Discovery of the Springs
away from town, and the young lord not caring where he went if he could not stay there, he accepted the offer of his friend, the Earl of Abergavenny, to repair to the latter's hunting-seat in Kent, Eridge House. There he amused him as well as he could with music and poetry, but he soon wearied of the solitude of a mansion surrounded on all sides by dense woods. There were no neighbours, no town worthy of the name within a respectable distance, and the invalid began to mope, a state of mind that reacted on his physical well-being. Finding that his health was no better in spite of the sacrifices he was making, he yielded to his desire again to participate in the gallantries of the Court, and determined, physicians or no physicians, with their leave or without it, to remain no longer at Eridge House. And now happened that which, had it occurred centuries earlier, would most assuredly have been set down by contemporary chroniclers as a miracle.
The road by which Lord North returned to London went through the woods, and at the very commencement of his journey, close by the only cottage on the Abergavenny estate, he passed a clear spring, which attracted his