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THE LISTENER.

In 1670, the charming and accomplished || thousand pounds, besides giving a handHenrietta, Duchess of Orleans, and sister some annual pension to John Young for of Charles II. came to exert her influence his eminent skill as an engineer. When over her brother to sign his infamous treaty || Henry died about one bundred and twenty with France; and here she confirmed her yards were left unfinished; the early death other brother, the Duke of York, after- of Edward VI. interrupted the works wards James II. in the Catholic religion. Mary continued it, but not with any de

Mary, the beloved sister of Henry VIII. || gree of energy; and by neglect the sea embarked from Dover in 1514, to be wedded rolled in such quantities of gravel that the to Louis XII. Henry, by frequently visit. || harbour became almost choked up, in ing this port, first discovered its import- which state it remained till 1583. By in. ance, and in the year 1593, began a work tense application, in the reigns of succeedworthy of a great monarch, by laying the ing monarchs, it was soon completed at a foundation of a most noble pier ; and his small expente. Majesty expended on this business eighty

THE LISTENER.

ANONYMOUS LETTER-WRITERS. they dare even to attack the individual I have ever regarded the anonymous character; as if that had any thing to do letter-writer in the same light as 1 do an

with the merit of a work, its originality or assassin whostabs in the dark. The brave its elegance. and honourable man, if he sees faults in an

Other anonymous writers prevent mar. individual, or even in the public, fears not riages, stir up strife between parents and to come forward and name himself; while children, wives and busbands ; but all have the dastardly coward vents his spleen by the same tendency, all are derived from the pouring forth his venom under initials that same source, and that is mischief. make no part of his name; or is not afraid,

Such were the reflections in which I sat when he disguises his own vile hand--|| busied yesterday in my arm chair; when writing, to make use of the honoured names sleep suddenly overcame me, and to the of Hotspur, Spencer, Douglas, &c. &c. eye of vision was represented a spare

My correspondents are, it is true, almost meagre form, who addressed me in the all anonymous; but they are of a far dif- following words :ferent temperament from those miserable “ Without name, without friends, an out. beings to whom I allude. They write to cast from society that fears me, and from virme for advice, they lash, in a good hu- tue by whom I am despised, behold the offmoured way, the manners of a thoughtless spring of CowARDICE aud MALIGNANCY. age, or they pour their trifling complaints || As CowA'RDICE was driveu froin the field of * into my aged though quick ears: and all honour he overtook the bag, united his fate their motive for signing themselves by fic. to bers, and I was the offspring of that detitious games originates in that desire oftestable union. I trembled before the scorn. tcoiding publicity; which publicity, in the ful looks of my mother, and had in me so general class of anonymous writers, is is much of my father that I dreaded even to eagerly sought after in their kind of way. perform the tasks sbe set me. She called

Hotromany a bitter and spiteful letter in the aid of Envy, who had helped to from these masked assassius has been pro uurture me with a parent's care, ou whose duced because, perhaps, the Editor of a lap | inbibed those lessons which have periodical work, or au impartial paper, has | guided me through this world, through not thought fit to sully bris pages with the which I have wandered unseen aud unnonsensical trash that has issued from their | kuowu through ages, and through which I pen: Only pluugiug deeper and deeper I am still doomed to wauder: through her into the slough of ignorance, behind the incitements I was spurred ou to undertake dirty mantle of an tuonymous siguature, ll the dark task of stabbing, uuseen, my

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neigbours fame, to engender hatred some no longer to my own judgment, and apply times, and often uneasiness between map to you to direct me in chusing a third wife. and man; to crush with venturous stroke, Some inconsiderate mortal will perhaps and still unknown, the building that seem express wonder at my persevering resolued to stand secure, which had been raised tion : his unfounded prejudice I shall not with difficulty, and which now propt up, attempt to refute ; but let him, at worst, served, perhaps, to support its owner, or compare wedlock to a lottery, he will be considerably to add to his comfort. Some forced to acknowledge, that although there times I have recoiled from the task, not be so many blanks, there are also many, from principle, for I have none; but from and some of them capital prizes. the whisperings of my father, who inceg “ Marriage has many pains," says Dr. santly told me I should one day be dis- Jobpson. That the Doctor stands eminent covered. Fear not,' on the other hand amongst our literati, the most severe critic cried Envy, “thou art obscure as thou art must allow; but his most zealous pane. hateful; thou hast no name; who will seek gyrists have very little to say in praise of thee out?'—Thus encouraged, I perform his feelings: nay, I shall make bold to the tasks my nurse and mother set me. It 'affirm that the propagator of such a prinis I who forge the tale of public slander, ciple must renounce all hopes of ever being and the loose scandalous novel that shrinks considered as either a philanthropist or a from the scourge of the law: I boast the patriot. Methinks sometimes, if mortal art of knowing state secrets and the private man could retain beyond the grave the intrigues of Princes and virtuous Princesses recollection of his former maxims, and rethat never had existence; I write the fair vive for one day to witness their effect, Dr. anonymous letter from the pretended lady Johnson would blush at seeing his bust in of fashion, or imitate the old shivering hand St. Paul's cathedral by the side of that of of the aged. Beware my sting, I inflict it | Howard. -What does Dr. Johnson say unseen; for Cowardice and Malige next? NANCY were my parents; and Envy my. Celibacy has no pleasures," --This instructress and nurse!"

