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Life Of Johnson, Vol. 2 by Boswell, Edited by Birkbeck Hill

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coincidences in which the Abbey abounds) his deadly enemy, James
Macpherson.' Stanley's _Westminster Abbey_, p. 298.

[877] _Hamlet_, act iii. sc. I.

[878] 'Fear was indeed a sensation to which Dr. Johnson was an utter
stranger, excepting when some sudden apprehensions seized him that he
was going to die.' Piozzi's _Anec_. p. 277. In this respect his
character might be likened to that of Fearing, in _Pilgrim's Progress_
(Part ii), as described by Great-Heart:--'When he came to the Hill
Difficulty, he made no stick at that, nor did he much fear the Lions;
for you must know that his troubles were not about such things as these;
his fear was about his acceptance at last.'

[879] See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Oct. 18, 1773.

[880] See _ante_, i. 249, where Garrick humorously foretold the
Round-house for Johnson.

[881] See _ante_, ii. 95.

[882] 'It was,' writes Hawkins (_Life_, p. 491), 'an oak-plant of a
tremendous size; a plant, I say, and not a shoot or branch, for it had
had a root which, being trimmed to the size of a large orange, became
the head of it. Its height was upwards of six feet, and from about an
inch in diameter at the lower end, increased to near three; this he kept
in his bed-chamber, so near the chair in which he constantly sat as to
be within reach.' Macpherson, like Johnson, was a big man. Dr. A.
Carlyle says (_Auto_. p. 398):--'He was good-looking, of a large size,
with very thick legs, to hide which he generally wore boots, though not
then the fashion. He appeared to me proud and reserved.'

[883] Boswell wrote to Temple on April 4:--'Mr. Johnson has allowed me
to write out a supplement to his Journey.' _Letters of Boswell_, p. 186.
On May 10 he wrote:--'I have not written out another line of my remarks
on the Hebrides. I found it impossible to do it in London. Besides, Dr.
Johnson does not seem very desirous that I should publish any
supplement. _Between ourselves, he is not apt to encourage one to share
reputation with himself_.' _Ib_ p. 192.

[884] Colonel Newcome, when a lad, 'was for ever talking of India, and
the famous deeds of Clive and Lawrence. His favourite book was a history
of India--the history of Orme.' Thackeray's _Newcomes_, ch. 76. See
_post_, April 15, 1778.

[885] _Richard II_, act i. sc. 3. See _ante_, i. 129.

[886] A passage in the _North Briton_, No. 34, shews how wide-spread
this prejudice was. The writer gives his 'real, fair, and substantial
objections to the administration of this _Scot_ [Lord Bute]. The first
is, that he is a _Scot_. I am certain that reason could never believe
that a _Scot_ was fit to have the management of _English_ affairs. A
_Scot_ hath no more right to preferment in England than a _Hanoverian_
or a _Hottentot_.' In _Humphry Clinker_ (Letter of July 13) we
read:--'From Doncaster northwards all the windows of all the inns are
scrawled with doggrel rhymes in abuse of the Scotch nation.' Horace
Walpole, writing of the contest between the House of Commons and the
city in 1771, says of the Scotch courtiers:--'The Scotch wanted to come
to blows, and _were at least not sorry to see the House of Commons so
contemptible_.' _Memoirs of the Reign of George III_, iv. 301. 'What a
nation is Scotland,' he wrote at the end of the Gordon Riots, 'in every
reign engendering traitors to the State, and false and pernicious to the
kings that favour it the most.' _Letters_, vii. 400. See _post_, March
21, 1783. Lord Shelburne, a man of a liberal mind, wrote:--'I can scarce
conceive a Scotchman capable of liberality, and capable of
impartiality.' After calling them 'a sad set of innate cold-hearted,
impudent rogues,' he continues:--'It's a melancholy thing that there is
no finding any other people that will take pains, or be amenable even to
the best purposes.' Fitzmaurice's _Shelburne_, iii. 441. Hume wrote to
his countryman, Gilbert Elliot, in 1764:--'I do not believe there is one
Englishman in fifty, who, if he heard I had broke (sic) my neck
to-night, would be sorry. Some, because I am not a Whig; some, because I
am not a Christian; and all, because I am a Scotsman. Can you seriously
talk of my continuing an Englishman? Am I, or are you, an Englishman?'
Elliot replies:--'Notwithstanding all you say, we are both Englishmen;
that is, true British subjects, entitled to every emolument and
advantage that our happy constitution can bestow.' Burton's _Hume_, ii.
238, 240. Hume, in his prejudice against England, went far beyond
Johnson in his prejudice against Scotland. In 1769 he wrote:--'I am
delighted to see the daily and hourly progress of madness and folly and
wickedness in England. The consummation of these qualities are the true
ingredients for making a fine narrative in history, especially if
followed by some signal and ruinous convulsion--as I hope will soon be
the case with that pernicious people.' _Ib_ p. 431. In 1770 he
wrote:--'Our government has become a chimera, and is too perfect, in
point of liberty, for so rude a beast as an Englishman; who is a man, a
bad animal too, corrupted by above a century of licentiousness.' _Ib_
p. 434.

[887] 'The love of planting,' wrote Sir Walter Scott, 'which has become
almost a passion, is much to be ascribed to Johnson's sarcasms.' Croker
_Corres_. ii. 34. Lord Jeffrey wrote from Watford in 1833:--'What a
country this old England is. In a circle of twenty miles from this spot
(leaving out London and its suburbs), there is more old timber ... than
in all Scotland.' Cockburn's _Jeffrey_, i. 348. See _post_, March
21, 1775.

[888] See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Aug. 20.

[889] Even David Hume subscribed to the fund. He wrote in
1760:--'Certain it is that these poems are in every body's mouth in the
Highlands, have been handed down from father to son, and are of an age
beyond all memory and tradition. Adam Smith told me that the Piper of
the Argyleshire militia repeated to him all those which Mr. Macpherson
had translated. We have set about a subscription of a guinea or two
guineas apiece, in order to enable Mr. Macpherson to undertake a mission
into the Highlands to recover this poem, and other fragments of
antiquity.' Mason's _Gray_, ii. 170. Hume changed his opinion. 'On going
to London,' writes Dr. A. Carlyle (_Auto_. p. 276), 'he went over to the
other side, and loudly affirmed the poems to be inventions of
Macpherson. I happened to say one day, when he was declaiming against
Macpherson, that I had met with nobody of his opinion but William Caddel
of Cockenzie, and President Dundas, which he took ill, and was some time
of forgetting.' Gibbon, in the _Decline and Fall_ (vol. i. ch. 6),
quoted Ossian, but added:--'Something of a doubtful mist still hangs
over these Highland traditions; nor can it be entirely dispelled by the
most ingenious researches of modern criticism.' On this Hume wrote to
him on March 18, 1776:--'I see you entertain a great doubt with regard
to the authenticity of the poems of Ossian.... Where a supposition is so
contrary to common sense, any positive evidence of it ought never to be
regarded. Men run with great avidity to give their evidence in favour of
what flatters their passions and their national prejudices. You are
therefore over and above indulgent to us in speaking of the matter with
hesitation.' Gibbon's _Misc. Works_, i. 225. So early as 1763 Hume had
asked Dr. Blair for 'proof that these poems were not forged within these
five years by James Macpherson. _These proofs must not be arguments, but
testimonies_!' J. H. Burton's _Hume_, i. 466. Smollett, it should seem,
believed in Ossian to the end. In Humphry Clinker, in the letter dated
Sept. 3, he makes one of his characters write:--'The poems of Ossian are
in every mouth. A famous antiquarian of this country, the laird of
Macfarlane, at whose house we dined, can repeat them all in the original
Gaelic.' See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Nov. 10.

[890] I find in his letters only Sir A. Macdonald (_ante_, ii. 157) of
whom this can be said.

[891] See _Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides_, 3rd ed. p. 520 [p. 431].

[892] For the letter, see the end of Boswell's _Hebrides_.

[893] _Fossilist_ is not in Johnson's _Dictionary_.

[894] 'Rasay has little that can detain a traveller, except the laird
and his family; but their power wants no auxiliaries. Such a seat of
hospitality amidst the winds and waters fills the imagination with a
delightful contrariety of images.' _Works_, ix. 62.

[895] Page 103. BOSWELL.

[896] From Skye he wrote:--'The hospitality of this remote region is
like that of the golden age. We have found ourselves treated at every
house as if we came to confer a benefit.' _Piozzi Letters_, i. 155.

[897] See _ante_, i. 443, note 2.

[898] I observed with much regret, while the first edition of this work
was passing through the press (Aug. 1790), that this ingenious gentleman
was dead. BOSWELL.

[899] See _ante_, p. 242.

[900] See _ante_, i. 187.

[901] See _ante_, ii. 121, 296, and _post_, under March 30, 1783.

[902] Johnson (_Works_, ix. 158) says that 'the mediocrity of knowledge'
obtained in the Scotch universities, 'countenanced in general by a
national combination so invidious that their friends cannot defend it,
and actuated in particulars by a spirit of enterprise so vigorous that
their enemies are constrained to praise it, enables them to find, or to
make their way, to employment, riches, and distinction.'

[903] Macpherson had great influence with the newspapers. Horace Walpole
wrote in February, 1776:--'Macpherson, the Ossianite, had a pension of
L600 a year from the Court, to supervise the newspapers.' In Dec. 1781,
Walpole mentions the difficulty of getting 'a vindicatory paragraph'
inserted in the papers, 'This was one of the great grievances of the
time. Macpherson had a pension of L800 a year from Court for inspecting
newspapers, and inserted what lies he pleased, and prevented whatever he
disapproved of being printed.' _Journal of the Reign of George III_,
ii. 17, 483.

[904] This book was published in 1779 under the title of '_Remarks on
Dr. Samuel Johnson's Journey to the Hebrides_, by the Rev. Donald
M'Nicol, A.M., Minister of Lismore, Argyleshire.' In 1817 it was
reprinted at Glasgow together with Johnson's _Journey_, in one volume.
The _Remarks_ are a few pages shorter than the _Journey_. By 'another
Scotchman,' Boswell certainly meant Macpherson.

[905] From a list in his hand-writing. BOSWELL.

[906] 'Such is the laxity of Highland conversation that the inquirer is
kept in continual suspense, and by a kind of intellectual
retrogradation, knows less as he hears more.' Johnson's _Works_, ix. 47.
'The Highlanders are not much accustomed to be interrogated by others,
and seem never to have thought upon interrogating themselves; so that,
if they do not know what they tell to be true, they likewise do not
distinctly perceive it to be false.' _Ib_ 114.

[907] Of his _Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland_. BOSWELL. It
was sold at five shillings a copy. It did not reach a second edition
till 1785, when perhaps a fresh demand for it was caused by the
publication of Boswell's _Hebrides_. Boswell, in a note, _post_, April
28, 1778, says that 4000 copies were sold very quickly. Hannah More
(_Memoirs_, i. 39) says that Cadell told her that he had sold 4000
copies the first week. This, I think, must be an exaggeration. A German
translation was brought out this same year.

[908] Boswell, on the way to London, wrote to Temple:--'I have continual
schemes of publication, but cannot fix. I am still very unhappy with my
father. We are so totally different that a good understanding is
scarcely possible. He looks on my going to London just now as an
_expedition_, as idle and extravagant, when in reality it is highly
improving to me, considering the company which I enjoy.' _Letters of
Boswell_, p. 182.

[909] See _post_, under March 22, 1776.

[910] See _ante_, p. 292.

[911] 'A Scotchman must be a very sturdy moralist who does not love
Scotland better than truth; he will always love it better than inquiry;
and if falsehood flatters his vanity, will not be very diligent to
detect it.' Johnson's _Works_, ix. 116.

[912] At Slanes Castle in Aberdeenshire he wrote:--'I had now travelled
two hundred miles in Scotland, and seen only one tree not younger than
myself.' _Works_, ix. 17. Goldsmith wrote from Edinburgh on Sept. 26,
1753:--'Every part of the country presents the same dismal landscape. No
grove, nor brook lend their music to cheer the stranger, or make the
inhabitants forget their poverty.' Forsters _Goldsmith_, i. 433.

[913] This, like his pamphlet on _Falkland's Islands_, was published
without his name.

[914] See Appendix.

[915] Convicts were sent to nine of the American settlements. According
to one estimate about 2,000 had been for many years sent annually. 'Dr.
Lang, after comparing different estimates, concludes that the number
sent might be about 50,000 altogether.' _Penny Cyclo_. xxv. 138. X.

