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su honour untainted to posterity. Come, my she may yet be innocent.”_"Ah no, sir,” cried sch, we wait for a song: let us have a chorus. But the child; "he only kissed her, and called her his where is my darling Olivia? That little cherub's angel, and she wept very much, and leaned upon yoke is always sweetest in the concert.”—Just as his arm, and they drove off very fast.”—"She's an I spoke, Dick came running in, "O papa, papa, ungrateful creature,” cried my wife, who could she is gone from us, she is gone from us; my sister scarcely speak for weeping, "to use us thus. She Livy is gone from us for ever.”—“Gone, child!" never had the least constraint put upon her affec" Yes, she is gone off with two gentlemen in a post- tions. The vile strumpet has basely deserted her chaise, and one of them kissed her, and said he parents without any provocation-thus to bring Fould die for her: and she cried very much, and your gray hairs to the grave, and I must shortly was for coming back; but he persuaded her again, follow." and she went into the chaise, and said, O what In this manner that night, the first of our real Fül my poor pa pa do when he knows I am undone!" misfortunes, was spent in the bitterness of com". Now then,” cried I, “my children, go and be plaint, and ill-supported sallies of enthusiasm. I mierable; for we shall never enjoy one hour more. determined, however, to find out our betrayer, And 0 may Heaven's everlasting fury light upon wherever he was, and reproach his baseness. The him and his !—Thus to rob me of my child !-And next morning we missed our wretched child at sure it will, for taking back my sweet innocent that breakfast, where she used to give life and cheerful. I was leading up to Heaven. Such sincerity as ness to us all. My wife, as before, attempted to my child was possessed of !—But all our earthly ease her heart by reproaches. “Never,” cried she, happiness is now over! Go, my children, go and "shall that vilest stain of our family again darken be miserable and infamous; for my heart is broken these harmless doors. I will never call her daughwithin me !"-"Father,” cried my son, “is this ter more. No, let the strumpet live with her vile your fortitude ?”—“Fortitude, child! Yes, he seducer: she may bring us to shame, but she shall shall see I have fortitude! Bring me my pistols. never more deceive us." I'll pursue the traitor: while he is on earth 1'11 “ Wife,” said I, "do not talk thus hardly: my pursue him. Old as I am, he shall find I can sting detestation of her guilt is as great as yours; but kim yet. The villain! The perfidious villain!"" ever shall this house and this heart be open to a I had by this time reached down my pistols, when poor returning repentant sinner. The sooner she my poor wife, whose passions were not so strong returns from her transgression, the more welcome as mine, caught me in her arms. “My dearest, shall she be to me. For the first time the very dearest husband,” cried she, "the Bible is the only best may err; art may persuade, and novelty spread weapon that is fit for your old hands now. Open out its charm. The first fault is the child of simthat, my love, and read our anguish into patience, plicity, but every other the offspring of guilt. Yes, for she has vilely deceived us.”—“Indeed, sir,” re- the wretched creature shall be welcome to this heart surned my son, after a pause, "your rage is too vio- and this house, though stained with ten thousand lent and unbecoming. You should be my mother's vices. I will again hearken to the music of her comforter, and you increase her pain. It ill suited voice, again will I hang fondly on her bosom, if I you and your reverend character, thus to curse find but repentance there. My son, bring hither your greatest enemy: you should not have cursed my Bible and my staff*: I will pursue her, wherever him, villain as he is.”—“I did not curse him, child, she is; and though I can not save her from shame, did I P—“Indeed, sir, you did ; you cursed him I may prevent the continuance of iniquity.” twice."—" Then may Heaven forgive me and him if I did! And now, my son, I see it was more than human benevolence that first taught us to
CHAPTER XVIII. bless our enemies! Blessed be his holy name for all the good he hath given, and for all that he hath The Pursuit of a father to reclaim a lost Child to Virtue. taken away. But it is not—it is not a small distress that can wring tears from these old eyes, that Though the child could not describe the gentlehave not wept for so many years. My child !— man's person who handed his sister into the postTo undo my darling !—May confusion seize— chaise, yet my suspicions fell entirely upon our Heaven forgive me, what am I about to say !-You young landlord, whose character for such intrigues may remember, my love, how good she was, and was but too well known. I therefore directed my Łow charming; till this vile moment, all her care steps towards Thornhill-castle, resolving to upbraid was to make us happy. Had she but died !—But him, and, if possible, to bring back my daughter: she is gone, the honour of our family contaminated, but before I had reached his seat, I was met by one and I must look out for happiness in other worlds of my parishioners, who said he saw a young lady, than here. But, my child, you saw them go off : resembling my daughter
