In Two Volumes.
Printed for C. Dilly, in the Poultry. 17911791.
Eugenia and Adelaide.
My father and the Count were ſo enraged at Clementina’s elopement, that for ſome time they could not tell what reſolution to come to. At length Don Gabriel declared that he would ſearch all Spain, nay the whole world, till he had recovered her; and, on his leaving Caſtille he ſwore he never would return to it without Clementina. —It was then that I diſcovered he paſſionately loved my ſiſter, notwithſtanding the indifference he always affected. Vol. II. B For B1v 2 For my own part, as my honour was as much concerned as his, I reſolved not to be behind hand with him in this expedition; ſo we both ſet out together, like true knights-errant, uncertain what road to take; for Clementina had concerted her ſcheme ſo cunningly, that nobody was privy to her flight but her woman, who was the companion of it.
I ſhall not trouble your Lordſhip with the particulars of this fruitleſs ſearch; let it ſuffice to tell you, that, after we had traveled moſt parts of Spain and Portugal to no ſort of purpoſe, we reſolved to ſeparate, and take different routes. We have ſome relations in France, where I deſigned to ſteer my courſe; and Caſtellar determined, at the ſame time, to puſh his inquiries into Italy. What ſucceſs he has had I don’t know; but I had the mortificationtification B2r 3 tification to leave France without hearing any news of her; and, almoſt deſpairing of ever ſeeing her again, I was returning into Caſtile, when, by an expreſs I had the news brought me of my father’s death. This obliged me for a while to ſuſpend my purpose of returning home, and to paſs into Italy, in order to negotiate ſome buſineſs, and receive certain ſums of money from a banker in this city. Some unlooked-for perplexing circumſtances in my affairs have obliged me to make a longer ſtay at Milan than I at firſt propoſed: and, as the uncertain fate of my ſiſter gives me unſpeakable concern, I muſt beſeech you, my Lord, and you, Madam (addreſſing himſelf to Eugenia) to inform me what you know relating to her; for I am well ſatisfied that her prodigious likeneſs to me, joined to her having B2 bor- B2v 4 borrowed my name and habit, has occaſioned all this ſtrange confuſion.
It will be an eaſy matter, Signior, to ſatisfy you, replied the Marquis; but, as my niece is beſt acquainted with the particulars of your ſiſter’s ſtory, I ſhall put that taſk upon her.— Here, Eugenia; give Don Clement an exact account of all that has paſt concerning Clementina. But, during her narration, ſhe took ſo much pains to conceal the paſſion ſhe had conceived for the counterfeit Don Clement, that the Marquis ſeveral times could not forbear ſmiling. But, notwithſtanding all her care, ſhe diſcovered ſo great an emotion at the repetition of ſeveral paſſages of her ſtory, that it was no difficult matter for Don Clement to diſcover that the charms of his ſiſter had made way for him in the heart of Eugenia. He B3r 5 He told that lady that he was certain it was no other than Count Caſtellar who had forced his ſiſter away: and added, that not having heard from him ſince, he was under terrible apprehenſions on that account.—Don Gabriel, ſaid he, is violent and haughty: and, as my ſiſter is now entirely in his power, I am ſure he will not ſcruple to uſe her with the greateſt ſeverity if ſhe refuſes to marry him; and I know Clementina would ſooner ſuffer death than conſent to a union ſo hateful to her.—Ah dear creature, continued he, were I now in Caſtile, you ſhould ſoon be delivered from your tyrant, ſince you have no longer a father, whoſe harſh commands forced you on the brink of ruin.—I join with you, replied the Marquis, in bewailing the fate of ſo amiable a creature. I own I felt ſentiments in my heart for Clementina, for which I was B3 at B3v 6 at a loſs to find a name: and I can tell you, niece, proceeded he, laughing, that, had I diſcovered this ſecret ſooner, you would have found in me a more dangerous rival than you did in Madame Burganeze.
Don Clement ſeized on this opportunity to aſſure Eugenia (with a modeſt ardour) that, though ſhe had loſt a feigned lover in the perſon of Clementina, ſhe had found a real one in that of Don Clement—Eugenia anſwered this only by an obliging look:—and the Marquis ſaid, I believe my niece will do no great violence to her inclinations in transferring them from the amiable Clementina to the accompliſhed Don Clement. Indeed the reſemblance was ſo perfect between this amiable brother and ſiſter, that it could hardly be called a change in Eugenia’s heart, B4r 7 heart, which now felt the ſame ſentiments for the true Don Clement that it had at firſt conceived for the ſuppoſed one. As there was no difference in the age of theſe beautiful twins, ſo there was none either in their faces of ſtatures; at leaſt it was ſo very inconſiderable as not to be diſtinguiſhed when they were aſunder. Don Clement was ſcarce twenty years old; and had not yet loft that delicacy which youth generally retains to that age. The converſation on this extraordinary event laſted till the night was almoſt fpent; when Pimenteles took his leave of the Marquis, with a promiſe to come and dine with him next day.
Madame Burganeze, who from her cloſet had not loft a word of their diſcourſe, was ſo much aſhamed of what had paſt, that ſhe would not appear; B4 ſo B4v 8 ſo that the Marquis and Don Clement, with the two young ladies, were the only perſons at the table. Clementina’s diſtreſs too much engroſſed their thoughts for them to talk on any other ſubject. The Marquis aſſured Don Clement that he would join with him moſt heartily for the recovery of his ſiſter.— I hope, continued he, our dear Clementina will have reſolution enough to reſiſt the unhuman Caſtellar till we can come to her relief. What ſhould hinder us then from immediately ſetting out for Spain? for thither I ſuppoſe Don Gabriel has carried her. I die with impatience to ſee my ever-loved creature, and free her from the inſolent raviſher. The Marquis ſpoke this with a warmth which ſhewed how much his heart was intereſted. Don Clement, after expreſſing his thanks for ſo generous an offer of his friendſhip, told him he would B5r 9 would readily embrace it.—Though my affairs here, ſaid he, are in ſo intricate a ſituation as to require my preſence to ſettle them, yet, where the welfare of ſo dear a ſiſter is at ſtake, I muſt forego every other advantage to fly to her aſſiſtance.—Let us be gone then, cried the Marquis; we will ſet out to-morrow. Accordingly he gave orders for this ſudden expedition; and his commands being executed with as much rapidity as they were given, Don Clement and he found themſelves in readineſs to depart very early the next morning.
The Marquis in taking leave of the ladies told Adelaide, that he hoped to have the happineſs of finding her at his houſe, on his return to Milan. As for Don Clement, ſhort as the time was, he B5 did B5v 10 did not leave Eugenia without receiving ſome marks of her eſteem for him.
Their voyage was proſperous: they arrived ſafely at Valencia; and ſet out immediately for the kingdom of Caſtile, where the Count of Caſtellar’s whole eſtate lay, and where he always reſided. They were informed by a gentleman whom they met on the borders of Caſtile, that the Count was at a caſtle he had on the banks of the Euadimara, a few leagues from Madrid: but they could not learn whether he had a lady or any ſtranger with him. However, as they made no doubt but that Clementina was really in his poſſeſſion, they reſolved, without loſing time, to ſet forward for his caſtle. Accordingly they redoubled their ſpeed, and reached it towards the cloſe of the day. The nearer they approached, the more they were B6r 11 were confirmed in their opinion, that this was the priſon of the unhappy Clementina. It was an old caſtle, which formerly had been very ſtately and magnificent, but was now partly fallen to ruin; and the walls everywhere ſo overgrown with moſs and ivy, that it could at a little diſtance be hardly diſtinguiſhed from a thick dark wood, with which it was ſurrounded.
There was ſomething however ſo romantic and charming in the ſituation, that the Marquis and Don Clement could not help ſtopping to contemplate the awful ſolitude. Its remoteneſs from any other dwelling gave it an aſpect peculiarly ſolitary; and it had been ſo neglected by the Count, who had a great many other fine ſeats, that it looked more like the remains of an ancient monaſtery than the manſion-houſe of a B6 grandee B6v 12 grandee of Spain. The outer court, which was as full of weeds as if no human creature had ever trod on it, was incloſed with a very high wall, and the entrance ſecured by a ſtrong gate, which was locked and barred on the inſide.
The Marquis and Don Clement, who had alighted from their horſes and given them to the ſervants who attended them, advanced towards the gate, and thundered at it with all their might: but, inſtead of its being opened, they were demanded from within, Who they were, and what they wanted? The Marquis returned no anſwer, but knocked louder than before; when the ſame voice cried out, You may be as noiſy as you pleaſe; but till I know your buſineſs you ſhall not be admitted.This B7r 13
This ſuſpicious anſwer redoubled the Marquis’s impatience.—Let us force the gate, ſaid he to Don Clement; I find but too plainly that this pernicious ſolitude is the abode of your lovely ſiſter. Let us not ſtand to importune a wretch who no doubt has received orders from his guilty maſter, not to ſuffer any but himſelf to enter the caſtle.— Saying this, he beckoned to the two footmen to come to his aſſiſtance. But Don Clement, who was of a calmer temper, or perhaps was not at that time agitated with emotions ſo violent as the Marquis, begged of him to deſiſt; telling him ſuch an attempt would be very imprudent, as they had but two ſervants with them; and perhaps there might be numbers in the caſtle who would, without a doubt, oppoſe them, ſhould they even ſucceed in forcing the gate.—I believe, added he, the Count is not in B7v 14 in reality here, by the caution his domeſtics obſerve; I will therefore try an expedient that may get us admittance, without committing ſuch outrages.— He ſpoke thoſe words ſo low that nobody but the Marquis could hear him; when, raiſing his voice, and addreſſing himſelf to the perſon on the inſide of the gate, Let not Don Gabriel think, ſaid he, to conceal his treaſons within theſe walls. We are certainly informed that he hides himſelf here; and, if he does not immediately ſurrender himſelf, he will compel us to uſe violence; and whoever you are that thus obſtinately refuſe us entrance, you may perhaps have your Lord’s life to anſwer for.
Don Clement had no ſooner ſpoke theſe words than he heard the fellow on the inſide unbarring the gate. The time he took to do it, and the number of B8r 15 of bolts and locks they heard him undo, convinced them how difficult it would have been for them to have forced an entrance. The gate was but now half- opened, which a gigantic ill-looking fellow held in his hand, at the ſame time that he had faſtened a ſtrong chain acroſs it on the inſide. He looked rudely at the two ſtrangers; and without the leaſt mark of civility, told them that his maſter was not there, but at Madrid.— Friend, anſwered the Marquis, we are but juſt now come from thence; and had the Count been there, it would have ſaved us this journey. I therefore once more command you, as you ſhall anſwer the contrary at your peril, to give us admiſſion immediately.
The ſharpneſs with which the Marquis pronounced this, ſeemed to intimidate the fellow; and, though it did not procure B8v 16 procure them the leaſt good manners from him, it however ſomewhat lowered the inſolence of his looks; he threw off the chain; and, at the ſame time flinging open the gate, he told them, with a ſurly grin, they might ſearch if they pleaſed; but they would have their labour for their pains.
The Marquis and Don Clement, without regarding the inſolence of this fellow, entered the court, and proceeded directly into the caſtle, which was readily opened to them by a footboy. He ſeemed ſtartled at ſeeing two ſtrange cavaliers; when the porter, who had followed them cloſe, ſaid bluntly,— Theſe gentlemen want my Lord.—I have told them already he is not here; but they won’t believe me; ſo carry them in, and let their own eyes convince them. The lad appeared in great confuſion B9r 17 confuſion at this requeſt. He proteſted the Count was not there:—but the Marquis and Don Clement perſiſting in their demand of being allowed to ſearch the caſtle, the lackey was obliged to yield: wherefore, civilly enough, deſiring them to walk in, he led them through all the lower apartments of the caſtle, which, though lofty and pleaſant, were nevertheleſs moſt of them empty and full of duſt.
The two gentlemen who, from all theſe circumſtances, concluded that Clementina was a priſoner here, after having gone through the lower chambers and thoſe in the firſt floor, without making any diſcovery, were aſcending another ſtair-caſe, in hopes of meeting with better ſucceſs; when they were ſtopped by an old Mooriſh woman who was coming down. She catched hold of B9v 18 of the Marquis by the arm, and told him haſtily, in broken Spaniſh, that he would only dirty himſelf if he went up; for that in the upper ſtory there were only lumber and rubbiſh. This but ſerved to heighten their curioſity:—ſo, ruſhing haſtily up, they were followed by the Mooreſs, who ſeemed to be much frightened.
The firſt chamber they entered was ſo dark, that they could not diſtinguiſh any object; when, after having thrown open the ſhutters, they ſaw lying on an indifferent bed a young man, who ſeemed to be in a profound ſleep. His fine long hair covered half his face.— But how were they filled with a mixture of delight and grief, when, on the youth’s ſtarting up (who had awoke with the noiſe) they diſcovered him to be Clementina! She no ſooner ſaw her brother B10r 19 brother and the Marquis than ſhe gave a loud ſhriek, and fainted away on the bed, from which ſhe had juſt riſen.— The means uſed to recover her by the Moreſco ſoon brought her to herſelf.— She opened her eyes; and caſting them firſt on the Marquis and then on her brother, with looks of tranſport!—ſhe remained gazing on them, without once offering to ſpeak.
Though the Marquis could hardly refrain throwing his arms round her neck, his reſpect for her with-held him; and he permitted Don Clement firſt to embrace her; when, in his turn, advancing to do the ſame, Clementina’s face was immediately overſpread with bluſhes: and ſhe caſt her eyes on the ground; from whence ſhe ſeemed unable to raiſe them.—Dear ſiſter, ſaid Don Clement (ſeeing her embarraſſment)raſſment) B10v 20 raſſment) aſſume a little more courage. You ſee yourſelf in the hands of two perſons who love you dearly. The Marquis already knows your whole ſtory; and has undertaken this journey with me into Spain, on purpoſe to join his aid with mine in delivering you from Don Gabriel.—You ſhould therefore rather return him thanks for his generoſity, than thus give yourſelf up to the confuſion which overwhelems you; and for which I am ſure your innocence never gave any cauſe.
Clementina, a little emboldened at this kindneſs from her brother, threw herſelf ſuddenly at his feet. Ah! my dear brother! ſaid ſhe, how your goodneſs tranſports me!—I am indeed covered with confuſion when I reflect on what is paſt; and might reaſonably expect nothing but reproaches from you; B11r 21 you; when, inſtead of theſe, you receive me with the moſt extreme tenderneſs!—I can’t, added ſhe, I dare not look at you without bluſhing:—and for my Lord Marquis, to whom I owe a thouſand obligations, I cannot lift up my eyes to him.—Why ſo, Madam? cried the Marquis, with an air that ſpoke his joy (and at the ſame time raiſing her up; for ſhe was ſtill embracing her brother’s knees) why ſhould you not look at me?—If while I thought you the moſt accompliſhed and deſerving of my own ſex, I loved and eſteemed you, do you think you will be leſs dear to me for being in reality the moſt amiable of women? So far from it, that I declare to you, this diſcovery will make me the happieſt of men.—If I am ſtill poſſeſſed of that place in your heart which you have ſo often aſſured me I held; nay, I ſhall inſiſtſiſt B11v 22 ſiſt on the right I have there, continued he, ſmiling; for I don’t ſee why the changing your habit ſhould make you change your mind; and if I thought it would have that effect, I would rather for ever ſee you in this dreſs than endure the loſs of your affection.— Come, come, ſaid Don Clement (ſeeing his ſiſter quite embarraſſed) the Marquis is in the right in what he ſays; and I think you can hardly ever make him ſufficient amends for the diſorder you have created in his family. Madame Burganeze is almoſt run mad for love of you: and I find that you had even made ſome progreſs in the heart of the beautiful Eugenia!—In ſhort, interrupted the Marquis, as you have made the whole family ſigh for you by turns, I know not of any reparation that can be offered, unleſs Don Clement will yield you to me, to puniſh you for the miſchiefs B12r 23 miſchiefs you have occaſioned.— Agreed, cried Don Clement; provided you will conſent that Eugenia ſhall be mine, who owes large amends for the indignity ſhe offered me in miſtaking me for my ſiſter.—The frankneſs and vivicity with which both the Marquis and Don Clement delivered themſelves, recovered Clementina from her confuſion, when all of them growing more ſerious, Don Clement immediately turned the diſcourſe.—We waſte time, ſaid he, and forget, whilſt in the company of our reſtored Clementina, that we are all within the hoſtile walls of our foe. Let us firſt go from hence, and then we ſhall have leiſure to enquire what Caſtellar’s behaviour has been to my ſiſter.
The Marquis, who was juſt going to make the ſame propoſal, immediately aroſe B12v 24 aroſe and took Clementina under the arm, while Don Clement led the way down ſtairs with his ſword drawn.— The Mooreſs having alarmed the ſervants with the danger they were in of loſing the young priſoner committed to their care, two luſty attendants of the Count’s, who (together with the ſurly porter) were all the men he had left at the caſtle, preſented themſelves before the Marquis and Don Clement, in order to ſtop their paſſage; but both proteſting that their ſwords ſhould force their way through them, they thought it moſt prudent to ſubmit to the neceſſity they were under of yielding. Clementina, whoſe heart fluttered like a bird newly eſcaped from the ſnares of the fowler, hung upon the arms of her two deliverers. They haſtened out of the caſtle to their two ſervants, who attended at the gate with their horſes.In C1r 25
In this manner they ſet forward for Madrid, and arrived about midnight at the houſe of Don Clement, which his two elder ſiſters ſtill lived in ſince the death of Don Manuel, their father— It is impoſſible to deſcribe the raptures of Donna Clementina on ſeeing herſelf thus happily reſtored to every thing that was dear to her!—Her brother, her ſiſters, and the Marquis, whom ſhe deſpaired of ever ſeeing again, were all at once given back to her wiſhes!
Late as it was, they none of them thought of reſt; for Pimenteles, impatient to know how the Count of Caſtellar had conducted himſelf towards his ſiſter, begged of her to relate what had paſſed ſince her forced departure from Milan.—You ſhall be informed of every particular, anſwered Clementina; but as there are ſome circumſtances in Vol. II. C the C1v 26 the beginning of my ſtory which may be neceſſary to mention, I ſhall acquaint you with every thing in order.
As the Marquis, as well as yourſelf and my ſiſters, already know the motive of my leaving Caſtile, I need not repeat it:—I ſhall only ſay that having reſolved to fly, I made nobody acquainted with my deſign but my woman, whoſe fidelity I knew might be depended upon:—and here, my dear brother, I muſt entreat your forgiveneſs for concealing my purpoſe from you: for, though you were as averſe from my marrying Don Gabriel as I was, yet I knew you would oppoſe ſo raſh an action. For this reaſon therefore I departed privately the night before my intended marriage; having firſt equipped myſelf and my maid with man’s apparel.C2 ‘I had C2r 27
I had heard that the Prince of Baſſiniano (who you knew was at Madrid) was returning to Italy; and as I had no ſettled plan for my conduct, I thought of nothing ſo much as the means of avoiding the hated Sahabedras; I reſolved to take this opportunity of getting out of his reach, and at the ſame time of ſeeing a charming country, of which I had heard ſo much. As I could ſpeak Italian tolerably, I was the more encouraged in this reſolution. Taking therefore a cloſe chaiſe, my woman and I ſet out, and got ſafe to Barcelona; where we waited for the Prince’s coming. We had the ſatisfaction to ſee him the day after our arrival, and embarked with him in a veſſel for Genoa, which we reached very happily; and paſſing from thence to Milan, I had an opportunity of ſeeing part of the fineſt country in the world.—The Prince of Baſ- C2v 28 Baſſiniano, with whom, brother, you know you had ſome ſlight acquaintance Madrid, treated me with great diſtinction; as he looked upon me to be the individual Don Clement whom he knew in Spain: and this circumſtance in a manner obliged me to aſſume your name, which I ſhould not, for my own ſecurity, otherwiſe have done: but I now found it was like to be of great ſervice to me; for by this name the Prince introduced me to many perſons of the firſt quality at Milan, and amongſt the reſt, to the generous Marquis of Peſcara; whom I found every way ſo deſerving of my eſteem, that I thought myſelf more obliged to the Prince for procuring me his friendſhip, than for all the other favours he had conferred on me. How many happy hours, my Lord, purſued Clementina, addreſſing herſelf to the Marquis, have we paſt together, C3r 29 together; when your ignorance of my ſex gave me the liberty of diſcourſing with you without reſerve! How often have you boaſted to me of the freedom of your heart; and that you would not exchange the ſweets you enjoyed in my friendſhip for the love of the greateſt Princeſs upon earth! Theſe were indeed moſt flattering aſſurances, and filled me with inexpreſſible delight:— but whatever ſatiſfaction I took in being beloved by one whom I ſo highly valued, that happineſs had like to have been wholly deſtroyed; and that at a time, too, when you were endeavouring to bind me ſtill more cloſely to you by the moſt endearing ties. In ſhort, my Lord, you gave me to underſtand that you wiſhed to ſee me united to your niece, the fair and amiable Eugenia.C3 ‘So C3v 30
So unexpected a favour, and at the ſame time a circumſtance ſo contrary to the whole ſcope of my deſigns, threw me into the utmoſt conſternation.— What could I do? The honour was too great to be refuſed;—and yet the impoſſibility of accepting it was ſtill greater!—What, ſaid I, muſt the Marquis, or what muſt Eugenia think of a denial?—I am their gueſt, and have received ſo many marks of their friendſhip and affection, that I could kill myſelf for acting ſo diſingenuous a part. Oh! let me rather confeſs myſelf at once to be an unfortunate woman who ſeeks ſo much goodneſs and generoſity. I had almoſt put this purpoſe into action the ſame minute, and was ready to diſcover myſelf to you, when I was ſtopped by an impulſe of ſhame. What am I going to do? The Marquis muſt look upon C4r 31 upon me as a raſh and imprudent creature; and that friendſhip which he has hitherto indulged towards me, may be turned into contempt and averſion.— This laſt reflection ſilenced me effectually, and threw ſuch a damp on my ſpirits that I was near ſinking down on the ſpot: but though I reſolved ſtill to conceal my ſex from you, I was yet at a loſs what anſwer to return; for there were two circumſtances which embarraſſed me to the laſt degree. The one was that, as in the frequent converſaſationstions we had together, you with the greateſt freedom opened your heart to me; I in return had more than once aſſured you that I had brought my freedom into Italy; and that no lady had yet obliged me to reſign it:—ſo that this was an irremediable bar to my pleading a pre-engagement. But what was ſtill more perplexing to me, I had C4 diſcovered C4v 32 diſcovered that I was far from being indifferent to Donna Eugenia.
