Patch Work Screen;
Deſign’d for the Farther
Printed for A. Bettesworth, at the
Red Lion in Pater-Noſter Row. 1726MDCCXXVI.
To the Ladies.
You may pleaſe to remember, that when we left our Galecia, it was with the good Lady, to partake of the Autumn Diverſions in the Country; as Horſe- Races, Dancings, Aſsemblées, Plays, Rafflings, and other Entertainments.
Theſe being over, ſome Buſineſs of conſequence call’d her to London, whether Maſquerading, or Toſſing of Coffee-Grounds, I know not; A2 but iv A2v but probably the latter; it being an Augury very much in vogue, and as true, as any by which Sidrophel prognoſticated, even when he took the Boy’s Kite for a blazing Comet; See Hudibras, Part 2. Canto 3. and as uſeful too as Scates in Spain, or Fans in Moſcovy; whatever was the Motive, our Galecia muſt needs ramble, like others, to take London-Air, when it is moſt ſubſtantially to be diſtinguiſhed, in the midſt of Winter.
Here it was I found her, and often had her Company, receiving from time to time an account of her Adventures; which I have kept together, in order to make a Lining for your Patch-work Screen. But #rule theſe v A3r theſe Pieces being much larger than the others, I think we muſt call it Pane-work; which, I hope, will be acceptable to your Ladyſhips, you having pleas’d your ſelves with this kind of Compoſure in your Petticoats; which, methinks, bears ſome reſemblance to Old London, when the Buildings were of Wood and Plaiſter. I wiſh, Ladies, you don’t condemn this my lining to the ſame Fate.
Well, be it ſo; if it have but the honour to light your Lamps for your Tea-kettles, its Fate will be propitious enough; and if it be thus far uſeful, I hope, you will not think there is too much of it. For my own part, I fear’d there would hardly be enough to hold out meaſure with the Screen.A3 This vi A3v
This made me once think to have enlarg’d it, by putting in ſome Pannels of Verſe; but, that I heard ſay, Poetry is not much worn at Court; only ſome old Ends of Greek and Latin, wherewith they garniſh their Dedications, as Cooks do their Diſhes with Laurel or other Greens, which are commonly thrown by, as troubleſome to the Carver, whatſoever Poetry may be by the Reader.
Wherefore, I hope, your Ladyſhips will eaſily excuſe the want of this kind of Embelliſhment in my Dedication; remembring, that One Tongue is enough for a Woman.But vii A4r
But perhaps, it may be ſaid, that this is an old faſhion’d, outof the-way Proverb, uſed only when Ladies liv’d at their Country-Seats, and had no occaſion for the Jargon of Babel; their Cooks, Gardiners, Butlers, Waiting-women, and other Servants all underſtood, and ſpoke the ſame Language, even old Engliſh: But now ’tis otherwiſe; and that which God ſent for a Curſe on thoſe preſumptuous Builders, is now become the diſtinguiſhing Mark of good Breeding.
How this Alteration came to paſs, or when it began, I do not well know. But ſome ſay, it was in the Year when the firſt Colony of buggs planted themſelves in England.O- viii A4v
Others affirm, it was at the ſame time that jinn broke down the Banks of our Female Sobriety, and overflow’d the Heads of the whole Populace, ſo that they have been brain-ſick ever ſince: But I am not Antiquarian enough to enter into this Diſpute, much leſs to determine it; only thus far, if I may ſpeak my ſimple Thoughts, I believe it was in Oliver’s time, when the Saints and the Ungodly ſpoke a Dialect ſo different, that one might almoſt take it for two Languages.
But after all, Ladies, I ſhould be very proud to find ſomething amongſt Authors, that might embeliſh my Dedication ſo as to make it ix A5r it ſuitable to your Merits, and my Book worthy your Acceptance.
I would moſt willingly, rifle Boileau, Racine, and hunt Scaron through all his Mazes, to find out ſomething to deck this my Epiſtle, till I made it as fine as a May day Milk Pail, to divert you with a Dance at your Cloſet-doors, whilſt my Crowdero-Pen, ſcrapes an old Tune, in faſhion about threeſcore and ſix years ago; and thereby teſtifie that I am paſsionately deſirous to oblige you.
Since you have been ſo kind to my Bookſellers in favour of the Screen, I hope, this Lining will not meet with a leſs Favourable Reception from Your Fair x A5v Fair Hands: Which will infinitely oblige
The Lining to the Patch-Work Screen.
Galecia one Evening ſetting alone in her Chamber by a clear Fire, and a clean Hearth, (two prime Ingredients towards compoſing the Happineſs of a Winter-ſeaſon) ſhe reflected on the Providence of our All-wiſe and Gracious Creator, who has mercifully furniſh’d every Seaſon with its reſpective Comforts to ſuſtain and delight us his poor Creatures: The Spring, for example, with its Sweets of Buds and Bloſsoms; the Muſick of the ſinging Birds, which hold Concert with the whiſtling Plough-man, committing his Seed to the Earth, in hopes of a plentiful Harveſt: Next, the Summerſeaſon,B ſeaſon, 002 B1v 2 ſeaſon, with its Fields cover’d over with ſhining Corn, and the Meadows with Haycocks; all inviting the induſtrious Farmer to come and receive the Fruits of his Annual Toil and Sollicitude. This happy Seaſon being paſt, comes the Autumn, with its laden Branches, to fill the Vats with Wine and Cyder; as alſo the Hogſheads with well brew’d October, to gladden the Feaſts when ſeated with Friends by good Fires, thoſe benign Champions that defend us from the Inclemencies of Winter’s Fury. Thus the Year is brought about; and tho’ I have not the Society of Friends by my Fire-ſide (ſaid ſhe to her ſelf) yet God has given me the Knowledge of Things, ſo far as to be able to entertain my Thoughts in this Solitude, without regret; when the Coldneſs of Friends, or rather the want of Riches, deprives me of their Company theſe long Winter-Evenings.
In theſe Cogitations, ſhe caſt her Eyes towards the Window, where ſhe beheld the Full Moon, whoſe Brightneſs ſeemed a little to extend the extream Shortneſs of the Days, when Dusk calls for Candles to ſupply the Sun’s Abſence. This brought to her mind the Thoughts ſhe had in her Childhood on this Subject: For then ſhe had a Notion (whether taught by her Nurſe, or 003 B2r 3 or otherwiſe) that the Old Moons were given to good Children to make them Silver Frocks to wear on Holidays.
As ſhe reflected on this infant Conceit, ſhe began to conſider whether ſhe had improv’d in her riper Years. Alas, ſaid ſhe to her ſelf, what have I ſpoke or acted more conſonant to good Morality, than this Conceit in the State of mine Innocence? For after we have paſs’d this contemptible Stage of Weakneſs both of Mind and Body, we enter into a State of Danger and Temptation; and if by chance we eſcape the Snares laid to catch our heedleſs Youth, we then walk on in a rough Road of conſuming Cares and Croſses, in which we often ſtumble or fall; and if we riſe again, perhaps it is to meet with greater Dangers, in Sickneſs, Sorrows, or divers Temptations, to which we too often ſubmit, thro’ our Raſhneſs or Inadvertency.
When the Bloſsom of Youth is ſhed, do we bring forth the Fruits of good Works? Do we relieve the Poor, any way within our Power? Do we inſtruct the Ignorant, comfort the Afflicted, ſtrengthen the Doubtful, or aſſiſt the Feeble, with other Works of Mercy corporal and ſpiritual?
She was thus ruminating, when a Gentleman enter’d the Room, the Door being a jar. He was tall, and ſtood upright beforeB2 fore 004 B2v 4 fore her; but not ſpeaking a word, though ſhe look’d earneſtly upon him, could not call to mind that ſhe knew him, nor could well determine whether he was a Perſon or a Spectre. At laſt ſhe ask’d him, who he was; but he gave her no anſwer. Pray, ſaid ſhe, tell me; if you are a Mortal, ſpeak; ſtill no Anſwer. At laſt, with an amazed Voice, ſhe ſaid, pray, tell me, who, or what you are. I am, ſaid he, your old Friend Captain Manly: At which ſhe was extreamly confuſed, to think that ſhe had ſo weak an Idea of ſo good a Friend, as not to know him, he having been many Years abſent; not knowing whether it proceeded from a Change of his Perſon in that time, or Dimneſs of Sight, between Moon-ſhine and Fire-light. But calling for a Candle, ſhe beg’d a thouſand Pardons, engaged him to ſit down, and let her know, what had ſo long conceal’d him from her Correſpondence.
The Story of CaptainManly.
Dear Galecia, ſaid he, though you partly know the looſe, or rather lewd Life that I led in my Youth; yet I can’t forbear relating part of it to you by way of Abhorrence.
Then it was I married a rich Widow- Lady, thereby to gratifie my Pride, Luxury and Ambition; for Love had no part in the Eſpouſals. I knew, that her Fortune, Friends and Intereſt would ſoon place me in a Station to my Liking, where I might enjoy my Bottle and my Friend, and, when I pleas’d, a little Cocquet-Harlot. Theſe things were the chief of my Ambition: For I did not aim at benefiting my King or Country by my Services, into what ſtate ſoever I might be advanc’d; but to gratifie my Pride and Vanity in embroider’d Cloaths, long Wigs, fine Equipage, and the like: Which Vanity is excuſable alſo, when the intention is to grace the Monarch we ſerve, or to honour the Family of which we are deſcended: But my Deſign was only to pleaſe the Eyes of the Fair, and make me the B3 Sub. 006 B3v 6 Subject o ftheirof their Prattle, when Ombre-Tables and Aſsemblées call them together; or to over-hear them in the Mall, ſaying, No body had a better Fancy in Dreſs than Captain Manly.
When Days of Muſter call’d us out to Review in the Park, then the ſhewing our fine Saddles, Holſters and Houſing, were more my Concern, than teaching my ſelf or my Soldiers their Duty. And when I returned, I fanſied I had undergone a great Fatigue, and could go no further than Locket’s or Paulet’s, ſend my Horſes home, charge my Man to be ſure to have my Chariot ready to carry me to the Play in the Evening. And alas! my Buſineſs there, was not to admire the Wit of the Poet, or the Excellency of the Actors in their reſpective Parts; but to ogle the Ladies, and talk to the Masks; and when I found one witty or well-ſhap’d, take her with me to the next Tavern to Supper. Thus, at coming out, with my Strumpet in my hand, aſsaulted and ſurrounded with a number of miſerable Objects, I could ſtep into my Chariot without relieving their Wants, or conſidering them as my Fellow-Creatures. Now, was not this valiantly done, to venture without any Weapon, but ſcornful Looks, to charge through a Set of miſerable Creatures, for daring to ask Alms of ſo great 007 B4r 7 great a Beau? not reflecting, what great Lord had ſent them, even the Lord of Heaven and Earth, whoſe Raggs were their Credentials, and their Sores the Badges of being his Meſsengers.
Thus far, Madam, I acted the Part of a Beau-Rake, till a Salivation and a Sweating-Tub call’d upon me for a more regular way of Intriguing: And even in this I ran the riſque of a Chance-medly Venture, like thoſe that hope to make their fortune by Lotteries.
One Evening at the Play I ſaw a pretty young Creature, very well dreſs’d, without Company or Attendants, and without a Mask (for ſhe had not yet learn’d ſo much Impudence, as to put on that Mark of Demonſtration.) This Fort I attack’d, and found it not impregnable. She conſented to a Parley at the Tavern; but told me withal, that I was greatly miſtaken if I took her for a lewd Perſon; for ſhe was not ſo, but a vertuous Maiden-Gentlewoman. The truth is, I knew not how to ſpell, or put together this ſeeming Contradiction: For to pretend to Vertue, and yet conſent to go to a Tavern with a Man wholly a Stranger to her, I did not underſtand. In ſhort, we ſupp’d at the Tavern; but whether ſhe or the Drawer, by her Inſtigation, put any thing in my Liquor, I know 008 B4v 8 know not; but ſo it was, I went drunk to bed, and in the Morning had forgotten what had paſs’d, and was greatly amazed to find a Woman in bed with me. We fell into Diſcourſe; and ſhe frankly told me her Name and Family, which greatly amaz’d me; and that ſhe was a Virgin, which more and more confounded me; and then ſhe told me the Cauſe of this Adventure: For, ſaid ſhe, I liv’d beyond my Fortune; and when that fail’d, I knew not what to do, for I could not work, and am aſham’d to beg; nor, indeed, could I reaſonably hope to be reliev’d, being in Youth and Health; for Charity is ſeldom extended to ſuch Perſons, be their Birth and Education what it will; Humility and Induſtry are the Lectures preach’d, and the Alms given on ſuch Occaſions: I will not argue (continu’d ſhe) how far that way is right or wrong; but finding my ſelf reduced to Diſtreſs, reſolved to take hold on the firſt Opportunity that preſented it ſelf, either to marry, or live with any Gentleman that would like my Perſon ſo well as to take me either of theſe ways, into his Protection.
I extreamly lik’d the Frankneſs of the Girl, together with her Perſon, which was truly handſom; and after a little farther Diſcourſe, I honeſtly told her, that I could not marry any body, having a Wife already;dy; 009 B5r 9 dy; but the other way I was willing to take her, and therefore bid her look out for a Houſe, and meet me again the next Night at the Play, and I would then take further meaſures: I offered her a Guinea; but ſhe generouſly refus’d it, ſaying, It was not come to that yet, to accept a Guinea for a Night’s Lodging, and ſo departed, promiſing to meet me at the Play.
This generous Behaviour ſurpriz’d me; and if at firſt I lik’d her, I now eſteemed her, and thought there was ſomething extraordinary in the Creature, thus to refuſe the Figure of the moſt amorous Monarch in the Univerſe, on a Piece of Gold, the Thing ſhe ſo much wanted, as to ſacrifice her Vertue and Honour for its ſake. I began to make her an Heroine, or petty Goddeſs in my Thoughts; her Beauty ſtamping on her the Character of one, and her Generoſity of the other. I pleaſed my ſelf with the Thoughts of becoming a Beau of the Firſt Rate, in having a handſome Houſe and a genteel Miſtreſs, with whom to paſs away my idle Hours; or, properly ſpeaking, to conſume my time in wickedneſs. I often recounted to my ſelf the Charms of her Converſation, as well as thoſe of her perſonal Beauty; with a thouſand other idle Ravings, which being paſs’d, I would return to my ſelf, ſaying, Fool that I am, thus to 010 B5v 10 to delude my Fancy with the hopes of Happineſs in a Strumpet, a cunning Jilt, pretending to Vertue, the better to diſguiſe her Vices; a Creature pickt up at a Play, as one does any common Stroler. However, I reſolved to keep my Appointment, if it were but to divert my my ſelf in bantering her pretended Vertue. When I came to the Play, I found my Miſtreſs engaged with another Spark: Then I reflected what a Coxcomb I had been, but was glad things had gone no further. I ſhould have hired a Houſe, ſaid I (in reproaching my ſelf) to have been the Receptacle of her numerous Cullies, and furniſh’d it for the ſervice of her Lewdneſs. O, what ridiculous Creatures do we Cullies make of our ſelves, when we depend upon a Creature that has abandon’d Vertue and Honour, in once becoming a Proſtitute! Ah, happy is the Man that has a vertuous and beautiful Wife: Juſtly might the wiſe Man ſay, Her Price is above Rubies. In which only Sentence he has proved himſelf a mighty Sage.
Thus a thouſand Thoughts rambled in my Head, all the while keeping a ſpiteful Eye on my beautiful Deceiver. I watch’d her going out with him, and ſaw them take Coach together in a dirty Hack; which grated my Pride, to ſee the Jilt prefer that to my fine Equipage, and a plain Country- 011 B6r 11 Country-Gentleman (as he ſeemed to be) before a Spark of the Town. I was much out of humour all the Evening, nor was it in the power of Bottle or Friend to divert me: If Ben Johnſon or Hudibras had been there, I muſt have remained dull and illhumour’d. I am aſhamed to tell you, the great Anxieties of Thought in which I paſt that Night; but Sleep, I am ſure, had a very ſmall ſhare of that time allotted by Nature for our Refreſhment. The Morning was not much better: I could ſcarce be commonly civil to thoſe Friends that did me the honour to come to my Levée. When dreſt, I went to the Chocolate Houſe, in order to divert my ſelf there amongſt the Fops that frequent that Place; which, indeed, in ſome degree quell’d my diſturbed Thoughts, to obſerve the different Follies of the Town-Fools; ſome taking out their Pocket-Glaſses to ſee how to place a Patch right upon a Pimple, tho’ there was none to be found on the Face; others talking of the Favours of their Phyllis’s and Bellinda’s; ſome curſing the Treachery of the Sex; others taking out their Billets to read over, for want of Converſation to entertain the Company; and if there was one more ugly than the reſt, be-ſure he pretended to more Letters and Billets than any body elſe, though, perhaps, written by himſelf, or 012 B6v 12 or ſome Friend for him; which way ſoever it was, it ſerved to gratifie his Vanity. Here, perhaps, I met with ſome as idly diſpos’d as my own good-for-nothing ſelf, that when Dinner-time approached, were ready to go with me to Locket’s; where, at a coſtly rate, we found Rarities enough to gratifie any luxurious Appetite.
Thus, I began by little and little to baniſh my falſe Chloris, who by this time had but little Intereſt left in my Thoughts; ſo that I knew, a Game at Hazard would utterly ſupplant her: For whether I ſhould win or loſe, I knew, the Pleaſure or the Chagrin would equally out-rival her Charms. It was my luck to win; but I was too vain to carry off the Money; but immediately ſent for my Barber to bring me one of his beſt Wiggs, and to my Semſtreſs for a Suit of her fineſt Linen, whether Point or Lace.
Thus equipt, I order’d my Equipage to attend me to Hide-Park, where in Fops- Ring I might ogle at my pleaſure, and at the ſame time expected my Wigg and Linen ſhould draw the Eyes of others, eſpecially thoſe of the Fair. No Author at Will’s liſtned more attentively to what was ſaid of his New Book or Play, than I look’d to ſee who ogled theſe my New Trappings, or could have more Chagrin if neglected: But 013 C1r 13 But, I think, I was not miſtaken; Beaus and Belles, Prudes and Coquets, all gave a Glance, at leaſt I thought ſo; and that pleaſed my Vanity as well, as if really ſo: And now I began to wonder at my ſelf for having had the leaſt Diſquiet for my Play-houſe Jilt. I began to be as impatient at my ſelf, as ever I was at her, to think that ſuch a worthleſs Thing ſhould diſcompoſe the Thoughts of ſuch a Hero, as I there counted my ſelf: But behold what hapned in the midſt of the high Conceits I had built on ſuch a ſandy Foundation. Here comes by my Miſs, in a Coach, and the Spark I ſaw with her at the Play. Their Coach ſeem’d to be a Country-Gentleman’s Vehicle; good Horſes, but look’d as if us’d to a Plough and Cart more than a Coach. He, indeed, was handſome in Perſon, only wanted a little of the Air of our Town Gallants. And now, after all the Tranquillity in which I thought my ſelf, the ſight of this Slut diſcompoſed me. I was enraged to think, that ſhe ſhould prefer his dirty Acres before all my ſhining Equipage, and coſtly Ornaments. I went out of the Park as ſullen as a ſick Monkey; I knew not whether to ſtrole: The Play was my Averſion, fanſying I ſhould ſee my falſe Chloris there. Too ſoon to go to Will’s or the Roſe, I reſolved to take a Turn in the Mall, C tho’ 014 C1v 14 tho’ too ſoon for the Beau Monde, but good time for the City and Country-Ladies to gather the Duſt, and ſpoil their fine Petticoats. Here I diverted my ſelf as well as I could, to ſee the Intrigues, ſome beginning, ſome going on, though but an old ſort of worn-out Diverſion to me; yet it ſerv’d to ſooth my ſurly Humour at that time.
I betook my ſelf to a Seat, and there began to look back upon the Follies of my Life, and of all ſuch as liv’d in that way, whoſe whole Buſineſs is Pride, Sloth and Luxury. We move in a conſtant courſe of Irregularity; I may ſay, as conſtant as the Sun, but with this diſtinction, his Motion is to do good, ours Miſchief, to our ſelves, Neighbours and Families. Methought I wiſh’d my ſelf in Shades amongſt the Poets and Philoſophers, where wholſome Air and Innocence procured us Health, that firſt ſtep to Happineſs: Nay, I thought, if I had a Wife that was good-humour’d, how many other Diſagreements ſoever ſhe had belonged to her, I could make my ſelf eaſie, and live honeſt, without conſidering that my Misbehaviour was the Cauſe of her ill Humour. I was in theſe Cogitations, when one of my wild Companions came and ſet himſelf by me, and ask’d, what made me ſo out of humour. Didſt thou drink ill Wine laſt 015 C2r 15 laſt Night, ſays he, and ſo art Maw-ſick? Or has Miſs jilted thee? Come, Man, let us go take a Bottle, waſh down Sorrow, and talk of our Adventures over a brisk Glaſs of Champagne: For, to tell truth, Friend, I am almoſt reſolved to marry, and ſo abandon this looſe way of living. There’s no way like it, replied I; and it is certainly in the Power of a ſweet temper’d Woman to reclaim the worſt of us; therefore be ſure to ſecure that Point, whatever the reſt may prove. That is a Quality I mightily eſteem, replied my Friend, and I hope I have met with one to my purpoſe. Prithee where, or when, ſaid I, tell me your Adventure; it is pleaſant ſitting here, and too ſoon for a Bottle, ſo tell me your Intrigue.
The other Night, ſaid he, as I was walking here a little late, till the Mall began to empty: I took notice of two pretty young Creatures, very well dreſs’d in new Mourning, with Gold Watches and Tweezers. They ſeemed in a great Conſternation, that their Man did not bring ’em word he had got ’em a Coach ready at the other ſide of the Horſe-Guard, as they had appointed, and ſeemed very uneaſie to go that way without Company or Attendance. I perceiving their Anxiety, offer’d to wait on them till they could get a Coach, which C2 was 016 C2v 16 was readily enough to be had as ſoon as through the Guard. I put them in a Coach, and begg’d leave to ſee them ſafe to their Lodgings, which was but in the Hay-Market; we arriv’d at a handſome Houſe, and as handſomly furniſh’d, a ſpruce Footman waiting, whom they rebuked for neglecting his Attendance in the Park, ſo that they were forced to be obliged to this Gentleman (meaning me,) for which they made me many grateful Acknowledgments in their North Country Dialect. They asked me to drink a Diſh of Tea, it being juſt ready, ſaying, they could not pretend to offer any thing elſe, they being Strangers in Town, Lodgers, and not Houſe keepers: They offered and excuſed every thing in ſuch a pretty Country Plainneſs as charmed me: So being deſirous to creep further into their Acquaintance, I refuſed Tea at that time, begging leave to wait on them in the Morning, when a Diſh of Tea would be very acceptable: I took my leave, but with a certain tender Reluctance, ſuch as I had been never ſenſible of before.
In the Morning I went, and found a civil Reception, mix’d with much Modeſty; and in ſome turns of Diſcourſe, I found that their coming to Town was to adjuſt ſome Law intanglements, and that their Stay would not be long: They deſired of me 017 C3r 17 me to let them know the neareſt Church, where they might go and offer themſelves and their Affairs to the Protection of Heaven; ſo I gave them as good Directions as I could, withal promiſing to wait on them with my Chariot to Weſtminſter and St. Paul’s, and that it was at their ſervice on all occaſions, whenever they would honour me with their Acceptance. In ſhort, they are ſo devout, ſweet and innocent, that I have indulged my Fancy to that degree, ſo as to reſolve to marry the Elder, who ſeems not averſe to the Propoſal; but will determine nothing till her Guardian comes to Town: But I hope to unrivet that Fancy; for you know that my looſe way of living has made a great Hole in my little Eſtate, which her Guardian would ſoon find out, and perhaps I ſhould be diſappointed in the firſt Reſolution I ever made of marrying.
He had ſcarce finiſh’d his Diſcourſe, when two of the Marſhal’s Men brought theſe two Ladies by us to carry them to Bridewell, which we found, upon Enquiry, was for having pickt a Gentleman’s-Pocket of twenty Guineas, and withal giving him the Foul Diſeaſe.
This was a ſurprizing Revolution, and it was with difficulty that I hinder’d this my Friend from going to their Reſcue. I alledged to him all the manner of their C3 firſt 018 C3v 18 firſt acquaintance, together with its Progreſs, as not being conſonant to true Vertue and Modeſty; and wonder’d, that he who knew the Town ſo well, ſhould be ſo eaſily bubled; but he had attributed all their Freedom and Eaſineſs of Acquaintance to proceed from a Country Simplicity, and Ignorance of the World. After having a a little deſcanted on this Adventure, we reſolved to go to the Roſe, to waſh down our Diſappointments, and try to meet ſome of our Acquaintance as they came out of the Play, and hear what Tranſactions, what Intrigues, and other little trifling News the Houſe afforded that Evening. In order to which, we poſted our ſelves in a Room juſt at the Stairs-head, where we ſat talking over our reſpective Affairs, as I have juſt now related.
And, behold, the firſt that mounted was my Miſtreſs, conducted by her Country- Squire: He bad the Waiter tell his Maſter to make haſte with Supper, for he did not intend to ſtay long. As ſoon as they were got into their Room, I asked the Waiter if he knew that Gentleman? Yes, Sir, ſaid he, I was born in the ſame Town with him, my Father holds a good Farm under him. And do you know the Lady that is with him? Yes, ſaid he, ſhe is his Siſter. Are you ſure of it, ſaid I? Yes, replied the Wait- 019 C4r 19 Waiter, ſhe and I are both of an Age; and I believe, ſaid he, they both go out of Town to morrow early. This was ſuch a double Surprize, as ſhock’d me beyond Expreſsion: For ’tis certain, that, unknown to my ſelf, I lov’d her as well as any Hero in a Romance; and had ſuffer’d as great Anxieties for the Falſhood of which ſhe ſeemed to have been guilty: And now, a little Spark of ſatisfaction, kindled by this Boy’s Intelligence, was at the ſame moment extinguiſhed, by the thoughts of her going out of Town, conſequently out of my reach. Thus, we ſuffer our ſelves to be hurried by irregular Paſsions, throwing Reaſon out of her Regency, and permit our ſelves to be governed by a thouſand Crimes, Follies and Impertinencies. In ſhort, we ſat down over our Bottle, to divert our Chagrin, and heighten our Satisfaction: For we had a mixture of both, his Miſtreſs proving a vile Jilt; nevertheleſs, it being diſcovered in time, e’re too late, was a Conſolation; mine proving an honeſt Whore (if one may ſo word it:) But the Proof came too late to retrieve the Loſs of her out of the Dominion of her Brother. In ſhort, we paſs’d our time as agreeably as our Circumſtances would permit, till Sleep called us to our reſpective Lodgings, and mine that Night was at my own Houſe: 020 C4v 20 Houſe: And, I believe, if my Wife could have received me with good Humour, I ſhould then have become a tolerable good Husband: For I was ſo chagrin’d with this Adventure, that Lewdneſs became nauceous to me; and I believe, there are few Husbands ſo abandoned, but a ſweettempered Woman might find an Interval to reclaim: But I was not ſo happy in this Juncture.
