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minds me very much of Prince Vildovontdozich-you remember him, Seraphine? He was an ill-used man, as I fancied, and I told the Emperor of Austria that he ought to do something for him. The very next week, he ordered Metternich to make him— I forget at the moment what-either a field-marshal or an archbishop. Do you recollect, child, which ?”

« No, Ma',” said Seraphine.

“I have got it down in my diary,” said Lady Cramly. “I never saw a greater likeness—if he had but mustachios, it would be pere fect”

“But,”, said Emma, “do Archbishops in Austria wear mustachios?"

“ It depends entirely upon the particular regulations of the different chapters," said Lady Čramly. “ The exalted aristocracy with which Seraphine and I exclusively lived, do I believe exactly as they please, at least M. seemed to think so. Seraphine, you know whom I mean by M.?" “ Yes, Ma’,” said Seraphine.

But,” said Emma, “what Mrs. Grindle was that which you saw in France ?

“Oh, such a love of a creature !” said the enthusiastic traveller," so pretty, and so clever, and so nice; you can quite imagine a pretty dear English thing with nice French manners—who first presented her to me, Seraphine?-wasn't it the Duc de Falderall ?”

“No, Ma',” said Seraphine; “ we first met her in a shoemaker's shop in the Rue Richelieu"

“Stuff! my dear child,” said her mamma," I am talking of Versailles, where she was living with her mother-I quite forget at the moment, but I am almost sure it was the Duc de Falderall."

“And what did she call herself?” said Emma.

“ Mrs. Grindle," replied Lady Cramly, “ daughter-in-law of a baronet here. Of course living in the society I always do, and treated with the distinction not only due to my personal rank but my literary character, I live with none but the best of people; and I tell you what, my dear Mrs. Amersham, when a woman like me has got a name, and is able to represent the real state of great nations from the highest authority, and upon the best information, she becomes both loved and feared according to the parties in which she mingles. Rely upon it, that my next work will far exceed my first-when that was published, my poor dear Sir Ferdinand was alive, and he checked my ardour, and what he called 'toned down' my pictures of foreign courts; now, I am left alone I will prove to the world how well I deserve the honours, distinctions, and decorations which have been showered upon me.”

“I have no doubt of that, my dear Lady Cramly,” said Emma; “ but I am exceedingly anxious to know, if you have not been somehow imposed upon by this fascinating young lady, whom, as Seraphine says, you met in the shoemaker's shop.”

“ Imposed upon!” said Lady Cramly; I imposed upon in a foreign capital !--My dear Mrs. Amersham, do you imagine with the resources I possess, the position I hold, and the credentials I command, that I can be imposed upon. I certainly may have confused myself about presenting the dear interesting creature to my gracious friend Phil at the Tuileries, but I cannot mistake her presentation to me by the Duc de Falderall.--You are so stupid, Seraphine, dear-you never recollect any thing ;-and yet,” added she, turning to Mrs. Amersham, “the men think her so wonderfully clever."

“I perfectly recollect," said Seraphine, “two or three days before we left Paris,' an extremely pretty woman with a lady who seemed to be her mother, coming into a shoemaker's shop where we were, in the Rue Richelieu, and you made a sort of acquaintance with her. I liked her—you found out her name, and the day before we actually did leave Paris we went to Versailles, and there we met her in the gardens, and you renewed your acquaintance with her, and we walked together.” “ Yes, child,” cried Lady Cramly, “but the Duc de Falderall”

“Was walking with us also,” said Seraphine ; “ you had just been introduced to him by Monsieur Le Snob, a sous-lieutenant in his regiment who had got us leave to see the grand Ircanor, and—"

“ Oh child, child, you have no memory at all,” said Lady Cramly; “you have forgotten all the circumstances-all the names, and all the localities—that is the advantage of keeping a diary.”.

Just at this period, the large and disagreeable colonel, having had his “say" out with his daughter, with whom as it grieved him to think he could find no particular fault, returned with her to the drawing-room, Jane wearing on her usually placid brow a somewhat anxious and nervous contraction-her eyes rested on those of Emma.

The colonel seemed resolved to be good-humoured; he knew that he was well housed for the night, and although he might to a certain extent be beaten as to the object of his visit, its result proved that he had no real reason for aların, and so he came into the salon rubbing his great hands joyously, and was received cordially by his hostess. Whereupon he began to talk big and loud, and feel himself at home, and would perhaps have pursued that course some time longer, had not the ringing of bells, and the barking of dogs, announced the arrival of the master of the house.

