LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

Memoir of John Murray
Isaac D’Israeli to John Murray, [1805?]

Vol. 1 Contents
Chapter I.
Chapter II.
Chapter III.
Chapter IV.
Chapter V.
Chapter VI.
Chapter VII.
Chapter VIII.
Chapter IX.
Chapter X.
Chapter XI.
Chapter XII.
Chapter XIII.
Chapter XIV.
Chapter XV.
Chapter XVI.
Chapter XVII.
Chapter XVIII.
Chapter XIX.
Vol. 2 Contents
Chap. XX.
Chap. XXI.
Chap. XXII.
Chap. XXIII.
Chap. XXIV.
Chap. XXV.
Chap. XXVI.
Chap. XXVII.
Chap. XXIX.
Chap. XXX.
Chap. XXXI.
Chap. XXXII.
Chap. XXXIV.
Chap. XXXV.
Chap. XXXVI.
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Dear Murray,

I am delighted by your apology for not having called on me after I had taken my leave of you the day before; but you can make an unnecessary apology as agreeable as any other act of kindness.

I think you have admirably well disposed of a part of your wine, and it is done with your accustomed ingenuity, which always triples the value of a gift. Hunter should be instructed to return the same number of empty bottles—the only opportunity you have is to get rid of them on these occasions. They break and perish in the heap at home. Empty bottles, too, is an old cant term at the University to characterise a certain set of dull fellows, or frivolous scribblers—so that a bookseller, of all men, should be cautious of harbouring them.

You are sanguine in your hope of a good sale of ‘Curiosities,’ it will afford us a mutual gratification; but when you consider it is not a new work, though considerably improved I confess, and that those kinds of works cannot boast of so much novelty as they did about ten years ago, I am somewhat more moderate in my hopes.

What you tell me of F. F. from Symond’s, is new to me. I sometimes throw out in the shop remote hints about the sale of books, all the while meaning only mine; but they have no skill in construing the timid wishes of a modest author; they are not aware of his suppressed sighs, nor
see the blushes of hope and fear tingling his cheek; they are provokingly silent, and petrify the imagination.

I shall certainly not hint at your further absence from Fleet Street. And then, a great event in your life, a fortunate one as I am persuaded, must succeed—that will also produce great dissipation of mind; but I hope that after a few months you will be fixed as the centre point of all your operations, and have the orb you describe moving correctly about you. To drop the metaphor, be assured your presence is absolutely necessary in and about your shop. You had to emigrate to find a solid business; you seem to have succeeded; you must now transplant it to your own bit of ground, and nurse it with the skill and industry of the gardener. You must employ your talents in this great town, as well as elsewhere, and in your house as well as in the town. You will not be offended with the ardent zeal I feel for your welfare; I wish to see you rooted in the earth as well as spreading out in blossoms and flowers.

Mrs. D’Israeli desires to be particularly remembered to you, love to Jane, compliments to Mr. and Mrs. Paget, and will be very happy to be introduced to Mary Anne, whom she thanks for her polite wishes. Pray include me in all these; I remember a beautiful Cupid’s head, which just laid its chin upon your father’s table, some twelve years ago. When I see Mary Anne I shall then be able to judge if I know her; a metamorphosis into a Venus from a Cupid might perplex me.

Believe me, with the truest regard,
Yours ever,
I. D’Israeli.