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Count de Vinevil by Penelope Aubin


PREFACE.
THE ADVENTURES OF THE Count De Vinevil.
CHAP. II.
CHAP. III.
CHAP. IV.
CHAP. V.
CHAP. VI.
CHAP. VII.
CHAP. VIII.
CHAP. IX.
CHAP. X.
CHAP. XI.
CHAP. XII.
CHAP. XIII.
CHAP. XIV.
CHAP. XV.
CHAP. XVI.
CHAP. XVII.
CHAP. XVIII.
CHAP. XIX.
CHAP. XX.

The Strange ADVENTURES OF THE Count de Vinevil AND HIS FAMILY.

PREFACE.

Since serious Things are in a Manner altogether neglected by what we call the gay and fashionable Part of Mankind, and religious Treatises grow mouldy on the Book-sellers Shelves in the Back-Shops; when Ingenuity is, for want of Encouragement, starved into Silence, and Toland's abominable Writings sell ten times better than the inimitable Mr. Pope's Homer; when Dacier's Works are attempted to be translated by a Hackney Writer, and Horace's Odes turned into Prose and Nonsense; the few that honour Virtue and wish well to our Nation ought to study to reclaim our giddy Youth; and since Reprehensions fail, try to win them to Virtue by Methods where Delight and Instruction may go together. With this Design I present this Book to the Publick, in which you will find a Story where Divine Providence manifests itself in every Transaction, where Virtue is tried with Misfortunes and rewarded with Blessings: In fine, where Men behave themselves like Christians, and Women are really virtuous, and such as we ought to imitate.

As for the Truth of what this Narrative contains, since Robinson Cruso has been so well received, which is more improbable, I know no Reason why this should be thought a Fiction. I hope the World is not grown so abandoned to Vice, as to believe that there is no such Ladies to be found, as would prefer Death to Infamy; or a Man that for Remorse of Conscience would quit a plentiful Fortune, retire, and choose to die in a dismal Cell. This Age has convinced us, that Guilt is so dreadful a thing, that some Men have hastened their own Ends, and done Justice on themselves. Would Men trust in Providence, and act according to Reason and common Justice, they need not to fear any thing; but whilst they defy God, and wrong others, they must be Cowards, and their Ends such as they deserve, surprizing and infamous. I heartily wish Prosperity to my Country, and that the English would be again (as they were heretofore) remarkable for Virtue and Bravery, and our Nobility make themselves distinguished from the Crowd, by shining Qualities, for which their Ancestors became so honoured, and for Reward of which obtained those Titles they inherit. I hardly dare hope for Encouragement, after having discovered, that my Design is to persuade you to be virtuous; but if I fail in this, I shall not in reaping that inward Satisfaction of Mind that ever accompanies good Actions. If this Trifle sells, I conclude it takes, and you may be sure to hear from me again; so you may be innocently diverted, and I employed to my Satisfaction. Adieu.

THE ADVENTURES OF THE Count De Vinevil.

In the Year 1702, the Count de Vinevil, a Native of France, born of one of the noblest Families in Picardy, where he had long lived possessed of a plentiful Estate, being a Widower, and having no child but the beautiful Ardelisa, his only Daughter, finding his Estate impoverished by continued Taxations, and himself neglected by his Sovereign, and no ways advanced, whilst others less worthy were put into Places of Trust and Power; resolved to dispose of his Estate, purchase and freight a Ship, sail for Turkey, and there settle at Constantinople, to trade; being induced so to do, from the perfect Knowledge he had of those Parts, having been in his Youth for above ten Years with an Uncle of his, who was Consul there for the French Factory, and carried him along with him to shew him the World.

Accordingly he turned all into ready Money, except some Lands, which being intailed he could not sell; and those he intrusted in the Hands of the Count de Beauclair, his Sister's Son.

Having thus ordered his Affairs, he purchased a Ship called the Bon-Avanturer, and having loaded it with Goods proper for the Levant, he went aboard with the fair Ardelisa, and a youth, who being an Orphan, and Heir to a considerable Estate in Picardy, was left to his Care. This Youth was Count of Longueville, then about seventeen Years of age; a young Gentleman of extraordinary Parts and Beauty: He was tall, delicately shaped, his Eyes black and sparkling, and every Feature of his Face was sweet, yet majestick; he was learned beyond his Years, and his Soul was full of Truth and Ingenuity; he had received from the best Education the best Principles, was brave, generous, affable, constant, and incapable of any thing that was base or mean. These Qualities rendered him dear to the Count de Vinevil, who looked on him as his own son, and was pleased to find that Ardelisa and he grew together in Affection as they grew in Age. She was then fourteen, and the most charming Maid Nature ever formed; she was tall and slender, fair as Venus, her Eyes blue and shining, her Face oval, with Features and an Air so sweet and lovely, that Imagination can form nothing more completely handsome or engaging. Her Mind well suited the fair Cabinet that contained it; she was humble, generous, unaffected, yet learned, wise, modest, and prudent above her Years or Sex; gay in Conversation, but by Nature thoughtful; had all the Softness of a Woman, with the Constancy and Courage of a Hero: In fine, her Soul was capable of every thing that was noble. There needed nothing more than this Sympathy of Souls, to create the strongest and most lasting Affection betwixt this young Nobleman man and Lady; they loved so tenderly, and agreed so well, that they seemed only born for one another.

The Evening before the Count de Vinevil left his Castle to go for Turkey, he called the young Count of Longueville into his Closet, and spake to him after this Manner: 'My Lord and Son, said he, I am, you see, going to quit my native Country, and to trust the faithless Seas with myself and all that is mine: I am going amongst Mahometans, to avoid the seeing those, who have been my Vassals, lord it over me; but, my dear Child, I am most unwilling to hazard your Life, or involve you in whatever Misfortunes may befal me. You have a noble Fortune to enjoy, great Relations, such as can, with ease, procure you such an honourable Post at Court, or in the Army, as may give you Opportunities of using, to your King and Country's Glory, those admirable Qualifications Heaven has bestowed upon you; which I have not been wanting to improve in you, nor omitted any thing that could make you such, as I desired to see you: And, believe me, no News will be more grateful to me in my Exile from France, than to hear that you are great and happy. Now then, my dear Child, let me prevail with you to consent to our Separation: Stay here, and be as blessed as I wish you; and if I die in Turkey, and leave Ardelisa an Orphan, let her, returning, find in you such a Friend, as you have found in me.' Here he stopped. The young Count, whom Respect had till now kept silent, throwing himself at his Feet, and embracing his Knees with Tears, replied, 'My Lord and Father! what have I done to merit your Displeasure, that you should propose such a thing to me? Can you believe me capable of an Action so base, as to abandon you and Ardelisa, to whom my Soul is devoted, out of whose Presence I would not live, to gain the Empire of the Eastern World? No, my Father, your Fortune shall be mine; we will live and die together, nothing but Death shall ever separate us. Ardelisa shall be my Charge, and I will be to her a Lover, Husband, and Father; and to you a Son, in the strictest and most tender sense. Urge me no more to leave you, my Soul is filled with Horror at the Thought.' The old Count, taking him up in his Arms, embraced him with Transport; 'Forgive me, my Son, said he, 'twas the Excess of my Affection made me fear to hazard the Life of what I loved so well; may Heaven prosper our Voyage, and reward you with a long Life and safe Return to France, when I am gone to rest: And may Ardelisa make you just Returns, and be to you as great a Blessing as you are to me. Let us now go to take our Repose, and with the Rising-sun we'll set out; all things are ready, the Wind is fair, and in another Country we will try to improve that Fortune we shall never be able here to better.'

The next Morning the good old Count, young Longueville, and the fair Ardelisa left the Castle, attended with many Friends, who accompanied them to the Ship, where they were all handsomely treated with a Dinner: After which they took Leave, with many Tears, and good Wishes. The old Count's Servants expressed themselves in so moving a Manner, that it would have drawn Tears from the most savage Heart; nor was there one of them, but did beseech him to let them go with him, though he had taken Care to recommend and provide for every one of them, having left Pensions to those who were grown old in his Service. He thanked them tenderly, and dismissed them all but four, which were Nannetta, a Maid, who had brought up Ardelisa, and governed his House ever since he had been a Widower; Bonhome, his old Steward and Secretary; Manne and Joseph, a young Maid and Boy, who had been bred up in his Family. And now, with a fair wind that Evening they hoisted Sail, on the 12th Day of March in the Year 1702/3 and, having a prosperous Voyage, reached the desired Port, arriving at Constantinople May the 1st.

So soon as they came to an Anchor, the old Count, who best knew the Customs of the Place, taking the Captain of the Vessel, went ashore to visit some French Merchants, to whom he brought Letters, and to pay the usual Compliments to the Bassa of the Port and French Consul; leaving the young Count with Ardelisa, whom the Disorder of a Sea-Voyage had so much indisposed, that she was scarce able to rise off the Bed: 'Now, my charming Dear, said the Lover, we are arrived at a strange Country, where we shall no more see Christian Churches, where Religion shews itself in Splendor, and God is worshipped with Harmony and Neatness; but odious Mosques, where the vile Impostor's Name is ecchoed through the empty Quires and Vaults; where cursed Mahometans profane the sacred Piles, once consecrated to our Redeemer, and adorned with shining Saints and Ornaments, rich as Piety itself could make them. Alas! alas! dear Ardelisa, what will our Father's Ambition and Resentments cost both him and us? My boding Soul seems to forewarn me, that we here shall meet some dire Misfortunes: The wealth we have brought with us may perhaps occasion our undoing; but more, your Beauty, should some lustful Turk, mighty in Slaves and Power, once see that lovely Face; what human Power could secure you from his impious Arms, and me from Death! Let me intreat you, as you prize your Vertue and my Life, shew not yourself in publick; let the House conceal you till Divine Providence delivers us from hence.' Ardelisa, who was from his Discourse made too sensible of what she had to fear, shedding some Tears, replied, 'My dear Lord, I did not dare to tell my Father what I thought of this Design; but I, like you, have had a Dread ever since we left our native Land. I shall be wholly governed by you in all things, and rather choose to confine myself from all Conversation, than give you the least Disquiet; but, alas! should my Father's new Undertakings, his Trading, occasion your Absence from me, what must I do? or who shall protect me from the Infidels Insolence?' At these Words, she remained silent, a Flood of Tears interrupting; whilst he, folding her in his Arms, sighed deeply, and just as he was going to speak, was prevented by Bonhome's entering the Cabbin to inform him, that the Boat was returned, with a Message from his Master, that they should come ashore, and that he only should stay aboard, to see the Cargo of the Ship unloaded; 'My Lord likewise, continued he, desires that you, Madam, will take Care to bring in your own Hand the little Cabinet of Jewels; you will find him at a French Merchant's House, where you are to continue till my Lord has taken a House.'

Nannetta and the young Lord assisting, Ardelisa arose, and was led to the Side of the Ship, and he descending into the Boat received his Mistress into his Arms, and with the faithful Nannetta and Joseph landed. They were by the Seamen conducted to the Merchant's House, where they found the Count de Vinevil, and were received and entertained with all the Kindness and Magnificence imaginable. Here they continued for about a Month, in which Time a handsome House was taken, and furnished, all the Goods got out of the Ship, brought ashore, and safely put into Warehouses; the greatest Part of which Goods were quickly sold to the Turks, by Means of the French Consul and Merchant.

The Count de Vinevil, at their leaving his House, made handsome Presents to Monsieur de Joyeuxe his Lady and Servants; and he and she had conceived the highest Esteem and Friendship that is possible for him, his Daughter, and the young Lord. And now the Count settled, and thus acquainted and assisted began to be extremely pleased with his Voyage and Success, and to resolve upon continuing in this Place the rest of his Days. Ardelisa carefully avoided going abroad, whilst her Father and Lover visited, managed, and dispatched all the Affairs with the Merchants: But so many Bashaws and Persons of Quality came to her Father's to traffick for European Goods, that she could not avoid being sometimes seen. Amongst these, Mahomet, the Captain of the Port's Son, a Chief Officer in the Sultan's Guards, was so charmed with her Beauty, that he became passionately in Love with her: And knowing that her Father (being a Christian) would never consent to her being his, he concealed his Affection, resolving to wait for an Opportunity to steal her away, or take her by Force. In the mean Time, he sent her several Presents of considerable Value, by a Slave, whom he ordered to watch the young Count's going home at Noon, and to ask for her before him, and in case he was refused the Sight of her, to deliver the Present and Letter to the Count for her. This he did, to render the Count and her uneasy, having been informed that he was to marry Ardelisa. These Letters had no Name to them, but were very amorous, and contained all the passionate Expressions in which a Lover could declare his Passion. This rendered both the old Lord and young very uneasy; but above all, Ardelisa, who foresaw her Ruin approaching.

