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have, for a long time, secretly admired your daugha ter. I say secretly, because I have not ventured to mention it before, and never shall to the young lady, unless this, meets with your approbation. I am wholly ignorant in whæt light you may regard this address, as well, as what proportion my fortune bears, to that, you intend to give your daughter; but of this I am certain, that though she may meet with more advantageous offers, in" point of external circumstances, yet, for sincere affection, none can excel him, who is, Sir,
Your most obedient humble Servant.
The Father's Answer. WHAT may be my daughter's thoughts of your proposal, 1 know not; but this I must observe to you, that I am determined not to influence her, in an affair of this kind, where I think she ought to have her own free choice. What I bave heard, and seen of your behaviour, makes any farther enquiry into your character unnecessary; and if your affairs are as you represent them, I shall have no objection; but of this you will allow me to make proper enquiries. As I have a son to provide for, I shall not be able to give my daughter much on the day of her marriage ; but, at my death, her fortune will be at least equal to your's. I must confess, that I am pleased with your writing to me on this subject, before you mentioned it to my daughter; and I freely consent to your acquainting her with your sentiments : however, I would not advise you to do this by letter ; for, as she is frequently at your house, you may open your mind to her by degrees, which will be better, than an abrupt declaration ; and, if she is disposed to favor your passion, she will meet with no
opposition from me, I shall be ready, whenever you may
farther on this subject;
And am, your's, &c.
To a young Lady on her keeping Company with a
Gentleman of bad Character. DEAR COUSIN, THE natural affection, and concern I feel for every thing which relates to you, obliges me to inform you, that people begin to talk very freely of you and Mr. H. who has frequently been seen with you, of late, in several public places. It gives me pain to tell you, that this reflects on your prudence, as he is kišown to be a profest rake, and one who commonly boasts of favors received from your sex, whose fondness for him, is the con, stant subject of his merriment and ridicule. There is reason to fear, that, his boasts of this kind are not entirely groundless; and it may reasonably be concluded, that the designs of such a man, are far from being honorable. But though, all his endeavours to undermine your virtue, should be ineffectual, yet you canliot be known to give him your company, and converse with him, without Jaying your reputation open to the shafts of slander, for, though I know you despise him, as every woman must do, so arogant a coxcomb, yet, as it is an universal maxiņ, that people are known by the company they keep, you will find your most innocent actions misrepresented, and turned to your disadvantage. Therefore, if you respect your family and friends, if you value your
peace of mind, or that jewel, your reputation, avoid him and all such company, as you would a pestilence.
Most affectionately your's.
To a Gentleman who was jealous of his Wife.
SIR, THE most inviolable friendship and esteem for you, and your family, are my only inducements for taking this liberty : a liberty, which you, perhaps, will scarcely forgive, though it proceeds from the most generous motives, and is intended to 'secure you, and yours, that happiness, which I think you deserve. I was at the play last night, with your lady, and the rest of the company who dined with
You was to share been of the party, buit excused yourself on a pretence of business, and a prior engagement which you could not defer. But how amazed was I, when I saw you in disguise, mixed with a crowd in the pit, watching every look and action of your wife! 'Tis true, she is of a gay disposition; but cheerful people, though mosť liable to misrepresentation, are, generally speaking, the most innocent ; for they alone can dong be merry; who have no evil in the mind not caurker at the heart. But jealousy, always sees with jaundiced eyes; every thing is misrepresented or discoloured ; and I am sorry to find that you are seeking your own unhappiness. All that yon feel, is founded on fear, and the mischief is entirely of your own making. Do you imagine women of sense, have no sense of honour? Your lady has never deserved this behaviour from you. I have known
her longer than you have, and never saw any thing in her conduct, but what was perfectly inoffensive. Her affection for you, I know to be great and unalterable; and I do not believe there is a worthier woman in the world, How then can you debase yourself, and scandalise her virtue, by behaving in this manner? I hope nobody perceived it but myself; and I beg, for the sake of yourself and family, that this may go no further, and that you
will excuse this well-meant-letter', from
The Gentleman's answer. MADAM, YOUR conjectures are too true; I am uuhappy, and know not how to help it. There is something in my wife's conduct that not only displeases, but almost distracts me; nor shall I recover myself till I have cleared up the doubts that disturb me: and this I have, for some time past, been vainly attempt ing I am still embarrassed; and know not whether to attribute her behaviour tó a gaiety of disposition, and a wish to please the company, or to levity of mind and disregard, of me. If I did not love her, I should not be thus unhappy ; but she has my whole heart; and it is natural for a man to centre his cares, where he has placed his treasure.--I thank you for your letter, and beg it may be secret; but I never shall be able to pursue your advice, so entirely as I would do, till some circumstances respecting her conduct are cleared up; which time and attention may possibly effect. I do not intend to lead a life of jealousy ; but I must and will be satisfied. I am, with the most perfect respect and esteem,
Madam, Yours, &c.
A Mother to her Daughter, who was jealous of her
Husband. MY DEAR I AM much concerned to learn that you suspect the fidelity of your husband. "Let me entreat you,. as you love your own happiness, to suppress the early risings of a passion that cam procure yoti Rothing but the keeńestanguish of heart, and to turn a deaf ear to the tales of officious and wicked people, who, perhaps, find an interest in setting you at variance. O, my child! beware of a suspicion, which, if indulged, will not only give you much present uneasiness, but, by spoiling your temper, wean from you the affections of your husband. If he is innocent, which is very probable, your suspicion is one of the greatest injuries, and the blackest act of injustice that can be done him; and, if you give way to your resentment, you are in danger of precipitating him into the very course you so much dread, and of rendering thiuse evils real, which are now only imaginary. For I cannot seriously iznagine that a man of his sense can be guilty of any thing so base and foolish. But supposing that what you heard is but too true, your reproaches would make him faj totally from you, to one who will take his part, and harden his heart against you for cyer. Thus you would yourself contribute to her triumpb; while he, seeing that he has no longer need of reserve; will grow hardened in his vices, and openly. pursue that course, which he would otherwise have followed privately and by 'stealth, for fear of its coming to your knowledge. Let me therętóre entreat you to summon all your prudence and instead of loading him with reproaches, and driving' him by your i humour to her, you wish him to