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very agrecable to me, and I believe not displea- which was the least expensive course of travelsing to him. He inquired into the nature of ling; whether any thing could be bought that my journey to Paris, and informed me of his would turn to account when disposed of again own business there, which was to collect pic- in London. Such curiosities on the way as tures, medals, intaglios, and antiques of all kinds, could be seen for nothing, he was ready enough for a gentleman in London, who had just stept to look at; but if the sight of them was to be into taste and a large fortune. I was the more paid for, he usually asserted that he had been surprised at seeing our cousin pitched upon for told that they were not worth seeing. He nethis office, as he himself had often assured me ver paid a bill that he would not observe, how he knew nothing of the matter. Upon asking amazingly expensive travelling was! and all how he had been taught the art of a cognoscento this, though he was not yet twenty-one. When so very suddenly, he assured me that nothing arrived at Leghorn, as we took a walk to look was more easy. The whole secret consisted in at the port and shipping, he inquired the exa strict adherence to two rules; the one, always pence of the passage by sea home to England. to observe, that the picture might have been This he was informed was but a trifle, compabetter if the painter had taken more pains; and red to his returning by land: he was therefore the other, to praise the works of Pietro Peru- unable to withstand the temptation ; so paying gino. “But,” says
as I once taught you me the small part of my salary that was due, how to be an author in London, I'll now un- he took leave and embarked with only one atdertake to instruct you in the art of picture- tendant for London. buying in Paris.”
“ I now therefore was left once more upon • With this proposal I very readily closed, the world at large ; but then it was a thing I as it was living; and now all my ambition was was used to. However, my skill in music could to live. I went therefore to his lodgings, im- avail me nothing in a country where every peaproving my dress by his assistance; and, after sant was a better musician than I ; but by this some time, accompanied him to auctions of pic- time I had acquired another talent which antures, where the English gentry were expected swered my purpose as well, and this was a skill to be purchasers. I was not a little surprised in disputation. In all the foreign universities with his intimacy with people of the best fa- and convents, there are, upon certain days, phishion, who referred themselves to his judgment losophical theses maintained against every adupon every picture or medal, as an unerring ventitious disputant; for which, if the chamstandard of taste. He made very good use of pion opposes with any dexterity, he can claim my assistance upon these occasions; for when a gratuity in money, a dinner, and a bed for asked his opinion, he would gravely take me one night. In this manner, therefore, I fought aside and ask mine, shrug, look wise, return, my way towards England; walked along from and assure the company that he could give no city to city; examined mankind more nearly; opinion upon an affair of so much importance. and, if I may so express it, saw both sides of Yet there was sometimes an occasion for a more the picture. My remarks, however, are but supported assurance. I remember to have seen few; I found that monarchy was the best gohiin, after giving his opinion that the colouring vernment for the poor to live in, and commonof a picture was not mellow enough, very delic wealths for the rich. I found that riches in berately take a brush with brown varnish that general were in every country another name for was accidentally by, and rub it over the piece freedom ; and that no man is so fond of liberty with great composure before the whole company, himself, as not to be desirous of subjecting the and then ask if he had not improved the tints. will of some individuals in society to his own.
" When he had finished his commission in “ Upon my arrival in England, I resolved to Paris, he left me strongly recommended to se- pay my respects first to you, and then to enlist veral men of distinction, as a person very pro- as a volunteer in the first expedition that was per for a travelling tutor; and, after some time, going forward ; but on my journey down, my I was employed in that capacity by a gentleman resolutions were changed by meeting an old acwho brought his ward to Paris, in order to set quaintance, who I found belonged to a comhim forward on his tour through Europe. I pany of comedians that were going to make was to be the young gentleman's governor, but å summer campaign in the country. The comwith a proviso that he should always govern pany seemed not much to disapprove of me for himself. My pupil, in fact, understood the art an associate. They all, however, apprized me of guiding in money concerns much better than of the importance of the task at which I aim1. He was heir to a fortune of about two hun- ed; that the public was a many-headed mondred thousand pounds, left him by an uncle in ster, and that only such as had very good heads the West Indies ; and his guardians, to qualify could please it; that acting was not to be learnt him for the management of it, had bound him in a day; and that without some traditional apprentice to an attorney. Thus avarice was shrugs, which had been on the stage, and only his prevailing passion : all his questions on the on the stage, these hundred years, I could never road were, how much money might be saved; pretend to please. The next difficulty was in fitting me with parts, as almost every character Mr Thornhill's friendship seemed proportionwas in keeping. I was driven for some time ably to increase for him. from one character to another, till at last Ho- He had formerly made us the most kind asratio was fixed upon, which the presence of the surances of using his interest to serve the fapresent company has happily hindered me from mily, but now his generosity was not confined acting."
to promises alone. The morning I designed for my departure, Mr Thornhill came to me with
looks of real pleasure, to inform me of a piece CHAP. XXI.
of service he had done for his friend George.
