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it will be a proof that I have been fortunate in selecting the most striking incidents.'
“I suppose by The Life of Robert Bruce, his lordship means that part of his ' Annals' which relates the history of that prince, and not a separate work.
“ Shall we have A Journey to Paris from you in the winter ? You will, I hope, at any rate, be kind enough to give me some account of your French travels very soon, for I am very impatient. What a different scene have you viewed this autumn, from that which you viewed in autumn 1773! I ever am, my dear Sir,
Your much obliged and
" JAMES BOSWELL.”
TO JAMES BOSWELL, ESQ. “ DEAR SIR,
November 16, 1775. "I am glad that the young laird is born, and an end, as I hope, put to the only difference that you can ever have with Mrs. Boswell. I know that she does not love me; but I intend to persist in wishing her well till I get the better of her.
“Paris is, indeed, a place very different from the Hebrides, but it is to a hasty traveller not so fertile of novelty, nor affords so many opportunities of remark. I cannot pretend to tell the public anything of a place better known to many of my readers than to myself. We can talk of it when we meet.
“I shall go next week to Streatham, from whence I purpose to send a parcel of the ‘History' every post. Concerning the character of Bruce, I can only say, that I do not see any great reason for writing it; but I shall not easily deny what Lord Hailes and you concur in desiring.
"I have been remarkably healthy all the journey, and hope you and your family have known only that trouble and danger which has so happily terminated. Among th congratulations that you may receive, I hope you believe none more warm or sincere, than those of, dear Sir,
“ Your most affectionate,
“ SAM. JOHNSON.”
TO MRS. LUCY PORTER, IN LICHFIELD.2 “ DEAR MADAM,
November 16, 1775. - This week I came home from Paris. I have brought you a little box, which I thought pretty; but I know not whether it is properly a snuff-box, or a box for some other use. I will send it, when I can find an opportunity. I have been through the whole journey remarkably well. My fellow-travellers were the same whom you saw at Lichfield, only we took Baretti with us. Paris is not so fine a place as you would expect. The palaces and churches, however,
* This alludes to my old feudal principle of preferring male to female succession.-BOSWELL.
There can be no doubt that, many years previous to 1775, he corresponded with this lady, who was his step-daughter, but none of his earliest letters to her have been preserved. BOSWELL.
Since the death of the author, several of Johnson's letters to Mrs. Lucy Porter, written before 1775, were obligingly communicated to me by the Rev. Dr. Vyse, and are printed in the present edition.-MALONE.
are very splendid and magnificent; and what would please you, there are many very fine pictures; but I do not think their way of life commodious or pleasant.
“Let me know how your health has been all this while. I hope the fine summer has given you strength sufficient to encounter the winter.
“Make my compliments to all my friends; and if your fingers will let you, write to me, or let your maid write to me, if it be troublesome to you. I am, dear Madam, “ Your most affectionate humble servant,
“ SAM. JOHNSON.” TO THE SAME. “DEAR MADAM,
December, 1775. “Some weeks ago I wrote to you to tell you that I was just come home from a ramble, and hoped that I should have heard from you. I am afraid winter has laid hold on your fingers, and hinders you from writing. However, let somebody write, if you cannot, and tell me how you do, and a little of what has happened at Lichfield among our friends. I hope you are all well.
“When I was in France, I thought myself growing young, but am afraid that cold weather will take part of my new vigour from me. Let us, however, take care of ourselves, and lose no part of our health by negligence.
“I never knew whether you received the Commentary on the New Testament, and the Travels, and the glasses.
“Do, my dear love, write to me; and do not let us forget each other. This is the season of good wishes, and I wish you all good. I have not lately seen Mr. Porter,' nor heard of him. Is he with you?
“Be pleased to make my compliments to Mrs. Adey, and Mrs. Cobb, and all my friends; and when I can do any good, let me know. I am, dear Madam,
“Yours most affectionately,
It is to be regretted, that he did not write an account of his travels in France ; for as he is reported to have once said, that "he could write the life of a broomstick,” ? so, notwithstanding so many former travellers have exhausted almost every subject for remark in that great kingdom, his very accurate observation, and peculiar vigour of thought and illustration, would have produced a valuable work. During his visit to it, which lasted but about two months, he wrote notes or minutes of what he saw. He promised to show me them, but I neglected to put him in mind of it; and the greatest part of them has been lost, or, perhaps, destroyed in a precipitate burning of his papers a few days before his death, which must ever be lamented. One small paper-book, however, entitled “FRANCE II.,” has been preserved, and is in my possession. It is a diurnal register of his life and observations, from the 10th of October, to the 4th of November, inclusive, being twentysix days, and shows an extraordinary attention to various minute particulars. Being the only memorial of this tour that remains, my readers, I am confident, will peruse it with pleasure, though his notes are very short, and evidently written only to assist his own recollection.
