[Continued from a letter begun on Monday, 8th April]
Tuesday. I received your letter last night, & wish it may be soon followed by another to say that all is over; but I cannot help thinking that Nature will struggle again & produce a revival. Poor woman! May her end be peaceful & easy, as the Exit we have witnessed! And I dare say it will. If there is no revival, suffering must be all over; even the consciousness of Existence I suppose was gone when you wrote. The Nonsense I have been writing in this & in my last letter, seems out of place at such a time; but I will not mind it, it will do you no harm, & nobody else will be attacked by it.–
I am heartily glad that you can speak so comfortably of your own health & looks, tho’ I can scarcely comprehend the latter being really approved. Could travelling fifty miles produce such an immediate change?– You were looking so very poorly here; everybody seem’d sensible of it.– Is there a charm in an hack postchaise?– But if there were, Mrs Craven’s carriage might have undone it all.– I am much obliged to you for the time & trouble you have bestowed on Mary’s cap, & am glad it pleases her; but it will prove a useless gift at present I suppose.– Will not she leave Ibthrop on her Mother’s death?– As a companion You will be all that Martha can be supposed to want; & in that light, under those circumstances your visit will indeed have been well-timed, & your presence & support have the utmost value.–
Miss Irvine spent yesterday Evening with us, & we had a very pleasant walk to Twerton. On our return we heard with much surprise that Mr Buller had called while we were out. He left his address, & I am just returned from seeing him & his wife in their Lodgings, 7 Bath St. His Errand as you may suppose, is health. It had been often recommended to him to try Bath, but his coming now seems to have been chiefly in consequence of his sister Susan’s wish that he would put himself under the care of Mr Bowen.– Having so very lately heard from Colyton & that account so tolerable, I was very much astonished–but Buller has been worse again since he wrote to me.– His Habit has always been billious, but I am afraid it must be too late for these waters to do him any good; for tho’ he is altogether in a more comfortable state as to Spirits & appetite than when I saw him last, & seems equal to a good deal of quiet walking, his appearance is exactly that of a confirmed Decline.–The Children are not come, so that poor Mrs Buller is away from all that can constitute enjoyment with her.– I shall be glad to be of any use to her, but she has that sort of quiet composedness of mind which always seems sufficient to itself.–
What honour I come to!– I was interrupted by the arrival of a Lady to enquire the character of Anne, who is returned from Wales & ready for service.– And I hope I have acquitted myself pretty well; but having a very reasonable Lady to deal with, one who only required a tolerable temper, my office was not difficult.– Were I going to send a girl to school I would send her to this person; to be rational in anything is great praise, especially in the ignorant class of school mistresses– & she keeps the School in the upper Crescent.–
Since I wrote so far, I have walked with my Mother to St James Square & Paragon; neither family at home. I have also been with the Cookes trying to fix Mary for a walk this afternoon, but as she was on the point of taking a long walk with some other Lady, there is little chance of her joining us. I should like to know how far they are going; she invited me to go with them when I excused myself as rather tired & mentioned my coming from St Ja[mes] Square, she said “that is a long walk indeed.” They want us to drink tea with them tonight, but I do not know whether my Mother will have nerves for it.–We are engaged tomorrow Evening. What request we are in!– Mrs Chamberlayne expressed to her neice her wish of being intimate enough with us to ask us to drink tea with her in a quiet way– We have therefore offered ourselves & our quietness thro’ the same medium.–
Our Tea & sugar will last a great while.–I think we are just the kind of people & party to be treated about among our relations;– we cannot be supposed to be very rich.– The Mr Duncans called yesterday with their Sisters, but were not admitted, which rather hurt me. In the Evening we met Mr John, & I am sorry to say that he has got a very bad cold–they have all had bad colds– & he has but just caught his.– Jenny is very glad to hear of your being better, & so is Robert, with whom I left a message to that effect–as my Uncle has been very much in earnest about your recovery.– I assure you, you were looking very ill indeed, & I do not beleive much of your being looking well already. People think you are in a very bad way I suppose, & pay you Compliments to keep up your Spirits.
[To be continued yet again on Thursday, 11th April]