Zitiervorschlag: Eliza Haywood (Hrsg.): "Book II", in: The Female Spectator, Vol.1\02 (1775), S. 57-107, ediert in: Ertler, Klaus-Dieter (Hrsg.): Die "Spectators" im internationalen Kontext. Digitale Edition, Graz 2011- . hdl.handle.net/11471/513.20.2353 [aufgerufen am: ].

Ebene 1►

Book II

Ebene 2► Metatextualität► When first myself and assistants set about this undertaking, we agreed to lay down certain rules to be observed among us, in order to preserve that harmony which it is necessary should exist in all societies, whether composed of a great or small number. One of the most material of which is to devote two evenings in every week to the business we have engaged in. In the first of these meetings we communicate to each other what intelligence we receive, and consider on what topics we shall proceed. In the second, we lay our several productions on the table, which being read over, every one has the liberty of excepting against or censuring whatever she disapproves; nothing being to be exhibited to the public, without the joint concurrence of all. The rendezvous is kept at my lodgings, and I give strict orders that no person whatever shall be admitted to interrupt our consultations; but you may as well attempt to exclude the lightning as the impertinence of some people. ◀Metatextualität Fremdportrait► I dare say there are few of my readers who have not, some time or other in their lives, been plagued with a buzzing fluttering kind of animal, whose love, for the time it lasts, is more troublesome than the hate of any other created being that I know of. I mean a race of mortals, who will tell you [58] all their own secrets in two hours acquaintance, and from thence imagine, they have a right to expect you should be as communicative to them. They will see one whether one will or not;— there is no shutting one's self from them; —they burst in upon one at all hours, and pursue one wherever one goes!—they come galloping to repeat every thing they see or hear of; and one must either be wholly rude, or banish all thoughts of one's own, however agreeable or necessary, to listen to the vociferous trifle they are big with — and the only consolation one has, is the certainty of getting rid of them the next new acquaintance they make. ◀Fremdportrait

Ebene 3► Allgemeine Erzählung► Fremdportrait► It was lately my misfortune to be fastened upon by one of those Tempo-Amyarians, (if I may venture to call them so, without offending the critics) and during the zenith of her fondness of me, had not a moment I could call my own. She came one of those evenings we had set apart for the entertainment of the public, and in spite of the charge I had given, forced her passage through my servants, and flew directly to the room where we were sitting. As she entered without ceremony, so she made no apology for the abruptness, tho' she found I had company, and might easily have seen, by my countenance, how little I was pleased with her visit, if she had not been too tenacious of a welcome for the news she brought; which she told me was of so much consequence, that she could not have slept all night without making me partaker of it.

As it was not from a lady of her degree of understanding, that I expected any intelligence fit for my purpose, and was very much out of humour at [59] her presence, I returned no answer to the compliment she made me; but she seemed to take no notice of my indolence in this point, and without waiting to see whether I should grow more inquisitive or not, began immediately to unlade herself of the fardle she had brought with her.

Ebene 4► Exemplum► She informed us she had been at court that day, had seen the fine lady Bloometta, it being the first time of her appearance there since her marriage,— described every article of her dress,—told us how charming she looked,—how all the young peers envied the happiness of old Pompilius, yet at the same time sneered at the unequal match, and seemed to promise themselves some agreeable consequences from it.—How some, as he led her to the presence, cried out " May and December!" others, "Fire and Frost!" and a thousand such like petty reflections, which the new-wedded pair could not but expect, and any one might be assured would be made, without being an ear-witness of. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 4

After having said all she could on this affair, she started up, and with a promise, neither wished nor requested by me, of calling upon me early the next morning, took her leave with as little ceremony as she had come in, and left us the liberty of pursuing our own discourse. ◀Allgemeine Erzählung ◀Ebene 3

However as good springs some times out of evil, this very interruption occasioned the conversation to turn on a subject which never can be too much attended to, and the too great neglect of which is the source of almost all the evils we feel, or are witness of in private life.

I believe I shall easily be understood to mean Marriage, since there is no one thing on which the happiness of mankind of much depends. It is [60] indeed the fountain-head of all the comforts we can enjoy ourselves, and of those we transmit to our posterity:—It is the band which unites not only two persons, but whole families in one common inseparable interest:—It is that which prevents those numberless irregularities, that would else overthrow all order, and destroy society; but then not to pervert the intention of no necessary and glorious an institution, and rob it of every blessing it is full of, lies only in ourselves. No violated vows before pledged to another, - no clandestine agreements made up by hasty and ungoverned passion, --no sordid bargains where wealth, not merit is the chief inducement, —no notorious disparity of years, of family, or humours, can ever be productive of a lasting concord, either between the principals themselves or those in alliance with them. Dirges, rather than Epithalamiums, should be sung at nuptials such as these, and their friends pity, not congratulate their lot.

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Pompilius had lived in very good harmony with his former lady, and none would have condemned him for paying his vows a second time at the alter of Hymen, provided he had made choice of a partner more agreeable to his present years. His inclinations might not, indeed, have been gratified to so exquisite a degree, but then his judgment had not been arraigned; nor had he forfeited in age, that reputation of good sense he had acquired in youth. How great a pity is it then, that he should give way to the dictates of a passion, the gratification of which can afford him but a short-lived joy; -must be injurious to his own character, and doubly so to the object of his affections!

What, if the charming Bloometta had been [61] disappointed in her first wishes! - What, if the too sensible Palemon had preferred a little fordid dross to the possession of the finest woman upon earth, and her resentment at the indignity offered to her youth and beauty, joined with the ambition of her parents, had set the pretensions of Pompilius in an advantageous light, a moment’s reflection might have served to convince him of the motives, and if he truly loved, have made him chose to recommend some noble youth of his own family, whose merits might have obliterated whatever sentiments she had been possessed of in favour of Pompilius! This indeed would have been a proof of the most generous affection, and at the same time of that command over himself, which is expected from persons in his station.

But how much soever the united joys of love and wine may be able to lull all thoughts of remorse in a heart which seems intent only on indulging its own desires, be they ever so extravagant, that of the sweet Bloometta must endure pangs, which every day will become more severe, by the efforts of her prudence to conceal them: --What conflicts between sincerity and duty must rend her gentle breast, when her doating lord exacts from her a return of his endearments!—How must she regret the sad necessity of being obliged to feign what nature will not grant! Those tender languishments, which, when mutual, afford mutual transport, seem aukward and nauseous in the man we do not love; and instead of more endearing him to us, turn the indifference we before had to him into aversion and contempt. In fine, there are no words to express the miseries of a loathed embrace; and she who sacrifices to pride or pique [62] the pleasures of her youth, by marrying with the man she hates, will soon, though too late to repair the irremediable mischief, repent in the utmost bitterness of soul what she has done. ◀Exemplum

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Methinks it is with great injustice that the generality of the world condemn Aristobulus of ingratitude, perfidiousness, and cruelty: he is indeed an instance, that love is not in our power; and though his lady’s fate is much to be commiserated, his own is, in reality, no less deserving our compassion. This nobleman, who for the graces of his person had few equals, made many conquests, without the artillery of one single sigh or protestation:- Celinda, to his great misfortune, was among the number: Celinda, of illustrious race, heiress of vast possessions, and endued with many perfections of mind and body; yet Celinda, whose love has been the bane of all his happiness, long did she conceal the secret of her passion from the whole word., as well as from him who was the object of it; yet indulging the pleasure of seeing him as much as possible, frequented all places where there was a probability of meeting him, till finding that he paid her no other civilities, than what her rank demanded, those soft emotions, which in the beginning afforded only delightful images, now degenerated into horrors, as they approached nearer to despair. She fell sick:-the physicians soon perceived her disorder was of the mind, and persuaded those about her, to use their utmost endeavours for discovering the cause. In vain were all the entreaties of her friends; in vain the commands of the most tender father; her modesty resisted all, and it was not till she was judged by every one that saw her, as well as by [63] herself, to be at the point of death, that she was prevailed upon to confess, that she desired life only to behold Aristobulus.

