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The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 12/From Jonathan Swift to John Gay - 3

< The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift‎ | Volume 12


DUBLIN, MARCH 19, 1728-9.


I DENY it. I do write to you according to the old stipulation, for, when you kept your old company, when I writ to one, I writ to all. But I am ready to enter into a new bargain since you are got into a new world, and will answer all your letters. You are first to present my most humble respects to the duchess of Queensberry, and let her know that I never dine without thinking of her, although it be with some difficulty that I can obey her when I dine with forks that have but two prongs, and when the sauce is not very consistent. You must likewise tell her grace that she is a general toast among all honest folks here, and particularly at the deanery, even in the face of my whig subjects. — I will leave my money in lord Bathurst's hands, and the management of it (for want of better) in yours: and pray keep the interest money in a bag wrapped up by itself, for fear of your own fingers under your carelessness. Mr. Pope talks of you as a perfect stranger; but the different pursuits and manners and interests of life, as fortune has pleased to dispose them, will never suffer those to live together, who, by their inclinations ought never to part. I hope when you are rich enough, you will have some little economy of your own in town and country, and be able to give your friend a pint of port; for the domestick season of life will come on. I had never much hopes of your vamped play, although Mr. Pope seemed to have, and although it were ever so good: but you should have done like the parsons, and changed your text, I mean your title, and the names of the persons. After all, it was an effect of idleness, for you are in the prime of life, when invention and judgment go together. I wish you had 100l. a year more for horses — I ride and walk whenever good weather invites, and am reputed the best walker in this town and five miles round. I writ lately to Mr. Pope. I wish you had a little village in his neighbourhood; but you are yet too volatile, and any lady with a coach and six horses would carry you to Japan.


  1. Found among Mr. Gay's papers, and returned to Dr. Swift by the duke of Queensberry and Mr. Pope.