[916] This 'clear and settled opinion' must have been formed in three
days, and between Grantham and London. For from that Lincolnshire town
he had written to Temple on March 18:--'As to American affairs, I have
really not studied the subject; it is too much for me perhaps, or I am
too indolent or frivolous. From the smattering which newspapers have
given me, I have been of different minds several times. That I am a
Tory, a lover of power in monarchy, and a discourager of much liberty in
the people, I avow; but it is not clear to me that our colonies are
completely our subjects.' _Letters of Boswell_, p. 180. Four years later
he wrote to Temple:--'I must candidly tell you that I think you should
not puzzle yourself with political speculations more than I do; neither
of us is fit for that sort of mental labour.' _Ib_ 243. See _post_,
Sept. 23, 1777, for a contest between Johnson and Boswell on
this subject.

[917] See _ante_, ii. 134.

[918] Johnson's _Works_, vi. 261.

[919] Four years earlier he had also attacked him. _Ante_, ii. 134, note

[920] Lord Camden, formerly Chief Justice Pratt. See _ante_, ii. 72,
note 3; and _post_, April 14, 1775.

[921] 'Our people,' wrote Franklin in 1751 (_Memoirs_, vi. 3, 10), 'must
at least be doubled every twenty years.' The population he reckoned at
upwards of one million. Johnson referred to this rule also in the
following passage:--'We are told that the continent of North America
contains three millions, not of men merely, but of whigs, of whigs
fierce for liberty and disdainful of dominion; that they multiply with
the fecundity of their own rattlesnakes, so that every quarter of a
century doubles their number.' _Works_, vi. 227. Burke, in his _Speech
of Concilitation with America_, a fortnight after Johnson's pamphlet
appeared, said, 'your children do not grow faster from infancy to
manhood than they spread from families to communities, and from villages
to nations.' Payne's _Burke_, i. 169.

[922] Dr. T. Campbell records on April 20, 1775 (_Diary_, p. 74), that
'Johnson said the first thing he would do would be to quarter the army
on the cities, and if any refused free quarters, he would pull down that
person's house, if it was joined to other houses; but would burn it if
it stood alone. This and other schemes he proposed in the manuscript of
_Taxation no Tyranny_, but these, he said, the Ministry expunged. See
_post_, April 15, 1778, where, talking of the Americans, Johnson
exclaimed, 'he'd burn and destroy them.' On June 11, 1781, Campbell
records (_ib_. p. 88) that Johnson said to him:--'Had we treated the
Americans as we ought, and as they deserved, we should have at once
razed all their towns and let them enjoy their forests.' Campbell justly
describes this talk as 'wild rant.'


'He errs who deems obedience to a prince
Slav'ry--a happier freedom never reigns
Than with a pious monarch.'
_Stit_. iii. 113. CROKER.

This volume was published in 1776. The copy in the library of Pembroke
College, Oxford, bears the inscription in Johnson's hand: 'To Sir Joshua
Reynolds from the Authour.' On the title-page Sir Joshua has written
his own name.

[924] R. B. Sheridan thought of joining in these attacks. In his _Life_
by Moore (i. 151) fragments of his projected answer are given. He
intended to attack Johnson on the side of his pension. One thought he
varies three times. 'Such pamphlets,' he writes, 'will be as trifling
and insincere as the venal quit-rent of a birth-day ode.' This again
appears as 'The easy quit-rent of refined panegyric,' and yet again as
'The miserable quit-rent of an annual pamphlet.'

[925] See _post_, beginning of 1781.

[926] Boswell wrote to Temple on June 19, 1775:--'Yesterday I met Mr.
Hume at Lord Kame's. They joined in attacking Dr. Johnson to an absurd
pitch. Mr. Hume said he would give me half-a-crown for every page of his
_Dictionary_ in which he could not find an absurdity, if I would give
him half-a-crown for every page in which he did not find one: he talked
so insolently really, that I calmly determined to be at him; so I
repeated, by way of telling that Dr. Johnson _could_ be touched, the
admirable passage in your letter, how the Ministry had set him to write
in a way that they "could not ask even their infidel pensioner Hume to
write." When Hume asked if it was from an American, I said No, it was
from an English gentleman. "Would a _gentleman_ write so?" said he. In
short, Davy was finely punished for his treatment of my revered friend;
and he deserved it richly, both for his petulance to so great a
character and for his talking so before me.' _Letters of Boswell_, p.
204. Hume's pension was L400. He obtained it through Lord Hertford, the
English ambassador in Paris, under whom he had served as secretary to
the embassy. J. H. Burton's _Hume_, ii. 289.

[927] See _post_, Aug. 24 1782.

[928] Dr. T. Campbell records on March 16 of this year (_Diary_, p.
36):--'Thrale asked Dr. Johnson what Sir Joshua Reynolds said of
_Taxation no Tyranny_. "Sir Joshua," quoth the Doctor, "has not read
it." "I suppose," quoth Thrale, "he has been very busy of late." "No,"
says the Doctor, "but I never look at his pictures, so he won't read my
writings." He asked Johnson if he had got Miss Reynold's opinion, for
she, it seems, is a politician. "As to that," quoth the Doctor, "it is
no great matter, for she could not tell after she had read it on which
said of the question Mr. Burke's speech was."'

[929] W.G. Hamilton.

[930] See _post_, Nov. 19, 1783.

[931] Sixteen days after this pamphlet was published, Lord North, as
Chancellor of the University of Oxford, proposed that the degree of
Doctor in Civil Law should be conferred on Johnson (_post_, p. 331).
Perhaps the Chancellor in this was cheaply rewarding the service that
had been done to the Minister. See _ante_, ii. 373.

[932] Johnson's _Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland_, ed. 1785,
p. 256. [Johnson's _Works_, ix. 108.] BOSWELL. See _ante_, ii. 10,
note 3.

[933] He had written to Temple six days earlier:--'Second sight pleases
my superstition which, you know, is not small, and being not of the
gloomy but the grand species, is an enjoyment; and I go further than Mr.
Johnson, for the facts which I heard convinced me.' _Letters of
Boswell_, p. 179. When ten years later he published his _Tour_, he said
(Nov. 10, 1773) that he had returned from the Hebrides with a
considerable degree of faith; 'but,' he added, 'since that time my
belief in those stories has been much weakened.'

[934] This doubt has been much agitated on both sides, I think without
good reason. See Addison's _Freeholder, May 4, 1714. _The Freeholder_
was published from Dec. 1715 to June 1716. In the number for May 4 there
is no mention of _The Tale of a Tub_; _An Apology for the Tale of a Tub_
(Swift's _Works_, ed. 1803, iii. 20);--Dr. Hawkesworth's Preface to
Swift's _Works_, and Swift's Letter to Tooke the Printer, and Tooke's
Answer, in that collection;--Sheridan's _Life of Swift_;--Mr.
Courtenay's note on p. 3 of his _Poetical Review of the Literary and
Moral Character of Dr. Johnson_; and Mr. Cooksey's _Essay on the Life
and Character of John Lord Somers, Baron of Evesham_.

Dr. Johnson here speaks only to the _internal evidence_. I take leave to
differ from him, having a very high estimation of the powers of Dr.
Swift. His _Sentiments of a Church-of-England-man_, his _Sermon on the
Trinity_, and other serious pieces, prove his learning as well as his
acuteness in logick and metaphysicks; and his various compositions of a
different cast exhibit not only wit, humour, and ridicule; but a
knowledge 'of nature, and art, and life:' a combination therefore of
those powers, when (as the _Apology_ says,) 'the authour was young, his
invention at the heighth, and his reading fresh in his head,' might
surely produce _The Tale of a Tub_. BOSWELL.

[935] 'His _Tale of a Tub_ has little resemblance to his other pieces.
It exhibits a vehemence and rapidity of mind, a copiousness of images
and vivacity of diction such as he afterwards never possessed, or never
exerted. It is of a mode so distinct and peculiar that it must be
considered by itself; what is true of that is not true of anything else
which he has written.' Johnson's _Works_, viii. 220. At the conclusion
of the _Life of Swift_ (_ib_. 228), Johnson allows him one great
merit:--'It was said in a preface to one of the Irish editions that
Swift had never been known to take a single thought from any writer,
ancient or modern. This is not literally true; but perhaps no writer can
easily be found that has borrowed so little, or that in all his
excellencies and all his defects has so well maintained his claim to be
considered as original.' See _ante_, i. 452.

[936] Johnson in his _Dictionary_, under the article _shave_, quotes
Swift in one example, and in the next _Gulliver's Travels_, not
admitting, it should seem, that Swift had written that book.

[937] See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Oct. 26, 1773. David Hume wrote of
Home's _Agis_:--'I own, though I could perceive fine strokes in that
tragedy, I never could in general bring myself to like it: the author, I
thought, had corrupted his taste by the imitation of Shakespeare, whom
he ought only to have admired.' J.H. Burton's _Hume_, i. 392. About
_Douglas_ he wrote:--'I am persuaded it will be esteemed the best, and
by French critics the only tragedy of our language.' _Ib_ ii. 17. Hume
perhaps admired it the more as it was written, to use his own words, 'by
a namesake of mine.' _Ib_ i. 316. _Home_ is pronounced _Hume_. He often
wrote of his friend as 'Mr. John Hume, _alias_ Home.' A few days before
his death he added the following codicil to his will:--'I leave to my
friend Mr. John Home, of Kilduff, ten dozen of my old claret at his
choice; and one single bottle of that other liquor called port. I also
leave to him six dozen of port, provided that he attests, under his
hand, signed John _Hume_, that he has himself alone finished that bottle
at two sittings. By this concession he will at once terminate the only
two differences that ever arose between us concerning temporal matters.'
_Ib_ ii. 506. Sir Walter Scott wrote in his _Diary_ in 1827:--'I
finished the review of John Home's works, which, after all, are poorer
than I thought them. Good blank verse, and stately sentiment, but
something luke-warmish, excepting _Douglas_, which is certainly a
masterpiece. Even that does not stand the closet. Its merits are for the
stage; and it is certainly one of the best acting plays going.'
Lockhart's _Scott_, ix. 100.

[938] Sheridan, says Mr. S. Whyte (_Miscellanea Nova_, p. 45), brought
out _Douglas_ at the Dublin Theatre. The first two nights it had great
success. The third night was as usual to be the author's. It had
meanwhile got abroad that he was a clergyman. This play was considered a
profanation, a faction was raised, and the third night did not pay its
expenses. It was Whyte who suggested that, by way of consolation,
Sheridan should give Home a gold medal. The inscription said that he
presented it to him 'for having enriched the stage with a perfect
tragedy.' Whyte took the medal to London. When he was close at his
journey's end, 'I was,' he writes, 'stopped by highwaymen, and preserved
the medal by the sacrifice of my purse at the imminent peril of
my life.'


'No merit now the dear Nonjuror claims,
Moliere's old stubble in a moment flames.'

The _Nonjuror_ was 'a comedy thrashed out of Moliere's _Tartuffe_.' _The
Dunciad_, i. 253.

[940] See _post_, June 9, 1784; also Macaulay's _England_, ch. xiv. (ed.
1874, v. 94), for remarks on what Johnson here says.

[941] See _ante_, i. 318, where his name is spelt _Madden_.

[942] This was not merely a cursory remark; for in his _Life of Fenton_
he observes, 'With many other wise and virtuous men, who at that time of
discord and debate (about the beginning of this century) consulted
conscience [whether] well or ill informed, more than interest, he
doubted the legality of the government; and refusing to qualify himself
for publick employment, by taking the oaths [by the oaths] required,
left the University without a degree.' This conduct Johnson calls
'perverseness of integrity.' [Johnson's _Works_, viii. 54.

The question concerning the morality of taking oaths, of whatever kind,
imposed by the prevailing power at the time, rather than to be excluded
from all consequence, or even any considerable usefulness in society,
has been agitated with all the acuteness of casuistry. It is related,
that he who devised the oath of abjuration, profligately boasted, that
he had framed a test which should 'damn one half of the nation, and
starve the other.' Upon minds not exalted to inflexible rectitude, or
minds in which zeal for a party is predominant to excess, taking that
oath against conviction may have been palliated under the plea of
necessity, or ventured upon in heat, as upon the whole producing more
good than evil.

At a county election in Scotland, many years ago, when there was a warm
contest between the friends of the Hanoverian succession, and those
against it, the oath of abjuration having been demanded, the freeholders
upon one side rose to go away. Upon which a very sanguine gentleman, one
of their number, ran to the door to stop them, calling out with much
earnestness, 'Stay, stay, my friends, and let us swear the rogues out of
it!' BOSWELL. Johnson, writing of the oaths required under the Militia
Bill of 1756, says:--'The frequent imposition of oaths has almost ruined
the morals of this unhappy nation, and of a nation without morals it is
of small importance who shall be king.' _Lit. Mag_. 1756, i. 59.

