The Letters of Horace Walpole, Volume 1

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editions, all of which are confirmed as Public Domain in the US unless a copyright notice is included. Thus, we usually do not keep eBooks in compliance with any particular paper edition.

The “legal small print” and other information about this book may now be found at the end of this file. Please read this important information, as it gives you specific rights and tells you about restrictions in how the file may be used.

This etext was produced by Marjorie Fulton.

For easier searching, letters have been numbered. Only the page numbers that appear in the table of contents have been retained in the text of letters. Footnotes have been regrouped as endnotes following the letter to which they relate.



VOL. 1. 1735-1748.




Second advertisement–40

Sir Charles Grey’s Letter connecting Walpole with Junius–41

Sketch of the Life of Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford, by Lord Dover–47


CHAPTer 1.–67
Motives to the Undertaking-Precedents-George the First’s Reign-a Proem to the History of the Reigning House of Brunswick-The Reminiscent introduced to that Monarch-His Person and Dress-The Duchess of Kendal-her Jealousy of Sir Robert Walpole’s Credit with the King-the Intrigues to displace him, and make Bolingbroke Minister

Marriage of George the First, while Electoral Prince, to the Princess Sophia Dorothea-Assassination of Count Konigsmark-Separation from the Princess-Left-handed espousal-Piety of the Duchess of Kendal-Confinement and Death of Sophia Dorothea in the Castle of Alden-French Prophetess-The King’s Superstition-Mademoiselle Schulemberg-Royal Inconsistency-Countess of platen-Anne Brett- Sudden Death of George the First

Quarrel between George the First and his Son-Earl of Sunderland-Lord Stanhope-South Sea Scheme-Death of Craggs-Royal Reconcilement-Peerage Bill Defeated-Project for seizing the Prince of Wales and conveying him to America-Duke of Newcastle-Royal Christening-Open rupture-Prince and Princess of Wales ordered to leave the Palace

CHAPtER 4.–83
Bill Of Pains and Penalties against Bishop Atterbury-Projected Assassination of Sir Robert Walpole-Revival of the Order of the Bath-Instance of George the First’s good-humoured Presence of Mind

Accession of George the Second-Sir Spencer Compton-Expected Change in Administration-Continuation of Lord Townshend -and Sir Robert Walpole by the Intervention of Queen Caroline-Mrs. Howard, afterwards Countess of Suffolk-Her character by Swift-and by Lord Chesterfield

Destruction of George the First’s Will.

History of Mrs. Howard, afterwards Countess of Suffolk-Miss Bellenden-Marriage with Colonel John Carnl)bell, afterwards Fourth Duke of Argyle-Anecdotes of Queen Caroline-Her last Illness and Death-Anecdotes of Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough-Last Years of George the Second-Mrs. Clayton, afterwards Lady Sundon-Lady Diana Spencer-Frederick, Prince of Wales-Sudden Removal of the Prince and Princess from Hampton Court to St. James’s-Birth of a Princess-Rupture with the King-Anecdotes of Lady Yarmouth

CHAPTER 8.–101

George the Second’s Daughters-Anne, Princess of Orange-Princess Amelia-Princess Caroline-Lord Hervey-Duke of Cumberland

CHAPTER 9.–103
Anecdotes of Sarah, Duchess of Marlborough-and of Catherine, Duchess of Buckingham



(Those Letters now first collected are marked N.)


1. To Richard West, Esq. November 9.-Picture of a University life. Cambridge sophs. Juvenile quadruple alliance–121


2. To George Montagu, Esq. May 2.-Marriage of Frederick, Prince of Wales, with the Princess Augusta of Saxe Gotha–122

3. To the same, May 6.-Pleasures of youth, and youthful recollections–123

4. To the same, May 20.-Jaunt to Oxford. Wrest House. Easton Neston. Althorp–124

5. To the same, May 30.-Petronius Arbiter. Coventry’s Dialogue between Philemon and Hydaspes on False Religion. Artemisia– 126

6. To Richard West, Esq. Aug. 17.-Gray, and other schoolfellows. Eton recollections. Course of study at the University–127


7. To George Montagu, Esq. March 20.-French and English manners contrasted–128

8. To the same.-Feelings on revisiting Eton–129


9. To Richard West, Esq. April 21. Paris society. Amusements. Funeral of the Duke de Tresmes. St. Denis. Church of the Celestins. French love of show. Signs. Notions of honour–130

10. To the same.-, Description of Versailles. Conventof the Chartreux. History of St. Bruno, painted by Le Soeur. Relics– 132

11. To the same, June 18.-Rheims. Brooke’s “Gustavus Vasa”– 134

12. To the same, July 20.-Rheims. Compiegne. Self-introduction–134

13. To the same, Sept. 28.-Mountains of Savoy. Grande Chartreuse. Aix. English visitors. Epigram–136

14. To the same, Nov. 11.-Passage of Mount Cenis. Cruel accident. Chamberri. Inscription. Pas de Suza. Turin. Italian comedy. “L’Anima Damnata.” Conversazione–138

15. To the same.-Bologna. Letter-writing. Curl. Whitfield’s Journal. Jingling epitaph. Academical exercises at the Franciscans’ church. Dominicans’ Church. Old verses in a new light–140


16. To the same, January 24.-Florence. Grand Duke’s gallery. Effect of travel. English and Italian character contrasted. Story of the prince and the nut–142

17. To the same, February 27.-Florence. The Carnival. Character of the Florentines. Their prejudice about nobility. Mr. Martin. Affair of honour–143

18. To the Hon. Henry Seymour Conway, March 6.-Complaints of his not writing. Attachment to Florence–145

19. To richard West, Esq. March 22.-Description of Siena. Romish superstitions. Climate of italy. Italian customs. Radicofani. Dome of Siena. Inscription. Entrance to Rome–146

20. To the same, April 16.-Rome. Ruins of the temple of Minerva Medica. Ignorance and poverty of the present Romans. The Coliseum. Relics–148

21. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, April 23.-Society at Rome. The Moscovita. Roman Conversations. The Conclave. Lord Deskford– 150

22. To Richard West, Esq., May 7.-The Conclave. Antiquities of Rome. State of the public a century hence–152

23. To the same, June 14.-Naples. Description of Herculaneum. Passage in Statius picturing out this latent city–153

24. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, July 5.-Reasons for leaving Rome. Malaria. Radicofani described. Relics from Jerusalem. Society at Florence. Mr. Mann. Lady pomfret. Princess Craon. Hosier’s ghost. The Conclave. Lord Chancellor Hardwicke–155

25. To Richard West, Esq.-Medals and inscriptions. Taking of Porto Bello. The Conclave. Lady Mary Montagu. Life at Florence–159

26. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, Sept. 25.-Character of the Florentines. Lady Mary Wortley Montagu described. Sortes Virgiliane–161

27. To Richard West, Esq. Oct. 2.-Effect of travel- A wedding at Florence. Addison’s Italy. Dr. Cocchi. Bondelmonti. A song. Bronzes and medals. Tartini. Lady Walpole. Platonic love–163

28. To the same, Nov.-Disastrous flood at Florence–166


29. To the Rev. Joseph Spence, Feb. 21.-Hopes to renew in England an acquaintance begun in Italy. Owns him his master in the antique–[N.) 168

30. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, March 25.-Rejoices at George Selwyn’s recovery And at the result of Mr. Sandvs’ motion for the removal of Sir Robert Walpole. Middleton’s Life of Cicero- -169

31. To Richard West, Esq., May 10.-His opinion of the first act of West’s tragedy of Pausanias. Description of Rome during fair-time–170

32. To Sir Horace Mann, Sept.-Calais on his return to England. Amorevoli. The Viscontina. Passage to Dover. Comfort and snugness of English in country towns. The distinction of “meddling people” nowhere but in England. Story of Mr. Pope and the Prince of Wales–172

33. To the same, Oct.-Corsica. Bianca Colonna. Baron Stosch, and his Maltese cats–174

34. To the Hon. H. S. Conway.-On his return to England. Changes produced by travel–175

35. To Sir Horace Mann, Oct. 8.-Illness of Sir Robert Walpole. The Opera. Sir Benjamin Keene. Dominichino’s Madonna and Child. Lady Dorothy Boyle. State of parties–176

36. To the same, Oct. 13–178

37. To the same, Oct. 19.-Unfavourable state of his father’s health–178

38. To the same, Oct. 22.-Duel between Winnington and Augustus Townshend. Long Sir Thomas Robinson. Mrs. Woffington. “Les Cours de l’Europe”–179

39. To the same, Nov. 2.-Sir Thomas Robinson’s ball. The Euston embroil. The Neutrality. “The Balancing Captain,” a new song–182

40. To the same, Nov. 5.-Opera House management–186

41. To the same, Nov. 12.-Admiral Vernon. The Opera. The Viscontina–187

42. To the same, Nov. 23.-Spanish design on Lombardy. Sir Edward Walpole’s courtship. Lady Pomfret. “Going to Court.” Lord Lincoln. Paul Whitehead. “Manners”–189

43. To the same, Nov. 26.-His mother’s tomb. Intaglio of the Gladiator–191

44. To the same, Dec. 3.-Admiral Haddock. Meeting of Parliament. State of parties. Colley Cibber–192

45. To the same, Dec. 10.-Debate on the King’s speech. Westminster petition. Triumph of Opposition. “Bright Bootle”– 194

46. To the same, Dec. 16.-Chairman of election committees. Ministry in a minority–197

47. To the same, Dec. 17.-Warm debates in Westminster election committee. Odd suicide–199

48. To the same, Dec. 24.-Anecdote of Sandys. Ministerial victory. Debates on the Westminster election. Story of the Duchess of Buckingham. Mr. Nugent. Lord Gage. Revolution in Russia–201