I had reaſon to imagine ſhe would not refuſe me, in caſe I was propoſed to her for a huſband. If the Marquis, ſaid I, ſhould communicate his deſigns to his niece, and find that ſhe already approves of me, into what ſad ſt raitsſtraits ſhall I be driven?—I muſt either fly from the preſence of perſons ſo dear to me, branded perhaps as an impoſtor or an ungrateful wretch; or elſe diſcloſe a ſecret that muſt plunge me into the deepeſt confuſion!—The thoughts of this cruel alternative tortured me for ſome hours. At length I reſolved (as my laſt expedient) before the Marquis ſhould ſpeak to Eugenia, and diſcover her favourable ſentiments towards me, to throw myſelf at her feet, confeſs the whole truth of my ſtory to her, and conjurejure C5r 33 jure her to keep the ſecret. Accordingly I entreated Eugenia by a note I conveyed to her, to allow me a private interview; for I muſt not omit to tell you that (as we women are more quick- ſighted than men in diſcovering the foibles of our own ſex) I had obſerved that Madame Burganeze had caſt a favourable eye on me from the firſt time ſhe ſaw me; which had made her more than ordinarily watchful of her daughter, whoſe beauty ſhe was not a little jealous of, inſomuch that I could never find an opportunity of ſpeaking to Eugenia but in her mother’s preſence:— for this reaſon then it was that I was obliged to act with ſo much precaution in requeſting a ſecret interview with the young lady.—She granted it; and I was juſt making the intended diſcovery to her when we were ſurpriſed by Madame Burganeze.C5 ‘I leave C5v 34
I leave you to judge, my Lord, and you, brother, proceeded Clementina, how vexatious ſuch an interruption was!—Eugenia was ſtill ignorant of my ſex; and I thought it a ſecret of too much importance to truſt Madame Burganeze with; eſpecially at a time when the violence of her jealouſy had almoſt robbed her of her reaſon. You will think perhaps that the beſt way to cure her of it was to diſcloſe myſelf to her at once: but I was of a different opinion. Prepoſſeſſed as ſhe was with the belief of my being a man, I could not have diſabuſed her without entering abruptly into a detail of circumſtances, which I thought of a nature too nice to be committed to the diſcretion of a perſon of ſo violent a temper. Beſides, might it not be a diſappointment to her, to find ſhe had ſet her affections on one of her own ſex; which would rather ſerve C6r 35 ſerve to exaſperate her againſt me for the deceit, than engage her to befriend me. Added to all this, I had prepared to relate my ſtory to Donna Eugenia with all the intereſting circumſtances that could induce her to pity me; and I could not think of making all at once a diſcovery which I thought might, if managed with prudence, ſecure me in the happineſs which I then enjoyed.
My thoughts were thus employed whilſt Madame Burganeze was venting her fury againſt the innocent Eugenia, whoſe fear and confuſion ſerved to increaſe mine. At length, in the hurry of my reflections an expedient came into my head, which I did not heſitate a moment in practiſing.—I feigned a violent paſſion for Madame Burganeze, and had the courage to declare it; and even went ſo far as to aſſure her that I C6 came C6v 36 came to her daughter on no other account, than to beg her aſſiſtance in the proſecution of my love. I added a great deal to ſtrengthen what I aſſerted; and Madame Burganeze, already infatuated with her paſſion for me and vanity of her own charms, was ſo very weak as to give credit to what I ſaid; and even ſwallowed the bait with a facility which ſurpriſed me. She heard me with pleaſure; and I had no reaſon to complain of the cruelty of my miſtreſs.
But though I had the good fortune to extricate both Eugenia and myſelf out of this dilemma, I had nevertheleſs the mortification of being obliged to quit the apartment of that lady, without having it in my power to undeceive her in the opinion ſhe might entertain of the odd confeſſion I had juſt made to her C7r 37 her mother, otherwiſe than by a ſign; which however I endeavoured to make as expreſſive as poſſible.
You, my Lord, purſued Clementina, to the Marquis, are no doubt apprized of many of theſe particulars: I have therefore endeavoured to run them over briefly; and have told you what my own ſentiments were, in order to account to your for a conduct which muſt otherwiſe appear very ſtrange, even though that ſecret which was the grand ſpring of my ſeemingly myſterious actions is now diſcovered.
Madame Burganeze conjured me to keep our loves concealed till ſhe could diſpoſe of her daughter in marriage, which ſhe ſaid ſhe would endeavour ſpeedily to do; and then hoped to get her brother to conſent to our union.— You C7v 38 You may be ſure I was not backward in approving theſe meaſures; but having already taken ſuch a ſtep towards diſcovering myſelf to Eugenia, I was impatient to complete my deſign.
The Marquis muſt remember the extreme embarraſſment which his diſcourſe threw me into, when, in plain terms, he propoſed to me the honour of his alliance. I was driven to extremity. I once more begged of Eugenia to give me a meeting. I thought that after having diſcloſed myſelf to her, and engaged her in my intereſt, my heart would be at eaſe, and I could at leiſure find means to extricate myſelf from my ridiculous amour with Madame Burganeze. It was only the eſteem of the Marquis of Peſcara and Donna Eugenia which I was in dread of loſing. That amiable lady condeſcended to gratify me C8r 39 me a ſecond time. We were ſurpriſed in the wood, and I was forced away, in ſpite of my feeble reſiſtance. I believe Count of Caſtellar (accompanied by a Spaniſh gentleman, who was his friend) that uſed this violence.
It ſeems that after having ſearched for me in ſeveral other parts of Italy, he had been at Milan for ſome time in diſguiſe, where he by chance heard the name of Don Clement Pimenteles.—As he very well knew that my brother was in France, he immediately concluded it could be nobody but myſelf who had aſſumed this new character. Truſting therefore for the certainty of his intelligence to no eyes but his own, he watched all my motions, and had frequent opportunities of ſeeing me at maſs; for I avoided all other places of public C8v 40 public meeting as much as poſſible. Being now convinced he had found the prey he ſought after, he kept a conſtant ſpy on me; who giving him intelligence of my ſetting out from the Marquis’s, attended only by a ſingle ſervant, that day on which I had feigned a journey to Lodi, in order to meet Eugenia in the wood, he reſolved not to let ſlip this opportunity of ſeizing me.
Theſe particulars I afterwards learned from himſelf: and thus that name, which I was in a manner under a neceſſity of bearing, and which had procured me a various mixture of pleaſure and of pain, was now at length the means of betraying me; and, had it not been for my late deliverance, would have been my deſtruction; for the Count having accompliſhed his cruel deſign, forced me into a calaſh, which an attendanttendant C9r 41 tendant was leading after him for the purpoſe: and Caſtellar, ſeating himſelf by me, drove with ſuch fury, that in leſs than three hours we had got above ſix leagues from Milan.
It was late when we arrived at an ordinary inn, where Don Gabriel told me I was to paſs the night. He led me out of the calaſh with very little ceremony.
We were ſhewn by the miſtreſs of the houſe into a chamber which the Count obliged me to enter with himſelf; when, after having locked the door, he began to load me with the bittereſt reproaches: he did not even ſtop at calling me wanton and abandoned!—I anſwered him only with tears.—He aſſured me, that the world ſhould not reſcue me out of his hands; and then left C9v 42 left me to the repoſe I ſtood in need of, having firſt ordered ſomething to refreſh me.
I threw myſelf on the bed without taking off my clothes, and paſſed the moſt diſmal night I had ever known in my life. I reflected with horror on my ſituation.—I am now in the power of my cruel perſecutor, ſaid I:—he no doubt will force me back to the preſence of a much incenſed father, from whom I muſt expect the moſt rigorous treatment: he will compel me to marry Don Gabriel, whom I now hate more than ever; and think that too ſmall a puniſhment for my fault! I bitterly regretted my ſeparation from my amiable friends at Milan, who I knew would be grieved at my abſence; and I was in deſpair of ever ſeeing them again. Thus I tortured myſelf till day-break, when the C10r 43 the Count knocked at my door, and aſked me, if I was up? I aroſe off the bed, and he immediately entered the chamber, followed by a ſervant, who brought in chocolate. I had but very little inclination to taſte any thing; however I was obliged to accompany him at breakfaſt.
When we had done, he propoſed purſuing our journey; for he told me, he meant to carry me directly back to Spain. I made him no anſwer; but being again forced to take my ſeat by him in the calaſh, which had freſh horſes, we travelled at the ſame rate we had done the evening before, the Count entertaining me with threats, and expreſſions of reſentment.
Nothing could be more dreadful to me than this journey; when having got out C10v 44 out of the Milaneſe territories, we entered the Pope’s dominions; and having reached Civita-Vechia, we found there a veſſel ready to ſail for Alicant. —The Count, without loſing time, obliged me to go on board with him.— The voyage was as proſperous as Don Gabriel could have wiſhed. We arrived ſafely in Spain. But the ſight of my native country ſerved only to redouble my grief!—This, ſaid I, this is the fatal place where I am for ever to be conſigned to the arms of a man whom I deteſt; and who will even think he does me a great honour in accepting of me!
We were no ſooner got on ſhore than the haughty Sahabedras put me into a coach, which he had hired to carry me to Madrid; and, without allowing me time to repoſe myſelf after the C11r 45 the fatigue of the voyage, he ſet out with me for the kingdom of Caſtile. My terror increaſed in proportion as we drew nearer to Madrid; and what with grief and the hurry of my journey, Don Gabriel found me ſo ill that he thought it adviſeable to ſtop at the caſtle where you found me. I was carried in in ſo weak a condition, that it was ſome days before I could leave my bed. Meanwhile there was no care omitted for my recovery.—The Count’s phyſician attended me; and in a little time aſſured him that I would be well enough to be removed to Madrid.
But Don Gabriel had now changed his deſign of carrying me thither:—he began to conſider that my father might perhaps have by this time repented his ſeverity toward me; and that, ſoftened by my tears and prayers, he would no longer C11v 46 longer preſs me to accept of a huſband whom I had run ſo many hazards to avoid. On the other hand, he knew that I was entirely at his own diſposal; none of my family knew of my being in Spain. He therefore thought it moſt prudent to conceal me from them, and make uſe of the power he had over my perſon, to force me to accept of him.
The ſolitude I was in ſeemed fit for ſo black a purpoſe. Wherefore, having put one or two of the apartments into ſome tolerable order, he retained ſuch of his domeſtics as he thought he could depend on; amongſt which number was the old Mooriſh woman, who was always truſted with the care of that caſtle.
I was now perfectly recovered; and was ſurpriſed that the Count had not ordereddered C12r 47 dered ſome change of apparel for me (for I was ſtill in the male habit in which he had found me); when one morning he entered my chamber, and accoſted me with his uſual haughtineſs. —You can now, Madam, ſaid he, no longer refuſe me your hand; you know you are mine by mutual agreement between your father and me: and I queſtion whether any perſon of quality, after your having abandoned your friends and your country, to ramble about in maſquerade, would be very fond of fulfilling thoſe engagements. However, I am willing to paſs over your irregularities, provided you will ſubmit with a good grace to obey your father’s will, in conſenting to make me your huſband. —He waited for my anſwer with his eyes fixed ſeverely on me.—If my father, replied I, perſiſts in his cruel reſolution of forcing me to accept of you, I can C12v 48 I can no longer reſiſt his commands: but till I receive thoſe commands from his own mouth, be aſſured your importunity is in vain.—I will go then this very day to Don Manuel Pimenteles, ſaid he, and acquaint him with your return to Spain. If he continues juſt to his promiſe, I will yield you to his authority; but be aſſured, that if I find him diſpoſed to break his word with me, or to ſhew the leaſt indulgence to your headſtrong humour, I will convoy you to a place where he ſhall never hear of you; and from whence all the united power of mankind ſhall not be able to force you.
He left me after this inſolent menace; and I heard no more of him till the next evening; when he entered my chamber with a diſordered countenance. I am D1r 49 —I am ſorry, Madam, ſaid he, to bring you news that muſt afflict you; but I under the neceſſity of letting you know that your father is dead, and that you have no choice to make, but that of accepting me for your huſband. I have not acquainted any of your friends that you are in my poſſeſſion; therefore, if you entertain hopes of being delivered out of my hands, they are vain; for I am now abſolute maſter of your deſtiny.—But added, in a ſofter tone (ſeeing me diſſolved in tears) I ſhall make no other uſe of that power than to procure you a happy eſtabliſhment for life, and make you miſtreſs of a fortune more ſplendid than you could have even hoped for. Reflect on the ſituation you are in, the value of the offer I make you, and what miſchiefs your refuſal muſt create. I will give you, continued he, three days to conſiderII. D ſider D1v 50 ſider of it: and I am perſuaded you will not be ſo blind to your own happineſs as to continue obſtinate.—I was too much taken up with the grief which the melancholy news he had juſt related filled me with, to be able to make him any reply. He obſerved it, and retired.
Though I was greatly afflicted at the death of my father, I however drew this conſolation from it,—that there was now no authority which could compel me to marry the Count. Were my father ſtill living, ſaid I, it would no longer be in my power to reſiſt his will; but his death having freed me from all obligations of duty, I ſhall have nothing to combat but the perſecutions of a wretch, whoſe love or hatred I equally contemn.‘Don D2r 51
Don Gabriel did not appear before me till the three days were expired in which he had deſired me to conſider of his propoſal.
I received him with an air that could give him but little encouragement; however he ſeated himſelf by me, and aſſuming an affable countenance,— I come, Madam, ſaid he, to receive a deciſive anſwer to what I propoſed to you. You have had time to reflect on it; and I even flatter myſelf before hand, that you will no longer oppoſe what muſt contribute to your happineſs, as well as to mine. Speak, added he, taking one of my hands:—Do you conſent to make me yours?—I remained ſilent for ſome time; which Don Gabriel interpreted in his favour; for I obſerved he waited, ſmiling, for my anſwer. In reality, I was ſtudying what D2 reply D2v 52 reply to make; for I thought it beſt to diſſemble a little, in order if poſſible to obtain my liberty. At laſt, caſting my eyes on him with more mildneſs than I was accuſtomed to do,—You take very ſtrange meaſures, my Lord, ſaid I, to ſoften my heart towards you.—Do you think that the rigorous confinement you impoſe on me, and this habit, which I bluſh ſtill to behold myſelf in, are not rather motives of diſguſt, than inducements to liſten to your pretenſions.— Furniſh me at leaſt with apparel proper for my ſex: and if you would inſpire me with any favourable ſentiments for you, reſtore me to my friends; ſuffer me to wipe away my tears for the loſs of my father; and you may then claim that from my gratitude which you muſt never hope to extort from my fears.—I pronounced this in a reſolute tone, and looked ſteadfaſtly in his face. He only laughed D3r 53 laughed at me: and ſhaking his head, —Ah Donna Clementina! ſaid he, you muſt forgive me if I doubt a little the ſincerity of your intentions:—after the experience I have had, you may imagine I can have but ſmall dependence on your generoſity; for if, whilſt you are in my power without any reſource, you contemn the advantages I propoſe to you, do you think I can be ſo ſilly as to believe, that when you are at your liberty, and amongſt your family, who have always oppoſed me, that you will then accept of them? No, no, added he; were your father ſtill living, I might perhaps conſent to what you demand; but ſince he can no longer oppoſe his authority in my favour, I ſhall hardly be ſo weak as to put you in poſſeſſion of a freedom that will for ever deſtroy my hopes. As for your dreſs, as nobody but myſelf ſhall ſee you, I declare it to D3 you D3v 54 you by every thing ſacred, that you ſhall never alter it, unleſs it be for your wedding-clothes, interrupted I, furiouſly; and take this as my final anſwer, —that I would rather throw myſelf into the arms of death than yous.—And ſo you ſhall, cried he, enraged in his turn; and drawing his ſword, with diſtracted looks, he lifted his arm, in order, as I imagined, to plunge it in my breaſt. I was ſeized with a ſudden terror at this action, which not being able to overcome, I fell in a ſwoon at the cruel Sahabedras’ feet.
I know not what impreſſion this ſcene made on him; for when I recovered my ſenſes, I found myſelf in another chamber, laid on the bed, and no one with me but the Mooriſh woman.— she made haſte to inform me, that her Lord, D4r 55 Lord, exaſperated almoſt to madneſs at my refuſal, had certainly deprived me of life, if my ſudden fainting had not ſtaid his arm.—I yet tremble, added ſhe, at the remembrance of his fury; and I even fear that nothing but your immediate compliance with his wiſhes will ſhield you from the terrible effects of his reſentment.—Conſider, my dear lady, continued ſhe (affecting to intereſt herſelf in my happineſs) how fatal your obſtinacy may prove to you! My Lord is too haughty and paſſionate to brook a denial, without a revenge the moſt ſevere that he can inflict. Alas! who knows what miſchiefs he is now meditating? Indeed, purſued ſhe after a ſhort pauſe, if I might preſume to adviſe you, I would have you endeavour to repair the injury you have offered him, by beginning this very minute to change your behaviour towards him. D4 Suffer D4v 56 Suffer me to carry him ſome obliging expreſſions of your ſorrow for having offended him. I will tell him, ſaid ſhe, riſing,—I interrupted her here; and catching her by the arm,—You ſhall tell him nothing from me, ſaid I, but that I deſpiſe him; and would ſooner ſuffer that death which he juſt now threatened me with (and which I believe him ſtill barbarous enough to inflict on me) than ever conſent to be his wife.
The woman, who no doubt had been inſtructed in every thing ſhe ſaid, expected that the danger I ſaw myſelf expoſed to, would have inſpired me with other ſentiments. She ſeemed confounded at this reply; and left me with a very ſurly air, and muttering ſomething to herſelf.‘Upon D5r 57
Upon the whole, when I began to reflect a little, I was far from being terrified at Don Gabriel’s menaces. On the contrary, believing that he would not be ſo wicked as to take away my life, I reſolved to treat him with ſo much ſcorn and averſion, that he muſt at length loſe all hopes, and abandon me to my fate.
This reflection made me paſs the day with ſome little tranquility. The Moor attended me at ſupper as uſual: ſhe aſſured me that ſhe had not dared repeat what I had ſaid to her Lord; who was ſo exaſperated againſt me, that he proteſted I ſhould remain a priſoner in the chamber I was then in (which was much worſe than that which was at firſt aſſigned me) till I had altered my mind. However, added ſhe, he has commanded me to attend on you with D5 my D5v 58 my accuſtomed ſervices; which indulgence I queſtion whether he would have granted you, had I told him with what contempt you treated him this morning. —I affected to believe her; but at the ſame time aſſured her that I would never ſwerve from my reſolution.—And indeed I ſpent the greateſt part of the night in fortifying myſelf more ſtrongly in it.
I was but juſt riſen next morning when the Count came into my chamber. I obſerved a ſort of languor in his face, which diſſipated ſome little impreſſions of fear that his firſt appearance made on me. I waited till he ſhould begin the converſation; and from the embarraſſment I remarked in his looks, I gueſſed that his love had got the better of his reſentment. He walked ſeveral times about the room without ſpeaking. At laſt, ſtopping D6r 59 ſtopping ſhort, he ſaid, in a tone gentle enough,—Are you reſolved then, Madam, to perſiſt in your cruelty? Or may I yet hope that you will conſent to happineſs? Speak, added he; you know I love you. Don’t abuſe the aſcendant you have over me, by ſhewing freſh marks of ſcorn which I have endured but too long.—I replied, I was ſteadfaſt in the reſolution I had taken,— never to hearken to him till he had reſtored me to my friends; and in the end aſſured him, that I would ſet my love at no other price whatever but that of my liberty.
I ſaw indignation in his eyes at my diſcourſe: he fell again into thoſe tranſports of rage which had ſo terrified me the day before. He threatened me in the ſevereſt terms with his vengeance; and accuſing himſelf of madneſs for D6 having D6v 60 having loved a creature ſo unworthy of his care, he flung out of the room, telling me I ſhould have time enough to repent of my folly and ingratitude.
I gave but little heed to his threats, being glad to be relieved from his preſence. It was ſome weeks before I ſaw him again; in all which time I was never permitted to ſtir out of my chamber, nor did I ſee any one except the Mooriſh woman, who told me one day, that the Count was reſolved to try me once more; but that if he found me continue obſtinate, I was to expect the worſt treatment.—Don Gabriel accordingly made me a viſit a day or two after:— but whether my reſolution had ſtaggered him a little or that he ſtill retained ſome degree of reſpect for me, he did not offer any outrage; but then he proteſted he would keep me a priſoner till he had D7r 61 had humbled that ſtubborn heart which refuſed to be his; and at the ſame time he declared that he would blaze it everywhere, that he had kept me for ſome months in his caſtle, concealed in man’s clothes; and we will then ſee, ſaid he, whether you will have much reaſon to wiſh herſelf out of my poſſeſſion.—He left me with this baſe inſult; and, taking horſe for Madrid, where his employments oblige him for the moſt part to reſide, I found myſelf expoſed to the cruelleſt miſfortune, with no other conſolation than that of my innocence.
