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Garrick went thither at the same time, known.3 I never heard that he found with intent to complete his education, any protection or encouragement by the and follow the profession of the law, from means of Mr. Colson, to whose academy which he was soon diverted by his decided David Garrick went. Mrs. Lucy Porter preference for the stage.
told me, that Mr. Walmsley gave him a This joint expedition of those two letter of introduction to Lintot his bookeminent men to the metropolis, was many seller, and that Johnson wrote some years afterward noticed in an allegorical things for him ; but I imagine this to be poem on Shakespeare's Mulberry tree, by a mistake, for I have discovered no trace Mr. Lovibond, the ingenious author of of it, and I am pretty sure he told me, “The Tears of Old-May-Day.”
that Mr. Cave was the first publisher They recommended to Mr. by whom his pen was engaged in LonColson,” an eminent mathematician and don. master of an academy, by the following He had a little money when he came letter from Mr. Walmsley :
to town, and he knew how he could live in the cheapest manner.
His first lodg"To the Reverend Mr. COLSON.
ings were at the house of Mr. Norris, a “Lichfield, March 2, 1737.
staymaker, in Exeter-street, adjoining
Catherine-street, in the Strand. “I "I had the favour of yours, and am extremely dined,” said he, “very well for eightobliged to you; but I cannot say I had a greater pence, with very good company, at the affection for you upon it than I had before being Pine-Apple in New-street, just by. early friendship, as by your many 'excellent and Several of them had travelled.
They valuable qualifications; and, had s had a son of my expected to meet every day ; but did not own, it would be my ambition, instead of sending know one another's names.
It used to him to the University, to dispose of him as this cost the rest a shilling, for they drank young gentleman is.
“He, and another neighbour of mine, one Mr. wine ; but I had a cut of meat for sixpence, Samuel Johnson, set out this morning for London and bread for a penny, and gave the together. Davy Garrick is to be with you early waiter a penny ; so that I was quite well the next week, and Mr. Johnson to try his fate with a tragedy, and to see to get himself employed in served, nay, better than the rest, for they some translation, either from the Latin or the gave the waiter nothing." 4 French. Johnson is a very good scholar and He at this time, I believe, abstained poet, and I have great hopes will turn out a fine tragedy-writer. If it should any way lie in your
entirely from fermented liquors : a way, I doubt not but you would be ready to practice to which he rigidly conformed recommend and assist your countryman.
for many years together, at different “G. WALMSLEY."
periods of his life. How he employed himself
His Ofellus, in the Art of Living in first coming to London is not particularly Irish painter, whom he knew at Birming
London, I have heard him relate, was an 1 Both of them used to talk pleasantly of this ham, and who had practised his own their first journey to London. Garrick, evidently precepts of economy for several years in meaning to embellish a little, said one day in my the British capital. He assured Johnson, hearing, “ We rode and tied.” of Killaloe, [Dr. Barnard, ) informed me, that at who, I suppose, was then meditating to another time, when Johnson and Garrick were try his fortune in London, but was dining together in a pretty, large company, Johnson humorously ascertaining the chronology 3 One curious anecdote was communicated by of something, expressed himself thus: “That was himself to Mr. John Nichols. Mr. Wilcox, the the year when I came to London with two-pence bookseller, on being informed by him that his halfpenny in my pocket.", Garrick overhearing intention was to get his livelihood as an author, him, exclaimed, Eh? what do you say? with eyed his robust frame attentively, and with a two-pence halfpenny in your pocket ?”—John- significant look, said, “You had bettt buy a SON. “Why, yes; when I came with two-pence porter's knot." He however added, Wilcox half-penny in my pocket, and thou, Davy, with was one of my best friends." B. three half-pence in thine.' B.
4 Cumberland says, in his Memoirs (i. 355) that 2 The Rev. John Colson was first master of he had heard Johnson declare that for a conthe Free School at Rochester, and afterwards siderable time he lived on fourpence halfpenny a Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at Cambridge. ( day.
THE ART OF LIVING IN LONDON
apprehensive of the expense, “That thirty Hervey, one of the branches of the noble pounds a year was enough to enable a family of that name, who had been quarman to live there without being con- tered at Lichfield as an officer of the army, temptible. He allowed ten pounds for and had at this time a house in London, clothes and linen. He said a man might where Johnson was frequently entertained, live in a garret at eighteen-pence a week; and had an opportunity of meeting genteel few people would inquire where he company. Not very long before his lodged ; and if they did, it was easy to death, he mentioned this, among other say, "Sir, I am to be found at such a particulars of his life, which he was kindly place. By spending three-pence in a communicating to me; and he described coffee-house, he might be for some hours this early friend, “Harry Hervey,” thus : every day in very good company; he
was a vicious man, but very kind to might dine for sixpence, breakfast on If you call a dog HERVEY, I shall bread and milk for a penny, and do love him.”