In the Morning, according to cuſtom, to the Chocolate Houſe I went; here a Letter was brought me by an elderly Woman, who told me, ſhe was ordered to deliver it into my own Hands; which was to this purpoſe, as near as I can remember:Sir, You may very well reproach me, that you have not heard from me in ſo many Days, and for not having obey’d your Orders in ſeeking for a Houſe: But when you know the Cauſe, I’m ſure, you will readily forgive the Neglect. ’Tis this: My Brother having heard of my frequenting the Playhouſe, and admitting the Courtſhip of ſeveral Lords and 021 C5r 21 and Gentlemen (tho’ I can ſafely affirm, I never granted any Favours but to your ſelf.) This brought him to Town, to perſuade me to go with him into the Country, which is really my Averſion. Nevertheleſs, he treated me ſo kindly, entertaining me with all the Diverſions of the Town, and us’d ſo many cogent Arguments, that I could ſcarce hold out againſt his kind Offers. How much I ſuffered in my Thoughts pro and con, is too tedious to repeat; laying before my ſelf the poor Life I ſhould lead under the Conduct of a Siſter-in-law, wholly a Country-Gentlewoman, and a Prude into the bargain, and young Nieces growing up to deſpiſe, and perhaps grudge the Bread that I eat, and much more the Cloaths that I wear; and I knew I had not wherewith to bribe them to Reſpect by coſtly Preſents. On the other hand, the Scandal of being a kept Miſs, or Left-hand Wife, the Decay of Beauty, which neceſſarily entails the Contempt of a Gallant, &c; In ſhort, my Brother took me to the Play laſt Night, and was ſo very obliging, that I had reſolved to go next Morning with him into the Country. But, Ah! coming up the Stairs at the Tavern, I ſaw you, my dear Captain. This daſh’d in pieces all my Intentions toward the Country: I could not leave my Manly, my beloved Captain: No, I reſolved to be Concubine, Strumpet, or whatever the malicious World would call me, Terms invented by great Fortunes and ugly Faces, who would monopolize all the fine Gentlemen to themſelves. I ſay, for your ſake, I will undergo the 022 C5v 22 the worſt of our Sex’s Character. And now, that my Brother is gone out of Town, I ſhall have Opportunity to take meaſures with you; and will meet you at the Play houſe this Evening, who am, Sir, Your Humble Servant, Chloris.
Thus was I again catch’d faſter than ever: Her abandoning her ſelf and her Family, drew faſt that Snare, in which her Beauty had before intangled me. And ſure, the moſt ſevere part of Mankind cannot wholly condemn me, though I greatly condemn my ſelf, and humbly beg pardon of Heaven.
I met her according to Appointment; and not to clog your vertuous Ears with what amorous Nonſence paſs’d, ſhe told me, ſhe had found a Houſe for our purpoſe, in a Quarter of the Town where neither of us were known. I gave her a Purſe of Gold wherewith to furniſh an Appartment and other Neceſsaries; all which ſhe perform’d with Expedition, and every thing was accompliſh’d with Neatneſs and Conveniency; and thus, vile Adulterer as I was, I eſtabliſh’d my ſelf with my Harlot.And 023 C6r 23
And now I liv’d in a regular way of Lewdneſs; I paſs’d my Days in Jollity, and ſlept in the Bed of Adultery, till Heaven, alljuſt and good, awak’d me out of this my impious Delirium, by the Revolution which ſoon follow’d. I will not tell you what different Thoughts attack’d me on this occaſion, leſt in ſome things I ſhou’d give offence; but I aſsure you, I was greatly embarraſs’d between Love, Religion and Loyalty; that if I was to write down the many Diſputes I had with my ſelf, it wou’d make a Book as big as Fox’s Martyrology. Let it ſuffice to tell you, that my Wife perceiving that I had ſome inclination to cloſe with the new Government, and my Miſs, on the other hand, thinking I would go away, they both made their reſpective Intereſt according to their Fancies, my Wife to have me diſobliged, that I might get me gone, and ſo rid her of the Company of an ill Husband; Cloris, that I might be prevented from going, that ſhe might retain her beloved Gallant. But ſo it was, between theſe different Intereſts, I was clap’d into Priſon even Newgate. Thus, we ſee how different Extreams produce the ſame Effect, as Glaſs is made by the Extreams of Heat and Cold: When the Government had got their Affairs in a pretty good poſture in Ireland, that my Liberty could do the King no 024 C6v 24 no ſervice, I was let out of Priſon. However, the Confinement had ſo diſobliged me, that it anſwered my Wife’s Intentions; and I went away to St. Germain’s, leaving Cloris to ſhift for her ſelf in finding a new Gallant.
When I came there, I found the Court in a melancholy way, things going but ill in Ireland, and long it was not e’re the King came back to France. Here I found, I cou’d do his Majeſty no Service, there being more Officers come out of Ireland than cou’d be imploy’d; ſo that many remain’d chargeable Pentioners; amongſt theſe, his Majeſty offer’d me Subſiſtence, which was a Favour I did not accept, they having born the Heat and Burden of the Day, loſt their Eſtates and many of them advanced in Years, &c; So that I being young enough, reſolved, to try my fortune, as many others did, in a Privateer, the French being then very ſucceſsful againſt the Engliſh and the Dutch: But it ſo hapned that the Engliſh took a Privateer bearing King James’s Commiſsion, and hanged ’em all as Rebels to their Country. This diſappointed us all, in particular my ſelf, who would not be a burden to the King in his narrow Circumſtances: Wherefore I reſolv’d to try my fortune in a Voyage to the Indies; accordingly I went aboard a French Veſsel, reſolving to try what Succeſs I ſhould have 025 D1r 25 have in Merchandize: I lay’d out all the Money I had, and what I cou’d get out of England: And thus ſet ſail from Breſt for Martinico, a Settlement in the North Indies belonging to the French. The Weather was good enough, nor did we meet with any Accident ſo conſiderable, as to be worth repeating, till we got off the Madera Iſlands; and then a vile Pyrate attack’d us: We made what reſiſtance we could; but they ſoon became our Maſters, carry’d us into Algier, and there ſold us for Slaves. Judge, dear Galecia, what a poor Station this was to me, who had indulg’d my ſelf in Delicacy and Luxury. However, of a bad ſtation, it was not the worſt; for the Perſon that bought me was a Widow, whoſe Husband dy’d a Chriſtian, (as I learnt afterwards) which I ſuppoſe, made her more kind to Chriſtian Slaves; for I was not employed in hard laborious work, but to feed the Hogs, fodder the Beaſts, take care of the Poultry, &c;
We had another Chriſtian Slave, who had been there ſome Years, and had by his juſt Dealings gain’d ſo far upon our Miſtreſs, that ſhe made him Ruler over the other Slaves; he govern’d and was obey’d as if he had been a circumciſed Free-man or Native. By little and little this Man and I grew more acquainted; when I found he D was 026 D1v 26 was a Roman Catholick Prieſt; and by degrees learn’d, that he had ſecretly converted and baptized our Miſtreſs’s Husband before he dy’d, who had recommended him to his Wife, to be good to him, and as ſoon as ſhe had ſettled her Affairs, to give him his Liberty and wherewithal to convey him into his own Country, which was Italy.
This good Woman had a great Favour for the Chriſtian Religion, but had not Courage to profeſs it. The truth is, the Severities againſt it are ſo great, that it is not to be done without Loſs of all things and Hazard of Life, to thoſe that are Natives; But for others, as Traders, and Travellers, &c; they live there thoroughly at their eaſe, together with their Families; and walk their Proceſsions even in the Streets of Conſtantinople.
The longer I lived here, the more I grew in favour with my Miſtreſs; inſomuch that I liv’d eaſie, and as happy as any of her Domeſticks that were Free-men. She being thus good to us, we endeavour’d to compenſate her Goodneſs, by giving her a thorough Underſtanding of our holy Religion. We got her the New Teſtament in the Turkiſh Language; the Story of which is ſo ſurprizing, and beyond all to which their Alcoran can pretend, that ſhe 027 D2r 27 ſhe was almoſt perſwaded to be a Chriſtian. What ſtuck with her ſome time, was, ſhe could not tell how to conclude this Hiſtory Authentick, much leſs ſacred; But we made it plain to her, how it had paſs’d through ſo many Ages, though oppos’d by the greateſt of Human Powers, ſubtileſt Knowledge, and its Profeſsors perſecuted to Death; yet they never endeavoured by Rebellious Armies to eſtabliſh their Doctrine; but by patient and meek Suffering, became victorious, and that thus the Kingdom of the Holy Crucified Jeſus was eſtabliſh’d almoſt throughout the Univerſe. This we demonſtrated to her; as alſo, how, laſtly, the Ottoman Empire was ſet up, and how it began with Rebellion, was carry’d on with Injuſtice, War and Rapine, and eſtabliſhed in a compound Religion, of Jew, Heretical Chriſtian and Old Heatheniſm. Theſe, and the like things the good Italian Prieſt made out to her ſo clear, that ſhe no longer doubted the Truth of the Chriſtian Religion; but durſt not venture on it in that Country; but choſe rather to make off, and convert her Eſtate into Money, and fly with us into Europe. But here ſtarted another Difficulty, that it wou’d look ſtrange in the Eyes of the vertuous European Women, for her to come away and D2 tra- 028 D2v 28 travel, by Sea and by Land with two Men, and neither of them her Husband, nor otherwiſe related to her. Hereupon ſhe propos’d to make one of us Maſter of that conſiderable Fortune ſhe poſseſs’d, together with her Perſon, which, was truly agreeable; not, ſaid ſhe, that I have any affection for either of you, above that of Friendſhip: For, believe it, all amorous Inclinations, are gone into the Grave with my dear Husband; but for Security of my honour, I make one of you this Propoſal. The good Prieſt anſwer’d her very reſpectfully, that He being an Italian Prieſt was vow’d to a ſingle Life. Then ſhe caſt her Eyes on me, expecting my Anſwer; whereupon I threw my ſelf at her Feet, ſaying, Madam, in this gracious Offer, you make me doubly your Slave; therefore I ſhou’d be the worſt of Miſcreants, ſhould I abuſe your Bounty, in concealing from you a material Truth, which prohibits me from accepting the Honour you offer. Be pleas’d to know, Madam, that I am a married Man, and have a Wife at London, ſo that according to our Chriſtian Law I cannot be Husband to another, till well aſsured that ſhe is no longer living: But as to that Scruple, you make of going along with us, I beg you to diſmiſs all apprehenſions, and be aſsured, that 029 D3r 29 that you ſhall be very ſafe under our Conduct: (For I, Madam) will defend your Vertue and Honour to the laſt drop of my Blood. She paus’d a while, and ſaid, ſhe was extreamly ſatisfied with our open Sincerity, and was reſolv’d to commit her ſelf and her Fortune to our care, and with us take a Voyage into Europe, for the ſake of that Holy Religion we had taught her; and accordingly, took convenient meaſures to diſpoſe and make off this her Country-Eſtate, under pretence of retiring from the Fatigue of Rural Incumbrance.
We concerted with her all due Meaſures for our Flight into Europe: Father Barnard (for that was the Name of the Prieſt) being better acquainted with the Turkiſh Ways and Language, undertook to get an European Veſsel, which he ſoon did at the Port of Algier; thither we came to him, where we found he had got an Italian Ship ready to ſet ſail: We had a fair Gale, a ſmooth Sea, and a pleaſant Serene Air; all which Heaven bleſsed us with for the ſake, perhaps, of this good Woman, who for the cauſe of Truth, forſook Friends, Kindred, and native Country. When we were got off the African Coaſts, ſhe preſs’d to be baptized, which was perform’d by Father Barnard, in the Preſence of moſt of the D3 Ship’s 030 D3v 30 Ship’s Crew, who devoutly joyn’d in Prayers and Praiſes to God. Thus we had a very pleaſant Voyage, without Danger or Difficulty. However, there is a little remarkable Story the Captain of the Veſsel told us which I cannot omit relating.
The Captain had a very pretty Boy with him, to whom he ſhewed great Kindneſs or rather Fondneſs; which made us at firſt take him for his Son; but when he undeceiv’d us, we asked him what degree of relation he bore to him? He told us, none at all; but, ſaid he, I will give you a particular Account of this Child.
I had been a Voyage in the Northern Seas, and return’d ſafe with a good Cargo; when I came aſhoar I met with ſome Merchants who bad me kindly welcome, and ask’d me if I had brought ſtore of ſuch and ſuch Goods; I told them, yes. They deſir’d me if it was poſsible, to help them to ſome Parcels of them, there being a great Fair or Mart to open at that Place the day following. Hereupon I call’d two or three Sailors, that were come aſhoar with me, and told them theſe Merchants would reward them if they would go to the Ship, and fetch thoſe Parcels of Goods aſhoar,ſhoar, 031 D4r 31 ſhoar, which they readily undertook. In the mean time, I went with the Merchants to take a Glaſs of Wine, bidding the Fellows come to us at ſuch an Hour.
There we ſtay’d many Hours; we drank, we ſupp’d, and fretted at our ſtaying ſo long; we play’d, we ſlept, ſtill no Return of our Sailors. Thus we paſsed the Night in Expectation, to no purpoſe, and in the Morning we departed about our Buſineſs. I enquired from place to place wherever I thought of any probability to find them, but could get no intelligence; I got a Boat to convey me to the Ship, not doubting but I ſhould find them there: but the Ship’s Crew had neither ſeen nor heard of them, which greatly amazed me. I then lookt out ſome Goods, and ſent to the Merchants, regulated my Affairs in the Ship, and when it was Evening went to Bed, having wanted Reſt the Night before: Where lying in my Cabbin between ſleep and wake, I heard a Noiſe of Feet coming down the ſteps; but I kept my ſelf quiet as if aſleep, thereby to prevent any body ſpeaking to me. But as I lay thus, one cry’d, Maſter, three or four times, before I would ſpeak; then opening my Eyes, I ſaw the Three Sailors that had been ſent the Day before to look the Merchants Goods; at which, my Anger excited me to uſe Seamens rough Language, in 032 D4v 32 in bidding them be gone, and leave me to my Repoſe. Patience, good Maſter, ſaid they, and hear us; we are no longer living Mortals: For we, together with your Boat, were caſt away Yeſterday, and drowned. To which I replied with Scorn and Anger, that I doubted not but they had been drowned in good Ale or Brandy, by which their Senſes were loſt; therefore bid them be gone to ſleep, and not ſtay there to diſturb me who was ſleepy, through their laſt Nights Negligence. Indeed, Maſter, ſaid one of them, you judge amiſs; for we are truly and really dead, and what you ſee, are only our Ghoſts. Give me your hand, ſaid I, that I may feel. Whereupon one of them held out his Hand, which I caught at, thinking to hold it faſt, but I felt nothing; at which I was greatly amazed; nevertheleſs I did not loſe the Power to ſpeak to them; but ask’d them, why they came to trouble me, if they were dead. To which one of them replied, ſaying, Maſter, you know you owe me ſo many Months Pay; which Money I deſire you to employ in paying my Debts. The next ſaid, that the Money I ow’d him, he deſired I would with it put his Boy to School, and when he was big enough, take him with me to Sea. I told him, I knew not how to promiſe him that, having Children of my own, 033 D5r 33 own, in particular a Son, who would be of fit Age at the ſame time. To which he added to his Requeſt, ſaying, Sir, if you ſhould have a good Voyage next time you put to Sea, will you promiſe me then to take him? I told him I would: So this Boy to which you ſee me ſo kind, is he; for I had a very good Voyage, and failed not to perform my Promiſe. I ask’d the third Sailor what he wanted; but the other Two told me, that he was not permitted to ſpeak. After this, they all three bow’d, and vaniſh’d, which greatly amazed me; for till then, I could not tell what to gueſs about their being caſt away, they look’d ſo like true ſubſtantial Perſons.
Thus I have told you all the Relation and Obligation I have to this Boy, excepting his own Obedience and Induſtry, which is very engaging.
This Relation was very amazing to us, eſpecially being told by the Perſon who tranſacted it: For tho’ we hear many Stories of Spirits and Apparitions, and greatly atteſted for Truth; yet we ſeldom meet with any body that can relate them of their own knowledge, as did this Captain.
Thus, in one Diſcourſe or other, we entertained our ſelves, ſailing with a proſperous Wind, till we arrived at Venice. Here 034 D5v 34 Here our new made Chriſtian was greatly delighted with the Beauty of this City, and in particular, with the Glory of the Churches, and the Solemnity of the Chriſtian Service, which Father Barnard took great pains to explain to her; all which ſhe comprehended extreamly well. And now, being in a ſtrange Country, without any Friend or Acquaintance, but us two that had been her Slaves, ſhe was unwilling to travel any farther, but determined to fix there in ſome Religious Houſe, and in a peculiar manner dedicate her ſelf to the Service of the Almighty. Father Barnard ſoon found out a convenient Place for this her pious purpoſe. We went with her to the Abbeſs, who was reported to be (what ſhe really is) a Perſon of great Prudence and Vertue. We told her Ladyſhip our Story in few words, and that of our New Convert; at which ſhe ſeemed greatly pleaſed, giving Glory to God; adding, that it was her Luck to receive into her Houſe Ladies of Foreign Countries: For, ſaid ſhe, I have a beautiful Engliſh Woman in my Convent, whom we beg’d leave to ſee, that we might introduce an early Acquaintance between theſe two Strangers of far different Countries. Hereupon my Lady call’d for the Engliſh Gentlewoman, who approached with great Reſpect and Modeſty. But, good 035 D6r 35 good Heavens! How was I ſurprized, when I found it was my Chloris! The firſt View was ſurprizing to us both; which my Lady Abbeſs perceiving, ask’d if we were Relations, or old Acquaintance? At which, Chloris caſt her ſelf at her Feet, and with a Flood of Tears, in few Words related to her the guilty Acquaintance between us; and how the Diſtractions in England at the Revolution, caus’d her to look into her ſelf, and behold with deteſtation her former Life, which ſhe reſolved to change, from Vice to Vertue, from Vanity to Piety, and imitate the holy Magdalen as near as ſhe could. In order to which, ſaid ſhe, I reſolved to ſeek a Convent wherein to paſs my Days in Penance. But ſuppoſing you, (addreſſing her ſelf to me) to be gone into France, after your Royal Maſter, I would not direct my Steps that way, but hither, where you now ſee me; where I have the Society of holy Virgins, and the Opportunity of pious Performances, which I would not change for all the Riches and Grandeur in the Univerſe.
I was greatly delighted with this her holy Enterprize and encouraged her in her pious Purpoſes, and aſsured her I would pray for her Perſeverance; of which ſhe had no need, for ſhe was very firm.
I told her, I was going for England, with a reſolution to live with my Wife juſtly, and faith- 036 D6v 36 faithfully, begged her Prayers for my Performance, and ſo took leave.
I ſaw her no more; but laid hold on the firſt Opportunity to come away for England, leaving Father Barnard to ſettle and eſtabliſh his Convert, which I hear, he accompliſh’d to all their Satisfactions.
Upon my Arrival in England, I found my Wife dead; and the good Woman, notwithſtanding all the Wrongs I had done her, had not only forgiven me, but certified the ſame, by having made me a decent Settlement. And, what is particular, upon due Examination, I found, that this Settlement was made and ſigned, the very Day I had honeſtly own’d to the Turkiſh Lady, my having a Wife in England; that I cou’d not but count it proceeded from the Hand of Heaven, for my juſt Dealings toward that good Lady, at a time when Neceſſity urged me to tranſgreſs the Rules of Honeſty and Honour.
This Settlement is now my ſupport; without which I ſhou’d have been reduc’d to great Diſtreſs, for I had loſt and ſpent all I had in the World; in which I verified the Old Proverb, That a Rolling Stone never gathers Moſs,
The Gentleman having finiſh’d his Story, Galecia waited on him to the Stairs-head; and at her return, caſting her Eyes on the Table, ſhe ſaw lying there an old dirty rumpled Book, and found in it the following story: In the time of the Holy War when Chriſtians from all parts went into the Holy Land to oppoſe the Turks; Amongſt theſe there was a certain Engliſh Knight, who had paſſed divers Campaigns, to the Advantage of the Chriſtians; Detriment to the Turks, and Honour to himſelf; at laſt, being weary of the War, he return’d home, loaden with Services done his King, Country and Relations: He retired into his own Country, to his paternal Eſtate, and by way of Thankſgiving to Heaven, he erected a Religious Houſe juſt by his own Habitation, that he might frequently join with them in their holy Offices: He married a fine young Lady, in order to eſtabliſh his Family. Thus this pious good Knight liv’d in Tranquillity of Mind and Fortune till things took another turn.E There 038 E1v 38
There were two young Gentlemen, who out of a Deſign of Piety, and the Contempt of the World, placed themſelves in this holy Retreat, in order to become Votaries in this Confraternity: But as Temptations purſue us in all Stations, ſo here it happened, that one of theſe Gentlemen, during the time of his Probation, caſt an amorous Eye on this Lady, the good Knight’s Spouſe. How far he endeavour’d to overcome or indulge this guilty Flame, is unknown; but he grew daily more and more paſſionatly in love; which he durſt not diſcover any way but by obſequious Bows when he happened in her Preſence, or to paſs by her, or the like; which the Lady return’d with a gracious Mien and Smiling Countenance, being in her nature courteous and affable. But as we are always ready to flatter our ſelves, ſo did our Lover, and took the Lady’s Courteſie for Kindneſs, and her ſmiling Looks for interiour Affection. This he revolv’d in his Thoughts from time to time, and Fancy upon Fancy augmented his Paſſion. At laſt, he took the boldneſs to write her a very amorous Letter; at which the Lady was greatly aſtoniſh’d and provok’d, and in her Anger ſhew’d it to her Husband. The good Knight laughed at the Man’s Folly, and adviſed his Lady to ſeem eaſie, and not diſcouragerage 039 E2r 39 rage her Lover, till ſuch time as he ſhould contrive his Puniſhment.
The good Knight did not tell his Superiour his Fault, thinking that would be a continual Diſgrace and Blot upon our young Probationer, and likewiſe a ſort of Diſgrace to himſelf and his Lady, that any one ſhould dare to have a Thought ſo audacious, much more to have the Impudence to own it. Wherefore he reſolved to mortifie our young Lover himſelf with a good dry Baſting: ſo he conſulted with his Lady, and engaged her to write a kind Letter to him, and invite him to come to her ſuch a Night, foraſmuch as the Knight her Husband would then be from home. This Letter greatly tranſported our Lover: He waſh’d, bath’d, perfum’d himſelf, and got him fine Linen; and thus equipp’d, he came late in the Night, when all were in bed, and quiet, only one Servant to let him in; who conducted him into the Parlour to the Knight his Maſter, inſtead of the Lady’s Bed-chamber. Here the Knight ſhew’d him his Crime, in that vile Letter he had written to his Wife, and forthwith began his Puniſhment with a good Cudgel, intending no farther Miſchief: But how it hapned, is unknown; whether the Knight’s Wrath roſe to an Extremity, or an unlucky E2 Chance- 040 E2v 40 Chance-Blow; but ſo it was, the Lover was kill’d in the Rencounter.
This put the Knight into a great Conſternation, not knowing what to do. The Knight’s Servant, perſuaded him to lend him his Help, to get the dead Body over the Wall of the Convent into their Garden, which joined to the Knight’s Houſe, ſuppoſing that when the Religious ſhould come in the Morning, and find him there, they would conclude, ſome ſudden Sickneſs had ſeized him in that place.
Now, there was one in the Confraternity, who was always at variance with this Robert, which was kill’d, (the other’s Name was Richard.) It hapned, that Richard had occaſion to riſe in the Night, and come to the little Houſe, and there found Robert placed as aforeſaid, Richard not thinking any thing, attended a while; then began to call, and bid him come away; but the dead Man not anſwering, the other thought he mock’d him: At laſt, being enrag’d at ſuch behaviour, Richard took up a Stone, and threw at him, which hit him in ſuch a manner, that he fell down off the Seat. Richard finding that he was really dead, believed that it was that Stone had done the Execution. This put him into a great Conſternation, being aſsured that it would paſs for Wilful Murther, by reaſon of that 041 E3r 41 that Variance in which they uſed to live. So caſting in his mind what to do, he at length reſolved to get the Body over the Wall into the Knight’s Court, which accordingly he did, and went and placed it in the Porch of the Knight’s Houſe, where he left it.
Now, let us return to the Knight: He and his Man were extreamly uneaſie at what had hapned, and by peep of Day open’d the Door, in order to go and liſten at the Wall of the Convent, thinking to hear ſomething of the dead Body; but, to their ſurprize, they found it ſitting in their own Porch, at firſt not knowing what to think, whether it was the real Body, or a Spirit; but on Examination, they found it was the Body; and what to do with it they did not know: At laſt they thought on the following Expedient:
There was in the Stable, a Horſe that had ſerved his Maſter in the War: They ſaddled this Horſe, with his war-like Accoutrements, and faſtened the dead Body on him, with a Spear in his hand, and ſo turn’d the Horſe out of the Stable, to run where he would.
Whilſt this was in hand, Richard, who was in great perplexity what to do on this occaſion, believing himſelf guilty of the Death of Robert, and ſo liable to the Puniſhment, E3 if 042 E3v 42 if diſcover’d reſolv’d to get away; Thereupon he went to the Miller, that belong’d to the Convent, and told him in the Name of the Superiour, that he muſt let him have his Mare to go out this Morning on earneſt Buſineſs for the Confraternity. Thus getting the Miller’s Mare, away he rid; but was not got far e’er he came within view of the dead Robert, whoſe Horſe ran neighing after the Mare. Richard thinking this to be the Ghoſt of Robert, which purſued him for his Murder, cry’d out, O Robert, forgive me! I did not Murder you deſignedly; O forgive me, good Robert; But if nothing will appeaſe thy Ghoſt but my Blood, I am ready to reſign my Life to the Stroke of Juſtice.
By this time the Morning was come fully on, and People being up about their buſineſs, ſeeing this Confuſion, ſeiz’d Richard, who ſtedfaſtly own’d the Murder of Robert, for which he was carried away to Priſon; and would, no doubt, have been executed as the Murderer of Robert; But the good Knight haſted away to the King, and laid the whole Tranſaction before his Majeſty. The King graciouſly pardoned the Knight; Richard was kindly receiv’d into his Convent, and all things went on in good order: But from hence came the Proverb, We muſt not ſtrike Robert for Richard.By 043 E4r 43
By this time Galecia’s Maid brought up her Supper; after which ſhe caſt her Eyes again on the foreſaid little Book, where ſhe found the following Story, which ſhe read through before ſhe went to bed.
The Cauſe of the Moors Overrunning Spain.
King ——— of Spain at his Death, committed the Government of his Kingdom to his Brother Don ―― till his little Son ſhould come of Age, to take the Government upon himſelf. But Don ―― prov’d a Traytor to his Truſt; and by many falſe Stories invented againſt the Queen and the Prince, ſo brought things about, as to make himſelf be acknowledg’d and Crown’d King of Spain. Hereupon the diſtreſs’d Queen made her Eſcape to the Moors, imploring that King’s Protection; which he not only generouſly gave her, but alſo aided her with a formidable Army wherewith to invade Spain, in right of the young Prince.The 044 E4v 44
The Uſurper of Spain, in the mean time, made great Preparations to oppoſe his Enemy and ſecure his Kingdom. He had a Noble General, a Perſon truly worthy in all things, excepting his adhering to the Uſurper, and ſuſtaining his unjuſt Pretentions: This General he ſent with a well-appointed Army, to oppoſe the Moors; where we will leave him for the preſent, and return to what paſſed at Court.
