To the Right Honourable Mr. Pitt

Sir,⁠—Never poor Wight of a Dedicator had less hopes from his Dedication, than I have from this of mine; for it is written in a bye corner of the kingdom, and in a retir’d thatch’d house, where I live in a constant endeavour to fence against the infirmities of ill health, and other evils of life, by mirth; being firmly persuaded that every time a man smiles,⁠⸺⁠but much more so, when he laughs, it adds something to this Fragment of Life.

I humbly beg, Sir, that you will honour this book, by taking it⁠⸺(not under your Protection,⁠⸺⁠it must protect itself, but)⁠⸺⁠into the country with you; where, if I am ever told, it has made you smile; or can conceive it has beguiled you of one moment’s pain⁠⸺⁠I shall think myself as happy as a minister of state;⁠⸻perhaps much happier than anyone (one only excepted) that I have read or heard of.