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osto, pretty much used. Besides these, trans- | with the skins of two foxes and one badger, lations of the classics into French, but not carried before them as trophies of their sucone book in Greek or Latin ; a circumstance cess : and, when they were about to sit down that discovered her ignorance in these lan-) to dinner (or supper), Sir Timothy Thicket guages. After having taken a full view of desired that Narcissa would honour the table this collection, I retired, and, at the usual with her presence; but this request, notwithtime, was preparing to lay the cloth, when I standing her brother's threats and intreaties, was told by the maid that her mistress was she refused, on pretence of attending her still in bed, and had been so affected with the aunt, who was indisposed; so I enjoyed the notes of the hounds in the morning, that she satisfaction of seeing my rival mortified. But actually believed herself a hare beset by the this disappointment made no great impression hunters, and begged a few greens to munch on him, who consoled himself with the bottle, for breakfast. When I expressed my sur- of which the whole company became so prise at this unaccountable imagination, she enamoured, that, after a most horrid uproar gave me to understand that her lady was very of laughing, singing, swearing, dancing, and much subject to whims of this nature, some fighting, they were all carried to bed in a times fancying herself an animal, sometimes state of utter oblivion. My duty being altoa piece of furniture ; during which conceited gether detached from the squire and his transformations, it was very dangerous to family, I led a pretty easy and comfortable come near her, especially when she repre- life, drinking daily intoxicating draughts of sented a beast; for that lately, in the charac- love from the charms of Narcissa, which ter of a cat, she had flown at her, and brightened on my contemplation every day scratched her face in a terrible manner: that, more and more.' Inglorious as my present some months ago, she prophesied the general station was, I became blind to my own unconflagration was at hand, and nothing would worthiness, and even conceived hopes of one be able to quench it but her water, which day enjoying this amiable creature, whose therefore she kept so long that her life was in affability greatly encouraged these presumpdanger; and she must needs have died of the tuous thoughts. retention, had they not found an expedient to make her evacuate, by kindling a bonfire under her chamber window, and persuading
CHAPTER XL. her that the house was in flames; upon which, with great deliberation, she bade them My mistress is surprised at my learningbring all the tubs and vessels they could find, communicates her performances to meto be filled, for the preservation of the house, I impart some of mine to her-am mortiinto one of which she immediately discharged fied at her faint praise-Narcissa apthe cause of her distemper. I was also in- proves of my conduct-I gain an involformed, that nothing contributed so much to
untary conquest over the cook-wench and the recovery of her reason as music, which dairy-maid-their mutual resentment and was always administered on those occasions insinuations—the jealousy of their lovers. by Narcissa, who played perfectly well on the harpsichord, and to whom she (the maid) During this season of love and tranquillity, was just then going to intimate her aunt's my muse, which had lain dormant so long, disorder. She was no sooner gone, than I awoke, and produced several small performwas summoned by the bell to my lady's charn- ances on the subject of my flame: but, as ber, where I found her sitting squat on her it concerned me nearly to remain undiscohams on the floor, in the manner of puss vered in my real character and sentiments, I when she listens to the outcries of her pur- was under a necessity of mortifying my desuers. When I appeared, she started up sire of praise, by confining my works to my with an alarmed look, and sprung to the own perusal and applause. In the mean time other side of the room to avoid me, whom, I strove to insinuate myself into the good without doubt, she mistook for a beagle opinion of both ladies, and succeeded so well, thirsting after her life. Perceiving her ex- by my diligence, and dutiful behaviour, that treme confusion, I retired, and on the stair- in a little time I was at least a favourite ser. case met the adorable Narcissa coming up, vant; and frequently enjoyed the pleasure of to whom I imparted the situation of my mis- hearing myself mentioned in French and tress. She said not a word, but, smiling with Italian, with some degree of warmth and sur. unspeakable grace, went into her aunt's prise, by the dear object of all my wishes, as apartment, and in a little time my ears were a person who had so much of the gentleman ravished with the effects of her skill. She in my appearance and discourse, that she accompanied the instrument with a voice so could not for her soul treat me like a comsweet and melodious, that I did not wonder mon lackey. My prudence and modesty at the surprising change it produced on the were not long proof against these bewitching spirits of my mistress, which were soon compliments. One day, while I waited at composed to peace and sober reflection. dinner, the conversation turned upon a knotty
