The Letters of Horace Walpole, Volume 1
Part 10 out of 18
the first time, with the greatest applause; Pitt answered him
with all his force and art of language, but on an ill-founded
argument. In all appearances, they will be great rivals.
Shippen was in great rage at Murray's apostacy;(742) if any
thing can really change his principles, possibly this
competition may. To-morrow we shall have a tougher battle on
the sixteen thousand Hanoverians. Hanover is the word given
out for this winter: there is a most bold pamphlet come out,
said to be Lord
Marchmont's,(743) which affirms that in every treaty made
since the accession of this family, England has been
sacrificed to the interest of Hanover, and consequently
insinuates the incompatibility of the two. Lord Chesterfield
says, "that if we have a mind effectually to prevent the
Pretender from ever obtaining this crown, we should make him
Elector of Hanover, for the people of England will never fetch
another king from thence." Adieu! my dear child. I am sensible
that I write you short letters, but I write you all I know. I
don't know how it is, but the wonderful seems worn out. In this
our day, we have no rabbit women-no elopements-no epic
poems,(744) finer than Milton's-no contest about harlequins and
Polly Peachems. Jansen (745) has won no more estates, and the
Duchess of Queensberry is grown as tame as her neighbours. Whist
has spread an universal opium over the whole nation; it makes
courtiers and patriots sit down to the same pack of cards.
The only thing extraordinary, and which yet did not seem to
surprise any body, was the Barberina's(746) being attacked by
four men masqued, the other night, as she came out of the
opera house, who would have forced her away, but she
screamed, and the guard came. Nobody knows who set them on,
and I believe nobody inquired.
The Austrians in Flanders have separated from our troops a
little out of humour, because it was impracticable for them to
march without any preparatory provisions for their reception.
They will probably march in two months, if no peace prevents
(741) Upon a motion, made by Sir William Yonge, that 534,763
pounds be granted for defraying the charge of 16,259 men, to
be employed in Flanders. The numbers on the division were 280
(742) From Toryism.-D.
(743) Hugh Hume, third Earl of Marchmont.
(744) This alludes to the extravagant encomiums bestowed on
Glover's Leonidas by the young patriots.
(745) H. Jansen, a celebrated gamester, who cheated the late Duke
of Bedford of an immense sum: Pope hints at that affair in this
line, "Or when a duke to Jansen punts at White's."
(746) A famous dancer.
301 Letter 92
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, Dec. 23, 1742.
I have had no letter from you this fortnight, and I have heard
nothing this month: judge now how fit I am to write. I hope
it is not another mark of growing old; but, I do assure you,
my writing begins to leave me. Don't be frightened! I don't
mean this as an introduction towards having done with you-I
will write to you to the very stump of my pen, and as Pope
"Squeeze out the last dull droppings of my sense."
But I declare, it is hard to sit spinning out one's brains by
the fireside, without having heard the least thing to set
one's hand a-going. I am so put to it for something to say,
that I would make a memorandum of the most improbable lie that
could be invented by a viscountess-dowager; as the old Duchess
of Rutland (747) does when she is told of some strange
casualty, "Lucy, child, step into the next room and set that
down."-"Lord, Madam!" says Lady Lucy,(748) "it can't be
true!"-"Oh, no matter, child; it will do for news into the
country next post." But do you conceive that the kingdom of
the Dull is come upon earth-not with the forerunners and
prognostics of other to-come kingdoms? No, no; the sun and the
moon go on just as they used to do, without giving us any
hints: we see no knights come prancing upon pale horses, or
red horses; no stars, called wormwood, fall into the Thames,
and turn a third part into wormwood; no locusts, like horses,
with their hair as the hair of women-in short, no
thousand things, each of which destroys a third part of
mankind: the only token of this new kingdom is a woman riding
on a beast, which is the mother of abominations, and the name
in the forehead is whist: and the four-and-twenty elders, and
the woman, and the whole town, do nothing but play with this
beast. Scandal itself is dead, or confined to a pack of
cards; for the only malicious whisper I have heard this
fortnight, is of an intrigue between the Queen of hearts and
the Knave of clubs. Y
our friend Lady Sandwich (749) has got a son; if one may
believe the belly she wore, it is a brave one. Lord
Holderness(750) has lately given a magnificent repast to
fifteen persons; there were three courses of ten, fifteen, and
fifteen, and a sumptuous dessert: a great saloon illuminated,
odours, and violins-and, who do you think were the
invited?-the Visconti, Giuletta, the Galli, Amorevoli,
Monticelli, Vanneschi and his wife, Weedemans the hautboy, the
prompter, etc. The bouquet was given to the Guiletta, who is
barely handsome. How can one love magnificence and low
company at the same instant! We are making great parties for
the Barberina and the Auretti, a charming French girl; and our
schemes succeed so well, that the opera begins to fill
surprisingly; for all those who don't love music, love noise
and party, and will any night give half-a-guinea for the
liberty of hissing-such is English harmony.
I have been in a round of dinners with Lord Stafford, and
Bussy the French minister, who tells one stories of Capuchins,
confessions, Henri Quatre, Louis XIV., Gascons, and the string
which all Frenchmen go through, without any connexion or
relation to the discourse. These very stories, which I have
already heard four times, are only interrupted by English
puns, which old Churchill translates out of jest-books into
the mouth of my Lord Chesterfield, and into most execrable
Adieu! I have scribbled, and blotted, and made nothing out,
and, in short, have nothing to say, so good night!
(747) Lady Lucinda Sherard, widow of John Manners, second Duke
of Rutland. She died in 1751.-E.
(748) Lady Lucy Manners, married, in 1742, to William, second
Duke of Montrose. She died in 1788.-E.
(749) Judith, sister of Lord Viscount Fane, wife of John
Montagu, fifth Earl of Sandwich.-E.
(750) Robert d'Arcy, fourth Earl of Holderness; subsequently
made secretary of State. Upon his death his earldom
extinguished, and what remained of his estate, as well as the
Barony of Conyers, descended to his only daughter, who was
married to Francis Osborne, fifth Duke of Leeds, in 1773.-D.
[From whom she was divorced in 1779. She afterwards married
Captain John Byron, son of Admiral Byron, and father of the
302 Letter 93
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, Jan. 6, 1743.
You will wonder that you have not heard from me, but I have
been too ill to write. I have been confined these ten days
with a most violent cough, and they suspected an inflammation
on my lungs; but I am come off with the loss of my eyes and my
voice, both of which I am recovering, and would write to you
to-day. I have received your long letter of December 11th,
and return you a thousand thanks for giving up so much of your
time; I wish I could make as long a letter for you, but we arc
in a neutrality of news. The Elector Palatine (751) is dead;
but I have not heard what alterations that will make. Lord
Wilmington's death, which is reckoned hard upon, is likely to
make more conversation here. He is going to Bath, but that is
only to pass away the time until be dies.
The great Vernon is landed, but we have not been alarmed with
any bonfires or illuminations; he has outlived all his
popularity. There is nothing new but the separation of a Mr.
and Mrs. French, whom it is impossible you should know. She
has been fashionable these two winters; her husband has
commenced a suit in Doctors' Commons against her cat, and
will, they say, recover considerable damages: but the lawyers
are of opinion, that the kittens must inherit Mr. French's
estate, as they were born in lawful wedlock.
The parliament meets again on Monday, but I don't hear of any
fatigue that we are likely to have; in a little time, I
suppose, we shall hear what campaigning we are to make.
I must tell you of an admirable reply of your acquaintance the
Duchess of Queensberry:(752) old Lady Granville, Lord
Carteret's mother, whom they call the Queen-Mother, from
taking upon her to do the honours of her son's power, was
pressing the duchess to ask her for some place for herself or
friends, and assured her that she would procure it, be it what
it would. Could she have picked out a fitter person to be
gracious to? The duchess made her a most grave curtsey, and
said, "Indeed, there was one thing she had set her heart
on."-"Dear child, how you oblige me by asking, any thing! What
is it? tell me." "Only that you would speak to my Lord
Carteret to get me made lady of the bedchamber to the Queen of
I come now to your letter, and am not at all pleased to find
that the Princess absolutely intends to murder you with her
cold rooms. I wish you could come on those cold nights and
sit by my fireside; I have the prettiest warm little
apartment, with all my baubles, and Patapans, and cats!
Patapan and I go to-morrow to New Park, to my lord, for the
air, and come back with him on Monday.
What an infamous story that affair of Nomis is! and how
different the ideas of honour among officers in your world and
ours! Your history of cicisbeosm is more entertaining: I
figure the distress of a parcel of lovers who have so many
things to dread-the government in this world! purgatory in the
next! inquisitions, villeggiaturas, convents, etc.
Lord Essex is extremely bad, and has not strength enough to go
through the remedies that are necessary to his recovery. He
now fancies that he does not exist, will not be persuaded to
walk or talk, because, as he sometimes says, "How should he do
any thing? he is not." You say, "How came I not to see Duc
d'Aremberg?" I did once at the opera; but he went away soon
after: and here it is not the way to visit foreigners, unless
you are of the Court, or are particularly in a way of having
them at your house: consequently Sir R. never saw him
either-we are not of the Court! Next, as to Arlington Street:
Sir R. is in a middling kind of house, which has long been
his, and was let; he has taken a small one next to it for me,
and they are laid together.
I come now to speak to you of the affair of the Duke of
Newcastle; but absolutely, on considering it much myself, and
on talking of it with your brother, we both are against your
attempting any such thing. In the first place, I never heard
a suspicion of the duke's taking presents, and should think he
would rather be affronted: in the next place, my dear child,
though you are fond of that coffee-pot, it would be thought
nothing among such wardrobes as he has, of the finest wrought
plate: why, he has- a set of gold plates that would make a
figure on any sideboard in the Arabian Tales;(753) and as to
Benvenuto cellini, if the duke could take it for his, people
in England understand all work too well to be deceived.
Lastly, as there has been no talk of alterations in the
foreign ministers, and as all changes seem at an end, why
should you be apprehensive? As to Stone,(754) if any thing
was done, to be sure it should be to him though I really can't
advise even that. These are my sentiments sincerely: by no
means think of the duke. Adieu!