This General had a very beautiful Daughter, whom the King took into his Protection in a pecularpeculiar manner, both for her Father’s Sake, and her own, promiſing her Father to marry her to one of the chief Grandees of Spain, if not to a Prince of the Blood Royal; in order to which, he plac’d her in a noble Appartment in the Royal Palace, gave her Equipage and Attendance ſuitable to a young Princeſs, that her Beauty might appear with greater Luſtre to draw the Eyes and Hearts of thoſe of the higheſt Rank and Quality. But the Succeſs prov’d otherwiſe; this over-doing undid all: For every body began to look upon her as one prepared to be the King’s Miſtreſs, not the Wife of any Subject. Her Jewels, Riches, and Grandeur were look’d upon as the Garlands to dreſs her up a Sacrifice to the King’s Pleaſure. Now whither theſe Whiſpers firſt put it into his thoughts, or that 045 E5r 45 that it was his Deſign all along, is unknown; but the event makes it look more like the latter: For he began to make his amorous Inclinations known to her, with the utmoſt Gallantry and Aſſiduity, which ſhe rejected with true Vertue and Modeſty, beſeeching his Majeſty to diſmiſs her the Court, and give her leave to retire into a Convent, or any diſtant Country-retreat, where her Vertue and Honour might be ſecure, and his Majeſty releaſed from the Sight of that Face which was a Snare to his Honour and Chriſtian Profeſſion, with divers Arguments from time to time to the ſame purpoſe. All which ſerved to render her the more amiable, and the more inflam’d that wicked Paſſion, which already was become unextinguiſhable; inſomuch that he reſolv’d bon-gre mal-gre to enjoy her; and accordingly executed his wicked Reſolution. It is not recorded whether he ſubborn’d her Slaves, or uſed open Force; but ’tis certain he had not her Conſent; but on the contrary, ſhe was ſo enraged in her mind, that ſhe thought on nothing but revenge; in order to which ſhe diſguiſed herſelf in form of a Slave and ſo went directly to the Army, to her Father; where caſting her ſelf at his feet, ſhe told him the whole Indignity: Whereupon the General ſummoned many of the principal Offi- 046 E5v 46 Officers of the Army, to hear the Story of this young Lady his Daughter! who upon her Knees begg’d them, for the ſake of their own Children, to repair the Diſhonour done to her and her Family. This ſo touch’d the General, and thoſe noble Officers about him, that with one accord they reſolv’d on a Revolt, and to joyn with the Moors, to dethrone the Uſurper, and eſtabliſh their young lawful King. In this ſtate we will leave the Army, and return to Court.
The King having news of this Revolt, was greatly embarraſs’d, not knowing which way to turn himſelf: He endeavour’d to raiſe new Troops; but alas to little purpoſe; for the Hearts of the People were eſtranged, and the vile Act which cauſed the General, and other Perſons of Honour to draw the Army into a Revolt, opened the Eyes of all, even his chief Adherents, both in Town, Country and Court, ſo that he was reduced to the utmoſt Diſtreſs, being contemned by his Servants, abhorr’d by his People, and the Army in open rebellion. In the midſt of theſe Dilemma’s, like King Saul of old, he betook himſelf to conſult the Devil.
There was a Hill on which ſtood a ſtrongbuilt Tower; But by whom, or when erected, or how it came there, no Record, or 047 E6r 47 or Tradition, gave account; only in general, ’twas called the Devil’s Tower. The Entrance was ſo faſt lock’d and barricaded, as render’d it very difficult to open, if attempted, which was never done, as being ſuppoſed a dangerous Enterprize. However, in this great Exigence to which this Uſurper was reduced, he reſolves to open this Place, be the event what it will; which was perform’d with great difficulty, and divers Perſons entered, who were immediately ſuffocated, and fell down dead; which was ſurprizing at firſt; but on ſecond thoughts, it was eaſily concluded to be the unwholſome Vapours, ſo long ſhut up from Air, which caus’d that ſudden Stop of the vital Spirits.
Wherefore it was reſolved to let it ſtand open a few Days, placing a Guard to prevent any body’s Entrance. In the mean time, proviſion was made of many Flambeaux and Torches, not only for the Service of their Light, but to help extenuate thoſe poyſonous Particles there gather’d by means of the want of Air. Thus they entered the Habitation of the Devil, or the Devil’s Tower, vulgarly ſo called.
They went but a little ſpace till it ſeem’d to wind on both hands, but they ſtruck towards the left; where they beheld with great Horror a vaſt Cauldron full of Blood, which 048 E6v 48 which kept continually boiling, but no Fire was to be perceived: At the ſame time they heard a ſtrange Noiſe of a diſtinct Thump, perform’d in exact time and meaſure. Then going a little farther, they met two Monſters dragging one another, who were laſh’d on by other Monſters behind them, making them cry and howl in a diſmal manner: For they were both to be put into that Cauldron of boiling Blood. The Paſsengers ſtood aſide to give them way, and then paſs’d on, meeting divers frightful Figures, whether real Monſters grown out of the foul Particles of that odious Encloſure, or Phantoms, or Spectres, they could not tell: But, amongſt the many Yellings and Cries which they heard; the continual Thump ceaſed not. Sometimes they heard a Noiſe like the Falling of Water; and going on they perceiv’d a Machine like a vaſt Mill which was a moſt horrible Sight; for the Griſt that was here ground, ſeem’d to be Human Creatures. At another place was a vaſt fiery Furnace, wherein were many Monſters marching about, whether Salamanders, or what, they could not tell. There were many more ſtrange and monſtrous Appearances, not eaſily to be remember’d, much leſs to be deſcrib’d; nor could any body conceive the true natural Cauſe of these Productions,ons 049 F1r 49 ons, whether a ſubterraneous Fire heated that Red Liquor, which appear’d like Blood, (which Liquor, perhaps, was only Water, ſo coloured by paſſing through Red Earth) no body could conclude; tho’ every one made their ſeveral Conjectures thereon.
After many ſtrange and aſtoniſhing Appearances, they came at laſt to a Gate, whereon were written in great Letters the following Lines:
Mortal, whoe’er thou art, beware,
Thou go not in this Place too far:
Yet bear this Warning in thy Mind,
Be ſure thou doſt not look behind.
When they had read theſe Verſes, they were not only much frighted, but found the Words reduced them to great Difficulties, ſeeming to forbid them to go back: For they could not do that, without looking behind; and then again, importing Danger if they went forward. They weighed theſe Conſiderations a while, till the King’s Inclinations, together with their own Curioſity, turned the Balance to a Reſolution of entring in, and proceeding farther. They ſoon conquered the Difficulties of getting the Gate open; ſo on they went, and found themſelves within the Body of a large round Room, which was the Tower that appeared F above- 050 F1v 50 above-ground, the reſt being a ſubterraneous Circle round this Tower.
In the midſt of this Place ſtood a great Image of Time, with a huge long Club in his Hand, which he raiſed and let fall in due meaſure; and this cauſed that aſtoniſhing Thump which they heard from the firſt Moment of their Entry. They kept in their mind, that they muſt not look behind them, ſo reſolved to walk round the Place; where on the Walls they found divers Inſcriptions, all importing Warnings, Menaces and Miſeries to thoſe that came there. In reading which, they ſometimes ſtopt to conſider the Purport and dubious Meanings of theſe uncouth Writings. At laſt being got round a good part of the Circle, they caſt their Eyes on the Shoulders of the Image, and there found the following Words, which the King read with an audible Voice:
All Tribulation ſhall they find,
Who needs will look on me behind.
At the reading hereof they all fell into a great Conſternation, eſpecially the King. They now very well underſtood what was meant by thoſe Words written on the Gate, Not look behind; which they had miſtaken, thinking they were prohibited looking behindhind 051 F2r 51 hind themſelves, or turning back the ſame way. Thus, the Devil’s Oracles are always double and deluſive, and ſuch are all his Temptations, as this wretched King and all his Adherents ſoon afterwards found.
They haſted out of the Tower as faſt as they could, faſtned and barricaded it up cloſe, as they found it, and ſo left it. The King returned home greatly troubled, and more embarraſs’d now than ever. The next Day the Tower was totally ſunk into the Ground, and no ſign left to demonſtrate there had ever been ſuch an Edifice. Thus the little Story ended, without telling what Miſery befel the King and Kingdom, by the Moors, who over ran the Country for many Years after. To which, we may well apply the Proverb, Who drives the Devil’s Stages,Deſerves the Devil’s Wages.
The reading this Trifle of a Story detained Galecia from her Reſt beyond her uſual Hour; for ſhe ſlept ſo ſound the next Morning, that ſhe did not riſe, till a Lady’s Footman came to tell her, that his Lady and another or two were coming to breakfaſt with her: Whereupon ſhe haſtned to get her ſelf and her Tea- Table ready for her Reception.F2 It 052 F2v 52
It was not many Moments e’er they arriv’d, and the good friendly Lady preſented one to Galecia, asking her if ſhe remember’d this her old Friend, after ſo many Years Abſence? Which at firſt a little ſurpriz’d her; but ſhe ſoon call’d her to mind. Ah, ſaid Philinda, (for that was her Name) I do not wonder you could not know me, my Afflictions having made me almoſt a Stranger to my ſelf: To which the good Lady replied, That whilſt the Tea Kettle was on the Fire, ſhe might tell Galecia her ſhort Story e’er it boyl’d: But Philinda beg’d the Lady to pardon the Confuſion which might occur in this Relation, and recount it to Galecia her ſelf, her Ladyſhip knowing every the minuteſt Circumſtance. To which the good Lady accorded. Philinda, in the mean time ſeeing the little Old Book lying on the Table, in which Galecia had been reading over-Night, took the ſame, and went into the next Room, and left them to their Story, being willing to be out of the hearing of thoſe Calamities, in which ſhe had been ſo great a Sufferer.
The Story of Philinda, Related by the Lady Allgood.
This Gentlewoman (ſaid my Lady) had out of her Frugality ſaved a little private purſe to her ſelf, unknown to her Husband; a way which many an excellent good Wife takes, whether to have ſomething of their own fancied Property, and more directly at their Service, or only to have a little Caſh to look on, matters not; but thus it happened: There was a Gentleman that wanted a little Sum of forty or fifty Pounds, wherewith to make up a Payment of Money unknown to his Wife. Philinda being this Gentleman’s Friend, he applied himſelf to her to help him to this Sum; to which ſhe accorded, and lent him the Money privately.
After a while ſhe having occaſion to diſpoſe thereof advantageouſly, writ a Letter deſiring him to meet her at the Abby, F3 where 054 F3v 54 where ſhe would be at Morning-prayers. His Wife hapned to receive the Note, and had the Curioſity to open it, and was ſeiz’d with a Jealouſie, which deſtroy’d her Quiet. However, ſhe made it up again, gave it her Husband without taking any notice; he went to the Church as appointed, and there he met with this his Friend; ſhe whiſpered to him, that ſhe had now an Opportunity to diſpoſe of her Money to advantage, and therefore deſired him to help her to it if he could, without too great Inconveniency. He told her, that he had the Money ready at home, and would go and fetch it, and come back to her by ſuch time as prayers were ended. So ſaid, ſo done: He went home, and fetch’d it, and came back to her e’er the Congregation was diſpers’d. They went into a publick Houſe to pay and receive this Money: But as ill luck would have it, chop’d into a Houſe of ill Repute, and ſo unlucky it was, that in that critical Juncture there came Conſtables and Officers of Juſtice to ſearch for Lewd People; and finding him and her together by themſelves, carried her before a Juſtice of Peace: Where, ſhe not reflecting on the Conſequence, told a wrong Name, being loth to be known, in that odd Circumſtance; and happen’d on a Name that had lately been before the ſame Juſtice. 055 F4r 55 Juſtice. Wherefore, without delay he ſent her to Bridewell. Thus was this good Woman brought into Diſtreſs, Diſgrace, Horror and the utmoſt Confuſion, before ſhe was aware; For at their being firſt ſeiz’d, ſhe deſir’d the Gentleman to ſlip away, and take no notice of her; but to leave her without concern, as if ſhe had been a common Woman; thinking to deal well enough with the Conſtables: For all that ſhe aim’d at was but to keep it from her Husband’s Knowledge: But matters going on as I told you before, ſhe was reduced to this Diſtreſs and ſhameful Condition, not knowing which way to turn her ſelf, to whom to addreſs, or what method to take for her Enlargement: She thought, if ſhe told her true Name, and ſent for her Husband, ſhe could hope for nothing but to be abandon’d, if not proſecuted by him as an Adultereſs. To remain there, and undergo the Rigour of the Law, allotted for ſuch Offenders, was hard, or rather inſupportable for an innocent Perſon: Beſides, it could not be; for her Abſence from her Houſe would ſoon ſtir up her Husband’s Enquiry to find her out.
Thus ſhe weigh’d every thing, but could pitch upon nothing that had any Face of probability, to do her any Service; At laſt, ſhe reſolv’d on the plain Truth, that being generally 056 F4v 56 generally the beſt Advocate for Innocence; and ſo ſent for her Husband, and told him the true State of the Caſe: But alas, it was all Words to a Storm, or the North Wind. He reſolv’d, and actually put in execution the utmoſt that Law could do in ſuch a caſe; Not only being content to abandon her to the Diſgrace which would naturally enſue; but perſecuted her from Place to Place, from Priſon to Priſon; ſo that Poverty, Proſecution and Puniſhment of all ſorts, was her lot; nay, even her own Friends and Relations were her Enemies, ſo groſsly foul was the Appearrance of this Tranſaction.
Thus this good Gentlewoman ſuffer’d with great patience, her manifold Afflictions, attended with the utmoſt foul Diſgrace; But good Heaven at laſt made way for her Juſtification. The Gentleman that had borrow’d the money of her, had been hurried by his ſuperiour Officer to his Poſt in Flanders. Which was the Cauſe he could not appear in her behalf, when things came to that great extremity. This Gentleman receiv’d a cruel Wound in ſome Skirmiſh, which happen’d there; ſo that the Surgeons deſpair’d of his Recovery. Hereupon he call’d ſome of his Friends, Gentlemen of undoubted Honour and Probity, and begg’d them to receive the Atteſtationon 057 F5r 57 on of a dying Man; which was, that Philinda was a perfect vertuous Woman, to the utmoſt degree that he knew of her; and that for his own Part, he never had a thought towards her, other than towards a Mother or a Siſter; And ſo he related to them the whole occaſion and manner of that Tranſaction, which had made ſo much Noiſe in the World, calling the Gentleman to witneſs, to whom he had paid the Money he had thus borrow’d of Philinda, and had been preſent when ſhe lent it to him; without which the ſaid Gentleman could not have made his Campaign. This he charged them all on the Word of a dying Man, to report to Philinda’s Husband and Friends; which they did with the utmoſt Sincerity.
Now this News, with the great danger the Gentleman was in, rous’d his Wife out of her Jealouſie or Delirium; ſhe went to Philinda’s Husband, beg’d pardon for all the trouble ſhe had cauſed him and his Wife, declar’d how ſhe had intercepted the Letter, made them be dog’d to that place where the Conſtable found them, and that ſhe ſent him there to ſeize them, and at the ſame time cauſed her Husband to be commanded into Flanders; For all which ſhe profeſs’d her ſelf truly ſorry: and earneſtly beg’d, that as ſhe had contriv’d their Separation, ſhe might 058 F5v 58 might cauſe their Re-union: which ſhe was willing to cement with her Tears and conſtant Vows offer’d to Heaven for their Happineſs.
Thus was the married Couple happily reconcil’d, and have liv’d together ever ſince in great Tranquillity. The Gentleman recovered of his Dangerous Wound, came home to pertake of, and increaſe their Happineſs by reiterated Atteſtations of the Innocence of all the proceeding. On the other ſide, his Wife promis’d never to intercept his or any body’s Letters, perceiving now it was not only a great Indignity and Breach of good manners, but a Crime that deſerves a Puniſhment, equal to that of picking Pockets, breaking a Lock, or the like.
Philinda and her Husband reſolv’d to have no more ſeparate Purſes each from other, whereby to cauſe Contention. Thus were theſe two Families reunited, and the Cauſe of their Diſturbance wholly remov’d; in which the Proverb was fulfill’d, After a Storm comes a Calm. Breakfaſt being ready the Company call’d Philinda from her old Book, in which ſhe was much engag’d, in particular in one Story, which 059 F6r 59 which (ſaid ſhe) being extraordinary, I will repeat to the Company as ſoon as we have done our Tea, which accordingly ſhe did, as follows:
Philinda’s story out of the book.
At the time when the Moors invaded Spain, there were many Irregularities committed which are uſual wherever the Seat of War is carried. By this means a beautiful young Nun, enter’d into an Intrigue with a Cavalier, of the Army, who found means, notwithſtanding all the Care and Circumſpection of thoſe Places; I ſay, they found means to contract an Affection; nor did they ſtop there, but promiſ’d perſonal Enjoyment, and to live together as married People, if our Nun could find a way to get out of her Cloyſter.
Now ſhe that could ſuffer her ſelf to conſent to the Temptation of the Fleſh, the Devil was at hand to help her through, and found a means for her Eſcape. toEſcape to the utter breach of her Solemn Religious Vow 060 F6v 60 Vow of Chaſtity. Thus they went away together, were married, and liv’d in the midſt of Plenty and conjugal Happineſs, till her Husband’s Devoirs called him to the Army.
At his going he left a Friend to conſolate and aſiiſtaſsiſt her in his Abſence; who truly perform’d the part of a good Man in all things within his power: The Army was encamp’d far off, and Correſpondence difficult, which was a perpetual Affliction to her; many Battels and Skirmiſhes were fought, without any News from him: At laſt, ſome of his own Regiment, ſent her word that he was kill’d. This was an inexpreſſible Grief to her: She liv’d many Days and Weeks in the utmoſt Diſquietude, uſing all means poſſible to know the truth; but he was Univerſally believed to be dead, though his Body was never found amongſt the Slain, nor yet heard of amongſt the Priſoners. The Friend, that was left with her, was no leſs afflicted, and bore a true ſhare of Grief with our diſconſolate Relict: But Time, which devours all things, by degrees drank up the Tears of the Widow, and ſo far diſſipated the Grief of the Friend, that he began to be ſenſible of her Charms, not only thoſe of her Beauty,ty, 061 G1r 61 ty, but was touch’d with that tender Affection which ſhe daily expreſs’d for the Loſs of his good Friend her Husband: This Eſteem by degrees ripened into Affection, and from Affection to Paſsion, till he could no longer reſiſt making his Addreſses to her. How ſhe received theſe Addreſses at firſt, or by what degrees or ſteps he climbed into her Affection, is yet unknown; but ſo it was, in ſome time they were married together, and lived happy enough, till the ſuppos’d dead Husband return’d, which was after they had been married but a few Weeks. We will not deſcant either on the Cauſe of his Silence or Abſence, whether dangerous Wounds, Impriſonment, or what elſe hapned; but he thought to bring her a pleaſing Surprize in bringing himſelf into her Arms: But, alas! the Appearance of his Perſon was much more diſagreeable, than if it had been his Ghoſt. However, ſhe conceal’d her Sentiments, and receiv’d him kindly. After the firſt mutual Careſses were over, he ſaid he was weary, having travelled far that Day; therefore would go lie down on a Couch, in the next Room,Room. He being thus gone to Repoſe his poor weary Body, ſhe in the midſt of her Anxiety, took a wicked thought in her head, and reſolved his death, before G her 062 G1v 62 her other Husband ſhould return; for he was gone abroad. This execrable Thought ſhe indulg’d, till he being faſt aſleep, ſhe put in Execution, and murder’d this unfortunate Gentleman; even him, for whoſe ſake ſhe had broke through the Laws of God and her Country, diſhonour’d her ſelf and her Family; Him, for whom ſhe had ſhed a Flood of Tears, utter’d millions of Sighs and Lamentations, and was for divers Months the moſt diſconſolate Creature living; yet had the Cruelty now to ſhed his Blood, who had given her no provocation; but on the contrary, had fatigu’d himſelf to a great degree with travelling far that day, to arrive at her Embraces.
No doubt, but her thoughts were greatly perplex’d at what ſhe had done, and what to do when the other Husband ſhould come home; which we will leave to the Conſideration of any that ſhall hear the Story.
When the Husband came, ſhe receiv’d him with a frighted diſconſolate Kindneſs; which he perceiving, preſs’d her to know the Cauſe. After ſome Sighs and Tears, ſhe told him, that Exceſs of Love to him had made her act the moſt wicked and deteſtable of all Crimes, and thereupon opened the Door where the poor murder’d Body lay; which Sight fill’d him with the 063 G2r 63 the utmoſt Horror and Deteſtation. He look’d upon her as a bloody and a hateful Monſter, never to be forgiven by God or Man; then again turning his Wrath upon himſelf, for having ſupplanted his Friend, before greater aſsurances of his death, he lamented him, reproach’d her, hated himſelf; ſhe, on the other ſide, ſigh’d, wept, tore her Háir, ſuffer’d convulſive Agonies, that between ’em, they acted a miſerable Scene of Horror.
After the firſt Efforts of their Grief and Diſtraction were diſcharg’d, they began to conſider what was to be done. The Gentleman thought it was cruel to expoſe her to the Hand of Juſtice, for a Crime ſhe had committed for his ſake, though in its ſelf moſt enormous; beſide, his Affection for her, joyn’d with Compaſsion, for the Foible of the Sex, he reſolv’d on the following Meaſures: Which were, that in the dead of the Night, he himſelf would carry the murther’d Body to the River, which ran juſt by the Side of the Town, and caſt it therein. This Reſolution they put in practice; firſt drying up his bloody Wounds as well as they could, then wrapt him in a Sheet, and the Gentleman took him on his Back, and went ſoftly down Stairs; but as ſhe was following, ſhe perceived a Foot hanging out, and G2 im- 064 G2v 64 immediately took a Needle and Thread, and ſew’d it into the Sheet: But in her Fright, by miſtake, took hold of the Gentleman’s Coat, and ſo faſtned that to the Sheet. He went on with his Load, got ſafe to the River, and with a haſty Caſt, threw it off; but the Sheet being faſtned to his Coat as before-ſaid, the Weight of the Dead Body in that ſudden Motion, drew in the living Man alſo; where he was ſoon drowned, not being in the leaſt able to help himſelf, by means of his being faſtned to the dead Body.
Next day theſe two Bodies being found thus faſtned together, were ſoon known, Officers of Juſtice came to ſearch the Houſe, examine, and apprehend the Family; But the miſerable Lady, ſoon confeſs’d, and told the Story, for which ſhe received Puniſhment from the Hands of Juſtice, and in which ſhe fulfilled the Proverb. Marry in haſte, and Repent at leiſure.The 065 G3r 65
The Ladies, having thus paſs’d the greateſt part of the Forenoon, reſolv’d to go take a walk in the Park, to get them a good Stomach to their Dinner. Here they found much Company, it being a very bright fine Winter’s Day; and according to cuſtom there were divers ſorts of Dreſſes, Figures and Shapes of Perſons, and as many different Diſcourſes; Some admiring the Fineneſs of the Weather, others ſaying it was not natural at that time of Year; ſome praiſing this Lady for her excellent Fancy in her Dreſs, whilſt others were blam’d for not ſuiting their Dreſs to their Complexion; one praiſed this Lady’s Manteau-maker, another blam’d that Lady’s Seamſtreſs; ſome commended the Chocolate they had for breakfaſt, others complaining of the Oyſters they had eat over Night; ſome talking of the Opera, ſome of the Play; how generous my Lord ſuch an one was to his New Miſtreſs; how glorious ſhe appeared in the Box; ſome talking of what ſuch a Lady won at Ombre, or loſt at Baſſet; Who was kept by the one, and who was jilted by the other; Who had luck in the Lottery, and who loſt in the South-Sea; Who had hang’d themſelves for Love, and who drown’d themſelves for Debt. Good Heavens!G3 vens! 066 G3v 66 vens! ſaid our Ladies, who is there that talks of any good or moral Vertues? Who ſerves God or their Neighbour, who prays with Devotion, or relieves the Poor; who inſtructs the Ignorant, or comforts the Afflicted; who protects the Fatherleſs, or ſupports the oppreſsed Widow; who viſits the Sick, buries the Dead, or covers the Naked with a Garment? Many more things of this kind they were repeating, till they perceiv’d a pretty elderly Gentlewoman following behind them, who for ſome time had over-heard their Diſcourſe; for which ſhe humbly beg’d their pardon, telling them it was not the effect of Curioſity, but that ſhe had been a true Sharer in thoſe Afflictions, caus’d by being abandon’d by Friends and perſecuted by Enemies; But the Almighty had been her Aſsiſtance; that ſhe might with great truth repeat thoſe Words, When my Father and Mother forſook me, the Lord cared for me. The Ladies being a little weary of walking, and very curious to hear the Gentlewoman’s Adventures, betook themſelves to a Seat, deſired her Company, and to relate her Story.
The Story of Mrs. Goodwife.
In the late Troubles of Ireland, ſaid ſhe, my Husband betaking himſelf to King James’s Party, we were ſtript of all we had, our Eſtate was forfeited, our Houſe plunder’d, even to our wearing Cloaths; ſo that we were reduced to the utmoſt Exigence. Being thus diſtreſsed, we came away for England; and I being of an Engliſh Family, came amongſt my Friends, to conſult and take meaſures with them, what courſe to take to help us in this our Extremity. But, alas, being reduced to a deplorable Condition, with two ſmall Children, we found but cold Reception, there having been ſeveral Changes in our Family; ſome Friends being dead, others grown up and married, which cauſed new Methods, new Eſtabliſhments, &c; However, by their help we came to London, thinking to get away to France; but when we 068 G4v 68 we came hither, we heard that the King had a greater Burthen of poor Followers than he knew well how to ſuſtain. We ſtaid here ſome time, conſidering what to do, or which way to direct our Courſe, endeavouring to get ſome Place or Buſineſs for my Husband, or my ſelf, till we had ſpent all we had in the World, and all that we could borrow of any Friend or Acquaintance; inſomuch that we were forced to go often ſupperleſs to Bed. In the Morning, when our poor Babes wak’d, one cry’d, Mamma, me want Breakfaſt, me is hungry; the other cry’d, Pappa, me want a Bit of Bread, me is hungry.
Theſe poor Infants thus pealing in our Ears, my Husband one Morning leap’d out of Bed, ſaying, he had lived long enough, ſince he heard his Children cry for Bread, and he had none to give ’em. I ſeeing him in this deſperate Condition, leap’d out alſo, put on my Cloaths, and pray’d him to look to the Children, whilſt I went to ſeek out for ſomething.
Thus, down ſtairs I went, not knowing whither, or what about. But as I paſs’d in the Entry, my Landlady called to me, as ſhe was in her Parlour, ſaying, Miſtreſs, I believe you are going to the Baker’s; pray do ſo much as bring me a Loaf with you. I went accordingly, and deſir’d a Loaf 069 G5r 69 Loaf for my Landlady, which the Baker’s Wife delivered to me immediately. I ſtood a while looking on the Shop full of Bread; but had not Courage to beg, nor Money to buy. Whether the Miſtreſs ſaw, I look’d with a longing Eye, and a needy Stomach, I know not; but ſhe ſaid, Miſtreſs, I believe you want a Loaf for your ſelf; To which I anſwer’d with flowing Tears, yes; but I have no Money to pay for one; then the good Woman replied, In the Name of God, take one, and pay for it when you can; and gave me a good large Loaf, ſo I came away joyfully. Of this, with a little Salt, my Husband, my ſelf and Children made a comfortable Repaſt, waſhing it down with clear Element.
