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Dr. Johnson was unquestionably in the right; and whoever examines himself candidly, will be satisfied of it, though the inconsistency between principles and practice are greater in some men than in others.

I recollect very little of this night's conversation. I am sorry that indolence came on me towards the conclusion of our journey, so that I did not write down what passed with the same assiduity as during the greatest part of it.


Mr. M'Aulay breakfasted with us, nothing hurt or dismayed by his last night's correction. Being a man of good sense, he had a just admiration of Dr. Johnson.

Either yesterday morning, or this, I communicated to Dr. Johnson, from Mr. M'Aulay's information, the news that Dr. Beattie had got a pension of two hundred pounds a year. He sat up in his bed, clapped his hands, and cried, "O brave we!"a peculiar exclamation of his when he rejoices*.

As we sat over our tea, Mr. Home's Tragedy of DOUGLAS was mentioned. I put Dr. Johnson in mind, that once, in a coffee house at Oxford, he called to old Mr. Sheridan, "How came you, Sir, to give Home a gold metal for writing that foolish play?” and defied Mr. Sheridan to shew ten good lines in it. He did not insist they should be together; but that there were not ten good lines in the whole play. He now persisted in this. I endeavoured to defend that.

* Having mentioned, more than once, that my Journal was perused by Dr. Johnson, I think it proper to inform my readers that this is the last paragraph which he read.

pathetick and beautiful tragedy, and repeated the following passage:


"Thou first of virtues! let no mortal leave


Thy onward path, although the earth should gape, "And from the gulph of hell destruction cry,

"To take dissimulation's winding way."

JOHNSON." That will not do, sir. Nothing is good but what is consistent with truth or probability, which this is not. Juvenal, indeed, gives us a noble picture of inflexible virtue :

"Esto bonus miles, tutor bonus, arbiter idem
"Integer: ambigua si quando citabere testis,
"Incertæque rei, Phalaris licet imperet, ut sis
"Falsus, et admoto dictet perjuria tauro,
"Summum crede nefas animam præferre pudori,
"Et propter vitam vivendi perdere causas *.”

He repeated the lines with great force and dignity; then added, “And, after this, comes Johnny Home, with his earth gaping, and his destruction crying-Pooh +!"

An honest guardian, arbitrator just,

Be thou; thy station deem a sacred trust.

With thy good sword maintain thy country's cause;
In every action venerate its laws:

The lie suborn'd if falsely urg'd to swear,

Though torture wait thee, torture firmly bear;
To forfeit honour, think the highest shame,
And life too dearly bought by loss of fame;
Nor to preserve it, with thy virtue give

That for which only man should wish to live.

For this and the other translations to which no signature is affixed, I am indebted to the friend whose observations are mentioned in the notes, pp. 66, and 416.


I am sorry that I was unlucky in my quotation, But notwithstanding the acuteness of Dr. Johnson's criticism, and the of his ridicule, the Tragedy of Douglas still continues to be generally and deservedly admired,

While we were lamenting the number of ruined religious buildings which we had lately seen, I spoke with peculiar feeling of the miserable neglect of the chapel belonging to the palace of Holyroodhouse, in which are deposited the remains of many of the Kings of Scotland, and of many of our nobility. I said, it was a disgrace to the country that it was not repaired: and particularly complained that my friend Douglas, the representative of a great house, and proprietor of a vast estate, should suffer the sacred spot where his mother lies interred, to be unroofed, and exposed to all the inclemencies of the weather. Dr. Johnson, who, I know not how, had formed an opinion on the Hamilton side, in the Douglas cause, slily answered, "Sir, sir, don't be too severe upon the gentleman; don't accuse him of want of filial piety! Lady Jane Douglas was not his mother."-He roused my zeal so much that I took the liberty to tell him he knew nothing of the cause which I do most seriously believe was the


We were now "in a country of bridles and saddles," and set out fully equipped. The Duke of Argyle was obliging enough to mount Dr. Johnson on a stately steed from his grace's stable. My friend was highly pleased, and Joseph said, "He now looks like a bishop."

We dined at the inn at Tarbat, and at night came to Rosedow, the beatiful seat of Sir James Colquhoun, on the banks of Lochlomond, where I, and any friends whom I have introduced, have ever been received with kind and elegant hospitality.


When I went into Dr. Johnson's room this morning, I observed to him how wonderfully courteous he had been at Inveraray, and said, "You were quite a fine gentleman, when with the duchess." He answered, in good humour, "Sir, I look upon myself as a very polite man :" and he was right, in a proper manly sense of the word. As an immediate proof of it, let me observe, that he would not send back the Duke of Argyle's horse without a letter of thanks, which I copied.



"THAT kindness which disposed your grace to supply me with the horse, which I have now returned, will make you pleased to hear that he has carried me well.

"By my diligence in the little commission with which I was honoured by the duchess, I will endeavour to shew how highly I value the favours which I have received, and how much I desire to be thought,

"My Lord,

"Your grace's most obedient,

" and most humble servant,

Rosedow, Oct. 29, 1773.


The duke was so attentive to his respectable guest, that on the same day, he wrote him an answer, which was received at Auchinleck:



"I am glad to hear your journey from this place was not unpleasant, in regard to your horse. I wish I could have supplied you with good weather, which I am afraid you felt the want of.

"The Duchess of Argyle desires her compliments to you, and is much obliged to you for remembering her commission. I am, sir,

"Your most obedient humble servant,

Inveraray, Oct. 29, 1778.


I am happy to insert every memorial of the honour done to my great friend. Indeed, I was at all times desirous to preserve the letters which he received from eminent persons, of which, as of all other papers, he was very negligent; and I once proposed to him, that they should be committed to my care, as his Custos Rotulorum. I wish he had complied with my request, as by that means many valuable writings might have been preserved, that are now lost *.

After breakfast, Dr. Johnson and I were furnished with a boat, and sailed about upon Locklomond, and landed on some of the islands which are inter

* As a remarkable instance of his negligence, I remember some years ago to have found lying loose in his study, and without the cover, which contained the address, a letter to him from Lord Thurlow, to whom he had made an application as Chancellor, in behalf of a poor literary friend. It was expressed in such terms of respect for Dr. Johnson, that, in my zeal for his reputation, I remonstrated warmly with him on his strange inattention, and obtained his permission to take a copy of it; by which probably it has been preserved, as the original I have reason to suppose is lost.

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