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<Q A 1765 TC EV EMONTAGU>
<X ELIZABETH MONTAGU>
[}ELIZABETH MONTAGU TO ELIZABETH VESEY. 1765 JUL 16. HUNTINGTON LIBRARY}]
Sandleford y=e= 16=th= [\July\] 1765
I had the pleasure of my dear M=rs= Veseys charming letter last post, which would have made me compleatly happy, if my conscience had not reproach'd me that I did not deserve it. In London there is such a noise & hurley burley in the streets one cou'd hardly hear ones conscience if it cried murder, in the quiet of the Country, one starts if it but whispers a transgression; which perhaps is the most philosophical account of the great increase of the Town, & the hundred new streets that are building. but if any one chuses to attribute the new squares & streets rather to our Colonies in Americas I give up my Hypothesis. I cannot imagine why I omitted to write to the most amiable of friends & the most entertaining of correspondents, how could I let that other Country Gentlewoman, (^ (\la mauvaise honte\) ^), persuade me, that one must not write if one could not divert? I had y=e= delightfull letter from Wales, which has put it into my head, & into my heart, that we must travel over that Country together, & I am convinced the ghosts of the drown'd Bards will rise from their watery Bier, & play over the hills & far away,
to [\warble\] their native wood notes wild. I was ashamed, lolling on a bench in my garden, to send you an answer to such a description of your travels. If I would hearken to it the same reason might make me lay down my pen & ink now, because I live in a brick house, go to bed before the pert fairies & the dapper elves begin their sports, while your life passes on the Muses bower. How is [\it/] my dear friend, that in your description of your grotto you have taken the very quintessence of the Penseroso & Allegro? leaving out all that is horrid in melancholly, all that is vulgar in mirth. I suppose Sylphs dip their pen in the rain bow, where the colours are united without being confounded. If I can once obtain a mossy seat in the Bower of Malvina, I believe I shall stay there till the morning star lights me home
[\when/] By dimpled brook, & fountain brim,
The wood nymphs deckt with daisys trim,
Their merry wakes & pastimes keep,
What hath night to do with sleep?
If I had as many eyes as Argus you should not persuade me to close one of them in sleep in [\such\] a scene (^till the babling Eastern scout^) began to discoverd (^our Conceald solemnity^), when vulgar day broke in on our mysteries, I would walk y=e= half mile you mention with great readiness.
I pass'd my time very agreably at Bullstrode. The Duchess has contrived to join magnificence with pleasure, & pomp with ease. The House & Park are greatly embellish'd since I saw them, & are really very fine, but the genuine good nature of the [\mistress\] of the place, gives it a charm beyond what the features of nature in the park, or the ornaments of art in the House can do. It must delight a friend, but it would please even a moral philosopher to see this Lady, with the united advantages of birth, title, & fortune, so entirely void of the pride such things are apt to infuse: it shows that good as her situation is, there is something in her superior to it. Her Menagerie contains many very rare animals, her garden many curious plants, but there is one Creature happy & in his element there, which I never saw in full prosperity any where else, If that is a (^Dependant^) [\Her\] Graces behavior to M=r= Achard is a Speculation for the virtuous, as much as a Phenix would be for y=e= Virtuous, it is indeed unique. It is the more commendable, because the Duchesses parts are so lively, & her powers of conversation so much excell his, that she has all kinds of superiority over him, but uses them all only to make his condition more happy. I found a heartfelt pleasure in this
and therefore placed it highest in my history of Bullstrode, now I will proceed. We used to sit in the morning in an open grove near the House surrounded by gold & silver pheasants, & all the feathery race, in the evening we went about y=e= Park in the Duchess coach, & got out & walk'd where peculiar beauties of prospect or shade invited us. M=rs= Boscawen & her Daughters, Lord Lyttelton & his daughter, composed the party. The young ones went about under the guardianship of M=r= Achard, who attended [\them/] with great good humour. the rest of [\us/] engaged in conversation, & the days [\passed\] away with down upon their feet. as you know the place I have not attempted to describe it. I am sure you admire the park, the round hills would please the sublime & beautyfull Burke. You congratullate me on M=r= Burkes Secretary ship, & indeed I should think it a happiness for the publick if I was not afraid he must follow his chief, who probably will not long keep his Post. I imagine M=r= Burke is singularly qualified for a place of business, The dull always arrogate to themselves the faculty of doing business, & poor things it is pity to mortify them, but I think a genius can generally do all that a Dunce can, and
