« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
Harmless at length th' unhappy man was found, | Ten years enduring at her board to sit,
The spirit settled, but the reason drown'd;
And all the dreadful tempest died away;
To the dull stillness of the misty day.
And now his freedom he attain'd-if free,
The lost to reason, truth, and hope, can be ;
His friends, or wearied with the charge, or sure
The harmless wretch was now beyond a cure,
Gave him to wander where he pleased, and find
His own resources for the eager mind;
The playful children of the place he meets,
Playful with them he rambles through the streets;
In all they need, his stronger arm he lends,
And his lost mind to these approving friends.
That gentle maid, whom once the youth had
Is now with mild religious pity moved;
Kindly she chides his boyish flights, while he
Will for a moment fix'd and pensive be;
And as she trembling speaks, his lively eyes
Explore her looks, he listens to her sighs;
Charm'd by her voice, th' harmonious sounds invade
His clouded mind, and for a time persuade :
Like a pleased infant, who has newly caught
From the maternal glance a gleam of thought;
He stands enrapt, the half-known voice to hear,
And starts, half-conscious, at the falling tear.
Rarely from town, nor then unwatch'd, he goes,
In darker mood, as if to hide his woes;
Returning soon, he with impatience seeks
His youthful friends, and shouts, and sings, and
Speaks a wild speech with action all as wild-
The children's leader, and himself a child;
He spins their top, or, at their bidding, bends
His back, while o'er it leap his laughing friends;
Simple and weak, he acts the boy once more,
And heedless children call him Silly Shore.
'SQUIRE THOMAS; OR, THE PRECIPITATE CHOICE.
Such smiling rogues as these,
Like rats, oft bite the holy cords in twain,
Too intrinsicate t' unloose-
Worship and awe, and they will claim it too.
Fathers," they cry, "long hold us in their chain,
Nay, tyrant brothers claim a right to reign;
Uncles and guardians we in turn obey,
And husbands rule with ever-during sway;
Lear, act 1. sc. 2. Short is the time when lovers at the feet
If I do not have pity upon her, I'm a villain; if I do not love her, I am a Jew.
Much Ado about Nothing, act ii. sc. 3.
Women are soft, mild, pitiable, flexible;
But thou art obdurate, flinty, rough, remorseless.
Henry VI. part 3, act ii. sc. 4.
He must be told of it, and he shall; the office
Becomes a woman best; I'll take it upon me;
If I prove honey-mouth'd, let my tongue blister.
Winter's Tale, act ii. sc. 2.
Disguise-I see thou art a wickedness.
He meekly listen'd to her tales and wit;
He took the meanest office man can take,
And his aunt's vices for her money's sake:
By many a threatening hint she waked his fear,
And he was pain'd to see a rival near;
Yet all the taunts of her contemptuous pride
He bore, nor found his grovelling spirit tried:
Nay, when she wish'd his parents to traduce,
Fawning he smiled, and justice call'd th' abuse;
"They taught you nothing; are you not, at best,"
Said the proud dame, "a trifler, and a jest?
Confess you are a fool!"-he bow'd and he con-
SQUIRE THOMAS flatter'd long a wealthy aunt,
Who left him all that she could give or grant:
Ten years he tried, with all his craft and skill,
To fix the sovereign lady's varying will;
This vex'd him much, but could not always last : The dame is buried, and the trial past.
There was a female, who had courted long
Her cousin's gifts, and deeply felt the wrong;
By a vain boy forbidden to attend
The private councils of her wealthy friend,
She vow'd revenge, nor should that crafty boy
In triumph undisturb'd his spoils enjoy ;
He heard, he smiled, and when the will was read,
Kindly dismiss'd the kindred of the dead;
"The dear deceased," he call'd her, and the crowd
Moved off with curses deep and threatenings loud
The youth retired, and, with a mind at ease,
Found he was rich, and fancied he must please :
He might have pleased, and to his comfort found
The wife he wish'd, if he had sought around;
For there were lasses of his own degree,
With no more hatred to the state than he :
But he had courted spleen and age so long,
His heart refused to woo the fair and young;
So long attended on caprice and whim,
He thought attention now was due to him;
And as his flattery pleased the wealthy dame,
Heir to the wealth he might the flattery claim;
But this the fair, with one accord, denied,
Nor waved for man's caprice the sex's pride:
There is a season when to them is due
Of beauty kneel, and own the slavery sweet;
And shall we this our triumph, this the aim
And boast of female power, forbear to claim?
