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decease he thus humorously characterizes his own works :

As for his Works in verse and prose,
I am myself no judge of those-
Nor can I tell what critics thought them,
But this I know, all people bought them,
As with a moral view designed
To please and to reform mankind!
And if he often miss'd his aim,
The world must own it to their shame;
The PRAISE is his and theirs the BLAME!
He gave the little wealth he had
To build a house for fools and mad,
To shew by one satiric touch,
No nation wanted it so much-
That kingdom he hath left his debtor,
I wish it soon may have a better;
And, since you dread no further lashes,
Methinks you may forgive his ashes!

I am,

My dear young Friend,

Yours, &c.

J. E.

LETTER III.

KEW;

ITS SITUATION, POPULATION, AND BRIDGE; ITS NEAT CHAPEL, WITH MEMORIALS OF GAINSBOROUGH, MEYER, AND ZOFFANY; ITS ROYAL PALACE AND EMBELLISHMENTS; DR. BEATTIE'S INTERVIEW WITH THEIR MAJESTIES, AND CONVERSATION ON VARIOUS TOPICS; HIS POETICAI. AND OTHER PUBLICATIONS; HIS DEATH, &c.; GARDENS OF kew; sIR WILLIAM CHAMBERS; NEW PALACE ; EXHIBITION OF THE BRITISH NAVY; RICHMOND; DELIGHTFUL SITUATION; RESIDENCE OF MANY MONARCHS; QUEEN ELIZABETH'S SAD DEATH HERE; RICHMOND GREEN; ROYAL OBSERVATORY; CHURCH WITH MONUMENTS; THOMSON; LIFE, CHARACTER, DEATH AND WRITINGS; CURIOUS LETTER RESPECTING HIM FROM THE CULLODEN PAPERS; WAKEFIELD, LIFE, DEATH, AND WRITINGS; RICHMOND HILL WITH VARIOUS ENCOMIUMS ; TERRACE AND BRINGE; MR. LEWIS; HIS SuccesSFUL ATTEMPT TO HAVE THE FOOT-PATH THROUGH THE PARK RE-OPENED; CONCLUSION.

Islington, July 1810. MY DEAR YOUNG FRIEND, In casting your eye over the map of the county of Surry you will perceive the Thames taking a sweep from Barnes to Richmond, which produces a peninsula, at the extremity of which is the pleasant little village of Kew. To pass by in silence a spot dignified by a royal residence would be altogether inexcusable. Kew contains 72 houses and 400 inhabitants. It was formerly a hamlet to the parish of Kingston,

GAINSBOROUGU, MEYER, &c.

and has a neat stone bridge of seven arches over the Thames, which connects it with the eastern entrance into Brentford. At the extremity of the bridge is the well known inn of the Star and Garter, whence Kew appears environed with picturesque scenery. Here is a neat chapel erected at the expense of the neighbouring gentry, with monuments to the memory of three artists, Gainsborough, Meyer, and Zoffany ; the first dying in 1788, the second in 1789, and the last in 1810, all of pictorial celebrity. The lines upon Meyer, miniature painter to his Majesty, by Hayley, are beautiful :

Meyer! in thy works the world will ever see
How great the loss of art in losing thee,
But love and sorrow find the words too weak,
Nature's keen sufferings on thy death to speak,
Through all her duties what a heart was thine!
In thy cold dust what spirit used to shine!
Fancy and Truth, and Gaiety and Zeal,
What most we love in life and losing feel;
Age after age may not one artist yield
Equal to thee in Painting's ample field,
And ne'er shall sorrowing Earth to Heaven commend
A fonder parent or a firmer friend!

The Royal residence was the seat of Mr. Molyneux, but granted on a long lease to the parents of his pre. sent Majesty, who passed many of his early years within its walls. The apartments are more neat and elegant than they are spacious ; adorned with some excellent paintings. Among the rest is a famous

66

THE KING AND DR. BEATTIE.

hunting piece in which his Royal Highness Frederic Prince of Wales is represented with his attendants. Here are also two large vases of statuary marble, on which are exquisitely cut, in basso-relievo, the four seasons of the year. Various other embellishments might be mentioned, but I regarded this PRINCELY ABODE, with more than ordinary interest, on account of a literary conversation which took place within its walls upwards of forty years ago, honourable to both parties; it ought not to be consigned to oblivion. Sir William Forbes, in his Life of Dr. James Beattie, has given us an account of an interview between this amiable man and his Majesty at Kew. Dr. Johnson's interview with his Majesty, at Buckingham-house, was at the time the subject of admiration, and Dr. Beattie's audience with the king is not less interesting though less known. It shall be here transcribed, especially as the conversation which passed on the occasion shews both their Majesties to so much advantage. It must only be premised that Dr. Beattie had written An Essay on Truth in reply to Hume the celebrated unbeliever, and on this account his Majesty had recently granted him a pension of 2001. per an

Sir William Forbes' narrative runs thus :“ Dr. Beattie had been informed by Dr. Majendie, who lived at Kew, and was often at the palace, that the king having asked some questions of the doctor respecting him, and being told that he sometimes visited Dr. Majendie there, his Majesty had desired to be informed the next time Dr. Beattie was to be at

num.

DR. BEATTIE AT KEW.

67

Kew. What his Majesty's intentions were Dr. M. said he did not know, but supposed the king intended to admit him to a private audience. A day was there fore fixed on which Dr. Beattie was to be at Dr. Majendie's house, early in the morning of which the doctor was to give notice to his Majesty. Of this interesting event, so honourable to Dr, Beattie, I shall transcribe in his own words the account he has given in his diary :- Tuesday, 24th August, 1773. Set out for Dr. Majendie's, at Kew-green. The doctor told me he had not seen the king yesterday, but had left a note, in writing, to intimate that I was to be at his house to-day, and that one of the king's pages had come to him this morning to say that his Majesty would see me a little after twelve. At twelve the doctor and I went to the king's house at Kew. We had been only a few minutes in the hall when the king and queen came in from an airing, and as they passed through the hall the king called to me by name, and asked how long it was since I came from town. swered, “ about an hour.' • I shall see you,' says he,' • in a little. The doctor and I waited a considerable time, for the king was busy, and then we were called into a large room furnished as a library, where the king was walking and the queen sitting in a chair. We were received in the most gracious manner possible by both their Majesties. I had the honour of a conversation with them, nobody else being present but Dr. Majendie, for upwards of an hour on a great variety of topics, in which both the king and queen

I an

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