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guage and the sentiments to be found in it, in greater hopes of her than she had of herself ; preference to all the ancient poets and philoso- and I would take the liberty to say, that desa phers. And this is now a convincing proof to pair of recovery allowed not room for cure. me, and shames as much an infidel's presump- She said she neither despaired nor hoped.. tion as his ignorance, that those who know least Then stepping to the glass with great compoare the greatest scoffers. A pretty pack of would- sure, My countenance, said she, is indeed an be wits
of us, who censure without knowledge, honest picture of my heart. But the mind will laugh without reason, and are most noisy and run away with the body at any time. loud against things we know least of !
Writing is all my diversion, continued she : and I have subjects that cannot be dispensed
with. As to my hours, I have always been an LETTER CCLXXII.
early riser : but now rest is less in my power
than ever. Sleep has a long time ago quarrelMR BELFORD TO ROBERT LOVELACE, ESQ. ed with me, and
will not be friends, although I
have made the first advances. What wili be, Wednesday, July 26. must. I came not to town till this morning early : She then stept to her closet, and brought me poor Belton clinging to me, as a man destitute a parcel sealed up with three seals: Be so kind, of all other hold.
said she, as to give this to your friend. A very I hastened to Smith's, and had but a very in- grateful present it ought to be to him: for, sir, different account of the lady's health. I sent up this packet contains such letters of his to me, my compliments; and she desired to see me in as, compared with his actions, would reflect disthe afternoon.
honour upon all his sex, were they to fall into Mrs Lovick told me, that after I went away other hands. on Saturday, she actually parted with one of her As to my letters to him, they are not many. best suits of clothes to a gentlewoman who is He may either keep or destroy them, as he pleaher [Mrs Lovick's] benefactress, and who bought them for a niece who is very speedily to I thought, Lovelace, I ought not to forego be married, and whom she fits out and portions this opportunity to plead for you: I therefore, as her intended heiress. The lady was jea- with the packet in my hand, urged all the argulous that the money might come from you or ments I could think of in your favour. me, that she would see the purchaser: who She heard me out with more attention than I owned to Mrs Lovick that she bought them for could have promised myself, considering her dehalf their worth: but yet, though her conscience termined resolution. permitted her to take them at such an under I would not interrupt you, Mr Belford, said rate, the widow says her friend admired the la- she, though I am far from being pleased with dy, as one of the loveliest of her sex: and having the subject of your discourse. The motives for been let into a little of her story, could not help your pleas in his favour are generous. I love shedding tears at taking away her purchase. to see instances of generous friendship in either
She may be a good sort of a woman: Mrs But I have written my full mind on this Lovick says she is : but self is an odious devil, subject to Miss Howe, who will communicate it that reconciles to some people the most cruel to the ladies of his family. No more, therefore, and dishonest actions. But, nevertheless, it is I pray you, upon a topic, that may lead to dismy opinion, that those who can suffer them- agreeable recriminations. selves to take advantage of the necessities of Her apothecary came in. He advised her to their fellow-creatures, in order to buy anything the air, and blamed her for so great an applicaat a less rate than would allow them the legal tion, as he was told she made to her pen; and interest of their purchase-money (supposing gave it as the doctor's opinion, as well as his they purchase before they want) are no better own, that she would recover, if she herself dethan robbers for the difference. To plunder a sired to recover, and would use the means. wreck, and to rob at a fire, are indeed higher de- She may possibly write too much for her grees of wickedness: but do not those, as well health : but I have observed, on several occaas these, heighten the distresses of the distres- sions, that when the medical men are at a loss sed, and heap misery on the miserable, whom what to prescribe, they inquire what their pait is the duty of every one to relieve?
tients best like, or are most diverted with, and About three o'clock I went again to Smith’s. forbid them that. The lady was writing when I sent up my name ; But, noble-minded as they see this lady is, but admitted of my visit. I saw a miserable al- they know not half her nobleness of mind, nor teration in her countenance for the worse; and how deeply she is wounded ; and depend too Mrs Lovick respectfully accusing her of too great much upon her youth, which I doubt will not assiduity to her pen, early and late, and of her do in this case ; and upon time, which will not abstinence the day before, I took notice of the alleviate the woes of such a mind: for, having alteration; and told her, that her physician had been bent upon doing good, and upon reclaim
MR BELFORD TO ROBERT LOVELACE.