’Tis now ſome days ſince he departed; and I make no doubt but he has put his menace in execution.—I had already begun to ſink under my fears, when Heaven heard my prayer, and ſent the only two perſons in the world to my aſſiſtance whom I moſt ardently wiſhed for.Cle D7v 62
Clementina having finiſhed her relation, her ſiſters, who many times had been in tears, conjured her to think of taking ſome reſt; wherefore, retiring to her apartment, the Marquis and Don Clement did the like to thoſe which were prepared for them.
It was late next morning before they roſe; when Clementina, having reaſſumed her proper dreſs, recalled alſo with it thoſe modeſt graces which ſhe had before endeavoured to baniſh; and ſhe now appeared to the Marquis the lovelieſt of her ſex. After the firſt ſalutations were over, the converſation immediately turned on the Count of Caſtellar. Clementina, who was well acquainted with the fierceneſs of that Lord’s temper, trembled to think of the flames which ſhe knowknew were kindling, and which muſt inevitably break out. Her appre D8r 63 apprehenſions were not for her brother alone:—the Marquis of Peſcara had an equal ſhare in her concern; for I believe it is needleſs to inform the reader that the paſſion ſhe had conceived for that accompliſhed gentleman had governed all her actions, and had enabled her ſo ſtrenuously to reſiſt Don Gabriel’s violence.—She was perſuaded that the Marquis, as well as Don Clement, meditated revenge againſt Caſtellar, though both of them affected to ſpeak careleſsly of him, in order to diſguiſe their real intentions from her, and prevent her from being alarmed; but they had in reality agreed between themſelves to go in ſearch of Don Gabriel that very day, and oblige him to atone for the outrage he had offered Clementina.— The Marquis begged that Don Clement would let him have the honour of avenging his miſtreſs. Pimenteles, whoſe D8v 64 whoſe courage was not inferior to his friend’s, oppoſed this, and declared it belonged to himſelf alone to chaſtiſe Don Gabriel for the inſults he had thrown upon his ſiſter; alledging that he only was injured, as the Marquis was not ſuppoſed by Don Gabriel to have any intereſt in Clementina’s fate. The Marquis was too much in love, and too much provoked at the remembrance of that lady’s ill treatment to accede to the reaſonableneſs of this plea.—A friendly conteſt continued for ſome time between the brother and the lover, which ſhould take upon him the puniſhment of the Count; but in the end each was obliged to yield ſo far to the other, as to agree that Caſtellar himſelf ſhould chuſe which of the two he would decide to conteſt with.
Having thus concerted their meaſures, the better to conceal them they talked D9r 65 talked of nothing but pleaſures, and the joy Eugenia would feel on ſeeing them all return ſafe to Italy.—They were diſcourſing with the ladies in this manner in Clementina’s apartment, when a ſervant came into the room and whiſpered Don Clement. He roſe off his ſeat, and, telling his ſiſters he would return in a minute, he left the room with ſo compoſed an air, that they did not ſuppoſe it was a buſineſs of any moment that called him from them. He went directly into a drawing-room, where the ſervant told him the Count of Caſtellar waited for him.
Don Gabriel having been informd of what had happened the night before by one of his domeſtics (whom the Moor had diſpatched to Madrid immediately after Clementina had been taken from the caſtle) was ſo enraged at the account, D9v 66 account, that the meſſenger had nearly fallen the fi rſtfirſt ſacrifice to his fury: he however conſtrained himſelf enough to hear the particulars of her eſcape, and the artifice the two gentlemen had made uſe of to get admittance. None of the ſervants knew either the Marquis or Don Clement; but the Count was ſo fully perſuaded that it could be no other than the latter that had freed Clementina from her captivity, he did not heſitate a moment what to do, but, commanding his footman who had brought him this information not to ſay a word of the affair to any one, he ordered him to go back to the caſtle; and, forbidding any of his people to follow him, he went directly to Don Clement’s houſe, who lived but a few ſtreets from his own. That gentleman, as I have already ſaid, found the Count in the drawing-room, where he was walking to D10r 67 to and fro in a violent manner, You have ſaved me the trouble, ſaid Don Clement, of going to look for you at your houſe; for be aſſured that you ſhall anſwer for the wrongs you have done my ſiſter.—Your inſolence, replied Don Gabriel, in preſuming to make uſe of ſuch violence as you have done, can be atoned for with nothing but your life!—Come then, cried Don Clement, we have each of us ſwords; and a few minutes ſhall end our quarrel. Saying this, he threw open the chamber-door which led into the garden, and invited the Count to go along with him. They both haſtened down a terrace that faced the door, and turning into a graſs-plot from whence they could not be diſcerned from any of the windows, Don Clement ſtopped, and drawing his ſword, the Count did the like; when ſomebody called out, “Hold, D10v 68 Hold, Don Clement!—remember our agreement:—the honour of his combat may fall to my lot. The Marquis, who ſpoke theſe words with the greateſt precipitation as he ran towards them, and having his ſword drawn, ran in between them in an inſtant, and obliged them to ſuſpend their engagement.
It was the ſame ſervant who had acquainted Don Clement with the Count’s being in the houſe, who, happening to overheard part of what they ſaid, had the curioſity to liſten to the remainder:— he was one of thoſe who had attended his maſter and the Marquis at the reſcue of Clementina; ſo, apprehending ſome ill conſequences from Don Gabriel’s viſit, he had the diſcretion to beckon the Marquis out of the chamber, where he was diſcourſing with Clementina and her ſiſters. He followedlowed D11r 69 lowed Don Clement and the Count; wherefore getting to the ſpot where they were going to engage almoſt as ſoon as they, he had time to prevent the execution of their deſign. If Don Clement was mortified at the unexpected appearance of the Marquis, who he had no mind ſhould interfere in the quarrel, Don Gabriel was fired with the utmoſt indignation. I don’t know how ſeaſonable this interruption may be to you, Signior Pimenteles, ſaid he, ſcornfully; but for my own part, I am ſo little diſpoſed for delay, that I deſire this gentleman may either retire inſtantly, or reſolve to be a paſſive witneſs of our conteſt.—I am too much concerned in your quarrel, ſaid the Marquis, haſtily, to ſubmit to thoſe terms:—for learn, proud Caſtellar, that I love Donna Clementina, and hope ſhortly to become her huſband.—He needed to have D11v 70 have ſaid no more to provoke Don Gabriel.—I am for you then, cried he; not the brother but the lover of Clementina ſhall be my firſt victim, ſince he will have it ſo. Saying this, he advanced towards the Marquis with ſo much fury, that he hardly eſcaped a thruſt which Don Gabriel made at his heart:—however he avoided it, yet not ſo nimbly but that he received a wound in his arm. The Count, eager to purſue his victory, preſſed on with ſo much warmth and ſo little conduct, that the Marquis, who had the advantage of a cooler and more deliberate courage, eaſily defended himſelf; and at the ſame time gave his adverſary a wound which made him fall motionleſs to the earth.
Though Don Clement (who was forced to be a ſpectator of this rencounter) was rejoiced at his friend’s ſucceſs, he D12r 71 he was nevertheleſs greatly alarmed at the condition in which he beheld the Count. He knew his fortune, and the rank he held at the court of Spain; and was apprehenſive his death might be attended with very will conſequences to the Marquis, who was a ſtranger there:but theſe fears began to diminiſh when he perceived that Don Gabriel ſtill breathed.—The Marquis and he took him in their arms, and, carrying him in, laid him gently on the bed, whilſt a ſurgeon was ſent for with the utmoſt ſpeed. The great quantity of blood which the Count had loſt threw him into a ſwoon; wherein he continued till after his wound was dreſſed, which the ſurgeon declared was not mortal: nevertheleſs, the Count was ſo much weakened that he remained ſpeechleſs the whole night.—Don Clement never left his bedſide; and even begged of his ſiſter to D12v 72 to viſit him, which ſhe readily conſented to; and, notwithſtanding the cruel treatment ſhe had received, ſhe attended him with as much care and aſſiduity as if he had been as dear to her as he was really odious; for during ſix days, in which he continued in a fever, the amiable Clementina ſeldom left his chamber.
In all this time there had not any enquiries been made after the Count: for ſince his carrying Clementina to his caſtle on the banks of the Guadimara, he had been often accuſtomed to paſs from thence to Madrid and back again, without ſuffering any of his attendants to follow him; fearing leſt the ſecret ſhould be revealed, by his domeſtics converſing too freely together; for notwithſtanding his threats to Clementina, that he would diſcover her being his poſ- E1r 73 poſſeſſion, he in reality uſed all his endeavours to conceal it. But all his caution could not prevent his ſervants from ſuſpecting that it could be nothing but a miſtreſs which occaſioned his making ſuch frequent and private excurſions; ſo that now, far from being alarmed at his abſence, they only imagined he was gone to paſs a few days with his incognita:—on the other hand, thoſe ſervants whom he had left at the caſtle, believing him ſafe at Madrid, gave themſelves no farther trouble about him. So that had the wound which he received from the Marquis proved mortal, his death might have remained a ſecret at leaſt till the authors of it had time to withdraw:—but it was otherwiſe ordained; for in ten days the Count’s illneſs was ſo much abated, that the physicians declared he was out of danger. Don Clement therefore findingII. E ing E1v 74 ing him in a condition to bear the converſation with which he intended to entertain him, ſat down by his bed-ſide, when, accoſting him with an air of friendſhip,—My Lord, ſaid he, it is with infinite ſatisfaction that I ſee you reſtored almoſt to your former health; nor would I have you believe that this proceeds from any fears I was under on account of your death: for had that misfortune really come to paſs, your rencounter with the Marquis and concealment in my houſe are both ſuch profound ſecrets, that that Lord might have retired into Italy before the affair could poſſibly be diſcovered:—or ſhould he ſtay, the juſtneſs of our cauſe and the greatneſs of our injuries would have been a ſufficient plea for his pardon.—Don Clement pauſed here; and finding the Count made no reply, but ſeemed as if he attended the concluſion of this ſpeech, E2r 75 ſpeech, he proceeded,—Conſider, Don Gabriel, the inſults which you have thrown on our family!—’Tis true my father promiſed to give you Donna Clementina for a wife; and I myſelf ſhould have thought your alliance an honour to our houſe, if the unconquerable diſlike my ſiſter had to you had not inclined me to wiſh the marriage might not take place. I made no ſecret of this to yourſelf; and you know I conjured my father not to force Clementina’s inclinations; but he was obdurate, and the conſequence of this was that my ſiſter was compelled to abandon her friends, her country, and even her ſex, in order to her concealment and protection againſt injuries! Was not this ſufficient cauſe for her to hate you?—But this was not all; you followed her indeed, but rather with the arrogance of a maſter who purſues a fugitive ſlave, than E2 with E2v 76 with the reſpect of a lover who would conquer the averſion of his miſtreſs!— What right had you to treat a young maiden of quality in the manner you have ſince done? To make her a priſoner in your houſe, to conceal her from her friends, to threaten her with death! or what’s worſe, the ruin of her reputation, if ſhe refuſed to comply with your deſires!—Theſe are truths, my Lord, which, ſhould they appear againſt you, would redound but little to your honour; and I much doubt whether your high rank would ſcreen you from the puniſhment I might with ſo much juſtice demand on you: but I am ſatiſfied to overlook all theſe injuries; and even Clementina herſelf has with the utmost generoſity beſtowed the tendereſt care on you, and is already inclined to forget the hardſhips you have made her ſuffer, provided you will promiſe to trouble E3r 77 trouble her quiet no more, nor make any farther attempts upon her perſon. She is now in the hands of a brother, from whom you will find it no very eaſy matter to tear her:—therefore, my Lord, reſign with a good grace thoſe pretentions which no force in the world will enable you to make good.—Here Don Clement ſtopped, to obſerve what impreſſion his diſcourſe had made on the Count. He had avoided in the latter part of his ſpeech to make any mention of the Marquis; believing that the name of a rival would only ſerve to encreaſe the conſternation he began to remark in Don Gabriel’s face, who had heard him attentively without once offering to interrupt him.
When the Count found Don Clement had done ſpeaking;—You have opened my eyes, Signior, ſaid he, with a E3 ſigh, E3v 78 ſigh, which have been but too long blinded by a miſplaced, though ardent, paſſion for your ſiſter:—I am fully ſenſible of the indignities I have offered to that lady; I am the more aſhamed of it when I reflect on her ſweetneſs and generous concern for me in my illneſs.— Teach me therefore, ſaid he (graſping one of Don Clement’s hands) teach me how to make her a reparation; for I ſwear to you I have no longer any deſigns upon her but what tend towards her happineſs.—Oh, my Lord! ſaid Don Clement, I am charmed to ſee you in this happy temper of mind! Our revenge, though juſt, has already been too ſevere:—ſince it almoſt coſt you your life, we can demand no farther reparation: and I think, after the declaration you have made, it would be only injurious to ſuſpect you capable of harbouring any ſentiments contrary to E4r 79 to ſo generous a change in your heart. You may depend upon it that I ſhall for ever bury in oblivion all that is paſt. I entreat your friendſhip from this moment; and promiſe you that neither the Marquis nor Clementina ſhall any longer look upon you as their foe.
At the name of the Marquis Don Gabriel bluſhed and betrayed ſome inward emotions which he would fain have concealed.—Don Clement obſerved it; and believing that he ſtill entertained a ſecret jealouſy againſt him as a rival, or that the remembrance of his being ſo lately vanquiſhed by him had occaſioned this diſorder, was willing to divert ſo diſagreeable a ſubject: ſo all at once changing the diſcourse, I believe, my Lord, ſaid he, you will in a day or two be able to leave your chamber. I am impatient to ſee E4 you E4v 80 you well again:—not, continued he, ſmiling, that I intend you ſhall leave me ſo ſoon, but I long to entertain you as a welcome gueſt, without the reſtraint that phyſicians and ſurgeons have laid on you: and I have two ſiſters beſides Clementina to whom you owe a compliment, for the fright they have been in on your account ever ſince your illneſs.—Indeed, anſwered the Count, I am the moſt unfortunate man in the world, to be the occaſion of ſo much trouble; but, à-propos, where is the gentleman to whoſe proſperous courage I think you are indebted for my being burdenſome to you thus long—the Marquis I have heard you call him?— He told me before that unlucky combat, that he was to marry your ſiſter; I believe him indeed worthy to be her huſband. Has he yet obtained that happy title? Tell me, for I am no longer E5r 81 longer Clementina’s lover, and therefore cannot be his rival.—He ſpoke this with ſo open and candid an air, that Don Clement made no doubt of his ſincerity.—They are not yet married, my Lord, ſaid he; you may imagine that we would not make choice of a time in which your life was in danger to celebrate a wedding. The Marquis himſelf, whoſe love for my ſiſter might juſtify a little impatience on this occaſion, was too generous even to preſs me to conclude the matter till he was aſſured of your recovery, which (as I hope) will be completed in a few days; and we then flatter ourſelves that you will honour with your preſence a ceremony, which nothing but the condition you have been in ſhould have retarded.—I have, replied Don Gabriel, entirely renounced all pretenſions to, or even hopes of gaining your ſiſter’s E5 favour; E5v 82 favour; and can hear of her being in the arms of another without a ſigh: but I muſt ſtill confeſs myſelf ſo weak that I could not endure to be a witneſs of it: therefore ſpare me, Don Clement,— ſpare me the mortification of this view; and to be truly generous, ſuſpend your ſiſter’s marriage till I am in a condition to remove from your houſe, when I ſhall leave you all in full poſſeſſion of your happineſs.
A requeſt ſo natural, and even delivered in a ſoft and humble tone of voice, from a man of the Count’s haughty temper, could not fail of moving the perſon to whom it was addreſſed. —I ſhall obey you, my Lord, anſwered Don Clement, though I aſſure you I ſhall regret loſing you more than you can imagine!After E6r 83
After this converſation the Count, Don Clement, and the Marquis (whom the former had deſired to ſee and be reconciled to) lived together in perfect amity. In a few days Don Gabriel found himſelf in a condition to go abroad:—ſo, taking leave of Don Clement, with many acknowledgments for his care and tenderneſs, he told him he had one requeſt to make, which he hoped he would not refuſe to grant.— I am now going, ſaid he, to a ſeat I have about two leagues from Madrid, where I intend to paſs a month or two; I inſiſt on returning the civilities I have received at your hands, by having the Marquis and you, together with your fair ſiſters, to ſpend ſome days with me.—Though nothing would be more agreeable to me, anſwered Don Clement, than to accept this mark of your friendſhip, yet I cannot take upon E6 me E6v 84 me to promiſe any thing in the name of the Marquis; on the contrary, I know he is impatient to return to Italy; that he is already tired of delays; and, for my own part, I have ſome reaſons to wiſh myſelf in that country, which incline me to haſten our departure as much as poſſible:—I fear therefore we muſt debar ourſelves the happineſs you propoſe to us;—but you may depend upon it we ſhall not leave Spain without making you a viſit at your villa.—Though the Count was very preſſing with Don Clement, he could obtain no more from him than a promiſe of waiting on him ſpeedily; upon which he took his leave in a very polite manner, and ſet out immediately for his country-ſeat.
The Marquis now at liberty to purſue his inclinations, did not fail of putting Don Clement in mind of his promise.— ‘I ſhall E7r 85 I ſhall defer my return into Italy, ſaid he, no longer than till my marriage with Donna Clementina is concluded; I ſhall therefore judge of your impatience to ſee Eugenia again by the haſte you make in completing my happineſs. Don Clement did not need to be put in mind of his miſtreſs; for her longed as ardently to return to the Marquis’s beautiful niece as that Lord did to ſee himſelf united to Clementina:he ſoon fixed the day for his ſiſter’s nuptials; and gave orders for ſuch preparations as were ſuitable to the occaſion and the quality of the perſons concerned.
In this interval of time it was that Don Clement recollected his engagement to the Count of Caſtellar; and concluding that it would not be ſo grateful to him to ſeeClementinaſee Clementina and theMarquisthe Marquis after their mar- E7v 68 marriage, he propoſed to the latter to pay Don Gabriel a viſit the following day, and carry the ladies along with them. The Marquis readily agreed to it; and Clementina, no longer regarding the Count as an enemy, was as willing to be of the party as either of them.
Accordingly the next morning they all ſet out for the Count’s country-ſeat. The weather was extremely fine, and happened not to be ſo warm as is uſual in Spain;—ſo that to make this little journey the more agreeable, the Marquis begged to have the honour of driving his miſtreſs in an open chaiſe, whilſt Don Clement with his two ſiſters went in a coach.—They were received by the Count Caſtellar with every mark of friendſhip and reſpect:-and after an entertainment, which teſtified the vaſt magnificence E8r 87 magnificence of this Lord, he preſented Clementina with a little caſket, which contained a diamond necklace, together with a ring, and jewels for her ears, all of very great value; telling her, in a gallant manner, that though he had intended thoſe ornaments as a bridal-preſent for the Counteſs of Caſtellar, yet he thought Fate had deſtined them much more gloriouſly for the Marchioneſs of Peſcara.—The Marquis was charmed with ſo obliging a compliment: and Clementina was even better pleaſed with it than with the magnificent preſent which accompanied it; which, however, ſhe accepted with the politeſt acknowledgements, fearing Don Gabriel would take a refuſal very ill.
The day paſſed over in the moſt delightful manner; when, Don Clement thinking it time to be gone, the whole company E8v 88 company took leave of the Count, and ſet out on their return to Madrid, in the ſame manner they had left it, the Marquis inſiſting on bearing Clementina company in the chaiſe.
They had now got about half-way home, and were paſſing through a narrow road, which was cut acroſs a wood, in which it was impoſſible for two carriages to go abreaſt. By means of this circumſtance Don Clement’s coach had got on at ſome diſtance before the chaiſe in which his ſiſter and the Marquis were. The unevenneſs of the road obliged them to drive ſlowly; and they were entered into a very intereſting converſation, when they were ſuddenly alarmed at the appearance of ſeveral horſemen, who galloped out of the wood, and encloſed them on every ſide. The Marquis was attended only by two ſervants, and E9r 89 and Don Clement with the like number, beſides his coachmen; ſo they found themſelves but ſeven in all, againſt twelve, which was the number of their enemies.
The ſhrieks of Donna Clementina alarmed her brother, who immediately got out of the coach and ran to her aſſiſtance. The Marquis had by this time leaped out of the chaiſe; and having no other weapon but a ſhort ſword, which would have been of little uſe, he haſtily ſnatched a piſtol from the hand of one of his ſervants (who had juſt taken it from his holſter) and let fly at a perſon maſked and muffled up in a cloke, who was endeavouring to force Clementina out of the chaiſe. The miſerable Count of Caſtellar (for it was he) was born to fall by the hand of the brave Marquis. The bullets with which the E9v 90 the piſtol was loaded, lodged in his breaſt; and he dropped dead under the horſes feet. His maſk falling off at the ſame time, diſcovered this treacherous Spaniard, to the amazement of Don Clement and his friend. The perſons who had aſſiſted the Count in this villanous expedition, were ſo terrified at ſeeing him fall, that they thought it ſafeſt to fly. However, one of them had the boldneſs to diſcharge his piſtol at the Marquis. It miſſed him; but unfortunately killed one of his ſervants who ſtood near him.
Clementina could not behold Don Clement without horror. She was put almoſt breathleſs with fear into the coach with her ſiſters; whilſt her brother and the Marquis, with the three remaining ſervants, rode on each ſide of it. It was dark when they reached Madrid: and Don E10r 91 Don Clement, believing that the Count’s death would ſoon be publiſhed, was afraid that, notwithſtanding the manner of it and the greatneſs of his crimes, the Marquis might be put to ſome trouble on that occaſion, as the deceaſed was a man of the highest rank, and had relations in the greateſt poſts about court; he thought it therefore adviſeable to be beforehand with his accuſers, and to rely on the clemency of Philip the Third (who then reigned) for his friend’s pardon. He made the Marquis acquainted with his deſign; and, though it was now night, they both took coach immediately for the Eſcurial.
