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also of Distinction (chough not perhaps an equal Match for him, according to the modern and polite Custom ot Stottbsietd Bargains) at last proceeded so far in his "Vows and Oaths never to have any one but her; and in urging her K> hasten the Consummation of uis Happines, th it the very Day was appointed, and a great Quantity of new Linnen, suitable to the Occasion, provided by he:,and al marked with his Name; so secure did.this unhappy young Lady think herself, and so much did she conside in . his Honour! Bur, alas! how wretchedly and how balely was this poor believing Maiden deceived! Without any Cause given on her side, without any Reason assigned, or any Apology made, for so much Persidy and Baseness on his side; at the very Time when she expected her pretended Admirer to be flying to her Arms on the Wings of Love, he leaves her to languish, under a cruel Uncertainty and Suspence, a Prey to a thoufand Fears, and comes away to Town, not deigning to give her any other Information, either that his Mind was changed, or why it was so, than what she could gather from common Reporr, namely, the Smallness of her Fortune.
What can we think of a Man, who, in cold Blood, and without any Provocation, could be guilty of so much Cruelty, and act so ungenerous and base a Part? He had not been deceived as to her Circumstances; no Endeavours had been used to put any Cheat upon him in that respect; no, he knew at the very sirst what would be advanced with her, and theresore could not plead any Imposition, or dishonourable Practices, in his own Justisication ; but out of meer Caprice, and Insolence, to shew he thought himself above being accountabte to any one for any of his Actions and to please his Vanity in making himself a Town talk, he thought proper thus to deceive and fool 3 young Lady, no way hi* Inserior but in point of Wealth.
Bur did the vain Man consider, though no one upon Earth, through a great Desect in our Laws, which have assigned no Punishment for such Perssidy, unless it can be proved by Witnesses, the Parties entered into a solemn Contract, that his Oaths and Vosvs were registered in Heaven, and there -was one there would one Day make him sensible, he was accountable to him for the Breach thereof, if not in this Lise, yet in another? Or, did he think, elate with Arrogance as he then was. thac theTimewas coming, when he should be so far infatuated, and reduced by his own Folly, to such Distress and Wretchedness, that he should make himself ten times more a Town talk, and ten times more ridiculous, than he had endeavoured to render the young Lady? Or did he know that, whereas, in this evil Day, she was pitied by all, and condemned by none, he should be so far from meeting with Compassion from any one, that he ftould be univerfally laughed at and despised, and sink into the lowest Degree of Ignominy and Contempt?
No, he was far from imagining so fad a Reverse could besal him; yet so it was: Many Years after his having been guilty of this ungenerous and unmanly Act, when very probably it had long been banished from his Memory, having by his extravagant Courses, reduced himself to great Straits and Inconveniences, siom which he knew not how to extneate himself, in a Fit of Passion and Dcspair, not k.io«ing how to humble himself suitably to his present Circumstances, he resolved to rid himself of a Lise whereof he grew weary, by laying violent Hands upon himself.
Having thus con< lurted within his own Mfnd, and not doubting but he had sussicient Com age to go through with his Design, so little was lie acquainted with himself, he wrote three Letters;
one to his Lady in the Country, where n he in" formed her, that by the Time she should receive that, he shou'd be no more, having put an End to a Life which was become a Burthen to him, and advising her not to lay it too much to FLarr, hat to compose herself as well as possible, lie. The second was ro a Gentleman, who was both his Neighboar in the Country (but wa> then in Town) and used to do Busiues for him: Therein he acquainted . him us he had done nis Lady, that, by the Time he received that Letter, he should have put an End to his Day, which were now grown insupportable to him, and desired him to come to such a Tavtrn, and take Care of his Body. The third was to a great Man, to whom he had long been a trusty Tool, wherein hegavehimthe fame Information as the two former, thanked him for all past Favours, and took his sinal Leave of him.