Welcomed to his own hearth and home was Amersham, as such a man must be ; he certainly started at seeing the colonel,-however, he was too happy;" and so, as soon as possible, the customary supper was announced, and without the waste of many previous words, the party were seated.

As they were going to this social and sociable meal, Jane laid her hand upon Emma's arm-bringing to mind something which Smylar once had said with regard to George Grindle's dissolute conduct, and whispered,

• Emma, what does that woman mean about the lady from Versailles ?”

“ Mean!" said Emma, bursting into a fit of laughter, “ who can tell what she means? she never spoke one word of truth in the whole course of her life !"

But where was Mr. Francis Grindle ? How was he? and why was he not there?

DEBTOR AND CREDITOR; OR, AN OLD ACCOUNT NEWLY

STATED. "On a beaucoup écrit, et avec raison, contre les ingrats ; mais on a laissé les bienfaiteurs en repos, -et c'est un chapitre qui manque à l'histoire des tyrans.”

D'ALEMBERT. THERE are two sorts of persons who have made common cause to declaim against the sin of ingratitude, and to accuse humanity of an habitual uneasiness under the yoke of obligations. There are, first, the rich and the prosperous, who having small need of assistance from others, and seeing many occasions presented to them for the exercise of liberality, consider themselves as belonging to the obliging classes, and bound to their interests; and, secondly, the poor and helpless, who feeling a constant want of protection and support, join in a chorus against the abstract ingratitude of the species, in order to pass for splendid exceptions, and to captivate the good will of all from whom they have any thing to hope.

With respect to the former of these personages it is by no means ne. cessary, as a justification of their complaints, that they should have availed themselves of the opportunities of doing good attached to their easy fortunes, and actually earned for themselves a specific claim on the gratitude of mankind; otherwise the category would furnish but a small quota towards the stunning outcry. Indeed it may be honestly asserted, that they who the most freely distribute their superfluous possessions, and exert their good offices in behalf of the humble and lowly, are usually the most patient under the coldness and neglect of those whom they have favoured, and the readiest in devising excuses for their defalcations. For the most part, the rich man's reproach against mankind is set up as a ready excuse for some special refusal of a good turn, some particular withholding of the right hand of fellowship to a friend in distress : and an excellent excuse it is; for, implying as it should seem a wounded spirit, and an honest indignation, it gains credit for good feeling, precisely where feeling is in reality the most thoroughly wanting.

On the part of the poor, the clamour against ingratitude is not so necessarily a conscious departure from truth; for the would-be borrower, deeply sensible of the extent of his own distresses, may well indulge in extravagant notions of the merits of an hypothetical lender; and he who in any emergency has no friend to assist him, may as readily put a value on the absent article, proportionate rather to its rarity than its intrinsic worth. But whatever may be his private opinions on the point, he will not the less insist upon his own sense of obligation, and the pride and pleasure of acknowledging it, when he sees an increased chance of obtaining assistance, through the profession of a lively feeling towards those who may serve him.

Between these two descriptions of persons, there is a sufficient force of lungs to carry all before it, and to establish the opinion that ingratitude is the worst of all offences (ingratum si dixeris, omnia dixeris), and that it is the pet sin and favourite weakness of gentle and simple.

The natural inference from all such general agreements is, that the position so favoured is altogether a fallacy; but without adopting this conclusion in all its rigour, or quixotically maintaining that men are in

May.-VOL. LXII. NO. ccxlv.

с

this respect a whit better than they should be, we must be permitted to express our belief that the statement is much overcharged, and, at least to a certain extent, founded on a one-sided view of the facts. It is an admitted law of our being, that the present holds a decided preponderance in the will over the past ; and that even the future is more influential on conduct, than recollections of what can never return. This being the case, it must be far less our fault than our misfortune, if the sense of an obligation for favours “had or received,” should give way to newer impressions, and if (in the common phrase) eaten bread should be soon forgotten. It is quite consonant, also, with the same great law of vital action, that the memory of the heart" (as the French deaf and dumb boy called it) should be powerfully revived by the near prospect of an approaching necessity for assistance; and that gratitude for benefits yet to come, should produce more powerful reaction in the voluntary system, than that which is purely retrospective. To complain of the order of nature, which has thus regulated our feelings, is to complain that you are a man;" and to set up claims in opposition to it, is not less absurd than it is weak and unjust.