One Day the same Slave comes as usual, bringing a Letter in a Silver Basket of choice Sweet-meats, in the midst of which was placed a Gold Box, under the Letter: This he delivered to the old Lord for his Daughter, who now kept in her Chamber, and would no more be seen by Strangers. Longueville offered the Slave a large Reward, if he would reveal his Master's Name and Quality. The Slave surlily answered, 'Do you take me for a Christian, than I should betray my Trust? A true Believer keeps his Word. My Master, when he thinks fit, will take what he is pleased to love: Ardelisa shall then know her Happiness. Till he reveal it himself, not all the Wealth, the damning Gold, that would procure a Set of Courtiers great enough to depose a Christian King, or to create two new ones, should seduce me to reveal his Secret; though I am sure to fall a Victim by his Hand, whenever he is displeased, or would divert himself with dooming me to die. Farewell, Christian, take Care, and blush to think we both despise your Faith and you.'

He left them much amazed; they went to Ardelisa in her Chamber, and there opening the Gold Box, they found inclosed the Picture of a young Turk, set round with Diamonds of great Price. Just at this Instant the old Lord was called by Nannetta to the French Consul, who wanted to speak with him; he leaving the Room, the young Count throwing himself at his Mistress's Feet, said, 'Now, my Ardelisa, my prophetick Fears are verified, now what Course shall we take? Why does Christianity forbid me to prevent your Ruin and my own by a noble Death? Where shall we fly to? Oh! now deny me not one last Request; this Night, this Hour, prevent my Dishonour, and let us marry. Stay not for a foolish Modesty till you are ravished from me; then we may with Honour go together, wherever cruel Fate shall drive us.' Here he embraced her tenderly, and she replied, 'My dear Lord, I am at my Father's and your Dispose, I will no longer deny you any thing. May Heaven prosper our vertuous Union, and preserve my Person always yours.' At these Words the old Lord entered the Room, to inform them what the Consul was come about: 'He tells me, said he, that he is secretly advertised, that there is some Design of seizing our Ship as it lyes in the Harbour, by Means of some Turkish Bassa, but he can't yet discover who; and counsels me to send you, my Son, immediately aboard, with what Goods we have proper for the Spanish Trade, and that you sail for the first Port there, or in Italy, which you may reach in few Days, and stay there till I and my Daughter can secretly get off with the Remainder of our Effects, which he will dispose of for us as his own. Now therefore, my dear Children, let us resolve what to do; too late I see my Rashness, for which I know you must condemn me: But forgive me, and reproach me not, say what is best to be done.' The young Lord answered, 'My honoured Father, first make Ardelisa mine, send for the Consul's Priest, and marry us, that I may not be so wretched to lose her unenjoyed. Next let us go aboard in the dead of the Night, and leave this fatal Place.' 'Alas! answered the Count, my Son, that is impossible, your first Request is just, and shall be instantly complied with; but what you last advise is impracticable. You know no ship can go into this Port, or out, but must first pass Examination; they will not stop you, but rather will be pleased with your Absence. You therefore can with Safety carry off what is most valuable of our Effects, and stay at some Port, to which we will follow you; from thence we will return to France.' 'No, my Father, said the young Lord, I cannot consent to leave you; the Consequence of that must be her Ruin and your Death; but this I will do, I will this Night go on board the Ship with our best Effects, under Pretence of going to trade; thus I shall pass safely out of the Port, at some Distance from which I will lye at Anchor till you and Ardelisa come to me, which you shall do in this Manner: To-morrow in the Afternoon you shall borrow the Consul's Boat, pretending you are going to take the Air on the Water for Pleasure, so you may get an Opportunity of escaping to me.' This the old Count agreed to, and the same Evening the generous Longueville, the Time and Circumstances requiring Haste and Secrecy. After Supper the Servants packed up what was least cumbersome and most valuable; the Consul accompanied the young Lord to the Bassa of the Port's House, who easily granted them the Passports proper for Longueville's Departure with the Ship and Goods. In the Night he took leave of his Bride and Father, with much Concern and Disorder: 'Now, said he, my charming Ardelisa, whom Heaven has this happy Day made mine, I am going from you for some tedious Hours, which I shall pass with an Impatience and Concern which Words cannot express: May Angels guard you and conduct you to my longing Arms again; but if some dreadful Chance prevents our meeting, remember both your Duty to yourself and me. Permit not a vile Infidel to dishonour you, resist to Death, and let me not be so completely cursed, to hear you live and are debauched. My Soul is filled with unaccustomed Fears; forgive me, Ardelisa, I know your Virtue is strong, though you are weak, but Force does oft prevail. We are now on the Crisis of our Fate, it is a bold Venture that I run to leave you here; but if I stay, we are sure of Ruin. To keep you I must leave you; in Providence is all my Hope. If we do meet no more to God I'll dedicate the wretched Hours I shall survive you, and never know a second Choice.' At these Words he took her in his Arms, whilst she, all drowned in Tears, said, 'Why, my dear Lord, do you anticipate Misfortunes? Why doubt that Providence which has preserved us coming hither, and will, I hope, prevent our Ruin? Fear not my Virtue, I am resolved never to yield whilst Life shall last. I applaud your Resolution, and shall prove I am worthy you. Go, since there is no other Way to save us, and by these fond Delays waste not the Time Fate points out for our Escape, before the vicious Infidel gets Knowledge of our Design.' At this he loosed her from his Arms, and, turning from her, wiped the falling Drops from his Eyes, whilst the old Count embraced him all the Tenderness of Friendship, and such Affection as Fathers have for only Sons, saying, 'A thousand Blessings follow you, my Son, and prosper what we do.' At these Words the young Lord bowed, and went to the Boat, followed by the Boatswain only, the Captain and part of the Men being gone before on board. He arrived safe into the Ship, and fell down at break of Day, passing the Castles, into the Road, where he cast Anchor.

CHAP. II.

And now the Sun rising, the young Lord began to count each Minute, still looking out to see if the wish'd-for Boat appeared; but Providence, that was resolved to try his Faith and Virtue, determined to separate him and Ardelisa. A dreadful Storm arose at Noon so violent that Cables could no longer hold the labouring Vessel, the Anchors broke their Hold, the Ship was drove into the open Seas, and in few Hours lost Sight of all the Turkish Coast. Eighteen Days they sailed, and then got Sight of Leghorne, into which they gladly put, to get Refreshments, and repair the shattered Vessel, which had lost all her Masts and Rigging.

Here they were constrained to stay to refit fourteen Days more; and then, contrary to the Captain's Advice, Longueville, whose uneasy State of Mind it is impossible for Words to descrie, commanded them to return to Constantinople; leaving her with the French Consul the Money and Goods they had brought from Turkey, for which Place they again set Sail; where we shall leave them pursuing their Voyage, and return to the old Count and Ardelisa.

No sooner was the young Lord gone aboard, but the Count de Vinevil, reflecting upon their Danger, told Ardelisa, he did not think it advisable for her to stay that Night in the House: So he called Nannetta and Joseph, and bid them go with her to the Consul's, whither he would come in the Morning, to consult how to accomplish what they designed. She much intreated her Father to go with her; but he answered, 'No, my dear Child, it is no ways safe for me to leave the House; for should the Bassa of the Port send Spies, my Presence would prevent their suspecting our Design of going away; if you are asked for, I can plead your being in Bed, as a just Excuse for your not appearing; me they have no Reason to hate.' These Reasons made her (though with great Reluctance) consent to go without him; shedding a Flood of Tears, she embraced him, saying, 'Adieu, my dear Lord and Father, may the attending Angels keep us, and blast our Enemies bad Designs against us.' He blessed her, and they parted, never, alas! to meet again, for Fate had so decreed. The Count and Servants busied in packing up what yet remained in the House, Ardelisa having carried only the small Cabinet of Jewels, with about a thousand Pistoles in her's and the Maid's Pockets, they shut all the Doors and Windows fast, to avoid Discovery; but it was not long before somebody knocked with such Fury at the Gate, that they all stood looking with Amazement on one another. At last the Count bid them go see what was the Matter: The Servant, who went to the Gate, demanded civilly, who was there? thinking it might be the young Lord returned, or Ardelisa, but he was soon answered by the enraged Mahomet, who having been informed by his Slave of what had passed betwixt Longueville and him, was resolved to gratify his Love and Revenge together: In order to which, he designed the seizing the Ship to prevent their Escape, and then caused this Rumour to be spread, in Hopes it would drive Longueville to fly with her, that so he might have a just Pretence to seize them; but finding he went alone, and that the Lady and her Father staid behind, he resolved to give them this Visit in the dead of the Night, not doubting to find them defenseless: And besides, whatever Violence he should them commit, would be better concealed, being not willing to occasion a Quarrel betwixt his Emperor and France; or what was more certain, lose his own Life by the Bow-string, if Justice were required by the French Ambassador. To prevent all which fatal Consequences, he determined to kill the old Lord and Servants, carry off the Lady, and leave none in the House to betray him. With this villainous Intent he came, attended with his bloody Vassals, whom the Fear of Death had so possessed, that they dared not fail to act whatever Villainy he commanded. Mahomet bid the Servant open the Gate that Moment, or he would force his Way in with Fire and Sword.

At these Words the poor Boy fled into the House, to give his Lord Notice; but the fatal Message had scarce past his trembling Lips, when they heard the Gate broke open, and saw the merciless Turks enter the House; Mahomet crying, 'Secure the Christian Dogs; by Mahomet! if one escape alive, besides the Lady, your forfeit Lives shall answer it.' At these Words they laid Hands on the amazed Servants, with their drawn Scimiters in Hand. The old Lord, whose noble Soul disdained to shrink, stepp'd boldly to him, saying, 'Insolent Lord! what have we done to injure thee? Why are we treated thus? Natives of France, and Friends to your great Emperor and you; if I or mine have injured you, you have a Right, as well as we, to procure Justice on us: Speak, what is our Crime?' Mahomet, clapping his Dagger to his Breast, replied, 'Do you ask Questions, Fool? Shew me to your Daughter's Bed, and with her Honour buy that Life which I, on any other Terms, will not spare. Make me happy in her Arms, and silently conceal all that shall pass this Night, or I will plunge this Dagger in your Heart, leave nothing here but speechless Ghosts and murdered Carcases, then with Ardelisa I'll return to my own Palace, and there force her to give all her Treasures up to me, and glut myself in her Embraces.' The Count de Vinevil, with a Look that spoke Disdain and Rage, replied, 'No, Villain! Ardelisa never shall be thine; not Empires, or the Dread of any Death thy cursed Fury could invent, should make me but in Thought consent to such a Deed; Life is a Trifle weighed with Infamy; the God I serve shall both preserve her Vertue, and revenge my Death: My Daughter is not educated so, and will, I know, prefer a noble Death to such Dishonour.' Mahomet, enraged, cried, 'Slaves! go search the Chambers, and bring her naked from her Bed, that I may ravish her before the Dotard's Face, and then send his Soul to Hell.' At this the old Lord smiled, and lifting up his Hands to Heaven, cried, 'It is just, my God, that I, who have thus exposed my Child, should first feel the Misery my Rashness merits, but do not let her perish here: Preserve her, Great Creator, from the Lust and Rage of these vile Infidels, and let thy Angels guide her home again; let my Blood expiate all my Sins, and give me Courage in this great Extremity.' At these Words the Turks, who had in vain searched all the House, assured their Lord, that Ardelisa was not there: 'Die then,' (said he to the old Count) 'here I'll begin my Vengeance.' At these Words the cruel Mahometan plunged his Dagger into his Breast; at which the old Lord fell, crying, Mercy, my Saviour! The Slaves soon dispatched the innocent Servants, who in vain implored their Pity; then they proceeded to plunder the House, after which they shut the Doors after them, and departed: Mahomet swearing he would find Ardelisa, or destroy all the Frenchmen in Constantinople.

CHAP. III.