, in a post-chaise with a perluaps he forced her away? If he forced her, gentleman, whom, by the description, I could only
guess to be Mr. Burchell, and that they drove very than the philanthropic bookseller in St. Pau's fast. This information, however, did by no means Church-yard, who has written so many little books satisfy me. I therefore went to the young 'Squire's, for children: he called himself their friend; but he and though it was yet early, insisted upon seeing was the friend of all mankind. He was no sooner him immediately. He soon appeared with the alighted, but he was in haste to be gone; for he most open familiar air, and seemed perfectly ama- was ever on business of the utmost importance, and zed at my daughter's elopement, protesting upon was at that time actually compiling materials for his honour that he was quite a stranger to it. I the history of one Mr. Thomas Trip. I immedinow therefore condemned my former suspicions, ately recollected this good-natured man's red pimand could turn them only on Mr. Burchell, who I pled face; for he had published for me against the recollected had of late several private conferences Deuterogamists of the age, and from him I borwith her: but the appearance of another witness rowed a few pieces, to be paid at my return. Leaving left me no room to doubt his villany, who averred, the inn, therefore, as I was yet but weak, I resolved that he and my daughter were actually gone towards to return home by easy journeys of ten miles a-day. the Wells, about thirty miles off, where there was My health and usual tranquillity were almost rea great deal of company. Being driven to that stored, and I now condemned that pride which had state of mind in which we are more ready to act made me refractory to the hand of correction. precipitately than to reason right, I never debated Man little knows what calamities are beyond his with myself, whether these accounts might not have patience to bear, till he tries them: as in ascending been given by persons purposely placed in my way the heights of ambition, which look bright from to mislead me, but resolved to pursue my daughter below, every step we rise shows us some new and and her fancied deluder thither. I walked along gloomy prospect of hidden disappointment; so in with earnestness, and inquired of several by the our descent from the summits of pleasure, though way; but received no accounts, till, entering the the vale of misery below may appear at first dark town, I was met by a person on horseback, whom and gloomy, yet the busy mind, still attentive to its I remembered to have seen at the 'Squire's, and he own amusement, finds, as we descend, something assured me, that if I followed them to the races, to flatter and to please. Still, as we approach, the which were but thirty miles farther, I might depend darkest objects appear to brighten, and the mental upon overtaking them; for he had seen them dance eye becomes adapted to its gloomy situation. there the night before, and the whole assembly I now proceeded forward, and had walked about seemed charmed with my daughter's performance. two hours, when I perceived what appeared at a Early the next day, I walked forward to the races, distance like a wagon, which I was resolved to and about four in the afternoon I came upon the overtake; but when I came up with it, found it to course. The company made a very brilliant ap- be a strolling company's cart, that was carrying their pearance, all earnestly employed in one pursuit, scenes and other theatrical furniture to the next vilthat of pleasure: how different from mine, that of lage, where they were to exhibit. The cart was reclaiming a lost child to virtue! I thought I per-attended only by the person who drove it, and one ceived Mr. Burchell at some distance from me; but, of the company, as the rest of the players were to as if he dreaded an interview, upon my approach- follow the ensuing day. "Good company upon the ing him, he mixed among a crowd, and I saw him road,” says the proverb, “is the shortest cut." I no more. I now reflected that it would be to no therefore entered into conversation with the poor purpose to continue my pursuit farther, and resolved player; and as I once had some theatrical powers to return home to an innocent family, who wanted myself, I disserted on such topics with my usual my assistance. But the agitations of my mind, freedom: but as I was pretty much unacquainted and the fatigues I had undergone, threw me into a with the present state of the stage, I demanded who fever, the symptoms of which I perceived before I were the present theatrical writers in vogue, who came off the course. This was another unexpected the Drydens and Otways of the day ?—"I fancy, stroke, as I was more than seventy miles distant sir," cried the player, “few of our modern drafrom home : however, I retired to a little ale-house matists would think themselves much honoured by by the road-side, and in this place, the usual retreat being compared to the writers you mention. Dryof indigence and frugality, I laid me down patiently den's and Rowe's manner, sir, are quite out of to wait the issue of my disorder. I languished here fashion ; our taste has gone back a whole century; for nearly three weeks; but at last my constitution Fletcher, Ben Jonson, and all the plays of Shaksprevailed, though I was unprovided with money to peare, are the only things that go down.”.
