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circumstances which happen to every one, we have taken the liberty to omit, and have inclosed the unintelligible words in brackets..

" Oct. 15, 1660. D. S.

I am glad to hear you are al} in health this sickly time * * * * * I am also glad that Mr. John 's daughter is recovered, who is a good young gentlewoman, and very deare unto her parents; when you see them remember me unto them. I think you are in the right when you say that physitians coaches in London are more for state than for business, there being so many wayes whereby they may be assisted at lesser charge and care in London. The Thames and hackney coaches being no small help, besides the great number of coaches kept by private gentlemen in and about London. When I read

s Travells in America many yeares ago, I was much surprized to finde there twentie thousand coaches in Mexico-perhaps there may be in London halfe that number. When Queene Elizabeth came to Norwich, 1578, she came on horsebacke from Ipswich, by the high road to Norwich, in the summer time, but she had a coach or two in her trayne. She rid through Norwich unto the Bishop's Palace, where she stayed a week, and went sometimes a hunting on horseback, and up to Musfold Hill often, to see wrestling and shooting. When I was a youthe many persons travelled with three horses, but now there' is a new face of things. * * *

God bless you all.

Y. D. F.

T. B. For Dr. Edward Browne, in Salisbury

Court, or to ye Golden · Balls, ", Flt. St. London."

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handen! D. S. * * * *

I am glad you have put an end to that laboure, though I am not sorry that you undertook it.-We are glad to understand by my daughter Browne's letter, that my daughter-in-law is delivered of a sonne-the blessing of God bee upon you both, and send healthThe vessel of cider sent you from Guernzey was waik, it came not out of Normandy, but from Guernzey, though it was not of my sonne and daughter's making—they might have made much, there being plentie of apples, butt they made butt 2 or 3 hoggesheads for their own use. Your sister tells me that they have plentie of large oysters like [ ] oysters about Guernzey, and althowe [rocky] they have I understand acquired a peculiar waye of disposing and selling of them, that they are not decayed before they bee eatenthey bring them in their hands into vessels that may containe a vast quantitie, and when they come to a competent distance from land they ancher and cast all the oysters overboard into the sea, and when the tide goes away and the ground bare, the people come to buy them, and the owners stand on drye ground and sell themand when the tide comes in the buyers retire, and come again at the next ebbe and buye, and so every ebbe until all sould: so the oysters

are kept securely and well tasted, being so often under the salt seawater and if they load a vessel of a large size] full they might sell them while they were good, being thus ordered, although it should take some time to sell them all. This seems a good contrivance, and such as I have not heard of in England. atque * *

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. . . . « July 14. :

D. S.

You have done very well to obtayne the manuscript or book, which you mention you had from my Lord of A -'s house how you came to knowe of it, or obtayne the use of it, I know not"; but I believe you might if you would putt forward, obtayne such a favor of my Lord himself, who when he was at Norwich asked for you. Hee was at Montpelier about the time when you were there. Now you have the booke by you, it will be fitt to make the best use you canne of it--for perhaps it must be returned unto the French ambassadour, or if hee [ ], unto my Lord; 'tis like he will expect it agayne from you in a short time, therefore bestowe most of your vacant time about it-transcribe all you can out of it, and drawe out the most material cutts yourself, by stracing] or otherwise, which you can do well enough for I would not have it out of your hands, and I do not desire that Moreland should have any thing to do with it-hee will drawe out of it for himself and his owne use, so all will who take notice of it. Nor would I have you to showe it to any, or very fewe, and such as are not like to make use thereof. B-_ (as I sent you word) hath lately published anatomical observations upon many animals, and probably of many in this booke. Transcribe what you can out of it, and sett downe the names of the animals, and the singular and peculiar observations upon any. The cutts being so, [large] 'tis probable there are not many.

if you did not keep the skull of the Dolphin you cutt up I will, God willing, send you one-tis likely the cutts are not of common animals at least not altogether, butt of such strange animals as have been brought to Paris or some of the King's houses.When you see the Elephant, observe whether hee bendeth his knees before and behind, inward, different from other quadrupeds as [

] observeth, and whether his belly bee the softest and smoothest part the [ ] are not exterior and outward but inwardly inflected as Aristotle sayth-Perhaps the booke hath the dissection of the Cainell-it were good to observe of what that bunch in the back consisteth, whether the back bone or spine riseth up into it or it be a lump of flesh, on the spine * * * I thought good to mention these hints-iny hedgehog being putt into my yard hee got away with 2 young ones but I look to find them agayne.

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Dec. 27.
D. S.

