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more than once or twice attempted it: but I find, like the man in the fable, who could leap only at Rhodes, that verse is almost impossible to me, except at Weston.—Tell my friend George that I am every day mindful of him, and always love him; and bid him by no means to vex himself about the tardiness of Andrews.” Remember me affectionately to William, and to Pitcairn, whom I shall hope to find with you at my return; and, should you see Mr. Buchanan, to him also.-I have now charged you with commissions enow, and having added Mrs. Unwin's best compliments, and told you that I long to see you again, will conclude myself, My dear Catharina, Most truly yours, W. C.

Their departure from Eartham was a scene of affecting interest, and a perfect contrast to the gaiety of their arrival. Anxious to relieve the mind of Hayley from any apprehension for their safety, Cowper addressed to him the following letter from Kingston.


The Sun, at Kingston, Sept. 18, 1792. My dear Brother—With no sinister accident to retard or terrify us, we find ourselves at a quarter

* A stone-mason, who was making a pedestal for an antique bust of Homer.

before one, arrived safe at Kingston. I left you with a heavy heart, and with a heavy heart took leave of our dear Tom,” at the bottom of the chalkhill. But, soon after this last separation, my troubles gushed from my eyes, and then I was better.

We must now prepare for our visit to the General. I add no more, therefore, than our dearest remembrances and prayers that God may bless you and yours, and reward you an hundred-fold for all your kindness. Tell Tom I shall always hold him dear for his affectionate attentions to Mrs. Unwin. From her heart the memory of him can never be erased. Johnny loves you all, and has his share in all these acknowledgments.

W. C.


Weston, Sept. 21, 1792.

My dear Hayley–Chaos himself, even the chaos of Milton, is not surrounded with more confusion, nor has a mind more completely in a hubbub, than I experience at the present moment. At our first arrival, after long absence, we find a hundred orders to servants necessary, a thousand things to be restored to their proper places, and an endless variety of minutiae to be adjusted; which, though individually of little importance, are most momentous in the aggregate. In these circumstances I find my* Hayley's son.

self so indisposed to writing, that, save to yourself, I would on no account attempt it; but to you I will give such a recital as I can of all that has passed since I sent you that short note from Kingston, knowing that, if it be a perplexed recital, you will consider the cause and pardon it. I will begin with a remark in which I am inclined to think you will agree with me, that there is sometimes more true heroism passing in a corner, and on occasions that make no noise in the world, than has often been exercised by those whom that world esteems her greatest heroes, and on occasions the most illustrious. I hope so at least; for all the heroism I have to boast, and all the opportunities I have of displaying any, are of a private nature. After writing the note, I immediately began to prepare for my appointed visit to Ham; but the struggles that I had with my own spirit, labouring as I did under the most dreadful dejection, are never to be told. I would have given the world to have been excused. I went, however, and carried my point against myself, with a heart riven asunder—I have reasons for all this anxiety, which I cannot relate now. The visit, however, passed off well, and we returned in the dark to Kingston; I, with a lighter heart than I had known since my departure from Eartham, and Mary too, for she had suffered hardly less than myself, and chiefly on my account. That night we rested well in our inn, and at twenty minutes after eight next morning set off for London; exactly at ten we reached Mr. Rose's door; we drank a dish of chocolate with him, and proceeded, Mr. Rose

riding with us as far as St. Albans. From this time we met with no impediment. In the dark, and in a storm, at eight at night, we found ourselves at our own back-door. Mrs. Unwin was very near slipping out of the chair in which she was taken from the chaise, but at last was landed safe. We all have had a good night, and are all well this morning God bless you, my dearest Brother,



Weston, Oct. 2, 1792. My dear Hayley-A bad night, succeeded by an East wind, and a sky all in sables, have such an effect on my spirits, that, if I did not consult my own comfort' more than yours, I should not write to-day, for I shall not entertain you much: yet your letter, though containing no very pleasant tidings, has afforded me some relief. It tells me, indeed, that you have been dispirited yourself, and that poor little Tom, the faithful 'squire of my Mary, has been seriously indisposed : all this grieves me, but then there is a warmth of heart and a kindness in it that do me good. I will endeavour not to repay you in notes of sorrow and despondence, though all my sprightly chords seem broken. In truth, one day excepted, I have not seen the day when I have been cheerful since I left you. My spirits, I think, are almost constantly lower than they were ;

the approach of winter is perhaps the cause, and if it is, I have nothing better to expect for a long time to COme.

Yesterday was a day of assignation with myself, the day of which I said some days before it came, when that day comes I will begin my dissertations. Accordingly when it came I prepared to do so; filled a letter-case with fresh paper, furnished myself with a pretty good pen, and replenished my inkbottle; but, partly from one cause, and partly from another, chiefly, however, from distress and dejection, after writing and obliterating about six lines, in the composition of which I spent near an hour, I was obliged to relinquish the attempt. An attempt so unsuccessful could have no other effect than to dishearten me, and it has had that effect to such a degree, that I know not when I shall find courage to make another. At present I shall certainly abstain, since at present I cannot well afford to expose myself to the danger of a fresh mortification.

W. C.


Weston, Oct. 13, 1792. I began a letter to you yesterday, my dearest brother, and proceeded through two sides of the sheet, but so much of my nervous fever found its way into it, that, looking it over this morning, I determined not to sent it. I have risen, though not in good spirits, yet in

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