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Emilia, or the Happiness of Retirement.
SI was converling with Emilia, a few days part, I from the resort of company. She answered in the affirmative, and remarked further, that her fituation enabled her to dißinguish between real friends and complimentary: For if she lived in a mor; public place, she might be visited by crowds of people, who were civil indeed, but had no motive for calling on her, but to spend an idle hour and gaze On the busy multitude.
2. I was pleased with the remark, and was naturally led to confider fuch a retired fituation as a fortunate circumAance for a young lady of delicacy. Not only the happiness of a family, but the character of young women, both in a moral and focial view, depends on a choice of proper company.
3. A perpetual throng of company, effecially if it furnishes a variety of new objects, has a pernicious effect on the difpofitions of female minds. Women are destined by nature to preside over domestic affairs. Whatever parade they may make abroad, their real merit and real characters are known only at home.
4. 'The behaviour of fervants: the neatness of furniture, the order of a table, and the regularity of domestic business, are decisive evidences of female worth. Perhaps sweetness of temper does not contribute more to the happiness of their partners and their families, than a proper attention to thefe ticles.
For this reason whatever has a tendency to divert the mind from these concerns, and give them a turn for empty show, endless noise, and tasteless amusements, ought to be carefully avoided by young ladies who wish for Telpect be yond the present momento
6. Milles, who are perpetually furrounded with idle com. pany, or even live in fight of it, though they may be fortuNate enough to preserve their inirocence, are still in hazard of contracting fuch a fondness for difpation and folly, as to unfit them for the superintendence of a family.
7. Another danger to which young women, poffe fed of personal charms, are exposed in public places, is, the flatreTy and admiration of inea. The good opinion of a fop will
hardly datter a woman of difcerpmept; much less his ordi+nary compliments, which are commonly without meaning.
8. But the heart is often fo disguised, that it is difficult at firft to distinguish between a coxcomb and a man of worth, or if it is easy for an accurate observeri yet there is great danger that vanity and inexperience will make young ladies overlook the distinction,
9. Few minds are effectually secured against the attacks of Battery. It is a poison the more fatal, as it feizes human nature in its weakest part. In youth, when the passions are in full vigor, and the judgment feeble, female mids are peculiarly liable to be corrupted by the contagious influence of pretty civilities and affeaed admiration. )
10. With whatever fcruples they may at firkt liften to the praises that are bestowed on their real or petended charms, a conftant strain of flattering addresses, accompanied with obsequious complaisance, feldon fails of giving them to high an opinion of themselves. They are insensibly led to believe, that they are possessed of virtues to which they are Tcally Arangers.
ri. This belief fatisfies then without attempting any further imprevement; and makes the in to depend, forse. putation in life, on good qualities, the fancied existence of which begins and ends with the fallchood of customary compliments,
13. Such ladies before marriage, are usually vain, pert, affected and fully; and after marriage, haughty, disappointed and peevish. The most perfect beauty must fade, and ceafe to command admiration; but in moft inftances, the Buptial hour puts a period to that excess of flattering attention which is the happiness of giddy fensales. The longeft term of admiration must be fhort: That which depends folely on personal attractions is often momentary.
13: The more flattery is bestowed upon young ladies, the Jefs, in general, are they solicitous to acquire virtues which fhall enfure respect when aciniration hall ceale. The more they are praifed in youth, the more they expect it in advanced life, when they have less charms to command it. Thus the exceffive complaisance of admirers, which is ex#emely pleasing at sixteen, proxies at forty, a source of morrification and discontent.
34. I would by no means infinuates, that young ladies, ought to be kept total ftrangers to company, and to rational professions of esteem. It is in company oyly that they can acquaint the
themselves with mankind, acquire an easy address, and learn numberlefs little decorums, which are e sential and cannot be taught by precept. Without these
woman will fometimes deviate from that dignity and propriety of conduct, which in any situation, will secure the good will of her friends, and prevent the blushes of her husband.
A ble only when it is indulged to excess, and permitted to abforb' more important concerns. Noris fame degree of flattery alway's dangerous or useless. The good opinion of mankind we are all desirous to obtain; and to know that we possess it, often makes us ambitious to deserve it., *** 16. No passion is given to us in vain: the best ends are • Sometimes effected by the worst means; and even female i vanity; properly managed; may prompt to the most merito. gious actions. I fhould pay Emilia but a very ill compliment to afcribe ker virtues to her local situation; for no perfon can claim, as a virtue, what she has been in no dan. get of lofing.
