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brother George."-— BWhat of ,him, child,'' interrupted 1, „does he know our mifery? I hope -my boy is exempt from any part 6f what his wretched family fuffers?" — „Yes, Sir," returned he, „he is perfectly gay, chearful, and happy. His letter brings nothing b,ut good news; he is the favourite of his colonel, who promifes to procure him the very nefl lieutenancy that becomes vacant!"
,,'And are you fure of all this," cried mfwife; ,,are you fure that nothing ill has be^ fallen my boy?" — „I\6thing indeed Madam,1 returned my fon, „yovt fhill fee the" letter, which will give you the higheft pleafure; and if any thing can procure you comfort, 1 am fure that will." „But are you litre," full repeated £he, „that the letter is from lumfelj and that he is really f6 happy?" — „Yes, lUidam," replied he, „it is certainly his, anJ he will one day be the credit and the fupport 6f our family!" — „Then 'I thank providence," cried flie, „that my lift letter to him has mifcArried." ■ „Yes, my dear," continued fhe, turning to me, „'l will now conie^ that tho' the hand of heaven is fore upon ii* in other inftances, it ha,s been favourable here. By the lift letter 'I wrote my fon, which was in the bittern'efs of anger, 'I defired Jiitu, upon his mother's blefling , and if he had the heart of a man, to fee juftice done his father and fifter, and avenge our .caufe- But thanks be to him that directs all things, it has mif■carried, and 'I am at reft." .,Woman," cried 'I, thou haft done very ill, and at another time my reproaches might have been more fevere. 'Oh! what a tremendous gulph haft thou efcaped, that would have buried both
thfc hee and him in encfiefs ruin. Providence, ndeed, has here been Mnder to lis than we iS onrfelves.^ 'It has referved that f6n to be he father and protector 6f my children when [Thai] be away. How unjiiftly did 1 cornlain 6F being fir'pt 6f every comfort, when 111 1 hear that he is happy and infenfible of or afflictions '■, Mil kept in referve to fupport is widowed mother, and to protect his bro>ers and lifters. But what lifters has he left, e has no fitters now, they are all gone, robed from me, and VI am undone." — „Father," iterrupted my fon, „1 beg you will give me ave to read his letter,' 'I know it will pleafe ra." „Up6n which, with nrjr permiffion, he lad as follows:"
"I have called off myr imagination a few aioents from the pleafures that furround me, to i it upon objects that are ftill more pleafing, ie dear little Fire - fide at home. IVly fancy raws that harmlefs groupe as liftening to eryllne of tin's with great compofure. 1 view ofe faces with delight which never felt the ■funning hand of ambition or diftrefs! But katever .your hapuinefs may be at home, 1 a fure It will be teme addition to It, to hear it lJ am perfectly pleafed with nrjr fituation, id every way happy here.
'Our regiment Is countermanded, and Is t to leave the kingdom; the colonel, who ofeffes hirafeff my friend, takes me with n to all companies where he is acquainted, d after my flrft vlfit, VI generally find myf received with encreafed refpect upon repeating it. 'I danced laft night with UdyGand could "I forget yoii know whom, 1 mifl be perhaps fuccefsful. But it is my, fate Ml I remember others, while 'I am myfelf forgottj
m6ft of m-y abfent friends, and in tl number, 1 fear, Sir, that "I muft conflder yt for'I have long expected the pleafure of a 1( ter from home to no purpofe. Olivia and Sj phia too, promifed to write, but feem to l| forgotten me. Tell them they are two aria little baggages, and that T am this moment! a moft violent paCTion with them: yet ftlll, know not how, though 'I want to blufteri little, my heart is refpondent only to Sibt emotions. Then tell them, Sir, that after I 'I love them affectionately, and be affureil«
Your dutiful Io»!