might be construed as a lenitive to the I was awakened from this unpleasant first part of the sentence, some enthusiast threat by my servant putting into my hand will say; since by exposing the irksomethe following letter :

ness of a single life, it suggests an induce

ment to enter the marriage state. Our TO TIMOTHY PEARWELL, ESQ.

cynical Doctor never meant such a hiof; Sir,—Notwithstanding I had been some his jaundiced imagination represented both how disappointed in the object of my first conditions under the same colour. His choice, yet I still relied so much on my feelings were as uncouth as his manners, own sagacity, that I presumed to chuse and displeased with himself, he cared not for myself a second time; when, I must making his fellow creatures discontent with confess it, according to the old adage, I their situation in life, be it what it might. jumped “out of the fryingpan into the Thousands would expatiate at full length fire." -The odds, nevertheless, were in my on the manifold gratifications celibacy favour; neither would probabilities have affords; for my part I shall candidly debeen against me had the object of my pur- clare, that the greatest I could enjoy consuit been any other than that enigmatical sisted in the anticipation of that bliss which being a woman.

awaited me, as I fancied, in the marriage Many and many would have argued in state. To be sure, I cooked my dish to the same manner as I did. If one extreme, my palate, and with rather a prodigal thought I, has been productive of unbound- hand, seasoned it with beauty, wealth, and ed nisery, the opposite one, no doubt, accomplishments. must be conducive to supreme happiness : I shall now postpone introducing any my logic, however, proved erroneous, and further reflections, to give you an account my own experience taught me that ex. of my first hymeneal adventure, tremes are frequently next door neighbours. Fortune happened to throw in my way, Be it as it may, I am determined to trust amongst other young ladies possessed of

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the above qualifications, one of those, my wife, 1 liked to see her set out her sprightly bewitching syrens, whose charms beauteous figure to the best advantage, are not to be resisted. Happy as the days and she availed herself of that infatuation of courtship are known to be, we were both || not to follow but to invent new fashions, anxious to abridge their duration; so that which, as you may well imagine, was four months after my being introduced to attended with no inconsiderable experice. Clarissa, I engaged to take her“ for better || Next, as it is of no use being fine unless or for worse."--Too soon did I find that you be seen, she would repeatedly be at " there could be too much of a good thing!" || home; and when intoxicated with the But more of that hereafter.

