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woman, there so suddenly upon her journey. Joseph was likewise there; and I have heard it was remarked that she fixed her eyes on him much more than on the parson; but this I believe to be only a malicious rumour. When the prayers were ended, Mr. Adams stood up, and with a loud voice pronounced : 'I publish the banns of marriage between Joseph Andrews and Frances Goodwill, both
of this parish,' &c. Whether this had any effect on Lady Booby or no, who was then in her pew, which the congregation could not see into, I could never discover: but certain it is, that in about a quarter of an hour she stood up, and directed her eyes to that part of the church where the women sat, and persisted in looking that way during the remainder of the sermon, in so scrutinising a manner, and with so angry a countenance, that most of the women were afraid she was offended at them. The moment she returned home, she sent for Slipslop into her chamber, and told her, she wondered what that impudent fellow Joseph did in that parish? Upon which Slipslop gave her an account of her meeting Adams with him on the road, and likewise the adventure with Fanny. At the relation of which, the lady often changed her countenance; and when she had heard all, she ordered Mr. Adams into her presence, to whom she behaved as the reader will see in the next chapter.
CHAPTER II. A dialogue between Mr. Abraham Adams and the Lady
Booby. MR. Adams was not far off; for he was drinking her ladyship's health below in a cup of her ale. He no
sooner came before her, than she began in the following manner: ‘I wonder, Sir, after the many great obligations
you have had to this family' (with all which the reader hath, in the course of this history, been minutely acquainted), that you will ungratefully show any respect 'to a fellow who hath been turned out of it for his misdeeds. Nor doth it, I can tell you, Sir, become a man of your character, to run about the country with an idle fellow and wench. Indeed, as for the girl, I know no harm of her. Slipslop tells me she was formerly bred • up in my house, and behaved as she ought, till she hankered after this fellow, and he spoiled her. Nay, she may still, perhaps, do very well, if he will let her ' alone. You are therefore doing a monstrous thing, in endeavouring to procure a match between these two people, which will be to the ruin of them both.' 'Madam,' says Adams, 'if your ladyship will but hear me speak, I protest I never heard any harm of Mr. Joseph Andrews; if I had, I should have corrected him for it; for I never have, nor will, encourage the faults of those under my cure. As for the young woman, I ' assure your ladyship I have as good an opinion of her ' as your ladyship yourself, or any other can have. She
is the sweetest-tempered, honestest, worthiest, young creature ; indeed, as to her beauty, I do not commend her on that account, though all men allow she is the handsomest woman, gentle or simple, that ever ap
peared in the parish.' -'You are very impertinent, says she, "to talk such fulsome stuff to me. It is "mighty becoming truly in a clergyman to trouble ' himself about handsome women, and you are a deli"cate judge of beauty, no doubt. A man, who hath
lived all his life in such a parish as this, is, a rare “judge of beauty. Ridiculous! Beauty indeed! a country-wench a beauty !-I shall be sick whenever
I hear beauty mentioned again. And so this wench is to stock the parish with beauties, I hope. But, Sir,
our poor is numerous enough already; I will have no 'more vagabonds settled here.'--'Madam,' says Adams, • your ladyship is offended with me, I protest, without any reason. This couple were desirous to consummate
long ago, and I dissuaded them from it; nay, I may * venture to say, I believe I was the sole cause of their
delaying it.' — Well,' says she, and you did very wisely and honestly too, notwithstanding she is the greatest beauty in the parish.'— And now, Madam,' continued he, 'I only perform my office to Mr. Joseph.' • Pray, don't mister such fellows to me,' cries the lady. "He,' said the parson, with the consent of Fanny, " before my face put in the banns.'— Yes,' answered the lady, I suppose the slut is forward enough ;
Slipslop tells me how her head runs upon fellows; • that is one of her beauties, I suppose. But, if they
have put in the banns, I desire you will publish them no • more without my orders.'— Madam,' cries Adams, 'if
any one puts in sufficient caution, and assigns a proper reason against them, I am willing to surcease.'—'I tell ' you a reason,' says she : "he is a vagabond, and he shall not settle here, and bring a nest of beggars into the parish ; it will make us but little amends that they will be beauties.'—Madam,' answered Adams, with
the utmost submission to your ladyship, I have been in'formed by lawyer Scout, that any person who serves a year gains a settlement in the parish where he serves.'
Lawyer Scout,' replied the lady, 'is an impudent 'coxcomb; I will have no lawyer Scout interfere with
me. I repeat to you again, I will have no more incum'brances brought on us : so I desire you will proceed no • farther.' -- Madam,' returned Adams, “I would obey your ladyship in every thing that is lawful; but surely
the parties being poor is no reason against their marrying. God forbid there should be any such law. The poor have little share enough of this world already; it would be barbarous indeed, to deny them the common privileges, and innocent enjoyments, which nature indulges to the animal creation.'—Since you understand yourself no better,' cries the lady, 'nor the respect due from such as you to a woman of my distinction, than to affront my ears by such loose discourse, I shall mention " but one short word; it is my orders to you, that you
publish these banns no more; and if you dare, I will ' recommend it to your master, the doctor, to discard you ' from his service. I will, Sir, notwithstanding your poor ' family, and then you and the greatest beauty in the
parish may go and beg together.' -— Madam,' answered Adams, 'I know not what your ladyship means by the
terms master and service. I am in the service of a master who will never discard me for doing my duty; and if the doctor (for indeed I have never been able to pay for a license) thinks proper to turn me from my
cure, God will provide me, I hope, another. At least, 'my family, as well as myself, have hands: and he will
prosper, I doubt not, our endeavours to get our bread 'honestly with them. Whilst my conscience is pure, I
shall never fear what man can do unto me.'-'I condemn my humility,' said the lady, 'for demeaning 'myself to converse with you so long. I shall take other 'measures; for I see you are a confederate with them.
But the sooner you leave me the better; and I shall give orders that my doors may no longer be open to you. I will suffer no parsons who run about the country with beauties to be entertained here.'— Madam,' said Adams, 'I shall enter into no persons' doors against their will: but I am assured, when you " have inquired farther into this matter, you will applaud, not blame, my proceeding; and so I humbly take my • leave:' which he did with many bows, or at least many attempts at a bow.
CHAPTER III. What passed between the lady and lawyer Scout. In the afternoon the lady sent for Mr. Scout, whom she attacked most violently for intermeddling with her servants; which he denied, and indeed with truth, for he had only asserted accidentally, and perhaps rightly, that a year's service gained a settlement; and so far he owned he might have formerly informed the parson, and believed it was law. 'I am resolved,' said the lady, to have no • discarded servants of mine settled here; and so, if this
be your law, I shall send to another lawyer. Scout said, “If she sent to a hundred lawyers, not one or all of " them could alter the law. The utmost that was in the • power of a lawyer, was to prevent the law's taking effect; and that he himself could do for her ladyship as well as any other; and I believe,' says he, Madam, your ladyship not being conversant in these matters, hath mistaken a difference; for I asserted only, that a man who served a year was settled. Now there is a • material difference between settled in law and settled ' in fact: and as I affirmed generally he was settled, and
law is preferable to fact, my settlement must be understood in law, and not in fact. And suppose, Madam, we
admit he was settled in law, what use will they make of • it? how doth that relate to fact? He is not settled in • fact: and if he be not settled in fact, he is not an inhabitant; and if he is not an inhabitant, he is not of this