[943] Dr. Harwood sent me the following extract from the book containing
the proceedings of the corporation of Lichfield: '19th July, 1712.
Agreed that Mr. Michael Johnson be, and he is hereby elected a
magistrate and brother of their incorporation; a day is given him to
Thursday next to take the oath of fidelity and allegiance, and the oath
of a magistrate. Signed, &c.'--'25th July, 1712. Mr. Johnson took the
oath of allegiance and that he believed there was no transubstantiation
in the sacrament of the Lord's Supper before, &c.'--CROKER.

[944] A parody on _Macbeth_, act ii. sc. 2.

[945] Lord Southampton asked Bishop Watson of Llandaff 'how he was to
bring up his son so as to make him get forwards in the world. "I know of
but one way," replied the Bishop; "give him parts and poverty." "Well
then," replied Lord S., "if God has given him parts, I will manage as to
the poverty."' H. C. Robinson's _Diary_, i. 337. Lord Eldon said that
Thurlow promised to give him a post worth about L160 a year, but he
never did. 'In after life,' said Eldon, 'I inquired of him why he had
not fulfilled his promise. His answer was curious:--"It would have been
your ruin. Young men are very apt to be content when they get something
to live upon; so when I saw what you were made of, I determined to break
my promise to make you work;" and I dare say he was right, for there is
nothing does a young lawyer so much good as to be half starved.' Twiss's
_Eldon_, i. 134.

[946] In New Street, near Gough Square, in Fleet Street, whither in
February 1770 the King's printinghouse was removed from what is still
called Printing House Square. CROKER. Dr. Spottiswoode, the late
President of the Royal Society, was the great-grandson of Mr. Strahan.

[947] See _post_, under March 30, 1783.

[948] Johnson wrote to Dr. Taylor on April 8 of this year:--'I have
placed young Davenport in the greatest printing house in London, and
hear no complaint of him but want of size, which will not hinder him
much. He may when he is a journeyman always get a guinea a week.' _Notes
and Queries_, 6th S., v. 422. Mr. Jewitt in the _Gent. Mag_. for Dec.
1878, gives an account of this lad. He was the orphan son of a
clergyman, a friend of the Rev. W. Langley, Master of Ashbourne School
(see _post_, Sept. 14, 1777). Mr. Langley asked Johnson's help 'in
procuring him a place in some eminent printing office.' Davenport wrote
to Mr. Langley nearly eight years later:--'According to your desire, I
consulted Dr. Johnson about my future employment in life, and he very
laconically told me "to work hard at my trade, as others had done before
me." I told him my size and want of strength prevented me from getting
so much money as other men. "Then," replied he, "you must get as much as
you can."' The boy was nearly sixteen when he was apprenticed, and had
learnt enough Latin to quote Virgil, so that there was nothing in
Johnson's speech beyond his understanding.

[949] Seven years afterwards, Johnson described this evening. Miss
Monckton had told him that he must see Mrs. Siddons. 'Well, Madam,' he
answered, 'if you desire it, I will go. See her I shall not, nor hear
her; but I'll go, and that will do. The last time I was at a play, I was
ordered there by Mrs. Abington, or Mrs. Somebody, I do not well remember
who; but I placed myself in the middle of the first row of the front
boxes, to show that when I was called I came.' Mme. D' Arblay's _Diary_,
ii. 199. At Fontainebleau he went--to a comedy (_post_, Oct. 19, 1775),
so that it was not 'the last time he was at a play.'

[950] 'One evening in the oratorio season of 1771,' writes Mrs. Piozzi
(Anec. 72), 'Mr. Johnson went with me to Covent Garden theatre. He sat
surprisingly quiet, and I flattered myself that he was listening to the
music. When we were got home he repeated these verses, which he said he
had made at the oratorio:--

"In Theatre, March 8, 1771.
Tertii verso quater orbe lustri,
Quid theatrales tibi, Crispe, pompae?
Quam decet canos male literates
Sera voluptas!
Tene mulceri fidibus canoris?
Tene cantorum modulis stupere?
Tene per pictas, oculo elegante,
Currere formas?
Inter aequales, sine felle liber,
Codices veri studiosus inter
Rectius vives. Sua quisque carpal
Gaudia gratus.
Lusibus gaudet puer otiosis,
Luxus oblectat juvenem theatri,
At seni fluxo sapienter uti
Tempore restat."'

(_Works_, i. 166.)

[951] _Bon Ton, or High Life above Stairs_, by Garrick. He made King the
comedian a present of this farce, and it was acted for the first time on
his benefit-a little earlier in the month. Murphy's _Garrick_, pp.
330, 332

[952] 'August, 1778. An epilogue of Mr. Garrick's to _Bonduca_ was
mentioned, and Dr. Johnson said it was a miserable performance:--"I
don't know," he said, "what is the matter with David; I am afraid he is
grown superannuated, for his prologues and epilogues used to be
incomparable."' Mme. D'Arblay's _Diary_, i. 64.

[953] 'Scottish brethren and architects, who had bought Durham Yard, and
erected a large pile of buildings under the affected name of the
Adelphi. These men, of great taste in their profession, were attached
particularly to Lord Bute and Lord Mansfield, and thus by public and
private nationality zealous politicians.' Walpole's _Memoirs of the
Reign of George III_. iv. 173. Hume wrote to Adam Smith in June 1772, at
a time where there was 'a universal loss of credit':--'Of all the
sufferers, I am the most concerned for the Adams. But their undertakings
were so vast, that nothing could support them. They must dismiss 3000
workmen, who, comprehending the materials, must have expended above
L100,000 a year. To me the scheme of the Adelphi always appeared so
imprudent, that my wonder is how they could have gone on so long.' J. H.
Burton's _Hume_, ii, 460. Garrick lived in the Adelphi.

[954] 'Man looks aloft, and with erected eyes, Beholds his own
hereditary skies.' DRYDEN, Ovid, _Meta_. i. 85.

[955] Hannah More (_Memoirs_, i. 213) says that she was made 'the umpire
in a trial of skill between Garrick and Boswell, which could most nearly
imitate Dr. Johnson's manner. I remember I gave it for Boswell in
familiar conversation, and for Garrick in reciting poetry.'

[956] 'Gesticular mimicry and buffoonery Johnson hated, and would often
huff Garrick for exercising it his presence.' Hawkins's _Johnson_,
p. 386.

[957] In the first two editions Johnson is represented as only saying,
'Davy is futile.'

[958] My noble friend Lord Pembroke said once to me at Wilton, with a
happy pleasantry and some truth, that 'Dr. Johnson's sayings would not
appear so extraordinary, were it not for his _bow-wow way_.' The sayings
themselves are generally of sterling merit; but, doubtless, his _manner_
was an addition to their effect; and therefore should be attended to as
much as may be. It is necessary however, to guard those who were not
acquainted with him, against overcharged imitations or caricatures of
his manner, which are frequently attempted, and many of which are
second-hand copies from the late Mr. Henderson the actor, who, though
a good mimick of some persons, did not represent Johnson correctly.

[959] See '_Prosodia Rationalis_; or, an Essay towards establishing the
Melody and Measure of Speech, to be expressed and perpetuated by
peculiar Symbols.' London, 1779. BOSWELL.

[960] I use the phrase _in score_, as Dr. Johnson has explained it in
his _Dictionary_:--'A _song in_ SCORE, the words with the musical notes
of a song annexed.' But I understand that in scientific property it
means all the parts of a musical composition noted down in the
characters by which it is established to the eye of the skillful.
BOSWELL. It was _declamation_ that Steele pretended to reduce to
notation by new characters. This he called the _melody_ of speech, not
the harmony, which is the term in _score_ implies. BURNEY.

[961] Johnson, in his _Life of Gray_ (_Works_, viii. 481), spoke better
of him. 'What has occurred to me from the slight inspection of his
_Letters_, in which my understanding has engaged me, is, that his mind
had a large gap; that his curiosity was unlimited, and his judgment
cultivated.' Horace Walpole (_Letters_, ii 128) allowed that he was bad
company. 'Sept. 3, 1748. I agree with you most absolutely in your
opinion about Gray; he is the worst company in the world. From a
melancholy turn, from living reclusely, and from a little too much
dignity, he never converses easily; all his words are measured and
chosen, his writings are admirable; he himself is not agreeable.'

[962] In the original, 'Give ample room and verge enough.' In the _Life
of Gray_ (_Works_, vii. 486) Johnson says that the slaughtered bards
'are called upon to "Weave the warp, and weave the woof," perhaps with
no great propriety; for it is by crossing the _woof_ with the _warp_
that men weave the _web_ or piece; and the first line was dearly bought
by the admission of its wretched correspondent, "Give ample room and
verge enough." He has, however, no other line as bad.' See _ante_,
i. 402.

[963] This word, which is in the first edition, is not in the second or

[964] '_The Church-yard_ abounds with images which find a mirror in
every mind, and with sentiments to which every bosom returns an echo.
The four stanzas, beginning "Yet even these bones," are to me original.
I have never seen the notions in any other place; yet he that reads them
here persuades himself that he has always felt them. Had Gray written
often thus, it had been vain to blame, and useless to praise him.'
_Works_, viii. 487. Goldsmith, in his _Life of Parnell_ (_Misc. Works_,
iv. 25), thus seems to sneer at _The Elegy_:--'The _Night Piece_ on
death deserves every praise, and, I should suppose, with very little
amendment, might be made to surpass all those night pieces and
_church-yard scenes_ that have since appeared.'

[965] Mr. Croker says, 'no doubt Lady Susan Fox who, in 1773, married
Mr. William O'Brien, an actor.' It was in 1764 that she was married, so
that it is not likely that she was the subject of this talk. See Horace
Valpole's _Letters_, iv. 221.

[966] Mrs. Thrale's marriage with Mr. Piozzi.

[967] See _ante_, i. 408.

[968] Boswell was of the same way of thinking as Squire Western, who
'did indeed consider a parity of fortune and circumstances to be
physically as necessary an ingredient in marriage as difference of
sexes, or any other essential; and had no more apprehension of his
daughter falling in love with a poor man than with any animal of a
different species.' _Tom Jones_, bk. vi. ch. 9.


'Temptanda via est, qua me quoque possim
Tollere humo victorque virum volitare per ora.'
'New ways I must attempt, my grovelling name
To raise aloft, and wing my flight to fame.'

DRYDEN, Virgil, _Georg_. iii. 9. 'Chesterfield was at once the most
distinguished orator in the Upper House, and the undisputed sovereign of
wit and fashion. He held this eminence for about forty years. At last it
became the regular custom of the higher circles to laugh whenever he
opened his mouth, without waiting for his _bon mot_. He used to sit at
White's, with a circle of young men of rank around him, applauding every
syllable that he uttered.' Macaulay's _Life_, i. 325.

[970] With the Literary Club, as is shewn by Boswell's letter of April
4, 1775, in which he says:--'I dine on Friday at the Turk's Head,
Gerrard Street, with our Club, who now dine once a month, and sup every
Friday.' _Letters of Boswell_, p. 186. The meeting of Friday, March 24,
is described _ante_, p. 318, and that of April 7, _post_, p. 345.

[971] Very likely Boswell (_ante_, ii. 84, note 3).

[972] In the _Garrick Corres_. (ii. 141) is a letter dated March 4,
1776, from (to use Garrick's own words) 'that worst of bad women, Mrs.
Abington, to ask my playing for her benefit.' It is endorsed by
Garrick:--'A copy of Mother Abington's Letter about leaving the stage.'

[973] Twenty years earlier he had recommended to Miss Boothby as a
remedy for indigestion dried orange-peel finely powdered, taken in a
glass of hot red port. 'I would not,' he adds, 'have you offer it to the
Doctor as my medicine. Physicians do not love intruders.' _Piozzi
Letters_, ii. 397. See _post_, April 18, 1783.

[974] The misprint of _Chancellor_ for _Gentlemen_ is found in both the
second and third editions. It is not in the first.

[975] Extracted from the Convocation Register, Oxford. BOSWELL.

[976] The original is in my possession. He shewed me the Diploma, and
allowed me to read it, but would not consent to my taking a copy of it,
fearing perhaps that I should blaze it abroad in his life-time. His
objection to this appears from his 99th letter to Mrs. Thrale, whom in
that letter he thus scolds for the grossness of her flattery of
him:--'The other Oxford news is, that they have sent me a degree of
Doctor of Laws, with such praises in the Diploma as perhaps ought to
make me ashamed: they are very like your praises. I wonder whether I
shall ever shew it [_them_ in the original] to you.'