No! we demand that homage, that respect,
Or the proud rebel punish and reject."
Our hero, still too indolent, too nice
To pay for beauty the accustom'd price,
No less forbore t' address the humbler maid,
Who might have yielded with the price unpaid;
But lived, himself to humour and to please,
To count his money, and enjoy his ease.
It pleased a neighbouring 'squire to recommend
A faithful youth, as servant to his friend;
Nay, more than servant, whom he praised for parts
Ductile yet strong, and for the best of hearts
Twelfth Night, act ii. sc. 2. One who might ease him in his small affairs,
With tenants, tradesmen, taxes, and repairs;
Answer his letters, look to all his dues,
And entertain him with discourse and news.
The 'squire believed, and found the trusted youth A very pattern for his care and truth;
Not for his virtues to be praised alone,
But for a modest mien and humble tone;
Assenting always, but as if he meant
Only to strength of reasons to assent:
For was he stubborn, and retain'd his doubt,
Till the more subtle 'squire had forced it out;
Let us this night, as one of pleasure date,
And of surprise: it is an act of fate."
'Go on," the 'squire in happy temper cried;
"I like such blunder! I approve such guide."
They ride, they halt, the farmer comes in haste,
Then tells his wife how much their house is graced ;
They bless the chance, they praise the lucky son
That caused the error-Nay! it was not one;
But their good fortune-Cheerful grew the 'squire,
When the 'squire's thoughts on some fair damsel Who found dependants, flattery, wine, and fire;
The faithful friend his apprehensions felt;
He heard the jack turn round, the busy dame
Produced her damask; and with supper came
The daughter, dress'd with care, and full of maid-
It would rejoice his faithful heart to find
A lady suited to his master's mind;
But who deserved that master? who would prove
That hers was pure, uninterested love?
Although a servant, he would scorn to take
A countess, till she suffer'd for his sake;
Some tender spirit, humble, faithful, true,
Such, my dear master! must be sought for you.
Nay, still was right, but he perceived, that strong And powerful minds could make the right the wrong."
Six months had pass'd, and not a lady seen
With just this love, 'twixt fifty and fifteen;
All seem'd his doctrine or his pride to shun,
All would be wooed, before they would be won;
When the chance naming of a race and fair,
Our 'squire disposed to take his pleasure there :
The friend profess'd, " Although he first began
To hint the thing, it seem'd a thoughtless plan :
The roads, he fear'd, were foul, the days were short,
The village far, and yet there might be sport."
"What! you of roads and starless nights afraid?
You think to govern! you to be obey'd!"
Smiling he spoke, the humble friend declared
His soul's obedience, and to go prepared.
The place was distant, but with great delight
They saw a race, and hail'd the glorious sight:
The 'squire exulted, and declared the ride
Had amply paid, and he was satisfied.
They gazed, they feasted, and, in happy mood,
Homeward return'd, and hastening as they rode;
For short the day, and sudden was the change
From light to darkness, and the way was strange;
Our hero soon grew peevish, then distress'd;
He dreaded darkness, and he sigh'd for rest:
Going, they pass'd a village, but, alas!
Returning, saw no village to repass;
The 'squire remember'd too a noble hall,
Large as a church, and whiter than its wall:
This he had noticed as they rode along,
And justly reason'd that their road was wrong.
George, full of awe, was modest in reply,
The fault was his, 'twas folly to deny ;
And of his master's safety were he sure,
There was no grievance he would not endure."
This made his peace with the relenting 'squire,
Whose thoughts yet dwelt on supper and a fire;
When, as they reach'd a long and pleasant green,
Dwellings of men, and next a man were seen.
"My friend," said George, "to travellers astray Point out an inn, and guide us on the way."
The man look'd up; "Surprising! can it be
My master's son? as I'm alive, 'tis he."
"How! Robin," George replied," and are we near
My father's house? how strangely things appear!