Her father, who had before suspected the disease, though not the person from whom the infection came, was rejoiced to find that her inclinations had not disgraced his dignity; and assured her, that if to see Aristobulus was of so much consequence, she should not only see, but live with him, till death should put a period to that happiness.

He made this promise, in confidence that the father of Aristobulus would gladly accede to the union of their families; nor was he deceived in his conjecture; the proposal he made was received with the utmost satisfaction, and the marriage-writings were drawn between them, before the young lord, who happened at that time to be on a party of pleasure in the country, knew that any such thing was in agitation.

Celinda was immediately made acquainted with this agreement, and from that moment the long-absent roses resumed their places in her cheeks, her wonted strength and vivacity returned, and she was again the joy of all who knew her.

But a far different effect, alas! had the news of this affair on him, who was with so much vehemence beloved by her. A special messenger being dispatched to bring him to London, he no sooner was informed of the occasion, but he was seized with the most mortal anguish; --he threw himself at his father’s feet, and with all the moving rhetoric of dutiful affection, conjured him by that paternal tenderness he had ever treated him with, and which he had never been guilty of doing any thing to for-[64]feit, not to insist on his fulfilling an engagement, than which death could not be more terrible.

Never was surprise greater than that of the father of Aristobulus, to hear him speak, in this manner; but it yet received a considerable increase, when on demanding the reasons of his refusal, and what objections he had to make against becoming the husband of so well-descended, so rich, so virtuous, and so young a lady, he had none to offer, but that he was not inclined to marry, or if he were, had something in his nature which opposed any inclination in her favour.

The match was too advantageous to their family, for the old peer to be put off with what seemed to him so trifling a motive, as mere want of love; he therefore resolve that his son should comply with his commands, and to that end enforced them by the most terrible menaces, of never seeing him more, and of cutting him off from all his inheritance, except what was entailed upon the title, which was very small, and little able to support it.

This was a very great shock to one who had the highest notions of grandeur, and a relish for all the expensive pleasures of the young and gay. He knew his father rigid, and obstinate to be obeyed by all who had any dependence on him; and doubted not, but his resentment would sway him to do as he said; he therefore repented he had irritated him so far, and begun to feign a less aversion to the marriage; he begged to be forgiven, and promised to visit Celinda, in the hope, he said, that he should discover more charms in her conversation, than he yet had been sensible of. His father seemed somewhat pacified with this as-[65]surance, and bid him go and offer her a heart she well deserved, and he had too long delayed bestowing.

He did not, it is certain, deceive his father in this point; -he went, but went with a view very different from what any one could have imagined he would ever have conceived: -- in the room of entertaining her with soft professions, which, perhaps, are sometimes made by those who mean them as little as himself could have done, he frankly confessed, he had an aversion to the married state; that it was not in his power to make a husband, such as she had reason to expect; and intreated that she would order it so, that the nuptials, which his father seemed so bent on completing, might be broke off on her side.

How alarming such a request must be to one who loved as she did, any one may judge; but the excess of her tenderness over-ruled all that pride and spirit, which is so natural to women on such occasions:-she paused a while, probably to suppress the rising sighs, but at length told him, that what he desired was the only thing she could refuse him; that her father was no less zealous than his own for the alliance, and that she had been too much accustomed to obedience, to dare to dispute his will in any thing he seemed so bent upon.

As nothing but his eternal peace could have enforced him to have acted in this manner, with a lady of her birth and fortune, and whose accomplishments, in spite of the little effect they had upon him, he could not but acknowledge, he was astonished at the calmness with which she bore it; Ebene 4► Dialog► and judging by that, her affection could not be less tender than he had been told, he left no ar-[66]guments untried, to make that very affection subservient to his aim, of being freed from all engagements with her: but she still pleading the duty she owed to him who gave her being, he grew quite desperate, and throwing off that complaisance he had hitherto behaved with, told her, that if, for the preservation of his birth-right, he were compelled to marry her, he neither could, nor would even endeavour to love her a as wife; --that she must expect only uncomfortable days, and lonely widowed nights; --and that it was not in the power of the ceremony, nor in either of their fathers, to convert an utter dislike into inclination.

To his cruel declaration she replied coldly, that as they were destined for each other by those who had the sole power of disposing of their hands, it was a very great misfortune their hearts could not comply with the injunction; but as for her art, she was determined to follow duty, though she fell a martyr to it. ◀Dialog ◀Ebene 4

Though under the obedience of a daughter she had the opportunity of veiling the fondness of a lover, the honour of our sex greatly suffered by such a behaviour; but, poor lady, the excess of her passion hindered her from seeing into the meanness of it; and at the same time flattered her with the belief, that in spite of the aversion he now expressed, her treatment of him, and the tenderness she could make no scruple of revealing to him in all its force, when she became his wife, would make an entire change in his sentiments, and it would not be in his power to avoid recompensing, with some degree of affection, so pure, so constant, and so violent a flame, as he would then be convinced she long had felt for him. [67] Aristoublus, after he had left her, again essayed to work upon his father’s mind; but all he could urge being ineffectual, he yielded to be a husband, rather than suffer himself to be cut off from being an heir. A day was appointed for the celebration of their nuptials, and they were married with a pomp more befitting their quality, than the condition of their minds. At night they were put to bed with the usual ceremonies; but the moment the company withdrew he arose, and chose rather to pass the hours till morning on a couch alone, than in the embraces of a woman who had indeed perfections sufficient to have made any man happy, who had not that antipathy in nature, which there is no accounting for, nor getting rid of.

It is not to be doubted but Celinda, not only that night, but for a long time afterward, continued to put in practice every tender stratagem, and used every argument that her love, and the circumstances they now were in, could inspire; but they were equally in vain, as the poet says,

Zitat/Motto► “Love scorns all ties, but those that are his own” ◀Zitat/Motto

Aristobulus remained inflexible, and obstinately bent never to be more of a husband than the name; neither time, nor her patient enduring the indignity put upon her, have wrought the least alteration in her favour. They live together in one house, but lye not in the same, eat not at the same table; rarely see each other, and their very servants appear as if of different families. Years after years have rolled on in this manner, yet she continues till a virgin-bride; while he, regardless of her love or grief, endeavours to lose, [68] in the arms of other women, the discontent which a forced marriage has involved him in. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Few men, indeed, have acted with that early sincerity, and openly declared their hatred, like Aristobulus, before marriage; but too many have done it afterwards, and proved by their behaviour, that they looked upon the sacred ceremony but as a thin necessary to be done, either for the sake of propagating their families, or for clearing their estates from mortgages, or for the payment of younger childrens fortunes. These, and various other motives, might be assigned for the alliances daily on foot; but to hear of one that promises an accomplishment of all the needs proposed by the first intention of this institution, is a kind of prodigy, and to say, “There goes a truly happy pair,” after the first month, would call the speaker’s veracity yin question.

Fame either swells the number beyond its just extent, or there are now no less than twenty three treaties of marriage either concluded, or on the carpet, between persons of condition, of which scarce the odd three afford the least prospect of felicity to the persons concerned.

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Fremdportrait► Can Mrs Tulip, in the autumn of her age, tho’ in her dress gaudy as the flower whose name she bears, ◀Fremdportrait imagine her antiquated charms will be able to reclaim the wild, the roving heart of young Briscommon? Not but that gentleman has sense, honour, and good nature: qualities which could not fail of making him know what was due to the merits of Claribella, had the condition of his fortune permitted him to marry her. But his intended bride must become more contemptible in his eyes, than even her gray hairs could make her, when [69] he reflects on the vanity which infatuates her so far, as to deprive her lovely niece of what might have made the happiness of her life, only to purchase to herself the name of wife to one young enough to be her son.

◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3 Ebene 3► Exemplum► Who sees Philimont and Daria together, without perceiving that nothing can be more adored by Philimont than Daria; --nothing more dear to Dariathan Philimont ?—Do not the equally enamoured pair seem to shoot their very souls at each other, at every glance? —Is Daria ever at the opera, the park, the play, without her Philimont ?—Or does Philimont think any company entertaining, if Daria is absent!—Yet Philimont is on the point of marriage with Emilia, and Daria has been long betrothed to Belmour. Strange checquer-work of love and destiny! ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Ebene 3► Exemplum► What reason has Sabina to boast of charms superior to the rest of her sex, of flatter herself with being always the object of Theomenes wishes? Have not his vows been prostituted to half the fine women in town, and if he persisted in those he made to her, so far as marriage, is it not because her fortune is larger than theirs, and more enables him to discharge those debts his extravagancies have contracted. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Ebene 3► Exemplum► How bitterly does Dalinda repent her giving way to an inconsiderate passion, which hurried her to throw herself into the arms of the meanborn, but meaner-soul’d, ill-natured Macro! She imagined as she has since confessed, that by marrying one so infinitely beneath her, she would have been sole mistress of herself and fortune; that he would never dare to take any privileges with the one, without her permission, nor pretend to have [70] the least command over the other; and that instead of being under the authority of a husband, she should have found in him an obsequious slave: -But poor mistaken woman! Macro was no sooner possessed of the power than he made her see a sad reverse to all her expectations; he was so far from regulating the affairs of her estate and family, according to her pleasure, or as she had been accustomed to do, that he plainly shewed he took a pride in contradicting her:- he consulted her inclinations in nothing, and even before her face gave commands, which he knew would be the most disagreeable tolerant which, if she offered to oppose, told her, in the rudest manner, that he was master, and as such would be obeyed. At first he raved, reproached him with ingratitude, and vowed revenge; but what alas! could she do? She had taken no care that proper settlements, in case of accidents, should be made, and was ashamed to have recourse to any of her kindred, whom she had disgraced and disobliged by so unworthy a match. The resentment she testified therefore only served to render her condition worse, and add new weight to the galling yoke she had so precipitately put on: he retrenched her equipage and table; set limits even to her dress; would suffer her neither to visit, nor be visited, but by those he approved, which were all creatures or relations of his own, and such as she had not been used to converse with; denied her even pocket-money; took every measure he could invent to break her spirit, and make her wholly subservient to his will, till at last his tyranny got the better, and he has now reduced her to the most abject slavery. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Tremble, Mariana, left your father’s clerk should [71] prove another Macro; and rather endure the shortlived pangs of combating an unhappy inclination, than by yielding to it, run the hazard of miseries, to which death alone can put a period.

Ebene 3► Exemplum► A few days hence, it is said, will crown the mutual wishes of Myrtano and the amiable Cleora. The friends on both sides are consenting; the marriage-articles are signed; the sumptuous equipage prepared; the country-feat new beautified; the bride-bed adorned; and every thing completed, that industrious ostentation can invent, to make the ceremony, affected to be called private, as pompous and magnificent as possible; yet, how can Cleora assure herself of being always happy in the constancy of her Myrtano , when she is not insensible a lady equal to herself in birth and fortune, and no way her inferior in the perfections either of mind of person, is a melancholy instance of an unfortunate mutability in his nature! Did he not once pursue Brilliante with all those dying ardours he has lately done Cleora? Was not the whole town witness of the adoration with which he treated her? Nay, did he not for her false commit some extravagancies, which as nothing but the most violent and real passion could occasion, so could be excused by nothing less? Yet did he not, without even a pretence for it, all at once forsake, renounce, seem to forget he had ever loved this Brilliante, and declare himself the votary of Cleora? ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Ah Cleora! You triumph now, it is true, and may you ever triumph, since the divine rites of marriage make it criminal to wish otherwise; yet much is to be feared, and very little to be hoped. Nothing is more uncertain than inclination; and [72] a heart that once has varied, without being able to assign any motive for its change, may possibly do the like again; and a time arrive, in which yourself may stand in need of that commiseration, your vanity and joy now hinder you from bestowing on a luckless, though not undeserving rival; while she, cured of her abused and ill-requitted tenderness, may fill the arms of a more constant man and taste the felicities of mutual truth with higher relish, by having been once deceived.

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Fremdportrait► Bellair is a very accomplished gentleman, has a large estate, and lives up to his income, without going beyond it; is charitable to the poor; liberal to merit, especially in distress; hospitable and generous to his friends; punctual in the payment of his tradesmen; keeps an handsome equipage, and a yet better table; is a lover of pleasure, but a hater of vice; and, in a word, has nothing in his character that might not make a prudent and good-natured woman happy in a husband; he had many oblique things given him to that purpose, but he listened to none for a long time, nor seemed inclined to alter his condition, till he saw Miseria. Fremdportrait► He had the pleasure, I cannot say the happiness, to meet this young lady at a ball; she was tall, well-shaped, had something extremely graceful in her air in dancing; a face, though not exquisitely beautiful, yet very agreeable; and the most winning softness in her conversation and manner. ◀Fremdportrait Such as she is, however, the heart of Bellair gave her the preference to all he had ever seen before; and having made some slight inquiry into her character and fortune, desired her father’s permission to visit her in the quality of a lover; - the offer was too advantageous to be refused, the old gentle-[73]man hesitated not to give his consent, and Miseriareceived her new admirer with as much complaisance, as the modesty of her sex admitted.

A few weeks completed the courtship; Bellair married, and, after some days, carrier her home --But, good gods! What a change did she immediately cause in his house! A bill of fare being by his orders brought to her every morning, she struck out three parts in four of the articles; and when Bellair, on finding his table thus retrenched, remonstrated gently to her, that there was not sufficient for the servants, she told him, that she would therefore have the number of them diminished; that she thought it a sin to keep so many idle fellows, who might serve their country either abroad in the wars, or in husband at home; and as for the maid-servants; instead of five, she was determined to keep no more than two. She even took the liberty to desire he would make less frequent invitations to his friends and kindred; and as for the poor they were presently driven from the gate, nor dare appear in sight of it again, for fear of being sent to the house of correction.

This kind of behaviour makes him extremely uneasy; his discontent increases every day, as none pass over without affording him some fresh occasion. His reason and his love are continually at war; up the former has so much the advantage, that though he is loth to do anything which may give offence to a wife so dear to him, yet he is still more loth to become the jest of his acquaintance, for bearing farther with her failings than becomes a man of sense and spirit. He begins of late to exert the authority of a husband and in [74] spite even of her tears, has re-taken some of those servants she had displaced and put many things relating to the oeconomy of his family nearer to their former footing. As for Miseria, she frets incessantly; all that softness in her eyes, which once was so enchanting, is now converted to a sullen gloom; -her voice, her manner, is quite changed; she either fits in his company obstinately silent, or speaks in such a fashion, as it would better become her to be mute. The little satisfaction he finds at home, drives him to seek it abroad, and every thing between them seems drawing towards a mutual dislike. And if that should happen, what consequences may possibly ensue! Reciprocal revilings on the sacred ceremony which united them! Every act of resentment against each other! Remorse! Hatred! Separation! Ruin, and eternal loss of peace to both! ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

A sympathy of humour is therefore no less to be consulted, than a sympathy of inclination, and indeed I think more so; for I have known several married people who have come together, without any thing of what we call the passion of love; who, by happening to think the same way, have afterwards become extremely dear to each other: whereas, on the contrary, some who have met all fire and flame, have afterwards, through an unhappy disagreement, even in very trifles, become all frost and snow. There is a vanity in human nature, which flatters us that we always judge right, and by consequence creates in us an esteem for those, who are wise enough to be of the same opinion we are; in a word, a parity of sentiment is the cement of that lasting friendship, as well as mutual [75] confidence, in which the comforts of a married state chiefly consist.

But though daily experience might convince us how necessary an ingredient this is to happiness, and that without it all the others are ineffectual, yet it is the least of any thing examined into; as if the attainment of a present satisfaction was the sole intent of marriage, and it matter’d not what consequences ensued.

It cannot indeed be in an acquaintance of a week or a month, that one can be able to judge of the disposition of a person; -parents, therefore, are highly to blame when they condemn their children to the arms of those, whom perhaps they have never seen till a few days before the ceremony passes, which is to unite them for ever.