It may therefore be laid down as a rule, that a large part of the ingratitude about which your twaddling moralists make such a pother, arises out of the unreasonable expectations of the obliging parties, and their deficient experience of their own nature in the particular. It is not indeed too much to believe that if they who personally swell the cry, and express the loudest indignation at the insensibility of the friends on whom they have lavished their kindness, could be brought to look at home, and acknowledge the offences they have themselves committed in the like kind, they would find reason for considerably lowering the tone of their vituperations. If those only who were without the sin of ingratitude were permitted to cast the first stone, the cairn of the ungrateful we apprehend would be an infinitely small quantity ; but this tu quoque sort of defence, however available against those who complain, may not be thought a very satisfactory ground for acquitting the defendant. Let us, then, look further into the matter.

One cause of the outcry against ingratitude, and that a very frequent one also, is the prevalent disagreement between the parties as to the sum of obligations contracted. Nothing, for instance, is more common than for the rich and the powerful to take credit for all the evil they have neglected to perpetrate, and to hold society obliged to them for acts of simple justice. It is all very well to quote Fra Paolo's assertion, that mai alcuno si pretende obligato à chi l'habbi fatto giustitia : that acute politician has not stated that the pretension of having obliged was never set up on the like ground in the opposite quarter; indeed, he must have known the reverse to be the truth. Nor indeed is this the worst; for many persons consider themselves as conferring an obligation by the very act of receiving one. A great man fancies that he has conferred an honour on a little man in eating his dinner, borrowing his money, or the like; and a landlord thinks he lays his tenant under eternal obligation by accepting from him the highest sum that can be got for his farm, and permitting the man, in return, to convert that land from barrenness to a maximum fertility, against the completion of the term. More frequent are the differences of rating the amount of favour between the parties, in cases where the naked fact of a benevolence is

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not denied. An architect's estimate is not wider apart from the expense really incurred in the execution of a national monument, than the borrower's estimate of obligation is from that of the lender.“ He lent me an hundred pounds, it is true ; but what is that to him who is rolling in wealth ? and then did I not pay him ?” The lender, on the other side, will tell you, “I lent the ungrateful scoundrel an hundred pounds-a large sum to trust with such a scamp, and that also when nobody else would have trusted him. Long enough, too, was I out of my money, and great was the difficulty I had in getting it back again!" Both these statements, indeed, must be set down as unreasonable exaggerations; but that only shows the clearer, how little probability there is of the parties agreeing on the subject of gratitude.

Still greater divergence is to be traced as to the obligation conferred by the accommodating friend who runs off with his neighbonr's chère moitié. The person thus relieved of what probably he had long been beartily tired, so far from expressing gratitude, is busied in preparing his pistols (or at all events his action) against what he facetiously calls the offending party; while that party, becoming suddenly convinced of the load of annoyance he has taken on his own shoulders, thinks the husband a most ungrateful fellow in pressing for damages in a quarter where he has in fact reaped inappreciable advantage.

Another cause of disagreement is the pretension too often set up by the obliging party, upon any trifling overt act of kindness, to make the person who receives it a debtor for the rest of his life. In money transactions, which are the type of all other debtor and creditor accounts, a receipt for the exact sum that was owing, is pro tanto as good as a receipt in full; and the man who, having been duly paid, renews his demand, is properly set down as no better than a swindler and a cheat : but if the debt, instead of having been contracted in the lawful currency of the realm, arises out of some less definable benevolence, though the favour should have been repaid a hundred-fold over, the debtor gets no quittance, and to the end of his life is liable to calls on his gratitude, which it is an act of moral bankruptcy to decline. The only admitted exception to this rule is in the account current between voter and candidate. The man who plumped at the last election has an admitted demand on the gratitude of his member till the recurrence of another election, and no longer. Unless he then puts in a ditto repeated, by way of refresher, the whole amount of good feeling is lawfully transferred to another, as completely as if it were by entry in the bank books.

Again, there is a fearful source of disagreement on the score of gratitude, arising out of the imputed causation of certain obligations. The obliging party books up the simple fact of a good turn done ; while the obliged is apt to set it down as a sprat Aung out to catch a whale,-mor as a favour bestowed, not so much to oblige A, as to spite or annoy B, -or perhaps to show off in the sight of C—from sheer ostentationor hypocrisy-or any other of the innumerable ricochet motives which determine half the plausible actions of poor humanity. Now, although it does not speak well for the abstract gratitude of the man, who is on the perpetual look out for such discounting pleas in abatement, yet would it be no less than sheer dupery to overlook them entirely. Such Rochefoucauldian views of man and of society may be derogatory to human nature, malevolent, churlish, or what you will; but it cannot be

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