Dr. Johnson revised some sheets of Lord Hailes's “Annals of Scotland,” and wrote a few notes on the margin with red ink, which he bade me tell his Lordship did not sink into the paper, and might be wiped off with a wet sponge, so that he did not spoil his manuscript.
" I told him there were very few of his friends so accurate as that I
could venture to put down in writing what they told me as his
sayings. Johnson. “Why should you write down my sayings 2"
Boswell. “I write them when they are good.” Johnson. “Nay,
you may as well write down the sayings of any one else that are
good.” But where, I might with great propriety have added, can I
find such 2
I visited him by appointment in the evening," and we drank tea
with Mrs. Williams. He told me that he had been in the company
of a gentleman whose extraordinary travels had been much the
subject of conversation.” But I found that he had not listened to
him with that full confidence, without which there is little satis-
faction in the society of travellers. I was curious to hear what
opinion so able a judge as Johnson had formed of his abilities, and
I asked if he was not a man of sense. Johnson. “Why, Sir, he is
not a distinct relater; and I should say, he is neither abounding
nor deficient in sense. I did not perceive any superiority of under-
standing.” Boswell. “But will you not allow him a nobleness of
resolution, in penetrating into distant regions 7" Johnson. “That,
| Of Saturday, April 1, 1775. * The traveller Bruce.
VOL. II. I