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I believe he

to go to he objected the necessity of attending his navigation; yet he could talk of going to Aberdeen, a place not much nearer his navigation. cannot bear the thought of living at in a state of diminution; and of appearing among the gentlemen of the neighborhood shorn of his beams. This is natural, but it is cowardly. What I told him of the increasing expense of a growing family, seems to have struck him. He certainly had gone on with very confused views, and we have, I think, shewn him that he is wrong; though, with the common deficience of advisers, we have not shewn him how to do right.

"I wish you would a little correct or restrain your imagination, and imagine that happiness, such as life admits, may be had at other places as well as London. Without asserting Stoicism, it may be said, that it is our business to exempt ourselves as much as we can from the power of external things. There is but one solid basis of happiness and that is, the reasonable hope of a happy futurity. This may be had every where.

"I do not blame your preference of London to other places, for it is really to be preferred if the choice is free; but few have the choice of their place, or their manner of life; and mere pleasure ought not to be the prime motive of action.

"Mrs. Thrale, poor thing, has a daughter. Mr. Thrale dislikes the times, like the rest of us. Mrs. Williams is sick; Mrs. Desmoulins is poor. I have miserable nights. Nobody is well but Mr. Levett. "I am, dear sir,

"London, July 3, 1778."

"Your most, &c.


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In the course of this year there was a difference be

1 [I suspect that this is a misprint, and that Johnson wrote "without affecting Stoicism ;"-but the original letter being burned in a mass of papers in Scotland, I have not been able to ascertain whether my conjecture is well founded or not. The expression in the text, however, may be justified. M.]

tween him and his friend Mr. Strahan; the particulars of which it is unnecessary to relate. Their reconciliation was communicated to me in a letter from Mr. Strahan in the following words:

"The notes I shewed you that passed between him and me were dated in March last. The matter lay dormant till July 27, when he wrote to me as flows:



"It would be very foolish for us to continue strangers any longer. You can never by persistency make wrong right. If I resented too acrimoniously, I resented only to yourself. Nobody ever saw or heard what I wrote. You saw that my anger was over, for in a day or two I came to your house. I have given you a longer time; and I hope you have made so good use of it, as to be no longer on evil terms with, sir, "Your, &c.


"On this I called upon him: and he has since dined with me."

After this time, the same friendship as formerly continued between Dr. Johnson and Mr. Strahan. My friend mentioned to me a little circumstance of his attention, which, though we may smile at it, must be allowed to have its foundation in a nice and true knowl

edge of human life. "When I write to Scotland (said he), I employ Strahan to frank my letters, that he may have the consequence of appearing a Parliament-man among his countrymen."



"When I recollect how long ago I was received with so much kindness at Warley-Common, I am ashamed that I have not made some inquiries after my friends.

1 Dr. Johnson here addresses his worthy friend,, Bennet Langton, Esq. by his title as Captain of the Lincolnshire militia in

66 Pray how many sheep-stealers did you convict? and how did you punish them? When are you to be cantoned in better habitations? The air grows cold, and the ground damp. Longer stay in the camp cannot be without much danger to the health of the common men, if even the officers can escape.

"You see that Dr. Percy is now Dean of Carlisle ; about five hundred a year, with a power of presenting himself to some good living. He is provided for.

"The session of the CLUB is to commence with that of the parliament. Mr. Banks desires to be admitted; he will be a very honourable accession.

"Did the King please you? The Coxheath men, I think, have some reason to complain: Reynolds says your camp is better than theirs.

"I hope you find yourself able to encounter this weather. Take care of your own health; and, as you can of your men. Be pleased to make my compliments to all the gentlemen whose notice I have had, apd whose kindness I have experienced.

"I am, dear sir,

"October 31, 1778."

"Your most humble servant,

I wrote to him on the 18th of August, the 18th of September, and the 6th of November; informing him of my having had another son born whom I had called James; that I had passed some time at Auchinleck; that the Countess of Loudoun, now in her ninety-ninth year, was as fresh as when he saw her, and remembered him with respect; and that his mother by adoption, the Countess of Eglintoune, had said to me, "Tell Mr. Johnson I love him exceedingly;" that I had again suffered much from bad spirits; and that as it was very long since I heard from him, I was not a little uneasy.

The continuance of his regard for his friend Dr. Burney, appears from the following letters:

which he has since been most deservedly raised to the rank of Major.



"DR. BURNEY, who brings this paper, is engaged in a History of Musick; and having been told by Dr. Markham of some MSS. relating to his subject, which are in the library of your College, is desirous to examine them. He is my friend; and therefore I take the liberty of entreating your favour and assistance in his inquiry and can assure you, with great confidence, that if you knew him he would not want any intervenient solicitation to obtain the kindness of one who loves learning and virtue as you love them.

"I have been flattering myself all the summer with the hope of paying my annual visit to my friends; but something has obstructed me; I still hope not to be long without seeing you. I should be glad of a little literary talk; and glad to shew you, by the frequency of my visits, how eagerly I love it, when you talk it. I am, dear sir,

"Your most humble servant,

"London, Nov. 2, 1778.”

66 SIR,



THE bearer, DR. BURNEY, has had some account of a Welsh Manuscript in the Bodleian library, from which he hopes to gain some materials for his History of Musick; but being ignorant of the language, is at a loss where to find assistance. I make no doubt but you, sir, can help him through his difficulties, and therefore take the liberty of recommending him to your favour, as I am sure you will find him a man worthy of every civility that can be shewn, and every benefit that can be conferred.

"But we must not let Welsh drive us from Greek. What comes of Xenophen? If you do not like the trouble of publishing the book, do not let your com

mentaries be lost; contrive that they may be published somewhere.

“I am, sir,

"Your humble servant,


"London, Nov. 2, 1778."

These letters procured Dr. Burney great kindness and friendly offices from both of these gentlemen, not only on that occasion, but in future visits to the university. The same year Dr. Johnson not only wrote to Dr. Joseph Warton in favour of Dr. Burney's youngest son, who was to be placed in the college of Winchester, but accompanied him when he went thither.

We surely cannot but admire the benevolent exertions of this great and good man, especially when we consider how grievously he was afflicted with bad health, and how uncomfortable his home was made by the perpetual jarring of those whom he charitably accommodated under his roof. He has sometimes suffered me to talk jocularly of his group of females, and call them his Seraglio. He thus mentions them, together with honest Levett, in one of his letters to Mrs. Thrale: "Williams hates every body; Levett hates Desmoulins, and does not love Williams; Desmoulins hates them both; Poll2 loves none of them."



"It is indeed a long time since I wrote, and I think you have some reason to complain; however, you must not let small things disturb you, when you have such a fine addition to your happiness as a new boy, and I hope your lady's health restored by bringing him. It seems very probable that a little care will now restore her, if any remains of her complaints are left.

"You seem, if I understand your letter, to be gaining ground at Auchinleck, an incident that would give me great delight.

1 Vol ii. p. 38.

Miss Carmichael.

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