Metatextualität► What I have failed on this score may possibly be looked upon as urged in defence of a late wedding, which gives just matter for astonishment to all the world; since it certainly could have been brought about by nothing (will they say) but a perfect knowledge of that mutual sympathy of humour, which I have been recommending as so great an essential to the felicity of the marriage state. It must be confessed, the artful Vulpone prevailed on the charming Lindamira to think as he did in one point; but that is what no more than thousands have done, or they could never have been united to the object to their wishes, and is the consequence only of that passion which arises from a liking of the person. ◀Metatextualität

This, therefore, I am far from taking to be the case; and I believe the reader will be of my opinion, when I relate the progress of these mysterious nuptials, as it was communicated to me by a [76] Sylph, whose business it is to attend every motion of those, whom nature has distinguished by superior beauty.

Fremdportrait► Lindamirafrom her very infancy gave a promise of charms, which, as she drew nearer to maturity, ripened into the utmost perfection:-descended by her father’s side from a prince, who, while he lived, was justly the darling of his people; and by her mother’s, from a hero, whose name will ever be remembered with honour;- bred up in the strictest principles of virtue, and never from under the eye of parents distinguished for every shining quality befitting their high dignity, but for nothing more than conjugal affection. ◀Fremdportrait

Fremdportrait► Vulpone has no family to boast of, being no more than what one may call of the modern gentry, of which, heaven knows, these latter ages have been very fertile in producing; but to do justice to him, he is no less indebted to his own merit, than to favour, for promotions he has attained: - what he wants in birth, is made up in education, and envy cannot deny him the character of an accomplished gentleman. ◀Fremdportrait

He had frequently the honour of visiting the illustrious parents of Lindamira, and was treated by them with that civility, which they thought his good qualities deserved. Little, alas! Did they foresee the consequence, or that their complaisance would embolden him to lift up his eyes to the possession or their lovely daughter; much less that a young lady, scarce eighteen, the idol of the court, and an object of universal admiration, should ever condescend to entertain the least tender emotions for a man, by some years past the meridian of his age, and in every other respect so infinitely her [77] inferior, that the distance between them would admit of no degree of comparison.

Yet so it happened! the god of soft desire gave a proof how much his power can do in overturning what has ever been looked upon as even an antithesis in nature, and made this blooming charmer, who daily saw un moved the loveliest, noblest, and most accomplished youths die at her feet, unable to resist the solicitations of a man older than her father.

Few were the opportunities he had of addressing her, but those he so well improved, that before once could well imagine she had forgiven his presumption in declaring the passion he had for her, he prevailed on her to reward it by an assurance she would never consent to give her hand to another.

It is not to be doubted, but the correspondence they held together was carried on with the extremest circumspection; but love, like fire, is difficult to be concealed; not all the caution in the world can hinder it from breaking out in one place or another. Some of the family, before whom it is possible they might be less upon their guard, as not thinking them of capacities to penetrate into the secret, took notice of some, passages, which seemed to them as derogatory to the dignity of their young lady, and immediately discovered it to her mother, who that moment acquainted her lord with what she had been told. After consulting together, tho’ the thing appeared incredible, yet the judged it improper to admit any future visits from a person of his station, after having been suspected of daring to hold a correspondence with their daughter. Vulpone was therefore in very civil terms, though without acquainting him with [78] the motives of this change of behaviour, desired to refrain coming to her house, and a strict watch at the same time set over every motion of Lindamira.

They gave her not the least room however to guess they had any doubts as to her conduct, as believing, that if there was any truth in the information that had been given them. She would be less cautious, by not thinking herself suspected, and consequently they should arrive at the certainty much easier than by a formal accusation.

It must be acknowledged, indeed, that this manner of acting was extremely prudent; but Lindamira had her intelligence: - those very servants, who made the discovery to her mother, could not help speaking of it among themselves, her woman over heard what they said, and acquainted her lady, who by that means knew so well how to disguise her sentiments, and affect an unconcern at what secretly wrung her very heartstrings, that her careful parents were deceived by it, and in time perfectly assured in their minds, that there was not the least ground for what they had been told, while the lovers had this consolation, in absence, to converse by letters, which were secretly conveyed to each other by the means of a confidante.

Three whole months passed over in this manner, in all which time Vulpone set not his famished eyes with one sight of his Lindamira; that artful young lady, the better to lull all suspicion, enjoining him never to come to any public place when she was to be there, of which she always took care to inform him; because as she seldom went but with her mother, or some person who [79] might probably be a spy on her actions, and could not answer how far either her own countenance, or that of her lover might betray what she so much desired to conceal, she resolved to leave nothing to chance, or give even the least shadow of an excuse for being sent, as otherwise it is likely she would have been to some place, where it might have been possible for her either to give or receive the satisfaction she now enjoyed of writing to her dear Vulpone, and receiving from him every day fresh protestations of his love and constancy.

At length an opportunity long languished for arrived: - Her mother had bespoke a front-row in the stage-box at the playhouse, but happening to be a little indisposed that day, or not in humour for the entertainment, Lindamira could not be excused from going, a young lady, for whom the family had a great regard, having been engaged to accompany them. She immediately apprized Vulpone of it, and also that they might speak to each other with all the freedom they could wish, as the person who would be with her was wholly unacquainted with him.

Accordingly, they had not been in the box three minutes before he came in, and the house not being very full that night, there was nobody in the box but themselves, so that they were in no danger of having any thing they said overheard, the lady who came with Lindamira being wholly intent on the play.

However it was, what he whispered in her ear that night, had the efficacy to draw from her a promise of running all hazards, and marrying him the next morning. Accordingly, under pretence of taking the air she went out early, and a [80] place being appointed for their meeting, the indissoluble knot was tied; after which she returned home, and all that day passed over, without the least suspicion of what was done.

On the next, some person, either through design or accident acquainted her mother, that she had been observed in very close conference with Vulpone in the box, and that they seemed so much taken up with each other, that they regarded neither the play nor the audience; that excellent lady was a little alarmed at the intelligence, yet now knowing but that it might be of a piece with that which she had formerly received, and saw no proof of its being true, resolved not to give any credit to this till she had more certainty, which she thought she might easily procure, by examining the lady who went with her to the play.

But how greatly did her fears and her astonishment increase, when sitting at her toilet undressing herself for bed, her illustrious confort came into the room, and with a countenance more troubled than she had ever seen him wear, commanded her woman to quit the room, then asked in a kind of confused and hasty voice, where Lindamira was? To which she replying, that she had lately left her, and was retired to her own apartment; he rejoined with a sigh, that he doubted much if any apartment in his house was her choice at present; then proceeded to tell her, that he was well assured, by those whose eyes had convinced them of the truth, that Lindamira had been with Vulpone the morning before, -that they were together in a hackney-coach, and drove very fast towards the city; from which he could not but conclude they were either already married, or too far [81] engaged for her honour and reputation to break off. He had doubtless said more, in the extremity of rage and discontent his soul was then enflamed with, had not the tenderness he had for his lady, and the disorder which was visible in her looks and gestures, restrained him.

After the first emotions were a little over, the servants were one by one called up, and strict inquiry made concerning the delivery of any letters or messages to Lindamira; but all were either really ignorant, or pretended to be so, and no light could be got from them into this affair, but that she had gone out early the morning before, attended only by one footman, whom she left at the Park-gate, and he saw her no more until she returned home in a hackney-coach.

The whole night was passed in examining and debating in what manner they should proceed to come at the truth; - the passion they both were in would not suffer them to see her with any degree of moderation;- so it was at last determined that her father should write to her, which he did in these terms:

Ebene 4► Dialog►Lindamira,

I hear strange things of you: if conscious of having done nothing to offend parents, to whom you have been so dear, nor to degrade the dignity of your birth, delay not to justify yourself, and convince us you have carried on no clandestine correspondence with Vulpone, or any other man; but if guilty, beware how you attempt to deceive us, left a second fault should render the first even less to be forgiven: -- you have been educated in the love of truth, prove at least that you have not swerved from all the [82] virtues inculcated into you by your careful instructors”.

This he sent to her by her woman, who, in a small space of time, returned with this reply, sealed as the other had been.