"-"Hlow," defray the expenses of my entertainment. It is cried I, “is it possible the present age can be pleased possible the anxiety from this last circumstance with that antiquated dialect, that obsolete humour, alone might have brought on a relapse, had I not those overcharged characters, which abound in the been supplied by a traveller, who stopped to take a works you mention ?"_"Sir," returned my comcursory refreshment. This person was no other panion, “the public think nothing about dialect, or
humour, or character, for that is none of their bu- perfectly in luck. Our entertainer soon return. stess; they only go to be amused, and find them- ed; an elegant supper was brought in, two or selves happy when they can enjoy a pantomime, three ladies in easy dishabille were introduced, under the sanction of Jonson's or Shakspeare's and the conversation began with some sprightliname.”—“So then, I suppose,” cried I, “that our ness. Politics, however, was the subject on which modern dramatists are rather imitators of Shaks- our entertainer chiefly expatiated; for he asserted peare than of nature.”_"To say the truth,” re- that liberty was at once his boast and his terror. turned my companion, "I don't know that they After the cloth was removed, he asked me if I had imitate any thing at all; nor indeed does the pub- seen the last Monitor? to which replying in the le require it of them: it is not the composition of negative, “What, nor the Auditor, I suppose?” the piece, but the number of starts and attitudes cried he. “Neither, sir," returned I. “That's that may be introduced into it, that elicits applause. strange, very strange,” replied my entertainer. I have known a piece, with not one jest in the "Now I read all the politics that come out. The whole, shrugged into popularity, and another saved Daily, the Public, the Ledger, the Chronicle, the by the poet's throwing in a fit of the gripes. No, London Evening, the Whitehall Evening, the se sir, the works of Congreve and Farquhar have too enteen Magazines, and the two Reviews; and much wit in them for the present taste; our modern though they hate each other, I love them all. Libdialect is much more natural.”
erty, sir, liberty is the Briton's boast, and by all my By this time the cquipage of the strolling com- coal-mines in Cornwall, I reverence its guardians.” pany was arrived at the village, which, it seems, |—" Then it is to be hoped,” cried I, "you revehad been apprized of our approach, and was come rence the king."-"Yes,” returned my entertainer, out to gaze at us : for my companion observed, that when he does what we would have him; but if strollers always have more spectators without doors he goes on as he has done of late, I'll never trouble than within. I did not consider the impropriety of myself more with his matters. I say nothing. I my being in such company, till I saw a mob gather think, only, I could have directed some things better. abont me. I therefore took shelter, as fast as pos- I don't think there has been a sufficient number of sible, in the first ale-house that offered, and being advisers : he should advise with every person wil. shown into the common room, was accosted by a ling to give him advice, and then we should have very well dressed gentleman, who demanded when things done in another guess manner." ther I was the real chaplain of the company, or "I wish,” cried I, “that such intruding advisers whether it was only to be my masquerade charac- were fixed in the pillory. It should be the duty ter in the play. Upon my informing him of the of honest men to assist the weaker side of our contruth, and that I did not belong in any sort to the stitution, that sacred power which has for some company, he was condescending enough to desire years been every day declining, and losing its due De and the player to partake in a bowl of punch, share of influence in the state. But these ignoover which he discussed modern politics with great rants still continue the same cry of liberty; and if Earnestness and interest. I set him down in my they have any weight, basely throw it into the subown mind for nothing less than a parliament-man siding scale." at least; but was almost confirmed in my conjec. “How," cried one of the ladies, "do I live to see tures, when, upon asking what there was in the one so base, so sordid, as to be an enemy to liberty, kaise for supper, he insisted that the player and I and a defender of tyrants? Liberty, that sacred should sup with him at his house; with which re- gift of Heaven, that glorious privilege of Britons ?” quest, after some entreaties, we were prevailed on "Can it be possible,” cried our entertainer, "that to comply.
there should be any found at present advocates for slavery? Any who are for meanly giving up the
privilege of Britons? Can any, sir, be so abject ?" CHAPTER XIX.
