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Lucinda by Penelope Aubin


THE LIFE AND Amorous Adventures OF LUCINDA, An English Lady.
Conjugal Duty Rewarded ; or, The RAKE Reformed.
Fortune favours the Bold: OR, The Happy Milaneze.


THE LIFE AND Amorous Adventures OF LUCINDA, An English Lady.

The Custom of former Ages to grieve and lament at the Birth of their Children, and to rejoice and make Festivals at their Burials, is not so much to be wondered at, when we reflect upon the surprizing Varieties of Fortune, and the Inconstancy of that fickle Goddess: And although Riches and Title seem, in the Opinion of the Vulgar, to have placed its Possessors farther from the Reach of her Disasters, she often frowns upon these, and we have many Precedents of Life to convince us, that she sometimes makes it her Pastime to humble the most haughty, rich, and aspiring, from the Possessions they imagined to enjoy with Security, into the most abject and contemned Condition. Examples of this Kind are so frequent, that there will be no Occasion to mention them in this Treatise: Those which have happened to me in the middle State of Life which I have passed, will be sufficient to shew the uncertainty of her Favours, or the little Occasion my Parents had to rejoice at my coming into the World. I was born in the famous City of London, my Father was the younger Brother of an antient Family long settled in the North of England, well esteemed, and Possessors of a good Estate, which they hospitably lived upon. My Grandmother came out of the West well born, whom my Grandfather married more for Love than Riches: This reciprocal Liking produced a numerous Issue, and there being many of them Sons, some were sent to the Army, some to Court; and it was the Fate of my Father to be sent to this City, and bound Prentice to an eminent Merchant. He was very diligent and well beloved, and soon after the time of his Apprenticeship was expired married a Citizen's Daughter with a good Fortune, and quickly increased his Riches considerably. They had no other Child but me, and great Joy there was at my Birth, after they had been married six Years and almost despaired of Children. Whether there was such Occasion for their Joy the Sequel will shew. They gave me the best Education; Masters of all Sorts came to teach me to read, write, dance, and all the Sorts of Needle-work then in fashion amongst the young Ladies: I delighted most in reading Plays and Love-Stories, and nothing troubled me so much as where I found a young Lady forced by her Relations to marry some old rich Dotard, when her Heart was already engaged in favour of one more suitable in Years: This gave me an inexpressible Grief, and I could never persuade my self that Wealth was of the least Consideration, where there was a Disagreement in liking. I was wonderfully pleased that my Mother had happened to have given me the Name of Lucinda ; it sounded in my thoughts Poetick and Romantick, and would much better become a Song than Joan or Dorothy. Whether it was given me as a Presage of my future Intrigues I know not, but it cost my Mother no little Trouble to have me so christned, and by it I lost the Favour of an Aunt, who it is supposed would have left me all she was worth, had my Mother consented to have named me Dorothy after my Aunt's Name. Alas! I was so foolish that I lamented not for this, and I would not for twice the Fortune have been called by so vulgar a Name. With such foolish Trifles are young People delighted!

Over against our House there lived a rich Merchant, who had two Daughters that were frequently my Play-fellows; and a Son whom they called Charles, who was about two Years older than I, and being often at the House to play with his Sisters, he used to be one; and I began to think our Pastime imperfect when he was not of the Party. He also, as they observed, was more overjoyed and pleased when I was there. Thus our tender Inclinations began, and he now appeared so desirous to oblige and divert me, that his Actions gave my Father and Mother no little Satisfaction. Our reciprocal Affections increased with our Years, and I began now to be sensible of no other Pleasure but what his Conversation afforded; so soon had Love rooted itself in my tender Heart. When I was near eighteen, my Father's House was continually filled with the Young and Handsome, as well as the Old and Rich, who came to court me; but I found not any, in my Opinion, to compare to Charles, who entirely possessed my Heart. He alone was the Object of all my Wishes and Desires, and the only Person that could make me perfectly happy. Some officious Person had acquainted my Mother, that the Familiarity, that used to pass betwixt us, was no longer decent; and that it was dangerous to my Reputation to be so often alone with a young Man, now we were advanced in Years. Thus our frequent meeting as usual began to be denied, and I was in great Apprehension would be in a little time quite forbidden: At the Intercession of my dear Charles, who was not able to bear the Thoughts of not seeing me as usual, I got the Key of the back Gate to our Garden, by which he was to procure another, that by this Means we might have the Satisfaction of seeing each other, after the Servants were gone to sleep. This happy Interview continued for some time, and our Inclinations increasing, I began to think of what Consequence such a Midnight Intrigue might prove, and how injurious to my Honour, tho' I was ever so innocent, it would appear. He who had no Design in his Heart capable of doing me any Injury for his own Satisfaction, solicited me for both our Securities, to interchange Promises of Marriage: And to make it more essential, I was obliged to make use of my Servant Maid as a Confident, where in her Presence we vowed to love each other perpetually, and that no Force or Change of Fortune should be capable of hindering us from solemnizing our Marriage at the first suitable Opportunity.

Notwithstanding this, I was obliged to suffer the disagreeable Visits of Roderick, who was very rich, and about forty Years of Age; and tho' he was accounted to have Wit, his Conversation gave me no Satisfaction, and I thought nothing could be well said, that came not from my beloved Charles. I endeavoured by my Actions, to shew him that my Heart was already engaged, that he was labouring in vain, for what it was impossible for him to obtain: But notwithstanding all my fair Dealing, he was indefatigable in the Pursuit, and I found my self obliged to receive him. My Parents were so blinded with his Riches, that their Doors were always open to him, shewing their designed Son-in-Law the greatest Respect and Civility imaginable.

This was often the melancholy Subject of our midnight Meetings, and Charles was grown almost inconsolable, lest in Obedience to my Relations I should be obliged to consent to marry Roderick: Indeed there was some Occasion, for not long after this, my Mother proposed it to me with severe Injunctions of Obedience to her Commands. I knew not what Excuses to make to disentangle me from this Proposition; his Riches far surpassed what he could expect with me, and his Years were not so advanced as to countenance my Refusal. My being already contracted to Charles was unknown to them, and I thought it not proper to discover it: My only Remedy therefore, was to desire my Mother to consider the Tenderness of my Years, and to bid her not to speak to me of this Subject till I had passed a Year or two more, which would make me better acquainted with the World, and know how to behave my self in such a solemn State; and that time being expired, if she continued in the same Mind, and it was her Desire, I should be ready with all Obedience to submit to what she should please to command. She told me, it was so much to the Advantage of our Family, that a Delay was dangerous, and that it was the greatest Folly not to give an immediate Consent. I had no Argument of any Consequence to oppose her prudent Resolutions: Being therefore almost in Despair, I fell upon my Knees, and besought her with Tears in my Eyes, that she would grant me but eight Days to give my Resolution, which with much Importunity she consented to. This I thought would afford me an Opportunity of consulting my dear Charles about this important Affair: I longed for the Evening, he came as usual to see me, when I acquainted him with the dismal News, and that I had but eight Days allowed me to frame my Resolution of marrying Roderick. This threw him into the utmost Despair; he was so astonished, that for a quarter of an Hour he was not able to utter one single Syllable, till at length breaking forth in the greatest Lamentations, and deepest Complaints; 'so then, my dear Lucinda, says he, after all the Vows and solemn Protestations you have made me, never to have so much as a kind Thought for any other, you are going to dispose of what of right belongs only to me, in favour of a Parent's Choice; what will be the Return, think you, of such Inconstancy and broken Faith? The very Apprehension of it almost deprives me of Life, and I had rather die ten thousand Deaths, than see the only Happiness I wish for or desire, in the Arms and Possession of any other Person. How can I endure such tormenting News? But I vow'—and thus he was going on, when I interrupted him by saying, 'How is it possible, my dearest Life, that you are capable of thinking me guilty of so much Perjury? My Conduct towards you ought to have inspired you with kinder Thoughts; I deserve not this injurious Treatment. Had it been my Intentions to enter into any other Engagement, I should scarcely have made you a Confident of it; No, no Temptation can ever make me leave you, and the Reason I communicated this to you, was that we might consult together to avoid this disagreeable Design.' He recovered his Temper at this Discourse; he fell on his Knees before me, imprinted a thousand warm Kisses on my Hands, and returned me with great Joy a thousand Thanks for the welcome Assurances I had given him. The only Means that we could think of to remedy this Accident, was, that I should fly away with him. We were some time consulting the securest way to effect it, and at last we agreed that he should expect me in a Barge provided for that purpose, at the first Stairs below the Bridge; where I was to come at the time appointed; and which was to carry us to some other Place where we were to remain in Secrecy, until the Intercession of some of our Relations had prevailed with my Father and Mother to forgive me this Fault, and to be perfectly reconciled to us.

My Servant Maid, who was to accompany me in my flight, was present at this Resolution, and afterwards occasioned all the Misfortunes that befel me. Roderick in the mean time saw me frequently, and I treated him with more Complaisance than usual, that my Relations might believe I had no other Design but to comply with their Desires. The wish'd for Time of my Deliverance was approaching, and Charles, who passed not a Night without the sight of me, animated me afresh to put in execution our projected Design; so that the Evening following I took what Things were most convenient, as Money and Jewels of great Value in my own Custody; and delivering Lace, Linen, and the richest Clothes, in a Bundle as much as my Maid could conveniently carry, when it was almost dark, we went according to Appointment towards the Water Stairs, where I perceived a Barge, which I imagined was that which my dear Charles had provided for me; and as I was going to ask one of the Watermen for the Person who had hired the Boat, I found my self seized by two Men, who by force, notwithstanding the Resistance and the Exclamations I made for Assistance, forced me into the Boat, which immediately put out, and rowed away with the utmost Haste. You may guess at the Affliction I was in, to find my self in the Power of two Persons unknown to me, and what to do or how to help my self I knew not. I often called for my Servant, but no one answered me; this threw me into such Fears and Apprehensions, that I could not forbear bursting out into a Flood of Tears.

When I was in the middle of this Lamentation, taking my wet Handkerchief from my Eyes, I perceived two Men near me who were striking Fire, and lighted a Candle; by the Glimpse of it I cast my Eyes about the Barge on every side, and I could discern no more Persons on Board than the Rowers, the two Men that lighted the Candle, and the Master or Steersman in the Stern. They were all masked, and therefore not to be known by me: I nevertheless took the Courage to ask them, what was the Reason of this Usage, and where was my Servant? He that was next me, answered, 'That what they had done was by the Order of their Master, and that the Passion he had for me obliged him to this Treatment, that he would soon be with them to pay me all the Civility imaginable; but as for the Chamber-Maid they knew not what was become of her, having received no Orders concerning the taking her aboard.' But what was my insupportable Grief, to find my self thus exposed in the Hands of Persons unknown to me, what would be my Fate, or what they intended to do with me I knew not. I blamed the unfortunate Resolution I had taken to leave my Parents who were so indulgent to me, I cried out upon the Infidelity of Mankind; since either by the Treachery of one who had gained my Heart, and by whose Intercession I had undertaken this fatal Design, or at least by whose Carelessness I was exposed to these dismal Circumstances, I was thus brought into inevitable Ruin. But alas! it was all to little purpose, I had so troubled them with my Questions and Lamentations, that I could obtain no more Answers, telling me they had Orders to hold no farther Discourse with me.

The Difference I found between my former Condition, the present State I was in, and the Misfortunes I was in all Appearance destined to undergo, made me suffer a greater Dissatisfaction and Pain, than if I had been condemned to immediate Execution. I flew into the greatest Agonies of Despair, tore the Hair from my Head, rent my Clothes to pieces, and committed a thousand unaccountable Actions, produced from the Fatality of my Condition; till quite tired with lamenting and complaining, and favoured by the great Silence in the Boat, I fell into so sound a Sleep, that I waked not till the Barge was arrived at the intended landing Place. Here I was obliged to go on Shore, the Sun began to display his Morning Rays, and the pretty innocent Birds to sing their melodious Notes, when I perceived at the End of a Visto of shady Trees a spacious and beautiful Country Seat. The two Persons that forced me into the Barge conducted me along this Walk. When I was in the House, I looked on every Side to discover if there was any thing I had seen before, but all was unknown to me. They led me up a Pair of Stairs, where one of the Fellows taking a Key out of his Pocket unlocks a Door, and conducts me into a large Room: Then making two low Reverences they left me alone, turning the Key and locking me in.

I went into the Balcony, and looked about to see the Situation of the Place, and if I could remember any thing of it. It was yet early, and the Sun scarce high enough to shew Objects at a great Distance; I only took notice of a high lofty Edifice afar off, but could not resolve my self to what Place it belonged. Whilst I was busy in these Reflections I heard a Door open, not that by which I entered; and a Woman of a middle Age presented her self to me in an obliging manner, dressed like a grave Citizen, desiring me that since it was so early, I would be pleased to retire to a Chamber within, and refresh my self by some few Hours Repose. 'Oh dear Madam, cried I, breaking out into Tears, if the Prayers of an unhappy Creature can move you to any Compassion, I beg of you to let me know where I am, and the Reason why I am brought to this Place.' I was going to continue my Discourse, but my Grief interrupted the Passage of my Words, and I found my self unable to utter another Syllable. 'Madam, answered she, you shall soon be acquainted where you are, and for what Reason you are brought hither; in the mean time refrain your Tears, and be assured that you will be treated with the utmost Civility and Respect: Under this Security go in and take necessary Repose, for before the Middle of the Day you will be informed of what you desire to know.'

I found no Relief but in my Lamentations and Complaints, yet considering that it was to little Purpose to grieve, I retired into a Chamber richly furnished, and threw my self upon a Bed that stood in the middle of the Room, where tired and fatigued with Grief I soon fell asleep. My dear Charles appeared to my Imagination, where bathed in Tears and making mournful Lamentations, he seemed to speak to me in this manner: Oh my charming, my dear, my faithful Lucinda, how miserable am I become! I thought I had provided sufficiently for our Security, by delivering you from your hateful Marriage with Roderick ; but to my Ruin I find that Destiny has deluded my Hopes, and your too great Credulity has occasioned our Misfortunes; and I find my self deprived for ever of that Happiness which I have searched after, and has cost me so many Cares and Fatigues even from the tenderest of my Years. I was just going to demand of him in what was that Credulity of mine so blameable, when my Drowsiness left me, to represent to me the most hideous and ungrateful Object that ever my Eyes beheld; it was the old Alphonsus sitting upon the Side of my Bed, his Head resting upon his two Hands in the most pensive and melancholy Posture that Fancy is capable of framing.

Alphonsus was a Gentleman of the Town, rich, and of a good Estate; and although above fifty Years of Age, Love was as busy in his Heart as if he had been but five and twenty. He happened to dance with me one Night at a Ball, to compliment the Wedding of a Relation, where he fell desperately in Love with me; he asked my Parents Permission to court me for Marriage. But they knowing my Aversion for him, made him the civilest Excuses they could invent; and he, after this Refusal, never coming to our House, I concluded my self quite out of his Thoughts. 'Is it you then Alphonsus, said I, that have occasioned my bringing hither? Who could have suspected this from a Person of your mature Age? What have I done to provoke you to render me the most miserable Creature in the World? If I once shewed my Aversion to your Love, be assured that no Confinement, Force, or Terror, shall ever constrain me to receive it. But if there remain any Pity in your Heart towards a Person you once pretended to love, I beg of you to compassionate me now; let me be carried to the Place from whence you took me, I will freely forgive you the Insult; but if you will not oblige me so far, let me at least know where I am, and permit me to find the way my self.' These Words were pronounced with so melancholy and moving Complaint, that would have softned any Heart but that of Alphonsus; in his it made no other Impression but to draw from him the following Words with a disdainful Smile: 'That could I think he had me brought hither for no other Reason but to send me back so soon? That his Design was to endeavour to gain my Affection, in this solitary and lonely Place, since woful Experience had taught him, that it was impossible to obtain it in so diverting a Place as the Town, where I was every Day besieged with Troops of Admirers. Nevertheless to ease your Apprehensions concerning the Place where you are, know that the City which you perceive at that Distance is London, and the Place you are in at present is my Country House; which you may from this Moment call your own, if you will consent to marry me: Without this Condescension, depend upon it, there is no Person able to rescue you from my Hands; and that in despite of you, you shall be constrained to pass the Remainder of your Life in this Solitude. I give you seven Days time to consider upon it; if you are wise, you will rather choose to be the Wife of a Gentleman of Fortune that loves you to Desperation, than to waste and unprofitably consume your Youth and Beauty, in this solitary and comfortless Condition.'