Whilst this tragick Scene was acting, the innocent Ardelisa, having recommended herself to Heaven, was sleeping in her Bed, and dreamt her Father called her, in a distant Room, to come to him. She fancied she ran thither, and saw him all over Blood and Wounds, at which he vanished from her; then found herself with Strangers in a wild desolate Place, where they were in great Distress for Food, and knew not where to go; she starting waked, and in much Disorder, finding it was Day, she rose, calling Nannetta, who was up already: 'Oh! Nannon, said she, I have had a dismal Dream, make Haste, and send Joseph to see if my dear Father is stirring yet.' The Maid was going when the Consul's Lady, entering the Chamber all in Tears, said, 'Dear Ardelisa, I have News to tell you that a Virtue less than yours could not support. Now summon all your Reason and Religion to your Aid, and to that God submit, who has this dreadful Night preserved you.' 'Alas! Madam, I too well understand you, she replied, my Father is murdered.' She at these Words fell into a swoon, out of which with Difficulty they recovered her; returning to Life, she fell into such moving Lamentations, such extreme, though modest Sorrow, that would have made even the cruel Infidels, could they have seen her, melt and feel Remorse. The Lady comforted her all she could, telling her, she must now think of her own Preservation; in order to which, the Boy and Maid must not be seen to stir abroad: Says she, 'Monsieur de Joyeuxe, who living near your Father, first heard the dreadful News, just now sent a Servant to acquaint us, that your Father and you were murdered, with all the Servants, and the House plundered; but that no body could tell by whom. Those that have done this hellish Deed will doubtless lye in wait for you. Let us permit this Report of your Death to spread, that we may get you secretly conveyed to some distant Port, from whence you may get off safely.' 'Alas! Madam, said she, your Goodness will expose you and your Family to Ruin; were I so ungrateful as to accept it, my staying in your House would undo you. No, Madam, God forbid I should involve you in my unhappy Fate, it is my Ruin the fierce Villain seeks, my fatal Face has been our Destruction. Had I not left my Father, we had nobly died together; the only Favour I can ask of you with Honour is, to let me depart e'er I am discovered: Procure me but the Habit of a Man, the Boy and I will venture to feign ourselves belonging to some Ship that now lyes in the Road; if we are taken, we can only die; if we escape, Money shall bribe the Captain where we get aboard, to put us safe into my dear Lord's Ship.' 'No, Madam, replied the Lady, your Life's too precious to be risqued in such a manner. We have a Country House within thirty Miles of this City, at a Village called Domez-Dure, thither I will this Night send you and your Servants; you and Nannetta shall be dressed like Men, and Joseph shall black his Face and Hands like Domingo our Slave: So you shall feign yourself very sick, and in our Horse-Litter shall be conveyed thither; there you may continue in Safety till a fit Opportunity presents to get you off: Our Boat shall about Noon go off, and acquaint your Lord with all that has happened, and bid him put off to Sea, and make away for some other Port, where he may some Days hence drop in with his Boat, and receive you. Perhaps by that time he whom we suspect to have done this Villainy, the Bassa Ibrahim's Son, who, it seems, was seen last Night attended with his Slaves late in the Streets, may be commanded hence to the Army, and then you may go away safely.'

This offer Ardelisa accepted of, with many Acknowledgments, and the Consul's Lady left the Room to acquaint the Consul what they had determined to do, leaving Ardelisa on her Bed, overwhelmed with Grief. The Maid soon packed up the Things, Men's Habits were brought, and she and her Lady, who seemed half dead, dressed and put into the Litter, with Joseph walking by the Side so black that he appeared a perfect Moor. They arrived safe at the Country-House, where Ardelisa fell sick, and remained much longer than she expected. The same Day she went from Constantinople the Storm prevented the Consul's Boat from giving the Lord Longueville Notice of what was past, and he was drove out to Sea, as is before recited.

CHAP. IV.

Many Spies were employed by Mahomet to get Intelligence of Ardelisa; and the same Evening of the Day she went away the Consul's House was searched, under Pretence of his Servants having concealed a Turkish Slave, whom the Bassa of the Port pretended his Son had lost; so that it was a great Providence for her and the Family she was not there. Whilst she lay sick at Domez-Dure, Joseph, the fictitious Black, used frequently to go about the Town for Provisions, and became well acquainted with all the Country thereabouts. It chanced one Day, that as he was going to a Village near the Sea, he saw some Troops of Turks going along the Road; and fearing to be questioned, he retired into a thick Wood; which, viewing well, he thought he perceived something like a House; but so covered with Trees and Bushes, that he could scarce discern it. Curiosity made him venture to go farther, and coming into the midst of the Wood, he saw a small Cottage, into which he entered by a Door that stood ajar. He stopped a while to hear if any Creature moved in it; but finding all things in Silence, he entered, and there found two little but convenient Rooms, with a little Table, three low Stools, a Fire-Place, some earthen Dishes, a Knife, Fork and Spoon of Silver, and a little Pot; and in the inner Room a Mattress, laid on some Rushes, with a Quilt and Sheets; a Box, in which he found some Linen and some Books of Devotion in the Latin Tongue, with a Crucifix: But no Person being there, he concluded some Christian Slave had escaped, and lived there concealed. The Soldiers, as he supposed, being now gone, he returned to the Road, pursued his Journey, and went home, relating to his Lady and Nannetta what he had seen in the Wood; adding, 'My honoured Lady, should we be pursued hither, it were a most safe Retreat for you to fly to.'

Some Days they continued undisturbed, Joseph frequently going to the Consul's to learn News of his Lord but in vain. Sometimes Ardelisa tormented herself, with thinking he perished in the dreadful Storm; but on Reflection thought again, some Token of the Wreck would sure have appeared, being so near the Shore. Then she concluded he was drove to Sea. But at length Joseph going to the Consul's, chanced to overtake a Slave, who was going the same Way; with whom falling in Talk, he asked him, whither he was going, and from whence he came? 'From Domez-Dure, said he, where I have been to view a Frenchman's Country-house, and have found what I wanted, for which my Lord will pay me nobly.'

I don't doubt these Words struck Joseph like a Thunderbolt; he, recollecting himself, said, Friend, will you drink a Dram with me; here, said he, pulling a little Bottle full of good Wine out of his Pocket) 'come let us sit down under this Tree, and rest awhile.' The Turk, suspecting nothing, and tempted with the Opportunity of drinking Wine, consented; and Joseph, as he lifted the Bottle to his Head, stabbed him to the Heart with his Knife: 'Go, Dog, said he, go bear thy Message to the Prince of Hell, there look Reward.' The Turk cried, ''Tis just, Great Prophet! Youth, I envy thee the Deed; so should the Fool be served that tells his Master's Secret: Much Christian Blood I've spilt, and thou hast punished me. Tell Ardelisa, if you do, as I suppose, belong to her, she is not safe at Domez-Dure; I can no more.' He in few minutes died; whilst Joseph, turning back, fled, to forewarn his Lady to be gone.

He had no sooner told the Story, but a death-like Paleness overspread her Face, and poor Nannetta could not speak: 'Dear God, (cried Ardelisa, where shall I fly? what must I do?' 'Madam, cried the faithful Boy, this Night fly to the Cottage in the Wood; the Slave, prevented from delivering his Message, gains us Time.' 'But, alas! said she, whom may we find in that sad Place?' 'None but a Christian, he replied, for such I am sure he must be, by what I saw, if any body lives there now. I will go hide myself in the Wood, and wait to see if any one come in or out, and speak to the Person; and if I see any, then return to let you know what is best to be done. Here we must not stay much longer, the dead Slave will be found, and some other sent; it is enough that this Place is suspected, and God, by my Hand, has given us this Time to think and escape.'

Having eat something he departed, leaving Ardelisa much distracted in her Thoughts. He had not waited long in the Wood, before he saw a Man come forth of the Cottage, in the Habit of a Santoin, or religious Turk, with Sandals on his Feet, his Face pale and meagre; he had in his Hand a Piece of Bread, he lift up his Eyes to Heaven, sighed deeply, crossed his Breast, and began to eat. Joseph, who at first feared he had been a Mahometan, was now overjoyed; and stepping from behind the Tree, where he had stood concealed, threw himself at his Feet, saying, 'Christian and Friend, fear me not, but let us go in and talk, and I will shew you a way to preserve Lives that may be of great Use to you.' At these Words the Hermit viewed him with much Attention; and though greatly surprized to hear him speak, yet as a Man, to whom Death itself would not be terrible, answered, 'Speak on.' 'Father, said the Boy, 'tis dangerous for us to talk here.' At this they entered the House, where he told the Hermit, 'That a Christian Lady, a Maid-Servant and himself begged to be sheltered there, till they might find Means to get off at a Sea-Port, to return to France.' 'To France, (said the Hermit) Moor, for why?' 'Because we are all Natives of that Place, replied the Boy.' 'Your Lady's Name, said the Hermit?' 'My dear Lord was de Vinevil, the Youth replied, and I a luckless Lad, who here have lost him.' At these Words he wept. 'Alas! sweet Boy, said he, I knew him well; all that are his I love, and will refuse no Kindness to.'

The Boy, at these Words, looking earnestly on him, knew him to be a Priest born in Picardy, who went a Missionary to Japan about ten Years before: 'Father Francis, said he, how blessed am I to see you, though in this sad Place? How came you here? and by what Providence preserved?' The joyful Priest embracing him, perceived he was no Black, and said thus: 'A cruel Storm, in our Return to France, drove our Vessel on this Coast, where a few of us were preserved from Death, but not from cruel Usage: We were but five, and soon were separated; three died, I and my Brother James a Turk brought to Constantinople, under Pretence of Kindness; then demanded a Ransom most exorbitant, which we protesting that we could not pay, he loaded us with Chains, threw us into a nasty Vault, where we remained, sustained with Bread and Water, till he feared our Deaths. Then he removed us to his Gardens in the Country, where he made us work as Slaves; till, weary of our Lives, we resolutely leaped the Wall and fled; meeting with this Wood in our Way, staid here to rest, not being able to go farther. My Brother, stripping off his Coat, even naked, entered the Village begging, to prevent our perishing for want of Food, pretending Sanctity and Vows to Mahomet. The charitable Villagers supplying his Wants with Food and Raiment, he returned loaded to me. Thus were we encouraged to erect this homely Cell with Boughs and Boards we begged, to shield us from the Winter Rains and Cold. Thus we lived three Months together, when he fell sick and died; for six Months since I've lived by begging as before, but never discovered where I dwell: I go each Morning forth, and roam about, or sometimes sit down under some Tree to rest, but don't return hither 'till Night.'

The Boy, thus satisfied, told all that related to his Lady; telling him withal, 'They had much Treasure, and that he might, with less Suspicion than they, visit the next Port, and find a Way both to deliver himself and them; and that he expected his Lord in a Ship belonging to them, of which he should have Intelligence from Constantinople? He answered, Child, you need not urge these Reasons, since God, who has preserved me here so long, requires that I should assist others in Distress. Go, bring your Lady hither, and may the Angels guide and keep us whilst we stay, and give us Opportunity to escape from hence. Begone; I must, as usual, go my Round, and shall be back at Night.' He gave his Blessing to the Youth, and so they parted.

CHAP. V.

Joseph returning home, gave his Lady an Account of the surprizing Things he had met with in the Wood; and she, lifting her Hands to Heaven, said, 'Now, my great Deliverer, whose Providence has provided me this Retreat, keep me and mine; guided by thee I cannot be unfortunate.' At Night they left the House, taking their Money and Jewels; and getting safely to the Wood, found the good Father waiting at his Cottage Door, who received them with a Joy and Civility suiting the polite Education he had received. He embraced Ardelisa with a Concern that called the Blood into his pale Cheeks, and shewed how dear her Father was to him: 'Welcome, said he, Daughter of my dearest Friend; this Place and the poor Master of it is devoted to your Service.' Leading her in, he seated her, having a poor Lamp burning: He had decked his little Cell as well as he could, having in one Corner of the Out-Room laid a Bed of Rushes for the Boy and him to lye on; and made a Door to the Inner-Room of plaited Rushes, to Rushes, to render it more private, that she and her Maid, who wore their Men's Clothes, might undress and rise without being seen. He then reached a Bottle of Wine, which he kept there, with some Bread, for fear he should fall sick and not be able to go out some Days; with a Cup they drank, and after some Discourse the Lady retired to Rest.

The next Morning the Boy and Priest went forth early; at Noon the Lad returned, bringing Provisions for three Days. They buried their Gold in a Hole under their Bed in the Inner-Room, and their Jewels behind the Cottage in a hollow Tree, covering the Box so carefully with Leaves and Earth, which they filled up the Hollow with, that it was almost impossible for others to find them; and in the Evening the Boy set out for Constantinople, to see if there was any News of his Lord and the Ship, as also to inform the Consul of their Departure from his Country-house, and new Habitation.