(751) Charles Philip of Neubourg, , Elector Palatine. He died
December 31, 1742. He was succeeded by Charles Theodore,
Prince of Sulzbach, descended from a younger branch of the
house of Neubourg, and who, in his old age, became Elector of
(752) Catherine Hyde, daughter of the Earl of Clarendon, and
wife of Charles Douglas, Duke of Queensberry; a famous beauty,
celebrated by Prior in that pretty poem which begins, "Kitty,
beautiful and young," and often mentioned in Swift and Pope's
letters, She was forbid the Court for promoting subscriptions
to the second part of the Beggar's Opera, when it had been
prohibited from being acted. She and the duke erected the
monument to Gay in Westminster Abbey. [And to which Pope
supplied the epitaph, "the first eight lines of which," says
Dr. Johnson, "have no grammar; the adjectives without
substantives, and the epithets without a subject." The duchess
died in 1777, and her husband in the year following.]
(753) Walpole, in his Memoires, says that the duke's houses,
gardens, table, and equipages swallowed immense treasures, and
that the sums he owed were only exceeded by those he wasted.
He employed several physicians, without having had apparently
much need of them. His gold plate appears to have been almost
as dear to him as his health; for he usually kept it in pawn,
except when he wished to display it on great occasions.
(754) Andrew Stone, at this time private secretary to the Duke
of Newcastle. he subsequently filled the offices of under-
secretary of state, sub-governor to Prince George, keeper of
the state-paper office, and, on the marriage of George the
third, treasurer to the Queen. he died in 1773.-E.
304 Letter 94
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, Jan. 13, 1743,
Your brother brought me two letters together this morning, and
at the same time showed me yours to your father. How should I
be ashamed, were I he, to receive such a letter! so dutiful,
so humble, and yet so expressive of the straits to which he
has let you be reduced! My dear child, it looks too much like
the son of a minister, when I am no longer so; but I can't
help repeating to you offers of any kind of service that you
think I can do for you any way.
I am quite happy at your thinking Tuscany so secure from
Spain, unless the wise head of Richcourt works against the
season; but how can I ever be easy while a provincial
Frenchman, Something half French, half German, instigated by a
mad Englishwoman is to govern an Italian dominion?
I laughed much at the magnificent presents made by one of the
first families in Florence to their young accouch`ee. Do but
think if a Duke or Duchess of Somerset were to give a Lady
Hertford fifty pounds and twenty yards of velvet for bringing
an heir to the blood of Seymour!
It grieves me that my letters drop in so slowly to you: I have
never missed writing, but when I have been absolutely too much
out of order, or once or twice when I had no earthly thing to
tell you. This winter is so quiet, that one must inquire much
to know any thing. The parliament is met again, but we do not
hear of any intended opposition to any thing. the tories have
dropped the affair of the Hanoverians in the House of Lords,
in compliment to Lord Gower. there is a second pamphlet on
that subject which makes a great noise.(755) The ministry are
much distressed on the ways and means for raising the money
for this year: there is to be a lottery, but that will not
supply a quarter of what they want. They have talked of a new
duty on tea, to be paid by every housekeeper for all the
persons in their families; but it will scarce be proposed.
Tea is so universal, that it would make a greater clamour than
a duty on wine. Nothing is determined; the new folks do not
shine at expedients. Sir Robert's health is now drunk at all
the clubs in the city; there they are for having him made a
duke, and placed again at the head of the Treasury; but I
believe nothing could prevail on him to return thither. He
says he will keep the 12th of February,.-the day he resigned,
with his family as long as he lives. They talk of Sandys
being raised to the peerage, by way of getting rid of him; he
is so dull they can scarce draw him on.(756)
The English troops in Flanders march to-day, whither we don't
know, but "probably to Liege: from whence they imagine the
Hanoverians are going into Juliers and Bergue.(757) The
ministry have been greatly alarmed with the King of Sardinia's
retreat, and suspected that it was a total one from the
Queen's interest; but it seems he sent for Villettes and the
Hungarian minister, and had their previous approbations of his
deserting Chamberry, etc.
Vernon is not yet got to town, we are impatient for what will
follow the arrival of this mad hero. Wentworth will certainly
challenge him, but Vernon does not profess personal valour: he
was once knocked down by a merchant, who then offered him
satisfaction-but he was satisfied.
Lord Essex' is dead:(758) Lord Lincoln will have the
bedchamber; Lord Berkeley of Stratton(759) (a disciple of
Carteret's) the Pensioners; and Lord Carteret himself probably
As to my Lady Walpole's dormant title,(760) it was in her
family; but being in the King's power to give to which sister
in equal claim he pleased, it was bestowed on Lord Clinton,
who descended from the younger sister of Lady W.'s
grandmother, or great grand-something. My Lady Clifford,(761)
Coke's mother, got her barony so, in preference to Lady
Salisbury and Lady Sondes, her elder sisters, who had already
titles for their children. It is called a title in abeyance.
Sir Robert has just bid me tell you to send the Dominichin by
the first safe conveyance to Matthews, who has had orders from
Lord Winchilsea (762) to send it by the first man-of-war to
England; or if you meet with a ship going to Port Mahon, then
you must send it thither to Anstruther, and write to him that
Lord Orford desires that he will take care of it, and send it
by the first ship that comes directly home. He is so
impatient for it, that he will have it thus; but I own I
should not like to have my things tumbled out of one ship into
another, and beg mine may stay till they can come at once.
(755) Entitled "The Case of the Hanover Forces in the Pay of
Great Britain examined." It was written by Lord Chesterfield,
and excited much attention.-E.
(756) In December he was created a peer, by the title of Lord
Sandys, Baron of Ombersley, and made cofferer of the
(757) The British troops began their march from Flanders at
the end of February, under the command of the Earl of Stair;
but were so tardy in their movements, that it was the middle
of May before they crossed the Rhine and fixed their station
at Hochst, between Mayence and Frankfort.-E.
(758) William Capel, third Earl of Essex. [A lord of the
bedchamber, knight of the garter, and captain of the yeomen of
(759) John, fifth and last Lord Berkeley of Stratton. He died
(760) The barony of Clinton in fee descended to the daughters
of Theophilus, Earl of Huntingdon, who died without male
issue. One of those ladies died without children, by which
means the title lay between the families of Rolle and
Fortescue. King George I. gave it to Hugh Fortescue,
afterwards Created an earl; on whose death it descended to his
only sister, a maiden lady, after whom, without issue, it
devolved on Lady Orford.
(761) Lady Margaret Tufton, third daughter of Thomas, sixth
Earl of Thanet. the barony of De Clifford had descended to
Lord Thanet, from his mother, Lady Margaret Sackville,
daughter of Anne Clifford, Countess of Dorset, Pembroke, and
Montgomery. Upon Lord Thanet's death, the barony of De
Clifford fell into abeyance between his five daughters. These
were Lady Catherine, married to Edward Watson, Viscount
Sondus; Lady Anne, married to James Cecil, Earl of Salisbury;
Lady Margaret, before mentioned; Lady Mary, married first to
Anthony Grey, Earl of Harold, and secondly to John Earl Gower;
and Lady Isabella, married to Lord Nassau Powlett.-D.
(762) First lord of the admiralty.-]).
306 Letter 95
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, Jan. 27, 1743.
I could not write you last Thursday, I was so much out of
order with a cold; your brother came and found me in bed.
TO-night, that I can write, I have nothing to tell you; except
that yesterday the welcome news (to the ministry) came of the
accession of the Dutch to the King's measures. They are in
great triumph; but till it Is clear what part his Prussian
Uprightness is acting, other people take the liberty to be
still in suspense. So they are about all our domestic matters
too. It is a general stare! the alteration that must soon
happen in the Treasury will put some end to the uncertainties
of this winter. Mr. Pelham is universally named to the head
of it; but Messrs. Prince,(263) Carteret, Pultney, and
Companies must be a little considered. how they will like it:
the latter the least.
You will wonder, perhaps be peevish, when I protest I have not
another paragraph by me in the world. I want even common
conversation; for I cannot persist, like the royal family, in
asking people the same questions, "Do you love walking?" "Do
you love music'!" "Was you at the opera?" "When do you go into
the country!" I have nothing else to say: nothing happens;
scarce the common episodes of a newspaper, of a man falling
off a ladder and breaking his leg; or of a countryman cheated
out of his leather pouch, with fifty shillings in it. We are
in such a state of sameness, that I shall begin to wonder at
the change of seasons, and talk of the spring as a strange
accident. Lord Tyrawley, who has been fifteen years in
Portugal, is of my opinion; he says he finds nothing but a
fog, whist, and the House of Commons.
In this lamentable state, when I know not what to write even
to you, what can I do about my serene Princess Grifoni? Alas!
I owe her two letters, and where to find a beau sentiment, I
cannot tell! I believe I may have some by me in an old chest
of draws, with some exploded red-heel shoes and full-bottom
wigs; but they would come out so yellow and moth-eaten! Do bow
to her, in every superlative degree in the language, that my
eyes have been so bad, that as I wrote you word, over and
over, I have not been able to write a line. That will move
her, when she hears what melancholy descriptions I write, of
my not being able to write-nay, indeed it will not be so
ridiculous as you think; for it is ten times worse for the
eyes to write in a language one don't much practise! I
remember a tutor at Cambridge, who had been examining some
lads in Latin, but in a little while excused himself, and said
he must speak English, for his mouth was very sore.
I had a letter from you yesterday of January 7th, N. S. which
has wonderfully excited my compassion for the necessities of
the princely family,(764) and the shifts the old Lady' is put
to for quadrille.(765)
I triumph much on my penetration about the honest
Rucellai(766)-we little people, who have no honesty, virtue,
nor shame, do so exult when a good neighbour, who was a
pattern, turns out as bad as oneself! We are like the good
woman in the Gospel, who chuckled so much on finding her lost
bit; we have more joy on a saint's fall, than in ninety-nine
devils, who were always de nous autres! I am a little pleased
too, that Marquis BagneSi'(767) whom you know I always liked
much, has behaved so well; and am more pleased to hear what a
Beffana(768) the Electress(769) is-Pho! here am I sending you
back your own paragraphs, cut and turned! it is so silly to
think that you won't know them again! I will not spin myself
any longer; it is better to make a short letter. I am going
to the masquerade, and will fancy myself in via della
Pergola.(770) Adieu! "Do you know me?"-"That man there with
you, in the black domino, is Mr. Chute.,, Good night!