I was not so much troubled at these Words, as by the Thoughts of what Measures Alphonsus had taken to carry me away in this manner; the very same Evening, the Method and Time the same agreed upon between poor unhappy Charles and my self. I could not by any Means disentangle the Intrigue; and therefore I desired he would tell me how he came to know of my Design of going away that Evening, and the Hour appointed where he was ready to take me away. 'I could never have had any Hopes of seeing you here, most lovely Lucinda, said he, had not the bewitching Splendor of Gold contributed to my Design: Your Servant Maid, like Danae, had not Power to resist so powerful an Advocate. Know then that ever since I had your Father's Refusal to give you to my Marriage Bed, I have constantly kept a secret Correspondence with this Maid of yours, with a Resolution to run away with you at the first favourable Opportunity. It has cost me, I acknowledge, a great deal of Trouble, Care, and Money; but I think all very well employed, since by that Means I have you in my Power. Last Thursday I received a Letter from your Maid, wherein she promised me to deliver you into my Hands, if I would present her with two hundred Guineas; imagine if I had the Power to delay one single Moment my return to Town; where she acquainted me with your Consultations, and Resolution to fly away with your first Lover, the time appointed and the manner how, in order to avoid the hateful Marriage with Roderick . I observed where the Barge that was hired by your Lover lay, and ordered mine to put in nearer the Stairs; I was the Person you took for the Master, the two others were my trusty Servants, and thus, Madam, you was conveyed to this Place; and I wish to the Gods it was as much to your Satisfaction, as it is to my Happiness and Contentment.' Here amorous Alphonsus broke off his Discourse, and left me in as deep a Consideration, how it was possible that a young Woman in whom I had placed so entire a Confidence, whom I thought I had engaged with so many Favours and repeated Presents, for which I received frequent Asseverations that she would serve me faithfully even to the Expence of her Life, could be capable of betraying me to Misery, in this treacherous manner. From this Discovery I concluded that here lay the too great Credulity I was blamed for in my last Sleep, by the Appearance of my dear Charles; and which he told me would be the Occasion of all my Misfortunes. These Reflections made me so pensive and melancholy, that I had scarcely the use of my Senses: In these Troubles and Convulsions of Grief, Alphonsus left me, and to supply his Place, sent to me the same grave Woman, that gave me my first Reception; she entertained me with such Discourse, and talked to me with so much Reason, that I found a great Abatement in my Grief. I began to talk without shedding of Tears; and the Resolution I had taken rather to die than receive the least Nourishment, till I was delivered from this Confinement, appeared to me senseless and criminal, and I resolved to accept a small Repast in order to re-establish my wasted Spirits and Vigour; so little are we Masters of our selves, and so prone to Inconstancy in our Resolutions.

It would not be long before the seven Days which Alphonsus had allowed me for my Determination were expired; he assiduously visited me, and treated me with the greatest Humanity and Civility imaginable to engage me to condescend to his Desires, but I could not have the Thoughts of cohabiting with a Person so disagreeable to me, who had forced me from the only Happiness I proposed to my self, to constrain me by Violence to sacrifice my Life to his unreasonable Desires. On the other Side, to pass my Life in this solitary Place, without any Hopes of Releasement, to be deprived of all Company and Conversation, was insupportable; and I foresaw that his hard Heart would never relent from his harsh Resolution, unless soothed by my Compliance. I therefore concluded it my wisest Course not to destroy all his Hopes, to abate the Disdain I shewed in my Behaviour to him, and to grant him some small Favours; which tho' no Blemish to my Honour, I very unwillingly condescended to bestow upon an Object so much my Aversion: But Policy and Convenience often compel us to many detestable Actions. At these his Hopes began to revive, he doubted not to accomplish his Design, his Air and Deportment took a new Spirit, his Soul was elated, and ready to expire with Excess of Joy.

Six tedious Months I passed in this disagreeable manner, having no other Conversation but the old House-keeper and my antiquated Lover, with a continual Ding in my Ears of Love and Matrimony; the first in hopes of serving her Master, and the other to obtain his fruitless Desires. It happened that one Day Alphonsus was accompanied hither by one of his Nephews; he was young and not disagreeable, as I perceived them from the Balcony, as they were coming together along the Walk to the House. When they approached within sight, I soon retired, which I knew would be grateful to old Alphonsus, who never desired I should be seen; and threw my self upon the Bed, deploring the Miserableness of my Condition.

I wished a thousand times for the Conversation of the young Spark, in hopes that his tender Years would have moved him to shew more compliance to what I desired. I often thought by what means to bring it about; but every Project seemed vain and to little purpose, and I found I was obliged to leave that to Fortune, which I found no likelihood of accomplishing any other way.

About two Days after this, when Alphonsus was gone to Town about some particular Affairs, Margaret (which was the Name of my Female Attendant) came as usual to make me a Visit, and receive my Commands. I found she had some Tenderness and Compassion for my Circumstances and Person; and if at any time she entertained me with Discourses that were disagreeable to me, it was rather in Obedience to her old Master, than the effect of any ill Nature of her own; and she agreeably surprized me, when she began to talk to me in the following manner: 'The great Displeasure I have, said she, beautiful Lucinda, to see you consume your Youth and Beauty in this melancholy State and Condition, together with a Present of no little Value, has prevailed with me to put a Letter into your Hands; the Person who gave it me assures me it contains not any thing but what consists with Honour, is to your Advantage, and he hopes suitable to your Inclinations, since it will deliver you from these Afflictions. I beg of you to excuse me the Liberty I have taken, and to assure me of not making any Discovery of it to Alphonsus, otherwise I dare not deliver it; and I wish to Heavens what I have undertaken may prove to your Contentment and Relief, since the Afflictions you endure have, I assure you, as sensibly touched my Heart, as if I had suffered them in my own Person.' I was impatient to know the whole Intrigue, and could not wait for the end of her Speech; but immediately promising that all should be kept secret, she put the following Letter into my Hands.

'Having had the Happiness, Madam, to see you in the Balcony, as I was coming in with my Uncle, I could do no less than pity the Unhappiness of your Fate, that confines you here, and subjects you to the unwelcome Courtship of old amorous Alphonsus, whose Temper I perfectly knew before this Bearer informed me of all that passed. I thought it the Duty of every young Cavalier to offer his Assistance to any Lady in such Extremity, and I therefore send to offer you mine. If you dare rely upon the Word of a Man of Honour, believe that if it be to your Inclinations, I will carry you wheresoever you please, without offering the least injurious Attempt, either upon your Honour or Person. If this meets with your Approbation, acquaint me with it by the Bearer, and I will contrive the most secure Means for your Deliverance. I expect your Answer, and remain,

'Yours, &c.'

Never any News could prove more grateful to me: What could be more welcome than a Prospect of the Liberty I had so much desired? But, to my Weakness, I must own there was a farther Charm; for I was wonderfully pleased with the Person of this lovely Youth, and from the first Moment I saw him, he was the only Man I could like next to my first Love; and that I should not think my self unhappy, were I obliged to pass my whole Life with him in honourable Chains. Curiosity made me enquire of Margaret the Quality and Circumstances of this Youth, with many other Things, which the Pleasure I received in talking of him, had put into my Thoughts. She told me his Name was Lewis, the sole Heir to his Parents, who died extremely rich about four or five Years ago; and she gave me such an advantageous Account of his obliging Temper, Humour and Disposition, that I already longed for an Opportunity to see him: And in these Thoughts, so much to his Advantage, I returned him the following Answer.

'I have received your Letter, wherein you assure me of your Zeal and Endeavours to free me from this miserable Confinement. Nothing can be more worthy of a Man of Honour than to succour a helpless Creature of our Sex in distress. If your Intentions are honourable, and suitable to the Opinion I have of your disinterested Generosity in this Affair, let me know the Means you propose, and you will find me inclinable to comply with any Thing consistent with my Reputation; and be assured, next to Providence, I shall acknowledge my self most obliged to my Deliverer.

'Adieu.'

This I delivered to Margaret, who soon carried it as intended. In two Days I received an Answer to it, with the Method proposed to execute our Design. Saturday-night was appointed as the most convenient Time, Alphonsus being accustomed to go then to London, and frequently returned not till the Monday after. Accordingly he went that Day, as usual, accompanied by most of his Servants, after he had locked me up safe in my Chamber, as he used to do, so that my old Companion had no Opportunity to come to me. About the Middle of the Night I waited with great Impatience, in Expectation to see by the little Light the Moon afforded, the Arrival of my Deliverer; when at some Distance I perceived him galloping this way, attended by some Servants on Horse-back: I was extremely over-joyed to find my wish'd-for Liberty so near approaching. Margaret I found was zealous and watchful; she chained up the great Dog which was to guard the House, lest he should interrupt our Flight by his Barking, and immediately let down the Draw-bridge. I had bundled up the Clothes and Linen which remained, ready for our Departure; and tying the Sheets together at two of their Corners, by that Means I let myself gently down from the Balcony; which was not so silently performed but that it waked the Dog, who made a hideous Noise and Barking, which unfortunately waked the Gardiner also, whose Apartment was near the House. He came with great Haste and Fury, armed with a Fork, to encounter the Thieves, as he apprehended; but soon retired, one of the Servants having discharged a Pistol with a Design to frighten him, which had the desired Effect.

We took this Opportunity to quit the House; and, when we were beyond the Gate, Lewis took me up behind him on the same Horse, when Margaret who durst not stay after us, mounted behind the Servant. Thus we rode for the whole Night, taking the most private Ways, the better to avoid being discovered by Alphonsus, who we were sensible would omit no Cost or Diligence in the Search after us. In the Morning we arrived at Stockbridge, having made near sixty Miles, where we took some Repose, very much pleased to find our selves out of Danger of being overtaken. Fear and Dread was banished from my Heart, where the kind Thoughts I had for my Guardian and Preserver began to intrude, and my Eyes could not refrain from expressing the Sense of Gratitude I owed to one who had done me such friendly Offices in their languishing Air. This so inflamed him, that in him appeared a manifest Content and Joy, which discovered the Satisfaction and Happiness he wished for and expected, could he prevail with me to enter into the sacred Bond of being his for ever. He neglected no time, but urged me from that Moment by his obliging Manner and engaging Deportment, to make him a solemn Promise never to contract or marry with any other. My Heart spoke very much in his favour; but I thought I was bound by the Ties of Honour, to tell him what had passed between my first Lover, Charles, and my self, now the Affair was disconcerted, and should Fortune by any of her Caprices hinder us from meeting with each other, no other Person should ever pretend a Right to me, and I should be very willing to gratify him in what he desired. He assured me that the Person I meant was engaged, and he believes married, to another, soon after I fled from my Father, at the Desire of his Relations, in order to break off all future Commerce between us; that it was esteemed my Inconstancy and wandering Inclinations was the Occasion of my flight, which gained his Consent with the more Ease, so that I might be assured to be at full Liberty to dispose of my Person to whom I pleased. Upon these reiterated Assurances I at last consented, and promised to give my self in Marriage to him at the first convenient Opportunity and Place we should meet with. I left him and went to Bed with my old Companion Margaret, who entertained me with a Discourse most agreeable to me, since it was in Praise of my Deliverer, for whom she was a welcome and powerful Advocate, tho' I must own it was needless, he having already gained the entire Possession of my Heart.

The Night thus past, we in the Morning mounted our Horses, as we had done the Day before, and continued our Journey; but we no sooner were got on Salisbury-Plain, when two Persons, with Masks on their Faces, came up towards us with a Design to rob us; the Servant who had poor Margaret behind him, spurred on his Horse, endeavouring to cover his Master and me from the Fire of the Robbers; one of them discharged his Pistol, of which we were afterwards too sensible, when we found the poor old Maid dead upon the Ground by the Shot she had received in her Head. The Servant had at the same time fired, but unsuccessfully, for he missed his aim. This encouraged the Highwayman, who was advancing to attack Lewis, behind whom I sat, trembling and almost dead with fear. Lewis was prepared to receive him, and Champion-like resolved to defend his Prize to the last Extremity. When he approached within the reach of his Pistol, Lewis presented him with two Balls, which passed through his Body; he soon fell from his Horse which galopped away, and the other Robber, seeing the fate of his Companion, scoured off as fast as his Horse could carry him. The Danger was now past, and I began by degrees to recover my Senses, when seeing the old Maid lying motionless on the Ground, I ordered the Servant to dismount, and to give her what Assistance we were able, towards her Recovery: But alas! she was past Relief, and almost cold, the Bullet having passed through her Head, after it had wounded the Servant in the Side. I was extremely concerned at the Loss of my poor Servant, who had been a great Means in my Deliverance: I was besides apprehensive lest this Accident, and the leaving her upon the Place, might bring us into Trouble, and discover the whole Proceeding to Alphonsus; for this Reason we thought it not convenient to remain long here. We took from Margaret the Clothes she had on, which were most remarkable, put on her others of mine less known, and ten Guineas in her Pocket, with a Paper to this effect: 'Into whatever charitable Person's Hands this shall happen to fall, they are desired that this unfortunate Creature may be transported to the Isle of Wight, where she is very well known, and questionless they will meet with Thanks, and a Reward from her Relations, besides this small Gratuity they are desired to accept.' This we thought would amuse them, and render them the less inquisitive; and knowing where to hear of the Person murdered, would expect to have the whole Story from that part; and before there could be returns of the News, we hoped to be in Safety and out of the Noise. This obliged us to be moving on as fast as the Wound my Servant had received would permit us to travel, and with great Fatigue we arrived that Night at Pool in Dorsetshire.

Here it was that I consummated my Marriage with Lewis, forced sooner to it than I intended, by the Inconvenience I suffered by being alone with two Men. A small Present tied up the Parson's Tongue, so that it was performed in private and kept secret, and even the People of the House knew not but we had been long in that Condition.

Here we thought it convenient to remain till the Servant's Wounds were healed. He found he was able to dress himself without the Surgeon in about six Days time; and there being in the Port a Dutch Ship freighted ready to return Home, we procured the Master's Cabin, made our selves Passengers, intending to sail for Rotterdam, where she was bound, and from thence transport our selves either to Florence, Lisbon, or what other Place we should think most suitable and convenient to reside at. The Salt Water and the tossing of the Boat made me fearful and uneasy, and my Hero had scarcely Power enough to recompence the Pain I endured, or prevent me from censuring my self for the Follies I had committed ever since I left my Father's House, and particularly by putting my self in the Power of a Person scarcely known to me, for whose Sake I had run all these hazardous Adventures. He did what was in his Power to comfort me; he gave me all Assurances imaginable of his inviolable Passion for me; his Words, his Behaviour, his Concern, and every Action was an authentick Demonstration of it: And, had not that Goddess, Fortune, been so noted for her Fickleness and Inconstancy, there could be no Reason to doubt of the Continuance of his Love for me till Destiny had made a final Separation between us.