As Don Clement was known and much reſpected by the principal miniſters, he found it no difficult matter to be admitted privately into the royal preſence; where, throwing himſelf at his ſovereign’s E10v 92 ſovereign’s feet, he declared the cauſe of his preſenting himſelf before his Majeſty; and having informed him of the death of Count of Caſtellar, he in a few words acquainted him with the injuries he had received from that Lord, and concluded with preſenting the Marquis of Peſcara to the King. The Monarch had often caſt his eyes on him during Don Clement’s narration, and found his perſon and carriage ſo graceful, that he was already prepoſſeſſed in his favour; he received him therefore with the moſt gracious condeſcenſion; and, finding he could ſpeak Spaniſh perfectly well, he talked to him ſome minutes, and aſſured him, that, as Don Clement had repreſented the matter, Count Caſtellar had very juſtly merited the death which he had brought upon himſelf; adding, that if his friends were diſcreet, they would chuſe not to make a noiſe E11r 93 a noiſe about an affair which would be ſo much to the diſhonour of a man of Don Gabriel’s years and high ſtation; and concluded with telling him he might rely on his protection.
The Marquis and Don Clement having with the warmeſt of expreſſions teſtified their gratitude to the Prince, took their leave, not a little glad they had ſo eaſily got rid of an affair which they apprehended would have been attended with unpleaſant conſequences. But indeed they had leſs reaſon for their fears than they imagined; for Don Gabriel’s relations being informed of every particular relating to the affair with Clementina, thought it moſt prudent to huſh up the matter; and, having given out that he was attacked and murdered by robbers in the night, on his way to Madrid, they had him privately interred;red; E11v 94 red; and there were few, except his own followers, who knew the truth of the ſtory.
Every obſtacle being now removed, the marriage of the Marquis with Donna Clementina was no longer delayed. It was ſolemnized at the houſe of Don Clement, though with leſs pomp than was intended, on account of the tragical adventure which had preceded it. The Marquis however thought nothing wanting to his happineſs in the poſſeſſion of his admired Clementina.
Don Clement, having now acquitted himſelf towards his friend, reminded the Marquis in his turn of his engagements to him; and, the day after his ſiſter’s nuptials, propoſed their departure from Spain.—Your impatience to E12r 95 to return to Eugenia pleaſes me, cried the Marquis, and believe me, my dear Pimenteles, I long to tie the bond which unites us ſtill cloſer, by giving you my niece: I am ready therefore to depart for Italy; for I am ſure Clementina will gladly go with us.—Let us be gone then, cried Don Clement; I feel my abſence from Eugenia becomes more and more inſupportable. In effect, Don Clement ordered every thing with ſo much diligence, that in three days they were in a condition to ſet out on their journey; when, after having taken leave of the two ſiſters of Don Clement (who choſe to remain in Spain) they departed from Madrid; and, after a proſperous journey, reached Milan, without meeting the leaſt accident that could for a moment interrupt their happineſs.Don E12v 96
Don Clement found himſelf received by Eugenia, with a joy equal to that he felt at ſeeing her again. She was charmed at the ſight of Clementina, and tranſported at finding ſhe had become the Marquis’s wife.
As for Madame Burganeze, ſhe no ſooner heard of her brother’s arrival, than, unwilling to undergo the confuſion which his preſence, together with that of his lady and Don Clement muſt create in her, ſhe ſhut herſelf up in her apartment; when, having wrote a letter to the Marquis, in which ſhe acknowledged her daughter to his care, ſhe privately withdrew from his houſe, without bidding any one farewell, and retired to the monaſtery of St. Bridget, where ſhe ſpent the reſt of her days; and the Marquis, impatient to ſee his friend F1r 97 friend as happy as himſelf, reſigned Eugenia to the arms of Don Clement.
It is now time to ſay ſomething of Adelaide, whom we left at the Marquis de Peſcara’s, when he went into Spain; and whom at his return he found ſtill her friend’s happineſs; but her own ſecret diſcontents left her but little reliſh for thoſe pleaſures which every day took place at the Marquis of Peſcara’s houſe and though Eugenia was now bleſt in a union from which ſhe promiſed herſelf the utmoſt felicity, ſhe found an alloy to her joy from the conſtant melancholy which preyed upon her dear Adelaide: that unhappy lady nouriſhed a ſecret grief which nothing could diminiſh. The Marchioneſs, who was charmed with her, ſtrove all in her power to divert her melancholy; but being Vol. II F unac- F1v 98 unacquainted with the cauſe, her obliging endeavours were only a conſtraints upon Adelaide, who would often ſlip from the company, and retire to her chamber, in order to give a looſe to her ſorrow.
Eugenia, who had often obſerved this, followed her one day, and ſurpriſed her in tears,—Dear Adelaide, ſaid ſhe, why will you perſiſt in afflicting yourſelf thus for an ungrateful man (for ſuch at length I am compelled to think him) whoſe death would not merit on of thoſe tears which you ſhed in ſuch floods for his inconſtancy:— have more regard to your youth and beauty, which have already gained you a thouſand admirers; conſider your birth and the vaſt fortune you have in proſpect;—Shall the young, the fair, the rich heireſs of the Baron St. Seberinarina F2r 99 rina ſigh away her bloom for a worthleſs creature, who, had he been ever ſo faithful, was undeſerving of her love?— She was going on, but Adelaide interrupted her:—How eaſy is it, my dear, ſaid ſhe, to counſel others, when our own hearts are at eaſe! I am as ſenſible as you can be, of the folly of tormenting myſelf for an irreparable ill; and I am even aſhamed of my weakneſs in continuing to weep for a man that any other but myſelf would deſpise; but, alas! my heart has been too long accuſtomed to love him; and I even perſuaded myſelf at ſome moments, that he is entirely without blame; and, notwithſtanding that he never let me know his fate, I perſiſt in thinking that I am ſtill to accuſe nobody but Fauſtina.— You rave, cried Eugenia; don’t indulge ſentiments ſo favourable to the Chevalier, unleſs you would for ever deſtroyF2 ſtroy F2v 100 ſtroy your own peace. I indeed encouraged you in them at firſt, imagining it would alleviate your grief to think that Don Enenique would ever preſerve you in his memory; but what reaſon have we had ſince to ſuppoſe that he does ſo? I grant you, that he was deceived by your couſin; but could the deception laſt? Was he not at leaſt at liberty to lament his fate to you, ſince all other conſolation was cut off? Yes, certainly he was: do not therefore, I conjure you, nouriſh an opinion that will ſerve only to feed the flame which devours your heart. I would to Heaven, my dear Adelaide, that Ponces had never known you loved him! you would then have but little reaſon to regret the loſing him. This circumſtance was what chiefly conſoled me under the loſs of Don Clement. I then felt all the pangs that you now ſuffer; but it was a great ſatisfaction F3r 101 ſatisfaction to me to think that, ſhould he be unfaithful, he would never know the pain it would coſt me; and I was ſo far from flattering myſelf with vain hopes, that I called every aid in my power to aſſiſt me in baniſhing from my thoughts an object that ſerved only to torment me; and I declare to you, that had I never ſeen him more, I ſhould have ſupported ſuch a misfortune without impatience, and would have endeavoured to conſole myſelf as much as poſſible.—How you preach! cried Adelaide (a little piqued at her friend’s words); have I not been a witneſs to the tears you ſo often ſhed for the abſence of Don Clement? and did I not alſo ſee the tranſports of joy which you diſcovered on his being reſtored to you? —Tranſports that nothing but a happineſs which you looked upon as ſupreme, would have inſpired you with. F3 Yes, F3v 102 Yes, Eugenia; I ſaw every thing that paſſed in your heart. I ſhared your ſorrows with you; but, alas! I cannot partake with you in your joys: and I will even confeſs to you, that the tenderneſs which you and Don Clement have for each other, is often a matter of mortification to me. Every word, every look of your amiable huſband ſerves only to keep my miſfortune freſh in my memory.—Such, ſaid I, would Don Enenique have been to the unfortunate Adelaide, if a treacherous creature had not robbed her of him.—Here ſhe melted into tears; and Eugenia was ſo affected, that, far from being able to comfort her, ſhe could only accompany her in her ſorrow.
Such was the ſituation of the diſconſolate daughter of Baron St. Seberina, when ſhe received an expreſs from Salernolerno, F4r 103 lerno, which brought her an account of her father’s death, who had been carried off ſo ſuddenly, that there was not time to give her the leaſt advice of his illneſs. Her preſence was abſolutely neceſſary at home; wherefore, taking a haſty leave of Eugenia, and the reſt of her noble friends, ſhe ſet out for the kingdom of Naples, in a coach with a gentleman of her kindred, who had come on purpoſe for her.
The Baron’s body had been embalmed before ſhe arrive; ſo that ſhe had time enough to order his funeral with a ſolemnity ſuitable to his quality and the affection ſhe bore his memory.
Adelaide now found herſelf miſtreſs of thirty thouſand ducats a-year: ſhe was juſt nineteen, and poſſeſſed of many perſonal charms; yet, with all theſe advantages,F4 vantages, F4v 104 vantages, ſhe ſtill retained ſo deep a melancholy, that ſhe had almoſt reſolved to renounce all commerce with the world, and ſhut herſelf up in a nunnery for life; but ſhe was reſerved by fate for other things.
Her father had but juſt time before his death to recommend her to the care of an old friend of his, a gentleman of the ſtricteſt honour and integrity. He was called Signior Fernando Deffari; and was married to a Spaniſh lady of a noble family, whoſe virtue and politeneſs made the Baron believe that his daughter would be perfectly happy under her protection. It was to Signior Deffari’s houſe then that Adelaide repaired after her father’s death; and that worthy man having ſettled her fortune in the moſt convenient and advantageous manner, ſhe found in him and his lady F5r 105 lady every thing that could conſpire to form the moſt valuable and agreeable friends; that lady had, along with a great deal of prudence, a gaiety in her manner that is not often found amongſt perſons of her nation; ſhe endeavoured by the moſt endearing carriage, to ſoften Adelaide’s grief for the loſs of her father; to which ſhe wholly imputed the tears which ſhe ſaw her ſhed inceſſantly. But though Adelaide was ſincerely afflicted for her father’s death; yet ſhe had another ſource of ſorrow which ſhe had hitherto concealed from her friend. Her ſuperior years, and the reſpect ſhe had for her (now ſtanding in the room of a parent) prevented her from revealing the ſecret of her heart; but the repeated careſſes of Madame Deffari, and the freedom with which ſhe treated her young friend, at length prevailed over her reluctance; and ſhe one day took F5 an F5v 106 an opportunity, from the frank behaviour of her protectreſs, to make her the confidante of her paſſion for the Chevalier de Ponces, and the unhappy conſequences which had attended it.
Madame Deffari condoled with her ſincerely; but at the ſame time bade her have comfort:—I know the Chevalier, ſaid ſhe, when I was in Spain; he was of the ſame province with me; I lived in ſtrict intimacy with his mother, who was a lady of one of the beſt families in Andaluſia. The Chevalier, when I ſaw him (which is almoſt ten years ſince) was a young man of great hopes; he had fine parts, improved by a noble education; and he promiſed to be as worthy as he was amiable. But the account you have given me of him has indeed much ſurpriſed me. Yet, if I be not miſtaken, Don Enenique thinks himſelf F6r 107 himſelf ſtill more unhappy than you are. I grant you that appearances are againſt him: but what if you ſhould find that he, after having too late diſcovered the fatal error he committed in marrying your couſin, ſo far from continuing with her, has retired from the world, overwhelmed with ſhame and grief?—Would it not be ſome conſolation to think that the Chevalier, ſeeing himſelf for ever deprived of you, had abandoned the perfidious woman who had been the occaſion of that misfortune? Yes, certainly it would: and you wrong yourſelf as well as him, in believing that he would paſs his life with Fauſtina, after having once dedicated it to you. No, my dear; think better of Don Enenique; for I could almoſt ſwear that, let him be in what part of the world he will, he is at this moment regretting the loſs of you.F6 Adelaide F6v 108
Adelaide heard her friend talk in this manner with unſpeakable ſatisfaction. —You have filled my mind, ſaid ſhe, with a delightful idea. I confeſs I feel an infinite pleaſure in the reflection that I am ſtill dear to Don Enenique, though I can no longer hope to be his, and probably may never ſee him more:—but yet, my dear friend, now that you have taken upon you to juſtify that gentleman, how can you reconcile his leaving me, with the unkind ſilence he has obſerved ever ſince our ſeparation, which is now more than a year? Might I not expect to have heard him complain of a deſtiny which he knows muſt have made me as wretched as himſelf?—had his fate appeared ſo cruel to him, would it not have been ſome conſolation to have acquainted me with his ſufferings?—me, who bore ſo great a ſhare in them!—And though I neither expected F7r 109 expected nor deſired to ſee him, I was yet within reach of a letter, which might have ſpared me the uncertainty I have ever ſince lived in!—Tell me, Madam, I conjure you, what would you have me think of this?—I don’t pretend, ſaid Madame Deffari, to account for every part of his conduct; what I have already ſaid is only an opinion founded on my former knowledge of him; and I confeſs this laſt circumſtance ſomewhat puzzles me:—but however, even with reſpect to this, we may form conjectures of the cauſe of your never having heard from him;— perhaps your father might have taken care to intercept any intelligence from him, to prevent a fruitleſs and improper correſpondence:—or maybe Fauſtina, with the aſſiſtance of the unfaithful Thereſa, might have been artful enough to prevail on the credulity of Ponces ſo far, F7v 110 far, as to make him believe that you yourſelf were acceſſary to her flight with him. Might not ſhe, with all the diſſimulation ſhe is miſtreſs of, have repreſented her paſſion in the moſt lively colours, and aſſured him that Adelaide, touched with her grief, and not loving half ſo well as ſhe did, had yielded him to her wiſhes, and even aſſiſted her in the accompliſhment of them; reſolving herſelf to wed the Count De la Roſa, whoſe wealth and titles ſhe preferred to the Chevalier’s paſſion. Might not Thereſa have backed this by a thouſand proteſtations; and might not Don Enenique, deceived perhaps by oaths, tears, and a million falſehoods, have his jealousy raiſed to ſuch a height— Forbear, cried, Adelaide, for Heaven’s ſake forbear to finiſh this cruel picture!—I conſent to his marrying Fauſtina, and myſelf wed the Count! Sure F8r 111 Sure he could not believe ſuch a monſtrous, ſuch an impoſſible thing!—Alas, he knows my heart too well! But yet, the treacherous, the artful Fauſtina! added ſhe (after a pauſe) Oh! Madam, you have awakened a dreadful thought! Why did you not rather encourage me to believe that Ponces had abandoned me ungratefully? I ſhould have endeavoured to deſpiſe, and (in time) to forget him:—but if, on the contrary, he accuſes me of ingratitude and perfidy,—how do you imagine I can ſupport ſuch a terrible reflection? Oh! if this be the reaſon of his neglect, I lay nothing to his charge:—I forgive him and acquit him. But I muſt ſink under this weight which oppreſſes me. —Her tears ſtopped her ſpeech, and ſhe ſunk down on the arm of Madame Deffari, who ſat by her.—That tender friend was afflicted to the laſt degree, at the F8v 112 the condition in which ſhe ſaw this unfortunate lady. She preſſed Adelaide’s face to her boſom, and drying up her tears with her handkerchief,—Forgive me, my dear child, ſaid ſhe, and don’t put me to the pain of believing myſelf the cauſe of this heavy affliction. Why will you thus torment yourſelf for what may be only a chimæra?—You know I told you it was a conjecture, merely, which I was going to offer; and one that probably has nothing in it: at leaſt all the foundation which I had for it was that, knowing the Chevalier to be a man of integrity, I was of opinion that there muſt have been ſome foul play to prevent his making explanations to you:—however, I beſeech you, don’t let what I have juſt now ſaid make the leaſt impreſſion on you: you know I love you with the tenderneſs of a mother,ther, F9r 113 ther, and would do any thing to diſpel the grief which hangs over you perpetually:—and I don’t know, ſaid ſhe (after a ſhort ſilence, and ſeeing Adelaide diſpoſed to liſten to her) but I have thought of a remedy, which, if it will not quite effect a cure, may at leaſt divert the malady. You muſt know then, I have long had a deſign to pay a viſit to my native country, and had even prevailed on Signior Deffari to go with me, when your father’s death (by conſigning you to our hands) put a ſtop to our intended journey. However, if you are inclined to ſee Spain, I think this need not retard us any longer; but remember we are not to ſee the Chevalier, added ſhe, ſmiling; and you muſt promiſe me that you will not make any enquiries after him but through my means.—I conſent to that moſt willingly, anſwered Adelaidelaide, F9v 114 laide, though perhaps your tenderneſs for me may incline you to conceal the truth from me, if you find his ſituation to be ſuch as you think the knowledge of it would give me pain.— Don’t trouble your head about that, replied Madame Deffari; I’ll anſwer for it we ſhall find better entertainment than a recital of his adventures.—Adelaide made no reply to this, but begged Madame Deffari to let their departure be as ſpeedy as poſſible.
Signior Deffari, who tenderly loved his wife, was rejoiced that his ward had conſented to take this journey with her; he made haſte to prepare every thing for it; and in a few days they were ready to ſail in a veſſel bound for Cadiz. The voyage was extremly pleaſant and agreeable. Signior Deffari wanted nothing in the ſociety of his amiable wife, who F10r 115 who, for her part, was charmed with the proſpect of ſeeing her relations and her country, from which ſhe had been abſent ſo long: and Adelaide felt a ſecret pleaſure at the idea of being in a place which ſhe believed contained every thing that was dear to her. Her head was filled with theſe thoughts when ſhe reached Spain; and Madame Deffari (impatient to ſee her friends, who, moſt of them, reſided in Andaluſia) haſtened aſhore, and went directly to the houſe of her brother, who had for a long time been expecting her arrival.
Whatever emotion Adelaide felt at finding herſelf in the very province where Ponces was born, and where ſhe was ſure he muſt be known; ſhe however reſiſted the curioſity ſhe had to be informed what was become of him: the promiſe ſhe had made to Madame Deffarifari F10v 116 fari ſhe reſovedreſolved punctually. That lady however did not fail to enquire privately amongſt her friends, whether he was in Andaluſia, and what was his ſituation? But all ſhe could learn was that he had been at an eſtate he had in Valencia about a year before; and that, having left his affairs in the hands of a particular friend, he had diſappeared, and nobody could give any account of him but that friend, who ſaid he had gone abroad, and intended to make a tour through Europe. But ſhe could not diſcover whether he had a lady in his company, or any other particular relating to him.
This account (believing that Adelaide was impatient to hear ſomething of him) Madame Deffari communicated to her, as there was nothing in it which could augment her trouble. I believe,lieve, F11r 117 lieve, added ſhe, that the Chevalier flies from all the world. Had Fauſtina been with him I ſhould certainly have heard of it; but I am apt to think that, deteſting her for the vile cheat ſhe put on him, he abandons her, and ſeeks to hide his grief and diſappointment in ſome place where he is not known;— but be that as it may, we muſt not think of him any more; for it is plain to me that Don Enenique, deſpairing to poſſeſs you from his fatal engagements to your couſin, is ſtudious to avoid every thing which may recal you to his mind. Be ſatisfied then, dear Adelaide, and follow his example, by endeavouring to forget a man to whom Heaven did not think fit to join you.—I ſubmit, cried Adelaide; I ſubmit without murmuring to the decrees of Providence!—but let us talk no more on a ſubject that has already coſt me too dear.” F11v 118 dear.—Madame Deffari, pleaſed to find her in ſuch a diſpoſition, ſaid all ſhe could to fortify her mind; and Adelaide received great conſolation from this very amiable woman.
Amongſt the number of friends who came to compliment Madame Deffari on her return to Spain, the Biſhop of Seville was one of the firſt. This Prelate, for whom ſhe had a particular eſteem, came one morning to ſee her; and, after a ſhort viſit, was ready to take his leave, telling her he was engaged to paſs the day with two young and handſome ladies, who lived at a villa about a league from thence. He added that they were ſo very amiable, he wiſhed that ſhe and her fair friend were acquainted with them.—I, continued he, think myſelf highly honoured by their friendſhip, as they are not F12r 119 not only women of great quality, but of exemplary virtue; and withal endowed with ſo much wit and judgment, that I often prefer their converſation to that of the moſt ingenious of the men.— He had no occaſion to ſay more to excite the curioſity of the ladies to whom he addreſſed himſelf. So great an encomium from a perſon of this good Biſhop’s character, made them long impatiently for a ſight of theſe two excellent women.—And do you fancy, ſaid Madame Deffari, that you ſhall have the charming creatures all to yourſelf, and not take us along with you?— For my part, I long to embrace them; I am ſure Adelaide does the ſame; and we inſiſt on your letting us have that pleaſure this very day.—I ſhould have made you an offer of this myſelf, replied the Biſhop; for though theſe ladies live extremely retired, yet I am ſure F12v 120 ſure they will be pleaſed with your acquaintance, and even thank me for the honour.—Come then, my dear, cried Madame Deffari to Adelaide; let us go and fee if my Lord Biſhop has not enlarged on the perfections of thoſe two unknown fair ones.—Saying this, ſhe led the way down ſtairs; and finding the Biſhop of Seville’s coach waiting at the door, they got into it.
During their ſhort journey, the Biſhop told them that the perſons whom they were going to ſee, though they lived in the moſt perfect union, were not ſiſters, nor any way related; that one of them was called Donna Clara d’ Avilas, daughter of the Marquis of Solar; the other, Donna Cynthia Cardonas, niece of the Duke of Segorbe, and allied to the houſe of Arragon.—There is ſomething, added he, a little particularticular G1r 121 ticular in their hiſtory, which is the occaſion of their retiring at an age when the pleaſures of the gay world (in which they were bred) muſt have appeared very alluring.—I will not relate any part of their ſtory, becauſe you would loſe much pleaſure by hearing it from any mouth but their own; and I make no doubt but they will entertain you with it when you become a little acquainted with them.—Theſe words brought them to the gate of the caſtle of Cardonas, where, being informed that both the ladies were within, the Biſhop gave his hand to Madame Deffari while Adelaide followed them into a large handſome parlour, where they found Donna Clara and Donna Cynthia buſied in a piece of embroidery.