(763) Frederick, Prince of Wales.-D.
(764) Prince and Princess Craon.
(765) Madame Sarasin.
(766) Sir H. Mann says, in his letter of January 7, 1743, 11 I
must be so just as to tell you, @my friend, the Senator
Rucellai, is, as you always thought, a sad fellow. He has
quite abandoned me for fear of offending."-D.
(767) "Apropos of duels, two of our young nobles, Marquis
BagneSi and Strozzi, have fought about a debt of' fifteen
shillings; the latter, the creditor and the occasion of the
fight, behaved ill."-Letter from Sir H. Mann, dated Jan. 7,
(768) A Beffana was a puppet, which was carried about the town
on the evening of the Epiphany. The word is derived from
Epifania. It also means an ugly woman. The Electress
happened to go out for the first time after an illness on the
Epiphany, and said in joke to Prince Craon, that the "Beffane
all went abroad on that day."-D.
(769) The Electress Palatine Dowager, the last of the House of
(770) A street at Florence, in which the Opera house stands.
308 Letter 96
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, Feb. 2, 1743.
Last night at the Duchess of Richmond's I saw Madame
Goldsworthy: what a pert, little, unbred thing it is! The
duchess presented us to one another; but I cannot say that
either of us stepped a foot beyond the first civilities. The
good duchess was for harbouring her and all her brood: how it
happened to her I don't conceive, but the thing had decency
enough to refuse it. She is going to live with her father at
The day before yesterday the lords had a great day: Earl
Stanhope(771) moved for an address to his Britannic Majesty,
in consideration of the heavy wars, taxes, etc. far exceeding
all that ever were known, to exonerate his people of foreign
troops, Hanoverians,) which are so expensive, and can In no
light answer the ends for which they were hired. Lord
Sandwich seconded: extremely well, I hear, for I was not
there. Lord Carteret answered, but was under great concern.
Lord Bath spoke too, and would fain have persuaded that this
measure was not Solely Of one minister, but that himself and
all the council were equally concerned in it. The late Privy
Seal(772) Spoke for an hour and a half, with the greatest
applause, against the Hanoverians: and my Lord Chancellor
extremely well for them. The division was, 90 for the Court,
35 against it The present Privy Seal(773) voted with the
Opposition: so there will soon be another. Lord Halifax, the
Prince's new Lord, was with the minority too; the other, Lord
Darnley,(774) with the Court. After the division, Lord
Scarborough, his Royal Highness's Treasurer, moved an address
of approbation of the measure, which was carried by 78 to the
former 35. Lord Orford was ill, and could not be there, but
sent his proxy: he has got a great cold and slow fever, but
does not keep his room. If Lord Gower loses the Privy Seal,
(as it is taken for granted he does not design to keep it,)
and Lord Bath refuses it, Lord Cholmondeley stands the fairest
I will conclude abruptly, for you will be tired of my telling
you that I have nothing to tell you-but so it is literally-
oh! yes, you will want to know what the Duke of Argyle did-he
was not there; he is every thing but superannuated. Adieu!
(771) Philip, second Earl Stanhope, born in 1714. He
succeeded his father when he was only seven years old, and
died in 1786. His character is thus sketched by his great-
grandson, Viscount Mahon, in his History of England, vol. iii.
p. 242.-"He had great talents, but fitter for speculation than
for practical objects of action. He made himself one of the
best-Lalande used to say the best-mathematicians in England of
his day, and was likewise deeply skilled in other branches of
science and philosophy. The Greek language was as familiar to
him as the English; he was said to know every line of Homer by
heart. In public life, on the contrary, he was shy, ungainly,
and embarrassed. From his first onset in Parliament, he took
part with vehemence against the administration of Sir Robert
Walpole." Bishop Secker says, that Lord Stanhope "spoke a
precomposed speech, which he held in his hand, with great
tremblings and agitations, and hesitated frequently in the
midst of great vehemence."-E.
(772) Lord Hervey.
(773) Lord Gower.
(774) Edward Bligh, second Earl of Darnley, in Ireland, and
Lord of the Bedchamber to Frederic Prince of Wales.-D.
309 Letter 97
To Sir Horace Mann.
Feb. 13, 1743.
Ceretesi tells me that Madame Galli is dead: I have had two
letters from you this week; but the last mentions only the
death of old Strozzi. I am quite sorry for Madame Galli,
because I proposed seeing her again, on my return to Florence,
which I have firmly in my intention: I hope it will be a
little before Ceretesi's, for he seems to be planted here. I
don't conceive who -waters him! Here are two noble Venetians
that have carried him about lately to Oxford and Blenheim: I
am literally waiting for him now, to introduce him to Lady
Brown's sunday night; it is the great mart for all travelling
and travelled calves-pho! here he is.
Monday morning.-Here is your brother: he tells me you never
hear from me; how can that be? I receive yours, and you
generally mention having got one of mine, though long after
the time you should. I never miss above one post, and that
but very seldom. I am longer receiving yours, though you have
never missed; but then-I frequently receive two at once. I am
delighted with Goldsworthy's mystery about King Theodore! If
you will promise me not to tell him, I will tell you@a secret,
which is, that if that person is not King Theodore, I assure
you it is not Sir Robert Walpole.
I have nothing to tell you but that Lord Effingham Howard(775)
is dead, and Lord Litchfield(776) at the point of death; he
was struck with a palsy last Thursday. Adieu!
(775) Francis, first Earl of Effingham, and seventh Lord
Howard of Effingham. He died February 12, 1743.-D.
(776) George Henry Lee, second Earl of Lichfield. He died
February 15, 1743.-D.
309 Letter 98
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, Feb. 24, 1743.
I write to you in the greatest hurry in the world, but write I
will. Besides, I must wish you joy; you are warriors; nay,
conquerors;(777) two things quite novel in this war, for
hitherto it has been armies without fighting, and deaths
without killing. We talk of this battle as of a comet; "Have
you heard of the battle?" it Is so strange a thing, that
numbers imagine you may go (ind see it at Charing Cross.
Indeed, our officers, who are going to Flanders, don't quite
like it; they are afraid it should grow the fashion to fight,
and that a pair of colours should be no longer a sinecure. I
am quite unhappy about poor Mr. Chute: besides, it is cruel to
find that abstinence is not a drug. If mortification ever
ceases to be a medicine, or virtue to be a passport to
carnivals in the other world, who will be a self-tormentor any
longer-not, my child, that I am one; but, tell me, is he quite
I thank you for King Theodore's declaration,(778) and wish Him
success with all my soul. I hate the Genoese; they make a
commonwealth the most devilish of all tyrannies!
We have every now and then motions for disbanding Hessians and
Hanoverians, alias mercenaries; but they come to nothing.
To-day the party have declared that they have done for this
session; so you will hear little more but of fine equipages
for Flanders: our troops are actually marched, and the
officers begin to follow them-1 hopes they know whither! You
know in the last war in Spain, Lord Peterborough rode
galloping about to inquire for his army.
But to come to more real contests; Handel has set up an
oratorio against the opera @ind succeeds. He has hired all
the goddesses from farces and the singers of Roast Beef(779)
from between the acts at both theatres, with a man with one
note in his voice, and a girl without ever an one; and so they
sing, and make brave hallelujahs; and the good company encore
the recitative, if it happens to have any cadence like what
they call a tune. I was much diverted the other night at the
opera; two gentlewoman sat before my sister, and not knowing
her, discoursed at their ease. Says one, "Lord! how fine Mr.
W. is!" "Yes," replied the other, with a tone of saying
sentences, "some men love to be particularly so, your
petit-maitres-but they are not always the brightest of their
sex.'@-Do thank me for this period! I am sure you will enjoy
it as much as we did.
I shall be very glad of my things, and approve entirely of
your precautions; Sir R. will be quite happy, for there is no
telling YOU how impatient he is for his Dominichin. Adieu!
(777) This alludes to an engagement, which took place on the
8th of February, near Bologna, between the Spaniards under M.
de Gages, and the Austrians under General Traun, in which the
latter were successful.-D.
(778) With regard to Corsica, of which he had declared himself
King. By this declaration, which was dated January 30,
Theodore recalled, under pain of confiscation of their
estates, all the Corsicans in foreign service, except that of
the Queen of Hungary, and the Grand Duke of Tuscany.-E.
(779) It was customary at this time for the galleries to call
for a ballad called "The Roast Beef of Old England," between
the acts, or before or after the play.
310 Letter 99
To Sir Horace Mann.
March 3d, 1743.
So, she is dead at last, the old Electress!(780)-well, I have
nothing more to say about her and the Medici; they had
outlived all their acquaintance: indeed, her death makes the
battle very considerable -makes us call a victory what before
we did not look upon as very decided laurels.
Lord Hervey has entertained the town with another piece of
wisdom: on Sunday it was declared that he had married his
eldest daughter the night before to a Mr. Phipps,(781)
grandson of the Duchess of Buckingham. They sent for the boy
but the day before from Oxford, and bedded them at a day's
notice. But after all this mystery, it does not turn out that
there is any thing great in this match, but the greatness of
the secret. Poor
Hervey,(782) the brother, is in fear and trembling, for he
apprehends being ravished to bed to some fortune or other with
as little ceremony. The Oratorios thrive abundantly-for my
part, they give me an idea of heaven, where every body is to
sing whether they have voices or not.
The Board (the Jacobite Club) have chosen his Majesty's Lord
Privy Seal(783) for their President, in the room of Lord
Litchfield. Don't you like the harmony of parties? We expect
the parliament will rise this month: I shall be sorry, for if
I am not hurried out of town, at least every body else
will-and who can look forward from April to November? Adieu!
though I write in defiance of having nothing to say, yet you
see I can't go a great way in this obstinacy; but you will
bear a short letter rather than none.
(780) Anna Maria of Medicis, daughter of Cosmo III. widow of
John William, Elector Palatine. After her husband's death she
returned to Florence, where she died, Feb @ 7 1743, aged
seventy-five, being the last of that family.