About seven u'clock the hunters arrived, passage of Tasso's Gierusalem, which it seems had puzzled them both. After a great murder of a prince before the altar, where many unsatisfactory conjectures, my mis- he is busy at his devotiong. After the deed tress, taking the book out of her pocket, is perpetrated, the regicide will harangue turned to the place in question, and read the the people with the bloody dagger in his hand; sentence over and over without success; at and I have already composed a speech, which length, despairing of finding the author's I think will suit the character extremely meaning, she turned to me, saying,—"Come here it is.” Then taking up a scrap of hither, Bruno, let us see what fortune will do paper, she read with violent emphasis and for us; I will interpret to thee what goes gesture as follows: before and what follows this obscure para. Thus have I sent the simple king to hell, graph, the particular words of which I will without or coffin, shroud, or passing bell. also explain, that thou mayest, by comparing To me, what are divine and human laws! one with another, guess the sense of that I court no sanction but my own applause! which perplexes us." I was too vain to let Rapes, robberies, treasons, yield my soul delight; slip this opportunity of displaying my talents, And human caroage gratifies my sight. therefore, without hesitation, read and ex- I drag the parent by the hoary hair, plained the whole of that which had discon- And toss the sprawling infant on my spear, certed them, to the utter astonishment of both. While the fond mother's cries regale mine ear. Narcissa's face and lovely neck were over- I fight, I vanquish, murder friends and foes; spread with blushes, from which I drew a Nor dare th' immortal gods my rage oppose. favourable omen, while her aunt, after having Though I did great violence to my understared at me a good while with a look of standing in praising this unnatural rhapsody, amazement, exclaimed,—"In the name of I nevertheless extolled it as a production that heaven, who art thou?" I told her I had of itself deserved immortal fame; and bepicked up a smattering of Italian during a sought her ladyship to bless the world with voyage up the Straits. At this explanation the fruits of those uncommon talents Heaven she shook her head, and observed, that no had bestowed upon her. She smiled with a smatterer could read as I had done. She then look of self-complacency, and, encouraged by desired to know if I understood French: to the incense I had offered, communicated all which question I answered in the affirmative. her poetical works, which I applauded one She asked if I was acquainted with the Latin by one, with as little candour as I had shown and Greek : I replied, “ A little.” “Oho!" at first. Satiated with my flattery, which, I continued she, “and with philosophy and hope, my situation justified, she could not in mathematics, I suppose ?" I owned I knew conscience refuse me an opportunity of something of each. Then she repeated her shining in my turn; and therefore, after a stare and interrogation. I began to repent compliment to my nice discernment and taste, of my vanity, and, in order to repair the observed, that doubtless I must have produced fault Í had committed, said, it was not to be something in that way myself, which she de. wondered at if I had a tolerable education, sired to see. This was a temptation I could for learning was so cheap in my country, by no means resist. I owned, that, while I that every peasant was a scholar; but I hoped was at college, I wrote some small detached her ladyship would think my understanding pieces, at the desire of a friend who was in no exception to my character. She was love; and at her request repeated the followpleased to answer,—“ No, no, God forbid.” ing verses, which indeed my love for NarBut during the rest of the time they sat at cissa had inspired. table they behaved with remarkable reserve.
This alteration gave me great uneasiness; ON CELLA, PLAYING ON THE HARPSICHORD AND and I passed the night without sleep, in mel. ancholy reflections on the vanity of young men, which prompts them to commit so many foolish actions, contrary to their own When Sappho struck the quivering wire, sober judgment. Next day, however, instead The throbbing breast was all on fire: of profiting by 'this self-condemnation, I And, when she raised the vocal lay, yielded still more to the dictates of the prin.
The captive soul was charmed away. ciple I had endeavoured to chastise; and if fortune had not befriended me more than prudence could expect, I should have been But had the nymph possessed with these treated with the contempt it deserved. After Thy softer, chaster power to please, breakfast, my lady, who was a true author, Thy beauteous air of sprightly youth, bade me follow her into the study, where she Thy native smiles of artless truth ; expressed herself thus :-"Since you are so learned, you cannot be void of taste; there. fore I am to desire your opinion of a small The worm of grief had never preyed performance in poetry, which I lately conn- On the forsaken love-sick maid: posed. You must know I have planned a Nor had she mourned a hapless flame, tragedy, the subject of which shall be the Nor dashed on rocks her tender frame.
