Containing his adventures; his cruel sufferings during ten years imprisonment at the Fortress of Magdeburg, by command of the late king of Prussia. Also Anecdotes, historical, political and personal.

Translated from the German by Thomas Holcroft.

THE man of feeling, and the friend of freedom, will read the life of Baron Trenck with sensations perhaps too strong: it will remain an eternal monument of the detest­able, the diabolical effects of despotism.

The historian will acquire from him essential information concerning the characters of persons, courts, and kingdoms, highly illustrative of the annals of the present century.

The philosopher will meditate on the manners of the peo­ple of Germany; will wonder, while reading, to recollect that there, as in states more improved, such numbers should remain so, almost miraculously, ignorant, superstitious, and credulous, while knowledge and science appear to be so far advanced; will sigh, to be so repeatedly told of mi­litary courts, and judges condemned to sweep the streets, after effecting the ruin of thousands; will incessantly reflect, with amazement, at the strange jargon, and confusion, that still are so universal over the globe, as he reads the words, king, liberty, vassal, military sentence, property, just claim, and an infinity of other heterogeneous and incompatible phrases; continually will he exclaim—How many ages yet, oh world, must thou exist, ere thy sons shall indeed learn wisdom!

The book is, what it would be, the perfect resemblance of its author; an original, bold, and interesting picture, Like him, it has its defects▪ but they are forgotten in the ad­miration of its inherent and masculine beauties.



"Thou hast rashly ventured in a stormy Sea,
Where Life, Fame, Virtue, all were wreck'd and lost;
But sure thou hast borne thy Part in all the Anguish,
And smarted with the Pain: then rest in Peace;
Let Silence and Oblivion hide thy Name,
And save thee from the Malice of Posterity."







YOUR affectionate solicitude, my amiable Caro­line, merits every return that grateful tender­ness and fraternal love can make; and the heart of Mor­timer offers you its warmest acknowledgments.

The long absence of which you so pathetically com­plain, arises from no common event, but all your con­jectures are ill-founded.— It is no misplaced attach­ment that makes me thus long a stranger to my native spot: it is no destructive infatuation which I am so re­luctant to avow; it is—and why should the heart of virtue blush to confess it?—the impulse of generous sen­sibility.

You smile, my penetrating sister; modern sensibility has been the frequent subject of my satyric powers; but it has been that superficial impostor, the offspring of pride and artifice, cherished by the undistinguishing ap­plause of vulgarity, that I have derided; the genuine effusions of a sensible and benevolent spirit I have al­ways revered. With me the plaintive voice of unaf­fected sorrow has ever been sacred: and the errors of humanity have never failed to find an indulgent advocate in my bosom.

This honest confession, my dear Caroline, is but the prelude to a tale of woe, which may, I think, convey a [Page 2] lesson of useful instruction, guard you against the delusions of the heart, and, by the irresistible power of truth, teach you to vanquish immorality, should it eve [...] dare to approach you.

As soon as I had transacted the business that brought me hither, I had adieu to the family of our worthy friend, and hired apartments in a neighbouring sea­port town, resolved to see every thing worthy the atten­tion of a curious traveller in this part of the world. In this pursuit I spent some time very agreeably, when, return­ing one evening from a pleasurable excursion, I found, in addition to the society I had left on going out, a young handsome military officer, and a most attractive elegant lady, who were, I was informed, united in the most sacred of all bands, and purposed to fix their resi­dence in that place during the summer season. The engaging emanations of exalted modesty, good sense, [...]eep sensi­bility, and plaintive softness, in the tout-ensemble of the lady, soon interested me in her favour: and I wished to know if the form and manners, so calculated to charm, were faithful emblems of as lovely a mind. To this end I assiduously cultivated the acquaintance of the captain; he seemed flattered by my attentions, and a short time produced an excess of sociability. I laughed, drank, sung, smoaked, and boasted of gallantry with him; and sometimes talked sentimentally with his fair partner, the enchanting Ela. I resolved to spare no pains to discover the native qualities of her soul, and soon found it was too perfect to need any disguise. Her lan­guage was that of virtue, adorned by the graces: every sentiment she uttered seemed the spontaneous effusions of an enlightened and elevated mind, and was worthy of being immortalised; yet, in the midst of apparent happiness, a sudden cloud of tender melancholy would arise, which in vain I endeavoured to penetrate. It often crossed her features without any apparent cause, but generally vanished in some benevolent or affection­ate effusion. In love as in every other gentle and ge­nerous sensation of the heart, I discovered her to be a perfect enthusiast. A stranger to every lukewarm im­pulse, her expressive eyes beamed unutterable tender­ness [Page 3] on the object of her choice, and frequently re­garded him with a kind of soft anxiety for which all my penetration was unable fully to account; but I thought I traced indifference, and sometimes more ungentle dis­positions in his aspect and behaviour. How often, when observing the impassioned attachment that evinced itself in all her looks, words, and actions, directed to him, have I appealed to the searcher of hearts, whether there was in existence a being capable of injuring so much ex­cellence? But I did not long wait for a discovery that brought the fullest conviction.

Having been absent near a fortnight on a visit to a gentleman in the neighbourhood, who, finding in me a taste and sentiment congenial with his own, had given me repeated invitations to his house, I returned to my former habitation, designing to bid adieu to my newly acquired friends, and turn my thoughts and wishes to­ward home. But how was I amazed and shocked on en­tering the house, where I had so lately left them in ap­parent happiness, to find the amiable Ela alone, de­serted, exposed among unfeeling strangers, to all the horrors of poverty, and the most poignant anguish of heart! Pale and dejected she arose at my entrance, fixed her swimming eyes on my face, and reading the language of my heart, burst into a passionate effusion of wo, and was retiring. I could not speak—but seizing her hand, as she was about to leave me, she looked at me with an expression that will be forever engraved on my remembrance, and, sinking into a chair by my side, endeavoured to suppress her emotions.— Mine, I believe, were little less violent—Pity entire­ly possessed my soul; and shall I own it, my Caroline? —the unmanly tear bedewed the hand of the lovely sufferer.

Again, she raised her eyes, beaming with gratitude through the deepest gloom of sorrow, and pressing my hand to her agitated heart—"Noble stranger!" she exclaimed—"Do you weep for my sufferings?—A [...]as! you know not how little I merit such generous sympathy, such exalted goodness!"

"I know," replied I, "that you are unhappy— [Page 4] and is not that enough?" "Enough!"—repeated she, with emotion—"Yes," I added, "and I likewise believe you are truly amiable."

"Then you are mistaken," interrupted she, with ex­treme energy—"I am not—Indeed I am not! —I do not merit your friendship—nor can I dare to de­ceive you —Oh! I am lost! lost for ever!"—she clasped her hands in agony. "But your unexampled greatness of soul," added she, "merits more than I can say: and truth and sincerity is the only acknowledgment in my power.—Yes sir,"—said she, again rising, "you shall know who she is whose sorrows you thus condescend to regard;—and for your sake, I will yet believe, that vir­tue resides among the sons of men."

With those words she darted out of the room, leaving me in a state of mind to which no language can do jus­tice.

My steps turned involuntarily after her, when the ap­pearance of the mistress of the house convinced me of an error, and I accompanied her back into the par­lour.

"Ah! sir," said she, as we entered, "here has been sad doings since you left us—Well—who could think that such a handsome gentleman and such a fine lady would turn out so!—Why the captain is a downright rogue, sir—and his wife, as he called her, is no better" —"Oh!"—interrupted I,—"you should not so readily believe injurious reports.—I dare say it is no more than some little temporary derangement which has been greatly exaggerated: or, perhaps, entirely misrepre­sented."

"No, no Sir," replied the woman, "'tis too true— Why the lady exposed herself—Trouble, like children, generally speaks truth.—Not but I pity the poor thing; and yet I'm looser enough by them already; so if she can't pay what is due, I must stop all I can, and she must not think of staying here to spunge upon an honest woman."

"But you surely would not turn her out into the street!" exclaimed I.—

"It is nothing to me, sir, where she goes,"—return­ed [Page 5] she—"but I know she shan't take up my house-room and eat my victuals any longer, and so I am going to tell her."

"Stop!"—cried I, as she opened the door to put her cruel threats in execution —"Would you distress the wretched?"

"No;"—she replied— "nor they shan't distress me."

"Hear me then," added I,—"I will be answerable for every expence of this unfortunate lady."

"Well to be sure, you're a generous gentleman,"— said the woman with a malignant sneer, "and the loss of one is often the gain of two."

I paid no regard to her insolence, but depositing a bill of twenty pounds in her hand to prove the sincerity of my words, earnestly desired that her amiable charge might be treated with all possible respect and attention: and again assuring her of an ample reward, begged she would take to herself all the merit she might fancy there was in this conduct;—nor ever let the secret pass her lips, as she expected the performance of my promise.

With this injunction she readily acquiesced: and I left her, soothed by the magic power of gold into the most engaging benignity.

Consoled by the sweet assurance of having gratified a laudable impulse, I retired to my apartment, and was buried in a labyrinth of conjecture relative to the un­happy Ela—when the woman of the house tapped at my door, and requested to speak with me.

"The lady," said she, in a tone of alarm—"has fastened her door, and obstinately refuses to answer me."

A dreadful fear crossed my mind, and, without mak­ing any reply, I hastily followed her with trembling steps.

After trying every gentle means to procure admission without success, I acquiesced in the expedience of using forcible measures, and the door was broke open.

Impressed with terrible apprehensions I entered the room, and beheld the cause of my disquietude stretch­ed on the carpet with death marked on her features. Unmindful of vulgar censure I threw myself beside her, [Page 6] and mourned her lot, fully assured that her soul had taken its irrevocable flight. But I was soon most joy­fully undeceived. The people around me declared she was only in a fit, and a few minutes confirmed the truth of their assertion.

The recollection of her misery rushed like a torrent on her mind; and fixing her eloquent eyes on my face, she enquired, why I had suffered them to bring her back?—

"That we may all unite our endeavours to render you happy," I replied,—"Happy!" echoed she, with a gloomy smile—"You know but little of the heart of Ela." As she uttered these words her eyes met those of the mistress of the mansion—and, starting wildly from me, she exclaimed, "What, and is that woman too come to render me happy! O, righteous Heaven, why am I reduced to be the sport of abject cruelty!—But think not, worthy stranger," added she—"that I ungratefully class you among the unfeeling herd; O, no, the wretched Ela can yet distinguish such as you—your goodness is writ­ten here,"—pointing to her bosom—"in indelible cha­racters.—Yes, and it is written likewise on a table that corruption cannot destroy; where I, perhaps, may con­template it when this poor form is mouldered into dust: and where,"—added she, with an air of mild, yet most commanding dignity,—"I may forget too how that wo­man" (again fixing her eye on the abashed offender) "has dared to insult me."

"Me insult you!" cried the woman, whlie anger and shame spread their sanguine emblems, over her features— How can you say, Miss, as how I ever insulted you— I'm sure your're very spiteful, and"—

I found she was about to enlarge—and therefore ex­erting all my authoritative powers to awe her into silence, they happily produced such an effect, that muttering some unintelligible jargon, she quitted the room.

"I refused to admit that woman into my apartment, Sir," (said the gentle mourner, addressing me)—"be­cause she has used an insolence of language to which no misfortune shall ever make me base enough to submit;— but when I heard your friendly voice at the door, grati­tude [Page 7] burst on my oppressed soul, and unequal to the con­flict, I sunk into insensibility."

I entreated her ardently to endeavour to forget all that could disturb her repose, and ventured to palliate the misconduct of the landlady: who was, I sincerely assur­ed her, fully sensible and ashamed of her behaviour: and would not, I was convinced, in a cooler moment, scruple to own she had erred.

"I neither wish, nor am intitled to such a concession, Sir," she calmly replied. "Perhaps I am more unjust in resenting than she is in giving offence: so let it be re­membered no more."

She laid her head on the pillow, saying, that sorrow weighed down her eyelids, and sleep would, in her pre­sent state, be an inestimable blessing. Considering this as an intimation that she wished to be alone, I beckoned the servants to withdraw, and retired wishing that every gentle influence might descend to give her comfort, and effectually soften the anguish of her heart.

The mistress of the house met me as I descended the stairs. Anger still sparkled in her eye, and she began an harangue about the lady's unforgiving temper, and her own wrongs and eminent virtues:—i [...]eighing most bitterly against the captain, and honouring him, I be­lieve very justly, with every opprobrious epithet that in­vention could suggest; but I found means to allay the bitterness of her resentment, and make her accompany me amicably to the parlour, where she related all that she knew respecting the unfortunate Ela. That the cap­tain disappeared the day after I quitted them on the ex­cursion before mentioned, and all their efforts had proved insufficient to discover his retreat; that the lady in the anguish of her heart, occasioned by this desertion, had avowed herself the victim of enthusiastic love—and prov­ed that the destructive flame still lived in her heart, by execrating her own folly rather than his baseness.

These unguarded expressions it was that gave rise to the treatment she had experienced, and struck so forcibly on her heart.—But we are well convinced, by observa­tion, that a generous indulgence to the imperfections of mortality must not be expected from groveling minds.— [Page 8] True sympathy is the spontaneous growth of elevated souls—and not to be met with in common walks of life.

The conduct of the landlady was consistent with her character, and strictly natural.—It therefore, my dear sister, contains this useful lesson, that it is in general certainly a point of wisdom to conceal our sorrows; as by exposing them, we only expose ourselves to the con­tempt and derision of the bulk of mankind.—Sometimes, indeed, we meet with a distinguishing and generous spi­rit;—but let us not too easily believe the soft persuasive voice, the gently-soothing accent, or even the tear-fraught eye.—All these, experience teaches us, are easily, and, I fear, very frequently assumed to gild the serpent's heart; and, by throwing us off our guard, precipitate us the more readily into the snares of the designing. Let discretion then always mark the bounds of confidence. —Let us remember one of the best approved maxims of the wisest of men, and, by keeping a bridle on our tongue, guard ourselves against the dangers of credulity.

You will laugh in the gaiety of your heart, and call this preaching.—Be it so—The sermon flowed unstudied from my pen, and why should I suppress a thought that may eventually contribute in the smallest degree to the welfare and happiness of my Caroline?

But your amiable impatience to know more of the in­jured Ela, I am well assured, far outstrips the pen of the readiest writer. Hence then digression. Your curiosity is the offspring of the virtues, and merits every gratifica­tion and indulgence.

The immediate consequence of Ela's exquisite sufferings was a dangerous fever.—Her life was despaired of, and I was the constant attendant of her couch. Death seemed the blessing to which all her wishes aspired;—but her prayers were rejected. The cup of her sorrows was not full. She was reserved, no doubt, for some wise purpose; and youth triumphed over the consuming fires of a [...]read­ful disease.

During its progress I watched each movement of her soul, and was confirmed in my first belief, that it was governed by the love of virtue: and in the practice of that alone could it hope for happiness.

[Page 9]The ejaculatory effusion of wounded peace dwelt for ever on her lips—and she prayed incessantly to be deli­vered from a world where poignant misery must inevita­bly await her steps, and poison every offered delight—But still the lamp of life was unextinguished; a few weeks revolved in doubtful sadness, when health again began to relume her eye, and irradiate her cheek.—But corro­ding anguish still possessed her mind, and the gentle voice of consolation spoke in vain.

Unmerited tenderness likewise still dwelt in the inmost recess of her devoted heart, and consecrated a temple for the worship of an idol whose destructive image, she ought, from every consideration, to expel.

Thus deluded, she languished for the soothing but dan­gerous indulgence of retirement; and avoided even my society with the most visible solicitude. But guided by the impulse of humanity, I refused to act in conformity to her wish, and obtruded my unwelcome society perpetu­ally upon her; regardless of the truly painful tribute her ardent gratitude constantly imposed, until the fol­lowing letter put an end to my friendly intrusions.


WHY will the most exalted of mankind still conti­nue to participate in the sorrows of a wretched girl?

You have been a ministering angel appointed to re­deem me from the power of death, and whisper peace to the bosom of despair: and let that suffice; no longer persecute your generous heart by attempting what is im­practicable. The sorrows of Ela are not to be con­quered by argument.—Leave me then, I humbly be­seech you.—I am unworthy of your attention; let me add, incapable of receiving from it any benefit. You would persuade me to forget him whom I have vowed to love for ever.—And shall I?—O, never, never!—Let [Page 10] me be convinced of his perfidy, and then I will despair indeed; but even then memory will obtrude his image on my distracted heart—till oblivion draws its thickest veil between us. In the first moments of his mysteri­ous absence, madness seized my soul, and my betraying tongue pronounced him assuredly false. But cooler rea­son now tells me I have wronged him. Some direful mis­fortune has certainly overwhelmed him, which, his fond attachment will not permit me to share; and, while I have been accusing him of perfidy, his soul has been to­tally engrossed by the contemplation of his Ela, and torn by the severest conflicts.

No longer, then, worthy Sir, persist in applying the balm of consolation to her whose case admits of but one cure.—In my agitated bosom hope still exists—and, should that fail me, the light of Heaven within, aided by re­flection and solitude, will be my best restoratives; and you only shall be made acquainted with the event, be it what it may.

I would say much more.—I would endeavour to de­scribe the impression your philanthropy has made on my mind, but language is much unequal to the task,—and your own heart will best delineate the grateful sensations of mine.

Thus, Sir, I have acquitted myself of a wish that has long lain heavy upon me: —and with the deepest sense of your exalted worth, I request, in addition to your past favours, that you will send me an address, by which I may be enabled to transmit a faithful narrative of the fate that awaits me; and suffer me again to add an ar­dent entreaty, that you will no longer make yourself a voluntary prisoner to the unhappy,

but ever grateful, ELA.

MORTIMER TO CAROLINE. [In continuation.]

AFTER deeply revolving on the contents of Ela's affecting letter, I concluded her request, of being left [Page 11] to the quiet enjoyment of unmolested solitude, too just and reasonable to be rejected;—and dispatching an an­swer, where, in addition to many adieus, was some well-meant council; I ventured to inclose an inconsiderable proof of my friendship, that might, in case of unfore­seen exigencies, enable her to bid defiance to absolute penury. I then discharged every obligation to her cour­teous hostess, and my wishes sprang forward to the dear haunt of our nativity, and my still dearer Caroline; from whose loved society I have been so long estranged. But the first place at which I stopped for refreshment, taking up a newspaper that accidentally lay on the ta­ble, I read the following paragraph:

"It is confidently asserted here, that the celebrated widow Barrymore is on the point of sacrificing her in­numerable captives on the altar of Hymen; and that the cause of this wonderful conversion from the deluding path of gallantry, is a young and elegant Hibernian; who, in addition to the charms of a fine person, an insinu­ating tongue, and military graces, is descended from a race, whose heroic deeds are immortalised in the annals of his country both in peace and war; and who will, we doubt not, find ample compensation for the trammels of matrimony in the trebled jointure of the elegant widow."

It instantly occurred to me, on perusing this curious piece of intelligence, that this fortunate Hibernian was the lover of Ela. Fully impressed with this belief, I resolved to visit Southampton, and, putting wings to my speed, reached it in a few days.—In the first house of public resort that I entered, I beheld my old acquain­tance fluttering among the gay ones of the age; with all the assurance of triumphant villainy.

My spirit rose indignant at the sight—his eyes glan­ced towards me, a guilty flush marked his extreme con­fusion—and he looked around him, as if from a vain wish to shrink from an observer he could not but dread. The loud laugh was converted into an unmeaning grin, and the studied repartee died away on his quivering lips.— He rivetted his eyes on the floor—when approaching him [Page 12] with my usual ease and freedom.—"I little expected, captain," said I, with all the sang-froid I could assume, "the honor of finding you here."

He stood aghast, and replacing the sparkling glass that he was about to convey to his lips, on the table, rose from his seat, and declared, with some perturbation, that he really had not the honor of knowing me.

"Then, Sir," said I, approaching nearer, and look­ing firmly in his face, "either you have a very treach­erous memory, or I have very treacherous eyes."

"Faith, very likely, Sir!" he exclaimed, resuming his native effrontery,—"my memory is sometimes treacher­ous: for 'pon my soul" (taking out an opera glass, and point­ing it impudently at my face) "I cannot recollect, Sir, I ever had the pleasure of contemplating your features before; and yet," added he, with an air of non-chalance, "I possibly may; for immaterial occurrences, and tran­sient acquaintance, make but a very slight impression on my mind." As he uttered these words he threw himself carelessly into a chair and yawned.

My patience was nearly exhausted by this insolence; but determined not to hazard my victory by losing my temper, I resolved to be-calm, and assuming a compo­sure, very foreign to my heart, I lamented the defect in his memory, and enquired if he had likewise forgot­ten that his name was Temple, and that I lodged in the same house with his lady and himself at Plymouth.

"Totally, my good Sir!" he replied, again, laughing immoderately.—"Pray you, my well remembered— friends," addressing his companions, with a triumph­ant sneer at me—"can any of you recollect that my name is Temple, or that I ever had a lady at Ply­mouth?" They all vociferated a negative▪ and the im­postor had the assurance to add, that, in his opinion, I had better try the efficacy of a glass of their burgundy to settle the derangement in my brain; and filling a bumper, he toasted the widow Barrymore, and daring­ly called on me to honour it.

Roused by this insolent defiance, I paused for a mo­ment, then looking disdainfully at him, "Think not," said I, "that all your subtersuges will shield you from [Page 13] justice. Whatever names you may have assumed to spread devastations around you, you know me well; and when I tell you, that since. your scandalous flight I have again been an inhabitant of the house where first I saw you and your amiable injured wife, you must like­wise be convinced that I know you, to your confusion and eternal shame."

As I concluded these words, the ruffian seized a bottle that stood before him, and fiercely menaced it at me; but one of his companions restraining his arm, firmly de­clared he would not suffer any violence to be used, as it appeared to him it was altogether a mistake. "For my friend's name," said he, addressing me, "is not Temple, but Dormer."

"It is not unlikely, Sir" I replied. "I may know the gentleman by a fictitious name; but be assured I am ful­ly convinced of the identity of his person:—and let me add, his very rage on the occasion proves that he deems it highly inconvenient, and particularly mal­apropos, to know me at this juncture."

"Villain, slave, madman!" echoed the enraged monster, struggling to elude the hold of his friend.— "My sword shall prove thy scandalous assertions fa [...]se."

"No," said I, "keep your sword for some future oc­casion. I come here in behalf of suffering innocence; not to put my life in competition with that of an unprin­cipled desperado;—and, but from an impulse of huma­nity, should never have obtruded my unwelcome presence on your festivity; or have disturbed your conquests. For your threats, I scorn them equally with yourself; and have only to say, let those that trust you—Beware."

With these words I hastily quitted the house in ex­treme agitation, and returned to the place where I left my servant, quite undetermined respecting my future conduct in this affair. But judge of my amazement, as I was sitting in the window of my apartment, ruminating on the past scene, and deeply absorbed in contemplating the grief that must inevi [...]ably await Ela, to behold her pass the house in a post-chaise. The carriage passed with extreme rapidity—the view I had of my fair friend was barely [Page 14] momentary, but I well knew it to be her; and throwing up the sash, I beheld her alight only a few doors from where I was. Guessing that her motive for visiting South­ampton was similar to mine, I hastened to receive the con­firmation from her own lips, and gave her every assistance in my power.

Surprise and joy animated her dejected form—as I ap­proached, her, "My best, my only friend!" she exclaimed in an impassioned tone, "hath the Supreme Being again graciously directed you to her, whose afflictions are I hope nearly complete?" Her eyes swam in tears, I felt myself unable to make her any reply. An interval of silence ensued, when drawing from her pocket a letter, she put it into my hand, saying, "That is what has brought me here." Its contents were as follow:


AS you are such a sweet, good lady, and I know, loves my master better than he deserves, my conscience will not let me rest, without acquainting you that he is going to be married to a fine rich widow, unless you make haste to stop the match.—We are living away here as well as ever, and my master goes by his own name again, and don't like to hear you mentioned; but my mind has never had a moment's peace since we left you, and that's truth; for I know you must be sadly oft; and, if you will accept the money I have saved out of my aunt's legacy, you shall be very welcome. Pray, good lady, excuse my boldness, and come here as soon as possible to prevent mis­chief.

Yours, to command, WILLIAM BARLOW.

MORTIMER TO CAROLINE. [In continuation.]

MY heart applauded the conduct of this honest fel­low whose respectful attention to Ela I had often re­marked: [Page 15] and it served to confirm this opinion, that true greatness of soul is not consined to any situation; but as of­ten resides in the bosom of the mendicant as that of the monarch. I then returned the letter to Ela, and she re­quested my advice in what manner to proceed. I paused some moments; then after a little preparatory conversation, I related my interview with the perfidious man, on whom her soul still doated. She reclined her head on her hand, and sat the silent picture of unutterable wo. Not one tear fell, but a fearful wildness glared in her eyes, which were steadfastly rivetted to one point. I trembled for the consequences of this desperate sorrow, and spared no pains to melt her into softness: my endeavours were happily crowned with success, and a friendly shower of tears▪ in some measure alleviated the exquisite anguish of her mind. But her silence still continued, and when I pressed to know in what manner she designed to act, she only waved her hand and left me. I considered her sorrow as sa­cred, and well assured that any intrusion would, at such a juncture, be unwelcome, was quitting the house, when a servant followed me to the door, put into my hand these lines, rendered, by the tears and agitation of the writer, scarcely intelligible.

"The unhappy Ela is incapable either of thinking or acting, until that merciful Being▪ who views her deep affliction, shall graciously vouchsafe to comfort her; then will she again see, thank, and supplicate the aid of her generous friend; but at this distressful moment her poig­nant distress admits of no alleviation, and the eye, even of sympathetic observation, would only add to her suffer­ings."

Fully convinced of the truth of her assertion, I has­tened to my lodgings and penned a long letter, which might, I hoped contribute to infuse resignation and forti­tude into her mind; nor did it fail of producing, in some degree, the desired effect. Some tedious hours elapsed in anxious expectation, when I received a card from the gentle mourner requesting to see me; and instantly fol­lowing the messenger, found her calm and collected be­yond my most sanguine hope. A tear indeed shone in her eye, but it seemed rather the tear of meek submission, than [Page 16] excruciating remorse or severe regret; and with all that prevailing eloquence, with which nature has most libe­rally endowed her, she, ardently besought me to con­duct her to the most ungrat [...]ful, yet still tenderly beloved of mankind, that she might at least hear her sentence from his own lips, ere she resigned her soul to despair In vain I endeavoured to dissuade her from so rash an under­taking, and intreated her to have recourse to her pen; but all my rhetoric was soft. "What!" she replied, "warn him again to avoid my dreadful presence! No [...] let me once again behold him, I ask no more."

Seeing therefore that all argument was insufficient to change her settled purpose, we had recourse to the address in the postscript of the worthy Barlow's letter, and I ac­companied her on this arduous expedition.

Barlow received us it the door of their habitation, and seeing his late loved mistress all pale and trembling, only prevented by my sustaining arm from sinking to the earth; his [...]lorid complexion was instantly supplanted by a death­lik [...] hue, and he continued holding the door in his hand, and gazing at us in an attitude of sorrow and amaze­ment.

"William," said the sweet sufferer, extending her arm toward him. "good, faithful William!"—

These affecting words, and the still more affecting man­ner in which they were uttered, gave a turn to the emotions of this truly excellent man, and springing forward, he faltered out, "Dear, injured, best of ladies;"—but, un­able to add more, turned aside to conceal his agitation, and wiped off a pitying tear with the sleeve of his coat.

Ela held his hand in her own, and looked up to Heaven —Such a scene must surely have penetrated the most un­feeling heart, and could not fail to immortalize the pencil of the most renowned artist, if he copied from nature and truth. I felt a sigh burst from my heart, and was about to remonstrate against the impropriety of our situation, thus exposed to the observation of the passing of s [...]ectators, when the sound or a carriage made me turn round, and I beheld the cause of our distress glowing with triumphant villainy, and a [...]o [...]d with all the powers of outward at­traction, that a fine person, assisted by every advantage of [Page 17] fashion and taste, can bestow, seated in a splendid chariot, the golden stripes of which mingled with all the vivid co­lours of the rainbow, and glittered in the sun-beams. Ela's eyes followed mine, and Barlow exclaimed, "It is my master!" The wretch regarded us with a furi­ous look, and pulling the string, ordered the driver to go on. But Ela, eluding our hold, clasped the chariot wheel in her arms, saying, "O merciful Heaven! I will be heard, or in this posture perish!"

"Drive on, drive on!" exclaimed the monster; but the servant, in whose breast a principle of humanity dwelt, seeing the situation of Ela, refused to comply—"The lady, Sir!" said he. "The devil," replied his brutal commander, leaping from the chariot. Ela caught hold of his arm as he descended.—"My Henry," she cried, falling on the ground, "will you not know your wife, your own Ela?—"Know thee, woman!" exclaimed he, throwing her from him, "away! thou art some wretched maniac, whom that villain!" glancing his eyes at me, "has hired to insult me!" She uttered a piercing shriek, and the wretch darted from us. I slew to her assistance. She looked p [...]teously in my face—I saw that affliction had nearly finished its work. Barlow conducted us into the house, and she fainted in my arms. One sit was quick­ly succeeded by another, and in the intervals of reason, the principles of life faded in her eyes, and the univer­sal conqueror seemed making his awful approach. In this state she continued some hours without the smallest ap­pearance of a favourable change, and I requested Barlow to procure a coach to convey her back to her la [...]e abode; but a loud rapping at the street door prevented his immediate acquiescen [...]e, and announced the return of his master.

"Slave!"—cried the enraged vi [...]l [...]in, the instant he beheld Barlow—"thou hast entered into a league with those wretches that came to abuse and ruin me!" Barlow, made no reply, but turning from him with an indignant and pity-marked countenance, hastened to the room that contained us. Dormer followed, uttering most tremendous threat­enings; but on beholding me, with the lifeless form of Ela in my arms, he stood some moments apparently rooted to the spot—and the uplifted came dropped from his hand. [Page 18] —A transient emanation of remorse crossed his features; but his native depravity quickly triumphed over every milder sensation; and, approaching me with desperation and inconceivable fury,—"Now!" he wildly exclaimed, "base insolent lyar, give me instant satisfaction."

Satisfaction!—said I, pointing to the corpse-like Ela— "Look here." "Yes," replied he, in a voice nearly choaked, "I do, I do.—She is gone, and I will send thy busy meddling soul to attend her."—He paused—then suddenly drawing his sword—"Defend, Defend yourself," he cried, brandishing the weapon with fierceness, "I thirst for your life—No subterfuge shall now avail you. "With these words, regardless of my situation, and without giving me a moment's time [...]o do as he desired—he made a furi­ous thrust at me; and Barlow, throwing himself between us, received it in his arm. The sight of his generous blood, spilt in my defence, called forth every fiery particle with which nature has inspired me, and seeing the villain about to repeat his attack, I instantly quitted the happily-insen­sible Ela; and enraged beyond all bounds of moderation, met him with fury equal to his own. But yet my presence of mind proved superior. His wild desperation put him entirely in my power; and, eluding his pass, I easily wrenched the sword from his slackened arm, saying.— "Thy life is mine; but take it and make expiation for thy guilt."—The humbled tyrant hid his face and was silent. —I offered up an ejaculation to that power who had thus graciously preserved me from murder; and hoping that the provocation would procure me a pardon for engaging in a practice I justly abhorred, carelessly threw his sword on the carpet, and turned to my fair charge and her faithful guardian. Barlow; whose garments were all ensanguined from the wound in his arm. But the base Dormer, seeing me thus unguarded, snatched up his sword and again dared me to the combat, adding, that his haughty unsubmitting spirit scorn­ed to accept the life that I could give; and death should end the contest. In vain I expostulated, and warned him to avoid my awakened vengeance. He was deaf to all I said;—and I most reluctantly acquiesced with his impetuous mad­ness.—But victory again awaited me; I disarmed him with equal facility as before; but his sword wounded [Page 19] my wrist in the scuffle, and the blood gushed out like a fountain.—The pain of the wound, and the sight of the stream that flowed from it, added to the ungrateful return my former lenity had met, determined me to ensure the present conquest by force, and inflict a corporal punishment on the aggressor; and taking up the cane that had been lift­ed against the unoffending Barlow, I expended my strength on the sides of the degraded, but still menacing coward; for such in reality he was, and forcing him into an adjacent room, I bolted the door, effectually to prevent his further intrusion.

During this encounter, a ray of animation revisited the death-like Ela; but she was still totally insensible to all that passed. Resuming my station by her side, Barlow hastened to procure a coach at my request; and calling at a surgeon's in our way to Ela's lodgings, our wounds were examined and dressed; when, with the consoling assurance of their being unattended by danger, we proceeded with our greatly recovered charge. Then dispatching Barlow to release his worthless master, I earnestly recommended Ela to the care of the mistress of the house, who seemed a much more hu­manized being than her with whom we had resided at Plymouth; and after prevailing on us to take some cordial refreshment. Ela, who had never uttered a syllable since our return, suffered me to lead her to a sopha; and, in a few moments, an apparently balmy slumber seemed to suspend every embittering remembrance. But anxiety still pervad­ed my heart, and I waited impatiently for the return of our honest confederate. A considerable time elapsed without his appearance; and Ela awoke from the deep stupor which I had mistaken for sleep. She fixed her eyes mournfully on mine, but her senses were still absorbed in forgetfulness; at least the sufferings she had so recently ex­perienced only floated on the surface of her mind, like the shadowy remembrance of an unpleasing dream; and all my endeavours proved insufficient to break her silence. I spoke to her repeatedly on the subject that I well knew could not fall deeply to affect her heart, but without gain­ing any other reply than a heavy sigh, or a gloomy smile. At length the long absence of Barlow greatly alarmed me, and fully assured that it must originate from some disas­trous [Page 20] circumstance, I resolved to go in quest of him, and left Ela in charge with the woman of the house; with whose obliging attention I was quite satisfied.

An ill-looking fellow opened Dormer's door; when, on my enquiring if Barlow was there, he replied in the af­firmative. Pretending to call him, he returned with three others, of similar exterior with himself, and seizing me declared they would soon conduct me to Barlow, whose fellow assassin they knew me to be, and we should receive the reward of our crimes. I was accordingly hurried into the presence of an old ignorant unprincipled wretch, dig­nified by the appellation of a justice; where, after some senseless interrogations, all that I could say in my defence was treated with contempt, and turned into ridicule; and after the usual forms I was committed to the prison that held my fellow sufferer, the truly estimable Barlow. Here we mingled our painful emotions together, not for our own misfortunes, but those of Ela; thus deprived of every earthly aid, and exposed to every evil from the malice and revenge of the wretch who had thus reduced her.

Happy was it for you, my dear and amiable Caroline, that no officious tongue dared to whisper the unmerited ig­nominy and sufferings which at that period awaited your brother. Condemned to the society of the most hardened ruffians, and loaded with heavy irons, like the most attro­cious violator of my country's laws; yet, conscious in­tegrity supported my spirit, and the dignity and chearful­ness of my mind was unimpaired. My anxiety, never­theless, was extreme for the uncertain fate of my lovely but unfortunate friend, for whom I was more than ever in­terested by the imperfect sketches of her numerous virtues, but too adventurous love, which our faithful Barlow com­municated to me during the early hours of our imprison­ment. In the midst of his unconnected, yet most affect­ing narrative, the form of her, whose sorrows we were contemplating, stood before us, led by the same group of wretches that had been our conductors. Lost to every sen­sation but the pleasure of again beholding her in existence, I sprang toward her, but the clanking of my setters struck her with inexpressible horror, and clasping her hands fear­fully together, she attempted to fly from me. Her ungentle [Page 21] attendants, however, effectually prevented her; when one of them daring to use very insolent language, and treating her very roughly, I seized an earthen mug that stood on one of the windows, and aimed it at his head; but he, luckily for me, avoided the blow; and I was from that moment deemed a most desperate villain by all my fellow prisoners: and all my looks and actions created suspicions of some dia­bolical intent.

But shocked, as Ela was at our fate, she submitted with the most perfect resignation to her own.—Not one murmur escaped her lips—but a silent and corroding melancholy was rooted in her heart! She evidently avoided even our converse; and it was not without infinite labour that we pre­vailed on her to relate the particulars of what had befallen her after our separation.

The first thing that awakened her from the lethargic state in which I had left her when I went in quest of Barlow, was enquiry from the landlady, whether she did not expect my return that evening? This question seemed to bring back the power of reflection, and filled her with alarming conjectures respecting our mysterious absence. After some hours of anxious expectation she dispatched in search of us a messenger, who returned with the party that appre­hended me, and were placed as centinels at her betrayer's door, to seize any that should enquire for Barlow or my­self. They took her into custody as an accomplice with as in assaulting and robbing this monster of depravity.

"And now," added the uncomplaining victim of un­bounded love, looking pensively at us—"the measure of my woes is nearly full; and but for the cruel return your goodness has experienced, pain could never more touch my heart. Be you restored to liberty and happiness, and a prison or a palace is equal to the undone Ela." I omit­ted no argument that could possibly afford her comfort, nor was the honest Barlow less assiduous. We treated our misfortune as a foolish adventure, and dubbing ourselves knights-errant of the first order, told her that our present sufferings would only prove a subject for our future boast. But all our efforts were insufficient, even for a moment to dissipate the settled gloom that enveloped her mind. A grateful, yet melancholy smile would often cross her features [Page 22] as she listened to our flattering predictions of seeing happy days; but, like the transient refulgence of a winter's sun, it was quickly succeeded by clouds and darkness.

Thus passed several tedious days, when we were called to our trial, and the audacious destroyer of innocence had even the daring wickedness to appear against us. Ela faint­ed the instant she beheld him, and continued insensible du­ring the whole time of our examination; but without pro­ducing any visible effect on her cruel destroyer.

Of the pretended robbery, no proof appeared, and we were therefore acquitted; but the driver of the chariot being suborned to swear to the identity of our persons. and Ela's endeavours to detain Dormer against his inclination, being corroborated by his own oath, and the bruises I had so liberally bestowed on him, we were convicted of the as­sault, and sentenced to pay two hundred pounds damages, and to suffer with Barlow, who was deemed our assistant and accomplice, three months imprisonment.

All remonstrance was useless here, and a patient endu­rance of our heavy wrongs seemed the only alternative.

This melancholy conclusion to our sad adventures, has­tened an event which I before saw was inevitable. The deadly stroke was given to the gentle heart of Ela; and it was not in the power of mortal aid to suspend the fatal consequence. I resolved to sooth, if possible, her fleet­ing days, and my attention to her sufferings entirely ab­sorbed my own. Sometimes, indeed, I felt an ardent wish that my situation might escape the tongue of rumour, and never wound the heart of my amiable Caroline. This was the constant prayer of my soul when reflection darted on my mind, and the event has proved that it was accepted.

Unknown to Ela. I penned a faithful narrative of her case, to that lady whom the perfidious Dorm r [...]marked for his future prey; but, charmed by his false deluding arts, she returned my letter unopened, with a message that plainly evinced her heart obstinately shut against conviction.

My whole attention, and that of the excellent Barlow, was now devoted in endeavouring to alleviate the silent but exquisite sufferings of our fair fellow prisoner. Vain hope, that can ever expect to surmount a grief like hers. [Page 23] I beheld her decline daily like some sweet and modest flower, bending beneath the pressure of an inclement season. —In vain I intruded myself, from the best of motives, perpetually on her solitude; no efforts could banish the deep rooted sadness that possessed her mind. During our imprisonment she penned the inclosed letters—and, when we were again restored to freedom, I still panted for ven­geance on the base Dormer; but the gentle injured angel besought me so eloquently to desist, that it must have been a heart as callous as his that could refuse its acquiescence. She begged me to conduct her back to Plymouth, where she left the greatest part of her cloaths, and papers that she highly valued.

And here, my beloved Caroline, the motions of my heart, on recollecting the scene that awaited as, forcibly suspends the progress of my tale. I must therefore defer the sequel to some more tranquil moments, fully assured that while you peruse the following testimonies of unsuspecting ten­derness and detested treachery, like me you will execrate the wretch capable of destroying so much native excellence, and drop a sympathetic tear to the sorrows of the un­fortunate Ela.

Adieu, my much-loved sister, expect soon to receive the conclusion of my narrative, and let the remembrance of every past distress give place to this consoling assurance, that the blessings of liberty again await,


LETTERS from ELA to MORTIMER, inclosed in the foregoing.


THE fabrick of misguided enthusiasm at length sinks into oblivion.

The delusions of a fatelly believing heart vanish before the [Page 24] most unequivocal conviction; and the only refuge my mi­series can hope, is through the awful regions of death. Thither all my wishes aspire. Shame and affliction for ever await me here; but there is one who judges not by the ri­gid dictates of erring mortals. To him I dare submit my cause, and his blessed assurances of peace and pardon bids each tumultuous passion rest for ever.

Thus, assured, the busy clamours of unmerited ten­tenderness no longer disturb my repose: but truth erects her standard in my soul, and long estranged reason re­assumes her sway.—By their aid I clearly discern the folly of my past life, and while the tears of penitence burst from my heart, piety and charity bid me forgive, and hope offers the best consolations and never failing rewards.

No, longer then, my inestimable friend, my more than brother, continue to grieve for those sorrows that cease to exist.—They are gone to prepare the asylum to which I am hastening:—and all that remains for me is to ensure a happy reception and pour the effusions of a grateful heart into your benevolent bosom.

In the first moments of thankfulness for the generous part you took in my sorrows, I said you should know who she was for whom you were thus interested; but while false hope, and the most torturing anxiety kept my mind in a constant state of dreary suspence, I was unequal to the per­formance of that promise;—now each corroding passion seems at rest, and tranquillity wooes me to what was before insupportable.

Born in the lap of luxury, the only darling of parental fondness, care was a stranger to my heart 'till it approached me in the alluring garb of love.

On the sultry plains of Indostan I received my existence. The God of Day surely pr [...]sided at my birth, and inspired me with all his ardors. I was early distinguished by a soul of fire, and often emphatically declared to be a daughter of the Sun.— Fatal distinction! It is this native fervour of soul that led to all my sorrows; incapable of guile myself, I never suspected it in others;— nor once thought it possible for cruelty to lie concealed under the most solemn professions of love, honor, and fidelity; but the dreadful assurance [Page 25] now stands unveiled before me, and I fall in the early bloom of life, the martyr of my own deluded heart.

My father, at the remembrance of whose indulgent good­ness suspended anguish rushes like a torrent on my mind, was a man of eminence in that quarter of the globe. My mother I never knew; the moment that gave me being, consigned her to the grave; and I believe contributed to endear me to the heart of my remaining parent, by whom she was so tenderly beloved, that the mention of her name, after a very considerable lapse of time, never failed to call forth emotions too powerful to be suppressed. The uncon­querable regret her loss occasioned, undermined by slow degrees his health, and certainly hastened his death.

Oh, best of men! How does that awful scene croud, with every affecting circumstance, on my awakened feel­lings? How does it recal sensations I could wish to cancel from the book of memory! His dying words never broke through my perjured soul.—I behold the most wronged and amiable of mankind, the all accomplished and excellent Granville Clifford, whispering sweetest consolation to my sorrow, while in vain he endeavours to suppress his own.

The parents of Granville Clifford were English adven­turers, whose numerous virtues and amiable manners ensured them the friendship and esteem of my father.—But they both met an early grave soon after their arrival in India; and with their latest breath committed their helpless orphans, and their humble fortune, to the protection of their only friend; who soothed their anxious hearts with the most solemn and generous assurances, of which his actions have proved the sincerity.

Granville Clifford was at that period, a beautiful boy of five years old; myself only six months. My father soon felt a particular attachment to him, and he shared with me his tenderest affection. Thus we grew up together, and a sen­timent of filial love took deep root in my infant mind, and strengthened with increasing years. The extreme loveliness of his person, the remarkable endowments of his mind, and the winning graces of his manners, daily increased the affection to which his defenceless infancy gave birth in my father's generous bosom, and he approved himself worthy of the charge with which he was entrusted.—He [Page 26] always gave him the endearing appellation of son, and deter­mined to hallow both on him and me every advantage that could be desired from the most finished education. But his affairs rendering it impossible for him to quit India, his extreme tenderness, and the delight he experienced in our innocent endearments would not suffer him to part with us; he therefore procured the best masters for us from England, France, and Italy, and inspecting our studies him­self, spared neither expence nor trouble to accomplish us in every useful and polite science: and render us a blessing to himself and society. How far his endeavours have been crowned with success in me, is now, alas! too evident to need any further demonstration.

The culture of our expanding minds was the sole em­ployment of my father's leisure hours He strove to impress us with the principles of morality; and his own example powerfully enforced the truths he taught.

The amiable Clifford imbibed instruction as fast as it could be offered him. He made a rapid progress in every valuable attainment: and the improving beauties of his mind and person made him universally caressed.—I was the da [...]ling object of his fond regard: to me his early preference was directed, and he aspired to render me as perfect as him­self.—To inspire me with the same love of beauty, harmony, and order, was his constant aim; and to him I am indebted for every virtue or accomplishment that I possess.

Ah! hal [...]y [...]n days of blissful innocence how does your remembrance recal embittered anguish to my heart! When I think with what [...]tive fondness the lovely youth endeavou [...]ed to infuse the lessons of wisdom into my open­ing mind▪ the teacher seems not less divine than his doctrine but madness seizes me as I turn to the reverse of the picture and contemplate the delusions of the human heart.—I seek the records of truth; I trace, in idea, the fables of romance; but amidst all the ruins of unimpassioned tendernes [...] I cannot discover one instance similar to mine. Eloisa suffered— greatly suffered; but her honour was a vo­luntary sacrifice—and the ardor of her lover knew no dimin [...]tion —He was the occasion of her fall; but he was likewise the partaker of her repentance, and the kind con­soler of her sorrows.—His endearing accents soothed [Page 27] her latest pangs, and she breathed out her soul in the blessed assurance of being re-united to him in a state where all im­perfection is done away.—Even Julia, the self-devoted Julia Etange, was supported by the unalterable attachment of her beloved St. Pr [...]ux, under parental severity, and the con­flicts of a heart full of sensibility, and capable of the most exalted affection.—But for me no friendly haven appears, where my ruined bark can safely fly to shield herself from the headlong storm. The boundless ocean of eternity seems my only refuge; and there all my hopes are centered.

The uncertain prosp [...]cts of futurity fleet before me—the sad recollection of the past presses for audience.—I feel my­self unequal to the task assigned; but will resume it when tranquillity again vouchsafes to attend

Your grateful ELA.


CONVINCED that my few sad days will soon be num­bered, I hasten to conclude my narrative ere the inevi [...]able stroke arrests my trembling hand, and consigns my name to the mercy of slanderous injustice.

Blessed with every felicity that the approving smiles of the best of fathers, the fond attention of the amiable Clifford▪ and the endearments of all around me could be­stow: [...]al gratitude and exalted friendship possessed my soul, and every [...]ational pleasure, every refined delight that affection can administer, or sensibility receive, gilded my days, until I attained my fifteenth year. Fatal period! from whence I may date the commencement of all my sorrows.

The anniversary of my birth was always devoted to mirth and festivity. My friends and companions crouded to offer their congratulations: the day was spent in every refined and innocent delight, and usually concluded with a ball and supper in the highest style of elegant simplicity. The heart of my indulgent father seemed always dilated with unusual gladness on that occasion; and the expressive features of Granville Clifford beamed unutterable things.

[Page 28]It was in the midst of such a scene as this, while in a pa­vilion fitted up for the night, every heart beat responsive to the power of harmony, and every age sparkled with pleasure, that the arrival of Henry Dormer was announced. He came with warm recommendations to my father, and was welcomed with heartfelt cordiality into our blissful abode. That evening, that fatal evening, the sad delusion began.

I was dancing a minuet with Granville Clifford, when my father entered with the charming stranger. His eyes instantly paid me the most flattering distinction A crim­son glow full used my cheek, and a sensation alto [...]ether n [...]w invaded my heart. I actually trembled as Granville led me to my seat. My father approached us and introduced the stranger. Granville welcomed him to India, with all the winning grace by which he was most happily distinguished; I fal [...]ered out an attempt to do the same, but acquitted myself most wretchedly, and felt both conscious and cha­g [...]ned at the defect. I [...]vetted my eyes on the floor; and again raised them to the most pleasing object they had ever before contemplated. He was—but why [...]eed I describe him to you! you know the manly beauty, the elegant symmetry by which nature had distinguished him; but you can never know by what indes [...]ibable, irresistable attractions that beauty was then adorned. (He was alter­ed, strang [...]ly altered ere you beheld him, in every opi­nion but mine; my deluded heart had received the infatua­tion too deeply, to discover any change.) In him I thought every mortal perfection centered, and his elo­quent eyes were fixed on me with equal approbation. My father requested him to join us in the dance, and as a stranger, he was complimented with my hand for the re­mainder of the evening. No longer I beh [...]ld any object but him—no longer could I attend to any melody, but that of his enchanting accents.—My unsuspecting heart greedily snatched at the delicious poison that fell from his tongue, and I was irre [...]rievably lost ere I saw the smallest danger.—He whispered a language new and delightful; the solicitude which Granville Clifford constantly evinced for my im­provement, declared that he thought me deficient in excel­lence; and while it spoke the sincerity of his regard, it [Page 29] humbled my vanity; but Henry Dormer uttered a language very different, he told me that I was all perfect,—and I believed him.—The fascination gained daily strength.— From that evening the persidious Henry spared no pains to ensure his conquest;—but while his tender assiduities were pointed at me, he was equally attentive to secure the favour of my father and Granville, who, strangers to guile, never once suspected the emotions he had excited in my bosom, but encouraged my evident wish of appearing agreeable in his eyes;—and while my worthy parent assured him of his perfect friendship, and zealous services, the gentle Clifford shewed him the most marked attention and omitted nothing that seemed likely to promote his welfare and happiness. — But I was no longer the same—No more did I listen with enraptured ear to the instructions of the best of parents— nor did my charmed soul attend to the language of Gran­ville Clifford's heart. No longer was I foremost at our morning studies—our noon-day haunts, were now neglected, and the grotto, where I had so often delighted to accompany the warbling flute with my voice, was totally deserted.— The murmuring water-fall no longer wooed me to its deep recess; nor the wild musicians of the groves invited me to join their song of gratitude. The stranger, engrossed all my thoughts. To him all my wishes aspired, to him my every thought, word, and action were addressed, and all the rest of the creation was forgotten. For him I dressed, s [...]ng, touched the trembling string, or displayed my skill in the ma [...]y dance; possessed of his approbation I wished for nothing more, and every other affection of my soul seemed absorbed by this ardent passion.—I certainly con­tinued to love my excellent father with the utmost tender­ness, but at that time I seldom thought of him; I like­wise still esteemed Granville Clifford, in the same degree, as I should have done an amiable and affectionate brother; but I carefully avoided his so [...]iety, and shrunk like the sens [...]tive plant▪ from his tender assiduity.—These deep re­cesses, these delightful labyrinths, through whose enchanting m [...]anders, Granville Clifford had often led me, with a heart where sportive innocence loved to reside, now bore witness to the secret vows of Henry Dormer.—In these sweet haunts, sacred to every noble and elegant sentiment that can [Page 30] exalt the human heart, Henry Dorm [...]r charmed me with the first avowal of his profane passion.—Love it was not, love it could never be; but I believed it so—and in artless strains confessed the impressions he had made on my heart. —He heard me with rapture, he sealed his extacy on my lips a thousand times, but hinted some fears about my father; —but I assured him they were ill-founded —"My father," said I, "is more than I can speak him. It is impossible you should yet know half his worth, nor can I describe it. He has enough to render his Ela happy, nor will he withhold it. Already he esteems and admires you. Go then! pour out your heart before him, assured of success."

Thus encouraged, he clasped me again in his arms, promised forever to obey me—called me his best, his only treasure; bestowed on me every endearing appella­tion that the most endearing tenderness could possibly suggest—and after numerous repetitions of his ardent vows, I hastened our return to the house that he might put his determination in practice; but turning down an unfrequented path, which we had before made choice of to avoid interruption, I beh [...]ld a tyger cou [...]hing just be­fore us.—Terrified for the danger of my adored Henry, unmindful of myself, I uttered a piercing shriek, and bid him fly: he instantly obeyed, and was out of sight in a moment. My destruction seemed now it evitable. The tyger panted at my heels, and offering up my ardent prayer, I r [...]signed myself to my apparent fate; when the generous Clifford sprang from an a [...]joining inclosure, and threw himself before the ravenou [...] animal. I uttered a shriek, wild as before, and threw my arms involun­tarily around him: but he flung me from him, and draw­ing his sword with the quickness of lightning, he plunged it into the heart of the f [...]aming monster, and conveyed me fainting to the house. Gratitude was the first impulse that engrossed my returning senses.—The assurance of Dor­mer's safety dwel [...] strongly on my mind; but again throw­ing my arms affectionately round the dear brother of my soul. I ardently blessed Heaven for his almost miraculous escape, and wept in his bosom. Then, raising my eyes— "You have saved me,"—said I,—"dear generous Granville, [Page 31] you have saved the life of Ela."—He made no reply, but printing a gentle kiss on my forehead he joined his cheek, wet with tears, to mine, and pressed me still closer to his heart. My father witnessed the scene with silent transport▪ and after my first emotions had subsided, my eyes invo­luntarily turned toward their still more favoured object. But deep confusion dyed his cheek, and his eyes carefully avoided mine. Ah! little did he then know the heart of the devoted Ela,—little did he then suspect that the wound was given, which neither time nor chance can ever cure. Distressed by his embarrassment, every thing else was forgot­ten; but when the affectionate enquiries of my father brought back the scene of danger to my remembrance, a variety of tender palliatives arose at the same instant to en­tirely exculpate my beloved Henry. His desertion I attri­buted wholly to surprize, and believed him, when he swore by every sacred power, that his own death would, in the cool hour of reflexion, be far less dreadful then, than losing me. Thus I neglected the warning hand of mercy, and giving myself wholly up to the guidance of my infatuated heart, I regarded the conduct of my preserver as an act of common humanity—and continued to cherish the viper in my bosom, who after having deprived me of all that renders life valuable, now throws aside every disguise, and robs me of that likewise.

My wearied spirits now se [...]k the balmy-blessing of sleep —the only cessation that my sorrows can ever taste, until the final, the ardently wished-for summons comes that brings an eternal release.



AGAIN I am enabled to resume my sad narration. The hours of darkness passed heavily along; but return­ing light seems to have brought a new supply of resigna­tion; and although it sometimes costs my heart a p [...]g, I return to my self-imposed duty, [...]er to pay your good­ness the only tribute of gratitude in my power.

[Page 32]The adventure related in my last, trivial as was the impression it made on my mind, caused a considerable alteration in our society. A very perceptible gloom hovered around the so lately gay and gallant Dormer. My father seemed labouring with some concealed emo­tion—and more than common happiness was visible in Granville Clifford. I was perplexed by each of them,— but the behaviour of Dormer appeared the most in­explicable, and dwelt strongly on my mind. He seemed to avoid my converse, and no longer sought to charm me with the music of his tongue. Then it was that anguish first seized my heart. Two days passed in a state of in­conceivable wretchedness. In vain I endeavoured to ac­count for the silent dejection of Dormer; the extreme vivacity of Clifford; or the mysterious air of my father: anxiety preyed deeply on my heart, and sleep was a stranger to my couch.—In this state I was, when the second night after the escape from the jaws of the tyger, the splendour of the heavenly luminaries, the sweet serenity of the air, and the melancholy murmur of a distant wood-dove, added to the melody of a nightingale, close to my chamber window, tempted me to indulge my contemplations in a small piazza, with which it was united. The moon shone with unclouded radiance on a fine sheet of water that fronted the house; I walked some time, buried in reflexion, when the sound of a gentle noise behind me made me turn round, and I beheld a beau­tiful little spaniel that belonged to Dormer running to­wards me I eagerly caught the pretty animal in my arms, and loaded it with caress [...]s. "Phaon," said I, "sweet little Phaon, where is your master?" The creature strug [...]led for his liberty to give me the desired information, bu [...] it was unnecessary. Dormer ascended a flight of steps that led from an avenue at the end of the piazza, and approached me with a pensive air. The impropriety of my dress occurred, and I was retiring; but springing suddenly forward he effectually prevented me. "Lovely Ela," he exclaimed, seizing my hands—"will you indeed leave me to despair?" I was incapable of making any reply. [Page 33] "Will you," added he—"angelic maid, scorn the most ardent passion that ever informed the heart of man? Can such unequalled goodness condemn her adoring Henry to madness and death?"

"Oh! never, never!" I exclaimed—"Why do you talk thus?" "Because," he replied, "looking firmly in my face, "your father has given you to Granville Clif­ford." "My father!" exclaimed I, sinking on a bench beside us. "Yes," he rep [...]ated wildly, "I heard the bar­gain sealed—I heard it and distraction seized me.—But I will never live to see it ratified." "It never can, indeed, it never shall,"—said I, looking tenderly at him. "Oh! but I fear, I fear it is inevitable,"—he replied—"unless my adored Ela;—but what was I about to say?—Your father's heart is set on the accomplishment of this long-destined union:—they fondly think you love this Clif­ford, and it is certain he doats on you. But, what do I say? (added he, after a pause) it is certain he shall never have you, for have you not generously declared your heart is mine?—Oh! that accursed tyger!—It was that which confirmed the destiny of your father. Clifford is exalted to a hero; but for me, what remains?"—"Love and happiness," I replied; "then envy not this really ami­able young man the acquisition of a little empty ho­nour"—"No," he exclaimed, "I cannot envy him any thing, but your affections."—"To-morrow," added he, "I go to enter on an employment, which the interest of your [...]ather has procured me; but alas! it will remove me far from all my soul holds dear.—This propitious night has led me thus happily to your feet, and let us not lose the precious moments.—I have been buried in the shades of yonder grove since the silent hour of midnight —and your sweet image burst like a heavenly vision on my eyes as I ascended the steps to return to my apartment. Swear, then, charming maid, ere I consent to part with you▪ that you will be mine: swear, in the awful face of Heaven, that no allurements shall ever shake your faith." I was about to comply with his request, when the soft sound of an approaching footstep struck [Page 34] our ears. We started from each other, Dormer disap­peared in an instant; returning day broke through the distant clouds, and my father stood before me. I could gladly have sunk into the earth to avoid his presence: till that moment I never felt the stings of self-accusation. He approached me with his usual benignity, and seating himself beside me—"What," said he, kissing my check, has thus early disturbed the slumbers of my sweet girl!" I threw my arms around him. I hid my face in his bo­som, but could not speak. "Ela," said he, in a more solemn tone, "you are unhappy. I have seen you so for many days; and the painful discovery has wounded the breast of your father."—"Oh! wretched girl" ex­claimed I, raising my streaming eyes, "to make my ex­cellent parent unhappy likewise." "Explain then, my child,"—said he, still holding me in his arms, "what is it that preys upon your heart?—and let your fond parent banish it." "Yet," added he, after a long "pause, why should I ask a confession that may give you pain, when I already know all that you can tell me?—My Ela is incapable of disguise."—"Yes, dear sir," said I, clasping his hands between my own, "indeed I am not, I will not, cannot attempt to conceal my heart from you." "Nor give it away without my acqui [...]scence, I hope," replied he with quickness.—I felt my face glow, and a­verted my eyes from his penetrating regard—"Yet," added he, "the little flatterer has been strongly tempt­ed; but beware, my lovely girl, how you listen to the delusions of an inexperienced heart. Happiness as per­fect as mortality can taste, courts you in the form of the accomplished, the elegant, the truly estimable Granville Clifford.—You know his bright endowments—his uncom­mon excellencies.—His grateful, let me add, generous soul, knows no ambition equal to that of being your pro­tector, your gentle friend and counsellor, through all the thorny paths of life; to lead you, from step to step, up to the fountain head of all perfection, and accompany you into those mansions of eternal peace and love, where I trust your virtues will gain you admittance. This, my dear Ela, is no tumultuous, sordid passion, that [Page 35] vanishes ere it is well understood; but real love, whose sole aim it is to promote the happiness of its object; which will always increase with time, and soar far above all the misfortunes or cruelty of the world. Such is the attachment of Granville Clifford.—I [...]ead the secret monuments of his ingenuous mind, and [...] well assured, that had he empires to bestow, you would be equally his choice as now. A heart, like his is a jewel that is seldom found—an inestimable gem, indeed, which all the treasures of the world can never purchase. This heart my child now waits your acceptance, and I have too firm a reliance on your innate excellence to entertain a doubt of your being thoroughly sensible of its value.— Gratitude will bring back the scene where his life was endang [...]red to rescue yours—and point out the return which that conduct merits:—justice will likewise draw comparisons on that occasion which cannot but be obvi­ous, and you will learn to subdue every foolish or trou­blesome enemy that may have disturbed your repose!— fully convinced, that your happiness is the first wish of your fond father's heart, and that my zeal in the cause of Granville Clifford, can arise from no other motive.— Experience, my dear girl, enables me to view objects through a juster medium than can possibly be expected from your early years, and unchequered mode of life. You are as much a stranger to the bye-paths and indirect, crooked ways of the world as if your days had passed in the vale of Abyssisinia; but I am fully assured you will not shut your ears, and obstinately contemn the voice of instruction, which now warns you to avoid all those who would, under any form whatever, seek to allure you from the paths of duty and strict rectitude; for those that dare to do so, whatever name they may assume, can only have their own gratification, not your happiness in view. I see, with a mixture of pain and pleasure, the native fervor, the exquisite sensibility of your mind;— yes, I have long seen it; and while I cannot but approve, I likewise tremble. Convinced therefore,—(you weep, my dear Ela, but medicine however nauseous, is some­times necessary) that this emaciated form will very soon [Page 36] be united to its kindred dust, I wish, ardently wish, to see you as securely sheltered from the storms of life as the uncertain [...]y of human events, and the falla [...]iousness of human foresight can admit. I know but one worthy of the charge. The one I have appointed my substitute, my representative—your guardian;—nay, more, your husband— Together you have grown up, and attained a blooming and promising maturity; your kindred virtues were early visible—an overuling power designs you for each other: let no ividious hand then interpose between you. The happiness of my few remaining days—the hap­piness of the amiable Clifford, and your own happiness, be assured, depends on the accomplishment of this event, which lies heavy at my heart. Mistake not then, I con­jure you, the glow of a transient approbation, raised on the airy basis of a fine person, adorned by the charms of novelty, and insinuating manners, for a serious attachment of the heart. Granville Clifford I am well convinced, is the real possessor of your affections; and however, an ignis fatuus may delude you for a short time, they will soon return to their proper object, and own him the worthy arbitrator of your future fate."

I was drowned in tears. He arose with mild dignity, and pressing me tenderly in his arms—

"Retire, my beloved Ela," said he, "the morning air is penetrating, and you are too carelessly guarded against it;—go then to your chamber, and reflect on what parental anxiety, and a tenderness that cannot be ex­ceeded, has prompted me to say." I obeyed, deeply affected, as I now am, by the recollection of a scene that can never be effaced from the heart of



THE final stroke seemed now given to all my blissful hopes, floods of tears fell from my eyes, and sighs of anguish burst from my heart. Unthankful for the nume­rous [Page 37] blessings by which I was surrounded, I execrated my very being, and impiously besought Heaven to recal the gift that was now become insupportable. Ah! Mis­taken, wretched Ela! how easily didst thou suffer thyself to be carried away by the tide of passion! Forgetful of what I owed the best of fathers, and most generous of friends—every valuable affection of my soul was lost in this intoxicating stream, and no consideration could prevail on me to forego its fatal draught. I revolved, deeply revolved what my father had said. It penetrated the inmost recesses of my heart; but when the image of my loved Henry recurred, apparently struggling with all the pangs of love, every thing else was forgotten, and, and I mourned only from the dreadful fear of losing him forever.—The amiable form of Granville Clifford then stole upon my mind. I reproached him with cruelty, I called him friend and brother, but bade him never hope for more. Ten thousand times I accused him mentally as the cause of all my distress, and felt myself, at that distracted moment, inclined even to hate him. In this agitated state the hours were spent, until a servant summoned me to breakfast; but the traces of sorrow, visible in my face, rendered me an object really unfit to be seen, and I pleaded indisposition as an excuse for keep­ing my chamber. The fear of a visit from my father struck me as I delivered this message to the servant; I called her back, and bade her say I was asleep.—My heart smote me as I thus assumed the despicable veil of hypo­crisy to conceal my real emotions. I seemed degraded in my own opinion—I wished to recall the message, but it was too late. "Gracious Heaven," said I, "what have I done that should need the mask of falsehood, that should prompt me in any shape to deceive the best of fathers? I have condescended to a meanness that must sink me even in the estimation of my servant; but there is no resource. I would not, methinks, for worlds offend or distress this good parent; and at this juncture I fear I could neither suppress my emotions nor bear his presence. But his tenderness, claims every return in my power, and I will sacrifice each wish of my own to promote his [Page 38] happiness.—Yes, I will try to conquer the struggles of this inbred rebel; endeavour▪ oh severe task! even to forget the dear enchanting Dormer, and yield implicit obedience to my father's will;—but then he loves me, alas! I could with fortitude bear any suffering of my own in silence;—but how shall I support those of my Henry?—The bare idea of his being wretched is torture. Oh! fatal, fatal attachment! it has, I fear, forever ba­nished peace from my bosom; and, perhaps, involved the most charming of men in misery."

In reflections like these I was buried until the hour of dinner approached, and I began to dress for that occasion; but before I had risen from the toilet, my father sent to enquire if I was well enough to attend him in the music-room; I replied in the affirmative, and in a few minutes followed the messenger.—Granville Clifford was with him; I trembled and felt a sanguine glow mount into my cheeks as I approached them; but the sweet compla­cency of my dear father's features, reassured me.—His eyes delicately avoided to scrutinize my altered looks; but giving me an open letter—"Here is a sweet compa­nion for you, my dear Ela," said he, just arrived from England."—I glanced my eyes over the letter: it was from a much esteemed friend of my father's, warmly recommending a young orphan lady (who destitute of any portion but an uncommon share of personal and mental graces, had evinced a desire to visit India) to his protection.

"This amiable lady," said my father, as I returned him the letter, "if she answers the description here given, will, I hope, in some measure, compensate to our little society, for the loss of our agreeable Dormer, who quitted us early this morning." I felt the colour desert my cheeks as he pronounced these words My heart seemed to die within me, and I was very near sinking to the ground; but summoning all my strength. I seated myself in a chair by his side, and assuming an air of in­difference, very foreign to my heart, expressed my sur­prize at the suddenness of Dormer's departure; then, to prevent any more being said on the subject, I took up [Page 39] an Italian composition that lay beside me, and flying to a harpsi [...]hord, played on it, while Granville Clifford hung over the back of my chair, and heaved repeated sighs. My father, whose soul was harmony itself, was lavish in his encomiums on my musical powers; and re­minding Clifford of the fair stranger, the carriage was ordered, and they both went to conduct her from the ship. Never was a poor wretch, whose hard fate had long estranged him from the chearing beams of the sun and the joys of liberty, more rejoiced at being again restored to light and freedom, than I was at being left to the unmo [...]ested indulgence of my feelings.—Again I retired to my chamber, and dropped the tear of bitter regret for the loss I feared I had sustained, in being for ever separated from the savoured obj [...]ct of my tender choice. Yet, I still resolved that fillal piety should triumph over every other impulse, when an Indian, who h [...]d occa­sionally attended Dormer during his stay with us, hastily entered, and delivered me a paper, containing the fol­lowing words:

"In a state of mind, which no language can paint, I tear myself from the most lovely of her sex; but let no consideration tempt the charming Ela to forget the man who lives but for her."

I pressed the insensible paper to my bosom. I [...]athed it with my tears; and, like Juliet, I madly sought to know, "Why Heaven delighted to practise stratagems upon so soft a subject as myself?" when the sound of the returning carriage struck my ear; and as soon as I had composed my features I hastened to receive our new guest. All the pictures my imagination had eve [...] formed of the Goddess of Beauty and Love, now seemed realized in this fair stranger.—Her form was exquisitely proportion­ed; her eyes bright, yet languishing, looked like hea­venly intelligencers of the most melting sensibility: every other feature was equally expressive, of all that can delight the eye, and fascinate the heart; her com­plexion was a charming assemblage of delicacy and health, and a pro [...]u [...]ion of bright hair played with grace­ful negligence around her finely turned forehead, and [Page 40] added beauty to the dazzling whiteness of her neck— I addressed her with a blushing consciousness of inferio­rity—I was at that moment reconciled to the absence of Dormer—I was even weak enough to congratulate my­self, that he was removed far from the power of such dangerous charms; I likewise formed a hope, that they might eventually lead to the accomplishment of all my wishes, by attaching the heart of Granville Clifford, who regarded her with marked attention, and withdrawing his preference from me.

But if I was struck with admiration, by the beauties of the fair stranger's person, how greatly was that ad­miration increased by the graces of her mind and man­ners. She appeared some years old [...]r than myself; her understanding naturally good, had been most happily cultivated, her wit was sparkling, tempered by a modesty that enhanced its worth; she excelled in every bright ac­complishment, and her every look, word, and movement, was attended by a grace I never yet saw equalled; her ten [...] was mild and amiable, and the qualifications of her he [...] [...], I believe, fully equal in excellence to tho [...] [...]er form. Every new day shewed some, before undiscovered, charm in her: My esteem for her increased in proportion to her merits; and I soon conceived a very tender affection for her, which seemed to meet an abundant return.—We were never asunder: we formed a variety of amusive schemes; and Granville Clifford spared no pains to render them delightful. My native vivacity was unbounded, and I endeavoured to exert it all in compliment to our lovely guest. By appearing gay I was believed to be happy; while the image of Henry Dormer still possessed my whole soul, and melancholy never failed to draw her secret sombre shade across the brightest scenes.—My father smiled serenely on our inno­cent pleasures: [...]e fancied that all that disturbed my repose was forgotten; he was infinitely delighted with the beautiful St. Clare, and showed her every possible mark of friendship and distinction.—Festivity reigned around us. Splendid entertainments, balls, masques, &c. were given in honour of our charming favourite, [Page 41] which effectually introduced her to our Indostan neigh­bours, and she was soon distinguished as the fair Sultana of the day. Adorers flocked in crouds around her: she had soon some very splendid offers, but those that made them were not happy enough to obtain her favour: co­vered with blushes, in the gentlest accents, she acknow­ledged the great honour done her by their generous pro­posals; but frankly owned that her heart forbade her ac­ceptance of them.—My father silently wondered at this conduct: others censured it as some of the gentlemen were, in the general eye, unexceptionable; but guided by my own experience, I read some tender secret in the fair Augusta's eyes, and believed her heart, like my own consumed by a hopeless yet devouring flame: yet why then come to India? Why subject herself to (suffer me to say) the censure of indelicacy by commencing an adventurer, if unable to support that character, and taste its proffered fruits?—This was an enigma which I was unable clearly to solve;—yet, a perhaps, sometimes crossed my mind, that the amiable Clifford was the barrier to her golden prospects. I saw the soft blush frequently suffuse her cheek when he addressed her—I frequently observed her fine eyes rivetted on his face when she be­lieved herself unnoticed; but I was fully assured, that if she had unhappily fixed her affections there, it was without the smallest probability of ever meeting a return; for he only paid her the cold tribute of common politeness —His unhappy unmerited attachment to me, seemed w [...]ven with the thread of his existence, and he beheld Augusta's wonderous charms unmoved. Thus several months revolved.

My father heard frequently from Dormer, who met with great success in his new employment.—Clifford repeatedly avowed his ardent and pure attachment; I som [...]times wept, but endeavoured to submit to what ap­peared inevitable, and consider him the arbitrator of my future sate. I wrote a letter to Dormer, declaring this to be my final resolution, and preparations were making for our nuptials, when my honoured father, who had long been in a declining state of health, was sud­denly [Page 42] confined to his bed, and death made its awful approach. Every heart around him mourned on that sad occasion, and every countenance bore the ensigns of sorrow. A few hours before he expired, he summoned me to his bedside.—"Ela," said he, "I am snatched from you ere the first wish of my soul is accomplished; but I leave you with the firmest reliance on your duty, your fidelity, and your judgment." He raised his eyes, and be­held Granville Clifford enter the room.—"Yes," continued he. "I cheerfully commit my dearest treasure to this most excellent young man."—The eyes of Granville streamed their grateful testimonies; the dying saint raised himself in the bed; and I was totally absorbed in unutterable wo. He took each of our hands, and joining them together, "Be blessed,"—said he, "be happy, and mourn not for me.—I am about to be released from all my pains—im­mortal glory already beams upon my soul.—Adieu—my children!"

He sunk on his pillow as these words broke faintly from his lips.—And here, my estimable friend, bitter reflection suspends my yet unfinished tale, and forces me to grant a respite, to myself and you.



IN vain should I attempt to describe the poignancy of my sorrow, on the ever regreted occasion, with the account of which my last letter concluded; but a heart like yours full of sensibility, and awake to all the tender claims of nature, will easily conceive them; why then should I labour to recal a scene, the remembrance of which fills my soul with inexpressible torture, and greatly augments my present sufferings!

Insensible to all the gentle arguments of love and friend­ship, my mind dwelt deeply on the irreparable loss I had sustained, and the voice of consolation was unheard.—The loved idea of my ever honoured parent engrossed every house: even Henry Dormer was unthought of at that dis­tressful [Page 43] period. I avoided as much as possible the salutary counsel and tender assiduity of the distressed but ever anxi­ously attentive Clifford, and even the presence of the ami­able Augusta St. Clare was unwelcome. I wished for the unrestrained indulgence of my wo I secluded myself whole days within my chamber, absorbed in gloomy soli­tude; and was not without great reluctance, prevailed on to join their society.—Never child mourned more truly for a parent's loss; never one had greater reason; but the pre­cepts of virtue delivered in the softest accents of empassion­ed tenderness▪ at length pierced the deep gloom of affliction by which my mind was enveloped; I listened to the elo­quent intreaties of my more than brother, enforced by the mild persuasions of my charming friend, and resignation diffused its blessings around me.

My father had made no disposition of his effects, every thing therefore devolved to me. This was a conduct I did not expect, nor was I at all gratified by it, as I wished and always believed, he would certainly ensure Granville Clifford an independency; but at the same time it determin­ed me to make him every compensation in my power for this apparent neglect. It was certainly this belief from whence this extraordinary step of my father's originated. —He judged of my heart by his own: but, alas! the conclusion was most fatally deceptive.—He did not reflect that the human heart is not to be relied on; and a heart in­clined like mine still less so than any other. He believed me just, generous and sincere; the event proved me false, cruel, and treacherous.—in the first moment of reflection on my future conduct, justice and discretion marked out that plan I ought to pursue; and I formed solemn resolutions of acting in exact conformity with what was universally known to be the long avowed design, and dying wish of my worthy father; but how soon were those resolves destroyed by the force of a bl [...]nd enthusiastic passion!—unworthy, I now, when too late, discover; totally unworthy the appella­tion by which it came recommended. Granville Clifford indeed truly loved; but impressed with a painful sense of his situation, his generous soul strove to suppress its emotion, and bore its pangs in silence. No longer his ardent vows assailed my reluctant ear—but sadness marked [Page 44] his elegant features, and a pensive habit took possession of his soul.—His fond attachment now looked up to me as a prize to which he durst not aspire—and he determined no more to persecute me with, as he termed it, his unworthy love, but to mourn the deprivation of all his hopes in secret, and gladly sacrifice his own happiness to my interest. Often had he marked the reluctance with which I attended to the language of his heart; but, unsuspicious of my pre­ference for Dormer, he hoped every thing from time, and the encouragement and interest of my father: but now he had lost that, he resolved to withdraw his claims, and (to use his own words) leave me to some brighter fate. What then was his joy, his unspeakable amazement, while tor­tured by contending passions, to hear me in compliance with the impulse of rectitude, and the laudable resolution I had formed pronounce, unsolicited, the most solemn assur­ances of being only his?—A flood of rapture burst on his dejected mind—he threw himself passionately at my feet. —his emotions were too powerful for utterance—but the eloquence of his eyes rendered all other language needless. I was deeply affected. Penetrated to the soul by the tender and respectful ardour of his attachment, and the fullest conviction of his exalted merits, I sincerely partook of his felicity; and a consciousness of having acted right, tri­umphed over every sensation that had warred against my peace; when the door of the room suddenly opened, and, quite unsuspicious of intrusion, Augusta St. Clare entered, followed by Henry Dormer.—They both started back— Clifford changed colour, and I fainted in his arms. On my recovery, the first object that presented itself was Dormer kneeling by my side: tenderness and keen reproach marked his features, he ventured to embrace me with ardour; he pressed his lips to my cheek; I reclined involuntarily on his bosom; and burst into tears. But remembrance soon awakened me from the fond delirium. I disengaged my­self from him, and raising my eyes, beheld Granville Clifford witnessing the scene, while an expression of deep melancholy overspread his lately animated countenance. The impropriety of my behaviour rushed upon my mind. Dormer still held one of my hands between his, but pre­senting the other to Clifford, I bade him no longer be [Page 45] anxious on my account, for I was quite recovered. He seemed totally insensible of my condescension, he still hung over the back of the chair, and gazed at me in gloomy silence; then suddenly withdrawing his penetrating eyes, he struck his hands on his forehead, and darted out of the room. I was deeply affected by his manner: memory brought back the just departed scene; and the solemn vows I had so lately uttered filled me with the most sensible re­gret. The dying words of my revered father arose upon my mind, and conspired to rack me. The beauteous Au­gusta regarded me with gentlest sympathy, and Dormer sat between us absorbed in thought. The appearance of dinner proved a welcome relief: a servant was dispatched to inform Clifford we waited for him; but he returned for answer, that a sudden but violent illness rendered him incapable of attending. I was inexpressibly alarmed at this account—embarrassment hovered around Dormer, and a tender sadness was visible in Augusta: our meal was cheerless, the unsocial gloom was only disturbed by a few tender enquiries relative to my health from the amiable Augusta, and some broken unintelligible sentences from the agitated Dormer.—An insufferable load of conflicting passions overwhelmed my heart: and as soon as dinner was removed I pleaded an excuse for retiring, and hastened to the chamber of Clifford. He was reclining on a couch when I entered, the picture of death;—but, all pale and trembling, he started up at my approach, and I seated my in silence by his side. "Are you ill?" said I, leaning tenderly towards him.—"Oh, yes," he replied, averting his face, I am, indeed, ill; but, let, me not disturb your happiness."—"Happiness!" I repeated with emotion, "Can I be happy and see my dearest friend thus?"—"Am I that friend?" said he, raising himself and fixing his eyes ardently on my face.—"Is it possible that I can be blest with such an appellation, and does my long adored Ela drop these precious tears for my sufferings? [...]—"Can Granville doubt it," said I, "after the avowal I have made?" —"Oh! pardon me, most loved maid," exclaimed he, "but, indeed, I am that infidel;—yet, what do I say? No, I do not doubt your pity;—but your love, charming Ela —your love—Oh! where am I?—You must be happy, [Page 46] indeed you must, and think no more of the wretched Clif­ford."—His tears fell on my hand; I was incapable of making any reply;—he started wildly from me and traver­sed the room—Fever glowed on his cheek, and distraction glared in his eye—he clapped his hands on his forehead, looked mournfully at me, and again declared he was very ill. I was little better; my agitation could not possibly be exceeded—he observed it, although so greatly oppressed himself, and his looks sufficiently declared that he was deep­ly sensible of the obligation he thought my compassion con­fer [...]ed. I hid my face with my handkerchief, and quitted the room to procure him assistance.

But my wearied spirits now compel me to break off, and de [...]e [...] the conclusion of my sad narrative to another oppor­ [...]ity.



THE illness of Clifford increased with such rapidity, that in a very few hours the faculty pronounced him in im­minent danger.—My grief was sincere, his innumerable vir­tues dwelt forcibly on my mind, and for several days and nights no persuasions could prevail on me to quit his side. The name of Ela dwelt for [...]ver on his lips, sometimes ac­companied with that of my father; but much oftner by that of Henry Dormer. I administered his medicines with my own hands, and, kneeling, fervently besought that Heaven would endow them with the power of restoration. The lovely Augusta lent her friendly aid, and shared my anxiety, Dormer sometimes ventured to intrude, and never failed to remind me of the injury my health must inevitably sustain from the deprivation of rest; but no in­treaties could prevail on me to quit this scene, until mental and bodily fatigue, added to my having neglected the ne­cessary refreshment of food and sleep totally over powered me, and the third night of my watching I was conveyed in a state of insensibility to my chamber.

[Page 47]This fatal weakness was the inlet to all my succeeding misfortunes; Dormer had now every opportunity to display his feigned attachment, nor did he neglect to avail himself of it. Too well assured of my unhappy predilection, he called forth all his arts to render it subservient to his cruel purpose. He incessantly assailed me with letters, whose melting language was formed to captivate the coldest heart. I pleaded my solemn engagements with Granville Clifford, added to the gratitude he so justly merited, and my duty to the best of fathers; but all I could urge was insufficient to dissuade him from the pursuit.—His gentle reproaches, ear­nest intreaties, and passionate complaints, pierced my yielding soul; he tenderly accused me with breach of faith, and swore he could not, would not live without me. Charm­ed with the language of his treacherous heart▪ and lulled in­to a forgetfulness of all that is just and honourable, by the still more dangerous delusions of my own [...] I consented to a midnight interview in that spot where the foot-step of my father had before surprized us.—There I no longer remem­bered what was due to the memory of that most excellent man, to Clifford, or myself:— no longer my heart retain­ed any impression but those of love and Dormer.

Infatuation wrapt me in her thickest mantle, and fond delirium soothed each accusing remembrancer with its Le­the and draught. "Let us, my adored Ela," said the perfi­dious Henry—"nobly resolve to sacrifice every meaner consideration on the altar of mutual attachment. Love is imperfect unless tried by difficulties.—These are the ob­stacles that evince its sincerity, and prove a thorny way to ages of happiness.—Let us then think only of each other —Let us fly from every intruder, and on the happy plains of my dear native isle, consecrate our lives to bliss."

My ears greedily drank in these delusive words, and my fond heart became their easy convert▪

"This▪" added the too charming betrayer, folding me with rapture in his arms, "this, lovely maid, is the golden opportunity to escape from all that can molest▪ the white moment which the gentle deity▪ who has united our hearts, now offers to ensure his future favour, may, perhaps, ne­ver return. Will it not then be impious to neglect the prof­fered blessing? But the souls of Ela and Henry are incapa­ble [Page 48] of such a prophanation. Come then my dear selected bride, banish all fears; a vessel now waits to wast us to the favoured land of liberty."

I know not whether I made any reply, but incapable of opposition, I followed him to the steps that descended from the p [...]azza, where I beheld several Indians waiting with a carriage. On a nearer approach I discovered them to be my own attendants. Breathless and almost fainting, I suf­fered Dormer to lift me into the carriage. "Say," my dearest love," said he, as soon as we were seated, "where these faithful creatures may find such necessary cloaths as will suffice for the voyage."—I marked out some trunks well stocked with linen, several riding dresses, and all my jewels; and, under the covert of the night, we arrived in a few hours on the sea-shore; the Indians following with our bag­gage. The very winds seemed bribed to promote the wishes of the base Henry, and hasten my destruction; they filled the fluttering sails, and conveyed us with rapidity from the Indostan shores. But the morning light seemed to bring back suspended reflection. A variety of bitter accusers [...]rouded round my heart. My eyes eagerly sought the dear haunts of my nativity—these scenes of innocence and artless joys forcibly recurred to my distracted mind—the image of Granville Clifford arose with them: I beheld him languishing on the bed of sickness;—methought I heard him once more request to see his long-loved Ela, and bless her ere he died.—Unequal to the conflict, remorse and poignant anguish seized me, and I wept passionately in the bosom of the soft seducer. But he soon found means to sooth my troubled soul, and banish every image but his own. He prevailed on me to sign a writing, empowering a person, in whom he dared confide, to turn all my effects into mo­ney, and transmit their value to England by the first op­portunity. This end accomplished. Dormer devoted all his time to alleviate the anxiety that sometimes preyed upon my peace. But the righteous vengeance of Heaven pursued my cruel perfidy. A dreadful storm arose just as we gain­ed fight of England; and, after perils almost incredible, we were wrecked on a dangerous coast in the western part of the island. There deprived of all means of subsistence, but from the charitable aid of some neighbouring gentry; [Page 49] the weak state in which I quitted India, added to the recent struggles of my mind, the bodily sufferings I had just en­countered, brought on an illness that threatened my life; but youth, added to the humane attentions of a worthy pair, who welcomed us with hospitable cordiality into their peaceful abode, averted the final blow, and I was again re­stored to health and reason.

The first thing that struck my observation was, that Hen­ry had imposed me on those excellent people for his wife; and, guided by the sophistry of his baleful arguments, I be­lieved myself in fact such. Here, fain would I draw a veil over my own conduct, but justice forces me to submit to the humiliating confession, and own, while deep repentance wrings my heart and tears stream from my eyes, that, in obedience to his will, I meanly dared to join in the guilty deception.

Methinks I see your upright soul turn with horror from the picture I have drawn of myself; but soft-eyed pity is the child of goodness, and the fullest conviction assures me that she is the native inmate of your exalted mind. This blessed assurance, although I dare no longer expect your esteem, bids me still hope for the continuance of your generous sympathy; and while you drop a tear over the errors of enthusiastic love, you will, perhaps, rather lament than condemn its victim.

Having thus sacrificed the rank, I am encouraged to be­lieve I have hitherto held in your opinion, to the dictates of truth, my trembling hand disqualifies me to attempt the sequel of my story at present, and compels me to resign the pen with the deepest and most grateful sense of the innume­rable obligations you have conferred on



IN the peaceful solitude where genuine philanthropy sheltered us from the raging element, and added its most powerful exertions effectually to preserve the being it had snatched from impending destruction; near twelve months [Page 50] elapsed in all the habits of conjugal endearment; and con­scious of possessing all the affection and fidelity that could possibly inform the heart of the tenderest wife, I certainly forgot that I was not so in reality, nor once reflected that religion, morality, and the laws of our country, required a solemn and public avowal of our choice. The fondness of my Henry filled my whole soul; every valuable precept impressed on my mind by education and example was lul­led asleep by his deluding tongue; and so entirely did I doat upon the dear betrayer, that I seemed incapable of distin­guishing between right and wrong, but as he pronounced them. His sentiments, his wishes were sure to be mine, and I could not figure to myself any higher gratification than that of seeing him happy, and being for ever blessed with his tender approbation.

Our kind entertainers believing us such as we appeared, soon evinced the most flattering partiality for us, and im­pressed with sincere compassion for the misfortunes that led us to their hospitable roof, hearing Dormer mention our expected remittances from India, earnestly besought us to remain with them until they arrived. We were easily pre­vailed on by their friendly importunity; and when the fleet, by which we hoped to receive the produce of my effects was announced, sadness again enveloped my mind; but Dormer testified the most impatient anxiety, and wrote to his correspondent in London by every post, to give us the earliest intelligence. Several weeks elapsed in a state of the most tedious uncertainty, when Dormer received an account from his friend in India which sufficiently awaked me from my dream of happiness, by presenting to my mind the most terrifying views. It informed us that Hy­d [...]r-Ali had entirely ravaged that part of the country where my possessions stood, and carried all that were not imme­diately sacrificed to his brutal cruelty into captivity.— This dreadful intelligence filled me with distraction. My tortured imagination painted the good, the amiable Clif­ford, and the beauteous Augusta St. Clare, butchered by the hands of merciless barbarians; or, at the best, borne away into a no less dreadful slavery. Their pathetic com­plaints penetrated my soul; and, "Oh!" I exclaimed, raising my streaming eyes to Dormer, "some horrible pu­nishment [Page 51] will assuredly overtake me, since excellence like their's is thus permitted to suffer!—I am, oh! bitter truth, treacherous and most forsworn! I have merited the chas­tisement of Heaven; but for these spotless victims, why should they bleed?" A deep gloom overspread Dormer's countenance, and he stood gazing at me in mournful silence, while the letter fell from his trembling hand to the floor, "Hark," said I, "do you not hear the generous injured Clifford praying for me, faithless and cruel as I am, even in the agonies of death?—Do you not see the lovely Augusta imploring mercy for him, rather than herself? Oh! my Henry, justice must force you to allow his worth, and par­ticipate in my distress." "I do, I do," said he, turning from me with emotion, "God knows I feel it powerfully."

"And does not this loss seem the award of righteous equity?" said I.—"Was I not most cruel and ungrateful to leave that excellent young man a beggar? Oh! severe ad­dition, and at such a time too, languishing under sufferings which his unhappy attachment to me had occasioned; it surely was a baseness unprecedented—and I can never cease to lament it."

"But be pleased likewise to remember, madam" said Dormer sternly, "that you are now yourself little better than a beggar, and let that suffice you to lament about. If you preferred this boasted Clifford to me, why not evince it sooner? I have sacrificed every thing to my fatal fondness for you?"

Amazement seized me at this unexpected, and surely most unfeeling reproach; and nearly choaked by emotions, I could only murmur out—"Unjust Henry—what have I not sacrificed?"—when the appearance of the lady of the house prevented his reply. She enquired the cause of my tears, sincerely compassionated our loss, and called forth every argument that humanity could suggest to alleviate our distress. Dormer listened to her in sullen silence; and a servant entering▪ delivered to him another letter, which came by a private ship, from his Indian correspondent, inform­ing him that he had disposed of my desolated lands for their utmost value▪ and transmitted their produce in invest­ments to a Dutch house in Amsterdam. This news seemed in some measure to dispel the cloud that overhung the brow [Page 52] of Dormer; at least so well he feigned returning tenderness, and deep regret for what he termed a sudden gust of passion, solely arising from his extreme anxiety on my account, that I could not retain the smallest doubt of his sincerity, and his late unkindness was instantly forgotten in the transport of again beholding the soft seducing smile adorn his cheek, suffu [...]ed by the consciousness of having erred;—and while a tender apology escaped his lips, I suffered him to press me to his bosom; and bade him to remember the late un­pleasing scene no more.

Thus we were again restored to apparent tranquillity, and Dormer proposed his immediate departure for Lon­don, there to wait the remittances from Holland; but ad­vised my remaining with our hospitable friends until their arrival. "when," said he, again folding me in his arms, "I will hasten on the wings of love to conduct my Ela to the fair metropolis of England, and there confirm our sa­cred vows unobserved by the eye of censure; to avoid which we have ventured to impose. I think, a pardonable falshood on these honest rustics, whose rigid opinions might, per­haps, have inclined them to judge severely of my charming girl for trusting herself, unsanctioned, to the protection of her adoring Henry."

Sooth [...]d by his false blandishments I readily acc [...]ded to this proposal, and he left me the following morning, with assurances of writing by every post▪ and returning with all possible expedition.—I was inexpressibly affected. I bade the hours fly swiftly to bring him again in health and safety to my arms. I invoked each right [...]ous power to guide his steps, and may justly say, with faithful I mogen,

"To weep 'twixt clock and clock▪ if s [...]eep charged nature,
To break it with a fearful dream of him,
And cry myself awake"—

was each night's task.—My kind entertainers exerted all their endeavours to render me cheerful and content; and, from a grateful s [...]nse of their benevolent attentions, I strove to appear so, while anxiety hovered around my heart Henry was punctual to his promise of frequent writing; every post came fraught with the most impassioned repetitions of [Page 53] inviolable love; when one evening, after waiting many hours for the arrival of the messenger, who constantly brought my letters from the neighbouring marke [...] town, I received the heart-felt intelligence of the Dutch house hav­ing failed soon after the receipt of my property from India, and Dormer's being arrested for debts contracted previously to his embarkation for the East. All language is much un­equal to delineate my feelings at that juncture: deaf to the intreaties of all around me, I procured a post-chaise with all possible expedition, in which I sat off for London, a­bout the hour of midnight; and, without granting a mo­ment's respite to the claims of hunger and watching, I tra­velled with such unceasing rapidity, that, on the third even­ing after my departure from our hospitable western friends, I arrived at the dreary mansions which contained all that my soul held dear. I found him in a wretched apartment, surrounded with, (as it appeared to me, unaccustomed to such scenes) every species of misery.—Deep despair marked his countenance; he started when I entered, but instead of flying to embrace or console me, kept his seat and hid his face with a handkerchief.—I threw my arms passionately around him, and shed floods of tears for his distresses, to­tally regardless of those that must inevitably await myself: I then endeavoured to whisper consolation, by directing his mind to hopes that had no existence in my own; but he seemed quite insensible to all my tenderness, and with­out making any reply, put me gloomily from him: then starting from his seat, he traversed the room in extreme agita­tion. I earnestly conjured him not to indulge such violent emotions—when looking at me, with a kind of fury, he exclaimed,—"Oh! you have undone me! My bane, my curse, my ruin▪ you have destroyed me!—And now, smil­ing mischief, what do you wish for more?"—The stroke of death would, I am fully assured, have inflicted much less pain than these cruel words.—My heart seemed to die within me, and sinking to the ground I continued, I believe, many hours in a state of insensibility.— Happy would it have been for me had I then been released from misery— for the recollection of Dormer's unkindness was the first ob­ject that returning reason presented to my distracted mind— and—"Oh! dear cruel Henry," sell involuntarily from [Page 54] my lips. But Henry was not present, either to hear my complaints, or pity my distress; he had left me in that de­plorable state to the care of those unfeeling beings by whom he was surrounded; and it was not till many minutes after my recovery, when my spirits were nearly reduced to their former state, by repeated entreaties to see him, that he en­tered the room with sullen aspect and averted eyes. A stranger to every species of disguise, I could not suppress the feelings his behaviour had excited—adding, "it is sure­ly most unkind to add unmerited reproach to anguish which is already insupportable; for what would I not do to allevi­ate the distress of my Henry?" "And what would you do."—said he, in the same harsh strain as before—"What can you do?" "Sooth you with unfeigned, unalterable tenderness," I eagerly replied—"and by sharing every pain that can invade your heart, render it▪ perhaps, less acute." He threw himself carelessly into a chair by my side, as I pronounced these words. I arose, and taking from my arms a very rich pair of bracelets that had been my mother's, and were set with brilliants, with a [...]ing that had likewise been her's, and the picture of my father, which hung at my bosom, and was superbly ornamented with rose dia­monds, I threw them on a table, saying, "Yes, I will do more, I will sacrifice even these dear tributes of parental fondness to the far more eloquent claims of unbounded love. [...] The countenance of Dormer assumed a milder ex­pression.—"But let them," I added pointing to the pre­cious emblems—"let them, my Henry, be our last re­source—for a variety of tender, penetrating recollections, recu [...] to endear them to my heart.—This, then, shall be the first victim." drawing from my pocket a most elegant gold watch, embossed with an infinite variety of precious stones, "which we offer up on the altar of necessity."

"Generous, charming girl." exclaimed the re-animated Henry—"But can you with-hold the rest, and suffer me to languish in this detested place?"—"Oh, no!" I replied, "I cannot with-hold any thing that will contribute to restore you to liberty and smiling peace: for what are these poor hau [...]les; indeed what is all that the universe can afford me, compared with the heart-felt delight of seeing you happy?" —He poured out a rhapsody of tender protestations, and [Page 55] again attributed his late behaviour to an excess of love; and the readiness with which I admitted his apologies, and pro­nounced his pardon, fully verified the justness of the adage, that, ‘"What we wish, we easily believe."’ I then enquired, if all I was possessed of would procure cash enough to extricate him from his present difficulties; to which, after a long pause he replied in the affirmative; and I was all impatience to put my design in execution.— Dormer overwhelmed me with his fond effusions, and wrote a letter to a friend of his, who had, he informed me, been one of his pleasant companions, and had dissipated a very large fortune by living freely; but was still a most worthy, generous, good-natured fellow, and would gladly undertake this business, for which my inexperience rendered me unfit, and might be depended on to dispose of my jewels to the best advantage. A hackney coach was then procured for me, and, unattended, I instantly went in pursuit of this gentleman, guided only by a written direction from Dor­mer; and, after a long search through a variety of obscure places, attended by innumerable difficulties, I found him in a really deplorable habitation, situated in a narrow dirty lane, near one of the Inns of Court. His tall emaciated figure was rendered disgusting by the paltry gaudiness of his apparel; his coat had once been scarlet, but had acquir­ed a kind of dull purple from long service; he had a blue satin waistcoat loaded with tarnished embroidery, and spangles; a pair of enormous buckles, where the copper peeped through their once glittering vest, kissed the ground as he tottered toward me; an immense bag hung suspended by his few gray hairs, and a rusty military hat, adorned with a large cockade of the same complexion, lay on an old sopha, from which he arose at my entrance. He ap­peared to be about fifty years of age; his face long, lean, and sallow, was ornamented with a large pair of dark greenish eyes, which glanced at the same instant to every point of the compass; and the entire loss of his teeth brought his nose and chin in a constant state of salutation.— He had a large black patch on his forehead, and another on one of his cheeks; I started back on beholding him, and would gladly have withdrawn from an object that looked [Page 56] like a burlesque on the human form: but advancing with a grin of ineffable delight, rendered infinitely striking by the glare of his extended eyes, he made me the most pro­found bow I had ever before witnessed, and eagerly enquir­ed to what blessed chance he was indebted for the honour of my presence. I was quite incapable of making him any reply, but by a low curt [...]sey, and the delivery of Dormer's letter. He seemed quite transported at the perusal of it, and enquired how long his friend and favourite Harry had been in England. I answered him very concisely, and seating himself beside me on the sopha; which, with an old worm-eaten table, and a large chest, prevented from falling to pieces by some cords tied round it, formed the entire furni­ture of his attic abode: he pathetically lamented our mis­fortunes, poured out an mundation of friendly professions, and offered to accompany me back to the prison. I readily acceded to this proposal, and the coach that brought me there waited to conduct us. Dormer was extremely embar­rassed when we approached.—He arose with perturbation, and deep confusion marked in his air and features:—my escort saluted him with the same easy gaiety as if he had found him surrounded by every species of happiness; and with his native grin of self-complacency, welcomed him to England. Dormer made him no reply, but turning hastily to me, whispered a request that I would retire for a few moments, with which I instantly complied, and the keeper of the prison sent his wife to attend me. In a short time I received a message from Dormer, desiring my return to his apartment. His visitor was gone, and my father's picture, with the bracelets and ring that had been my mother's, lay on the table. "I have sent all but these, my love," said he, pointing to the dear memento's—"Your watch and all your jewels, which my friend assures me will bring near three hundred pounds, and my debt is but a hundred and fifty, so that the rest may support us till I can do something better." —"Thank God!" I exclaimed, "who has made me the blest instrument of your enfranchisement!"—"And thank you, my charming girl!"—he cried, pressing my hand passionately to his lips. My tears dropped one by one on the bosom of my riding shirt, which was fastened in the middle with a pin that Granville Clifford had given me. [Page 57] It contained a knot of his bright ches [...] [...]hair, set in gold, and surrounded with pearls. He had [...] England for it, and begged my acceptance of it as a faint tribute of his early love.—My eyes were on it. I considered it as some­thing sacred.—It was, indeed, the gift of a saint; and no pious mussulman ever contemplated the relicks of his [...] ­phet with more sincere veneration. "I am glad," said I, with my eyes still fixed upon it, "that I have not lost you. —No, I will never part with you, never fear it.—"You shall not my Ela," cried Dormer, imagining these words were addressed to him. "Be assured we will never part." —"I hope not," said I, not daring to▪ undeceive him.—His tenderness penetrated every avenue of my soul, the image of Clifford disappeared; and I repeated with emotion, "No, no, we will never part. What should I be without my Henry! Nothing! nothing! Oh! worse, a mass of in­describable wretchedness!—Horrible picture! I cannot bear it; but it will never be realized;—it never can."—Henry echoed my last words. I threw my arms around him, and wept passionately in his bosom.

But the time is now come! The picture is realized!— Oh! my passionate friend, my senses are quite overpowered. —Adieu for the present—I can add no more.



WITH a heart full of impatience I waited the return of Dormer's deputy.—Two days elapsed in a state of fruitless and painful expectation, and we both expressed our surprize at the delay and silence of our supposed friend, in whom Dormer still professed to repose the most entire confidence. The third morning passed with­out our wished-for visitor appearing. Dormer seemed un­easy, but said little. I was extremely alarmed. I pro­posed paying a second visit to the habitation of his boast­ed friend, and with apparent reluctance he acquiesced. On my arrival at the house, I was informed by the peo­ple [Page 58] belonging to it, that their lodger had quitted them the evening of that day on which Dormer had entrusted him with my jewels, telling them, that he was engaged to accompany a young nobleman in his travels through Europe—This intelligence almost distracted me. I could not conceal my emotions, but quitted the house in silence I burst into tears as soon as I was re-seated in the coach, and wept passionately as it conveyed me back to the pri­son.—Dormer flew to receive me, with a look of eager enquiry; but the traces of sorrow on my countenance rendered all other information needless. "Are we ru­ined, cheated, robbed?"—said he.—Then after a pause, he added, "Oh! yes, I know, I feel we are!—And what remains?"—"What indeed?" said I, endeavouring to suppress my tears. Dormer echoed my words, in an empassioned tone, and slung himself in an apparent agony into a chair. I said every thing that love like mine could suggest to give him comfort and palliate the severity of this blow; but the loss of liberty dwelt forcibly on his mind, and he was insensible to all I could say. Near two years revolved in this state of wretchedness. The dear memento's of my revered parents, which Dormer had providentially reserved from the sangs of that plausible devouring harpy, who had so cruelly deceived us, were now appropriated to obtain the necessary means of exist­ence; and I added something to the little stip [...]nd by my labours. The jail-keeper's wife was a humane being: she gently soothed my sorrows, and dissipated by her mild persuasions many a gloomy thought. To her I was indebted for reaping both profit and amusement from the exertion of my unworthy talents. She procured painting, drawing, embroidery, and various kinds of needlework for me. I accquitted myself so as to give general satisfaction, and was liberally rewarded. Dor­mer wrote to all his relations, and many of those that had professed themselves his friends; but not one of them condescended to take the smallest notice of his applications. These [...]peated disappointments sunk deeply on his mind, a [...] had a very unpleasant effect on [Page 59] his temper. I sometimes experienced the consequences of it; but my devoted heart never failed to offer a mul­titude of apologies in his behalf, "His passions are ar­dent."—I often mentally said—"His sensibility is ex­treme, and his tender fears on my account renders it more tremblingly alive to the slightest touch. He would not feel thus for himself only. Shall I then reproach him for a fault arising from an excess of tenderness for me? Shall I not rather forgive a caprice which flows from so delightful a source, and endeavour to soften the wounds I have undesignedly inflicted? For me, the na­tural sweetness of his temper is injured; and shall I cruel­ly dare, even in thought, to condemn him for what ori­ginates solely with myself? Oh, no; let me endeavour to sooth his perturbed spirits, and gently lead him in­sensibly back to his native serenity."

These were the reflexions that supported me during the heavy hours of my Henry's confinement; at length the joyful hope of his enfranchisement darted its glad­some ray across my mind. After many tedious delays, we received the little wreck of my once large possessions from Holland. Its amount was barely eleven hundred pounds.

I poured out ardent acknowledgments to Heaven, I invoked benedictions on the head of my Henry, as I de­livered into his hands the welcome sum. I know not the half I said, but I do not think that a moment of more sincere delight and lively gratitude ever visited my heart. Henry seemed touched by my enthusiasm, and the day concluded with a felicity from which I had long been estranged.

"To-morrow," said Henry, "to-morrow, my dear­est love, I shall again taste the sweets of liberty."

Heaven knows with what sincerity I shared his raptures, and eagerly anticipated the promised blessing. Henry, to-morrow, and liberty filled my whole soul. The bliss­ful words seemed to fleet before my eyes in dazzling cha­racters, and sunk, with deep impression, on the tablets of my heart.

[Page 60]I arose early the next morning to hail the welcome day and facilitate Dormer's enlargement. His debts were soon discharged, and after some necessary forms, we quit­ted our dreary abode. The jail-keeper's wife shed tears at our departure—she was a worthy creature, and had formed a real attachment to me. I was inexpressibly af­fected at her effusions of artless good will, and after pre­vailing on her to accept a trifling acknowledgment of her kind attentions, I left her with sensible regret.

We hired elegant apartments in a polite quarter of the metropolis, and Dormer laid out the most considerable part of what money remained from the payment of his debts, in purchasing that commission which he now holds. The private solemnization of our nuptials was again pro­posed; but some unlucky circumstance always started up to delay its performance. Again Dormer applied re­peatedly to his numerous relations, but was equally un­successful as before. It was at that period that the wor­thy Barlow was engaged in our service. He one evening rescued Dormer from a band of merciless street-robbers. My heart overflowed with gratitude: the honest creature told a tale of artless woe: I prevailed on Dormer to re­tain him in quality of a domestic, and amply were we re­warded by his fidelity, and marked attachment. Twice afterwards he saved his master's life and mine, in the short course of a fortnight; once from a daring party of house-breakers, whose weapons trembled at our throats when Barlow entered with the officers of justice, and seized every one of them: and a few days after, by sa­ving us, at the imminent danger of his own existence, from the fury of a raging fire, which had consumed all the under part of the house ere we awaked; and our apartment was sinking in ruins when Barlow appeared at the window with a ladder of ropes, and conveyed me in his arms, to an adjoining house. Thus calamity await­ed us which ever way we turned. Our loss was consider­able from the last misfortune. A trunk, containing a part of our cloaths and papers, snatched from the de­vouring flames by Barlow's vigilance, was all that escaped destruction. The extreme shock that my spirits received, [Page 61] brought on a severe and dangerous illness, during which time the unwearied attentions of Barlow far exceeded my highest praise. After a confinement of some weeks, I began again to recover. I experienced a chilling cold­ness and cruel neglect on the part of Dormer: the hu­mane William often witnessed it with tearful eyes. Whole days and nights would his master be absent, while I was confined to the bed of sickness; but I can with truth declare that a murmur never passed my lips. Dormer, I have now every reason to believe, at that time engaged in a new and not most eligible set of acquaintance, and perhaps by their baleful influence formed the cruel design of deserting me His nightly revels generally concluded with riot and intoxication. His noisy associates often occasioned shameful confusion at the door of our habitation: but he never introduced one of them to my presence; and I now suppose, if ever I was mentioned among them, it was, as being one of those wretched females who live the slaves of [...]nfamy and lawless man.

Poverty soon stared us in the face with all its horrors. Barlow was dismissed unpaid. Clamorous demands for money perpetually assailed us. We had run up a con­siderable bill with the people of the house, and all the terrors of a prison recurred to Dormer's mind, and filled him with distraction. Often, in his frequent fits of fury and impatience, did I tremble lest some act of despera­tion would ensue. The produce of his commission was, to a man of his turn, too inconsiderable to be mentioned. It was barely sufficient, he always declared, to pay his hair-dresser. In this dilemma he mentioned the ne­cessity of leaving our lodgings clandestinely, and proposed borrowing a trifling sum on his commission, and imploring the protection of our worthy friend in Cornwall, until the present storm was overblown, and time unfolded brighter prospects to our view. I highly approved the latter part of his scheme, but revolted at the thought of deliberate injustice. My soul started at the idea of wronging those who had provided us the means of ex­istence, and tenderly administered every comfort in their power to me, when agonizing on the bed of sickness; [Page 62] but the appearance of Barlow relieved my struggles. He entered the room without waitin [...] for permission. A big tear stood on his cheek. A variety of emotions labour­ed for utterance. He threw himself on his knees be­tween us, and drawing from his pocket a parcel, he laid it softly at my feet, saying, in a low and interrupted voice, "Here, here, best of ladies, Heaven sent it me for you," and rising, he hid his face with the skirt of his coat, and darted out of the room. I stooped down and took up the parcel, which contained bank notes to the amount of two hundred pounds. Dormer stood motionless with amazement, and a servant entered and gave him a pan [...] con [...]aining these words:

"If your honour will please to accept my humble service, the satisfaction of attending you and your good lady, is all the reward expected by

Your most obedient, W. BARLOW.

P. S. I will presume to wait upon your honour to­morrow. I hope you will consider of the favour I have asked by that time, and not make me miserable by refusing it; nor say any thing about my boldness when I saw you last; for I am sadly afraid my lady and you was very an­gry; but hope your goodness will excuse me."

"Excuse him!" I exclaimed▪ glancing my eye over this transcript of humble wor [...]h—"Excuse him! gracious God, what a noble▪ disinterested, generous spirit! But we must not take any advantage of it, we must not accept his gold."

"We must, we must," cried Dormer hastily, "in­deed we must: to hesitate at such a time as this would be the h [...]ight of madness." "But where," said I, "could he get it?" "That▪" replied Dormer, "there is no doubt of his accounting for very sufficiently; and we shall, I hope, be enabled to repay him." "How" I enquired. A cloud of passion arose on Dormer's brow He started from his seat, travers [...]d the room, muttered something, wherein I distinct­ly heard the words, "scrupulous, absurd, fool, troublesome, mad-woman"—and putting the notes in his pocket, he left me.

I saw him no more until day-break the next morning, when sitting in my room, ruminating on the times that [Page 63] were past, he entered with haggard looks and wild disor­dered air, and, clasping me frantickly in his arms, ex­claimed, "It is all over, Ela, it is all over!"—and striking his forehead furiously against the arm of my chair, he fell senseless on the carpet. I gave a piercing shri [...]k, and our guardian angel, Barlow, rushed into the room. He raised Dormer from the floor. I know not what I said, but casting on me a pitying look, he cried, "Tell me nothing, dear lady, I know all." "And what," said I, "do you know William?" "Know!" he exclaimed, "know that"—he paused—"know enough," he added—"Oh! madam—but my master must not stay here—we must get him away instantly." "Away,' said I, as my tears fell in torrents on Dormer's pallid face, "where would you take him away? William, William▪ he is gone already!" "No!" he exclaimed, "but he must be gone, or"—"What?" he repeated—"I will tell you another time—but we must all go."—"Go!" I cried, "William, explain this my­stery.—Where can we go now?" "Any where, Madam▪" he replied, "for safety. Indeed we must go without delay."

Dormer began to recover. He had wounded his forehead against the chair; and I, not till then, observed his cloaths stained with blood in many places. Barlow prevailed on him to drink a glass of wine and water; and whispering me that he would soon return▪ quitted the room. "I must fly!" said Dormer, suddenly star [...]ing from me, "or veng [...]ance will find me." "Vengeance!" I echoed, fol­lowing him▪ —"Vengeance!—Oh! my ever dear Henry, what means all this?"—He lea [...]ed his head on his clasped hands, looked fearfully in my face, but made not any reply. Barlow ent [...]red—"A chair wai [...]s. Sir.—and you had better retreat ere day gets high" "Had I!" said Dor­mer, fixing his eyes on Barlow, with an expression that seemed to demand how he knew the necessity of such a step—"Had I, William?" he repeated—"Surely, Sir," replied Barlow. "We are convinced the time is dangerous —and one minute's delay may be fatal."—"And would you tear him from me?' I exclaimed▪ throwing my arms round him. "No, Madam," replied Barlow▪ "you shall follow with me▪ and I will shew the expediency of this step. I have satisfied the people below, and will fetch your [Page 64] things to-morrow;" with those words he left me to at­tend Dormer to the door; and when he returned, I silently accompanied him out of the house.

An humble lodg [...]ng which Barlow had hired for himself when we dismissed him, was now converted into our asylum; and during our melancholy wal [...] to it, he com­municated, at my repeated and earnest importunity, the following dreadful information. That, passing the door of a well known gaming-house the preceding evening, he observed his master entering amidst a crowd of sharpers; and desirous of witnessing his conduct, he disguised him­self and followed him. On his entrance he found him engaged in a warm contest: fortune was, as usual on those occasions, very fluctuating; one moment she poured heaps of gold into his lap, the next left him almost pennyless; till at length he was stripped of all he had, and his lucky anta­gonist refused to play any more, although Dormer borrowed a guinea from one of the bye-standers.—Exasperated at this conduct, and reduced by his ill-fortune to a state of despe­ration, Dormer struck him; a scuffle ensued—swords were drawn, murder was echoed through the house, Dormer escaped, and Barlow was prevented from following imme­diately by his fears of creating suspicion; he therefore mix­ed among the pursuers, found they had no knowledge of our abode, and then hastened to give us every aid in his power, not doubting but Dormer would, ere long, be traced to our late lodging.

Judge you, who are possessed of genuine sensibility▪ what my sufferings must have been as I listened to this shocking relation. Murder and ruin resounded through my terrified imagination, and all the gentle palliatives that Barlow could invent were insufficient to sooth my fears. In a state of mind, little short of insanity, I reached the place that held the wretched Henry. There we spent some mournful days; when our before proposed journey to the West was again mentioned as highly expedient, and Barlow highly approv­ed it. "I hate still," said he, a little reserve. There is another hundr [...]d—my old aunt in the North died and left me [...]ou [...]" (putting a pocket-book into my lap). "What I before ventured to lay at your feet, my dear lady, was a part of it, and"—he could add no more.—I held the [Page 65] pocket-book towards him. I was deeply affected—"No," said I, "kind, good William, we must not make you a beggar."—"You will not, indeed you will not.—I must share it with you—I must always attend you—I ask no more," he replied, with interrupted voice. I could not speak—"Keep it, pray keep it, Madam," he added—"I only beg to stay with you." "You shall forever," cried Dormer, taking up the pocket-book that had fallen from my hand. We will never part with you—yo [...] shall be henceforth our friend, not servant;—and, perhaps, we may be happy —all happy."—"God send it," said Barlow—My [...]art repeated his prayer. The mistress of the house entered, and informed Barlow, there had been two men below en­quiring if Captain Dormer lived there, but that she had re­plied in the negative. Dormer changed countenance. Barlow thanked her caution, and put a guinea into her hand.

"We must not continue here," said Dormer, as soon as she was gone. Barlow owned it to be unsafe. I was in­expressibly alarmed; and it was agreed that we should ins­tantly set off on our proposed expedition. Fully assured of a cordial reception, I only penned a few lines to apprize our friends in the West of our design, and we instantly de­parted. But when we arrived at the spot where we had experienced such proofs of genuine friendship, we found the house, where we hoped to have been welcomed by these generous villagers, uninhabited, and some neigh­bouring peasants informed us, that the lady had been many months in an ill state of health, and they were gone to reside in the South of France.—This was a heart-felt dis­appointment; at such a juncture it came with accumulated force. I believe we all felt it very sensibly; and the following day conveyed us back to the place where we first saw you.— And fearful of being traced by his real name, Dormer assum­ed that of Temple. Barlow soon received unequivocal assur­ances from London, that the person wounded by his master was entirely out of danger. This intelligence restored Dor­mer's native levity; and the recollection of former woes seemed no longer to hold a place in his memory; but around my heart they still shed their baleful influence. Granville Clifford haunted my dreams. Augusta St. Clare [Page 66] never failed to accompany him. The image of my father seemed to hover perpetually over me—and peace was a stranger to my breast.—Dormer proposed our continuing in that place, during the summer, hinted a hope that our friends would▪ ere its expiration▪ return from France. I have since thought, that it was his design to throw me on their charity. But if that was his purpose it proved abortive. You are already acquainted with what followed—you know the artifice by which he prevailed on the generous, unsus­pecting Barlow to desert me likewise; why should I re­peat it?

I have now fulfilled my arduous undertaking. It has re­called the sensibility, which, when undertook it. I vainly hoped was vanquished. But it is just I should suffer.—I dare not repine these are, I humbly trust, some of my last pangs.—Oh! dear injured Clifford—and you, my once doa [...]ing father▪ if your pure spirits now witness the woes that rend my heart, de [...]gn, like Heaven, to compassionate, and accept my sincere pen [...]tence. And you, my inestima­ble friend, vouchsafe to pardon the ills I have occasioned you; in my heart they often expel the memory of my own. How many worthy beings are involved in my ruin? —Oh! rem [...]mber Barlow—himself and Heaven will reward your goodness; but I hope he has found an advocate in your own breast, and needs not any from me.

Fully conscious of my own errors, I could wish to warn others against the same fatal delusions—and shewing them the [...]ni [...]s that never fail to attend a deviation from the paths of [...]titude, inspire them with fortitude to subdue every temptation to quit the sweet and peaceful paths of duty and innocence. Be this your care—I am every way in­capable of directing y [...]ur judgment.

The cold the rigid, and unfeeling, will loudly execrate my follies: perhaps you alone will pity them. They will condemn my wilful blindness, my guilty perseverance: and m [...] heart acqui [...]s them of injustice; yet, while with a strong sens;e of superiority they contemplate my fate, and exclaim with the self-righteous Pharisee, "God, I thank thee, that I am not like one of these!"—may they imbibe a lesson from the fountain of every excellence, who was graciously pleased to accept the prayer of the despised penitent, that [Page 67] impressed with a poignant sense of his iniquities, smote his breast with deep humility, and besought mercy.

Wish not, my ever valued friend, to detain a weary suf­ferer in this darksome region. My soul is impatient to escape this wretched prison, and lay down her sorrows at his foot stool, who weighs all things in the balance of Eternal Truth. I have transgressed the laws of morality—the world deems me a cast-away—I stand condemned beyond all pow­er of appeal; and am, like Cain, a miserable wanderer on the earth. But shall I likewise wander comfortless through the ages of eternity? Oh! no—the Christian system darts its glorious lustre through my beclouded soul! Blessed effulgence of heavenly love! I feel your all-powerful effica­cy. The shadows of eternal night disappear. Pardon and immortality open to my view, and peace dawns around me.

May the prayers of a broken spirit, which the Supreme has promised he will never reject, shower the choicest be­nedictions of Heaven on all your paths: may you be hap­py here, and may we meet hereafter, is the ardent, and will be the last petition that hovers around the heart of



AFTER a considerable lapse of time I again resume my pen to conclude the woe-fraught narration, which has so greatly interested the gentle heart of my Caroline; who, ever tremblingly alive to the claims of humanity, will, I am assured, on that score, pardon my long silence, and exculpate her brother from the charge of neglect.

My coward spirit shrinks from the deline [...]tion of scenes whose deep and mournful impression can never be effaced from my memory until it ceases to exist; but your elo­quent intreaties triumph over all the pleadings of timi­dity, and I submit to the painful recital, which, while it cannot fall to re [...]al anguish to my heart, conveys also a [Page 68] striking lesson of morality, and inspires me with courage to subdue every reluctance, and obey the powerful im­pulses of justice and truth. Our journey to this place, in compliance with the earnest wish of Ela, mentioned in my last, was such as you will easily conceive. The truly excellent Barlow accompanied us, and sadness hovered around our little party. Ela's increasing weakness, and deep oppression of mind, occasioned many delays; when passing through a deep glen, as we drew near to our place of destination, the piercing shriek of female dis­tress assailed our ears, and a voice exclaimed, with most affecting vehemence, "villain, monster, tell me what is become of her!" Ela started wildly, and suddenly open­ing the door of the carriage, was going to jump out, regardless of the consequences; but I prevented the exe­cution of this dangerous attempt, by catching her in my arms. She struggled to elude my hold—"Cruel, cruel tyrants," said she, "why will you keep me from him? Will none of you have pity?"—"And you too,"—added she, looking at me with an expression of poignant an­guish—"will you detain me from the dear, dear injured," —she could no more. Barlow pulled the string—the carriage stopped—the screams still continued. We lifted Ela out in our arms; and beheld at a small distance a confused group, among whom was Dormer leaning against the shattered trunk of an old tree, with his face conceal­ed between his hands, and the most perfect manly form that ever before struck my eyes, encircled in the arms of a lady from whom the screams proceeded, were most conspicuous. We could not discern either of their faces, but their figures were equal in symmetry. Ela withdrew her hand from mine, and darting from us, threw herself before them. They both clasped her alternately in their arms, with silent transport, and they mingled their tears together. I witnessed this scene with emotions that cannot be described. Poor Barlow fell on his knees and prayed aloud, that there might not be any more mischief. Another lady, tall and majestie, appeared leaning on the a [...]m of a servant to support her trembling [Page 69] form. Her eyes wandered fearfully around her, but resting on Dormer—"What means this!" she repeated­ly exclaimed—"Who are these—and why do they ac­cuse you?"—"Hush, hush, hush," he cried, furiously snatching up a pistol that lay at the stranger's feet— "This answers all!" As he uttered these scarce articu­late words, the bullet pierced his raging brain, and he fell prostrate before his interrogator. But all description is unequal to the scene that ensued. Heart-rending shrieks echoed through the air. Ela's empassioned, un­conquerable love, soared far above her wrongs: agoniz­ing with accumulated sufferings, she threw herself on the ensanguined earth, and folded the expiring Henry in her affectionate embrace, with a kind of frantic tenderness. His head rested on her bosom, his eyes were eagerly rivetted on her face—The words "own, and only wife," died on his lips, which still seemed to beg forgiveness. She besought Heaven to pity the sad effects of a distrac­ted moment—and graciously extend his unbounded mer­cy to a crime, which no excess of wretchedness can justify, nor any argument excuse. In broken accents she blessed his fleeting soul with welcome sounds of pardon;—and what presumptuous mortal shall dare to scan the un­searchable depths of futurity? The self-devoted victim raised himself with a look of penetrating horror on be­holding Barlow and myself:—we each extended our hands to him—his spirit departed with a deep sigh; the remembrance of his crimes was absorbed in compassion for his fate, and every atom in my frame trembled in uni­son with the emotions of my heart.

Ela continued holding the corpse in her arms; and with a look of fixed despair, repeated, in a deeply mournful voice—"it is over, oh, it is all over!" The elegant young man, who had so greatly interested me, quitted his fair companion, and kneeling beside Ela, hung over the woe-fraught scene, while horror and heart-felt anguish con­vulsed the finest features, and most faultless form that ima­gination can picture. The lady, who had demanded of the wretched Dormer an explanition of the mystery before her, now lay stretched on the earth, apparently as lifeless as [Page 70] himself:—and the other beautiful unknown still sat motion­less on the grass, and concealed her face with her garments. The big drops stole slowly over Barlow's cheek, and I was unable to interupt the awful silence. My eyes were fixed on Ela, whose attitude and looks no art can possibly deline­ate: the quick transition from all the wildness of horror to deep despair, that marked her countenance, surpasses all the powers of language, and sets description at defiance. Her fine expressive eyes, seemed rooted in the firmament; then, with a sudden start, she clasped her hands together, sunk on the bosom of the handsome stranger by her side, murmured out—"I go, I go, Clifford—bless me" and fell into strong convulsions His heart certainly complied with her request; but his tongue refused its concurrence. He held her struggling in his arms, and his tears fell one by one on her pallid face. My soul seemed to echo the name of Clifford—I before believed it to be him—his amiable character was deeply engraved on my memory, and I con­templated with him a mixture of admiration and lively esteem. The beauteous form, in whose arms I first beheld him▪ approached us with agitated air and trembling steps: the description of Augusta St. Clare stole upon my mind— never did I behold such delicacy, such animation, grace, symmetry, and elegance. She stooped down, hung over the struggling Ela, then raised her streaming eyes to Clifford and faintly exclaimed, "Here's desolation!" "Retire▪ my love," said Clifford—"pray quit this scene; you are already ill. "I am," she cried, leaning her head on her hand, "I am indeed ill; but where can I go?" She grew paler and paler. I raised her in my arms▪ assist [...]d by Barlow, placed her in one of the carriages, and left her to proceed slowly onward to our destined place under his care. On my return, I found the other lady recovering. She poured a torrent of tears on the body of Dormer; then suffering me to lead her from the mournful scene, I saw her seated in her own chariot, and committing her to the care of one of her attendants, they followed the other carriage, and I re­turned to the spot that held our poor lost Ela▪ and her guardian friend. In our arms we conducted her to a neigh­bouring cottage; there she continued near two days in a constant succession of those dreadful fits. After the necessary [Page 71] forms, Dormer's remains were deposited in the parish church-yard, and his death ascribed by the voice of the law, to lunacy. Barlow brought us hourly intelligence of our fair fellow sufferers, who were both ill, but he hoped not dangerously, and his services were extended to us all. Ela was at length restored to the bitter recollection of the past. Her emaciated form was barely animated by exist­ence, and she now really seemed what she before vainly sup­posed, incapable of feeling another pang. "The wounds of injured sensibility," said she, as the last tear dropped from her eye, "are closed forever.—I think my sufferings are now over.—This poor deluded heart seems callous to all that can ensue"—she paused, "yes, dear Clifford," she added, "you forgive me, promise likewise to bury my memory in oblivion, and be happy;—and the bitterness of death is past." "Rather say," replied Clifford, tenderly supporting her drooping form, "that you will endeavour to live and make us all happy." "Live!" she faintly ex­claimed, "can my friend, my brother, wish me to live? Can Granville Clifford desire I should continue to groan un­der this heavy, heavy oppression?—Oh, mistaken good­ness!— But no, no, Ela Spencer must not, will not live." We were both too deeply affected to add any more; but, under the guidance of Barlow, soon joined the rest of our mournful party. The fair Augusta arose at our entrance, and after embracing Ela with tenderness, while the com­passionate tear bedewed her lovely face, Clifford pressed her to his heart, and gazing alternately in each of their faces— "Oh!" she eagerly exclaimed, "I have found a parent!" "And I," added her companion, approaching us with the mildest dignity, "a long lost child; the oft lamented pledge of mutual attachment, the dear memento of my early, only love." "Yes, generous Clifford," she added, after a pause, —"blessed guardian of defenceless innocence, if wealth and rank can gratify a mind like your's, they both await you, and you alone are wo [...]hy to possess them."—Asto­nisment marked the features of Ela and Clifford; and Augusta stood motionless beside them "Know," conti­nued her mother, "exalted son of philanthropy," pointing to Augusta, "that when you took this unhoused wanderer to your arms, you wedded not Augusta St. Clare▪ but [Page 72] Isabella Waldron, the last survivor of that noble house, and the rightful heiress of its vast estates, which some my­sterious cause has hitherto estranged her from, and which after the death of her grandfather, devolved to its present lately deceased possessor."—"Welcome sounds," exclaimed Ela,—"has then Granville Clifford triumphed, nobly tri­umphed over the delusions of his heart, and married the only woman that could ever deserve him! My few remain­ing days will now glide gently by, and I shall lay down my head in peace, blessed with the sweet assurance, that the friends of my heart will be happy." A moment of silence ensued, when Clifford tenderly embracing his lovely partner said, "Yes, this is my wife, my charming much-loved wife, whom I value for herself alone—Yet, madam," he added, "think me not insensible to your generous good­ness in thus readily adopting an unworthy stranger.—I do not, madam, nor ever can deserve such a distinction.— True, madam, I have taken happiness to my bosom under the semblance of Augusta St. Clare; and if that is a sufficient claim to your favour, gratitude may, in some degree▪ com­pensate for the deficiencies of merit."—"But how," he continued, turning with still more affecting voice and air to Ela, "how shall I sufficiently thank my charming friend?" "By forbearing,"—replied the gentle mourner, "to distress her by acknowledgments of which she is unworthy." Her spirits were quite exhausted. She expressed a wish to retire, the other two ladies attended her;—and Clifford related the uncommon vicissitudes that had befallen himself and his lovely charge after the sudden and mysterious loss of Ela; but I must defer the description of these particulars till leisure enables me to resume the pen, for I am this mo­ment summoned to the apartment of that injured fair one.

Adieu! my Caroline, and believe me with unalterable affection,

Ever yours, MORTIMER.
[Page 73]


OUR tragedy draws to a conclusion, the sorrows of Ela will soon cease to exist, and the universal conqueror assumes a milder form than usual to conduct her to happier climes.

As soon as I had dispatched my last letter to you, accom­panied by the truly noble Clifford, I hastened to the cham­ber that held our fair friends. Ela was seated between them; her pallid cheek reclined on the shoulder of one, and the other supported her in her arms. Their eyes dwelt with soft compassion on her face, and pensive sadness marked their inimitable features. It was a scene for the heart, and I contemplated it some minutes without interruption. Clif­ford leaned his arm on my shoulder, unconscious, and a deep sigh stole from him unobserved by any but myself. F [...] gently raised her languid eyes; we both approached her, and I can only judge of Clifford's emotions by my own. The drooping mourner pressed each of our hands between her's, and looking at us with a benignant and placid countenance, "Oh!" she exclaimed, "how does this blest union of according minds gratify every wish of my soul, and irradiate the gloomy cavern into which I am entering Mourn not," she added, with a smile of sweet­est resignation, "the end of my suffering is near—the blest [...]eprieve is come; love and friendship unite to reward your virtues—the sweetest assurance of your being happy, ex­tracts the barbed arrow from affliction—and seems to lead me through the flowery paths to those mansions—where sin and sorrow are forever excluded;"—she paused, and then —"One wish," she added, "still lingers round my heart, and you will not, I think, refuse it.—The ransomed cap­tive rejoices to regain his freedom his friends eroud to offer their congratulations, and festivity crowns the scene—and how much rather should you, my only friends below, cele­brate this glad occasion—when the weary prisoner is per­mitted to exchange her galling setters for an immortal crown! Let not then the short hours I remain among you be spent in unavailing sadness.—Start not," she continued, [Page 74] "at what I am going to propose—the marriage of Clifford and my charming friend, is imperfect in the eye of the law —and what time more proper than the present to have it continued?"—We were all silent — but our eyes revealed the eloquent language of our hearts—Ela's alone were dry —"Refuse not," she cried, looking alternately in the faces of Clifford and his Isabella, this last and only request.— "Refuse you?" repeated Clifford in impassioned and in­terrupted accents, "Oh! who could refuse you any thing?" She smiled serenely on him, pressed his hand gratefully to her lips, and sunk exhausted on the bosom of the beauteous Isabella.

This last wish of Ela is now accomplished. A few hours since, the nuptials of the loveliest pair that surely ever graced the Hymeneal temple, were again solemnized—and the God attended with his brightest torch to illume the house of mourning. Never saw I, till now, a pair so matched in excellence, so equal in perfection; and although my pen can never give you a true idea of the impression, which the scene I have just quitted has left on my mind; I will en­deavour to trace some faint resemblance of it. The ceremo­ny was performed in the chamber of Ela. The native charms of Isabella were heightened by the elegant simpli­city of her dress. She wore a fine India muslin, trimmed with narrow fringe, and lined with lilac, linen correspond­ent, and her fine auburn tresses turned simply up under a large cap, which added delicacy to a set of features, and complexion that scorns the power of imitation;—and as, with a graceful tenderness, she gave her hand to Clifford and pronounced the solemn vow, I sent up a mental prayer that Heaven would bless me with such a bride;—for, like the lovely Roman, she improves her charms,

"With inward Greatness, unaffected Wisdom,
And sanctity of Manners."

Her mother, who is that lady, to obtain whose gold, Dor­mer plunged into the deep abyss of guilt, fate in pensive at­titude by Ela's side, while her eyes dwelt full of tender­ness on her amiable children. Clifford led his blushing bride toward her, and kneeling, pressed her extended hand [Page 75] to his lips; she blessed them both, and my heart felt the scene too, too affecting. Clifford's elegant features were marked by a sombre shade, which all his efforts were insuf­ficient to conceal; and while he pressed his Isabella in his arms, he stole a pensive look toward the emaciated form of Ela, and a tear started from his eye. Barlow stood behind us, Mrs. Barrymore arose; and giving him a paper, "ac­cept," said she, "this small acknowledgment of our esteem, your worth exceeds reward."—He eagerly opened the pa­per— it contained bank notes, which nearly doubled what he had bestowed on Ela. With much difficulty he was prevailed on to acquiesce:—and unable to express his grati­tude, or conceal his emotions, he silently quitted the room. —A momentary lustre shone in Ela's eyes, and a mild suffu­sion of heart-felt joy crossed her features; but the heralds of approaching dissolution soon resumed their seats▪ the living principle faded fast away, and I snatch the present moment while a deep sleep has overpowered her, to trans­mit these particulars to my beloved Caroline. As I con­cluded the last word—a servant brought a m [...]ssage from Mrs. Barrymore, requesting my immediate presence.—I attend her while sad presages hover round my heart.

[In continuation.]

THE final blow is given, death throws a veil over the de­lusions of the heart, and the spirit of Ela is released from all its woes.

When I laid aside my pen, I hastened to her apartment. —She was breathing out her last prayer in the arms of Clif­ford, beseeching Heaven to shower the choicest benedictions on our heads; then earnestly conjuring us not to mourn for her; she added, "lay me in the grave of Dormer;" and her soul departed with a serene smile.

Adieu! I am too deeply affected to add another word, but to assure you, that I shall as soon as possible conclude this narrative, and am always

Your affectionate MORTIMER.
[Page 76]


THIS day I have shed the last tear over the lifeless Ela, and seen it deposited beside the sad remains of him, whose penitence, though late and momentary, was, I hope, sincere, and found acceptance.

To-morrow we set off for the seat of Mrs. Barrymore, and shall soon hasten again to embrace my Caroline, and in her society endeavour to conquer the dejection that now preys upon my mind.—I have just parted with my amiable friends for the night; but sleep refuses its gentle influence to sooth my perturbed spirits; and I will try to lose the painful sense of recent scenes, by gratifying your amiable curiosity, so strongly awakened to know the adventures of Clifford and Isabella.

The unwearied attention, and marked tenderness of that lovely woman, during a long and dangerous illness, which commenced previously to the departure of Henry and Ela, and was greatly augmented and prolonged by that event, convinced him of what he had before suspected, that he had undesignedly attacked her heart.—The devastations of Hy­der-Ali soon followed, and when he saw her beauteous form rudely seized by the hands of savage tyrants, his heart loudly proclaimed her interest there. He flew, regardless of his own life, to her aid; but one of the barbarians soon stretched him, covered with wounds, at his feet, and were carrying them into a dreadful captivity, when a party of troops met them, and, after a long contest, obliged the sa­vages to fly, and rescued all the prisoners Isabella and Clifford were conducted to the house of the commanding officer, where they resided some months, and perfect esteem and tender admiration was ripened by gratitude into as lively a passion in the bosom of Clifford as that by which Isabella was agitated. Heaven looked down well pleased on the virtuous union of congenial souls. Clifford received a summons from England; intimating that, from a series of remarkable events, a noble estate had devolved to him, and that his presence was necessarily required to take possession [Page 77] of it.—The hope of yet again beholding his once adored Ela, his lamented friend and sister, rendered this acquisi­tion doubly welcome. But his heart pronounced Augusta St. Clare arbitress of his future happiness: without her par­ticipation he felt the strongest assurance that joy must ever be a stranger to his heart; and the gifts of lavish fortune be bestowed in vain. He flew to pour out the language of his generous soul at her feet. A stranger to affection, or ar­tifice, she owned the interest he had long possessed in her heart; and superior to the scruples and assumed delicacy of less exalted minds, permitted him the following day, to lead her blushing to the altar; and they immediately em­barked in the fleet that was ready to sail for England.— Here their fruitless researches after Ela alone interrupted their felecity; when chance directed them to the spot where Dormer and she had experienced such friendly aid after their escape from the fury of the waves, and where they had been so long detained with the most cordial hospitality. But here their hopes of tracing the fugitives were equally unsuccessful as before; and they were hastening back to the metropolis, when they overtook Dormer, and his destined bride, and the scene already pourtrayed instantly ensued. His intended union with Mrs. Barrymore was prevented by a delay, which testifies an over-ruling Providence, and for which she now looks up with heart-felt gratitude. Deprived of her natural protectors, ere she could be sensible of the loss, at a very early age, she engaged the affections of a most accomplished youth, the only son of a wealthy family, to whom she was nearly allied; but under whose roof her childhood passed in a state of dependance much worse than servitude; a state which the delicate mind of my Caroline will readily conceive, and a good heart never fail to com­passionate.— The attachment was mutual, a private marri­age took place, the birth of Isabella led to a discovery, and wretchedness ensued. The tender wife was torn from the arms of her distracted husband, hurried, with her lovely infant, on board a vessel, and condemned to perpetual exile from the object of her fond attachment. There she lan­guished some years a stranger to joy, but what arose from contemplating the softened features of her adored husband, visible in her beauteous child; when the sudden account of [Page 78] his death seemed to complete the measure of her woes. Long she stood trembling on the brink of eternity, wrapt in delirium; and the first object her senses fought, was the sweet pledge of mutual love, the only solace of her sorrow­ing widowhood. But the heart-rending intelligence, that death had likewise robbed her of that blessing, excluded every ray of consolation, and many years revolved in woe that would not admit of alleviation.—When, after repeated struggles with her own heart, gratitude prevailed on her to reward the generous love of an amiable foreigner, and she accompanied him to her native shores; she found that the o [...]durate parents of her adored Edward had not long surviv­ed him, and the estate had devolved to a distant part of the family. She endeavoured to drown the remembrance of the past in every species of fashionable dissipation. Again she became a widow; again was prevailed on to accept the golden fruits that Hymen offered—and ere she attained her six and thirtieth year▪ found herself again at liberty▪ with an income of eight-thousand a year. She then mentally resolved no more to wear the hymeneal chain;—but how weak are female resolutions? Her's was not proof against the arts of Dormer; when a summons from the person that succeeded to the estates of her loved Edward, requesting instantly to see her at his house in Wales, to impart to her ere he died, a secret which lay heavy at his heart, delayed the promised nuptials:—her lover murmured;—but her commands were absolute; and, with a very ill grace, be bowed submission, but was permitted to attend her. The dying penitent informed her, that her daughter was, by his hands, torn from her bosom to secure to himself the inherit­ance to which he had long aspired. That, under the name of Augusta St. Clare, she was educated in a convent in France; that from a fear that her uncommon beauty and accomplish­ments had attached the heart of his only son, he had forced her to India soon after her return; and that Heaven had pu­nished his cruelty, by the full conviction of having murdered his child, who survived her loss but a few months, and de­clared, with his dying breath, th [...] he died the victim of pa­rental rigor. The recital of this story seemed deeply to af­fect Dormer. The well known name of Augusta, no doubt, brought bitter accusation to his heart. He mention­ed [Page 79] the performance of their vows; but Mrs. Barrymore firmly declared, that until she folded her long lost child in her arms, joy must be a stranger to her bosom.

Despairing of ever accomplishing his wishes if she held that determination, he called forth all his rhetoric to shake it, but in vain. They bade adieu to Wales, and their jour­ney was a scene of murmurings and altercation. When the sound of Granville Clifford's voice resounded through his heart, he raised his eyes, and beheld the dreaded interroga­tor, with the equally formidable Augusta by his side.—Des­peration at that moment seized him, Clifford bade him alight;—he threw himself from the carriage—and aimed his sword at his breast; but their attendants interposed, and the sequel you are already acquainted with.

Bereft of all her arts Vice stands exposed in her native deformity. The Wisdom of Virtue is no less conspicuous. The finger of Truth points at the folly of wickedness; and the inevitable misery, by which it never fails to be attended, even in this world, is surely sufficient to deter every think­ing mind from the practice of it, without alluding to what must as certainly await it in a future state.

Let us then, my dear sister, remember that wholsome medicine may be extracted from the most poisonous plants; and while sympathy drops a tear over the grave of Ela, and silence throws a veil over the memory of Dormer, let us profit by their sad example, and apply the warning voice to our hearts; and we shall feel the strongest conviction, that happiness can never reside with depravity;—nor, however it may suffer for a time, will the bosom that rectitude inha­bits ever want a support. May these truths be indelibly engraven on the mind of my Caroline, is the ardent wish of

Her affectionate MORTIMER.

BOOKS, Printed and sold by W. Spotswood, Philadelphia.

  • 1. The Beauties of Sterne; including all his pathetic tales, and most distinguished observations on life. The tenth edition, with considerable additions.
  • 2. Enfield's Family Prayers, or Devout Christi­an's Daily Companion—Containing, one week's prayers— general forms of prayers, and occasional prayers and thanksgivings.
  • 3. The Beauties of Johnson; consisting of maxims and observations, moral, critical, and miscellane­ous. By Dr. S. Johnson, accurately extracted from his works and arranged in alphabetical order, after the man­ner of the Duke de la Rochesoucault's maxims. To which is added, the Life of Dr. Johnson.
  • 4. Twenty two Fables; addressed to the Ladies, by Dr. Cozens.
  • 5. The Night-Cap, 2 vols. by Mr. Mercier.
  • 6. Collection of Voyages and Travels, containing the voyage of Peter Kolben, A. M. to the Cape of Good Hope; a voyage to China, by Lewis Le Compte; and Anecdotes of the Elephant, from Wolfe's Travels.
  • 7. Richardson's Essays on select passages of Shakespeare.
  • 8. An Account of the Siege of Gibraltar.— By Captain Drinkwater.

HENRY and EMMA, A POEM. Upon the Model of the NUT-BROWN MAID.


THOU, to whose eyes I bend; at whose command,
(Tho' low my voice, tho' artless be my hand)
I take the sprightly reed, and sing, and play:
Careless of what the cens'ring world may say:
Bright Cloe, object of my constant vow,
Wilt thou a while unbend thy serious brow?
Wilt thou with pleasure hear thy lover's strains;
And with one heav'nly smile o'erpay his pains?
No longer shall the Nut-brown Maid be old;
Tho' since her youth three hundred years have roll'd.
At thy desire, she shall again be rais'd;
And her reviving charms in lasting verse be prais'd.
No longer man of woman shall complain,
That he may love, and not be lov'd again:
That we in vain the fickle sex pursue,
Who change the constant lover for the new.
Whatever has been writ, whatever said,
Of female passion feign'd, or faith decay'd;
Henceforth shall in my verse refuted stand,
Be said to winds, or writ upon the sand.
And while my notes to future times proclaim
Unconquer'd love and ever-during flame;
O fairest of the sex! be thou my muse:
Deign on my work thy influence to diffuse.
[Page 2]Let me partake the blessings I rehearse;
And grant me love, the just reward of verse.
As beauty's potent queen, with ev'ry grace
That once was Emma's, has adorn'd thy face:
And as her sun has to my bosom dealt
That constant flame, which faithful Henry felt:
O let the story with thy life agree:
Let men once more the bright example see;
What Emma was to him, be thou to me.
Nor send me by thy frown from her I love,
Distant and sad a banish'd man to rove.
But Oh! with pity long intreated crown
My pains and hopes; and when thou say'st that one
Of all mankind thou lov'st, oh! think on me alone
WHERE beauteous His and her husband Tame
With mingled waves for ever flow the same:
In times of yore an ancient Baron liv'd;
Great gifts bestow'd and great respect receiv'd.
When dreadful Edward with successful care,
Led his freed Britons to the Gallic war;
This lord had headed his appointed bands,
In firm allegiance to his king's commands;
And (all due honours faithfully discharg'd)
Had brought back his paternal coat, enlarg'd
With a new mark, the witness of his toil;
And no inglorious part of foreign spoil.
From the loud camp retir'd, and noisy court,
In honourable case and rural sport,
The remnant of his days he safely past;
Nor found they lagg'd too slow, nor flew too fast.
He made his wish with his estate comply;
Joyful to live, yet not afraid to die.
One child he had, a daughter chaste and fair;
His age's comfort, and his fortune's heir.
They call'd her Emma; for the beauteous dame
Who gave the virgin birth, had borne the name.
The name th' indulgent father doubly lov'd;
For in the child the mother's charms improv'd.
Yet, as when little round his knee she play'd;
He call'd her oft in sport, his Nut-brown Maid:
[Page 3]The friends and tenants took the fondling word;
(As still they please, who imitate their lord)
Usage confirm'd what fancy had begun:
The mutual terms around the lands were known;
And Emma and the Nut-brown Maid were one.
As with her stature still her charms encreas'd;
Thro' all the isle her beauty was confess'd.
Oh! what perfections must that virgin share,
Who fairest is esteem'd, where all are fair?
From distant shires repair the noble youth,
And find report for once had lessen'd truth.
By wonder first, and then by passion mov'd,
They came; they saw; they marvell'd; and they lov'd.
By public praises, and by secret sighs,
Each own'd the gen'ral power of Emma's eyes.
In tilts and turnaments the valiant strove,
By glorious deeds to purchase Emma's love.
In gentle verse, the witty told their flame;
And grac'd their choicest songs with Emma's name.
In vain they combated, in vain they writ:
Useless their strength, and impotent their wit.
Great Venus only must direct the dart,
Which else will never reach the fair one's heart;
Spight of th' attempts of force, and soft effects of art.
Great Venus must prefer the happy one:
In Henry's cause her favour must be shown;
And Emma of mankind must love but him alone.
While these in public, to the castle came,
And by their grandeur justify'd their flame:
More secret ways the careful Henry takes;
His 'squires, his arms, and equipage forsakes.
In borrow'd name, and false attire array'd,
Oft he finds means to see the beauteous maid.
When Emma hunts, in huntsman's habit drest,
Henry on foot pursues the bounding beast.
In his right hand his beachen pole he bears:
And graceful at his side his horn he wears.
Still to the glede, where she has bent her way,
With knowing skill he drives the future prey.
Bids her decline the hill, and shun the brake:
And shews the path her steed may safest take.
[Page 4]Directs her spear to fix the glorious wound;
Pleas'd, in his toils to have her triumph crown'd:
And blows her praises in no common sound.
A falc'ner Henry is, when Emma hawks:
With her of tarsels, and of lures he talks.
Upon his wrist the tow'ring merlin stands;
Practis'd to rise, and stoop at her commands.
And when superior now the bird has flown,
And headlong brought the tumbling quarry down:
With humble rev'rence he accosts the fair;
And with the honour'd feather decks her hair.
Yet still, as from the sportive field she goes,
His down-cast eyes reveal his inward woes.
And by his look and sorrow is express'd,
A nobler game pursu'd, than bird or beast.
A shepherd now along the plain he roves:
And, with his jolly pipe, delights the groves.
The neighb'ring swains around the stranger throng,
Or to admire, or emulate his song:
While with soft sorrow he renews his lays,
Nor heedful of their envy, nor their praise.
But soon as Emma's eyes adorn'd the plain,
His notes he raises to a nobler strain;
With dutiful respect, and studious fear,
Lest any careless sound offend her ear.
A frantic gipsey now the house he haunts,
And in wild phrases speaks dissembled wants.
With the fond maids in palmistry he deals:
They tell the secret first, which he reveals:
Says who shall wed▪ and who shall be beguil'd;
What groom shall get▪ and 'squire maintain the child.
But when bright Emma wou'd her fortune know;
A softer look unbends his op'ning brow.
With trembling awe he gazes on her eye;
And in soft accents▪ forms the kind reply;
That she shall prove as fortunate as fair,
And Hymen's choicest gifts are all reserv'd for her.
Now oft had Henry chang'd his fly disguise;
Unmark'd by all▪ but beauteous Emma's eyes.
Oft had found means alone to see the dame,
And at her feet to breathe his am'rous flame:
[Page 5]And oft the pangs of absence to remove,
By letters, soft interpreters of love:
Till time and industry, (the mighty two
That bring our wishes nearer to our view)
Made him perceive, that the inclining fair
Receiv'd his v [...]ws with no reluctant ear;
That Venus had confirm'd her equal reign,
And dealt to Emma's heart a share of Henry's pain.
While Cupid smil'd, by kind occasion bless'd,
And with the secret kept, the love increas'd;
The am'rous youth frequents the silent groves;
And much he meditates, for much he loves.
He loves: 'tis true; and is belov'd again:
Great are his joys; but will they long remain?
Emma with smiles receives his present flame;
But smiling, will she ever be the same?
Beautiful looks are rul'd by fickle minds:
And summer seas are turn'd by sudden winds.
Another love may gain her easy youth:
Time changes thought; and flatt'ry conquers truth.
O impotent estate of human life!
Where hope and fear maintain eternal strife:
Where fleeting joy does lasting doubt inspire;
And most we question, what we most desire.
Amongst thy various gifts, great heav'n▪ bestow
Our cup of love unmix'd; forbear to throw
Bitter ingredients in; nor pall the draught
With nauseous grief: for our ill-judging thought
Hardly enjo [...]s the pleasurable taste;
Or deems it not sincere; or fears it cannot last.
With wishes rais'd, with jealousies opprest,
(Alternate tyrants of the human breast)
By one great trial he resolves to prove
The faith of women, and the force of love.
If scanning Emma's virtues he may find
That beauteous frame inclose a steady mind;
He'll fix his hope of future joy secure;
And live a slave to Hymen's happy pow'r.
But if the fair one, as he fears, is frail;
If pois [...]d aright in reason's equal seale,
Light fly her merits, and her faults prevail;
[Page 6]His mind he vows to free from am'rous care;
The latent mischief from his heart to tear,
Resume his azure arms, and shine again in war.
South of the castle, in a verdant glade,
A spreading beach extends her friendly shade:
Here oft the nymph his breathing vows had heard:
Here oft her silence had her heart declar'd.
As active spring awak'd her infant buds;
And genial life inform'd the verdant woods:
Henry, in knots involving Emma's name,
Had half express'd, and half conceal'd his flame
Upon this tree: and as the tender mark
Grew with the year, and widen'd with the bark:
Venus had heard the virgin's so [...] address,
That, as the wound, the passion might encrease.
As potent nature shed her kindly showr's;
And deck'd the various mead with op'ning flowr's;
Upon this tree, the nymphs obliging care
Had left a frequent wreath for Henry's hair:
Which as with gay delight the lover found;
Pleas'd with his conquest▪ with her present crown'd,
Glorious thro' all the plains he oft had gone,
And to each swain the mystic honour shewn:
The gift still prais'd, the giver still unknown.
His secret note the troubled Henry writes,
To the known tree the lovely maid invites:
Imperfect words and dubious terms express,
That unforeseen mischance disturb'd his peace;
That he must something to her ear commend,
On which her conduct, and his life depend.
Soon as the fair one had the note receiv'd;
The remnant of the day alone she griev'd:
For diff'rent this from ev'ry former note.
Which Venus dictated, and Henry wrote;
Which told her all his future hopes were laid
On the dear bosom of his Nut-brown Maid;
Which always bless'd her eyes and own'd her pow'r;
And bid her oft adieu, yet added more.
Now night advanc'd, the house in sleep were laid,
The nurse experienc'd, and the prying maid;
[Page 7]And last that spright, which does incessant haunt
The lover's steps, the ancient maiden aunt.
To her dear Henry, Emma wings her way,
With quicken'd p [...]re repairing forc'd delay.
For love, fantastic pow'r, that is afraid
To stir abroad till watchfulness be laid;
Undaunted then, o'er cliffs and valleys strays;
And leads his vot'ries safe thro' pathless ways.
Not Argus with his hundred eyes shall find,
Where Cupid goes, [...] [...]he poor guide is blind.
The maiden first arriving sent her eye
To ask if yet its chief delight were nigh:
With fear, and with desire, with joy and pain▪
She sees, and runs to meet him on the plain.
But oh! his steps proclaim no lover's haste;
On the low ground his fix'd regards are cast:
His artful bosom heaves dissembled sighs;
And tears suborn'd fall copious from his eyes.
With ease, alas! [...]e credit what we love:
His painted grief does real sorrow move
In the afflicted fair: adown her cheek
Trickling the genuine tears their current break.
Attentive stood the mournful nymph: the man
Broke silence first: the tale alternate ran.
SINCERE O tell me, hast thou felt a pain,
Emma, beyond what women knows to feign?
Has thy uncertain bosom ever strove
With the first tumults of a real love?
Hast thou now dreaded, and now blest his sway;
By turns averse, and joyful to obey?
Thy virgin softness hast thou ere bewail'd,
As reason yielded, and as love prevail'd?
And wept the potent God's resistless dart,
His killing pleasure, his extatick smart,
And heav'nly poison thrilling through thy heart?
If so, with pity view my wretched state;
At least deplore, and then forget my fate:
[Page 8]To some more happy knight reserve thy charms,
By fortune favour'd, and successful arms:
And only, as the sun's revolving ray
Brings back each year this melancholy day:
Permit one sigh, and set apart one tear,
To an abandon'd exile's endless care.
For me, alas! out-cast of human race,
Love's anger only waits, and dire disgrace:
For lo! these hands in murther are imbru'd;
These trembling feet by justice are pursu'd;
Fate calls aloud, and hastens me away;
A shameful death attends my longer stay;
And I this night must fly from thee and love,
Condemn'd in lonely woods a banish'd man to rove.
WHAT is our bliss that changeth with the moon?
And day of life, that darkens e'er 'tis noon?
What is true passion, if unbless'd it dies;
And where is Emma's joy, if Henry [...]ies?
If love, alas! be pain; the pain I bear,
No thought can figure, and no tongue declare.
Ne'er faithful woman felt, nor false one feign'd
The flames, which long have in my bosom reign'd:
The god of love himself inhabits there,
With all his rage, and dread, and grief, and care,
His complement of stores, and total war.
Oh! cease then coldly to suspect my love:
And let my deed at least my faith approve.
Alas! no youth shall my endearments share;
Nor day, nor night shall interrupt my care:
No future story shall with truth upbraid
The cold indiff'rence of the Nut-brown Maid:
Nor to hard banishment shall Henry run,
While careless Emma sleeps on beds of down.
View me resolv'd, where'er thou lead'st, to go,
Friend to thy pain, and partner of thy woe:
For I attest fair Venus, and her son,
That I, of all mankind, will love but thee alone.
LET prudence yet obstruct thy vent'rous way;
And take good heed, what men will think and say?
[Page 9]That beauteous Emma vagrant courses took,
Her father's house and civil life forsook;
That full of youthful blood, and fond of man,
She to the wood-land with an exile ran.
Reflect, that lessen'd fame is ne'er regain'd:
And virgin honour once, is always stain'd:
Timely advis'd, the coming evil shun:
Better not do the deed, than weep it done.
No penance can absolve our guilty fame!
Nor tears that wash out sin, can wash out shame.
Then fly the sad effects of desp'rate love;
And leave a banish'd man thro' lonely woods to rove.
LET Emma's hapless case be falsely told
By the rash young, or the ill-natur'd old:
Let ev'ry tongue its various censures chuse;
Absolve with coldness, or with spite accuse:
Fair truth, at last her radiant beams will raise;
And malice vanquish'd heightens virtue's praise.
Let then thy favour but indulge my flight;
O! let my presence make thy travels light;
And potent Venus shall exalt my name
Above the rumours of censorious fame:
Nor from that busy Demon's restless pow'r
Will ever Emma other grace implore,
Than that this truth should to the world be known,
That I of all mankind, have lov [...]d but thee alone.
BUT canst thou wield the sword, and bend the bow [...]
With active force repel the sturdy foe?
When the loud tumult speaks the battle nigh,
And winged deaths in whistling arrows fly;
Wilt thou, tho' wounded, yet undaunted stay,
Perform thy part, and share the dangerous day?
Then, as thy strength decays, thy heart will fail;
Thy limbs all trembling and thy cheeks all pale:
With fruitless sorrow thou, inglorious maid,
Wilt weep thy safety by thy love betray'd:
Then to thy friend, by foes o'er-charg'd, deny,
Thy little useless aid, and coward fly:
[Page 10]Then wilt thou curse the chance that made thee love
A banish'd man, condemn'd in lonely woods to rove.
WITH fatal certainty Thalestris knew,
To send the arrow from the twanging yew:
And great in arms, and foremost in the war,
Bonduca brandish'd high the British spear.
Could thirst of vengeance, and desire of fame
Excite the female breast with martial flame?
And shall not love's diviner pow'r impire
More hardy virtue, and more gen'rous fire?
NEAR thee, mistrust not, constant I'll abide,
And fall, or vanquish, fighting by thy side.
Tho' my inferior strength may not allow,
That I should bear, or draw the warrior bow;
With ready hand the shaft I will supply,
And joy to see thy victor arrows fly.
Touch'd in the battle by the hostile reed,
Should'st thou (but Heav'n avert it!) should'st thou bleed
To stop thy wounds, my finest lawn I'd tear;
Wash them with tears, and wipe them with my hair;
Blest, when my dangers and my toils have shown,
That I of all mankind, could love but thee alone.
BUT canst thou, tender maid, canst thou sustain
Afflictive want, or hunger's pressing pain?
Those limbs, in lawn and softest silk array'd,
From sun-beams guarded, and of winds afraid;
Can they bear angry Jove? can they resist
The parching dog-star, and the bleak north-east?
When chill'd by adverse snows, and beating rain,
We tread with weary steps, the longsome plain:
When with hard toil we seek our ev'ning food,
Berries and acorns, from the neighb'ring wood:
And find among the cliffs no other house,
But the thin covert of some gather'd boughs:
Wilt thou not then reluctant send thine eye
Around the dreary waste, and weeping try,
(Tho' then, alas! that trial be too late)
To find thy father's hospitable gate,
And seats, where case and plenty brooding sate?
[Page 11]Those seats, whence long excluded thou must mourn:
That gate for ever barr'd to thy return:
Wilt thou not then bewail ill-fated love,
And hate a banish'd man, condemned in woods to rove.
THY rise of fortune did I only wed,
From its decline determin'd to recede?
Did I but purpose to embark with thee,
On the smooth surface of a summer [...]s sea;
While gentle zephyrs play in prosp'rous gales;
And fortune's favour fills the swelling sails:
But would forsake the ship, and make the shore,
When the winds whistle, and the tempests roar?
No, Henry, no: one sacred oath has ty'd
Our loves; one destiny our life shall guide
Nor wild, nor deep our common way divide.
WHEN from the cave thou risest with the day
To beat the woods, and rouse the bounding prey;
The cave with moss and branches I'll adorn,
And chearful sit to wait my lord's return.
And when thou frequent bring'st the smitten deer;
(For seldom, archers say, thy arrows err)
I'll fetch quick fewel from the neighb'ring wood,
And strike the sparkling flint, and dress the food:
With humble duty and officious haste,
I'll cull the farthest mead for thy repast:
The choicest herbs I to thy board will bring;
And draw thy water from the freshest spring:
And when at night with weary toil oppress'd,
Soft slumbers thou enjoy'st, and wholesome rest;
Watchful I'll guard thee, and with midnight pray'r
Weary the gods to keep thee in their care;
And joyous ask at morn's returning ray,
If thou hast health, and I may bless the day.
My thought shall fix, my latest with depend
On thee, guide, guardian, kinsman, father, friend:
By all these sacred names be Henry known
To Emma's heart; and grateful let him own,
That she of all mankind, could love but him alone.
[Page 12]
VAINLY thou tell'st me, what the woman's care
Shall in the wildness of the wood prepare:
Thou, e'er thou goest, unhappiest of thy kind,
Must leave the habit, and the sex behind.
No longer shall thy comely tresses break
In flowing ringlets on thy snowy neck;
Or sit behind thy head, an ample round,
In graceful braids with various ribband bound:
No longer shall the boddice aptly lac'd,
From thy full bosom to thy slender waist,
That air and harmony of shape express,
Fine by degrees, and beautifully less:
Nor shall thy lower garments artful pleat
From thy fair side dependent to thy feet,
Arm their chaste beauties with a modest pride,
And double ev'ry charm they seek to hide.
Th' ambrosial plenty of thy shining hair
Cropt off and lost, scarce lower than thy ear
Shall stand uncouth; a horseman's coat shall hide,
Thy taper shape, and comliness of side;
The short trunk-hose shall shew thy foot and knee
Licentious, and to common eye-sight free;
And with a bolder stride, and looser air,
Mingled with men, a man thou must appear.
NOR solitude, nor gentle peace of mind
Mistaken maid, shalt thou in forests find;
'Tis long since Cynthia and her train were there;
Or guardian gods made innocence their care.
Vagrants and out-laws shall offend thy view;
(For such must be my friends;) a hideous crew,
By adverse fortune mix'd in social ill;
Train'd to assault, and disciplin'd to kill;
Their common loves, a lew'd abandon'd pack,
The beadle's lash still flagrant on their back;
By sloth corrupted, by disorder fed,
Made bold by want, and prostitute for bread.
With such must Emma hunt the tedious day,
Assist their violence, and divide their prey;
With such she must return a setting light;
Tho' not partaker, witness of their night.
[Page 13]Thy ear, inur'd to charitable sounds,
And pitying love, must feel the hateful wounds,
Of jests obscene, and vulgar ribaldry,
The ill-bred question, and the lew'd reply;
Brought from long habitude of bad to worse,
Must hear the frequent oath, and direful curse,
That latest weapon of the wretches war;
And blasphemy, sad comrade of despair.
NOW, Emma, now, the last reflection make,
What thou would'st follow, what thou must forsake:
By our ill-omen'd stars, and adverse heav'n,
No middle object to thy choice is giv'n.
Or yield thy virtue to attain thy love;
Or leave a banish'd man, condemn'd in woods to rove.
O GRIEF of heart! that our unhappy fates
Force thee to suffer what thy honour hates:
Mix thee amongst the bad, or make thee run
Too near the paths which virtue, bids thee shun.
Yet with her Henry still let Emma go;
With him abhor the vice, but share the woe:
And sure my little heart can never err
Amidst the worst, if Henry still be there.
OUR outward act is prompted from within;
And from the sinner's mind proceeds the sin:
By her own choice free virtue is approv'd,
Nor by the force of outward objects mov'd.
Who has assay'd no danger, gains no praise,
In a small isle, amidst the widest seas.
Triumphant constancy has fix'd her seat:
In vain the syrens sing, the tempests beat:
Their flatt'ry she rejects, nor fears their threat.
FOR thee alone these little charms I drest;
Condemn'd them, or absolv'd them by thy test.
In comely figure rang'd my jewels shone;
Or negligently plac'd, for thee alone:
For thee again they shall be laid aside;
The woman, Henry, shall put off her pride
For thee: my cloaths, my sex exchang'd, for thee,
I'll mingle with the peoples wretched lee;
Oh! line extreme or human infamy!
[Page 14]Wanting the scissors with these hands I'll tear
(If that obstructs my flight) this load of hair.
Black soot, or yellow walnut shall disgrace
This little red and white of Emma's face.
These nails with scratches shall deform my breast,
Lest by my look or colour be express'd
The mark of ought high born, or ever better dress'd.
Yet in this commerce, under this disguise,
Let me be grateful still to Henry's eyes:
Lost to the world, let me to him be known:
My fate I can absolve, if he shall own,
That leaving all mankind, I love but him alone.
O WILDEST thought of an abandon'd mind,
Name, habit, parents, woman left behind,
Ev [...]n honour dubious thou prefer'st to go
Wild to the woods with me; said Emma so?
Or did I dream what Emma never said?
O guilty error! and oh wretched maid!
Whose roving fancy would resolve the same
With him, who next should tempt her easy fame;
And blow with empty words the susceptible flame.
Now why should doubtful terms thy mind perplex?
Confess thy frailty, and avow the sex:
No longer loose desire for constant love
Mistake; but say 'tis man, with whom thou long'st to rove,
ARE there not poisons, racks, and flames, and swords;
That Emma thus must die by Henry's words?
Yet what could swords or poison, racks or flame.
But mangle and disjoint this brittle frame?
More fatal Henry's words, they murder Emma's fame.
AND fall these sayings from that gentle tongue,
Where civil speech and soft persuasion hung,
Whose artful sweetness and harmonious strain
Courting my grace, yet courting it in vain,
Call'd sighs, and tears, and wishes to it's aid:
And, whilst it Henry's glowing flame convey'd.
Still blam'd the coldness of the Nut-brown Maid.
[Page 15]LET envious jealousy, and canker'd spight
Produce my action to severest light,
And tax my open day, or secret night.
Did e'er my tongue speak my unguarded heart
The least inclin'd to play the wanton's part?
Did e'er my eye one inward thought reveal,
Which angels might not hear, and virgins tell?
And hast thou, Henry, in my conduct known
One fault, but that which [...]s must [...]er own,
That I of all mankind, have [...] but thee alone?
VAINLY thou talk'st of loving me alone:
Each man is man; and all our sex is one.
Fals [...] are our words; and fickle is our mind:
Nor in love's ritual can we e'er find
Vows made to last, or promises to bind.
BY nature prompted, and for empire made
Alike by strength or cunning we invade:
When arm'd with rage we march against the foe;
We list the battle-ax, and draw the bow:
When fir'd with passion we attack the fair;
Delusive sighs and brittle vows we bear:
Our f [...]lsehood and our arms have equal use;
As they our conquest or delight produce.
THE foolish heart thou gav'st, again receive;
The only boon departing love can give
To be less wretched, be no longer true:
What strives to fly thee, why should'st thou pursue?
Forget the present flame; indulge a new.
Single the lovliest of the am'rous youth;
Ask for his vow, but hope not for his truth.
The next man (and the next thou wilt believe)
Will pawn his gods, intending to deceive;
Will kneel, implore, persist, o'ercome, and leave.
Hence let thy Cupid aim his arrows right;
Be wise, and false; shun trouble, seek delight,
Change thou the first; nor wait thy lover's flight.
Why should'st thou weep? let nature judge our case:
I saw thee young, and fair; pursu'd the chace
Of youth, and beauty: I another saw
Fairer, and younger: yielding to the law
[Page 16]Of our all-ruling mother, I pursu'd
More youth, more beauty: blest vicissitude!
My active heart still keeps its pristine flame:
The object alter'd▪ the desire the same,
THIS younger fairer pleads her rightful charms:
With present pow'r compels me to her arms.
And much I fear, from my subjected mind,
(If [...]eauty's force to constant love can bind)
That years may roll, e'er in her turn, the maid
Shall weep the fury of my love decay'd:
And weeping follow me, as thou dost now,
With idle clamours of a broken vow.
NOR can the wildness of thy wishes err
So wide, to hope that thou may'st h [...]e with her.
Love, well thou know'st, no partnership allows;
Cupid averse rejects divided vows.
Then from thy foolish heart▪ vain maid, remove
An useless sorrow, and an ill-star'd love:
And leave with the fair, at large in woods to rove.
ARE we in life thro' one great error led?
Is each man perjur'd, and each nymph betray'd?
Of the superior sex art thou the worst?
Am I of mine the most completely curst?
Yet let me go with thee; and going prove,
From what I will endure, how much I love.
THIS potent beauty, this triumphant fair,
This happy object of our diff'rent care,
Her let me follow, her let me attend,
A servant: (she may scorn the name of friend.)
What she demands, incessant I'll prepare,
I'll weave her garlands, and I'll pleat her hair:
My busy diligence shall deck her board:
(For there at least I may approach my lord)
And when her Henry's softer hours advise
His servant's absence▪ with dejected eyes
Far I'll recede, and sighs forbid to rise.
YET when encreasing grief brings slow disease;
And [...]bbing life, on terms severe as these,
Will have its little lamp no longer fed;
When Henry's mistress shews him Emma dead;
[Page 17]Rescue my poor remains from vile neglect,
With virgin honours let my herse be deckt,
And decent emblem; and at least persuade
This happy nymph, that Emma may be laid
Where thou, dear author of my death, where she
With frequent eye my sepulchre may see.
The nymph amidst her joys may haply breathe
One pious sigh, reflecting on my death,
And the sad fate which she may one day prove,
Who hopes from Henry's vows eternal love.
And thou forsworn, thou cruel, as thou art,
If Emma's image ever touch'd thy heart,
Thou sure must give one thought, and drop one tear
To her whom love abandon'd to despair;
To her, who dying, on the wounded stone
Bid it in lasting characters be known,
That of mankind, she lov'd but thee alone.
HEAR, solemn Jove; and conscious Venus, hear;
And thou, bright maid, believe, whilst I swear;
No time, no change, no future flame shall move
The well plac'd basis of my lasting love.
O powerful virtue! O victorious fair!
At least excuse a trial too severe:
Receive the triumph and forget the war.
NO banish'd man, condemn'd in woods to rove,
Intreats thy pardon, and implores thy love:
No perjur'd knight desires to quit thy arms,
Fairest collection of thy sexes charms,
Crown of my love, and honour of my youth:
Henry, thy Henry with eternal truth,
As thou may'st wish, shall all his life employ,
And found his glory in his Emma's joy.
IN me behold the potent Edgar's heir,
Illustrious earl, him terrible in war
Let Loyre confess, for she has felt his sword,
And trembling fled before the British lord.
Him great in peace and wealth fair Deva knows;
For she amidst his spacious meadows slows;
Inclines her urn upon his fatten'd lands;
And sees his numerous herd imprint her sands.
[Page 18]AND thou, my fair, my dove, shall raise thy thought
To greatness next to empire; shalt be brought
With solemn pomp, to my paternal seat,
Where peace and plenty on thy word shall wait.
Music and song shall wake thy marriage day:
And while the priests accuse the bride's delay,
Myrtles and roses shall obstruct her way.
FRIENDSHIP shall still thy evening feasts adorn:
And blooming peace shall ever bless thy morn:
Succeeding years their happy race [...]hall run;
And age unheeded by delight come on:
While yet superior love shall mock his pow'r:
And when old time shall turn the fated hour,
Which only can our well-ty'd knot unfold,
What rests of both, one sepulchre shall hold.
HENCE then for ever from my Emma's breast
(That heav'n of softness, and that seat of rest)
Ye doubts and fears, and all that know to move
Tormenting grief, and all that trouble love,
Scatter'd by winds recede, and wild in forests rove.
O DAY, the fairest sure that ever rose!
Period and end of anxious Emma's woes!
Sire of her joy, and source of her delight;
O! wing'd with pleasure take thy happy flight,
And give each future morn a tincture of thy white.
Yet tell thy vot'ry, potent queen of love,
Henry, my Henry, will he never rove?
Will he be ever kind, and just, and good?
And is there yet no mistress in the wood?
None, none, there is: the thought was rash and vain;
A false idea, and a fancy'd pain.
Doubt shall for ever quit my strengthen'd heart;
And anxious jealousy's corroding smart;
Nor other inmate shall inhabit there,
But soft belief, young joy, and pleasing care.
HENCE let the tides of plenty ebb and flow,
And fortune's various gale unheeded blow.
If at my feet the suppliant goddess stands,
And sheds her treasure with unweary'd hands;
[Page 19]Her present favour cautious I'll embrace,
And not unthankful use the proffer'd grace:
If she reclaims the temporary boon,
And tries her pinions flutt'ring to be gone;
Secure of mind I'll obviate her intent,
And unconcern'd return the good she lent.
Nor happiness can I, nor misery feel,
From any turn of her fantastick wheel;
Friendship's great law, and love's superior pow'rs,
Must mark the colours of my future hours.
From the events which thy commands create,
I must my blessings on my sorrows date:
And Henry's will must dictate Emma's fate.
YET while with close delight and inward pride
(Which from the world my careful soul shall hide)
I see thee, lord and end of my desire,
Exalted high as virtue can require;
With pow'r invested, and with pleasure chear'd;
Sought by the good, by the oppressor fear'd;
Loaded and blest with all the affluent store,
Which human vows at smokeing shrines implore;
Grateful and humble grant me to employ
My life, subservient only to thy joy;
And at my death to bless thy kindness shewn
To her, who of mankind, could love but thee alone.
WHILE thus the constant pair alternate said,
Joyful above them, and around them play'd
Angels and sportive loves, a numerous crowd;
Smiling they clapt their wings, and low they bow'd.
They tumbled all their little quivers o'er,
To chuse propitious shafts; a precious store:
That when their god should take his future darts,
To strike (however rarely) constant hearts,
His happy skill might proper arms employ,
All tipt with pleasure, and all wing'd with joy:
And those, they vow'd whose lives should imitate
These lover's constancy, and share their fate.
THE queen of beauty stopt her bridled doves;
Approv'd the little labour of the loves;
[Page 20]Was proud and pleas'd the mutual vow to hear;
And to the triumph call'd the god of war:
Soon as she calls, the god is always near
NOW Mars, she said, let Fame exalt her voice;
Nor let thy conquests only be her choice:
But when she sings great Edward from the field
Return'd the hostile spear and captive shield,
In Concord's temple hung, and Gallia taught to yield.
And when, as prudent Saturn shall complete
The years design'd to perfect Britain's state;
The swift-wing'd pow'r shall take her trump again,
To sing her fav'rite Anna's wond'rous reign;
To recollect unweary'd Malbro's toils,
Old Rufus shall unequal to his spoils;
The British soldier from his high command
Glorious, and Gaul thrice vanquish'd by his hand;
L [...] her at least perform what I desire;
With second breath the vocal brass inspire;
And tell the nations in no vulgar strain,
What wars I manage, and what wreaths I gain.
AND when thy tumults and thy fights are past,
And when thy laurels at my feet are cast;
Faithful may'st thou like British Henry prove,
And Emma-like let me return thy love.
RENOWN'D for truth let all thy sons appear;
And constant beauty shall reward their care.
MARS smil'd, and bow'd: the Cyprian deity
Turn'd to the glorious ruler of the sky:
And thou, she smiling said, great god of days
And verse, behold my deed, and sing my praise.
As on the British earth, my fav'rite isle,
Thy gentle rays and kindest influence smile,
Thro' all her laughing fields and verdant groves,
Proclaim with joy these memorable loves.
From ev'ry annual course let one great day,
To celebrated sports and floral play
Be set aside; and in the softest lays
Of thy poetic sons, be solemn praise.
And everlasting marks of honour paid.
To the true lover, and the Nut-brown Maid.


"ONE parting kiss, my ETHELINDE!"
Young EDWIN fault ring cried,
"I hear thy father's hasty tread,
Nor longer must I hide.
To-morrow eve, in yonder wood,
Beneath the well-known tree,
Say wilt thou meet thy own true love,
Whose only joy's in thee?"
She clasp'd the dear beloved youth,
And sigh'd and dropt a tear;
"Whate'er betide, my only love
I'll surely meet thee there."
They kiss, they part; a list'ning page
To malice ever bent,
O'erheard their talk, and to his lord
Reveal'd their fond intent
The baron's brow grew dark with frowns,
And rage disdain'd his cheek,
"Heavens! shall a vassal shepherd dare
My daughter's love to seek.
But know, rash boy, thy bold attempt
Full sorely shalt thou rue;
Nor e'er again, ignoble maid,
Shalt thou thy lover view."
The dews of evening fast did fall,
And darkness spread apace,
When ETHELINDE with beating breast
Flew to th' appointed place.
[Page 22]
With eager eye she looks around,
No EDWIN there was seen;
"He was not wont to break his faith,
What can his absence mean!"
Her heart beat thick at every noise,
Each rustling thro' the wood;
And now she travers'd quick the ground.
And now she list'ning stood.
Enlivening hope and chilling fear
By turns her bosom share,
And now she calls upon his name,
Now weeps in sad despair.
Mean-time the day's last glimmering fled,
And blackening all the sky,
A hideous tempest dreadful rose,
And thunders roll'd on high.
Poor ETHELINDE aghast, dismay'd,
Beholds with wild affright
The threat'ning sky, the lonely wood,
And horrors of the night.
"Where art thou now my EDWIN dear!
Thy friendly aid I want;
Ah me; my boding heart foretells
That aid thou canst not grant."
Thus rack'd with pangs, and beat with storms,
Confus'd and lost she roves;
Now looks to heaven with earnest prayer,
Now calls on him she loves.
At length a distant taper's ray
Struck beaming on her sight;
Thro' brakes she guides her fainting steps
Towards the welcome light,
An aged hermit peaceful dwelt
In this sequester'd wild,
Calm goodness sat upon his brow,
His words were soft and mild.
[Page 23]
He ope'd his hospitable door,
And much admiring view'd
The tender virgin's graceful form,
Dash'd by the tempest rude.
"Welcome, fair maid, whoe'er thou art,
To this warm shelter'd cell;
Here rest secure thy wearied feet,
Here peace and safety dwell."
He saw the heart-wrung starting tear,
And gently sought to know
With kindest pity's soothing looks,
The story of her wo.
Scarce had she told her mournful tale,
When struck with dread they hear
Voices confus'd with dying groans,
The cell approaching near.
"Help, father! help," they loudly cry,
"A wretch here bleeds to death,
Some cordial balsam quickly give
To stay his parting breath."
All deadly pale they lay him down,
And gash'd with many a wound;
When, woful sight! 'twas EDWIN's self
Lay bleeding on the ground.
With frantic grief poor ETHELINDE
Beside his body falls;
"Lift up thine eyes, my EDWIN dear,
'Tis ETHELINDE calls."
That much lov'd sound recalls his life,
He lifts his closing eyes,
Then feebly murm'ring out her name
He gasps, he faints, he dies.
Stupid a while, in dumb despair
She gaz'd on EDWIN dead;
Dim grew her eyes, her lips turn'd pale,
And life's warm spirit fled.
[Page 24]


BOW the head thou lilly fair,
Bow thy head in mournful guise▪
Sickly turn thy shining white,
Bend thy stalk and never rise.
Shed thy leaves thou lovely rose,
Shed thy leaves so sweet and gay;
Spread them wide on the cold earth,
Quickly let them fade away.
Fragrant woodbine all untwine,
All untwine from yonder bower;
Drag thy branches on the ground,
Stain with dust each tender flower.
For, wo is me! the gentle knot,
That did in willing durance bind
My EMMA and her happy swain,
By cruel death is now untwin'd.
Her head with dim half-closed eyes
Is bow'd upon her breast of snow;
And cold and faded are those cheeks,
That wont with chearful red to glow.
And mute is that harmonious voice,
That wont to breathe the sounds of love;
And lifeless are those beauteous limbs,
That with such ease and grace did move.
And I of all my bliss berest,
Lonely and sad must ever moan;
Dead to each joy the world can give,
Alive to memory alone.

THE Deserted Village. BY DR. GOLDSMITH.



SWEET AUBURN! loveliest village of the plain,
Where health and plenty chear'd the lab'ring swain,
Where smiling spring its earliest visit paid,
And parting summer's ling'ring blooms delay'd.
Dear lovely bow'rs of innocence and ease,
Seats of my youth, when ev'ry sport could please,
How often have I loiter'd o'er thy green,
Where humble happiness endear'd each scene!
How often have I paus'd on ev'ry charm,
The shelter'd c [...]t, the cultivated farm,
The never-failing brook, the busy mill,
The decent church that [...]opt the neighb'ring hill,
The hawthorn bush, with seats beneath the shade,
For talking age and whisp'ring lovers made!
How often have I blest the coming day,
When toil remitting lent its turn to play,
And all the village train, from labour free,
Led up their sports beneath the spreading tree;
While many a pastime circled in the shade,
The young contending as the old survey'd;
And many a gambol frolic'd o'er the ground,
And slights of art and feats of strength went round.
And still as each repeated pleasure tir'd,
Succeeding sports the mirthful band inspir'd;
The dancing pair that simply sought renown,
By holding out, to tire each other down;
The swain mistrustless of his smutted face,
While secret laughter titter'd round the place;
The bashful virgin's side-long looks of love,
The matron's glance that would those looks reprove.
[Page 3]These were thy charms, sweet village! sports like these,
With sweet succession, taught ev'n toil to please;
These round thy bow'rs their chearful influence shed,
These were thy charms—but all these charms are fled.
Sweet smiling village, loveliest of the lawn,
Thy sports are fled, and all thy charms withdrawn;
Amidst thy bow'rs the tyrant's hand is seen,
And desolation saddens all thy green:
One only master grasps the whole domain,
And half a tillage stints thy smiling plain;
No more thy glassy brook reflects the day,
But, choak'd with sedges, works its weedy way;
Along thy glades, a solitary guest.
The hollow sounding bittern guards its nest;
Amidst thy desart walks the lapwing flies,
And tires their echoes with unvary'd cries.
Sunk are thy bow'rs in shapeless ruin all,
And the long grass o'ertops the mould'ring wall,
And trembling, shrinking from the spoiler's hand,
Far, far away the children leave the land.
Ill fares the land, to hast'ning ills a prey,
Where wealth accumulates, and men decay;
Princes and lords may flourish, or may fade;
A breath can make them, as a breath has made:
But a bold peasantry, their country's pride,
When once destroy'd, can never be supply'd.
A time there was, ere England's griefs began.
When ev'ry rood of ground maintain'd its man;
For him light labour spread her wholesome store,
Just gave what life requir'd, but gave no more:
His best companions, innocence and health,
And his best riches, ignorance of wealth.
But times are alter [...]d; trade's unfeeling train
Usurp the land and dispossess the swain;
Along the lawn▪ where scattered h [...] rose,
Unwieldy wealth, and cumb'rous pomp repose;
And ev'ry want to luxury ally'd,
And ev'ry pang that folly pays to pride.
These gentle hours that plenty bade to bloom,
Those calm desires that asked but little room;
Those healthful sports that grac'd the peaceful scene,
Liv'd in each look, and brighten'd all the green;
[Page 4]These, far departing, seek a kinder, shore,
And rural mirth and manners are no more.
Sweet AUBURN! parent of the blissful hour,
Thy glades forlorn confess the tyrant's pow'r.
He [...], as I take my solitary rounds,
Amidst thy tang'ling walks, and ruin'd grounds,
And, many a year claps'd, return to view
Wh [...]re once the cottage stood, the hawthorn grew,
Remembrance wakes with all her busy train,
Sw [...] [...] my breast, and turns the past to pain.
I [...] [...] wand'rings round this world of care,
In al [...] my griefs—and GOD has giv'n my share—
I still had hopes my latest hours to crown,
Amidst these humble bow'rs to lay me down▪
To [...]b [...]nd out life's taper at the close,
And keep the flame from wasting by repose:
I still had hopes, for pride attends us still,
Amidst the swains to shew my book-learn'd skill,
Around my fire an ev'ning group to draw,
And tell of all I felt, and all I saw;
And, as an hare whom hounds and horns pursue,
Pants to the place from whence at first he flew,
I still had hopes, my long veaxtions past.
Here to return — and die at home at last.
O blest retirement, friend to life's decline,
Retreats from care, that never must be mine,
How blest is he who crowns in shades like these,
A youth of labour with an age of ease;
Who quits a world where strong temptations try,
And▪ since 'tis hard to combat, learns to fly!
For him no wretches, born to work and weep,
Explore the mine, or tempt the dang'rous deep;
No fur [...]y porter stands in guilty state,
To s [...]rn imploring famine from the gate;
But on [...]e moves to meet his latter end,
Angels around befriending Virtue's friend;
Sinks to the grave with unperceiv'd decay,
While resignation gently slopes the way;
And▪ all his prospects bright'ning to the last.
His Heav'n commenc [...]s ere the world be past!
Sweet was the sound, when oft at evening's close,
Up yonder hill the village murmur rose;
[Page 5]There, as I past with careless steps and slow,
The mingling notes came soften'd from below;
The swain responsive as the milk-maid sung,
The sober herd that low'd to meet their young;
The noisy geese that gabbled o'er the pool,
The playful children just let loose from school;
The watch-dog's voice that bay'd the whisp'ring wind,
And the loud laugh that spoke the vacant mind;
These all in sweet confusion sought the shade,
And fill'd each pause the nightingale had made.
For now the sounds of population fail,
No chearful murmurs fluctuate in the gale,
No busy steps the grass-grown foot-way tread,
But all the bloomy flush of life is fled.
All but you widow'd, solitary thing,
That feebly bends beside the plashy spring;
She, wretched matron, forc'd, in age, for bread,
To strip the brook with mantling cresses spread,
To pick her wintry faggot from the thorn,
To seek her nightly shed, and weep till morn;
She only left of all the harmless train,
The sad historian of the pensive plain.
Near yonder copse, where once the garden smil'd,
And still where many a garden flow'r grows wild;
There, where a few torn shrubs the place disclose,
The village preacher's modest mansion rose.
A man he was, to all the country dear,
And passing rich with forty pounds a year;
Remote from towns he ran his godly race,
Nor ere had chang'd, nor wish'd to change his place;
Unskilful he to fawn, or seek for pow'r,
By doctrines fashion'd to the varying hour;
Far other aims his heart had learn'd to prize,
More bent to raise the wretch'd than to rise.
His house was known to all the vagrant train,
He chid their wand'rings, but reliev'd their pain,
The long remember'd beggar was his guest,
Whose beard descending swept his aged breast;
The ruin'd spend thrift, now no longer proud,
Claim'd kindred there, and had his claims allow'd;
The broken soldier, kindly bade to stay,
Sate by his fire▪ and talk'd the night away;
Wept o'er his wounds, or tales or sorrow done,
Shoulder'd his crutch and shew'd how fields were won.
[Page 6]Pleas'd with his guests, the good man learn'd to glow,
And quite forgot their vices in their wo;
Careless their merits, or their faults to scan,
His pity gave ere charity began.
Thus to relieve the wretched was his pride,
And ev'n his failings lean'd to Virtue's side;
But in his duty prompt at ev'ry call,
He watch'd and wept, he pray'd and felt for all.
And, as a bird each fond endearment tries,
To tempt its new-fledg'd offspring to the skies;
He tried each art, reprov'd each dull delay,
Allur'd to brighter worlds, and led the way.
Beside the bed where parting life was lay'd,
And sorrow, guilt, and pain, by turns dismay'd,
The rev'rend champion stood. At his control,
Despair and anguish fled the struggling soul;
Comfort came down the trembling wretch to raise,
And his last fault'ring accents whisper'd praise.
At church, with meek and unaffected grace,
His looks adorn'd the venerable place;
Truth from his lips prevail'd with double sway,
And fools, who came to scoff remain'd to pray.
The service past, around the pious man,
With ready zeal▪ each honest rustic ran;
Ev'n children follow'd with endearing wile,
And pluck'd his gown, to share the good man's smile.
His ready smile a parent's warmth exprest,
Their welfare pleas'd him, and their cares distrest;
To them his heart, his love, his griefs were giv'n,
But all his serious thoughts had rest in heav'n.
As some tall cliff that lifts its awful form,
Swells from the vale, and midway leaves the storm,
Tho' round its breast the rolling clouds are spread,
Eternal sunshine settles on its head.
Beside you straggling fence that skirts the way,
With blossom'd furze unprofitably gay,
There, in his noisy mansion skill'd to rule,
The village master taught his little school;
A man severe he was, and stern to view,
I knew him well, and ev'ry truant knew;
Well had the boding tremblers learn'd to trace
The day's disasters in his morning face;
Full well they laugh'd with counterfeited glee
At all his jokes, for many a joke had he;
[Page 7]Full well the busy whisper circling round,
Convey'd the dismal tidings when he frown'd;
Yet he was kind, or if severe in aught,
The love he bore to learning was in fault;
The village all declar'd how much he knew;
'Twas certain he could write, and cypher too;
Lands he could measure, terms and tides presage,
And ev'n the story ran that he could guage:
In arguing too, the parson own'd his skill,
For e'en tho' vanquish'd, he could argue still;
While words of learned length and thund'ring sound,
Amaz'd the gazing rustics rang'd around,
And still they gaz'd and still the wonder grew,
That one small head could carry all he knew.
But past is all his fame. The very spot
Where many a time he triumph'd is forgot.
Near yonder thorn that lifts its head on high,
Where once the sign-post caught the passing eye,
Low lies that house where nut-brown draughts inspir'd,
Where grey-beard mirth and smiling toil retir'd,
Where village statesmen talk'd with looks profound,
And news much older than their ale went round.
Imagination fondly stoops to trace
The parlour splendours of that festive place;
The white-wash'd wall, the nicely sanded floor,
The varnish'd clock that click'd behind the door;
The chest contriv'd a double debt to pay,
A bed by night, a chest of draw'rs by day;
The pictures plac'd for ornament and use,
The twelve good rules, the royal game of goose;
The hearth, except when winter chill'd the day,
With aspen boughs, and flow'rs and fennel gay,
While broken tea-cups, wisely kept for shew,
Rang'd o'er the chimney, glisten'd in a row.
Vain transitory splendor! cou'd not all
Reprieve the tott'ring mansion from its fall!
Obscure it sinks, nor shall it more impart
An hour's importance to the poor man's heart;
Thither no more the peasant shall repair,
To sweet oblivion of his daily care;
No more the farmer's news, the barber's tale,
No more the woodman's ballad shall prevail;
No more the smith his dusky brow shall clear,
Relax his pond'rous strength, and lean to hear;
[Page 8]The host himself no longer shall be found
Careful to see the mantling bliss go round;
Nor the coy maid, half will [...]ng to be prest,
Shall kiss the cup to pass it to the rest.
Yes! let the rich deride the proud disdain,
These simple blessings of the lowly train,
To me more dear, congenial to my heart,
One native charm, than all the gloss of art;
Spontaneous joys, where Nature has its play,
The soul adopts, and owns their first-born sway;
Lightly they frolic o'er the vacant mind,
Unenvy'd▪ unmolested, unconfin'd.
But the long pomp, the midnight masquerade,
With all the freaks of wanton wealth array'd,
In these▪ ere triflers half their wish obtain,
The toiling pleasure sickens into pain;
And, ev'n while Fashion's brightest arts decoy,
The heart distrusting asks, if this be joy?
Ye friends to truth, ye statesmen who survey
The rich man's joys encrease, the poor's decay,
'Tis yours to judge, how wide the limits stand
Between a splendid and a happy land.
Proud swells the tide with loads of freighted ore,
And shouting Folly hails them from her shore;
Hoards, ev'n beyond the miser's wish abound,
And rich men flock from all the world around.
Yet count our gains. This wealth is but a name
That leaves our useful product still the same.
Not so the loss. The man of wealth and pride,
Takes up a space that many poor supply'd;
Space for his lake, his park's extended bounds,
Space for his horses, equipage and hounds;
The robe that wraps his limbs in silken sloth,
Has robb'd the neighb'ring fields of half their growth,
His feat, where solitary sports are seen,
Indignant spurns the cottage from the green;
Around the world each needful product flies,
For all the luxuries the world supplies.
While thus the land adorn'd for pleasure all
In barren splendor feebly waits the fall.
As some fair female unadorn'd and plain,
Secure to please while youth confirms her reign,
[Page 9]Slights every borrow'd charm that dress supplies,
Nor shares with art the triumph of her eyes:
But when those charms are past, for charms are frail,
When time advances, and when lovers fail,
She then shines forth solicitous to bless,
In all the glaring impotence of dress.
Thus fares the land, by luxury betray'd,
In Nature's simplest charms at first array'd,
But verging to decline, its splendors rise,
Its vistas strike, its palaces surprise;
While scourg'd by famine from the smiling land,
The mournful peasant leads his humble band;
And while he sinks, without one arm to save.
The country blooms—a garden, and a grave.
Where then, ah, where shall poverty reside,
To 'scape the pressure of contiguous pride?
If to some common's fenceless limits stray'd
He drives his flock to pick the scanty blade,
Those fenceless fields the sons of wealth divide,
And ev'n the bare-worn common is deny'd.
If to the city sped—What waits him there?
To see profusion that he must not share;
To see ten thousand baneful arts combin'd
To pamper luxury, and thin mankind;
To see each joy the sons of pleasure know,
Extorted from his fellow-creature's wo,
Here while the courtier glitters in brocade,
There the pale artist plies the sickly trade;
Here, while the proud their long-drawn pomps display,
There the black gibbet glooms beside the way.
The dome where Pleasure holds her midnight reign,
Here, richly dec [...]t, admits the gorgeous train;
Tumultuous grandeur crouds the blazing square,
The rattling chariots clash, the torches glare.
Sure scenes like these no troubles ere annoy!
Sure these deno [...]e one universal joy!
Are these thy serious thoughts—Ah, turn thine eyes
Where the poo [...] houseless shiv'ring female lies.
She once, perhaps, in village plenty blest,
Has wept at ta [...]es of innocence distrest;
[Page 10]Her modest looks, the cottage might adorn,
Sweet as the primrose peeps beneath the thorn;
Now lost to all; her friends, her virtue fled,
Near her betrayer's door she lays her head,
And▪ pinch'd with cold, and shrinking from the show'r,
With heavy heart deplores that luckless hour,
When idly first ambitious of the town,
She left her wheel and robes of country b [...]own.
Do thine, sweet [...]UBURN, thine, the loveliest train,
Do thy fair tribes participate her pain?
Ev'n now, perhaps, by cold and hunger led,
At proud mens doors they ask a little bread!
Ah, no. To distant climes, a dreary scene,
Where half the convex world intrudes between,
Through torrid tracts with fainting steps they go,
Where wild Altama murmurs to their wo.
Far different there from all that charm'd before,
The various terrors of that horrid shore;
Those blazing suns that dart a downward ray,
And fiercely shed intolerable day;
Those matted woods where birds forget to sing,
But silent bats in drowsy clusters cling;
Those pois'nous fields with rank luxuriance crown'd,
Where the dark scorpion gathers death around;
Where at each step the stranger fears to wake
The rattling terrors of the vengeful snake;
Where crouching tigers wait their hapless prey,
And savage men more murd'rous still than they;
While oft in whirls the mad tornado flies,
Mingling the ravag'd landscape with the skies.
Far different these from ev'ry former scene,
The cooling brook, the grassy vested green,
The breezy covert of the warbling grove,
That only shelter'd thefts of harmless love.
Good Heav'n! what sorrows gloom'd that parting day,
That call'd them from their native walks away;
When the poor exiles, ev'ry pleasure past.
Hung round the bow'rs, and fondly look'd their last,
And took a long farewel, and wish'd in vain
For sea's like these beyond the western main;
And shudd'ring still to face the distant deep,
Return'd and wept, and still return'd to weep.
[Page 11]The good old sire, the first prepar'd to go
To new-found worlds, and wept for others wo;
But for himself, in conscious virtue brave,
He only wish'd for worlds beyond the grave;
His lovely daughter, lovelier in her tears,
The fond companion of his helpless years,
Silent went next, neglectful of her charms,
And left a lover's for a father's arms.
With louder plaints the mother spoke her woes,
And blest the cot where ev'ry pleasure rose;
And kist her thoughtless babes with many a tear,
And clap them close, in sorrow doubly dear;
Whilst her fond husband strove to lend relief
In all the silent manliness of grief.
O Luxury! thou curst by Heav'n's decree,
How ill exchanged are things like these for thee!
How do thy po [...]ions with insidious joy,
Diffuse their pleasures only to destroy!
Kingdoms by thee, to sickly greatness grown,
Boast of a florid vigour not their own.
At every draught more large and large they grow,
A bloated mass of rank unwieldy wo;
Till sapp'd their strength, and ev'ry part unsound,
Down, down they sink, and spread a ruin round.
Ev'n now the devastation is begun,
And half the business of destruction done;
Ev'n now, methinks, as pond'ring here I stand,
I see the rural Virtues leave the land.
Down where yon anch'ring vessel swells the sail
That idly waiting flaps with ev [...]ry gale,
Downward they move, a melancholy band,
Pass from the shore, and darken all the strand.
Contented toil, and hospitable care,
And kind connubial tenderness, are there;
And piety with wishes plac'd above,
And steady loyalty, and faithful love.
And thou, sweet Poetry, thou loveliest maid,
Still first to fly where sensual joys invade;
Unfit in these degen'rate times of shame,
To catch the heart, or strike for honest fame;
Dear charming nymph, neglected and decry'd,
My shame in clouds, my solitary pride.
[Page 12]Thou source of all my bliss, and all my wo,
That sound'st me poor at first, and keep'st me so;
Thou guide, by which the nobler arts excel,
Thou nurse of ev'ry virtue, fare thee well.
Farewel, and O! where'er thy voice be try'd,
On Torno's cliffs, or Pambamarca's side,
Whether where equinoctial servours glow,
Or winter wraps the polar world in snow,
Still let thy voice, prevailing over time,
Redress the rigours of the inclement clime;
Aid slighted truth, with thy persuasive strain,
Teach erring man to spurn the rage of gain,
Teach him, that states of native strength possest,
Tho' very poor, may still be very blest;
That trade's proud empire hastes to swift decay,
As ocean sweeps the labour'd mole away:
While self-dependent pow'r can time defy,
As rocks resist the billows and the sky.

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