It is remarkable that he never, so far as I know, assumed his title of
_Doctor_, but called himself _Mr_. Johnson, as appears from many of his
cards or notes to myself; and I have seen many from him to other
persons, in which he uniformly takes that designation. I once observed
on his table a letter directed to him with the addition of _Esquire_,
and objected to it as being a designation inferiour to that of Doctor;
but he checked me, and seemed pleased with it, because, as I
conjectured, he liked to be sometimes taken out of the class of literary
men, and to be merely _genteel,--un gentilhomme comme un autre_.
Boswell. See post, March 30, 1781, where Johnson applies the title to
himself in speaking, and April 13, 1784, where he does in writing, and
Boswell's Hebrides, Aug. 15, 1773, note.

[977] 'To make a man pleased with himself, let me tell you, is doing a
very great thing.' _Post_, April 28, 1778.

[978] 'The original is in the hands of Dr. Forthergril, then
Vice-Chancellor, who made this transcript.' T. WARTON--BOSWELL.

[979] Bruce, the Abyssinian traveller, as is shewn by _Piozzi Letters_,
i. 213.

[980] 'That the design [of the _Dunciad_] was moral, whatever the author
might tell either his readers or himself, I am not convinced. The first
motive was the desire of revenging the contempt with which Theobald had
treated his _Shakespeare_ and regaining the honour which he had lost, by
crushing his opponent.' Johnson's _Works_, viii. 338.


'Daughter of Chaos and old Night,
Cimmerian Muse, all hail!
That wrapt in never-twinkling gloom canst write,
And shadowest meaning with thy dusky veil!
What Poet sings and strikes the strings?
It was the mighty Theban spoke.
He from the ever-living lyre
With magic hand elicits fire.
Heard ye the din of modern rhymers bray?
It was cool M-n; or warm G-y,
Involv'd in tenfold smoke.'

Colman's _Prose on Several Occasions_, ii. 273.

[982] 'These _Odes_,' writes Colman, 'were a piece of boys' play with my
schoolfellow Lloyd, with whom they were written in concert.' _Ib_ i. xi.
In the _Connoisseur_ (_ante_, i. 420) they had also written in concert.
'Their humour and their talents were well adapted to what they had
undertaken; and Beaumont and Fletcher present what is probably the only
parallel instance of literary co-operation so complete, that the
portions written by the respective parties are undistinguishable.'
Southey's _Cowper_, i. 47.

[983] _Ante_, i. 402.

[984] Boswell writing to Temple two days later, recalled the time 'when
you and I sat up all night at Cambridge and read Gray with a noble
enthusiasm; when we first used to read Mason's _Elfrida_, and when we
talked of that elegant knot of worthies, Gray, Mason, Walpole, &c.'
_Letters of Boswell_, p. 185.

[985] 'I have heard Mr. Johnson relate how he used to sit in some
coffee-house at Oxford, and turn M----'s _C-r-ct-u-s_ into ridicule for
the diversion of himself and of chance comers-in. "The _Elf--da_," says
he, "was too exquisitely pretty; I could make no fun out of that."'
Piozzi's _Anec_. p. 37. I doubt whether Johnson used the word _fun_,
which he describes in his _Dictionary_ as 'a low cant [slang] word.'

[986] See _post_, March 26, 1779, and Boswell's _Hebrides_, Oct. 1, and
under Nov. 11, 1773. According to Dr. T. Campbell (_Diary_, p. 36),
Johnson, on March 16, had said that _Taxation no Tyranny_ did not sell.

[987] Six days later he wrote to Dr. Taylor:--'The patriots pelt me with
answers. Four pamphlets, I think, already, besides newspapers and
reviews, have been discharged against me. I have tried to read two of
them, but did not go through them.' _Notes and Queries_, 6th S., v. 422.

[988] 'Mrs. Macaulay,' says Mr. Croker, who quotes Johnson's _Works_,
vi. 258, where she is described as 'a female patriot bewailing the
miseries of her friends and fellow-citizens.' See _ante_, i. 447.

[989] See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Aug. 24, 1773, and _post_, Sept. 24,
1777, for another landlord's account of Johnson.

[990] From Dryden's lines on Milton.

[991] Horace Walpole wrote, on Jan. 15, 1775 (_Letters_, vi.
171):--'They [the Millers] hold a Parnassus-fair every Thursday, give
out rhymes and themes, and all the flux of quality at Bath contend for
the prizes. A Roman Vase, dressed with pink ribands and myrtles,
receives the poetry, which is drawn out every festival: six judges of
these Olympic games retire and select the brightest compositions, which
the respective successful acknowledge, kneel to Mrs. Calliope Miller,
kiss her fair hand, and are crowned by it with myrtle, with--I don't
know what.'

[992] Miss Burney wrote, in 1780:--'Do you know now that,
notwithstanding Bath-Easton is so much laughed at in London, nothing
here is more tonish than to visit Lady Miller. She is a round, plump,
coarse-looking dame of about forty, and while all her aim is to appear
an elegant woman of fashion, all her success is to seem an ordinary
woman in very common life, with fine clothes on.' Mme. D'Arblay's
_Diary_, i. 364.

[993] 'Yes, on my faith, there are _bouts-rimes_ on a buttered muffin,
made by her Grace the Duchess of Northumberland.' Walpole's _Letters_,
vi. 171. 'She was,' Walpole writes, 'a jovial heap of contradictions.
She was familiar with the mob, while stifled with diamonds; and yet was
attentive to the most minute privileges of her rank, while almost
shaking hands with a cobbler.' _Memoirs of the Reign of George III_, i.
419. Dr. Percy showed her Goldsmith's ballad of _Edwin and Angelina_ in
MS., and she had a few copies privately printed. Forster's
_Goldsmith_, i. 379.

[994] Perhaps Mr. Seward, who was something of a literary man, and who
visited Bath (_post_, under March 30, 1783).


Fluctibus in mediis et tempestatibus urbis.'

Horace, _Epistles_, ii. 2. 84. See _ante_, i. 461.


'Qui semel adspexit quantum dimissa petitis
Praestent, mature redeat repetatque relicta.'

Horace, _Epistles_, i. 7. 96.

'To his first state let him return with speed,
Who sees how far the joys he left exceed
His present choice.' FRANCIS.

Malone says that 'Walpole, after he ceased to be minister, endeavoured
to amuse his mind with reading. But one day when Mr. Welbore Ellis was
in his library, he heard him say, with tears in his eyes, after having
taken up several books and at last thrown away a folio just taken down
from a shelf, "Alas! it is all in vain; _I cannot read_."' Prior's
_Malone_, p. 379. Lord Eldon, after his retirement, said to an
inn-keeper who was thinking of giving up business:--'Believe me, for I
speak from experience, when a man who has been much occupied through
life arrives at having nothing to do, he is very apt not to know what to
do _with himself_.' Later on, he said:--'It was advice given by me in
the spirit of that Principal of Brasenose, who, when he took leave of
young men quitting college, used to say to them, "Let me give you one
piece of advice, _Cave de resignationibus_." And very good advice too.'
Twiss's _Eldon_, iii. 246.

[997] See _post_, April 10, 1775. He had but lately begun to visit
London. 'Such was his constant apprehension of the small-pox, that he
lived for twenty years within twenty miles of London, without visiting
it more than once.' At the age of thirty-five he was inoculated, and
henceforth was oftener in town. Campbell's _British Poets_, p. 569.

[998] Mr. S. Raymond, Prothonotary of the Supreme Court of New South
Wales, published in Sydney in 1854 the _Diary of a Visit to England in
1775. by an Irishman_ (_The Rev. Dr. Thomas Campbell_,) _with Notes_.
The MS., the editor says, was discovered behind an old press in one of
the offices of his Court. The name of the writer nowhere appears in the
MS. It is clear, however, that if it is not a forgery, the author was
Campbell. In the _Edinburgh Review_ for Oct., 1859, its authenticity is
examined, and is declared to be beyond a doubt. Lord Macaulay aided the
Reviewer in his investigation. _Ib_ p. 323. He could scarcely, however,
have come to his task with a mind altogether free from bias, for the
editor 'has contrived,' we are told, 'to expose another of Mr. Croker's
blunders.' Faith in him cannot be wrong who proves that Croker is not in
the right. The value of this _Diary_ is rated too highly by the
Reviewer. The Master of Balliol College has pointed out to me that it
adds but very little to Johnson's sayings. So far as he is concerned, we
are told scarcely anything of mark that we did not know already. This
makes the Master doubt its genuineness. I have noticed one suspicious
passage. An account is given of a dinner at Mr. Thrale's on April 1, at
which Campbell met Murphy, Boswell, and Baretti. 'Johnson's _bons mots_
were retailed in such plenty that they, like a surfeit, could not lie
upon my memory.' In one of the stories told by Murphy, Johnson is made
to say, 'Damn the rascal.' Murphy would as soon have made the Archbishop
of Canterbury swear as Johnson; much sooner the Archbishop of York. It
was Murphy 'who paid him the highest compliment that ever was paid to a
layman, by asking his pardon for repeating some oaths in the course of
telling a story' (_post_, April 12, 1776). Even supposing that at this
time he was ignorant of his character, though the supposition is a wild
one, he would at once have been set right by Boswell and the Thrales
(_post_, under March 15, 1776). It is curious, that this anecdote
imputing profanity to Johnson is not quoted by the Edinburgh reviewer.
On the whole I think that the _Diary_ is genuine, and accordingly I have
quoted it more than once.

[999] Mrs. Piozzi (_Anec_. p. 173) says that Johnson spoke of Browne as
'of all conversers the most delightful with whom he ever was in
company.' Pope's bathos, in his lines to Murray:--

'Graced as thou art with all the power of words,
So known, so honoured, at the House of Lords,'

was happily parodied by Browne:--

'Persuasion tips his tongue whene'er he talks,
And he has chambers in the King's Bench Walks.'

Pattison's _Satires of Pope_, pp. 57, 134. See Boswell's _Hebrides_,
Sept. 5.

[1000] Horace Walpole says of Beckford's Bribery Bill of
1768:--'Grenville, to flatter the country gentlemen, who can ill afford
to combat with great lords, nabobs, commissaries, and West Indians,
declaimed in favour of the bill.' _Memoirs of the Reign of George
III_, iii. 159.

[1001] See _ante_, ii. 167, where he said much the same. Another day,
however, he agreed that a landlord ought to give leases to his tenants,
and not 'wish to keep them in a wretched dependance on his will. "It is
a man's duty," he said, "to extend comfort and security among as many
people as he can. He should not wish to have his tenants mere
_Ephemerae_--mere beings of an hour."' Boswell's _Hebrides_, Oct.
10, 1773.

[1002] 'Thomas Hickey is now best remembered by a characteristic
portrait of his friend Tom Davies, engraved with Hickey's name to it.'

[1003] See _ante_, ii. 92. In the _Life of Pope_ (_Works_, viii. 302),
Johnson says that 'the shafts of satire were directed in vain against
Cibber, being repelled by his impenetrable impudence.' Pope speaks of
Gibber's 'impenetrability.' Elwin's _Pope_, ix. 231.

[1004] He alludes perhaps to a note on the _Dunciad_, ii, 140, in which
it is stated that 'the author has celebrated even Cibber himself
(presuming him to be the author of the _Careless Husband_).' See _post_,
May 15, 1776, note.

[1005] See _ante_, ii. 32.

[1006] Burke told Malone that 'Hume, in compiling his _History_, did not
give himself a great deal of trouble in examining records, &c.; and that
the part he most laboured at was the reign of King Charles II, for whom
he had an unaccountable partiality.' Prior's _Malone_, p. 368.

[1007] Yet Johnson (_Works_, vii. 177) wrote of Otway, who was nine
years old when Charles II. came to the throne, and who outlived him by
only a few weeks:--'He had what was in those times the common reward of
loyalty; he lived and died neglected.' Hawkins (_Life_, p. 51) says that
he heard Johnson 'speak of Dr. Hodges who, in the height of the Great
Plague of 1665, continued in London, and was almost the only one of his
profession that had the courage to oppose his art to the spreading of
the contagion. It was his hard fate, a short time after, to die in
prison for debt in Ludgate. Johnson related this to us with the tears
ready to start from his eyes; and, with great energy, said, "Such a man
would not have been suffered to perish in these times."'

[1008] Johnson in 1742 said that William III. 'was arbitrary, insolent,
gloomy, rapacious, and brutal; that he was at all times disposed to play
the tyrant; that he had, neither in great things nor in small, the
manners of a gentleman; that he was capable of gaining money by mean
artifices, and that he only regarded his promise when it was his
interest to keep it.' _Works_, vi. 6. Nearly forty years later, in his
_Life of Rowe_ (_ib_. vii. 408), he aimed a fine stroke at that King.
'The fashion of the time,' he wrote, 'was to accumulate upon Lewis all
that can raise horrour and detestation; and whatever good was withheld
from him, that it might not be thrown away, was bestowed upon King
William.' Yet in the _Life of Prior_ (_ib_. viii. 4) he allowed him
great merit. 'His whole life had been action, and none ever denied him
the resplendent qualities of steady resolution and personal courage.'
See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Sept. 24, 1773.