ing a libertine whom she loved, she is disap- coldness, which, however, was rather to be expointed in all her darling views, and will never pected on your account, than that it deserved be able, I fear, to look up with satisfaction exception on mine. And the lady invited us enough in herself to make life desirable to her. both to breakfast with her in the morning ; he For this lady had other views in living, than the being obliged to return the next day. common ones of eating, sleeping, dressing, visit- I left them together, and called upon Mr ing, and those other fashionable amusements, Dorrell, my attorney, to consult him upon poor which fill up the time of most of her sex, ese Belton's affairs; and then went home, and wrote pecially of those of it who think themselves fit- thus far, preparative to what may occur in my ted to shine in and adorn polite assemblies. Her breakfasting visit in the morning. grief, in short, seems to me to be of such a nature, that time, which alleviates most other persons' afflictions, will, as the poet says, give in
LETTER CCLXXIII. crease to hers.
Thou, Lovelace, mightest have seen all this superior excellence, as thou wentest along. In every word, in every sentiment, in every action,
Thursday, July 27. is it visible.—But thy cursed inventions and in- I went this morning, according to the lady's triguing spirit ran away with thee. 'Tis fit that invitation, to breakfast, and found Mr Hickman the subject of thy wicked boast, and thy reflec- with her. tions on talents so egregiously misapplied, should A good deal of heaviness and concern hung be thy punishment and thy curse.
upon his countenance: but he received me with Mr Goddard took his leave; and I was going more respect than he did yesterday; which, I to do so too, when the maid came up, and told presume, was owing to the lady's favourable her a gentleman was below, and very earnestly character of me. inquired after her health, and desired to see He spoke very little, for I suppose they had her : his name Hickman.
all their talk out yesterday, and before I came She was overjoyed; and bid the maid desire this morning. the gentleman to walk up.
By the hints that dropped, I perceived that I would have withdrawn; but I suppose she Miss Howe's letter gave an account of your inthought it was likely I should have met him up- terview with her at Col. Ambrose's—of your proon the stairs; and so she forbid it.
fessions to Miss Howe; and Miss Howe's opiShe shot to the stairs-head to receive him, nion, that marrying you was the only way now and, taking his hand, asked half a dozen of left to repair her wrongs. questions (without waiting for any answer) in Mr Hickman, as I also gathered, had pressed relation to Miss Howe's health ; acknowledg- her, in Miss Howe's name, to let her, on her reing, in high terms, her goodness in sending turn from the Isle of Wight, find her at a neighhim to see her, before she set out on her little bouring farm-house, where neat apartments journey.
would be made ready to receive her. She ask He gave her a letter from that young lady, ed how long it would be before they returned ? which she put into her bosom, saying, she
would And he told her, it was proposed to be no more read it by and by
than a fortnight out and in. Upon which she He was visibly shocked to see how ill she said, she should then perhaps have time to consilooked.
der of that kind proposal. You look at me with concern, Mr Hickman, He had tendered her money from Miss Howe; said she- sir! times are strangely altered but could not induce her to take any: No wonwith me since I saw you last at my dear Miss der I was refused ! she only said, that, if she Howe's !—What a cheerful creature was I then! had occasion, she would be obliged to nobody -my heart at rest! myprospects charming! and but Miss Howe. beloved by everybody but I will not pain you. Mr Goddard, her apothecary, came in before
Indeed, madam, said he, I am grieved for you breakfast was over. At her desire he sat down at my soul.
Mr Hickman asked him, if he could He turned away his face, with visible grief give any consolation in relation to Miss Harlowe's in it.
recovery, to carry down to a friend who loved Her own eyes glistened: but she turned to her as she loved her own life? each of us, presenting one to the other-him to The lady, said he, will do very well, if she me, as a gentleman truly deserving to be called will resolve upon it herself. Indeed you will, 80-me to him as your friend, indeed, Chow madam. The doctor is entirely of this opinion; was I at that instant ashamed of myself!) but, and has ordered nothing for you but weak jelnevertheless, as a man of humanity ; detesting lies and innocent cordials, lest you should starve my friend's baseness; and desirous of doing her yourself. And let me tell you, madam, that so all manner of good offices.
