by his kind lotter.

I remember Rasay with too much pleasure not to partake of the happiness of any part of that amiable family. Our ramble in the islands hangs upon my imagination; I can hardly help imagining that we shall go again. Pennant seems to have seen a great deal which we did not see : when we travel again, let us look better about us.

“ You have done right in taking your uncle's house. Some change in the form of life gives from time to time a new epocha of existence. In a new place there is something new to be done, and a different system of thought arises in the mind. I wish I could gather currants in your garden. Now fit up a little study, and have your books ready at hand; do not spare a little money, to make your habitation pleasing to yourself.

“I have dined lately with poor dear I do not think he goes on well. His table is rather coarse, and he has his children too much about him." But he is a very good man.

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1 This very just remark, I hope, will be constantly held in remembrance by parents, who are in general too apt to indulge their own fond feelings for their children at the expense of their friends. The common custom of introducing them after dinner is highly injudicious. It is agreeable enough that they should appear at any other time; but they should not be

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