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Allerthorpe Sept: y=e= 10=th=
[\IN PENCIL 1742\]
   Good news coming by so welcome a hand gave me me a joy I can no more express than I can the thousand obligations I have to your Grace, & the gratitude I feel for them; your letter gave me the first account of my Brothers being arrived in good health, the kind manner in which you enquired after him for me gives me infinite pleasure, but I will say no more of this as I know you love to oblige & hate to be thank'd. I had certainly wrote to your Grace last post but for a mistake in my Arithmetick in computing when you would arrive at Welbeck, where I hope you have the satisfaction of finding Lady Oxford in good health, I imagine her Ladyships Seat is magnificent, the situation fine & every thing about you delightfull, but what will most please you will be Lady Oxfords company: You reproach me with writing short sentences & short letters when my Visitors are gone, alass my Lady Dutchess if any thing could make me fond of silence or concise expression it would be Country visitors, yet [\for all I say this DELETED\] do not imagine I deliver my self over to absent Reverie, for I assure you I am as civil as a Grocers wife the first day her Husband is Mayor of a Corporation, as for Politeness it is that (\je ne scai quoi\) of behaviour composed of numberless nameless mysteries which I do not understand, but for civility it is a wearisome zeal of complaisance that any one with my spirits may fatigue their Neighbours with; I know a
A Person who will [\sweat\] with civility all the Christmas Holidays & would make themselves hoarse with complimenting tho' they & their company were in the whispering Gallery at S=t= Pauls, for [\my INTO me\] indeed I would not put myself into a galloping consumption of complaisance, & for that reason was always reckon'd by them tardy in my civilities: for my part I wish the Thermometer of peoples behaviour would rise no higher than temperate for that excessive heat of complaisance is very overcoming. I do most heartily wish her Lady C- R may not lose that singular Man her Lover, I think the loss would be irreparable, M=r= Tattle all over sweet as she [\describes\] [\TEAR\] [\him,/] if he has wit equal to his judgment must be a very agreable companion, the present possession of a Beau is to one of her impatience much better than a Reversion of an Ape, the shadow of a shadow is no material thing 'tis sure: but what sort of a Man is this? was he bred a tooth scraper or a carver in Ivory, for certainly she must have taken him [\in INTO by\] her teeth? he is not the first Ass that was slain by a jawbone but the jawbone of an Ass has kill'd a Lion so far the weapon & the death is honorable. I am very sorry for what your Grace tells me of the probability of M=rs= Percivals going to Ireland, then poor Donn will go for ever; for her Brother will perswade her to [\stay/] with him, indeed he is that sort of friend to whom one ought to deny nothing, but it is grievous to us to part with her. I wrote her a long
Letter last tuesday which I hope she has received by this time. I shall be extreamly glad to hear your Grace had a pleasant journey to Welbeck, & that the little ones are well after change of air, I dare say they are mighty happy [\in INTO with\] their present situation: I hope you will have time to afford me one line tho' certainly all the Country will be paying their complim=ts= to Lady Oxford, but that won't take up your leisure as much as when you are the Lady of the House, for there it is necessary to be every moment with people, & [\one/] must be sitting in form to receive them half an hour before they arrive.
   I would beg my best respects to Lady Oxford for whom I have so much esteem I dare not trouble her with a longer compliment.
[\DELETED BY ANOTHER HAND M=r= Montagu & my Sister beg their complim=ts= to y=r= Grace [\TEAR\]
Lord Duke, mine too attend his Grace & M=r= Achard.\] I have [\TEAR\] [{quite{] [\quite BY ANOTHER HAND?\] got the better of my cold & am perfectly well, that last Article seems of very little consequence but they must be happy if they are not important who have the honour of being
   Your Graces
    Most Obedient
    And most Faithfull Hum=ble= Ser=t=
[\ADDRESS\] paid 2:=d= / To / Her Grace the Dutchess of Portland / At Welbeck / Near Mansfield / Nottinghamshire / Free / Edw: Montagu