Holland proved very disagreeable to me; the Houses indeed were neat, the Prospect of the Country various and diverting, by an agreeable Mixture of green Meadows, Cattle, Canals, and Ships, to please the Eye; but the Wives were little more than Servants to their Husbands, and the Men so brutish that they were not conversible: Traffick and Gain was their only Aim, and they seemed so fearful of being deprived of the very little they carried about them, that their Hands were continually in their Pockets to secure it. I therefore pressed my Husband to leave this Country, and accordingly he was so good, and condescending to my Desires, as to take the first Opportunity to embark for Leghorn, designing to settle there, or at Florence, where we hoped for more delightful Conversation. At this Place we hired an Apartment, where we lived contented with our Condition. I endeavoured by all my Actions and Deportment to gratify my Husband, and he on his part contrived and sacrificed whatever was in his Power to please me. Our Love increased upon the Birth of a Son which I brought him, and all our Care terminated in giving him the best Education we were able. This undisturbed Happiness continued for the Space of three Years. I brought him in that time no more Children; and whether that, or what other Cause might be the Reason of it, I know not, but I perceived his Concern and Passion for me grew more indifferent every Day, and I began to rail at the Instability of Fortune. He no longer enjoyed the same Satisfaction as formerly in my Conversation, staid Abroad, contrary to his Custom, whole Days; and sometimes I was forced to pass whole Nights without the Sight of him. I grew very much troubled at this Alteration, I complained to him of his Unkindness, and endeavoured to procure a Remedy by my Prayers and Intercessions; but, alas! all my Application was to no Purpose, and, to my Grief, I found his former Passion for me was very much diminished, if not quite expired.

This Misfortune drew on another; for by continuing this manner of living, he had so squandered away the Bills and Riches he brought with him, that I was necessitated to dispose of my Jewels. I pressed him to go or write to his own Country for a Supply; but he took no Care whilst any thing remained. I began to look more narrowly into his Actions, to see if I could discover the Reason of his leading so disorderly a Life; and by great Fatigue, Bribes and Contrivance, found that he courted a French Madam. I was very impatient to see this fresh Object of his Passion, imagining to my self, that it must be wonderfully charming and engaging, since capable of robbing me of the Possession of one who had so often swore to admire me so much beyond the rest of my Sex; that it was impossible for him to live without me, and protested to continue in the same Sentiments to the end of the World. I therefore one Morning left my Husband in Bed, and went to her House, under the Pretence of buying some Lace and French Toys, for she dealt in those Commodities. Whilst she exposed her Ware, I looked with Earnestness to discover the Charms of her Beauty, and I must own it appeared to me very indifferent, tho' I cannot say, but her Air, and Manner of speaking was engaging. I bought but little of her Merchandize, and returning Home, advised my Spouse, that if he was not pleased with my Person, he would at least make Choice of one more agreeable than that which at present possest his Soul; for I have been this Morning, said I, at the dirty French Woman's to buy some Lace, and I find her much more fit for a Pedlar of Trinkets, than a Purchaser of Hearts. He made me no other Answer than that I should be quiet, and not concern my self with other People's Affairs, took his Hat and Sword, went immediately out, and returned not Home in four Days.

You may easily guess how this manner of Behaviour affected me. What Remedy could I possibly apply to it? I could lay the Blame to no other but my own Folly, for abandoning my Father, who had contrived a Marriage for me, and had provided a loving Husband, with whom I might have lived happily all my Life, and enjoyed the Comfort of my Relations; that now I was sufficiently punished for my Undutifulness and Disobedience, and when the Anguish would end I knew not. I begged Forgiveness from the Powers above, that they would pardon the Folly of my green and unexperienced Years, and alter the wandering Inclinations of him with whom I had vowed to live for ever. It was now the Winter Season, and the Weather very cold, which obliged my Husband to call for a Pan of Charcoal to warm his Chamber. This had not been made half an Hour, when, being in the next Room, I heard something fall with a great Noise upon the Ground. I quickly run in to see what was the matter, and found my Husband fallen stupid on the Floor; the nauseous Fumes had deprived him of his Senses, and if no one had come to his Assistance, might probably have ended his Days. My Curiosity made me inquisitive in what he had been employing his time, and looking about, I found a Letter, in a Woman's Hand, upon the Table, with an Answer he was writing to it unfinished when the Fumes overcame him. My Maid was now come to our Assistance, we carried him and laid him with much ado upon the Bed. I bid her apply the Corner of a Towel dipt in Vinegar to his Nostrils to restore his Spirits; and snatching up the Letter I ran with all Haste to my Chamber, where I locked my self in, that I might have an uninterrupted Opportunity to read it. The Woman's Letter was to this Purpose.

'You will hear from the Person who brings you this Letter the Reason that hinders me from seeing you before Sunday. I shall be sensible of a great deal of Displeasure to be deprived of your Company for so long a time, and nothing could make me suffer it, but an indispensable Necessity. I should willingly consent to the Proposition you made me some Days ago, but it is of that Importance that it requires a mature Deliberation, and ought to be thoroughly consulted. It being securest for us, in my Opinion, to leave the Country to avoid the Search your Wife will certainly make after us; my Thoughts have continually been employed about it, ever since our last Conversation, and are by far too many to communicate to you in Writing. Sunday will afford us a more convenient Opportunity to confer concerning this Affair, and fix upon our last Resolution. In the mean time I wish you all Happiness, and conjure you to continue your Affection for one who will faithfully love you as long as she lives.'

Upon reading his Letter, I no longer doubted of the Reason of the Indifference and Dislike my Husband shewed to my Person; and impatient to know what Answer my loving Spouse would return, I read these Words.

'I received your Letter Yesterday with great Satisfaction, I kissed it a thousand Times, and you may be assured that nothing could be more welcome to me than the Assurances you give me of your Fidelity and Constancy: The Interest you have in my Heart, easily persuades me to what I most desire and covet. I can scarcely, my dear Cloe, survive so long an Absence as Sunday, the Thoughts of our future Happiness may the better enable me to endure it; and since you approve of that as the most convenient time, I shall expect it with the greatest Impatience. You need not question an entire Disposition to so agreeable a Command: The Fear and Apprehensions you have of my Wife are needless; let nothing discompose you upon that Score; for before our Departure I will sufficiently secure all Occasions of Fear from that Side, I will acquaint you with the Means when next I have the Happiness to see you. I have many considerable Relations in France —'

Thus far had my hopeful Husband continued his Letter, when the Fumes of the Charcoal threw him into a Swoon, in which he might perhaps have expired, had not I seasonably come with my Assistance. When I was sensible of his Perfidiousness, I almost repented my Endeavours to recover the unfaithful Wretch, to live in the Arms of another: I was to blame not to let him die in that disloyal Action, a fit Punishment for so detestable a Crime. I put the Letters in my Pocket ready to produce upon Occasion, but this Discovery had so overwhelmed me with Trouble and Grief, that the Reflections threw me into a fainting Fit.

I know not what happened to me whilst I continued in this Condition, but when I came to my self I found I was upon the Bed; I opened my Eyes bathed in Tears, and perceived at my Bed's Foot my Husband, who seemed to express tender Shews of Trouble and Concern for me: But whether it was produced from my Discovery of his Infidelity, the Tenderness he had for me, or the counterfeit Hypocrisy so usual to his Sex, I could not determine.

'Oh perfidious Traytor, cried I, is this the Reward of all the Affection I have shewed you since our first Acquaintance and mutual Protestations? What is become of all those Charms you so valued heretofore? Alas! they have lost all their Force, and are become incapable of driving the Idea of the least deserving, of one whom all but you would despise out of your Heart. Inconstancy has the Dominion of it, and Heaven knows if I am the first Person you have so treacherously betrayed. To have left me in the Power of your Uncle, had been more humane and kind, than to burden me thus with miserable Misfortunes, impossible for me to bear. But if my Tears have not Power to move you, think on your Son, your beloved Son, scarce three Years old; and let that incline your Heart to Pity. Who will be a Father to him when you are gone? How can you leave your own Blood, the Resemblance of your self, thus exposed to the Treatment of the savage World? I might have reasonably expected a better Usage from you, but I have gained by it, at least this dear bought Experience; she, who confides in the Promises and Oaths of faithless Man, is sure to be deceived and ruined. Neither can I forbear pitying my worthless Rival Cloe, who will doubtless soon be left and abandoned by you; what can she expect from you that have the cruel Heart to leave a Child, and a tender Wife who trusted to your broken Oaths, in such a barbarous Manner? But know, perfidious Wretch, your ill Usage, your treacherous Dealings, shall not go unrevenged; and by all the Gods I swear that you and your dirty Concubine shall soon be sensible of it: Since the two Letters I have under both your Hands will be a sufficient Testimony of your Behaviour and Infidelity.'

When I had uttered these Words, I was putting my Hand into my Pocket to produce the Letters, but found them not there; which made me conclude as it proved, that my Spouse had taken them from me. 'Think not, continued I, that your taking these Letters from me shall hinder my Revenge, for either Cloe or I must die; I will never suffer you to be in the Arms of any other, and tho' you fled with her to the farthest Corner of the World, my Injuries would carry me thither, and no Distance be able to secure you from my Revenge, till I had broke the criminal Love between you.' These Complaints were attended with such Fury and Passion, that pitying in some measure my great Affliction, and fearing the Effects of it, he began to sooth me; he embraced me, kissed me with a Fervency, at least well dissembled, begged my Pardon with the greatest Submission, and vowed to change his way of living, forsake all Conversation that should give me any Uneasiness, and inviolably keep that Faith he had so often vowed to me, and as he acknowledged, I so well deserved. 'I must own, my dear Lucinda, said he, that I could be no less than perfectly blind and stupid when I preferred Cloe's Beauty to yours; neither was there any thing in her Manner and Behaviour capable of engaging any one in his Senses, who had the Possession of you. I can attribute it to no other Cause but Witchcraft, nothing less could make me guilty of so much Folly, so unaccountable an Action, as ungenerously to forsake you for so undeserving a Creature: But I thank the Powers above for discovering our intended Flight, the Thoughts of it amaze me; but forgive me, my dear, my charming Lucinda; I am convinced of my Weakness, dry up those afflicting Tears, forget what is passed, receive me into those welcome Arms, I shall know for the future how to esteem that Happiness; and be assured that for the time to come you shall have no Reason to complain of any of my Actions.'

Who of all our tender Sex could be proof against such Promises, and insinuating Expressions? My Heart had not Power to resist, and persuaded that what he spoke came from the Sincerity of his Heart, I quickly consented to a Reconciliation I so much desired; and my Eyes, long accustomed to Tears of Grief, could scarce now forbear paying that Tribute to Joy. I embraced him, gave him a thousand Kisses, swore an utter Oblivion of all the Injuries he had done me; whilst he reiterated all his Protestations and Vows of a sincere Repentance, and an unmolested Possession of his Heart to the end of the World. Excess of Joy appeared reciprocally in all our Airs and Actions, and we seemed to enter into a new State of Happiness more transcendent than what we enjoyed at our first Union. But alas! it is not our Lot to have a long and entire Felicity in this World! I too soon discovered by his Indifference that the Distemper was not absolutely cured, this increased my Suspicions and Jealousies; I contrived to have him dog'd, and found that the faithless Creature often went to Cloe's, notwithstanding the Promises he made me to the contrary.

I was unwilling to give Faith to my Informer, without being a Witness of it my self; I therefore put on a Disguise that I might not be known, and went to the Door of Cloe's House: It was in the Month of February, the Weather rigorously cold, I had waited there two Hours in expectation of him; the Severity of the Weather made me tremble like an Aspin-Leaf, when Lewis, who came, seeing me in that Condition, taking me for a poor Woman in want, gave me Alms, and bid me go Home and buy some Wood to warm me; I returned him Thanks, the shaking of my Teeth with Cold altering my Voice assisted my Disguise; I found there was too much Truth in what I had been informed, and returned Home very uneasy,

I passed two Months without taking notice to my Spouse of what I had discovered; when one Day, after he was gone out, as I suppose, to see his Mistress, an elderly Woman, decently and gravely dressed, came to ask for me; I met her in the first Apartment, but she desired to speak with me in private: I carried her up into my Chamber, where, after we had discoursed of several Subjects, she expressed her self in this Manner. 'Madam, I hope you will not take it amiss, that at the Desire and Intreaties of a Gentleman, I have presumed to wait upon you; the poor Condition you see me in, may serve for an Excuse, being obliged to do any thing almost for a Subsistence and Livelihood in an honest way: I am persuaded that the Gentleman is too honourable to require any thing of you but what Decency and good Breeding allows' —I had not Patience to hear more, and desired she would tell me quickly what she had to say to me; at this, she took a Billet out of her Pocket, and presented it to me, the Contents were to this Purpose.

'Doubtless, Madam, you will think it strange that one who never had the Happiness of your Acquaintance, should presume to send you a Letter; but if you could see to the Bottom of my Heart, you would soon know the indispensable Necessity. I have often endeavoured to check my growing Passion, but your Charms are too powerful, and I find Resistance ineffectual: I know with what Caution we are obliged to act, where a Lady's Honour is concerned, I desire not any thing that may be injurious to that. All that I beg is, that you will permit me to love you, and to acknowledge my self, Madam,

'Your most Humble Servant,
Don Antonio di Castello'.

When I had read the Letter, I enquired of the Woman who this Don Antonio was; she told me a Spanish Gentleman that had long resided at this Court, of great Quality and Fortune; that he had always lived with Grandeur, and was accounted a generous Person, and of untainted Honour and Reputation; described his Person, Shape and Habit. I told her she might if she pleased carry him back his Letter, and desire him not to give himself any farther Trouble of this kind, since it would be to no purpose; and I should be obliged to acquaint my Husband, to put a Stop to his Importunity; that I forgave him this Fault, because it was the first, but that I could not answer for the Event, should he continue to trouble me again. She begged of me not to return the Letter, and excused her self from receiving it; that if I would not be so obliging to answer it, she implored me not to offer him the Affront to send it back, believing by his Expressions that he aimed at no more than what was within the Bounds of Honour to grant, and what should not in the least violate the Duty I owed my Husband. In fine, she urged so many Reasons, and play'd her Part so well, that not without Reluctancy I retained the Letter.

I saw the next Day a Gentleman pass by my Balcony, followed by two Servants; he was dress'd after the same manner she had before described, and I doubted not but it was Don Antonio, especially when I saw him make a low Obeysance. My Heart trembled at this Adventure, I knew nothing of the manner of Courtship the Spanish Dons used to pay to the married Ladies. I observed him attentively, and tho' I found no Disposition in me to love him, I must own his Person was not ungrateful to me; he seemed to be about thirty, and his Habit and Equipage shewed him to be of no mean Rank. Don Antonio continued thus to pass by my Balcony every Day, for at least a Fortnight, without making any other Advances to gain my Love. This time expired, the Woman who brought me the first Letter, came with a second, accompanied with a Present of great Value; which was a large Cupid of Gold, drawing his Bow set with Diamonds, the String was a String of Pearls, and the sparkling Eyes of Cupid were represented by two large Brilliants. I must confess I was perfectly dazzled with the Splendor of this rich Present; but I durst not accept it, lest it should come to my Husband's knowledge, and occasion him to suspect my Honesty. Don Antonio in his Letter desired an Opportunity to speak with me, but in so humble and obliging a manner, that I could not hate a Person who professed to love me, and gave me such convincing Proofs of his Passion.

I told the old Madam the Reasons that forbid me to accept his Presents, that I was extremely concerned that Don Antonio should take such Pains and Trouble to accomplish what my Honour would never permit me to grant; that I advised him to place his Affections upon some Object more deserving of a Person of his Merits and Endowments: And I desired he would send me no more Letters or Presents, lest in time the Consequence might be fatal to me if not to us both.

With this Answer she returned very much concerned that I would not send one more agreeable, or accept of the Cavalier's Present. For six Months after this, the Don frequently sent me Letters, begging for an Opportunity to speak with me. I was apprehensive lest they should be discovered, and prove my Ruin. I returned him no Answer to any, but must acknowledge that his Letters did not displease me. My Husband continued his lewd way of living, which abated my Inclinations for him, and was the Reason I discovered not to him Don Antonio's Courtship. He was so bewitched to Cloe, that it took up all his Thoughts and Time; and if an Accident had not prevented him, I doubt not he would have left me, and fled away with her to France, according to the before concerted Design.