“ No, sir," replied I, “I am for liberty, that at
tribute of God! Glorious liberty! that theme of The deseription of a Person discontented with the present modern declamation. I would have all men kings. Geremment and apprehensive of the loss of our Liberties. I would be a king myself. We have all naturally The house where we were to be entertained an equal right to the throne: we are all originally lying at a small distance from the village, our in- equal. This is my opinion, and was once the Hiter observed, that as the coach was not ready, he opinion of a set of honest men who were called Fould conduct us on foot; and we soon arrived at Levellers. They tried to erect themselves into ene of the most magnificent mansions I had seen a community where all would be equally free. But, in that part of the country. The apartment into alas! it would never answer; for there were some which we were shown was perfectly elegant and among them stronger, and some more cunning than modern: he went to give orders for supper, while others, and these became masters of the rest; for the player with a wink, observed that we were las sure as your groom rides your horses, because he
is a cunninger animal than they, so surely will the the needy or the venal, of men who are willing to animal that is cunninger or stronger than he, sit bear the mortification of contiguous tyranny for upon his shoulders in turn. Since then it is en. bread. Thus each very opulent man generally tailed upon humanity to submit, and some are born gathers round him a circle of the poorest of the to command, and others to obey, the question is, as people; and the polity abounding in accumulated there must be tyrants, whether it is better to have wealth, may be compared to a Cartesian system, them in the same house with us, or in the same each orb with a vortex of its own. Those, how. village, or still further off, in the metropolis. Now, ever, who are willing to move in a great man's sir, for my own part, as I naturally hate the face vortex, are only such as must be slaves, the rabble of a tyrant, the farther off he is removed from me, of mankind, whose souls and whose education are the better pleased am I. The generality of man- adapted to servitude, and who know nothing of libkind also are of my way of thinking, and have erty except the name. But there must still be a unanimously created one king, whose election at large number of the people without the sphere of once diminishes the number of tyrants, and puts the opulent man's influence, namely, that order tyranny at the greatest distance from the greatest of men which subsists between the very rich and number of people. Now the great who were ty- the very rabble; those men who are possessed of too rants themselves before the election of one tyrant, large fortunes to submit to the neighbouring man are naturally averse to a power raised over them, in power, and yet are too poor to set up for tyranand whose weight must ever lean heaviest on the ny themselves. In this middle order of mankind subordinate orders. It is the interest of the great, are generally to be found all the arts, wisdom, and therefore, to diminish kingly power as much as virtues of society. This order alone is known to possible; because whatever they take from that, is be the true preserver of freedom, and may be called naturally restored to themselves; and all they have the people. Now it may happen that this middle to do in the state, is to undermine the single ty- order of mankind may lose all its influence in a rant, by which they resume their primeval authori- state, and its voice be in a manner drowned in ty. Now the state may be so circumstanced, or that of the rabble: for if the fortune sufficient for its laws may be so disposed, or its men of opulence qualifying a person at present to give his voice in 60 minded, as all to conspire in carrying on this state affairs be ten times less than was judged sufbusiness of undermining monarchy. For in the ficient upon forming the constitution, it is evident first place, if the circumstances of our state be such that greater numbers of the rabble will be thus in. as to favour the accumulation of wealth, and make troduced into the political system, and they ever the opulent still more rich, this will increase their moving in the vortex of the great, will follow where ambition. An accumulation of wealth, however, greatness shall direct. In such a state, therefore, must necessarily be the consequence, when as at all that the middle order has left, is to preserve the present, more riches flow in from external com- prerogative and privileges of the one principal gomerce, than arise from internal industry; for ex vernor with the most sacred circumspection. For ternal commerce can only be managed to ad- he divides the power of the rich, and calls off the vantage by the rich, and they have also at the great from falling with tenfold weight on the midsame time all the emoluments arising from internal dle order placed beneath them. The middle order industry; so that the rich, with us, have two may be compared to a town, of which the opulent sources of wealth, whereas the poor have but one. are forming the siege, and of which the governor For this reason, wealth, in all commercial states, from without is hastening the relief. While the is found to accumulate, and all such have hitherto besiegers are in dread of an enemy over them, it is in time become aristocratical. Again, the very but natural to offer the townsmen the most specious laws also of this country may contribute to the ac- terms; to flatter them with sounds, and amuse cumulation of wealth; as when, by their means, them with privileges; but if they once defeat the the natural ties that bind the rich and poor together governor from behind, the walls of the town will are broken, and it is ordained, that the rich shall be but a small defence to its inhabitants. What they only marry with the rich; or when the learned are may then expect, may be seen by turning our eyes held unqualified to serve their country as counsel- to Holland, Genoa, or Venice, where the laws govern lors, merely from a defect of opulence, and wealth the poor, and the rich govern the law. I am then for, is thus made the object of a wise man's ambition; and would die for monarchy, sacred monarchy; for by these means, I say, and such means as these, if there be any thing sacred amongst men, it must be riches will accumulate. Now the possessor of ac- the anointed Sovereign of his people; and every cumulated wealth, when furnished with the neces- diminution of his power in war, or in peace, is an saries and pleasures of life, has no other method to infringement upon the real liberties of the subject. employ the superfluity of his fortune but in pur- The sounds of liberty, patriotism, and Britons, chasing power. That is, differently speaking, in have already done much; it is to be hoped that the making dependants, by purchasing the liberty of (true sons of freedom will prevent their ever doing
more. I have known many of those pretended my stay for some days: and as their niece, my champions for liberty in my time, yet do I not re- charming pupil
, whose mind in some measure had member one that was not in his heart and in his been formed under my own instructions, joined in family a tyrant."