49. To the same, Dec. 29.-The Dominichino. Passage of the Giogo. Bubb Doddington. Follies of the Opposition–206


50. To Sir Horace Mann, Jan. 7.-Reasons why he is not in fashion. His father’s want of partiality for him. Character of General Churchill. Vote-trafficking during the holidays. Music party. The three beauty-Fitzroys. Lord Hervey. Hammond, the poet. Death of Lady Sundon. Anecdotes–207

51. To the same, Jan. 22.-House of Commons. Merchants’ petition. Leonidas Glover. Place Bill. Projected changes. King’s message to the Prince. Pulteney’s motion for a secret committee on Sir Robert Walpole’s conduct. New opera–212

52. To the same Feb. 4.-Sir Robert’s morning levees. His resignation. Created Earl of Orford–218

53. To the same; Feb. 9.@Political changes. Opposition meeting at the Fountain. Cry against Sir Robert. Instructions to members. Lord Wilmington first lord of the Treasury.New ministry. Crebillon’s “Sofa”–220

54. To the same, Feb. 18.-Rumoured impeachments. Popular feeling. “The Unhappy Favourite.” “broad Bottom” ministry. the Prince of Wales at the King’s levee. sir Robert takes his seat in the HOuse of Lords. Grand masquerade–224

55. To the same, Feb. 25.-House of Commons. Shippen. Murray. Story of Sir R. Godschall. Impeachments. Changes. “England in 1741,” by Sir C. H. Williams–227

56. To the same, march 3.-Merchants’ petition. leonidas Glover. New Story of the Lord mayor. speech of Doddington. Heydon election. “The broad Bottom.” Duchess of Marlborough’s Memoirs. Lord Oxford’s sale. New opera. Sir robert at richmond–229

57. to the same, March 10.-The coalition. Motion for a committee of inquiry into the last twenty years thrown out. Duke of Argyle resigns. Old Sarah’s Memoirs–234

58. To the same, march 22.-Queen of Hungary’s successes. Lord Oxford’s sale–237

59. to the same, March 24.-Secret Committee to inquire into the conduct of the Earl of Orford appointed. Horace WAlpole’s speech on the occasion–238

60. To the same, april 1.-Secret Committee balloted for. court and Opposition lists. Bill for repealing the Septennial Act rejected–241

61. To the same, april 8.-lady Walpole’s extravagant schemes. Subsidy for the Queen of Hungary. Lord Orford’s crowded levees. Rage of the mob against him. Place Bill rejected by the Lords–243

62. To the same, April 15.-Progress of the Secret Committee. Committal of Paxton–246

63. To the same, april 22.- Secret Committee. Examination of Sir John Rawdon. Opening of Ranelagh Gardens–247

64. To the same, April 29.-Preparations for war in Flanders. Examinations before the Secret Committee. Scuffle at the Opera–249

65. To richard West, Esq., may 4.-Anxiety for the recovery of his health and spirits. The age most unpoetical. Wit monopolized by politics. Royal reconciliation. Asheton’s sermons. (Death of Mr. West)–251

66. To sir Horace mann, May 6.-Florentine nobility. Embarkations for Germany. Doings of the Secret committee. the opera–252

67. to the same, May 13.-first report of the Secret Committee. Bill to indemnify evidence against Lord orford brought in–254

68. To the same, May 20.-Indemnity Bill carried in the Commons. Party dinner at the Fountain. Place Bill. Mr. Nugent’s attack on the bishops–254

69. To the same, May 28.-Ranelagh. Vauxhall. Mrs. Clive. “Miss Lucy in town.” Garrick at Goodman’s Fields: “a very good mimic; but nothing wonderful in his acting.” Mrs. Bracegirdle. meeting at the Fountain. The Indemnity Bill flung out by the Lords. Epigram on Pulteney. Committee to examine the public accounts. Epigram on the Indemnity Bill. Kent and symmetry. “The Irish Beggar”–256

70. To the same, June 3.-Epigram on Lord Islay’s garden upon Hounslow Heath–260

71. To the same, June 10.-Lady Walpole and her son. Royal reviews. Death of hammong. Process against the duchess of Beaufort–261

72. To the same, June 14.-Peace between Austria and Prussia. Ministerial movements. Perplexities of the Secret Committee. Conduct of Mr. Scrope. Lady Vane’s adventures–263

73. To the same, June 25.-successes of the Queen of Hungary. Mr. Pulteney created Earl of Bath–265

74. To the same, June 30.-Second Report of the Secret Committee.’ The Pretender. Intercepted letters. Lord Barrymore–267

75. to the same.-Lines on the death of Richard West, Esq. “A Receipt to make a lord”–269

76. To the same, July 7.-New Place Bill. General Guise. Monticelli–271

77. To the same July 14.-Ned and Will Finch. Lord Sidney Beauclerc. Pulteney takes up his patent as Earl of Bath. Ranelagh masquerade. Fire in Downing Street–273

78. To the same.-Prorogation. End of the Secret Committee. Paxton released from Newgate. Ceretesi. Shocking scene of murder. Items from his grandfather’s account-book. Lord Orford at court–275

79. To the same, July 29.-About to set out for Houghton. Evening at Ranelagh with his father. Lord Orford’s increasing popularity. “The Wife of Bath.” Cibber’s pamphlet against Pope. Doddington’s “Comparison of the Old and New Ministry”– 278

80. To the same,-New ballads. Lord Orford at Houghton–279

81. To the same, Aug. 20–280

82. To the same, Aug. 28.-Marshal Belleisles, Cardinal Tencin. “Lessons for the Day.” “An honourable man”–281

83. To the same, Sept, 11.-Visit to Woolterton. A Catalogue of New French Books”–284

84. To the same, Sept. 25.-Admiral Matthews. The King’sJourney to Flanders. Siege of Prague. History of the Princess Eleonora of Guastalla. Moli`ere’s Tartuffe–285

85. To the same, Oct. 8.-Siege of Prague raised. Great preparations for the King’s journey to Flanders. Odes on Pulteney. Story of the Pigwiggins. Fracas at Kensington Palace–287

86. To the same, Oct. 18.-Admiral Matthews. “Yarmouth Roads.” A ballad, by Lord Hervey–289

87. To the same, Oct. 23.–293

88. To the same, Nov. 1.-The King’s levee and drawing-room described. State of parties. A piece of absence. Duc d’Arembery–294

89. To the same, Nov. 15.-Projects of Opposition Lord Orford’s reception at the levee. Revolution in the French court. The Opera. Lord Tyrawley. Doddington’s marriage–296

90. To the same, Dec. 2.–House of Commons. Motion for a new secret committee thrown out. Union of the Whigs–298

91. To the same, Dec. 9.-Debate on disbanding the army in Flanders. “Hanover”-the word for the winter–299

92. To the same, Dec. 23.-Difficulty of writing upon nothing– 301


93. To Sir Horace Mann, Jan. 6.-Admiral Vernon. Reply of the Duchess of Queensberry–302

94. To the same, Jan. 13.-House of Commons. Case of the Hanover ‘Forces.” Difficulty of raising the supplies. Lord Orford’s popularity–304

95. To the same, Jan. 27.-Accession of the Dutch to the King’s measures–306

96. To the same, Feb. 2. Debate in the Lords on disbanding the Hanoverian troops–308

97. to the same, Feb. 18.–309

98. To the same, Feb. 24.’ Austrian victory over the Spaniards in Italy. King theodore’s Declaration. handle and the Opera– 309

99. To the same, March 3.-Death of the Electress. Story of Lord Hervey. The Oratorios–310

100. To the same, March 14.-Duel between his uncle Horace and Mr. Chetwynd. Death of the Duchess of Buckingham–311

101. To the same, March 25.-Epidemic. Death of Dr. Blackburne, Archbishop of York–314

102. To the same, April 4.-Funeral of the Duchess of Buckingham–315

103. To the same, April 14.-Army in Flanders. King Theodore. The Opera ruined by gentlemen directors. Dillettanti Club. London versus the country–317

104. To the same, April 25.-Departure of the King and Duke of Cumberland from the army in Flanders. The Regency. Princess Louisa and the Prince of Denmark. Lord Stafford and Miss Cantillon. Irish fracas. Silvia and Philander–318

105. To the same, May 4.-King Theodore. Admiral Vernon’s frantic speech. Ceretesi. Low state of the Opera. Freemasonry- -320

106. to the same, May 12.-Death of the Duchess of Kendal. Story of Old Sarah. Maids of honour–322

107. To the same, May 19.-Mutiny of a Highland regiment–323

108. To the same, June 4.-Marriages, deaths and promotions. Sale of Corsica–324

109. To the same, June 16.-expected battle in Flanders. Alarms for Mr. Conway. Houghton gallery. Life of Theodore–326

110. To the same, June 20.-Visit to Euston. Kent. Anecdote of Lord Easton. Lady Dorothy Boyle–328

111. To the same, June 28.-Batttle of Dettingen. Conduct of the King. Anecdotes–329

112. To the same, July 4.-Further anecdotes of the battle. Public rejoicings. Lines on the victory. Halifax’s poem of the battle of the Boyne–331

113. to the same, July 11.-another battle expected–333

114. to the same, July 19.-Conduct of General Ilton. “The Confectioner”–334

115. To the same, July 31.-the temporizing conduct of the Regency. Bon-mot of Winnington–335

116. To the same, Aug. 14.-Arrival of the Dominichini. Description. Pun of Madame de S`evign`e–336

117. TO John Chute, Esq., Aug. 20.-Life at Houghton. Stupifying qualities of beef, ale, and wine. The Dominichini– [N.) 338