(781) Constantine Phipps, in 1767, created Lord Mulgrave in
Ireland. He married, on the 26th of February, Lepel, eldest
daughter of Lord Hervey, and died in 1775. Her ladyship was
found dead in her bed, 9th March, 1780, at her son's house in
(782) George William Hervey, afterwards second Earl of
Bristol. He died unmarried, in 1775.-E.
(783) Lord Gower.
311 Letter 100
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, March 14, 1743.
I don't at all know how to advise you about mourning; I always
think that the custom of a country, and what other foreign
ministers do, should be your rule. But I had a private
scruple rose with me: that was, whether you should show so
much respect to the late woman (784) as other ministers do,
since she left that legacy to Quella a Roma.(785) I mentioned
this to my lord, but he thinks that the tender manner of her
wording it, takes off that exception; however, he thinks it
better that you should write for advice to your commanding
officer. That will be very late, and you will probably have
determined before. You see what a casuist I am in ceremony; I
leave the question more perplexed than I found it.
Pray, Sir, congratulate me upon the new acquisition of glory
to my family! We have long been eminent statesmen; now that we
are out of employment we have betaken ourselves to war-and we
have made great proficiency in a short season. We don't run,
like my Lord Stair, into Berg and Juliers, to seek battles
where we are sure of not finding them-we make shorter marches;
a step across the Court of Requests brings us to engagement.
But not to detain you any longer with flourishes, which will
probably be inserted in my uncle Horace's patent when he is
made a field-marshal; you must know that he has fought a duel,
and has scratched a scratch three inches long on the side of
his enemy-lo Paon! The circumstances of this memorable
engagement were, in short, that on some witness being to be
examined the other day in the House upon remittances to the
army, my uncle said, He hoped they would indemnify him, if he
told any thing that affected himself." Soon after he was
standing behind the Speaker's chair, and Will. Chetwynd,(786)
an intimate of Bolingbroke, came up to him, What, Mr. Walpole,
are you for rubbing up old sores?" He replied, "I think I said
very little, considering that you and your friends would last
year have hanged up me and my brother at the lobby-door
without a trial." Chetwynd answered, I would still have you
both have your deserts." The other said, If you and I had,
probably I should be here and you would be somewhere else."
This drew more words, and Chetwynd took him by the arm and led
him out. In the lobby, Horace said, "We shall be-observed, we
had better put it off till to-morrow." "No, no, now! now!"
When they came to the bottom of the stairs, Horace said, "I am
out of breath, let us draw here." They drew; Chetwynd hit him
on the breast, but was not near enough to pierce his coat.
Horace made a pass which the other put by with his hand, but
It glanced along his side-a clerk, who had observed them go
out together so arm-in-arm-ly, could not believe it amicable,
but followed them, and came up just time enough to beat down
their swords, as Horace had driven him against a post, and
would probably have run him through at the next thrust.
Chetwynd went away to a surgeon's, and kept his bed the next
day; he has not reappeared yet, but is in no danger. My uncle
returned to the House, and was so little moved as to speak
immediately upon the Cambrick bill, which made Swinny say,
"That it was a sign he was not ruffled."(787) Don't you
delight in this duel? I expect to see it daubed up by some
circuit-painter on the ceiling of the saloon at Woolterton.
I have no news to tell you, but that we hear King Theodore has
sent over proposals of his person and crown to Lady Lucy
Stanhope,(788) with whom he fell in love the last time he was
Princess Buckingham(789) is dead or dying: she has sent for
Mr. Anstis, and settled the ceremonial of her burial. On
Saturday she was so ill that she feared dying before all the
pomp was come home: she said, "Why won't they send the canopy
for me to see? let them send it, though all the tassels are
not finished." But yesterday was the greatest stroke of all!
She made her ladies vow to her, that if she should lie
senseless, they would not sit down in the room before she was
dead. She has a great mind to be buried by her father at
Paris. Mrs. Selwyn says, "She need not be carried out of
England, and yet be buried by her father." You know that Lady
Dorchester always told her, that old Graham(790) was her
I am much obliged to you for the trouble you have taken about
the statue; do draw upon me for it immediately, and for all my
other debts to you: I am sure they must be numerous; pray
A thousand loves to the Chutes: a thousand compliments to the
Princess; and a thousand-what? to the Grifona. Alas! what can
one do? I have forgot all my Italian. Adieu!
(784) The Electress Palatine Dowager.
(785) She left a legacy to the Pretender, describing him only
by these words, To Him at Rome.
(786) William Chetwynd, brother of the Lord Viscount Chetwynd.
On the coalition he was made Master of the Mint.
(787) Coxe, in his Memoirs of Lord Walpole, gives the
following account of this duel: "A motion being made in the
House of Commons, which Mr. Walpole supported, he said to Mr.
Chetwynd, 'I hope we shall carry this question.' Mr. Chetwynd
replied, 'I hope to see you hanged first!' 'You see me hanged
first!' rejoined Mr. Walpole and instantly seized him by the
nose. They went out and fought. The account being conveyed
to Lord Orford, he sent his son to make inquiries; who, on
coming into the House of Commons, found his uncle speaking
with the same composure as if nothing had happened to ruffle
his tamper or endanger his life. Mr. Chetwynd was wounded."
vol. ii. p. 68.-E.
(788) Sister of Philip, second Earl Stanhope.
(789) Catherine, Duchess of Buckingham, natural daughter of
King James II. by the Countess of Dorchester. She was so
proud of her birth, that she would never go to Versailles,
because they would not give her the rank of Princess of the
Blood. At Rome, whither she went two or three times to see
her brother, and to carry on negotiations with him for his
interest, she had a box at the Opera distinguished like those
of crowned heads. She not only regulated the ceremony of her
own burial, and dressed up the waxen figure of herself for
Westminster Abbey, but had shown the same insensible pride on
the death of her only son, dressing his figure, and sending
messages to her friends, that if they had a mind to see him
lie in state, she would carry them in conveniently by a
back-door. She sent to the old Duchess of Marlborough to
borrow the triumphal car that had carried the Duke's body.
Old Sarah, as mad and proud as herself, sent her word, "that
it had carried my Lord Marlborough, and should never be
profaned by any other corpse." The Buckingham retorted that,
"she had spoken to the undertaker, and he had engaged to make
a finer for twenty pounds." [See ant`e, p. 204.]
(790) Colonel Graham. When the Duchess was young, and as
insolent as afterwards, her mother used to say, "You need not
be so proud, for you are not the King's but old Graham's
daughter." It is certain, that his legitimate daughter, the
Countess of Berkshire and Suffolk, was extremely like the
Duchess, and that he often said with a sneer, "Well, well,
kings are great men, they make free with whom they please! All
I can say is, that I am sure the same man begot those two
women." The Duchess often went to weep over her father's body
at Paris: one of the monks seeing her tenderness, thought it a
proper opportunity to make her observe how ragged the pall is
that lies over the body, (which is kept unburied, to be some
time or other interred in England,)-but she would not buy a
314 Letter 101
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, March 25, 1743.
Well! my dear Sir, the Genii, or whoever are to look after the
seasons, seem to me to change turns, and to wait instead of
one another, like lords of the bedchamber. We have had loads
of sunshine all the winter; and within these ten days nothing
but snows, north-east winds, and blue plagues. The last ships
have brought over all your epidemic distempers: not a family
in London has escaped under five or six ill: many people have
been forced to hire new labourers. Guernier, the apothecary,
took two new apothecaries, and yet could not drug all his
patients. It is a cold and fever. I had one of the worst,
and was blooded on Saturday and Sunday, but it is quite gone:
my father was blooded last night: his is but slight. The
physicians say that there has been nothing like it since the
year Thirty-three, and then not so bad: in short, our army
abroad would shudder to see what streams of blood have been
let out! Nobody has died of it, but old Mr. Eyres, of Chelsea,
through obstinacy of not bleeding; and his ancient Grace of
York:(791) Wilcox of Rochester(792) succeeds him, who is fit
for nothing in the world, but to die of this cold too.
They now talk of the King's not going abroad: I like to talk
on that side; because though it may not be true, one may at
least be able to give some sort of reason why he should not.
We go into mourning for your Electress on Sunday; I suppose
they will tack the Elector of Mentz to her, for he is just
dead. I delight in Richcourt's calculation- I don't doubt but
it is the method he often uses in accounting with the Great
I have had two letters from you of the 5th and 12th, with a
note of things coming by sea; but my dear child, you are
either run Roman Catholicly devout, or take me to be so; for
nothing but a religious fit of zeal could make you think of
sending me so many presents. Why, there are Madonnas enough
in one case to furnish a more than common cathedral-I
absolutely will drive to Demetrius, the silversmith's, and
bespeak myself a pompous shrine! But indeed, seriously, how
can I, who have a conscience, and am no saint, take all these
things? You must either let me pay for them, or I will demand
my unfortunate coffee-pot again, which has put you upon
ruining yourself By the way, do let me have it again, for I
cannot trust it any longer in your hands at this rate; and
since I have found out its virtue, I will present it to
somebody, whom I shall have no scruple of letting send me
bales and cargoes, and ship-loads of Madonnas, perfumes,
prints, frankincense, etc. You have not even drawn upon me
for my statue, my hermaphrodite, my gallery, and twenty other
things, for which I am lawfully your debtor.
I must tell you one thing, that I will not say a word to my
lord of this Argosie, as Shakspeare calls his costly ships,
till it is arrived, for he will tremble for his Dominichin,
and think it will not come safe in all this company-by the
way, will a captain of a man-of-war care to take all? We were
talking over Italy last night- my lord protests, that if he
thought he had strength, he would see Florence, Bologna, and
Rome, by way of Marseilles, to Leghorn. You may imagine how I
gave in to such a jaunt. I don't set my heart upon it,
because I think he cannot do it; but if he does, I promise
you, you shall be his Cicerone. I delight in the gallantry of
the Princess's brother.(793) I will tell you what, if the
Italians don't take care, they will grow as brave and as
wrongheaded as their neighbours. Oh! how shall I do about
writing to her? Well, if I can, I will be bold, and write to
I have no idea what the two minerals are that you mention, but
I will inquire, and if there are such, you shall have them;
and gold and silver, if they grow in this land; for I am sure
I am deep enough in your debt. Adieu! .