1 Son of Mrs. Johnson, by her first husband.-BOSWELL. 3 It is probable that the author's memory here deceived him, and that he was thinking of Stella's remark, that Swift could write finely upon a broomstick. See Jolinson's Life of Swift.-J. BosweLL, JUN.
“ Tuesday, Oct. 10. We saw the Ecole Militaire, in which one hundred and fifty young boys are educated for the army. They have arms of different sizes, according to the age ;-flints of wood. The building is very large, but nothing fine except the council-room. The French have large squares in the windows;—they make good iron palisades. Their meals are gross.
“We visited the observatory, a large building of a great height. The upper stones of the parapet very large, but not cramped with iron. The flat on the top is very extensive; but on the insulated part there is no parapet. Though it was broad enough, I did not care to go upon it. Maps were printing in one of the rooms.
“We walked to a small convent of the Fathers of the Oratory. In the reading-desk of the refectory lay the Lives of the Saints.
“ Wednesday, Oct. 11. We went to the Hôtel de Chatlois, a house not very large, but very elegant. One of the rooms was gilt to a degree that I never saw before. The upper part for servants and their masters was pretty.
“ Thence we went to Mr. Monville's, a house divided into small apartments, furnished with effeminate and minute elegance.—Porphyry.
“Thence we went to St. Roque's [Roch] Church, which is very large ;-the lower part of the pillars incrusted with marble.—Three chapels behind the high altar; the last a mass of low arches.-Altars, I believe, all round.
“We passed through Place de Vendôme, a fine square, about as big as Hanover Square.—Inhabited by the high families.—Louis XIV. on horseback in the middle.
“ Monville is the son of a farmer-general. In the house of Chatlois is a room furnished with japan, fitted up in Europe.
· We dined with Bocage, the Marquis Blanchetti, and his lady. The sweetmeats taken by the Marchioness Blanchetti, after observing that they were dear. Mr. Le Roy, Count Manucci, the Abbé, the Prior, and Father Wilson, who stayed with me, till I took him home in the coach.
“Bathiani is gone.
“ The French have no laws for the maintenance of their poor.—Monk not necessarily a priest.—Benedictines rise at four ;-are at church an hour and half; at church again half an hour before, half an hour after, dinner; and again from half an hour after seven to eight. They may sleep eight hours. Bodily labour wanted in monasteries.
“The poor taken to hospitals, and miserably kept.-Monks in the convent, fifteen :-accounted poor.
Thursday, Oct. 12. We went to the Gobelins.— Tapestry makes a good picture : imitates flesh exactly.—One piece with a gold ground; the birds not exactly coloured.—Thence we went to the King's cabinet; very neat, not perhaps perfect.-Gold ore.-Candles of the candle-tree.-Seeds. Woods. Thence to Gagnier's house. where I saw rooms nine, furnished with a profusion VOL, IT.
of wealth and elegance which I had never seen before.—Vases.—Pictures. The dragon china.—The lustre said to be of crystal, and to have cost-35001.—The whole furniture said to have cost 125,0001.—Damask hangings covered with pictures.—Porphyry.—This house struck me.—Then we waited on the ladies to Monville's.—Captain Irwin with us. Spain.—Country towns all beggars.At Dijon he could not find the way to Orleans.-Cross roads of France very bad.-Five soldiers.—Woman.-Soldiers escaped.—The Colonel would not lose five men for the death of one woman.—The magistrates cannot seize a soldier but by the Colonel's permission.—Good inn at Nismes.—Moors of Barbary fond of Englishmen.--Gibraltar eminently healthy; it has beef from Barbary.—There is a large garden.-Soldiers sometimes fall from the rock.
“Friday, Oct. 13. I stayed at home all day, only went to find the Prior, who was not at home. I read something in Canus.—Nec admiror, nec multum laudo.
"Saturday, Oct. 14. We went to the house of Mr. [D’] Argenson, which was almost wainscotted with looking-glasses, and covered with gold. The ladies' closet wainscotted with large squares of glass over painted paper. They always place mirrors to reflect their rooms.
