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The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 11/From Erasmus Lewis to Jonathan Swift - 8


WHITEHALL, JULY 24, 1714.


I SAW lord Harley this morning. He tells me, that he left you horridly in the dumps. I wish you were here; for, after giving a quarter of an hour's vent to our grief for the departure of our don Quixote[1], we should recover ourselves, and receive consolation from each other. The triumph of the enemy makes me mad, I feel a strange tenderness within myself, and scarce bear the thoughts of dating letters from this place, when my old friend is out, whose fortune I have shared for so many years. But fiat voluntas tua! The damned thing is, we are to do all dirty work. We are to turn out Monckton[2], and I hear we are to pass the new commission of the treasury. For God's sake write to lady Masham, in favour of poor Thomas[3], to preserve him from ruin. I will second it. I intended to have writ you a long letter; but the moment I had turned this page, I had intelligence that the dragon has broke out into a fiery passion with my lord chancellor[4], swore a thousand oaths he would be revenged. This impotent, womanish behaviour vexes me more than his being out. This last stroke shows, quantula sint hominum corpuscula. I am determined for the Bath on the second or the ninth of August at farthest.

  1. Lord Oxford, who was just at this time dismissed from his employment as first minister, and immediately succeeded by lord Bolingbroke. On Tuesday the twenty-seventh of the same month he surrendered his staff as lord treasurer, and on the 30th lord Shrewsbury was appointed to succeed him in that office.
  2. Robert Monckton, one of the commissioners for trade and plantations, who had given information against Arthur Moore, one of his brother commissioners, for accepting a bribe from the Spanish court, to get the treaty of commerce continued.
  3. Mr. Thomas had been secretary under the old commission of the treasury, and he wrote to the dean, by the same post, for a recommendation to lady Masham, either to be continued in the same office under the new commissioners, or to be considered in some other manner, by way of compensation. He urges a precedent for this in the case of his predecessor, who, being removed from his post of secretary, got the office of comptroller of the lotteries, worth five hundred pounds per annum, for thirty-two years.
  4. Lord Harcourt.