P. S. It won't do! I have tried to write, but you would bless
yourself to see what stuff I have been forging for half an
hour, and have not waded through three lines of paper. i have
totally forgot my Italian, and if she will but have prudence
enough to support the loss of a correspondence, which was long
since worn threadbare, we will come to as decent a silence as
(791) Doctor lancelot Blackburne. Walpole, in his Memoires,
vol. i. p. 74, calls him "the jolly old archbishop, who had
the manners of a man of quality, though he had been a
buccaneer, and was a clergyman." Noble, in his continuation
of Granger, treats these aspersions as the effect of malice.
"How is it possible!" he asks, ,that a buccaneer should be so
great a scholar as Blackburne certainly was? he who had so
perfect a knowledge of the classics, as to be able to read
them with the same ease as he could Shakspeare, must have
taken great pains to have acquired the learned languages, and
have had both leisure and good masters." He is allowed to have
been a remarkably pleasant man; and it was said of him, that
"he gained more hearts than souls."-E.
(792) He was not succeeded by Dr. Wilcox, but by Dr. Herring,
who was elevated, in 1747, to the archbishopric of Canterbury,
and died in 1757.-E.
(793) a Signor Capponi, brother of Madame Grifoni.
315 Letter 102
To Sir Horace Mann.
Monday, April 4, 1743.
I had my pen in my hand all last Thursday morning to write to
you, but my pen had nothing to say. I would make it do
something to-day though what will come of it, I don't
They say, the King does not go abroad: we know nothing about
our army. I suppose it is gone to blockade Egra, and to not
take Prague, as it has been the fashion for every body to send
their army to do these three years. The officers in
parliament are not gone yet. We have nothing to do, but I
believe the ministry have something for us to do, for we are
continually adjourned, but not prorogued. They talk of
marrying Princess Caroline and Louisa to the future Kings of
Sweden and Denmark; but if the latter(794) is King of both, I
don't apprehend that he is to marry both the Princesses in his
Herring, Of Bangor, the youngest bishop, is named to the see
of York. it looks as if the bench thought the church going out
of fashion; for two or three(795) of them have refused this
Next Thursday we are to be entertained with a pompous parade
for the burial of old Princess Buckingham. They have invited
ten peeresses to walk: all somehow or other dashed with
blood-royal, and rather than not have King James's daughter
attended by princesses, they have fished out two or three
countesses descended from his competitor Monmouth.
There, I am at the end of my tell! If I write on, it must be
to ask questions. I Would ask why Mr. Chute has left me off
but when he sees what a frippery correspondent I am, he will
scarce be in haste to renew with me again. I really don't
know why I am so dry; mine used to be the pen of a ready
writer, but whist seems to have stretched its leaden wand over
me too, who have nothing to do with it. I am trying to set up
the noble game of bilboquet against it, and composing a
grammar in opposition to Mr. Hoyle's. You will some day or
other see an advertisement in the papers, to tell you where it
may be bought, and that ladies may be waited upon by the
author at their houses, to receive any further directions. I
am 'really ashamed to send this scantling of paper by the
post, over so many seas and mountains: it seems as impertinent
as the commission which Prior gave to the winds,
"Lybs must fly south, and Eurus east,
For jewels for her neck and breast."
Indeed, one would take you for my Chloe, when one looks on
this modicum of gilt paper, which resembles a billet-doux more
than a letter to a minister. You must take it as the widow's
mite, and since the death of my spouse, poor Mr. News, I
cannot afford such large doles as formerly. Adieu! my dear
child, I am yours ever, from a quire of the largest foolscap
to a vessel of the smallest gilt.
(794) There was a party at this time in Sweden, who tried to
choose the Prince Royal of Denmark for successor to King
Frederick of sweden.
(795) Dr. Wilcox, Bishop of Rochester, and Dr. Sherlock,
Bishop of Salisbury: the latter afterwards accepted the See of
317 Letter 103
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, April 14, 1743.
This has been a noble week; I have received three letters at
once from you. I am ashamed when I reflect on the poverty of
my own! but what can one do? I don't sell you my news, and
therefore should not be excusable to invent. I wish we don't
grow to have more news! Our politics, which have not always
been the most in earnest, now begin to take a very serious
turn. Our army is wading over the Rhine, up to their middles
in snow. I hope they will be thawed before their return: but
they have gone through excessive hardships. The King sends
six thousand more of his Hanoverians at his own expense: this
will be popular-and the six thousand Hessians march too. All
this will compose an army considerable enough to be a great
loss if they miscarry. The King certainly goes abroad in less
than a fortnight. He takes the Duke with him to Hanover who
from thence goes directly to the army. The Court will not be
great: the King takes only Lord Carteret, the Duke of
Richmond, master of the horse, and Lord Holderness and Lord
Harcourt,(796) for the bedchamber. The Duchesses of Richmond
and Marlborough,(797) and plump Carteret,(798) go to the
His Royal Highness is not Regent: there are to be fourteen.
The Earl of Bath and Mr. Pelham, neither of them in
regency-posts, are to be of the number.
I have read your letters about Mystery to Sir Robert. He
denies absolutely having ever had transactions with King
Theodore, and is amazed Lord Carteret can; which he can't help
thinking but he must, by the intelligence about Lady W. Now I
can conceive all that affected friendship for Richcourt! She
must have meant to return to England by Richcourt's interest
with Touissant(799) and then where was her friendship? You are
quite in the right not to have engaged with King Theodore:
your character is not-Furibondo. Sir R. entirely disapproves
all Mysterious dealings; he thinks Furibondo most bad and most
improper, and always did. You mistook me about Lady W.'s
Lord-I meant Quarendon, who is now Earl of Litchfield, by his
father's death, which I mentioned. I think her lucky in
Sturges's death, and him lucky in dying. He had outlived
resentment; I think had almost lived to be pitied.
I forgot to thank you about the model, which I should have
been sorry to have missed. I long for all the things, and my
Lord more. so. Am I not to have a bill of lading, or how!
I never say any thing of the Pomfrets, because in the great
city of London the Countess's follies do not make the same
figure as they did in little Florence. Besides, there are
such numbers here who have such equal pretensions to be
absurd, that one is scarce aware of particular ridicules.
I really don't know whether Vanneschi be dead; he married some
low English woman, who is kept by Amorevoli; so the Abbate
turned the opera every way to his profit. As to
Bonducci,(200) I don't think I could serve him; for I have no
interest with the Lords Middlesex and Holderness, the two sole
managers. Nor if I had, would I employ it, 'to bring over
more ruin to the operas. Gentlemen directors, with favourite
abb`es and favourite mistresses, have almost overturned the
thing in England. You will plead my want of interest to Mr.
Smith(801) too: besides, we had Bufos here once, and from not
understanding the language, people thought it a dull kind of
dumb-show. We are next Tuesday to have the Miserere of Rome.
It must be curious! the finest piece of vocal music in the
world, to be performed by three good voices, and forty bad
ones, from Oxford, Canterbury, and the farces! There is a new
subscription formed for an opera next year, to be carried on
by the Dilettanti, a club, for which the nominal qualification
is having been in Italy, and the real one, being drunk: the
two chiefs are Lord Middlesex and Sir Francis Dashwood, who
were seldom sober the whole time they were in Italy.
The parliament rises next week: every body is going out of
town. My Lord goes the first week in May; but I shall
reprieve myself till towards August. Dull as London is in
summer, there is always more company in it than in any one
place in the country. I hate the country: I am past the
shepherdly age of groves and streams, and am not arrived at
that of hating every thing but what I do myself, as building
and planting. Adieu!
(796) Simon, second Viscount Harcourt, created an earl in
1749; in 1768 appointed ambassador at Paris, and in 1769 Lord
Lieutenant of Ireland. He was accidentally drowned in a well
in his park at Nuncham, in 1777; occasioned, it is believed,
by overreaching himself, in order to save the life of a
(797) Elizabeth Trevor, daughter of Thomas Lord Trevor, wife
of Charles Spencer, Duke of Marlborough. She died in 1761.-E.
(798) Frances, only daughter of Sir Robert Worseley, first
wife of Lord Carteret.
(799) First minister of the Great Duke.
(800) Bonducci was a Florentine abb`e, who translated some of
Pope's works into Italian.
(801) The English Consul at Venice.
318 Letter 104
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, April 25, 1743.
Nay, but it is serious! the King is gone, and the Duke with
him. The' latter actually to the army. They must sow
laurels, if they design to reap any; for there are no
conquests forward enough for them to come just in time and
finish. The French have relieved Egra and cut to pieces two
of the best Austrian regiments, the cuirassiers. This is
ugly! We are sure, you know, of beating the French afterwards
in France and Flanders; but I don't hear that the heralds have
produced any precedents for our conquering them on the other
side the Rhine.(802) We at home may be excused from trembling
at the arrival of every post; I am sure I shall. If I were a
woman, should support my fears with more dignity; for if one
did lose a husband or a lover, there are those becoming
comforts, weeds and cypresses, jointures and weeping cupids;
but I have only a friend or two to lose, and there are no
ornamental substitutes settled, to be one's proxy for that
sort of grief. One has not the satisfaction of fixing a day
for receiving visits of consolation from a thousand people
whom one don't love, because one has lost the only person one
did love. This is a new situation, and I don't like it.
You will see the Regency in the newspapers. I think the
Prince might have been of it when my Lord Gower is. I don't
think the latter more Jacobite than his Royal Highness.
The Prince is to come to town every Sunday fortnight to hold
drawing-rooms; the Princesses stay all the summer at St.
James's-would I did! but I go in three weeks to Norfolk; the
only place that could make me wish to live at St. James's. My
Lord has pressed me so much, that I could not with decency
refuse: he is going to furnish and hang his picture-gallery,
and wants me. I can't help wishing that I had never known a
Guido from a Teniers: but who could ever suspect any connexion
between painting and the wilds of Norfolk.
Princess Louisa's contract with the Prince of Denmark was
signed the morning before the King Went; but I don't hear when
she goes. Poor Caroline misses her man of Lubeck,(803) by his
missing the crown of Sweden.