118. To Sir Horace Mann, Aug. 29.-Undoubted originality of the Dominichini. Mr. Pelham first lord of the treasury–340

119. To the same, Sept. 7.-The marrying Princesses. French players at Cliefden. Our faith in’politics. Story of the Duke of Buckingham. Extraordinary miracle–341

120. To the same, Sept 17.-The King and Lord Stair–343

121. To the same, Oct. 3.-Journey to town. Newmarket described. No solitude in the country. Delights of a London life. Admiral Matthews and the Pope. Story of Sir James of the Peak. Mrs. White’s brown bob. Old Sarazin at two the morning. Lord Perceval’s “Faction Detected.” Death of the duke of Argyle–344

122. To the same, oct. 12.-Conduct of Sir Horace’s father. The army in Flanders in winter quarters. Distracted state of parties. Patapaniana. Imitation of an epigram of martial–347

123. To the Same, Nov. 17.-the King’s arrival and reception. His cool behaviour to the Prince of Wales. Lord Holderness’s Dutch bride. The Prince of Denmark. the Opera–349

124. To the same, Nov. 30.-Meeting of Parliament. Strength of Opposition. Conduct of Lord Carteret. Treasury dishclouts. Debate on the Address–351

125. To the same, Dec. 15.-Debates on the Hanoverian troops. Resignation of Lord Gower. Ministerial changes. Sandys made a peer. Verses addressed to the House of Lords, on its receiving a new peer–352

126. To the same, Dec. 26.–354


127. To Sir Horace Mann, Jan. 24.-The Brest fleet at sea. Motion for continuing the Hanover troops carried by the exertions of Lord Orford–356

128. To the same, Feb. 9.-Appearance of the Brest squadron off the Land’s End. Pretender’s son at Paris–358

129. To the same, Feb. 16.-French squadron off Torbay. King’s message concerning the young Pretender and designed invasion. Activity and zeal of Lord Orford–359

130. To the same, Feb. 23.-Welsh election carried against Sir Watkyn Williams. Prospect of invasion. Preparations–361

131. To the same, March 1.-The French expected every moment. Escape of the Brest squadron from Sir John Norris. Dutch troops sent for. Spirit of the nation. Addresses. Lord Barrymore and Colonel Cecil taken up. Suspension of the Habeas Corpus. The young Pretender–361

132. To the same, March 5.-Great storm. French transports destroyed, and troops disembarked–363

133. To the same, March 15.-Fears of invasion dispelled. Mediterranean engagement. Admiral Lestock–364

134. To the same, March 22.-French declaration of war. Affair in the Mediterranean. Sir John Norris. Hymeneals. Lord Carteret and Lady Sophia Fermor. Doddington and Mrs. Behan– 365

135. To the same, April 2.–366

136. To the same, April 15.-Nuptials of the great Quixote and the fair Sophia. Invasion from Dunkirk laid aside–367

137. To the same, May 8.-Debate on the Pretender’s Correspondence Bill–369

138. To the same, May 29.-Movements of the army in Flanders. Illness of his father. Death of Pope. Mr. Henry Fox’s private marriage with Lady Charlotte Lenox. Bishop Berkeley and tar-water–370

139. To the same, June 11.-Successes of the French army in Flanders. State of the combined army. And of our sea-force– 372

140. To the same, June 18.-Return of Admiral Anson. Ball at Ranelagh. Purchase of Dr. Middleton’s collection. Lord Orford’s pension–373

141. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, June 29.-Eton recollections. Lines out of a new poem. Opinion of the present great men. Ranelagh described–[N.] 375

142. To Sir Horace Mann, June 29.-Cluster of good news. Our army joined by the dutch. Success of the King of Sardinia over the Spaniards. The Rhine passed by Prince Charles. Lines on the death of Pope. Epitaph on him by Rolli– 377

143. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, July 20.-Happiness at receiving a letter of confidence. Advice on the subject of an early attachment. Arguments for breaking off the acquaintance. Offer of the immediate use of his fortune–379

144. To Sir Horace Mann, July 22.-Letter-writing one of the first duties. Difficulty of keeping up a correspondence after long absence. History writing. Carte and the City aldermen. Inscription on Lady Euston’s picture. lady Carteret. Epigram on her–381

145. To the same, Aug. 6.-Marquis de la Ch`etardie dismissed by the Empress of Russia. The Grifona. Lord Surrey’s sonnets– 383

146. To the same, Aug. 16.-Preparations for a Journey to Houghton. Rule for conquering the passions. Country life. king of Prussia’s address to the people of England. A dialogue on the battle of Dettingen–385

147. To the same, Sept. 1.-Victory at Velletri. Illness of the King of France. Epigram on Bishop Berkeley’s tar-water–387

148. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, Oct. 6.–388

149. To Sir Horace Mann, Oct. 6.-Self-scolding. Neapolitan expedition–390

150. To the same, Oct. 19.-Defeat of the King of Sardinia. loss of the ship Victory, with Sir John Balchen. Death of Sarah of Marlborough, the Countess Granville, and Lord Beauchamp. Marriage of Lord Lincoln. French King’s dismissal of Madame de Chateauroux. Discretion of a Scotch soldier–391

151. To the same, November 9.-Lord middleton’s wedding. The Pomfrets. Lady Granville’s At Home. Old Marlborough’s will. Glover’s Leonidas–393

152. To the same, Nov. 26.-History of Lord Granville’s resignation. Voila le monde! Decline of his father’s health. Outcry against pantomimes. Drury Lane uproar. Bear-garden bruisers. Walpole turned popular orator–394

153. To the same, Dec. 24.-Conduct of the King. Prostitution of patriots. List of ministerial changes. Mr. Pitt declines office. Opposition selling themselves for profit. The Pretender’s son owned in France–397


154. To Sir Horace Mann, Jan, 4.-Complains of dearth of news. His ink at low water mark. Lord Sandwich’s first-rate tie-wig. Lady Granville’s assemblies. Marshal a prisoner at Hanover– 399

155. To the same, Jan. 14.-M. de Magnan’s history. Prince Lobkowitz. Doings of the Granville faction. Anecdote of Lord Baltimore. Illness of Lord Orford. Mrs. Stephens’s remedy. Sir Thomas Hanmer’s Shakspeare. Absurd alteration therein–400

156. To the same, Feb. 1.-Variety of politics. Lord Granville characterized. Progress of the coalition–402

157. TO the same, Feb. 28.-Alarming illness of Lord Orford. Success of the coalition. situation of the Pelhams. Masquerade at the Venetian ambassadress’s. Lady townshend’s ball. Marshal Belleisle at Nottingham. matrimonials on the tapis–404

158. To the same, march 29.-Death of Lord Orford. Inquiry into the miscarriage of the fleet in the action off Toulon. Matthews and Lestock. Instability of the ministry. Thomson’s Tancred and Sigismunda. Glover’s Leonidas. The Seasons. Alenside’s Odes. Quarrel between the Duchesses of Queensberry and Richmond. Rage for conundrums–406

159. To the same, April 15.-Reflections on his father’s death. Compliments paid to his memory. Mediterranean miscarriages– 410

160. To the same, April 29.-Disadvantages of a distant correspondence. Death of Mr. Francis Chute, and of poor Patapan. Prospect of a battle in Flandders. Marshal Saxe–411

161. To the same, May 11.-Battle of Fontenoy. Bravery of the Duke. Song, written after the news of the battle, by the Prince of Wales–412

162. To George Montagu, Esq., May 18.-Condolence on the death of Mr. Montigu’s brother at Fontenoy–415

163. To Sir Horace Mann, May 24.-Popularity of the Duke of Cumberland. Lady Walpole. Story of Lord Bath’s parsimony–415

164. To George Montagu, Esq. may 25.-Family at Englefield Green. Sir Edward Walpole. Dr. Styan Thirlby–416

165. To the Hon. H. S. conway, May 27.-Despairs of seeing his friend a perfect hero. the Why!–417

166. To sir Horace Mann-Recommendatory, of Mr. Hobart, afterwards Lord Buckinghamshire–418

167. to the same, June 24.-Expected arrival from Italy of the sister-Countess. Surrender of the citadel of tournai. Defeat of Charles Lorrain. Revolution of the Prince of Wales’s court. Miss Neville. Lady Abergavenny–419

168. to George Montagu, Esq. June 25.-Mistley, the seat of Mr. Rigby, described. Fashionable at Homes. Lady Brown’s Sunday parties. Lady Archibald hamilton. Miss Granville. Jemmy Lumley’s assembly–421

169. To the Hon. H.S. Conway, July 1.-Tournai and Fontenoy. Gaming act–422

170. To Sir Horace Mann, July 5.-Seizure of Ghent and Bruges by the French–424

171. To the same, July 12.—425

172. to George Montagu, Esq. July 13.-Success of the French in Flanders. Lord Baltimore. Mrs. Comyns–427

173. To sir Horace Mann, July 15.–428

174. To the same, July 26.-Projected invasion. Disgraces in Flanders–430

175. To George Montagu, Esq. AUg. 1.-Portrait of M. de Grignon. Livys patavinity. marshal Belleisle in London. Duke of Newcastle described. Duches of Bolton’s geographical resolution–431

