The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 14/Letter: Swift to Pope - 25

OCT. 21, 1735.

I ANSWERED your letter relating to Curll, &c. I believe my letters have escaped being published, because I write nothing but nature and friendship, and particular incidents which could make no figure in writing. I have observed that not only Voiture, but likewise Tully and Pliny writ their letters for the publicly view, more than for the sake of their correspondents; and I am glad of it, on account of the entertainment they have given me. Balsac did the same thing, but with more stiffness, and consequently less diverting: now I must tell you that you are to look upon me as one going very fast out of the world; but my flesh and bones are to be carried to Holyhead, for I will not lie in a country of slaves. It pleases me to find that you begin to dislike things in spite of your philosophy; your Muse cannot forbear her hints to that purpose. I cannot travel to see you; otherwise I solemnly protest I would do it. I have an intention to pass this winter in the country with a friend forty miles off, and to ride only ten miles a day, yet is my health so uncertain that I fear it will not be in my power. I often ride a dozen miles, but I come home to my own bed at night: my best way would be to marry, for in that case any bed would be better than my own. I found you a very young man, and I left you a middle aged one; you knew me a middle aged man, and now I am an old one. Where is my lord ——? methinks I am inquiring after a tulip of last year. "You need not apprehend any Curll's medling with your letters to me; I will not destroy them, but have ordered my executors to do that office." I have a thousand things more to say, longævitas est garrula, but I must remember I have other letters to write if I have time, which I spend to tell you so; I am ever, dearest sir, your, &c.