The Lady and her Maid thus left alone, passed the Time in Prayer and Discourse, wherein they conversed so piously, and expressed themselves so excellently, that it is Pity the World is not favoured with a Recital of all they said; for Nannetta was a Maid whose Education had been noble, her Birth not mean, and indeed Ardelisa owed to her, in great part, the exalted Principles and Sentiments she possessed, she having had the Care of her in her Infancy; they eat together, and Ardelisa forgot all Distinctions, only Nannetta's Respect increased with her Mistress's Favour. At Night they were glad to see the good Father return home; he told them he had learned what ought to fill their Souls with fresh Acknowledgments to God, who had that Day miraculously preserved them: 'So soon, says he, as I entered the Village, I found the People all in an Uproar and their Eyes and Steps were all directed to the House you left, where a Band of Turkish Soldiers were rifling and searching all the Rooms and Gardens, headed by a Man, who, by the Respect they shewed him, seemed of no small Quality. I staid at some Distance to observe what passed, and after some time, saw them depart in much Disorder, and he in the utmost Rage swearing by Mahomet, he would destroy the Village if he found you not soon. The People stared upon one another, and separated. I asked no Questions, but as usual walked forward, seeming to mumble my Orisons, and receiving the Alms of those who called me. I would advise you, Madam, continued he, not to stir forth of the House some days; I will go to the next Sea-Port, to see if any Ship be there belonging to Spain, France, Holland, or England, in either of which we may escape after Joseph is returned.' Ardelisa then besought him to take five Pieces of Gold to serve his Necessities: 'No, my Child, said he, the Providence of God shall provide for me, Money would render me suspected, this Habit is my Passport here, I pray God to keep you in my Absence and prosper my Journey.' They supped, prayed, and went to Repose, and before Day the Hermit departed.

CHAP. VI.

At the end of three Days Joseph returned to his Lady, and related the unhappy News he brought after this manner: 'My dear Lady, said he, the Consul and his Lady are in Health, are much transported at your Safety, and send you Word my Lord was well some days ago, and is so still, they hope.' 'Is he then alive, and here? she cried; then I am happy.' 'He was well, replied the Boy, and was here, but is departed, Madam: His Ship was drove so far out to Sea in the Storm, that he was obliged to make the first Port, which proved Leghorn, where the Ship was repaired and victualled again. Thence he returned to Constantinople, but entered not the Port, fearing Discovery. At Evening he sent his Boat ashore, ordering the Crew to report, when asked, that he was dead, and that the Captain of the Ship came there only to trade. The Coxswain was ordered to go to Monsieur de Joyeuxe's House, to enquire for my old Lord and you. They there informed him, that he, you, and all the Family were murdered the same fatal Night he left you, and that he counselled my Lord to get off the Coast immediately, and return to France, where Monsieur de Joyeuxe and his Family hoped e're long to see him, designing to return thither next Year. The Coxswain returned to the Ship with this Message, upon which they set Sail, and are doubtless gone home to France. The Consul heard nothing of the Ship's Arrival, till Monsieur de Joyeuxe sent him this Account. The Consul has sent a Letter by the Ambassador's Packet, which he hopes will meet him in Picardy, to inform him, that you are living, and the Consul will take care to inform you of the first Opportunity to get off for France: Mean Time he is ready to serve you in all Things, and hopes it will not be long before he shall be able to send you Word, that your Enemy is gone to the Army, and that you may safely return to Constantinople.'

'Alas! my God, answered Ardelisa, when will my Sorrows end? Thankful I am that my dear Lord still lives, but why did he depart without me? That he lives, said I! Alas! Grief has perhaps e're this finished his Life and Sorrows, and I have little or no Hopes of ever seeing him again.' Here Tears stopped her from proceeding, and poor Joseph and Nannetta strove to comfort her all they were able.

The same Night the good Priest returned, but brought no News of any Ship; to him they related what the Boy had learned at the City. He counselled Ardelisa to trust in Providence, and rest satisfied: 'My dear Children, said he, this Life is attended with nothing but Uncertainties, and full of Sorrows; the Enjoyments of it are short and transitory. In all our Affections and Friendships here with one another, we should have a future View, and manifest that Love, by being instrumental to one another's eternal Welfare. Our wise Creator inclined us to love one another so tenderly, with a more glorious Design than that of only propagating Mankind; it was to render us useful to each other in the greatest Concern of Life, that of obtaining eternal Happiness; whilst this is our Aim, no Separation can be grievous, nor the Death of what we love cast us down. He that leads the Person he pretends to love into Sin acts the Devil's Part, and is his greatest Enemy. I remember my dead Friends as my greatest Treasures, which I hope to enjoy when we wake together; so you, Ardelisa, must do, and if Heaven denies you the Sight of a loved Husband here, consider, in a little while, he will be restored to you so improved, that your Joy and Friendship shall be eternal: This those who live as, and are Christians, are certain of.' 'What Heavenly Sounds are these? (said Ardelisa) Your Words convey a Balm into my sickly wounded Soul, have stilled my Passions and cured my Frailty; yes, Father, I submit, and Death itself will, I hope, find me well prepared.' These heavenly Conversations they continued daily, and betwixt the pious Father and the Boy were well supplied with necessary Food. Ardelisa and the Maid ventured not out at any Distance from the House. One Evening they were surprized with hearing a hollowing in the Wood; they looked upon one another as Persons apprehensive of some great Misfortune; but the Noise coming nearer, the good Father being not returned home, the Boy went boldly out, and saw something like a Man on Horseback. He went up to him, saying, 'In the Name of God, what would you have?' This he spoke in the Turkish Language; but the Man replied in French, 'Are you not Joseph ? if so, bring me to your Lady.' The Boy said, 'Who do you belong to?' 'The Consul,' said he. At these Words he knew him, and said, ' Domingo, you're welcome.' The Horseman, taking his Hand, said, 'How fares your Lady? Mahomet, her Enemy, is gone for the Army, a French Ship is in the Harbour, and I have brought the Horse-Litter to our Country House, with Horses for the good Father, you, and I. Bring your Lady thither presently, and To-morrow we'll return to Constantinople.' By this Time they came to the House, from whence the Servant returned to the Village; and the little Family packing up what they had brought, designing to leave one of the Consul's Servants to wait the Father's Return, and bring him to them at Constantinople, departed soon after, leaving the lucky mournful Cottage destitute of Inhabitants, where they had lived three Months without Disturbance.

CHAP. VII.

Full of Joy and Hopes, they chearfully walked towards Domez-Dure ; but nothing is to be depended on in this World. A great Turkish General, named Osmin, who was going to Constantinople, with many Attendants, chose the Coolness of the Night to travel, as is very customary in the Heat of Summer, met these poor Travellers, ordered them to be stopped, and seized. They told him, they were two poor French Lads, and the Black, who were cast ashore in a Boat coming from a Ship for Provisions, and were making their Way to Constantinople, where their Ship was sailed for, to go in Search of her, or apply to the French Consul to be sent home, if the Ship was lost, or sailed thence. This Ardelisa, who was Orator for the rest, said; but the Charms of her Face and the Eloquence of her Tongue so enchanted Osmin, that he resolved to secure her for himself. He told them, they were Slaves, run away from their Owners, he supposed; however, he would carry them to Constantinople, and there see the Truth of what they said. So ordered they should be chained together, and walk in the middle of his Troop, commanding that no Violence should be offered to them, or any thing they had about them taken away.

They had not gone far before Ardelisa fainted, being unable to support her inward Grief and the Fatigue of the March: At which the General was alarmed; and seeing the Concern her Companions were in, guess'd her to be the most noble of the three: He therefore ordered her to be put in a Horse-Litter that attended him; so before Day they arrived at his Palace, which was at the entering into the City; she and the Boy and Maid were brought in, and locked into a Room, where they could only sigh and look upon one another, but dared not talk for fear of being overheard and discovered.

In few Moments after they were thus left, the General entered, and addressing himself to Ardelisa, said, 'Lovely Boy, or Maid, I know not which as yet to call you, fear not the Treatment I shall give you; my Heart is made a Captive to your Eyes, I will enjoy and keep you here, where nothing shall be wanting to make you happy. If you are a Man, renounce your Faith, adore our Prophet and my Great Emperor, and I will give you Honours and Wealth exceeding your Imagination; if you're a Woman, here are Apartments where Painting, Downy Beds, and Habits fit for to cover that soft Frame, Gardens to walk in, and Food delicious, with faithful Slaves to wait upon you, invite your Stay; where I will feast each Sense, and make you happy as Mortality can be.' At these Words he clasped her in his Arms, and rudely opening her Breast, discovered that she was of the soft Sex. She, trembling, strove, and, falling at his Feet, begged him to kill, or let her go. 'You doubtless are, said he, the beauteous Maid, who fled my Friend Mahomet's Pursuit, for whom he killed your Slaves and Father; how blessed am I to find you? Your Maid, whose Tears and Blushes has discovered her to me, shall bear you Company a-while. I must this Moment to the Emperor, and shall soon return to sleep within these lovely Arms.'

At these Words he left the Room, and two Eunuchs entered, who did lead her and her Maid into the Garden; and there opening the Doors of a beautiful Apartment, conducted them in; then leaving them in a lovely Room, departed, and soon returned with Sherbets of delicate Taste, preserved and cold Meats, telling them, they should refresh themselves; and shewing a rich Bed-chamber, with Closets full of Women's Clothes, bid them shift, and dress in any of those rich Turkish Habits they liked best, none should disturb them. At these words the Eunuchs withdrew. Now the distracted Maid and her Lady, looking upon one another, wept, unable to express their Thoughts in Words. At length Ardelisa broke Silence in this manner: 'Just God! what wilt thou do with us? Direct me now, and help me in this great Distress. Oh Nannon ! advise me: Shall this bold Hand destroy the Villain when he enters? Sure it can be no Sin to save my Virtue with his Blood? Yes; I am resolved to do it, though I perish. Let his Slaves revenge his Death on me, and torture me with all their Fury can invent, Death's but a Trifle in Comparison of Infamy. Yes; my dear Lord commanded me to suffer Death, rather than yield to lustful Infidels, and Christianity enjoins it: Come, let us eat, and, thus resolved, fear nothing. You, my faithful Friend, they'll doubtless spare, as being neither young nor beautiful. Pray for me; and if ever you are so happy to see France, and my dear Lord again, tell him I have obeyed him, and behaved myself as does become a Christian and his Wife.' She then sat down, looking with such Serenity and Calmness, as one prepared for all Events. They eat and prayed together, and passed the Night in pious Talk, where we shall leave them.

CHAP. VIII.

We now return to Osmin, to shew what Care Almighty Goodness takes of those who trust in him. The Turk had brought a Packet from the Grand Visier to the Sultan, the Contents of which did so displease him, that, according to the barbarous Customs of that Nation, he wracked his Rage upon the luckless Osmin, commanding him a Prisoner to the Seven Towers; where, chained, we leave him to curse his false Prophet, and his Destiny.

The News of his Disgrace soon reached his Home; and now the Slaves no longer were so careful to watch the Doors of his Seraglio, but, in the Morning, left them open; telling the Lady, she might have the Liberty of the Gardens to walk. This was pleasing News to Ardelisa, because she and Nannetta hoped by this Means to find some Way to escape. They thanked the Eunuchs who had brought in Chocolate for their Breakfast; and when they were gone, Ardelisa and Nannetta ventured into the Garden; which was such, as shewed that Art and Nature had there done their utmost, and made it one of the most delightful Places Eyes ever saw: Fountains, and Groves, and Grottoes, where the Sun could never enter; long Walks of Orange and Myrtles, with Banks, where Flowers of the most lovely Kinds, and fragrant Scents stood crowded, with Pleasure-Houses built of Parian Marble, and within so wrought and painted, that it appeared an earthly Paradise. Nor did there want large Terrass-Walks, from whence the Eye might be entertained with the full View of that great City, and the noble Port, which is one of the most lovely Prospects in the World.