Fate prevented his treacherous Intentions, for one Morning as I was revolving upon my unhappy Condition, he was brought Home by two Men followed by a confused Mob. I soon knew the Occasion, he was not able to sustain himself, so dispirited and weak, that his Legs were unable to support him; and his Face so besmeared and covered with Blood, that I could scarce know him: I caused him to be immediately put into Bed, and sent for the ablest Surgeons; his Wounds were searched, and judged incurable, and Quiet and Rest was the only Hopes remained for his Recovery. No sooner were the Surgeons gone out of the House, but the Ministers of Justice came in, to enquire into the Affair, and the Occasion of it. My Husband was obliged to speak, and in this weak Condition acquainted them that he had passed the last Night at a Gentlewoman's House called Cloe, with whom he had kept a Correspondence for some time, notwithstanding the Exhortations and Desires of his Wife to the contrary; that he had unfortunately left the Key in his Chamber Door, and was in the Morning in a sound Sleep, when he found himself stabbed as he lay in Bed; that at this he awakened and knew that it was her Brother who gave him this Treatment for the Dishonour he had done to the Family; that he had often waited for an Opportunity, but could never meet with any till this unhappy Minute. I was getting out of Bed, said he, when I received another Wound, and tho' I took my Sword to defend my self from farther Attempts, the Wounds and Loss of Blood had made me unable to stand, and I fell helpless upon the Floor. He after this gave me several fresh Wounds, and fled out of the House. The Trouble of uttering this had so abated the small Spirits and Force remaining, that Lewis fainted away; so that for some time we thought him dead. The Ministers of Justice left the House, in order to look after the Criminal, but they could never discover what was become either of the Sister, or the insatiable Revenger. He grew weaker every Day, no Consultation or Advice for his Recovery was neglected; all proved unsuccessful, and after he had prepared himself for Death, at the end of five Days he expired, enjoying his Senses to the last, repenting of his ungrateful Usage to me, and begging my Forgiveness to the last Moment.

His last Behaviour to me had made such Impression, that I grieved very much for his Misfortune; I wished I had accompanied him in his Death, and heartily forgave him all the Injuries he had done me. But, as ill Fortune seldom comes alone, this was succeeded by another more afflicting, which was the Loss of my Son, who soon followed his Father. Being thus deprived of all my Comfort, the little Money remained almost wasted, and nothing but a few Jewels left to support me, my Condition was reduced to that Extremity, that it would have been impossible for me to bear, had not Fortune provided for my Relief. When Don Antonio had heard of my Husband's Death, he not only continued, but renewed his Applications with greater Fervency: It is not difficult to believe that I had now no Reason to be displeased at his Courtship, the frequent Presents he made me, being neither unnecessary, or unacceptable in my present Circumstances. I nevertheless thought it indecent to receive Addresses from any other, so soon after my Husband's Expiration; but the fervent Solicitations, and fervent Intercession he made to me prevailed so far, that I promised to see him in my House at a Time I assigned. Don Antonio overjoyed came accordingly to visit me the Evening appointed. His Satisfaction was so great, that it scarcely left him the Power to speak, and he treated me with all the Respect imaginable, suitable to the Opinion and Character I had of him. After the first Compliments, our Conversation turned upon variety of Subjects, and was so agreeable to us both, that it continued to Midnight before we parted. His Discourses appeared to me so full of Wit and good Sense, and his Behaviour so generous and engaging, that my Heart began to have no little Affection for him. These Conversations were kept secret for two Months, to avoid the Censure of the World, for receiving Propositions of Marriage so soon after the Loss of my Husband. When this time was expired, my new Lover made earnest Solicitations to me, to accompany him into Spain, his own Country; that our Marriage should be solemnized when we were gone from this Place about a Day's Journey, where we were not known: And in Confirmation of this Promise, he presented me with a Diamond of great Price, and under the Writing to this effect, he subscribed his Name writ in his own Blood. I could not refuse my Consent, which made him very industrious to provide with Speed every thing necessary for our Voyage. He acquainted me that the Spaniards were generally so jealous of their Wives, that any Gentleman who should allow his Consort the Freedom they permit in other Countries, or give them even the Opportunity to speak with any other Person, would be despised for their Folly and loose Oeconomy; and therefore that I might not be punished with this required Reservedness, or he censured for his Unwariness, or loose Conduct, he desired I would accompany him in this Voyage dressed in Men's Clothes; that being obliged to go by Sea, this would yet be the more requisite. He therefore provided for me a Man's Habit, rich and fashionable, with all things suitable. The Garb, I fancy, had inspired me with manly Resolutions; I had no timorous Thoughts, was resolved at least to counterfeit the young Hero, and applied my self diligently to attain their Airs. My Knees at first knocked too close together, and my Gate was too mincing; but Custom made me step more boldly, and in a little time I could strut and cock my Hat as well as the best, and force out a necessary Oath to adorn my Discourse. Thus equipped, I embarked with my Spouse. I passed for a Relation of Don Antonio, and there was no one in the Ship who suspected my being a Cavalier. When the Winds had swelled our Sails, and our Vessel began to scud away, to pass the time more agreeably, I desired Don Antonio to divert us with some Tale of Love, of which I knew him to be well stored, and able to deliver it to us to the greatest Advantage: The Captain of the Vessel, and the Company made him the same request, and he condescended to entertain us in the following manner.

Conjugal Duty Rewarded ; or, The RAKE Reformed.

In Saragosa, a famous City in Spain, had long inhabited the antient Family of the Alvarez, the most esteemed both for their Worth and large Possessions, of any in the Kingdom of Arragon. Of this Line was Don Sebastian, one of the most affable and most accomplished young Gentlemen in that Country. He, like the rest of the young Noblemen, spent his Time in courting variety of young Ladies; no particular Beauty having yet the Influence to fix his inconstant Heart, he made an equal Application to all. Gallantry was his only Diversion, and the Nights were passed in Serenades, scouring about in Masks and Disguises, according to the Custom of the Place.

In the midst of this Career he happened to see a young Gentlewoman, whose Beauty and Behaviour seemed to him extraordinary. He was so charmed with her Appearance, that he fell desperately in love with her. He followed her Home to her House; and taking particular Notice of it, that he might not forget the Place, he, like other Lovers, omitted not to pass often every Day by her Window, in hopes of the Happiness to see the Object that had engaged all his Thoughts. The Day that afforded him not this Opportunity was esteemed the most unlucky, but when he was so fortunate to have a Sight of her, if she cast but one Look upon him which he always interpreted to his own Advantage, he thought himself the happiest Creature imaginable. After he had passed some time in these fashionable Vanities, finding his Passion still increasing, he began to enquire after the Condition of the young Lady, and understood that her Father, who had been a Goldsmith, was dead for some Years; that she had a Mother living there, with two Brothers who were of the same Trade; that she had the Reputation of being very virtuous, was much esteemed, of no despicable Fortune, and by many courted for Marriage.

Don Sebastian was more enflamed at this good Character. To obtain the Possession of her he made all his Endeavours: He addressed and complimented her with Letters, tempted her with the richest Presents, and omitted not any thing that might conduce to effect his Design. The Lady was proof against all these Temptations; and at the end of this Course, which he continued for four Months, he found himself unable, with all his Stratagems, to take this impregnable Fortress. He resolved therefore to make his Attack after another manner in hopes of better Success, and concluded to try if addressing to her in a civil manner, and speaking to her himself, might be more powerful towards the softening her obdurate Heart. He took the first Opportunity, when seeing Panthea at the Door; 'Madam, says he, in the most humble and respectful manner, I hope you will pardon me if I take this favourable Moment, to assure you that the Passion I have professed for you in my Letters in real and sincere; that I have loved you with the greatest Violence ever since the first Sight; that you are the continual Object of my Thoughts, and I commit no Action, wherein you have not a Concern. Without you it is impossible for me to live; it is you that make my Destiny, and as you command I am either to be happy or miserable. These are Affairs too important to be neglected, and I hope may prevail with you as an Excuse for my taking this Method to acquaint you with my Condition. I hope you will be more favourable to this Declaration, than you have been to the Letters I sent you, and not condemn a Person to be the most miserable of Mankind for loving you at this extravagant rate.' His Actions were so conformable to his Expressions, and accompanied with so many Sighs, uttered in so agreeable a Style, that no one who heard him could doubt of the Sincerity of his Intentions. 'We know, Don Sebastian, said Panthea, that you are perfectly Master of the Art of Persuading; your Person, as well as your Behaviour, are framed for it, and many of our Sex have no doubt been sensible of it to their Cost. If Report be to be credited (you will excuse me the Freedom) after the rambling Life you are reported to have led, they must be stupid who take this Discourse of your's for any other than Jest and Raillery; neither think it Pride or Disdain that hindered me from answering your Letters, the Compliments in them were much beyond what I deserved. I must acknowledge the Vanity of supposing myself beloved, was not displeasing to me. What we desire, we are too subject to believe. My Weakness was not yet so great, as to condescend to return you an Answer to your Letters. To have given Encouragement to a Passion I had no farther Proof of, would have been injurious to the Honour and Decency of our Sex, well knowing how little your Cavaliers value an easy Conquest: I therefore summoned all my Forces to resist these powerful Attempts; and, Thanks to my Stars, I still possess, and ever shall, Fortitude and Prudence sufficient to guard me from these Temptations, tho' seconded by your Presence, where you confirm those Protestations and tender Expressions you have so often made use of in my favour. But, to shew you that my Heart is not capable of Ingratitude, upon Condition that what you require is not beyond the Bounds of Honour, I give you leave to love, and will return it with a virtuous and honest Friendship: Yet be certain, that whenever you move in the least beyond these Limits, you shall never see me more; and, notwithstanding the Difference of our Qualities, be despised as an Invader of my Honour, and an Enemy that only aims at ruining my Reputation and good Name.' At these Words Panthea's Mother, who had overheard this Discourse, advanced: 'Sir, said she, the Folly of my Daughter, and the Manner of expressing her innocent Thoughts, not accustomed to entertain Persons of your Rank and Quality, must appear to you ridiculous.' 'On the contrary, Madam, cried he, when I came here first I thought not to have staid a Moment, but her Discourse has such a Mixture of Wit and good Sense, uttered in so obliging a Manner, that it is I think impossible for me to go: Her Expressions are fresh Chains, and her Words gather new Charms and Sweetness, as they come out of her pretty Mouth. Virtue and Beauty are not always linked to Quality: Your pretty Daughter possesses both, and tho' not of so high Degree, of so exalted Birth, a Cavalier of the highest Rank may be proud of her Conversation, when adorned with two such valuable Jewels.'

After much Discourse of this Kind Don Sebastian took his Leave for this Time He continued his Visits for fourteen or fifteen Days, in Hopes of accomplishing his Intentions; and tho' he was well born, rich, not unacceptable to the Generality of the Ladies, and, as he thought, not hated by Panthea, finding that he laboured in vain, that all his Endeavours were to no Purpose, that he sighed without any Hopes of the Return he expected to extinguish his Flames, which were continually encreasing, he resolved to try another Course, which was to send the Mother six thousand Crowns, with a farther Promise to give her Daughter a considerable Portion when she should think fit to marry, in Case she would comply and gratify his passionate Desires. The Mother and the Daughter were both incensed at this Affront: They abhorred the being thought so vile and mercenary as to part with that Honour for a little dirty Dross, which had been so carefully preserved; they therefore returned his Letter and Present in the greatest Disdain, and bid the Messenger tell him, that he might keep his Money to ensnare some other heedless Ladies, but that she was too sensible of the Value of Honour and Virtue to be taken in such weak Toils.

This Repulse but the more enflamed Don Sebastian: He knew not what to do; to live without her was impossible: He resolved to have her at any Rate, and therefore, although there was a great Difference between the Riches and the Quality of the Families, yet her Beauty, her Honour, and her Virtue, had raised her so much above the low Stock from whence she proceeded, that he flattered himself she would be esteemed a Match not disequal or disesteemed by the most elevated Rank; he therefore concluded to marry her, in case she would give her Consent, and to this End making her a Visit, 'Panthea, said he, I know not if you will forgive me the Attempts I have made upon your Honour; it is not my least Joy that I have found you able to resist my Solicitations: Your Virtue, joined with the Charms of your Beauty, have gained, my lovely Panthea, the Possession of my Soul; they are a sufficient Portion for any one, and much more to be esteemed, than Quality and Riches where they are not. I therefore come to make you all the Reparation in my Power, to shew my Sincerity, and confirm you in the Opinion of the inviolable Passion I have for you, by offering you my Fortune and Person, by becoming your Husband. If you will consent to it, you shall find me the most faithful and the most loving that Nature ever produced.' These Words were very pleasing to Panthea : 'I know not, Sir, says she, whether this is a new Stratagem to inveigle me: I am sensible of the Difference of our Conditions, and your Condescension in it may well countenance my Suspicions; but if what you say is really your Intention, I shall receive the Honour you will do me with all Acknowledgments of Gratitude, and endeavour to convince you by my Behaviour that a Person may be happy, tho' not married to one of an equal Rank and Quality.'

In Confirmation of his Promise, Don Sebastian presented her with a Diamond Ring, which, after two or three Kisses, he put upon her Finger, desiring her that the Affair might be kept secret till he had acquainted his Relations with it: In the mean time she might advertise her Mother and Brothers of his Design, and that he would himself procure a Priest to celebrate their Marriage. The Ceremony was performed the next Morning, in the Presence of her Mother, the two Brothers, a Servant Maid of theirs, and a trusty Valet who belonged to Don Sebastian. The whole Day was spent in Feasting, Merriment, and Joy, at Panthea's Marriage; the Bridegroom notwithstanding thought it an Age before the wished for Evening, the happy Season wherein he was to reap those longed for Joys he had with such indefatigable Labour so often attempted, came. Big with Expectation he hastes to Bed, rifles the bridal Treasure, and with repeated Pangs often renews the amorous Chase, resolved to make a full Repast of what he had so long desired: Towards the Morning the Fury of his Appetite abated, he grew more temperate, and began to think of his Interest. My dear Panthea, said he, I think my self the happiest Creature in the World, and prefer my Panthea before all the Treasure of the Universe; but you know, my Dear, that we must not quite neglect the Management of our Affairs, which required that this Marriage should be kept a Secret for some time, till all was settled to my Intentions: That till then I shall be obliged to lye every Night at Home: That it was more his Unhappiness, he assured her, than it could be her's, and desired her not to take it amiss, since it was for both their Advantages; that he would visit her every Day, and, when he had not the Satisfaction to be with her, she should be the Object of his Thoughts and Wishes; that he had provided for her a Bill of a thousand Crowns to supply her present Occasions, and would take Care to furnish her from Time to Time with whatever she wanted. She told him the Absence of what she so much esteemed must needs be very grievous to her; that her only Comfort would be to think it contrary to his Desires, and the Effect of his Prudence only, often so great an Enemy to Love; that she hoped she had the sole Possession of his Heart, and in that View was very willing to submit to any thing he should think fit to command; that she should every Day expect him with Impatience, and desired him to omit no Opportunity that would permit him to come with convenience to her welcome Arms. In this amorous State they parted, and he frequently renewed his Visits with the same Ardour and Inclination.

