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than others with all the assistance of wind and tide; and yet that is a true judgment which we form of ourselves from our situation with others, whether we are on a line with them, or before them.

LETTER XXXIX.

10th November. T Begin to think my situation more ■*. tolerable: I am much occupied; and the number of actors, and the different parts they play, make a very amusing variety in the scene. I have made an acquaintance with the Count of C—, and I esteem him B 3 more more and more every day. He is a man of strong understanding and, great discernment: but though he: sees farther than other people, he isnot therefore cold in his temper and manner; his sensibility surpasses all; his other qualities. One morning that I went to speak to him upon business, he expressed a friendship for me; by the first word he perceived that we understood each other, and that he might talk to me in a style different from that he made use of with most of the others

I cannot express the satisfaction I receive from the openness of his conduct with regard to me. It i*

the the greatest of pleasures when a delicate mind thus lays itself open to one. ■'

LETTER XL.'

December 24. T Foresaw it; the minister occasions ■*- me a number of vexations. 'Tis the most punctilious blockhead under heaven ; he goes on step by step, with the trifling minuteness of ah old woman. But how can a man be pleased with other people who is never satisfied with himself? I like to go on with business regularly and B 4 with with alacrity; and when it is finished, that it should be finished. But not so with him; he is capable of returning my draught to me, and saying, " It will do; but go over it again however, there is always something to correct ; one may find a better phrase, or a properer word."—I then lose all patience, and wish myself at the devil. Not a conjunction, not one connecting word must be omitted ; and as tc the transpositions, which I like, and which flow naturally from my pen, he is their mortal foe. If every sentence is not expressed exactly in the style of the

office, ©slice, he is quite lost. 'Tis deplorable to have any connection with such a personage,

The only thing which gives me satisfaction, is my intimacy with Count C—. He very frankly told me the other day, how much he was displeased with the difficulties and delays of the minister; that people of his cast must make every thing troublesome to themselves, and to others: " But," added he, *' one must submit, as a traveller that is obliged to climb over a mountain; if the mountain was not in the way, his road would undoubtedly be ihorter and more convenient, but in

fine,

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