[1009] 'The fact of suppressing the will is indubitably true,' wrote
Horace Walpole (_Letters_, vii. 142). 'When the news arrived of the
death of George I, my father carried the account from Lord Townshend to
the then Prince of Wales. The Council met as soon as possible. There
Archbishop Wake, with whom one copy of the will had been deposited,
advanced, and delivered the will to the King, who put it into his
pocket, and went out of Council without opening it, the Archbishop not
having courage or presence of mind to desire it to be read, as he ought
to have done. I was once talking to the late Lady Suffolk, the former
mistress, on that extraordinary event. She said, "I cannot justify the
deed to the legatees; but towards his father, the late King was
justifiable, for George I. had burnt two wills made in favour of
George II."'

[1010] 'Charles II. by his affability and politeness made himself the
idol of the nation, which he betrayed and sold.' Johnson's _Works_,
vi. 7.

[1011] 'It was maliciously circulated that George was indifferent to his
own succession, and scarcely willing to stretch out a hand to grasp the
crown within his reach.' Coxe's _Memoirs of Walpole_, i. 57.

[1012] Plin. _Epist_. lib. ii. ep. 3. BOSWELL.

[1013] Mr. Davies was here mistaken. Corelli never was in England.

[1014] Mr. Croker is wrong in saying that the Irishman in Mrs. Thrale's
letter of May 16, 1776 (_Piozzi Letters_, i. 329), is Dr. Campbell. The
man mentioned there had never met Johnson, though she wrote more than a
year after this dinner at Davies's. She certainly quotes one of 'Dr.
C-l's phrases,' but she might also have quoted Shakspeare. I have no
doubt that Mrs. Thrale's Irishman was a Mr. Musgrave (_post_, under June
16, 1784, note), who is humorously described in Mme. D'Arblay's _Diary_,
ii. 83. Since writing this note I have seen that the Edinburgh reviewer
(Oct. 1859, p. 326) had come to the same conclusion.

[1015] See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Aug. 26, 1773, where Johnson said that
'he did not approve of a Judge's calling himself Farmer Burnett, and
going about with a little round hat.'

[1016] 'If all the employments of life were crowded into the time which
it [sic] really occupied, perhaps a few weeks, days, or hours would be
sufficient for its accomplishment, so far as the mind was engaged in the
performance.' _The Rambler_, No. 8.

[1017] Johnson certainly did, who had a mind stored with knowledge, and
teeming with imagery: but the observation is not applicable to writers
in general. BOSWELL. See _post_, April 20, 1783.

[1018] See _ante_, i. 358.

[1019] See ante, i. 306.

[1020] There has probably been some mistake as to the terms of this
supposed extraordinary contract, the recital of which from hearsay
afforded Johnson so much play for his sportive acuteness. Or if it was
worded as he supposed, it is so strange that I should conclude it was a
joke. Mr. Gardner, I am assured, was a worthy and a liberal man.
BOSWELL. Thurlow, when Attorney-General, had been counsel for the
Donaldsons, in the appeal before the House of Lords on the Right of
Literary Property (_ante_, i. 437, and ii. 272). In his argument 'he
observed (exemplifying his observations by several cases) that the
booksellers had not till lately ever concerned themselves about
authors.' _Gent. Mag_. for 1774, p. 51.

[1021] 'The booksellers of London are denominated _the trade_' (_post_,
April 15, 1778, note).

[1022] _Bibliopole_ is not in Johnson's _Dictionary_.

[1023] The Literary Club. See _ante_, p. 330, note 1. Mr. Croker says
that the records of the Club show that, after the first few years,
Johnson very rarely attended, and that he and Boswell never met there
above seven or eight times. It may be observed, he adds, how very rarely
Boswell records the conversation at the club, Except in one instance
(_post_, April, 3, 1778), he says, Boswell confines his report to what
Johnson or himself may have said. That this is not strictly true is
shewn by his report of the dinner recorded above, where we find reported
remarks of Beauclerk and Gibbon. Seven meetings besides this are
mentioned by Boswell. See _ante_, ii. 240, 255, 318, 330; and _post_,
April 3, 1778, April 16, 1779, and June 22, 1784. Of all but the last
there is some report, however brief, of something said. When Johnson was
not present, Boswell would have nothing to record in this book.

[1024] _Travels through Germany, &c_., 1756-7.

[1025] _Travels through Holland, &c. Translated from the French_, 1743.

[1026] See _post_, March 24, 1776, and May 17, 1778.

[1027] _Description of the East_, 1743-5.

[1028] Johnson had made the same remark, and Boswell had mentioned
Leandro Alberti, when they were talking in an inn in the Island of Mull.
Boswell's _Hebrides_, Oct. 14, 1773.

[1029] Addison does not mention where this epitaph, which has eluded a
very diligent inquiry, is found. MALONE. I have found it quoted in old
Howell. 'The Italian saying may be well applied to poor England:--"I was
well--would be better--took physic--and died."' _Lett_. Jan. 20, 1647.
CROKER. It is quoted by Addison in _The Spectator_, No. 25:--'This
letter puts me in mind of an Italian epitaph written on the monument of
a Valetudinarian: _Stavo ben, ma per star meglio sto qui_, which it is
impossible to translate.'

[1030] Lord Chesterfield, as Mr. Croker points out, makes the same
observation in one of his _Letters to his Son_ (ii. 351). Boswell,
however, does not get it from him, for he had said the same in the
_Hebrides_, six months before the publication of Chesterfield's
_Letters_. Addison, in the preface to his _Remarks_, says:--'Before I
entered on my voyage I took care to refresh my memory among the classic
authors, and to make such collections out of them as I might afterwards
have occasion for.'

[1031] See ante, ii. 156.

[1032] 'It made an impression on the army that cannot be well imagined
by those who saw it not. The whole army, and at last all people both in
city and country were singing it perpetually, and perhaps never had so
slight a thing so great an effect.' Bumet's Own Time, ed. 1818, ii. 430.
In Tristram Shandy, vol. i. chap. 21, when Mr. Shandy advanced one of
his hypotheses:--'My uncle Toby,' we read, 'would never offer to answer
this by any other kind of argument than that of whistling half-a-dozen
bars of Lilliburlero.'

[1033] See ante, ii. 66.

[1034] 'Of Gibbon, Mackintosh neatly remarked that he might have been
cut out of a corner of Burke's mind, without his missing it.' _Life of
Mackintosh_, i. 92. It is worthy of notice that Gibbon scarcely mentions
Johnson in his writings. Moreover, in the names that he gives of the
members of the Literary Club, 'who form a large and luminous
constellation of British stars,' though he mentions eighteen of them, he
passes over Boswell. Gibbon's _Misc. Works_, i.219. See also _post_,
April 18, 1775.

[1035] We may compare with this Dryden's line:--

'Usurped a patriot's all-atoning name.'

_Absalom and Achitophel_, l. 179. Hawkins (_Life_, p. 506) says that 'to
party opposition Johnson ever expressed great aversion, and of the
pretences of patriots always spoke with indignation and contempt.' He
had, Hawkins adds, 'partaken of the short-lived joy that infatuated the
public' when Walpole fell; but a few days convinced him that the
patriotism of the opposition had been either hatred or ambition. For
_patriots_, see _ante_, i. 296, note, and _post_, April 6, 1781.

[1036] Mr. Burke. See _ante_, p. 222, note 4.

[1037] Lord North's ministry lasted from 1770 to 1782.

[1038] Perhaps Johnson had this from Davies, who says (_Life of
Garrick_, i. l24):--'Mrs. Pritchard read no more of the play of
_Macbeth_ than her own part, as written out and delivered to her by the
prompter.' She played the heroine in _Irene_ (_ante_, i. 197). See
_post_ under Sept. 30, 1783, where Johnson says that 'in common life she
was a vulgar idiot,' and Boswell's _Hebrides_, Aug. 28, 1773.

[1039] A misprint for April 8.

[1040] Boswell calls him the 'Irish Dr. Campbell,' to distinguish him
from the Scotch Dr. Campbell mentioned _ante_, i. 417.

[1041] See _ante_, i. 494.

[1042] Baretti, in a MS. note in his copy of _Piozzi Letters_, i. 374,
says:--'Johnson was often fond of saying silly things in strong terms,
and the silly Madam [Mrs. Thrale] never failed to echo that beastly
kind of wit.'

[1043] According to Dr. T. Campbell, who was present at the dinner
(_Diary_, p. 66), Barry and Garrick were the two actors, and Murphy the
author. If Murphy said this in the heat of one of his quarrels with
Garrick, he made amends in his _Life_ of that actor (p. 362):--'It was
with Garrick,' he wrote, 'a fixed principle, that authors were entitled
to the emolument of their labours, and by that generous way of thinking
he held out an invitation to men of genius.'

[1044] Page 392, vol. i. BOSWELL.

[1045] Let me here be allowed to pay my tribute of most sincere
gratitude to the memory of that excellent person, my intimacy with whom
was the more valuable to me, because my first acquaintance with him was
unexpected and unsolicited. Soon after the publication of my _Account of
Corsica_, he did me the honour to call on me, and, approaching me with a
frank courteous air, said, 'My name, Sir, is Oglethorpe, and I wish to
be acquainted with you.' I was not a little flattered to be thus
addressed by an eminent man, of whom I had read in Pope, from my
early years,

'Or, driven by strong benevolence of soul, Will fly, like Oglethorpe,
from pole to pole.'

I was fortunate enough to be found worthy of his good opinion, insomuch,
that I not only was invited to make one in the many respectable
companies whom he entertained at his table, but had a cover at his
hospitable board every day when I happened to be disengaged; and in his
society I never failed to enjoy learned and animated conversation,
seasoned with genuine sentiments of virtue and religion. BOSWELL. See
_ante_, i. 127, and ii. 59, note 1. The couplet from Pope is from
_Imitations of Horace_, _Epist_. ii. 2. 276.


'Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never _is_, but always _to be_ blest.'

_Essay on Man_, i. 95.

[1047] 'The natural flights of the human mind are not from pleasure to
pleasure, but from hope to hope.' _The Rambler_, No. 2. See _post_, iii.
53, and June 12, 1784. Swift defined happiness as 'a perpetual
possession of being well deceived.' _Tale of a Tub_, Sect, ix., Swift's
_Works_, ed. 1803, iii. 154.

[1048] See _post_, March 29, 1776.

[1049] The General seemed unwilling to enter upon it at this time; but
upon a subsequent occasion he communicated to me a number of
particulars, which I have committed to writing; but I was not
sufficiently diligent in obtaining more from him, not apprehending that
his friends were so soon to lose him; for, notwithstanding his great
age, he was very healthy and vigorous, and was at last carried off by a
violent fever, which is often fatal at any period of life. BOSWELL.

[1050] See _ante_, p. 338.


'Mediocribus esse poetis
_Non homines, non Di_, non concessere columnae.'
'But God and man, and letter'd post denies
That poets ever are of middling size.'

FRANCIS, Horace, _Ars Poet_. l. 372.

[1052] Why he failed to keep his journal may be guessed from his letter
to Temple:--'I am,' he wrote on April 17, 'indeed enjoying this
metropolis to the full, according to my taste, except that I cannot, I
see, have a plenary indulgence from you for Asiatic multiplicity. Be not
afraid of me, except when I take too much claret; and then indeed there
is a _furor brevis_ as dangerous as anger.... I have rather had too much
dissipation since I came last to town. I try to keep a journal, and
shall show you that I have done tolerably: but it is hardly credible
what ground I go over, and what a variety of men and manners I
contemplate in a day; and all the time I myself am _pars magna_, for my
exuberant spirits will not let me listen enough.' _Letters of Boswell_,
pp. 187-9.

[1053] Johnson, in _The Rambler_, No. 110, published on Easter Eve,
1751, thus justifies fasting:--'Austerity is the proper antidote to
indulgence; the diseases of mind as well as body are cured by
contraries, and to contraries we should readily have recourse if we
dreaded guilt as we dread pain.'

[1054] From this too just observation there are some eminent exceptions,
BOSWELL. 'Dr. Johnson said:--"Few bishops are now made for their
learning. To be a bishop, a man must be learned in a learned age,
factious in a factious age, but always of eminence."' Boswell's
_Hebrides_, Aug. 21, 1773.

[1055] Lord Shelburne wrote of him:--'He panted for the Treasury, having
a notion that the King and he understood it from what they had read
about revenue and funds while they were at Kew.' Fitzmaurice's
_Shelburne_, i. 141.