their entreaties, I complied. That night I was My warmth I found had lengthened this ha- shown to a magnificent chamber, and the next rangue beyond the rules of goood breeding: but morning early Miss Wilmot desired to walk with the impatience of my entertainer, who often strove me in the garden, which was decorated in the moto interrupt it, could be restrained no longer. dern manner. After some time spent in pointing "What,” cried he, "then I have been all this out the beauties of the place, she inquired, with while entertaining a jesuit in parson's clothes! but seeming unconcern, when last I had heard from by all the coal-mines of Cornwall, out he shall my son George? “Alas, madam,” cried I," he has pack, if my name be Wilkinson.” I now found I now been nearly three years absent, without ever had gone too far, and asked pardon for the warmth writing to his friends or me. Where he is I know with which I had spoken. "Pardon!” returned not; perhaps I shall never see him or happiness he in a fury: "I think such principles demand ten more. No, my dear madam, we shall never more thousand pardons. What? give up liberty, pro- see such pleasing hours as were once spent by our perty, and, the Gazetteer says, lie down to be sad- fire-side at Wakefield. My little family are now dled with wooden shoes! sir, I insist upon your dispersing very fast, and poverty has brought not narching out of this house immediately, to prevent only want, but infamy upon us.” The good-naNorse consequences: sir, I insist upon it.” I was go-tured girl let fall a tear at this account; but as I ing to repeat my remonstrances; but just then we saw her possessed of too much sensibility, I foreheard a footman's rap at the door, and the two bore a more minute detail of our sufferings. It ladies cried out, "As sure as death there is our was, however, some consolation to me, to find that master and mistress come home.” It seems my time had made no alteration in her affections, and entertainer was all this while only the butler, who, that she had rejected several offers that had been in his master's absence, had a mind to cut a figure, made her since our leaving her part of the country. and be for a while the gentleman himself: and, to She led me round all the extensive improvements say the truth, he talked politics as well as most of the place, pointing to the several walks and arcountry gentlemen do. But nothing could now ex- bours
, and at the same time catching from every cred my confusion upon seeing the gentleman and object a hint for some new question relative to my his lady enter; nor was their surprise at finding son. In this manner we spent the forenoon, till such company and good cheer less than ours. the bell summoned us in to dinner, where we found "Gentlemen,” cried the real master of the house the manager of the strolling company that I mento me and my companion,” my wife and I are tioned before, who was come to dispose of tickets your most humble servants; but I protest this for the Fair Penitent, which was to be acted that is so unexpected a favour, that we almost sink evening, the part of Horatio by a young gentleunder the obligation.” However unexpected our man who had never appeared on any stage. He company might be to them, theirs, I am sure, was seemed to be very warm in the praises of the new still more so to us, and I was struck dumb with performer, and averred that he never saw any who the apprehensions of my own absurdity, when bid so fair for excellence. Acting, he observed, whom should I next see enter the room but my was not learned in a day; “but this gentleman," dear Miss Arabella Wilmot, who was formerly de- continued he, " seems born to tread the stage. His signed to be married to my son George, but whose voice, his figure, and attitudes, are all admirable. We match was broken off as already related. As soon caught him up accidentally in our journey down.” as she saw me, she flew to my arms with the ut- This account, in some measure, excited our curiosi. most joy.—“My dear sir,” cried she, “ to what ty, and, at the entreaty of the ladies, I was prevailed happy accident is it that we owe so unexpected a upon to accompany them to the play-house, which visit? I am sure my uncle and aunt will be in rap- was no other than a barn. As the company with tures when they find they have the good Dr. Prim- which I went was incontestably the chief of the rose for their guest.” Upon hearing my name, place, we were received with the greatest respect, the old gentleman and lady very politely stepped and placed in the front seat of the theatre; where up, and welcomed me with the most cordial hospi- we sat for some time with no small impatience to tality. Nor could they forbear smiling, upon being see Horatio maké his appearance. The new perinformed of the nature of my present visit ; but the former advanced at last; and let parents think of unfortunate butler, whom they at first seemed dis- my sensations by their own, when I found it was posed to turn away, was at my intercession for- my unfortunate son. He was going to begin, given.
when, turning his eyes upon the audience, he perMr. Amold and his lady, to whom the house be- ceived Miss Wilmot and me, and stood at once longed, now insisted upon having the pleasure of speechless and immovable. The actors behind the