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revived at last, and in a few weeks, to the satisfaction of the whole town, to whom Mary was an object both of affection and respect, the lovers were united at the parish church. Not long after, a gentleman, to whom their story was known, put them in possession of a small but comfortable farın on his estate; and Mary shines as much, as a wife and mother, as she had before done as a relation and friend.
LOVE AND COURTSHIP.
LOVE is an affection of the mind, compounded of desire, esteem, and benevolence, which forms the bond of at, tachment and union between individuals of the different sexes; and makes them feel, in the society of each other, a species of happiness which they experience no where else.
As custom has forbid you that unlimited range in your choice which the men enjoy, so nature has benevolently ase signed to you a greater flexibility of taste on this subject. Some agreeable qualities recommend a young man to your common good liking and friendship. In the course of his acquaintance, he contracts, an attachment to you. When you perceive it, it excites your gratitude, this gratitude rises into a preference, and this preference perhaps at last ads vances to some degree of attachment, especially if it meets with crosses, and difficulties; for these, and a state of suspense, are very great incitements to attacbment, and are the food of love in both sexes.
The effects of love among men are diversified by their different tempers. An artful man may counterfeit every one of them, so as easily to impose on an open, generous, and feeling heart, if it be not well guarded, and even these virtuous dispositions may be the cause of its danger. The dark and crooked paths of eunning are unsearchable and inconceivable to an honourable and elevated mind.
The following are the most genuine effects of an honourable passion among men, and the most difficult to counterfeit. A young man of delicacy often betrays his passion by. bis too great anxiety to conceal it, especially if he bave little hopes of success. True love renders a man not only respectful but timid, in his behaviour to the woman he loves. To conceal the awe which he feels, he may sometimes affect pleasantry, but it sits awkwardly on him, and he quickly relapses into seriousness. He magnifies all her real perfections in his imagination, and is either blind to her failings, or converts them into beauties.
His heart and his character will be improved in every respect hy his attachment. His manners will become more gentle, and his conversation more agreeable; but diffidence and embarrassment will always make hiin appear to disadvantage in the company of the object of his affections.
When you observe these marks in a young man's behaviour, you must reflect seriously what you are to do. If his attachment be agreeable to you, if you feel a partiality for him, you would do well not to discover to him, at first, the full extent of your love. Your receiving his addresses shews your preference, which is all at that time he is entitled to, know. If he have delicacy, he will ask for no stronger proof of your affection, for your sake ; if he have sense, he will not ask it, for his own.
If you see evident proofs of a young man's attachment, and are determined to shut your heart against him; as you ever hope to be used with generosity by the person who shall engage your heart, treat him honourably and humanely. Do not suffer him to linger in a state of miserable suspense, but be anxious to let himn know your sentiments concerning him.
Beware of acting the part of a coquette. There is one case perhaps, and but one, where a young woman may do it justifiably, to the utmost verge which her conscience will allow. It is where a young man purposely declines to pay his addresses till he thinks himself perfectly sure of her consent. This is intended to force a woman to give up the undoubted privilege of her sex, the privilege of refusing: it is intended to force her to explain herself, in effect, before be bimself designs to do it, and by this means to oblige her to violate the modesty and delicacy of her sex, and to invert the clearest order of nature.
It is of great importance to distinguish whether a young man, who has the appearance of being your lover, delays to speak explicitly, from the motive above-mentioned, or from a diffidence inseparable froin true attachment. In the one case you can hardly use him too ill, in the other you ought to treat him with great kindness : and the greatest kindness you can shew, bin, if you are determined not to listen to his addresses, is to let him know it as soon as possible. It appears necessary to be more particular on this subject, because such instructions are generally needed at an early period of life, when young women have but little experience or knowledge of the world; when their passions are warm, and their judgment not arrived at such fall maturity as to be able to correct them. It is very desirable that every female should possess such principles of honour and generosity as will render her incapable of deceiving, and at the same time to possess that acute discernment which may secure her against being deceived,
But there is yet one danger peculiar to your sex, which it requires, in some circumstances, no ordinary resolution to avoid, that is, lest you should at any time ioconsiderately yield your affections to a man who perhaps may be scarcely known to you, or who may be placed by circumstances out of your reach.
In the following most affecting narrative may be seen the fatal consequences of indulging a hopeless passion; in the character of Jane Vernon, which is drawn from the life, you behold every thing that is amiable; but her attachment to Douglas, however well founded as to the character of its objcct, proved fatal to her.
Arm your hearts therefore against so hopeless ag attachment, for if it be not subdued in its commencement, there will be little hope of conquering it when it has engaged your whole soul.
