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pense; of which, for that reason, he makes a secret; he is not quite happy; greatly distinguished by the favour of worthy women. Who would wonder at that?-But has paid dear for the distinction!-What can one say? What can one think? He once said himself, that his life was a various life, and that some unhappy things had befallen him. If the prudence of such a man could not shield him from misfortune, who can be exempted from it?--And from worthy women, too!That's the wonder!-But is this Olivia one of the worthy women?-I fancy he must despise us all. I fancy he will never think of encumbering himself with one of a sex that has made him pay so dear for the general distinction he has met with from it. As to his politeness to us, a man may afford to shew politeness to those he has resolved to keep at distance from his heart.
But ah, Lucy! there must be one happy woman, whom he wishes not to keep at distance. This is the affair that hangs in suspense; and of which, therefore, he chooses to say nothing.
I HAVE had the pleasure of a visit from my godfather Deane. He dined with us this day in his way to town. The ladies, Dr Bartlett, and my Lord L-, are charmed with him. Yet I had pain mingled with my pleasure. He took me aside, and charged me so home-He was too inquisitive. I never knew him to be so very urgent to know my heart. But I was frank, very frank; I should hardly have been excusable if I had not, to so good a man, and so dear a friend. Yet he scarce knew how to be satisfied with my frankness.
He will have it that I look thinner and paler than I used to do. That may very well be. My very soul, at times-I know not how I am-Sir Charles is in suspense too, from somebody abroad. From my heart I pity him. Had he but some faults, some great blemishes, I fancy I should be easier about him. But to hear nothing of him but what is so greatly praiseworthy, and my heart so delighted with acts of beneficence -And now my godfather Deane, at this visit, running on in his praises, and commending, instead of blaming me, for my presumptuous thoughts; nay, exalting me, and telling me, that I deserve him-that I deserve Sir Charles Grandison! Why did he not chide me? Why did he not dissuade me?-Neither fortune nor merit answerable?-A man who knows so well what to do with fortune !--The Indias, my dear, ought to be his! What a king would he make! Power could not corrupt such a mind as his. Cæsar, said Dr Bartlett, speaking of him before Mr Deane and all of us, was not quicker to destroy, than Sir Charles Grandison is to relieve. Emily's eyes, at the time, ran over with
joy at the expression; and, drying them, she looked proudly round on us all, as if she had said, This is my guardian!
But what do you think, Lucy? My godfather will have it, that he sees a young passion in Miss Jervois for her guardian!-God forbid !
A young love may be conquered, I believe; but who shall caution the innocent girl? She must have a sweet pleasure in it, creeping, stealing, upon her. How can so inexperienced a heart, the object so meritorious, resist or reject the indulgence? But, O my Emily! sweet girl! do not let your love get the better of your gratitude, lest it make you unhappy! and, what would be still more affecting to a worthy heart, make the generous object of a passion that cannot be gratified, unhappy; and for that very reason, because he cannot reward it! See you not already, that, with all his goodness, he is not quite happy? He is a sufferer from worthy women!-0, my Emily, do not you add to the infelicity of a man who can make but one woman happy, yet wishes to befriend all the world. -But hush! selfish adviser! Should not Harriet Byron have thought of this in time?-Yet she knew not that he had any previous engagements; and may Death lay his cold hand upon her heart, before she become an additional disturbance to his! He knows not, I hope, he guesses not, though Dr Bartlett has found me out as well as the sisters, that I am captivated, heart and soul, by his merits. May he never know it, if the knowledge of it would give him the shadow of uneasiness!
I owned to Mr Deane, that my Lord Land the ladies were warmly interested in my favour. Thank God for that! he said. All must happen to his wish. Nay, he would have it, that Sir Charles's goodness would be rewarded in having such a wife; but what wife can do more than her duty to any husband who is not absolutely a savage? How then can all I could do, reward such a man as this?
But, Lucy, don't you blush for me, on reading this last passage of my writing? You may, since I blush myself on re-perusing it. For shame, Harriet Byron, put a period to this letter!-I will; nor subscribe to it so much as the initials of my name.
SIR CHARLES GRANDISON TO DR BARTLett.
[Enclosed in the preceding.]
Friday, March 17. LAST night I saw interred the remains of my worthy friend Mr Danby. I had caused his two nephews and his niece to be invited; but they did not attend.
As the will was not to be opened till the funeral was over, about which the good man had given me verbal directions; apprehending, I believe, expostulations from me, had I known the contents; I sent to them this morning to be present at the opening.