„'Ir\ all 6ur miferiescried 'I, M thanks have we not to return, that one atle* 6f 6ur family is exempted from what we fiifl* Heaven be his guard, and keep my bo^ ■ happy to be the fupporter of his wido^ mother, and the father of' thefe two baM which is all the patrimony 1 can now bequej him. May he keep their innocence from i temptations 6f want, and be their conduct in the paths of h6nour." 'I had fcarce « thefe words , when a noife, like that «j tumult, feemed to proceed from the pt»j below; it died away f6on after, and a clad ing of fetters was heard al6ng the paffa»e i led to my apartment. The keeper of J prifon entered , hdlding a man all bl<W wounded and fettered with the heavieft ir0" "I looked with compaflion on the wretch as * pproached me, but with horror when lI found t was my own Ton — „ My George! My* Jeorge! and do XI behold thee thus. Wounded! 'ettered! 'Is this thy happinefs! is this the matter you return to me! that this Tight could reals, myr heart at once and let me die!"
„Whe>e, Sir, is your fortitude?" returned iy- fon with an intrepid voice. „ 'J muft iuffer, >y life is forfeited, and let th^m take it."
*I tried to reftrain my paffions f6r a few linutes in filence, but lI thought 'I fhoiild Ave died with the effort. — ,,'0 my boy, m$r :eart weeps to behold thee thus, and 'I canot, cannot help it. 'In the moment that 'I iought thee bleft, and prayed for thy fafety, \ behold thee thus again! Chained, woundd. 'And yet the death 6f the youthful is hap. ,y. But 'I am old, a very old man, and have !red to fee this day. To fee my^ children all ntimely falling about me, while 'I continue a /retched furvivor in the midft of ruin! May |] the ciirfes that ever funk a foul fall heavy poiv the murderer of my children. May he !ve, like me, to fee." —
,,Hold, Sir," replied my f6n, „6r 1 fhall lufh for thee. H6w, Sir, forgetful of your te\ your holy calling, dius to arrogate the ill ice of heaven, and fling thofe ciirfes upard that muft foon defcend to crtifh th^r ivn grey head with deftrjiction! No, Sir, let be your care now to fit me for that vile ?ath 'I muft fhortly fuffer, to arm me with Ipe £nd refolution, to give me courage to •ink of that bitternefs which miift fhortly be y- portion."
„My child, you muft not die: 'I am fure > 6ffence 6f thine can deferve f6 vile a punifhmenr. My George oould never be gulta 6f anv crime to make his anceftors afhame! 6f hW'
„Mine, Sir," returned my fdn, „is,l fear, an unpardonable .',ne. When 'I receivd my mother's letter from home, t immediate! came d6wn, determined to pnntfh the betrays 6i our honour, and Cent him an order to niei me, which he anfwered, not in perfon, by his difpaiching fotfr-of his domeftics s feize me. *i wounded one who firft affitilra me, and lI fear defpi'rately; but the reft mail me their > prifoner. The ;coward is determined to put the law in execution agiinft me; i!» proofs are undeniable; I have font a challenge, and as 1 am the firft tranfgreffor up>'n tl-' ftatute x), 1 fee no hopes 6f pardon But y« have often charmed me with your leffons » fortitude, let me now, Sir, find them in yo"r example."
,,'And my f6n, you fhall Find them. '1^ now raited ai>6ve this world, and all tD' pleafures it can produce. From this moment 'I break from my heart all the ties that heldii down to earth, and will prepare to fit us b* for eternity. Yes my fon, I will point t>»! the -way, and my foul fhall guide yours » the afcent, for we will t ike our flight together. 'I now fee and am convinced you can exp1'^ no pardon here, and 'I can only exhort f'1 to feek it at that great eft tribunal where «'e both fhall fh6rtly anfwer. But let lis n«(
x) the firft transgrefior upon the ftatute; Goldfa'* vimmt an, dafs tint die Zeit die Porliamentsnku <" fchienen welche die HexaHsfordtrung fir tin W£ verbrechen erktarte.