1788 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Bp. Beilby Porteus

Thomas Twining to Frances Burney, 20 January 1788; Diary and Letters of the Author of Madam D'Arblay, ed. Austin Dobson (1904-05) 3:397.



So far I have tried what a little forced pleasantry will do for me, — with a great deal of real penitence and humiliation wrapped up in it. I take occasion to modulate into another subject, that may be favourable to me, as it will (I hope) put your mind into a posture of congratulation; with which it can no more hold its position of resentment than I can now hold two livings without a dispensation: for, you must know, my old Cambridge acquaintance, the Bishop of London, has just given me the living of St. Mary's, in Colchester. Its value is no great matter; about 90 a-year, I believe: but from its situation and other circumstances, it has always been more desirable to me than greater things elsewhere; and so pray be as glad as you possibly can. But admire me too: I actually asked for this dab of preferment. It is the first piece of pushery I ever was guilty of; and it has answered so well, that all my old sneaking principles of modesty and delicacy, etc., are overturned "de fond en comble"; and I believe if I were to begin the world again, I should run at everything that came in my way, like a mad bull. (Is that not your way at Court?)