My mistress paid me a cold compliment on laid their heads together, in order to concert my versification, which she said was elegant a plan of revenge ; and the former having enough, but the subject beneath the pen of a been educated at the academy of Tottenhamtrue poet. I was extremely nettled at her court, undertook to challenge me to single indifference, and looked at Narcissa, who had combat. He accordingly, with many opproby this time joined us, for her approbation; but brious invectives, bade me defiance, and she declined giving her opinion, protesting offered to box me for twenty guineas. I told she was no judge of these matters : so that I him, that although I believed myself a match was forced to retire, very much balked in for him, even at that work, I would not de. my expectation, which was generally a little scend so far below the dignity of a gentle. too sanguine. In the afternoon, however, man as to fight like a porter, but if he had the waiting-maid assured me that Narcissa any thing to say to me, I was his man at had expressed her approbation of my perform- blunderbuss, musket, pistol, sword, hatchet, ance with great warmth, and desired her to spit, cleaver, fork, or needle; nay, I swore, procure a copy of it, as for herself, that she that, should he give his tongue any more (Narcissa) might have an opportunity to saucy liberties at my expense, I would crop peruse it at pleasure. I was elated to an his ears without any ceremony. This rhoextravagant pitch at this intelligence, and domontade, delivered with a stern counteimmediately transcribed a fair copy of my nance and resolute tone, had the desired ode, which was carried to the dear charmer, effect upon my antagonist, who, with some together with another on the same subject, confusion, sneaked off, and gave his friend as follows:
an account of his reception. The story 1.
taking air among the servants, procured for Thy fatal shafts unerring move,
me the title of Gentleman John, with which I bow before thine altar, Love?
I was sometimes honoured, even by my mis. I feel thy soft resistless flame
tress and Narcissa, who had been informed Glide swift through all my vital frame! of the whole affair by the chambermaid. In
the mean time the rival queens expressed
their passion by all the ways in their power; For, while I gaze, my bosom glows, the cook entertained me with choice bits, the My blood in tides impetuous flows; dairy-maid with stroakings. The first would Hope, Fear, and Joy alternate roll,
often encourage me to discover myself by comAnd floods of transport 'whelm my soul!
plimenting me upon my courage and learn
ing, and observing, that if she had a husband My faltering tongue attempts in vain,
like me, to maintain order, and keep acIn soothing murmurs to complain ;
counts, she could make a great deal of money My tongue some secret magic ties, by setting up an eating-house in London, for My murmurs sink in broken sighs! gentlemen's servants on board-wages. The
other courted my affection by showing her IV.
own importance, and telling me, that many Condemned to nurse eternal care, a substantial farmer in the neighbourhood And ever drop the silent tear ;
would be glad to marry her; but she was reUnheard I mourn, unknown I sigh, solved to please her eye, if she should plague Unfriended live, unpitied die !
her heart. Then she would launch out into Whether or not Narcissa discovered my the praise of my proper person, and say, she passion, I could not learn from her behaviour, was sure I would make a good husband, for which, though always benevolent to me, was I was very good-natured. I began to be henceforth more reserved and less cheerful. uneasy at the importunities of these inamoWhile my thoughts aspired to a sphere so ratas, whom, at another time, perhaps, I far above me; I had unwittingly made a con- might have pleased without the disagreeable quest of the cook-wench and dairy-maid, sauce of matrimony; but at present my whole who became so jealous of each other, that, soul was engrossed by Narcissa, and I could if their sentiments had been refined by edu- not bear the thoughts of doing any thing decation, it is probable one or other of them rogatory of the passion I entertained for her. would have had recourse to poison or steel, to be avenged of her rival; but, as their minds were happily adapted to their humble
CHAPTER XLI. station, their mutual enmity was confined to scolding and fisty-cuffs, in which exercise Narcissa being in danger from the brutality they were both well skilled. My good for- of Sir Timothy, is rescued by me, who tune did not long remain a secret ; for it was revenge myself on my rival – I declare disclosed by the frequent broils of these he- my passion, and retreat to the sea-sideroines, who kept no decorum in their en- am surrounded by smugglers, and carcounters. The coachman and gardener, who ried to Boulogne-find my uncle, Lieupaid their devoirs to my admirers, each to tenant Bowling, in great distress, and his respective choice, alarmed at my success, relieve him-our conversation.
