Monday, February 14, 2011


The Fag End of a Life

Lord Chesterfield, Letters to His Son (September 22, 1758):
I should not take all this trouble merely to prolong the fag end of a life, from which I can expect no pleasure, and others no utility; but the cure, or at least the mitigation, of those physical ills which make that life a load while it does last, is worth any trouble and attention.
Id. (July 20, 1764):
As for me, I am just what I was when you left me, that is, nobody. Old age steals upon me insensibly. I grow weak and decrepit, but do not suffer, and so I am content.
Id. (April 22, 1765):
I see and hear these storms from shore, suave mari magno, etc. I enjoy my own security and tranquillity, together with better health than I had reason to expect at my age, and with my constitution: however, I feel a gradual decay, though a gentle one; and I think that I shall not tumble, but slide gently to the bottom of the hill of life. When that will be, I neither know nor care, for I am very weary.
His son died before he did.


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