Downing Decr 21st 1794.
Late as it is I must thank you for your kind letter.
shall drop my melancholy subject: for friendly as you are in your condolences, it is very difficult ‘to pluck resolution from flowery weakness’.1
I take the most effectual method of driving away sad thoughts from calamities public as well as private by applying with redoubled force to my studies. possibly in a few months you may find on your table a production of my pen which may give you some amusement. Another diversion from sorrow is one more proper to old age, that of making
my latter end beneficial to my neighboring fellow creatures dependents or otherwise. The one is by the importation of barley which bears even at present a high price,
& it is to be feared will rise to an immoderate one. The other is that of employing a number of poor now out of work in labors I might very well defer. At this time it will be peculiarly beneficial not only to themselves but to the public, As it will suppress murmurs
& even insurrections, for crafty malecontents will assuredly make advantage even of the calamity of bad seasons.
I fear that as you hint that dissipation has too great hold of the million: but it should not be checked least despondency should seize on I fear the majority:
let it enjoy its bagatelle.2 I live in a quiet neighborhood,
& give them little trouble but when I lay them under contribution for some good cause public or private. raising of seamen for the
county of Flint was one. The death of my fellow traveller Lloyd was another. Affection drew from my purse 50 guineas;
& his friends made it up
full two hundred, so you may think I carry something terrific about me: but then I do not spare myself.
Let me now enquire after my friends. How is Lord Walpole. and how is Mr Storer.
The last I truely pitied racked by ^the tortures of an easy chair: condemned to the
punishment of not knowing what to do with myself. I must now enquire after my friends: for Mrs Pennant
most earnestly desires me not to urge to her a london journey. she cannot bear the reminding scene: nor will it be grateful to me. But I must regret the not seeing of my friends. They must make
welsh tours & see me. I shall write again to morrow on Tuesday3
when I can get a frank, for I have a quere to put to you which requires a sketch to attend it, I am now in a humour to write: &
owe a letter! and as a duty
would not defer it. my warmest good wishes attend you &
Adieu, Dear Sir
Yrs most affectionatly