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[504] to write the truth, and the whole truth, just as it strikes your mind, I don't doubt. Whether it ought to be communicated by private letters to your friends, or by your journal, I do not know. Your friends, I know, will expect everything in letters, therefore I would write but few letters, and those I would write in my best style, and write my sober, honest opinion, without any exaggeration. . . .

February 8, 1817.—I read carefully your letter to me of the 9th of November last, No. 59, as well as both of yours to Dr. Kirkland, and made up my mind, as I had done long before, and as you have learnt by my letters before now, that a seat at the University is much more congenial to your taste, genius, and habits, in my opinion, than to be employed on the boisterous and vexatious ocean of law and politics. After reading your letter, and examining the subject with care, and fearing, by the contents of your letter, that I had misstated to you the conversation which took place between me and Dr. Kirkland, at two several times, I called on him and handed him your letter in the affirmative, which he read, and was, to appearances, much pleased, as I really thought he was. I soon found that my statement to you was correct. . . . .

. . . . To see Athens, my son, is not worth exposing your life, nor the time nor the money you must spend to see it. Whatever time you spend, let it be for useful purposes,—let them be like seed sown in a rich soil, from which we may expect some thirty, some sixty, and some an hundred fold. While I think of it, I will here state, that, however corrupt may be the character of Lord Byron, and however much you ought to despise both, yet he is entitled, as a stranger, to your thanks and gratitude for his kindness and attention to you while in London, and for the facilities with which he furnished you for Greece. Yet I hope, should you hereafter meet him anywhere on the Continent, that you will seek no further acquaintance with him. It will be of no credit to you in this country.

March 22.—Since I returned from Hanover, my dearest and best of sons, I have not been very deficient or neglectful, as the multiplicity of my letters show the fact. To sit down quietly by myself, and write to my son, is one of the greatest pleasures I enjoy; except when I learn he is well, prosperous, and studious, judicious and happy, and relying on God, with an honest, thankful heart for all the benefits he enjoys, and for all the improvements he has made. When I hear you are well, and healthy, and contented, and pleased, you know not the joys of your father's, your mother's heart. These joys you never will know, you never can know, till you become a father


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