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cetious company, and to expose her to a repetition of insults. If, guided by the feelings of modesty, she avoid the presence of the impertinent guests, she is complained of for neglecting her duty; she loses the little perquisite which, otherwise, she would be entitled to; perhaps disobliges her mistress, and loses her place. Whoever attends but for a moment to the case of a poor girl so situated, if he be not lost to all sense of virtue, must feel his heart relent at the cruelty of taking advantage of such a situation. But the misfortune is, that we seldom attend to such cases at all ; we sometimes think of the fatigues and sufferings incident to the bodies of our inferiors; but we scarcely ever allow any sense of pain to their minds.
Among the French, whom we mimic in much false politeness, without learning from them, as we might do, much of the true, the observances of goodbreeding are not confined merely to gentlemen, but extend to persons of the lowest ranks. Thus a Frenchman hardly ever addresses any man, however mean his condition, without calling him Monsieur, and the poorest woman in a country village is ad. dressed by the appellation of Madame. The accosting, in this manner, people of so very low a rank, in the same terms with those so much their superiors, may perhaps appear extravagant ; but the practice shews how much that refined and elegant people are attentive to the feelings of the meanest, when they have extended the rules and ceremonial of politeness even to them.
No 27. TUESDAY, APRIL 27, 1779.
There is a kind of mournful eloquence
Lee's THEODOSIU S.
A very amiable and much respected friend of mine, whose real name I shall conceal under that of Wentworth, had lately the misfortune of losing a wife, who was not only peculiarly beautiful, but whose soul was the mansion of every virtue, and of every elegant accomplishment. She was suddenly cut off in the flower of her age, after having lived twelve years with the best and most affectionate of husbands. A perfect similarity of temper and disposition, a kindred delicacy of taste and sentiment, had linked their hearts together in early youth, and each succeeding year seemed but to add new strength to their affection. Though possessed of an afluent fortune, they preferred the tranquillity of the country to all the gay pleasures of the capital. In the cultivation of their estate, in cherishing the virtuous industry of its inhabitants, in ornamenting a beautiful seat, in the society of one another, in the innocent prattle of their little children, and in the company of a few friends, Mr. Wentworth and his Amelia found every wish gratified, and their happiness complete.
My readers will judge then, what must have been Mr.Wentworth's feelings, when Amelia was thus suddenly torn from him, in the very prime of her life, and in the midst of her felicity. I dreaded the effects of it upon a mind of his nice and delicate sensibility; and, receiving a letter from his brother, requesting me to come to them, I hasted thither, to endeavour by my presence, to assuage his grief, and prevent those fatal consequences of which I was so appre. hensive.
As I approached the house, the sight of all the weil-known scenes brought fresh into my mind the remembrance of Amelia ; and I felt myself but ill qualified to act the part of a comforter. When my carriage stopt at the gate, I trembled, and would have given the world to go back. A heart-felt sorrow sat on the countenance of every servant ; and I walked into the house without a word being ut. tered. In the hall I was met by the old butler who has grown grey-headed in the family, and he has tened to conduct me up stairs. As I walked up, I commanded firmness enough to say, "Well, Wil• liam, how is Mr. Wentworth ?" The old man, turning about with a look that pierced my heart, said, Oh Sir, our excellent Lady!'- Here his grief overwhelmed him ; and it was with difficulty he was able to open to me the door of the apartment.
Mr. Wentworth ran and embraced me with the warmest affection ; and, after a few moments, assumed a firmness, and even an ease, that surprised me. His brother, with a sister of Amelia's, and some other friends that were in the room, appeared more overpowered than my friend himself, who, by the fortitude of his behaviour, seemed rather to moderate the grief of those around him, than to demand their compassion for himself. By his gentle and kind attentions, he seemed anxious to relieve their sorrow ; and, by a sort of concerted tranquillity, strove to prevent their discovering any symptoms of the bitter anguish which preyed upon his mind. His countenance was pale, and his eyes betrayed
that his heart was ill at ease ; but it was that silent and majestic sorrow which commands our reverence and our admiration.
Next morning after breakfast I chanced to take up a volume of Metastasio, that lay amongst other books upon a table ; and, as I was turning over the leaves, a slip of paper, with something written on it, dropped upon the foor. Mr. Wentworth picked it up; and as he looked at it, I saw the tears start from his eyes, and, fetching a deep sigh, he uttered in a low and broken voice, · My poor Amelia !'-It was the translation of a favourite passage which she had been attempting, but had left unfinished. As if uneasy lest I had perceived his emotion, he carelessly threw his arm over my shoulder, and reading aloud a few lines of the page which I held open in my hand, he went into some remarks on the poetry of that elegant author. Some time after, I observed him take up the book, and carefully replacing the slip of paper where it had been, put the volume in his pocket.
Mr. Wentworth proposed that we should walk out, and that he himself would accompany us. As we stepped through the hall, one of my friend's youngest boys came running up, and catching his Papa by the hand, cried out with joy, that. Mama's • Rover was returned. This was a spaniel who had been the favourite of Amelia, and had followed her in all her walks ; but after her death, had been sent to the house of a villager, to be out of the immediate sight of the family. Having somehow made its escape from thence, the dog had that morning found his way home; and, as soon as he saw Mr. Wentworth, leaped upon him with an excess of fondness. I saw my friend's lips and cheeks quiver. He catched his little Frank in his arms; and, for a few moments, hid his face in his neck.
As we traversed his delightful grounds, many different scenes naturally recalled the remembrance of Amelia. My friend, indeed, in order to avoid some of her favourite walks, had conducted us an unusual road; but what corner could be found that did not bear the traces of her hand ? Her elegant taste had marked the peculiar beauty of each dif. ferent scene, and had brought it forth to view with such a happy delicacy of art, as to make it seem the work of nature alone. As we crossed certain paths in the woods, and passed by some rustic build. ings, I could sometimes discern an emotion in my friend's countenance ; but he instantly stifled it with a firmness and dignity that made me careful not to seem to observe it.
Towards night, Mr. Wentworth having stolen out of the room, his brother and I stepped out to a terrace behind the house. It was the dusk of the evening, the air was mild and serene, and the moon was rising in all her brightness from the cloud of the east. The fineness of the night made us extend our walk, and we strayed into a hollow valley, whose sides are covered with trees overhanging a brook that pours itself along over broken rocks. We approached a rustic grotto, placed in a sequestered corner, under a half impending rock. My companion stopped. • This,' said he, was one of Ame• lia's walks, and that grotto was her favourite even• ing retreat. The last night she ever walked out, e and the very evening she caught that fatal fever, "I was with my brother and her, while we sat and • read to each other in that very place. While he spoke, we perceived a man steal out of the grotto, and, avoiding us, take his way by a path through a thicket of trees on the other side. It is my brother,' said young Wentworth ; • he has been here in his