As ſoon as we had thus refreſh’d our ſelves, the good Baker’s Wife, who had taken notice of my dejected Behaviour, ſent a Servant with ſome Flower to make us a Pudding, a Piece of Meat to make the Children ſome Broth, together with a Pound of Butter, in which was ſtuck an Half- Crown Piece, to buy us Drink. I was tranſported at the good Woman’s Charity, got on the Pot with ſpeed, and made us a ſumptuous Meal, ſuch a one as we had not taſted in many Days. When this our plentiful Dinner was over, I began to conſiderſider 070 G5v 70 ſider which way I might diſpoſe of my Half Crown to make us live for the time to come: Which, you will ſay, was a very ſmall Sum wherewith to begin any Buſineſs, for a Livelihood.
After revolving divers things in my Mind, I at laſt took it in my thoughts to go buy a little Wheat, and boyl it, and try to ſell Bowls of Wheat; which accordingly I did, and next Day when my Wheat was ready, I went with it, with a Basket on my Arm. I muſt confeſs, I had Confuſion to knock at Doors, and ask if they wanted a Bowl of Wheat; and what was an additional Mortification, when I took off my Gloves to deliver my Merchandize, my Hands diſcover’d that I was not brought up to ſuch Buſineſs; inſomuch, that the Servants would ſometimes take notice, and ſay, that theſe Hands look’d more like the Hands of one uſed to ſit in a Drawing Room and play with a Fan, than of one who ſells things about the Streets. How far theſe kind of Complements might have given me Vanity at another time, I know not; but now they were a true Mortification; for nothing made this humble Task ſit more eaſie, than the Belief, that no body knew me. However, I got as much by this Day’s Induſtry, as bought us Food the next. 071 G6r 71 next. Thus I went on, daily leaving my Husband to take care of the Children, and get the Wheat prepar’d for the enſuing Day. And thus did my Husband content himſelf in this poor Employment, for the ſake of his dear Babes, who himſelf had been bred a Gentleman.
In my going to good Houſes to ſell my Wheat, I got many a Piece of boyl’d, bak’d, and roaſt Meat, which I brought home to my hungry Children; nor did my Husband refuſe his Share. By degrees frequenting thoſe Houſes, I got acquainted with the Maids, ſo that they truſted me to ſell old things for them, paying me ſo much in the Shilling, as I could get for them. Thus I fell into a little way of Merchandize, ſelling at one Houſe what I got at another. The Cook maid at one Houſe wanted this thing, the Houſe-maid that; the Chamber maid this thing to ſell here, the Nurſe had that thing to buy there; ſo that by degrees I fell into a pretty Trade of this kind of buying and ſelling old Cloaths, and grew ſo skill’d in it, that we took a Shop; and by ſuch time as our Daughter was grown up, we had a Portion to diſpoſe of her handſomely in the City. Our Son is our Aſsiſtant in this 072 G6v 72 this our Trade, and is our Book-keeper. Thus Ladies (ſaid ſhe) we have made out the Proverb, Something doing, ſomething coming. They were all thankful to the Gentlewoman for her Relation; and the Lady invited her, with the others, to dinner; but ſhe excus’d her ſelf to her Ladyſhip, it being inconſiſtent with ſome Affairs ſhe had at that time. The Lady and her Friends, together with Galecia, went with my Lady to dinner where we will ſuppoſe, they regaled themſelves very well; together with my Lady’s Husband, and his Friends till the coming of the Punch- Bowl, drove the Ladies into the Drawingroom, where the Tea-table attended their approach. They were ſcarcely ſeated when a Lady came to make my Lady Allgood a Viſit; (for that was our Lady’s Name) who receiv’d her with Tranſports of Kindneſs, after a very long Abſence, ſhe being juſt come out of France, where ſhe had been many Years following the Fortune of King James. They made her many Congratulations for her ſafe Arrival, and divers Inquiries after the Health and Circumſtances of their Friends and Acquaintance in 073 H1r 73 in thoſe Parts, and the Condition of the Court of St. Germain’s, ſince the Death of the King. To which ſhe anſwer’d, that they all acted a melancholy Scene. However, they had this Advantage, the Change of Fortune brought every one to a right underſtanding of themſelves, and a due Conſideration of others. The Poor are become reſpectful, the Rich (if ſuch there be) compaſsionate, Inferiours are humble, Superiours are affable, the Women vertuous, the Men valiant, the Matrons prudent, Daughters obedient, Fathers obliging, Sons obſervant, Patrons readily aſsiſting, Supplicants gratefully accepting; whilſt true Piety and Devotion are the Cement of all the other Vertues, to build up a holy Court, like thoſe we read of in the time of Conſtantine or Theodoſius. In ſhort, there is a Pattern, by which every one may ſquare their Lives, ſo as to make vertuous and honeſt Figures amongſt Mankind, and in ſome degree honourable alſo, Vertue and Honour being inſeparable Companions.
The Ladies proceeded to ask her, if ſhe had had a happy Voyage by Sea and Land, without any dangerous Adventures? To which ſhe replied, that all was very eaſie and happy; only in the Coach between Paris and Callis there was a Lawyer, H who 074 H1v 74 who told us a Story carrying ſomething of Horror along with it; which being ſhort, if your Ladyſhip pleaſe, I will relate it: It is ſomething of the Portugueze Nun, whoſe amorous Letters have been the Entertainment of all the World. Her Story muſt needs be acceptable, replied the Ladies, wherefore, pray proceed to oblige us with the relation of it.
The Story of The Portugueze Nun.
This Young Lady was bred in a Convent, as are moſt in thoſe Countries, the Convents being the general Places of Education for all Children of Diſtinction. When ſhe came to Years of Maturity, her Parents took her home, in order to eſtabliſh her in the World, by marrying her to ſome worthy Gentleman; of which there was one in the Neighbourhood, who greatly coveted this Eſpouſal: But all the Perſuaſions of her Parents, joyn’d with the Gentleman’s Courtſhip, availed nothing; ſhe perſiſted in her Reſolution of becoming a Religious Dame. Her Mother endeavour’d as much as poſsible, to extirpate theſe Thoughts, by carrying her into Company, buying her fine Cloaths, introduc’d her at Court, Comedies, Opera’s, Balls, Maſques, and all ſorts of Diverſion, which diverts the greateſt Part of Human kind: But nothing moved this young Lady from H2 her 076 H2v 76 her Religious Purpoſe. For all theſe kinds of Glories ſeemed to her as Folly and Vanity, a Dream without any ſolid Satisfaction: That in the end, her Parents conſented to her Return into the Convent.
Here ſhe performed all the Duties of her Novitiate with perfect Obedience, to the ſatisfaction of the Abbeſs and all the Religious, that ſhe was receiv’d, and in due time, profeſs’d a Member of their Holy Society, with Joy and Content: In which ſhe behaved her ſelf with great Prudence, Vertue and Piety, for divers Years, till the great War between France and the Allies broke out. Then it was, that a certain military Officer came to viſit a Relation of his in the Convent, and brought with him a French Chevalier, who was an Hugonot, and came out of curioſity with his Friend, to ſee the manner of making a Viſit at the Grate. Now, as it is not permitted for any young Lady or Nun, to receive Viſitors there, without ſome Companion, this our foreſaid Nun was appointed to accompany the other. And, lo, this was the fatal Moment of our Nun’s Ruin: For ſhe no ſooner ſaw the Beau Hugonot, but ſhe felt an Emotion ſhe had never been ſenſible of before.
When ſhe came to know he was an Hugonot, ſhe thought it was Compaſsion that had diſturbed her Interiours, to think that ſo 077 H3r 77 ſo fine a Perſon ſhould live in a wrong Religion. He, on the other ſide, was troubled, to ſee ſo beautiful a young Lady thus confined, out of a whimſical Conceit of devotion (as his Principles termed it.) Amongſt theſe Thoughts, divers Glances ſhot each againſt other, and forbidden Sighs met in a ſort of ſoft Union; whilſt the other Couple of Friends talked of things indifferent, appertaining to the common Rode of Friendſhip. In this way they continued till the Bell called our Nuns to Choir and our Gentlemen to their reſpective Habitations.
We will not pretend to know or gueſs, by what ſteps of Fancy on Cogitation they climb’d up to an extream Paſsion, ſuch as her printed Letters demonſtrate, or how they firſt diſcover’d their amorous Sentiments each to other, things extreamly difficult in thoſe Places: But ſo it was, that he deſir’d to be inform’d of the Catholick Religion, pretending that no body gave him ſo rational an Account, and produced ſuch cogent Arguments as this Lady. By this means he was permitted to have frequent acceſs to the Grate, where ſhe not only entertain’d him with many devout Diſcourſes, and ſolid Arguments, but gave him Books to read, which he return’d in due time, giving an account of what he read, in thoſe Books; H3 what 078 H3v 78 what touch’d, and what diſpleas’d him. This manner of proceeding blinded the Underſtanding of thoſe that accompanied her to the Grate, and it is to be ſuppos’d, that by means of theſe Books lent and return’d, Letters were convey’d backward and forward to each other; not only thoſe in Print, but divers others, by which means (no doubt) her Eſcape was contriv’d; which was accompliſh’d in this odd manner: an Opportunity offering when one of thoſe Religious Dames died and was interr’d, that Night, before the Vault was made up, ſhe took the pains to lift out the Body and lay it in her own Bed, and then plac’d a Train of Fire, which ſhe knew would catch and ſet fire of the Bed by ſuch time as ſhe could be got over the Wall, by Ladders of Ropes there provided by her Lover, (if one may ſo call the Devil’s Engineer.) Thus ſhe left the Houſe to be burnt with all the holy Inhabitants, therein contain’d: But Providence ſo order’d it, that it was diſcover’d before ’twas too late, and extinguiſh’d before much hurt, only that Cell with its Moveables was deſtroy’d, and the Body ſo disfigur’d, that it could not be known, but was much lamented by the good Dames, really ſuppoſing it to be this our Fugitive. They lamented their Loſs in her as a Perſon of exemplary Prudence and Vertue,tue 079 H4r 79 tue, as one in whom ſhin’d Piety and Wiſdom with their moſt refulgent Rays; a Perſon whoſe Aſpect commanded the Youth, and her Actions taught obedience to all; In fine, much they lamented, much they regretted the Death of this Holy Aſsociate. In the mean time, ſhe got ſafe away with her Chevalier, he having provided for her all manner of rich Accoutrements, and took the firſt opportunity to get married. Thus ſhe broke her ſolemn Religious Vow of Chaſtity, and the Laws of her Country, betray’d the Honour of her Family; and diſgrac ’d her Sex and Quality.
They liv’d together in this State, and had divers Children, till an unfortunate Shot in the Army finiſh’d his Days; but not on ſuch a ſudden, but that he had time to ſend word to her, by a particular Friend that he dy’d with great Remorſe for what had paſs’d between him and her; and griev’d to leave her and her Children in ſo diſtreſs’d and abandon’d a Condition. She receiv’d this Information with utmoſt Grief; ſhe fell into Convulſions, which attended her Fit after Fit, all the Hours ſhe liv’d, which were not many. But in one of her Intervals, ſhe call’d ſome Friends about her, related to them all the Story of her criminal Marriage, greatly lamenting over her Child- 080 H4v 80 Children; for by this her Confeſsion they muſt become miſerable Vagabonds on the Face of the Earth, having no right to the Eſtate of their Father’s Family, which is conſiderable in France, as is that of my Family (ſaid ſhe) here in Portugal: But I know, the Law in both Countries looks on them as Baſtards, I being incapable of contracting Marriage, after a ſolemn Religious Vow. O wretch that I was, who with ſo much Importunity obtain’d of my Parents Leave to become a Religious; I, who lived Years in the ſame ſtate, with ſatisfaction to my ſelf, and the approbation of the whole Community. How was it poſible, that for the Love of this one Man, a Stranger, of a different Country, a different Religion, different Language! How was it poſsible, I ſay, to break all Laws Divine and Human, and to become ſo great a Monſter as to hazard the burning ſo ſtately an Edifice, and in ſo doing, murder ſo many excellent pious Perſons! O miſerable Wretch that I am, and ſo ſhe fell into one of her Convulſions, of which ſhe dyed. At the Concluſion of this Story, ſaid the Gentlewoman, there was none in the Coach that did not ſhed Tears; ſome compaſsionating one part of the Story, ſome blaming another, every one pitying the Children, whoſe Cauſe was 081 H5r 81 was then depending in the Parliament of Paris (as the Lawyer in the Coach ſaid) in which he was engaged; but feared he ſhould be able to do no good on the Childrens behalf; for he was almoſt ſure they would loſe their Proceſs; and withal loſe that Charity they might hope for amongſt their Friends, by humble Supplication; to which he ſaid, he would adviſe ’em, that they might not fall under that unlucky Proverb, All covet, all loſe.
This ſorrowful Story affected the Company with Compaſsion almoſt to Tears; which, to divert, my Lady Allgood began to call for Cards; But Evening approaching, they were unwilling to ſtay, yet asked the Lady who had told the laſt melancholy Story, if ſhe had not one that was leſs grievous, to entertain them a few Moments, till Night ſhould call for their Departure. To which ſhe replyed, that in the Coach between Dover and Home, there was an ancient Gentlewoman told ’em a kind of an odd Tranſaction, which hapned in the Neighbourhood where ſhe liv’d heretofore; which is as follows.
The History of The Lady Gypsie.
In my younger days, ſaid ſhe, I liv’d in the Weſt of England; for there I was born; in which Parts there happen’d this odd Project of a young Lady, the only Child of her Parents, who were Owners of a conſiderable Eſtate. As ſhe grew in Stature, ſhe improv’d in Beauty, which caus’d her Father to keep a ſtrict hand over her; nevertheleſs ſhe was not ſo ignorant of the World, but that ſhe deſir’d to know more: She ſaw and convers’d with many young Ladies of her Neighbourhood, who talked of the bright Diverſions of the Town; this Play, that Ball, this Treat, that Muſick meeting, this Walk, that Aſiemblée, the Diverſions of the Park, Plays, Exchange, Spring-garden, &c; Theſe Diſcourſes, ſet her on fire, to ſee ſuch much talked of Places; and that ſhe might thereby be able to entertain Company ſuitable to her Sex and Quality: Whereas ſhe was now but 083 H6r 83 but a ſilent Auditor to others, whoſe Capacities, perhaps, were leſs ſuſceptible than hers; only having been in thoſe Places, and amongſt ſuch Company as had filled, nay, even overflowed them with Vanity, which diſcharged its Superplus amongſt the young Country-Ladies, whoſe lot had lain at home.
This Conſtraint and Home-breeding began to be very tireſome to the young Lady; but no Perſuaſions could prevail with her Parents to relieve this her Country-reſtraint, telling her, ſhe muſt not think of going to London till ſhe was married. How far ſhe wiſh’d to be married for the ſake of going to London, or for the ſake of Marriage its ſelf, is unknown; but perhaps neither: For ſhe was no ſooner arived to marriageable Years, but ſhe was ſought after by many; her young beautiful Perſon, with her Father’s large Inheritance annexed to it, rendering her extreamly deſirable. Amongſt theſe, her Father pitched upon one whoſe Riches and Prudence recommended him to his approbation; but by no means to our young Lady’s liking. He was perfectly Country bred like her ſelf; He knew nothing of Publick Affairs, but what he learnt of the News papers: His chief Entertainment was of Dogs and Horſes; 084 H6v 84 Horſes; whether Roan or Ball performed their Heats beſt in order to win the Plate at the next Horſe race. Beſide, he was a Widower, though not old; nor had his Lady left him any Child. Nevertheleſs, ſhe thought her Youth and Beauty deſerved an Husband wholly new, and not a Man at ſecond hand. In ſhort, one reaſon or another preſented themſelves to her Fancy, that ſhe grew obſtinate to her Parents Propoſal; they on the other hand, preſsed as poſitively. This her Refuſal made them fancy ſhe had ſome other Object of her Affection; which Fancy ſo prevail’d with them, that they threatned to confine her to her Chamber, thereby to diſcover or prevent any ſuch Intrigue. This was a grievous Surprize, and Fright; but inſtead of bending her thereby, Deſpair, or at leaſt, Fear, not only made her grow Stubborn, and abſolutely refuſed marrying this her home bred Lover, but alſo dread the poſitive Temper of her Parents.
As ſhe was one day walking in the outward Court, ruminating on divers impending Occurrences, ſhe ſaw ſome Gypſies enter the Gates, who preſently approaching, addreſsed her with their gibble-gabble Cant after their accuſtomed man- 085 I1r 85 manner; but ſhe took one of them aſide, as if to hear her Fortune; and ask’d her, if they would receive a diſtreſsed Perſon into their Clan; to which they readily accorded. She then asked them which way they were ſtrolling? They ſaid, towards London, to gather up ſome Rents for ſome Nurſe-Children they had taken. This their going towards London pleaſed our young Lady extreamly, it being the Place ſhe longed to ſee; ſo ſhe promiſed to come to them that Night, where they lodged.
So ſaid, ſo done; and (like an unthinking Wretch as ſhe was) left her Father’s Houſe that Night, and ſo went to this Band of Strollers, carrying with her only what her Pockets would contain, as, Money, Rings, a Watch, &c; She travell’d with them ſeveral Days, her Perſon being diſguiſed both in Habit and Complexion, (for that they took care to do the moment ſhe came to them.) After a few Days Travel, ſhe ſaw and felt her Folly, undergoing the Fatigue of Wind and Wet, Heat and Cold, bad Food, bad Lodging, and all things diſagreeable to her Conſtitution and Education: She knew not what to do with her ſelf; ſhe durſt not return to her Parents, nor inform any body of her Condition; her Money, and all that was valuable, they had gotten from her: So, what to do, ſhe knew I not. 086 I1v 86 not. She had no proſpect but of Miſery and Diſgrace: She paſs’d her Nights in ſilent Tears, and her Days in Sighs and ſecret Lamentations: The wicked way in which theſe vile Wretches liv’d, cheating, ſtealing, lying, and all ſorts of Roguery, was abominable to her vertuous Mind. Amongſt theſe, there was one who ſeemed of a better mien than the reſt, and was ready upon all occaſions to befriend her in any thing within his power. He was ſomething in Years, and not ſo well able to undergo the Fatigue as the others; nor could he ever compaſs the Art of cheating, canting and ſtealing, as the reſt did: He was weary of theſe his wicked Companions; but knew not how to live without them: So one Day, he and ſhe being tired with marching, and coming near a Village, ſet themſelves down on a Bank by the Highway, whilſt the Gang ſtrolled about the Hedges and Out-places, to try what they could pilfer.
Sitting here, the old Man began to tell her how he came to be linked into this Band of Vagabonds; of which, he ſaid he was very weary, but knew not how to extricate himſelf, they having gotten from him all the Money his evil Life had before procured; and he being now advanced in Years, was not able otherwiſe to get a Live- 087 I2r 87 Livelihood, but as they provided for him according to their Contract when they received his Money; to which Contract they were very juſt, added he, and in ſome degree kind, being conſiderate of my Years, and other Occurrences, as you will underſtand by my Story, which I will faithfully relate to you.
The Story of T A N G E R I N E, The Gentleman Gypſie.
I took my Name, ſaid he, from that renowned Garriſon of Tangier; where I was a Soldier. When the good and gracious King Charles was driven to a neceſſity of demoliſhing that Fort, and diſmantling the Garriſon, which was much againſt his Inclination, it being a greater Loſs to England than that of Dunkirk; though not ſo much taken notice of, as lying ſo much farther off. The parting with either was very grievous to the King: But the great Machine of State at that time between Court and Country partly moved in ſuch manner, that his Majeſty had not Money to ſupport the ſaid Garriſons, ſo that bon-gre, mal-gre he was forced to part with them. But to return to what appertains to my ſelf, State-affairs being neither your, nor my province at this time.I 089 I3r 89
I was born a Gentleman, and educated accordingly, but the Havock Cromwell’s Party had made in my Father’s Subſtance, forced me (as well as many other younger Brothers) to ſeek my Fortune; and ſo I went with a Friend of my Father’s, (an Officer of Note) to Tangier, where, I doubt not, but he would have endeavour’d for my Preferment, in time.
But now, give me leave to go back a little; Before my going to Tangier, the Beauty of a young Lady had fir’d my Heart to that degree, that I knew not how to go, or ſtay. I ſhall not repeat to you the manner of our Courtſhip, the many Hopes, Tears, Joys and Fears, which agitated our Interiours. In ſhort, the Lady was willing to promiſe me Marriage, and to ſtay for me till my Return, or till I ſhould be in a condition to ſend for her; but that was not ſufficient; nothing would ſerve my turn, but to eſpouſe her e’er my Departure; and this with the utmoſt Sincerity. I had great Difficulty to gain her Conſent to this; and many Arguments paſsed backward and forward on both ſides; but at laſt her Affections were ſo prevalent, as to make her ſubmit to my Importunites, and ſo married we were, very I3 privately, 090 I3v 90 privately, about a Week before my Departure. I will not repeat to you what tenderneſs paſs’d between us that Week; it breaks my aged Heart to think of it; nor is my faltring Tongue able to expreſs the Sorrows of this our Separation.
I got well to Tangier, lived happy with my Friend, and made my ſelf many more in the Garriſon, &c; but it was not long e’er we were all ſent for home, the Garriſon being to be deſtroy’d as I before ſaid. When I got to England, the firſt News I heard, was, that my Father was dead, and my elder Brother married to this my Wife. I cannot expreſs how greatly I was afflicted and amazed, even to Diſtraction; I knew not which way to go, nor to addreſs my ſelf; Father I had none, Heaven and the Courſe of Nature had depriv’d me of that Happineſs; my Father’s Houſe a Den of Inceſt; my Brother my Rival; my Wife an inceſtuous Proſtitute. To go near, or reproach them, was to make them miſerable, and my ſelf not happy.
In the mean time, I wanted Bread: For the King, who was not able to maintain us in Garriſon, when we did him and the Nation Service, was as little able, when we did him none. In ſuch Afflictions, I joyned 091 I4r 91 joyned my ſelf with ſome others of theſe my diſtreſsed Tangier-Companions, and ſo went to ſeek Adventures on the High way. Sometimes we went in little Parties, ſometimes ſingle. It was my luck one time to attack a Coach, whilſt another or two remain’d perdue at a diſtance: But how was I ſurpriz’d, when I found in this Coach my Brother and his Wife, or rather my Wife! Tho’ I knew them, they knew not me: For the Weather had much alter’d me in travelling by Sea and Land, beſide the little Diſguiſe I wore. They readily gave me me what they had, which was conſiderable, and with which I departed, without demanding Watches, Rings, Necklace, or any thing elſe. But Hue and Cry was ſoon out after me; which purſued me ſo cloſe every way, that I had no hopes of eſcaping. At this juncture ’twas I met with this Band of Strollers, and gave them all my Booty to receive me into their Gang; which they ſoon did, and as ſoon diſguiſed me from being known by my moſt intimate Acquaintance: And thus I have lived amongſt them ever ſince, till Old Age has put me on another Diſguiſe more undiſcoverable than the former.
He had ſcarce finiſh’d his Diſcourse, when a mourning Coach came driving on with a 092 I4v 92 a ſlow Pace, and in it an elderly Lady, with two young Ladies. The latter perceiving our two Gypſies, called out to ſtop the Coach, that they might divert themſelves, by having their Fortune told. The old Gypſie approaching the Coach, ſaw his Wife in her Widow’s Dreſs: He told them, that their Fortune was ſo extraordinary, that he deſir’d a little longer time to conſider of it, before he could inform them; ſo they let him know where they intended to lodge that Night, which was to be at the ſame great Town where our Gang of Strollers were going; then the Coach paſsed on, he promiſing to come to ’em.
Indeed, ſaid the Old Gypſie, I ſhall tell them ſtrange Fortune, when I let the Lady know, that I am her true and lawful Huſband, and Father to that young Gentleman that rode by the Coach: For I have heard, that ſhe was delivered of this her Son ſome Weeks too ſoon for her Credit; ſo that I doubt not but I left my Brother an Heir ready for his Eſtate, before I went to Tangier.
Thus, methinks, I ſee an End of this miſerable Way of living, which always ſeemed odious to me; but the Shelter it gave me from the foremention’d Purſuit made me undergo it with Patience: For I am not vicious 093 I5r 93 vicious or unworthy in my Nature, having always had a conſtant Abhorrence of the other, as well as this vile Courſe; but a fatal Neceſsity compell’d me to it. I have often thought it a Defect in our Government, that there is not ſome method thought on or contriv’d for diſtreſsed young Gentlemen and Gentlewomen, to employ, and ſecure them from theſe or other wicked Actions, to which they are often expoſed by hard fortune, or ill management, or the Cruelty or Caprice of Parents; the latter of which I take to be your caſe (continuing his ſpeech to the young Lady Gypſie) But, be aſsur’d, when I get to my Eſtate, which I ſhall now ſoon do, my Brother being dead, (by making my Wife own this her Son to be my Son;) Be aſsured, I ſay, that I ſhall then take care of you, in my own Houſe, and make your Beauty ſhine in the Eyes of this my Son (if he be not otherwiſe engaged) ſo as to make you become my Daughter: For which Kindneſs our Young Gypſie was very thankful: But Providence determined otherwiſe, as appears by the Sequel.
By this time our Strollers came to them, having pillaged the Hedges and Farmers Yards of what they could conveniently come at: So one Party of them was to go with 094 I5v 94 with their Booty to the next Town, whilſt the other went into this Village, to cant, lye, tell fortunes, pick Pockets, &c; and ſo they were to meet all at their Rendezvous, at the Place appointed.
Here they came to a Lady’s Houſe, where they began (as uſual) to tell fortunes among the Servants, who liſtned to them as ſo many divine Oracles. In the mean time, the Lady of the Houſe came to chide them for hearkening to thoſe deceitful Vagabonds. Now, ſo it hapned, that this Lady had ſore Eyes; which our Gypſie remark’d; and having before learnt many fine Receits of her Mother, took notice to the Lady of the Indiſpoſition of her Eyes, telling her that ſhe could cure them. Alas, ſaid the Lady, I have try’d almoſt all things, without Effect, and therefore have little reaſon to put any confidence in what you offer. But our Young Gypſie preſs’d her with ſuch agreeable Arguments, couch’d in modeſt reſpectful Terms, that the Lady was perſuaded to make uſe of this poor Stroller’s Receit. Now, the Preparation being to take ſome days time, the Lady received the Girl into her Houſe, till the Medicine could be made. This was a great comfort to our Gypſie, hoping, perhaps, to have an Opportunity of ingratiating her ſelf with the Lady.Things 095 I6r 95
Things ſucceeded well; the Lady’s Eyes were cured, and then her Ladyſhip asked the Maid, why ſuch a young Girl as ſhe, did nor rather betake her ſelf to Service, than lead ſuch a vagrant ſcandalous Life, and offered her to remain amongſt the Servants, till ſome Place might fall for her; in the mean time ſhe was appointed to aſsiſt in the Kitchen.
Here ſhe behaved her ſelf with great Diſcretion, and was ſo ready at all Sauces and ſavory Meats, all manner of Pickling and Paſtry, with whatſoever belong’d to a compleat Cook, that ſhe amaz’d all who beheld the manner of her proceeding.
She had not been there many Weeks, e’er the Lady’s Houſe-keeper was married; after which the Lady prefer’d our Gypſie to her Place. Here ſhe performed all to admiration, whether Sweetmeats, Diſtillations, Infuſions, or whatever elſe belong’d to a Perſon in that Station: ſhe was a Stranger to nothing, but ill-manners; all Curioſities of the Houſe-keeper’s Cloſet was familiar to her, that her Lady and every body were amaz’d not knowing what to conjecture.By 096 I6v 96
By this time the falſe Complexion the Gypſies had put on her was worn off; and in this genteel Poſt ſhe began to get Cloaths ſuitable to her ſtation; that now our Gypſie appear’d beautiful in her Perſon, as well as knowing in her Buſineſs, and prudent in her Actions. Now, as this Brightneſs of Perſon and Parts was viſible to all, ſo in a peculiar manner it ſtruck the eyes, of the young Gentleman her Lady’s Son, who was lately come from Travel, he had ſeen the World, with its various ſorts of Beauties; but none had touch’d him like our Gypſie’s. However, he thought of no other Favours, but what might be, purchaſed at the price of a Guinea, or ſo.