something more. Witt like a lively school boy sometimes plays truant, & loves a holy day, but when the roguish thing applies he learns his lesson quick, Lord Lyttelton will certainly prefer the rural pleasures of Hagley to being in office in this unsettled state of things. I hear some of our young Statesmen are already weary of their employments, they do not find Governance so pretty a play thing as they imagined. I hope they will be wiser than boys usually are; that they will lay down their play thing before they have broken it to peices. The Duke of Newcastle being in the vigour of his age, & meridian of his parts, is extreamly happy. These are odd times: I have seen Grandams & their grand children at quadrille at the same table; & now Grandsires & their Grandsons sit at the same Council table. Happy Country in which no man is too old or too young, too unacquainted with affairs, or too much hackeny'd in wickedness, not to be fit for the highest trusts in the state! M=r= Pitt is at S=r= William [\Pensents\] Seat. He & his family travell'd with 2 coaches & six, & four post chaises & four, & forty attendants
as I am inform'd. I think this is not travelling so much like a Patriot as a Patriarch. Lord Lyttelton is at Hagley, where he expects (^Chiefs out of War^) & (^Statesmen out of place^). All people are sorry for the K- who made M=r= Pitt the fairest offers, & such as he would have accepted, but L=d= Temple would not come in, & M=r= Pitt would not come in without him. There is no board of trade at all sitting. I believe the Admiralty is not fill'd up. You will see a great many strange stories concerning the french at Newfoundland in the papers, but there is little foundation [\for them/] Capt Paliser sank six fishing boats, which in Change Alley were metamorphosed onto as many ships of the line, but a young man who came from Newfoundland in the last ship, call_d here last week, & assured me, these reports were raised by stock jobbers.
I have sent y=r= letter to our friend at Dent. She is still much teized with pains in her head [\BLOT: 2 WORDS UNCLEAR\] [\Virtue & wealth what are but a name!/] I am afraid after ye easy & unembarass_d countenance of the Duchess of B-, & the robust address of the Countess of N-, Lady Hertfords blushing timid (\accueil\) will not please. After these what can the Irish think of a Lady who blushes & whispers? I have not heard yet from the Son of
Woody Morven. He was detain'd there longer than he intended. He will be a diamond of the first water, when Italian suns have thrown their rays into his solid & clear genius. I will communicate some of his letters if he writes any. I am afraid there is no part of the habitable globe in which young men admire old Women, if there be, it must be in the half years twilight of Greenland, & even there perhaps there is some heresy in the good doctrine of the equality of [\Joan\] & my Lady.
I must tell you Lord Lyttelton shew'd me with more pride & self complacency than I ever saw in him a letter which he said came from a Lady. I read & said who is this, she writes in a very superior style, who can it be, the style I thought I knew, but the hand I did not, for your Ladyship had so closely musterd the scatterd [\form\] of your alphabet & put them in such fair array, that to tell you the truth, if your name had not been at the bottom, or some mark of Lucan had not appeard, you had lost the credit with me of an incomparable letter. We laugh'd exceeding at my admiration of the letter without discovering the writer. Prey tell M=r= Vesey that he has all
all the love & esteem I can give to such green years. He is an unfortunate man to be too old for a Secretary of State & too young for a Lover. Pray when you see the Primate give my best respects to him.
I am very sorry for the disorder in your stomach. The oyster shell powder has been of great service to mine, & living much upon milk has done one good. I fear you cannot bear milk. pray avoid eating acids & sugar mix'd, for they will ferment & hurt you. Methinks the [\BLOT\] [\WORD UNCLEAR\] of Lucan are angry that I detain you so long. I hope since the weather has been cooler you have found less of the languor you complain'd of.
I am my dear Madam
Best respects to our amiable M=rs= Hancock. M=rs= Carter had rejoyced me with ye good news of your House which I love better than any (\Hôtel\) that ever was built.