[1056] Chief Justice Pratt (afterwards Lord Camden) became popular by
his conduct as a judge in Wilkes's case. In 1764 he received the freedom
of the guild of merchants in Dublin in a gold box, and from Exeter the
freedom of the city. The city of London gave him its freedom in a gold
box, and had his portrait painted by Reynolds. _Gent. Mag_. 1764, pp.
44, 96, 144. See _ante_, p. 314.

[1057] The King, on March 3, 1761, recommended this measure to
Parliament. _Parl. Hist_. xv. 1007. 'This,' writes Horace Walpole, 'was
one of Lord Bute's strokes of pedantry. The tenure of the judges had
formerly been a popular topic; and had been secured, as far as was
necessary. He thought this trifling addition would be popular now, when
nobody thought or cared about it.' _Memoirs of the Reign of George
III_, i. 41.

[1058] The money arising from the property of the prizes taken before
the declaration of war, which were given to his Majesty by the peace of
Paris, and amounted to upwards of L700,000, and from the lands in the
ceded islands, which were estimated at L200,000 more. Surely there was a
noble munificence in this gift from a Monarch to his people. And let it
be remembered, that during the Earl of Bute's administration, the King
was graciously pleased to give up the hereditary revenues of the Crown,
and to accept, instead of them, of the limited sum of L800,000 a year;
upon which Blackstone observes, that 'The hereditary revenues, being put
under the same management as the other branches of the publick
patrimony, will produce more, and be better collected than heretofore;
and the publick is a gainer of upwards of L100,000 _per annum_ by this
disinterested bounty of his Majesty.' Book I. Chap. viii. p. 330.
BOSWELL. Lord Bolingbroke (_Works_, iii. 286), about the year 1734,
pointed out that 'if the funds appropriated produce the double of that
immense revenue of L800,000 a year, which hath been so liberally given
the King for life, the whole is his without account; but if they fail in
any degree to produce it, the entire national fund is engaged to make up
the difference.' Blackstone (edit, of 1778, i. 331) says:--'L800,000
being found insufficient, was increased in 1777 to, L900,000.' He adds,
'the public is still a gainer of near L100,000.'

[1059] See _post_, iii. 163.

[1060] Lord Eldon says that Dundas, 'in broken phrases,' asked the King
to confer a baronetcy on 'an eminent Scotch apothecary who had got from
Scotland the degree of M. D. The King said:--"What, what, is that all?
It shall be done. I was afraid you meant to ask me to make the Scotch
apothecary a physician--that's more difficult."' He added:--'They may
make as many Scotch apothecaries Baronets as they please, but I shall
die by the College.' Twiss's _Eldon_, ii. 354. A Dr. Duncan, says Mr.
Croker, was appointed physician to the King in 1760. Croker's _Boswell_,
p. 448. A doctor of the same name, and no doubt the same man, was made a
baronet in Aug. 1764. Jesse's _Selwyn_, i. 287.

[1061] Wedderburne, afterwards Lord Chancellor Loughborough, and Earl of
Rosslyn. One of his 'errands' had been to bring Johnson bills in payment
of his first quarter's pension. _Ante_, i. 376.

[1062] Home, the author of _Douglas_. Boswell says that 'Home showed the
Lord Chief Baron Orde a pair of pumps he had on, and desired his
lordship to observe how well they were made, telling him at the same
time that they had been made for Lord Bute, but were rather too little
for him, so his lordship had made John a present of them. "I think,"
said the Lord Chief Baron, "you have taken the measure of Lord Bute's
foot."' _Boswelliana_, p. 252. Dr. A. Carlyle (_Auto_. p. 335),
writes:--'With Robertson and Home in London I passed the time very
agreeably; for though Home was now [1758] entirely at the command of
Lord Bute, whose nod made him break every engagement--for it was not
given above an hour or two before dinner--yet, as he was sometimes at
liberty when the noble lord was to dine abroad, like a horse loosened
from his stake, he was more sportful than usual.'

[1063] Lord North was merely the King's agent. The King was really his
own minister at this time, though he had no seat in his own
cabinet councils.

[1064] Only thirty-four years earlier, on the motion in the Lords for
the removal of Walpole, the Duke of Argyle said:--'If my father or
brother took upon him the office of a sole minister, I would oppose it
as inconsistent with the constitution, as a high crime and misdemeanour.
I appeal to your consciences whether he [Walpole] hath not done this...
He hath turned out men lately for differing with him.' Lord Chancellor
Hardwicke replied:--'A sole minister is so illegal an office that it is
none. Yet a noble lord says, _Superior respondeat_, which is laying down
a rule for a prime minister; whereas the noble Duke was against any.'
_The Secker MS. Parl. Hist_. xi. 1056-7. In the Protest against the
rejection of the motion it was stated:--'We are persuaded that a sole,
or even a first minister, is an officer unknown to the law of Britain,'
&c. _Ib_ p. 1215. Johnson reports the Chancellor as saying:--'It has not
been yet pretended that he assumes the title of _prime minister_, or,
indeed, that it is applied to him by any but his enemies ... The first
minister can, in my opinion, be nothing more than a formidable illusion,
which, when one man thinks he has seen it, he shows to another, as
easily frighted as himself,' &c. Johnson's _Works_, x. 214-15. In his
_Dictionary_, _premier_ is only given as an adjective, and _prime
minister_ is not given at all. When the Marquis of Rockingham was
forming his cabinet in March 1782, Burke wrote to him:--'Stand firm on
your ground--but _one_ ministry. I trust and hope that your lordship
will not let _one_, even but _one_ branch of the state ... out of your
own hands; or those which you can entirely rely on.' Burke's _Corres_.
ii. 462. See also _post_, iii. 46, April 1, 1781, Jan. 20, 1782, and
April 10, 1783.

[1065] See _ante_, p. 300.

[1066] 'As he liberally confessed that all his own disappointments
proceeded from himself, he hated to hear others complain of general
injustice.' Piozzi's _Anec_. p. 251. See _post_, end of May, 1781, and
March 23, 1783.

[1067] 'Boswell and I went to church, but came very late. We then took
tea, by Boswell's desire; and I eat one bun, I think, that I might not
seem to fast ostentatiously.' _Pr. and Med_. p. 138.

[1068] See ante, i. 433.

[1069] See ante, i. 332.

[1070] The following passages shew that the thought, or something like
it, was not new to Johnson:--'Bruyere declares that we are come into the
world too late to produce anything new, that nature and life are
preoccupied, and that description and sentiment have been long
exhausted.' _The Rambler_, No. 143. 'Some advantage the ancients might
gain merely by priority, which put them in possession of the most
natural sentiments, and left us nothing but servile repetition or forced
conceits.' _Ib_ No. 169. 'My earlier predecessors had the whole field of
life before them, untrodden and unsurveyed; characters of every kind
shot up in their way, and those of the most luxuriant growth, or most
conspicuous colours, were naturally cropt by the first sickle. They that
follow are forced to peep into neglected corners.' _The Idler_, No. 3.
'The first writers took possession of the most striking objects for
description, and the most probable occurrences for fiction.' _Rasselas_,
ch. x. Some years later he wrote:--'Whatever can happen to man has
happened so often that little remains for fancy or invention.' _Works_,
vii. 311. See also _The Rambler_, No. 86. In _The Adventurer_, No. 95,
he wrote:--'The complaint that all topicks are preoccupied is nothing
more than the murmur of ignorance or idleness.' See _post_, under Aug.
29, 1783. Dr. Warton (_Essay on Pope_, i. 88) says that 'St. Jerome
relates that Donatus, explaining that passage in Terence, _Nihil est
dictum quod non sit dictum prius_, railed at the ancients for taking
from him his best thoughts. _Pereant qui ante nos nostra dixerunt_.'

[1071] Warburton, in the Dedication of his _Divine Legation_ to the
Free-thinkers (vol. I. p. ii), says:--'Nothing, I believe, strikes the
serious observer with more surprize, in this age of novelties, than that
strange propensity to infidelity, so visible in men of almost every
condition: amongst whom the advocates of Deism are received with all the
applauses due to the inventers of the arts of life, or the deliverers of
oppressed and injured nations.' See _ante_, ii. 81.

[1072] In _The Rambler_, No. 89, Johnson writes of 'that interchange of
thoughts which is practised in free and easy conversation, where
suspicion is banished by experience, and emulation by benevolence; where
every man speaks with no other restraint than unwillingness to offend,
and hears with no other disposition than desire to be pleased.' In _The
Idler_, No. 34, he says 'that companion will be oftenest welcome whose
talk flows out with inoffensive copiousness and unenvied insipidity.' He
wrote to Mrs. Thrale:--'Such tattle as filled your last sweet letter
prevents one great inconvenience of absence, that of returning home a
stranger and an inquirer. The variations of life consist of little
things. Important innovations are soon heard, and easily understood. Men
that meet to talk of physicks or metaphysicks, or law or history, may be
immediately acquainted. We look at each other in silence, only for want
of petty talk upon slight occurrences.' _Piozzi Letters_, i. 354.

[1073] _Pr. and Med_. p. 138. BOSWELL.

[1074] This line is not, as appears, a quotation, but an abstract of p.
139 of _Pr. and Med_.

[1075] This is a proverbial sentence. 'Hell,' says Herbert, 'is full of
good meanings and wishings.' _Jacula Prudentum_, p. 11, edit
1651. MALONE.

[1076] Boswell wrote to Temple:--'I have only to tell you, as my divine,
that I yesterday received the holy sacrament in St. Paul's Church, and
was exalted in piety.' It was in the same letter that he mentioned
'Asiatic multiplicity' (_ante_ p. 352, note 1). _Letters of Boswell_,
p. 189.


'Nil admirari, prope res est una, Numici,
Solaque, quae possit facere et servare beatum'

Horace, _Epis_. i. 6. 1.

'Not to admire is all the art I know,
To make men happy and keep them so'

Pope's _Imitations_, adapted from Creech.


'We live by Admiration, Hope, and Love;
And even as these are well and wisely fixed,
In dignity of being we ascend.'

Wordsworth's _Works_, ed. 1857, vi. 135.


'Amoret's as sweet and good,
As the most delicious food;
Which but tasted does impart
Life and gladness to the heart.
Sacharissa's beauty's wine,
Which to madness does incline;
Such a liquor as no brain
That is mortal can sustain.'

Waller's _Epistles_, xii. BOSWELL.

[1080] Not that he would have wished Boswell 'to talk from books.' 'You
and I,' he once said to him, 'do not talk from books.' Boswell's
_Hebrides_, Nov. 3, 1773. See _post_, iii, 108, note 1, for Boswell's
want of learning.

[1081] See _post_, under March 30, 1783.

[1082] Yet he sat to Miss Reynolds, as he tells us, perhaps ten times
(_post_, under June 17, 1783), and 'Miss Reynolds's mind,' he said, 'was
very near to purity itself.' Northcote's _Reynolds_, i. 80. Eight years
later Barry, in his _Analysis_ (_post_, May, 1783, note), said:--'Our
females are totally, shamefully, and cruelly neglected in the
appropriation of trades and employments.' Barry's _Works_, ii. 333.

[1083] The four most likely to be mentioned would be, I think,
Beauclerk, Garrick, Langton, and Reynolds. On p. 359, Boswell mentions
Beauclerk's 'acid manner.'

[1084] In his _Dictionary_, Johnson defines _muddy_ as _cloudy in mind,
dull_; and quotes _The Winter's Tale_, act i. sc. 2. Wesley (_Journal_,
ii. 10) writes:--'Honest, _muddy_ M. B. conducted me to his house.'
Johnson (_post_, March 22, 1776), after telling how an acquaintance of
his drank, adds, 'not that he gets drunk, for he is a very pious man,
but he is always _muddy_.' It seems at first sight unlikely that he
called Reynolds _muddy_; yet three months earlier he had
written:--'Reynolds has taken too much to strong liquor.' _Ante_, p.
292, note 5.

[1085] In _The Rambler_, No. 72, Johnson defines good-humour as 'a habit
of being pleased; a constant and perennial softness of manner, easiness
of approach, and suavity of disposition.'

[1086] See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Aug. 17, 1773.

[1087] 'It is with their learning as with provisions in a besieged town,
every one has a mouthful, and no one a bellyful.' Johnson's _Works_
(1787), xi. 200.

[1088] 'Men bred in the Universities of Scotland cannot be expected to
be often decorated with the splendours of ornamental erudition, but they
obtain a mediocrity of knowledge between learning and ignorance, not
inadequate to the purposes of common life, which is, I believe, very
widely diffused among them.' Johnson's _Works_, ix. 158. Lord Shelburne
said that the Earl of Bute had 'a great deal of superficial knowledge,
such as is commonly to be met with in France and Scotland, chiefly upon
matters of natural philosophy, mines, fossils, a smattering of
mechanics, a little metaphysics, and a very false taste in everything.'
Fitzmaurice's _Shelburne_, i. 139. 'A gentleman who had heard that
Bentley was born in the north, said to Porson: "Wasn't he a Scotchman?"
"No, Sir," replied Porson, "Bentley was a great Greek scholar."'
Rogers's _Table Talk_, p. 322.