At certain intervals, my ambition would not killed him, filled me with just apprehenrevive; I would despise myself for my tame sion of his resentment, which I found myself resignation to my sordid fate, and revolve a in no condition to withstand; especially hundred schemes for assuming the character when I considered his intimacy with our of a gentleman, to which I thought myself squire, to whom I knew he could justify entitled by birth and education. In these himself for what he had done, by imputing it fruitless suggestions time stole away unper- to his love, and desiring his brother Bruin to ceived, and I had already remained eight take the same liberty with his sister, without months in the station of a footman, when an any fear of offence. When we arrived at accident happened that put an end to my the house, Narcissa assured me, she would servitude, and for the present banished all exert all her influence in protecting me from hopes of succeeding in my love.
the revenge of Thicket, and likewise engage Narcissa went one day to visit Miss her aunt in my favour; at the same time, Thicket, who lived with her brother, within pulling out her purse, offered it as a small less than a mile of our house, and was per consideration for the service I had done her. suaded to walk home in the cool of the But I stood too much upon the punctilios of evening, accompanied by Sir Timothy, who, love to incur the least suspicion of being having a good deal of the brute in him, was mercenary, and refused the present, by sayinstigated to use some unbecoming fami-ing, I had merited nothing by barely doing liarities with her, encouraged by the solita- my duty. She seemed astonished at my riness of a field through which they passed. disinterestedness, and blushed: I felt the same The lovely creature was incensed at his suffusion, and, with a downcast eye, and rude behaviour, for which she reproached broken accent, told her, I had one request to him, in such a manner, that he lost all regard make, which, if her generosity would grant, to decency, and actually offered violence to I should think myself fully recompensed for this pattern of innocence and beauty. But an age of misery. She changed colour at Heaven would not suffer so much goodness this preamble, and, with great confusion, to be violated ; and sent me, who, passing by replied, she hoped my good sense would accident near the place, was alarmed with hinder me from asking any thing she was her cries, to her succour. What were the bound in honour to refuse, and therefore emotions of my soul when I beheld Narcissa, bade me signify my desire. Upon which I almost sinking beneath the brutal force of kneeled and begged to kiss her hand. She this satyr! I flew like lightning to her immediately, with an averted look, stretched rescue ; and he, perceiving me, quitted his it out; and I imprinted on it an ardent kiss, prey, and drew his hanger to chastise my and, bathing it with my tears, cried—“Dear presumption. My indignation was too high madam, I am an unfortunate gentleman, and to admit one thought of fear; so that, rushing love you to distraction ; but would have died upon him, I struck his weapon out of his a thousand deaths rather than make this hand, and used my cudgel so successfully, declaration under such a servile appearance, that he fell to the ground, and lay, to all were I not determined to yield to the rigour appearance, without sense. Then I turned of my fate, to fly from your bewitching preto Narcissa, who had swooned, and sitting sence, and bury my presumptuous passion in down by her, gently raised her head, and eternal silence.” With these words I rose supported it on my bosom, while, with my and went away, before she could recover her hand around her waist, I kept her in that spirits so far as to make any reply. My position. My soul was thrilled with tumul- first care was to go and consult Mrs Sagely, tuous joy at feeling the object of my dearest with whom I had maintained a friendly corwishes within my arms : and while she lay respondence ever since I left her house. insensible, I could not refrain from applying When she understood my situation, the good my cheek to hers and ravishing a kiss.' In woman, with real concern, condoled me on a little time, the blood began to revisit her my unhappy fate, and approved of my reso. face; she opened her enchanting eyes, and lution to leave the country, as being perfectly having recollected her late situation, said, well acquainted with the barbarous disposition with a look full of tender acknowledgement-of my rival,—"who, by this time,” said she, “Dear John, I am eternally obliged to you !" | " has no doubt meditated a scheme of reSo saying, she made an effort to rise, in venge. Indeed I cannot see how you will which I assisted her, and she proceeded to be able to elude his vengeance; being himself the house, leaning upon me all the way. I in the commission, he will immediately grant was a thousand times tempted by this oppor- warrants for apprehending you; and as almost tunity to declare my passion, but the dread all the people in this country are dependent of disobliging her restrained my tongue. on him and his friend, it will be impossible We had not moved an hundred paces from for you to find shelter among them: if you the scene of her distress, when I perceived Sir should be apprehended, he will commit you Timothy rise and walk homeward; a circum- to jail, where you may possibly languish in stance, which, though it gave me some satis- great misery till the next assizes, and then faction, inasmuch as I thereby knew I had l be transported for assaulting a magistrate."
