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the nephew, and became as eager for her marriage with Jones, as he had before been to couple her to Blifil.
Here Mír. Allworthy was again forced to interpose,
and to relate what had passed between him and Sophia, at which he testified great surprise.
The 'squire was silent a moment, and looked wild with astonishment at this account. At last he cried out, “Why, what can be the meaning of "this, neighbour Allworthy? Vond o un she was, " that I'll be sworn to.----Odzookers ! I have hit o't. As sure as a gun I have hit o' the very right o't. It's all along o'zister. The girl hath got a ? hankering after this son of a whore of a lord. I
a 'vound 'em together at my cousin, niy lady Bel"laston's. He hath turned the head o' her, that's
certain--but dn me if he shall ha her-I'll ha ' no lords nor courtiers in my vamily.'
Allworthy now made a long speech, in which he repeated his resolution to avoid all violent measures, and very earnestly recommended gentle methods to Mr. W'estern, as those by which he might be assured of succeeding best with his daughter. lle then took his leave, and returned back to Mrs. Miller, but was forced to comply with the earnest entreaties of the 'squire, in promising to bring Mr. Jones to visit him that afternoon, that he might, as be said, 'make all matters up with the young gen' tleman. At Mr. Allworthy's departure, Western promised to follow his advice, in his behaviour to Sophia, saying, I don't know how 'tis, but d-1
me, Allworthy, if you don't make me always do “just as you please; and yet I have as good an *tsteate as you, and am in the commission of the peace as well as yourself,
CHAP. X.. Wherein the History begins to draw towards &
Conclusion, WHEN Allworthy returned to his lodgings, he heard Mr. Jones was just arrived before him. He hurried therefore instantly into an empty chamber, whither he ordered Mr. Jones to be brought to him alone.
It is impossible to conceive a more tender or moving scene, than the meeting between the uncle and nephew (for Mrs. Waters, as the reader may well suppose, had at her last visit discovered to him the secret of his birth). The first agonies of joy which were felt on both sides, are indeed beyond my power to describe: I shall not therefore attempt it. After Allworthy had raised Jones from his feet, where he had prostrated himself, and received him into his arms, O my child! he cried, 'how have I been to blame! how have I injured you! What amends can I ever make you for those unkind, those unjust suspicions which I ' have entertained; and for all the sufferings they ' have occasioned to you? Am I not now made
amends?' cries Jones; 'Would not my sufferings, • if they had been ten times greater, have been now richly repaid? O my dear uncle! this goodness, this tenderness overpowers, unmans, destroys me. I cannot bear the transports which ' flow so fast upon me. To be again restored to your presence, to your favour; to be once more thus kindly received by my great, my noble, my
generous benefactor. — Indeed, child,' cries Allworthy, “I have used you cruelly. ---lle then explained to him all the treachery of Blifil, and again repeated expressions of the utmost concern, for having been induced by that treachery to use him so ill. O, talk not so l' answered Jones; 'in' deed, Sir; you have used me nobly. The wisest
man might be deceived as you were ; and under such a deception, the best must have acted just as you did. Your goodness displayed itself in * the midst of your anger, just as it then seemed. I owe every thing to that goodness of which I have been most unworthy. Do not put me on ‘self accusation, by carrying your generous senti
ments too far. Alas! Sir, I have not been punished more than I have deserved ; and it shall be the whole business of my future life to de'serve that happiness you now bestow on nre; for believe me, my dear uncle, my punishment hath not been thrown away upon me: though I have 'been a great, I am not a hardened sinner; I
thank heaven, I have had time to reflect on my past life, where, though I cannot charge myself ' with any gross villany, yet I can discern follies ' and vices more than enow to repent and to be ashamed of; follies which have been attended ' with dreadful consequences to myself, and liave brought me to the brink of destruction.' . 'I am rejoiced, my dear child,' answered Allworthy; to hear you talk thus sensibly; for as I am con'vinced hypocrisy (good heaven! how have I been 'imposed on by it in others !) was never among 'your faults; so I can readily believe all you say:
You now see, Tom, to what dangers imprudence ' alone may subject virtue (for virtue, I am now 'convinced, you love in a great degree). Prudence ' is indeed the duty which we owe to ourselves; and if we will be so much our own enemies as to neglect it, we are not to wonder if the world is deficient in discharging their duty to us; for “ when a man lays the foundation of his own ruin; “ others will, I am afraid, be too apt to build upon 'it. You say, however, you have seen your errors,
and will reform them. I firmly believe you, my · dear child; and therefore, from this moment,
you shall never be reminded of them by me. Remember them only yourself so far, as for the future
to teach you the better to avoid them; but still ' remember, for your comfort, that there is this
, great difference between those faults which can'dor may construe into imprudence, and those ' which can be deduced from villany only, The
former, perhaps, are even more apt to subject a man to ruin; but if he reform, his character will, at length, be totally retrieved; the world, though ‘not immediately, will, in time, be reconciled to ' him; and he may reflect, not without some mix
ture of pleasure, on the dangers he hath escaped; but villany, my boy, when once discovered, is irretrievable; the stains which this leaves behind, no time will wash away. The censures of * mankind will pursue the wretch, their scorn will 'abash him in public; and if shame drives him 'into retirement, he will go to it with all those 'terrors with which a weary child, who is afraid * of hobgoblins, retreats from company to go to "bed alone.--Here his murdered conscience will 'haunt him. Repose, like a false friend, will fly ' from him. Wherever he turns his eyes, horror presents itself; if he looks backward, unavailable repentance treads on his heels; if forward, incu‘rable despair stares him in the face; till, like a condemned prisoner confined in a dungeon, he detests his present condition, and yet dreads the consequence of that hour which is to relieve him ' froin it. Confort yourself, I say, my child, that this is not your case; and rejoice, with thankfulness to him who hath suffered you to sce your errors, before they have brought on you that de. struction, to which a persistance in even those errors must have led you. You have deserted 'them; and the prospect now before you is such, • ' that happiness seems in your own power.'--At these words Jones fetched a deep sigh; nport which, when Allworthy remonstrated, he said, “Sir, 'I will conceal nothing from you: I fear there is one consequence of iny vices I shall never be able
'to retrieve. O, my dear uncle! I have lost a
. treasure.'- You need say no more,' answered Allworthy; 'I will be explicit with you;
I know * what you lament; I have seen the young lady,
and have discoursed with her concerning you. · This I must insist on, as an earnest of your sin
cerity in all you have said, and of the steadfast- . 'ness of your resolution, that you obey me in one 'instance. To abide entirely by the determination
of the young lady, whether it shall be in your ' favour, or no. She hath already suffered enough : from solicitations which I hate to think of; she • shall owe no further constraint to my family : I 'know her father will be as ready to torment her ' now on your account, as he hath formerly been
on another's; but I am determined she shall suf• fer no more confinement, no more violence, no more uneasy hours.'-' 0, my dear uncle ! an
' swered Jones, ‘lay, I beseech you, some command
on me, in which I shall have some merit in obe*dience. Believe me, Sir, the only instance in whichi “I could disobey you, would be to give an uneasy
moment to my Sophia. No, Sir, if I am so miser* able to have incurred her displeasure beyond all
hope of forgiveness, that alone, with the dreadful ' reflection of causing her misery, will be sufficient ' to overpower me. To call Sophia mine is the
greatest, and now the only additional blessing which heaven can bestow; but it is a blessing
which I must owe to her alone.'-'I will not flat* ter you, child,' cries Allworthy; 'I fear your case * is desperate: I never saw stronger marks of an ' unalterable resolution in any person, than ap‘peared in her vehement declarations against receiving your addresses; for which, perhaps, you can account better than myself.'—Oh, Sir! I can account too well,' answered Jones; I have * sinned against her beyond all hope of pardon; • and guilty as I am, my guilt unfortunately appears to her in ten times blacker than the real colours.