But, alas, when he came to make attacks, he quickly found his miſtake; For our Gypſie, was ſo affronted, that ſhe told her Lady, that ſhe muſt take her leave of her Ladyſhip, and deſired to be diſmiſsed. The Lady was ſurprized, and would not permit her to depart, till ſhe asked her the reaſon of this her ſudden Reſolution; Much ſhe preſs’d, and loath the Girl was to diſcover: But in the end, ſhe told the real Truth. The Lady rebuked her Son, for having ſuch an unworthy thought towardswards 097 K1r 97 wards the poor young Creature; and one that ſhe loved and eſteemed. The Gentleman promiſed that he would no more attack the Gypſie’s Vertue; nevertheleſs, a while after, the Gypſie preſs’d for her Departure, which the young Gentleman oppos’d.
At laſt our Fair One told her Lady, that ſhe could not ſtay in the Houſe with the young Gentleman; ſo once more beg’d her Ladyſhip to diſmiſs her. The Lady importun’d her to let her know the reaſon, and whether her Son was troubleſome to her or not: She ſaid, no; but her own Weakneſs was ſo. Then caſting her ſelf at her Lady’s feet; beg’d pardon for having dar’d to caſt her Eyes, on her Ladyſhip’s Son, a Perſon ſo much above her: But alas; continued ſhe, I am but a poor helpleſs Maid, He a glorious Youth, whoſe Birth, Perſon, and Education, all combine to ſtorm my Heart, guarded with nothing but Vertue and Innocence; wherefore, Madam, I beſeech you to conſent to my Departure, whilſt I am innocent. The good Lady was greatly touch’d, and found a neceſsity to part with her; but withal reſolv’d to provide for her, putting her into ſome way ſuitable to her Merits. This ſhe revealed to her Son, which he abſolutelyK lutely 098 K1v 98 lutely oppos’d, telling his Mother, that he was ſo far from parting with his Gypſie, that he was reſolv’d to unite himſelf to her in the holy Bonds of Matrimony. The Lady was ſtruck with Horrour and Amazement at this her Son’s Declaration, much reproaching him for the Meanneſs of his Thoughts, in divers ſorts of Expreſſions ſuitable to the occaſion. He, on the other ſide, defended himſelf with what Arguments he could, without breaking the bonds of Duty and Reſpect.
He alledged the Gypſie’s Deſerts both in Mind and Perſon, his own Affections, which he found impoſsible to conquer, or bring into any bounds of Reaſon; the Gypſie’s vertuous and generous Deportment, in deſiring to be diſmiſsed, rather than blemiſh her Lady’s Family with ſuch an unworthy Alliance; With many other Arguments which he produced in favour of his beloved Gypſie; none of which his Mother could gainſay or diſallow: But in fine, ſhe was far unfit for his Quality or Fortune. Beſide, ſaid the Lady, your Father enjoyn’d me at his Death to promote a Marriage between you and Mr. Truman’s Daughter, when you ſhould return from your Travels. And now I have ſent my Steward to make Propoſals on that Subject,ject, 099 K2r 99 ject, how can I abſolve my ſelf of my Promiſe made to your dear Father deceas’d? I wonder not at your loving the Gypſie; for ’tis certain, I love and eſteem her in a great degree; nevertheleſs Reaſon muſt be my Guide, and ought to be yours: And though it be extreamly againſt my Inclination to part with her, yet now your Folly compels me, Duty to my honourable dead Husband’s Memory commands me, Reſpect to your Family obliges me, and maternal Affection to you, finiſhes the Chain of all the indiſpenſible Reaſons. Then calling for the Gypſie, told her, ſhe had at laſt reſolv’d to comply with her Deſires, of letting her go; therefore commanded her to diſpoſe her ſelf for her departure next Morning.
Hereupon our Gypſie caſt her ſelf at the Lady’s Feet, aſsuring her Ladyſhip that ſhe had no ways contributed to any of this Diſorder, which had happened in her Family; Your Son, Madam, is here to teſtifie, that I never encourag’d his Paſsion, nor concealed any thing from you Ladyſhip; but behav’d my ſelf openly and aboveboard in all things, except letting your Son know my Inclinations; but always refus’d his Propoſals, though never ſo honourable, being without and againſt your Ladyſhip’s Conſent.K2 The 100 K2v 100
The young Gentleman was about to reply, by way of witneſs to her Aſsertion, when behold the Steward (which the Lady had ſent to her Friend Mr. Truman) approached, and with him, Mr. Truman’s Steward, bringing a Letter containing the following words:Madam, Heaven has juſtly puniſh’d me in the Loſs of my Daughter, for the breach of that Promiſe, I made to my worthy Friend your Husband in behalf of your Son: When Riches tempted me I had no power to refuſe; for a certain rich neighbouring Gentleman gain’d ſo far upon me, that I lay’d my Commands upon her to diſpoſe her Perſon and Affections for him; which ſhe receiv’d with ſuch Diſpleaſure, that I have never ſeen her ſince, nor ever hope to ſee her more; That I am now, Madam, as afflicted as guilty; one, implores your Pity, the other, your Pardon, which I hope for from the abundance of that Goodneſs which made you at firſt comply with this propos’d Alliance with your unworthy Friend and moſt obedient Servant, J. Truman. Whilſt 101 K3r 101
Whilſt the Lady was peruſing this Letter, Truman’s Steward caſt his Eyes on the Gypſie, and knew her to be his Maſter’s Daughter, and with a ſuitable Obeiſance, ſaluted her by her Name, withal reproaching her for the many and great Afflictions ſhe had cauſed her Father by this her long Abſence.
This Diſcovery was the moſt pleaſing and agreeable Surprize that could happen to a Family. The Lady and her Son were delighted beyond expreſsion; our young Lady Gypſie was loſt in a pleaſing Confuſion; a Mixture of Shame and Satisfaction appear’d in her; one for having committed ſuch a ridiculous piece of Extravagance in leaving her Father’s Houſe; the other, for being diſcover’d to her Lover, and her good, after ſuch a long Concealment. The elder Lady put a period to all, by orderring her Equipage to be made ready to carry them all to her Friend Mr. Truman’s; where they celebrated the Marriage, to the great Satisfaction of all Parties.
Thus was this young Lady deliver’d out of that Ocean of Diſgrace, into which her Folly and Raſhneſs had caſt her; and for an Augmentation of Happineſs, K3 Mr. 102 K3v 102 Mr. Tangerine and his Family came to make them a Viſit, he being reconciled to his Wife, and lived with her as his Brother’s Widow; it being convenient on all accounts to keep the reſt ſecret. To theſe two Families one may very well apply the Proverb, Give Folks Luck, and throw ’em into the Sea.
The Company were very much diverted at this Story, tho’ they blamed the Young Lady for her ſtrange unparallel’d Enterprize, ſaying, that ſurely ſhe had been reading ſome ridiculous Romance, or Novel, that inſpired her with ſuch a vile Undertaking, from whence ſhe could rationally expect nothing but Miſery and Diſgrace. But Heaven was gracious and merciful, in preſerving her from ſinking into the moſt odious Infamy.
Thus having paſs’d the ſhort Winter’s Afternoon, in Tea and Chat, the approaching Evening called them to their reſpective Habitations.
Galeſia was no ſooner got to her Lodging, but a Gentleman, an Acquaintance ſhe had at St. Germain’s, came to make her a Viſit; 103 K4r 103 Viſit; and being ſeated, ſhe began to enquire what good fortune had attended him ſince ſhe left him there, and ſince his Arrival in England. To which he anſwer’d, I have been too ſtrict an Adherent to Honour and Honeſty, to hope for good fortune on this ſide Heaven. However, ſince you enquire, I will tell you a Romantick Adventure which fell in my way a few Days ago.
The History of Dorinda.
You know, Madam, that our narrow Circumſtances at St. Germain’s taught us a regular Way of living; that our Evening Bottle did not prevent our Morning Breakfaſt, nor Cynthia encroach upon Phœbus; but an early Couché caus’d an early Levé; that we had full time enough in the Morning to pay our Duty to God in his Church, and the King in his Chamber. After this, a Walk on the Terras got us a Friend and a Stomach, to repair to the Coffee-houſe, and over a Diſh of Tea hear or make News. My Perſon and my Pocket being accuſtomed to this way of living, I lik’d it ſo well, that I believe, I ſhall never deſire to change, tho’ I am now in a Country where another method is practiſed.
Thus, being got up early one Morning, I took a Walk in the Park near Roſamond sRoſamond’s Pond; after which, I ſat down a while, rumi- 105 K5r 105 ruminating on divers Occurrences in Europe, which will fill the Hiſtory of future times with amazing Truths; and caſting my Eyes towards the Pond, I ſaw a fineſhap’d Gentlewoman walking cloſe by the Pond’s ſide, very much dagled with the froſty Dew of the Morning. She ſeemed very melancholy, ſometimes ſighing, ſometimes weeping, now lifting up her Hands and Eyes to Heaven, then caſting them towards the Pond; at laſt, all on a ſudden, ſhe leaped into the Water, and had certainly periſhed, had not I been there: For depending upon mine ability in ſwimming, I leap’d in, and truly, not without difficulty and danger, got her out. I then called to ſome Soldiers I ſaw at a diſtance, and by their help brought her to a Seat, where ſhe came to her ſelf; but would not be perſuaded to tell who ſhe was, or where ſhe lived, or whither ſhe would go: So I got a Chair, and carried her to my Lodgings; where, with much ado, I prevailed with my Landlady to receive her. She put her into a warm Bed, got a Nurſe to rub and chafe, and a Surgeon to bleed her, and uſe all other Applications ſuitable to her Condition. When the Hurry was a little over, I went into her Room to comfort, and to get out of her the Cauſe of this deſperate Tranſaction. She being thoroughly come to 106 K5v 106 to her ſelf, waſhed and dreſsed in clean dry Head-cloaths, I thought I had ſeen her ſome where; and at laſt called to mind where; and asked her if her Name was not Dorinda? yes, yes, ſaid ſhe, it was by that ſham Name you formerly picked me up at the Play; and tho’ Time and Fatigue has altered you, yet I remember your Features perfectly well; It was ſuch Romantick Whimſies that brought upon me the Ruin and Diſtreſs in which you behold me; I had read Plays, Novels, and Romances, till I began to think my ſelf a Heroine of the firſt rate; and all Men that flatter’d, or ogled, me were Heroes; and that a pretty well-behaved Foot-man or Page muſt needs be the Son of ſome Lord or great Gentleman.
I affected to ſeek Adventures of divers ſorts; amongſt the reſt, I went mask’d and unaccompanied to the Play-houſe; where you pick’d me up carried me to a Tavern gave me a handſome Treat; and I pleas’d my ſelf to think how you would be baulk’d, when you ſhould pretend to any Favours out of the Road of common Honeſty; as you know you were. After this I met you again in Convent-Garden Square; then on Tower-hill; And thus I rambled, hoping all the while you would court me for Marriage;riage; 107 K6r 107 riage; which indeed, was great Folly in me to expect, in the midſt of ſuch Behaviour; But when it came out that you was a married Man, you may remember that I abandoned all Commerce with you; For amongſt all my Freaks and romantick Frolicks, I preſerved my ſelf from the great Offence; But that is not enough; one muſt remember the common Saying, Thoſe that will no evil do,Muſt do nothing tends thereto.
For ſuch conduct as mine, was as diſhonourable in the Eyes of the World, as if one was a downright Proſtitute; and not only diſhonourable, but ridiculous; for it is according to the ſaying of a Poet, Dye with the Scandal of a Whore,And never know the Joy.
Now, though I broke of your Company, yet I could not on a ſudden detatch my Heart from the thoughts of you; but the Revolution came on, and your Devoirs calling 108 K6v 108 calling you to follow the King, Time and Abſence help’d me to overcome my Folly; and I became more ſedate, ſo as not to ramble alone to Plays, nor to be ſeen in Places unfit for a young Gentlewoman; nevertheleſs, a Romantick Humour hung long upon me, that if any worthy Country-Gentleman made his Addreſses to me, I ſet him in the rank of Juſtice Clod-pate, or Juſtice Calf in thoſe Comedies, and fancy’d their ſpruce young Footman ſome Prince or Hero in diſguiſe, like Dorus in Sir Philip Sidney’s Arcadia. But notwithſtanding my having blotted my Reputation, and render’d my ſelf ridiculous, by theſe fooliſh Whims; I ſay, notwithſtanding all this, a neighbouring Gentleman of an Eſtate made his Addreſses to me; to which I conſented, and Writings were to be drawn. I told him, that ſuch a Footman of mine muſt be provided for, by my Father’s order at his Death; to which he readily conſented, and ſaid, he ſhould be put to ſome honeſt Trade whereby to get his Living. But I told him no; for Trades might fail, and therefore I reſolved to have an hundred Pounds a Year ſettled on him. The Gentleman was diſguſted at this Propoſal (as very well he might) and for the future viſited me no more. After this, my Favourite Footman lighting me one Evening up Stairs, 109 L1r 109 Stairs, in a Freak caught him by the Arm, and ſaid, Jack, I am in love with you; and in a gigling way, ſaid, I will marry you, thinking Jack would have been out of countenance, ſcratched his Head, grin’d and looked like an Idiot; But truly, quite the contrary; He brisked up, and kiſsed me, ſaying, he liked me ſo well, that I ſhould not need to ask twice. I was ſhock’d at this Boldneſs, though my ſelf had been the Cauſe, and ſo went into my Dreſsingroom; a place that excludes all but my Maids, and ſome few Female Friends; but he had the boldneſs to follow me thither, and briskly ſat him down by my Toilet. My Woman hearing me gone into my Dreſsing-room, came to me according to Cuſtom, and ſeeing Jack ſit there, began to chide him with rough Words, and bad him get him gone out of the Room, leſt a Fire ſhovel forc’d him out with Blood about his Ears. I, fooliſhly, was exaſparated againſt her, as ſuppoſing (I believe) that ſhe encroach’d on my Prerogative, in forbidding whom ſhe thought fit; or what other Notion my ill Genius inſpir’d, I know not; but ſo it was, that I eſpouſed Jack’s Cauſe, bidding her be patient, and ſhe ſhould know farther. In ſhort, ſome Words of diſpute paſsed; I ſtill took Jack’s part; at laſt, ſhe ſaid, if you have made Jack L your 110 L1v 110 your Companion, or your Maſter, he ſhall never be mine; and ſo forthwith departed. I muſt own, this gave me ſome Uneaſineſs, or rather Confuſion, and out of which he endeavour’d to recover me, with many fair Words, mix’d with Sighs and Tears, the Rhetorick the Sex has always ready wherewith to betray us; kneeling and kiſsing my Hands, begged me not to abate of that Goodneſs, which had inſpir’d him with a Paſsion, on which his Life depended; for he having been bred up in my Father’s Service, and reading many pretty Books, could ſpeak well enough. However, I oblig’d him to depart for that time; and ſend my Chamber-maid to me. The poor Girl having been inform’d by my Woman, what had paſs’d, entered in Tears, and found me in the ſame Condition. I bad her look in my Cloſet, and bring me ſome little Cordial, that was there, and put me to bed; which accordingly ſhe did; but not to reſt: For I ſlept not that Night; but toſsed and touz’d, my thoughts being agitated with the utmoſt Vexation; not knowing how to undo what my Folly, or rather Whimſie had begun: For ’tis certain he was indifferent to me; but having thus far expoſed my ſelf to him, and my Servants, and in them to every body, I knew not what 111 L2r 111 what to do; I was like one on horſe-back, plung’d in the midſt of a violent deep Torrent, fearing to go forward, leſt it ſhou’d be deeper; not daring to turn, leſt that Motion ſhould empower the rapid Stream to bear him down.
In this ſtate were my Thoughts; I had no body to conſult; ſhame forbidding me to tell my Story to any body wiſer than my ſelf: ſometimes I pleas’d my thoughts, that if I married him, I ſhould always be Miſtreſs, and not be under the Government and Correction of an imperious and ſurly Maſter; not reflecting that the whole Sex, of what degree ſoever, will always exert the Authority that God gave their great Grandfather Adam. Then again, my romantick Brain would make me imagine, that he was of an Origin; (if known) above what he appeared: for he had been a Beggar-boy, taken up at my Father’s Gate, and was bred up in our Houſe, as I have told you, nor would he ever be perſuaded to tell his Name, nor from whence he came.
Then again, I would draw that Curtain from before the Eyes of my Reaſon, and behold him as the poor Beggar-boy Jack, whoſe buſineſs it had been L2 to 112 L2v 112 to clean the Dog kennels, and at laſt, for a reward of his well-doing he was advanced to put on a Livery. This Reflection grated my proud Heart: Then it was I wiſh’d there had been Proteſtant Nunneries, where I might have ſhelter’d my Diſgrace, under a holy Veil, or at leaſt, a pretended, if not a real Devotion.
Then again my Thoughts would roll the other way, and conſider Jack made a Gentleman by me; reſolving that if I married him, to buy him a Commiſsion, and let him try to make his Fortune in Flanders. Thus my poor Head turn’d from Thought to Thought, without any Sleep in my Eyes, or Repoſe in my Heart.
In the Morning I heard a Buſtle at my Chamber-door, which prov’d to be between Jack and my Maid; for ſhe coming then to wait on me, according to cuſtom, he follow’d her, and would go in with her; which ſhe refus’d; with that he ſtrugled with her, and at laſt got the Key; then puſhing her away, came in and lock’d the Door faſt, and ſhut her out. I was frighten’d at this; but he approaching the Bed ſide, on his Knees begged Pardon for this Action, making a thouſand Proteſtations of Duty and Reſpect;ſpect; 113 L3r 113 ſpect; adding the Violence of his Paſsion, which my Goddneſs over night had kindled, in his Heart; at the ſame time he had the cunning to take hold on that Hand next my Bell, under a pretence of kiſsing it, launching out into many flattering Speeches not worth repeating; but the ſubſtance was, to preſs me to a Speedy Marriage, even that Morning. I ſuppoſe, he conſider’d me as a kind of Romantick Humouriſt, (as I really was) and thought it beſt to make ſure work, e’er I chang’d my mind.
Now I being thus ſhut up with him, knew that my Honour (as to outward appearance) was loſt, and that I was more liable to Contempt than in being his Wife; ſo I e’en permitted him to go fetch a Parſon; and was married that fatal Morning. At this the poor Creature (ſaid the Gentleman) fell into a flood of Tears; but after a few Moments, drying her Eyes, ſhe returned to her Story.
We paſsed this Day and the following Night in Jollity enough; but the next Morning my Steward came to Town, and was ſoon informed of this my Folly: When he approach’d my Preſence, I was ſtruck with Shame and Confuſion, he beingL3 ing 114 L3v 114 ing a Gentleman of a graceful Mien, and much reſpected in this Country. When he came in, my Husband, (for I muſt no longer call him Jack) kept his Seat, and without Ceremony call’d him by his Name, and bad him welcome. The good Gentleman, though he knew the Caſe, pretended Ignorance, and bad Jack get out of his Preſence, to prevent a good Kicking. Then with Tears in my Eyes, I told him what was done. At which he ſeem’d much troubled for my ſake; and withal told me, that ſince I had made my Footman my Maſter, I muſt not have him longer for my Servant; and bidding me provide ſome body to receive his Accounts, turn’d ſhort, and departed.
This Tranſaction, as well as that of my Woman before, were both very grievous to me; and did, as it were, take me down in my Wedding-ſhoes; but ſoon after appear’d a buſineſs more mortifying for my Chamber-maid was found with child and lay’d it to my Husband, and produced a Promiſe of Marriage.
He opened my Cabinet, and before my Face took out Handfuls of Gold and Jewels, and gave her, without counting, bad her look out a decent Houſe, and therewith furniſh 115 L4r 115 furniſh the ſame, make her ſelf eaſie, for ſhe ſhould not be abandoned. He kept the Key of my Cabinet, and Scrutore; in ſhort of every thing, that I had not a Pair of Gloves or a Row of Pins but what he gave me out. Imagine now, how I began to ſee and feel my Indiſcretion; but this was nothing to what follows.
He ſaid, he would have me diſpoſe my ſelf to go into the Country, where he had a Houſe of his own, and told me his Name, and the place of his Birth; at which I was a little pleaſed, hoping my Romantick Notion was come true, and that I ſhould find ſomething a little tolerable and decent, Suitable to his Perſon, which was truly handſome. But, good Heavens! When we came to the Place, how was I amazed, to find my ſelf brought to a poor thatch’d Cottage! To ſay the truth, he had taken care to have it made as well as it would bear, againſt my coming; and had put decent Furniture therein, telling me, he did not intend my Stay ſhould be long there; only till he could get his buſineſs done amongſt ſome Friends and Acquaintance he had in that Country; So away he went, leaving me and my Maid, and wherewithal to live in that mean way. But inſtead of travelling the Countrytry, 116 L4v 116 try as he pretended, he went directly to London, made off my Houſe, and Goods, Plate, Linnen, and Jewels, &c; in ſhort, all. He gam’d, drank, whored, kept the Slut my Chamber-maid Lady-like: Thus, he ſoon ran through my perſonal Eſtate I left behind me, though it was of conſiderable Value. He came to me again e’er I was delivered of my firſt Child, and did not let me know how near he had ſpent all; but brought with him a handſom Supply, to ſuſtain the Charges of my approaching Childbed.
Now it was that he propos’d to me the ſelling of a Lordſhip I had lying far diſtant, and to buy one nearer London, where Rents were better paid, and leſs Charge and Trouble, in gathering and receiving the ſaid Rents; and withal propos’d to ſpare ſomething over, (that he had in View being leſs in Extent than the other) wherewith to buy him a Place in the Army, Court, Cuſtom-houſe, or the like; all which I approved and ſo conſented to the ſelling my Lordſhip.But 117 L5r 117
But alas, I had ſoon Cauſe to repent, when I found there was nothing done, no Lordſhip purchas’d, no Place nor Poſt bought; but the Money ſquandered away, I knew not how; but I ſuppoſe, in Riot, Gaming, and Lewdneſs. However, I wanted nothing in that little Station in which he had plac’d me; and I began to be very well pleas’d, being out of the Hurry and Reproaches of the great World, and my Friends in particular. He viſited me ſometimes; and always pretended great Buſineſs, Projects and Undertakings. I became with Child a ſecond time; but it was about two Years after the firſt.
At this Juncture he pretended it was extreamly adviſable to ſell my other Lordſhip, to which at firſt I was very averſe; but he alledging how great the Taxes on Land were, and like to continue, and that the Banks and Funds made a much better Return; which he pretended to know by Experience, as if he had put the Money of that other Lordſhip there; with another plauſible Pretence he made, that in that Village where he had placed me, there was a good Farm or two to be ſold with a handſom Houſe on them, which he 118 L5v 118 he would buy, and ſit up for my Habitation: All which look’d well; and made me hope, and flatter my ſelf that things were better than I imagined: Whereupon, after many Difficulties and Diſputes with my ſelf, and him, I conſented; thinking that his Pretences, of the Funds, and Banks might be in ſome degree true.
Moreover, I thought, that he, as well as others, lov’d to have things in their own Name. And thro’ ſeveral other ſuch Fancies, together with his Proteſtations, I deluded my ſelf thoroughly to my undoing.
However, he was ſo far juſt to his Word in buying the ſaid Farms, made the Houſe very handſome both within and without, and there plac’d me, brought me a very handſome Chariot from London, and in it a young Gentlewoman, for my Companion, and Waiting-woman; all this look’d kind, and the Child was pleas’d with its Bauble.
But alas, the Scale ſoon turn’d; and my waiting-Gentlewoman became Mother of a brave Boy, which the falſe Wretch my Husband endeavour’d to ſhuffle off, telling me ſhe was a Kinſwoman of his unhappily mar- 119 L6r 119 married, and deſired me to be kind to her; but ſhe ſoon found the way to be kind to her ſelf, and cruel to me; and as her Children grew up, (for ſhe had more) ſhe grew inſolent to me and mine; and the Tables turn’d: For inſtead of her being my Waiting-woman, I was partly hers; for ſhe ruled and governed my Houſe and Servants; and I ſuppoſe, they had Orders under-hand to obey her rather than me; and my Husband when at home, abetted the ſame, ſhewing more reſpect to her than me; ſo that I plainly ſaw that all this Houſe, handſome Furniture, and Chariot was all provided upon her account, not mine; and ſhe commanded all as if really her own.
By this time my Son began to grow up fit for ſome ſort of Education beyond that of a Country-School, and for which I preſs’d his Father to provide: At laſt he adher’d to my Importunities, and bought a little Horſe on purpoſe to carry him to London with him: But I could never get him to tell me where, or about what Buſineſs he had placed him: For whenever I asked, I receiv’d nothing but a churliſh Anſwer: And if I complain’d of the Inſolence of his inſulting Miſtreſs he had placed with me, I had no Redreſs; but all her 120 L6v 120 her Words and Actions approv’d, and mine diſdain’d.
This Uſage at laſt tired me out, together with an Ardent Deſire of ſeeing my Son, or endeavouring to find him out. In all this a good neighbouring Lady aſsiſted me, and lent me Money to convey me to London, adviſing me to go to my Friends, and humble my ſelf to them, and thus endeavour to extricate my ſelf out of theſe Vexations. This good Lady took my Daughter into her care, which was my ſecond Child; and thus to London I came I addreſs’d my ſelf to my Friends, from whom I found few Comforts, but many Reproaches.
Thus, having neither Friends nor Money, nor being able to find out my Son or Huſband, nor knowing how to get my Living in the midſt of theſe Afflictions, I did that wicked Action, of throwing my ſelf into the Pond, from which you have been my Deliverer, and are a Witneſs of this laſt Act of Deſpair, as you was of my firſt Act of FollyFolly. And, I think, the whole Sequel of my Husband’s Behaviour, does moſt exactly fulfil the Proverb, Set a Beggar on Horſe-back, And he’ll ride to the Devil.The 121 M1r 121
Dorinda had juſt finiſh’d her Story (ſaid the Gentleman) when my Foot-Boy came to know whether I would dine at the Tavern, or have my Dinner brought home; but hoping ſhe might eat a Bit, I order’d it to be brought to my Lodging. The Landlady accommodated Dorinda with all Neceſsaries: For ſhe had ſo well recover’d her ſelf, that ſhe came into the Dining- Room with a good Appetite: But whilſt we ſate attending the coming of Dinner, Dorinda fell a ſighing, as if troubled with the Vapours, which I took to be the effect of her deep reflecting on things paſt, and in which I endeavour’d to conſolate her, bidding her forget what was paſt, and hope for better to come. But ſhe ſaid, it was not Reflection that caus’d her Sighs, but the Sight of my Boy put her in mind of that Child her Husband had carried away. At which the Boy fell a-crying, and ſaid, Mamma, Mamma, Indeed, you are my Mamma. This was a ſurprizing Diſcovery; wherefore we made the Boy tell us all he could remember ſince he left his Mother, which is as follows.
The Story of Young Jack Mechant.
