Thomas Gray to Mary Antrobus, [September or October 1764]
I am extremely concerned at the account you give me of poor Dolly's sufferings. the severeness of the pain makes me believe, that (when you wrote) her distemper was drawing to its crisis, & the abscess might find a vent of itself, wch is most to be wish'd.
I am no friend to Surgeons, & in this case particularly, (as the seat of her malady is so near a very tender part, that is not to be trifled with,) I should by no means suffer them to proceed to any operation without the Professor's inspection & advice. if he declares it necessary, let her not be frighted at the sight of steel, for I can tell her upon some experience, that one half-hour of the pain she undergoes from her illness is much more, than all she will suffer from Mr Thackeray's hand. I talk as supposing it still to come, but perhaps it is all over, & I may congratulate her on having got rid of this evil, & with it of those illnesses she has suffer'd so much from these two years, for it is possible Nature may have found out this means to free her from those complaints. I heartily wish her well, & hope to hear again from you soon.
I have been detain'd in Town till now, & go not to Southampton till Wednesday. when I get thither, I shall let Mr Brown know, where I am lodged, & you will send your letter to him to direct.
My complements to Mrs A:, pray tell me about B: & his Wife, if they have been to see you.
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