[1089] Walton did not retire from business till 1643. But in 1664, Dr.
King, Bishop of Chichester, in a letter prefixed to his _Lives_,
mentions his having been familiarly acquainted with him for forty years;
and in 1631 he was so intimate with Dr. Donne that he was one of the
friends who attended him on his death-bed. J. BOSWELL, jun. His first
wife's uncle was George Cranmer, the grandson of the Archbishop's
brother. His second wife was half-sister of Bishop Ken.

[1090] Johnson himself, as Boswell tells us, 'was somewhat susceptible
of flattery.' _Post_, end of 1784.

[1091] The first time he dined with me, he was shewn into my book-room,
and instantly poured over the lettering of each volume within his reach.
My collection of books is very miscellaneous, and I feared there might
be some among them that he would not like. But seeing the number of
volumes very considerable, he said, 'You are an honest man, to have
formed so great an accumulation of knowledge.' BURNEY. Miss Burney
describes this visit (_Memoirs of Dr. Burney_, ii. 93):--'Everybody rose
to do him honour; and he returned the attention with the most formal
courtesie. My father whispered to him that music was going forward,
which he would not, my father thinks, have found out; and, placing him
on the best seat vacant, told his daughters to go on with the duet,
while Dr. Johnson, intently rolling towards them one eye--for they say
he does not see with the other--made a grave nod, and gave a dignified
motion with one hand, in silent approvance of the proceeding.' He was
next introduced to Miss Burney, but 'his attention was not to be drawn
off two minutes longer from the books, to which he now strided his way.
He pored over them shelf by shelf, almost brushing them with his
eye-lashes from near examination. At last, fixing upon something that
happened to hit his fancy, he took it down, and standing aloof from the
company, which he seemed clean and clear to forget, he began very
composedly to read to himself, and as intently as if he had been alone
in his own study. We were all excessively provoked, for we were
languishing, fretting, expiring to hear him talk.' Dr. Burney, taking up
something that Mrs. Thrale had said, ventured to ask him about Bach's
concert. 'The Doctor, comprehending his drift, good-naturedly put away
his book, and see-sawing with a very humorous smile, drolly repeated,
"Bach, Sir? Bach's concert? And pray, Sir, who is Bach? Is he a piper?"'

[1092] Reynolds, noting down 'such qualities as Johnson's works cannot
convey,' says that 'the most distinguished was his possessing a mind
which was, as I may say, always ready for use. Most general subjects had
undoubtedly been already discussed in the course of a studious thinking
life. In this respect few men ever came better prepared into whatever
company chance might throw him; and the love which he had to society
gave him a facility in the practice of applying his knowledge of the
matter in hand, in which I believe he was never exceeded by any man.'
Taylor's _Reynolds_, ii. 454.

[1093] See _ante_, p. 225.

[1094] 'Our silly things called Histories,' wrote Burke (_Corres_, i.
337). 'The Duke of Richmond, Fox, and Burke,' said Rogers (_Table-Talk_,
p. 82), 'were conversing about history, philosophy, and poetry. The Duke
said, "I prefer history to philosophy or poetry, because history is
_truth_." Both Fox and Burke disagreed with him: they thought that
poetry was _truth_, being a representation of human nature.' Lord
Bolingbroke had said (_Works_, iii. 322) that the child 'in riper years
applies himself to history, or to that which he takes for history, to
authorised romance.'

[1095] Mr. Plunket made a great sensation in the House of Commons (Feb.
28, 1825) by saying that history, if not judiciously read, 'was no
better than an old almanack'--which Mercier had already said in his
_Nouveau Tableau de Paris_--'Malet du Pan's and such like histories of
the revolution are no better than an old almanack.' Boswell, we see, had
anticipated both. CROKER.

[1096] It was at Rome on Oct. 15, 1764, says Gibbon in a famous passage,
'that the idea of writing the decline and fall of the city first started
to my mind.' It was not till towards the end of 1772 that he 'undertook
the composition of the first volume.' Gibbon's _Misc. Works_, i.
198, 217-9.

[1097] See p. 348. BOSWELL. Gibbon, when with Johnson, perhaps felt that
timidity which kept him silent in Parliament. 'I was not armed by nature
and education,' he writes, 'with the intrepid energy of mind and voice
_Vincentem strepitus, et natum rebus agendis_. Timidity was fortified by
pride, and even the success of my pen discouraged the trial of my
voice.' Gibbon's _Misc. Works_, i. 221. Some years before he entered
Parliament, he said that his genius was 'better qualified for the
deliberate compositions of the closet, than for the extemporary
discourses of the Parliament. An unexpected objection would disconcert
me; and as I am incapable of explaining to others what I do not
thoroughly understand myself, I should be meditating while I ought to be
answering.' _Ib_ ii. 39.

[1098] A very eminent physician, whose discernment is as acute and
penetrating in judging of the human character as it is in his own
profession, remarked once at a club where I was, that a lively young
man, fond of pleasure, and without money, would hardly resist a
solicitation from his mistress to go upon the highway, immediately after
being present at the representation of _The Beggar's Opera_. I have been
told of an ingenious observation by Mr. Gibbon, that '_The Beggar's
Opera_ may, perhaps, have sometimes increased the number of highwaymen;
but that it has had a beneficial effect in refining that class of men,
making them less ferocious, more polite, in short, more like gentlemen.'
Upon this Mr. Courtenay said, that 'Gay was the Orpheus of
highwaymen.' BOSWELL.

[1099] 'The play like many others was plainly written only to divert
without any moral purpose, and is therefore not likely to do good; nor
can it be conceived without more speculation than life requires or
admits to be productive of much evil. Highwaymen and house-breakers
seldom frequent the play-house, or mingle in any elegant diversion; nor
is it possible for any one to imagine that he may rob with safety,
because he sees Macheath reprieved upon the stage.' _Works_, viii. 68.

[1100] 'The worthy Queensb'ry yet laments his Gay.'

_The Seasons_. Summer, l. 1422. Pope (_Prologue to the Satires_, l. 259)

'Of all thy blameless life the sole return
My verse, and Queensb'ry weeping o'er thy urn.'

Johnson (_Works_, viii. 69) mentions 'the affectionate attention of the
Duke and Duchess of Queensberry, into whose house he was taken, and with
whom he passed the remaining part of his life.' Smollett, in _Humphry
Clinker_, in the letters of Sept. 12 and 13, speaks of the Duke as 'one
of the best men that ever breathed,' 'one of those few noblemen whose
goodness of heart does honour to human nature.' He died in 1778.

[1101] This song is the twelfth air in act i.

[1102] 'In several parts of tragedy,' writes Tom Davies, 'Walker's look,
deportment, and action gave a _distinguished glare to tyrannic rage_.'
Davies's _Garrick_, i. 24.

[1103] Pope said of himself and Swift:--'Neither of us thought it would
succeed. We shewed it to Congreve, who said it would either take greatly
or be damned confoundedly. We were all at the first night of it in great
uncertainty of the event, till we were very much encouraged by
overhearing the Duke of Argyle say, "It will do--it must do! I see it in
the eyes of them!" This was a good while before the first act was over,
and so gave us ease soon: for that duke has a more particular knack than
any one now living in discovering the taste of the publick. He was quite
right in this, as usual: the good-nature of the audience appeared
stronger and stronger every act, and ended in a clamour of applause.'
Spence's _Anec_. p. 159. See _The Dundad_, iii. 330, and _post_,
April 25, 1778.

[1104] R. B. Sheridan married Miss Linley in 1773.

[1105] His wife had L3000, settled on her with delicate generosity by a
gentleman to whom she had been engaged. Moore's _Sheridan_, i. 43.

[1106] 'Those who had felt the mischief of discord and the tyranny of
usurpation read _Hudibras_ with rapture, for every line brought back to
memory something known, and gratified resentment by the just censure of
something hated. But the book, which was once quoted by princes, and
which supplied conversation to all the assemblies of the gay and witty,
is now seldom mentioned, and even by those that affect to mention it, is
seldom read.' _The Idler_, No. 59.

[1107] In his _Life of Addison_, Johnson says (_Works_, vii. 431):--'The
reason which induced Cervantes to bring his hero to the grave, _para mi
solo nacio Don Quixote y yo para el_ [for me alone was Don Quixote born,
and I for him], made Addison declare, with undue vehemence of
expression, that he would kill Sir Roger; being of opinion that they
were born for one another, and that any other hand would do him wrong.'

[1108] 'It may be doubted whether Addison ever filled up his original
delineation. He describes his knight as having his imagination somewhat
warped; but of this perversion he has made very little use.' Johnson's
_Works_, vii. 431.

[1109] 'The papers left in the closet of Pieresc supplied his heirs with
a whole winter's fuel.' _The Idler_, No. 65. 'A chamber in his house was
filled with letters from the most eminent scholars of the age. The
learned in Europe had addressed Pieresc in their difficulties, who was
hence called "the attorney-general of the republic of letters." The
niggardly niece, though entreated to permit them to be published,
preferred to use these learned epistles occasionally to light her
fires.' D'Israeli's _Curiosities of Literature_, i. 59.

[1110] Boswell was accompanied by Paoli. To justify his visit to London,
he said:--'I think it is also for my interest, as in time I may get
something. Lord Pembroke was very obliging to me when he was in
Scotland, and has corresponded with me since. I have hopes from him.'
_Letters of Boswell_, pp. 182, 189, and _post_, iii. 122, note 2. Horace
Walpole described Lord Pembroke in 1764 as 'a young profligate.'
_Memoirs of the Reign of George III_, i. 415.

[1111] Page 316. BOSWELL.

[1112] Page 291. BOSWELL.

[1113] In justice to Dr. Memis, though I was against him as an Advocate,
I must mention, that he objected to the variation very earnestly, before
the translation was printed off. BOSWELL.

[1114] Mr. Croker quotes _The World_ of June 7, 1753, where a Londoner,
'to gratify the curiosity of a country friend, accompanied him in Easter
week to Bedlam. To my great surprise,' he writes, 'I found a hundred
people, at least, who, having paid their twopence apiece, were suffered
unattended to run rioting up and down the wards making sport of the
miserable inhabitants. I saw them in a loud laugh of triumph at the
ravings they had occasioned.' Young (_Universal Passion_, Sat. v.)
describes Britannia's daughters

'As unreserved and beauteous as the sun,
Through every sign of vanity they run;
Assemblies, parks, coarse feasts in city halls,
Lectures and trials, plays, committees, balls;
Wells, _Bedlams_, executions, Smithfield scenes,
And fortune-tellers' caves, and lions' dens.'

In 1749, William Hutton walked from Nottingham to London, passed three
days there in looking about, and returned on foot. The whole journey
cost him ten shillings and eight-pence. He says:--'I wished to see a
number of curiosities, but my shallow pocket forbade. _One penny to see
Bedlam was all I could spare_.' Hutton's _Life_, pp. 71, 74. Richardson
(_Familiar Letters_, No. 153) makes a young lady describe her visit to
Bedlam:--'The distempered fancies of the miserable patients most
unaccountably provoked mirth and loud laughter; nay, so shamefully
inhuman were some, among whom (I am sorry to say it) were several of my
own sex, as to endeavour to provoke the patients into rage to make
them sport.'

[1115] In the _Life of Dryden_ (_Works_, vii. 304), Johnson
writes:--'Virgil would have been too hasty if he had condemned him
[Statius] _to straw_ for one sounding line.' In _Humphry Clinker_
(Letter of June 10), Mr. Bramble says to Clinker:--'The sooner you lose
your senses entirely the better for yourself and the community. In that
case, some charitable person might provide you with a dark room and
clean straw in Bedlam.' Churchill, in _Independence_ (Poems, ii.
307), writes:--

'To Bethlem with him--give him whips and straw,
I'm very sensible he's mad in law.'

[1116] My very honourable friend General Sir George Howard, who served
in the Duke of Cumberland's army, has assured me that the cruelties were
not imputable to his Royal Highness. BOSWELL. Horace Walpole shews the
Duke's cruelty to his own soldiers. 'In the late rebellion some recruits
had been raised under a positive engagement of dismission at the end of
three years. When the term was expired they thought themselves at
liberty, and some of them quitted the corps. The Duke ordered them to be
tried as deserters, and not having received a legal discharge, they were
condemned. Nothing could mollify him; two were executed.' _Memoirs of
the Reign of George II_, ii. 203.

[1117] It has been suggested that this is Dr. Percy (see _post_, April
23, 1778), but Percy was more than 'an acquaintance of ours,' he was
a friend.