Dear sir, though wanderers, we at last are right:
Let us proceed, and glad my father's sight;
We shall at least be fairly lodged and fed,
I can ensure a supper and a bed ;
Surprised, our hero saw the air and dress,
And strove his admiration to express ;
Nay! felt it too-for Harriet was, in truth,
A tall fair beauty in the bloom of youth;
And from the pleasure and surprise, a grace
Adorn'd the blooming damsel's form and face;
Then too, such high respect and duty paid
By all-such silent reverence in the maid;
Venturing with caution, yet with haste, a glance;
Loath to retire, yet trembling to advance,
Appear'd the nymph, and in her gentle guest
Stirr'd soft emotions till the hour of rest:
Sweet was his sleep, and in the morn again
He felt a mixture of delight and pain.
How fair, how gentle," said the 'squire, "how meek,
And yet how sprightly, when disposed to speak!
Nature has bless'd her form, and Heaven her mind,
But in her favours Fortune is unkind;
Poor is the maid-nay, poor she cannot prove
Who is enrich'd with beauty, worth, and love."
The 'squire arose, with no precise intent
go or stay, uncertain what he meant :
He moved to part; they begg'd him first to dine;
And who could then escape from love and wine?
As came the night, more charming grew the fair
And seem'd to watch him with a two-fold care:
On the third morn, resolving not to stay,
Though urged by love, he bravely rode away.
Arrived at home, three pensive days ho gave
To feelings fond and meditations grave;
Lovely she was, and, if he did not err,
As fond of him as his fond heart of her;
Still he delay'd, unable to decide
Which was the master passion, love or pride:
He sometimes wonder'd how his friend could make
And then exulted in, the night's mistake;
Had she but fortune, "Doubtless then," he cried,
"Some happier man had won the wealthy bride."
While thus he hung in balance, now inclined
To change his state, and then to change his mind
That careless George dropp'd idly on the ground
A letter, which his crafty master found;
The stupid youth confess'd his fault, and pray'd
The generous 'squire to spare a gentle maid;
Of whom her tender mother, full of fears,
Had written much; "She caught her oft in tears,
For ever thinking on a youth above
Her humble fortune: still she own'd not love;
Nor can define, dear girl! the cherish'd pain,
But would rejoice to see the cause again:
That neighbouring youth, whom she endured be-
She now rejects, and will behold no more:
Raised by her passion, she no longer stoops
To her own equals, but she pines and droops,
Like to a lily, on whose sweets the sun
Has withering gazed-she saw and was undone :
His wealth allured her not, nor was she moved
By his superior state, himself she loved;
So mild, so good, so gracious, so genteel,-
But spare your sister, and her love conceal;
We must the fault forgive, since she the pain must
"Fault!" said the 'squire, "there's coarseness in the mind
That thus conceives of feelings so refined;
Here end my doubts, nor blame yourself, my friend,
Fate made you careless;-here my doubts have
The way is plain before us-there is now The lover's visit first, and then the vow Mutual and fond, the marriage rite, the bride Brought to her home with all a husband's pride; The 'squire receives the prize his merits won, And the glad parents leave the patron son.
But in short time he saw with much surprise, First gloom, then grief, and then resentment rise, From proud, commanding frowns, and anger-darting eyes:
"Is there in Harriet's humble mind this fire, This fierce impatience?" ask'd the puzzled 'squire: “Has marriage changed her? or the mask she wore Has she thrown by, and is herself once more?”
Hour after hour, when clouds on clouds appear, Dark and more dark, we know the tempest near; And thus the frowning brow, the restless form, And threatening glance, forerun domestic storm: So read the husband, and, with troubled mind, Reveal'd his fears;-" My love, I hope you find All here is pleasant; but I must confess You seem offended, or in some distress : Explain the grief you feel, and leave me to redress."
"Leave it to you?" replied the nymph, "indeed! What! to the cause from whence the ills proceed? Good heaven! to take me from a place, where I Had every comfort underneath the sky; And then immure me in a gloomy place, With the grim monsters of your ugly race, That from their canvass staring, make me dread Through the dark chambers where they hang to tread!
No friend nor neighbour comes to give that joy,
Which all things here must banish or destroy :
Where is the promised coach? the pleasant ride?
O! what a fortune has a farmer's bride!
Your sordid pride has placed me just above
Your hired domestics; and what pays me? love!
A selfish fondness I endure each hour,
And share unwitness'd pomp, unenvied power;
I hear your folly, smile at your parade,
And see your favourite dishes duly made;
Then am I richly dress'd for you t' admire,
Such is my duty and my lord's desire;
Is this a life for youth, for health, for joy?