much watching, so little nourishment, and so Mr Hickman received my civilities with a much grief, as you seem to indulge, is enough
to impair the most vigorous health, and to wear As he was resolved to make the best of the out the strongest constitution.
matter, and as the lady had refused to accept of What, sir, said she, can I do? I have no ap- money offered by Mr Hickman, I said nothing petite. Nothing you call nourishment will stay of her parting with her clothes. I thought it on my stomach. I do what I can: and have would serve no other end to mention it, but to such kind directors in Dr H. and you, that I shock Miss Howe: for it has such a sound with should be inexcusable if I did not.
it, that a woman of her rank and fortune should I'll give you a regimen, madam, replied he; be so reduced, that I cannot myself think of it which, I am sure, the doctor will approve of, with patience'; nor know I but one man in the and will make physic unnecessary in your case. world who can. And that is, “ go to rest at ten at night. Rise This gentleman is a little finical and formal. not till seven in the morning. Let your break- Modest or diffident men wear not soon off those fast be watergruel, or milk-pottage, or weak little precisenesses, which the confident, if ever broths: your dinner anything you like, so you they had them, presently get above; because will but eat: a dish of tea, with milk, in the af- they are too confident to doubt anything. But ternoon; and sago for your supper: and, my I think Mr Hickman is an agreeable, sensible life for yours, this diet, and a month's country man, and not at all deserving of the treatment air, will set you up.”
or the character you give him. We were much pleased with the worthy gen- But you are really a strange mortal ; because tleman's disinterested regimen: and she said, you have advantages in your person, in your referring to her nurse, (who vouched for her,) air, and intellect, above all the men I know, and Pray, Mr Hickman, let Miss Howe know the a face that would deceive the devil, you can't good hands I am in: and as to the kind charge think any man else tolerable. of the gentleman, assure her, that all I pro- It is
upon this modest principle that thou demised to her, in the longest of my two last let- ridest some of us, who, not having thy confiters, on the subject of my health, I do and dence in their outside appearance, seek to hide will, to the utmost of my power, observe. I their defects by the tailor's and peruke-maker's I have engaged, sir, (to Mr Goddard,) I have assistance ; (mistakenly enough, if it be really engaged, sir, (to me,) to Miss Howe, to avoid done so absurdly as to expose them more ;) and all wilful neglects. It would be an unpardon- sayest, that we do but hang out a sign, in our able fault, and very ill become the character I dress, of what we have in the shop of our minds. would be glad to deserve, or the temper of mind This, no doubt, thou thinkest, is smartly obI wish my friends hereafter to think me mis- served ; but pr’ythee, Lovelace, tell me, if thou tress of, if I did not.
canst, what sort of a sign must thou hang out, Mr Hickman and I went afterwards to a neigh- wert thou obliged to give us a clear idea by it bouring coffee-house ; and he gave me some ac- of the furniture of thy mind ? count of your behaviour at the ball on Monday Mr Hickman tells me, he should have been night, and of your treatment of him in the con- happy with Miss Howe some weeks ago, (for ference he had with you before that ; which he all the settlements have been some time enrepresented in a more favourable light than you grossed ;) but that she will not marry, she dehad done yourself: and yet he gave his senti- clares, while her dear friend is so unhappy. ments of you with great freedom, but with the This is truly a charming instance of the force politeness of a gentleman.
of female friendship ; which you and I, and our He told me how very determined the lady was brother rakes, have constantly ridiculed as a against marrying you ; that she had, early this chimerical thing in women of equal age, rank, morning, set herself to write a letter to Miss and perfections. Howe, in answer to one he had brought her, But really, Lovelace, I see more and more, which he was to call for at twelve, it being almost that there are not in the world, with all our finished before he saw her at breakfast; and conceited pride, narrower-souled wretches than that at three he proposed to set out on his re- we rakes and libertines are. And I'll tell thee turn.
how it comes about. He told me that Miss Howe, and her mother, Our early love of roguery makes us generally and himself, were to begin their little journey run away from instruction ; and so we become for the Isle of Wight on Monday next : but that mere smatterers in the sciences we are put to he must make the most favourable representa- learn; and, because we will know no more, tion of Miss Harlowe's bad health, or they think there is no more to be known. should have a very uneasy absence. He express- With an infinite deal of vanity, un-reined ed the pleasure he had in finding the lady in imaginations, and no judgments at all, we next such good hands. He proposed to call on Dr commence half-wits, and then think we have H. to take his opinion whether it were likely the whole field of knowledge in possession, and she would recover; and hoped he should find it despise every one who takes more pains, and is favourable.