This was nothing less than his having procured The short continuance of Friendship among the him an ensign's commission in one of the regi
Picious, which is coeval only with mutual satis- ments that were going to the West Indies, for faction.
which he had promised but one hundred pounds,
his interest being sufficient to get an abatement My son's account was too long to be deliver- of the other two. “ As for this trifling piece of ed at once; the first part of it was begun that service," continued the young gentleman, “I night, and he was concluding the rest after din- desire no other reward but the pleasure of haner the next day, when the appearance of Mr ving served my friend; and as for the hundred Thornhill's equipage at the door seemed to make pounds to be paid, if you are unable to raise it a pause in the general satisfaction. The butler, yourselves, I will advance it, and you shall rewho was now become my friend in the family, pay me at your leisure.” This was a favour we informed me, with a whisper, that the Squire wanted words to express our sense of: I readily, had already made some overtures to Miss Wil- therefore, gave my bond for the money, and tes mot, and that her aunt and uncle seemed highly tified as much gratitude as if I never intended to approve the match. Upon Mr Thornhills to pay. entering, he seemed, at seeing my son and me, George was to depart for town the next day, to start back; but I readily imputed that to suré to secure his commission, in pursuance of his prise, and not displeasure. However, upon our generous patron's directions, who judged it highadvancing to salute him, he returned our greet- ly expedient to use dispatch, lest in the meaning with the most apparent candour ; and after time another should step in with more advantaa short time his presence seemed only to increase geous proposals. The next morning, therefore, the general good humour.
our young soldier was early prepared for his deAfter tea he called me aside, to inquire after my parture, and seemed the only person among us daughter; but upon my informing him that my that was not affected by it. Neither the fatigues inquiry was unsuccessful, he seemed greatly sure and dangers he was going to encounter, nor the prised; adding, that he had been since frequent- friends and mistress (for Miss Wilmot actually ly at my house, in order to comfort the rest of loved him,) he was leaving behind, any way the family, whom he left perfectly well. He damped his spirits. After he had taken leave then asked if I had communicated her misfor- of the rest of the company, I gave him all that tune Miss Wilmot, or my son; and upon my I had—my blessing.“And now, my boy,” replying, that I had not told them as yet, he cried I, “ thou art going to fight for thy coungreatly approved my prudence and precaution, try, remember how thy brave grandfather fought desiring me by all means to keep it a secret
. for his sacred king, when loyalty among Britons “ For at best,” cried he, “ it is but divulging was a virtue. Go, my boy, and imitate him in one's own infamy; and perhaps Miss Livy may all but his misfortunes; if it was a misfortune not be so guilty as we all imagine.” We were to die with Lord Falkland. Go, my boy, and here interrupted by a servant,
who came to ask if you fall, though distant, exposed, and unwept the Squire in to stand up at country-dances ; so by those that love you, the most precious tears that he left me quite pleased with the interest are those with which Heaven bedews the unbuhe seemed to take in myconcerns. His addresses, ried head of a soldier." however, to Miss Wilmot, were too obvious to The next morning I took leave of the good be mistaken ; and yet she seemed not perfectly family, that had been kind enough to entertain pleased, but bore them rather in compliance to me so long, not without several expressions of the will of her aunt, than from real inclination. gratitude to Mr Thornhill for his late bounty. 1 had even the satisfaction to see her lavish i left them in the enjoyment of all that happisome kind looks upon my unfortunate son, ness which affluence and good-breeding procure, which the other could neither extort by his for- and returned towards hoine, despairing of ever tune nor assiduity. Mr Thornhill's seeming finding my daughter more, but sending a sigh composure, however, not a little surprised me; to heaven to spare and forgive her. I was now we had now continued here a week at the presso come within about twenty miles of home, haing instances of Mr Arnold; but each day the ving hired a horse to carry me, as I was yet, but more tenderness Miss Wilmot shewed my son, wcak, and comforted myself with the hopes of soon seeing all I held dearest upon earth. But ceived by the loudness of her voice, and the bitthe night coming on, I put up at a little public- terness of her reproaches, that no money was to house by the road-side, and asked for the land- be had from her lodger. I could hear the relord's company over a pint of wine. We sat be- monstrances very distinctly. “Out, I say, pack side his kitchen fire, which was the best room out this moment! tramp, thou infamous strumin the house, and chatted on politics and the pet, or I'll give thee a mark thou won't be the news of the country. We happened, among better for these three months. What! you trumother topics, to talk of young Squire Thornhill, pery, to come and take up an honest house, who, the host assured me, was hated as much as without cross or coin to bless yourself with! his uncle, Sir William, who sometimes came come along, I say.”