Are these my duties, this my base employ?
No! to my father's house will I repair,
And make your idle wealth support me there;
Was it your wish to have an humble bride
For bondage thankful? Curse upon your pride!
Was it a slave you wanted? You shall see,
That if not happy, I at least am free;
Well, sir, your answer." Silent stood the 'squire,
As looks a miser at his house on fire;
Where all he deems is vanish'd in that flame,
Swept from the earth his substance and his name ;
So, lost to every promised joy of life,
Our 'squire stood gaping at his angry wife;-
His fate, his ruin, where he saw it vain
To hope for peace, pray, threaten, or complain;
And thus, betwixt his wonder at the ill
And his despair, there stood he gaping still.
"Your answer, sir;-shall I depart a spot
I thus detest?"—" O), miserable lot!"
Exclaim'd the man. Go, serpent! nor remain
To sharpen wo by insult and disdain :
A nest of harpies was I doom'd to meet;
What plots, what combinations of deceit!
I see it now; all plann'd, design'd, contrived;
Served by that villain-by this fury wived-
What fate is mine! What wisdom, virtue, truth,
Can stand, if demons set their traps for youth?
He lose his way! vile dog! he cannot lose
The way a villain through his life pursues;
And thou, deceiver! thou afraid to move,
And hiding close the serpent in the dove!
I saw-but, fated to endure disgrace-
Unheeding saw the fury in thy face;
And call'd it spirit;-O! I might have found
Fraud and imposture-all the kindred round!
A nest of vipers"
-"Sir, I'll not admit These wild effusions of your angry wit: Have you that value, that we all should use Such mighty arts for such important views? Are you such prize, and is my state so fair That they should sell their souls to get me there? Think you that we alone our thoughts disguise? When in pursuit of some contended prize, Mask we alone the heart, and soothe whom we despise!
Speak you of craft and subtle schemes, who know That all your wealth you to deception owe; Who play'd for ten dull years a scoundrel part, To worm yourself into a widow's heart? Now, when you guarded, with superior skill, That lady's closet, and preserved her will, Blind in your craft, you saw not one of those Opposed by you might you in turn oppose; Or watch your motions, and by art obtain Share of that wealth you gave your peace to gain? Did conscience never"
-"Cease, tormentor, cease-Or reach me poison-let me rest in peace!" "Agreed-but hear me-let the truth appear." "Then state your purpose; I'll be calm and hear." "Know then, this wealth, sole object of your care, I had some right, without your hand, to share ; My mother's claim was just; but soon she saw Your power, compell'd, insulted, to withdraw : "Twas then my father, in his anger, swore You should divide the fortune, or restore; Long we debated ;-and you find me now Heroic victim to a father's vow; Like Jephthah's daughter, but in different state, And both decreed to mourn our early fate; Hence was my brother servant to your pride, Vengeance made him your slave, and me your bride; Now all is known: a dreadful price I pay For our revenge ;-but still we have our day;
All that you love you must with others share,
Or all you dread from their resentment dare!
Yet terms I offer-let contention cease:
Divide the spoil, and let us part in peace."
Our hero trembling heard-he sat-he rose-
Nor could his motions nor his mind compose;
He paced the room-and, stalking to her side,
Gazed on the face of his undaunted bride;
And nothing there but scorn and calm aversion
He would have vengeance, yet he fear'd the law:
Her friends would threaten, and their power he saw;
Then let her go :"-but O! a mighty sum
Would that demand, since he had let her come
Nor from his sorrows could he find redress,
Save that which led him to a like distress,
And all his ease was in his wife to see
A wretch as anxious and distress'd as he:
Her strongest wish, the fortune to divide
And part in peace, his avarice denied;
And thus it happen'd, as in all deceit,
The cheater found the evil of the cheat;
The husband grieved-nor was the wife at rest;
Him she could vex, and he could her molest;
She could his passion into frenzy raise,
But when the fire was kindled, fear'd the blaze:
As much they studied, so in time they found
The easiest way to give the deepest wound;
But then, like fencers, they were equal still,
Both lost in danger what they gain'd in skill;
Each heart a keener kind of rancour gain'd,
And paining more, was more severely pain'd;
And thus by both were equal vengeance dealt,
And both the anguish they inflicted felt.
Then she plots, then she ruminates, then she devises; and what they think in their hearts they may effect, they will break their hearts but they will effect.
Merry Wives of Windsor, act ii. sc. 2. She hath spoken that she should not, I am sure of that; Heaven knows what she hath known.
Macbeth, act v. sc. 1.
Our house is hell, and thou a merry devil. Merchant of Venice, act ii. sc. 3. And yet, for aught I see, they are as sick that surfeit of too much, as they that starve with nothing; it is no mean happiness, therefore, to be seated in the mean. Id. act i. sc. 2.
A VICAR died, and left his daughter poor-
It hurt her not, she was not rich before:
Her humble share of worldly goods she sold,
Paid every debt, and then her fortune told;
And found, with youth and beauty, hope and health,
Two hundred guineas was her worldly wealth;
It then remain'd to choose her path in life,
And first, said Jessy, “Shall I be a wife ?—
Colin is mild and civil, kind and just,
I know his love, his temper I can trust;
But small his farm, it asks perpetual care,
And we must toil as well as trouble share:
True, he was taught in all the gentle arts
That raise the soul, and soften human hearts;
And boasts a parent, who deserves to shine
In higher class, and I could wish her mine;
Nor wants he will his station to improve,
A just ambition waked by faithful love;—
Still is he poor-and here my father's friend
Deigns for his daughter, as her own, to send;
A worthy lady, who it seems has known
A world of griefs and troubles of her own:
I was an infant, when she came, a guest
Beneath my father's humble roof to rest;
Her kindred all unfeeling, vast her woes,
Such her complaint, and there she found repose;
Enrich'd by fortune, now she nobly lives,
And nobly, from the blest abundance, gives;
The grief, the want of human life, she knows.
And comfort there and here relief bestows;
But are they not dependants?--Foolish pride
Am I not honour'd by such friend and guide?
Have I a home," (here Jessy dropp'd a tear,)
"Or friend beside ?"-A faithful friend was near.
Now Colin came, at length resolved to lay His heart before her and to urge her stay; True, his own plough the gentle Colin drove, An humble farmer with aspiring love; Who, urged by passion, never dared till now, Thus urged by fears, his trembling hopes avow: Her father's glebe he managed; every year The grateful vicar held the youth more dear; He saw indeed the prize in Colin's view, And wish'd his Jessy with a man so true; Timid as true, he urged with anxious air His tender hope, and made the trembling prayer; When Jessy saw, nor could with coldness see, Such fond respect, such tried sincerity. Grateful for favours to her father dealt,
She more than grateful for his passion felt;
Nor could she frown on one so good and kind,
Yet fear'd to smile, and was unfix'd in mind;
But prudence placed the female friend in view-
What might not one so rich and grateful do?
So lately, too, the good old vicar died,
His faithful daughter must not cast aside
The signs of filial grief, and be a ready bride:
The village beauty purposed to retreat;
Thus, led by prudence, to the lady's seat
But as hard-fought fields the victor knows
What to the vanquish'd he in honour owes,
So in this conquest over powerful love,
Prudence resolved a generous foe to prove;
And Jessy felt a mingled fear and pain
In her dismission of a faithful swain,
Gave her kind thanks, and when she saw his
Widow'd and poor, her angry father gave,
Mix'd with reproach, the pittance of a slave;
Forgetful brothers pass'd her, but she knew
Her humbler friends, and to their home withdrew;
The good old vicar to her sire applied
For help, and help'd her when her sire denied ; When in few years death stalk'd through bower and hall,
Sires, sons, and sons of sons, were buried all :
She then abounded, and had wealth to spare
For softening grief she once was doom'd to share:
Thus train'd in misery's school, and taught to feel,
She would rejoice an orphan's woes to heal :
So Jessy thought, who look'd within her breast,
And thence conceived how bounteous minds are
From her vast mansion look'd the lady down
On humbler buildings of a busy town;
Thence came her friends of either sex, and all
With whom she lived on terms reciprocal :
They pass'd the hours with their accustom'd ease,
As guests inclined, but not compell'd to please;
But there were others in the mansion found,
For office chosen, and by duties bound;
Three female rivals, each of power possess'd,
Th' attendant maid, poor friend, and kindred guest.
