probable way of accounting 13 He hates all your family, for his bearing with the house, yourself excepted; and I have and for his strange suspensions several times thought, that I of marriage, when it was in his have seen him stung and morpower to call such an angel of tified that love has obliged him a woman his.

125S to kneel at your footstool, beIS O my dear, the man is a cause you are a Harlowe. Yet

villain! the greatest of villains, is this wretch a savage in in every light! I am convinced love. -- Love that humanizes that he is. And this Doleman the fiercest spirits, has not must be another of his imple been able to subdue his. His ments!

JIS pride, and the credit which a JS There are so many wretches few plausible qualities, sprin

who think that to be no sin, kled among his odious ones, which is one of the greatest, have given him, have secured and the most ingrateful of all him too good a reception from sins, to ruin young creatures of| our eye-judging, our undistinour sex who place their confi guishing, our self-flattering, dence in them; that the wonder our too confiding sex, to make is less than the shame, that assiduity and obsequiousness, people of figure, of appearance and a conquest of his unruly at least, are found to promote passions, any part of his study, the horrid purposes of profli- 5 He has some reason for his gates of fortune and interest! animosity to all the men, and S But can I think (you will ask to one woman of your family. with indignant astonishment] He has always shewn you, and that Lovelace can have de his own family too, that he

signs upon your honour? 26 prefers his pride to his inIKS That such designs he has had, terest. He is a declared mar

if he still hold them not, I can riage-hater: a notorious intrihave no doubt, now that I know guer: full of his inventions; the house he has brought you and glorying in them.- He to, to be a vile one. This is a never could draw you into declue that has led me to account claration of love: nor till your for all his behaviour to you ever wise relations persecuted you, since you have been in his as they did, to receive his adhands.

s dresses as a lover.--Heknew, Allow me a brief retrospec that you professedly disliked tion of it all.

him for his immoralities: he We both know, that pride, could not therefore justly revenge, and a delight to tread blame you for the coldness and in unbeaten paths, are princi indifference of your behaviour pal ingredients in the character to him. of this finished libertine. !J. The prevention of mischief was your first main view in the a person be capable of premecorrespondence he drew you ditated art, who can sit down into. He ought not, then, to to write, and not write from the have wondered, that you de heart? -- And a woman to write clared your preference of the her heart to a man practised single life to any matrimonial in deceit, or even to a man of engagemeut. He knew that this some character, what advanwas always your preference; tage does it give him over her? and that before he tricked K As this man's vanity bad

you away so artfully. What made him imagine, that no IKS was his conduct to you after woman could be proof against

wards, that you should of a love, when his address was sudden change it?

honourable; no wonder that he Thus was your whole be struggled, like a lion held in haviour regular, consistent, toils, against a passion that he and dutiful to those to whom thought not returned. And by birth you owed duty; and how could you, at first, shew a neither prudish, coquettish, return in love, to so fierce a nor tyrannical to him.

spirit, and who had seduced as He had agreed to go on with you away by vile artifices, but

you upon those your own terms, to the approval of those artifiand to rely only on his own ces? merils and future reformation, IS Hence, perhaps, it is not for your favour.

difficult to believe, that it beIs It was plain to me, indeed, came possible for such a wretch

to whom you communicated all as this to give way to his old that you knew of your own prejudices against marriage; heart, though not all of it and to that revenge which had that I found out, that love had always been a first passion with pretty early gained footing in it. And this you yourself This is the only way, I think, would have discovered sooner to account for his horrid views S than you did, had not his in bringing you to a vile house. alarming, his unpolite, his And now may not all the rest rough conduct, kept it under. | be naturally accounted for? 3 lknew, by experience, that His delays — his teasing ways love is a fire that is not to be -- his bringing you to bear with played with, without burning his lodging in the same house one's fingers: I knew it to be a his making you pass to the dangerous thing for two single people of it, as his wife; though persons of different sexes to I restrictively so, yet with bope, enter into familiarity and cor- no doubt (vilest of villains as respondence with each other; he is!) to take you at advantage since, as to the latter, must not| - his bringing you into the


company of his libertine com ported, so instigated, too propanions: the attempt of impo bably, as he has been! - That sing upon you that Miss Part native dignity, that heroism, I ington for a bedfellow, very will call it, which has, on all probably his own invention proper oaccasions, exerted it. for the worst of purposes: his self in its fulllustre, unmingled terrifying you at many diffe with that charming obligingrent times: his obtruding him- JS ness and condescending self upon you when you went sweetness, which is evermore out to church; no doubt to the softener of that dignity, prevent your finding out what when your mind is free and the people of the house were: unapprehensive! the advantages he made of 3 Let me stop to admire, and your brother's foolish project| to bless my beloved friend, with Singleton.

who, unhappily for herself, at See, my dear, how naturally an ageso tender, unacquainted all this follows from the dis as she was with the world, and

covery made by Miss Lardner. with the vile arts of libertines, IKS See how the monster, whom having been called upon to

I thought, and so often called, sustain the hardest and most a fool, comes out to have been shocking trials, from persecu

all the time one of the greatest ting relations on one hand, and JIS villains in the world!

