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deny but that you had some obligations to the fellow, bad as he is, and I shall therefore excuse : what hath past already, but must insist you never "mention his name to me more; for I promise you,
it was upon the fullest and plainest evidence that ' I
resolved to take the measures I have taken.' Well; Sir,' says she, “I make not the least doubt, .but time will shew all matters in their true and 'natural colours, and that you will be convinced this poor young man deserves better of you than some other folks that shall be nameless.
'Madam,' cries Allworthy, a little ruftled, 'Į will not hear any reflections on my nephew; and 'if ever you say a word more of that kind, I will depart from your house that instant. He is the
worthiest and best of men; and I once more re'peat it to you, he hath carried his friendship to
this man to a blameable length, by too long con cealing facts of the blackest die. The ingrati
tude of the wretch to this good young man is ' what I most resent; for, Madam, I have the greatest reason to imagine he had laid a plot ta supplant my nephew in my favour, and to have disinherited him.'
'I am sure, Sir,' answered Mrs. Miller, a little frightened (for though Mr. Allworthy had the utmost sweetness and benevolence in his smiles, he had great terror in his frowns), 'I shall never
speak against any gentleman you are pleased to think well of. I am sure, Sir, such behaviour ' would very little become me, especially when the 'gentleman is your nearest relation; but, Sir, you
must not be angry with ine, you must not indeed, ' for my good wishes to this poor wretch. Sure I may call him so now, though once you would have been angry with me, if I had spoke of him 'with the least disrespect. How often have I heard you call him your son? How often have you prattled to me of him, with all the fondness of a parent? Nay, Sir, I cannot forget the many ten
der expressions, the many good things you have 'told me of his beauty, and his parts, and his vir'tues; of his good-nature and generosity.--I am sure, Sir, I cannot forget them, for I find them all true. I have experienced them in my own cause. They have preserved my family. You must pardon my tears, Sir, indeed you must, "When I consider the cruel reverse of fortune which ' this poor youth, to whom I am so much obliged, hath suffered; when I consider the loss of your favour, which I know he valued more than his ' life, I must, I must lament him. If you had a dag
ger in your hand, ready to plunge into my heart, 'I must lament the misery of one whom you have 'loved, and I shall ever love.'
Allworthy was pretty much moved with this speech, but it seemed not to be with anger; for after a short silence, taking Mrs. Miller by the hand, he said very affectionately to her: • Come, *Madam, let us consider a little about your daugh
ter. I cannot blame you for rejoicing in a match ' which promises to be advantageous to her, but ‘you know this advantage, in a great measure, depends on the father's reconciliation. I know Mr. Nightingale very well, and have formerly had 'concerns with bim ; I will make him a visit, and ' endeavour to serve you in this matter. I believe
he is a worldly man; but as this is an only son, ‘ and the thing is now irretrievable, perhaps lie 'may in time be brought to reason. I promise you I will do all I can for you.'
Many were the acknowledgements which the poor woman made to Allworthy for this kind and generous offer, nor could she refrain from taking this occasion again to express her gratitude towards Jones, 'to whom,' said she, I owe the op' portunity of giving you, Sir, this present trouble.' Allworthy gently stopped her; but he was too good a man to be really offended with the effects of so noble a principle as now actuated Mrs. Mil
ler; and indeed, had not this new affair inflamed his former anger against Jones, it is possible he might have been a little softened towards him, by the report of an action which malice itself could not have derived from an evil motive.
Nir. Allworthy and Mrs. Miller had been above an hour together, when their conversation was put an end to, by the arrival of Blifil, and another person, which other person was no less than Mr. Dowling, the attorney, who was now become a great favourite with Mr. Blisil, and whom Mr. Allworthy, at the desire of his nephew, had made his steward ; and had likewise recommended him to Mr. Western, from whom the attorney received a promise of being promoted to the same office upon the first vacancy; and in the mean time, was employed in transacting some affairs which the ?squire then had in London in relation to a mortgage.
This was the principal affair which then brought Mr. Dowling to town; therefore he took the same opportunity to charge liimself with some money for Mr. Allworthy, and to make a report to him of some other business; in all which, as it was of much too dull a nature to find any place in this history, we will leave the uncle, nephew, and their lawyer concerned, and resort to other matters.
Containing various Matters. BEFORE we return to Mr. Jones, we will take one more view of Sophia.
Though that young lady had brought her aunt into great good humour by those soothing methods which we have before related, she had not brought her in the least to abate of her zeal for the match with lord Fclamar. This zeal was now inflamed by lady Bellaston, who had told her the preceding evening, that she was well satisfied from the conduct of Sophia, and from her carriage to his lordship, that all delays would be dangerous, and that the only way to succeed, was to press the match forward with such rapidity, that the young lady should have no time to reflect, and be obliged to consent, while she scarce knew what she did. In which manner, she said, one-half of the marriages among people of condition were brought about. A fact very probably true, and to which I suppose is owing the mutual tenderness which afterwards exists among so many happy couples.
A hint of the same kind was given by the same lady to lord Fellamar; and both these so readily embraced the advice, that the very next day was, at his lordship's request, appointed by Mrs. Western for a private interview between the young parties. This was communicated to Sophia by her aunt, and insisted upon in such high terms, that, after having urged every thing she possibly could invent against it, without the least effect, she at last agreed to give the highest instance of complaisance which any young lady can give, and consented to see his lordship.
As conversations of this kind afford no great entertainment, we shall be excused from reciting the whole that past at this interview; in which, after his lordship had made many declararions of the most pure and ardent passion, to the silunt, blushing Sophia; she at last collected all the spirits she could raise, and with a trembling low voice, said, My lord, you must be yourself con'scious whether your former behaviour to me hath 'been consistent with the professions you now 'make.' 'Is there,' answered he, 'no way by
which I can atone for madness? what I did, I am afraid, must have too plainly convinced you, 'that the violence of love had deprived me of my 'senses.' 'Indeed, my lord,' said she, it is in your power to give me a proof of an affection
which I much rather wish to encourage, and to ' which I should think myself more beholden.'
Name it, Madam,' said my lord, very warmly.-My lord,' says she, looking down upon her fan, 'I know you must be sensible how uneasy this pre' tended passion of yours hath made me. - Can you be so cruel to call it pretended?' says he. Yes, my lord,' answered Sophia, “all professions • of love to those whom we persecute, are most insulting pretences. This pursuit of yours is to me a most cruel persecution; nay, it is taking a most ungenerous advantage of my unhappy situation.' '; Most lovely, most adorable charmer, do not accuse me,' cries he, ‘of taking an ungenerous advantage, while I have no thoughts but what are ' directed to your honour and interest, and while 'I have no view, no hope, no ambition, but to throw 'myself, honour, fortune, every thing at your feet.
My lord,' says she, “it is that fortune, and those 'honours, which gave you the advantage of which 'I complain. These are the charms which have se• duced my relations, but to me they are things in' different. If your lordship will merit my grati'tude, there is but one way - Pardon me, di'vine creature,' said he, there can be none. All I 'can do for you is so much your due, and will give
me so much pleasure, that there is no room for your gratitude.'—Indeed, my lord,' answered she, you may obtain my gratitude, my good opi
nion, every kind thought and wish which it is in my power to bestow; nay, you may obtain them 'with ease, for sure to a generous mind it must be easy to grant my request. Let me beseech you, then, to cease a pursuit
, in which you can never ' have any success. For your own sake as well as mine, I entreat this favour; for sure you are too noble to have any pleasure in tormenting an unhappy creature. What can your lordship propose • but uneasiness to yourself, by a perseverance, which, upon my honour, upon my soul, cannot,