“Most ever honoured parents,

It is possible some busy person may have informed you of what I neither can nor will deny, though by acknowledging, I have no other merit than by sincerity to plead my pardon. I confess, then, I have ventured to dispose of myself without your permission, which be assured I never would have done, could I have entertained myself without your permission, which be assured I never would have done, could I have entertained the least hope of obtaining it; or if any thing less than the ruin of my eternal peace threatened me, in being deprived of him who is now my husband. Pity, therefore, I beseech you, the sad extreme which enforced this action in her, who in every other thing will always be obedient”.

Lindamira Vulpone ◀Dialog ◀Ebene 4

Suspence now ceased: -this illustrious pair now knew all that their care would have prevented, was irrevocably passed: --How greatly they were troubled, none but parents in the like circumstances can conceive; yet did their anger surmount even their grief: - the answer she sent seemed to them somewhat too bold, and tho’ they had commanded her to declare the truth, they thought she might have done it in more submissive terms; and looking on her as one that had abused their indulgence, affronted their authority, disgraced their family, and in a manner renounced all pretensions to their favour, they sent an immediate order to her to quit the house that instant, and never presume to see them more. [83]

Lindamira, on receiving this command, sent repeated messages, imploring their pardon and blessing, but they were deaf to all intreaties on that score, and she was obliged to depart; after which they retired to their country seat, to give a loose to their disquiet, and avoid hearing any thing on so disagreeable a subject. Vulpone also carried his amiable bride into a sweet recess he had prepared for her, in case any accident should discover their marriage before they intended it.

The town abounds with various conjectures on what the event will be; but I am of opinion it cannot be but happy, provided that Lindamira continues to find in Vulpone the same charms as first induced her to make choice of him, and her noble parents vouchsafe to give a sanction to their love. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Great preparations are now making for the nuptials of Belfont and Miss Tittup: -- as they are both of the same way of thinking, and too much in love with their own dear selves to be in much concern about each other, they may are well enough will continue as they are; but if a reformation should happen on one side without the other, then what in any different circumstance would be the greatest blessing to the party changed, would prove a curse to both; since it is only be persisting in follies of our own, we can be able to endure them in those we are obliged to live with: --the best wish that can be given them, therefore, as a mutual conversion is not to be expected, is, that they may both be always the same vain, fluttering, thoughtless creatures they have ever been; so will they pass their days with ease and peace at home, and only be ridiculous abroad. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Ebene 3► Exemplum► The case of Altizeera is extremely unhappy; [84] who, endued with an excellent understanding herself, was compelled, by the arbitrary will of her father, to become the bride of the veriest fop in town; a fool by nature, and rendered yet more so by a wrong education; he thinks he must have a judgment superior to his wife, because he is a man; and that it comes him to contradict every thing she says and dos, because he is a husband. Her good sense makes her submit to him as such; but she fears to open her mouth in any company if he is present, left he should expose his folly by attempting to show his wit in finding fault with what she utters. I know not how she may forgive him in her own mind; but am sure her acquaintance neither can nor ought to do it, for depriving them of the pleasure they might receive in her conversation, by his stupidity and arrogance. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

I remember, some years ago, I heard a lady say, she imagined it was owing to our long peace, that every public place abounded so with coxcombs and sinikins; and that if we once came to have a war again, a more manly air and dress would be so much the fashion, that those gentlemen who staid at home would naturally affect it, and exchange their foreign silk brocades for downright English cloth. Some accidents in life have since that time broke off our acquaintance, it would else have given me some pleasure to rally her mistake. We are now engaged in three wars; threatened with invasions, Popish pretenders; plots, and what no! Great fleets are equipping; huge armaments getting ready; pressing for land and sea-service; our fields are covered with tents; our streets swarm with soldiers; in every quarter we hear drums beating, trumpets sounding; nothing but military [85] preparations going forwards; yet, in my opinion, our fine gentlemen appear every whit as clean, as calm, and unconcerned as ever, except when they labour under the want of any of those commodities, the interruption of our commerce prevents from being imported; and then indeed they complain bitterly against the times. One who can endure no clothes that are not of the French cut, cries, he is made a monster by a dunce of an English taylor: another is poisoned with ill scents, and dies for some fresh orangerie and bergamot; a third says, “Pox on the Spanish war, and those – that forced our late minister into it; there is not a bit of right vermilion paste now to be had!”

How long this over-delicacy will continue, heaven knows! But it is yet far from being extirpated. Even among the military gentlemen, there are some, who being infected with it before they became so, find it an insuperable difficulty to bring themselves to that hardiness and neglect of personal ornaments, which fruit the life of a soldier.

A person, who has had great dealings with the beau monde, and has lately been obliged to deliver up her books, on account of a statute of bankruptcy awarded against her, one of the assignees, who happens to be a particular acquaintance of mine, took the pains to transcribe, as a great curiosity, the copy of a bill owing to her from a gentleman how in the army, and made me a present of it. Metatextualität► As I am convinced all the items in it are genuine, it afforded me a great deal of diversion, and I believe will not be unacceptable to the public. ◀Metatextualität

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Satire► Cornet Lovely, debtor to Rebecca Facement,
June 6, 1743

For a riding mask to prevent sun-burn I I 0

[86] For a night mask to take away freckles I I 0

For 6 pounds of jessamine butter for the hair 6 6 0

For 12 pots of cold cream I I0 0

For 4 bottles of Benjamin water I 0 0

For 30 pounds of perfumed powder I I0 0

For 3 boxes of tooth powder 0 15 0

For a spunge tooth brush 0 2 6

For a hair tooth brush 0 1 0

For 6 bottles of perfumed mouth water 1 4 0

For a silver comb for the eye brows 0 5 0

For 2 ounces of jet powder for ditto 0 18 0

For 4 boxes of fine lip-salve 1 0 0

For an ounce of best Carmine 3 0 0

For6 bottles of orange flower-water 1 10 0

For 12 pounds of almond paste 6 6 0

For 2 pounds of Bergamot snuff 8 0 0

For 3 bottles of essence ditto 1 10 0

For 6 pair of dog-skin gloves 1 10 0

Total 38 9 6

Such was the ammunition this doughty hero, it seems, took with him; the loss of which, had it happened to have fallen into the enemy’s hands, would probably have given him more concern than routing of the whole army, provided his own clear person had escaped without a scar.

Frequent campaigns, however, it is to be hoped, will wear this effeminacy off, and the example of others teach such new-fledged warriors, that if they would soar to glory, they must entirely throw aside all the softening luxuries of their silken youth. ◀Satire ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Not that there is any necessity that a man must be a sloven, because he is a soldier, and neglect all the decencies of life to prove his attachment to [87] his vocation; -- there is an affectation in this also, as well as the other and I should say, that officer, who, when he might have a good tent to descend him from the weather, chose to lye on the bare earth, exposed to all the inclemencies of the air, had an equal share of vanity with him who had his pavilion hung with velvet and embroidery. To endure al the toils and hardships of the field with patience and intrepidity, to be fearless of danger when the duties of his post commanded, is highly laudable and emulative; but to run into them without a call, and when bravery can be of no service, is altogether idle; and courage in such a one, like all other virtues, degenerates into a vice, by being carried to an extreme.

But I am most of all concerned when I hear a man, having done a gallant action in the field, is so far puffed up with it, that he looks upon himself as a little deity, and that he may, in consideration of having been able to fulfil his duty in one point, dispense with all other obligations.

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Some time before the opening of the last campaign, Amaranthus, a brave young officer, made his addresses to Aminta; his passion had all the effect he wished it should have on her tender heart; -- she either had too much confidence in his honour, or too little artifice to conceal the sentiments he had inspired her with -- he was ravished at the discovery; swore never to be but her’s, and there passed between them a solemn promise of marriage on his return from Germany, for which place it was expected his regiment would have orders speedily to embark.

Each day seemed to bring with it an increase of mutual tenderness, and scarce ever was there a [88] pair, whose love in its beginning promised more lasting felicity. Amaranthus, in every action, testified he had no will but that of his Aminta; and Aminta, by all her behaviour, proved, that whatever she command or intreated of her Amaranthus, was only what she knew he wished she should do.

At length the fatal hour of separation arrived, accompanied with all those agonies which none but those who love are able to conceive: -- glory, which till now had been the darling idol of Amaranthus’ soul, lost all its charms, since it tore him from the society of Amina; and Amina, in being about to be deprived o the presence of Amaranthus, seemed to have no life but for complains.