from a villainous lover on the But if this be so, what sit other, has been enabled to would be asked by an indiffe such an illustrious example of rent person has bitherto saved fortitude and prudence, as you? Glorious creature! – never woman gave before her; What, morally speaking, but and who, as I have heretofore your watchfulness! What but observed *, has made a far that, and the majesty of your greater figure in adversity, virtue; the native dignity, which than she possibly could have in a situation so very difficult, made, had all her shining qua(friendless, destitute, passing| lities been exerted in their full for a wife, cast into the com force and power, by the conpany of creatures accustomed tinuance of that prosperous to betray and ruin innocents run of fortune which attended hearts) has hitherto enabled her for eighteen years of life you to baffle, over-awe, and out of nineteen. confound, such a dangerous

* * * libertine as this; so habitually IK But now, my dear, do I remorseless, as you have ob apprehend, that you are in served him to be; so very greater danger than ever yet various in his temper; so in-| you have been in; if you are ventive; so seconded so sup

* See Vol. II. p. 270.

not married in a week; and yet that Counsellor William(whom stay in this abominable house. Mr. Hickman knows to be a For were you out of it, I own Il man of eminence in his professhould not be much afraid for sion) has actually as good as you.

I finished the settlements: that These are my thoughts, on two drafts of them have been the most deliberate considera made; one avowedly to be sent IS tion: "That he is now con to one Captain Tomlinson, as

vinced, that he has not been the clerk says: – and I find able to draw you off your that a licence has actually been guard: that therefore, if he can more than once endeavoured obtain no new advantage over to be obtained; and that diffiyou as he goes along, he is culties have hitherto been resolved to do you all the poor made equally to Lovelace's justice that it is in the power of is vexation and disappointment. such a wretch as he, to do you. My mother's proctor, who is He is theratherinduced to this, very intimate with the proctor as he sees that all his own applied to by the wretch, has family have warmly engaged come at this information in

themselves in your cause: and confidence; and hints, that, i KS that it is his highest interest to as Mr. Lovelace is a man of

be just to you. Then the horrid high fortunes, these difficulties wretch loves you (as well he will probably be got over. may) above all women. I have But here follow the causes of no doubt of this; with such a my apprehension of your love as such a wretch is capable danger; which I should not S of: with such a love as Herod have had a thought of (since loved his Mariamne. He is now nothing very vile has yet been therefore, very probably, at| attempted) but on finding last, in earnest.'

what a house you are in, and, I took time for inquiries of on that discovery, laying todifferent natures, as I knew by gether and ruminating on past the train you are in, that what-| occurrences. ever his designs are, they can

You are obliged, from the not ripen either for good or present fovourable appearanS evil, tillsomething shall result K ces, to give him your comfrom this new device of his pany whenever he requests about Tomlinson and your it. — You are under a necessity uncle.

of forgetting, or seeming to Device I have not doubt that| forget, past disobligations; and it is, whatever this dark, this to receive his addresses as those impenetrable spirit intends by of a betrothed lover. - You

will incur the censure of pruHK And yet I find it to be true, dery and affectation, even perhaps in your own apprehension,l your uncle, whose presence, at if you keep him at that dis your own motion, he has tance which has hitherto been wished on the occasion. A your security. - His sudden wish, were all real, very un(and as suddenly recovered) likely, I think, to be granted.' illness has given him an op- 13 And thus situated, should portunity to find out, that you he offer greater freedoms, must love him. (Alas, my dear, Il you not forgive him?


knew you loved him! He is, as I fear nothing (as I know Is you relate, every hour more who has said that devil car

and more an encroacher upon nate or incarnate can fairly do it. He has seemed to change against a virtue 80 estabhis nature, and is all love and lished*. — But surprises, my

gentleness. The wolf has put dear, in such a house as that Is on the sheep's clothing; yet you are in, and in such cirmore than once has shewn his cumstances as I have menteeth, and his hardly sheathed tioned, I greatly fear! -- The claws. The instance you have man, one, who has already given of his freedom with triumphed over persons worthy your person*, which you could of his alliance. not but resent; and yet, as 213 What then have you to do, matters are circumstanced but to fly this house, this inbetween you, could not but fernal house! — O that your pass over, when Tomlinson's heart would let you fly the letter called you into his com man!

pany **, shew the advantagehe 13 If you should be disposed so is has now over you; and also, to do, Mrs. Townsend shall be

that if he can obtain greater, ready at your command. he will. — And for this very | But if you meet with no imreason (as I apprehend) it is, pediments, no new causes of that Tomlinson is introduced; doubt, I think your reputation

that is to say, to give you the in the eye of the world, though is greater security, and to be a not your happiness, is con

mediator, if mortal offence be cerned, that you should be his given you, by any villainous -- and yet I cannot bear, that attempt. — The day seems not these libertines should be renow to be so much in your 5 warded for their villainy with power as it ought to be, since the best of the sex, when the that now partly depends on worst of it are too good for

them. * She means the freedom Mr. Lovelace took with her before the fire-plot.

But if you meet with the See Vol. II. Letter cxxiv. When Miss least ground for suspicion; if Howe wrote this letter, she could not know of that.

* See Mrs. Norton's Letter, Vol. II. ** See Vol. II. Letter cxxv. p. 274.

« VorigeDoorgaan »