They had not walked long here, before they perceived Joseph running towards them; he made a Sign to them to retire into one of the Grottoes, whither he followed; and so soon as he could recover his Breath, he embraced his Lady's Knees, saying, 'My Soul is transported, my dear Lady, to see you safe; I have News will overjoy you: Last Night the Villain Osmin was sent by the Sultan to the Black-Tower ; amongst the Servants I have learned all, and this Night will deliver you. I find the Servants are very careful of the Out-Doors and Gates, therefore in the Night I will set Fire to the House, which will put them all into Confusion; be you ready to follow me, and I doubt not to conduct you safe to the Consul's.' Ardelisa admired the Boy's Zeal and Love, and said, 'My God, I thank thee; and if I live to see France again, Joseph, you shall know how much I esteem your Fidelity.' They thought it not convenient to talk longer; so Joseph hasted back to the House, being taken little or no Notice of by the Servants, who were in the greatest Concern, expecting their Lord's Ruin, and consequently a new Master, who might perhaps prove move cruel than their old; for it is customary for the Sultan, when he puts one Favourite to Death, to give his Estate, House, and Slaves to another.

The Day growing hot, Ardelisa and her Maid thought of returning to their Apartment to pass the Day; when they perceived a Lady in Turkish Habit, tall, delicately shaped, and a Face perfectly beautiful, yet looked melancholly. She started at the Sight of them, being in Men's Clothes, and dressed like Europeans, yet she stood still. At which Ardelisa hasted towards her, and, bowing, spoke to her in French, supposing her some Christian Lady, who had, like her, been forced thither: 'Madam, said she, fear not to speak to me, I am, like you, a Woman; and if you are a Christian, tell me of what Nation, and how brought here?' At these Words, the Lady, looking on her attentively, answered, 'Yes, Stranger, I am a Christian, and by Birth a Venetian, made Captive with many others of our wretched Nation, noble Virgins, who, like me, have lived too long, being now made Slaves to the wild Lusts of cruel Infidels; from which nothing but Death can deliver us.' At these Words Ardelisa, embracing her, said, 'Yes; God by me will, I doubt not, this Night free us; come with me into that Apartment, where I will tell you News, that will not be unwelcome to you.' They went together, followed by Nannetta, and being seated, Ardelisa told her of Osmin's Disgrace, bid her stay with her that 'Day, and at Night she hoped they should be shewed a Way to escape. 'And now, said she, to make the Day seem less tedious, oblige me with the Recital of your Misfortunes.' To which the Lady willingly condescended, and thus began her Story.

CHAP. IX.

'My Name is Violetta, I was born in Venice, of a Family antient and noble; my Father's Name was Don Manuel, who did then, and I hope does still, command a Man of War for the Republick, being honoured with the Order of St. Mark for his great Services. My Mother is a Lady of great Goodness and Beauty, and descended of one of the most illustrious Families of the Venetian Senators. It pleased God to give them no other Children but myself, and one Son, who lost his Life in that unfortunate Day when I was taken. He commanded the Forces on the Coast, and the Turks landing, after a bloody Dispute, getting the better by Numbers, ravaged the Coast; and entering the Churches and Convents, in one of which my Father had placed me to secure me, as most of our Nobility had their Daughters; they carried us all aboard their Ships, with all the Treasure their sacrilegious Hands had pillaged; and here divided the Spoils, presented those of us whom they liked best, or believed most noble, to the Grand Seignior and his Favourites: It was my Lot to be given to Osmin, and here I have had the Misfortune to be kept these two Years, being too much esteemed by him.' Ardelisa, interruping her, cried, 'Alas! Madam, are there no more Ladies here?' 'No, replied Violetta, not at present; there are here sometimes at least ten more of different Nations, some of which are noble as myself, and, in my Opinion, more worthy to be loved; but they are all now gone into the Country, to a House of Pleasure, during Osmin's Absence: But as for my Part, whether it be that he loves me, as he pretends, more than the rest, or that he fears to trust me hence, I know not; but I was never removed from this Place. I have had one Son by him, which I secretly baptised, and which it pleased God to take to himself since Osmin went to the Army, which is about three Months. This is my unfortunate History, I pray Heaven it may end more happily.' The Ladies passed the Day with much Satisfaction to each other, longing for the approaching Night.

CHAP. X.

Let us now make Enquiry after the good Priest, who returned not to his Cottage till the Day after Ardelisa and her Servants had left it; being prevented from returning home by the following Accident. As he was passing by a Wood, in his way home from the Sea-side, which he frequently visited, to look out for a Ship, he saw a Troop of Turks, at the Head of which was the treacherous Turk, who had used him so cruelly, when he made him and the other good Priest his Gardiners. He stepped out of the Road to avoid being seen, which immediately gave some Suspicion to the Eagle-eyed Turks, who presently made up to him. This occasioned him to fly from them into the Wood, where, looking out for a Place to hide himself, he perceived, in the Side of a small rising of the Ground, a Hole big enough for a Man to go in at; and, looking curiously into it, saw Steps cut in the Earth to go down. His Fears inclined him to venture into this Place; descending, he came to a Door, which was put to, but not fastened; opening it, he entered into a Cave, where Nature seemed to have played the Part of Art; it was spacious and clean, a Lamp was burning on a Table; there stood a large Trunk locked, and on a Bed of Rushes lay a Man in a rude Habit of Beasts Skins, and by him stood an Earthen Pitcher full of Water; he appeared very sick and weak. The good Father drew near to him; at which the Man, turning his Head, said, with a weak Voice, in the Turkish Language, 'Stranger, disturb me not, leave me to die in Peace.' The good Father, moved with Compassion, answered, 'God forbid I should injure you, I would much rather assist you in all I am able.'

At these Words the dying Man replied, 'Alas! Turk, thou can'st give me no Assistance, my Saviour must assist me.' 'Are you then a Christian, said the Priest? I myself am so; and what is more, a Priest: God has doubtless sent me here to you.' 'Then I am happy,' said the Penitent; and strait besought him, saying, 'Father, there is Bread in that Trunk, take it, hear my Confession, and make me blessed; let my Lord but visit my Soul, and I shall die joyfully.'

The good Priest willingly consented, and prepared him for Death, as well as the Time and Place would permit, giving him Wine out of a Bottle he carried in his Pocket; after which he seemed much revived. Then he desired the Penitent to relate to him, if he was able, how he came there, and who he was? He answered, 'Father, my Strength and Life are deficient, in that Trunk you'll find a Paper, which contains what you desire to know; take that and what else you will find with it, I thank my God a Christian has it.' Here he returned to Prayer, his Agonies growing strong, in which he continued till six in the morning, when he died. The good Father finished his good Work, with saying the Burial Service over him, and covering him up in his rude Habit, and some of the Rushes of his Bed, went to the Trunk, which opening with a Key he had given him, he found some very rich Linen, and choice Books, and a Cabinet of great Value; which opening, there was a great Quantity of Gold and Jewels, with a Crucifix, all Diamonds, and, in a Corner of the Trunk, some Church-Plate. In the same Cabinet a large Paper, which, with the help of the Lamp, he read, though by his Confession he had been partly informed of his Life past. The Paper contained these Words.

CHAP. XI.

My Name was Don Fernando de Cardiole, I was by Birth a noble Spaniard, and was Commander of a Galleon; I fell in Love with a Lady, whose Name was Donna Corina, a Maid of Honour to the Queen. She seemed to favour me above all the other Pretenders, of whom she had many, being a Lady of great Fortune and Beauty; till a young Nobleman, who came to Court, just returned from his Travels, whose Name was Don Pedro de Mendoza, made Love to her. She grew cold to me, and he rude and insolent; at which, incensed, I watched an Opportunity, and had him assassinated: Then putting out to Sea with my Vessel, and not daring to return, steered my Course for Turkey; telling the Slaves, if they would consent to set me and my Treasure, which I had brought on board, fate on the Coast of Turkey, I would deliver the Ship into their Hands, to go where they pleased, which they willingly consented to.

So soon as I came ashore at Gallipoli, I went to the Bassa of that Place, declaring myself a Turk, and offering to discover great Secrets to the Grand Visier of the Designs of the Christian Princes. I was circumcised, and treated splendidly, sent with great Attendance to Constantinople, and there so ingratiated myself with the Grand Visier, that I was soon entrusted with the Command of a Ship against the Venetians. There, with the Fleet, I did all the Mischief I was able, entered and plundered the Churches, deflowered noble Virgins, and returned much commended, and highly pleased; neither did I fail of Reward, being permitted to take what I pleased of the Plunder.

I had now a Palace of my own, a Pension, and Seraglio of Women, and lived in the Enjoyment of all earthly Delights; but God, who had till now suffered me to go on and continue insensible, awaked my Conscience, and I felt such bitter Remorse in my Soul, that I could take no Rest or Pleasure. All these things that I before took Delight in were now hateful to me; after long Debates in my own Thoughts, I resolved upon what to do: To Spain I could not return, Justice would meet me there; Shame and Guilt forbad me to fly to any Christian Country, here my Conscience would not let me stay: I determined therefore to leave all my Fortune, House, and Family, and to retire to some lonely Place, where I might spend my Days and Nights in Solitude and Prayer; where I might with Penitence, Tears, Fasting and Prayers, reconcile myself to my offended God. I had a trusty Slave, named Ibrahim, who I acquainted with my Design of retiring; he found this Wood, and contrived the Cave you here do find me in; and one Evening he brought me hither, with what Wealth you here will find, which I reserved to provide for me, if I should live to weak Old Age. Once in five Days he comes to me, for I have given him his Freedom, and enough to live at Ease; my Fortune and Command a Favourite Turk enjoys. This Servant brings me Food, such as will keep; Bread, Cordials, and dried Fruits, for Flesh I never taste, nor Wine. 'Tis now a Month since he was here, by which I guess him sick or dead. It is now ten days since I was seized with a Fever and Ague; I find myself so weak, that I am apprehensive I shall die: I therefore write this, that if any Christian finds me here, he may be warned of sinning, as I have done, and may be enabled, by the Wealth herewith to procure a happier Condition for himself, than I can ever hope for in this World.



Christian, remember you must one Day die,
And unto Judgment come as well as I.

CHAP. XII.

Father Francis read this Paper with great Concern, and, taking the Cabinet, left the dismal Place, not doubting but his Pursuers were gone, and the Coast clear; in which he was not deceived; for they having sought for him some time in vain, desisted, and pursued their Journey to Constantinople. He got safe to the Cottage, but was much surprized to find Ardelisa and her Servants gone: One while he imagined they were discovered and seized; but, upon second Thoughts, that seemed very improbable. Then he began to think they were gone for Constantinople; he passed that Day in much Anxiety, and sat musing all Night. At last he resolved to go for Constantinople, to the Consul's, where he thought, if any where, he should hear of them.

Accordingly, early in the Morning, he set out, carrying with him the Cabinet he found in the Spaniard's Cave, and arrived safely at the Consul's House; where, having related the Cause of his Coming, and Name, he was kindly received: But neither the Consul nor his Servants could tell what was become of Ardelisa, Nannetta, or the Boy. Domingo and the Servants, with the Horse-litter, were returned from Domez-Dure, having waited there till they were weary; Domingo having first gone back to the Cottage, and not found them, 'We conclude, said he, that some Misfortune has befallen them going from the Wood; but what, we cannot yet learn.'

The Priest entertained the Consul and his Lady with an Account of all the tragical Passages of his Life: They spent the Evening much pleased with his Conversation; but remembring how fatigued he must needs be with his Journey, they broke off the Conversation, and the Consul waited on him to his Chamber, begging him to accept of some Linen and Habit suiting his Birth, and more commodious, which he modestly received, with the most handsome Acknowledgments: After which the Consul retired, leaving him to his Devotions.

And now, left alone, he sat down and reflected on the Goodness of God, which had at last delivered him from a Life of Misery, attended with continual Fears from Cold and Hunger, and had brought him safe to Christian Conversation, Plenty, and a Retreat, where he might sleep securely. After returning the due Thanks, he shifted, and entered a Bed easy and sweet, a Comfort his tired Limbs had long been Strangers to; he wished for nothing now so much as for Ardelisa, and the faithful Maid and Boy: 'Now my God, said he, shew yet more the Wonders of thy Mercy, in preserving them, if living.' After that he fell into a profound Sleep, sweet as the Peace of his good Conscience.

About Midnight he and all the Family were waked by some Persons knocking at the Gate, in a Manner that spoke the utmost Haste or Fury; they all left their Beds, and one of the Servants called to know who was there. Joseph answered, 'It is I, open the Gate quickly, I am Joseph.' At these Words the Servant unbarred the Gate, and saw Ardelisa, Violetta, Nannetta, and Joseph: Shutting the Gate, they went in, where they were received with a Joy Words cannot express. Ardelisa said, 'Ask no Questions, but put out the Lights, for we have left the Place we were confined in all in Flames; and should any Noise be heard in this House, when the City is alarmed, it might render us suspected; whereas now they will conclude us burned, and that will prevent all Reports of our escaping.'

