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[TO JOSEPH ALSTON.]
When, when will the month of October come? It appears to recede instead of approaching; and time, which extinguishes all other sorrows, serves but to increase mine; every moment I feel that I have lost so much of your society which can never be regained. Ah, my husband, what can be pleasure to your Theo., unassisted by the charms of your presence and participation? Nothing. It is an idea which has no place in my mind unconnected with you.
I send you M'Kenzie; there is no London edition in town more elegantly bound. Before my departure you complained grievously of the bad cigars sold in Charleston,. In the hope that this city affords better, I send you a box containing a thousand; the seller took some trouble to choose the best for me, and I have added some Vanilla and Tonka beans to them. May the offering please my great Apollo! If you should do so rash a thing as to visit the city during the summer, pray smoke all the time you remain there; it creates an atmosphere round you, and prevents impure air from reaching you.
I wish, also, that you would never be in town before or after the middle of the day. I have somewhere heard that persons were less apt to catch infectious disorders at that time than any other, and I believe it. Have you never remarked how highly scented the air is before sunrise in a flower-garden, so much so as to render the smell of any flower totally imperceptible if you put it to your nose? That is, I suppose, because, when the sun acts with all his force, the air becomes so rarefied, that the quantity of perfume you inhale at a breath can have no effect; while, on the contrary, during the night, the vapours become so condensed that you perceive them in every blast. May not the same be the case with noxious vapours? It is said that the fever in Charleston, does not arise from that, but the filth of the streets are quite enough to make one think otherwise. Perhaps I am wrong both in my reason and opinion. If so, you are able to correct; only do as you think best, and be prudent. It is all I ask. I imagine the subject worth a reflection, and you cannot err. Montesquieu says he writes to make people think; and why may not Theodosia?
We have this evening been to visit Mrs. Caines (late Mrs. Verplanck) at her country place. The marriage was thus published--Married, G.C., Esq., counsellor of law, from the West Indies, 'and now having a work in the press', to Mrs., &c. That work has been the cause of some curiosity and not a little amusement.
I dined the other day with Mrs. Montgomery. The chancellor has sent her out a list of statues, which are to be so exactly imitated in plaster as to leave the difference of materials only. The statues are, the Apollo Belvidere, Venus de Medicis, Laocoon and his children, Antinous, and some others. The patriotic citizens of New-York, are now subscribing to the importation of a set here for the good of the public. If they are really perfect imitations, they will be a great acquisition to this city. But, 'selon moi', there is the difficulty. Our son looks charmingly. Adieu.
- Project Gutenberg's Memoirs of Aaron Burr, Volume 2., by Matthew L. Davis, 1836