—“O dear madam,” cried down into the country, was loved. He went on the stranger, pity me, pity a poor abandoned to observe, that he made it his whole study to creature, for one night, and death will soon do betray the daughters of such as received him to the rest. I instantly knew the voice of my poor their houses, and after a fortnight or three weeks' ruined child Olivia. I flew to her rescue, while possession turned them outunrewarded and aban- the woman was dragging her along by the hair, doned to the world. As we continued our dis- and I caught the dear forloru wretch in my arms. course in this manner, his wife, who had been "Welcome, any way welcome, my dearest out to get change, returned, and perceiving that lost one, my treasure, to your poor old father's her husband was enjoying a pleasure in which bosom. Though the vicious forsake thee, there she was not a sharer, she asked him, in an an- is yet one in the world that will never forsake gry tone, what he did there ? to which he only thee; though thou hast ten thousand crimes to replied in an ironical way, by drinking her answer for, he will forgive them all.”_"O my health. “Mr Symonds,” cried she,
own dear”-for minutes she could say no more, me very ill, and I'll bear it no longer. Here my own dearest good papa ! Could angels three parts of the business is left for me to do, be kinder? How do I deserve so much? 'î'he and the fourth left unfinished, while you do villain ! I hate him, and myself, to be a reproach nothing but soak with the guests all day long; to so much goodness. You can't forgive me; I whereas, if a spoonful of liquor were to cure me know you cannot.”—“Yes, my child, from my of a fever, I never touch a drop.” I now found heart I do forgive thee : only repent, and we what she would be at, and immediately poured both shall yet be happy. We shall see many out a glass, which she received with a curtesy, pleasant days yet, my Olivia."--"Ah! never, and drinking towards my good health, “ Sir,” sir, never. The rest of my wretched life must resumed she, “ it is not so much for the value be infamy abroad, and shame at home. But, of the liquor I am angry, but one cannot help alas! papa, you look much paler than you used it when the house is going out of the windows. to do." Could such a thing as I am give you so If the customers or guests are to be dunned, all much uneasiness ? surely you have too much the burden lies upon my back; he'd as lief eat wisdom to take the miseries of my guilt upon that glass as budge after them himself. There yourself?”—“Our wisdom, young woman," re, now above stairs, we have a young woman who plied I" Ah, why so cold a name, papa ?” has come to take up her lodgings here, and I cried she. “ This is the first time you ever don't believe she has got any money, by her called me by so cold a name.”—" I ask pardon, over-civility. I am certain she is very slow of my darling," returned I ; " but I was going to payment, and I wish she were put in mind of observe, that wisdom makes but a slow defence it.”
'_“ What signifies minding her ?” cried the against trouble, though at last a sure one. host; “ if she be slow, she is sure.”-“I don't The landlady now returned, to know if we know that,” replied the wife," but I know that did not choose a more genteel apartment; to I am sure she has been here a fortnight, and we which assenting, we were shewn to a room where have not yet seen the cross of her money.”—“I we could converse more freely. After we had suppose, my dear,” cried he, shall have it talked ourselves into some degree of tranquillity, all in a lump.”—“In a lump !" cried the other, I could not avoid desiring some account of the " I hope we may get it any way; and that I gradations that led to her present wretched siam resolved we will this very night, or out she tuation. “ That villain, sir," said she, “ from tramps, bag and baggage.' “ Consider, my the first day of our meeting, made me honourdear," cried the husband, “ she is a gentlewo- able, though private, proposals.”, man, and deserves more respect.”—“As for the “ Villain, indeed !" cried I ; “ and yet it in matter of that,” returned the hostess, “ gentle some measure surprises me, how a person of Mr or simple, out she shall pack with a sassarara. Burchell's good sense and seeming honour could Gentry may be good things where they take; be guilty of such deliberate baseness, and thus but for my part never saw much good of them step into a family to undo it.” at the sign of the Harrow.” Thus saying, she “My dear papa,” returned my daughter, ran up a narrow flight of stairs that went from
you labour under a strange mistake. Mr Burthe kitchen to a room over-head, and I soon per- chell never attempted to deceive me.