The Consul consented, and Violetta was, with Ardelisa, conducted to the Chamber; and the Consul, his Lady, and Father Francis denied themselves the Pleasure of knowing their Adventures till the Morning. All the Family went to Bed, but not to sleep; that was impossible for the great Noise in the Streets, which was occasioned by the Fire: For the City of Constantinople has been so many times almost destroyed by that merciless Element, that the People are very much alarmed with any thing of that Nature. Osmin's Palace was large and noble, and flamed dreadfully in the Garden; and the Seraglio being fired at the same Time by Ardelisa, who left it burning, their Departure put the Servants in such Distraction, that they ran through the Streets, crying, Fire! Fire! It raised almost all the City, the Consul and his Family were early up, and then Ardelisa gave them a full Relation of all that had befallen her since her Departure from the Wood, with an Account of all her Friend Violetta's Misfortunes, whose Beauty and Wisdom charmed all the Company.

A general Joy now spread itself through all the Family, and Providence seemed to smile; the Ladies, Priest, Nannetta, and Joseph, stirred not forth; and in a few Days a French Ship being freighted was ready to sail for France. The Consul waited on the French Ambassador, to inform him of all, and obtained of him to assist him, in procuring for them a safe Passage home. In the Consul's Boat, accompanied with the Consul and his Lady, the two Ladies, in Men's Habits, with the Priest, Maid, and Boy, got safe to the Ship, with the Jewels, Gold, and Habits they carried with them; and there the Consul and his Lady took Leave of them, with all Demonstrations of Love and Respect on both Sides. This Ship was called the St. Francis, the Captain's Name was Monsieur de Feuillade, a fine accomplished Gentleman, young, brave, and of a noble sweet Disposition. The Ladies, so soon as the Ship was under Sail, laid aside their Men's Habits, and put on such as became their Sex and Quality; in which they appeared so charming, that the unfortunate Captain soon gazed away his Liberty, becoming passionately in Love with Violetta . He entertained them with such Civility and Respect, as shewed the Esteem he had for them, and spoke the Gentleman and the Lover.

They set Sail the 20th of August, 1705. it being more than three Years since Ardelisa came to Turkey, six Months of which Time she spent in the melancholy Cottage in the Wood, and near a whole Year since she saw her Lord; and now she doubted not of soon seeing again her dear native Country, Friends, and Relations; but, above all Things, him whom she preferred to all Things. They passed the Time the most agreeably that was possible, in which the good Father shared, who was so pious, useful, and modest, that not only they, but all the Sailors thought themselves happy in having such a Man with them: He was Physician to the Sick, having great Skill in Physick and Surgery, and could apply fit Remedies to both Soul and Body. Violetta only seemed melancholy: The Loss of her Honour, and the dismal Impression the Way of Life she had led with Osmin had made in her Soul, no Change of Condition could perfectly efface; she thought only of retiring to a religious House, to weep for a Sin, of which she was in Reality altogether innocent. The good Priest observed her Sadness, and one Day took an Opportunity, when Ardelisa was gone with the Captain and Nannetta, to take the Air upon the Deck, to speak to her, in this Manner: 'Madam, why do you abandon yourself thus to Grief, at a Time when you are returning to Christians, and your own Country; to your noble Father, Mother and Friends? Your Soul should now be ravished in Admiration of that Providence that has so unexpectedly delivered you from the most unhappy Condition a Lady could be in.'

She lifted up her Eyes at these Words, and wiping the falling Tears away, said, 'Father, till I saw Ardelisa, I found my Conscience undisturbed, I submitted to the fatal Necessity of my Circumstances; and Christianity forbidding me to finish Life by my own Hand, I thought I had done all that was required; but that noble Lady's heroick Conduct has convinced me, I did not what I ought: She never would have permitted a lustful Turk to possess her, but by his Death would have preserved her Honour; or, resisting to Death, not have survived it. I am no longer Friends with myself, and long to hide my Face in a Convent, where Tears shall wash away the Stains of his Embraces: Nay, Father, to you I confess, I even loved him, saw him with a Wife's Eyes, and thought myself obliged to do so.'

The Priest answered, 'Madam, you are deceived; in Ardelisa, who was married to another, it would have been a horrid Crime to suffer another Man for to possess her; but as you were single, a Virgin, and made his by the Chance of War, it was no Sin in you to yield to him, and it would have been wilful Murder to have killed him, or but conspired his Death; nay, a Sin not to have been faithful to his Bed, whilst he is living you ought not to marry, you might have been a Means of his Conversion; you ought to pray for him, and consider he acted according to his Knowledge and Education.' Violetta thanked him, and seemed much revived.

CHAP. XIII.

They had now sailed six Days, when the seventh Night it grew dark and tempestuous; the Wind changed, and about Midnight a Storm arose so dreadful, the Pilot could no longer steer the Ship; so that she drove they knew not whither. At break of Day they found themselves amongst the Ægean Isles; the Ship had lost all her Masts, they had but thirteen Hands aboard, when the Carpenter going down into the Hold, came back with a Face that expressed the Terrors of his Mind; he cried, 'Hoist out the Boats quickly, there is five Foot Water in the Hold.' At these Words a Death-like Paleness spread over every Face; the Captain, Ladies, Priest, Nannetta, Joseph, and five Sailors entered the first Boat, taking with them their Gold, Jewels, some Trunks of Clothes, Biscuit, a Vessel of Wine, and some Quilts, Bedding, and Salt-Meat, what they could possibly put in without endangering the Boat's sinking; and then they made away for the Island which was nearest, on which they landed safely; but had the Misfortune to see the other Boat sink, which the greedy Sailors had too deeply loaded. The Ship floated a little while, and then disappeared, being swallowed up by the merciless Waves. And now, being on Shore, they were desirous to know where they were; which they soon discovered to be on the Island Delos, which lyes in the Archipelago, the largest of the Cyclades, once famous for the Temple of Apollo, but now entirely abandoned by the Turks, and desolate of all Inhabitants. Here they must remain till some Discovery could be made of a better Place to remove to, which they proposed to do by Means of their Boat; in which, next to Providence, they placed all their Hopes. They hasted to bring all ashore, the Tempest continuing, and drew the Boat on Land. And now Necessity taught them what to do in a Place where there was neither House nor Market. Going up a little way from the Shore, they found two or three ruinous Huts, which they entered as joyfully as if they had been Palaces. In one of these the two Ladies went, with Nannetta, the Captain ordering a Quilt and some Coverlids, the best they had saved, to be put into it; as likewise Ardelisa's Trunk, in which was the Clothes and Treasure belonging to the Ladies. Into another Hut the Priest, Joseph, and he entered; there he placed the Wine, Biscuit, and Meat, knowing he must now husband that, lest they should want before they could be supplied with more.

And now having ordered all things the best that was possible in so unhappy a Place and Circumstance, the Captain and Priest went to the Ladies, whom they found much dejected, and out of Order. They said all they could to comfort them, desiring them to eat something; Joseph brought them Meat and Wine, and the Sailors gathered Leaves and Sticks, and made Fires in the Huts, being handy, and used to shift. The Captain ordered them also some Meat and Wine, which they eat as chearfully as if nothing had happened. And now the good Father, seeing the Ladies sad, addressed himself thus to Ardelisa: 'Madam, ever since I have had the Honour to know you, I have observed something so noble and Christian in all your Deportment, that I believed you incapable of Fear or Ingratitude to God, who this Day has given you a signal Deliverance from Death. It is not many Hours ago since we expected to be swallowed up in the Deep, and thought Death stared us in the Face; but now the Divine Power has brought us to firm Land, and to a Place where, if we are alone, and have no Inhabitants to comfort or relieve us, we have no Enemies to fear, no inhuman Turks to murder or enslave us; we may here sleep in Security. And as for Food, Providence, that provides for the wild Beasts and Birds, will doubtless provide for us; in us, who have had such uncommon and extraordinary Proofs of his Favour, it would be an unpardonable Sin to distrust him now. Summon up then your Faith and Reason to aid you, and be not cast down.' These Words seemed as Cordials to them all; they eat thankfully what was set before them, and the Captain, Priest, and Boy returning to their Hut, the Sailors to their's, they slept as sweetly as if they had lain in Palaces on Beds of Down.

CHAP. XIV.

The next Morning, the Sky being cleared up, and the Winds ceased, the chearful Sun began to shine; the Captain, Priest, and Sailors walked out of their Huts, to view the Shore and Country: they saw many Sea-Birds upon it, and Plenty of Ruins, with some Goats and Swine, which they supposed cast there by some Shipwreck; but so wild, that they fled away as soon as any body came in sight of them. At last the Captain thought it best to send three of the Sailors out in the Boat, to discover if any Place could be found near that more convenient to remove to, or buy Provisions at, till some Christian Ship arrived to take them in; which, it was probable, would not be long, because this Island affords Plenty of good Water, and is safe for Christians to air Goods on, or mend their Vessels. The Boat was accordingly got out, and the Sailors entered it, the Captain charging them not to venture far from that Island; but they were either taken, or drowned, for they never returned again with the Boat. For some Days they lived on what Provisions they had brought with them, and the two Sailors and Joseph walking daily up and down the Island, which is many miles in Circumference, gathered up Plenty of Eggs, which the Sea-Fowl laid there, and now and then some small Fishes, which they catched in some little Brooks, which are in the Island.

But now the Biscuit was spent, and Bread wanting, they began to despair of the Boat's Return, which they had every Day expected till now. The Ladies, unused to such Hardships, fell both sick. The good Father searched every where for Herbs medicinal to relieve them; but, alas! so many things were wanting, that they were ineffectual. How could Cordials and Restoratives be had, when neither Wine nor Spirits could be made? The Captain, whose Concern for Violetta equalled the Passion he had for her, denied himself what was requisite to support his own Life, for fear of her wanting; whilst the poor Ladies, whom Sickness and Want had rendered unable to walk, were watched by Nannetta, who was almost as feeble as they. The Priest, Captain and Sailors did nothing but wander about in search of Food: They had brought two Musquets and some Powder ashore with them; but that being spent, the Guns were useless. They now contrived Pitfalls and Snares, which they made with Twigs plucked from small Trees and Bushes, which were very plenty by the Sea side; and with these they had pretty good Success, catching Sea-Fowls, and sometimes Rabbits. These they brought home, dressed, and divided, giving first to the Ladies: But, alas! what could this do to sustain the Lives of eight Persons; Water was all they had to drink.

One Evening the Boy catched a young Goat, and, unable to carry it, tied a String about its Neck, and led it home. The Dam, with another Twin-Kid, followed, hearing it bleat. This young Goat being brought to the Hut belonging to the Captain, and tied there, drew the other two to follow her in, and so they were taken. One of the young ones they immediately killed, and feasted upon; the Dam they preserved for her Milk, and the other Kid as a Treasure, when they could get no other Food. With the Milk of this Goat the Ladies Lives were in a manner wholly preserved, the Boy feeding her and the Kid with what he could get of Greens, of which there was no Want. And now they all grew so weak for want of Food, that they were scarce able so much as to seek for it; Silence seemed almost to reign amongst them, every one being unwilling to speak his Despair to his Friend; their hollow Eyes were continually directed to the Sea, from whence they only hoped Relief; nothing but the Arrival of some Christian Ship could save them from perishing.

The Priest, on this Occasion, shewed himself more than Man; he encouraged every body else, and seemed chearful himself; and though he eat less than they, yet seemed always satisfied; tho' his meagre Face and Leanness shewed his Decay, yet his Tongue uttered no Complaint: 'Come, my Children, says he, Mortality is subject to Misfortunes, the Way to Heaven is difficult, but the End glorious; there we shall want nothing: The Almighty's Ears are always open to our Complaints; trust him, in his own Time he will deliver us, or take us to eternal Rest.' With these, and such like Discourses he comforted them daily.

CHAP. XV.