On clean-shirt-day he He told me he had now written only went abroad, and paid visits.” I have three acts of his Irene, and that he heard him more than once talk of his' retired for some time to lodgings at frugal friend, whom he recollected with Greenwich, where he proceeded in it esteem and kindness, and did not like to somewhat farther, and used to compose, have one smile at the recital. “This walking in the Park; but did not stay man,” said he, gravely," was a very sen- long enough at that place to finish it. sible man, who perfectly understood At this period we find the following: common affairs : a man of a great deal of letter from him to Mr. Edward Cave, knowledge of the world, fresh from life, which, as a link in the chain of his literary not strained through books. He bor- history, it is proper to insert : rowed a horse and ten pounds at Birmingham. Finding himself master of
" TO MR. CAVE. so much money, he set off for West Chester, in order
“Greenwich, next door to the Golden Heart, to get to Ire
Church-street, July 12, 1737. land. He returned the horse, and SIR, probably the ten pounds too, after he got
“HAVING observed in your papers very unhome.
common offers of encouragement to men Considering Johnson's narrow circum- to communicate to you the following design,
letters, I have chosen, being a stranger in London, stances in the early part of his life, and which, I hope, if you join in it, will be of advanparticularly at the interesting era of his tage to both of us. launching into the ocean of London, it is been lately translated into French, and published
* The History of the Council of Trent having not to be wondered at, that an actual in- with large Notes by Dr. Le Courayer, the stance, proved by experience, of the pos- reputation of that book is so mucho revived in sibility of enjoying the intellectual luxury England, that, it is presumed, a new translation of social life upon a very small income, Notes from the French, could not fail of a
of it from the Italian, together with Le Courayer's should deeply engage his attention, and be favourable reception. ever recollected by him as a circumstance “If it be answered, that the History is already of much importance. He amused himself, in English, it must be remembered, that there
was the same objection against Le Courayer's I remember, by computing how much undertaking, with this disadvantage, that the more e pense was absolutely necessary to French had a version by one of their best
translive uj the same scale with that which lators, whereas you cannot read three
pages his friend described, when the value of the style is capable of great improvements; but
the English History without discovering that money was diminished by the progress of It may be estimated that
1 The Honourable Henry Hervey, third son of double the money might now with diffi- the first Earl of Bristol, quitted the army, and culty be sufficient.
He married a sister of Sir Thomas Amidst this cold obscurity, there was Aston, by, whom
he got the Aston estate, and one brilliant circumstance to cheer him ; he assumed the name and arms of that family.
Hervey's eldest was well acquainted with Mr. Henry | brother was Pope's Lord Fanny.
The weight of years, and totters to the tempest,
whether those improvements are to be expected poet might avail himself with considerable from the attempt, you must, judge from the advantage. I shall give my readers some specimen, which, if you approve the proposal, I shall submit to your examination.
specimens of different kinds, distinguishSuppose the merit of the versions equal, we ing them by the italic character. may hope that the addition of the Notes will turn the balance in our favour, considering the “Nor think to say here will I stop, reputation of the Annotator.
Here will I fix the limits of transgression, "Be pleased to favour me with a speedy Nor farther tempt the avenging rage of heaven. answer, if
you are not willing to engage in this When guilt like this once harbours in the breast, scheme; and appoint me a day to wait upon you, Those holy beings, whose unseen direction if you are.
Guides through the maze of life the steps of man,
Fly the detested mansions of impiety,
It should seem from this letter, though A small part only of this interesting adsubscribed with his own name, that he | monition is preserved in the play, and is had not yet been introduced to Mr. Cave. varied, I think, not to advantage : We shall presently see what was done in consequence of the proposal which it “The soul once tainted with so foul a crime, contains.
No more shall glow with friendship’s hallow'd
ardour : In the course of the summer he returned Those holy beings, whose superior care to Lichfield, where he had left Mrs. Guides erring mortals to the paths of virtue, Johnson, and there he at last finished his Affrighted at impiety like thine, tragedy, which was not executed with his Resign their charge to baseness and to ruin.” rapidity of composition upon other occa
“I feel the soft infection sions, but was slowly and painfully Teach me the Grecian art of soft persuasion.”