Their attorney, Mr Sylvester, a man of character and good behaviour, brought me a letter, signed by all three, excusing themselves on very slight pretences, and desiring that he might be present for them. I took notice to him, that the behaviour of his principals, over-night and now, was neither respectful to the memory of their uncle, nor civil, with regard to me. He honestly owned, that Mr Danby having acquainted his two nephews, a little before he died, that he had made his will, and that they had very little to expect from him, they, who had been educated by his direction, and made merchants at his expense, with hopes given them, that he would, at his death, do very handsomely for them, and had never disobliged him, could not be present at the opening of a will, the contents of which they expected to be so mortifying to them.
I opened it in presence of this gentleman. The preamble was an angry one, giving reasons for his resentment against the father of these young persons, who (though his brother) had once, as I hinted to you at Colnebrook, made a very shocking attempt upon his life. I was hurt, however, to find a resentment carried so far as against the innocent children of the offender, and into the last will of so good a man; that will so lately made, as within three weeks of his death; and he given over for three months before.
Will the tenderness due to the memory of a friend permit me to ask, Where would that resentment have stopt, had the private man been a monarch, which he could carry into his last will?
But see we not, on the other hand, that these children, had they power, would have punished their uncle for disposing, as he thought fit, of his own fortune; no part of which came to him by inheritance ?
They had been educated, as I have said, at his expense; and, in the phrase of business, well put out; expenses their careless father would not have been at ; he is, in every light, a bad man. How much better had these children's title been to a more considerable part of their uncle's estate than he has bequeathed to them, had they been thankful for the benefits they had actually received! benefits, which are of such a nature, that they cannot be taken from them.
Mr Danby has bequeathed to each of the three, one thousand pounds; but, on express condition, that they signify to his executor, within two months after his demise, their acceptance of it, in full of all demands upon his estate. If they do not, (tender being duly made,) the three
Mr Sylvester complimented me on this great windfall, as he called it; and assured me, that it should be his advice to his clients, that each take his and her legacy, and sit down contented with it; and he believed, that they the rather would, as, from what their uncle had hinted, they apprehended, that the sum of a hundred pounds each was all they had to hope for.
I inquired into the inclinations and views of the three; and received a very good general account of them; with a hint, that the girl was engaged in a love affair.
Their father, after his vile attempt upon his brother's life, was detested by all his friends and relations, and went abroad; and the last news they heard of him was, that he was in a very ill state of health, and in unhappy circumstances, in Barbadoes; and very probably by this time is no more.
I desired Mr Sylvester to advise the young people to recollect themselves; and said, that Ĭ had a disposition to be kind to them; and as he could give me only general accounts of their views, prospects, and engagements, I wished they would, with marks of confidence in me, give me particular ones; but that, whether they complimented me as I wished, or not, I was determined, for the sake of their uncle's memory, to do all reasonable services to them. Tell them, in a word, Mr Sylvester, and do you forgive the seeming vanity, that I am not accustomed to suffer the narrowness of other people's hearts to contract mine.
The man went away very much pleased with what I had said; and, in about two hours, sent me a note, in the names of all his clients, expressing gratitude and obligation; and requesting me to allow him to introduce them all three to me this afternoon.
I have some necessary things to do, and persons to see, in relation to my deceased friend, which will be dispatched over a dish of tea. And, therefore, I have invited the honest attorney, and his three clients, to sup with me.
I will not send this to Colnebrook, where I hope you are all happy, [all must; for are they not all good? and are not you with them ? till
I accompany it with the result of this evening's conversation. Yet I am too fond of every occasion that offers to tell you, what, however, you cannot doubt, how much I am yours, not to sign to that truth the name of CHARLES GRANDISON.
SIR CHARLES GRANDISON.
Friday Night, March 17. MR SYLVESTER, an honest pleasure shining in his countenance, presented to me, first, Miss Danby; then, each of her brothers; who all received my welcome with a little consciousness as if they had something to reproach themselves with, and were generously ashamed to be overcome. The sister had the least of it; and I saw by that, that she was the least blameable, not the least modest; since, I dare say, she had but followed her brothers' lead; while they looked down and bashful, as having all that was done amiss to answer for.
be raised on such an occasion, carries in its appearances an air of insult. I have, said I, a great desire to do you service. Now let me know, gentlemen, (I will talk to the young lady singly, perhaps,) what your expectations were upon your uncle; what will do for each of you, to enable you to enter the world with advantage, in the way you have been brought up; and, as I told your worthy friend, Mr Sylvester, I will be ready to do you all reasonable service.—But hold, sir; for Mr Thomas Danby was going to speak; you shall consider before you answer me. The matter is of importance. Be explicit. I love openness and sincerity. I will withdraw, till you have consulted together. Command me in when you have determined.
