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The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 11/From Robert Harley to Jonathan Swift - 3

FROM THE EARL OF OXFORD.


JULY 27, 1714[1].


IF I tell my dear friend the value I put upon his undeserved friendship, it will look like suspecting you or myself. Though I have had no power since July 25, 1713[2], I believe now, as a private man, I may prevail to renew your license of absence, conditionally you will be present with me; for to morrow morning I shall be a private person. When I have settled my domestick affairs here, I go to Wimple; thence, alone, to Herefordshire. If I have not tired you, tête à tête, fling away so much time upon one who loves you. And I believe, in the mass of souls, ours were placed near each other. I send you an imitation of Dryden, as I went to Kensington:


To serve with love,
And shed your blood,
Approved is above.
But here below,
Th' examples show,
'Tis fatal to be good.

  1. Endorsed, "Just before the loss of his staff."
  2. The earl of Oxford in his Brief Account of Publick Affairs, presented to the queen, on the ninth of June 1714, and published in the report of the secret committee, mentions, that he wrote a large letter, dated July 25, 1713, to lord Bolingbroke, "containing his scheme of the queen's affairs, and what was necessary for lord Bolingbroke to do;" which letter was answered by that lord, on the twenty-seventh of that month.