These frequent Visits were taken Notice of by the Neighbours, who began to censure the young Lady's Conduct and Deportment, and reflected upon the Mother and the Brothers for suffering so scandalous a Correspondence, to the Prejudice of their Sister. They lamented that a young Person, who had so carefully preserved her Reputation and Character untainted to the Age of Twenty, and who was so esteemed for her Virtue and Behaviour, should have the Weakness and Unhappiness to be enticed into a dishonest Conversation. Panthea was not ignorant of these Reports; but knowing her own Innocence, and believing she should soon have an Opportunity to clear her Reputation by the Discovery of her Marriage, she took but little Notice of it. She nevertheless often desired her Spouse to take her Home with him, to avoid the Scandal and Calumny which the Neighbours cast upon her; but he gave her such soothing Answers, that she consented rather to bear the Blame and Censure of the whole World, than give him the least Occasion for Displeasure; resolved to sacrifice all her Actions to his Contentment and Satisfaction.

The Passions that engage Mankind, especially if violent, seldom continue long. It was thus with Don Sebastian, the Ardency of his Love began to lessen, he often looked upon his Panthea, and found not in her those bewitching Charms he used to think her Mistress of; this made him incline to Repentance for his unwary Marriage. In his cooler Reflections he thought the Inequality of the Match injurious to the Honour of his Family, that it would be to his Prejudice to have it discovered; and therefore abstained from visiting her so frequently, and only at those Times when his inordinate Desires prompted him to it. Thus the poor Panthea was forsaken, he forgot his often repeated Vows and Promises, the Duties of a married State, and fell into his old Course of living. Amongst the Variety of Ladies he courted the Daughter of Seignior Mendoza, one of the most antient Families in Arragon, fell desperately in love with him; they being both rich, and of equal Quality, the Relations soon agreed, and the Marriage was soon solemnized with great Pomp and Splendor. The Consummation being past, Don Sebastian went Home with his Wife to her Father's House; where, whilst the Honey-moon lasted, like other Husbands, he passed his time in Content and Satisfaction: But it being impossible that this News could be long kept from the Knowledge of Panthea and her Relations, some busy Body or other soon acquainted them with this dismal News; no Grief could be more excessive than that which they received at these unhappy Tidings; how to proceed they knew not, the Priest that solemnized the Marriage, that tied the fatal Knot, was unknown to them, both as to Person and Habitation. To commence a Process against two such wealthy and powerful Families, afforded a very uncertain Promise of Success, tho' a certain and inconceivable Expence attended it: That it would be the most prudent way to be quiet for some time, the better to consult what Means was to be taken, the most likely to prevail, and remedy their sad Condition. This was the Resolution of the Relations: Panthea's Pain and Lamentation was more piercing. 'Oh poor unhappy Panthea, said she, how miserable art thou grown, thus basely used by thy faithless, thy once dear Sebastian, tied by the sacred Bonds of Marriage to be only thine: But alas! what Links, what Chains, have Strength enough to bind insinuating, false, and faithless Man! Off from my Head, ye treacherous Locks: These Curls helped to contrive my Ruin, to ensnare and charm the Man that has undone me; the Poison is turned upon my self, and I alone the Sufferer, down on the Ground, and twist your selves into a fatal Line, to end the wretched Life of poor Panthea . If there be a Line, a single Feature, in this once admired Face, it is a Traytor, a Conspirator, and has helped me to the Wretch that has undone me; with these Nails I will dig, and bury them in the bloody Furrows of my Cheeks, as deep as the Treachery of my faithless Husband.' She was thus going on, her Hair tore off from her Head, her Clothes in pieces on the Ground, and her bleeding Face seamed with Scratches; when the Mother and the Brothers forced into her Chamber, to give her all the Comfort they were able. This melancholy Sight almost distracted them, they were before too sensibly touched at the Disgrace, but this was still more pointed; and what could be more afflicting than to see the only Comfort they enjoyed, thus overwhelmed with Grief? Oh my dear Child, said she, cease to complain, we own you have Reason, but it is not in our Power to conduct our Fates, we must submit to what the Gods decree, and fruitless are our Mournings and Complaints; this Excess of Grief is baneful to your Health, destructive to the fair Form that Nature gave you, and breaks into those solid Bounds of Prudence you have hitherto maintained. Is it so great a Miracle to find a faithless Man? Alas! my Child, there are Millions in your Case; you are not single in this Misfortune, the very Person who thinks her self so happy in the Possession of him has more Occasion to complain, he has cheated and deluded her, made her a Prostitute, and robbed her of her Honour by a Trick; but yours, my dear Panthea, is safe and spotless, delivered by due Form of Law into the Hands of him your first Possessor, and consecrated by a holy Priest: Let the malicious World say as they please, this we all know, thy Mother, Brothers, and thy tender Conscience can testify the Fact, and the sole Right to him is only yours. A time will come I hope, my Dear, when we shall be able to justify your Cause in spite of all his Grandeur, bring him repenting to your Arms, and ask your Pardon with a true Contrition; but if our Right is to be sway'd by Greatness, there are those in Spain that for a small Reward will do us Justice, and revenge our Wrongs. 'Oh pray torment me not, Panthea cried, you add new Fuel to my Grief, Sebastian is the vilest Wretch of all Mankind, base and unworthy of a kind Thought; but yet he is my Husband: I will bear my Wrongs with conjugal Obedience, preserve my Innocence with Patience, keep my sacred Vows, and love the Villain to the last. Leave me to grieve my hapless Fate alone, I am too miserable for Conversation, you but disturb me; excuse me, my dear Mother, for my Afflictions make me uncapable of knowing what I do or say.' Upon this, they thought it proper to leave her, ordering the Maid who was present at the Marriage, to stay near at hand, and to watch her carefully, lest she should offer some Violence to her self. After she had lamented in this manner for some time, she began to be more appeased, and sometimes would enter into a Conversation with her Maid; the Subject was always the Loss she had in one whom she loved so tenderly, endeavouring still to say something in his Excuse, and would have willingly persuaded her self that it was the Force of his Relations, rather than his own Inclinations, that had occasioned this ill Treatment. The Servant was of another Opinion, she thought it was owing to his wandring Humour and ill Morals; that she could never forget such an Injury, and were it her Case, whatever might be the Event, no less than the Sacrifice of his Life could satisfy her Revenge.

These Discourses were often related to the Mother, who was desirous to know how her Daughter proceeded in her Resentments. She was surprized at, and admired her forgiving Temper, wondring how one proceeding from Spanish Parents could be endued with such Mildness and Goodness: She thought this was to be valued in itself; but in the mean time, how should the Honour of the House be salved? If whole Families have been murdered for a single Look, or an unwary Action, what would they think of them who had been so notoriously and publickly affronted, without making a suitable Return? This made it necessary to clear their Reputation to the World, and should she want one to revenge the Injuries of the Family, she would be the fatal Instrument her self rather than suffer this Stain to taint and blot their Fame. When she saw her Daughter, she used to entertain her with such Discourse, which was ungrateful to her Temper; and this Dispute betwixt Forgiveness and Revenge commonly ended in a little Quarrel. The Brothers and the Servant were of the same Inclination with the Mother; so that there was four against one in this Combat. This tender Creature was so constantly assaulted every Day in this kind of Argument, that she was obliged at last, for her Quiet, to give her seeming Consent towards the Prosecution of their bloody Design. They had agreed, to make their Revenge more notorious, that Panthea, who had been once the Mistress of his Heart, should make use of those Engagements that used to allure him to his Happiness, to invite him to his fatal End; and to this Purpose they desired that she would write a kind Letter to him, assuring him of her Forgiveness of what was past, and that if he would but make her sometimes so happy to afford her his Company, it would give her a Satisfaction, without which she was not able to live: That if he came according to this Invitation, there should be two Bravoes ready to receive him at the End of the Street, and give him an Entertainment suitable to his Deserts. This treacherous Behaviour appeared very detestable to the honourable Panthea, she would rather have lost her Life than have consented to it: But reflecting that their cruel Disposition would by some means or other revenge themselves upon this Injurer, at a Time when perhaps she knew nothing of it, she entred into their Measures, and gave her seeming Condescension in the following Lines.

'The cruel Injuries you have lately done me, my dear Sebastian, are not sufficient to blot the Memory of you out of my tender Heart. The Reflection of former Joys revive in my Soul, and I ardently wish for their Continuance: I heartily forgive you, upon the agreeable Condition that you see me often; you are too great a Treasure to be possest by one alone, and it is a Folly to think to keep that to one self, which is the Blessing of the whole Sex. Fail not to come to me on Tuesday in the Dusk of the Evening, I can live no longer without you, the Maid shall be ready as usual to let you in at the back Door, where you shall find a Welcome that will convince you how entirely you possess the Heart and Soul of

'Your Panthea.'

This Letter was approved, she carried it in to seal, and enclosing in it another still more kind, it was delivered into the Maid's Hand; who had Orders to give it with all Privacy to Don Sebastian at his own House. In the mean time the Bravoes were hired to be in readiness, in case the Stratagem should take, to assault and murder the Don as he approached the Door. Solemn Promises and Engagements had past, and every Thing was provided to execute the Attempt. The Maid knocked at the Don's Door, which was opened by a Footman, who enquired her Business; she told him she must speak with his Master, for it was on so important an Affair, that she could not deliver her Message to any but himself. He called his Master, and the Maid put the Letter into his Hand; he opened it, and read it over and over. Guilt and Joy often altered his Countenance whilst he read, but the latter seemed to have the Transcendency; and he told the Maid that her Mistress must excuse him, if he returned not an Answer in Writing; he had now no convenient Opportunity, but he would not fail to come and visit her at the Time she had assigned, and with a great deal of Joy pay all the Arrears of Love he was in debt to her. He had often wished to renew this Intrigue, the Person of Panthea appeared charming after this Respite; and he (being a Lover of Variety) wanted another Amusement to pass his Time the more agreeably. As he was returning into his House, he drew forth the Letter to have the Pleasure of reading it again; and found his Surprize had made him forget to read the inclosed, which dashed his wanton Hopes, and was to the following Effect.

'I was obliged to write the Letter that inclosed this, upon the Command of my Relations; who contrived it to revenge the Injuries you have done us. My Heart is not so warm to invite you to my despised Embraces, nor my Temper so cruel to tempt you to this treacherous Snare. As you value your Life, forbear to come, for near the House will be placed two hired Villains to dispatch you upon your Approach. Thus I take care to save that Life which has destroyed mine; but if it be not Love, I think it at least the Duty of

'Your faithful, tho' abused Wife.'

At this he grew pensive and thoughtful, the Prospect of the Pleasures he proposed to himself were vanished, and he found himself in Danger of paying very dear for those he had obtained by his deceitful Practices. He could not but reflect upon his own Baseness and Perfidiousness, and it shocked him extremely to have his Honour so far surpassed by one of a meaner Extract, as to endeavour generously to protect that Life which had so inhumanly treated her. This revived the covered Embers of his Love, and by its kindly Warmth hastned its Growth into Value and Esteem. He began to loath himself for his Treachery to her; Oh that his fickle Heart in view of Interest had never tempted him to this second Marriage! He wished a thousand times, that the Contents of the first Letter had been the Sense of her Heart, and the last the Contrivance only of her Parents, to break the Continuance of the Intrigue. Upon this he reasoned for some time, but all the Arguments, which his Desires could invent, were too weak to conclude any thing in favour of his Wishes. To go himself he concluded would be dangerous, and a foolish Rashness, when thus forewarned. He was doubtful whether the whole might not be fictitious, and a Stratagem contrived to draw him into some farther Mischief which he did not yet conceive. The Force that was to assault him was but weak, two Villains only, who, accounting for the Badness of their Action, could not be esteemed above the Match of one sturdy resolute Fellow, backed by a Cause so just; he therefore acquainted a trusty Servant he had of the Design there was to assassinate him the next Evening, when he should go to such a part of the Town; that two Persons had undertaken to perform it, that he was resolved to discover the Villains, and the Bottom of the Design; and therefore had pitched upon him as one on whom he could depend: That having this Notice, and being well armed, both offensively and defensively, he had not much Occasion to fear; for at some Distance there should be two or three Servants more placed, to assist him in case of Extremity; and that his Reward should be proportionable to the Danger he underwent, and to the great Service it would do him.

The Servant readily obeyed his Master's Commands, was proud of the Confidence he put in him, and pleased with the Hopes of a considerable Gratuity. The Evening approaching he puts on his Master's Coat of Mail, proof against Sword or Dagger, arms himself with his long Toledo, and its Dagger behind; and lest any of these should fail, he puts a Stilletto, and a Pocket Pistol into his Pocket. It was convenient to take a dark Lanthorn to discover the Faces of the Assassinators, when they should be either taken or killed; and that it might not hinder his Dagger Hand in his Defense, he contrived to hang it to one of the Breast Buttons of his Doublet. This Equipment he thought sufficient for his Defense. And at the Time appointed he thus sallied out; at some Distance followed his Master, with a Servant or two who knew nothing of the Affair to see the Event. According to the Letter, when this single Person, who was dressed in the Clothes Sebastian used to wear, approached the Corner of the Street, he was vigorously assaulted by the two Villains; their Thrusts were all to no purpose, the Coat of Mail was not to be pierced by their Violence, and the Servant soon laid them both dead, or wounded, at his Feet. Don Sebastian was now satisfied of the reality of the Design, and leaving his Servants came up to view their Faces. He believed them to be Panthea's Brothers, who intended to glut their Revenge, and repair their Injuries, by this Attempt, and this provoked his Curiosity; but he found it otherwise, and immediately retired Home with his Servants to avoid all farther Enquiries.

The old Woman who heard the Bustle was pleased with the Thoughts of her premeditated Revenge, not doubting of the Success; but when she went out to see the tragical Effect, she was very much disappointed to find her two Villains lye wallowing in their own Blood upon the Ground, whilst the Object of her Fury was gone safe away: And what yet vexed her more was, that she found her self obliged to treble her Reward to these Assassinators, to prevent them from discovering who had hired them to this wicked Attempt, and to help to discharge the Expence of their Cures, if any could be obtained.

When she came back, she repined with her Daughter at their disappointed Design, and the Escape of the villainous Wretch who had ruined their Reputation; but all the Return that she could gain from the good Panthea was, 'How vain is it for us to pretend to give Rules to Providence, whose Decrees they reserve in their own Power? Whether they are to our Happiness or Misfortune, it is our Duty to submit with Patience. The succeeding in so black a Crime would have encreased our Guilt, and drawn a greater Vengeance on our Heads. Secure and guarded by our Innocence, we enjoy the Pleasures of a quiet Conscience, and wait till Fate shall please to change our Dooms, and give us unexpected Happiness.'

In the mean time Don Sebastian was returned Home; the Joy of having escaped so tragical a Scene, so well concerted, and attended with such Probability of Success, and the being indebted for his Deliverance to a Person he had treated so inhumanly, and from whom he was sensible he merited another Return, occasioned various Vicissitudes in his Mind. He abhorred himself for his former Ingratitude, acknowledged that this Action must proceed from the highest Pitch of Duty and Inclination: Her Form, her Beauty, her Behaviour, were far beyond those to which he had yielded in her Prejudice. With what Excuses could he palliate his Baseness? Or, if this should be known and published to the World, the general Censure would condemn him unworthy of the Honour of his Ancestors, to part with his Probity for a new Face, whose Charms a short Time would change into Indifference; whilst the black Stain of so vile an Action would endure for ever, was a rash unwary Bargain, and hateful to her Memory.

These kind Thoughts of her began to revive the glowing Embers of his former Passion; and tho' he had no Reason to complain either of the Person or Deportment of the Lady, with whom he was at present engaged, he wished it had been possible to have untied the fatal Knot; or rather, that he had never been so unlucky to have consented to it: But this was to no purpose, a patient Submission to his present Fate was necessary, and a Resolution to bear his Chains contentedly, till Fortune should be pleased to ease him. He resolved to cast no more Blots of this kind upon his Honour, but to live up to the Rules of Honesty, and be a perfect good Husband for the future. He behaved himself with all the Tenderness imaginable, whether real or counterfeit I cannot determine, to his present Lady; and the Endearments were so reciprocal, that a happier Couple, in the Estimation of the World, were not to be found. Nothing was wanting to complete the Joy of the Parents, but the Blessing of an Heir to continue the Line. The Father lived not to see his Hopes thus gratified, for he died before his Daughter had been married nine Months.

