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Mr. Leman of the Crescent.'

We did so,
We did so,

poor Bessy

ran and fetched him. Mr. Piozzi received the blessed Sacrament at his hands; but recovered sufficiently to go home and die in his own house."

He died of gout at Brynbella in March 1809, and was buried in a vault constructed by her desire in Dymerchion Church. There is a portrait of him (period and painter unknown) still preserved amongst the family portraits at Brynbella. It is that of a good-looking man of about forty, in a straight-cut brown coat with metal buttons, lace frill and ruffles, and some leaves of music in his hand. There are also two likenesses of Mrs. Piozzi: one a three-quarter length (kit-kat), taken apparently when she was about forty; the other a miniature of her at an advanced age. Both confirm her description of herself as too strong-featured to be pretty. The hands in the three-quarter length are gloved.


Brynbella continued her headquarters till 1814, when gave it up to Sir John Salusbury. From that period she resided principally at Bath and Clifton, occasionally visiting Streatham or making summer trips to the seaside.


That she and her eldest daughter should ever be again (if they ever were) on a perfect footing of confidence and affection, was a moral impossibility. trangements are commonly durable in proportion to the closeness of the tie that has been severed; and it is no more than natural that each party, yearning for a reconciliation and not knowing that the wish is re

ciprocated, should persevere in casting the blame of the prolonged coldness on the other. Occasional sarcasms no more prove disregard or indifference, than Swift's "only a woman's hair" implies contempt for the sex.

Miss Thrale's marriage with Lord Keith in 1808 is thus mentioned in "Thraliana" :

"The Thraliana' is coming to an end; so are the Thrales. The eldest is married now. Admiral Lord Keith the man; a good man for ought I hear: a rich man for ought I am told: a brave man we have always heard and a wise man I trow by his choice. The name no new one, and excellent for a charade, e.g.

"A Faery my first, who to fame makes pretence;
My second a Rock, dear Britannia's defence;

In my third when combined will too quickly be shown
The Faery and Rock in our brave Elphin-stone."

Her way of life after Piozzi's death may be collected from the Letters, with the exception of one strange episode towards the end. When nearly eighty, she took a fancy for an actor named Conway, who came out on the London boards in 1813, and had the honour of acting Romeo and Jaffier to the Juliet and Belvidera of Miss O'Neill (Lady Becher). He also acted with her in Dean Milman's fine play, "Fazio." But it was his ill fate to reverse Churchill's famous lines:

"Before such merits all objections fly,

Pritchard's genteel, and Garrick's six feet high."

Conway was six feet high, and a very handsome man to boot; but his advantages were purely physical; not

a spark of genius animated his fine features and commanding figure, and he was battling for a moderate share of provincial celebrity, when Mrs. Piozzi fell in with him at Bath. It has been rumoured in Flintshire that she wished to marry him, and offered Sir John Salusbury a large sum in ready money (which she never possessed) to give up Brynbella (which he could not give up), that she might settle it on the new object of her affections. But none of the letters or documents that have fallen in my way afford even plausibility to the rumour, and some of the testamentary papers in which his name occurs, go far towards discrediting the belief that her attachment ever went beyond admiration and friendship expressed in exaggerated terms.*

Conway threw himself overboard and was drowned. in a voyage from New York to Charleston in 1828. His effects were sold at New York, and amongst them a copy of the folio edition of Young's "Night Thoughts," in which he had made a note of its having been presented to him by his "dearly attached friend, the celebrated Mrs. Piozzi." In the preface to "Love Letters of Mrs. Piozzi, Written when she was Eighty, to William Augustus Conway," published in London in 1842, it is stated that the originals, seven in number, were purchased by an

* Since the appearance of the first edition of this work, it has been stated on the authority of a distinguished man of letters that Conway shewed the late Charles Mathews a letter from Mrs. Piozzi, offering marriage.-New Monthly Magazine (edited by Mr. Harrison Ainsworth) for April, 1861.

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American "lady," who permitted a "gentleman to take copies and use them as he might think fit. What this "gentleman" thought fit, was to publish them with a catchpenny title and an alleged extract by way of motto to sanction it. The genuineness of the letters is doubtful, and the interpolation of three or four sentences would alter their entire tenor. But taken as they stand, their language is not warmer than an old woman of vivid fancy and sensibility might have deemed warranted by her age. exceedingly," is the mission given by the old Countess of Eglinton to Boswell in 1778. L'age n'a point de sexe; and no one thought the worse of Madame Du Deffand for the impassioned tone in which she addressed Horace Walpole, whose dread of ridicule induced him to make a most ungrateful return to her fondness.* Years before the formation of this acquaintance, Mrs. Piozzi had acquired the difficult art of growing old; je sais vieillir: she dwells frequently but naturally on her age: she contemplates the approach of death with firmness and without self-deception and her elasticity of spirit never for a moment suggests the image of an antiquated coquette. Of the seven letters in question, the one cited as most compromising is the sixth, in which Conway is exhorted to bear patiently a rebuff he had just received from some younger beauty:

"Tell Mr. Johnson I love him

"The old woman's fancy for Mr. Conway represents a relation of warm friendship that is of every-day occurrence between youth and age that is not crabbed.". The Examiner, Feb. 16, 1861,

""Tis not a year and a quarter since, dear Conway, accepting of my portrait sent to Birmingham, said to the bringer, 'Oh if your lady but retains her friendship: oh if I can but keep her patronage, I care not for the rest. And now, when that friendship follows you through sickness and through sorrow; now that her patronage is daily rising in importance: upon a lock of hair given or refused by une petite Traitresse, hangs all the happiness of my once high-spirited and high-blooded friend. Let it not be so. EXALT THY LOVE: DEJECTED HEART-and rise superior to such narrow minds. Do not however fancy she will ever be punished in the way you mention no, no; she'll wither on the thorny stem dropping the faded and ungathered leaves:-a China rose, of no good scent or flavour-false in apparent sweetness, deceitful when depended on unlike the flower produced in colder climates, which is sought for in old age, preserved even after death, a lasting and an elegant perfume, a medicine, too, for those whose shattered nerves require astringent remedies.

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"And now, dear Sir, let me request of you- to love yourself and to reflect on the necessity of not dwelling on any particular subject too long, or too intensely. It is really very dangerous to the health of body and soul. Besides that our time here is but short; a mere preface to the great book of eternity: and 'tis scarce worthy of a reasonable being not to keep the end of human existence so far in view that we may tend to it either directly or obliquely in every step. This is preaching — but remember how the sermon is written at three, four, and

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