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The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 19/From Jonathan Swift to John Barber - 4



AUGUST 10, 1732.

I AM very angry with my friend doctor Delany, for not applying to you sooner, as I desired him, in favour of Mr. Matthew Pilkington, a young clergyman here, who has a great ambition to have the honour of being your chaplain in your mayoralty. I waited for the doctor's answer before I would write to you, and it came but last night. He tells me you have been so very kind as to give him a promise upon my request. I will therefore tell my story. This gentleman was brought to me by the doctor about four years ago, and I found him so modest a young man, so good a scholar and preacher, and of so hopeful a genius, and grew still better upon my hands the more I knew him, that I have been seeking all opportunities to do him some real service; from no other motive in the world, but the esteem I had of his worth. And I hope you know me long enough to helieve me capable of acting as I ought to do in such a case, however contrary it may be to the present practice of the world. He has a great longing to see England, and appear in the presence of Mr. Pope, Mr. Gay, doctor Arbuthnot, and some other of my friends, wherein I will assist him with my recommendations. He is no relation or dependant of mine. I am not putting you upon a job, but to encourage a young man of merit upon his own account as well as mine. He will be no burden upon you, for he has some fortune of his own, and will have a much better from his father; and has also a convenient establishment in a church in this city.

Mr. Pilkington will be ready to attend you upon your command[1], and I wish he may go as soon as possible, that he may have a few weeks to prepare him for his business, by seeing the Tower, the Monument, and Westminster Abbey, and have done staring in the streets.

I am so entirely out of the world, that I cannot promise a hope ever to requite your favour, otherwise than with hearty thanks for conferring this obligation upon me. And I shall ever remain, with true esteem, your most obedient, and obliged humble servant,