I Was mightily pleas’d (ſaid the Boy) to go along with my Father, on the little Horſe he had bought for me, eſpecially, being to go to London, a Place I ſo much longed to ſee, as moſt Boys do of my Age. We travell’d till I was very weary, and I was glad when we got to a Town, which we did a pretty while before Night. We came to an Inn, where there happened to be ſome Perſons pretending to be Preſsmaſters raiſing Men to go to Sea. They ſcrap’d acquaintance with me, and I with them; they told me ſuch fine Stories of the Sea, and of Foreign Countries, ſuch ſtrange things, that I wiſh’d to go along with them. I paſs’d the Evening with them, they continuing to amuſe me with their Stories, Flatteries and Cajoleries, till ſuch time as Drowſineſs call’d my Father and me to Bed, where my Day’s Wearineſs cauſed me to ſleep very ſound, inſomuch that I 123 M2r 123 in the Morning I never heard, or felt my Father when he roſe: For he got up pretty early, and went away, leaving word with the Hoſt, that I ſhould come along with thoſe Gentlemen, i.e. the pretended Preſs- Gang, and meet him at London, he pretending he had Buſineſs there which required Haſte; ſo he left me to travel with thoſe Gentlemen at leiſure. I miſtruſted nothing, but kept along with them very well ſatiſfied.
When we came to London, and I did not ſee my Father, I began to cry; but they wheedled me, and told me, he was buſie on Ship-board, ſo they would carry me to him, and there I ſhould ſee the Sea, and Ships, the moſt wonderful things in the World. I then went with them in a Boat, where there were ſeveral Boys and Girls, and ſo came amongſt many Ships; at laſt we got to one, into which we mounted: They ſhew’d me the Ropes, and Tackling of all ſorts, amuſing me, with telling the Uſe of them: At laſt, we were to go down to eat ſome Sweet meats, and drink ſome Punch; and very merry we all were.
Here I ſtaid with my Companions, playing, and fooling with one another, till all on a ſudden, we were lock’d down in this M2 Place. 124 M2v 124 Place. Then our Mirth turned into Sighs and Tears, being doubly frighted, when we were told, we were ſailing to the Indies. However, they wheedled us all, according to our reſpective Circumſtances; in particular, they told me, I ſhould meet my Father there, he being gone in another Ship, which they pretended was thro’ Miſtake: But I had now learn’d to believe nothing they ſaid; but found we were, what they call’d kid-knap’d.
Thus, we all ſate in Grief, till the Sea began to turn our Sorrow into Sickneſs; and a Storm ariſing, added Fright to the reſt. The Cries amongſt us were grievous; one crying, he ſhould never again ſee his Father, and another, his Mother, this or that Play-fellow, and ſo on. But, amongſt the reſt, a Girl of about a dozen or fourteen Years old, with whom I had made a particular acquaintance, wept grievouſly, becauſe ſhe ſhould never ſee Jackey Mechant any more. I wonder’d to hear her name my Name; ſo I ask’d her, who Jackey Mechant was? She ſaid, he was a very pretty Boy, that lived next Houſe to her Father and Mother, and was her Playfellow, and uſed to lie with her, till his Mother began to think her with Child; then it was that his Father and he together,gether, 125 M3r 125 ther, brought her to this Captain; to whom they ſold her, and Jackey was to have the mony for himſelf. He promiſed me, continued ſhe, that he would be ſure to come to me on board, and go along with me to the Indies; but he is not come according to his word.
While we were in this Diſcourſe, the Captain came into the Hold, bringing with him another Paſsenger, which he had bought juſt before he ſet ſail; and promis’d to keep him in his Cabbin, and teach him Navigation; but in the ſtorm his Cries and Fears were troubleſome to the Mariners, ſo he told that Boy, he being ſo Hen-hearted, muſt e’en go amongſt the other Slaves; the Girl looking up, and wiping her blubbered Face, ſoon found our new Paſsenger to be Jackey Mechant; we asked him why he was put to Sea, he ſaid, that his Father had ſold him to that Captain, for Faults he was forbid to tell till he got into the Indies; but with much perſuaſion, he told us, that it was for calling his Mother, Whore; for, ſaid he, one of my Play-fellows, call’d me Baſtard and Son of a Whore, for which we quarrelled, and I got him down; and in my Fury hurt ishis Eye ſo, that he is like to loſe it, and I had like to be hang’d M3 for 126 M3v 126 for it, if taken; but one of them bigger and older than the reſt, told me, that my Mother was not Squire Mechant’s Wife; but one that had been his Wife’s Chambermaid; and much more to this purpoſe.
Dorinda hearing all this, knew, that this Boy, her Son ſpake of, muſt needs have been her Husband’s Baſtard; ſhe ſaid, he was alike cruel to one as to the other; ſhe then bid him go on, and tell how he got out of the Ship; the Storm was great (added he) and a croſs Wind continued, which drove us on the Coaſt of Portugal, where the Captain caſt Anchor for a little time; there he let us out of the Hold, to come on the Deck for Air, having been very Sick during the Storm. I ſeeing my ſelf at liberty, and pretty near the Land, knowing I could ſwim very well, having practis’d the ſame among the Boys in the Country, I leaped into the Sea, and ſo got to Land; here I found ſome difficulty, having no Language but Engliſh.
At laſt I met with this Engliſh Gentleman who took me into his Service, and I attended him faithfully in divers places of his Travels, till I am arrived at the Feet 127 M4r 127 Feet of you, my dear Mother. She embraced him moſt tenderly; and many Tears were ſhed on both ſides, till dinner came, which caus’d a Ceſsation of theſe Endearments; the poor Dorinda, not only din’d heartily, but the good Meal ſhe made, was attended with great ſatisfaction, or rather Tranſport.
As we ſat at Dinner, reflecting on divers of theſe Occurrences, we heard a Hawker cry in the Streets, The Tryal, Condemnation, and Execution, of John Mechant at Tyburn, for having barbarouſly murdered a Woman by whom he had a Child; and becauſe ſhe ask’d him for Money to maintain it, he moſt inhumanly ſtab’d her.
We liſtened to the Repetition of the Cry, and Dorinda plainly found it was the Name of her Husband, as indeed, it prov’d to be the ſame Perſon.
You may imagine, that great was her Surprize, Horrour, and Amazement. She retired to her Chamber; and I went to find out the bottom, whether it was ſo; and what could be made out for her ſupport, which I hope will be pretty well; there being ſomething conſiderable in the State-funds, beſides thoſe Farms in the Country;try; 128 M4v 128 try; in all which I will be as helpful to her as I can.
You will do extreamly well ſaid Galecia; and ſince your Wife is dead, when you have brought things to a Period, e’en take the Widow for your pains. The whole Story has been a Romantick Chain, of very odd Contingencies; ſo make that the laſt Link. Very well contriv’d, ſaid the Gentleman. I will go home and Take Counſel of my Pillow.
The Gentleman being gone, Galecia reflected on his Diſcourſe, as alſo on thoſe other Stories ſhe had heard amongſt the Ladies: She began to think the World was made up with Extravagant Adventures. Amongſt the Old Romances, ſaid ſhe to her ſelf, we find ſtrange and improbable Performances, very ſurprizing Turns and Rencounters; yet ſtill all tended to vertuous Ends, and the Abhorrence of Vice; But here is the Quinteſsence of Wickedneſs deſign’d and practiced, in a ſpecial manner, in the ſtory of Jack Mechant, who ſold both his lawful and natural Son, and murdered his Concubine becauſe ſhe did not ſtarve her Child.Thoſe 129 M5r 129
Thoſe honourable Romances of old Arcadia, Cleopatra, Caſſandra, &c; diſcover a Genius of Vertue and Honour, which reign’d in the time of thoſe Heroes, and Heroines, as well as in the Authors that report them; but the Stories of our Times are ſo black, that the Authors, can hardly eſcape being ſmutted, or defil’d in touching ſuch Pitch.
As ſhe was in theſe Reflections, ſhe heard a Noiſe in the Street; and looking out, ſhe ſaw every body gazing up at a ſtrange Light in the Sky: Good God! ſaid our Galecia ſure the general Conflagation is begun, when the Almighty will purge the World from its Droſs, by Fire as heretofore he did from its Filth by Water.
As Galecia was in theſe Thoughts, her Friend Miranda came up into her Appartment, being frighted with that Light. She ſaid, ſhe durſt go no farther; but beg’d Houſe-room that Night; I can ſit in a Chair by the Fire, ſaid ſhe, and not trouble you with a Bed-fellow: But Galecia readily offered her part of her Bed; telling her, they would take a Walk together in the Morning over the Park, to viſit 130 M5v 130 viſit their old Friend Amarantha. They had ſome Confabulation together, Miranda telling Galecia, how ill her Husband us’d her, how he had left her with Child, and went away with a Miſtreſs; I will not ſay a Whore, ſaid ſhe, becauſe the Creature is a Gentlewoman; otherwiſe ſhe deſerves no other Name. What is become of him, I know not. When he was landed in Flanders, he writ to me to Inform me he was got ſafe over Sea, but was ſoon to remove from thence; ſo bid me not write to him till I heard from him again: For he ſaid, he was going home into his own Country, he having quitted his Poſt in the Army; whether he took this Lady with him as a Wife; or what elſe was the Myſtery, I know not; but I have never heard from him ſince.
My Child dyed in few Weeks after it was born; which was an Addition to my Grief; However, it is happy; for the Count, his Father left me in ſuch narrow Circumſtances, I ſhould have had much difficulty to have ſupported my ſelf and him.
The Men of all Qualities, Countries, and Stations, ſaid Galecia, are alike; there is no ſuch thing as Vertue and Honour left amongſt ’em, at leaſt, in regard of their Wives; 131 M6r 131 Wives; from the Lady to the Porter’s Wife; I hear, all Womankind complain of the Unkindneſs of their Husbands. All which, ſaid Miranda, proceeds from the Multitude of lewd Strumpets; who reign amongſt us with Impunity. You are happy Galecia, continu’d ſhe, that amongſt your many Tribulations, you have not had the Affliction of an ill Husband to torment you; nor a good one, ſaid Galecia, to conſolate and protect me; But all theſe things are in the hands of Providence; in whoſe Protection let us recommend our ſelves this dreadful Night; for behold, the Sky ſeems more and more inflam’d; that, God only knows who ſhall live to ſee the Morning- Sun; or, perhaps, his bright Lamp may be put out.
Thus, our two Friends retired to their Reſt, as if they were to riſe to Immortality: to which we may apply the Proverb, A good Conſcience, is a continual Feaſt
Vertue and Innocence are always ſafeguards; and ſcreen’d our two Friends from fear that dreadful Night, ſo that they ſlept ſound, and wak’d in the morning in due time 132 M6v 132 time to take a walk over the Park, to breakfaſt with their Friend Amarantha, who received them with all the marks of ſincere Kindneſs and Friendſhip, as far as her melancholy circumſtance would permit; for ſhe had buried her Husband, ſince ſhe had ſeen them, and tho’ ſhe had been a Widow ſome Years, yet the ſight of theſe old Friends renew’d her Grief, and, ſpight of all Endeavours, made her ſhed a flood of Tears.
They endeavour’d to conſolate each other with what Arguments they could on ſuch an occaſion. Ah me, ſaid ſhe, I could not be juſt to his memory, if I ſhould ceaſe to lament him as long as I live, his Loſs being irreparable: He was the beſt of Huſbands, beſt of Friends, beſt of Maſters, a true Lover of his King, and the Laws of his Country, facetious amongſt Friends, grave amongſt Strangers, pleaſant amongſt the Young, and a Pattern to his Elders. In fine, his Deportment was inſtructive, and agreeable to all; but above all, to me, whom he moſt tenderly lov’d, and accordingly, was in every thing entirely obliging. In all which, replied Galecia, he did but render Juſtice to your Merit. But there are ſo few Husbands who do ſo in theſe Days, that one ought to prize that Man very much, who 133 N1r 133 who treats his Wife with common Civility, and does not place his Proſtitute in competition with, or rather above her, not only in Affection, but even in external Behaviour; of which, this our beautiful Friend Miranda is an Example. To which Miranda replied, That ſhe was not worthy to be an Example in Diſcourſe; ſo beg’d them to call another Cauſe: In particular, ſaid ſhe to Amarantha, tell us, if you can, what is become of our old Friend and Play-fellow Bellemien? Alas, ſaid Amarantha, that poor Girl has been very unfortunate in her Marriage, as I ſhall relate to you, when Breakfaſt is over.
The Story of Bellemein, Related by Amarantha.
There was a Widow-Gentlewoman ſomewhat decayed in the World, who had but one only Child, a beautiful Daughter. This Gentlewoman apply’d her ſelf, by Induſtry, to ſalve thoſe Sores which hard Fortune had made in her Circumſtances, thereby to enable her to educate this her Daughter a little ſuitable to her Birth, without being dependant on her Relations. This cauſed her to let her Houſe to Lodgers, but chiefly to Men, as being ſuppoſed the leaſt Trouble: She likewiſe took their Linen to mend and ſtarch; or any ſowingwork, whereby ſhe could honeſtly get a Penny. Amongſt theſe Gentlemen that lodged at, or frequented her Houſe, there was one who became extreamly enamour’d with Favorella (for that is the Name of her beautiful Daughter;) which, as ſoon as the Mother 135 N2r 135 Mother perceiv’d, ſhe took all poſsible care to prevent any dangerous Correſpondence, and the Daughter was no leſs circumſpect. All which ſo inflam’d the young Gentleman, that ſometimes he reſolved to marry her: For though Riches were wanting, (which in theſe days is counted the main Article) yet where Beauty, Vertue, and Prudence, are united there is reaſon to hope for a happy Eſpouſal; thoſe three Ingredients being of force to draw in that other, to wit Riches. Nevertheleſs, though his Inclinations were ſtrong, and the young Creature’s Affections correſpondent; yet they fear’d to marry, he having only a younger Brother’s Fortune to depend upon, of which he ſhould be depriv’d if he married without the Conſent of his Mother, which he knew would be in vain to ask, when a ſuitable Fortune did not accompany his Requeſt. Nevertheleſs, ſuch were the Charms of the young Favorella, that maugre all the oppoſitions of Reaſon and Intereſt, he was forced to comply with his Paſsion, in the Eſpouſing her. However, they were ſo diſcreet, as to take care to keep their Marriage abſolutely a Secret, till time ſhould help them through the Difficulty. But as theſe clandeſtine Marriages ſeldom prove happy, ſo this between Palemon and Favorella was wholly unfortunate.N2 Now 136 N2v 136
Now thus it hapned, Palemon’s elder Brother being married ſome time, and having no proſpect of Children he began to joyn his Importunities with thoſe of his Mother and other Friends, to make Palemon betake himſelf to a Wife, whereby to provide Heirs for the Family; and to further their Deſign, pitcht upon our Friend Bellemien, who, you know, is the only Child of her Mother, and has a Fortune ſuitable to his Family; and indeed, ſuch was her Fortune, that her Mother would not have accepted a younger Brother, but that the way to the paternal Eſtate lay open, by the Defect of Heirs on the Elder Brother’s ſide. At the ſame time, Palemon and Favorella, began to find their Circumſtances too narrow for a decent Subſiſtance, which began to call loud on them to change the Meaſures of their living. His Friends knowing he had a ſufficient Allowance from his Family, wonder’d that he could not live within compaſs; and thought he ſurely kept Company with lewd Women; therefore they preſsed him the more to marry. The poor Favorella, told him, ſhe was willing to eaſe him of the Burden of maintaining her, and ſo would go to Service, work to the Exchange, or any thing to make him eaſie.At 137 N3r 137
At this time there was a Clerk juſt out of his time, who had a pretty paternal Eſtate, which he offered to ſettle upon her a Joynture, as not knowing of her prior Marriage.
Things being on this footing on both ſides, truly, Palemon and Favorella agreed between themſelves, that both of them ſhould try to enlarge their Circumſtances, by the way which ſeem’d chalk’d out by Fortune, and ſo each of them to marry the reſpective Perſons thus provided; promiſing to continue a mutual Affection for each other, and if Fortune ſhould ever turn things about, ſo as to have it proper for them to come together again, then to remember their firſt conjugal Vows, and live no longer aſunder; in the mean time, endeavour to bear their Yoke in Patience in theſe their new Eſpouſals, which courted their acceptance.
Thus the unhappy Couple diſpenſed each with other to an abſolute Separation: He married our Friend Bellemien, and ſhe married the young Lawyer, who honeſtly ſetled his Eſtate upon her: and they both lived in theſe their new Eſpouſals well enough: Whether they held any ſecret N3 cor- 138 N3v 138 correſpondence, is unknown, we are bound to hope the beſt, and conclude they did not, (if one may call that the beſt;) but it is a moot point, which is beſt, or rather, which is worſt, every way in ſuch a Station, being bad, even to a great Degree of Wickedneſs. In due time Palemon had a Child; by this his new Wife, and all things went on in pretty good Order and Harmony amongſt them; the Relations on both ſides were pleas’d to ſee an Heir to inherit the Riches of both Families.
This Tranquillity held till the Death of our young Lawyer, Favorella’s Husband; for he lived but few Years with her, and then Palemon’s Flame began to revive, and burn with Violence. Then he began to have Gripes in Conſcience, or at leaſt, his Paſsion was diſguis’d in that dreſs; Favorella’s Beaty dazled him, Favorella’s Wrongs ſtung him; Favorella was his firſt Love, his firſt Wife, and ought to be the Object of his Affection; ſhe ought to be righted, his Conſcience quieted; But chiefly, (as one may ſuppoſe) his Inclinations gratified; which was no way to be done, but by quitting his latter Spouſe, and cleaving to the former. We will ſuppoſe, that his Thoughts met with great Obſtacles on the other ſide, to think how he ſhould ruine a vertuous young Gentlewoman,woman, 139 N4r 139 woman, expoſe the Child he had by her, arm all her Relations with Revenge, and diſoblige his own Family.
Thus was this unhappy Gentleman become miſerable through his own Folly. His Days he paſs’d in Anxiety, and his Nights in Deſpair; his Bed was no place of Reſt, nor his Table of Refreſhment; his Houſe was a Den of Horror, and abroad a Wilderneſs of Woe: his Wife’s Kindneſs was diſagreeable, and her very Careſses nauceous. He betook himſelf to Devotion, and reading good Books; all which ſerved but to augment his Grief, by ſetting his Crimes in a juſt light, before the Eyes of his Underſtanding. He had no third Perſon to whom he could or durſt to communicate this his Affliction, thereby to receive Counſel or Conſolation; but was forced to feed this gnawing Worm of an ill Conſcience ſecretly, till it devoured his whole internal Quiet.
Thus, after many Debates with himſelf, he at laſt comply’d with Inclination, and reſolv’d ſecretly to leave his Houſe, Wife, and Family, and go live in private Lodgings with Favorella, whom he thought was his true and lawful Wife. This he put in Execution, and writ the followinging 140 N4v 140 ing Billet to his latter Wife, our friend Bellemien:Madam, I have taken a reſolution to live from you; I deſire you, as you favour your own Quiet, not to inquire after me; I have very good reaſon for what I do; be kind to the poor Babe you have by me, for its ſake and your own; for, I confeſs there is nothing due to it for my ſake, its wretched Father, Palemon.
Having writ this Letter, he ſtep’d into the Nurſery, where the innocent Babe lay ſmiling in its Cradle.
At his approach, it ſliggar’d and ſtretch’d out his little Hands to catch hold of him, as if with dumb Shews, it would have ſaid, Pappa, will you leave me to the riſque of Fortune? Will you leave me, your only Child, whom God has given you to ſupport your Name and Family, by whom your Race muſt be continued? Ah, unkind Pappa! And then its little face drew into a form of crying. He look’d on the innocent Babe with tenderneſs; and bowing down to kiſs it, the poor 141 N5r 141 poor innocent claſp’d its little Fingers in his Wig, as loth to part with its Father. This brought Tears from the Eyes of the unhappy Palemon. Oh, Wretch that I am, ſaid he to himſelf, thus to leave this lovely Innocent, the Pledge of his Mother’s tender Love! and thus to part from a faithful vertuous Woman; to leave her to the Cenſure of this World, as if guilty of ſome heinous Crime; or at leaſt, as if ſhe was of ſome ill Temper or froward HumourHumour, unfit to cohabit withal! Whereas ſhe is ſweet, vertuous, and mild, as Summer-dew, or the Vernal Sun. Her Family and Fortune have enrich’d and honoured thee, brought thee to be eſteem’d and reſpected, above thy Merit! Palemon, to what exigence have thy Crimes and Follies reduced thee!
Thus ſighing, thus weeping, thus regarding the Child with Tenderneſs, he heard the Nurſe coming up ſtairs; upon which he haſtily ſtep’d into his Cloſet, where he made up the foreſaid Billet; and then left his Houſe, never more to return.
When his Lady aroſe, and ſaw his Cloſet-door open, ſhe thought to run to him with open Arms, and wonted kind Careſses; but inſtead of her dear Palemon, ſhe found the ſaid ſurprizing Letter. At which 142 N5v 142 which her Grief and Wonder was ſuch, as I cannot deſcribe; therefore leave you (good Ladies) to gueſs. Her Mother and all her Relations, ſoon became Co-partners of her Grief and Diſgrace. Which way to turn themſelves in it, they knew not; where to enquire, or what meaſures to take, they were wholly ignorant. But length of time and much Enquiry, brought them to the Knowledge of his Habitation, and how he lived with Favorella, as Man and Wife. But when they came to the Knowledge hereof, they were at a loſs where to begin, or at which End of this ill-ſpun Thread to take hold; ſome advis’d ’em to the ſpiritual Court, there to proſecute him as an Adulterer; others, on the contrary, ſaying, that was playing the Game for them, juſt as they had dealt the Cards, and the way to bring on a Divorce; which was moſt uſeful to them of all things; Others adviſed differently, no body knowing how the affair was, touching his former Marriage with Favorella. Amongſt many Enquiries, and Conſultations, Bellemien chanc’d to be at a Friend’s Houſe, where ſhe was relating her Griefs, and telling the differing ſorts of Advice given her by ſeveral Friends; ſome for the Spiritual Court, ſome for Common Law, others for bringing the Caſe into Parliament.Amongſt 143 N6r 143
Amongſt theſe Gentlewomen, there was one (an abſolute Stranger) who told her that ſhe believed ſhe could give her better Counſel than any Lawyer in the three Inns of Court, if ſhe would go privately with her into the next Room; which accordingly ſhe did; and there ſhe told Bellemien the whole Story of his firſt Marriage, the Cauſe and manner of the Separation, all that had paſs’d in his ſecond Eſpouſals; the manner of leaving his Houſe, and the Grief he underwent in parting with his Child; inſomuch that Bellemien was greatly ſurpriz’d, and thought this Gentleman at leaſt, a Scotch-Seer, if not a She- Conjurer; or elſe that ſhe had feign’d a Story.
Now, Madam, ſaid the unknown Perſon, that you are inform’d of the true ſtate of the Caſe, conſider well how to act Suppoſe you could get proof of this firſt Marriage, which will be difficult, what will it avail? ’Twill only make the Man you once lov’d affectionately, appear a great Villain, your ſelf Mother of an illegitimate Child, and deprive it too of the Right of Inheritance, by proving it a Baſtard; and his firſt Wife of a comfortable Subſiſtance, which ſhe enjoys now in right of her ſecond Huſband,band, 144 N6v 144 band, the young Lawyer, ſhe married afterwards: For if a prior Marriage be proved, that Joynture reverts to his Family.
Now, Madam, though this Women enjoys your Husband, ſhe lies under the ſcandal of a kept-Miſtreſs, a Proſtitute, a Concubine, a Strumpit, &c; deſpiſed by all vertuous People; whilſt you enjoy your Honour, your Reputation, the Compaſsion of all the World, who eſteem you for your Patience, and your Child is Heir to its Family on both ſides. Now, if you pleaſe, take the Counſel of the unhappy Favorella, your Rival: I ſay, take this Counſel from me, who am Palemon’s firſt and lawful Wife; and remember, that, with the Proverb, ’Tis better, to ſit ſtill, than riſe up, and fall.
At theſe Words, Bellemien ſwoon’d in her Chair, whilſt Favorella fled out at a Backdoor, reſolving for the future eternally to avoid her Preſence.This 145 O1r 145
This Story being ended, Galecia and Miranda took their Leaves, in hopes to get to Prayers, in their Way home: But they came too late, for the People were juſt coming out of Church, as they got thither.
Returning back, they found a Mob gathering, which almoſt obſtructed their Paſſage; one crying out, You Rogue, you detain my Wife from me; but I will make you produce her, or Newgate ſhall hold you. Then another cry’d aloud, Out upon thee, Villain, I am thy Wife. Our two Friends thought, this was a feign’d Noiſe, deſign’d only to gather a Crowd, for the conveniency of picking Pockets; ſo they haſtned by as faſt as they could, each to their reſpective Lodgings.
By ſuch time as Galecia had reſted and dined, there came a Gentleman to viſit her, bringing with him a young Gentlewoman, whom he preſented to Galecia, telling her, that he took the Liberty to bring this Stranger to her, that ſhe might receive a little Conſolation, by diſcourſing in a Language ſhe underſtood; becauſe Engliſh was utterly unknown to her: For though ſhe was the King of England’s Subject, yet being born O at 146 O1v 146 at Paris, and always educated in a French Convent, ſhe knew no other Language. Galecia received her with a civil Decency, bidding her welcome into England, and wiſhing her Happineſs, in the Country which ought to have been the Place of her Nativity, as it is now (and I hope, ſaid ſhe will continue to be) the Place of your Abode.
No indeed, reply’d the Gentleman, ſuch is her Misfortune, as deprives her of that Happineſs, the Particulars of which I ſhall leave her to relate, and wait upon you again. O good Sir, ſaid the young Stranger, do you inform this Gentlewoman of my unhappy Adventures; and do it in Engliſh, leſt I ſink with Confuſion to hear my Follies related in a Language I underſtand. Hereupon the Gentleman began the ſtory as follows.
The History of Malhurissa, Related by her Friend.
This Gentlewoman, ſaid he, had the misfortune to loſe her Parents when very young, who left her to the Care of her Uncle, a worthy Gentleman; but his Duty calling him to the Army, ſhe was educated in a Convent, according to the Cuſtom of thoſe Countries, where they grow up under a conſtant Inſtruction and Practice of Vertue and Piety, in which ſhe made a Proficiency ſuitable to the Endeavours of thoſe holy Votaries. Her Uncle being to go to the Army to make his Campagne, thought it convenient to remove her to a Convent of a leſs rigorous Order, where ſhe might learn the more polite Parts of Education; as Dancing, Singing, Muſick, and the like; get acquainted with young Ladies of Quality, and be permitted to dreſs, ſomething more according to the O2 Mode 148 O2v 148 Mode of the World, than thanthan was us’d in the other.
This Removal he committed to the Care of one, whom her Mother had brought out of England with her at the Revolution, and had always attended this young Creature. He left with this young Niece her Mother’s Rings, Watch, Necklace, and divers Suits of Apparel, with fine Linnen, rich Laces, and the like; and that ſhe might want nothing for that Year, he left an hundred Louis’ D’ors for her Penſion and other neceſsary Occaſions. Having thus diſpoſs’d this Affair, he together with other Officers, went away to the Army.
