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to direct me in the study of history. You will probably have seen that summary review, which is in a collection of letters upon history, which he did me the honour to write me. It is but a sketch of the work he had proposed to himself; but it is the sketch of Lord Bolingbroke. He will probably have told you, that those letters were by his direction delivered up by me to Mr Pope, who burnt, as he told me, the manuscripts, and printed off, by a private press, some very few copies, which were to be considered still as manuscripts, one of which Mr Pope kept, and sent another to Lord Bolingbroke. Sir William Wyndham, Lord Bathurst, Lord Marchmont, Mr Murray, and Mr Lyttelton, I think, had each one. I do not remember to have been told of any copies given, except to myself, who have always preserved mine, as I would a MS. which was not my own, observing not only the restrictions which Lord Bolingbroke himself had recommended to me, but securing likewise, as far as I could, even in case of my death, that this work should never become public from that copy, which is in my possession. I enlarge upon this, because I think myself particularly obliged, out of regard to Lord Bolingbroke, to give this account of that work to the person whom he has intrusted with all his writings, in case you might not have known this particularity. And at the same time I think it my duty, to the memory of Lord Bolingbroke, to myself, and to the world too, to say something more to you in relation to this work.

"It is a work, sir, which will instruct mankind, and do honour to its author; and yet I will take upon me to say, that for the sake of both, you must publish it with caution.

"The greatest men have their faults, and sometimes the greatest faults; but the faults of superior minds are the least indifferent, both to themselves and to society. Humanity is interested in the fame of those who excelled in it; but it is interested before all in the good of society, and in the peace of the minds of the individuals that compose it. Lord Bolingbroke's mind embraced all objects, and looked far into all; but not without a strong mixture of passions, which will always necessarily beget some prejudices, and follow more. And on the subject of religion particularly, (whatever was the motive that inflamed his passions upon that subject chiefly,) his passions were the most strong; and I will venture to say, (when called upon,

as I think, to say what I have said more than once to himself, with the deference due to his age and extraordinary talents,) his passions upon that subject did prevent his otherwise superior reason from seeing, that, even in a political light only, he hurt himself, and wounded society, by striking at establishments, upon which the conduct at least of society depends, and by striving to overturn in men's minds the systems which experience at least has justified, and which authority at least has rendered respectable, as necessary to public order and to private peace, without suggesting to their minds a better, or indeed any system.

"You will find, sir, what I say to be true in a part of the work I mentioned, where he digresses upon the criticism of church history.

"While this work remained in the hands only of those I have mentioned, (except, as I have been telling you, to himself and to them in private conversation,) I have otherwise been silent upon that subject; but I must now say to you, sir, that, for the world's sake and for his, that part of the work ought by no means to be communicated farther. And you see, that it is a digression not necessary to that work. If this digression should be made public, it will be censured, it must be censured, it ought to be censured. It will be criticised, too, by able pens, whose erudition, as well as their reasonings, will not be easily answered. In such a case, I shall owe to myself and to the world to disclaim publicly that part of a work, which he did me the honour to address to me; but I owe to the regard which he has sometimes expressed for me, to disclaim it rather privately to you, sir, who are intrusted with his writings, and to recommend to you to suppress that part of the work, as a good citizen of the world, for the world's peace, as one intrusted and obliged by Lord Bolingbroke, not to raise new storms to his memory.—I am, sir, your very humble servant, HYDE."

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LETTER

DAVID MALLET, ESQ. TO LORD HYDE.

MY LORD, I received a very real pleasure, and at the same time a sensible concern, from the letter your lordship has honoured me with. Nothing could be more agreeable to me than the favourable opinion of one, whom I have long admired for every quality that enters into an estimable and amiable character; but then nothing can occasion me more uneasiness than not to be able to suppress that part of a work which you would have kept from public view.

"The book was printed off before your lordship's letter reached my hands; but this consideration alone would have appeared trifling to me. I apprehend that I cannot, without being unfaithful to the trust reposed in me, omit or alter any thing in those works, which my Lord Bolingbroke had deliberately prepared for the press, and I will publish no other. As to this in particular, his repeated commands to me were, that it should be printed exactly according to the copy he himself, in all the leisure of retirement, had corrected with that view.

"Upon the whole, if your lordship should think it necessary to disclaim the reflections on Sacred History, by which I presume is meant some public and authentic declaration, that your notions on this head differ entirely from those of your noble friend; even in this case I am sure you will do it with all the delicacy natural to your own disposition, and with all the tenderness to his memory, that the particular regard he always bore you can deserve. I am, with the greatest respect, my lord," &c.

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