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of diligence confirmed by experience, labours under all the disadvantages natural to one who is liberated from long and irksome restraint, and, suddenly becoming his own master, rushes heedlessly into the vortex of novelty, amusement,
and fancied pleasure, without friends to advise le or check his thoughtless career, because his age
and expected prudence prevent them from taking
80 delicate a step with a man supposed to be e arrived at the years of discretion; but this, proTom
bably, ingenuous youth! is, happily for you, not your situation. Such, however, was my case, and
the cause of all my miscarriages :---presumptuous, Voll and confident in my own virtuous intentions and
inclinations, I boldly ventured into the snares of
you to make a serious PAUSE, and reflect deeply upon the facts, remembering, at the same time, that it will most inevitably prove your own lot if you follow my imprudent, thoughtless example; and that a well-spent after-life of a centúry will not wipe out the foul stain, regain your character or your friends, nor perhaps your peace of mind."
The effects of my folly have been these. Having got deeply into debt, for years I have been in a manner sequestered from society, though accustomed to the best, and compelled to be a solitary in the midst of a CROWD, hunted by bailiffs, or immured within the walls of a loathsome prison, and publicly begging from its grated doors the bitter bread of misery; subjected to the reproaches of my creditors, and to the more agonizing reflections of a naturally good and ingenuous mind; forsaken by all my friends---one only excepted, who has been the means of rescuing me, by steady and unexampled perseverance in kind offices, from want, and probably from worse---and has lived to see a complete reformation crown his endeavours, and corret conduct take place of folly and dissipation.
A beloved wife, whom I had brought to distress by my extrayagance, and injured in her peace, by frequent fits of ungovernable in
. . toxication
toxication, was previously compelled by her necessities, and the advice of her friends, to leave me, and return to the most laborious of all employments, teaching in a school, for the support of an innocent and helpless babe, which I could no longer maintain; and, lamentable to say, it soon fell a martyr to death,
- probably to its misguided father's vices. A consumption, and a complication of disorders, brought on by too much fatigue and fretting at my unkindness, soon carried off the mother; and I was only liberated time enough from a prison to receive her forgiveness, and follow her to the same grave to which we had but a year before attended my innocent babe. She was respectably buried at the expence of her friends; for, to my shame, I had put it out of my own power to do it. Her good character preserved those friends to the last, which my imprudence lost, before I had time or opportunity to know the value of them.
Reader! young man! whoever you are, contemplate this picture. View it well, and keep it continually in your memory, till by habit you are confirmed in goodness ;'and while you shudder at the fatal effects of sin, abstain from it yourself, and think not too hardly of the penitent MONI. TOR, who thus opens his wounds afresh for your warning and instruction. I could have heightened the picture more by the introduction of the moving death-bed scene of an exemplary and
good woman, an affectionate wife, who died in peaceful composure with Christian fortitude, and whose last words to me were, “ If you respect my memory, do what is right, and think of me ..sometimes.”
Happy shade! I have thought of you in the midnight watches, at the dawn of day, in the hustle and hurry of the noon-tide hours, and at falling eve; in the cheerful and in the reflecting moment; nor will I cease till death to remember and practise your dying exhortation, as far as my weak efforts and means enable me.
Having thus given you one side of the picture, I will not take my leave of the subject without informing you, that sincere repentance has followed my errors, and that, though forsaken by my relations and the world, that good Providence, which with complacency beholds from on high the patient struggles of the friendless children of adversity, and holds out an assisting hand to the silent, sinking, but repenting sinner, is, I trust, rewarding my fortitude by an amendment of my heart, judgment, and fortunes, and may, probably, enable me in time to do justice to those I have injured by my extravagance, and to my own-naturally ingenuous feelings, which headstrong passion alone has been able for a time to deaden and overcome... : To those who have known me in former life, and especially to those who were more nearly con
nected with me, I will only say in the words of Him whom we all revere, “ Break not the bruised reed---quench not the smoking flax.” I have not, however, met with one relation who has come fora ward to assist me in want, or encourage and comfort me in adversity ; but a stranger (though well acquainted with all my past life) has perseveringly done it; and I hope the remembrance of it will be sweet to him in the silent hours of reflection, but, above all, in the hour of his departure from this life. I forbear to name him; nor do I reproach my connexions, for I have no right to blame them; but I merely state this for the warning and intsruction of my young readers, and may it enter deep into their hearts. .
I have at length, ingenuous youth! conquered the syren, VICE; she now presents a very different face to my astonished view, and I have learnt to know and distinguish her, under all her disguises, from her rival. To show her to you in her true colours, as well as to keep her at a distance from you in the road we are to pursue, is the intent of my acting as your CONDUCTOR in the difficult journey you are about to undertake; nor will it be less my business to engage VIRTUE to accompany us, the better to guard and protect you against the snares of Vice; for she is found of them that seek her, and she will at last conduct those who take her as their guide to the mansions of bliss, on the further side of yon mountain, upon