When he had thus settled all Preliminaries, and nothing remained but to sinish the grand Affair, he takes a Hackney Coach, orders the Man to stop at a Gunsmith's, where he provides himself with a Pair of Pistols, Powder, and Ball, and then drives to the Tavern mentioned in his Letter to his Friend, where he discharges the Coachman, bids the Drawer shew a Room, calls for Wine, and when it was broughr, shuts himself in. Thus far all was according to Form, and he had acted tolerably well the Part of an old Rsmai. the Laws of whnse Country not only co.inived at, but even approved of, and were favourable to Suicide: But, alas! when it came to the Push, when the critical Moment drew nigh th t was to determine his Fate, to his great Diia ^ointment and Mortisication, he found what he had never bt-fore distrusted, that he had no Courage, but was a m er Chicken.
The fame false He.rt, which so many Years before had so little Compassion or Tenderness lor
the Tears and Sorrows of a beautisul young Lady, and might consequently have been imagined destitute of any Feeling, selt now, on a sudden, to hu great Surprize, a mighty Tenderness for the worthless Carcase wherein it was lodged ; insomuch that he could not prevail upon his dear self to make any Holes therein, though he had already proceeded so hr, that he had rendered Death in a manner unavoidable, and necessity, unless he would submit to the cutiing Humiliation, of seeing himseit become the Ridicule, Laughing-stock, and Contempt of the whole Town; a Punishment more mortifying, to a Man of any Spirit, than even Death itself!
Being reduced theresore, desetvedly, by his own Folly to such a wretched Alternative; neither knowing how to live with Honour, nor having seifsicent Fortitude to put what he had resolved in Execution; undetermined what to do, yet necessitated to go from where he was, unless he woold be surprized by the People, who, as he had Reason to expect, would soon be there to enquire after him, in Consequence of the two Letter* he had sent to the great Man, and the Gentleman that was his Agent ; the best Thing he could think of, was to pay his Reckoning, and leave Word he was gone into the Park, imagining perhaps he might have Courage enough to leap into Resamond's Pond, tho* he had not to sire a Pistol. But, if he thus fancied, he was therein mistaken a second Time;_ for the fame Pusillanimity accompanying him thither, he was forced likewise to decamp from thence, Re inftfta, and the sirst News that was heard of him, some Time afterwards, was, that he was safe and sound at his Seat in the Country.
In the mean while, the two Letters beforementioned being received,let anyone imagine the Shock and Surprizt: it must cause in his Friend*; however, as it was now suppofed past Remedy, all the
one one could do, was to pity and lament bis Fate, and all that remained for the other, was to comply with his Request. Accordingly the latter went in a Coach, with proper Persons to take Care of his Corpse, as had been desired, and Messengers were dispatched by the former to enquire aster the Particulars of this unexpected Catastrophe; but it will be hard to fay which were most amazed, either the Persons in search aster him, on being told what Message he had lest at the Tavern, especially when on following him into the Park, they could hear nothing there of him, nor yet at any other Places where they made the like Enquiry, or of ih: People of the Tavern, when they were again strictly examined about him, and acquainted with the Reasons for inch a Scrutiny.
In short, as he was a Person generally known, all the Town was in an Uproar for some Days, nor was the Country at sirst in less Consusion ; for his Lady, on the Receipt of his shocking Lerter, having dispatched Messengers to enquire into it, and they bunging back Word, that no Tidings could be heard of him, neither could his Body be found, every one was in the dark concerning his Fate, and formed a hundred various Conjectures, till soon aster when he again made his Appearance suddenly at his Country Seat, as was besore observed.
This News becoming once publick, Astonishment gave Way to very difserent Emotions, and the Man whom besore every one pitied, was now become univerfally the Object of Derision and Contempt; nor could any one imagine with what Face he could ever again shew his Head in public, where he might be well assured, the Eyes of all Men would be sixed upon him wherever he went; where he must expect, that all Persons of Reputation would shun his Company, and where he could