By the air with which they received the Biſhop of Seville, his two companionsII. G nions G1v 122 nions perceived how welcome a gueſt this venerable man was to them. They accoſted Madame Deffari and Adelaide (whom the Biſhop introduced as a young ſtranger of quality) in a manner that ſhewed at once their politeneſs and the ſweetneſs of their diſpoſitions:—they embraced the latter with the freedom of a ſiſter, aſking the Biſhop what they muſt give him for making them ſo happy?— In ſhort, theſe ladies found one another ſo very agreeable, that they ſoon became familiarly acquainted. They thought the day paſſed too quickly; and theſe amiable Spaniards would not ſuffer their two new friends to depart without making them promiſe to come again in a few days, and ſpend a week at their caſtle; which Madame Deffari the more readily conſented to, as Signior Deffari was to be abſent from her for ſome time, on buſineſs which called him to Seville.On G2r 123
On their return home, the two ladies did not fail to expreſs their admiration of the two young perſons they had juſt been viſiting:—they beſtowed a thouſand praiſes on them; and proteſted they were more charming than even the Biſhop had repreſented them, though Madame Deffari ſaid ſhe obſerved a certain air of melancholy in their faces, eſpecially in that of Donna Clara.—Adelaide was ſo impatient to ſee them again, that Signior Deffari was no ſooner gone to Seville than ſhe put his lady in mind of her promiſe; who, as well to gratify Adelaide as her own inclination, went the ſame day to the caſtle of Cardonas; where they now purpoſed to paſs ſome time.
The two amiable friends received their gueſts with the utmoſt joy. They told them they muſt now look upon G2 them- G2v 124 themſelves as at home; and that, laying by all conſtraint and ceremony, they were each to ſuppoſe themſelves in their own houſe.—I will ſhew you your apartments, ſaid Donna Cynthia (to whom the caſtle belonged) and you ſhall tell me how you like them. Saying this, ſhe led them into a gallery, from whence there was a door to their lodgings, which conſiſted of a handſome antichamber, two bedchambers, and three neat cloſets; two of which were properly furniſhed for dreſſing- rooms, and the third for a ſtudy.— There, ſaid Donna Cynthia, are to be your quarters:—you will find ſome entertainment in that little library, as well as in our park and other improvements.
Madame Deffari and Adelaide were charmed with their ſituation!—Every thing G3r 125 thing was elegant and regular within the caſtle; and the woods, meadows, and gardens, with which it was ſurrounded, together with the river Guadelquiver, which waſhed the walls of it, rendered it one of the moſt delightful abodes in the world.—They paſſed the day with all the ſatiſfaction that could poſſibly reſult from the converſation of perſons highly pleaſed with each other; and it was late before they parted to betake themſelves to reſt.—Donna Clara having waited on the two ladies to their apartment, gave Adelaide the keys of a cabinet which ſtood in the library; and, having called a woman to wait on them, retired.
When Madame Deffari had withdrawn to undreſs, Adelaide unlocked the cabinet, to lay by ſome jewels which ſhe had juſt taken off; when, opening G3 one G3v 126 one of the drawers, ſhe ſaw a little gold box, which ſeemed by the colour to have lain a long time neglected. She took it up, and, having opened it, ſhe was ſurpriſed with the picture of a young man of about five or ſix-and- twenty years of age, and of an agreeable ſoft countenance!—The painting was very delicate and lively, and the ſetting adorned with precious ſtones; but by the circumſtance in which ſhe found this picture, ſhe concluded that it repreſented ſome perſon whom the ladies of the caſtle either had but little value for, or elſe had ſome other reaſons for putting it out of their ſight!— She remembered that the Biſhop had told her there was ſomething particular in their ſtories; and fancying that this picture might poſſibly have ſome relation to them, ſhe reſolved to take occaſion from thence to lead them into a con- G4r 127 converſation ſhe ſo much wiſhed for.— She laid the picture as ſhe found it, and went to bed without ſaying any thing of the matter to Madame Deffari.—They roſe early next morning; and hearing that Donna Clara and Donna Cynthia were both up and gone into the park, they followed them. After the firſt compliments were over, Madame Deffari ſeating herſelf at the foot of a tree, the penſive Donna Clara took her place by her, and both entered into a ſerious converſation; whilſt Adelaide, taking Donna Cynthia under the arm, walked gently on to enjoy the ſweets of the morning.
Adelaide, who thought this a good opportunity to engage Donna Cynthia to a recital of her ſtory, which ſhe was impatient to hear, entered immediately on a ſubject which ſhe thought was moſt G4 likely G4v 128 likely to introduce it.—I am little obliged to Donna Clara, ſaid ſhe, in a lively way, for giving me the keys of her cabinet, where I found the picture of a young man, ſo very handſome that I could ſcarce ſleep the whole night, for thinking of him!—How pleaſed ſhould I be, added ſhe, to find that he was one of your family, and that he was to paſs the day with us!— Donna Cynthia ſighed; and, ſhaking her head, anſwered, I ſhould be very ſorry if that picture had in reality made any impreſſion on you; becauſe the perſon for whom it was done is dead! and it has lain a long time where you found it, as we ſeldom go into that apartment; being unwilling to be too often reminded of the original.—A brother? replied Adelaide.—no, cried Donna Cynthia; nothing a-kin to either of us: but he was a man who was G5r 129 was once very dear to Clara; and I don’t know whether his death (had he been faithful) would not have occaſioned hers.—Did he then forſake her? cried Adelaide (who could not help being moved) Oh, Heavens! added ſhe; are all mankind perfidious? You would think ſo, added Donna Cynthia, were I to relate to you the circumſtances which have befallen myſelf and Donna Clara. But why, lovely Adelaide, do you exclaim againſt the treachery of men? I hope you have never experienced any of their ingratitude.—Adelaide bluſhed a little at this. I don’t know. ſaid ſhe, whether I have any thing to accuſe but my own ill ſtars, for the loſs of a perſon who was engaged to me by the moſt ſolemn vows:—but I ſhall let you into the whole ſecret, provided in return, you will relate your ſtory to me, which I am G5 ſure- G5v 130 ſure muſt have ſomething intereſting in it.—That I will readily do, anſwered Donna Cynthia; but as I muſt at the ſame time, acquaint you with ſome particulars of Donna Clara’s life, it is but juſt that lady ſhould participate with me in the pleaſure of hearing your relation.—Adelaide quickly conſented to this; and they agreed to walk into the park after dinner, with Donna Clara, whom they now ſaw advancing towards them with Madame Deffari.—After their walk they went into the caſtle:— and Donna Cynthia having told her companion of the promiſe ſhe had made Adelaide, they were all three impatient for an opportunity of being by themſelves. Dinner being over, and Madame Deffari having retired to the ſtudy, where ſhe ſaid ſhe would amuſe herſelf with a book for an hour or two, the three ladies haſtened to the park; and G6r 131 and there, chuſing a ſeat in which the heat of the ſun could not moleſt them, Donna Cynthia, without waiting for the leaſt entreaty, immediately began her tale:—
The incidents of my life, and thoſe of Donna Clara’s, have ſuch a connection that, in relating to you my ſtory, I muſt neceſſarily ſpare my friend the trouble of repeating any of the circumſtances of hers. We are both of Madrid; and, entering into an early acquaintance, our friendſhip increaſed with our years. It happened that we were both addreſſed at the ſame time, by two gentlemen who were conſidered as highly accompliſhed. Donna Clara’s lover was called Don Raphael de Portia (the ſame whoſe picture you ſaw); and he who called himſelf my ſlave, was named Don Izidor de St. Ivorio.G6 ‘If G6v 132
If I was pleaſed with the agreeable perſon and ſprightly wit of this young man, Clara was no leſs charmed with the like graces in Don Raphael: there ſcarce paſt a day in which we had not ſome new inſtance of the gallantry of thoſe two gentlemen (between whom, I muſt inform you, there was as ſtrict a friendſhip as that which Donna Clara and I had for each other). It was now about four months that an intercourſe had ſubſiſted, as delightful as can be imagined to reſult from an innocent paſſion for a deſerving object; for ſuch my friend and I believed each of our lovers to be; and we looked upon our affection for them but as a ſuitable return to their love for us.
Donna Clara was then under the conduct of her father and a ſtepmother, not the moſt indulgent, who had a daughter G7r 133 daughter of their own to provide for, before ſhe would ſuffer Clara to be diſpoſed of:—ſhe was therefore under much greater embarraſſments than I was, who had my fortune almoſt at my own diſpoſal, and had nobody to controul me but an aunt, with whom I had been brought up, and from whoſe tenderneſs I might expect every thing that could make me happy.—How much do I envy you, ſaid Donna Clara to me one day! It is in your power to recompenſe Don Izidor’s merit whenever you pleaſe; your happineſs is in your own hands: but my caſe is very different; for I dare not make Don Raphael’s pretenſions known to my father till my ſiſter is firſt diſpoſed of;—which I believe will be ſoon, interrupted I; for I know your mother is a lady of too active a temper not to promote her daughter’s intereſts; and I am apt to think ſhe has ſome deſign G7v 134 deſign on foot, by the great intimacy ſhe has lately entered into at the old Count de Pulvez, whoſe ſon, you know, is one of the fineſt gentlemen of the province.—Clara was of the ſame opinion with me, ſo that we now both imagined that her ſiſter (who was the only obſtacle in her way) would ſoon be removed; and ſhe would then be at liberty to allow Don Raphael to apply to her father. Our loves, ſaid I, began together; and one happy day (I hope) ſhall tie both the nuptial knots. My aunt already approves my choice; and I only wait till your father has done the ſame by yours, to give my hand to Izidor.
Clara embrace me for this mark of my tenderneſs for her. But ſhould Izidor, ſaid ſhe, be acquainted with your intentions, he muſt needs be jealouslous G8r 135 lous of a friendſhip which ſo much delays his happineſs.
This converſation happened whilſt we were walking in the gardens of the Eſcurial; and we had juſt done ſpeaking when we perceived our two lovers coming towards us. They ſoon joined us; and after a ſhort general converſation, Don Izidor took me by the hand, and, making a gallant compliment to Clara, who had that moment given hers to Don Raphael, he led me towards another walk; leaving our friends at liberty to entertain each other where they thought proper.
We were no ſooner alone than Don Izidor, throwing himſelf on his knees with an air of tranſport, ſeized both my hands; and fixing his eyes on mine, with the moſt paſſionate looks, he ſeemeded G8v 136 ed at a loſs for words to expreſs the emotions of his ſoul.—I chid him for ſo unſeaſonable a rapture; and made him riſe from the poſture he was in.— What do you mean, ſaid he, by depriving me of the inexpreſſible pleaſure I juſt now taſted? Was it not cruel in you diſturb a reverie ſo tranſporting? Can theſe proofs which I give you of my tenderneſs be diſpleasing? or have you found out any new method by which you would have me convince you of the exceſs of my love? Dear Cynthia, continued he, why won’t you ſuffer me to name that long-expected day which is to make you mine for ever? Why theſe inſupportable delays?—I ſhould not, purſued Donna Cynthia, repeat to you a trifling converſation ſo little worth your attention, but for reaſons which you will hear preſently explained. The ardent and tender manner in which Don Izidor ſpoke, made G9r 137 made me almoſt forget the promiſe I had made to Donna Clara; but, ſoon recollecting myſelf, I told him the obligation I had laid myſelf under to her; and if, added I, you love me as you would have me believe, you will make no difficulty in conforming to my will in this particular.—Ah cruel! cried he, how ſevere a taſk you enjoin me! Perhaps it may be a tedious while before Donna Clara will be at liberty to marry Raphael; and I perceive my happineſs is wholly to depend on that of another! Ungrateful Cynthia! I ſee but too plainly how indifferent I am to you!— With this he turned from me with all the marks of violent grief.—Who would not have believed him ſincere!—Stay, Don Izidor, ſaid I; and be convinced that Cynthia does not deſerve theſe reproaches. ’Tis true indeed I promiſed Clara that I would not make you my huſband G9v 138 huſband till ſhe ſhould have it in her power to do the ſame by Don Raphael; but ſhe is too generous to inſiſt on this agreement, if ſhe finds her marriage is not likely to be accompliſhed in a very ſhort time.—I ſhall then, ſaid he, after a ſhort pause, be more obliged to Donna Clara than I am to you. I know a heart tender as hers will readily abſolve you from a promiſe ſo injurious to my love. I will go to her this minute, throw myſelf at her feet, and beſeech her to free you from it.—Hold, hold, ſaid I, ſeeing him ready to leave me; to what are you going to expoſe me? Of what weakneſs would not Donna Clara accuſe me, when ſhe ſhould find that one half- hour’s converſation with you had made me forget the promiſe which our long friendſhip had exacted from me! Be contented, added I; and believe that I ſhall be as juſt in fulfilling the engagementsments G10r 139 ments to love, as I am to thoſe of a friend; I will deſire you to wait but two months (no very important trial of your conſtancy) and will, at the expiration of that time give you my hand, let the event of Clara’s love be what it may. I flatter myſelf, however, that her ſiſter will in the mean time be eſpouſed by the Count de Pulvez’s son; but if the Marchioneſs her mother ſhould be diſappointed in this ſcheme of hers, I doubt poor Don Raphael’s conſtancy will undergo a ſevere trial.—Don’t miſtake the matter, anſwered Izidor, laughing, if Raphael ſhould loſe Donna Clara, I have hopes that he would outlive the miſfortune.—How! ſaid I, does he not love her then?—Oh certainly! cried Izidor (in ſome confuſion); but, as he is not without fears of a diſappointment, I believe he is armed againſt it.—This anſwer was far from ſatisfying me. I trembled G10v 140 trembled for Donna Clara, and preſſed Izidor ſo earneſtly to explain himſelf, that at laſt I obtained the hateful diſcovery to which I urged him.
Don Raphael, ſaid he, does not in reality love your friend; for he is actually engaged to another. His miſtreſs is now in Portugal; and it is only to divert his melancholy till her return, that he pays his court to Donna Clara, whoſe ſituation he knows will hinder him from being obliged to come to a ſudden ecclairciſſement; for we both know that the Count of Pelvez has other views for his ſon than the elder ſiſter of Clara. But, dear Cynthia, continued he, he muſt keep this ſecret inviolably. For Heaven’s ſake, ſuffer Donna Clara to continue in her error till time ſhall diſabuſe her.‘It G11r 141
It is impoſſible for me, proceeded Donna Cynthia, to deſcribe to you was ſeized with diſquiet from the firſt moment he had dropt thoſe words which led me to foreſee part of Clara’s misfortune; I even dreaded the explanation which I was preſſing him to make; and every word he uttered pierced me like an arrow. I made ſad reflections on the baſeneſs of Don Raphael; and could not help turning them all at once on Don Izidor.—What have we not to fear, thought I, from a ſex which is capable of ſo much cruelty and diſſimulation; perhaps this very Izidor, this favoured lover, may be as vile as Don Raphael, who was no leſs laviſh in his teſtimonies of affection to Clara.
I was ſo ſtruck with this thought, that I liſtened without interruptingrupting G11v 142 rupting him; and even remained ſilent for ſome minutes after he had done ſpeaking. He imagined no doubt that ſome ſuſpicions of himſelf might naturally enough mix themſelves with my reflections on what I had juſt heard; and to remove thoſe, he told me, with an obliging confidence, that I muſt not judge of all mankind by Don Raphael. —I own, ſaid he, he has not dealt with that ſincerity we could have wiſhed; but I hope my charming Cynthia does not therefore form an opinion injurious to her faithful Izidor.—I don’t know what to think, ſaid , coolly; but, in my mind, a lady of Donna Clara’s birth is not a fit perſon to be trifled with; and, if Don Raphael could not live without an amour till the return of his miſtreſs, he ſhould have made choice of ſome other object.—Huſh, huſh, for God’s ſake! cried Izidor, alarmed at my grave G12r 143 grave manner of ſpeaking; you forget that I truſted this to you as a ſecret of the greateſt conſequence!—And indeed I then believed that Don Izidor’s diſcloſing it was more owing to his warmth than any infidelity to his friend.
The day began now to cloſe, and we parted. I ſaw Donna Clara alone advancing towards me; but my thoughts were ſo wholly taken up with what I had juſt heard, that without ſpeaking one word to her, I took her under the arm, and we both walked to our coach (which waited for us at the garden-gate) as neither of us choſe our lovers ſhould attend us to it.
Clara during our walk had been as ſilent as I was; and being ſeated in the carriage, I perceived a penſiveneſs in her looks, which I had never obſerved before: G12v 144 before:—ſhe ſeemed to be wrapped up in thought; and I could eaſily ſee the conſtraint ſhe put herſelf in endeavouring to hide ſomething that troubled her. At laſt, with a deep ſigh (which ſhe tried to ſuppreſs) What ails you, Cynthia? ſaid ſhe.—I looked earneſtly at her; and ſaw ſo much grief in her eyes that I no longer doubted her having diſcovered the infidelity of her lover.—Ah Clara! replied I, how can you aſk me the occaſion of my trouble, when I find you are no longer ignorant of the falſehood of that ungrateful man? How! ſaid ſhe, with ſome ſurpriſe, does Don Izidor make a boaſt then of his treachery! and has he had the barbarity to inſult you?—Don Raphael, you mean, replied I (thinking in her confuſion ſhe knew not what ſhe ſaid); God forbid that Izidor ſhould be guilty of ſo much perfidy!—Theſe words threw H1r 145 threw her into a perplexity from which I ſaw ſhe could ſcarce recover herſelf; ſhe remained in ſuſpenſe for a minute, and then told me that ſhe did not miſtake that Don Izidor de St. Ivorio was the baſeſt of all mankind; and added, that it was on my account ſhe appeared ſo dejected; aſſuring me at the ſame time, that ſhe imagined, by my melancholy and the anſwer I made her, when ſhe aſked me the occaſion of it, that I had penetrated into her thoughts. Theſe words left me no room to doubt that I was betrayed as well as ſhe. However, I begged of her to explain herſelf.—She told me that after Izidor and I had left them, Don Raphael and ſhe had taken ſeveral turns in the walks, and that at length, being tired, they ſeated themſelves on the brink of a canal; the flowers which painted the banks of it, the ſmooth tranſparency of Vol. II H the H1v 146 the water, and the thick ſpreading trees which ſhaded it, formed ſo delightful a ſcene, that it ſeemed to inſpire Don Raphael with a thouſand new and agreeable thoughts.—This place, ſaid he, is certainly inhabited by the Muſes. I feel their inſpiration; or rather, one of them has juſt now whiſpered ſomething in my ear, ſacred to the beautiful Clara. —Give me leave, ſaid he, to commit the precious lines to paper, before they eſcape my memory.—With this he took a pencil out of his pocket, and at the ſame time a handful of papers; but with ſo little care, that he dropt one of them without obſerving it.
He fell immediately to writing with ſo much attention, that he gave as little heed to my taking up the paper as he had done to his letting it fall. It was folded ſo carefully that, ſeeing it addreſſeded H2r 147 ed To the beautiful Donna Violante, I with a jealous curioſity proceeded directly to the contents; and, though I made no doubt of its being wrote by Don Raphael, yet, caſting my eyes firſt at the bottom, judge of my ſurpriſe, to ſee it ſubſcribed by Don Izidor!— Believe me, my dear love, continued Donna Clara, this ſight grieved me as much as if I had ſeen Don Raphael’s name to the deteſted paper. I read it twice over. Theſe were the words:
The more I ſtruggle with my chains, the ſtronger they hold me;— doubtleſs a puniſhment impoſed on me by Love, for endeavouring to free myſelf from a captivity ſo delightful; which, in ſpite of your coldneſs, moſt beautiful and obdurate Violante, I am determined to ſubmit to whilſt I live.H2 ‘Don H2v 148
Don Raphael, having finiſhed his verſes, preſented them to me to read; but I was too much diſturbed to give any attention to them; I returned him the note, and begged of him to tell me who this dangerous beauty was, of whoſe cruelty Don Izidor complained?—Don Raphael could not conceal the chagrin that this unexpected queſtion gave him. I ſaw vexation in his face; but, affecting an air of raillery, he told me, that in reality Don Izidor had no great reaſon to complain of the ſeverity of Violante, as ſhe was a lady of a temper not apt to throw her lovers into deſpair.— In ſhort, ſaid he, Don Izidor has a mind to divert himſelf with a piece of gallantry, in which (were you to know the character of the lady he addreſſes) you would be convinced there is nothing ſerious.—I told him that neither the ſenſe nor the language of that letter ſeemed to be H3r 149 be adapted to a looſe woman, as he would inſinuate; nor was it poſſible for him to perſuade me into a belief that Izidor would addreſs a perſon of that character in the ſtyle of a reſpectful lover.
