Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Swift Borrows a Book

Dr. Swift to Mr. Pope

Dublin June 28, 1715.

My Lord Bishop of Clogher gave me your kind letter full of reproaches for my not writing. I am naturally no very exact correspondent, and when I leave a country without probability of returning, I think as seldom as I can of what I loved or esteemed in it, to avoid the Desiderium which of all things maketh life most uneasy. . .

I borrowed your Homer from the Bishop (mine is not yet landed) and read it out in two evenings. If it pleaseth others as well as me, you have got your end in profit and reputation: yet I am angry of some Rhymes and Triplets, and pray in your next do not let me have so many unjustifiable Rhymes to war and gods. I tell you all the faults I know, only in one or two places are you obscure; but I expected you to be so in one or two and twenty. I have heard no soul talk of it here, for indeed it is not come over; nor do we very much abound in Judges, at least I have not the honour to be acquainted with them. . .

I desire you will present my humble service to Mr. Addison, Mr. Congreve and Mr. Rowe, and Gay. I am, and will be always, extremely yours, etc.,

-from The Works of Alexander Pope, Vol. VII

No comments: