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caught mine eye, no martial bust frowned upon me as I advanced: his countrymen had placed no recording stone to point out the hero's last retreat, nor had any kind relative bestowed the annual pittance to bind his green sod with briars.
When age rendered labour in sufficient for a maintenance, he sought refuge in his parish work. house,
Where sireless youth and joyless age repair, (Driv'n by hard fate) to seek parochial care. What poor reward awaits the humble brave! A name unknown, and an untrophied grave.'
But whilst ruminating over the unconscious dead the dews of night began to fall, and admonished me (if health and all her rosy blessings were dear) to return to the abodes of the living. Soon Somnus began to shed his poppies over me; and while the downy god was about to take his station on mine eyelids I exclaimed with Somerville,
• How vain the pomp of kings! Look down, ye
date, which peremptorily ordered my amazed mother to cease from that moment her protection of Mary, and never to hold intercourse with the dear girl more. This was a direful
command; torturing alike to the hearts, the fondly attached hearts, of my mother and Mary.
Mamma, in dismay and distrac tion, now deviating from her established rule of never speaking of her domestic sorrows, revealed this unfortunate event to an amiable friend, Mrs. Constantia Fermor; who, from that time, became the protectress of Mary.
Not more cruel than unfounded was the suggestion of Alfred's attachment to Mary: it is true, he fondly loves her, but it is with the affection of a brother. Lady Delamore, from the uncommon discre tion Mary, upon every occasion, evinced, was induced, when she attained her fourteenth year, to disclose to her the secret (which my mother firmly believed) of her birth, with strict injunctions never to breathe a suspicion of it to any one; and shortly after brought her on a visit here, to introduce her to the equally well-informed St. Orville:for well knowing their often seeing each other could not well be avoided, and fearing their mutual fascination, she prudently led them to love each other by the near tie of consanguinity.
The AMIABLE WIFE and ARTFUL After my dear grandmamma Ash
[An Extract from SANTO SEBASTIANO, a Novel, by the Author of The Romance of the Pyrenees'.]
(Concluded from page 383.)
'MY mother's conduct most sensibly affected lord Delamore; but he retired to his pernicious counsellors, and returned-as firmly believing the attachment of St. Orville as before with the cruel man
grove's death, and that I resided entirely at home, I too was introduced learned to love her almost as dearly to Mary, as my sister; and soen as I do my brother: and, in despite of my father's interdict, I often go to see her, as she is now only a few miles distance from hence; as upon the marriage of miss Spencer, about two years ago, to a man of good fortune, near Lyme, Mrs. Spencer moved her residence to that place. Only for my visits, my beloved
sister (for I am incredulous to lord Delamore's assertion, and am, as well as St. Orville, certain Mary is his daughter) would be quite brokenhearted, for she is dejected beyond measure at being so cruelly deprived of the happiness of seeing her beloved benefactress.
Selina, I have already told you, was easily won by the blandishments of Mrs. Monk; whom, for years, she visited unknown to my mother: and in those secret interviews, her mind was so perverted, and her heart so mu lelled, that her duty and affection were quite alienated from her incomparable mother, and given, with her whole confidence and interest, to the diabolical mistress of her father. At length, my poor mother obtained the dreadful intelligence of who it was that estranged the affections of her eldest child from her. Agonising was the horrible information: she entreated, supplicated, implored, and commanded her daughter never to visit Mrs. Monk more; but in vain. The secret once disclosed, Selina braved the matter out; triumphed in her disgraceful disobedience; and now openly visited this mortal foe to her mother: and to this hour she daily resorts to her, recounting all the occurrences of the castle, and plans and plots with her, to make my mother wretched.
By this unnatural (and surely I may say, infamous) attachment to Mrs. Monk, the wily Selina first secured for herself a high place in my deluded father's affection; which she has since failed not to improve, by her unwearied blandishments and machinations: so that it is long since it has been firmly believed by all, that she will be sole heiress to my father's immense personal wealth; and yet even that belief, nor her personal attractions, ever gained for her a suitor, until sir Charles Stratton, ruined by his
thoughtless dissipation, and with a mind careless of domestic happiness, made proposals for her, against the entreaties, nay prayers, of his mother, lady Horatio Fitzroy. But,
lady Selina, or a pistol,' was his reply; and he addressed Selina-a woman I have heard him execrate ten thousand times, as a fiend, a diabolical, and every harsh epithet he could think of; even at the time he was making desperate love to me..... Nay, start not; I am not love-stricken by my sister's elected husband. Oh! no; I have but one cousin, who ever endangered my heart:-not sir Charles Stratton; but one too tasteless to think of me: so, thank my stars, my affections" are still to be disposed of.
The moment Charles (who was the avowed absolute aversion of Selina) declared himself her lover, she instantly became most desperately enamoured; and compels him to act the lover in the most glowing colours: and if you have any partiality for the ridiculous, I think you will be amused by sir Charles's real or pretended passion.. For, you must know, it is his invariable rule to fall in love with every new pretty face he sees; and the last, in his opinion, is always the most fascinating: so that, when he comes here, should he be surprised by the sight of a beautiful new face, expect to see him souse at once into love for it, and making awkward endeavours to conceal from Selina his new admiration.
About myself, I have little to say. I am four years younger than Selina (one cause of her great aversion to me); and nearly three my brother's junior. My grandmother Ashgrove (who long knew, before my dear mother discovered it, of Selina's intimacy with the vile Monk), fearing that my heart should be peryerted by pernicious counsel, early
begged me from my mother. For two years, I resided totally with grandmamma: but then, upon visiting my mother, and finding lord Delamore made no attempt to introduce me to Mrs, Monk (I suppose, because he knew my volatility would lead me to keep no secret), my grandmother judged it for my happiness not totally to monopolise me, lest, by doing so, she should weaken my mother's affection for me. From that period, therefore, until my dear grandmother's death, I resided six months alternately with lady Ashgrove and at home; my education conducted by a very estimable governess, aided by masters, and under the inspecting eye of my mother and grandmother.
In this way, too, was Selina educated;-only, without the assistance of grandmamma, who, I may say, almost abhorred my sister. Selina, in her turn, even from my birth, conceived a deadly enmity to me; and, ere I was actuated by her conduct to my adored mother, I strangely disliked her. We never, in childhood, coalesced; but, as time went on, and disclosed many secrets to me, my dislike has changed to detestation, Mutual antipathy has increased with our years; and since my beloved Mary was despoiled of my mother's protection, my nominal sister and self rarely exchange even a sentence in a week for at that time, greatly irritated by my father's cruelty to poor St. Orville (which all sprung from the diabolical malice of Selina, and her coadjutor Monk); in the anguish of my heart, I said to Selina, "I was sure she was a changeling, and not my mother's child." Her rage almost amounted to frensy, and she flung her draw ing-box, then in her hand, at me; but luckily it did not reach me and, since that time, you cannot
wonder at my being upon worse terms than ever with her.
By being so much with my dear grandmother (who absolutely detested my father), I heard him harshly reprobated, and turned into the strongest ridicule, by my lively aunt Ennerdale; heard him condemned by lord and lady Horatio Fitzroy, with unqualified severity: and, tenderly love ing my mother, you will not wonder that resentment for the neglect and unkindness she has experienced took po-session of my mind: and that perpetually hearing him spoken of as I did, should lessen him in my estimation. I hope you will consider this as some mitigation of my failure in veneration for lord Delamore: but St, Orville will not receive it as such; indeed, this is the only thing we ever disagreed about; for his maxim is, "that others fail ing in their duties, is no excuse for our doing so."
"Though my father," St. Orville always says, "sometimes forgets his affection for his son, that son shall never forget his duty to his father." Nor does he, miss De Clifford; for no one who sees the undeviating sweet, conciliating, and respectful manner of St. Orville to his father, could suspect that father ever had been cruel or unkind to him.
'Not so with me, I am ashamed to say; for seldom can I catch my, self treating my father with proper respect. My mother's injuries are ever floating in my mind's eye; and, in a constant state of irritation, I often found my flippant tongue say. ing saucy things to lord Delamore➡ way, sometimes turning him into ridicule--which always extremely displeases my mother with me; and yet I cannot help it; for how can a libertine father be an object of re spect to his grown-up offspring? Indeed, until I came down to attend
him in his last illness, I firmly be- tire, with his physicians, to receive instructions from them.
lieve I hated him.
Though lord Delamore's late acquired dislike to London confines him so much to the country, he has constantly made my mother spend every spring in town, to keep up the family state and consequence in the public eye; and to mix with those of her own station, unmingled with the base alloy, which in the country he is compelled to admit into the society of his family. Last year, being eighteen, I was presented; and a very delightful time we had in town, from the queen's to the king's birth-day but this year, alas! how sadly different! My father, out of sorts with every one, because he had unjustly quarrelled with his son, would not accompany us to town; but staid here, brooding mischief, and at length fretting himself into illness. My dear mother, in consequence of mental disquietude, fell dangerously ill the last week in January, and continued in a very weak and precarious state until the beginning of May. By the management of Selina, my father knew not the danger my mother had been in, until it was past; and just as he heard of it, his terrible illness came on; when I hastened down to him, and found him so weak, so ill, so full of agonising pain, so very near death, that I felt my supposed hatred of him had been all delusion. For two days after my arrival, he knew me not, his fever ray so high (his complaint, rheumatic gout); but when his abating pain, and consequent decrease of fever, allowed him to observe me, he eagerly called me to him, kissed me tenderly, said "I looked like my angel mother" (a resemblance he never allowed before), and bade me "not to leave him." I meant to obey him; but shorly after, I was compelled to reVOL. XXXVIII.