I must tell you an odd thing that happened yesterday at
Leicester House. The Prince's children were in the circle:
Lady Augusta(804) heard somebody call Sir Robert Rich by his
name. She concluded there was but one Sir Robert in the
world, and taking him for Lord Orford, the child went staring
up to him, and said, "Pray, where is your blue string! and
pray what has become of your fat belly?" Did one ever hear of
a more royal education, than to have rung this mob cant in the
child's ears till it had made this impression on her!
Lord Stafford is come over to marry Miss Cantillon, a vast
fortune, of his own religion. She is daughter of the
Cantillon who was robbed and murdered, and had his house
burned by his cook(805) a few years ago. She is as ugly as
he; but when she comes to Paris, and wears a good deal of
rouge, and a separate apartment, who knows but she may be a
beauty! There is no telling what a woman is, while she is as
she is. There is a great fracas in Ireland in a noble family
or two, heightened by a pretty strong circumstance of Iricism.
A Lord Belfield(806) married a very handsome daughter of a
Lord Molesworth.(807) A certain Arthur Rochfort, who happened
to be acquainted in the family, by being Lord Belfield's own
brother, looked on this woman, and saw that she was fair.
These ingenious people, that their history might not be
discovered, corresponded under feigned names-And what names do
you think they chose?-Silvia and Philander! Only the very same
that Lord Grey(808) and his sister-in-law took upon a parallel
occasion, and which arc printed in their letters!
Patapan sits to Wootton to-morrow for his picture. He is to
have a triumphal arch at a distance, to signify his Roman
birth, and his having barked at thousands of Frenchmen in the
very heart of Paris. If you can think of a good Italian motto
applicable to any part of his history send it to me. If not,
he shall have this antique one-for I reckon him a senator of
Rome, while Rome survived,-"O, et Presidium et dulce decus
meum!" He is writing an ode on the future campaign of this
summer; it is dated from his villa, where he never was, and
being truly in the classic style, "While you, great Sir," etc.
(802) Walpole seems to have forgotten the battle of
(803) Adolphus Frederick of Holstein, Bishop of Lubeck, was
elected successor, and did succeed to the crown of Sweden. He
married the Princess Louisa Ulrica of Prussia.
(804) Afterwards Duchess of Brunswick.-D.
(805) Cantillon was a Paris wine-merchant and banker, who had
been engaged with Law in the Mississippi scheme. He
afterwards brought his riches to England and settled in this
country. In May 1734, some of his servants, headed by the
cook, conspired to murder him, knowing that he kept large sums
of money in his house. They killed him, and then set fire to
the house; but the fire was extinguished, and the body, with
the wounds upon it, found. The cook fled beyond sea; but in
December, three of his associates were tried at the Old Bailey
for the murder, and acquitted.-E.
(806) Robert Rochfort, created Lord Belfield in Ireland in
1737, Viscount Belfield in 1751, and Earl of Belvedere in
1756. His second wife, whom be married in 1736, was the Hon.
Mary Molesworth. D.
(807) Richard, third Viscount Molesworth, in Ireland. He had
been aide-de-camp to the great Duke of Marlborough, and in
that capacity distinguished himself greatly at the battle of
Ramilies. He became afterwards master-general of the ordnance
in Ireland, and commander of the forces in that kingdom, and a
field-marshal. He died in 1758.-D.
(808) Fordo, the infamous Lord Grey of werke, and his
sister-in-law, Lady Henrietta Berkeley, whose "Love Letters,"
under these romantic names, were published in three small
volumes. They are supposed to have been compiled by Mrs.
Behn.-D. [Lord Grey commanded the horse at Sedgmoor, and is
accused of flying at the first charge, and preserving his life
by giving evidence against his associates. He married Lady
Mary, daughter of George, first Earl of Berkeley, and died in
320 Letter 105
To Sir Horace Mann.
May 4, 1743.
The King was detained four or five days at Sheerness but
yesterday we heard that he was got to Helvoetsluys. They
talk' of an interview between him and his nephew of Prussia-I
never knew any advantage result from such conferences. We
expect to hear of the French attacking our army, though there
are accounts of their retiring, which would necessarily
produce a peace-I hope so! I don't like to be at the eve, even
of an Agincourt; that, you know, every Englishman is bound in
faith to expect: besides, they say my Lord Stair has in his
pocket, from the records of the Tower, the original patent,
empowering us always to conquer. I am told that Marshal
Noailles is as mad as Marshal Stair. Heavens! twice fifty
thousand men trusted to two mad captains, without one Dr.
I am sorry I could give you so little information about King
Theodore; but my lord knew nothing of him, and as little of
any connexion between Lord Carteret and him. I am sorry you
have him on your
hands. He quite mistakes his
province: an adventurer should come hither;(810) this is the
soil for mobs and patriots it is the country of
the world to make one's fortune - with parts never so scanty,
one's dulness is not discovered, nor one's dishonesty, till
one obtains the post one wanted-and then, if they do not come
to light-why, one slinks into one's green velvet bag,(811) and
lies so snug! I don't approve of your hinting at the
falsehoods(812) of Stosch's intelligence; nobody
regards it but the King , it pleases
I was not in the House at Vernon's frantic speech;(813) but I
know he made it, and have heard him pronounce several such:
but he has worn out even laughter, and did not make impression
enough on me to remember till the next post that he had
I gave your brother the translated paper; he will take care of
it. Ceretesi is gone to Flanders with Lord Holderness. Poor
he was reduced, before he went, to borrow five guineas of Sir
Francis Dashwood. How will he ever scramble back to Florence?
We are likely at last to have no opera next year: Handel has
had a palsy, and can't compose; and the Duke of Dorset has set
himself strenuously to oppose it, as Lord Middlesex is the
impresario, and must ruin the house of Sackville by a course
of these follies. Besides what he will lose this year, he has
not paid his share to the losses of the last; and yet is
singly undertaking another for next season, with
the almost certainty of losing
between four or five thousand pounds, to which the
deficiencies of the opera generally amount now. The
Duke of Dorset has desired the King
not to subscribe; but Lord Middlesex is so obstinate, that
this will probably only make him lose a
thousand pounds more.
The Freemasons are in so low repute now in England, that one
has scarce heard the proceedings at Vienna against them
mentioned. I believe nothing but a persecution could bring
them into vogue again here. You know, as great as our follies
are, we even grow tired of them, and are always changing.
(809) Physician of Bedlam-
"Those walls where Folly holds her throne,
And laughs to think Monroe would take her down."-E.
(810) He afterwards came to England, where he suffered much
from poverty and destitution, and was finally arrested by his
creditors and confined in the King,'s Bench prison. He was
released from thence under the Insolvent Act, having
registered the kingdom of Corsica for the use of his
creditors. Shortly after this event he died, December 11,
1756, and was buried in the churchyard of St. Anne's, Soho,
where Horace Walpole erected a marble slab to his memory. He
was an adventurer, whose name was Theodore Anthony, Baron
Newhoff, and was born at Metz, in 1686. Walpole, who had seen
him, describes him as "a comely, middle-sized man, very
reserved, and affecting much dignity,"-D.
(811) The secretaries of state and lord treasurer carry their
papers in a green velvet bag.
(812) Stosch used to pretend to send over an exact journal of
the life of the Pretender and his sons, though he had been
sent out of Rome at the Pretender's request, and must have
had very bad, or no intelligence, of
what passed in that family.
(813) The admiral had recently said, in the House of Commons,
that "there was not, on this side Hell, a nation so burthened
with taxes as England."-E.
322 Letter 106
To Sir Horace Mann.
Arlington Street, May 12, 1743.
It is a fortnight since I got any of your letters, but I will
expect two at once. I don't tell you by way of news, because
you will have had expresses, but I must talk of the great
Austrian victory!(814) We have not heard the exact
particulars yet, nor whether it was Kevenhuller or lobkowitz
who beat the Bavarians; but their general, Minucci, is
prisoner. At first, they said Seckendorffe was too; I am glad
he is not: poor man, he has suffered enough by the house of
Austria! But my joy is beyond the common, for I flatter myself
this victory will save us one: we talk of nothing, but its
producing a peace, and then one's friends will return.
The Duchess of Kendal(815) is dead-eighty-five years old: she
was a year older than her late King. Her riches were immense;
but I believe my Lord Chesterfield will get nothing by her
death-but his wife: (816) she lived in the house with the
duchess, where he had played away all his credit.
Hough,(817) the good old Bishop of Worcester, is dead too. I
have been looking at the "Fathers in God" that have been
flocking over the way this Morning to Mr. Pelham, who is just
come to his new house. This is absolutely the ministerial
street Carteret has a house here too; and Lord Bath seems to
have lost his chance by quitting this street. Old Marlborough
has made a good story of the latter; she says, that when he
found he could not get the privy seal, he begged that at least
they would offer it to him, and upon his honour he would not
accept it, but would plead his vow of never taking a place; in
which she says they humoured him. The truth is, Lord Carteret
did hint an offer to him, upon which he went with a nolo
episcopari to the King-he bounced, and said, "Why I never
offered it to you:" upon which he recommended my Lord
Carlisle, with equal Success.
Just before the King went, he asked my Lord Carteret, " Well,
when am I to get rid of those fellows in the Treasury?" They
are on so low a foot, that somebody said Sandys had hired a
stand of hackney-coaches, to look like a levee.
Lord Conway has begged me to send you a commission, which you
will oblige me much by executing. It is to send him three
Pistoia barrels for guns: two of them, of two feet and a half
in the barrel in length; the smallest of the inclosed buttons
to be the size of the bore, hole, or calibre, of the two guns.
The third barrel to be three feet and an inch in length; the
largest of these buttons to be the bore of it; these feet are
English measure. You will be so good to let me know the price
There has happened a comical circumstance at Leicester House:
one of the Prince's coachmen, who used to drive the Maids of
Honour, was so sick of them, that he has left his son three
hundred pounds, upon condition that he never carries a Maid of
Our journey to Houghton is fixed to Saturday se'nnight; 'tis
unpleasant, but I flatter myself that I shall get away in the
beginning of August. Direct your letters as you have done all
this winter; your brother will take care to send them to me.
(814) There was no great victory this year till the battle of
Dettingen, which took place in June; but the Austrians
obtained many advantages during the spring over the Bavarians
and the French, and obliged the latter to recross the
(815) Erangard Melusina Schulembergh, the mistress of George
I. George I. created her Duchess of Munster and Marchioness
of Dungannon in Ireland in 1719; Ind Duchess of Kendal,
Countess of Feversham, and Baroness of Glastonbury. in
England, in 1723. All these honours were for life only. He
also persuaded the Emperor to create her Princess of eberstein
in the Roman empire in 1723.-D.