Flush in my cheek, and wander in my veins. elaborated. A few days before his death, while burning a great mass of papers, he “Sure this is love, which heretofore I picked out from among them the original conceived the dream of idle maids, and unformed sketch of this tragedy, in his wanton poets.” own hand-writing, and gave it to Mr. Langton, by whose favour a copy of it Though no comets or prodigies foretold is now in my possession. It contains the ruin of Greece, signs which heaven fragments of the intended plot, and must by another miracle enable us to speeches for the different persons of the understand, yet might it be foreshewn, by drama, partly in the raw materials of prose, tokens no less certain, by the vices which partly worked up into verse ; as also a always bring it on.” variety of hints for illustration, borrowed from the Greek, Roman, and modern This last passage is worked up in the writers. The hand-writing is very diffi- tragedy itself, as follows: cult to be read, even by those who are best acquainted with Johnson's mode of LEONTIUS. -That power that kindly penmanship, which at all times was very The clouds, a signal of impending showers, particular. The King having graciously To warn the wand'ring linnet to the shade, accepted of this manuscript as a literary Beheld, without concern, expiring Greece, curiosity, Mr. Langton made a fair and And not one prodigy foretold our fate. distinct copy of it, which he ordered to DEMETRIUS. A thousand horrid prodigles fore
told it; be bound up with the original and the
A feeble government, eluded laws, printed tragedy ; and the volume is de- A factious populace, luxurious nobles, posited in the King's library.
His And all the maladies of sinking states, Majesty was pleased to permit Mr. When public villainy, too strong for justi
Shows his bold front, the harbinger of ruin Langton to take a copy of it for himself. Can brave Leontius call for airy, wonders,
The whole of it is rich in thought and which cheats interpret, and which fools regard ? imagery, and happy expressions, and of When some neglected fabric nods beneathi the disjecta membra scattered throughout, Must
heaven despatch the messengers of light, and as yet unarranged, a good dramatic Or wake the dead, to warn us of its fall ???
COMPLETION OF "IRENE"
MAHOMET (to IRENE). “ I have tried is taking the wall, another yields it; and thee, and joy to find that thou deservest it is never a dispute.”] to be loved by Mahomet, with a mind He now removed to London with Mrs. great as his own. Sure, thou art an er- Johnson ; but her daughter, who had ror of nature, and an exception to the rest lived with them at Edial, was left with her of thy sex, and art immortal ; for senti- relations in the country.
His lodgings ments like thine were never to sink into were for some time in Woodstock$ nothing. I thought all the thoughts of the street, near Hanover-square, and afterfair had been to select the graces of the day, ward in Castle-street, near Cavendish
) . robe, tune the voice and roll the eye, place interesting, to many, in tracing so great the gem, choose the dress, and add new a man through all his different habitations, roses to the fading cheek, but-spark- I shall, before this work is concluded," ling."
present my readers with an exact list of Thus in the tragedy :
his lodgings and houses, in order of time,
which, in placid condescension to my “ Illustrious maid, new wonders fix me thine ; respectful curiosity, he one evening dicThy soul completes the triumphs of thy face ; tated to me, but without specifying how I thought, forgive, my fair, the noblest aim, The strongest effort of a female soul
long he lived at each. In the progress Was but to choose the graces of the day,
of his life I shall have occasion to mention To tune the tongue, to teach the eyes to roll, some of them as connected with particular Dispose the colours of the flowing robe,
incidents, or with the writing of particular And add new roses to the faded cheek.
parts of his works. To some, this minute I shall select one other passage, on ac- attention may appear trifling ; but when count of the doctrine which it illustrates. we consider the punctilious exactness with Irene observes, “That the Supreme Being which the different houses in which Milton will accept of virtue, whatever outward resided have been traced by the writers circumstances it may be accompanied of his life, a similar enthusiasm may be
with, and may be delighted with varieties pardoned in the biographer of Johnson. FP of worship; but is answered : That His tragedy being by this time, as he Ef variety cannot affect that Being, who, in- thought, completely finished and fit for the
finitely happy in his own perfections, stage, he was very desirous that it should wants no external gratifications ; nor can be brought forward. Mr. Peter Garrick infinite truth be delighted with falsehood; told me, that Johnson and he went tothat though he may guide or pity those he gether to the Fountain tavern, and read
leaves in darkness, he abandons those who it over, and that he afterward solicited the shut their eyes against the beams of Mr. Fleetwood, the patentee of Drury-lane day.”
