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Mrs. Worthy made some enquiries into the family of the Lovelys, as her mother used to claim relationship to some of that name. By this means they discovered there was no very distant relationship between the Worthys and the Lovelys, though they were very glad it was not on the side of the Greedys. Mr. Lovely also had to console himself with a hope, that an intermixture into that family, might ultimately be of no great harm to the next generation, as his grandfather was too much the other way, and had suffered considerably, by lending large sums of money to some, in being security for others, and liberal apon all occasions, so that his fortune had been much injured by his generosity.
Upon this discovery, the easy and affectionate appellation of cousin, was at once adopted, and the conversation became familiar ; soon after which, the day was terminated by family prayer, and supper, and as the day following produced some conversation which it is hoped will not prove uninteresting to my readers, though omitted in the former editions. The substance of that conversation shall next be narrated, as soon as the morning sun shall rise, and if these Dialogues be now in the hands of those who retire to their rest, without first dedicating themselves to God, by family prayer ; while they conclude the evening by reading these little dramatic attempts, may this laudable custom, so seriously attended to at Brookfield-Hall, excite my kind readers also to break through the united barriers of sloth and shame; and ere they close their eyes in sleep, may they close the day with God.
ode 393 VOLPHI
SETWEEN MRS. AND MISS WORTHY, AND MRS. LOVELY
THE EVILS OF SEDUCTION, FURTIER CONTINUED.
family were at breakfast with their new guests, it was proposed by Mr. Worthy, that he and Mr. Lovely should take a ride to see some of the more extended prospects in that beautiful country, and then, on their return home, to pass through some of the retired glens that add a most pleasing variety to the enchanting neighbourhood of Brookfield-Hall : whilo the pleasantness of the day, and the serenity of the weather, invited Mrs. and Miss Worthy, and Mrs. Lovely, to make an easier excursion in an open carriage nearer bome. Though the captivating scenery of the place, occupied Mrs. Lovely's attention for a longer time than was designed, from the weakly state of her health ; yet their return allowed them sufficient time for the following conversation, before the designs of the more extended ride of Mr. Worthy and Mr. Lovely could be accomplished. After they were seated in an open pleasant hall, in this earthly paradise ; some jellies and a little fruit were brought in.
Mrs. Wor. Now madam, if Mr. Lovely was here, I think he would lay his commands upon you that you should taste how you like one of those jellies, and some of that fruit after your airing.
Mrs. Lov. O Madam, your kindness and attention tu such entire strangers, will never be forgotten.
• Mrs. Wor. I hope not, for don't you remember yesterday evening that we made it out that we are cousins, and relatives demand from us more than the common civility that is generally bestowed on strangers.
Mrs. Lov. I thank you kind Madąm, This gentle exercise in this delightful situation, seems to have done me so much good, that I shall accept your offer without waiting for Mr. Lovely's coinmands, though his commands of this. sort, are most affectionately nanierous. Dear man, no body can blame me for loving him.
Miss. Wor. I think we should all blame you if you did not love him, for we are all charmed with him since my father has told us of his noble and generous conduct.
Mrs. Lov. O Madam, you cannot know half his worth; his most happy and delightful temper, can never be sufficiently appreciated. If his Uncle could have broken off the match, I am sure it must have broken my heart, he is such a delightful man.
Mrs. Wor, Why we are all of us equally delighted with him.
Mrs. Lov. I am glad of it dear Madam, for I cannot but love all who love my dear husband. No woman can be blest with a better.
Mrs. Wor. Perhaps not, but I think I am blest with one quite as good. I have been married to Mr. Worthy above five and twenty years; and if we ever differ, we never disagree,
It is poor work when people's happiness ends with the honey moon. I doubt not but that the honey moon with us, will last all the days of our lives.
Mrs. Lov. So dear Madam, the landlord of the Golden Lion says. What a quiet and orderly house they keep! while their, kindness and attention is remarkably engaging. Mr. Lovely and myself, are so pleased with them, that it was our intention to have passed a few days under their hunble roof, had not your kind invitation prevented ; and especially
as the beautiful scenery of the place, so highly caltivated and improved by Mr. Worthy's taste ; so captivated our attention.
Mrs. Wor. Yes, and this is the only thing in which Mr. Worthy seems a little extravagant, in dressing his old family demesne. Most travellers are highly delighted with our situation.
Mrs. Lov. I should be surprised at their want of taste, if they were not. Considering what troubles we have lately sustained ; and what, from your affectionate hospitality, we have now before us, it seems as though we were on enchanted ground.
Mrs. Wor. Why Mr. Worthy considers by these improvements, how well he employs his poor neighbours; and he finds it much better to give them labor, than to give them money without it: and this is one reason why our parish poor rates are scarcely felt.
Mrs. Lov. What a happiness it would be if every country gentleman would follow such an example !
Mrs. Wor. Indeed it would. It may be now and then necessary to take a little journey for the sake of our family, yet Mr. Worthy cannot bear to be long from home, and this makes him so much beloved while he is at home.
Yrs. Lov. I am sure Mr. Lovely will be just such another, if ever he should possess any of the family estates, but that is now scarcely to be expected.
Mrs. Wor. I dare say he will; there is no doubt of the generosity of his mind. The best end of living, is to live for the good of others.
Mrs. Lov. It is amazing what he feels for that poor disconsolate woman at the Golden Lion : but if she is a penitent, bad as her conduct may have been, she is still to be pitied.
Mrs. Wor. We hope she is a penitent: but she has enough to repent of.
Mrs. Lov. Indeed she has; and she is inost deservedly and severely punished, by the reflections of her own niind. 1 thank God, there are no such
reflections between my dear George and me. I have heard more of her story this morning; though my spirits were too weak to hear the whole of it yesterday evening ; and however severe our troubles may have been, yet still they have been as nothing, when compared to an unfortunate lady in our neighbourhood, from the cruelty and treachery of her husband.
Mrs. Wor. Perhaps it is more painful for a woman to be forsaken by her husband, than for a man to be forsaken by his wife; though it is the same sort of cruelty and treachery on either side of the question. Mrs. Lov. Indeed Madam you would
say so, if you were to hear the story of this unfortunate Lady,
Mrs. Wor. Perhaps you have not sufficient strength and spirits to tell the story.
Mrs. Lov. O yes I have! The agitation I felt yesterday in coming among strangers, through your great kindness, is considerably subsided.
Miss Wor. But before you begin, I must step out for my work. Your talking need not hinder my working.
Mrs. Wor. But where is your sister Mary? bad she not better come in and help you to finish your work for the poor children?
Miss Wor. She will as soon as she returns from Betty Newman's, she is gone to take measure of one of the twins.
[Miss Worthy steps out for her work. During her absence Mrs. Worthy remarks]
Mrs. Wor. This is the best way I can find out of educating my daughters ; and I am happy to say, that they love the task, and wish to be a blessing to their poor neighbours by attending to their wants. They would much rather dress the poor, than dress themselves. They have been taught to esteem it the highest folly, to be the slaves and fools of fashion. Any thing that appears like fantastic dress, either in man or woman ; with them, is a sure indication not,