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Matters, muft alfo have been omitted. It was therefore thought neceffary, not intirely to reject fuch Letters, and at the fame time to admit of none but what were thus feafoned with Pleafantry or Amufement. No Tranflations of foreign Letters have place in this Collection; the Intention of it being to do Honour to the Men of Genius of our own Country, and to give Juch natural Pictures of themfelves, and the Times they lived in, as Hiftory has not furnished.
Whatever Reception thefe Volumes may meet with from the Public, the Editors of them may fay with great Truth, that they are the best Collection of English Letters which have hitherto been publifhed. It was judged proper to infert none of earlier Date than the Reign of Henry the Eighth. The English Language, and indeed the Performances of our Writers, before that Time, not being altogether fo intelligible or inftructive· as to claim a Place in thefe Volumes.
It is only necessary to obferve farther, that no Notice is here taken of thofe Collections of Letters lately published of Mr. Pope, Doctor Swift and others, as they are almoft in everybody's Hands, and fresh in their Memories.
My Sweetheart and Friend,
AND my Heart put themfelves into your Hands, begging of you to take them to your good Favour and that, by my being abfent from you, your Affection may not be diminished towards them; for it would be a great Pity to augment their Pain; for Abfence gives me enough, and more than ever, and more than I could have thought; and calls to my Remembrance a Point of AftroVOL. I. B
nomy, which is this, That by how much farther the Moors are diftant from the Sun, the Heat is notwithstanding more fervent; fo it is with our Love: For though we are perfonally distant from each other, the Heat of Love remains, at leaft on our Side, and I hope the fame on yours; affuring you, that the Anxiety of Abfence is already too great; and when I think of the Augmentation thereof, which I muft ftill fuffer, if it was not for the firm Hope I have of your inviolable Affection towards me, to put you in Remembrance of that, fince I cannot be perfonally with you at prefent. I fend you the nearest Likeness to it I can, to wit, my Picture fet in Bracelets, the only Device which I have left, wishing myself in their Place whenever it shall please you. Written by the Hand of Your Servant and Friend.
To the SAM E.
HE Uneafinefs I bore, by being uncertain
of your Health, gave me a great deal of Trouble; nor could I enjoy any Quiet without knowing the Truth: but as you have as yet felt nothing, I hope I may affure you that you will *efcape * it, as I hope we have; for we were at Waltham, where two Ufhers, two Valets de Chambre, 'your Brother, and Mafter Treafurer fell fick, but are now perfectly recovered; fince which we be'took ourselves to your Houfe at Hondfon, where, God be praised, we are very well for the prefent;
The Sweating Sickness.