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whenever your daughter visited us, we always found she never would come without Madam Considerate, or yourself; and what nice profitable talk we always had! But when that wild blade would come to see Patty, he would act as if he was half mad. Neither I nor Harry could keep him in any tolerable order; and I never could get rid of him, till I called the servants in for family prayer, and then he would be off like a pistol.-Poor girl, I am desperately afraid that the match will be her ruination.
Consid. I am sorry to hear that he is such a sad, wild fellow; and I am told also that he is very insulting in his conversation. Far. Why, he never could keep his tongue in any
sort of order, when at my house; what ‘an uproar he made one night, when he told my daughter Polly, that she would never be married, because she had lost two of her fore-teeth, and then she was all in a passion.-She is full of envy, that her younger sisters, Patty and Nancy should be married before her.
Consid. (smiling.] Perhaps if the loss had been on the tongue, instead of the teeth, it might have been a less calamity.
Far. Ah! poor Polly, even from her cradle, she was a sad crabbed child, and I think she is crosser than ever, since she has taken to spend so much of her time at Madam Toogood's; and then she comes home as brim full of scandal, as ever she can hold ; but still she is my child.—The Lord make her his child !
Consid. Well, I am glad, Mr. Littleworth, my daughter's visits were so acceptable at your house. I can assure you, Mr. Henry's visits were not less so at our’s. His conversation at all times, was much to the purpose ; and instead of being driven away on account of prayer, he would often stop and be our family chaplain, and much to the edification of us all.
Far. Aye, aye, dear child, and he prays so humbly,
and so much from the heart; I am sure it does my heart good to hear him. And then, as soon as ever he has done the business of the farm, away he
after some of his good books : and directly he has saved a little
money, he is sure to go and buy some fresh ones : but he is extravagant in nothing else, dear child !
Loveg. Really, Mr. Littleworth, it appears to me, that the
grace of God mends the head, while it converts the heart. It brings the mind into such a sober, holy, regular frame, we can know nothing of the good of our own existence, till we exist in God.
Far. Why, now it appears just so to me, as though I had been all my days without brains, while I was living without grace. But, blessed be God, what nice winter evenings we now spend at our house ; when Harry sits and reads, and talks to us out of some of his good books. And then he gets Billy Traffic, and some other young people, to come and see him. At times we have quite a little congregation, and then we have such sweet singing and prayers ! But as for my part, I never could sing, but I does my best to make a joyful noise unto the Lord."
Consid. You cannot think me to blame, Mr. Littleworth, while I give my free consent, that my daughter should marry
such an excellent young man. Far. To be sure, Sir, I cannot but be very thankful for the merciful providence of God, that has contrived such a charming match for my child. Little did I think, when he was a wicked wild sailor, that he would ever be married to a gentleman's daughter, who has been twice mayor of Mapleton !—The Lord keep him from pride!
Consid. There is no great honour in being mayor of Mapleton, Mr. Littleworth.
Far. Why, Mr. Strut, the present mayor, don't think so: he fancies he has a right to act as though he was a
little god. How he struts about our town, like a crow in a gutter! To my mind, he thinks himself as great a man as King George.—God bless him!
Laveg. I hope, Mr. Littleworth, your son has too much good sense and grace, to be proud. Pride is nothing better than the offspring of folly and the disease of fools : and pride turns all things into confusion. When proud people meet together, they never can be happy.
Far. Why, Harry, dear child ! makes us all happy; and Nancy is a sweet, humble, diligent girl. And she is so notable, and attentive to her mother. My dame sees what it is that makes the best child. She begins to think of coming to Brookfield church, oftener than she used to do. I hope to the Lord she feels more in her heart than she likes to express, for she is ashamed to say much, as she cannot forget how she thwarted us, when we began to think about the salvation of our souls. But the Lord he praised ! she is wonderfully altered.
Loveg. Indeed, Sir, I think she is. Nothing can please her better, than the intended marriages of her son and daughter; while she is so much concerned at the union designed between Will Frolic and Miss Patty. But it seems that several bad matches have taken place in Mapleton, and its neighbourhood of late : I am surprised, however, if in this world we are to be surprised at any thing, that good tempered, humble young woman, Rachael Meek, the linen-draper's daughter, should have consented to marry that strange dogmatic young chap, Jack Positive, the lawyer.
Consid. Ah, Sir! love is blind : I believe the unhappy young woman heartily repents of it. If ever she presumes to give her advice, she is snapped at directly.He will say, “Madam, when I need your advice, I will ask it-till then, I shall act as I like best.”
Lovey. What must one of her humble, and tender
mind feel, under such contemptuous and cruel treatment.
Consid. Sir, he will do worse than all this. If the poor innocent creature asks a question, his answer will be, “I shall do as I like best.” If he should venture upon any wrong, or wild pursuits, as obstinacy frequently misguides him, and she begins with ever so much meekness to expostulate, his answer will be, "I shall not be guided by a woman.” Then, lest she should further provoke him, she very wisely keeps silent, only now and then drops a tear.
Far. Poor dear creature, she must have a dog's life of it.
Consid. I dare say a much worse life than your dog leads ; for whatever he commands must be observed, be it ever so absurd ; and when he has burned his fingers by his own folly, he will blame her that she did not consult with him ; while he appears so little to respect her judgment, as not to allow her to go to market to provide for the family, but under his orders and directions.
Loveg. Better to be a beast of burder, than the wife of such a man.
If “ wives are to be in subjection,” yet they are not doomed to be the abject slaves of such abominable tyrants. But it seems that her father was always against the match.
Far. Ah ! fathers can't at all times, get their children to follow their advice; we are a stiff-necked generation ; but to my mind, that was another strange match on the contrary side of the question, when my poor tailor, Simon Simple, married Fanny Pert, the milliner; for though he makes the breeches, yet all the folk say, she is determined to wear them.
Traf. Why, he has been the tailor for our family for some time ; and while he does not want for a share of good sense, yet, being of a meek and harmless disposition, he has unfortunately given the rod out of his own hands, and then she flogs him well for his folly. Once when iny son Billy went to their house about a job, he told a strange story on his return.
Consid. What was it, Sir ?
Traf. Why, the door being a little a-jar, he heard her cry,
“Simon! why, Simon ! what are you at; why don't you come down directly? young Mr. Traffic is here; I shan't stand bawling after you all day." And when he gave her to understand that he had overheard her coarse way of talk to her husband, she blushed, and said, “she did not mean to scold him, and that it was only the tone of her voice that made him think so,
and that they lived very happy together.
Consid. Happy! how can he be happy, while she is dinning his cars all the day with her impertinent and noisy talk, and with her insulting reflections ! I believe that all his happiness consists in patiently suffering himself to be hen-pecked whenever she pleases, without saying a word in his own behalf.
Far. There is another match nearly of the same sort, which is quite as bad. You know a Mr. Placid, that married Miss Fury. By all accounts, what a life she leads the poor gentleman! I am told, there is not a bigger termagant in the town.
Consid. I know the unfortunate man very well. If ever he thwarts her, directly she is the downright tiger. She hears not a word of reason, but falls into a terrible passion, and then cries, out of mad revenge.
Traf. What can he do with such a creature ?
Consid. Why, he puts her in good humour again as soon as he can; and in order to keep a little peace, is obliged to submit to all her whims and projects, and let her have her own way in every thing.--And all that won't do.
Far. Why, to my mind, she must be worse than the