“ Then we went to Julien's, the Treasurer of the Clergy; 30,000l. a year. -The house has no very large room, but is set with mirrors, and covered with gold.—Books of wood here, and in another library.
“At D' [Argenson's] I looked into the books in the lady's closet, and, in contempt, showed them to Mr. T[hrale).—Prince Titi ; Bibl. des Fées, and other books. She was offended, and shut up, as we heard afterwards, her apartment.
“ Then we went to Julien Le Roy, the King's watchmaker, a man of character in his business, who showed a small clock made to find the longitude.A decent man.
“Afterwards we saw the Palais Marchand, and the Courts of Justice, civil and criminal.—Queries on the Sellette.—This building has the old Gothic passages, and a great appearance of antiquity.–Three hundred prisoners sometimes in the gaol.
“Much disturbed; hope no ill will be.
“In the afternoon I visited Mr. Freron,4 the journalist. He spoke Latin very scantily, but seemed to understand me.—His house not splendid, but of commodious size.—His family, wife, son, and daughter, not elevated, but decent.—I was pleased with my reception.—He is to translate my books, which I am to send him with notes.
“Sunday, Oct. 15. At Choisi, a royal palace on the banks of the Seine, about seven miles from Paris.—The terrace noble along the river. The rooms numerous and grand, but not discriminated from other palaces. The chapel beautiful, but sınall.—China globes.—Inlaid tables.-Labyrinth.Sinking table.-Toilet tables.
1 The rest of this paragraph appears to be a minute of what was told by Capt. Irwin.BOSWELL.
2 Melchior Canus, a celebrated Spanish Dominican, who died at Toledo, in 1560, He wrote a treatise, De Locis Theologicis, in Twelve books.-BOSWELL.
3 This passage, which so many think superstitious, reminds me of Archbishop Laud's Diary -BOSWELL.
4 Elie Catherine Freron, a celebrated French critic, and powerful opponent of Voltaire, was born at Quimper in 1719. He was originally a Jesuit, but quitted the society at the age of 20. He died in the year following Johnson's visit to Paris; and therefore the contenplated translation of the Doctor's works was put an end to.-ED.
“Monday, Oct. 16. The Palais Royal very grand, large, and lofty.—A very great collection of pictures.—Three of Raphael.--Two Holy Family.-One small piece of M. Angelo.—One room of Rubens.--I thought the pictures of Raphael fine.
“The Tuileries.-Statues.- Venus.—Æn. and Anchises in his arms.-Nilus. - Many more.—The walks not open to mean persons.-Chairs at night hired for two sous a-piece.—Pont tournant.
“Austin Nuns.—Grate.—Mrs. Fermor, Abbess. She knew Pope, and thought him disagreeable.—Mrs. has many books; has seen life. Their frontlet disagreeable.—Their hood.—Their life easy.-Rise about five; hour and half at chapel; dine at ten. Another hour and a half at chapelhalf an hour about three, and half an hour more at seven; four hours in chapel.-A large garden.—Thirteen pensioners.—Teacher complained.
“At the Boulevards saw nothing, yet was glad to be there.-Rope-dancing and farce.—Egg-dance.
“N. [Note.] Near Paris, whether on week-days or Sundays, the roads empty. “ Tuesday, Oct. 17. At the Palais Marchand I bought A snuff-box
6 Table book
15 Scissors 3 p (pair)
63-£2 123. 6d. “We heard the lawyers plead.-N. As many killed at Paris as there are days in the year.—Chambre de question.--Tournelle at the Palais Marchand.-An old venerable building.
“The Palais Bourbon, belonging to the Prince of Condé. Only one small wing shown ;-lofty ;-splendid ;-gold and glass. The battles of the great Condé are painted in one of the rooms. The present Prince a grandsire at thirty-nine.
“ The sight of palaces, and other great buildings, leaves no very distinct images, unless to those who talk of them. As I entered, my wife was in my mind : she would have been pleased. Having now nobody to please, I am little pleased.
“ N. In France there is no middle rank.
“So many shops open, that Sunday is little distinguished at Paris.--The palaces of Louvre and Tuileries granted out in lodgings.
“In the Palais de Bourbon, gilt globes of metal at the fire-place.
Wednesday, Oct. 18. We went to Fontainebleau, which we found a large mean town, crowded with people.—The forest thick with woods, very extensive. -Manucci secured us lodgings. The appearance of the country pleasant. No
1 His tender affection for his departed wife, of which there are many evidences in his “Prayers and Meditations," appears very feelingly in this passage.-BOSWELL.