more serious, than ourselves, as phlegmatic,
MISS HOWE TO MISS CLARISSA HARLOWE.
stupid fellows, who have no taste for the most way to my feet, as long as I could behold the poignant pleasures of life.
skirts of her raiment. This makes us insufferable to men of modesty I went into the back-shop, continued the and merit, and obliges us to herd with those of worthy man, and recommended the angelic lady our own cast; and by this means we have no to the best care of Mrs Smith; and, when I was opportunities of seeing or conversing with any. in the street, cast my eye up at her window; body who could or would shew us what we are ; there, for the last time, I doubt, said he, that I and so we conclude that we are the cleverest shall ever behold her, I saw her; and she waved fellows in the world, and the only men of spirit her charming hand to me, and with such a look in it; and looking down with supercilious eyes of smiling goodness, and mingled concern, as I on all who give not themselves the liberties we cannot describe. take, imagine the world made for us, and for Pr’ythee tell me, thou vile Lovelace, if thou us only.
hast not a notion, even from these jejune deThus, as to useful knowledge, while others scriptions of mine, that there must be a more go to the bottom, we only skim the surface; are exalted pleasure in intellectual friendship, than despised by people of solid sense, of true ho- ever thou couldst taste in the gross fumes of nour, and superior talents; and shutting our sensuality? And whether it may not be possieyes, move round and round (like so many
blind ble for thee, in time, to give that preference to mill-horses) in one narrow circle, while we ima- the infinitely preferable, which I hope, now, gine we have all the world to range in.
that I shall always give?
I will leave thee to make the most of this re
flection, from I threw myself in Mr Hickman's way, on
Thy true friend, his return from the lady.
J. BELFORD. He was excessively moved at taking leave of her ; being afraid, as he said to me, (though he would not tell her so,) that he should never see
LETTER CCLXXIV. her again. She charged him to represent everything to Miss Howe in the most favourable light that the truth would bear. He told me of a tender passage at parting ;
Tuesday, July 25. which was, that having saluted her at her closet- Your two affecting letters were brought to door, he could not help once more taking the me, (as I had directed any letter from you should same liberty, in a more fervent manner, at the be,) to the colonel's, about an hour before we stairs-head, whether she accompanied him; and broke up. I could not forbear dipping into them this in the thought, that it was the last
time he there ; and shedding more tears over them than should ever have that honour; and offering to I will tell you of; although I dried my eyes as apologize for his freedom, (for he had pressed well as I could, that the company I was obliged her to his heart with a vehemence, that he could to return to, and my mother, should see as litneither account for or resist)–Excuse you, Mr tle of my concern as possible. Hickman! that I will ; you are my brother and I am yet, (and was then still more,) excesmy friend; and to shew you that the good man, sively fluttered. The occasion I will communiwho is to be happy with my beloved Miss Howe, cate to you by and by; for nothing but the flutis very dear to me, you shall carry to her this ters given by the stroke of death could divert token of my love, [offering her sweet face to my first attention from the sad and solemn conhis salute, and pressing his hand between hers;] tents of your last favour. These, therefore, I and, perhaps, her love of me will make it more must begin with. agreeable to her, than her punctilio would other- How can I bear the thoughts of losing so dear wise allow it to be ; and tell her, said she, drop- a friend ! I will not so much as suppose it. Inping on one knee, with clasped hands, and up- deed, I cannot! such a mind as yours was not Îifted eyes, that in this posture you see me, in vested in humanity to be snatched away from the last moment of our parting, begging a bless- us so soon. There must be still a great deal for ing upon you both, and that you may be the de- you to do for the good of all who have the haplight and comfort of each other, for many, very piness to know you. many happy years!
