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possessed of in this life; I mean a knowledge of the world, and a knowledge of myself. To know the world well, one must cease to be an actor in the busy scene of life, and be contented to be an humble spectator; and to know one's self well, long uninterrupted leisure for self-examination, at a distance from the turbulence and seductions of the world, is esentially necessary. The result of my reflections with regard to the world has been the same with that of the wise man, that it is vanity of vanities. But I have not, like bim, ended my inquiries there. My mind could never rest in so dispiriting a conclusion; it naturally led me to the consideration of another life, where all that is amiss here will be rectified. And after the most unprejudiced inquiries, I remained in the full conviction, that it is from religion alone we can hope for contentment in this life, or happiness in a future one: and the result of my self-examination was, a determined resolution to make her sacred dictates the guide of all my future actions. Don't think, Sam, that either superstition or melancholy has had the least influence on this occasion, for I have not a grain of either in my composition; it has been the effect of a long, cool, deliberate train of reflection. I am sorry I was not before made acquainted with the very kind part which Mr. Boyle took in my affairs. I fear a letter, after so great a distance of time, would appear with but an ill grace: I must therefore beg you will take it upon yourself to make him my most grateful acknowledgments, and at the same time the apology for my silence. You do not say a word about Mrs. VOL. V.
Whyte, nor your boy. Do you think we are indifferent with regard to what concerns you ? Assure Mr. and Mrs. Guinness of my warmest regards and best wishes. I did intend to return a few lines in answer to the obliging ones which she added to yours, but you see the paper is finished. I am ever sincerely and affectionately yours,
THOMAS SHERIDAN TO MR. WHYTE.
Paris, October 13th, 1766. OFTEN have I sat down to write to you an account of the most fatal event that could befall me in this life, and as often have thrown aside the pen, Oh, my dear Sam! the most excellent of women is no more. Her apparent malady was an intermitting fever, attended with no one bad symptom till the day before her death, when she was sud. denly deprived of her senses, and all the fatal prognostics of a speedy dissolution appeared, She died the death of the righteous, without one pang, without a groan. The extraordinary circumstances attending her case made me resolve to have her opened: when it was found that the whole art of medicine could not have prolonged her days, as all the noble parts were attacked, and any one of four internal maladies must have proved mortal. If the news of this event has not yet reached Dublin, break it to my sister as gently as you can. I set out from this in a few days for
St. Quintin, a town about half way between this and Calais, where I purpose to leave my children, in the hands of Protestants, to whom they are strongly recommended. As soon as I have settled them, I shall set out for London, and thence proceed to Dublin as speedily as possible. I thank you for your last letter and the remittance, without which I should not have been able to have made this arrangement.--Sam! you have lost a friend who valued you much. I have lost what the world cannot repair, a bosom friend, another self. My children have lost-oh! their loss is neither to be expressed nor repaired. But the will of God be done. I am ever sincerely and affectionately yours,
THOMAS SHERIDAN. ;
MRS. SHERIDAN TO MR. WHYTE.
London, February 25th, 1762. It is so long since you and I have corresponded, that I really do not recollect whether you are a letter in my debt; or I in yours : for my own credit's sake, I wish it may be the former: but be that as it may, I will not omit the opportunity of Mr. Rainsford's return, to send you Mr. Sheri. dan's Dissertation, which includes part of his plan. 'Tis addressed, as you see, to a great man: when you read it, you will not be at a loss to discover, that the person addressed is our present first minister. It has been as well received by him as we could possibly wish, and even beyond the expectation of our friends. He expressed himself highly pleased with the design, and sent Mr. Sheridan word it should receive all countenance and encouragement. Lord Bute is a man of his word, and every body knows his great influence; so that the affair now seems likely to become of great importance. The course of lectures which Mr. Sheridan is now reading in the city is attended in a manner that shows the people more warm and earnest on the subject than can well be conceived; his auditory seldom consisting of less than five hundred people, and this is the utmost the hall will contain ; many have been disappointed for want of room, and he is strenuously solicited to repeat the course again immediately in the same place. This I believe he will comply with, though he is to give another course next month at Spring Gardens. Last Monday evening, Charles, for the first time, exhibited himself as a little orator. He read Eve's speech to Adam, from Milton, beginning
O thou! for whom, and from whom, I was formed, &c.
As his father had taken a deal of pains with him, and he has the advantage of a fine ear and a fine voice, he acquitted himself in such a manner as astonished every body. He purposes in his next course to show him in all the variety of style that is used in English composition, and hopes in a very little time to make him complete in his own art. Dick has been at Harrow school since Christmas: as he probably may fall into a bustling life, we have a mind to accustom him early
to shift for himself : Charles's domestic and sedentary turn is best suited to a home education. This is the present system of your little old acquaintance.
I shall be glad of your opinion on the Dissertation, as also to know what progress you yourself have made in this particular branch in your school, which I am very glad to hear by Mr. Rainsford is in great reputation. I am obliged to break off, as I have been interrupted a dozen times since I sat down to write. Indeed I am so distressed for want of a room to myself, that it discourages me from attempting any thing, though I have this winter made a shift to scribble something that you shall hear of another time. Adieu, dear Sam. I am yours, sincerely,
P.S. My sister Chamberlaine desires me to inform you (you may be assured I did not hint the subject) that she had paid Mrs. some money that you had left in her hands for that use, which she expects you'll acquit her of. I leave my brother Dick to answer for himself.
DR. SMOLLETT TO AN AMERICAN GENTLEMAN. SIR,
London, May 8th, 1763. I Am favoured with yours of the 26th of February, and cannot but be pleased to find myself, as a writer, so high in your esteem. The curiosity you express with regard to the particulars of my