I received yours'and cannot but comend you for taking notice of the comet, and for giving so (good) a description-how you found it, and for having drawne a figure thereof-it was the first account of it that came to Norwich, though some report there was, that it had been seen, and therefore your description in whát manner you saw it was the more welcome, and [

] the bookseller would needs write it out that you might gratifie his friends and customers with your account thereof. T 's letters mention it; but to little or no purpose, or any information. We have had somewhat cloudy and foggy evenings, so that we heard no more of it, and this day was clear and frostie, and the sunne silvery bright, but we could not get (a sight of] it was so mistie before this night, while - I am writing, which is between seven and eight o'clock. I never saw a larger and [longer] tayle of a comet since 1618, when I was at schoole. I believe it will be much observed and discussed, and accounts given of it by the learned, and observed beyond sea.

" T. B."

THE

Retrospective Review.

Vol. I. Part II.

ART. I. An Apology for the Life of Mr. Colley Cibber, Comedian,

and late Patentee of the Theatre Royal, with an Historical View of the Stage in his own Time, written by Himself. The Second Edition. °London, 1740.

There are perhaps few individuals, of intense personal feeling, whose lives, written by themselves, would be destitute of interest or of value. Works of this description enlarge the number of our intimacies without inconvenience, awaken, with a peculiar vividness, pleasant recollections of our own past career, and excite that fond and gentle sympathy with the little sorrows, cares, hopes, and enjoyments of others, which infuses new tenderness into all the pulses of individual joy. The qualification which is most indispensable to the writer of such auto-biographies, is vanity. If he does not dwell with gusto on his own theme, he will communicate no gratification to his reader. He must not, indeed, fancy himself too outrageously what he is not, but should have the highest sense of what he is, the happiest relish for his own peculiarities, and the most blissful assurance that they are matters of great interest to the world. He who feels thus, will not chill us by cold generalities, but trace with an exquisite minuteness all the felicities of his life, all the well remembered moments of gratified vanity, from the first beatings of hope and first taste of delight, to the time when age is gladdened by the reflected tints of young enterprize and victory. Thus it was with Colley Cibber; and, therefore, his Apology for his own life is one of the most amusing books that have ever been written. He was not, indeed, a very wise or lofty character

-nor did he affect great virtue or wisdom-but openly derided gravity, bade defiance to the serious pursuits of life, and honest

VOL. I. PART II.

N

168

applsion for fibon which be his light

ly preferred his own lightness of heart and of head, to knowledge the most extensive or thought the most profound. He was vain even of his vanity. At the very commencement of his work, he avows his determination not to repress it, because it is part of himself, and therefore will only increase the resemblance of the picture. Rousseau did not more clearly lay open to the world the depths and inmost recesses of his soul, than Cibber his little foibles and minikin weaknesses. The philosopher dwelt not more intensely on the lone enthusiasm of his spirit, on the alleviations of his throbbing soul, on the long draughts of rapture which he eagerly drank in from the loveliness of the universe, than the player on his early aspirings for scenic applause, and all the petty triumphs and mortifications of his passion for the favour of the town. How real and speaking is the description which he gives of his fond desires for the bright course of an actor-of his light-hearted pleasure, when, in the little part of the Chaplain in The Orphan, he received his first applause—and of his higher transport, when the next day Goodman, à retired actor of note, clapping him on the shoulder at a rehearsal, exclaimed, with an oath, that he must make a good actor, which almost took away his breath, and fairly drew tears into his eyes! The spirit of gladness which gave such exquisite keenness to his youthful appetite for praise, sustained him through all the changes of his fortune, enabling him to make a jest of penury, assisting him to gather fresh courage from every slight, adding zest to every success, until he arrived at the high dignity of “ Patentee of the Theatre Royal.” When “he no revenue had but his good spirits to feed and clothe him," these were ample. His vanity was to him a kingdom. The airiest of town butterflies, he sipped of the sweets of pleasure wherever its stray gifts were found; sometimes in the tavern among the wits, but chiefly in the golden sphere of the theatre,—that magic circle whose majesties do not perish with the chances of the world, and whose glories never grow dim. In reading his life, we become possessed of his own feathery lightness, and seem to follow the course of the gayest and the emptiest of all the bubbles, that, in his age of happy trifling, floated along the shallow but glittering stream of existence.

The Life of Cibber is peculiarly a favorite with us, not only by reason of the superlative coxcombry which it exhibits, but of the due veneration which it yields to an art too frequently under-rated, even among those to whose gratification it ministers. If the degree of enjoyment and of benefit produced by an art be any test of its excellence, there are few indeed which will yield to that of the actor. His exertions do not, indeed, often excite emotions so deep or so pure as those which the noblest poetry inspires, but their genial influences are far more widely extended.

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