(816) Melusina Schulembergh, Countess of Walsingham, niece of
the Duchess of Kendal, and her heiress.
(817) Hough Was a man of piety, ability, and integrity, and
had distinguished himself early in his life by his resistance
to the arbitrary proceedings of James II. against Magdalen
College, Oxford, of which he was the president. Pope, with
much justice, speaks of "Hough's unsullied mitre."-D. [He was
nominated Bishop of Oxford in 1690; and translated to
Worcester in 1717.]
323 Letter 107
To Sir Horace Mann.
May 19, 1743.
I am just come tired from a family dinner at the Master of the
Rolls;(818) but I have received two letters from you since my
last, and will write to you, though my head aches with maiden
sisters' healths, forms, and Devonshire and Norfolk. With
yours I received one from Mr. Chute, for which I thank him a
thousand times, and will answer as soon as I get to Houghton.
Monday is fixed peremptorily, though we have had no rain this
month; but we travel by the day of the week, not by the day of
We are in more confusion than we care to own. There lately
came up a highland regiment from Scotland, to be sent abroad.
One heard of nothing but their good discipline and quiet
disposition. When the day came for their going to the water
side, an hundred and nine of them mutinied, and marched away
in a body. They did not care to go where it would not be
equivocal for what King they fought. Three companies of
dragoons are sent after them. If you happen to hear of any
rising don't be surprised-I shall not, I assure you. Sir
Robert Monroe, their lieutenant-colonel, before their leaving
Scotland, asked some of the ministry, " "But suppose there
should be any rebellion in Scotland, what should we do for
these eight hundred men?" It was answered, "Why, there would
be eight hundred fewer rebels there."
"Utor permisso, caudeque pilos ut equinae
Paulatim cello; demo unum, demo etiam unum,
My dear child, I am surprised to hear you enter so seriously
into earnest ideas of my lord's passing into Italy! Could you
think (however he, you, or I might wish it) that there could
be any probability of it? Can you think his age could endure
it, or him so indifferent, so totally disministered, as to
leave all thoughts of what he has been, and ramble like a boy,
after pictures and statues? Don't expect it.
We had heard of the Duke of Modena's command before I had your
letter. I am glad, for the sake of the duchess, as she is to
return to France. I never saw any body wish anything more!
and indeed, how can one figure any particle of pleasure
happening to the daughter of the Regent,(819) and a favourite
daughter too, full of wit and joy, buried in a dirty, dull
Italian duchy, with an ugly, formal object for a husband, and
two uncouth sister-princesses for eternal companions? I am so
near the eve of going into Norfolk, that I imagine myself
something in her situation, and married to some Hammond or
Hoste (820) who is Duke of Wootton or Darsingham. I remember
in the fairy tales where a yellow dwarf steals a princess, and
shows her his duchy, of which he is very proud: among the
blessings of grandeur, of which he makes her mistress, there
is a most beautiful ass for her palfrey, a blooming meadow of
nettles and thistles to walk in, and a fine troubled ditch to
slake her thirst, after either of the above mentioned
Adieu! My next will be dated from some of the doleful castles
in the principality of your forlorn friend, the duchy of
(818) William Fortescue, master of the rolls, a relation of
Margaret Lady Walpole. ffortescue was made master of the rolls
in 1741, and continued so until his death in 1749. He was the
friend and correspondent of Pope, and assisted the poet in
drawing up the humorous report, "Stradling versus Stiles." He
was a man of great humour, talents, and integrity.]
(819) Mademoiselle de Valois, who had made herself notorious
during the regency of her father, by her intrigue with the
Duke of Richelieu. She consented to marry the Duke of Modena,
in order to obtain the liberty of her lover, who was confined
in the Bastille, for conspiring against the Regent. The Duke
of Richelieu, in return, followed her afterwards secretly to
(820) The Hammonds and Hostes are two Norfolk families, nearly
allied to the Walpoles.
324 letter 108
To Sir Horace Mann.
Houghton, Jan. 4, 1743.
I wrote, this week to Mr. Chute, addressed to you; I could not
afford two letters in one post from the country, and in the
dead of summer. I have received one from you of May 21st,
since I came I must tell you a smart dialogue between your
father and me the morning we left London: he came to wish my
lord a good journey: I found him in the parlour. "Sir," said
he, "I may ask you how my son does; I think you hear from him
frequently: I never do." I replied, "Sir, I write him kind
answers; pray do you do so?" He coloured, and said with a
half mutter, "Perhaps I have lived too long for him!" I
answered shortly, "Perhaps you have." My dear child, I beg
your pardon, but I could not help this. When one loves any
body, one can't help being warm for them at a fair
opportunity. Bland and Mr. Legge were present-your father
could have stabbed me. I told your brother Gal, who was glad.
We are as private here as if we were in devotion-. there is
nobody with us now but Lord Edgecumbe and his son. The Duke
of Grafton and Mr. Pelham come next week, and I hope Lord
Lincoln with them. Poor Lady Sophia is at the gasp of her
hopes; all is concluded for his match with Miss Pelham. It is
not to be till the winter. He is to have all Mr. Pelham and
the Duke of Newcastle can give or settle; unless Lady
Catherine should produce a son, or the duchess should die, and
the duke marry again.
Earl Poulett(821) is dead, and makes vacant another riband.
I imagine Lord Carteret will have one; Lord Bath will ask it.
I think they should give Prince Charles(822) one of the two,
for all the trouble he saves us. The papers talk of nothing
but a suspension of arms: it seems toward, for at least we
hear of no battle, though there are so many armies looking at
Old Sir Charles Wager(823) is dead at last, and has left the
fairest character. I can't help having a little private
comfort, to think that Goldsworthy-but there is no danger.
Madox of St. Asaph has wriggled himself into the see of
Worcester. He makes haste; I remember him only domestic
chaplain to the late Bishop of Chichester.(824) Durham is not
dead, as I believe I told you from a false report.
You tell me of dining with Madame de Modene,(824) but you
don't tell me of being charmed with her. I like her
excessively-I don't mean her person, for she is as plump as
the late Queen; but, sure her face is fine; her eyes vastly
fine! and then she is as agreeable as one should expect the
Regent's daughter to be. The Princess and she must have been
an admirable contrast; one has all the good breeding of a
French court, and the other all the ease of it. I have almost
a mind to go to Paris to see her. She was so excessively
civil to me. You don't tell me if the Pucci goes into France
I like the Genoese selling Corsica! I think we should follow
their example and sell France; we have about as good a title,
and very near as much possession. At how much may they value
Corsica? at the rate of islands it can't go for much.
Charles the Second sold Great Britain and Ireland to Louis
XIV. for 300,000 pounds. a-year, and that was reckoned
extravagantly dear. Lord Bolingbroke took a single hundred
thousand for them, when they were in much better repair.
We hear to-day that the King goes to the army on the 15th N.
S. that is, to-day; but I don't tell it you for certain.
There has been much said against his commanding it, as it is
only an army of succour, and not acting as principal in the
cause. In my opinion, his commanding will depend upon the
more or less probability of its acting at all. Adieu!
(821) John, first Earl of Poulett, knight of the garter. He
died, aged upwards of eighty, on the 28th May 1743.-D.
(822) Prince Charles of Lorraine, the queen of Hungary's
general against the French.-D.
(823) This distinguished admiral died on the 24th of May, in
his seventy-seventh year; at which time he was member for West
looe. A splendid monument was erected to his memory in
(824) Dr. Waddington.
(825) It was not the Duchess of Modena, but the Duke's second
sister, who went to Florence.
326 letter 109
To Sir Horace Mann.
Houghton, June 10, 1743.
You must not expect me to write you a very composed, careless
letter; my spirits are all in agitation! I am at the eve of a
post that may bring me the most dreadful news! we expect
to-morrow the news of a decisive battle. Oh! if you have any
friend there, think what apprehensions I (826) must have of
such a post! By yesterday's letters, our army was within
eight miles of the French, who have had repeated orders to
attack them. Lord Stair and Marshal Noailles both think
themselves superior, and have pressed for leave to fight. The
latter call themselves fourscore thousand; ours sixty. Mr.
Pelham and Lord Lincoln come to Houghton to-morrow, so we are
sure of hearing as soon as possible, if any thing has
happened. By this time the King must be with them.- My fears
for one or two friends have spoiled me for any English hopes-I
cannot dwindle away the French army-every man in it appears to
my imagination as big as the sons of Anak! I am conjuring up
the ghosts of all who have perished by French ambition, and am
dealing out commissions to these spectres,
"-To sit heavy on their souls to-morrow!"
Alas! perhaps that glorious to-morrow was a dismal yesterday
at least, perhaps it was to me! The genius of England might
be a mere mercenary man of the world, and employed all his
attention to turn aside cannonballs from my Lord Stair, to
give new edge to his new Marlborough's sword: was plotting
glory for my Lord Carteret, or was thinking of furnishing his
own apartment in Westminster Hall with a new set of
trophies-who would then take care of Mr. Conway? You, who are
a minister, will see all this in still another light, will
fear our defeat, and will foresee the train of
consequences.-Why, they may be wondrous ugly; but till I know
what I have to think about my own friends, I cannot be wise in
I shall now only answer your letter; for till I have read
to-morrow's post, I have no thoughts but of a battle.
I am angry at your thinking that I can dislike to receive two
or three of your letters at once. Do you take me for a child,
and imagine, that though I may like one plum-tart, two may
make me sick? I now get them regularly; so I do but receive
them, I am easy.
You are mistaken about the gallery; so far from unfurnishing
any part of the house, there are several pictures undisposed
of, besides numbers at Lord Walpole's, at the Exchequer, at
Chelsea, and at New Park. Lord Walpole has taken a dozen to
Stanno, a small house, about four miles from hence, where he
lives with my lady Walpole's vicegerent.(827) You may imagine
that her deputies are no fitter than she is to come where
there is In a modest, unmarried girl.(828)
I will write to London for the life of Theodore, though you
may depend upon its being a Grub Street piece, without one
true fact. Don't let it prevent your undertaking his Memoirs.