Notwithſtanding the gaiety which he had aſſumed, this ſpeech quite confounded him: he bluſhed; and, caſting his eyes on the ground, ſeemed to ſtudy for an anſwer. I took advantage of his perplexity; and tapping him gently on the ſhoulder,—Come, come, Don Raphael, ſaid I; I know you are vexed at the diſcovery I have made. It is in vain to diſſemble with me; and ſince I am obliged to chance for letting me into part of this ſecret, make me indebted to your ſincerity for the remainder.— You can’t call it an infidelity to your friend, continued I, finding him ſtill H3 ſilent, H3v 150 ſilent, ſince it was without your participation that I got my firſt light into this intrigue; and I can aſſure you, you will leave me under much worſe impreſſions of him, if you don’t explain the matter truly to me.—What will you have me explain, anſwered Don Raphael, looking fearfully at me? Would it not vex you on Donna Cynthia’s account, if I ſhould tell you that Izidor loves another?—No, replied I (affecting indifference); I know not how far he is engaged with Donna Cynthia; and we can none of us diſpoſe of our hearts.— Theſe words ſeemed to revive his confidence; and begging my care of the ſecret he was going to repoſe in me, he told me, that he had done Donna Violante the greateſt injuſtice in painting her in ſuch falſe colours; for that ſhe was in reality a virtuous and beautiful widow; and poſſeſſed of a fortune ſo brilliant, H4r 151 brilliant, that Izidor would be the happieſt man in the world if he could obtain her. ’Tis about a month, added Raphael, ſince he firſt ſaw her; and, dazzled with her charms, or rather with her riches, he formed a deſign on her; and began by writing to her in a manner as animated as if by a real paſſion. He would truſt no one but me to be the bearer of his letter, leſt (by means of his ſervants, who knew of his attachment to Donna Cynthia) the ſecret ſhould be betrayed. I put the letter into Donna Violante’s hands, as ſhe received it without heſitation; and, having juſt caſt her eyes on me, continued her walk.
I drew no ill preſage from this beginning; and went directly to Izidor, who waited for me, to declare my ſucceſs.H4 ceſs H4v 152 ceſs. In talking of the merit of Violante, I took occaſion to aſk Izidor what had encouraged him to addreſs her; and on what foundation he built his hopes of ſucceſs.—He told me that, on Violante’s part he had yet met with little encouragement, his acquaintance with her having ſcarce gone farther than a bare ſalute; but, added he, I am not without good hopes from the vivacity of a young widow, who, I am ſure, can’t be proof againſt the ſpirit with which I mean to purſue her.—I ſtopped him ſhort, and aſked him,—had he forgot Donna Cynthia? No, he replied; I ſhould prefer her to any woman living; but, as my principal end in the choice of a wife is a commodious fortune, Violante has this point the advantage of her; and, if I ſucceed in that quarter, I fancy I muſt make a little free with my fidelity to Donna Cynthia, whom, however, H5r 153 however, I will not loſe ſight of till I am ſecure of the widow; but if I fail there, I ſhall aſſume the marriage-chain with Cynthia with the credit of as conſtant a ſwain as ever ſighed. I need not in the mean time, added he, be afraid of preſſing her to come to a concluſion; for I find by ſome hints ſhe has dropped, that her romantic attachment to her friend Clara is likely to keep her ſingle till that lady is at liberty to give you her hand; for it ſeems ſhe can’t be happy herſelf till her friend is ſo. In ſhort, purſued Don Raphael, Violante’s reception of his letter filled Izidor with the gayeſt expectations imaginable; he had begged for an anſwer; which he requeſted a ſervant of mine might call for, on account of the reaſons I mentioned. I was with him when the footman returned with a letter in his hand. Izidor, who flattered himſelf H5 that H5v 154 that the letter was as favourable as his heart could wiſh, broke it open with eagerneſs; but his joy was ſuddenly damped when he found that it was his own letter which Violante had ſent back, with no other ceremony than that of putting it in a cover.
I confeſs I could not help laughing at the conſternation of my poor friend; he looked ſometimes at me, and ſometimes at the letter he held in his hand, and ſeemed quite confounded at this behaviour of Violante.—What is become of your hopes now Izidor? ſaid I; you ſee the conqueſt is not ſo eaſy as you imagined.—I don’t give it up yet, anſwered he (a little recovered from his ſurpriſe; it is a peeviſh trick of Violante’s I muſt own; but I am not ſo young a lover as to take the firſt repulſe. —Upon the whole, he was ſo far from being H6r 155 being diſheartened, that he wrote to Donna Violante again the next day, in terms more paſſionate than before. She did not indeed treat this letter with the ſame contempt ſhe had done the other, by ſending it back; but then her anſwer was ſuch as I thought would have diſcouraged Izidor from any farther attempts.—She ſent him word by her woman, that it was in vain for him to hope that he could ever make the leaſt impreſſion on her heart, which was not at all diſpoſed to love: that ſhe indeed pitied him; but that ſhe could not afford him even that ſentiment, if he continued to perſecute her with letters: and in concluſion, deſired him to think no more of her.—This anſwer, forbidding as it was, did not however incline Izidor to deſpair. He drew no unfavourable omen from Violante’s keeping his laſt letter, and condeſcending ſo far as to ſend her H6 woman H6v 156 woman to him with a meſſage. He therefore reſolved to make uſe of this lucky opportunity of gaining over to his intereſt one whom he found was in Violante’s confidence. He ſlipped a purſe of piſtoles into her hand, telling her at the ſame time, in a melancholy tone, that he would endeavour to obey the cruel orders of her lady, as far as it was in his power: but for her laſt injunctions,— that he ſhould think no more of her, if ſhe expected to be obeyed in that, ſhe ſhould at once have commanded him to die.—Biancha (that was the maid’s name) was on a ſudden become ſo faſt a friend to Don Izidor, that ſhe could not reſolve to leave him, after executing ſuch rigorous commands, without affording him ſome comfort. She told him that ſhe wondered the hardneſs of Violante’s heart could be ſo very inſenſible to ſo much merit and H7r 157 and generoſity! She owned indeed that her miſtreſs had never appeared much affected with his paſſion; but added, ſhe did not think his caſe ſo deſperate, ſince Violante did not ſeem to prefer any other to him. I have executed her orders faithfully, continued ſhe; and now if I give you a word or two of advice from myſelf, I think it will not be amiſs. I know, purſued ſhe, that Donna Violante’s heart is tender and ſuſceptible of ſoft impreſſions; but then I know too that ſhe loves to make trial of the conſtancy of her admirers.—Not, ſaid ſhe (haſtily interrupting herſelf) that I would have you think I would by this inſinuate that ſhe is leſs ſerious in the ſentiments I juſt now delivered from her; but you know, Signior, that perſeverance is what a lady can eaſily forgive in a lover: ſame time it muſt be managed with addreſs. I adviſe you therefore H7v 158 therefore to let this matter reſt for a few days, as if in compliance to Donna Violante’s will (as well as to prevent her having any miſtruſt of my aiding you in your deſign) and then, the violence of your paſſion getting the better of your reſolution, and not permitting you to be ſilent any longer, you muſt renew the attack. You underſtand me, added ſhe, with a ſignificant look; and if my intereſt to Donna Violante can be of any ſervice to you, I am more yours than my lady’s.—Don Izidor reliſhed the advice of the cunning Biancha ſo well, that he could not forbear embracing her; and promiſing to follow it to a title, diſmiſſed her.
I was preſent, purſued Don Raphael, at this converſation, and could not help obſerving to Don Izidor that the promiſes of this mercenary girl had elated H8r 159 elated him as much as if he had received the kindeſt meſſage from his miſtreſs. He told me the work was half done; and that he was impatient to have a few days over, that he might put Biancha’s idea in practice; the ſucceſs of which he ſaid he did not doubt. I knew it would be in vain for me to repreſent to him the injuſtice he did Donna Cynthia: Izidor is of a temper not to be contradicted; and I was convinced of the impoſſibility of diſſuading him from what he had once reſolved on.
It is now five days, added Don Raphael, ſince he laſt wrote to Donna Violante;—and thinking that long enough for a man ſo much in love to impoſe ſilence on himſelf, he this day ſent thoſe lines which I ſo unluckily dropped. I am to wait on the fair widow with them to-night; and am to add H8v 160 add every thing which I can think of to ſoften her heart, in favour of my friend. Such are the particulars, continued Donna Clara, which I learned from Don Raphael. I parted from him without making any remarks on Don Izidor’s conduct, which he, by reiterated intreaties, conjured me to conceal from you.
I could not help admiring the ſingularity of theſe incidents, purſued Donna Cynthia: and however ill-natured our ſtars were in condemning us to love ſuch hypocrites, I thought we yet owed them ſome thanks, for the diſcoveries we had made of their falſehood. —I did not heſitate a moment to acquaint Donna Clara with the perfidy of Don Raphael.—You ſee, ſaid I, we are equally abuſed: our injuries, like our loves, are the ſame:—but let us at leaſt be H9r 161 be juſt to ourſelves, and abandon theſe traitors before they have time to add to our vexation.—Agreed, anſwered Donna Clara; and my Don Raphael’s miſtreſs (whoever ſhe be) repay his love with ingratitude.—Yes, cried I; and let Violante be the ruin of the faithleſs Izidor!—These words, (continued Cynthia) though they ſeemed to be nothing more than the firſt ſallies of anger in a diſappointed woman, were afterwards but too fatally verified. We made a reſolution on the ſpot, never to ſee our two lovers again, nor to vouchſafe them any reaſons for the conduct we intended to obſerve towards them.
We had an opportunity the next day to try the ſtrength of theſe reſolutions.— Don Izidor came as uſual to make me a viſit; but I refuſed abſolutely to ſee him:—Donna Clara obſervedſerved H9v 162 ſerved the ſame behaviour with regard to Don Raphael. They each of them wrote to us; but we ſent back their letters unopened; at the ſame time forbidding the meſſengers to bring us any more, on pain of being ill-treated.—As for our two lovers, though ſuch a conduct might probably pique their pride, yet, certain I am, it was ſo far from giving them any diſguſt, that I rather believe they were glad of ſuch an opportunity to break with us; for they were ſo punctual in obeying our orders, that neither Clara nor I heard any more from them!
I could not however reſiſt a curioſity (hardly to be excuſed) to know how Izidor ſucceeded with Donna Violante. I was ſome time at a loſs to know who to employ to get me the intelligence I wanted:—at laſt I fixed on a proper H10r 163 a proper perſon. There was a young man who had formerly been a valet de chambre to my father, to whom (on account of his good ſervices) he had at his death left a pretty annuity, which enabled him to live independently.— This fellow had, together with a good perſon, ſome agreeable qualifications, which I knew would be of uſe to my deſign:—in ſhort, my project was that he ſhould endeavour to inſinuate himſelf into the good graces of Biancha (Donna Violante’s woman); and by that means make himſelf maſter of her lady’s actions.—I proposed it to him; and he readily embraced an opportunity of obliging me. There was no great difficulty in getting an acceſs to this damſel:— Roderigo (that was my agent’s name) in a few days got acquainted with her; and ſoon found the way to her heart, in ſo much, that in a ſhort time H10v 164 time after I had enjoined him his taſk, he had gained ſo far upon her confidence as to enable him to give me the account I am going to relate.
Don Raphael, ſaid he, according to the promiſe he had made his friend, went that very evening (after he had parted from Donna Clara) to wait on the fair widow, fully reſolved to uſe all his art in giving her a favourable impreſſion of Don Izidor. Violante no ſooner heard his name pronounced by Biancha, than ſhe deſired him to be admitted.— Raphael, charmed at this happy beginning of his negociation, was in a moment in her dreſſing-room, whether ſhe had thought proper to withdraw on purpoſe to receive him: and my friend Biancha, out of a curioſity natural to her ſtation, poſted herſelf where ſhe could not loſe a word of their diſcourſe.‘After H11r 165
After the firſt compliments were over, Don Raphael, being ſeated near Violante, conjured her to hear him patiently on a ſubject, on which he ſaid he would not dare to entertain her, without being firſt aſſured of her pardon.— Violante anſwering this preliminary with a gracious nod, encouraged him to proceed.—Suffer me then, Madame, ſaid he, to ſolicit you in behalf of Don Izidor; the moſt deſerving and the moſt unfortunate of men! I don’t come to repreſent him as an obſtinate and importuning lover, who is reſolved to tire you with his paſſion: on the contrary, I would have you look on him as an unhappy generous man, who ſubmits, without murmuring, to the fate your ſcorn has condemned him to; and I am only now come to lay at your feet the laſt efforts of a paſſion which his reaſon, in obedience to your will, has in H11v 166 in vain attempted to ſubdue. Behold, added he, putting one knee on the ground, and preſenting Don Izidor’s letter to her,—behold the dictates of a heart pierced with your cruelties! and which nothing but death or the adorable Violante can reſtore to peace!—Here he pauſed to obſerve what impreſſion this fine preamble made on the lady.
He diſcovered indeed, that ſhe liſtened to him with a ſort of pleaſure, which encouraged him to proceed in the ſame ſtrain; for having taken the letter out of his hand, ſhe remained with her eyes fixed on his face, as if in expectation that he had ſomething more to ſay.—Don Raphael, who rightly enough gueſſed that Violante was of a romantic turn of mind, reſolved to treat her in that ſtyle.—Permit me then, ſaid he, to breathe Don Izidor’s ſighs, to H12r 167 to ſpeak all his pains, and to pour out a torrent of vows at your feet.—He ended his rhapſody by throwing himſelf proſtrate on the floor, and proteſting he would not riſe till ſhe had expreſſed ſome pity towards his friend.—You are a ſkilful advocate, Don Raphael, added ſhe; and Izidor is much obliged to you. If any thing could win me, ’tis his way of making love by proxy: it has ſomething whimſical in it, which ſuits my humour:—prithee let us carry on this ſcene. I will ſuppoſe you to be your friend Don Izidor; and let me ſee how you would go about to woo an obdurate miſtreſs.—Oh, Madam! anſwered Don Raphael, if you would ſuffer the real Don Izidor to ſpeak his ſentiments before you, you would find them much fuller of tenderneſs and delicacy than I ſhall be able to expreſs.—Pſha, cried Violante, you muſt be a very inſenſible Cavalier H12v 168 Cavalier indeed, if the ſight of a fine woman can’t inſpire you with nothing that is pretty.—Oh! pardon me, Madame! anſwered Don Raphael, I was only doing juſtice to my friend: but if you will have me to perſonate him, permit me then to tell you, relentleſs Violante, that I can no longer ſupport your cruelty:—you know that I have loved, or rather, adored you, from the firſt moment I ſaw you; and no words can expreſs that anguiſh, the anxiety, the unſupportable torment, which your ſcorn has, ſince that fatal time, condemned me to! Ceaſe than at length, your frowns, moſt amiable creature; or prepare to ſee the heart which idolizes you bleed before your eyes!
Don Raphael accompanied theſe words with an air and tone of deſpair; and, clapping his hand with the moſt paſſionate I1r 169 paſſionate geſture on his ſword, he had drawn it half-way from the ſcabbard, when Violante, either quite forgetting herſelf or alarmed for the poor gentleman’s life, threw her arms ſuddenly about his neck (as he kneeled before her) and, embracing him ardently,— You ſhall not die, my dear Chevalier, ſaid ſhe; Violante is not inſenſible to your merit; and loves you with a paſſion equal to that which you expreſs for her. —Though Don Raphael thought this was carrying the jeſt a little too far, he was not however remiſs in point of gallantry; but, returning Violante’s careſſes, he told her that he thought Don Izidor, from being the moſt wretched, was become the happieſt of men! and that he hoped his friend had nothing now to do, but to come and receive thoſe marks of favour in perſon, which ſhe had vouchſafed him as his Vol. II I repre- I1v 170 repreſentative. How! cried Violante, ſtarting; would you ſo eaſily forego the right I have given you to my heart, and yield up that love to another which I have juſt now laviſhed upon you!— Impoſſible! I can’t entertain ſo mean an opinion of you; and I promiſe myſelf you will be as willing to return my tenderneſs as Don Izidor would.—Don Raphael, who did not expect this, was ſtruck almoſt ſpeechleſs. She perceived his embarraſſment.—Don’t be ſurpriſed, ſaid ſhe; you ſee my weakneſs; and after what I have ſaid, I ſhall no longer endeavour to conceal it:—I liked you the firſt moment I ſaw you, and had even the curioſity to enquire who you were. I flattered myſelf that the billet which you preſented to me as I came from church, contained your own ſentiments:—judge then, how I was chagrined at the diſappointment, when I found I2r 171 found it came from Don Izidor! I determined never to ſee him; nor could I endure to hear his name pronounced by any mouth but yours. Conſider then, Don Raphael, whether you will prefer his friendſhip to the love I offer you? Don’t miſtake my meaning, ſaid ſhe ſeeing him thoughtful); I have no deſign upon your liberty, nor do I intend ever to give up my own again;— but you ſee I am young and rich: and I am vain enough to think that nothing but the regard you have for Izidor, could hinder you from improving the kindneſs I have for you.
Don Raphael laid hold on theſe laſt words, which he was reſolved to turn to his own justification.—You judge right, Madam, ſaid he; nothing but the inviolable friendſhip which ſubſiſts between Don Izidor and me, could I2 make I2v 172 make me heſitate a moment; I am but too ſenſible of the value of theſe favours you would beſtow on me, but muſt own I am not worthy of the honour you do me:— for, alas! charming Violante, I can repay you nothing but my utmoſt gratitude!— Don Izidor ſuffers enough already from the ſcorn of an adored miſtreſs, without receiving a freſh wound from the treachery of a beloved friend! Recall your heart then; and if you are determined not to beſtow it on the unhappy Don Izidor, reſerve it at leaſt for one more worthy of it than Don Raphael.—He pronounced theſe words in ſo grave, yet perſuaſive, a tone, that any female but Violante would have retreated: but ſhe was not ſo eaſily to be put off; ſhe was a woman of impenetrable cunning; was extremely inſinuating, and had all her life been uſed to intrigue. She found ſhe had miſtaken I3r 173 miſtaken Don Raphael’s temper (which was not the moſt forward); and apprehended, very juſtly, that the ſtrange advances ſhe had made had ſhocked him. She reſolved, if poſſible, to retrieve this wrong ſtep; and, ſeeming to be moved at what he ſaid, ſhe bent her eyes dejectedly to the ground; and then, as if it were ſtealing a baſhful look at Don Raphael, ſhe let fall ſome tears, which ſhe could always command, and begged him to leave her to repent a weakneſs ſhe was not then able to conquer. This piece of diſſimulation had the deſired effect. The artful tears of this cunning creature entirely ſubdued the weak inconſtant heart of Don Raphael, and waſhed away all his ſcruples of honour. He threw himſelf at her feet, implored her pardon, and ſwore he would ſacrifice every thing to her.— Don Izidor’s friendſhip and the confidenceI3 dence I3v 174 dence he had in him, were no longer remembered!
The artful Violante dried her eyes; and finding that Don Raphael had fallen into her ſnare, they from that time commenced an amour, from which they promiſed themſelves great felicity.
Don Raphael told her it would be beſt to flatter Izidor with ſome hopes, that he himſelf might continue his viſits under pretence of negociating for his friend, till his intimacy in Violante’s family ſhould intitle him to viſit her on his own account. Violante approved of this; and Don Raphael took his leave.
Theſe were the particulars, continued Donna Cynthia, which Roderigo told me paſt at their firſt meeting: he I4r 175 he added, that Don Raphael had often waited on the widow ſince, under the notion of a friend and confidant to Don Izidor; that he had even prevailed on her once to ſee Izidor, the better to amuſe and blind him, as well as to prevent him from prying too curiouſly into Raphael’s conduct;—which he was ſo far from ſuſpecting, that he thought himſelf obliged to his good offices for this mark of the lady’s favour.
Roderigo, who knew how Clara and I ſtood with reſpect to thoſe two baſe men, too the liberty to ſay we had no great loſs of them as lovers; and made ſo many keen reflections on this new piece of treachery in Don Raphael, that I could not help bluſhing at finding a more lively ſenſe of honour in a poor fellow of his education, than in two men who might boaſt of their birth I4 and I4v 176 and breeding! I did not chide him for this freedom; but bid him continue the part he had acted, and inform me if Izidor ſhould come to diſcover his friend’s kindneſs to him.
I communicated this news to Donna Clara; and told her that as Violante was become as much, or more, her rival than mine, ſhe had an equal right with me to be informed of what paſt between her and Don Raphael. We could neither of us forbear laughing at this whimſical turn:—and as we already looked upon our two lovers with a good deal of contempt, we imagined that the farther accounts which we expected from Roderigo, would ſerve to confirm it:—and we propoſed ſome diverſondiverſion as the figure Don Izidor would make when he ſhould come to know how much he had been fooled by Don Raphael.‘It I5r 177
It was almoſt a month before we heard any more of the adventure; when, one morning, before Donna Clara (who had paſt the night at my houſe) or I were up, my woman came in and told me that Roderigo deſired to ſpeak with me. We both dreſſed ourſelves haſtily; and concluding ſomething extraordinary had brought him at ſo early an hour, we deſired that he might be admitted. He no ſooner appeared at my chamber-door than I obſerved ſuch an unuſual concern in his looks, that I could not forbear crying out,—What’s the matter, Roderigo? What news?— Ah! Madam, cried he, looking at Donna Clara, the worſt that can be imagined!—And it relates to Don Raphael, cried Donna Clara: you may ſpeak without diſguiſe; for he is ſo indifferent to me, that nothing concerning him can give me the leaſt pain.— I5 She I5v 178 She ſpoke theſe words without well knowing what ſhe ſaid: they ſeemed to drop from her tongue without being guided by her reaſon; and I believe they were uttered through a ſort of confuſion, which Roderigo’s expreſſion had thrown her into: for the firſt thought which ruſhed into her mind was, that Raphael was married to Violante (which, conſidering that woman’s character, would have been mortification enough to Clara, had ſhe in reality hated Raphael) —Roderigo ſtill looked at her with concern in his face.—God be praiſed, Madam! ſaid he; I wiſh you may always continue indifferent towards ungrateful men!—Why, Roderigo? ſaid Clara, affecting to ſmile, pray, is Don Raphael married, or dead?—He is dead, anſwered Roderigo;—the unfortunate Don Raphael has paid the price of his folly with his life!‘I deſired I6r 179
I deſired Roderigo to repeat the particulars of this melancholy event.—You may remember, Madam, ſaid he, that I told you Don Raphael paid ſeveral viſits to Violante, under colour of ſerving Don Izidor; but that gentleman growing at length a little impatient at the coquetry of Violante, or perhaps ſuſpecting part of the truth (by Biancha’s means, who was always his friend) he reſolved to watch Raphael at his next interview with the lady. He gave him a letter to deliver to her; and, without appearing in the leaſt to ſuſpect his fidelity, he prayed him to carry it to her; which the other readily undertook to do. Laſt night was the time appointed for this purpoſe, or rather was the fatal period marked out by Heaven to end Don Raphael’s life! The jealous Izidor, by the help of a few piſtoles, prevailed on Biancha to conceal him in I6 her I6v 180 her miſtreſs’s cloſet; firſt engaging him by a ſolemn promiſe, that he would take care not to diſcover himſelf. He appeared ſo calm, that Biancha did not apprehend any evil conſequences from this compliance. Don Izidor, impatient to have his ſuſpicions either baniſhed or confirmed, was looking through a caſement in the cloſet door, which was covered by a ſilk curtain, where Don Raphael entered the chamber where Violante was waiting to receive him. Her dreſs was negligent, but elegant at the ſame time. He ſaw her receive Don Raphael with a freedom which convinced him they were on very good terms: and making him ſit by her on a ſopha, they entered into a converſation which left him no reaſon to doubt his friend’s treachery. He could ſcarce contain himſelf at what he heard:—but this was not all; he ſaw Don I7r 181 Don Raphael take the letter he had given him for Violante out of his pocket, and preſenting it to her, with an ironical ſmile,—I had almoſt forgot, ſaid he, to deliver you this letter from one of the moſt paſſionate of your lovers, the unfortunate Don Izidor, who languiſhes under your frowns.—Prithee read it, ſaid Violante: it will divert us a little.— Don Raphael broke open the ſeal, and read it with a loud voice; accompanying every word with ſo ridiculous a tone and geſture, that Violante was ready to die with laughing.—The enraged Don Izidor could bear no more;—he burſt open the cloſet-door, and, throwing himſelf on the two lovers, he buried his dagger in the unhappy Raphael’s boſom, who inſtantly expired! Violante had only time to give a loud ſhriek, and then fell motionleſs on the ſopha! Don Izidor, ſatisfied with the ſacrifice I7v 182 ſacrifice he had made to his revenge, left the houſe directly; Biancha (who had been a witneſs to this ſcene from another cloſet, where ſhe had hid herſelf at my requeſt) not having power to ſtop him or give the alarm to the family. Theſe, continued Roderigo, are the particulars which I learned from Biancha this morning. Violante, who has been the occaſion of this miſerable diſaſter, is in the moſt deplorable ſtate imaginable; and all the friends of Don Raphael are now in purſuit of his murderer!
Whatever my concern was at this dreadful account, Donna Clara’s was infinitely greater: for now it was that ſhe found how dear Don Raphael had been to her. She reproached herſelf for it; and would fain have believed that ſhe rejoiced at his death as a puniſhmentment I8r 183 ment due to his crime. She accuſed him of treachery and ingratitude, and of having occaſioned her a thouſand torments! for which ſhe ought to deteſt his memory, and to congratulate Izidor on his having at once both revenged himſelf and her! Thus for a while ſhe pleaſed herſelf, with thinking that her juſt anger had got the better of her love:—but, alas! I ſoon found ſhe deceived herſelf!—this was but a vain reſource, which her reſentment at firſt offered to conſole her under a misfortune, that ſhe was in reality ſcarcely able to ſupport! Whilſt Raphael lived and courted another, a juſt pride ſtifled, and ſhe flattered herſelf had entirely ſubdued her paſſion for him; but in that her heart betrayed her: for now the ſcene changed in a moment, and repreſented this faithleſs lover to her imagination in the moſt amiable light in I8v 184 in which partial love could place him. She condemned herſelf for having deſerted him, without being ſure that what Don Izidor had ſaid of him was true:—ſhe blamed Violante alone for his unhappy fate; and accuſed that wretched woman, Don Izidor, and herſelf, by turns. She lamented Don Raphael with floods of tears; and I found that it was a ſort of decorum ſhe kept up with herſelf, which prevented her giving a looſe to them at firſt; for when ſhe had, as it were, mitigated his crime, ſhe gave herſelf leave to weep without reſtraint. I knew the ſoftneſs as well as the generoſity of her nature, required this tribute to the memory of a man whom ſhe had once loved ſo well. I therefore gave way to her grief; conſidering that time and her own good ſenſe, would adminiſter more comfort than I was capable of affording her.‘Don I9r 185
Don Raphael’s friends uſed the utmoſt diligence to find out Don Izidor; but he had the good fortune to eſcape their purſuit. His flight however was ſo precipitate, that it was found he had taken nothing with him but a ſmall ſum of money; and his whole eſtate, which was conſiderable, was confiſcated to the crown. As this affair made a great noiſe, and was little to the credit of Donna Violante, ſhe ſoon after diſappeared; and I believe has never been ſince in Madrid.
As for Donna Clara and myſelf, we could no longer reliſh a place which had been the ſcene of ſuch a diſaſter.— My aunt, who love me too well to oppoſe my inclination, at laſt yielded to my deſire of retiring to this caſtle, which is on my own eſtate. Donna Clara’s father dying about the ſame time, I9v 186 time, left her entirely miſtreſs of herſelf; and I had no difficulty in perſuading her to accompany me. Here my friend and I paſs our time in an agreeable though melancholy ſolitude; for we converſe with few beſides the good Biſhop of Seville, who now and then honours us with his company. ’Tis now three years ſince we lived here; and we are ſo well ſatisfied with the pleaſures of our retirement, that we have not the moſt diſtant thought of ever changining it.
Here Donna Cynthia ended her narrative; and, perceiving that night had inſenſibly ſtole upon them, ſhe propoſed to the ladies to return home, telling Adelaide ſhe would claim her promiſe the next evening, when they would with pleaſure take the opportunity of adjourning to the ſame place.They I10r 187
They were ſurpriſed at their return into the caſtle, to find the Biſhop of Seville ſitting with Madame Deffari, who told them, that that prelate having juſt alighted from his carriage, ſhe was going to ſend for them into the park; ſaying, ſhe believed they had met with ſome enchanted palace, or fairy abode, which had ſo much prolonged their walk. Donna Cynthia excuſed herſelf and her companions; and changing the diſcourſe, addreſſed herſelf to the Biſhop, aſking him to what mighty good chance they owed the honour of ſeeing him at that unuſual hour (for that gentleman living ſome miles from the Caſtle of Cardonas, never came to viſit them ſo late, but when he intended to paſs the night there; and of this he always ſent them notice)? ſo that Donna Cynthia concluded that it was ſomething materially particular which had been the occaſion I10v 188 accaſionoccaſion of his coming at almoſt nine o’clock at night.
You may be ſurpriſed indeed, daughter anſwered the Biſhop, at ſeeing me here at ſuch an hour, without firſt acquainting you with my deſign:— but an accident brought me into your neighbourhood this evening, and detained me in it longer than I expected; and, as I know my chamber is always ready for me, I make no ſcruple of throwing myſelf on you as a gueſt tonight.—You do us honour, replied Donna Cynthia, but, if it be no ſecret, will you let us know what that accident was, to which we are ſo much obliged?—I will tell you, anſwered the Biſhop; you know Father Theodore, whom you ſurnamed the Solitary, and have had ſuch a curioſity to ſee from the deſcription I have given you of I11r 189 of him. The perſon we are ſpeaking of (added he, directing his ſpeech to Madame Deffari) lives about a quarter of a league from this caſtle; and it was mere chance which led me firſt into his acquaintance. A violent ſtorm of wind and rain obliged me once, as I happened to ride this way, to turn into his little lodge for ſhelter. He received me with great civility and good-nature; and upon my inquiring into his circumſtances (as I ſaw him in a poor habitation) he told me he was an Italian monk, of the order of St. Hyronimo, who, having raiſed himſelf ſome enemies on a point of religious controverſy, was obliged to fly from their perſecution. I found him a man of ſo much humanity and good-ſenſe, that I have ſince that time frequently called at his houſe in my way thither, to have the pleaſure of half an hour’s converſation with I11v 190 with him; but he is ſo complete a recluſe, that theſe ladies, though he has for a long time lived ſo very ear them, never once had a ſight of him. But indeed it is no wonder; for he aſſures me he has never ſtirred farther than his little garden. You muſt know then, that this poor ſolitary is now at the point of death; and, having ſent a peaſant to me this morning, I made all the haſte I could to him, the countryman telling me he was dangerouſly ill, having got a violent cold (by ſleeping late on the graſs which had thrown him into a fever.
I found him in reality very ill, and weak. Having begged me to ſit down by him, and firſt thanked me for affording him my preſence, he told me he had ſomething to communicate to me, which, I12r 191 which, amongſt his other ſins, would not ſuffer him to die in peace.
Know then, ſaid he, that I have deceived you in my profeſſion, my name, and my country: for the former of which in particular I muſt intreat your pardon and abſolution. You know, continued he, that I have always made you believe that I was an Italian prieſt, who fled from the perſecution of my enemies; but this is far from the truth; for I only put on the religious habit for my better ſecurity and convenience, as I believed the monk’s cowl would not only render my perſon more inviolable, but would make people leſs curious to pry into the method of life I purpoſed to lead.
Are you not an eccleſiaſtic? cried I, amazed at what I hear him fay.— No, I12v 192 No, my Lord, no, anſwered he; I am the moſt unfortunate man living.—But pray hear me out.—He then proceeded to tell me his real name and country, which I find to be our own; for he is actually a Spaniard; but having gone into Italy in quality of Secretary to the Viceroy of Naples, he there got acquainted with a young woman of quality, whom he married unknown to her friends; and embarking with her in a veſſel for Spain, he had the misfortune to loſe her.
This diſaſter ſo much embittered his life, that, reſolving to renounce the world, he, on his arrival in Spain, ſold his eſtate in Valencia, and retired to this province, where it ſeems he was born; and where, added the Biſhop, I am afraid he will ſoon end his days; for, after having exhauſted his ſpirits in relating K1r 193 relating to me all the circumſtances of his unhappy ſtory, he had ſcarce ſtrength enough to go through with his confeſſion, and to repeat ſome prayers after me, which he begged I would offer up for his ſins.
I ſtayed ſo late with him, purſued he, that I thought it would be in vain for me to attempt going home tonight. Beſides, as I have ſent to Cadiz for a phyſician, I would chuſe to be in the way when he viſits him.
Adelaide, who liſtened attentively to the good biſhop’s diſcourſe, had laid the moſt violent conſtraint upon herſelf to hide the tumult in her boſom which this relation had occaſioned. She concluded that the ſuppoſed Father Theodore could be no other than her lover, the Chevalier de Ponces. She aſked the BiſhopII. K ſhop K1v 194 ſhop of Seville, with a trembling voice, —Whether the ſick perſon had deſired his name to be concealed?—No, replied the Biſhop; he is called Don Enenique de Ponces.—At that dear name Adelaide could no longer contain herſelf:—ſhe fetched a deep groan, and fainted away on the neck of Madame Deffari, who ſat by her. All the company were ſtartled and ſurpriſed, except that lady, who well knew the cauſe. Adelaide was ſoon brought to herſelf by the remedies which were applied; and the Biſhop of Seville, with Donna Cynthia and Donna Clara, having altogether, with great earneſtneſs, demanded the occaſion of her ſo ſudden illneſs, Madame Deffari, with Adelaide’s permiſſion, acquainted them in a few words with the whole of her friend’s ſtory.The K2r 195
The good Biſhop ſeemed quite aſtoniſhed with this new diſcovery; and, addreſſing himſelf to Adelaide (whom he now ſaw eaſing her ſwoln heart with tears) Be comforted, Madam, ſaid he; your huſband is indeed dangerouſly ill; but the hopes of ſeeing you again may work miracles; and perhaps reſtore him to health,—you whom he believes dead, and whoſe loſs I have heard him ſo bitterly deplore.—Alas, my Lord, anſwered Adelaide, it is not me whom he deplores; you know my friend informed you that it was my couſin whom he married and took away with him (believing her indeed to be me) but he muſt certainly have ſoon been undeceived; therefore it is to Fauſtina’s memory that he dedicates all his ſorrow.—You are miſtaken, cried the Biſhop, and wrong the Chevalier; for he loſt his wife without K2 ever K2v 196 ever being undeceived in his belief of its being you whom he married; and, if you be that Adelaide, the daughter of the Baron St. Seberina, Don Enenique never was unfaithful, nor ceaſed one moment to love you.—Explain this, my Lord, cried Madame Deffari. I am overjoyed at what you tell us.—To this the Biſhop replied:—I ſhall give you the information you deſire in the Chevalier’s own words:—
I have informed you, my Lord, of the oppoſition my paſſion met from my Adelaide’s father.—With difficulty I prevailed on her to yield to my entreaties; and obtained at length an almoſt reluctant promiſe to meet me the following evening, after dark, in a ſummer-houſe in the garden; where a prieſt, whoſe ſervice I had ſecured, had engaged to unite us in indiſſoluble bonds. She K3r 197 She was faithful to her appointment; but appeared under ſuch extraordinary agitation, that, fearing a return of her former ſcruples, I haſtened the ceremony that ſecured her mine; and, putting her and her attendant into my chaiſe, I mounted my horſe; and in a ſhort time we reached the ſea-ſide; where, ſtill favoured by the obſcurity of the night, we got on board a brigantine I had hired for the purpoſe; and we ſet ſail immediately.
Adelaide inſtantly retired to her cabin; and I was preparing to follow her, when Thereſa ſtopped me, ſaying, her miſtreſs had requeſted to be left a ſhort time to her own thoughts.— Though grieved and diſappointed at this propoſal, I replied, Her will ſhould be obeyed, however painful to my heart; and, deſiring Thereſa to return K3 to K3v 198 to her miſtreſs, I remained buried in reflection on a conduct which might have been conſtrued into indifference, had ſhe not that very night given ſuch undoubted proofs of the moſt ſincere attachment.
In a few minutes Thereſa delivered me a ſhort note from my dear Adelaide: the hand was ſcarcely legible, ſo greatly were her ſpirits affected. As nearly as I can remember (and often have they come acroſs my thoughts) theſe were the words:—
Your ready compliance with a requeſt ſo apparently unkind, has obliged me greatly. You cannot, my deareſt Ponces, doubt of my love; but you muſt own the ſacrifice I have made of filial affection, duty, and all thoſe ties I have hitherto moſt revered, require the K4r 199 the tribute of ſorrow I cannot deny them.—A few hours, I truſt, will compoſe my ſpirits; and I ſhall meet you in the morning in a frame of mind better ſuited to that union on which my future happineſs muſt depend.
I reiterated my aſſurances of compliance to her maid; and even admired this ſenſibility of mind in my Adelaide. —I retired to the captain’s cabin for the remainder of the night. In a few hours we fell in with a little fleet, which the Viceroy of Naples was then ſending on a grand expedition. We had ſcarcely joined them (which we would rather have avoided, and ſhould have done ſo, had the weather been clear) when we were, moſt unfortunately met by ſome pirates of Barbary, who inſtantly attacked us.—The Spaniards fought bravely, though under much diſadvantage,K4 tage, K4v 200 tage, the brigantines being ſo crowded with men that they had not room to defend themſelves regularly. It was now peep of day, and I had mingled in the fight, not daring to truſt myſelf with a ſight of Adelaide in ſuch an alarming moment; but the precious charge animated me with uncommon fire; ſo that, after a fierce engagement which laſted near an hour, I leapt in the enemy’s ſhip which had grappled my brigantine, and advancing with my ſword drawn towards the captain (who had more than once attempted to board me) we began a very ſharp and long encounter.— Moſt of my men followed my example, and engaged with the Turks; who defended themſelves with great bravery. For my own part, I was received by the infidel with uncommon intrepidity; when, after exchanging ſeveral blows, I fortunately laid him dead at my feet.“But K5r 201
But oh! how dear did this victory coſt me! During the engagement between the two veſſels, my brigantine had ſtarted a plank, which the crew in the confuſion they were in, had not diſcovered, and moſt of them having followed when I boarded the Turk, there remained but few hands to aſſiſt her behind. The ſhips had by this time got clear of each other; and, to complete our diſtreſs, the wind had riſen ſo high, that it was impoſſible for the ſailors who were with me to get to the relief of their comrades. How dreadful was my ſituation when I ſaw the brigantine which contained the treaſure of my ſoul juſt ready to be ſwallowed up by the waves; for the water had by this time almoſt filled it. The ſtorm had ſevered our veſſels ſo, that it was only poſſible to diſtinguiſh my dear Adelaide running diſtractedly on the deck, followed by K5 her K5v 202 her woman, who was wringing her hands. But what were my agonies, when, after a fruitleſs endeavour to get to their ſuccour, I ſaw the fatal brigantine ſink to the bottom!—I beheld every thing dear to me periſh before my eyes in one dreadful moment, and was at this ſight ſo little maſter of myſelf, that I was going to plunge in after her, if ſome of the people about me, who ſaw my deſpair, had not held me. I was carried to the cabin, where my ſervant had followed me, rather to prevent me from committing any violence on myſelf than to offer me any conſolation; which he knew at that time would be a vain attempt.
In the mean time the two fleets were diſperſed, as well the Turkiſh as Spaniſh; which without doubt was providential; for it not only ſaved a great many K6r 203 many lives that muſt have been loſt, had the engagement continued, but alſo retarded that black enterpriſe the Neapolitan ſhips were going on; and which God has ſince been pleaſed ſo happily to defeat.—Your Lordship can’t be ignorant that I mean that execrable deſign againſt the Republic of Venice.
We toſſed about the remainder of that day and the whole enſuing night, when the following morning the ſtorm abated. As we had made ourſelves maſters of the Turkiſh ſhip, I ordered them to purſue our melancholy courſe to Spain, where we arrived without meeting any farther moleſtation.
Of all the money and jewels I had carried with me from Italy I had nothing left, having loſt all in the veſſel; but this would have given me little concern,K6 cern, K6v 204 cern, had the waves ſpared my beloved wife. The maſter of the brigantine which was ſunk, loſt nothing in the exchange he had made; for the Turkiſh ſhip proved to be very rich; ſo that moſt of his crew were well rewarded for the hazard they had run.
I now found myſelf the moſt forlorn wretch in the world. In one moment I took a review of all my calamities.— In what condition, ſaid I, am I returned to my native country! I left it, poſſeſſed of a conſiderable employment, and fluſhed with a thouſand flattering hopes: but where are they now? I have abuſed the Duke d’Oſſuna’s favour by abſenting myſelf from my poſt without his knowledge; and that at a moſt critical time.—I have ſtole away from Naples like a criminal; and ſuch indeed I am; for, after having engaged a virtuous, K7r 205 a virtuous, young, and beautiful maid to forſake her friends and her country to follow my fortunes, I have ſeen her periſh before my eyes! I accuſe myſelf of her death; for it was her love for me which had occaſioned it.—Yes, cried I, had Adelaide never beheld the wretched Enenique, ſhe had ſtill lived, ſtill been happy.
Thus I reflected that I had loſt the beſt part of my fortune, my hopes, and my wife. I made no doubt but the Baron St. Seberina, her father, would make the moſt diligent inquiry after her; and that, aſſiſted by the Viceroy, who muſt alſo be provoked at my flight, I ſhould inevitably be diſcovered; and though, had Adelaide lived, I was not without hopes of appeaſing the Baron, yet I had every thing to apprehend from the fury of an incenſed father,ther, K7v 206 ther, who, having loſt an only child, would not fail to look upon me as the author of her death. Theſe reflections made me form a reſolution at once what courſe to take. I repaired with the utmoſt privacy to Valencia, where I have an eſtate.—I put it into the hands of a friend, who was to remit a ſmall ſum to me yearly, making him acquainted with my deſign; and at the ſame time deſired him to give out that I was gone to travel. I changed my name to that of Father Theodore; and diſguiſing myſelf in a monk’s habit, I reſolved to paſs the reſt of my days in mourning the loſs of Adelaide; and to live as ſolitarily as if I had really been a holy man.—The many years I have been abſent from Andaluſia, together with the alteration in my perſon, made me ſo little known there, that I concluded it would be no hard matter to conceal myſelf under a borrowed name.“I choſe K8r 207
I choſe Andaluſia for my reſidence for two reaſons; the one, that being the place of my nativity, and at the ſame time one of the moſt delightful parts of Spain, I had a particular attachment to it; the other, that I imagined, ſhould there be any ſearch for me, my enemies would leaſt ſuſpect me to be in the very province whither I knew it was moſt likely they would direct their firſt inquiries. I bought this little dwelling from a poor man who had lived here many years; and I only wiſh to exiſt, in order to make an atonement for a life which (thought not blameleſs) has yet been fuller of miſfortunes than crimes.
I could not, proceeded the Biſhop, hear this unhappy young man conclude his ſad ſtory without ſhedding tears. I have already told you how much he had impaired his ſtrength by talking K8v 208 talking ſo long. However, after having paſt ſome hours at his bed-ſide, which were ſpent as well in affording him conſolation as in hearing a detail of his adventures, I left him in a tranquil ſtate of mind; but ſo weak in body, that I am not without fears of loſing him:—therefore, good daughter, added he, addreſſing Adelaide, though you have again found your lover, and found him ſuch as you would wiſh him to be; yet have a care in giving a looſe to the emotions of your heart! He is indeed moſt worthy of your love; and I wiſh Heaven may ſpare him to make you happy:—but I conjure you not to build your happineſs on a life, of which we muſt be ſo uncertain.—Oh, my Lord! cried Adelaide (her face bathed in tears) aſſiſt me with your counſel; and teach me, if poſſible, to bear theſe cruel ſtrokes of fate without murmuring.muring K9r 209 muring.—Don’t talk of murmuring, interrupted the Biſhop, gravely; God forbid, child, that you ſhould preſume to repine at the decrees of Providence. You ought rather to fall on your knees, and adore its wife and merciful diſpenſations, which have preſerved you in a moſt wonderful manner, at the ſame time that it permitted the deſtruction of that miſerable woman who betrayed you!—Conſider that, had you been in her place, you muſt have periſhed; and the Chevalier would, in reality, have had the loſs of that wife to lament, whoſe life ſeems to have been the care of Heaven! Let this conſideration fill you with the utmoſt gratitude.—You are to believe that, if God is pleaſed to make Don Enenique to himſelf, it is not in order to afflict you; but, on the contrary, to work ſome ſpecial end of his own; perhaps to give you a farther oppor- K9v 210 opportunity of exerciſing that admirable patience and ſubmiſſion, which he has already bleſt you with; and to teach you not to put too great a value on the tranſitory enjoyments of this life.—We ought therefore, without laying ſchemes of happineſs for whole years, which an accident of one minute may deſtroy, to content ourſelves to live (as we all are) poor dependants on the mercies which are hourly vouchſafed us!