17. But there is no retirement beyond the reach of tems*tation, and the whole tenor of her conduct proves, that her unblemished "morals and uniform delicacy proceed from better principles than neceffity or accident,
18. She is loved and flattered but she it not vain; ber company is universally coveted, and yet fhe has no airs of haughtiness and disdain.
19. Her cheerfulness in company shows that she has a relish for fociety; her contentment at home, and attention tö domestic concerns, are early specimens of her happy dispo- fition; and her decent, unaffected abhorrence of every fpecies of licentious behaviour, evinces, beyond fufpicion, that the innocence of her heart is equal to the charıms of her perfon. arts to
JULIANA. A real obaracter, * . ULIANA is those-rare women whofe perfos
at attractions have no rivals, but the fweetness of het temper and the delicacy of her featiments. An elea
is one of ti
gant perfon, regular featüres; a fine complexion, a lively expressive countenance, an easy address, and those blushes of modesty that foften the soul of the beholder: These are native beauties which render her the objé & of univerfal admiration.
2. But when we converse with her, and hear the melting expreffions of unaffected fenfibility and virtue that figw from her tongue, her personal charins receive pew lustre, and . ifresistibly engage the affections of her acquaintance.
ĝo Senfible that the great fource of all happiness, is pu... rity of morals and an easy conscience, Juliana pays constant and sincere attention to the daties of religion," She abhors the infamous, but fashionable vice of deriding the facred institutions or religion,
4. She confiders a lady without virtue as-a monster on Earth; and every accomplishment, without morals, -as polite deception. Ske is neither a hypocrite, nor an enthufie. ak; on the contrary, the mingles such checrfulneis with the religious duties of life, that even her piety, carries with it a charm which infenfibly allures the profligate from the arms of vice.
5. Not only the general tenor of her life, but in particu* lar her behavior in church, evinces the reality of her relia. -gion. She esteems it not only criminal in a high degree, but extremely unpolite, to behave with levity in a place confecrated to the folemn purpose of devation,
6. She cannot believe that any person, who is folicitors; to treat aħl mankind with civility, can laugh in the temple of Jehovah, and treat their great Benefactor with heedlefs : neglect.
3. In polite life, the manners of Juliana are peculiarly engaging. To her fuperiors, the shows the utmost de ference and respect. To her equals, the most modest complaibance and civility; while every rark experiences her kindnefs and affability
8. By this conduct she fecures the love and friendship of : * all degrees. No person can despise her, for she does nothing that is ridiculous; the cannot be hated, for the does inn. jury to none; and even the malevolent whispers-of- ca. lurany are filenced, by her mode deportment and generous condescenfion.
šg. Her conversation is lively and sentimental ; free from false wit, frivolous minuteness, and affectation of learning, Although her discourse is always under the direction of prue dencc, yet it appears unstudied ; for her good fenfe always furnifhes, her with thoughts fuited to the fubject, and the purity of her mind renders any caution in expreffing them, almoft unnecessary.
10. She will not lead the converfation ; much lefs car the stun the ears of company with perpetual chat, to intero fupt the discourse of others. But when occafion offers, Me acquits herself with ease and grace ; without the airs of pert: acle, or the confusion of bashfulness.
11. But if the conversation happens to turn upon the foir bles of either fes, Juliana discovers her goodness by filence, er by inventing palliations. She detelts every species of Sunder.
12. She is fenfible that to publifh and aggravate human errors is not the way to correct thein; and reformation, father than infamy, is the wifh and the study of her life. Herionn amiable example is the feverest of all fatiets upon the faults and the follies of 1 her sex, and goes farther in dif, countémancing both, thán all the censures of malicious detraction, 451 37: -). 13. Although Júliana poffeffes every accomplishment that can commandesteein, and admiration; yet the bias neither vanity nor oftentation. Her merit is eafily discovered withi out flow and parade. 3114. She confiders tlaat haughtinefs and contempt of others always proceed from meanness, that true greatness is ever acceffible, and that felt recommendation and bluffering pretensions, are but the glittering decorations of empty heads and trifting hearts. Bet
15. However strong may be her defire of afeful informaa tion, or however lively her curiosity; yet' fhe reftrains thefe paffions within the bounds of prudence and good breeding. She deems it impertinent to the highest degree to be prying into the concerns of other people much more impertinent and criminal does she deem it, to indulge an officious inqui. fitiveness, for the sake of gratifying private spleen in the propagation of unfavorable truths
...try to 16. So exceedingly delicate is the in her treatment of her fellow creatures, that she will not read a paper - ROE