Yet I should say Mrs. Heywood,(829) or Mrs. Behn(830) were
fitter to write his history.
How slight you talk of Prince Charles's victory at Brunau! We
thought it of vast consequence; so it was. He took three
posts afterwards, and has since beaten the Prince of Conti,
and killed two thousand men. Prince Charles civilly returned
him his baggage. The French in Bavaria are quite
dispirited-poor wretches! how one hates to wish so ill as one
does to fourscore thousand men!
There is yet no news of the Pembroke. The Dominichin has a
post of honour reserved in the gallery. My Lord says, as to
that Dalton's Raphael, he can say nothing without some
particular description of the picture and the size, and some
hint at the price, which you have promised to get. I leave
the residue of my paper for tomorrow: I tremble, lest I should
be forced to finish it abruptly! I forgot to tell you that I
left a particular commission with my brother Ned, who is at
Chelsea, to get some tea-seed from the physic-garden; and he
promised me to go to Lord Islay, to know what cobolt and
zingho(831) are, and where they are to be got.
The post is come: no battle! Just as they were marching
against the French, they received orders from Hanover not to
engage, for the Queen's generals thought they were inferior,
and were positive against fighting. Lord Stair, with only the
English, proceeded, and drew out in order; but though the
French were then so vastly superior, they did not attack him.
The King is now at the army, and, they say, will endeavour to
make the Austrians fight. It wilt make great confusion here
if they do not. The French are evacuating Bavaria as fast as
possible, and seem to intend to join all their force together.
I shall still dread all the events of this campaign. Adieu!
(826) Mr. Conway the most intimate friend of Horace Walpole,
was now serving in Lord Stair's army.
(827) Miss Norsa; she was a Jewess, and had been a singer.
(828) Lady Maria Walpole.
(829) Eliza Heywood, a voluminous writer of indifferent
novels; of which the best known is one called "Betsy
Thoughtless." She was also authoress of a work entitled "The
Female Spectator." - Mrs. Heywood was born in 1693, and died
(830) Mrs. Afra Behn, a woman whose character and writings
were equally incorrect. Of her plays, which were seventeen in
number, Pope says,
"The stage how loosely does Astrea tread,
Who fairly puts all characters to bed."
Her novels and other productions were also marked with similar
characteristics. She died in 1689-D.
(831) Cobalt and Zinc, two metallic substances; the former
composed of silver, copper, and arsenic, the latter of tin and
328 letter 110
To Sir Horace Mann.
Houghton, June 20, 1743.
I have painted the Raphael to my lord almost as fine as
Raphael himself could; but he will not think of it-. he will
not give a thousand guineas for what he never saw. I wish I
could persuade him. For the other hands, he has already fine
ones of every one of them. There are yet no news of the
Pembroke: we row impatient.
I have made a short tour to Euston this week with the Duke of
Grafton, who came over from thence with Lord Lincoln and Mr.
Pelham. Lord Lovel and Mr. Coke carried me and brought me
back. It is one of the most admired seats in England-in my
opinion, because Kent has a most absolute disposition of it.
Kent is now so fashionable, that, like Addison's Liberty, he
"Can make bleak rocks and barren mountains smile."
I believe the duke wishes he could make them green too. The
house is large and bad; it was built by Lord Arlington, and
stands, as all old houses do for convenience of water and
shelter, in a hole; so it neither sees, nor is seen: he has no
money to build another. The park is fine, the old woods
excessively so: they are much grander than Mr. Kent's passion
clumps-that is, sticking a dozen trees here and there, till a
lawn looks like the ten of spades. Clumps have their beauty;
but in a great extent of country, how trifling to scatter
arbours, where you should spread forests! He is so unhappy in
his heir apparent,(832) that he checks his hand in almost
every thing he undertakes. Last week he heard a new complaint
of his barbarity. A tenant of Lord Euston, in
Northamptonshire, brought him his rent: the Lord said it
wanted three and sixpence: the tenant begged he would examine
the account, that it would prove exact-however, to content
him, he would willingly pay him the three and sixpence. Lord
E. flew into
a rage, and vowed he would write
to the Duke to have him turned out of a little place he has in
the post-office of thirty pounds a-year. The poor man, who
has six children, and knew nothing of my lord's
being upon no terms of power with
his father, went home and shot himself!
I know no syllable of news '. but that my Lady
Carteret is dead at Hanover, and Lord Wilmington dying. So
there will be to let a first
minister's ladyship and a first
lordship of the Treasury. We have nothing from the army,
though the King has now been there some time. As new a thing
as it is, we don't talk much about it.
Adieu! the family are gone a fishing: I thought I stayed at
home to write to you, but I have so little to say that I don't
believe you will think so.
(832) George, Earl of Euston, who died in the lifetime of his
father. He seems to have been a man of the most odious
character. He has been already mentioned in the course
of these letters, upon the
occasion of his marriage with the ill-fated lady Dorothy
Boyle, who died from his ill-treatment of her. Upon a picture
of lady Dorothy at the Duke of Devonshire's at Chiswick, is
the following touching inscription, written by her mother,
which commemorates her virtues and her fate:-
"lady Dorothy Boyle,
Born May the 14th, 1724.
She was the comfort and joy of her parents, the delight of all
who knew her angelick of temper, and the admiration of all who
saw her beauty. She was marry'd October the 10th, 1741, and
delivered (by death) from misery, May the 2nd, 1742. This
picture was drawn seven weeks after her death (from memory) by
her most affectionate mother, Dorothy Burlington."-D.
329 letter 111
To Sir Horace Mann.
Friday noon, July 29, 1743.
I don't know what I write-I am all a flurry of thoughts-a
battle-a victory! I dare not yet be glad-I know no
particulars of my friends. This instant my lord has had a
messenger from the Duke of Newcastle, who has sent him a copy
of Lord Carteret's letter from the field of battle. The King
was in all the heat of the fire, and safe--the Duke is wounded
in the calf of the leg, but slightly; Duc d'Aremberg in the
breast; General Clayton and Colonel Piers are the only
officers of note said to be killed-here is all my trust! The
French passed the Mayne that morning with twenty-five thousand
men, and are driven back. We have lost two thousand, and they
four-several of their general officers, and of the Maison du
Roi, are taken prisoners: the battle lasted from ten in the
morning till four. The Hanoverians behaved admirably. The
Imperialists(833) were the aggressors; in short, 'In all
public views, it is all that could be wished-the King in the
action, and his son wounded-the Hanoverians behaving well-the
French beaten: what obloquy will not all this wipe out!
Triumph, and write it to Rome! I don't know what our numbers
were; I believe about thirty thousand, for there were twelve
thousand Hessians and Hanoverians who had not joined them. O!
in my hurry, I had forgot the place-you must talk of the
battle of Dettingen!
After dinner. My child, I am calling together all my
thoughts, and rejoice in this victory as much as I dare; for
in the raptures of' conquest, how dare I think that my Lord
Carteret, or the rest of those who have written, thought just
of whom I thought? The post comes in tomorrow morning, but it
is not sure that we shall learn any particular certainties so
soon as that. Well! how happy it is that the King has had
such an opportunity of distinguishing himself'!(834) what a
figure he will make! They talked of its being below his
dignity to command an auxiliary army: my lord says it will not
be thought below his dignity to have sought dangers These were
the flower of the French troops: I flatter myself they will
tempt no more battles. such, and we might march from one end
of France to the other. So we are in a French war, at least
well begun! My lord has been drinking the healths of Lord
Stair and Lord Carteret: he says, "since it was well done, he
does not care by whom it was done." He thinks differently
from the rest of the world: he thought from the first, that
France never missed such an opportunity as when they undertook
the German war, instead of joining with Spain against us. If
I hear any more tomorrow before the post goes out, I will let
you know. Tell me if this is the first you hear of the
victory: I would fain be the first to give you so much
Well, my dear child, all is safe! I have not so much as an
acquaintance hurt. The more we hear the greater it turns out.
Lord Cholmondeley writes my lord from London that we gained
the victory with only fifteen regiments, not eleven thousand
men, and SO not half in number to the French. I fancy their
soldiery behaved ill, by the Gallantry of their officers; for
Ranby, the King'S private surgeon, writes that he alone has
150 officers of distinction desperately wounded under his
care. Marquis Fenelon's son is among the prisoners, and says
Marshal Noailles is dangerously wounded; so is Duc d'Aremberg.
Honeywood's regiment sustained the attack, and are almost all
killed: his natural son has five wounds, and cannot live. The
horse were pursuing when the letters came away, so there is no
certain account of the slaughter. Lord Albemarle had his
horse shot under him. In short, the victory is complete.
There is no describing what one hears of the spirits and
bravery of our men. One of them dressed himself up in the
belts of three officers, and swore he would wear them as long
as he lived. Another ran up to Lord Carteret, who was in a
coach near the action the whole time, and said, "Here, my
lord, do hold this watch for me; I have just killed a French
officer and taken it, and I will go take another."
Adieu! my dear Sir: May the rest of the war be as glorious as
(833) The Bavarians.
(834) Frederick the Great, in his "Histoire de mon Temps,"
gives the Following account of George the Second at the battle
of Dettingen. "The King was on horseback, and rode forward to
reconnoitre the enemy: his horse, frightened at the
cannonading, ran away with his Majesty, and nearly carried him
into the midst of the French lines: fortunately, one of his
attendants succeeded in stopping him. George then abandoned
his horse, and fought on foot, at the head of his Hanoverian
battalions. With his sword drawn, and his body placed in the
attitude of a fencing-master, who is about to make a lunge in
carte, he continued to expose himself, without Circling, to
the enemy's fire."-D.
To Mr. Chute.
My dear Sir, I wish you joy, and you wish me joy, and Mr.
Whithed, and Mr. Mann, and Mrs. Bosville, etc. Don't get
drunk and get the gout. I expect to be drunk with hogsheads
of the Mayne-water, and with odes to his Majesty and the Duke,
and Te Deums. Patapan begs you will get him a dispensation
from Rome to go and hear the thanksgiving at St. Paul's. We
are all mad-drums, trumpets, bumpers, bonfires! The mob are
Back to Full Books