Whilſt the good prelate was thus endeavouring to comfort his fair pupil, ſhe ſtrove as much as poſſible to ſtifle her ſighs.—Whatever ſubmiſſion ſhe ſhewed to this venerable man’s advice, her thoughts were too much agitated at this time, to be eaſily calmed.—She thanked him, however, in the moſt reſpectful terms, for the zeal he expreſſed for her happineſs and peace of mind.— It K10r 211 It was now pretty late; and the meſſenger whom the Biſhop had ſent to Rios for the phyſician, was returned with him, and came to acquaint his Lord that he had left him at the houſe of the ſick man.— Adelaide was afraid to ſhew too great an impatience to know what was the ſtate of the Chevalier; but Madame Deffari, who gueſſed at what paſt in her mind, entreated the Biſhop to ſend for the phyſician, that he might give them an account of his patient’s ſtate of health. Accordingly the Biſhop diſpatched one of his ſervants for him; the Chevalier’s little habitation being only two or three fields length from the caſtle.
When the phyſician arrived, he aſſured them that the Chevalier was ſtill in a high fever; and that he had little hopes but from his youth and ſtrength. He added, that his patient was delirious, and K10v 212 and could not be prevailed on to take a cordial which he had brought with him to procure ſleep.—The whole company were alarmed at this account! The Biſhop was deeply moved at Adelaide’s ſorrow, as well as at the Chevalier’s danger.—He aſſured her there ſhould be nothing omitted that could tend towards his relief:—and, riſing up, he let the phyſician know that he would go with him to his patient, to try if his preſence would have any ſalutary effect.— Accordingly they both departed from the caſtle:—and Donna Cynthia, perceiving that it was now almoſt midnight, entreated her gueſts to think of taking ſome repoſe.
Adelaide went indeed to bed; but thoſe perſons muſt never have felt a pain like hers who imagine that ſhe ſlept.—Ponces, the amiable Ponces, ſtill K11r 213 ſtill faithful and conſtant as ever, was a thought which tranſported her beyond expreſſion:—but then, that ſame Ponces, amiable and conſtant as he is, is at the point of death!—This cruel reflection quite diſtracted her; and ſhe roſe before day, to learn, if poſſible, what ſhe was to expect.
Madame Deffari was ſtill aſleep; and finding all the houſe in a profound ſilence, ſhe waited in her antichamber, walking backwards and forwards with the utmoſt anxiety, till ſhe ſhould hear ſome of the family ſtirring. But the Biſhop of Seville, who judged of her inquietude, did not leave her long in ſuſpenſe. That good man, who had (together with the phyſician) ſat up all night, no ſooner ſaw day-light than he haſtened to the caſtle of Cardonas; and, going directly to Adelaide’s apartment, he K11v 214 he met that lady in the gallery; who, on hearing him come up the ſtairs, was advancing to receive him in the utmoſt agitation.—The Chevalier is ſtill alive, ſaid he (without waiting for her aſking him) and though not out of danger, yet, from having reſted a little, his fever is ſomewhat abated.—I found him, added the Biſhop, light-headed, as the phyſician told us; and I remained almoſt two hours by his bedſide before his reaſon returned, when I prevailed on him to take the doſe which was prepared to make him ſleep; and which I almoſt began to ſuſpect he had refuſed from the phyſician, leſs out of want of recollection than a diſinclination to live; for it was with ſome difficulty that I perſuaded him to take it; and not till after I had repreſented to him the heinouſneſs of his endeavouring to haſten his own death, by not only K12r 215 only the neglecting, but abſol flawed-reproduction3 lettersrefuſing all means of preſervation. But I found he had quite different notions from mine:—for, ſhaking his head, he told me that, after having made his peace with God, he hoped it would not be imputed to him as a crime, if he preſſed forward on his journey to a better world, in order to leave one which was hateful to him:—however, at my requeſt he ſaid he would no longer refuſe the aids which I had ſo generouſly procured him. In effect, the cordial which he accepted from my hands ſo compoſed him, that he ſlept for near three hours; and on his awakening ſeemed much refreſhed.—Oh, my Lord! cried Adelaide, how infinitely good are you! Sure Heaven ſent you to be a comforter and preſerver to me, as well as to the unhappy Chevalier, who, without your charitable aſſiſtance, had K12v 216 had by this time been no more!— Give God the praiſe, anſwered the Biſhop) who has pleaſed to make me inſtrumental in this good work. But moderate your joy; for I have already told you that, though Don Enenique is much better, he is nevertheleſs not out of danger.—If he knew I was alive, and ſo near him, replied Adelaide, bluſhing, I am ſure it would help him to recover.—On the contrary, anſwered the Biſhop, it might only ſerve to irritate his diſorder; for ſudden impulſes of joy and ſurpriſe have often produced effects as fatal as thoſe of grief. However, you may be ſure I ſhall, when his ſtrength permits, take an opportunity of making the diſcovery to him in ſuch a manner as he will be beſt able to bear. In the mean time I muſt chide you for your impatience: for I well perceive by your eyes, that you L1r 217 you ſlept but little laſt night.—Adelaide was ſomething abaſhed at this gentle reprimand: however, relying entirely on the goodneſs of the Biſhop, ſhe conjured him to continue his kind offices to the Chevalier, and to indulge her ſo far as to let her know from time to time how he did.—And I leave it to you, my Lord, added ſhe, turning her face away, to inform him that Adelaide ſtill lives, and lives only for him.
Madame Deffari, with Donna Cynthia and Donna Clara, were by this time up; and, longing to enquire after the Chevalier’s health, they were rejoiced at the hopes the Biſhop gave them by his account: and indeed they ſo much intereſtd themſelves in Adelaide’s happineſs, that one would have thought it was the particular concern of Vol. II. L ea L1v 218 each of them.—Donna Cynthia invited the phyſician to breakfaſt with them; and they had the ſatiſfaction to hear from him that the Chevalier’s diſorder was ſo much abated, that he began to entertain the beſt hopes imaginable of him:—in effect he recovered his ſtrength ſo well in a few days, that the Biſhop of Seville, believing that the knowledge of Adelaide being alive would much contribute towards reſtoring him to perfect health, he reſolved no longer to defer a diſcovery on which the happineſs of two ſuch virtuous and amiable perſons depended. He intended to prepare the Chevalier by degrees for the joyful news he had to diſcloſe to him: wherefore going to make him a viſit, as was his daily cuſtom, he found him reclining on his bed, with a book before him, on which he ſeemed very attentive. He laid it by when he perceived the L2r 219 the Biſhop at his bedſide; and, accoſting that reverend man with a cheerful air,— I would prefer nothing on earth but your Lordſhip’s company, ſaid he, to the author I have been juſt now reading, whoſe ſentiments I am the more delighted with as they ſerve to confirm me in a reſolution I had taken (in caſe it pleaſed God to reſtore me to health) to aſſume that holy weed in reality, which I have ſo long preſumed to wear only as a diſguiſe. This I think the ſmalleſt atonement I can make for my profanation of the ſacred habit.—I am pleaſed, anſwered the Biſhop, to find you entertained in ſo edifying, as well as agreeable a manner; and wiſh you would beſtow more of your time in an employment which would take off your thoughts from the melancholy ſubjects which ſo often engage them. You are now but juſt recovered from a dangerousL2 ou L2v 220 ous fit of ſickneſs, which had almoſt brought you up to the brink of the grave! ſummon up therefore all your ſpirits; baniſh the gloom which has ſo long hung over you; and prepare your mind to taſte the ſweets of peace. You have diſburthened your ſoul of a weight which had a long time oppreſſed it;— you have made me the confidant of your ſorrows, as well as of your ſins.— I have abſolved you from the one, and hope I have adminiſtered ſome conſolation to the other. In ſuch a frame of mind as I flatter myſelf you are now in, I muſt approve the reſolution you have taken, effectually to bed the world and its vanities adieu. You will in this ſolitude have leiſure to diſcover the charms of piety and true devotion:—charms which the world are but little acquainted with; where they are ſo obſcured with avarice and hypocriſy, that their ſplendordor L3r 221 dor is altogether loſt! Here you muſt look upon yourſelf as juſt entered into a new world. You muſt forget that you were ever any other than what you now are:—that you ever had a name, a fortune, or a wife. Let all the vanities of your youth be forgotten; and let the memory of nothing but your faults dwell with you. A little uſe will make all theſe things eaſy; and every day will advance your happineſs and repoſe. You muſt learn to fix your eyes on the ſupreme Author of all good; and to look upon him as the end of all your wiſhes and deſires:—this will put you in a ſtate to be envied by kings.— Your life will be always ſweetened with hopes the moſt raviſhing that can touch a human heart, without any mixture of thoſe fears which render the mortal condition ſo miſerable:—you will no longer regret the feeling your treaſure ſwallowed L3 up L3v 222 up by the waves, nor ſigh for having the object of your love torn from you. Such bleſſings are thoſe which you may promiſe yourſelf from a religious life: I would wiſh you therefore, my ſon, to have a reliſh for ſuch a life before you enter upon it. ’Tis true, the longer you are acquainted with it, the more amiable it will grow (an attribute, I think, which piety has peculiar to itſelf); but then, I would be no means encourage you to bind yourſelf by vows before you are well apprized of your own ſtrength of mind, and are ſure that no motives would be powerful enough to tempt you back into the world, which you renounce. ’Tis neceſſary therefore before you proceed too far, to weigh nicely the importance, and be fully convinced of the ſteadineſs of your reſolution.‘Oh,’ L4r 223
Oh, my Lord! replied the Chevalier, that taſk is long ago performed. I have ſearched into the innermoſt receſſes of my ſoul; and I can boldly declare that if all the riches, titles, and honours in the univerſe were laid at my feet, they would not ſhake my ſettled purpoſe, nor once tempt me to renounce this poor covering. No, my reverend friend; you have inſpired me with a holineſs, and raiſed my hopes to ſuch a degree, that it is not in the power of any thing to make me forego them.—Aſk your heart one queſtion more, replied the Biſhop, and then I have done. Suppoſe your Adelaide, that Adelaide whom you ſo much loved, were to be reſtored to your wiſhes, are you proof againſt a temptation ſo full of charms?—Ah! why do you rip up a wound, replied the Chevalier, into which you have but juſt poured a balm? L4 Alas! L4v 224 Alas! I fear were ſuch a miracle to be wrought, I ſhould too ſoon forget all my pious reſolves!—Yes, my Lord, I own myſelf ſo frail a wretch, that Adelaide could even force me from the altar!—How weak is man! replied the good paſtor, lifting up his eyes to heaven. Oh, my God! what wretches are we! to be thus enſlaved by our paſſions!—Indeed, young man, I pity you, added he. Alas! you are deceived in imagining that you have acquired that victory over yourſelf, which is neceſſary for the holy life you purpoſe to lead. I well perceive that you deſpiſe riches and pomp not out of a chriſtian humility, but becauſe another object engroſſes all your affections!— Don’t reproach me thus cruelly, anſwered the Chevalier, with a weakneſs which I have made no ſcruple to confeſs to you. ’Tis true, my love for Adelaide L5r 225 Adelaide was beyond all deſcription; but I own this without bluſhing. She was my wife; amiable and virtuous as ever man was bleſt with; and if it be in the power of nothing but that dear wife (who now lies buried in the deep) to make me ſwerve from my duty, don’t, I conjure you, let the thoughts of an impoſſibility debar me from that happineſs, for which you have made me long for ſo ardently.
The worthy prelate fixed his eyes gravely on the Chevalier. The ſecret he had to diſcloſe to him was of ſo uncommon and very affecting a nature, as obliged the Biſhop to pauſe for ſome time, in order to collect himſelf, ſo as to be able to make the important diſcovery in ſuch a manner as would leaſt ſurpriſe and diſcompoſe the mind of his friend. The Chevalier obſerved his L5 coun- L5v 226 countenance, which ſeemed expreſſive of ſomething more than common; and, bending reſpectfully towards him, I fear, ſaid he, you think me incapable of diſcharging thoſe ſevere duties which the profeſſion I am ready to embrace will exact from me; and that you judge it expedient perhaps that I ſhould undergo a longer probation than ordinary. If theſe be your ſentiments, ſpeak, my Lord; for I attend with the utmoſt ſubmiſſion to hear your final ſentence on me.—Hear me then, my ſon, anſwered the Biſhop; for I am going to ſpeak, though not on the ſubject you expect yet on one; which, next to your eternal welfare, concerns you moſt nearly. Prepare yourſelf then for aſtoniſhment; prepare your heart for joy; but above all, prepare, with gratitude and humility, to adore that Providence who in ſo wonderful a manner preſerved and now L6r 227 now reſtores to you—your wife! For know, Don Enenique, your Adelaide lives! To her then, who has the beſt right to your vows, be they all dedicated; whilſt I, highly content with being inſtrumental in promoting the happy union, will join with you in admiring the various ways which Heaven takes to bring about its purpoſes.
The Chevalier, who was fully poſſeſſed with a belief of Adelaide’s death, looked upon this as the effect of a delirium; and, fearing that he was again fallen into his former ſtate of raving, conjured the Biſhop to tell him, whether he was awake, and in his ſenſes; and if all he had heard was real?—The Biſhop then proceeded to relate ever particular as he had it from Adelaide’s own mouth.—But Don Enenique, ſtill doubting of his own happineſs, aſked, L6 —might L6v 228 —might he not be permitted to ſee Adelaide? The Biſhop anſwered, ſhe was not far off; and that if he thought the ſight of her would not agitate his ſpirits ſo as to endanger his health, he himſelf would conduct her to him directly. Don Enenique graſped his benefactor’s hand, and, preſſing it eagerly, conjured him by no means to delay his felicity.
The Prelate aroſe, and kindly bidding him endeavour to govern the impetuoſity of his wiſhes, he left him to go to the Caſtle of Cardonas, where he informed the ladies of what had paſſed. But he had ſcarce time to finiſh what he had to ſay, when the overjoyed Adelaide flew to the Chevalier’s habitation; the Biſhop and Madame Deffari (who had a deſire to be witneſſes of their meeting) followed. Adelaide had ſtopped at L7r 229 at his chamber-door a little, to recover her agitated ſpirits; and, notwithſtanding her impatience to behold her beloved Don Enenique, ſhe had not the courage to enter the room, till the Biſhop, laying hold of her hand, and begging her to compoſe herſelf, led her directly to the Chevalier.
An extaſy of joy overpowered him ſo, that (although he endeavoured) he was not able to riſe; and the equally tranſported Adelaide could only throw herſelf on his boſom, where, hiding her face, ſhe gave vent to her tears.—She wept indeed; but ſure they were not tears of ſorrow which ſhe ſhed on the breaſt of Don Enenique, but ſuch as flow from tranſports too ſtrong for the poor expreſſion of words! However, having recovered herſelf a little, ſhe raiſed her head, and the Chevalier and ſhe L7v 230 ſhe gazed at each other in ſilence ſo long, that the Biſhop, fearing ſuch tumultuous joy might overcome Don Enenique’s hardly recovered ſtrength, thought proper to correct thoſe raptures, which ſeemed ſo wholly to poſſeſs their faculties as almoſt to deprive them of their proper powers.
Chevalier, ſaid he, “gentlygently tapping him on the ſhoulder, you ſee that without a miracle your wife (for ſuch I ſuppose ſhe will ſhortly be) is reſtored to you, beyond your hopes. Let the future part of your life therefore (ſince your temporal engagements muſt neceſſarily prevent thoſe ſpiritual ones you propoſed) be ſpent ſo, as to render you worthy this diſtinguiſhed mark of favour from Heaven; and though the firſt ſteps you took to gain this lady were not quite blameleſs, yet you have I think fully L8r 231 fully atoned for them; and I know of no reward ſo ſuited to your fidelity as that which is now beſtowed on you.— May you live many days to participate of ſuch an unlooked for enjoyment, and may your gratitude and future conduct in life be ſuch as will juſtly entitle you to merit ſo divine a favour;— for ſo I think I may juſtly pronounce it!
Adelaide during this interval of the Biſhop, had not yet thoroughly recovered herſelf from the unſpeakable tranſport of joy which the ſight of her dear Enenique had occaſioned. But when the good man had finiſhed his congratulations to her lover, ſhe attempted in broken accents to utter ſome expreſſions in return for the Biſhop’s kind wiſhes; however, the worthy prelate obſerving that ſhe was not yet L8v 232 yet properly compoſed to deliver herſelf, kindly interrupted her; and taking her by the hand, addreſſed her as follows:
Pardon me, my dear Adelaide, for being ſo abrupt as to interpoſe whilſt you are ſpeaking: But as I’ve ſaid thus much to my worthy friend Don Enenique, ſuffer me alſo the indulgence of a word or two to you.—As for your part, Madam, added he, with a moſt affable air, I well perceive that it is needleſs for me to tell you that you are fully recompenſed for all you have ſuffered, by being in the poſſeſſion of this virtuous and valuable man; and, as you have alſo expiated the fault of your diſobedience (when you meditated your former flight with your lover) ſo I hope you will paſs the remainder of your days in that uninter- L9r 233 uninterrupted ſtate of felicity which in my opinion you both are ſo highly deſerving of.
This grave addreſs of the Biſhop recalled (as it was intended) the two lovers from their mutual tranſport; they both at once, as if informed by the ſame mind, threw themſelves at the venerable man’s feet, and embracing his knees, began to pour out the warmeſt acknowledgments that hearts overflowing with love and gratitude could ſuggeſt.—He raiſed them both up, and, preſenting Madame Deffari (who till now in the hurry of their joy they had overlooked) to the Chevalier, he quickly recollected her; and, being told it was to her he was indebted for ſeeing his Adelaide in Spain, he broke into freſh exclamations of praiſe, thanking Madame Deffari, and calling her his good angel. L9v 234 angel. In ſhort, Don Enenique having once given a looſe to the tranſports of his heart, almoſt exhauſted his ſtrength in endeavouring to give them utterance.
Donna Cynthia had deſired the Biſhop of Seville to make a compliment on her part to the Chevalier, and to invite him to her caſtle; where he would find every thing more for his convenience than he could at his own houſe.— Don Enenique was eaſily prevailed on to accept of this offer; wherefore, finding himſelf now able to perform ſo ſhort a journey, he was put in the Biſhop of Seville’s coach, who, with Madame Deffari and Adelaide, accompanied him to the Caſtle.
That amiable lady, Donna Cynthia, received him with all the tokens of com- L10r 235 complaiſance and affection which a ſincere and generous heart could dictate: —it was done in ſuch a manner as convinced the Chevalier that ſhe intereſted herſelf in his happineſs; ſo that now being accommodated with every thing neceſſary to his preſent ſtate, and, above all, bleſt with the company of his ever-dear Adelaide, he in a ſhort ſpace of time recovered his former health and ſpirits.
No obſtacle now remaining to the joining the hands of this truly happy pair, the preparations for this ceremony were ſhort, and without that pomp ſo much affected by the great, and ſo little eſſential to happineſs. The Chevalier Ponces received his Adelaide from the hands of Signior Deffari, who came to the Caſtle of Cardonas for the purpoſe of being preſent on this happy occaſion;caſion; L10v 236 caſion; and the good Biſhop of Seville (who was ſo much delighted at their union) tied the nuptial knot of this amiable couple.
Donna Cynthia entertained her noble gueſts for ſeveral days at the Caſtle; where they ſpent the time in the greateſt harmony and conviviality: and it was her wiſh and expectation to have had the happineſs of their agreeable company for a conſiderable while, without the leaſt interruption: but unluckily Signior Deffari received a packet, which informed him that his affairs immediately required his preſence in Italy. As he was therefore under the neceſſity of taking his leave, he politely apologized to Donna Cynthia and the new-married couple, at the ſame time expreſſing an uneaſineſs at being obliged to withdraw himſelf earlierlier L11r 237 lier than he deſigned. Adelaide in her own mind was not diſpleaſed at this event, and gladly laid hold of the opportunity of returning home. She took however an unwilling leave of her valued friend, the Biſhop of Seville: nor could ſhe bid adieu to Cynthia and Clara without ſhedding tears,—the unhoped for happineſs ſhe had found at the Caſtle of Cardonas, had endeared that ſpot to her ſo much; and though, ſhe carried thence the bleſſing it had put her in poſſeſſion of, ſhe could not take her leave of it without a conſiderable degree of regret. Donna Cynthia and Clara were equally affected at parting with ſo amiable and endearing a friend.
They all embarked together for Italy; where, being ſafely arrived, the firſt thing Adelaide did was to repair to Milan, L11v 238 Milan, to pay a viſit to her old and dear friend Eugenia, whom ſhe found in perfect contentment with the accompliſhed Don Clement; that gentleman having been prevailed on by his lady to remain ſtill in Italy. Don Enenique and Adelaide ſtayed ſome time with the Marquis and Marchioneſs of Peſcara, and then returned to Salerno (whither Signior Deffari and his lady had gone before); where they lived in the enjoyment of as perfect happineſs as this life can afford.