One Night, as they were retired to Rest, (for indeed sleep they could not, or at least but little, want of Food having made them almost Strangers to those sweet Slumbers which are produced by good Meat, or wholesom Nourishment) they heard a mighty Storm, the Winds blew, as if Nature were in Convulsions, and the Elements at Strife; then Guns went off, by which they guessed some Ship was near, and in Distress. So soon as the Day-break the Boy and Sailors ventured out to see what they could discover; and there saw the dismal Remains of a Shipwreck upon the Shore, by the Carcases of several drowned Men, huge Coffers floated on the Waters, and some lay upon the Shore. The Seamen and Boy got what they were able, and found some Casks of Salt-Beef, Biscuit, Rum, and Bails of India Goods, which shewed it was some East-India Ship that was lost; they hoped to find some of the Sailors, but none were saved alive on that Place; by those that lay dead, they guessed them Venetians.

By this time Father Francis and the Captain came to them, and gave them their Assistance; and now getting home to their Huts what they had got, a new Life seemed to appear in them. Thus the Ruin of others procured their Preservation, as is frequent in this World; and one of the Vessels of Rum being broached, and each taking a Dram, with a Biscuit, they resolved to return to work, and search all the Shore, the Sea now ebbing, to see if they could get more, especially Food, for Treasure was to them useless. That Gold, that causes so much Mischief in the World, for which Men sell their Souls, and change their Faiths, was here less valuable than a Crust of Bread. They succeeded so well, that in five hours they had five Barrels of Beef and Pork, seven of Biscuit, three of Rum, one of Brandy, five of Wine, and many rich Goods and Chests of Clothes. Thus Providence, to preserve them, caused the Winds and Seas to bring them Food and Raiment. They likewise gathered up many Pieces of the Ship, Planks, Ropes, broken Masts, Sail-Cloth, &c. and now they began to think of making a Habitation for all the Family to dwell together, and nothing but a Boat was wanting to make them happy. They in few Days accomplished their Design of a House; for they made a large Tent, with the Sail Cloth on Poles, with Partitions, so that it reached from one Hut to the other. Here the Ladies could be brought, and seated, to take a little Air, and to eat: They had likewise saved some Barrels of Powder and Shot, which was of great use to them; for the Men soon got. Strength enough to walk again about the Island, and shot Wild-Hogs and Fowl frequently. Thus they lived for two Months.

CHAP. XVI.

One Evening Joseph returned from Shooting, and told them, at the farther end of the Island he saw a Ship lye at Anchor, at some distance from a Creek, into which he saw a Boat put. The Men came ashore, and about six of them left the Boat, and walked up the Land towards a Brook, as he supposed, for Water; and on the Ship's Stern he could discern a Red Cross, and thence concluded they were Christians. This News made them long for the next Morning, when the Captain, Priest, and Boy set out by Day-break, and went to the Place, which they reached in three Hours time, so much had Hope strengthened them; and there found the Shore full of Seamen, and a Tent set up, in which they supposed the Captain and Passengers were. The Priest went up to the first Man he found near enough to speak to, and asked him, whence they were? The Man answered, 'From Venice.' 'What is your Captain's Name,' said the Father; 'Don Manuel,' answered the Seaman, and the Ship is a Man of War called the 'St. Mark.' 'Now, Friend,' said the Priest, 'where are you bound?' 'Home, Sir,' he replied. 'Pray bring me and my Friend to the Captain,' said the Priest; 'we are Christians cast on this Island, and beg to speak to him.' 'Speak and welcome, Gentlemen,' said the Man, 'My Captain's a noble Venetian, and will treat you generously; a worthier Man ne'er sailed the Seas.'

They followed him to the Tent, and were received with such Humanity as surprized them; but discoursing the Captain, to whom they related part of their Misfortunes, they discovered it was Violetta's Father they were talking with. Then the French Captain, looking on the good Father, said to the Captain, 'Sir, did you not lose a Daughter in the last dreadful War with the Turks? a Lady the most lovely of her Sex, called Violetta.' 'Yes, answered Don Manuel, I did; but why do you mention that?' 'She's here, my Lord, said he, and in my Care.'

Then the good Father and he related all the manner of her Escape: what Joy and Satisfaction this News was to Don Manuel, the Mind can much better conceive, than Words express; they dined with him, and after a noble Treat, he agreed to go along with them, ordering the Ship to be brought round. In walking with them, he told them, that as he was at Sea with his Ship, with three other Men of War in Company, going to meet some Venetian Merchant-Ships, that they expected from the East-Indies, which they were ordered to convoy home, the Storm happened, which had shipwrecked one of those Ships, as he was since informed. This Tempest parted the Men of War, and drove him out to Sea, so that he was in great want of fresh Water; for which reason he put in here.

They entertained him with Ardelisa's whole History, and so they passed the time, till they reached their Tarpaulin Palace; into which being entered, they found the two Ladies: But when Violetta saw herself embraced by her Father, Joy so overcame her, that she fainted in his Arms; and, recovering, was congratulated by the whole Company. And now the Ladies and Servants seemed so revived, that all Sorrow was forgotten; Supper was brought in, and nothing spared of the Provisions that yet remained, which before they used to divide with care, for fear of wanting. As they were at Supper, the first Lieutenant of the Ship was brought in, to inform Don Manuel, that the Ship was come to an Anchor near that Place. Soon after him came several young Gentlemen to compliment their Commander, on Account of Violetta : This Company past some Hours very agreeably, admiring the strange Accidents that had befallen them, and particularly their meeting in this Place. Don Manuel, and those belonging to him, returned to the Ship; and next Morning, returning to Shore, passed the Day with his Daughter and Friends, bringing rich Wines and Sweetmeats to regale them. The Seamen hasted to water the Ship, and to get all things on board belonging to Ardelisa, and her Family, which they performed in five Days; and then the Ladies, French Captain, Father Francis, Nannetta, Joseph, and the two Sailors went aboard the Venetian Ship, leaving the desolate Island, and their Huts, with many things which they thought not worth taking away, which might nevertheless be of great Use to any others, who should have the same Occasion for them. Ardelisa desired the Goat and Kid might be brought aboard, which she loved much, because its Milk had preserved her's and Violetta's Life; and therefore she resolved to carry it to France with her: So it was brought in the Boat, being grown so tame, it would follow Joseph like a Dog.

They set Sail for Venice the 2d of February, 1705, having lived on the Island from the 29th of August to that time, which was five Months and four Days; and they arrived safe at Venice in fourteen Days, where the Ladies were conducted to Don Manuel's House, accompanied by the French Captain, the Priest, and their Servants; and there Donna Catherina received her Daughter with the greatest Transports imaginable, weeping for Joy, the young Lady doing the same; a Sight so moving, it touched all the Company. Here Ardelisa and the rest were entertained magnificently, and not only invited, but even constrained, to continue till a French Ship arrived to carry them to France.

CHAP. XVII.

Ardelisa was treated by all Don Manuel's Relations, and shewed all that was worthy Observation in that noble City, whose Situation alone renders it a Wonder. The French Captain, Mons. de Feuillade, was the only Person who was not here diverted: He thought only of the approaching Separation that was to be made between him and Violetta, to whom he had given a thousand Testimonies of his Passion, but never made any plain Declaration of Love, which he was withheld from doing, by these Considerations: First, he was not the eldest Son of that noble Family to which he belonged, being second Brother to the Count de Feuillade, who now enjoyed the Title and Estate. He had indeed great Expectations from the Marquis de Rochmount his Uncle, who was his Godfather, and had no Heir, and was very antient; but then he reflected that Violetta was a Lady of the nicest Virtue, and would, perhaps, scruple to marry, whilst the Infidel, who had been happy in the enjoying of her, lived. These Thoughts had till now kept him silent; but his Passion was too great to suffer him to part from her, without declaring his Love: He resolved therefore to take the first Opportunity to reveal it to her, which was difficult, by reason of the abundance of Company that visited at Don Manuel's, and frequent Diversions, to which the Ladies were invited abroad.

One Morning he rose very early, and went into the Gardens to walk, being melancholy. After some time he entered a Banquetting-House, where he sat down, and was in a profound Meditation, when he heard a Rustling behind the Quickset-Hedges; and, lifting up his Eyes, saw Violetta alone, very pensive. She passed by, and went up a small Mount, upon which there stood a Summer-House, which for Prospect, and the Painting it was embellished withal, equalled, if not excelled, any in Venice. Into this she entered, and sat down; he immediately followed her thither, and there threw himself upon his Knees before her, saying, 'Charming divine Violetta! see here a Man who adores you, who has loved you from the first moment he saw you; and yet, through Respect, continued silent, and would not importune you whilst you were unfortunate. You are now returned home, and secured from all future Mischiefs; and I, the most unhappy of all Men, must, e're long, leave you; the Thoughts of this Separation are insupportable. Tell me, divine Creature! may I hope that you are not wholly insensible of my Services? and that you will sometimes remember me with Compassion? I am going to my native Country, to a Place where my Friends and Fortune are; but I would much rather stay here and die at your Feet, and could wish I had not one Moment survived our Deliverance from the desolate Island, since it is the Means of depriving me of your Sight. Oh! speak! Is your Soul insensible to Love? May I not hope?'

Violetta, much disordered, seemed to ruminate before she spake; and at length replied, 'Sir, I am neither insensible, nor ungrateful; your Affection has been so easy to be discovered in all the kind and generous things you did for me in my Distress, that it would be base in me not to acknowledge, that I believe your Passion sincere and noble; and the grateful Sense I have of it is such, that I will not dissemble with you: Were not my Circumstances what they are, I would sooner consent to be your's, than any Man's living.'

At these Words he kissed her Hand with the greatest Transport, saying, 'Madam, proceed no farther, let this charming Sentence live for ever in my Thoughts, no Circumstance remains to bar me from being happy; do you but bid me live, I shall surmount all Obstacles: Your noble Father will find nothing in my Birth, or Fortune to render me unworthy such an Honour. You are not pre-ingaged, the Villain who possessed that lovely Person, had no Title to it but lawless Force; he neither was a Christian nor a Husband; he used you as his Slave, and, doubtless, would, whene'er his brutish Lust inclined him to a Change, have bestowed you on some Favourite Slave, to use or poison you.'

Violetta answered, with a Flood of Tears, 'Yet while this Villain lives, Honour forbids me to be your's: 'Tis true, he forced me to his Bed, but 'twas the Custom of his Nation, and what he thought no Crime, yet he was tender of me; and whilst he lives, my Modesty cannot permit me to receive another in my Bed.' 'But if he's dead, Madam, the Lover cried, then will you give Consent to make me blessed; for doubtless he is long since so, the Turkish Emperors never failing to send the Bowstring to the Man with whom they are once displeased. 'Twill not be many days before some Vessel will arrive from Turkey, and then you'll be informed of all that's happened, since we left it; till then permit me to declare my self to your Father, and to hope.'

Violetta rising, to put an End to the Discourse, answered only, 'Importune me no farther.' He said no more, but taking her Hand, conducted her to the House, and returned to the Summer-house, where, for some moments, he reflected, with much Pleasure, on what had passed between them. By this time Don Manuel rose, and came into the Garden, with Father Francis, who was the Favourite of the whole Family. The Captain joined them, and, after some other Discourse, thinking it a lucky Opportunity, discovered to Don Manuel, in a Manner the most respectful and gallant that was possible, the Passion he had for Violetta; in which the good Priest seconded him, giving him and his Family (whom he perfectly knew) such a Character, that Don Manuel received the Offer very obligingly; telling the Captain, if his Daughter was consenting, he should not contradict her Inclinations. After this Monsieur la Feuillade took the Freedom of a Lover, often to dance, walk, and accompany Violetta abroad, and all her Relations treated him as a Person they esteemed Don Manuel's Son

CHAP. XVIII.

It was not long before a Venetian Ship arrived; the Captain of which brought an Account of many extraordinary Events that had happened at Constantinople since their Departure. He said, 'That three Days after Osmin's Palace was burnt, he, having received the News of it, fell sick, and refused to eat, continuing silent. He fasted three Days, and the fourth was found dead in his Chains, as he lay on the Floor. His Body, said he, I saw dragged, by the Sultan's Order, about the Streets, which his Servants afterwards were suffered to take and bury. Some days after the Grand Visier returning from the Army, and being received coldly by the Sultan, grew incensed against him; and, fearing Osmin's Fate, formed a Conspiracy, and deposed the Sultan, setting up Mahomet, his younger Brother, on the Throne.' Then he told them, 'That Monsieur Joyeuxe, and his Family were returned to France.'

