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and what is his name? If you give me satisfaction on this head, I shall not urge the demand I have made upon you sooner than the time you mention ; but as it may be done at once, I expect your answer by the bearer, whom you well know, for he was, as he informs me, very lately your servant.
I assure you, Sir, it is in consideration of the great opinion I have of your integrity, that I refer the payment of my demand to a simple answer to this question ; but I fear that cannot be done.
I am your friend and well-wisher.
Dear Sir,—I believe that ever since you first knew me, you will be ready to acknowledge, that no person was ever more bashful in asking favours than myself. Indeed I have always considered it as more pleasing to an honest mind, to confer than to receive a favour ; but an unexpected affliction in my family, obliges me to solicit your assistance, by the loan of about forty pounds for six months, but on this condition, that you can spare it without hurting yourself; for I would by no means choose that my friend should suffer in his present circumstances, in order to oblige me. Indeed, Sir, I was some days engaged amongst my acquaintances to raise the money, before I could prevail with myself to ask it from you ; and that I have now done it, is from a principle far more noble than any lucrative motive, nor indeed would I have asked it at all, were I not morally certain of paying it at the time proposed. I hope this will not give offence, and as I said before, if it is any way inconvenient, let me beg that you will refuse it.
I am, sir, yours with the greatest sincerity.
The Answer. Dear Sir,–I could not hesitate one moment in answering your letter; and had I known that my worthy friend had been in the want of the sum mentioned, I should never have put his unaffected modesty to the blush, by suffering him to ask it ; no, sir, the offer should have come from myself. However, the sum is sent by the bearer, but let me beg that, if you consider me really as your friend, you will suit the payment to your own circumstances, without being confined to a particular time; and not only so, but that you will likewise command my assistance in every thing else wherein I can serve you. But lest you think me strictly formal, I have hereby given you leave to draw on me to the amount of two hundred pounds, or for any less sum, to be paid as is most suitable to your circumstances.
LETTER XLVI. From a Tenant to a Landlord, excusing delay of
payment. Sir,—I have been your tenant above ten years in the house where I now live, and you know that I never failed to pay my rent quarterly when due. At present I am extremely sorry to inform you, that from a variety of losses and disappointments, I am under the necessity of begging that you will indulge me one quarter longer. By that time I hope to have it in my power to answer your just demand, and the favour shall be ever gratefully acknowledged by,
Your obedient humble servent.
The Answer. Sir, It was never my design to oppress you. I have had long trial of your honesty, and therefore
you may rest perfectly satisfied concerning your present request. No demand shall be made by me upon you for rent, until it suits you to pay it ; for I am well convinced you will not keep it from me any longer.-I am yours sincerely.
LETTER XLVIII. From a country Farmer, on the same occasion.
Honoured Sir,-I am extremely sorry, that through a variety of unforeseen accidents, I am obliged to write you on such a subject as this. The season last year was bad, but I was enabled to pay you. This has turned out much worse, and it being so long before we could get the corn home, it is not yet fit
to be sold. I only beg your patience about two months longer, when I hope to pay you faithfully, with gratitude. am, sir, your honest tenant, and humble servant.
The Answer. Mr. Clover,—I hope that, from the whole of my conduct ever since you first became my tenant, you cannot have reason to allege any thing against me. I never treated you with rigour, as I always considered you as an industrious, honest man. Make yourself perfectly easy concerning the payment of your rent, till I come to the country in the summer, and if things be as you represent them, (and I doubt not but they are,) you may be assured of every reasonable indulgence.-I am yours.
LETTER L. From an Insolvent Debtor, to his principal Creditor,
respecting the acceptance of a Composition. Sir, —When I first entered upon business, I little thought that ever I should be under the neces
sity of writing you on such a subject as this ; but experience teaches me, that it is much better to ac. knowledge the state of affairs to my creditors, than put them to the expense of taking out a commission of bankruptcy. To you, therefore, sir, as the person to whom I am principally indebted, do I address myself on this melancholy occasion, and must freely acknowledge that my affairs are very much perplexed. I have these ten years past endeavoured to acquire something to myself, but in vain. The variety of different articles which I have been obliged to sell on credit, and the losses sustained thereby, always kept me in low circumstances ; and often when I paid you money, I had none left for the support of my family. If you will be pleased to employ any prudent person to examine my books, I doubt not but you will be convinced, that the whole of my conduct has been consistent with the strictest rules of honesty ; and if it shall appear so to you, I must beg you will be pleased to call a meeting of the ditors, and lay it before them. I have not spent any more than was absolutely necessary for the support of my family, and every thing remaining shall be delivered up. When all this is done, I hope you will accept of it, as it is not in my power to do any more, and consider me as one whose misfortunes call for pity instead of resentment.--) am, sir, your most humble servant.
The Answer. Sir,—It is with the greatest concern that I have perused your affecting letter ; and should consider myself as very cruel indeed, if I refused to comply with a request so reasonable as that made by you. I have employed a worthy person, a friend of mine, to examine your books, the result of which shall immediately be laid before the other creditors, and if it is as you represent, you need not be afraid of any harsh usage. I always considered you as one of the greatest integrity, and am determined to lay down a plan for your future support. In the meantime I have sent a trifle to defray your expenses, till the other affairs are settled, and am,
Your sincere well-wisher.
LETTER LII. From a Tradesman to a Wholesale Dealer, to delay
payment of a Sum of Money. Sir,-My note to you will be payable in ten days, and I am sorry to inform you, that although I have considerable sums, in good hands, yet none of them are due these three weeks, which is all the time I require. It is a favour I never asked of any one till this moment, and I hope for the future not to have any occasion to repeat it. I am really distressed for your answer ; but as proof of my sincerity, have sent inclosed three notes subscribed by persons well known to yourself, and although they exceed my debt, yet I have no objection to your keeping them as security till due. Let me beg, to hear from you as soon as this comes to hand, which will greatly oblige,---Your humble servant.
The Answer. Sir,-- It was extremely fortunate for you that your letter arrived the day after it was written, for I was to have paid your note away yesterday, and I could not have had an opportunity of recalling it in time to have served you. Indeed it was imprudent not to have communicated the news to me sooner,