of that, he took every opportunity of privately the body. But in religion the law is written, admonishing me against the artifices of Mr and inflexible, never to do evil. And this law, Thornhill, who, I now find, was even worse my child, is right ; for otherwise, if we commit than he represented him."- “ Mr Thornhill !” a smaller evil to procure a greater good, certain interrupted I, can it be?"_“Yes, sir," re- guilt would be thus incurred, in expectation of turned she, “it was Mr Thornhill who seduced contingent advantage. And though the advanme; who employed the two ladies, as he called tage should certainly follow, yet the interval them, but who in fact were abandoned women between commission and advantage, which is of the town, without breeding or pity, to decoy allowed to be guilty, may be that in which we us up to London. Their artifices, you may re- are called away to answer for the things we have member, would have certainly succeeded, but done, and the volume of human actions is clofor Mr Burchell's letter, who directed those re- sed for ever.—But I interrupt you, my dear: proaches at them, which we all applied to ourselves. How he came to have so much influ- “ The very next morning," continued she, ence as to defeat their intentions, still remains “ I found what little expectation I was to have a secret to me; but I am convinced he was ever from his sincerity. That very morning he introour warmest, sincerest friend.”
duced me to two unhappy women more, whom, “You amaze me, my dear,” cried I ; " but like me, he had deceived, but who lived in connow I find my first suspicions of Mr Thornhill's tented prostitution. I loved him too tenderly baseness were too well grounded: but he can
to bear such rivals in his affections, and strove triumph in security ; for he is rich, and we are to forget my infamy in a tumult of pleasures. poor. But tell me, my child ; sure it was no With this view I danced, dressed, and talked ; small temptation that could thus obliterate all but still was unhappy. The gentlemen who vithe impressions of such an education, and so sited there told me every moment of the power virtuous a disposition, as thine ?"
of my charms, and this only contributed to in“ Indeed, sir,” replied she, “ he owes all his crease my melancholy, as I had thrown all their triumph to the desire I had of making him, and power quite away. Thus each day I grew more not myself, happy. I knew that the ceremony pensive, and he more insolent, till at last the of our marriage, which was privately performed monster had the assurance to offer me to a young by a popish priest, was no way binding, and that baronet of his acquaintance. Need I describe, I had nothing to trust to but his honour.". sir, how his ingratitude stung me? My answer “ What!" interrupted I, “and were you in- to this proposal was almost madness. Í desired deed married by a priest in orders ?"-" In- to part. As I was going, he offered me a purse, deed, sir, we were,” replied she,“ though we but I flung it at him with indignation, and burst were both sworn to conceal his name.”_"Why from him in a rage that for a while kept me in. then, my child, come to my arms again ; and sensible of the miseries of my situation. But I now you are a thousand times more welcome soon looked round me, and saw myself a vile, than before ; for you are his wife to all intents abject, guilty thing, without one friend in the and purposes ; nor can the laws of man, though world to apply to. Just in that interval, a stagewritten upon tables of adamant, lessen the force coach happening to pass by, I took a place, it of that sacred connection."
being my only aim to be driven at a distance “Alas! papa,” replied she, “you are but little from a wretch I despised and detested. I was acquainted with his villanies : he has been mar- set down here; where, since my arrival, my ried already, by the same priest, to six or eight own anxiety, and this woman's unkindness, wives more, whom, like me, he has deceived have been my only companions. The hours of and abandoned.”
pleasure that I have passed with my mamma “ Has he so?” cried I," then we must hang and sister now grow painful to me. Their sorthe priest, and you shall inform against him to- rows are much ; but mine are greater than morrow."-" But, sir,” returned she, “ will theirs; for mine are mixed with guilt and inthat be right, when I am sworn to secresy?"- famy.” “ My dear," I replied, “if you have made such “ Have patience, my child,” cried I, “ and I a promise, I cannot, nor will I, tempt you to hope things will yet be better. Take some rebreak it. Even though it may benefit the pub- pose to-night, and to-morrow I'll carry you lic, you must not inform against him. In all home to your mother, and the rest of the fahuman institutions, a smaller evil is allowed to mily, from whom you will receive a kind recep-, procure a greater good; as, in politics, a pro- tion. Poor woman! this has gone to her heart ; vince may be given away to secure a kingdom; but she loves you still, Olivia, and will forget in medicine, a limb may be lopt off to preserve it.”