Sebastian was now sole Patron of the House, at liberty to do what he pleased, and no one with Authority either to spy into or controul his Actions. This altered not his Courage, his Repentance was sincere, and his Resolutions fixed and unalterable, he still proved the most kind and loving Husband. Fortune seemed to be pleased with his Behaviour; for four Months had scarcely passed when she broke off his uneasy Chains, by dissolving the second Marriage, as a Reward of his Perseverance. His Spouse had inadvertently taken too plentiful a Draught of Lemonade cooled in Ice, when she had been overheated by long walking in her Garden amongst her Orange-Trees, when the Sun was too high in the Horizon: This threw her into a Fever, and in a few Days she expired. He was now Master of all, he could do no less but grieve for the Loss. He had enjoyed the Possession of a charming Woman, who, as he had no Reason to doubt, loved him: He was become Lord of a great Fortune, absolutely now at his own Disposal. But alas! upon what Conditions were they become his? He had cheated the departed fair One of her Honour, he had deceived and robbed her indulgent Parents of their Inheritance, who had thus generously rewarded him for his perfidious Villainy. He had no Claim, no Right to any thing, had been long married to another; and instead of this mistaken Goodness, the most keen Revenge ought to have been his Lot. These Considerations very much disturbed his Thoughts, and when he had solemnized the Funeral with the greatest Magnificence and dismal Pomp, he revolved in his Mind all Means possible to repair his shattered Honour, and to do Justice to the injured Family. When a decent Time for Mourning was expired, he frequently sent Messengers to Panthea, to acquaint her how Providence had favoured his Wishes; and that now, being disengaged from any other Tie of Honour, he had nothing more at Heart, than to manifest his Gratitude for that generous Action of saving his Life; and endeavour to deserve her Forgiveness by his Integrity for the Time to come. He therefore desired she would consent to have the Ceremony of Marriage again performed and solemnized: She returned him for an Answer, 'That certainly he had not well considered what he desired, for it would be to his Dishonour; and she unworthy of his Bed, if the censorious World should have Reason to blame her former Conduct towards him; that if he had no more Regard to his own Reputation, she would never agree to any thing that should in the least fully it; and had that Value for her own, to choose rather to live unhappy and innocent, than to brand her Virtue by rendring her former Marriage doubtful; but if his Value and Esteem for her was so great as to remove all Censure from her spotless Virtue, and acknowledge those sacred Bands which had so long been celebrated between them, her Honour and her Inclinations could have no Pretence to refuse what he desired, and she would fly with Pleasure to his Arms, the same forgiving loving Creature, forgetful of all Wrongs, and banish from her Breast the unwelcome Thoughts that spoke not in his Favour.' He could not but applaud her nice Taste of Honour, and made all necessary Disposals to salve his Reputation in his former way of living, and make as ample Reparation to the injured as was possible. The Family he had last married into was almost extinguished; he therefore, with great Pains, found out the next Heir, who was at a great Distance; upon whom he settled the Inheritance of the Estate that belonged to his Ancestors, and was given him in Marriage. The ready Money which he had received, most of which he had hoarded up and improved, having a plentiful Fortune of his own, he laid out in pious Uses; he sent rich Presents to Panthea, her Brothers he provided with good Employments in the Government, the Mother was treated with the greatest Duty and Respect, the House new, and richly furnished for her own Abode, and the Palace to which Panthea was to be brought, was made magnificent to the greatest Degree. All Care was taken to satisfy the Curious and Distrustful, that the Marriage was formerly celebrated; and those who suspected Panthea's Virtue, were mistaken Censurers. The unkind Usage she had suffered made her shine the brighter, and every Mouth began to open in her Praise. Mirth and Content seemed the only Employment of both Parties; and the only Expectation now was, how sufficiently to demonstrate their universal Joy, when Panthea should be conducted Home to her repenting wishing Bridegroom.


The End of the Rake reformed.

Don Antonio had proceeded thus far in his Story, when he found himself interrupted by the unwelcome Sight of a Privateer of Barbary, who made all his Endeavour to come up with us. Our Ship was in a general Consternation, for we were not strong enough to engage him with any Hopes of Success, neither being heavy laden could we propose great Safety from our Flight. We nevertheless used all Means to make it as swift and speedy as possible. But the Wind forbearing to swell our Sails, there happened an unlucky Calm, and we were obliged to lye still. The Captain, the other Officers, and Don Antonio had the Decks cleared, and every Thing disposed in order to give the Barbarians a warm Reception, resolving to defend our selves to the last Drop of Blood. We had but six Pieces of Cannon on Board, and these we managed to the greatest Advantage, returning every Discharge the Enemy made with one of our Broad-sides. The Engagement lasted for some time, and it was difficult to determine whether the Attack or the Defense was executed with the greatest Vigour; the Officers ran from Side to Side to animate the Mariners, and where the greatest Danger was, there Don Antonio was always present. I followed him from Place to Place, was always near to him; and I, who not long before was ready to die at the Sight of a naked Sword, was now inspired with undaunted Courage, began to contemn Death, and slight the greatest Danger: Of such Power is Custom to reconcile us to the greatest Extremes. Fear was quite banished from my Heart, and no one who had been a Witness of my Behaviour, would have suspected me for any other than a finished Hero.

The Corsair, seeing we were resolved to defend our selves to the last, doubled their Fury and Attack. They had made so many Shot into the Body of our Vessel, that she began to leak considerably; we discovered where she took most Water, and with our Diligence stopped her Leak, the Captain believing that the Barbarians would at our brave Defense despair of taking us. There might have been some Grounds for this Conclusion, had not an unlucky Accident happened; a chance Shot brought our Main Mast by the Board, and by its Fall killed the valiant Captain, and five of the bravest Sailors, who were near him. This Misfortune increased the general Consternation in the Crew, and they had scarcely the Heart to labour sufficiently to pump out the Water the Ship received at her Leaks, but weary and discouraged were inclined to save their Lives in Slavery by a Surrender, rather than hazard an honourable Death by a brave and resolute Defense.

All the Pains that Don Antonio took to encourage them were useless; they threw down their Arms, and concluding that the Ship would suddenly sink, and no other Remedy in View, they chose to submit to the Mercy of the Barbarians, rather than undergo their certain Fate from the merciless Waves. Upon this, crying out for Quarter, the Privateer soon boarded us, and several of the Privateer's Men entered our Vessel. The single Resistance of Don Antonio would have been very insignificant; he could not bear his hard Fate, and his greatest Anguish and Trouble was for me who was always by his Side. Thus agitated, he was going to knock his own Brains out against the Side of the Ship, when we found our selves surrounded by a File of the Privateers, from whom I expected immediate Death: They on the contrary offered us Quarter, imagining by our rich Clothes, that we should be able to give a good Ransom for our Liberty, could they take us alive. Don Antonio refused to take Quarter, and continued to defend himself so vigorously that they durst not approach him. So that finding it impossible to take him alive, the Captain of the Corsair ordered one of his Ship to shoot him, the Vessel filling continually with Water, and a longer Delay being dangerous. According to command the Sailor fired his Musket, the Shot took Place, and the brave Antonio fell dead at my Feet.

Being thus deprived of all my Hopes of all the Comfort I had, I resolved to revenge my self of the Villain who had given him his Death, and running to him with my drawn Sword, I gave him a cut in the Shoulder; and as I was going to renew my blow, those who were behind me seized me, soon wrested the Sword from my too feeble Arm, robbed me of the Death I wished for, and made me their Prisoner. The Captain soon carried me into his own Vessel, when they had scarcely plundered our leaky Vessel before I saw her sink. I was immediately stripped by the Captain's Order, and glad to put on one of his Coats, which tho' it fitted me not so well as I wished, was more agreeable to my present Condition.

When the Barbarians had divided the Plunder they found in our Vessel, and the Prisoners were secured under a strong Guard, they put out all their Sails, and made the best of their way for Algiers, where we arrived in a few Days; from thence we were carried to Constantinople to be sold. My only Consolation was, that they had not discovered my Sex, being more willing to undergo any Slavery they should enjoin me as a Man, than be forced to submit my self as a Woman to their libidinous Desires.

We had not been long at Constantinople before we were carried to the Place they call Bestistan, that is, the Market where they sell their Slaves, as we do our Cattle and Horses in England. There were many that demanded of my Conditions and Ability; they made me leap and run, to see if they could find any Defects in my Limbs; but the Person to whose Lot I was fallen, putting too great a Value upon me for my Youth and Figure, so much beyond the others, and which he imagined would raise my Price, it was long before he could meet with a Chapman. At length a rich Merchant, who was pleased with my Person and Appearance, offered him four hundred Crowns for me; the Market being almost over, and fearing he should not meet with so good a Chapman, the Bargain was concluded, and I was to be delivered to the Merchant at his House. I was accordingly carried to the Merchant's, and the Captain received the Money for which I was purchased. Now began my first Experience in Slavery, and I very much lamented my unfortunate Condition. I had heard before of the Hardships and Severities these poor Creatures are obliged to undergo, and I represented to my Imagination a Scene of the greatest Misery; but my Expectations were a little relieved, when my new Patron carried me into his Apartment, shewed me the several Cabinets, China, and Plate in it, and told me that my Office should be to keep this Apartment, and what was in it, nicely, neat, and clean; and provided I acquitted my self well in this Employment, he would expect no other Service of any kind from me. I was very well pleased with my light Task, and believed I had Strength enough to perform it to his Satisfaction. I instantly applied my self to execute his Commands, and he was pleased with my first Endeavours. The Bell rung as a Signal to call us to our Dinners, and I was conducted by one who (as I understood afterwards) was our Cook into a large Portico or Hall, supported with Pillars, where the Slaves were accustomed to eat. But who can express the Surprise I was in, and the Trembling that seized me, when amongst the Number who belonged to my Patron, I found Charles, my first Lover? Neither the Habit with which he was clothed, the Abatement of the Sweetness of his Countenance by his continual Slavery, or the long Beard he was obliged to wear, could disguise him from my Knowledge. If my Astonishment was great, his was yet more extraordinary; for I found his Eyes fixed upon me, and Alterations in his Face that shewed the Confusion of his Mind. After some Time when he had welcomed me into their Society, he asked me of what Country I was, and what was my Name. I told him my Country was Great Britain, that I was of the Family of the Johnsons, and going to Spain upon some Affairs of Consequence in the Company of some Merchants, we had the Misfortune to be taken by the Algerines, who plundered us of all we had, and sold us as Slaves at the next publick Market. This was what I thought fit to say to my Fellow Slave, to disguise my Sex from him, and to confirm the rest of the Slaves who heard our Discourse, in that Opinion, it not being yet a convenient Time to discover my Condition to him. His Eyes were unmoveably fixed upon me all the time we were at Dinner; and being now time to refresh our selves with Repose, he approached me, 'I wish, said he, that since Destiny had doomed you to Slavery, that you had been sold to some other Master; for when I look upon you, methinks I see that engaging Face, that has been the fatal Cause of all my Misfortunes and Misery.' I could return him no Answer; the Overseer, or Person whose Duty it is to take care of the Slaves, coming at that instant, ordered me to go along with him. He conducted me into a Chamber next my Patron's, and shewing me some Straw in a Corner of it, that, says he, is the Place where you are to sleep and repose your self. I bowed to him in return of Thanks, but Sleep was all that Night a Stranger to my Eyes; the Thoughts of what I must suffer by the Loss of Don Antonio were crowded in my Imagination, and left no Room for Rest; the finding my old Lover amongst the Slaves gave me some Confusion, and I could not conclude what would be the Event if I should chance to be discovered. In variety of Thoughts of this kind I passed the tedious Night upon my Bed of Straw, in the most afflicting manner imaginable. When the Morning came, my Master called me to my daily Task, which was to help to dress him, and to take care of his Apartment.

I was concerned that I could not understand the Discourse that passed amongst my Fellow Slaves; I often knew the Meaning of several Words, but the Sense of the whole was hidden from me. This, with the Convenience of understanding the Language, the better to perform what I should be enjoined, made me apply my self diligently to learn it. When I considered of it farther, I found it a Mixture or Gallimaufry of most Languages, Italian, French, Spanish, &c. I soon perfectly understood it, and by a little Practice was able to speak it as well as the best of them; and as easy and natural to me it became as my Mother-tongue. I was obliged one Day to wait upon my Master to his Country Seat, where he had a curious and charming Garden. He intended I should root up some of the Weeds that had mingled themselves amongst his finest Flowers. Here I found Charles, who was employed in transplanting some Trees which his Master would have removed, to make an agreeable Shade in a part of the Garden, too much exposed to the Heat of the Sun. When the Patron had given what Orders he thought necessary, he returned to the Town, and left me alone with my Fellow Slave Charles. My first Lover thinking the Opportunity propitious, threw down his Garden Instruments, and embracing me in his Arms, gave me a thousand surprizing Kisses. 'Pardon me, my Fellow Slave, said he, for being so impertinent to disturb you with these Testimonies of my Friendship; this manner of Address I know is not customary amongst Men, but you must excuse me, since every Time I look upon you, I have a secret Inclination that makes me covet you in my Arms, so perfectly does your Figure represent the most dear and faithless Mistress of my Heart. And tho' the Thoughts of her Perfidiousness should more reasonably provoke me to despise and detest her, to vilify and rail at her undeserved Behaviour, my Heart melts in her Favour, my Language softens in her Praise, and I cannot conceive a Thought or utter a Syllable in her Prejudice. It is natural to hate what has been the Occasion of our Ruin, but my Tenderness for her, my Weakness is so great, to my Shame I own it, that in lieu of detesting her, I have a warm Love and fervent Passion for any thing that bears the least Resemblance of her.'

At these Words the Tears trickled from the Eyes of my poor Fellow-Sufferer. I have often wondered how I was able to support my Disguise, and not join with him in his Complaints and Lamentations; but when he began to blame me for my Perfidiousness, I was the most put to it, and could hardly forbear returning him an Answer in my Vindication: But my Prudence was sufficient to guard me from such a Slip, which otherwise might have been attended with a Train of Inconveniencies. When the first Shock of this Passion was past, he took me by the Hand, and desired me to come and sit down by him upon a Bank of Camomile, under a Shade of Orange Trees, so thick that the Sunbeams could scarcely enter, where he chose me as a Confident to unburden his Breast, as to an indifferent Person, of what he had suffered for his fair and faithless Mistress from the Beginning of their first Amours.

