face with a greeting like that of Balak to Balaam, _“ Come curse me, Jacob; and come defy me, Israel!" So say I-Come curse me, that east wind; and come defy me, the north! Would you have me in such circumstances copy you out a love-song?

I may perhaps see you on Saturday, but I will not be at the ball-Why should I? “man delights not me, nor woman either!" Can you supply me with the song, Let us all be unhappy together--do if you can, and oblige le pauvre miserable

R. B.



Brow, Sea-bathing quarters, 7th July, 1796.

My dear Cunningham,

I received yours here this moment, and am indeed highly flattered with the oba of the literary circle you mention ; a literary circle inferior to none in the two kingdoms. Alas! my friend, I fear the voice of the bard will soon be heard among you no more! For these eight or ten months I have been ailing, sometimes bedfast, and sometimes not; but these last three months I have been tortured with an excruciating rheumatism, which has reduced me to nearly the last stage, You actually would not know me if you saw me. --Pale, emaciated, and so feeble, as occasionally to need help from my chair-my spirits fled! fed !but I can no more on the subject-only the medi. cal folks tell me that my last and only chance is bathing and country quarters, and riding. The deuce of the matter is this: when an excise man is off duty; his salary is reduced to 351. instead of 501.-What way, in the name of thrift, shall I main. tain myself, and keep a horse in country quarters -with a wife and five children at home, on 351. ? I mention this, because I had intended to beg your utmost interest, and that of all the friends you can muster, to move our commissioners of excise to grant me the full salary.- I dare say you know them all personally. If they do not grant it me, I must lay my account with an exit truly en poete ; if I die not of disease, I must perish with hunger.

I have sent you one of the songs; the other my memory does not serve me with, and I have no copy here ; but I shall be at home soon, when I will send it you.-Apropos to being at home, Mrs. Burns threatens, in a week or two, to add one more to my paternal charge, which, if of the right gender, I intend shall be introduced to the world by the respectable designation of Alexander Cunningham Burns. My last was James Glencairn, so you can have no objection to the company of 110bility. Farewell.

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To Mrs. BURNS.

My dearest love,

Brow, Thursday. I delayed writing until I could teļl you what effect sea-bathing was likely to produce. It would be injustice to deny that it has eased niy pains, and I think has strengthened me; but my appetite is still extremely bad. No flesh nor fish can I swallow : porridge and milk are the only things I can taste. I am very happy to hear by miss Jess Lewars, that you are all well. My very best and kindest compliments to her and to all the chikiren. I will see you on Sunday. Your affectionate husband,

R. B.




Brow, 12th July, 1796. I have written you so often, without receiving any answer, that I would not trouble you again, but for the circumstances in which I am. An illness which has long hung about me, in all probability will speedily send me beyond that bourne whence no traveller returns. Your iendship, with which for many years you honoured me, was a friendship dearest to my soul. Your conversation, and especially your correspondence, were at once highly entertaining and instructive. With what, pleasure did I use to break up the seal!

The remembrance yet adds one pulse more to my poor palpitating heart. Farewell !!!

R. B.

The above is supposed to be the last production of Robert Burns, who died on the 21st of the month, nine days afterwards. He had however the pleasure of receiving a satisfactory explanation of his friend's silence, and an assurance of the continu. ance of her friendship to his widow and children; an assurance that has been amply fulfilled.

It is probable that the greater part of her letters to him were destroyed by our bard about the time that this last was written. He did not fore see that his own letters to her, were to appear in print, nor conceive the disappointment that will be felt, that a few of this excellent lady's have not served to enrich and adorn the collection.




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