praises that had been lavished upon her As a prelude, Clarissa being a minor, superior taste, she sat down to cards, she ber miserly guardians would only grant then had to pay in sterling money by their consent upon condition of the whole handfulls the interested incense of which of her property being settled on herself; || she had devoured the smoke. and I readily acquiesced giving that proof My bints at economy were suffered to of disinterestedness, as I had a handsome pass unnoticed, and when, at the expirafortune of my own, upincumbered with tion of two years, I found myself compelled debt. Although by no means extrava- || to mortgage an estate, and to explicitly gantly inclined, yet I conceived it became announce a reform, my wife's spirits were me to form an elegant establishment pro- | instantly paralized. Not long after, she portionate to my income, mindful at the caught the small-pox, by which she was same time to keep a provision for casual- | literally disfigured. Disconsolate at the ties. Little did I imagine that the musical || loss of her beauty, she lingered for a short talents of my cara sposa alone would be the time, and finally left me to lament the occasion of my whole reserve being more death of a partner whose life had been for than absorbed; however, it turned out to me a source of regret amidst an ocean of be the case. Simple amateurs were not || joys. found sufficiently competent to join in her My second wife had no beauty to boast conceits, so that a couple, at least, of vir- | of; and with regard to fortune and accomtuosi of each sex were put in requisition.plishments, hers were proportionate to the Then every rehearsal was followed by a situation in life of her father, an humble dinner, to which on account of the ulti- | worthy country curate. Like another mate debating which pieces were to be | Cæsar, veni, vidi, vici, I saw Miss Arabella executed, and in what succession, I myself|| Wilson at church, was pleased with her was considered as an intruder; of course, countenance, and on my third visit, asked none of my friends were to be admitted || whether she would allow me to demand upon any terms; but I might have as many | her father's consent; which the good as I chose at supper, when they would be gentleman, being apprized of her acquiesbetter entertained, as the Signors and Sig- cence, and acquainted with my circumnoras were to stop. To these latter I must stances and character, readily granted. It do the justice to acknowledge their being was immediately agreed also, that he should extremely sober and temperate, though I accompany his daughter to London, there always found them superlatively dainty. to provide such articles of wearing apparel What surprised me most in them, however, as her new situation would require, the was their prolonging their stay after all choice and purchase of which I doubted the company bad withdrawn; but Clarissa | not but one of my female relatives would relieved me from my visible auxiety, by willingly superintend. This point once informing me in a sweet whisper, that the settled, I sued for no demur; a few hours compliment due to those artists was always brought us to town. The next day, whilst to be discharged prestissimo. So much for the ladies were gone shopping, I went to my having professed being an admirer of procure a special license, and half a score music!

of milliners, dress-makers, and other artists I was ever of opinion that a plain look- l of the same description, being prevailed ing woman should avoid dressing too upon to sit up all night, our days of courtshowy; but this not being the case with ship were speedily at an end to make

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OLD ACQUAINTANCES; OR, NEW MASKS.

room for a life of contradiction and dis intruded upon, I proposed removing into pleasure.

the country; to this suggestion she object. The objection of my new spouse to ed, reproaching me with wishing to de. range within the circle of my numerous prive her of medical assistance, as she stood connections and acquaintance, I ascribed, in need of daily advice : yet exercise was at first, to her domestic habits, and to a prescribed, and she refused taking any out timidity which would soon wear off; but of doors. The jolting of the carriage she shewed a similar dislike to receiving

might be attended with fatal consequences; company at home; and I discovered, to my the streets of London, besides, offered sach great sorrow, that it proceeded from a pe monstrous sights! Oh! if her child was nurious disposition on the one hand, and to be deformed!—Meaowhile she was safely from peevishness on the other. Under a , delivered, and she immediately changed pretence of her being indisposed, I was her course. She relinquished the negative forced to decline many invitations; wben, to assume the imperative; and if her com. in fact, the only motive of her refusal was mands, however whimsical, ridiculous, of to prevent the obligation of returving the absurd, were not obeyed, as by magic, civility. A trusty housekeeper, who had “ her dear babe must suffer, a wet-nurse been in my father's service before I was must be sent for."-How shall I proceed? boro, and my aged porter and butler, who an involuntary mistake threw her into so had lived in the family from the same date violeyt a rage, that a complete derangeas the former, gave me warning, on account ment soon followed, and within a fortnight, of the constant discontented humour and once more I was left a widower; and a conill-treatment of their mistress; neither was vulsion robbed me of my child. I suffered to enjoy one day's rest until I The joys of being a parent I have exhad dismissed my valet, who, upon an oc perienced once, and cannot renounce tamely casion, had saved my life at the peril of his the bopes of enjoying the same blessing own, because Madame could not abide again. So many of my acquaintance are keeping in her house a foreigner, to be happy in the marriage state, that, although murdered by him at some future period. my lot, as a husband, bas hitberto been

So far, however, I had not been quite unhappy, through my inconsiderate choice, deprived of my liberty; I was allowed to I consider it as one chance more in my betake my morning rides and walks, so bene half, that my next wife will not resemble ficial to health; but my wife, discover- either of the two first, whom I have describ ing that she was in the family way, would ed, and that you might select one whose no longer dispense with my presence, so temper and qualifications will be moro that I was condemned to live in a state of congenial with my own.—1 am, &c. &c. imprisonment. In order to avoid being

BENEDICT.

OLD ACQUAINTANCES; OR, NEW MASKS.-FROM THE FRENCH

" Je crois voir des masques partout,
" Et partout, c'etait des visages," MARTELLY.