The famous Town of London, said he, was the Place of my Birth, where my Parents still inhabit, and are esteemed the richest Merchants of that Place. There lived over against us a Merchant who had gathered great Wealth by Traffick; he had only one Daughter, who, as it was generally thought, would be Heir to all his Riches. The Fame of this and the Beautifulness of her Person made her the Admiration of the whole Town: I had two Sisters about the same Age; and receiving by chance their first Education at the same Boarding School, they contracted an Acquaintance and Intimacy that continued after they came Home. They used to be frequently together, and this afforded me an Opportunity of beginning an Acquaintance with Lucinda (the Name of the only Daughter) and I already began to have that innocent Affection for her which such tender Years were capable of producing, the Seeds of a future Passion that was to be ripened by time. Neither was I now unhappy; for the fair One made me an equivalent Return, and we were so far advanced as to promise each other perpetual Love and Affection: Our Passions increased with our Years, and would have ended, no doubt, to both our Satisfactions in a happy Marriage, had not the Father and Mother of Lucinda been so exorbitantly covetous of Riches as to break all our Measures, and destroy our Hopes. The fair One gave me her self an Account of what was the Obstacle to our Desires, that a Rich old Fellow called Roderick had by the Power of his Riches so far gained the good liking of her Father and Mother, that they had promised to give him their Daughter in Marriage; that in vain she opposed these Resolutions, the paternal Commands were too positive to be disobeyed, and all the Consolation she was able to obtain was the Respite of eight Days to fix her Resolutions, to comply with what was so rigorously commanded. In this time she acquainted me with the great Aversion she had to be married to this Dotard, how officiously she was teazed to yield, to her continual Vexation and Discontent (the Opportunity we had of meeting by means of the back Gate of the Garden, when the Servants were in Bed, brought this to my Knowledge.) This unwelcome News so much afflicted me, that I was even ready to terminate my Misfortune by ending my own Life, since nothing could be more grievous to me than to see my charming Mistress in the Possession of another. But not to trouble you with numberless Circumstances, we resolved to take with us what we could conveniently carry, and fly from our Relations, to complete our Marriage in some other Place, and to remain there till our Friends had reconciled us to our Parents. The Day was appointed to make our Escape, the Place assigned, and the Manner agreed upon, that Lucinda with her Servant, who was her Confident in this Affair, was to meet me at the Water side, where I was to provide a Boat to receive her. I was punctual to the Assignation, and every Thing was provided to put our Design in Execution: But, alas! long did I expect her there in vain; and I passed the whole tedious Night in the most exquisite Torments between Hope and Despair. I doubted not but her Father had discovered our Intentions, and had been the Occasion of my Disappointment, for I could not suspect the Perfidiousness of my Lucinda, who had given me such Proofs of our Affections by discovering to me the Design of marrying her to another, and had thus kindly contrived and agreed with me how to prevent it. But by sad Experience I quickly found that the Promises and Vows of frail Woman are not to be depended upon.

In this Condition I remained the whole Night; in the Morning I went to a Friend's House in the Town, some distance from my Father's; I sent Spies about to get Intelligence of what had passed in the Family where Lucinda lived. I was soon informed that the whole House was in great Confusion upon the missing of Lucinda, not knowing what was become, or where to find either her or her Maid Servant, that her Father and Mother were in the utmost Despair, and had sent Men with Horses and Messengers to every Part, in search after her, with Assurances of great Rewards to those who should first discover her. This News increased my Grief, and wounded me a-fresh. I reflected upon the Demonstration of Love which I had always received from Lucinda ; but on the other Side I could reasonably conclude no other than that she had some secret Lover whom she preferred before me, and was fled away with him. I blamed her Infidelity, and wondered to what purpose she should take such Pains to deceive me. I laboured with the sharpest Pangs of Pain, and was tore to pieces with the Inquietude of my Thoughts; but, finding this served only to increase my Afflictions, I resolved to return Home, that I might not be suspected for the Person who had fled away with Lucinda, whom I now really believed in the Arms of another Lover. I had told my Relations that an Affair of Consequence required me to be in the Country for four or five Days, and they were surprized to see me return so soon, especially when they perceived in my Face some Tokens of Melancholy, the Occasion whereof I would not upon their Demands discover to them. The Messengers who were sent in search of Lucinda, were returned without being able to make the least Discovery of which way she had taken, or with whom she was gone. My Melancholy and Despair increased; no Diversion or Variety of Company could afford me the least Satisfaction, and therefore I resolved to end my Grief by seeking an honourable Death in the Wars that were then depending between Holland and Great Britain . I entered my self a Volunteer on board one of the largest Frigats in the Fleet, where, my an undaunted Courage and desperate Behaviour, pushed on by my desire of Death, I performed such daring Actions, that not undeservedly I was accounted one of the stoutest young Fellows in that dreadful Navy: But a Peace soon ensuing, with this acquired Applause I returned to my Relations, who being pleased with the Reputation of my Character, received me with unspeakable Joy. They enjoyed not long my Company, Lucinda still continued the constant Subject of my Thoughts; for her I went to die, and thought my self unhappy in the Disappointment; my Heart was never at ease, the Idea of my Loss troubled my Soul, and it was impossible to live without her. I therefore resolved to end my wretched Life in some honourable way; and since the Danger of the Fleet had crossed my Hopes, I was resolved to see if the Hazard of the Camp would be more prosperous to my Wishes. And there being Wars in Turkey, I intended for the Christian Camp, in hopes that some keen Scimiter might in some Action cut off my Miseries with my wretched Life.

To this intent I went a Passenger in the first Venetian Ship that sailed, in order to prosecute my Design; but Fortune who had not yet paid me all the Store of Misery she owed me, threw us into the Hands of a Turkish Rover, before we reached our intended Port. We had a brisk Gale, but our Vessel was a sluggish Sailer; on the contrary, the Rover had been lately careened, built for Speed, and having all her Sails out, made such way that she could overtake us when she pleased. We were but forty Hands in our Ship, our Condition was desperate, it was to little purpose to resist, there was no Hopes of Escape, and Fear had disanimated the whole Crew: I was the only undaunted Person; for since Death was the Boon I sought, it was indifferent to me in what manner it should happen.

Our Captain, tho' he saw this disparity of Force, and the vain Expectation of Success from his Defense, was obliged in Honour to make some Resistance, and therefore all was prepared for an Engagement. He encouraged his Sailors, and told them how much better it was to die an honourable Death, than tamely submit to inglorious Slavery, and lead a miserable Life among Heathens and Barbarians. We had engaged for four Hours before the Rovers could boast of any great Advantage; when, by a Broadside of Cartridge-Shot,they made a great Havock of our Sailors who were upon the Deck, and we found that our Number of fighting Men was decreased to sixteen; this was a Presage of our approaching Ruin, we were now unable to defend our selves, the Rover boarded us with a Number of his Men, became Masters of our Deck, and we were compelled to retire into the Gangway of the Quarter Deck; where we turned two small Guns upon them, which we discharged to clear the Deck. But we were soon mastered, and the Captain, as well as my self, being wounded, the Ship was taken by the Enemy. They soon plundered the Ship, changed our Habits for the worse they had, and putting heavy Chains upon our Legs, huddled us together under the Hatches, to lament our unhappy Condition. It was not long before we were put to Sale for Slaves, and I have been three tedious Years in the Service of this Master, without giving my Father or Mother any notice of my Misfortune; but have bid Adieu to my Country for ever, in hopes that a sudden Death will deliver me from the cruciating Torments of this World. The Reason therefore why I offered to you those Embraces and Endearments, was, for the Likeness that you bear to my beloved, tho' faithless, Lucinda; and it is impossible to behold you without renewing the Idea of the Charms of that dear Mistress who always possest my Breast. And did not your Habit and Expression convince me of the contrary, I should believe you the very same Person that has been the Occasion of all my Troubles, and at whose Remembrance with Pain I restrain my watry Eyes from shedding their usual Tribute.

At these Expressions he applied his Handkerchief to his Face, to hide his shameful Tears; the mournful Story had so inclined my Heart to pity, that no less than the Fear of a Discovery of my self and Sex to the Destruction of us both, could hinder me from shewing the same Signs of Compassion: But I found it necessary, and by my Endeavours mastered my Inclination, very much concerned that it was not proper for me to alter his Opinion of my Perfidiousness, which troubled me extremely. I did what was in my Power conveniently to comfort him, advising him to think as little as possible of his absent Mistress, that whilst she was in his Mind it would give fresh Nourishment to and augment his Affliction. 'Oh my Fellow Slave, said he, were you not every Day before my Eyes, perhaps in time the Remembrance of her might lessen in my Heart; but you are so perfectly her Figure, that when I see you it occasions all these irregular Transports which so disorder me.' I bid him be of Comfort, that Time perhaps which brings the most unexpected Things to pass, might by some unaccountable Event procure his Happiness; and that in the mean time he should bear his Yoke with Patience. By this time the Servant came to fetch us Home from the Garden, and I applied my self to my daily Work.

My Patron was a Widower of about fifty Years of Age, he was very rich, and all his Estate was designed for an only Daughter, who was not yet twenty Years of Age. I thought no Turkish Woman could be so beautiful as she appeared to me; I do not remember to have seen any European of a fairer Complexion, of more delicate Skin, or a more agreeable Mixture of White and Red: In fine, I think she was the handsomest Woman I ever saw. She called to me one Day as I was passing by her Chamber; I stopped, and with all the Humility of a Slave, desired to know what she would please to command. She bid me sit down by her; I with Excuses of my Duty refused, but she again commanded me, and I was obliged to obey. She asked me of what Country I was, what was my Name, my Age, and whether I was ever married. I told her that Great Britain was my Country, that my Parents were something above the Degree of common Citizens, that I was about twenty Years of Age, and that I had never been married: She afterwards demanded of me if I had ever advised my Relations of my Slavery, and if I had not the Hopes of being quickly ransomed? I told her that having been so wicked to leave my Parents, in Opposition and Defiance to their Commands and Desires; the Powers above had justly rewarded my Undutifulness, by exposing me to this Misfortune; that I had little Reason to expect a Deliverance, but yet was not without some Hopes of having my Liberty purchased in some time. She appeared with some Concern when I mentioned my Hopes of Redemption, but seemed to endeavour to conceal it from an antient Female Slave in the Room, that was there as her Watch and Guardian; yet in a low Voice she gave me to understand that she was to go the next Day to the Garden, and ordered me to be there at the beginning of the Afternoon. I made her a low Reverence, and promised her I would not fail, when she put four Sultanoes into my Hand, and bid me I should acquaint her when I had Occasion for more.

The Reception she gave me, her Commands to meet her in the Garden, and the Money she put into my Hand, made me believe she was fallen in Love with me. On the one Side I pitied her fruitless Passion, since Nature had made me uncapable to give her any satisfactory Return; and on the other Side, I compassionated my own Condition, apprehending lest this amorous Conversation should raise a Jealousy, to which the Turks are so subject, to my infallible Ruin. I knew the Effect and Resentment of a Passion that met not with a suitable Return, which I thought must infallibly be my Case with Sabina (the Name of the young Turkish Lady) when she found I returned her not those warm Endearments which she expected; her injured Passion would turn to a mortal Hatred, and what must be my Fate from such a merited Revenge? This made me curse the Moment that first brought me to her Sight, I could not hope to allay the Fury of her Desires with soft Words and innocent Caresses; she ran too great a Danger for her Satisfaction, to be rewarded with such trifling Joys: But where was the Possibility of returning more substantial Bliss? Alas! I was unable, I detested my Face, I loathed my pleasing Form that had raised her Passion, and drew me into these inevitable Hardships. These Reflections so disturbed my Rest, that I could not close my Eyes for the whole Night; I passed the Morning as usual, in Pain for the Event of the Day; I wished that some lucky Accident would have happened to have drawn me with Honour from this Appointment. I knew the Women of that Country were not framed of the coldest Mould, that Opportunities were dangerous and scarce, and therefore usually turned to the greatest Advantage. I am, thought I, a fit Hero, and likely to oblige a young blooming wishing Beauty in her first Passion, full of Curiosity and Desire; in what manner is it possible for me to acquit my self without provoking her Hatred and Revenge? Should I not go, the Disobedience and Contempt would be unpardonable; besides, my Duty draws me there, my Patron commanding me to free those precious Flowers he so delights in from the baneful Weeds. I therefore went, tho' with an aking Heart; the first Thing I saw in the Garden was Sabina attended by two old Women who were to take care of her; I was glad to see she was not alone, and thought I should be the better able to act my part. She soon perceived me, and employed the old Women to gather some Flowers in a Compartment a little distant, that she might have the better Opportunity to talk with me alone. She commanded me as before to sit down by her; she was well dressed, appeared extremely beautiful, and there was a charming Sweetness in her Eyes, that shewed the Passion of her Heart; nothing but Love could make her Looks so agreeable. Her first Question was, when I expected to be redeemed; I returned her the same Answer as before. 'But, said she, suppose you should here at Constantinople have an Opportunity to make your Fortune, would you not rather choose to stay here and enjoy it, than run the Hazard of your Life, by taking so long a Voyage as the return to your own Country? I know something that may perhaps prove very much to your Advantage.' This so amazed me, that I knew not what Answer to make; Sabina looked upon me with such Attention, that it increased my Apprehensions: Nevertheless after a little Pause, I returned her this. 'Not knowing in what other Place, except my own Country, to make my Fortune, I thought it most advisable to return thither: Yet notwithstanding, if I could meet with any thing here, that would be to my certain and future Advantage, I should willingly yield to the Temptation; and in Gratitude, acknowledge that I should owe my Life to the Goodness of those who should procure me that unexpected Happiness.' There was Hypocrisy in my Answer, my Sentiments were not conformable to my Words; but I was obliged to dissemble, rather than provoke her Hatred. With Eyes glowing with Love, she returned, that I must first get my self instructed in the Turkish Religion, and that then she would her self inform me in particular of that which, considering the Condition I was in, would no doubt be to my greatest Satisfaction, and I should for ever bless the lucky Moment that first brought me to her Sight. I made her all the Obeisance of a Slave, and returned her Thanks for the Favours she was pleased to promise me; I found not the Danger of this present Rencounter so terrible as I imagined, for Sabina, whom I assisted in the most humble manner, raised her self from the green Bank where she sat, not to give her old Guards too much occasion of Suspicion, and by that Opportunity gave me a Purse which I received with Signs of a profound Respect; and opening of it at my Leisure I found it crammed with Sultanoes, and amongst them these Verses.



From the sharp Pains of Love, she hopes you'll ease
Her panting Heart, who kindly sends you these;
Slave to a Slave she will no longer be,
If all her powerful Gold can set you free.
No Chains but those of Hymen shall you wear,
Where the kind Nymph an equal Weight will bear;
That State must needs be happy, all will hold,
Wherein lies Duty, blended Love, and Gold.

Although I was very much pleased with the Gold, I received a greater Dissatisfaction at the Verses; the Thought how this Affair would end, afforded but a dismal Prospect; I knew not how to proceed, or how I could disengage from Sabina's Affection. I resolved rather to die the most miserable Death, than turn to the Mahometan Religion; and how could I give my Consent to Marriage, when I was so incapable of performing the greatest Part of the Ceremony? This brought a fresh River of Tears into my Eyes, and I heartily prayed to Providence to deliver me by some Means or other from these afflicting Circumstances.

I know not whether my Prayers prevailed; but it is certain that two Days after this, my Patron fell sick, and his Distemper so far increased, that he began to be apprehensive of his Death. Whilst the Family was in these Troubles, Sabina had not the Opportunity to speak to me alone; for being the only Person that attended my Master in his Chamber, I could not leave him for a Moment. At the seventh Day of his Sickness there came to him a Talisman, (who is a kind of Priest among the Turks) to dispose him to the Thoughts of another World, and to set the Affairs of his Family in order. My Patron immediately caused an Inventory of what he owed to be made, and laid under his Pillow, that they might be discharged in case he should die. The Turks being of Opinion that they would otherwise be put to their Account in the other World, and if they know not to whom to make Restitution of what they have unjustly acquired, they bequeath it by their last Will to the endowing of Hospitals and other pious Uses, and part for the maintaining Lamps in their Mosques, with Salaries to Talismen and other religious Priests to pray for their Souls after their Decease. After the Talisman had exhorted the Sick to reflect seriously upon his past Life, and to repent of all his Enormities and evil Actions, finding that Life continued longer than he expected; he called for the Alcoran or the Turkish Law, and read seven times successively the Chapter which the Mahometans call Charbereth Flozy, wherein are contained the Actions of Jesus Christ, for which I could hear no other Reason than that it was a constant Custom among the Turks. On the tenth Day my Patron died, with Appearance of great Penitence; his Body was immediately laid upon a Carpet, extended in the Middle of the Floor of the Chamber where he expired; where his nearest Relations came, and standing in a Circle about him, with Crowns made of the Wood of Aloes in their Hands, made their Prayers much after the manner of the Roman Catholicks. After this, they laid the dead Body upon a Table, stripped off his Linen; they washed first his privities, and after that his whole Body with Water and Soap, drying of it with clean Linen Cloths; when this was performed, they washed it with Rose-water, and anointed the Body with perfum'd Oils and fragrant Ointments to give it an agreeable smell. After this they clothed him in his richest Vestments, putting on his Head a Turbant adorned with Flowers; and when the Body had lain thus for some time upon the Table, it was carried away to be buried in the place he had designed when he was alive.