176. To sir Horace Mann, Aug. 7.-Rumours of an invasion. Proclamation for apprehending the Pretender’s son–432

177. To the Rev. Thomas Birch, Aug. 15.-Respecting a projected History of George the Second–434

178. To Sir Horace Mann, Sept. 6.-Landing and progress of the young Pretender. His manifestoes–435

179. To the same, Sept. 13.-Progress of the rebellion. The Duke of Newcastle’s speech to the Regency–436

179a. To George Montagu, Esq., Sept. 17.– (Transcriber’s note: this letter appears in the text but was omitted from the printed table of contents–438

180. To the same, Sept. 20.-Edinburgh taken by the rebelsOur strength at sea. Plan of raising regiments. Lady Orford’s reception in England.–439

181. To the same, Sept. 27.-Successes of Prince Charles in Scotland–441

182. To the same, Oct. 4.-Operations against the rebels. Spirited conduct of the Archbishop of York–443

183. To the same, Oct. 11.-Death of Lady Granville–445

184. To the same, Oct. 21.-Excesses of the rebels at Edinburgh. Proceedings in Parliament–446

185. To the same, Nov. 4.-State of the rebellion. Debates respecting the new raised regiments. Ministerial changes–447

186. To the same, Nov. 15.-Disturbance about the new regiments. Advance of the rebels into England. Their desperate situation. Lord Clancarty–449

187. To the same, Nov. 22.-The rebels advance to Penrith. The Mayor of Carlisle’s heroic letter, and surrender of the town. Proceedings in Parliament–451

188. To the same, Nov. 29.-,rhe sham Pretender. Lord Derwentwater taken. The rebels at Preston. Marshal Wade–453

189. To the same, Dec. 9.-Conduct of the rebels at Derby. Black Friday. Preparations for a French invasion Rising spirit of the people–455

190. To the same Dec. 20.-Flight of the rebels from Derby. Capture of the Martinico fleet. Debate on employing the Hessian troops.Marriage of the Duchess of Bridgewater and Dick Lyttelton. A good Irish letter–457


191. To Sir Horace Mann, Jan. 3.-Recapture of Carlisle. General Hawley. Preparations at Dunkirk. Ministerial movements–460

192. To the same, Jan. 17.-The rebels fortifying themselves in Scotland. Hawley’s executions. Anecdotes of him. The French invasion laid aside–461

193. To the same, Jan. 28.-Battle of Falkirk–463

194. To the same, Feb. 7.-Plight of the rebels. The new regiments. Confusion at court–464

195. To the same, Feb. 14.-Insurrection in the closet. The Pelhams throw up the seals. Reconciliation and return to office. History–466

196. To the same, March 6.-Reunion of the dispersed clans. Lord Lovat–469

197. To the same, March 21.-The rebels take Fort Augustus. The Prince of Wales’s new opposition–470

198. To the same, March 28.-The rebels out of spirits. Lady Walpole. Peggy Banks. The opera. Shocking murder–471

199. To the same, April 15.-The rebellion at its last gasp. Supplies from France taken. Hanoverian troops. Trial of Hawley. Marriage of Lord Kildare. An odd discovery. Strange event–473

200. To the same, April 25.-Battle of Culloden. Escape of the young Pretender. Fireworks and illuminations. Death of Mr. Winnington–476

201. To the same, May 16.-End of the rebellion. Old Tullybardine. Lords Kilmarnock, Balmerino, and Ogilvie prisoners. Antwerp taken–478

202. To George Montagu, Esq. May 22.-Visit to Langley. The Sidney Papers. Sir Philip’s defence of the Earl of Leicester– 479

203. To the same, June 6.-Character of the Prince of Hesse. Fame of the Violette–480

204. To Sir Horace Mann, June 6.-Marriage of the Princess Mary to the Prince of Hesse–482

205. To George Montagu, Esq. June 12.-Anecdotes of the Prince of Hesse. Lady Caroline Fitzroy. Dick Edgecumbe–483

206. To the same, June 17.-Prospect of Peace. Death of Augustus Townshend–484

207. To Sir Horace Mann, June 20.-Battle of Placentia. Old Tullybardine and Lord Cromartie in the Tower. Death of Jack Spenser–485

208. To George Montagu, Esq. June 24.-Ministerial changes. Arrival of rebel prisoners. Jack Spenser’s will. Lady Townshend’s bon-mots. Anecdotes of Lords Bath and Sandys, and the Duke of Cumberland–486

209. To the same, July 3.-Promotions and marriages–487

210. To Sir Horace Mann, July 7.-Lord Lovat, and Murray, the Pretender’s secretary,taken.–488

211. To the same, Aug, 1.-Trials of the rebel Lords. Description of Lords Kilmarnock, Cromartie, and Balmerino. Intercessions in their behalf. Confessions of Murray–489

212. To George Montagu, Esq. Aug. 2.-Trials of the rebel Lords. Anecdotes–494

213. To the same, Aug. 5.-Discoveries of Murray. Lady Cromartie’s petition. Anecdotes of the rebel lords. The Duke of Cumberland’s ball–495

214. To George Montagu, Esq. Aug. 11.-Lord Cromartie’s pardon. Lady Caroline Fitzroy’s marriage–497

215. TO Sir Horace mann, Aug. 12.-Opera squabbles. The Violette. Lord Sandwich’s embassy. Marriage of Lady Charlotte Fermor, and of the Princess Louisa to the King of Denmark. Wanderings of the young Pretender. Conduct of the rebel Lords. Story of Lord Balmerino–497

216. To George Montagu, Esq. Aug. 16.-Anecdotes of the rebel Lords under sentence–500

217. To Sir Horace Mann, Aug. 21.-Account of the execution of Lords Balmerino and Kilmarnock–501

218. To the same, Sept. 15.-Lady Orford and Mr. Shirley–504

219. To the same, Oct. 2.-Arrival of Mr. Chute from Italy. Mr. Whithed described–506

220. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, Oct. 3.-Enclosing Gray’s Ode on a distant Prospect of Eton College–507

221. To Sir Horace Mann, Oct. 14.-Defeat of the allies in Flanders. Capitulation of Genoa. Acquittal of Cope. General Oglethorpe’s sentence–508

222. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, Oct. 24.-Campaign in Scotland– 509

223. To George Montagu, Esq. Nov. 3.-His Epilogue to Tamerlane–510

224. To Sir Horace Mann, Nov. 4.-Ministerial changes. Lord Chesterfield accepts the seals. Expedition to Quiberon. Admiral Matthews’s court-martial–511

225. To the same, Nov. 12–513

226. To the same,, Dec. 5.-Marriages. Reformations in the army. Arrest of Orator henley. theatricals–514

227. To Sir Horace Mann, Dec. 25.-Trial of Lord Lovat. Mr.Davis’s copy of the Dominichino–515


228. To Sir Horace Mann, Jan. 27.-The Prince’s new Opposition- -517

229. To the same, Feb. 23.-The Opera. Debates on places and pensions. Lord Kildare’s marriage. Panciatici. Anecdotes of Lord Holderness and Lord Hervey–519

230. to the same, March 20.-Lord Lovat’s trial. Anecdotes–521

231. To the same, April 10.-Account of Lord Lovat’s execution. The Independents. Tottering state of the ministry. Civil war in the house of Finch–522

232. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, April 16.-Mutability of fame and popularity. Lord Lovat’s burial. Story of George Selwyn. Debate on the Heritable Jurisdictions Bill–525

233. To Sir Horace Mann, May 5.-The new Stadtholder. Scotch Clanships Bill. Bill for allowing counsel to prisoners on impeachments for treason. Resignations. Holland House–526

234. To the same, May 19.-Anson’s victory. Death of Captain Grenville. Mr. Dayrolies–527

235. To the same, June 5.-Sudden dissolution of Parliament. Rumoured ministerial changes. Purchase (of Strawberry Hill– 528

236. TO the Hon. H. S. Conway, June 8.-Description of Strawberry Hill. Dissolution of Parliament. Measures for carrying elections–530

237. To Sir Horace Mann, June 26.-Election tumults. Sir Jacob Botiverie’s peerage. The Duchess of Queensberry at court. Instance of English bizarrerie–531

238. To George Montagu, Esq. July 2.-Ill success of the army in the Netherlands. Battle of Laffeldt. Gallant conduct of Mr. Conway. Naval captures–533

239. To Sir Horace Mann, July 3.-Battle of Laffeldt. Capture of the Domingo fleet. Progress of the elections–534

240. To the same, July 28.-Piedmontese victory over the French. Death of the Chevalier Belleisle–535

241. To the same, Sept. 1.-Bergen-op-Zoom. Sir James Grey. Pantiatici–536

242. To George Montagu, Esq. Oct. 1.-Cardinal Polignac’s Anti-Lucretius. George Selwyn. Anecdotes–537

243. To Sir Horace Mann, Oct. 2.-Capture of Bergen-op-Zoom. Character of Mr. Chute. Chit-chat. Anecdote of Lord Bath–537

244. To the same, Nov. 10.-Admiral Hawke’s victory. Meeting of the new Parliament. The musical clock–539

245. To the same, Nov. 24.-Meditates a journey to Florence. Congress at Aix-la-Chapelle. Ministerial interference in the Seaford election. Mr. Potter. Lady Mary Wortley Montagu’s Eclogues–539


246. To Sir Horace Mann, Jan. 12.-General dispositions for war. Diplomatic Changes. Lord and Lady Coke. Matrimonial fracas–541

247. To the same, Jan. 26.-Mr. Legge’s embassy to the King of Prussia. Mr. Villiers. Ministers triumphant in Parliament. Admiral Vernon’s letters–542

248. To the same, Feb. 16.-Resignation of Lord Chesterfield. Ministerial changes. Hitch in Mr. Legge’s embassy. Discontents in the army. Public amusements. Comedy of the Foundling–544