I withdrew to my study; and in about a quarter of an hour, they let me know, that they were ready to attend me. I went in to them. They looked upon one another. Come, gentlemen, don't fear to speak; consider me, for your uncle's sake, as your brother.
The elder brother was going to speak; but hesitating, Come, said I, let me lead you into the matter-Pray, sir, what is your present situation? What are your present circumstances?
My father, sir, was unhappy-My fatherWell, sir, no more of your father-he could do nothing for you. Your whole dependence, I presume, was upon your uncle.
My uncle, sir, gave us all our education-my uncle gave each brother a thousand guineas for putting out each to a merchant; five hundred only of which sums were so employed; and the other five hundred guineas are in safe hands.
Your uncle, sir, all reverence to his memory, was an excellent man.
Indeed, sir, he was.
And what, sir, is the business you were brought up to?
My master is a West India merchant. And what, Mr Danby, are your prospects in that way?
Exceeding hopeful, sir, they would have been -my master intended to propose to my uncle, had he lived to come to town, to take me in a quarter-partner with him directly; and, in a twelvemonth's time, a half-partner.
A very good sign in your favour, sir. You must have behaved yourself well.-And will he now do it?
Ah! sir, and was silent.
Upon what terms, Mr Danby, would he have proposed to your uncle to take you in a quarterpartner?
Sir-he talked of-
Four thousand pounds, sir. But my uncle never gave us hopes of more than three thousand guineas each, besides the thousand he had given; and when he had so much reason to resent the unhappy steps of my father, he let us
And does she countenance your address? If her uncle-I don't doubt if her uncle could have prevailed upon my uncle
Well, sir, I am your uncle's executor.-Now, sir, (to Mr Edward Danby,) let me know your situation; your prospects?
Sir, I was put to a French wine-merchant. My master is in years. I am the sole manager of his business; and he would leave off to me, I believe, and to his nephew, who knows not so much of it as I do; nor has the acquaintance, either in France or England, that I have; could I raise money to purchase half the stock.
And what, sir, is necessary for that purpose? O, sir! at least six thousand pounds. But had my uncle left me the three thousand I once hoped for, I could have got the other half at an easy interest; for I am well beloved, and have always borne a good character.
What did you suppose your uncle would do with the bulk of his fortune, (you judged it, I suppose, to be large,) if you expected no more than three thousand guineas each at the most, besides what he had given you?
We all thought, sir, said Mr Edward Danby, it would be yours, from the time that he owed his life to your courage and conduct. We never entertained hopes of being his heirs general; and he several times told me, when I was in France, that you should be his heir.
He never hinted that to me. What I did was as necessary to be done for my own safety, as for his. He much over-rated my services. But what are your prospects, Mr Edward Danby, in the French wine-trade?
O sir! very great!
And will your master leave off to you and his nephew, think you?
I dare say he would, and be glad of retiring to Enfield, where he has a house he is so fond of, that he would be continually there by his good will.
And have you, sir, any prospect of adding to your circumstances by marriage? Women are a drug, sir. I have no doubt of offers, if once I were my own master.
I started. His sister looked angry. His bro
ther was not pleased. Mr Sylvester, who, it seems, is an old bachelor, laughed.
A true merchant this already! thought I. Well, now, shall I have your consents, gentlemen, to take your sister aside?—Will you trust yourself with me, Miss Danby? Or had you rather answer my questions in company?
Sir, your character, your goodness, is so well known, I scruple not to attend you.
I took her hand, and led her to my study, leaving the door open to the drawing-room in which they were. I seated her. Then sat down, but still held her hand.
Now, my dear Miss Danby, you are to suppose me, as the executor of your uncle, his representative. If you had that good uncle before you, and he was urging you to tell him what would make you happy, with an assurance, that he would do all in his power towards it; and if you would open your mind freely to him; with equal freedom open it to me. There was only this difference between us; he had resentments against your father, which he carried too far when he extended them to his innocent children; [but it was an atrocious attempt, that embittered his otherwise benevolent spirit; I have no resentment; and am armed with his power, and have all the will he ever could have, to serve you. And now, let me know, what will effectually do it?
The worthy girl wept. She looked down. She seemed as if she were pulling threads out of her handkerchief. But was unable to return any other answer, than what her eyes, once cast up, as if to heaven, made for her.
Give me, my good Miss Danby, (I would not distress you,) give me, as your brothers did of their situation, some account of yours. Do you live with either of your brothers?
No, sir. I live with an aunt; my mother's sister.
Is she good to you?