Now it was, that this wicked Wretch the foreſaid Attendant, had the Opportunity to betray the poor young Creature. When they were come out of the Convent, and in the Coach, in order to go to the other, together with their Trunks, and other Neceſsaries, her Attendant ask’d her, if ſhe had not a Fancy to go to St. Germain’s, which had been the Court of their Engliſh Sovereign; for, ſaid ſhe, now we are got in the Coach, we can go thither, and divert you for a Day or two, e’er you enter your Encloſure. The young Lady, who had never ſeen any thing 149 O3r 149 thing but her Cloyſter, was eager to embrace this Propoſal; ſo to St. Germain’s they went; and ſtayed ſome days, viewing the Caſtle, and all the Appartments, where the King, Queen, and Prince kept their reſpective Courts, the Garden, Walks in the Wood and Park, the Churches of the Fryers, both in the Town and Foreſt.
Going to the Pariſh-Church to Prayers they met a Gentleman that claim’d acquaintance with Mrs. Vileman (for that was the name of our Attendant.) He told her, that he was going directly to Paris, to enquire for her, to let her know that her Father in England was dead, and had left her very conſiderable Effects, and ſhew’d them a Letter which he pretended to have receiv’d to this Purpoſe. Mrs. Vileman ſeem’d ſtruck with Affliction, Confuſion and Hurry, in which the Gentleman pretended to comfort her; particularly in reference to the good Fortune left her, for which it was neceſsary to go to England, as ſoon as poſsible.
Then the Queſtion aroſe, whether ſhe ſhould go by Callis or Diepe; but the Gentleman advis’d her, by Diepe; for being got ſo far towards Rohan, it was eaſie and cheap getting, to Diepe, and ſo croſs over O3 to 150 O3v 150 to Rye; But Mrs Vileman reply’d, ſhe could not go directly thence; becauſe ſhe muſt carry that young Gentlewoman to the Convent aſsign’d for her Reception. Ah me, ſaid the young Lady, it breaks my heart to think of parting with you; Methinks, I wiſh I was to go along with you to England: For beſide the Unwillingneſs of being ſeparated from you, I long to ſee England, and in particular, London, with all its Pomp and Riches; they ſay, it is much beyond Paris.
Thus this poor young Thing nibbled at the Bait they had lay’d for her; and they reply’d in deluſive Words very fit to excite and improve their Curioſity. At laſt, the Gentleman ſaid, it would be but a Frolick ſuitable to her Youth, to make uſe of this Opportunity; and being with the Perſon into whoſe Hands ſhe was committed, no body would have great reaſon to blame the Enterprize; but on the contrary, applaud her Endeavours to improve her Knowledge of the World, when ſhe had ſo fair an Opportunity. In ſhort, the poor young Creature fell into the Trap they had lay’d for her, and conſented to go with them to England: ſo they made their Coach carry them to Poiſey, where they took Water, and away they went to Rohan; the Gen- 151 O4r 151 Gentleman making Love to our young Lady all the way. They ſtay’d at Rohan ſome time, under colour of buying Goods to freight the Ship; For he pretended to be a great London-Merchant, Son to a Country-Gentleman of an Eſtate, in which Vileman joyn’d her Atteſtation; whilſt he aſſur’d her of his everlaſting Love and earneſtly preſs’d her to be married. The poor young Girl was ſoon catch’d in the Ambuſcade of Cupid, this being the firſt Onſet ſhe ever made in the Field of Love. She conſented to a Marriage, but he put it off with one Shuffle or another. However, having gained her Conſent to Marry, the next thing was, to adviſe her to let him lay out her Money in Merchandize, which would be ſo advantageous to her, that one hundred Piſtoles would be at leaſt two hundred in England; to which ſhe agreed, and accordingly parted with her Money, with ſatisfaction, to the Man ſhe thought her Husband, or at leaſt, to be ſuch very ſoon; ſo next Morning they were to be married.
I need not tell you what Arguments he uſed to perſuade her to be his Bedfellow that Night, we will ſuppoſe they were ſuch as is common on thoſe occaſions; as, that their promiſe to each other was the true 152 O4v 152 true and ſubſtantial Marriage; that the Parſon was only as a Witneſs to that Promiſe; that if ſhe refus’d him, he had very little reaſon to depend upon her Affection, or elſe that ſhe doubted of his, and took him to be the worſt of Miſcreants and a thouſand ſuch idle Stories, wherewith innocent Maids are betray’d to Ruin, as was this young Gentlewoman.
In ſhort, ſhe conſented to lye with him upon promiſe of Marriage next Morning. But, behold, when Morning came, he had ſo lay’d the Buſineſs, that the Sailors came with Noiſe and Hurry, ſaying that the Wind ſerv’d, and they were ready to ſet ſail, ſo they aroſe in great haſte to get to the Ship, and ſo away they came for England; ſhe all the while believing her ſelf his Wife; and that ſhe had a great Cargo of Merchandize in the Ship. They got ſafe to London, and plac’d themſelves in a Lodging among their own Gang of Villains. Here he pretended to great Buſineſs at the Exchange, Cuſtom-Houſe, and Poſt-Office, always in a hurry, and full of Employment. At laſt, he told her, that he wanted Money to diſcharge the Duties of his Merchandize at the Cuſtom-Houſe; ſo begs her to lend him ſome of her Rings and Jewels to raiſe it for that uſe: She believingving 153 O5r 153 ving her ſelf his Wife, parted with every thing he requir’d; and as ſoon as the Goods ſhould be diſcharg’d, they were to make a glorious publick Wedding.
On the other hand, Mrs. Vileman was hurried in looking after the Effects of her dead Father; ſo ſhe borrow’d the young Gentlewoman’s Cloaths, thereby to appear genteel amongſt her Relations, as ſhe pretended, till ſhe could get her ſelf equip’d in Mourning; tho’ in reality, ſhe had no Relations, being only a Baſtard of an Officer in the Army, who never own’d her by reaſon of her Mother’s inſatiable Lewdneſs.
Thus was this poor young Creature ſtrip’d of all ſhe had, by one Sham or another. Nevertheleſs, they liv’d very well, both in Meat, Drink, and Lodging.
When they had got all from her, (then, according as it was concerted amongſt ’em) the Landlady arreſted them for Board and Lodging; only by a Sham-Officer; and ſo pretended to carry Vileman and the Rogue to Priſon; whereas it was only a Shuffle, to get them away, and drop, her, when they had got all: For ſhe being the 154 O5v 154 the ſuppoſed Wife, was not to be taken to Priſon with them.
This poor Creature being thus ſtrip’d of all, debauch’d, diſgrac’d, deluded, and abandon’d, helpleſs, friendleſs, pennyleſs, in a Country where ſhe underſtood not a Word of the Language; ſhe knew not what to do. In the midſt of this her Diſtreſs, ſhe bethought her ſelf to go to the Chapel of an Embaſsador, where ſhe hop’d to find ſome body that could ſpeak French: She addreſſing her ſelf to the Porter, he immediately call’d me to her, (ſaid the Gentleman) and ſhe ſoon made me underſtand her Buſineſs; ſo I recommended her to go into the Chapel, and there offer her ſelf to God, at his holy Altar, and then I promis’d to come to her again; which accordingly I did, and took her into a little Room, where ſhe repeated to me all this lamentable Story. After I had heard her out, I knew ſhe was the Perſon on whoſe account I had receiv’d a letter from France; which, if you pleaſe to peruſe, you are welcome.The 155 O6r 155 The Letter. Sir, I Am ſo well aſsured of your Readineſs to do any good Office, that I addreſs my ſelf to you with the utmoſt Freedom, begging you, if poſsible, to find out a poor loſt Sheep, my Niece, and to ſend her home to her Friends, particularly to me: For thus it is, Sir, The only Child of my dear deceas’d Siſter, has been deluded away into England by a wicked Fellow, who has abandon’d his Wife here in Paris, a very honeſt induſtrious Woman; but he an idle Villain. My Enquiry reach’d after them to Rohan, where it is ſaid, they lived together as Man and Wife; after which, they went for England. I hope, there is a Poſsibility of finding her, becauſe ſhe cannot ſpeak one Word of Engliſh. She is young, and tolerably handſome. Sir, if you can find her, be pleaſed to ſend her to me: Aſſure her, that I will receive, and forgive her, even tho’ ſhe ſhould be with Child by the Villain; and ſhall own my ſelf extreamly oblig’d to you, who am, Sir, Your Obedient Humble Servant, Goodman. Having 156 O6v 156
Having thus found her continu dcontinued the Gentleman) I was about to take her to a Houſe, where I might give her ſomething to eat (for ſhe was faint,) when, juſt at the Chapel-Door, I met her pretended Huſband; who immediately took hold of her, calling her Wife. Vile Wretch, ſaid I, thou knoweſt, ſhe is none of thy Wife; therefore touch her not. How! (reply’d he) will you dare to ſay, ſhe is not my Wife? I have ſought her three or four Days, and now I find who has debauch’d and detained her from me, for which I ſhall make you pay dearly. (He not dreaming I had any Letter from her Uncle;) and, I believe, he would have had the impudence to have enter’d a Proceſs againſt me, in hopes to have ſqueez’d Money from me, ſuppoſing, no doubt, that I would give ſomething to be quiet, and not be expos’d in the Face of the Church, and my Lord Embaſsador. This made him very clamorous, audacious and inſolent; inſomuch that a Mob gather’d about us, and there was no paſsing; he ſtriving to get her from me, I holding her faſt, and the People were clamorous, according to their ſeveral ſentiments, ſo that I was going to call a Conſtable both for her ſecurity and my own.But 157 P1r 157
But Providence ſent us a better Officer of Juſtice, than any other in the King’s Dominions: For at this juncture, his real Wife appear’d, crying out to him, Vile Wretch, how dar’ſt thou call any body Wife, but me. She had a Conſtable with her, who ſeiz’d him, in order to carry him before a Magiſtrate; for which reaſon the Mob diſpers’d; ſo that we got out of the Crowd; and after I had refreſhed her and my ſelf at an Eating Houſe, I conducted her hither, and now beg you to entertain her in French, whilſt I go ſeek a ſafe Lodging for her, till I can convey her to her Uncle.
The Gentleman being gone, Galecia amus’d the young Lady as well as ſhe could, by giving her Conſolation, and blaming the Wickedneſs of Vileman, her Governante, excuſing her Folly, imputing it to her want of knowing the World; but chiefly applauding the extream Goodneſs of her Uncle, who verify’d our Engliſh Proverb, A Friend in Need, is a Friend indeed.P Moreo- 158 P1v 158
Moreover, Galecia, the better to divert Malhuriſſa from the Thoughts of her Miſfortunes, ask’d her, if ſhe had no diverting Story or Rencounter that had hapned in her Convent amongſt the Novices, or young Ladies the Penſioners. To which Malhuriſſa reply’d, No; ſaying, nothing remarkable had appeared there, but extraordinary Vertue and Piety, the Religious performing their Devotions in exact Regularity, and the Seculars as perfect in their Reſpect and Obedience; ſo that all things went on in a conſtant Harmony, without the leaſt Diſcord; which I am bound to acknowledge, though with Shame and Confuſion of Face, for having ſo ill practis’d thoſe excellent Precepts and Examples.
’Tis true, indeed, the wicked Vileman my Governante, for her abominable Behaviour, is extreamly blameable; but that would not excuſe me, Madam, in the Thoughts of any leſs charitable Perſon than your ſelf, who is pleaſed to diſguiſe my Crimes in the Robes of Youth and Ignorance, and hide them under the Umbrage of unthinking Innocence: Yet they appear to me in too true a Light, for my inward Repoſe; which brings to my Thoughts a Story 159 P2r 159 Story I heard at Rohan, of a Vile Governante, who is a kind of Parallel with my Wicked Vileman; only her Crime exceeds, if poſsible, that of Vileman’s: And it is a dreadful Truth, being recorded in the Courts of Juſtice at Rohan; as hereafter related.
The Story of Succubella, Related by Malhurissa.
There was a rich Merchant at Rohan, who had but one Child, a Daughter; whoſe Mother being dead, the good Father endeavour’d to find out a fit Perſon to attend her in the Quality of a Governeſs. This Woman ſeem’d very prudent, vertuous and juſt in all her Actions, and educated the young Gentlewoman accordingly, that ſhe appear’d a fine well behav’d Creature, dutiful to her Father, reſpectful to her Betters, obliging to her Equals, civil to her Inferiours, charitable and compaſsionate to the Poor: She was aſsiduous in her Devotions to Heaven, and regular in all her Actions; in particular, ſhe had a great Tendency towards the Capuchins Order, and their extream Mortifications took with her; ſo that her Father’s Houſe being pretty near their Cloyſter, 161 P3r 161 Cloyſter, ſhe went thither daily to Prayers, and the Superiour, of the Houſe was her Ghoſtly Father.
Thus had the Governante form’d this young Gentlewoman towards God and the World; by which ſhe gain’d the Eſteem and Commendations of every body: But now, behold, what a Snake lay hid in the Graſs.
The Governante having one night got her Pupil to Bed, as uſual; ſhe did not immediately fall aſleep; but lay quiet, and obſerved the Governante, who inſtead of undreſsing her ſelf, in order to come to bed, ſeem’d to accommodate her Perſon, as if ſhe was going a viſiting; which the Girl wondered at, but ſaid nothing: At length ſhe ſaw her take ſomething out of her Cabinet, and with it ſmear’d her ſelf; and then immediately ran up the Chimney, The Girl was greatly amaz’d hereat, it being to her an unconceivable Myſtery. However, between Thoughtfulneſs and Sleep, ſhe paſs’d the Night; and when ſhe wak’d in the Morning found her Governante in Bed with her, according to Cuſtom. She was amaz’d, remembring what ſhe hadhad ſeen over Night, and ask’d her, whether ſhe went, and what made her go up the P3 Chim- 162 P3v 162 Chimney; She ſhuffled and fumbled at firſt, but her young Miſtreſs preſsing the thing home, ſhe ſaid, Huſh, Miſs; this is a Secret to Girls; but when you are a Woman I will let you know.
Miſs was forced to be ſatisfied with this Anſwer for a while; but afterwards began to preſs her about this Secret; ſtill ſhe put her off from time to time with divers Evaſions. At laſt, the Girl being impatient, told her Governante that ſhe ſhould not pretend to keep her a Child always; therefore ſhe would know this Secret. The Governante, perhaps, thinking that if ſhe did not gratifie her, ſhe would tell her Father, or ask ſome body elſe: Wherefore, ſhe told her, if ſhe would promiſe to be very ſecret, ſhe would let her know all, and ſhe ſhould go with her to a Place where ſhe would meet with good Company, Mirth, Feaſting, Muſick, and Dancing, &c; So the Girl promis’d Secrecy, and the next Night agreed to go together; which accordingly they did; the Governante and ſhe, anointing themſelves, utter’d ſome Words, and ſo both went up the Chimney; but flying over the Capuchins Cloyſter, the Clock ſtruck Twelve; and then Miſs, according to cuſtom, made the ſign of the Croſs in the 163 P4r 163 the Name of the Trinity, and down ſhe fell in the midſt of the Cloyſter. The Religious getting up at that Hour, going through the Cloyſter to their Church to chaunt Mattins, they found this young Gentlewoman ſprawling in the midſt of the Cloyſter, almoſt dead with the Fall: They took her up, and put her into a warm Bed, let her blood, and apply’d all other Neceſsaries on ſuch an occaſion; ſo that ſhe came to her ſelf, though greatly bruiſed.
In the Morning the Superiour came to the Merchant’s Houſe, where he was kindly received by him; but the good Father told him, that he came that morning to viſit Miſs, his young Penitent. The Merchant knowing nothing of what had happened, told him merrily, that his Daughter was ſo ill an Huſwife, that ſhe was not up yet; ſo he ſent to the Governante to tell his Daughter, that the Father Superiour was come to viſit her this mornning; the Governante ſent word, that Miſs had not reſted well in the Night, ſo was aſleep this morning, and ſhe was loth to awake her yet. In the mean time, the Wicked Succubella, the Governante, was preparing for her eſcape: But the Father Superiour hearing this Anſwer, ask’d the Mer- 164 P4v 164 Merchant, if he was ſure his Daughter was in his Houſe that Night. Which put him to a ſtand; the good Father added, that he was ſure ſhe was not, and deſired the Merchant to go up with him into his Daughter’s Chamber and aſsure himſelf of the Truth he told him; for ſaid he, your Daughter is in our Cloyſter at this time: whereupon they both went up into the young Gentlewoman’s Chamber; where miſsing her, they immediately ſeiz ’d on Succubella, the wicked Governante, committed her into the Hands of Juſtice, upon which her Proceſs was made, and ſhe confeſs’d the whole Fact, ſuccinctly, juſt as as the young Gentlewoman had told the Capuchins; ſo ſhe had the Reward of her Sorcery, at a Stake where ſhe was burnt alive; and is upon record, a miſerable Example, of the extreameſt Wicked neſs.
This Story, ſaid Galecia, is very extraordinary, and ſeems, to oppoſe thoſe who will not allow any poſsibility of Mortals having Commerce with Spirits, ſo as to give them power to move them at their pleaſure; to make ’em run up a Chimney, fly into the Air, enabled to do miſchief, and the like; the truth is, I am not Philoſopher enough, to argue the point; I 165 P5r 165 I can only refer my opinion, to an old Proverb, Needs muſt, when the Devil drives.
’Tis true, indeed, ſaid Malhuriſſa, when I was at Rohan, there aroſe a Diſpute amongſt the Company, of the Impoſsibility of the Devil’s having power to raiſe Spirits; and from one thing to another, the Caſe of the Witch of Endor was cited; which cauſed great Diſputes to ariſe, which would, I think, have been almoſt endleſs, but that a Gentlewoman produc’d a few Verſes of her own Compoſing, which the Company lik’d; and tho’ I did not underſtand Engliſh, I beg’d a Copy, in hopes I ſhould learn, being juſt coming for England: They are as follows,
In guilty Night, and hid in falſe Diſguiſe,
Forſaken Saul to Endor comes, and cries,
Woman, ariſe, call pow’rful Arts together,
And raiſe the Soul that I ſhall name, up hither.
Whom ſhall I raiſe, or call? I’ll make him hear.
Samuel alone, let him to me appear.
Methinks, thou’rt frighted: The Witch trembles. Tell, what doſt thou fear?
———Nothing I fear but thee:
For thou art Saul, and haſt beguiled me.
Peace, and go on; what thou ſeeſt let me know.
I ſee the Gods aſcending from below.
Who’s that, that comes?——
———An old Man mantled o’er.
O, that is he, let me his Ghoſt adore.
Why haſt thou rob’d me of my Reſt, to ſee
That which I hate, this wicked World, and Thee?Saul. 167 P6r 167
O, I am much diſtreſt, and vexed ſore;
God hath me left, and anſwers me no more.
Oppreſt with War, and inward Terrors too,
For Pity ſake, tell me what I ſhall do.
Art thou forlorn of God, and com’ſt to me?
What can I ſhew thee then, but Miſery?
Thy Kingdom’s gone, into thy Neighbour’s Race;
Thy Hoſt ſhall fall by Sword before thy Face.
Farewel, and think upon theſe Words with ſorrow:
Thou, and thy Sons ſhall be with me to Morrow.
They had juſt finiſh’d reading the Verſes, when the Gentleman, Malhuriſſa’s Friend, came to call her away to the Lodging he had hired for her. They had no ſooner taken their leave, but Galecia caſting her Eye on the Window, ſaw there a Book, which a little Miſs of her acquaintance had left; and found it to be written by the ingenious Mr. Dyke: In it ſhe read the following Conſiderations.
Conſiderations out of Mr. Dyche’s Book.
What is Man! Originally Duſt, ingender’d in Sin, brought forth in Sorrow, helpleſs in his Infancy, giddy in his Youth, extravagant in his Manhood, and decrepit in his Age. His firſt Voice moves Pity, his laſt, Sorrow.
He is at his firſt coming into the World, the moſt helpleſs of all Creatures: For Nature cloaths the Beaſts with Hair, the Birds with Feathers, the Fiſh with Scales: But Man is born naked; his Hands cannot handle, his Feet cannot walk, his Tongue cannot ſpeak, his Eyes cannot ſee, nor his Ears hear, to any Uſe. The Beaſts come into the World without Noiſe, and go to their Dug without help: Man, as ſoon as born, extends his little Voice, and crys for aſsiſtance; afterwards, he is ſimple in his Thoughts, vain in his Deſires, and Toys are his Delight. He no ſooner puts on his diſtinguiſhing Character Reaſon, but he burns 169 Q1r 169 burns it with the Wildfire of Paſsion, and diſguiſes it with Pride, tears it with Revenge, ſullies it with Avarice, and ſtains it with Debauchery.
His next Station, is a State of Miſery; Fears torment him, Hopes diſtract him, Cares perplex him, Enemies aſsault him, Friends betray, Thieves rob, Wrongs oppreſs, Dangers way lay him.
His laſt Scene deplorable; his Eyes dim, his Ears deaf, his Hands feeble, Feet lame, Sinews ſhrunk, Bones dry, his Days full of Sorrow, his Nights of Pain, his Life miſerable, his Death terrible.
Man is a Tennis-Ball of Fortune, a Shuttle-cock of Folly, a Mark for Malice. If poor, deſpis’d; if rich, flatter’d; if prudent, not truſted; if ſimple, derided. He is born crying, lives laughing, dies groaning.
Ah me, ſaid Galecia to her ſelf, how many melancholy Truths, this Learned Man has ſet down; yet all but common to Q our 170 Q1v 170 our Nature. How many more are there extraordinary, and particular to each Perſon, caus’d by their Paſsions, Follies, or Misfortune, ſuch as would render Life inſupportable, were it not for the Hopes of a Happy Futurity. Then, O gracious Heaven, let that Hope abide, ſupport, and increaſe in me, till, Fruition crown this my Expectation: For here is no Happineſs to be found; for whether we look behind or before us, on the right hand or on the left, or round about us, we find nothing but Diſtreſs, Diſtractions, Quarrels, Broils, Debts, Duels, Law-ſuits, Tricks, Cheats, Taxes, Tumults, Mobs, Riots, Mutinies, Rebellions, Battels, &c; where thouſands are ſlain; nay, we make Slaughter a Study, and War an Art. Are we not then more irrational than Brutes, who endeavour to preſerve their own kind, and protect their own Species? For that poor dirty Creature a Swine, a Beaſt which ſeems extreamly careleſs, with its Head always prone to the Earth; yet if any of its Kind cry, the whole Herd, run grunting to it, as if it were to aſsiſt the diſtreſsed, or at leaſt, to compaſsionate their Fellow-Creature in its Sufferings. But, if two Boys quarrel, and fight, the Men will ſtand by and abett the Quarrel, till Blood and broken Bones ſucceed; and 171 Q2r 171 and amongſt the Gentry, Quarrels ariſe of much worſe conſequence.
In theſe Cogitations our Galecia ſate, till Morpheus accoſted her, and with his leaden Rod, ſtretch’d over her Temples, ſhe leaned back in her Chair, and ſleeping, had the following Dream.
She dream’d that ſhe was walking ſomewhere, in a very rough bad Way, full of great Stones, and ſharp Flints, which hurt, and cut her Feet, and almoſt threw her down; in ſome places Coaches and Carts overturn’d; in other places, Horſe-men thrown, Limbs broken, Robbers rifling, Ladies affronted, Maids deluded by falſe Lovers, inſolvent Debtors drag’d to Jayls by rude ſurly Bayliffs, Wives miſ-uſed, Husbands abuſed, Whores ſlanting, honeſt Women deſpiſed, Girls trappan’d by Bawds, Boys miſ-led by Drunkards, Jilts and Thieves; In ſhort, ſhe dream’d of nothing good or happy; which we will ſuppoſe, Q2 proceeded 172 Q2v 172 proceeded from her ſerious reflecting on Mr. Dyke’s Conſiderations.
Then ſhe thought her ſelf on the Sea, amongſt Fleets, in danger of being caſt away; and ſometimes of being ſeiz’d by Pyrates; a Noiſe of Wars, Towns bombarded, Cannonaded, taken and retaken; at which ſhe very often ſtarted in her ſleep.
After many of theſe frightful Viſions were paſt, ſhe imagin’d ſhe came into a pleaſant Valley, fertile of Corn, Fruits and Paſturage; pleaſant Brooks, Rills and Springs, ſuch as are rarely to be found; for they never froze in Winter, nor abated of their Water in Summer. Woods replete with ſinging Birds, Shoals of Pigeons in the Dove-Houſe, which cooed about the Yard, in amorous Addreſses to their innocent conſtant Mates. Sure, ſaid Galecia to her ſelf, this is the Eden of old, or at leaſt, the Land of Promiſe, flowing with more delicious Streams than thoſe of Milk and Honey. She was extreamly delighted with this Valley, thought it almoſt a terreſtrial Paradice, excelling in fact, whatſoever the Fancies of Poets or Romances could repreſent: Here ſhe thought ſhe walk’d ſecure from Wolf, Bear or wild Boar, 173 Q3r 173 Boar, to fright or moleſt her Walks by Day; or carking Cares to diſturb her Sleep by Night; not being ſo divided from Neighbours, as to render it a Deſart; nor ſo near, as to have their Houſes intercept either the riſing or the ſetting Sun.
Thus ſhe thought her ſelf very happy: But it fell out, as ſhe was one day walking beyond her uſual bounds, towards a little riſing Hill, a ſtrange and hideous Giant came out of his Den, where he liv’d upon Rapin, Malice and Miſchief; he ſtudied the Black Art, and with the Claws of his Hands, or rather his Fore-feet he wrote ſtrange Figures and Cyphers, wherewith he conjur’d up Spirits, and inchanted People, and ſo got ’em into his Den: For he could not run faſt enough to catch any body, his Toes being rotted, or broken off, which was the reaſon he often miſs’d of his Prey; and by this means Galecia eſcaped his Clutches. At the ſight of him ſhe ran down the Hill with the utmoſt ſpeed; and at the bottom ſhe met with a good Philoſopher, who ſtudy’d the Stars, and had a place in Aſtrea’s Court: He took her into his Cave, and ſo ſecured her from the Attempt of Omriſon, for that was the Name of the Giant.Q3 After 174 Q3v 174
After this Fright, ſhe thought, a pretty young Man took her by the hand, telling her, he was her good Genius, and would conduct her to ſome Diverſion after her Surprize; ſo he led her up a Hill, which he told her, was Parnaſſus; and ſaid he would introduce her, to ſee ſome of the Diverſions of the Annual Coronation of Orinda. Our Celebrated Engliſh Poeteſs, Mrs. Philips. They came ſomewhat late; ſo that the grand Ceremonies were over: But they were time enough for the Singing and the Dancing.
Thus, all things being placed in perfect Order, and Orinda ſeated on a Throne, as Queen of Female Writers, with a Golden Pen in her Hand for a Scepter, a Crown of Laurel on her Head; Galecia’s Genius plac’d her in a Corner, where ſhe might ſee and hear all that paſs’d; when lo, a Band of Bards came, and caſt themſelves at Orinda’s Feet, and there offer’d their Crowns, Wreaths, and Branches of Laurel, every one making a Speech in Verſe, in praiſe of her Wit and Vertue; which ſhe moſt graciouſly accepted, and bid them riſe; when ranging themſelves on each ſide her Throne, one began to ſing as follows.The 175 Q4r 175
The bard ſings.
We allow’d you Beauty, and we did ſubmit
To all the Tyrannies of it.
Cruel Sex, will you depoſe us too in Wit?