The events which, for a long time, The Count de Norville left France in the continued to agitate France, have wrought month of June, 1788: when he took a such a change in the manners, tastes, for voyage for the sake of improving himself tune, and situation of its inhabitants, that in the languages of the porth, which be it is impossible for a Frenchman who bas

had been some time studying, and which been absent from his country for only a he desired to obtaiu a thorough knowledge quarter of a century, to enter it again with. of. During the commencement of his stay out meeting, at every step, fresh subjects in a foreign country, the revolution broke to excite his astonishmeut, and without out; and the political Alame spread through continually falling into curious, and often Frauce with the rapidity of the eyil: the disagreeable errors.

family of the Count was persecuted and

OLD ACQUAINTANCES; OR, NEW MASKS.

73

proscribed; some of his relatives, martyrs i arrival had spread through the village, to the royal cause, lost on the scaffold the every one went to pay him homage ; but as remainder of that blood which had already he saw no one, they were obliged to be sabeen shed in the field of battle in the de- || tisfied with being only allowed to write fence of their monarch ; others were con down their names. The Count, to whom demned to end those days in exile, now the list was delivered in the evening, read shortened by grief aud despair. The the names over very attentively, but was Count, himself, although 'he bad quitted not able to discover among them one with his country long before the fever of revolt || whicli he was acquainted. The next day, bad destroyed every moral principle, was M. de Lussac, one of the newest and richyet placed on the fatal list, and stripped, est inhabitants of the district, being more during the life of his father, of the immense pressing and more fortunate than those that wealth that his family had, for ages, en- || had preceded him, was introduced into the joyed, and which, one day, was to descend il presence of M. de Norville ; after having to his own children.

made him a laboured congratulation on his The sorrows of his country drew tears return, M. de Lussac, who had carefully infrom the Count, who supported, without formed the Count of the important characcomplaining, the loss of rank, dignity, and ter he held in the commune, of which he fortune. He thought no more of seeing was fifth magistrate, intreated him to do France, where he then possessed nothing; him the honour of accepting an iuvitation a Frenchman of known honour and bravery, he gave nim for the following day. “I while the Russians, who had given him so shall have," said he, “ a select and brilliant generous a reception, were conquered on party, composed of the first people in this the plains of Eylau, the Count, at the head quarter, and I shall consider myself but of another Russian army, fought, and too happy if the Count de Norville will do avenged, by a shining victory, the nu. me the honour of his company." merous checks that the brave Russians re M. de Norville, curious of seeing a speceived from French valour; an illustrious cimen of the inhabitants of the canton, and warrior, à grateful foreigner, he instructed desirous also of knowing the manners of his bosts in the art of vanquishing the Per- those amongst whom he was obliged to siaus, and paid the debt of hospitality by pass a part of the year, accepted the invihis victories.

tation of M. de Lussac. A change took place in France; she The Count, who feared he should find invited the Bourbons back to the throne of himself in the midst of a circle of strangers, their ancestors : immediately the Count de was agreeably deceived in seeing himself Norville, proud of having yet a sacrifice to surrounded by people whose countenances offer to his sovereign, abandoned, without were familiar to bim, although their names regret, the brilliant lot that awaited him in were utterly unknown to him. These a foreign land, to go and range himself names rather staggered him; there was, among the defenders of a throne, of which according to his opinion, a very great rehis ancestors had been some of the firmest semblance between the features of a valetsupporters. On his return to France, he de chambre formerly in bis father's service, offered to his King a pure heart, a well- and those of a financier who was placed tried arm, and a name without reproach, on his right hand; but how could he rewhich had been rendered doubly glorious cognise Dupré under the name of M. de by his exploits : precious advantages, of St. Yves, the owner of half a dozen old which the native modesty of the Count castles, which he had taken care to demotaught bim not to be vain, but on which lish? He thought also that he discovered, the wisdom of the monarch knew how to in the countenance of a certain Baroness set á just value.

de Chamois, the wit and gaiety of a charmThe government that had seized on the ing female villager, who was about fourteen wealth of the Count, forgot to dispose of years of age at the time of his departure, a little chateau, situated about eight leagues and who gave promise of being one of the from Paris. M. de Norville went there on prettiest girls in the neighbourhood; but a Sunday; and as soon as the news of his " to judge by the countevance of Madame No. 113.-Vol. XVIII.

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