249. To Sir Horace Mann, March 11.-Prevalence of miliary fever. Death of the Marquis of Powis. Private theatricals. Attempt to damn the Foundling. Animosities in the House of Commons. Buckingham assizes. The Duchess of Queensberry’s masquerade–545

250. To the same, April 29.-Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle. Masquerade at the Hay market–547

251. To George Montagu, Esq. May 18.-Lord Anson’s voyage with Lady Elizabeth Yorke. His voyage. Anecdotes. Marshal Wade’s house–549

252. To the same, May 26.-Ranelagh. Anecdotes. Sir Thomas Bootle. Story of Prince Edward–550

253. To the same, June 7.-The Duke of Newcastle’s journey to Holland. Strawberry Hill,” the old name of his house–551

254. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, June 27.-His rural occupations. Lord Coke. Friendly advice from White’s. F`ete at Vauxhall– (N.). 553

255. To SirHorace Mann, July 14.@The Duke of Newcastle’s travels. Anecdote–554

256. To the same.-Bad state of Lord Orford’s health. Reflections. Has finished his Aedes Walpolianae. Improvements at Strawberry Hill–555

257. To George Montagu, Esq. July 25.-Account of a visit to Nugent. Family of the Aubrey de Versa, Earls of Oxford. Henningham Castle Gosfield–556

258. To the same, Aug. 11.-Anecdotes of the House of Vere. Kitty Clive. Garrick and Lee. Visit to Esher. Claremont House. Mrs. Pritchard–558

259. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, Aug. 29.-His progress in planting. Anticipations of future discoveries–561

260. To George Montagu, Esq. Sept. 3.-Bonmot of the duke of Cumberland. “The new light.” Whitfield and the Methodists. Smell of thieves. Story of Handsome Tracy. Gray, the worst company in the world–563

261. To Sir Horace Mann, Sept. 12-Death of Bishop Gibson–565

262. To George Montagu, Esq. Sept. 25.-Disinterested friendship. passage in Chillingworth. The Duchess of Ireland’s Hennins, or piked horns–566

263. To the Hon. H. S. Conway, Oct. 4.-Meeting of Parliament. Preparations for proclaiming the peace. Lady Cadogan–567

264. TO George Montagu, Esq. Oct. 20–568

265. To Sir Horace Mann, Oct. 24.-Adventure of Milord Richard Onslow. Character of lord Walpole. Unpopularity, of the peace. Death of old Tom Walker–569

266. To the same, Dec. 2.-The King’s return. Prospects of a stormy session. League Of the tories with the Prince’s party. Bon-mots of Mr. Chute. The Opera. Pertici. Lord Marchmont and Hume Campbell. Treason at Oxford–570

267. To the same, Dec. 11.-Imprisonment of the young Pretender at Vincennes. Death of the proud Duke of Somerset; his will. Bon-mot of John Stanhope. hogarth at Calais–571

268. To the same, Dec. 26.-Improvements at Strawberry Hill. Diplomatic movements. Old Somerset’s will. Trial of the Vice-Chancellor of Oxford.Story of sir William Burdett–574


The letters of Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford, as hitherto published, have consisted of,-

1. The letters contained in the quarto edition of his works, published in the year 1798.

2. His letters to George Montagu, Esq. from 1738 to 1770, which formed one quarto volume, published in 1818.

3. His letters to the Rev. William Cole and others, from 1745 to 1782, published in the same form and year.

4. His letters to the Earl of Hertford, during his lordship’s embassy to Paris, and also to the Rev. Henry Zouch, which appeared in quarto, in 1825.

And 5. His letters to Sir Horace Mann, British Envoy at the Court of Tuscany, from 1741 to 1760, first published in 1833, in three volumes octavo, from the originals in the possession of the Earl of Waldegrave; edited by Lord Dover, with an original memoir of the author.

To the above are now added several hundred letters, which have hitherto existed Only in manuscript, or made their appearance singly and incidentally in other works. In this new collection, besides the letters to Miss Berry, are some to the Hon. H. S. Conway, and John Chute, Esq. omitted In former editions; and many to Lady Suffolk, his brother-in-law, Charles Churchill, Esq., Captain Jephson, Sir David Dalrymple, Lord Hailes, the Earl of Buchan, the Earl of Charlemont, Mr. Gibbon, Mr. Pitt, afterwards Earl of Chatham, George Hardinge, Esq., Mr. Pinkerton, and other distinguished characters. The letters to the Rev. William Cole have been carefully examined with the originals, and many explanatory notes added, from the manuscript collections of that indefatigable antiquary, deposited in the British museum.

Besides being the only complete edition ever published of the incomparable letters of this “prince of epistolary writers,” as he has been designated by an eminent critic, the present work possesses the further advantage of exhibiting the letters themselves in chronological order. Thus the whole series forms a lively and most interesting commentary on the events of the age, as well as a record of the most important transactions, invaluable to the historian and politician, from 1735 to 1797-a period of more than sixty years.

To Lord Dover’s description of these letters (1) little need be added. Of Horace Walpole it is not too much to say, that he knew more of the Courts of George I., George II., and George III., during the early years of the last monarch, than any other individual; and, though he lived to an extreme age, the perpetual youthfulness of his disposition rendered him as lively a chronicler when advanced in life, as when his brilliant career commenced. It is to this unceasing spring, this unfading juvenility of spirit, that the world is indebted for the gay colours with which Walpole invests every thing he touches. If the irresistible court beauties-the Gunnings, the Lepels, and others-have been compelled, after their hundred conquests, to yield to the ungallant liberties of Time, and to Death, the rude destroyer, it is a delight to us to know that their charms are destined to bloom for ever in the sparkling graces of the patrician letter-writer. In his epistles are to be seen, even in more vivid tints than those of Watteau, these splendid creatures in all the pride of their beauty and of their wardrobe, pluming themselves as if they never could grow old, and casting around them their piercing glances and no less poignant raillery. But Horace Walpole is not content with thus displaying his dazzling bevy of heroines; he reveals them in their less ostentatious moments, and makes us as familiar with their weaknesses as with the despotic power of their beauty. Nothing that transpired in the great world escaped his knowledge, nor the trenchant sallies of his wit, rendered the more cutting by his unrivalled talent as a raconteur. Whatever he observed found its way into his letters, and thus is formed a more perfect narrative of the Curt-of its intrigues, political and otherwise-of the manoeuvres of statesmen, the cabals of party, and of private society among the illustrious and the fashionable of the last century, at home and on the continent-than can elsewhere be obtained. And how piquant are his disclosures! how much of actual truth do they contain! how perfectly, in his anecdotes, are to be traced the hidden and often trivial sources of some of the most important public events! “Sir Joshua Reynolds,” say the Edinburgh reviewers, “used to observe, that, though nobody would for a moment compare Claude to Raphael, there would be another Raphael before there was another Claude; and we own, that we expect to see fresh Humes and fresh Burkes, before we again fall in with that peculiar combination of moral and intellectual qualities to which the writings of Horace Walpole owe their extraordinary popularity.”

As a suitable introduction, prefixed to the whole collection of letters, are the author’s admirable “Reminiscences of the Courts of George the First and Second,” which were first narrated to, and, in 1788, written for the amusement of Miss Mary and Miss Agnes Berry. To the former of these ladies the public is indebted for a curious commentary on the Reminiscences, contained in extracts from the letters of Sarah Duchess of Marlborough, to the Earl of Stair, now first published from the original manuscripts. Of the Reminiscences themselves it has been truly observed, that, both in manner and matter, they are the very perfection of anecdote writing, and make us better acquainted with the manners of George the First and Second and their Courts, than we should be after perusing a hundred heavy historians.

Of the most valuable of all Walpole’s correspondence-his letters to Sir Horace Mann-the history will appear in the following Preface to that work, from the pen of the lamented editor, the late Lord Dover:-

“In the Preface to the ‘Memoires of the last Ten Years of the Reign of George II. by Horace Walpole, Earl of Orford,’ published in the year 1822, is the following statement:-

“‘Among the papers found at Strawberry Hill, after the death of Lord Orford, was the following memorandum, wrapped in an envelope, on which was written, Not to be opened till after my will.”

“‘In my library at Strawberry Hill are two wainscot chests or boxes, the larger marked with an A, the lesser with a B:- I desire, that as soon as I am dead, my executor and executrix will cord up strongly, and sell the larger box, marked A, and deliver it to the Honourable Hugh Conway Seymour, to be kept by him unopened and unsealed till the eldest son of Lady Waldegrave, or whichever of her sons, being Earl of Waldegrave, shall attain the age of twenty-five years; when the said chest, with whatever it contains, shall be delivered to him for his own. And I beg that the Honourable Hugh Conway Seymour, when be shall receive the said chest, will give a promise in writing, signed by him, to Lady Waldegrave, that he or his representatives will deliver the said chest, unopened and unsealed, by my executor and executrix, to the first son of Lady Waldegrave who shall attain the age of’ twenty-five years. The key of the said chest is in one of the cupboards of the green closet, within the blue breakfast room, at Strawberry Hill; and that key, I desire, may be delivered to Laura, Lady Waldegrave, to be kept by her till her son shall receive the chest.’
“‘March 21st, 1790.'”

(Signed) HON. HORACE WALPOLE, EARL OF ORFORD.’ Aug. 19, 1796.’