The cruel necessity, however, must be submitted to; ears, sighs, embraces, and mutual protestations of everlasting constancy, completed the tender, but melancholy farewell: none that had seen them part, could have well distinguished which felt the deepest anguish, but if we consider the nature of the circumstance, we shall find the difference must be wide. Amaranthus, doubtless, loved with the utmost passion at that time, and was going to lose, he knew not for how long, the fight of her who was the object of his flame; but then that absence was the sole misfortune he had to struggle with: whereas Aminta had not only the same in an equal degree, but attended with others of a more dreadful kind. The dangers to which a life, far dearer to her than her own, must inevitably be exposed, filled her with apprehensions, which she was scarce able to support. After his departure, she passed the greatest part of her time at the foot of the altar, offering up her vows [89] and prayers for his protection; nor could the intreaties of her dearest friends prevail on her to partake with them any of those diversions and entertainments her youth had formerly delighted in: all the conversation she coveted, was such as informed her concerning the army; she was continually asking questions on that head; was only pleased or sad, according she heard they were near, or at a distance from the enemy; the arrival of every courier gave a palpitation to her heart, till the receipt of a letter from Amaranthus convinced her, that her terrors as yet had been without foundation.

He wrote to her several times before the battle of Dettingen, in the last of which he acquainted her, that they were on the point of leaving Aschaffenburgh, in order to join the forces at Hanau, from which place she might expect to hear from him again. Welcome as all his letters were, this afforded her a double portion of satisfaction, because, in case of an engagement with the French, the number of the combined armies would give her less to fear from him who took up all her care. But what became of her, when instead of receiving the joyful intelligence she hoped, of having made the enemy fly before them without a blow, she heard there had been a terrible reencounter; that great numbers of brave men had fallen on both sides, and that Amaranthus was among the number of the flain?

It would be in vain to go about to describe what it was she felt; her grief and her despair were above all representation; as they were beyond all bounds; so I shall only say, that both were too violent to endure long continuance, but must [90] have found a period with her life, had she not been relieved by different and more comfortable news.

The wounds, which had occasioned the report of his death, were dangerous indeed, but not mortal; and his friends had greater reason to congratulate than condole them, since the manner in which they were received, purchased him immortal honour.

It is certain he behaved with the utmost intrepidity, and was so far from being daunted by the fall of others, that he seemed rather animated with fresh courage to revenge their face; and though the regiment he was in suffered greatly, and he was himself wounded in many places, yet he would not be prevailed upon to quit the field, till an unlucky blow upon the head quite stunned him, and he fell in all appearance, dead.

As his valour had gained him friends, even among those who were till now the least acquainted with his person, he was immediately taken up, but for some hours discovered no symptoms of breath; so that it was not strange , in the confusion every one was after the battle, that in the accounts transmitted of it, this young hero’s name should be inserted in the list of those who were killed.

Aminta heard of his recovery, and the praises which every one gave to his merit, with a pleasure conformable to the love she had for him; but could not help being a little alarmed when she found he had wrote to others, and she who flattered herself with being the first to whom he would employ his pen, had not received the least line from him since the battle: but it is not without great difficulty we bring ourselves to have an ill opinion of those we love: her tenderness invented ex-[91]cuses for him, which, it is possible, he would not have had artifice to invent for himself, and chose to impute his silence to any cause, rather than neglect. The distance between them was great; couriers might not have opportunity to wait his writing; the post might miscarry, or he might possibly be detached to some place, whence neither courier nor post could come; and what letters he sent, might pass through hands, which he did not judge proper to intrust with the secret of his correspondence with her.

In this manner did she beguile despair till his return; and though she resolved to accuse him, doubted not but he would give such reasons for his seeming unkindness, that she would be obliged to ask his pardon for having been unjust enough to suspect him.

Far was she from being truly unhappy, till after she was informed of his arrival; and several days passed over, without either seeing o receiving any message from him. This was, indeed, what all her love and tenderness wanted ingenuity to account for, and she was now compelled, even in spite of herself, to think him ungrateful and perfidious. Amazement, and some little share of pride, which never fails to exert itself in love abused, prevented her some time from sending to him; at last she wrote, reproached him with the alteration in his behaviour, yet mingled her upbraidings with so much sweetness, as shewed her ready to forgive, whenever he came to intreat it.

To this he returned an answer extremely complaisant, but far from any thing that expressed the ardour of a lover; excused himself by the hurry of his affairs, for having not yet been able to wait [92] upon her; but assured her, he would not fail of paying his respects the first leisure hour; concluded with telling her, that nobody could have a greater regard for her than himself, and that he should be proud of any opportunity to convince her of it; and subscribed himself, not as he was accustomed, “her eternal adorer”, but “her most humble and obedient servant”.

She must have been the dullest and most infatuated of the sex, had she not now seen she had intirely lost a heart she thought herself so secure of, and had so much gloried in: rage and grief had alternately the possession of her soul; yet love still retained a part, and was so blended with them both, that it would not suffer the one to grow into disdain, nor the other to destroy some little remains of hope, that she should one day be able to reclaim him.

She was apt to imagine, that if once she saw him, he could not behold those eyes, which he a thousand times had sworn were the lights of his life, now drowned in tears, of which he was the cause, without resuming those emotions they had formerly inspired him with; but having waited his expected visit longer indeed than is ordinarily consistent with the impatience of a lover, and finding he came not, she wrote a second time, conjuring him not to let her languish in this uncertainty, and told him, that she only begged to know, from his own mouth, her fate, and after that would never ask to see him more.

This pressing mandate he complied with: the fashion in which she received him may easily be guessed at, by what has been said of the violence of her affection; but the excessive coldness, and [93] distant air of his replies to all she said, could not be expressed even by he, who was the witness of it; but the sum of what he gave her to understand was, that he was convinced a tender intercourse with the ladies took up too much of a soldier’s mind, and that he had made a resolution to employ all his in the duties of his function: he told her, that were he in any other situation, or cold think it compatible with that pursuit of shame he was engaged in, to continue an amorous correspondence, Aminta should have the preference of all her sex; but as he was circumstanced, he flattered himself her good sense would induce her to pardon this change of temper in him, since his zeal for the service of his king and country was the only rival which had occasioned it.

It must be acknowledged he deceived her not in this last article; for, in fact, the promotion he had acquainted, the applause of the whole army, the praise bestowed on him by the general, and the compliments made him by ladies of the first quality at his return, on account of his behaviour at Dettingen, have so much elated him, that he is no longer the same person: -- his once soft beseeching air is now converted into one all reserved and haughty; a scornful toss of the head; a careless fling of the arms; eyes that seem intent rather on things within himself, than any thing he can find without; --in fine, there are appears so thorough a change in his whole manner, that if the gestures of the body may be looked upon as any indication of the affections of the mind, as questionless they may, his are full of self-sufficiency: -he seems to think what he has done commands, as his due, the love and respect of all who see him, and that [94] it is beneath him even to regard, much less imagine himself obliged by it.

Aminta had therefore the less to mortify her, as it was not because the superior beauty of any other had supplanted her in his affections, but because in reality he now thought no woman worthy of the serious passion of a man like himself.

She was, notwithstanding, utterly unable to support the shock, and no sooner found his heart was irrecoverable, than despising all other conquests, though she has youth, beauty and fortune enough to make many, retired to a lone country house, where she endeavours, among rural pleasures, to forget those of the great world, and in the melody of the sweet inhabitants of the woods and groves, lose the memory of that voice by which she was undone.