Hereupon there were a Choir of pretty Creatures in form of Graſshoppers, with Golden Wings, but as large as new born Babes: And theſe anſwer’d the Bard in Chorus, twit, twit, twit, twit, twit, and this they repeated with an harmonious Melody, charming one’s Senſes into an abſolute Tranſport. After this, the Bard proceeded; and when he came to theſe Words,
As in Angels, we
Do in thy Verſes ſee,
Both improv’d Sexes eminently meet,
They are than Man more ſtrong, and more than Woman ſweet,
A great Flock of Nightingales (glorious like Angels) joyn’d with the Graſshoppers, which again repeated their Chorus, as if Echoes to the Bard, whenſoever his Cadence ſuited to their Voices; ſinging in an admirable Conſort, with ſtrange Turnings, Flights and Strains, Sweet, Sweet, Sweet, Sweet, Sweet, &c;In 176 P4v 176
In this manner, the Bard, the Graſshoppers and the Nightingales finiſh’d their Song. Then another Monſieur Corneille. Bard began his Song in praiſe of this Queen: To which the Choir of Nightingales ſung the Chorus: But his Song not being in Engliſh, Galecia did not rightly underſtand it, ſo as here to repeat the Words; but the Muſick was extreamly fine.
After this, there came in a Band of Fairies, following their Queen, dreſsed in her Royal Robes, with a Crown on her Head, ſinging an old Song, as follows.
The Queen of Fairies ſings.
Come, follow, follow me,
You Fairy Nymphs, with Glee,
Come, trip it on this Green,
And follow me, your Queen;
Hand in Hand we’ll dance around,
In praiſe of Queen Orinda, crown’d.Hi- 177 Q5r 177
Hither, ye chirping Crickets come,
And Beetles, with your drouſie Hum;
And if with none of you we meet,
We’ll dance to th’ Echoes of our Feet.
Hereupon they ſtruck up a Dance, whilſt a Multitude of Crickets, and Beetles, ſung the Meaſures, ſuch as made incomparable Muſick; quite otherwiſe than what they make in our Chimneys, or ſuch as we hear the Beetles hum in a Summer- Evening.
Whilſt they were thus Dancing, the Fairy Queen ſpy’d Galecia, as ſhe was in a Corner: And whether ſhe was angry to ſee a Mortal in that Aſsembly; or that ſhe was excited by Charity, is unknown; but ſhe took a Handful of Gold out of her Pocket, and gave to one of her Gentlemen-waiters, bidding him carry it to that Mortal, and command her away from thence.
Galecia was very attentive to the Muſick and Dancing; when lo, an haſty Knocking at her Chamber-door awak’d her out of her pleaſant Dream: The Perſon that knock’d, was a Gentleman, very well dreſs’d, who 178 Q5v 178 who ask’d for Galecia, and ſhe anſwered him reſpectfully, that ſhe was the Perſon: He preſented her with a Purſe of Gold, and, inſtantly turning ſhort, would not, by any means, be perſuaded, either to ſtay, to tell his Name, or who ſent him.
Galecia was greatly pleas’d with the Receit of this unexpected Treaſure; and after having counted it over and over, ſhe lay’d it by, and went to Bed; But, to ſhew that Money does not always make us happy, ſhe was very uneaſie and reſtleſs all the Night, being diſturb’d with the Thoughts how, or in what manner ſhe ſhould diſpoſe of it to the beſt Advantage, whether in the Funds, Lotteries, in Building, Traffick, &c;
Thus ſhe lay tumbling and toſsing full of Inquietude; according to the following old Story of a Cobler, who ſate daily in his Stall, working hard, and ſinging merrily, any thing that came in his head. Now, it hapned, that a rich Uſurer, whoſe Lodging was juſt over this poor Man, wonder’d very much at his being continually ſo very merry, who had nothing to ſupport him, or to depend upon, but this his daily Labour; whilſt the Uſurer underwent perpetual Thoughtfulneſs, ſleepleſs Nights, and anxious Days, how to diſpoſe of this Sum, how to 179 Q6r 179 to recover that; how to enter this Proceſs, and how to purſue that: His Head and Hands were incumber’d with Bills, Bonds, Mortgages, Buildings, Dilapidations, Forfeitures, and a thouſand other the like Vexations. In the mean time the poor Cobler was always merry and unconcern’d: He reſolv’d at laſt to try whether Money would diſcompoſe him; ſo watch’d an Opportunity when the Man was out of his Stall, and privately convey’d there a Bag of Money amongſt the Rubbiſh: Which, as ſoon as the Cobler found, he was ſeiz’d with a great Conſternation, not knowing how it ſhould come there. Various Conjectures and Apprehenſions appear’d to his View, not worth repeating; he was unwilling to diſcover, but afraid to conceal it, leſt it ſhould be found upon him, and by ſome Mark or other, on the Bag, or ſome of the Pieces therein, he might be ſeiz’d for a Felon; or, if none of theſe hapned, then, what he ſhould do with it, either to ſecure, or turn it to Profit. In ſhort, a thouſand things revolv’d in his Thoughts, which diſappointed him of his ordinary mirth; ſo that his wonted Chearfulneſs was turned into a dull penſive Melancholy, and his Singing quite ceas’d.The 180 Q6v 180
The Uſurer took notice hereof, and ask’d him what was the reaſon he was not ſo jovial as heretofore? The poor Man frankly told him his Caſe, and the cauſe of his Inquietude. What ſucceeded between them, matters not; We are to apply the Story to our Galecia; who, as beforeſaid, had toſt about all night, till wearineſs brought her into a gentle Sleep, which held her to her Pillow till the Morning was pretty far advanced, when ſhe was waked, by the coming of a Sea-Captain from the Indies, who was her very good Friend; and whoſe ſafe Arrival was great ſatisfaction to her.
After the uſual Salutations, and Congratulations on ſuch an occaſion. She ask’d him what ſorts of Goods he had brought from the Indies that Voyage? He told her, that the greateſt of his Cargo was Female Vertues; which he hop’d would ſell well in this Country, where there was ſo great a Scarcity. Of this Galecia, conſidered a little; and immediately reſolv’d to lay out her Fairie-Treaſure in this Merchandize, and ſo engaged the Captain, her Friend, to ſend her ſome Parcels of his Cargo. He perform’d with all convenient ſpeed; ſending her the choiceſt, and niceſt of the Female Vertues.She 181 R1r 181
She thought it her Duty and Intereſt to ſend to the Court in the firſt place: Accordingly, ſhe put up a large Quantity of Sincerity, and ſent it thither; The Factor or Agent offer’d it to Sale, with good Grace and due Recommendation; inſomuch that the Ladies all commended the Goods; ſaying they were curiouſly wrought, and ſafely brought over; but ’twas pity they did not come ſooner; for now that kind of Merchandize, was quite out of faſhion. Nevertheleſs, ſhe went from Appartment to Appartment, from Lodging to Lodging, traced the Galleries over and over, every where offering her Traffick, till the Guards, Centinels, and Waiters almoſt took her for a Spectre; ſo ſhe was forced to return without diſpoſing of any.
The next Venture Galecia ſent out, was a parcel of Chaſtity; which ſhe ſent into the Hundreds of Drury, not doubting but to make a good return from thence: Here it was greatly lik’d, and highly prais’d, and gladly they would have bought, but had not wherewith to purchaſe ſo rich an Imbelliſhment. The Factor offered to give them credit, if they had any Friend that would paſs their word for payment; but R that 182 R1v 182 that was not to be found: For their Friends were loſt, and Credit broken to that degree, that they had not Cloaths to cover them (even upon occaſion of Profit) but what they either hired or borrowed;
Amongſt this Crew, there was one, that looking over the Parcels of divers of the Dealers, who had help’d to Stow the Ship, found thereon the Mark of two or three of her Acquaintance who had lived with her in the ſame Court, viz. Betty Bilk; Sarah Shuffle, Polly Picklock, &c; Ah, ſaid ſhe, is it poſsible that theſe Girls are grown ſuch great Dealers in this kind of Ware? They were my intimate Friends; I narrowly eſcaped being carry’d with them to Newgate; and I wiſh I had gone, ſince they have had ſuch luck by means of their Tranſportation: But alas, it is too late to repent now, not being able to do any thing; for I have been ſo far from gaining by my Profeſsion here, that I have loſt Health, Wealth, Credit, Friends, and am become a poor abandon’d rotten Skeleton, which is not only my Fate; but the Fate of moſt of thoſe who deal in this way of Trade.The 183 R2r 183
The Factor could not forbear asking her how ſhe came at firſt to be deluded? Alas, ſaid ſhe, it is a great difficulty to have ſo much Foreſight to avoid all the Traps lay’d in this Town, to enſnare and catch our Innocence: But my Ruin was by a young Girl, my Play-fellow, whoſe Brother caſt a wicked Eye on me; and under pretence of courting me for a Wife, deluded me into Wickedneſs: The Subtilties, and methods he uſed, are too tedious to tell you at this time; but whenever you are more at leiſure, if you will take the trouble to come, I will give you ſuch a Catalogue of the Miſ-adventures, as would make the brighteſt Vertue burn blue and ready to go out, at ſuch relations.
The Factor finding her time elaſp’d, and that ſhe was not like to ſell any of her Parcel, told her, ſhe would come another time, hear ſome of their Adventures; and bring with her ſome other ſorts of Vertues, as that of Penance, Piety or the like. So the poor Factor, was forced to return, with her Merchanize, but no Mony.R2 Having 184 R2v 184
Having ſuch bad luck at Court and Places adjacent, Galecia was reſolv’d to try the City; which being accuſtomed to Traffick, ſhe hoped there for better Succeſs: Wherefore ſhe put up a good Parcel of Humility, and ſent amongſt thoſe rich and haughty Dames: Knowing, this ſort of Goods was ſcarce amongſt them, ſhe doubted not of a good Market. But alas, it prov’d quite otherwiſe: for they would not ſo much as look on the Ware, nor permit the Factor to open her Parcel, telling her, they had greater ſtore thereof in the City, than they needed; which appears daily (ſaid they) by giving your Ladies place every where, by following their Faſhions at all times; Whereas our Riches give us a right to be fantaſtical, and ſetters-up of new Modes; But ’tis our Humility that pervails with us, and makes us their Apes, at the ſame time; many of them being but meanly deſcended, they often run in our Debt, for their gaudy Trappings; and their Husbands borrow of ours, to ſupport their Equipage, on the credit of their Acres.
To which the Factor reply’d, that the Humility they boaſted of was only Home-made, whereas, that ſhe offered, was right Indian. Away, reply’d they, you know, Indian Goods are prohibited; had you brought ſome from France 185 R3r 185 France or Spain, from the Battel of Bleinheim, or from Madrid, when King Philip fled from thence; nay, if it had been but Engliſh Humility from Preſton, it had been ſomething like: But to come into the City with your prohibited Ware, is Inſolence in a high degree; Therefore be gone, before my Lord Mayor’s Officers catch you, and puniſh you according to your Deſerts. Hereupon our poor Factor was forced to haſten away, and glad when ſhe had got ſafe through Temple-Bar.
This was but a ſorrowful Return to our Galecia, who had lay’d out her whole Fairy-Preſent in theſe Indian Goods: She began to deſpair of making any Advantage: but her Factors, who had been up and down the Hundreds of Drury; beg’d her to try there once more, not with the Vertue of Chaſtity, for it was to no purpoſe; but they had great hopes that Repentance and Piety might take. So Galecia ſent away a good Parcel of each of thoſe Vertues.
The Agent, or Factor carry’d them to the ſame Houſe, where ſhe had before promiſed to come, viz. to one Mrs. Rottenbone’s, who receiv’d, her kindly and look’d carefully into her Parcels; fitted her ſelf with divers Suits, both of Piety R3 and 186 R3v 186 and Repentance; and ſent to ſeveral of her Neighbours to come and do the ſame.
The firſt who came, was one Mrs. Caſtoff, who took of each a pretty Quantity: After her, came three or four more; and when they had fitted themſelves, Mrs. Rottenbones, deſir’d Mrs. Caſtoff to tell our Agent how things happen’d, that ſhe came to eſteem theſe Vertues, ſo as to dreſs her ſelf therein; which ſhe related briefly, as follows.
The story of Mrs. Castoff.
I Was Daughter of an honeſt Country- Gentleman tho’ but of a ſmall Eſtate, who had many Children. Now, there was a good Gentlewoman in our Neighbourhood, whoſe Husband died, leaving her no Child: She took me from my Mother, I ſuppoſe, to provide for me; which was eſteemed a very great Kindneſs.
This Gentlewoman, ſome time after, mov’d from her Country-Reſidence, and took me with her to London, where we liv’d happily together, I being then about fourteen Years old: I waited on her in the nature of a Chamber-maid, thereby to initiate me into a religious and dutiful Behaviour: For ſhe being a Widow, valued but little of Dreſs, except that of her Mind; her Devotions, Retirements and Inſtructions to me and her Servants, being the greateſt part 188 R4v 188 part of her Employment; which, I doubt, was not ſo agreeable to my giddy Youth as it ought to have been; young People, too often having an Opinion of themſelves, as if Inſtructions were needleſs, and themſelves capable of being Teachers, inſtead of Learners.
How far this was my fault, I know not; but inſtead of keeping with her in her Chamber, I was perpetually making Errands, and pretences to be in the Shop where we lodged; and here my young Face call’d many young Fellows to cheapen Goods, and many to buy; For our Landlady kept a Millener’s Shop. Theſe would often addreſs themſelves to me with ſome Queſtion or other, as is uſual among Youth, which had no other conſequence, than making me grow pert, and think too well of my ſelf: But my Ruin proceeded from one of my own Sex.
There was a certain comely genteel Woman, who frequented that Shop, and by degrees made an acquaintance with me, asking me if I was a Servant to that Gentlewoman, or related to her? I told her that I was neither; but let her know how it was. Upon which, ſhe told me ſhe could help me to a very good Place, where I ſhould have not on- 189 R5r 189 only very good Wages, but other conſiderable Advantages, and be in a Way for Preferment; but adviſed me to ſay nothing to any one, eſpecially the Gentlewoman I then liv’d with, till ſhe had ſpoken with the Lady for whom ſhe intended me.
This paſs’d on a while, ſhe ſtill giving me Encouragement and Aſsurance of her Diligence in this Affair. At laſt, ſhe bid me dreſs my ſelf the next Sunday, as if I was going to Church, but come to her, and ſhe would go with me to a Lady, who had ſpoken to her to get her a pretty Girl to wait in the Nurſery; but that it was beſt not to acquaint any body with it, till ſhe ſaw how the Lady lik’d me.
In this Proſpect I greatly rejoyc’d; and accordingly dreſs’d my ſelf as if going to Church, and ſo I went to this Woman’s Houſe; which prov’d to me the Den of Deceit, the Devil’s Dungeon, which in ſome Degree I deſerved for my Hypocriſie to Heaven, and my Ingratitude to the good Gentlewoman my Patroneſs, for thus forming an Intrigue of any kind without her Knowledge.
I got to my Deceiver in due time, who readily went with me to preſent me to the Lady. 190 R5v 190 Lady. We came to a large magnificent Houſe, and went up a Noble Stair-Caſe, into a ſtately Dining-Room, where, inſtead of a Lady, was a Gentleman, who immediately ſtood up; and ſpeaking very friendly, told my Conducter, he ſuppos’d, that this Young Gentlewoman was the Perſon ſhe brought to offer to his Wife; and then addreſsing himſelf to me, Come, pretty Maid, ſaid he, I will direct you to her: So he took my by the hand, led me into a Back-Room, and lock’d the Door; in the mean time my Betrayer departed.
I will not trouble you with the Repetition of the fine Speeches he made to recover me from my Surprize, and ſuppreſs my Tears; for he was a Man of Wit, and an engaging Mien; he promis’d me a thouſand Fineries, gave me an handful of Gold, told me I ſhould have a fine Houſe of my own, a Coach and Servants, with all manner of Imbelliſhments to grace and adorn my Beauty; which Beauty (continu’d he) has chain’d my Heart, ever ſince the moment I beheld it in the Milliner’s Shop, where I was (incog) buying ſome things, on purpoſe to ſee you; for you were recommended to me by Mrs. Wheedle, the Woman that brought you hither.In 191 R6r 191
In ſhort, my Eyes were not blind to his Noble Perſon, nor my Ears deaf to his alluring Speeches, nor was my Heart made of a Stick or a Stone; but young and tender, ſuſceptible of the Impreſsions of Love: For I will do his Lordſhip that Juſtice, he uſed no manner of Violence againſt my Youth and Innocence: But —— with that ſhe wept, which ſtopt her proceeding for a while, but ſhe ſoon recover’d her ſelf.
I was placed (continu’d ſhe) in a ſumptuous Lodging, with Servants, and Fineries of all ſorts about me; my Lord frequently came, and entertain’d me with his Wit and Gallantry; he carry’d me abroad from time to time in his Coach to take the Air, and treated me at all Places of Diverſion and Entertainment; in the Evenings we went to Plays, Balls and Opera’s; I perk’d up in the Face of Quality, and was a Companion for my Betters: Thus I liv’d in Lewdneſs and Profaneſs.
By this barefac’d Wickedneſs, my good Patroneſs found me out: For ſhe was in great Affliction in conſideration of what became of me. As ſoon as ſhe knew, ſhe ſent one to me to enquire into the matter; which ſhew’d it ſelf ſo foul, that ſhe proceededceeded 192 R6v 192 ceeded no farther in her Enquiry; only ſent me word ſhe caſt me off for ever; This Menace I very little valued, thinking my ſelf much above her Favour.
At laſt, the News of my lewd Life came to the Ears of my Father and Mother in the Country; who, good People, were ſorely griev’d; and ſent to me, deſiring I would abandon the way I was in, and reſolve to live vertuouſly and modeſtly for the future, and their Houſe ſhould be open for my Reception, and their Arms for my Pardon: But, alas, theſe Offers were, I thought, much below my acceptance; I ſcorn’d an old-faſhion’d Country-Seat, with Bow-windows, low Roofs, long dark Paſsages, a ſlight Thread-Sattin Gown, Worſted-Stockins, plain Shoes, and ſuch like Cloathing; or to have Swine and Poultry for my Companions; perhaps, on Sunday in the Afternoon ſome of the Farmers Wives: So I refus’d this offer’d Favour and Forgiveneſs.
Hereupon my good pious Parents ſent me word, they caſt me off for ever, bidding me think of them no more.
This, indeed, was ſome Grief at firſt; but the next Viſit from my Lord with his courtly Behaviour ſoon aſswaged it.Thus 193 S1r 193
Thus I walk’d on in the open Path of Pleaſure, and aſcended the higheſt Pinacle of Pride; my Vanity being daily ſoothed with Praiſes of my Beauty; and the World ſolliciting me for Places and Preferments by my Lord’s Intereſt. All which gratified my Vanity, and made me believe my ſelf a great Lady; becauſe I was Courted and Viſited by my Superiours, and reſpected by my Equals.
Thus had the Devil raiſed me upon a high Pinacle, to make my Fall the greater; For all on a ſudden, my Lord ſent one of his Gentlemen, to bid me not dare to ſee his Face any more. I was earneſt with the Gentleman to tell me the reaſon of this great Change; but, he could not, or would not; only he inform’d me, that my Lord was not very well. At the ſame time he told the People of the Houſe, that they muſt look to me for payment of the Lodgings.
Thus was I caſt off by my Keeper; and for an Addition to my Grief, they turn’d me out that very Day, and ſeiz’d all my Furniture, I not having Money at that time to diſcharge the Rent; my Profuſeneſs,S fuſe- 194 S1v 194 fuſeneſs, having always anticipated my Lord’s Liberality.
In this Condition I went to Mrs. Wheedle, thinking to borrow a little of her, to releaſe my things; and to have taken a Lodging with her, at leaſt, that Night: But, alas, far from that, ſhe not only refus’d me all Favour, but loaded me with Reproaches; and chiefly, for having ſo far abus’d my Lord’s Bounty, and like an impudent Strumpet, I had depriv’d him of his Health.
Thus was ſhe a perfect Devil, leading People into Damnation, and then becoming their Tormentors. I was amazed to find my ſelf charg’d with being the Cauſe of my Lord’s Illneſs; of which I knew my ſelf truly innocent; but Words of Juſtification were to no more purpoſe, than to fight with the North-Wind. Thus was I Caſt off, not only by my Lord, but by this vile Wretch my firſt Seducer.
In the midſt of this great Diſtreſs I got into a private poor Lodging, not knowing what to do, nor to whom to addreſs. I was reduced to great Miſery, being helpleſs, friendleſs, deſtitute, and abandon’d; and, what was worſt of all, I began to find 195 S2r 195 find a great Alteration in my Health. I had only one Ring on my Finger when I was driven out of my Lodging. This enhanced my preſent Neceſsity.
Sitting in this deplorable Condition, a Gentlewoman came up Stairs; and entring my Room, I ſoon diſcover’d ſhe was Waiting Woman to my Lord’s Lady; and was come from her to aſsiſt me in my Sufferings. She went with me to my former Lodging; from whence we recovered my things, ſold ’em as well as we could, therewith paid all my Debts, and had Money left, for my Aſsiſtance. I thank’d, and on my Knees pray’d for this kind Lady, who is a Mirrour of Goodneſs; not only to forgive, but to ſeek me out, and relieve me.
Thus I paſs’d on a while; But finding my Diſtemper increaſe, I was forced to put my ſelf under Cure; which ſo far devour’d the little Subſtance I had, that by ſuch time as I was thoroughly well, I was in a manner pennyleſs: However, I having recover’d my Health, and not quite exhauſted my youth, (for I was ſtill young) I knew, I was able to go to Service; but the difficulty was, I had led ſo evil a Life, it was impoſsible to hope for a RecommendationS2 mendation 196 S2v 196 mendation from any body: This came to the Ears of my Lord’s good Lady, who again ſent her Woman, to conſult with me; who adviſed me from my Lady to put my ſelf under a Manteau-maker; which I approv’d, and reſolv’d to be vertuous and modeſt, and ſhe promis’d to be at the Charge. This greatly rejoyced me; and accordingly I was placed with a Perſon of that Employment.
Here I went on very well, learnt my Buſineſs in perfection, and in due time ſet up for my ſelf, and began to have good Encouragement. But my unhappy Beauty was again my Ruin.
There came a glorious young Gentleman of Quality to lodge in the ſame Houſe where I liv’d; his unhappy Perſon and Mien were extreamly engaging, and his broken Engliſh, (for he was a Foreigner) was with ſuch a pretty Accent, that his Converſation was Charming; at leaſt, it was ſo to me; he would often condſecendcondeſcend to come and ſit with me and my Workwomen, under pretence of improving himſelf in the Engliſh Language. Thus, Deceit on his ſide, and Weakneſs on mine, compoſed an Amour, to deſtroy my whole Life’s Happineſs.I 197 S3r 197
I will not repeat to you, his Sighs, Tears, Vows, Preſents, Treats, and divers ſorts of Gallantries, and laſtly, his Promiſe of Marriage, if I ſhould be with Child; and this on his Knees he ſwore; in theſe very Words, If you prove with Child, I ſwear to marry you: But for my ſake, may no young Woman take Mens Words, nor believe the Oaths till the Parſon puts the Hoop on their Finger, that Circle which conjures the moſt notorious Rover into ſome decent Limits; if not of Conſtancy, at leaſt, of Formality. I proving with Child, charged him with his Promiſe, which he anſwer’d in his broken Engliſh; Yes, Madam, Me will marry you to my Foot-man; if He be willing. But the Gentlemen in my Country do not marry vid de Whores; for dat is no good faſhion; but go you gone Miſtreſs; dere is Money for you; and ſo left me, and forthwith his Lodging likewiſe.
Thus was I caſt off by this wicked Foreigner. But this was but one part of my Misfortune; for that moſt excelling of her Sex, my Lord’s Lady, hearing of this my Misbehaviour, ſent and took away thoſe Cloaths I had of her’s in making, and withal acquainted me, ſhe caſt me off for ever, and, S3 by 198 S3v 198 by her Example, all other Ladies and Gentlewomen did the like. Thus I loſt my Livelyhood; and with the Grief hereof, I had like to have miſcarried; and having nothing, to do at my Manteau-making nor Strength, nor Credit to put my ſelf into any other Buſineſs, I ſpent all I had, both Money and Cloaths; that when I was out of my Child-bed, I was like to ſtarve; but the good Woman of the Houſe, pittying me, and not knowing the whole of my Story (for I made her believe my Husband was an Officer, and gone into Flanders; ) I ſay, this good Woman, got me to be a Wet Nurſe in a Lady’s Houſe. Here I was very happy for a while; but by ſome means or other my Lady heard of my Character, and ſo caſt me off, getting another Nurſe in my place.
Now was I reduced to greater Neceſsity than ever, having ſold, pawn’d, and ſpent All, my Credit loſt every where; and having my ſelf and a Child to keep, Time and Poverty began to prey upon my Beauty; ſo that was not much to be depended upon; I had not Cloaths to grace me, nor Linen to keep me clean; that now I was forced to betake my ſelf to the moſt ſcandalous and meaneſt ſort of Lewdneſs, and became a Night-walker in Fleet-ſtreet. Should I 199 S4r 199 I tell you all the Affronts, and Indignities I ſuffer’d here, ’twould make your Ears glow, being often beat, and made to expoſe my ſelf ſtark-naked, for the brutal Diverſion of thoſe who pick’d up ſuch diſtreſsed Creatures. By this time my Daughter began to grow up, and was very beautiful; and likely enough to fall into the ſame wicked Way; but that a good Gentlewoman, a Lawyer’s Wife, taking pity of her Youth, took her into her Houſe, giving her a vertuous honeſt Education; but upon condition that I ſhould never come near her, nor ſhe me.
Thus was I a Caſt off from my own dear and only Child, which was very grievous to me; but was forced to bear it for her good; and the better to ſecure, and accompliſh this Prohibition, I reſolv’d to remove my ſelf to the Hundreds of Drury; for I began to be too well known, to be acceptable any where elſe.
Thither I came, and there I lived in great Miſery and Contempt; ſuch as I would not wiſh to the greateſt Enemy that ever was. However, it has ſo far opened the Eyes of my Underſtanding, as to know that nothing but a ſincere Repentance will attone for my Tranſgreſsions. Hereupon ſhe lookt 200 S4v 200 lookt into the Factor’s Box, and took a large Parcel of theſe Vertues, wherewith ſhe adorn’d her ſelf, and according to the proverb, Caſt off Vice, when Vice caſt off her.
The reſt of the Company ask’d our Factor, if ſhe had no good Books to put them alſo into a State of Repentance; ſo ſhe produced a Book call’d the Imitation of Chriſt, bidding them ſtrictly peruſe the Contents of that invaluable Treatiſe, and therein they would find Reſt for their Souls.
The Factor, ſeeing ſhe was like to diſpoſe of no more of her Vertues at that time, put up her Goods, and went home.
Galecia perceiving, ſhe made no better return of her Merchandize in London, reſolved to try the Country, in hopes the Women of all Ranks and Stations would be better Cuſtomers. As ſhe was buſie in putting up her things for this Journey, ſhe heard a Chariot ſtop at the Door, and a Gentlewoman come up her Stairs; at whoſe Appearance ſhe was raviſhed with Joy, 201 S5r 201 Joy, it proving to be the good Lady’s Waiting-Woman; who by her Lady’s Order, came to ſee if Galecia had done her buſineſs in Town; and if ſhe was diſpos’d to go into the Country: For, ſaid ſhe, my Lady very very earneſtly deſires your Company, now the Spring comes on. Therefore, dear Galecia, diſpoſe your ſelf to go with me.
This Invitation was an inexpreſsible Joy to our Galecia; ſo ſhe haſtned to put up every thing; the Gentlewoman lending her helping hand; ſoon finiſhed and took her away in the Chariot to her Inn that night, in order to proſecute their Journey early the next Morning.
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