To these came Jessy, as a seaman thrown
By the rude storm upon a coast unknown
The view was flattering, civil seem'd the race,
But all unknown the dangers of the place. [freed,
Few hours had pass'd, when, from attendants
The lady utter'd-“This is kind indeed;
Believe me, love! that I for one like you
Have daily pray'd, a friend discreet and true;
O! wonder not that I on you depend,
You are mine own hereditary friend
Hearken, my Jessy, never can I trust
Beings ungrateful, selfish, and unjust;
But you are present, and my load of care
Your love will serve to lighten and to share :
Come near me, Jessy; let not those below
Of my reliance on your friendship know;
Look as they look, be in their freedoms free-
But all they say do you convey to me."
Here Jessy's thoughts to Colin's cottage flew, And with such speed she scarce their absence knew.
And duteous care by close attention shows:
But is she faithful? in temptation strong?
Will she not wrong me? ah! I fear the wrong :
Your father loved me; now, in time of need,
Watch for my good, and to his place succeed.
"Blood doesn't bind-that girl, who every day
Eats of my bread, would wish my life away;
I am her dear relation, and she thinks
To make her fortune, an ambitious minx!
She only courts me for the prospect's sake,
Because she knows I have a will to make;
Yes, love! my will delay'd, I know not how-
But you are here, and I will make it now.
"That idle creature, keep her in your view,
See what she does, what she desires to do;
On her young mind may artful villains prey,
And to my plate and jewels find a way;
A pleasant humour has the girl: her smile
And cheerful manner tedious hours beguile :
But well observe her, ever near her be,
Close in your thoughts, in your professions free
Again, my Jessy, hear what I advise,
And watch a woman ever in disguise;
Issop, that widow, serious, subtle, sly—
But what of this-I must have company :
She markets for me, and although she makes
Profit, no doubt, of all she undertakes,
Yet she is one I can to all produce,
And all her talents are in daily use;
Deprived of her, I may another find
As sly and selfish, with a weaker mind:
But never trust her, she is full of art,
And worms herself into the closet heart;
Seem then, I pray you, careless in her sight,
Nor let her know, my love, how we unite.
"Do, my good Jessy, cast a view around,
And let no wrong within my house be found;
That girl associates with- -I know not who
Are her companions, nor what ill they do ;
"Tis then the widow plans, 'tis then she tries
Her various arts and schemes for fresh supplies;
'Tis then, if ever, Jane her duty quits,
And, whom I know not, favours and admits:
O! watch their movements all; for me 'tis hard,
Indeed is vain, but you may keep a guard;
And I, when none your watchful glance deceive,
May make my will, and think what I shall leave.”
Jessy, with fear, disgust, alarm, surprise,
Heard of these duties for her ears and eyes;
Heard by what service she must gain her bread,
And went with scorn and sorrow to her bed.
Jane was a servant fitted for her place,
Experienced, cunning, fraudful, selfish, base;
Skill'd in those mean humiliating arts
That make their way to proud and selfish hearts;
By instinct taught, she felt an awe, a fear,
For Jessy's upright, simple character;
Whom with gross flattery she a while assail'd,
And then beheld with hatred when it fail'd;
Yet trying still upon her mind for hold,
She all the secrets of the mansion told;
And to invite an equal trust, she drew
Of every mind a bold and rapid view;
But on the widow'd friend with deep disdain,
And rancorous envy, dwelt the treacherous Jane :---
In vain such arts; without deceit or pride,
"Jane loves her mistress, and should she depart, I lose her service, and she breaks her heart;
My ways and wishes, looks and thoughts she With a just taste and feeling for her guide,
From all contagion Jessy kept apart,
Free in her manners, guarded in her heart.
Jessy one morn was thoughtful, and her sigh
The widow heard as she was passing by ;
And-" Well!" she said, "is that some distant
Or aught with us, that gives your bosom pain?
Come, we are fellow sufferers, slaves in thrall,
And tasks and griefs are common to us all;
Think not my frankness strange they love to
Their state with freedom, who endure restraint;
And there is something in that speaking eye
And sober mien, that prove I may rely:
You came a stranger; to my words attend,
Accept my offer, and you find a friend;
It is a labyrinth in which you stray,
Come, hold my clue, and I will lead the way.