Yes, sir, very good. But she has children; and cannot be so good as she would be to me. Yet she has always been kind; and has made the best of my uncle's allowance for my education; and my fortune, which is unbroken, is the same sum that he gave my brothers; and it is in good hands; and the interest of it, with my aunt's additional goodness and management, enables me to make a genteel figure; and, with my own housewifery, I never have wanted some little matters for my pocket.
Good girl! thought I-Mercantile carle! thy brother Edward, pretty one! How dared he to say, that women are drugs?-who, in their economy, short as their power is, are generally superior to men?
Your uncle was very good to put you upon a foot with your brothers, in his bounty to them; as now he has also done in his will; and assure yourself, that his representative will be equally
kind to you as to your brothers. But shall I ask you, as your uncle would have done-Is there any one man in the world, whom you prefer to another?
She was silent; looked down; and again picked her handkerchief.
I called in her elder brother, (not the drugmerchant,) and asked him what he knew of his sister's affections?
Why, my good Dr Bartlett, are these women ashamed of owning a laudable passion? Surely there is nothing shameful in discreet love.
Her brother acquainted me with the story of her love; the good girl blushing, and looking down all the while, with the consciousness of a sweet thief, who had stolen a heart, and, being required to restore it, had been guilty of a new cheat, and given her own instead of it.
The son of Mr Galliard, an eminent Turkeymerchant, is the man with whom she has made this exchange. His father, who lives in the neighbourhood of her aunt, had sent him abroad, in the way of his traffick; partly with a view to prevent his marrying Miss Danby, till it should be seen whether her uncle would do anything considerable for her; and he was but just returned; and, in order to be allowed to stay at home, had promised his father never to marry without his consent; but nevertheless loved his sister, Mr Danby said, above all women; and declared that he never would be the husband of any other.
Í asked, whether the father had any objections, but those of fortune, to his son's choice? and was answered, No. He could have no other, the young man, like a brother, said; there was not a more virtuous and discreet young woman in the kingdom than his sister, though he said it, that should not say it.
Though you say it, that should not say it? Is not our relation entitled to the same justice that we would do to another?
We must not blame indiscriminately, continued I, all fathers who expect a fortune to be brought into their family, in some measure equivalent to the benefit the new-comer hopes to receive from it; especially in mercantile families, if the young man is to be admitted into a share with his father; who, by the way, may have other children
Something by way of equivalent for the part he gives up, should be done. Love is a selfish deity; he puts two persons upon preferring their own interest, nay, a gratification of their passion often against their interests, to those of everybody else; and reason, discretion, duty, are frequently given up in a competition with it. But love, nevertheless, will not do everything for the ardent pair. Parents know this; and ought not to pay for the rashness they wish to prevent, but cannot.
They were attentive. I proceeded, addressing myself to both in the mercantile style.
Is a father, who, by his prudence, has weathered many a storm, and got safe into port, obliged to re-embark in the voyage of life, with the young folks, who, perhaps, in a little while, will consider him as an incumbrance, and grudge him his cabin? Parents (though a young man, I have always thought in this manner) should be indulgent; but children, when they put themselves into one scale, should allow the parent his due weight in the other.-You are angry at this father, are you not, my dear Miss Danby?
I said this, to hear what answer she would return.
Indeed I am not. Mr Galliard knows best his own affairs, and what they require. I have said so twenty and twenty times; and young Mr Galliard is convinced, that his father is not to be blamed, having other children. And, to own the truth, (looking on the floor,) we both sit down, and wish together, now and then; but what signifies wishing?
My sister will now have two thousand pounds; perhaps when old Mr Galliard sees, that his son's affections
Old Mr Galliard, interrupted I, shall be asked to do nothing inconvenient to himself, or that is not strictly right by his other children; nor shall the niece of my late worthy friend enter into his family with discredit to herself.
Notice being given, that supper was ready, I took the brother and sister each by the hand; and, entering the drawing-room with them, Enjoy, said I, the little repast that will be set before you. If it be in my power to make you all three happy, happy you shall be.
It must give great pleasure, my dear Dr Bartlett, you will believe, to a man of my lively sensations, to see three very different faces in the same persons, from those they had entered with. I imagined more than once, as the grateful eyes of the sister, and tongues of the brothers, expressed their joy, that I saw my late worthy friend looking down upon us delighted, and not with disapprobation upon his choice of an executor, who was determined to supply the defects, which the frailty of human nature, by an over-strong resentment on one hand, and an over-flowing gratitude, on the other, had occasioned.
I told Mr Thomas Danby, that, besides his legacy, he might reckon upon five thousand pounds, and enter accordingly into treaty for and with his master's niece.