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Among the number of his most intimate friends was Lord Oxford, whom Pope has so finely complimented upon the delicacy of his choice.

For him, thou oft haft bid the world attend,
Fond to forget the statesman in the friend ;
For Swift and him, despis'd the farce of state,
The sober follies of the wife and great ;
Dextrous, the craving, fawning croud to quit,
And pleas'd to scape from Aattery to wit.

Pope himself was not only excessively fond of his company, but under several literary obligations to him for his assistance in the translation of Homer. , Gay was obliged to him upon another account ; for being always poor, he was not above receiving from Parnell , the copy-money which the latter got for his writings. Several of their letters, now before me, are proofs of this, and as they have never appeared before, it is probable the reader will be much better pleased with their idle effufions, than with any thing I can hammer out for his amusement.

Binfield, near Oakingham, Tuesday.

Dear SIR,

: I

Believe the hurry you were in hindred your

giving me a word by the last post, so that I am yet to learn whether you got well to town


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[x] I or continue so there ? I very much fear both for your health and your quiet; and no man living

can be more truly concerned in any thing that touches either than myself. I would comfort

myself, however, with boping that your business • may not be unsuccefsful, for your fake; and that, • at least, it may soon be put into other proper • hands. For my own, I beg earnestly of you to return to us as soon as possible. You know how very

much I want you, and that however your business may depend upon any other, my bufiness depends entirely upon you, and yet still I • hope you will find your man, even though I lose you the mean while.

At this time the more I love you the more I can spare you ; which alone < will, I dare fay, be a reason to you to let me • have

you back the fooner. The minute I lost you, Eustathius with nine hundred pages, and nine thousand contractions of the Greek charac. ster, arose to my view! Spendanus, with all his auxiliaries, in number a thousand pages, (value three shillings) and Dacier's three volumes,

Barne's two, Valterie's three, Cuperus, half in < Greek, Leo Allatius, three parts in Greek ; Sca. <figer, Macrobius, and (worse than them all) 6 Aulus Gellius! All these rushed upon my soul at once,

and whelmed me under a fit of the headach. I cursed them all religiously, damnd my best friends among the rest, and even blasphemed • Homer himself. Dear Sir, not only as you



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are a friend, and a goodnatured man; but as g you are a christiın and a divine, come back ! speedily, and prevent the increase of my fins; { for at the rate I have begun to rave, I shall ! not only damn all the poets and commenta& tors who have gone before me, but be damn’d ? myself by all who come after me. To be se

rious, you have not only left me to the last de'gree impatient for your return, who at all times should have been fo; (tho' never so much as < since I knew you in best health here) but you

have wrought several miracles upon our family; you

have made old people fond of a young and gay person, and inveterate papists of a clergyman

of the church of England; even nurse herself is (in danger of being in love in her old age, and • (for all I know) would even marry Dennis for your sake, because he is your man, and loves his mafter. In short, come down forthwith, or give me good reasons for delaying, though but for a • day or two, by the next post. If I find them juít, • I will come up to you, though you know how precious my time is at present ; my hours were

never worth so much money before ; but perhaps ? you are not sensible of this, who give away your

own works. You are a generous author, I a hackney scribbler; you are a Grecian, and bred at an university ; I a poor Englishman, of my { own educating ; you ase a reverend parson, I a

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wagg ;

wagg; in short, you are Dr. Parnelle, (with an “E at the end of your name) and I

. Your most obliged and

• Affectionate friend and

• Faithful servant,

«A. POPE.!

• My hearty service to the Dean, Dr. Arbuthnot, Mr. Ford, and the true genuine shepherd, J. Gay of Devon, I expect him down with you."

We may eafily perceive by this, that Parnell was not a little necessary to Pope in conducting his translation; however he has worded it so ambiguously, that it is impossible to bring the charge directly against him. But he is much more explicit, when he mentions his friend Gay's obliga-, tions in another letter, which he takes no pains to conceal.

Dear SIR,

Write to you with the fame warmth, the I

fame zeal of good will and friendship with $ which I used to converse with you two years ago, and can't think myself absent, when I feel you so much at my heart; the picture of you,

which Jervas brought me over, is infinitely less * lively a representation, than that I carry about with me, and which rises to my mind whenever I think of you, I have many an agreeable reverie,

through those woods and downs, where we once rambled together; my head is sometimes at the Bath, and sometimes at Letcomb, where the Dean makes a great part of my imagi

nary entertainment, this being the cheapeft way of treating me; I hope he will not be displeased at this manner of paying my respects to him, in* ftead of following my friend Jervas's example, which to fay the truth, I have as much inclination to do as I want ability.

I have been ever since December last in greater variety of business * than any such men as you (that is, divines and philosophers,) can possibly imagine a reasonable creature capable of. Gay's play, among the rest, 6 has cost much time and long suffering, to stem a tide of malice and party, that certain authors

have raised against it; the best revenge upon such - fellows, is now in my hands, I mean your Zoi«lus, which really transcends the expectation I

had conceived of it. I have put it into the press, "beginning with the poem Batrachom: for you

seem by the first paragraph of the dedication to it, to design to prefix the name of some particular person. I beg therefore to know for whom s you intend it, that the publication may 'not be delayed on this account, and this as soon as is

* possible.

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