On my return to my father, he said to me, in a tone that thrilled through my heart, "My child, go to bed. I remarked how pale and thin you looked; and Holt has in-' formed me, your long and tender attendance upon your mother subdued you, and that you have been very ill, and in a rheumatic fever too. I know that pain, and must feel for you: but hearing you left your sick chamber, for the first time, to come to me; and that since your arrival you never sought your pil low; has given such pain to my heart, I cannot bear it.-Go to bed, my child."..
I wept for joy, at this proof of his affectionate concern for me; and feeling that Nature did absolutely require my taking rest, to sustain me through, what the physicians. apprehended, a relapse in my father, I retired: after two hours' rest, I returned, and found him still; his curtains drawn around him. I sat quietly by his bed-side, until I heard him sigh heavily, and move. I then gently drew aside the curtain, to look at him; when he instantly caught my hand, and pressed it affectionately to his lips.--Oh! how my heart thrilled!
That night, as the nasty foreboding doctors apprehended, he had a relapse; but it turned out, most fortunately, of little consequence; when, in the first moments of returning pain, poor Holt, overpowered by his sorrow, unguardedly dropped some word expressive of despair. My father, with almost terrifying vehemence, instantly exclaimed
Driveller! I am not dying. I cannot, will not, die! Emily cannot now come to me; and on the bosom of my angel wife, only, will I resign my last breath."
Qh, Miss De Clifford ! what delu sive dreams of happiness for us all did I augur from these emphatic words! During the very slow progress of my father's amendment, his kindness and growing partiality to me seemed hourly to increase. We talked incessantly of my mother. I ventured to speak of St. Orville; my father seemed pleased that I did so; and we often pursued the subject together. At length the Gazette arrived containing my gallant brother's late glorious achievement; during the perusal of which, my father wept like a child; and, as soon as abated agitation permitted him to hold a pen, he wrote a long letter to St. Orville-what it contained I know not; but it cost lord Delamore many tears.
It happened, most unfortunately, that my father was so much recovered, as to be able to walk out before the return of my mother;—a return, I have no doubt, Selina most diabolically retarded: writing for so many renewals of leave of absence; -first for permission to stay the birth-day; and then that my mother looked pale, and was so weak she was not yet equal to so long a journey; and this was all, I am certain, because she dreaded their meeting before Monk had an opportunity of working my overthrow in my father's favour, and turning his heart from my mother. Last Mondayob! it was black Monday for me!my father walked over to visit that enchantress Monk and returned from her, an altered being. No more did his eyes beam with affection on me; no more was his voice attuned by kindness. Alas! he returned the harsh, stern father, I had ever before found him. I thanked Heaven, St. Orville's letter was gone, beyond the reach of malice to recal; but I trembled for all the airy castles Į had built, for the conjugal hap
piness of my parents: and, alas! alas! the frigid reception my father gave my mother, after a separation of almost five months-and after her dangerous indisposition, and his own
cruelly put every lingering hope to flight. I know he was offended at her want of punctuality, in not being at Bridport, to which place he anxiously rode this morning, to meet her (the longest ride he has attempted since his illness); and fatigue and disappointment terribly irritated him
but could not have occasioned such a heartless reception as that: and I cannot but mingle self-upbraidings with my sorrow; for I doubt not my indignant impetuosity increas ed the malice and machinations of Mrs. Monk.
On my father's being taken ill, this Circe flew hither. By his lordship's order, she was admitted, and became his chief nurse:-and such a nurse, Seabright the housekeeper told me, never was before seen!.... Sitting rocking herself on her chair, with a face a yard long, to look woe-begone; and without rouge, to look like grief. Howling, when he moaned; fidgetting with the curtains, when he dosed, effectually to awaken him; running about, shouting, bawling, and calling every one
impeding all; and doing nothing herself, when his pain became violent and alarming-but officiously giving him all his medicines, of which, in her tender, agonised anxiety (as she herself termed it) always contriving to spill two-thirds: though she managed never to lose a drop of the madeira she had continually recourse to, to sustain her through her heart-rending attendance: and both Seabright and Holt affirm, they are certain she threw the medicines about, and made all her noises, on purpose to prevent his recovery, being anxious to come into possession of the immense bequest he has made to