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194 SAMUEL JOHNSON

tention. This busy and forcible mind is now under the government of those who lately would not have been able to comprehend the least and most narrow of its designs.

March 8/4 1754.

To Miss Boothby

My SWEET ANGEL,

I have read your book, I am afraid you will think without any great improve- ment. . . . You ought not to be offended ; I am perhaps as sincere as the writer. In all things that terminate here I shall be much guided by your influence, and should take or leave by your direction ; but I cannot receive my religion from any human hand. I desire however to be instructed. . . . Dear Angel, do not forget me. My heart is full of tenderness.

December $lst [1755].

To James Boswell (on his way home from

Corsica] DEAR SIR,

Apologies are seldom of any use. We will delay till your arrival the reasons, good or bad, which have made me such a sparing and ungrateful correspondent. Be assured, for

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