“In obedience to these directions, the box described in the preceding memorandum was corded an(] sealed with the seals of the Honourable Mrs. Damer and the late Lord Frederick Campbell, the executrix and executor of Lord Orford, and by them delivered to the late Lord Hugh Seymour, by whose representatives it was given up, unopened and unsealed, to the present Earl of Waldegrave, when he attained the age of twenty-five. On examining the box, it was found to contain a number of manuscript volumes and other papers, among which were the Memoires now published.’ “

“The correspondence of Horace Walpole with Sir Horace Mann, now first published, was also contained in the same box. It appears that Walpole, after the death of Sir Horace, became again the possessor of his own letters. He had them copied very carefully in three volumes, and annotated them with short notes, explanatory of the persons mentioned in them, with an evident view to their eventual publication. “It is from these volumes that the present publication is taken. The notes of the author have also been printed verbatim. As, however, in the period of time which has elapsed since Walpole’s death, many of the personages mentioned in the letters, whom he appears to have thought sufficiently conspicuous not to need remark, have become almost forgotten, the Editor has deemed it necessary to add, as shortly as possible, some account of them; and he has taken care, whenever he has done so, to distinguish his notes from those of the original author, by the letter D. placed at the end of them.

“This correspondence is perhaps the most interesting one of Walpole’s that has as yet appeared; as, in addition to his usual merit as a letter-writer, and the advantage of great ease, which his extreme intimacy with Sir Horace Mann gives to his style, the letters to him are the most uninterrupted series which has thus far been offered to the public. They are also the only letters of Walpole which give an account of that very curious period when his father, Sir Robert Walpole, left office. In his letters hitherto published, there is a great gap at this epoch; probably in consequence of his other correspondents being at the time either in or near London. A Single letter to Mr. Conway, dated ‘london, 1741,’-one to Mr. West, dated ‘May 4th, 1742,’-(none in 1743,) and one to Mr. Conway, dated ‘Houghton: Oct. 6th, 1744,’ are all that appear till ‘may 18th, 1745,’ when his letters to George Montagu recommence, after an interval of eight years. Whereas, in the correspondence now published, there are no less than one hundred and seventeen letters during that interval.

The letters of Walpole to Sir Horace Mann have also another advantage over those of the same author previously published, namely, that Sir Horace’s constant absence from home, and the distance of his residence from the British Islands, made every occurrence that happened acceptable to him as news. It) consequence, his correspondent relates to him every thing that takes place, both in the court and in society,-whether the anecdotes are of a public or private nature,-hence the collection of’ letters to him becomes a most exact chronicle of the events of the day, and elucidates very amusingly both the manners of the time, and the characters of the persons then alive. In the sketches, however, of character, which Walpole has thus left us, we must always remember that, though a very quick and accurate observer, he was a man of many prejudices; and that, above all, his hostility was unvarying and unbounded with regard to any of his contemporaries, who had been adverse to the person or administration of Sir Robert Walpole. This, though an amiable feeling, occasionally carries him too far in his invectives, and renders him unjust in his judgments.

“The answers of Sir Horace Mann are also preserved at Strawberry Hill: they are very voluminous, but particularly devoid of interest, as they are written in a dry heavy style, and consist almost entirely of trifling details of forgotten Florentine society, mixed with small portions of Italian political news of the day, which are even still less amusing than the former topic. They have, however, been found useful to refer to occasionally, in order to explain allusions in the letters of Walpole.

“Sir Horace Mann was a contemporary and early friend of Horace Walpole. (2) He was the second son of Robert Mann, of Linton, in the county of Kent, Esq. He was appointed in 1740 minister plenipotentiary from England to the court of Florence-a post he continued to occupy for the long period of forty-six years, till his death, at an advanced age, November 6, 1786. In 1755 he was created a baronet, with remainder to the issue of his brother Galfridus Mann, and, in the reign of George the Third, a knight of the Bath. It will be observed that Walpole calls his correspondent Mr. Mann, whereas the title-pages of’ these volumes, and all the notes which have been added by the editor designate him as Sir Horace Mann. This latter appellation is undoubtedly, in the greater part of the correspondence, an anachronism, as Sir Horace Mann was not made a baronet till the year 1755; but, as he is best known to the world under that designation, it was considered better to allow him the title, by courtesy, throughout the work.

“As the following letters turn much upon the politics of the day, and as the ignoble and unstable Governments which followed that of Sir Robert Walpole are now somewhat forgotten, it may not be unacceptable to the reader to be furnished with a slight sketch of the political changes which took place from the year 1742 to the death of George the Second.

“At the general election of 1741, immense efforts were made by the Opposition to the Walpole administration to strengthen their phalanx-great sums were spent by their leaders in elections, and an union was at length effected between the Opposition or ‘Patriots,’ headed by Pulteney, and the Tories or Jacobites, who had hitherto, though opposed to Walpole, never acted cordially with the former.

“Sir Robert, upon the meeting of Parliament, exerted himself with almost more than his usual vigour and talent, to resist this formidable band of opponents; but the chances were against him. The timidity of his friends, and, if we may believe Horace Walpole, the treachery of some of his colleagues, and finally the majority in the House of Commons against him, compelled him at length to resign; which he did in the beginning of February, 1742. Upon this step being taken, and perhaps even before it, the Duke of Newcastle and Lord Hardwicke, the two most influential members of Sir Robert Walpole’s cabinet, entered into communication with Mr. Pulteney and Lord Carteret, the leaders of the regular Opposition, with a view of forming a government, to the exclusion of the Tories and Jacobites, and even of part of Mr. Pulteney’s own party. The negotiation was successful; but it was so at the expense of the popularity, reputation, and influence of Pulteney, who never recovered the disgrace of thus deserting his former associates.

“In consequence of these intrigues, the King agreed to send for Lord Wilmington, and to place him at the head of the ministry. It is remarkable that this man, who was a mere cipher, should have been again had recourse to, after his failure in making a government at the very commencement of the reign of George the Second, when his manifest incapacity, and the influence of Queen Caroline, had occasioned the remaining of his opponent Sir Robert Walpole in power. With Lord Wilmington came in Lord Harrington, as president of the council; Lord Gower, as privy seal; Lord Winchilsea, as first lord of the admiralty; Lord Carteret as secretary of state; the other secretary being the Duke of Newcastle, who had been so under Walpole; Lord Hardwicke continued chancellor; and Samuel Sandys was made chancellor of the exchequer. Several of the creatures of Pulteney obtained minor offices: but he himself, hampered by his abandonment of many of his former friends, took no place; but Only obtained a promise of an earldom, whenever he might wish for it.

“These arrangements produced, as was natural, a great schism in the different parties, which broke out at a meeting at the Fountain Tavern, on the 12th of February, where the Duke of Argyll declared himself in opposition to the new government, upon the ground of the unjust exclusion of the Tories. The Duke of Argyll subsequently relented, and kissed hands for the master-generalship of the ordnance, upon the understanding, that Sir John Hinde Cotton, a notorious Jacobite, was to have a place. This the King refused; upon which the Duke finally subsided into Opposition. Lord Stair had the ordnance, and Lord Cobham was made a field-marshal and commander of the forces in England. This latter event happened at the end of the session of 1742, when Lord Gower and Lord Bathurst, and one or two other Jacobites, were promoted. It was at this period (July, 1742), that the King, by the advice of Sir Robert Walpole, who saw that such a step would complete the degradation Of Pulteney, insisted upon his taking out the patent for his earldom and quitting the House of Commons; which he did with the greatest unwillingness.

“On the death of Lord Wilmington, in July 1743, Mr. Pelham was made first lord of the treasury and chancellor of the exchequer (from which office Sandys was dismissed), by the advice of Sir Robert Walpole, and instead of Lord Bath, who now found that his adversary had really turned the key upon him, (3) and that the door of the cabinet was never to be unlocked to him. The ministry was at this time, besides its natural feebleness, rent by internal dissensions; for Lord Carteret, who, as secretary of state, had accompanied the King abroad in 1743, had acquired great influence over his royal master,-and trusting to this, and to the superiority of his talents over his colleagues, his insolence to them became unbounded. The timid and time-serving Pelhams were quite ready to humble themselves before him; but Lord Carteret was not content with this: he was not content, unless he showed them, and made them feel, all the contempt he entertained for them. In addition to these difficulties, Lord Gower resigned the privy-seal in December 1743, upon the plea that no more Tories were taken into office; but probably more from perceiving that the administration could not go on. Lord Cobham also resigned, and went again into opposition.

“Finally, in November 1744, the greater part of the cabinet having previously made their arrangements with the Opposition) joined in a remonstrance to the King against Lord Carteret, and offered, if he was not dismissed, their own resignations. After some resistance, the King, again by the advice of Lord Orford, yielded. Lord Carteret and his adherents, and those of Lord Bath, were dismissed, and a mixed government of Whigs and Tories was formed. Mr. Pelham continued first minister; the Duke of Dorset was made president of the council; Lord Gower again took the privy-seal, which had been held for a few months by Lord Cholmondeley; the Duke of Bedford became first lord of’ the admiralty; Lord Harrincton secretary of state; Lord Chesterfield, Lord Sandwich, George Grenville, Doddington, and Lyttelton, and Sir John Hinde Cotton, Sir John Philipps, and some other Tories, had places. But though the King had dismissed Lord Carteret (now become Earl of Granville) from his councils, he had not from his confidence. He treated his new ministers with coldness and incivility, and consulted Lord Granville secretly upon all important points.

“At length, in the midst of the Rebellion, in August 1746, the ministry went to the King, and gave him the option of taking Pitt into office, which he had previously refused, or receiving their resignations. After again endeavouring in vain to form an administration through the means of Lord Granville and Lord Bath, the King was obliged to consent to the demands of his ministers-and here may be said to commence the leaden rule of the Pelhams, which continued to influence the councils of this country, more or less, for so many years. Pitt took the inferior, but lucrative office of paymaster; and from this time no material change took place till the death of Mr. Pelham, in March 1754, unless we except the admission of Lord Granville to the cabinet in 1751, as president of the council; an office which he contrived, with an interested prudence very unlike his former conduct, to retain during all succeeding ministries-and the getting rid of the Duke of Bedford and Lord Sandwich, of whom the Pelhams had become jealous.