However some people may approve this action in Amaranthus, I cannot help thinking there is more of the savage than the true hero in it; and I am certain we must give the lie to our senses, and many modern great examples, as well as to numbers in antiquity, if we should say, that love and glory are things incompatible; or that a wife and prudent wife, be her passion never so violent, will not always be too tender of her husband’s interest and reputation, to desire, that to prove his regard to her, he should neglect any part of what he owes to them. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

That fiction of the poets, concerning the loves of Mars and Venus, seems built on a very just foundation: --women, in general, are observed to be most fond of military gentlemen; --and wherefore is it so? Surely not because they wear red coats! – That many others do, who sometimes sit [95] behind a counter, and what is worse have not the heart to draw a sword, or fire a pistol; but it is, because a soldier is supposed, at least, to have courage to defend, in any exigence, all who are under his protection; and also because the character of a brave man is, of all other, most esteemed in the world, as that of a coward is the most contemned. Will a woman, therefore, by artifice or persuasion, either directly or indirectly, attempt to make the man she loves, guilty of any thing that might fully the lustre of that character for which she loves him? – Would she not rather push him on to actions, which might justify the choice she made of him? And whatever she suffered in absence for him, or from the fears her tenderness suggested as to the dangers he encountered, would she not value herself on surmounting them, and take a laudable pride in proving how worthy she was of her husband’s affection, by the regard she had for his fame?

Ebene 3► Allgemeine Erzählung► I remember to have been one night at the play, when the wife and two sons of a great admiral came into the box; --some who knew them whispered it to others, till a general murmur ran throughout the house: -- all eyes, all tongues, all hands were immediately employed to sow the love and gratitude the assembly had for the family of that illustrious hero. The voice of the people is the best trump of fame; it is not by fulsome panegyricks, or by the praises of an interested few, or by rewards, often partially bestowed, that true merit is distinguished, but by the unsought, unbiased prayers and blessings of the whole: -- the acclamations bestowed on him sprang from the heart; -- his excellent lady saw and felt an inward [96] satisfaction at it, which diffused itself through all her features, and gave an additional lustre to her eyes; and yet no doubt, she mourned his tedious absence, languished for his return, had often wept in private, and given a loose to all the tender anxiety the knowledge of those numberless and imminent dangers, with which he was at that time surrounded, must involve her in; --yet his glory, dearer to her than all the satisfaction in his presence could save bestowed, dearer to her than even his life, since it was so to him, enabled her to take a pleasure even in the sufferings by which he purchased it. ◀Allgemeine Erzählung ◀Ebene 3

Metatextualität► Many such examples, which I have either heard or read of, I could produce for the honour of my sex in this point; but what the eye is witness of strikes the most, and makes the most deep and lasting impression: I chuse, therefore, rather to mention this lady, because I doubt not but many of my readers were spectators, as well as myself, or her amiable behaviour on this occasion; and perhaps also on many others, when I was not so happy to present. ◀Metatextualität

Some women, I know, have not strength of spirits of support the parting from a beloved and loving husband, without such agonies as might stagger the resolution of the boldest man, render him scarce able to tear himself away, and when he does, compelled by cruel duty, seem as if he had left half his soul behind him; and yet those very ladies may be far from thinking the softness of their sex ought to be complied with, or would think that husband more worthy their affection, who, to the prejudice of his honour, should humour her foible. Ebene 3► Exemplum► Metatextualität► Fremdportrait► But in such cases I would recommend the wife [97] of a later general as an example. Never woman loved a husband to a greater degree of fondness, nor received amore grateful return of tenderness and affection, she was one of those who could not bear the shock of parting, without those emotions I have been describing; and perceiving the fit of her disorders had a greater effect on him than she wished them to have, intreated, that for the future, whenever they were obliged to separate, he would take no leave of her; ◀Fremdportrait ◀Metatextualität --he seemed surprized that a greatness of soul, such as she testified in making this request, could not enable her to endure, with equal firmness, a misfortune which was irremediable in the station he was, and would fain have refused what she desired: “How unkind, said he, and how unjust to your merits must I appear, if I should do as you would have me! And how shall I flatter myself you will suffer less when the new of my departure is brought to you, than if you actually saw me on horse-back!” “ No matter, replied she, what I shall suffer, since the foolish timidity of my nature will not permit me to govern myself as becomes a person wo has the honour to be your wife; it will be more for your reputation, and your ease that the loose I give my griefs may be in private.”

With such kind of arguments she prevailed on him; and orders on after arriving that he must repair to the army, every thing was got ready for his departure with all the secrecy imaginable; not the least mention made of it to the family, nor by any one who came to the house; and on a time prefixed, his equipage attended him at the gates, and he went forth with no other ceremony, than [98] he was accustomed to use when he was to return the same day.

All the tender adieus he had to make were sent to her by letter, and much so ever she endured, none but her woman was a witness; --she could command her pen, though not her eyes; and returned him answers, such as convinced him nothing was so much desired by her as new additions to that reputation he had in so many battles, and amidst so many dangers, acquired. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

The parting of friends and lovers is like the parting of the soul and body, always most easy when least warned of it. The preparations are more terrible than the thing itself; and as reason is oftentimes too weak to overcome a natural timidity, it is infinitely best to be wholly ignorant to the shock we are to sustain, till it arrives.

Metatextualität► I wish, however, there were more occasion than there seems to be for this caution;-- it is my business, as a Spectator, to let as little as possible escape me; and I am sorry to observe, that my researches present me with few instances of that conjugal tenderness, which required such a command over themselves, as the above-mentioned lady endeavoured to attain. ◀Fremdportrait

The farewells married people ordinary take of each other, seem little more than mere matters of form; and some there are, who, after the moment of separation, appear like a prisoner just got rid of his letters; they strike and skip about, as if they knew not how enough to repair, by a present jollity, the anxiety of their late confinement.

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Melinda no sooner finds herself freed from the presence of Romero, than she hurries from assembly; gallants it with every pretty [99] fellow she comes in company with; drives form one end of the town to the other; sends for gentlemen out of chocolate houses, and is the veriest rattle in nature. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Silax pretends the town is full of distempers, and persuades his wife to go to their country seat for the benefit of the air; but the coach which caries her is scarcely out of sight, before he sends for half a dozen friends of his own way of thinking, as many ladies of pleasure to entertain them, and converts every room in his house into a brothel: nothing but feasting, drinking, dancing, and rioting is to be seen; till tired with debauchery, and not till then, he returns to his wife, and lives a regular way of penance. ◀Ebene 3 ◀Exemplum

Exemplum► Ebene 3► Lelia adored Macrobious while present with her, but the service of his country no sooner obliged him to quit her arms, than she fought consolation in the embraces of his own brother; yet Macrobius had married her without a fortune, and still continues to love her too well for his repose. ◀Ebene 3 ◀Exemplum

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Dorimon had made a figure little to be envied by his neighbours, had he not been fortunate enough to appear agreeable in the eyes of the young, rich, and beautiful Clotilda; in spite of all the dissuasions of her friends, she married him, and makes him the most obsequious and tender wife; yet the ungrateful Dorimon, quite insensible of the obligations he has to her, as well as of the charms which could not fail to bind any to the man, is continually finding pretences to be absent from her, and passes the greatest part of his time with a loose creature, whom chance brought him acquainted with at a house of ill fame. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

Can any one believe, that souls like these were [100] ever paired in heaven! Might one not rather be tempted to imagine, that some daemon, enemy to mankind, had been permitted to dispose of them! Those who seem most formed for each other, and suited for mutual happiness, are very rarely suffered to give any testimonies here below of that divine and pre-existing union so much talked on, but still by some cross intervening accident, severed and doomed to lots of different kinds.

Ebene 3► Exemplum► Who can reflect on the strange circumstance which parted Panthea from her dear and betrothed Fidelio, without being seized with the utmost amazement! Metatextualität► But as there is somewhat very remarkable in the story of this young lady, and few have been able to attain a perfect knowledge of the truth, I think I should not fill the province I have undertaken, if I omitted giving the public a full account of the particulars; and to do that, I must trace her misfortunes to their fountain-head, which indeed was from the first moment of her being. ◀Metatextualität

Miletta, her mother, was mistress to the subtle and opulent Lacroon, many years before the death of this lady, but had the artifice to engage him in a covenant, that if he ever happened to be a widower, he should either marry her, or forfeit to her a very large sum of money therein specified. Fate seemed to favour her wishes; he became in a condition for her to demand either the one or the other. He knew himself bound, and hesitated not long before he consented to be the husband of one, for whom his passion was then greatly abated, rather than suffer so much money to go out of his family. Panthea was at that time about eleven or twelve years old, but had been bred in the most [101] private manner, and utterly ignorant of her parents; a person, who had been servant to Miletta, being intrusted with the care of her, whatever she received was transmitted through her hands, to whom she imagined herself some distant relation.