It is a generally received opinion, founded in fact, that females may attain a superior degree of happiness in a married state to what they can possibly find in the other. What a forlorn and unprotected situation is that of an old maid ! What chagrin and peevishness are apt to infect their tempers; and how great is the difficulty of making a transition, with dignity and cheerfulness, from the period of youth and beauty, admiration and respect, into the calm, silent, unnoticed retreat of declining years !
A married state, if entered into from proper motives of esteem and affection, is certainly the happiesi; it will make you most respectable in the world, and the most useful inem, bers of society.
JANE was the only daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Vernon who both died when she was about fifteen years of age, leaving her destitute of every thing save a liberal education, which her father, who was a clergyman, bad bestowed upon her. As soon as the violence of her grief for her deceased parents had somewhat subsided, she began to look forward with anxiety to her future prospects in life, when Mr. and Mrs. Hanbury, who lived in the neighbourhood, unexpectedly came to announce their intention of offering her a home, by adopting her as their daughter; which offer she with gratitude accepted. Having made the necessary arrangements, Miss Vernon, accompanied her kind friends to the Lodge, where they resided. During the journey, Mr. and Mrs. Hanbury observed, that they had nothing to offer but their protection, and was afraid that their house would prove rather dull, as she would see no one but themselves; except during the college vacations, when Mr. Douglas, the ward of Mr. Hanbury, would be of their party. Jane had before heard some of her companions speak of that gentleman as being proud and haughty, she therefore entertained a prejudice against him, and instead of promising herself any pleasure from his society, only conceived that her friendless situation would excite his pity and contempt.
At length the time arrived when Mr. Douglas made his appearance at the Lodge, and the usual salutations being over, he retired to his studies. The next evening he joined their party, and Miss Vernon began to entertain a more favourable opinion of him than she had formerly done; and as she became more acquainted with his character, she looked forward each day with increased anxiety to his evenjog visit to their fireside. Her happiness, however, was somewhat beclouded by the apparent coldness and absence of mind which Mr. Douglas evinced, even when engaged in the social exercises of the evening. Possessing an ardent passion for learning, and ambitious of emulating his brother students at college, he became particularly anxious to devote almost every moment of his waking hours to the pursuit of his favourite object. Hence he appeared indifferent, when duty or necessity called him from his studies to the pleasures of domestic intercourse; and consequently regardless of the kind attentions of Miss Vernon, and ignorant of those affectionate looks and scarcely stiffed sighs, which a growing passion for him rendered impossible to be at all times concealed—she indeed felt the full force of Thompson's expression, that
nought but love Can answer love, and render bliss secure.
Thus cherishing a secret and corroding passion, she began at length to feel in her weak and languid frame the fatal effects of her indulgence; for independently of the absence of a mutual passion in Mr. Douglas's breast, it was known, that so far from having any intention of becoming a husband, he had determined to make an extensive tour in foreign countries as soon as his collegiate vacations were completed, and his minority ceased. Miss Vernon's growing affection therefore had nothing on which the anchor of hope could safely rest, and consequently she pined in silent and hopeless despair. Her kind benefactors, unacquainted with the canse of her alarming state, procured medical advice; when from some unusual symptoms the doctor soon discovered the cause of his patient's malady, and advised her immediate removal.
After the necessary arrangements were made, she was conveyed to Bristol for change of air; while her friends, grieved at her illness and alarmed lest she should fall á victim to the baneful effects of her hopeless passion, did every thing in their power to restore her to her wonted happiness and health. This was partially effectéd, when, after her return and a renewed visit from Mr. Douglas to the lodge, her still warm affection and đespondency produced another melancholy shock, and she was confined to her room. Mr. Douglas indeed had too much of the "milk of human kindness" not to be affected at the illness of his guardian's adopted daughter, although his abstraction of mind from every thing that had no immediate relation to literature, prevented his perceiving the cause or feeling a mutual flame. He however had always loved her as his sister, and esteemed her as one of his most particular friends. Generous pity and sympathizing regret, now filled his mind, and produced an affectionate anxiety to which he had before been a perfect stranger. While questioning his heart whether Miss Vernon's illness might not have been caused by a passion which his own conduct had involontarily created, he was interrupted by Mr. Hanbury who came to unfold to him the fatal truth, and to advise with him how to act on so delicate an occasion. Mr. Douglas with an admirable presence of mind requested to be left alone; and Mr. Hanbury withdrew leaving in the hands of his ward some verses which Miss Vernon had composed and had through accident lost. Mr. Douglas now began to feel the warmest emotions. Compassion, al