[1118] Very likely Mr. Steevens. See _post_, April 13, 1778, and May 15,

[1119] On this day Johnson wrote to Mrs. Thrale:--'Boswell has made me
promise not to go to Oxford till he leaves London; I had no great reason
for haste, and therefore might as well gratify a friend. I am always
proud and pleased to have my company desired. Boswell would have thought
my absence a loss, and I know not who else would have considered my
presence as profit. He has entered himself at the Temple, and I joined
in his bond. He is to plead before the Lords, and hopes very nearly to
gain the cost of his journey. He lives much with his friend Paoli.'
_Piozzi Letters_, i. 216. Boswell wrote to Temple on June 6:--'For the
last fortnight that I was in London I lay at Paoli's house, and had the
command of his coach.... I felt more dignity when I had several servants
at my devotion, a large apartment, and the convenience and state of a
coach. I recollected that _this dignity in London_ was honourably
acquired by my travels abroad, and my pen after I came home, so I could
enjoy it with my own approbation.' _Letters of Boswell_, p. 200. A year
later he records, that henceforth, while in London, he was Paoli's
constant guest till he had a house of his own there (_post_, iii. 34).

[1120] Lord Stowell told Mr. Croker that, among the Scottish _literati_,
Mr. Crosbie was the only man who was disposed to _stand up_ (as the
phrase is) to Johnson. Croker's _Boswell_, p. 270. It is said that he
was the original of Mr. Counsellor Pleydell in Scott's novel of _Guy
Mannering_. Dr. A. Carlyle (_Autobiography_, p. 420) says of 'the famous
club called the Poker,' which was founded in Edinburgh in 1762:--'In a
laughing humour, Andrew Crosbie was chosen Assassin, in case any officer
of that sort should be needed; but David Hume was added as his Assessor,
without whose assent nothing should be done, so that between _plus_ and
_minus_ there was likely to be no bloodshed.' See Boswell's _Herbrides_,
Aug. 16, 1773.

[1121] He left on the 22nd. 'Boswell,' wrote Johnson to Mrs. Thrale on
May 22, 'went away at two this morning. He got two and forty guineas in
fees while he was here. He has, by his wife's persuasion and mine, taken
down a present for his mother-in-law.' [? Step-mother, with whom he was
always on bad terms; _post_, iii. 95, note 1.] _Piozzi Letters_, i. 219.
Boswell, the evening of the same day, wrote to Temple from Grantham:--'I
have now eat (sic) a Term's Commons in the Inner Temple. You cannot
imagine what satisfaction I had in the form and ceremony of the
_Hall_.... After breakfasting with Paoli, and worshipping at St. Paul's,
I dined tete-a-tete with my charming Mrs. Stuart. We talked with
unreserved freedom, as we had nothing to fear; we were _philosophical_,
upon honour--not deep, but feeling; we were pious; we drank tea, and bid
each other adieu as finely as romance paints. She is my wife's dearest
friend; so you see how beautiful our intimacy is. I then went to Mr.
Johnson's, and he accompanied me to Dilly's, where we supped; and then
he went with me to the inn in Holborn, where the Newcastle Fly sets out;
we were warmly affectionate. He is to buy for me a chest of books, of
his choosing, off stalls, and I am to read more and drink less; that was
his counsel.' _Letters of Boswell_, p. 196.

[1122] Yet Gilbert Walmsley had called him in his youth 'a good
scholar.' _Garrick Corres_. i. 1; and Boswell wrote to him:--'Mr.
Johnson is ready to bruise any one who calls in question your classical
knowledge, and your happy application of it.' _Ib_ p. 622.

[1123] 'Those whose lot it is to ramble can seldom write, and those who
know how to write very seldom ramble.' Johnson to Mrs. Thrale. _Piozzi
Letters_, i. 32. See _post_, April 17, 1778.

[1124] A letter from Boswell to Temple on this day helps to fill up the
gap in his journal:--'It gives me acute pain that I have not written
more to you since we parted last; but I have been like a skiff in the
sea, driven about by a multiplicity of waves. I am now at Mr. Thrale's
villa, at Streatham, a delightful spot. Dr. Johnson is here too. I came
yesterday to dinner, and this morning Dr. Johnson and I return to
London, and I go with Mr. Beauclerk to see his elegant villa and
library, worth L3000, at Muswell Hill, and return and dine with him. I
hope Dr. Johnson will dine with us. I am in that dissipated state of
mind that I absolutely cannot write; I at least imagine so. But while I
glow with gaiety, I feel friendship for you, nay, admiration of some of
your qualities, as strong as you could wish. My excellent friend, let us
ever cultivate that mutual regard which, as it has lasted till now,
will, I trust, never fail. On Saturday last I dined with John Wilkes and
his daughter, and nobody else, at the Mansion-House; it was a most
pleasant scene. I had that day breakfasted with Dr. Johnson. I drank tea
with Lord Bute's daughter-in-law, and I supped with Miss Boswell. What
variety! Mr. Johnson went with me to Beauclerk's villa, Beauclerk having
been ill; it is delightful, just at Highgate. He has one of the most
numerous and splendid private libraries that I ever saw; green-houses,
hot-houses, observatory, laboratory for chemical experiments, in short,
everything princely. We dined with him at his box at the Adelphi. I have
promised to Dr. Johnson to read when I get to Scotland, and to keep an
account of what I read; I shall let you know how I go on. My mind must
be nourished.' _Letters of Boswell_, pp. 193-5.

[1125] Swift did not laugh. 'He had a countenance sour and severe, which
he seldom softened by any appearance of gaiety. He stubbornly resisted
any tendency to laughter.' Johnson's _Works_, viii. 222. Neither did
Pope laugh. 'By no merriment, either of others or his own, was he ever
seen excited to laughter.' _Ib_ p. 312. Lord Chesterfield wrote
(_Letters_ i. 329):--'How low and unbecoming a thing laughter is. I am
sure that since I have had the full use of my reason nobody has ever
heard me laugh.' Mrs. Piozzi records (_Anec_. p. 298) that 'Dr. Johnson
used to say "that the size of a man's understanding might always be
justly measured by his mirth;" and his own was never contemptible.'

[1126] The day before he wrote to Mrs. Thrale:--'Peyton and Macbean
[_ante_, i 187] are both starving, and I cannot keep them.' _Piozzi
Letters_, i. 218. On April 1, 1776, he wrote:--'Poor Peyton expired this
morning. He probably, during many years for which he sat starving by the
bed of a wife, not only useless but almost motionless, condemned by
poverty to personal attendance chained down to poverty--he probably
thought often how lightly he should tread the path of life without his
burthen. Of this thought the admission was unavoidable, and the
indulgence might be forgiven to frailty and distress. His wife died at
last, and before she was buried he was seized by a fever, and is now
going to the grave. Such miscarriages when they happen to those on whom
many eyes are fixed, fill histories and tragedies; and tears have been
shed for the sufferings, and wonder excited by the fortitude of those
who neither did nor suffered more than Peyton.' _Ib_ 312. Baretti, in a
marginal note on _Piozzi Letters_, i. 219, writes:--'Peyton was a fool
and a drunkard. I never saw so nauseous a fellow.' But Baretti was a
harsh judge.

[1127] A learned Greek. BOSWELL. 'He was a nephew of the Patriarch of
Constantinople, and had fled from some massacre of the Greeks.'
Johnstone's _Life of Parr_, i. 84.

[1128] See _ante_, p. 278.

[1129] Wife of the Rev. Mr. Kenneth Macaulay, authour of _The History of
St. Kilda_. BOSWELL. See Boswell's _Hebrides_, Aug. 28, 1773.

[1130] 'The Elzevirs of Glasgow,' as Boswell called them. (_Hebrides_,
Oct. 29.)

[1131] See in Boswell's _Hebrides_, Johnson's letter of May 6, 1775.

[1132] A law-suit carried on by Sir Allan Maclean, Chief of his Clan, to
recover certain parts of his family estates from the Duke of
Argyle. BOSWELL.

[1133] A very learned minister in the Isle of Sky, whom both Dr. Johnson
and I have mentioned with regard. BOSWELL. Boswell's _Hebrides_, Sept.
3, 1773, and Johnson's _Works_, ix. 54. Johnson in another passage,
(_ib_. p. 115), speaks of him as 'a very learned minister. He wished me
to be deceived [as regards Ossian] for the honour of his country; but
would not directly and formally deceive me.' Johnson told him this to
his face. Boswell's _Hebrides_, Sept. 22. His credulity is shewn by the
belief he held, that the name of a place called Ainnit in Sky was the
same as the _Anaitidis delubrum_ in Lydia. _Ib_ Sept. 17.

[1134] This darkness is seen in his letters. He wrote 'June 3, 1775. It
required some philosophy to bear the change from England to Scotland.
The unpleasing tone, the rude familiarity, the barren conversation of
those whom I found here, in comparison with what I had left, really hurt
my feelings ... The General Assembly is sitting, and I practise at its
Bar. There is _de facto_ something low and coarse in such employment,
though on paper it is a Court of _Supreme Judicature_; but guineas must
be had ... Do you know it requires more than ordinary spirit to do what
I am to do this very morning: I am to go to the General Assembly and
arraign a judgement pronounced last year by Dr. Robertson, John Home,
and a good many more of them, and they are to appear on the other side.
To speak well, when I despise both the cause and the Judges, is
difficult: but I believe I shall do wonderfully. I look forward with
aversion to the little, dull labours of the Court of Sessions. You see,
Temple, I have my troubles as well as you have. My promise under the
venerable yew has kept me sober.' _Letters of Boswell_, p. 198. On June
19, he is 'vexed to think myself a coarse labourer in an obscure
corner.... Mr. Hume says there will in all probability be a change of
the Ministry soon, which he regrets. Oh, Temple, while they change so
often, how does one feel an ambition to have a share in the great
department! ... My father is most unhappily dissatisfied with me. He
harps on my going over Scotland with a brute (think how shockingly
erroneous!) and wandering (or some such phrase) to London!' _Ib_ p. 201.
'Aug. 12. I have had a pretty severe return this summer of that
melancholy, or hypochondria, which is inherent in my constitution....
While afflicted with melancholy, all the doubts which have ever
disturbed thinking men come upon me. I awake in the night dreading
annihilation, or being thrown into some horrible state of being.' He
recounts a complimentary letter he had received from Lord Mayor Wilkes,
and continues:--'Tell me, my dear Temple, if a man who receives so many
marks of more than ordinary consideration can be satisfied to drudge in
an obscure corner, where the manners of the people are disagreeable to
him.' _Ib_ p. 209.

[1135] He was absent from the end of May till some time in August. He
wrote from Oxford on June 1:--'Don't suppose that I live here as we live
at Streatham. I went this morning to the chapel at _six_.' _Piozzi
Letters_, i. 223. He was the guest of Mr. Coulson, a Fellow of
University College. On June 6, he wrote:--'Such is the uncertainty of
all human things that Mr. Coulson has quarrelled with me. He says I
raise the laugh upon him, and he is an independent man, and all he has
is his own, and he is not used to such things.' _Ib_ p. 226. An
eye-witness told Mr. Croker that 'Coulson was going out on a country
living, and talking of it with the same pomp as to Lord Stowell.' [He
had expressed to him his doubts whether, after living so long in the
_great world_, he might not grow weary of the comparative retirement of
a country parish. Croker's _Boswell_, p. 425.] Johnson chose to imagine
his becoming an archdeacon, and made himself merry at Coulson's expense.
At last they got to warm words, and Johnson concluded the debate by
exclaiming emphatically--'Sir, having meant you no offence, I will make
you no apology.' _Ib_ p. 458. The quarrel was made up, for the next day
he wrote:--'Coulson and I are pretty well again.' _Piozzi Letters_,
i. 229.

[1136] Boswell wrote to Temple on Sept. 2:--'It is hardly credible how
difficult it is for a man of my sensibility to support existence in the
family where I now am. My father, whom I really both respect and
affectionate (if that is a word, for it is a different feeling from that
which is expressed by _love_, which I can say of you from my soul), is
so different from me. We _divaricate_ so much, as Dr. Johnson said, that
I am often hurt when, I dare say, he means no harm: and he has a method
of treating me which makes me feel myself like a _timid boy_, which to
_Boswell_ (comprehending all that my character does in my own
imagination and in that of a wonderful number of mankind) is
intolerable. His wife too, whom in my conscience I cannot condemn for
any capital bad quality, is so narrow-minded, and, I don't know how, so
set upon keeping him under her own management, and so suspicious and so
sourishly tempered that it requires the utmost exertion of practical
philosophy to keep myself quiet. I however have done so all this week to
admiration: nay, I have appeared good-humoured; but it has cost me

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