Miletta, who had always preserved some sense of reputation, was now more averse than ever to acknowledging her; and the poor girl was not at all the happier for her mother’s grandeur.

A strange caprice in some women! They are ashamed of the fruits of their sin, though not of the sin itself: everybody knew she was kept by Lacroon, for the gratification of his looser hours, nor was she so weak as to imagine it a secret; yet could she not support the thoughts of being called a mother, without being a wife, or, that even after she was so, that so glaring a proof should appear of her former transgression.

But it was for a vey short time she enjoyed the title she had so much desired; scarce had she shewn herself in her splendor, before she was seized with a distemper which puzzled the physician’s art to give a name to; such as it was, however, it affected both her mind and body; she became delirious, and at some times had such violent fits of frenzy, that they were obliged to tie her in her bed; yet was all this without any symptoms of a fever: an inward wasting at the same time preyed on her vitals, and so decayed her whole frame, that in a few weeks she grew the most pity-moving object that ever was beheld, and died little lamented by any, except those who reaped the advantage of her secrets.

After her death, Lacroon took it in his head to call Panthea home, acquainted her with her birth, [102] and not only owned her as his daughter in the face of the world, but treated her with all the marks of a paternal care and affection.

A change of fortune so undreamed of, so prodigious, could not but be transporting to a young heart; she had now a crowd of servants, all obsequious, and flying to obey her least commands; her person was adorned with jewels, and the most skilful masters in their several professions attended her every morning, to perfect her in all the accomplishments of her sex, and the station to which she now was raised; yet was she not elated to far as to give herself any unbecoming airs; and all this served only to make her pleased; not vain or arrogant.

Envy must allow, that though she is far from being a beauty, there is somewhat of a sweetness in all her air and features that is very attractive; and those who were the least inclined to converse with her on the score of her birth, if by chance they happened into her company, were insensibly engaged not only to continue in it, but also to wish the pleasure they took in being with her might be renewed.

She had scarce reached fifteen, before her youthful charms were taken notice of by many worthy persons of the other sex; but the most powerful effect they had to boast was the heart of the noble and accomplished Fidelio. The passion he had for her made him overlook all the scruples others raised on the account of her mother’s character, and indeed on that of her father also; who, for many reasons, was little esteemed by the generality of mankind.

Lacroon was highly pleased with his addresses [103] on the score of his quality: but Panthea for that of his person and conversation. She loved him long before her modesty would permit her to confess it; but at length her passion broke through all restraints, and she repaid the pain she had given him by acknowledging she felt an equal share. After this declaration they engaged themselves by a solemn vow to live only for each other. Alas, little did either of them think they erred in doing so! Fidelio was entirely at his own disposal, and Panthea had received her father’s positive commands to omit nothing in her power for the better confirming his affections.

The consent, however, was to be asked in form, which Fidelio did not fail to do in the most submissive terms; and Lacroon, though he at first, to disguise his satisfaction, affected to delay the ceremony on account of Panthea’s extreme youth, was easily prevailed upon to fix the day, which was no longer than was requisite to prepare for it in a manner befitting the quality of the one, and the riches of the other.

But see the uncertainty of all human events! This equally-enamoured pair, when they thought themselves most secure, and near being joined to each other, were on the point of being separated eternally; and that too by a way the most severe and shocking of them both, that the extremest malice of their fate could have invented.

Lacroon, to acquire the wealth he now is in possession of, has done such things as perhaps no man before him ever did with impunity. Not but he had been frequently called to account by those whom he had injured, but his cunning, and the corruption of the times, still got him off; and [104] those frequent escapes having rendered him more bold in vice, he at length arrived at that height, as to add insults to injustice; which so provoked some persons of greater credit than any who had yet appeared against him, that they resolved to undertake the cause, and either sink themselves, or procure that punishment on him his crimes deserved.

This happened some few days before that which was assigned for the nuptials of Fidelio and Panthea. The lovers were wholly ignorant of is misfortune, and passed their ours in all the joys which mutual affection, joined with innocence, affords; while Lacroon was calling all his invention to his aid for means to remedy the so much dreaded evil. He had no hope but in Imperio, whose power was incontestable, and had on many less occasions stood his friend; but how to assure himself that he would exert it in this, he was for some time at a loss. At last the tutelary daemon, who had hitherto never left him without some subterfuge, inspired him with one, if possible more black and horrid than ever he had yet been master of.

He remembered to have heard Imperio praise the innocent charms of Panthea, and resolved to make no scruple to offer her up a sacrifice to shame, if by her prostitution he could be preserved from the just prosecution of his enemies. In fine, he went directly to that great person, and intreated he would interpose between him and those who fought his ruin, and filly insinuated, that Pantea would think herself blest to be the slave of him who was the deliverer of her father.

Imperio, just in his own nature, had not that ill opinion of Lacroon which he deserved, and doubtless would have done all he could for him in [105] his exigence, without this offer; but being one of the most amorous men on earth, could not refuse so sweet a bribe as the possession of a young virgin, whom he had frequently looked upon with desiring eyes. He therefore took Lacroon at his word, and promised in return to use all the influence he had to make up matters between him and those antagonists from whom he had most to fear.

Lacroon returned home with a joyful heart, as being certain those who had the greatest malice to him, loved and respected Imperio too much to disoblige him; but when he broke the matter to Panthea, and told her, that instead of being the bride of Fidelio, she must prepare herself to be the mistress of Imperio, he found difficulties which he expected not from one so young, and so entirely a dependent on him. Dialog► She had even the courage to tell him, she would die rather than forfeit her virtue; to which he scornfully replied, “If your mother had been a girl of such squeamish principles, you had not come into the world to contradict my will”.

This cruel reproach on her birth, and coming from a father, joined with the part he acted in this affair, struck her to the heart; she burst into tears, was unable to speak another word, and was ready to sink on the floor. He then repented what he had said, and finding the softness of her nature would be more easily prevailed upon by gentle means, “Be comforted, my child, resumed he, your mother was the more dear to me, as I found her the more ready to recompence my love; I meant not what I said should give you pain; you know I have the greatest tenderness for you; I have proved it, and hope you have gratitude enough [106] to be obedient, especially in anything where my whole fortune, even my life is concerned.” ◀Dialog

He then proceeded to let her know he had many enemies, and had no friend capable of serving him but Imperio; made use by turns of persuasions and menaces, till at length her virtue had not strength to resist their united force, and she yielded to do what in reality her soul abhorred, rather than, by refusing, be the occasion of her father’s ruin, and at the same time be driven out to misery herself.

His point thus gained, Lacroon conducted her himself to the house of Imperio, where she still resides; but whether any better reconciled to her fate, none but her own heart can determine.

As for Fidelio, it would be utterly impossible to express the force of this grief and rage, when he found his tender expectations of a lasting happiness thus vanished into air: --as his passion for Panthea had made him think her the most perfect of her sex, to find her false has given him an antipathy to all womankind; he shuns all conversation, but such as join with him in invectives against love and marriage; yet sometimes, when he thinks himself alone, cries out, “O Panthea, lovely, bewitching maid! Wherefore did heaven join so fair a face with so unchaste and perfidious a heart!”

In hope to cure the disorder of his mind, some friend prevailed on him to quit the town; but this change of place has wrought no other change in him, than to convert the wildness of his behaviour into a profound melancholy, which it is feared will be lasting. ◀Exemplum ◀Ebene 3

I must confess the fate of this young gentleman is greatly to be lamented; but, methinks, the world [107] is too severe upon for Panthea: her youth, and the authority of a father, than whom she had no other friend, may plead some excuse for her want of that fortitude and resolution, which alone could have preserved her virtue:--It is on Lacroon alone that the just censures of her fall should light:-- Lacroon, guilty of crimes unnumbered, yet of none more unnatural, more detestable, than this of separating two hearts, which seemed by heaven united, and seducing and betraying his own child to infamy and perdition. ◀Ebene 2 ◀Ebene 1