While she thus warned me of my danger, / precantion ; for when we came within sight we heard a knocking at the door, which of the French shore, one of the smugglers threw us both into great consternation, as, told me, I must pay for my passage. To in all probability, it was occasioned by my this declaration I replied, that my passage pursuers; whereupon this generous old lady, was none of my own seeking, therefore they putting two guineas into my hand, with tears could not expect a reward from me for transin her eyes, bade me, for God's sake, get out porting me into a strange country by force. at the back door, and consult my safety as i Damme !" said the outlaw, "none of your Providence should direct me. There was palaver; but let me see what money you have no time for deliberation. I followed her got.” So saying, he thrust his hand into my advice, and escaped by the benefit of a dark pocket without any ceremony, and emptied night to the sea-side, where, while I rumi- it of the contents : then casting an eye at my nated on my next excursion, I was all of a hat and wig, which captivated his fancy, he sudden surrounded by armed men, who, took them off, and clapping his own on my having bound my hands and feet, bade me head, declared that a fair exchange was no make no noise, on pain of being shot, and robbery. I was fain to put up with the barcarried me on board of a vessel, which I gain, which was by no means favourable to soon perceived to be a smuggling cutter. me; and a little while after we went all on This discovery gave me some satisfaction at shore together. first, because I considered myself safe from I resolved to take my leave of these desthe resentment of Sir Timothy : but when I peradoes without much ceremony, when one found inyself in the hands of ruffians, who of them cautioned me against appearing to threatened to execute me for a spy, I would their prejudice, if ever I returned to England, have thought myself happily quit for a year's unless I had a mind to be murdered ; for imprisonment, or even transportation. It which service, he assured me, the gang never was in vain for me to protest innocence: I wanted agents. I promised to observe his could not persuade them that I had taken a advice, and departed for the upper town, solitary walk to their haunt at such an hour, where I inquired for a cabaret or public-house; merely for my own amusement; and I did into which I went, with an intention of taking not think it my interest to disclose the true some refreshment. In the kitchen, five Dutch cause of my retreat, because I was afraid sailors sat at breakfast, with a large loaf, a they would have made their peace with justice, firkin of butter, and a keg of brandy, the bung by surrendering me to the penalty of the law. of which they often applied to their mouths What confirmed their suspicion was the with great perseverance and satisfaction. At appearance of a custom-house yacht, which some distance from them I perceived another gave them chase, and had well nigh made a person in the same garb, sitting in a pensive prize of the vessel ; when they were delivered solitary manner, entertaining himself with a from their fears by a thick fog, which effec- whif of tobacco from the stump of a pipe as tually screened them, and favoured their black as jet. The appearance of distress arrival at Boulogne. But before they had never failed to attract my regard and comgot out of sight of their pursuer, they held a passion; I approached this forlorn tar with a council of war about me; and some of the view to offer him my assistance; and, notmost ferocious among them would have withstanding the alteration of dress, and disthrown me overboard, as a traitor who had guise of a long beard, I discovered in him my betrayed them to their enemies ; but others, long lost and lamented uncle and benefactor, more considerate, alleged, that, if they put Lieutenant Bowling! Good Heaven! what me to death, and should afterwards be taken, were the agitations of my soul, between the they could expect no mercy from the legis- joy of finding again such a valuable friend, lature, which would never pardon outlawry and the sorrow of seeing him in such a low aggravated by murder. It was therefore condition ! The tears gushed down my determined, by a plurality of votes, that I cheeks; I stood motionless and silent for should be set on shore in France, and left to some time; at length, recovering the use of find my passage back to England as I should speech, exclaimed, “Gracious God! Mr think proper, this being punishment sufficient Bowling.” My uncle no sooner heard his name for the bare suspicion of a crime in itself not mentioned, than he started up, crying, with capital. Although this favourable determi- some surprise,—" Holla !” and after having nation gave me great pleasure, the apprehen- looked at me steadfastly without being able sion of being robbed would not suffer me to to recollect me, said, "Did you call me, be perfectly at ease. To prevent this calamity, brother?" I told him I had something extraas soon as I was untied, in consequence of ordinary to communicate, and desired him to the foresaid decision, I tore a small hole in give me the hearing for a few minutes in one of my stockings, into which I dropped another room: but he would by no means con. six guineas; reserving half a piece and some sent to this proposal, saying, “ Avast there, silver in my pocket, that, finding something, friend ; none of your tricks upon travellers : they might not be tempted to make any if you have any thing to say to me, do it further inquiry. This was a very necessary | above board: you need not be afraid of being