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with Johnson on their northern tour, Lord Auchinleck remarked to a friend, "There's nae hope for Jamie, man; Jamie's gane clean gyte. What do you think, man? He's aff wi' the landlouping scoundrel of a Corsican. And whase tail do ye think he has pinned himself to now, man? a dominie, man,-an auld dominie, that keepit a schule and ca'd it an academy." Bosweh has denied the truth of a report which had gained credit, that on his representing the lexicographer to his father as a constellation of genius, he replied, “ Ursa Major." Lord Auchinleck, he admits, did use the expression, but it was spoken aside to a brother judge as Dr. Johnson was standing in the Court of Session.*

After an absence of eighty-three days the travellers returned to Edinburgh. They were complimented and entertained by Lord Elibank, Lady Colville, Lord Hailes, Principal Robertson, and others. Mrs. Boswell, though she did not oppose her husband taking part in the Hebridean journey, was not reconciled to it. On his return she remarked to him, "I have seen a bear led by a man, but I never before saw a man led by a bear." Boswell accepted the remark facetiously, and, in the belief he would enjoy it, repeated it to Dr. Johnson. As might have been expected, the lexicographer felt most keenly the allusion to his rough manners, and he was placed in circumstances in which retort was impossible. Removal was his only refuge, and he hastened his departure. He left Edinburgh in the stage-coach on the 22nd November-just twelve days after his return to the city. But he did not forget Mrs. Boswell's censure. For several years he alluded to her disliking him in many letters to her husband. Writing to Boswell on the 29th January, 1774, he sends his compliments to Mrs. Boswell, adding, "Tell her I do not love her the less for wishing me away." On the 5th March he wrote,

* Life of Johnson.

"Mrs. Boswell is a sweet lady-only she was so glad to see me go that I have almost a mind to come again, that she may again have the same pleasure." In the same strain he writes to Boswell on the 27th August, 1775,

"Of Mrs. Boswell, though she knows in her heart that she does not love me, I am always glad to hear any good, and hope that she and the dear little ladies will have neither sickness nor any other affliction. But she knows that she does not care what becomes of me, and for that she may be sure that I think her very much to blame."

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Dr. Johnson prepared his "Journey to the Hebrides most leisurely; it was not published till January, 1775. Boswell received a parcel of copies, one for himself, others for persons who had shown particular attention to the writer. In distributing the volumes he invited special attention to an encomium upon himself in the earlier portion of the work. Obtaining charge of several cases appealed from the Court of Session to the House of Lords, he hastened to London to enjoy the honours which he conceived Dr. Johnson's eulogy must have secured him.

On the evening of Saturday, the 18th March, Boswell by the Edinburgh diligence reached Grantham. Travelling being suspended till Monday, he in the interval wrote a long letter to Mr. Temple. An extract follows.

"I am now," he proceeded, "so far on my way to London in the fly. It is Saturday night, and we repose here all Sunday. I have an acquaintance in Grantham, the Rev. Mr. Palmer, who was chaplain to the late Speaker; he is a worthy, learned, social man. I sent him a card that I would breakfast with him to-morrow, if not inconvenient to him. His answer is just come, which you shall hear As breakfasting will be attended with some inconveniences in the present state of his family, he will be very glad of the favour of his company to a family dinner to-morrow at two o'clock. What can be the meaning of this? How can breakfasting be

inconvenient to a family that dines? Can he wish to lie long in the morning that Queen Mab may be with him, 'tickling the parson as he lies asleep'? or can his wife and daughter not. dress early enough? Pray guess in your next, with a sacerdotal sagacity, what this can be. I shall try to learn and let you know. It is now early in the morning. I am writing in a great English parlour, to have my letter ready for the post at nine. It is comfortable to have such an acquaintance as Palmer-so situated. I have thought of making a good acquaintance in each town on the road. No man has been more successful in making acquaintance easily than I have been. I even bring people quickly on to a degree of cordiality. I am a quick fire, but I know not if I last sufficiently, though surely, my dear Temple, there is always a warm place for you. With many people I have compared myself to a taper, which can light up a great and lasting fire, though itself is soon extinguished.