The death of Pelham called into evidence the latent divisions and hatreds of public Men, who had been hitherto acting in concert. Fox and Pitt were obviously the two persons, upon one of whom the power of Pelham must eventually fall. But the intriguing Duke of Newcastle hated, and was jealous of both. He, therefore, placed Sir Thomas Robinson in the House of Commons, as secretary of state and leader, and made Henry Bilson Legge chancellor of the exchequer, while he himself took the treasury-leaving Fox (4) and Pitt in the subordinate situations they had hitherto held. The incapacity of Sir Thomas Robinson became, however, soon so apparent, that a change was inevitable. This was hastened by a temporary coalition between Fox and Pitt, which was occasioned, naturally enough, by the ill-treatment they had both received from the Duke of Newcastle.

“At length the latter reluctantly consented to admit Fox into the cabinet, in 1755. Upon this, Pitt again broke with Fox, and went with his friends into opposition, with the exception of Sir George Lyttelton, who became chancellor of the exchequer. The new government, however, lasted but one session of parliament-its own dissensions, the talents of its opponents, and the dissatisfaction of the King, who had been thwarted in his German subsidiary treaties, aiding in its downfall.

“The Duke of Devonshire, who had been very active in the previous political negotiations, was now commissioned, in 1756, by the King to form a government. The Duke of Newcastle and Fox were turned out, and Pitt became lord of the ascendant. But the King’s aversion to his new ministers was even greater than it had been to his old; and in February 1757, he commissioned Lord Waldegrave to endeavour to form a government, with the assistance of Newcastle and Fox. In this undertaking he failed, very mainly through the irresolutions and jealousies of Newcastle. Thus circumstanced, the King, however unwillingly, was obliged to deliver himself up into the hands of Pitt, Who (in June, 1757) succeeded in forming that administration, which was destined to be one of the most glorious ones England has ever seen. He placed himself at the head of it, holding the situation of secretary of state and leader of the House of Commons, leaving the Duke of Newcastle at the head of the treasury, and placing Legge again in the exchequer. This administration lasted till the reign of the succeeding sovereign.”

To his edition of the Letters to Sir Horace Mann, Lord Dover appended illustrative notes, which are retained in the present. Of the manner in which his lordship executed the office of editor and annotator, the Edinburgh Review thus speaks, in a brilliant article on those Letters, which appeared in the number of that work for January 1834:-“The editing of these volumes was the last of the useful and modest services rendered to literature by a nobleman of amiable manners, of untarnished public and private character, and of cultivated mind. On this, as on other occasions, Lord Dover performed his part diligently, judiciously, and without the slightest ostentation. He had two merits, both of which are rarely found together in a commentator: he was content to be merely a commentator,-to keep in the background, and to leave the foreground to the author whom he had undertaken to illustrate. yet, though willing to be an attendant, he was by no means a slave; nor did he consider it as part of his editorial duty to see no faults in the writer to whom he faithfully and assiduously rendered the humblest literary offices.”

It remains only to add, that the original notes of Horace Walpole are throughout retained, undistinguished by any signature; whereas, those of the various editors are indicated by a characteristic initial, which is explained in the progress of the work.

January, 1840.
(1) Sketch of the Life, etc.

(2) The coincidence of remarkable names in the two families of Mann and Walpole, would lead one to imagine that there was also some connection of relationship between them-and yet none is to be traced in the pedigree of either family. Sir Robert Walpole had two brothers named Horace and Galfridus-and Sir Horace Mann’s next brother was named Galfridus Mann. If such a relationship did exist, it probably came through the Burwells, the family of Sir Robert Walpole’s mother. (3) “Sir Robert Walpole’s expression, when he found that Pulteney had consented to be made Earl of Bath.”

(4) “Fox was secretary at war.”


To the first edition of Lord Orford’s works, which was published the year after he died, no memoir of his life was prefixed: his death was too recent, his life and character was too well known, his works too popular, to require it. His political Memoirs, and the collections of his Letters which have been subsequently published, were edited by persons, who, though well qualified for their task in every other respect, have failed in their account of his private life, and their
appreciation of his individual character, from the want of a personal acquaintance with their author.

The life contained in Sir Walter Scott’s Biographical Sketches of the English Novelists labours under the same disadvantages. He had never seen Lord Orford, nor even lived with such of his intimates and contemporaries in society as survived him.

Lord Dover, who has so admirably edited the first part of his correspondence with Sir Horace Mann, knew Lord Orford only by having been carried sometimes, when a boy, by his father Lord Clifden to Strawberry Hill. His editorial labours with these letters were the last occupation of his accomplished mind, and were pursued while his body was fast sinking under the complication of disease, which so soon after deprived Society Of One Of its most distinguished members, the arts of an enlightened patron, and his intimates of an amiable and attaching friend. Of the meagreness and insufficiency of his memoir of Lord Orford’s life prefixed to the letters, he was himself aware, and expressed to the author of these pages his inability then to improve it, and his regret that circumstances had deprived him, while it was yet time, of the assistance of those who could have furnished him with better materials. His account of the latter part of Lord Orford’s life is deficient in details, and sometimes erroneous as to dates. He appears likewise to have been unacquainted with some of his writings, and the circumstances which led to and accompanied them. In the present publication those deficiencies are supplied from notes, in the hands of the writer, left by Lord Orford, of the dates of the principal events of his own life, and of the writing and publication of all his works. It is only to be regretted that his autobiography is so short, and so entirely confined to dates. In estimating the character of Lord Orford, and in the opinion which he gives of his talents, Lord Dover has evinced much candour and good taste. He praises with discrimination, and draws no unfair inferences from the peculiarities of a character with which he was not personally acquainted.

It is by the Review of the Letters to Sir Horace Mann, that the severest condemnation has been passed and the most unjust impressions given, not only of the genius and talents, but of the heart and character, of Lord Orford. The mistaken opinions of the eloquent and accomplished author (5) of that review are to be traced chiefly to the same causes which defeated the intentions of the two first biographers. In his case, these causes were increased, not only by no acquaintance with his subject, but by still farther removal from the fashions, the social habits, the little minute details, of the age to which Horace Walpole belongs,-an age so essentially different from the business, the movement, the important struggles, of that which claims the critic as one of its most distinguished ornaments. A conviction that these reasons led to his having drawn up, from the supposed evidence of Walpole’s works alone, a character of their author so entirely and offensively unlike the original, has forced the pen into the feeble and failing hand of the writer of these pages,-has imposed the pious duty of attempting to rescue, by incontrovertible facts, acquired in long intimacy, the memory of an old and beloved friend, from the giant grasp of an author and a critic from whose judgment, when deliberately formed, few can hope to appeal with success. The candour, the good-nature of this critic,-the inexhaustible stores of his literary acquirements, which place him in the first rank of those most distinguished for historical knowledge and critical acumen,-will allow him, I feel sure, to forgive this appeal from his hasty and general opinion, to the judgment of his better informed mind, on the peculiarities of’ a character often remarkably dissimilar from that of his works.

Lord Dover has justly and forcibly remarked, “that what did the most honour both to the head and the’ heart of Horace Walpole, was the friendship which he bore to Marshal Conway; a man who, according to all the accounts of him that have come down to us, was so truly worthy of inspiring such a decree of affection.” (6)
He then quotes the character given of him by the editor of Lord Orford’s works in 1798. This character of Marshal Conway was a portrait drawn from the life, and, as it proceeded from the same pen which now traces these lines, has some right to be inserted here. “It is only those who have had the opportunity of penetrating into the most secret motives of his public conduct, and into the inmost recesses of his private life, who can do real justice to the unsullied purity of his character;-who saw and knew him in the evening of his days, retired from the honourable activity of a soldier and of a statesman, to the calm enjoyments of private -life; happy in the resources of his own mind, and in the cultivation of useful science, in the bosom of domestic peace-unenriched by pensions or places-undistinguished by titles or ribbons-unsophisticated by public life, and unwearied by retirement.”

To this man, Lord Orford’s attachment, from their boyish days at Eton school to the death of Marshal Conway in 1795, is already a circumstance of sufficiently rare occurrence among men of the world. Could such a man, of whom the foregoing lines are an unvarnished sketch-of whose character, simplicity was one of the distinguished ornaments-could such a man have endured the intimacy of such an individual as the reviewer describes Lord Orford to have been? Could an intercourse of uninterrupted friendship and undiminished confidence have existed between them during a period of nearly sixty years, undisturbed by the business and bustle of middle life, so apt to cool, and often to terminate, youthful friendships? Could such an intercourse ever have existed, with the supposed selfish indifference, and artificial coldness and conceit of Lord Orford’s character?