theatre, to have it acted at his house ; but Johnson's residence at Lichfield, on his Mr. Fleetwood would not accept it, return to it at this time, was only for three probably because it was not patronized months; and as he had as yet seen but a by some man of high rank; and it was small part of the wonders of the metropolis, not acted till 1749, when his friend David he had little to tell his townsmen. Hé Garrick was manager of that theatre. related to me the following minute anec
The “ Gentleman's Magazine,” begun dote of this period : “ In the last age, and carried on by Mr. Edward Cave, when my
mother lived in London, there under the name of “ Sylvanus Urban, were two sets of people, those who gave had attracted the notice and esteem of the wall, and those who took it ; "the Johnson, in an eminent degree, before he peaceable and the quarrelsome. When I came to London, as an adventurer in
returned to Lichfield, after having been literature. He told me, that when he d? in London, my mother asked me, whether first saw St. John's Gate, the place where
I was one of those who gave the wall, or that deservedly popular miscellany was those who took it. Now it is fixed that
1 Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides, 3d every man keeps to the right ; or, if one I edit. p. 232.
originally printed, he “beheld it with taste and sensibility, had' he not felt reverence. I suppose, indeed, that himself highly gratified. every young author has had the same kind of feeling for the magazine or periodical
Ad URBANUM.* publication which has first entertained him,
URBANE, nullis fesse laboribus, and in which he has first had an opportunity URBANE, nullis victe calumniis, to see himself in print, without the risk
Cui fronte sertum in erudita of exposing his name. I myself recollect
Perpetuo viret et virebit ; such impressions from “ The Scots Maga Quid moliatur gens imitantium, zine, ," which was begun at Edinburgh
Quid et minetur, solicitus parum,
Vacare solis perge Musis, in the year 1739, and has been ever con
Juxta animo studiisque felix. ducted with judgment, accuracy, and propriety. I yet cannot help thinking of
Linguæ procacis plumbea spicula, it with an affectionate regard. Johnson
Fidens, superbo frange silentio ;
Victrix per obstantes catervas has dignified the “Gentleman's Maga
Sedulitas animosa tendet. zine,” by the importance with which he
Intende nervos, fortis, inanibus invests the life of Cave ; but he has given it
Risurus olim nisibus æmuli ; still greater lustre by the various admirable
Intende jam nervos, habebis Essays which he wrote for it.
Participes opera Camænas. Though Johnson was often solicited by Non ulla Musis pagina gratior, his friends to make a complete list of his Quam quæ severis ludicra jungere
Novit, fatigatamque nugis writings, and talked of doing it, I believe
Utilibus recreare mentem. with a serious intention that they should all be collected on his own account, he
Texente Nymphis serta Lycoride,
Rosa ruborem sic viola adjuvat put it off from year to year, and at last
Immista, sic Iris refulget died without having done it perfectly. I
Æthereis variata fucis. 2 S. J. have one in his own hand-writing which contains a certain number; I indeed doubt
2 A translation of this Ode, by an unknown if he could have remembered every one correspondent, appeared in the Magazine for the of them, as they were so numerous, so
month of May following: various, and scattered in such a multi “Hail URBAN! indefatigable man plicity of unconnected publications ; nay, Unwearied yet by all thy useful toil! several of them published under the names
Whom num'rous slanderers assault in vain ;
Whom no base calumny can put to foil. of other persons, to whom he liberally
But still the laurel on thy learned brow contributed from the abundance of his Flourishes fair, and shall for ever grow. mind. We must, therefore, be content What mean the servile imitating crew, to discover them, partly from occasional What their vain blust'ring and their empty noise, information given by him to his friends, Ne'er seek : but still thy noble ends pursue, and partly from internal evidence.1 Unconquer'd by the rabble's venal voice.
Still to the Muse thy studious mind apply, Ilis first performance in the “Gentle Happy in temper as in industry. man's Magazine,” which for many years The senseless sneerings of a haughty tongue, was his principal source for employment Unworthy thy attention to engage, and support, was a copy of Latin verses, Unheeded pass : and though they mean thee in March, 1738, addressed to the editor wrong, in so happy a style of compliment, that By manly silence disappoint their rage.
Assiduous diligence confounds its foes, Cave must have been destitute both of
Resistless, though malicious crowds
oppose. 1 While in the course of my narrative I enu
Exert thy powers, nor slacken in the course, merate his writings, I shall take care that my Thy spotless fame shall quash all false reports: readers shall not be left to waver in doubt,
Exert thy powers, nor fear a rival's
force, between certainty and conjecture, with regard to But thou shalt smile at all his vain efforts, their authenticity; and, for that purpose, shall Thy labours shall be crown'd with large sucmark with an asterisk (*) those which he acknowledged to his friends, and with a dagger (t) those
The Muses' aid thy Magazine shall bless. which are ascertained to be his by internal evidence. When any other pieces are ascribed No page more grateful to th' harmonious Nine to him, I shall give my reasons. B.
Than that wherein thy labours we surrey ;