You enumerate in your letter of Thursday Tears, said he, fell from my eyes ; I even last,* the particulars in which your situation is sobbed with mingled joy and sorrow; and she already mended ; let me see by effects that you retreating as soon as I raised her, I went down are in earnest in that enumeration; and that you stairs highly dissatisfied with myself for going; really have the courage to resolve to get above yet unable to stay; my eyes fixed the contrary the sense of injuries you could not avoid ; and
# See Letter CCL. of this Vol.
make to you.
then will I trust to Providence and my humble portant point once more to your discussion, beprayers for your perfect recovery; and glad at fore I give, in your name, the negative that canmy heart shall I be, on my return from the lit- not, when given, be with honour to yourself retle island, to find you well enough to be near us pented of or recalled. according to the proposal Mr Hickman has to Know then, my dear, that I accompanied my
mother to Colonel Ambrose's on the occasion I You chide me in yours of Sunday on the free- mentioned to you in my former. Many ladies dom I take with your friends. +
and gentlemen were there whom you know; I may be warm. I know I am-too warm. particularly Miss Kitty D'Oyly, Miss Lloyd, Yet warmth in friendship, surely, cannot be a Miss Biddy D'Ollyffe, Miss Bíddulph, and their crime ; especially when our friend has great respective admirers, with the colonel's two niemerit, labours under oppression, and is strug- ces; fine women both; besides many whom you gling with undeserved calamity.
know not ; for they were strangers to me but by I have no notion of coolness in friendship, be name. A splendid company, and all pleased with it dignified or distinguished by the name of one another, till Colonel Ambrose introduced prudence, or what it will.
one, who, the moment he was brought into the You may excuse your relations. It was ever great hall, set the whole assembly into a kind your way to do so. But, my dear, other people of agitation. must be allowed to judge as they please. I am It was your villain. not their daughter, nor the sister of your bro- I thought I should have sunk as soon as I set ther and sister-I thank Heaven, I am not. my eyes upon him. My mother was also af.
But if you are displeased with me for the fected ; and, coming to me, Nancy, whispered freedoms I took so long ago as you mention, I am she, can you bear the sight of that wretch withafraid, if you knew what passed upon an appli- out too much emotion ?- If not, withdraw into cation I made to your sister very lately, (in the next apartment. hopes to procure you the absolution your heart I could not remove. Everybody's eyes were is so much set upon) that you would be still glanced from him to me. I sat down and fanmore concerned. But they have been even with ned myself, and was forced to order a glass of me—but I must not tell you all. I hope, how- water. Oh! that I had the eye the basilisk is ever, that these unforgivers [my mother is reported to have, thought I, and that his life among them] were always good, dutiful, pas- were within the power of it!-directly would I sive children to their parents.
kill him. Once more forgive me. I owned I was too He entered with an air so hateful to me, but warm. But I have no example to the contrary so agreeable to every other eye, that I could have but from you ; and the treatment you meet with looked him dead for that too. is very little encouragement to me to endeavour After the general salutations he singled out to imitate you in your dutiful meekness, Mr Hickman, and told him he had recollected
You leave it to me to give a negative to the some parts of his behaviour to him, when he hopes of the noble family, whose only disgrace saw him last, which had made him think himis, that so very vile a man is so nearly related self under obligation to his patience and politeto them. But yet—alas ! my dear, I am so fearful of consequences, so selfishly fearful, if And so, indeed, he was. this negative must be given-I don't know what Miss D'Oyly, upon his complimenting her, I should say—but give me leave to suspend, among a knot of ladies, asked him, in their however, this negative, till I hear from you hearing, how Miss Clarissa Harlowe did ? again.
He heard, he said, you were not so well as he This earnest courtship of you into their splen. wished you to be, and as you deserved to be. did family is so very honourable to you—they 0, Mr Lovelace, said she, what have you to so justly admire you-you must have had such answer for on that young lady's account, if all a noble triumph over the base man-he is so be true that I have heard ! much in earnest-the world knows so much of I have a great deal to answer for, said the unthe unhappy affair-you may do still so much blushing villain ; but that dear lady has so many good-your will is so inviolate your relations excellencies, and so much delicacy, that little are so implacable--think, my dear, and re- sins are great ones in her eye. think.
Little sins ! replied Miss D'Oyly ; Mr Love And let me leave you to do so, while I give lace's character is so well known, that nobody you the occasion of the flutter I mentioned at believes he can commit little sins. the beginning of this letter ; in the conclusion You are very good to me, Miss D'Oyly. of which you will find the obligation I have Indeed I am not. consented to lay myself under, to refer this im- Then I am the only person to whom you are
• See Letter CCLXVII. of this Vol.