The last correspondence included in the present publication will, it is presumed, furnish no less convincing proof, that the warmth of his feelings, and his capacity for sincere affection, continued unenfeebled by age. It is with this view, and this alone, that the correspondence alluded to is now, for the first time, given to the public. It can add nothing to the already established epistolary fame of Lord Orford, and the public can be as little interested in his sentiments for the two individuals addressed. But, in forming a just estimate of his character, the reader will hardly fail to observe that those sentiments were entertained at a time of life when, for the most part, the heart is too little capable of expansion to open to new attachments. The whole tone of these letters must prove the unimpaired warmth of his feelings, and form a striking contrast to the cold harshness of which he has been accused, in his intercourse with Madame du Deffand, at an earlier period of his life. This harshness, as was noticed by the editor of Madame du Deffand’s letters, in the preface to that publication, proceeded solely from a dread of ridicule, which formed a principal feature of Mr. Walpole’s character, and which, carried, as in his case, to excess, must be called a principal weakness. “This accounts for the ungracious language in which he so often replies to the importunities of her anxious affection; a language so foreign to his heart, and so contrary to his own habits in friendship.” (7)

Is this, then, the man who is supposed to be “the most eccentric, the most artificial, the most fastidious, the most capricious of mortals? -his mind a bundle of inconsistent whims and affectations-his features covered with mask within mask, which, when the outer disguise of obvious affectation was removed, you were still as far as ever from seeing the real man.”-“Affectation is the essence of the man. It pervades all his thoughts and all his expressions. If it were taken away, nothing would be left.” (8)

He affected nothing; he played no part; he was what he appeared to be. Aware that he was ill qualified for politics, for public life, for parliamentary business, or indeed for business of any sort, the whole tenor of his life was consistent with this opinion of himself. Had he attempted to effect what belongs only to characters of another stamp -had he endeavoured to take a lead in the House of Commons-had he sought for place, dignity, or office-had he aimed at intrigue, or attempted to be a tool for others-then, indeed, he might have deserved the appellation of artificial, eccentric, and capricious.

>From the retreat of his father, which happened the year after he entered parliament, the only real interest he took in politics was when their events happened immediately to concern the objects of his private friendships. He occupied himself with what really amused him. If he had affected any thing, it would certainly not have been a taste for the trifling occupations with which he is reproached. Of no person can it be less truly said, that “affectation was the essence of the man.” What man, or even what woman, ever affected to be the frivolous being he is described? When his critic says, that he had “the soul of a gentleman-usher,” he was little aware that he only repeated what Lord Orford often said of himself-that from his knowledge of old ceremonials and etiquettes, he was sure that in a former state of existence, he must have been a gentleman-usher,-about the time of Elizabeth.

In politics, he was what he professed to be, a Whig, in the sense which that denomination bore in his younger days,-never a Republican.

In his old and enfeebled age, the horrors of the first French revolution made him a Tory; while he always lamented, as one of the worst effects of its excesses, that they must necessarily retard to a distant period the progress and establishment of civil liberty. But why are we to believe his contempt for crowned heads should have prevented his writing a memoir of “Royal and Noble Authors?” Their literary labours, when all brought together by himself, would not, it is believed, tend much to raise, or much to alter his opinion of them.

In his letters from Paris, written in the years 1765, 1766, 1767 and 1771, it will be seen, that so far from being infinitely more occupied with “the fashions and gossip of Versailles and Marli than with a great moral revolution which was taking place in his sight,” he was truly aware of the state of the public mind, and foresaw all that was coming on.

Of Rousseau he has proved that he knew more, and that he judged him more accurately, than Mr. Hume, and many others who were then duped by his mad pride and disturbed understanding.

Voltaire had convicted himself of the basest of vain lies in the intercourse he sought with Mr. Walpole. The details of this transaction, and the letters which passed at the time, are already printed in the quarto edition of his works. In the short notes of his life left by himself, and from which all the dates in this notice are taken, it is thus mentioned:

“Although Voltaire, with whom I had never had the least acquaintance, had voluntarily written to me first, and asked for my book, he wrote a letter to the Duchesse de Choiseul, in which, without saying a syllable of his having written to me first, he told her I had officiously sent him my works, and declared war with him in defence ‘de ce bouffon de Shakspeare,’ whom in his reply to me he pretended so much to admire. The Duchesse sent me Voltaire’s letter; which gave me such a contempt for his disingenuity, that I dropped all correspondence with him.”

When he spoke with contempt of d’Alembert, it was not of his abilities; of which he never pretended to judge. Professor Saunderson had long before, when he was a lad at Cambridge, assured him, that it would be robbing him to pretend teaching him mathematics, of which his mind was perfectly incapable, so that any comparison of the intellectual powers of the two men” would indeed be as “exquisitely ridiculous” as the critic declares it. But lord Orford, speaking of d’Alembert, complains of the overweening importance which he, and all the men of letters of those days in France, attributed to their squabbles and disputes. The idleness to which an absolute government necessarily condemns nine-tenths of its subjects, sufficiently accounts for the exaggerated importance given to and assumed by the French writers, even before they had become, in the language of the Reviewer, “the interpreters between England and mankind:” he asserts, “that all the great discoveries in physics, in metaphysics, in political science, are ours but no foreign nation, except France, has received them from us by direct communication: isolated in our situation, isolated by our manners, we found truth, but did not impart it.” (9) It may surely be asked, whether France will subscribe to this assertion of superiority, in the whole range of science! If she does, her character has undergone an even greater change, than any she has yet experienced in the course of all her revolutions.

lord Orford is believed by his critic to have “sneered” at every body. sneering was not his way of showing dislike. He had very strong prejudices, sometimes adopted on very insufficient grounds, and he therefore often made great mistakes in the appreciation of character; but when influenced by such impressions, he always expressed his opinions directly, and often too violently.

The affections of his heart were bestowed on few; for in early life they had never been cultivated, but they were singularly warm, pure, and constant; characterized not by the ardour of passion, but by the constant preoccupation of real affection. He had lost his mother, to whom he was fondly attached, early in life; and with his father, a man of coarse feelings and boisterous manners, he had few sentiments in common. Always feeble in constitution, he was unequal to the sports of the field, and to the drinking which then accompanied them, so that during his father’s retreat at Houghton, however much he respected his abilities and was devoted to his fame, he had little sympathy in his tastes, or pleasure in his society. To the friends of his own selection his devotion was not confined to professions or words: on all occasions of difficulty, of whatever nature, his active affection came forward in defence of their character, or assistance in their affairs.

When his friend Conway, as second in command under Sir John Mordaunt, in the expedition to St. Maloes, partook in some degree of the public censure called forth by the failure of these repeated ill-judged attempts on the coasts of France, Walpole’s pen was immediately employed in rebutting the accusations of the popular pamphlet of the day on this subject, And establishing his friend’s exemption from any responsibility in the failure. When, on a more important occasion, Mr. Conway was not only dismissed from being Equerry to the King, George III., but from the command of his regiment, for his constitutional conduct and votes in the House of Commons, in the memorable affair of the legality of General Warrants for the seizure of persons and papers, Walpole immediately stepped forward, not with cold commendations of his friend’s upright and spirited conduct, but with all the confidence Of long-tried affection, and all the security of noble minds incapable of misunderstanding each other, he insisted on being allowed to share in future his fortune with his friend, and thus more than repair the pecuniary loss he had incurred. Mr. Conway, in a letter to his brother, Lord Hertford, of this period, says “Horace Walpole has on this occasion shown that warmth of friendship that you know him capable of so, strongly, that I want words to express my sense of it;” (10) thus proving the justice he did to Walpole’s sentiments and intentions.

In the case of General Conway’s near relationship and intimacy from childhood, the cause in which his fortunes were suffering might have warmed a colder heart, and opened a closer hand, than Mr. Walpole’s: but Madame du Deffand was a recent acquaintance, who had no claim on him, but the pleasure he received from her society, and his desire that her blind and helpless old age might not be deprived of any of the comforts and alleviations of which it was capable. When by the financial arrangements of the French government, under the unscrupulous administration of the Abb`e Terray, the creditors of the state were considerably reduced in income, Mr. Walpole, in the most earnest manner, begged to prevent the unpleasantness of his old friend’s exposing her necessities, and imploring aid from the minister of the day, by allowing him to make up the deficit in her revenue, as a loan, Or in any manner that would be most satisfactory to her. The loss, after all, did not fall on that stock from which she derived her income, and the assistance was not accepted; but Madame du Deffand’s confidence in, and opinion of, the offer, we see in her letters.

During his after life, although no ostentatious contributor to public charities and schemes of improvement, the friends in whose opinion he knew he could confide, had always more difficulty to repress than to excite his liberality.

That he should have wished his friend Conway to be employed as commander on military expeditions, which, as a soldier fond of his profession, he naturally coveted, although Mr. Walpole might disapprove of the policy of the minister in sending out such expeditions, surely implies neither disguise, nor contradiction in his opinions.

The dread which the reviewer supposes him to have had, lest he should lose caste as a gentleman, by ranking as a wit and an author, he was much too fine a gentleman to have believed in the possibility of feeling. He knew he had never studied since he left college; he knew that he was not at all a learned man: but the reputation he had acquired by his wit and by his writings, not only among fine gentlemen, but with society in general, made him nothing loath to cultivate every opportunity of increasing it. The account he gave of the idleness of his life to Sir Horace Mann, when he disclaims the title of “the learned gentleman,” was literally true; and it is not easy to imagine any reason why a man at the age of forty-three, who admits that he is idle, and who renounces being either a learned man or a politician, should be “ashamed” of playing loo in good company till two or three o’clock in the morning, if he neither ruins himself nor others. (11) He wrote his letters as rapidly as his disabled fingers would allow him to form the characters of a remarkably legible hand. No rough draughts or sketches of familiar letters were found amongst his papers at Strawberry Hill: but he was in the habit of putting down on the backs of letters or on slips of paper, a note of facts, of news, of witticisms, or of any thing he wished not to forget, for the amusement of his correspondents.

After reading “The Mysterious Mother,” who will accede to the opinion, that his works are “destitute of every charm that is derived from elevation, or from tenderness of sentiment?” (12)