Richard Brinsley Sheridan

Cecil Price (ed.), The Letters of Richard Brinsley Sheridan, Vol. 3

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pg 240924. To Kate Ogle, and to His Wife

Osborn MS.


Thursday night Decr. 7th [1815]

My Dear Kate

I should not have fail'd to have written by to Day's Post, having seen Baylie but having lain awake the whole night with eight hours incessant Coughing—I kept my bed to Day trying for a doze and am only up now while They do the room—I will get rid of myself first with Baylie before I speak of what is of more importance—Dear Hecca—. I could not help making the best of matters to him knowing He is so blunt a man I fear'd his giving me some terrifying opinion. I went thro' all my cases with him which are four. Would you know them—1st my poor veins—my first terror!—2d the inflammation, which caused my going into that infernal hot Bath, and which still continues—3d my total loss of appetite—I fear beyond remedy—and 4th. this racking cough which seized me last Saturday sennight, and seems resolved to scoff at the other three maladies and carry me off his own self. If for six weeks you find a Person never eating four ounces of solid food altogether nor obtaining through the whole times six hours of sound sleep—if I cannot walk I can have no exercise, if no exercise no sleep—and besides other drawbacks how can I have the least appetite? and how can this last? But Kate my Dear don't imagine I shall ever write in a moaning or melancholy Tone about myself—I will hope for the best. And I should add that Baylie left me with very encouraging words—He ha[s] gotten my two guineas tho'. Tho' do him justice he was very reluctant to take them but I spoke of his kindness and generosity to Hester and that I could not admit of a double intrusion—and He prescribed something which has done me good. As to my veins He would not let me undo what Cline had bound up so in fact He did not see the worst part—however he approved of what Cline had done in whom I have implicit confidence and whom I could very hardly prevail on to touch a fee either and only on the condition ofpg 241 not offering him another. Baylie says that by all he can judge you certainly are better. Good! O here is too much about myself.—

And now my Dear Hecca a word about your cottage. Can you suppose for a moment that I can wish to thwart you in anything you seem to set your heart so much on as quiet and seclusion, and that which you deem indispensible a facility of seeing Baylie. You describe how eagerly you desire to recover your health, by Heaven not more eagerly than I do—my own condition I value as little to it.—But I must make you smile another time at your idea of this cottage and 'Place'. Such a cottage as I believe never enter'd into the head of any human being before, and such a cottage as I am sure no human head ever enter'd into yet. Such a cottage as I believe Middlesex cannot produce nor I suspect all England. But my dear nummy you calculate erroneously even as to your principal point the seeing Baylie as I thought from the first—Baylie takes his turn in going to Windsor1— but is far from settling at his Place in the neighbourhood, when I ask'd him when he thought of going there again He answer'd 'at my usual time the beginning or middle of August' so that Hecca after getting out of the reach of me and poor Charles, would have got nearly out of the reach of Baylie too. To say truth I never much believed in Baylie or any Scotchman retiring from a most lucrative Profession without some very strong cause.—However I will assist in accomplishing your scheme rely on it with all my means and all my whole veins because I see your heart is set on it, and under modification it may be the very best. Baylie and I jump'd together on the same idea—and you may be in truly lovely air, aye in a flower Garden in a month—not a 100 yards out of Baylie['s] road, and the Bishop passing the door !2 but no more now I am tired to death. | God thee bless and good night |


I do long to hear what you think of Cub's3 account

Friday  O disappointment! I did think Charles['s] Letters must have extracted one line!

Notes Settings


Editor’s Note
1 Mrs. S. may have lived at Windsor for a short period, for she was buried in Old Windsor churchyard in Oct. 1817.
Editor’s Note
2 'The Bishop of London … is a near relation of Mrs. Sheridan' (Watkins, ii. 529). He was William Howley (1766–1848), and was present at S.'s deathbed.
Editor’s Note
3 Charles Brinsley Sheridan's.
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