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“ with that I can purchase a feraglio of beauties, and “ indulge my taste in every kind of pleasure. And
pray what is it to me, whether my wife has beauty,
or wit, or elegance, when her money will supply inc " with all that in others? You, cousin, had an oppor
tunity of being as happy as I am : the men, believe
me, would not like you a bit the worse for being “ married : on the contrary, you would find, that for
who took notice of you as a single woman, twenty would be your admirers and humble servants “ when there was no danger of being taken in. Thus
you might have gratified all your paffions, made an elegant figure in life, and have chosen out some
gen“ tle fwain as romantic and poetical as you pleased for
The good John Trot husband "! would have been easily managed, and" Here my indignation could be detained no longer, and I was leaving the room in disdain, when he caught me by the hand—“Nay, prithee, my dear cousin, none of these “ violent airs. I thought you and I had known one an65 other better. Let the poor souls, who are taught " by the priests and their nurses to be afraid of hell“ fire, and to think they shall go to the devil for fol
lowing nature and making life agreeable, be as out" rageously virtuous as they please : you have too much “ sense to be frighted at bugbears ; you know that the • term of your existence is but short; and it is highly " reasonable to make it as pleasant as possible.”-I was too angry to attempt confuting his arguments; but bursting from his hold, told him I would take care not to give him a second opportunity of insulting my distress, and affronting my understanding, and so left his house with a resolution never to enter it again. Y.
No. LXXVIII. Saturday, August 4, 1753.
Propter vitam vivendi perdere caufas.
Nor quit for life, what gives to life its worth.
WENT home mortified and disappointed. My fpirits funk into a dejection, which took from me for many days all inclination to stir out of my lodging, or to see a human face. At length I resolved to try, whether indigence and friendship were really incompatible, and whether I should meet with the same treatment from a female friend, whose affection had been the principal pleasure of my youth. Surely, thought I, the gentle Amanda, whose heart seems capable of every tender and generous sentiment, will do justice to the innocence and integrity of her unfortunate friend ; her tenderness will encourage my virtue and animate my fortitude; her praises and endearments will compenfate all my hardships. Amanda was a fingle woman of a moderate independent fortune, which I heard she was going to beftow on a young officer, who had little or nothing befides his commission. I had no doubt of her approba. tion of my refusing a mercenary match, since she herself had chosen from motives so opposite to those which are called prudent. She had been in the country some
months, so that my misfortunes had not reached her ear, till I myself related them to her. She heard me with great attention, and answered me with politeness enough, but with a coldness that chilled my very heart. “ You are fenfible, my dear Fidelia," said the, " that I never pretended to set my understanding in
competition with yours. I knew my own inferiori. ty; and though many of your notions and opinions
appeared to me very strange and particular, I never “ attempted to dispute them with you. To be sure, you
know beft ; but it seems to me a very odd con“ duet for one in your situation to give offence to fo
good an uncle; first by maintaining doctrines which
may be very true for ought I know, but which are “ very contrary to the received opinions we are brought
up in, and therefore are apt to shock a common un« derstanding; and fecondly, to renounce his protection, " and throw yourself into the wide world, rather than marry
the män he chose for you; to whom, after all, *** I do not find
any real objection, nor any an-
“ I am heartily glad," answered the, " that you have found the art of making yourself hapPy by the force of imagination ? I wish your enthu.
“ fialı may continue ; and that you may fill be far“ther convinced, by your own experience, of the fol
ly of mankind, in supposing poverty and disgrace to “ be evils."
I was cut to the soul by the unkind manner which accompanied this sarcasm, and was going to remonstrate against her unfriendly treatment, when her lover came in with another gentleman, who, in spite of my full heart, engaged my attention, and for a while made me forget the stings of unkindness. The beauty and gracefulness of his person caught my eye, and the politeness of his address and the elegance of his compli. ments foon prejudiced me in favour of his understanding. He was introduced by the Captain to Amanda as his most intimate friend, and seemed dekrous to give credit to his friend's judgment by making himself as agreeable as possible. He succeeded so well, that A. manda was wholly engrossed by the pleasure of his conversation, and the care of entertaining her lover and her new guest; her face brightened, and her good humour returned. When I arose to leave her, she pressed me so earnestly to stay dinner, that I could not, without discovering how nuch I resented her behaviour, refuse. This, however, I should probably have done, as I was naturally disposed to Thew every sentiment of my heart, had not a secret wilh arose there to know a little more of this agreeable stranger. This inclined me to think it prudent to conceal my resentment, and to accept the civilities of Amanda. The conversation grew more and more pleasing; I took my share in it, and had
more than my share of the charming stranger's notice and at. tention. As we all grew more and more unreserved, Amanda dropped hints in the course of the conversa. tion relating to my story, my fentiments, and unhappy situation. Sir George Freelove, for that was the young gentleman's name, listened greedily to all that was laid of me, and seemed to eye me with earnest curiosity as well as admiration. We did not part till it was late, and Sir George insisted on attending me to my lodgings ; I strongly refused it, not without a sensation which more properly belonged to the female than the philosopher, and which I condemned in myself as arifing from dishonest pride. I could not without pain fuf. fer the polite Sir George, upon so short an acquaintance, to discover the meanness of my abode. To a. void this, I sent for a chair ; but was confused to find, that Sir George and his servants prepared to attend it on foot by way of guard; it was in vain to dispute ; he himself walked before, and his fervants followed it. I was covered with blushes, when, after all this parade, he handed me in at the little shop door, and took leave with as profound respect as if he had guarded me to a palace. A thousand different thoughts kept me from closing my eyes that night. The behaviour of Amanda wounded me to the foul : I found that I must look on her as no more than a common acquaintance; and that the world did not contain one person whom I could call my friend. My heart felt desolate and for, lorn; I knew not what course to take for
future fubfiftence; the pain which my pride had juft given me, convinced me that I was far from having conquered the passions of humanity, and that I should feel too sensibly all the mortifications which attend on poverty. I determined, however, to fubdue this pride, and called to my affiftance the examples of ancient fages and philosophers, who despised riches and honours, and felt