he, perceiving the flames, instantly awaked my
wife and daughter, and all running out, naked, CHAP. XXII.
and wild with apprehension, recalled me to life
with their anguish. But it was only to objects Offences are easily pardoned where there is love at of new terror, for the flames had by this time bottom.
caught the roof of our dwelling, part after part
continuing to fall in, while the family stood with The next morning I took my daughter behind silent agony looking on, as if they enjoyed the me, and set out on my return home. As we blaze. I gazed upon them and upon it by turns, travelled along, I strove by every persuasion to and then looked round me for my two little ones; calm her sorrows and fears, and to arm her with but they were not to be seen. "Omisery! where,” resolution to bear the presence of her offended cried I, “ where are my little ones?"—“ They mother. I took every opportunity, from the pros- are burnt to death in the flames," said my wife pect of a fine country, through which we pass- calmly," and I will die with them.” That moed, to observe how much kinder Heaven was to' ment I heard the cry of the babes within, who us than we to each other; and that the misfore were just awakened by the fire, and nothing tunes of nature's making were but very few. I could have stopped me. “ Where, where are my assured her, that she should never perceive any children?” cried I, rushing through the flames, change in my affections; and that during my life, and bursting the door of the chamber in which which yet might be long, she might depend up- they were confined.-" Where are my little on a guardian and an instructor. I armed her ones?”—“Here, dear papa, here we are !” cried against the censure of the world, shewed her that they together, while the flames were just catchbooks were sweet unreproaching companions to ing the bed where they lay. I caught them both the miserable ; and that if they could not bring in my arms, and conveyed them through the us to enjoy life, they would at least teach us to fire as fast as possible, while, just as I was got endure it.
out, the roof sunk in. “Now," cried I, holdThe hired horse that we rode was to be put ing up iny children,“ now let the flames burn up that night at an inn by the way, within about on, and all my possessions perish ; here they are five miles from my house ; and as I was willing – I have saved my treasure: here, my dearest, to prepare my family for my daughter's reception, here are our treasures, and we shall be happy." I determined to leave her that night at the inn, We kissed our little darlings a thousand times; and to return for her, accompanied by my daugh- they clasped us round the neck, and seemed to ter Sophia, early the next morning. It was share our transports, while their mother laughnight before we reached our appointed stage: ed and wept by turns. however, after seeing her provided with a decent I now stood a calm spectator of the flames, and apartment, and having ordered the hostess to after some time began to perceive that my arm prepare proper refreshments, I kissed her, and to the shoulder was scorched in a terrible manproceeded towards home. And now my heart ner. It was, therefore, out of my power to give caught new sensations of pleasure, the nearer I my son any assistance, either in attempting to approached that peaceful mansion. As a bird save our goods, or preventing the flames spread. that had been frightened from its nest, my affec- ing to our corn. By this time the neighbours tions outwent my haste, and hovered round my were alarmed, and came running to our assistlittle fire-side with all the rapture of expectation. ance; but all they could do was to stand, like us, I called up the many fond things I had to say, spectators of the calamity: My goods, among and anticipated the welcome I was to receive. I which were the notes I had reserved for my already felt my wife's tender embrace, and smiled daughters' fortunes, were entirely consumed, exat the joy of my little ones. As I walked but cept a box with some papers, that stood in the slowly, the night waned apace ; the labourers of kitchen, and two or three things more, of little the day were all retired to rest—the lights were consequence, which my son brought away in out in every cottage; no sounds were heard but the beginning. The neighbours contributed, of the shrilling cock, and the deep-mouthed however, what they could to lighten our distress. watch-dog, at hollow distance.--I approached They brought us clothes, and furnished one of my little abode of pleasure, and before I was our out-houses with kitchen utensils ; so that by within a furlong of the place, our honest mastiff day-light we had another, though a wretched, came running to welcome me.
dwelling, to retire to. My honest next neighIt was now near midnight that I came to knock bour and his children, were not the least assiat my door: all was still and silent-my heart duous in providing us with every thing necessary, dilated with unutterable happiness, when, to my and offering whatever consolation untutored be amazement, I saw the house bursting out into a nevolence could suggest. blaze of fire, and every aperture red with confla- When the fears of my family had subsided, gration ! I gave a loud convulsive outcry, and curiosity to know the cause of my long stay be tell upon
the pavement insensible. This alarm- gan to take place. Having, therefore, informed ed my son, who had, till this, been asleep, and them of every particular, I proceeded to pre