"Mr. Johnson, when enumerating our club, observed of some of us that they talked from books,-Langton in particular. Garrick, he said, would talk from books, if he talked seriously. 'I,' said he, 'do not talk from books; you do not talk from books.' This was a compliment to my originality, but I am afraid I have not read books enough to be able to talk from them. You are very kind in saying that I may overtake you in learning. Believe me, though, that I have a kind of impotency of study; however, nil desperandum est.

"For my own part, I have continued schemes of publication, but cannot fix. I am still very unhappy with my father. We are so totally different that a good understanding is scarcely possible. He looks on my going to London just now as an expedition, as idle and extravagant, when in reality it is highly improving to me, considering the company which I enjoy; and I think it is also for my interest, as in time I may get something. Lord Pembroke was very obliging to me when he was in Scotland, and has corresponded with me since. I have hopes from him. How happy should I be to get an independency by my own influence while my father is alive!


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'I am in charming health and spirits. There is a handsome maid in this inn, who interrupts me by coming sometimes into the room I have no confession to make, my priest, so be not curious.

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It is as fair reasoning for me to say that this handsome maid (Matty is her name) argues better than-whom you please."

Boswell reached London on the 21st March, and at once waited on Dr. Johnson, who received him cordially. On the 4th April he despatched a long letter to Mr. Temple, of which a portion is subjoined

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My last was indeed a characteristical letter: I was quite in my old humour. My mind, formerly a wild, has been for some years pretty well enclosed with moral fences; but I fear the fences are stone hedges (to use a strange expression of Mr. Johnson in his Journey") of a loose construction, for a storm of passion would blow them down. When at Grantham there was a pretty brisk gale, which shook them; but now Reason, that steady builder and overseer, has setthem firm, or they have proved to be better than I thought them, for my enclosures are in as good order as ever. I thank you, however, for your friendly props; your kind counsels pleased me much.






"Your soft admonitions would at any time calm the tempests of my soul. I told you that my arguments for concubinage were only for theory; the patriarchs might have a plurality, because they were not taught that it was wrong; but I, who have always been taught that it is wrong, cannot have the same enjoyment without an impression of its being so, and consequently without my moral sense suffering. But is not this prejudice?


“I had last night an unexpected call to be at the bar of the House of Commons this day for Captain Erskine, brother to Miss Floyer's husband, as counsel for him in the Clackmannan election, where he is petitioner. I had neither wig nor gown with me. I posted to Claxton's early this morning, and he has kindly lent me both. I know not but in equity he should have a share of the guineas which they bring.

"To-day I dine at Sir John Pringle's; to-morrow at Dilly's, with Mr. Johnson and Langton, &c. ; Thursday at Tom Davies's, with Mr. Johnson and some others; Friday at the Turk's Head, Gerrard Street, with our club, Sir Joshua Reynolds, &c., who now dine once a month, and sup every Friday. My forenoons are spent in visiting, and you know the distances of London make that business enough. Mr. Johnson has allowed me to write out a supplement to his Journey, but I wish I may be able to settle to it. This House of Commons work will be good ballast for me. I am little in what is called the gaiety of London; I went to Mrs. Abingdon's benefit to please Sir Joshua Reynolds. I have been at no other public place except exhibitions of pictures with Lord Mountstuart; he is warmly my friend, and has engaged to do for me. His brother's lady,† a sweet, handsome, lively little woman, is my wife's intimate friend. I pass many of my morning hours with her. Paoli and I (for his simple designation is the highest) are to be some time between the 10th and 26th of this month; I shall go from thence to your parsonage and overpower you with vivacity, and return to Bath."


at Wilton

Boswell proceeded to Mamhead, and there, though his host

* John, Lord Mountstuart, eldest son of John, third Earl of Bute, and afterwards first Marquess of Bute. He was born 30th June, 1744, and died 16th November, 1814.

This lady was Margaret, daughter of Sir David Cunninghame, of Milnecraig, and his wife, Lady Mary Montgomery, daughter of Alexander, ninth Earl of Eglinton. She married, in 1767, the Hon. James Archibald Stuart, second son of John, third Earl of Bute. This gentleman was one of Boswell's most attached friends.


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