The News of Osmin's Death gave Monsieur la Feuillade much Satisfaction; but Violetta would not be prevailed upon to marry him soon. At length she promised, if he would consent to let her retire for six Months into a Convent, after that she would comply with his Desires. These were hard Terms, but he was forced to yield to them, on Condition he might visit her there. She however yielded to stay at her Father's till Ardelisa went away; and the Lover vowed the six Months should begin from the Day she received the News of Osmin's Death.

As for Ardelisa, though entertained and diverted so highly, she thought each Day a Year till she saw her dear Lord again; and, according to her Wish, a French Ship arrived; which News being brought to her, Monsieur la Feuillade and the Priest went aboard; and there seeing the Captain, knew him to be Monsieur de Fountain, Monsieur Feuillade's Cousin, who was as much, or more, surprized at the Sight of them. He embraced them, saying, 'Heavens! did I ever think to see either of you again? Father Francis ! what Angel has preserved you alive till this joyful Day? You, Cousin, are thought dead, your Ship was reported to be cast away; I have good News to tell you, your Uncle the Marquis is dead, and has left you all his Estate and Title; you are now Marquiss of Rochmount.'

They went into the great Cabin, where they drank a Bottle of Wine with the Captain, and then took him ashore; telling him, they would bring him to a Lady, at the Sight of whom he would be yet much more surprized. They soon arrived at Don Manuel's, where they found Ardelisa waiting their Return with Impatience; but when she saw Captain de Fountain, she was overjoyed, knowing he came from the Place where her Lord (if living) was. He thought himself in a Dream; never was a more agreeable Meeting of Friends; when he assured her, The Lord Longueville was in Health, Ardelisa shed Tears for Joy; but he told her withal, that he was retired into a Convent of Franciscan Friers, where, notwithstanding his Friends Intreaties, he was determined to stay the rest of his Life, if no News of her being yet alive arrived, by a Messenger whom he had sent to Turkey, on purpose to get a particular Account of that unfortunate Accident, in which your Father, you, and all the Family, were supposed to be murdered.

Here Ardelisa gave him an Account of all that had happened to her since that time: as likewise that the Consul had sent him Letters long since of her escaping in that dreadful Night. Monsieur Fountain answered, 'They questionless are come to his Hands by this Time, but it is six Months since I have been in Picardy.' Then Father Francis looking on Violetta, who spoke not all this while, said, 'Madam, we have News for you too, which will not be disagreeable; Monsieur de Feuillade is this Day able to make you Marchioness of Rochmount.' So Monsieur de Fountain informed her, that the Title and Estate of the old Marquis his Uncle was given to him. Upon which Violetta, looking gravely on her Lover, said, 'My Lord, Violetta is not a Match for a Marquis, you will doubtless repent of a Love so ill placed.' 'Madam, said he, were it possible for me to be angry with you, it would be now; no, had I the Empire of the World, I should dedicate myself and that to your Service, and would refuse it, if you were not to share it with me.' Ardelisa smiled, saying, 'What you refuse the Marquis, you must grant to me; deny me not the Pleasure of seeing you married before I leave Venice ; the Friendship is such between us, that, methinks, you should not let me go to France alone; let us continue to share one Fate, and end our Lives together; France is a Country charming as your own.' Violetta replied, 'Charming Ardelisa! to whom I owe my Deliverance from a Life worse than Death, Heaven knows how dear I prize your Friendship and your Conversation; but can I leave my Parents? Did not Duty forbid me to consent, my Heart is so much your's, I should not be able to part with you.'

At these Words Don Manuel entered the Room, to whom Father Francis told all the News. The Ship staid here two Months to unlade, and take in Goods; at the End of which Time, Captain de Fountain gave Ardelisa Notice to prepare for her Departure to France: And then she so pressed Violetta to marry, that she yielded; and, in fine, Don Manuel and his Lady consented that she should accompany her Lord to France, where they promised to give them a Visit the next Spring.

Don Manuel gave her a noble Fortune in Jewels and Bills, and was extremely satisfied with his Son-in-Law; who was now possessed of a Lady, whose Temper and Person was such as made her a Portion of herself, and whose Fortune, being Don Manuel's only Child, was so great, as might have deserved as noble a Husband, if she had wanted Part of the Excellencies she possessed. This Wedding was splendid as their Quality, and when they went aboard the Ship for France, they were accompanied by all Don Manuel's Relations, by whom an Entertainment was provided suiting the Magnificence of his Temper.

We will omit the tender Expressions of Donna Catherina at parting with her Daughter, with all the Acknowledgments Ardelisa made for the noble Entertainment she had received, as likewise the good Priest, who was much esteemed by all. They all took Leave of one another, and the Ship set Sail with a fair Wind, and arrived safe at Calais, July 1. 1706.

With what Transport did Ardelisa see her native Land again! The good Father prostrating himself upon the Shore, gave Thanks to God for his and their Safety. And now they consulted how to go to their Homes: Ardelisa resolved, that her Arrival should not be made publick presently, having a Desire first to make a Trial of her Lord's Affection: So they determined to go first to the Marquis's Seat, which was about five miles short of the Count de Beauclair's, Ardelisa's Cousin, in whose hands the Count de Vinevil had entrusted his Estate: They therefore hiring a Post-Chaise for the Ladies, and Horses for themselves, Nannetta and Joseph took the Road for Rochmount, where they soon arrived, with all the Treasure, as Jewels, &c. the Ladies had saved, and Violetta's Father and Mother had given her, taking the Goat with them. They found the old Steward and Servants in the House; the Count de Feuillade, the Marquis's elder Brother, having delayed to take Possession, or alter any thing, till he was satisfied his Brother was dead, to whom he was left Successor in the Title and Fortune. But when the Servants saw their young Lord enter the Gate, they received him with such Joy as cannot be expressed. He thanked them with much Tenderness, and, shewing Violetta, said, 'Here I have brought you a Lady, who you will find yourselves happy in serving.' All this while Ardelisa kept her Hood over her Face, Violetta saying, 'Sister, you are not well, you shall have a Bed got ready for you immediately.' The Servants flew to get all in Order; the Marquis conducted his Lady and Ardelisa to a noble Chamber, where he left Nannetta to undress them, being much tired with the Journey; and, leaving Order for Supper, went in a Coach, with Father Francis, to the Count his Brother.

CHAP. XIX.

The News of the Marquis's Arrival spread so fast, that, returning home, accompanied with his Brother, he found the Court-Hall and Parlours full of Relations, Friends, and Tenants; and having caressed them all, he took only his Brother up Stairs to Violetta. Entering the Room, the Count knew Ardelisa. It is easy to imagine how entertaining this Conversation must be; she gave him the Reason why she would be private for that Night; which he was so well pleased with, that he agreed to take Father Francis home with him in the Coach that Night, and to go along with him to the Convent to the Lord Longueville the next Morning, as she desired: He much admired Violetta, his new Sister. The Marquis was obliged to return to the Company below, and in some time most of the Visitors took Leave, good Manners obliging them to withdraw, because it was near Night, and the Marquis come off a Journey. Some of his nearest Relations stay'd Supper, and so importuned him for a Sight of his Lady, that he was forced to bring her down to Table.

This Opportunity Ardelisa took, to send Nannetta for Father Francis, who, entering the Chamber, she spake to after this manner: 'Father, the great Confidence I place in you, makes me desire the Favour of you to go to my dear Lord; after you have given him an Account of my Deliverance, of which perhaps the Letters have already informed him, proceed to relate to him all that happened to me since, to the Time of my being taken into Don Manuel's Ship, and there finish; telling him, that I there fell sick, and died, requesting you to go to him, if ever you saw France again. And here say all that's moving, as my dying Message to him; and well observe his Looks and Words; and if you find his Passion is decay'd, cease to importune him farther.' And here she wept. 'I would not break his Peace, said she, or force him to the World again, to be looked coldly on, and loved for Duty only; I'll sooner enter a Convent, and die silent and unknown.'

'Madam, said he, your Doubts are criminal; but you would, I suppose, render him more sensible of his good Fortune, by first giving him a Glimpse of the most unhappy State Fate could reduce him to: I'll, to oblige you, try his Constancy, and doubt not to bring him with me to you.' He returned to the Company, who soon took Leave; and then the happy Marquis with his Lady, wishing Ardelisa good Repose, retired to an Apartment, where the rich Furniture surprized and convinced her, by what little she had already seen, that France was the most noble Country in the World. Here they returned Heaven Thanks; and now, freed from all anxious Thoughts, being arrived where nothing was wanting to make them happy, they committed themselves to sleep: But Ardelisa could not rest, she talked with Nannetta all the Night.

CHAP. XX.

Next Morning the Count de Feuillade, with whom the good Father went, as was agreed, called him, and hasted to the Convent; where they found the Lord Longueville much altered, to whom the Count spake, after this manner: 'My dear Friend, you will wonder doubtless at this early Visit; but I bring a Person with me, who has News of Consequence to impart to you; he has been in Turkey.' At these Words the Lord Longueville fixed his Eyes upon him; 'Father Francis, said he, my God! what do I see? Is my dear Ardelisa safe and alive? No News but that can comfort me.' 'That I am Father Francis, my Lord, he replied, is certain, and I wish I could give you News, suiting your Wishes, of your Lady; all that relates to her I shall acquaint you with.' Here they sat down, and he rehearsed all her Adventures, and his own; in which the Lord Longueville did not once interrupt him with one Question: But when he told the manner of her dying in her Voyage to Venice, he turned pale. The good Father hasted to a Conclusion, and finished in these Words: 'The last Words, my Lord, she spoke, were relating to you, which I omit, because they were so tender, I cannot repeat them with dry Eyes, and therefore would doubtless wound your Soul: Now you must resolve to submit to Providence, and be content.' 'Yes, answered he, I am; my God, I submit.'

Here the Drops ran from his swol'n Eyes, and he could say no more. At length he pursued his Discourse, saying, 'Father and Friend! I thank you both, and beg you'll witness how resigned I bear the greatest Loss that ever Mortality sustained: Be Witness, Heaven! how dear I loved her, and since she can be mine no more on Earth, this Day I'll quit the World; Tomorrow's Sun shall see me in the humble Habit of a Frier, these Walks shall bound my Wishes, and I will know no Pleasure but the Hopes of seeing her again. Farewel World, and sensual Joys, in Death I place my Hope.' Here he crossed his Arms, a Death-like Paleness overspread his Face, and he fainted.

The Count and Father, much surprized, called for Help; at which the Prior, and some Friers came; and, fetching Wine and Spirits, brought him back to Life. Then they, repenting of the Trial they had made, looked confusedly upon one another. At length the Priest said, 'Pardon me, Heaven! and you, my Lord! this Sin; you are imposed upon, fair Ardelisa lives, at her Request I made this Trial of your Constancy: Come with me, I will bring you to her.' At these Words he lifted up his Eyes, 'Ah! do not flatter me, he cried, 'tis cruel. By all that is good, replied the Count, it is true, she lives.'

Then they brought him to the Coach, and told him, as they went along, all that had passed in her Abode at Venice, and Return to France; and being come to the Marquis's, who was just up, they were received with the greatest Demonstrations of Friendship. He immediately sent to know if Ardelisa was stirring; Nannetta took the Message, and said, her Lady was not dressed. 'The Lord Longueville is below,' said the Servant. E're the Words were spoke, he came to the Door, conducted by Joseph, who had seen him enter the Hall; and, throwing himself at his Feet, told him, his Lady was there. He entered the Chamber, and seeing Ardelisa on the Bed-side, caught her in his Arms so suddenly, that she scarce knew him: Excess of Joy did for some time lock up their Tongues, so that they continued silent; but at length they both recovered, and brake forth in Words so tender and so passionate, that none but Lovers can conceive. The Servants all withdrew, and now God had rewarded their long Sufferings, by making them happy in one another. An universal Joy appeared in all this Family, and the Count de Beauclair being sent for, saw this happy Couple, and honourably restored his Uncle, the Lord de Vinevil's Estate, to Ardelisa. Thus these two Lords and Ladies lived in perpetual Felicity and Friendship; and Father Francis, with much Intreaty, consented to be Chaplain to Lord Longueville: Nannetta and Joseph married, and were nobly provided for.

The next Spring the Marquiss and his Lady had a Visit from Don Manuel and Donna Catherina, whom they entertained as became their Quality and Affection. The same Year Violetta blessed her Lord with a Son, and Ardelisa her's with a Daughter, who bear their Names.

Thus Divine Providence, whom they confided in, tried their Faith and Virtue with many Afflictions, and various Misfortunes; and, in the End, rewarded them according to their Merit, making them most happy and fortunate.

 
 
 

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