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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
Dr. Johnson’s Farewell to his Mother’s Aged Servant
By Samuel Johnson (1709–1784)
 
SUNDAY, Oct. 18, 1767.—Yesterday, Oct. 17, at about ten in the morning, I took my leave forever of my dear old friend Catherine Chambers, who came to live with my mother about 1724, and has been but little parted from us since. She buried my father, my brother, and my mother. She is now fifty-eight years old.  1
  I desired all to withdraw, then told her that we were to part forever; that as Christians, we should part with prayer, and that I would, if she was willing, say a short prayer beside her. She expressed great desire to hear me; and held up her poor hands, as she lay in bed, with great fervor while I prayed, kneeling by her, nearly in the following words:—  2
  “Almighty and most merciful Father, whose loving kindness is over all thy works, behold, visit, and relieve this thy servant, who is grieved with sickness. Grant that the sense of her weakness may add strength to her faith, and seriousness to her repentance. And grant that by the help of thy Holy Spirit, after the pains and labors of this short life, we may all obtain everlasting happiness through Jesus Christ our Lord; for whose sake hear our prayers. Amen. Our Father,” etc.  3
  I then kissed her. She told me that to part was the greatest pain that she had ever felt, and that she hoped we should meet again in a better place. I expressed, with swelled eyes and great emotion of tenderness, the same hopes. We kissed and parted, I humbly hope to meet again and to part no more.  4
 
 
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