It is not the Custom either for the Wife or Daughter to attend the Corps at the Burial; they stay at home to prepare a sumptuos Banquet for the Priests when they return fatigued by continually crying, as they pass along the Streets, Alla Alla Mehemeth Resul Alla, that is God is God and Mahomet is his Prophet. After the Interment is thus solemnized, they erect a Mausoleum suitable to the Condition of the Person; they fill his Grave with the choicest Flowers, and throw it into an oval Box, in which is enclosed the Elegy of the Deceased.

But to return to the Priests, when they have bury'd the Corps they come back immediately to the House of the Deceased Person, to partake of the Banquet, and to receive each five Aspers as a reward for their Prayers and Trouble.

Many Turks have small Mosques or Chapels built near their burying Places, for the convenience of praying for the departed Souls; and there is scarcely one of these without an Inscription expressing the good Deeds and Life of the dead Person. Those of a meaner Rank have for their Monuments a long Chest of Stone in depth about three Foot strew'd about, and fill'd with Flowers, in order to oblige those Passengers who go that way, and partake of their sweet Odor, to pray for the Souls of those who lye there, that they may be as sweet, and of as agreeable a Flavour in the Nostrils of Mahomet, and their great Creator.

After my Patron was thus interred, all his Slaves had their Freedom presented them according to the last Will and Testament of my late Master. His Brother who was his Executor gave us besides some Money to bear our Expences in the return to our Countries. Sabina was upon her Father's Death carry'd to her Uncle's House: and thus I was happily delivered from the Apprehensions I feared from my amorous Engagement with her.

I was two Years in this Slavery, before I lost my Master, and during the whole time I had nothing remarkable happened to me, except the falling into the same Slavery with my first Love Charles, and Sabina's falling in love with me each of which gave me many uneasy Thoughts. I had no reason to complain of the Hardships of my Slavery, since my Patron was, as I had good reason to believe, one of the best Men, not only in Turkey, but even in the compass of all Europe . His Temper was civil and obliging, free from that Cruelty which the Turks generally shew toward their Christian Slaves, and which as an Eye-witness, I saw too often practised by other Masters.

We no sooner receiv'd the happy News of our being at Liberty, but every one endeavoured with all haste to leave this place of their Confinement. Charles was the only Person that amongst the general Joy shew'd sensible Signs of Grief. It was difficult for me to leave him in these Troubles and Discontent, and yet I was resolved not to discover my self to him till a luckier Opportunity should present: when accompanying me, at my Request, out of Town some day in the afternoon (for now we were at full Liberty to do what we pleased, and the Executor obliged to furnish our Expences until we could conveniently go) my old Lover with Pain consented to what I had so earnestly desired. He was grown so melancholy, that Conversation was hateful to him, or any thing that had the least appearance of asswaging his Grief, when with much ado I had prevailed with him to go with me out of Town. When we were in a solitary Place out of the Danger of being seen or heard, I wonder, Charles, said I, that you should appear so afflicted and concern'd at a time that demands our greatest Joy; for what can be more acceptable to a generous Soul than to be delivered from the base and servile Bonds of Slavery, and whose oppressive Weight we have felt by sad Experience? You boast your self to be of no unworthy Family, that they abound in Riches, and love you to Despair; your Absence doubtless loads them with endless Grief, corrupts the Joys of Life, and turns all their Comfort into Sorrow. How can a noble Soul whose delight it is to do merciful and generous Actions, be pleased in giving Misery and Pain? When you act thus you are thoughtless of a Parent's Care, or of a filial Duty, a Return unworthy for the Life they gave you. If an unfortunate and unruly Passion has forc'd you almost upon the brink of Madness, they are not in the Fault; and if perhaps you had acquainted them with your unbounded Passion, they would have contrived some means to have favour'd your Design. Without any Trial of their Inclinations, or Discovery of your Discontent, you have the Cruelty to leave them, to abandon them for ever, and not to ease their doleful Hearts by knowing where you are, uncertain whether they ought to mourn your fatal Death, or grieve for your unhappy miserable Life. 'Tis strange that you should rather choose to be a Slave and serve abroad, than live at home and give command to others! Rather discard this baneful Love, throw off the weighty Chains, banish the fair one from your Breast, return to your Country, be a Blessing to your Parents, and take this glorious Opportunity to free you from the Bondage of your Mind as well as Body. Fortune perhaps may favour your good Intentions; and who knows but that you may in time find another Lucinda to ease your Complaints, and reward your Constancy with endless Happiness.

Charles, who had all this time kept his Eyes fixt upon the Ground, began to look up at the sound of Lucinda; he cast his Eyes upon me, sighed and spoke in the following Words. I must acknowledge, my Friend, said he, that what you say is very reasonable; I have behaved my self so unworthily, I must confess, to my Relations, that I have justly forfeited all their Esteem and Value, having given them such continual occasion of Grief and Affliction: and it is for this Reason that I wish never to see them more, or to return to the unhapy Place that gave me Birth. I will always remain a Stranger to my Country, banished from those I have injur'd, and waste a lingring miserable Life in a remote and foreign Climate. You wonder at the Confusion of my Thoughts, and why this Liberty, so acceptable to most, should de received by me with such Indifference, such little Signs of Joy; but I must own the Constany of my Love, the Violence of my Passion debars me of all Content, and in time will make me die the most wretched, the same unhappy Creature I have always lived. To return to my Relations would but produce fresh Troubles, and occasion of Afflictions; my impatient Temper would quickly hurry me from thence, predominant Passion, would force me from my Duty, and make me rove again about the faithless World, in hopes to find at last a welcome Death. That I am unfortunate, you find; know my Folly in continuing to love a Person for whose sake I have endur'd so many Hardships, doubtful of a suitable return. I know not where to find her, whether alive or dead; and if by chance my unwearied Diligence should luckily discover her, the same ill Fate, that always has attended me, perhaps will lead me to my Destruction, and shew me the faithless Fair One dying with Pleasure in the Embraces of another Lover. This I own proclaims me a doating incorrigible Fool: but the Power of Love forbids me to reform. It is in vain to strive to end the Charm, my Life and Passion bear an equal date. Oh my Lucinda! my dear beloved Lucinda! (said he with a Sigh) notwithstanding the reason you have given me to suspect your Fidelity, I'll adore you with an endless Passion to the last. Could I but see that pleasing Form, those killing Eyes that have enslaved me, my Fatigues and Cares were well rewarded; and to end my Life upon that panting Bosom, would be my utmost Wish: a Happiness the immortal Gods would die for! But why do I talk thus? perhaps you are now in the cold Arms of Death, and all that Beauty crumbled into Earth: I will not long be absent from you. I, sure, at last shall find that wished-for End which I have ransacked all the Corners of the World to meet: but, as for you, my Friend, if ever it be your chance to see my lovely Lucinda, whose Image you perfectly represent, tell her that you have seen her constant Lover, who, after he has had the unexpected Fortune of being freed from Turkish Slavery, is for her Sake so careless of his Liberty, as to hazard the Loss of it by farther Attempts; and, being not able to live without her, is searching Opportunities to sacrifice those Trifles to her Shrine.

So many moving Sighs, and mournful Tears, accompanied these Expressions, that I could no longer bear to see him in this lamenting Condition. There is no occasion for your rambling any farther, my dear Charles, said I, to seek your loved Lucinda; she holds, she holds you in her longing Arms, presses you with her warm Embraces, and with her balmy Kisses stops your fleeting Soul; which if it have a Tenderness like mine, would otherwise quit its Mansion with excess of Joy. I am the happy Object of your constant Passion, the Fair One you complain of, the very she whom you unjustly call your false Lucinda : But when you hear the Variety and Turns of Fortune I have undergone for you, if there be a Grain of Pity in your Breast, give it to poor Lucinda. Think her not faithless and unkind, but blame the Treachery of a mis-placed Confidence, a corrupted Servant, who betrayed our first Design, and sold me to a Villain for a Bribe, from whence ensued a Train of Misfortunes which would have been endless, had not my kinder Stars, in pity to my Sufferings, brought us together in vile Slavery, and unexpected Freedom, which yields a Prospect of succeeding Joys. I durst not discover my self sooner to you, lest the fatal Secret might have proved a Ruin unavoidable to us both. Neither have I (I must confess) lessened my Satisfaction by the Concealment; it has given me the unutterable Pleasure to find what most I wished, your faithful boundless Passion for me, attended with a Constancy to be admired, and matchless in the Bounds of Nature. I was going to continue my Discourse upon this agreeable Theme, when my Lover, ravished with the surprizing Joy, fell down on his Knees at my Feet, trembling with Pleasure; he took my Hand, bathed it with Tears of Joy, and imprinted on it a thousand tender Kisses. He begged my Pardon if he had said any thing that might offend me; his Passion was extraordinary, and he could not account for all the Irregularities of Conduct it might occasion. I easily forgave him, raised him from the Ground, sealed his Pardon with my Embraces, and began to tell him by what Contrivance I fell into the Hands of old Alphonsus, how I escaped out of his House; how I refused to gratify my Deliverer by Marriage, till I had Assurances that you was faithless, and wedded to another. In fine, I concealed nothing from him that had happened to me: And to divert his Melancholy, I entertained him with my Intrigue with Sabina, and her Passion for me.

Being overjoyed at our lucky Meeting, and perfectly satisfied in each other's Conduct, we took a Resolution to go as soon as possible from this Place; and there lying in the Port an English Vessel ready to sail, we laid hold of the Opportunity. It was thought convenient that I should still retain my Habit; it would give me more Freedom amongst the Passengers and Mariners: We therefore entered the Ship in our slavish Garb, and hoped that after so many Misfortunes, we should at last meet with a happy Return.

We had not been a Fortnight under Sail before we were surprised with a violent Storm. As the Day began to break, the Wind blew impetuously from every Corner, the Clouds obscur'd the Sky; instead of Daylight Darkness increas'd, and Torrents of Showers, like Rivers, washed our Decks. The Passengers were thrown from Side to Side; the raging Billows toss'd the floating Ship up to the Firmament, and then as soon immers'd her into the watry Bowels of the Deep; the unruly Vessel could scarcely obey her Helm; her Sheets and Cordage were tore to Rags and Lint, and the creaking Planks groan'd as if they'd fall asunder. The Captain walked pensive with his Arms a-cross, the Faces of the Mariners grew pale, and, as a Presage of our inevitable Ruin, the general Sound was now, to Prayers, to Prayers: the trembling Priest was stuttering out his Lesson, when a sudden Crack, as if the Ship was burst asunder, encreased our Fears, and fill'd the Air with Screams. He left his Book to know what was the Disaster, and found the Main-Mast was shatter'd with Lightning, and blown down. We fell to our Prayers again, and expecting to sink every Moment, every One apply'd themselves to their Devotion, and made publick Confessions of their Sins, without Reserve. When we had been in these Agonies for some time, the Sky grew clearer, the Winds abated their Violence, and we had hopes, tho' in that shatter'd Condition, to out-ride the Storm. The Dram-Bottle went briskly about, our Fears lessened, and we began to recover. I looked amongst the Passengers, and could not forbear smiling at the Remembrance I retain'd of many of their Confessions; some were so comical, that I could not forbear giving too much Ear to them in the midst of our greatest Danger, which was I fear to the Disadvantage of my Devotion; and this six Hours Storm made us better acquainted with each other's Frailties and Inclinations, than if we had lived so many Years together. When the Storm was over, the Mariners applied themselves to repair the Damage the Vessel had suffered; our Leaks were stopped, our Masts splintered up as well as the Opportunity would permit, and Sheets, which the Captain kept in Reserve, braced to the Yards. And yet, notwithstanding we were restored to this tolerable Condition, and that the Sea had smoothed its rugged Face, and we were out of Danger, and quiet and peaceable in a grateful Calm, I made a firm Resolution never to trust my self more to this angry Element, when it was possible for me to get a Passage by Land.

This good-natured Weather continued till we arrived on the Coast of England; we had not one rough haughty Billow to disturb us: and there being a Mariner on board who had spent his younger Days in the Schools, and had improved himself by reading, but forced by some Extravagancies in his Youth to take to this sort of Life, he was esteemed the Wit amongst them; and when they were a careening, or the Hands lay idle in a Calm, Jonathan (for such was his Name) was always courted to divert them with his Buffoonery or some pleasing Story. This Season was agreeable, he wanted not much Intreaty, and began to shew his Parts in the following Manner.

Fortune favours the Bold: OR, The Happy Milaneze.

After the Defeat of the Switzers in the Battel between the Lords Dona and Meliguan, when Maximilian Sforza had by his ill Govetnment lost his Dutchy of Milan, Gio. Giacomo Trivultio made all his endeavours to have the Gibellines banish'd or forced out of the State; many of them having shelter'd themselves at Mantua, where the Marquis Don Francesco di Gonsaga gave them Protection, and permitted them to inhabit. At that time Charles of Bourbon, that great Soldier, was Governor of Milan for the King of France; he was so mild and courteous, that several of those who had been banished, were recall'd, and restor'd to the Possession of their Estates. Some of them were fled to Trent, under the Protection of Francesco Sforza, then Duke of Bari; others to Rome, and others to Naples, according to the reception they met with amongst the Princes of Italy.

Amongst those who retir'd to Mantua, was a Gentleman of an ancient Family, called Gonzalo, a Person well accomplished, of much Honour, and whose Estate was equal to the richest Cavalier of Milan. His Mother had had the Address to have made such Interest with the Governors, that she remained in possession of her Fortune, tho' she was of the Party of the Sforzas, and one of the chiefest who endeavoured most strenuously to drive the French out of Milan. Gonzalo before he was forc'd to quit Milan had by his genteel Carriage and Behaviour gain'd the Favour of one of the finest Ladies of Milan; and he was so violently in Love with her, notwithstanding she was married, that his being obliged to be absent from her was more insupportable to him than his Banishment. They kept a Correspondence by Letters, by the means of a Servant who had formerly lived with Livia (which was the Lady's Name) in the House where she inhabited. The Affair was so far advanc'd by the Management of this Servant, that Gonzalo was come to Milan to enjoy and reap the Fruit of his Addresses at the very time when the French had discover'd some fresh Designs of the Family of the Sforzas, of which he was esteemed the Principal. And the search after the Conspirators was executed with such Strictness and Diligence, that to save his Life he was obliged to fly from thence with all Haste and Secrecy.

This parting gave great Uneasiness to both sides; Gonzalo lost his desired Expectation, and could not bear an Absence that appeared of so long continuance. The fair Lady was disappointed, and what can be more grievous to a Woman? but besides this Affliction, she was tormented with Fears and Apprehensions lest her Gallant should fall into the Hands of his Enemies by ill Fortune, or be betrayed for a Reward by those he was forced to confide in, to the loss of his Life, and the only Happiness she coveted. But Fortune was so favourable to his Flight, that Gonzalo arrived with all safety at Mantua . To divert him from the Melancholy that his Banishment and the Absence of his Mistress occasion'd, he frequented Company, and paid Visits to the best of the fair Sex. It was not long before one of the greatest Rank and Beauty in Mantua was very much pleased with his Manner and Deportment; and her Passion for him encreasing beyond the degrees of liking, she was so much in Love, as to follow the warm Measures of the Women of that Country, and not be ashamed to endeavour publickly to have a Correspondency with him.

She therefore, to engage him with the more certainty, sent a Confident of hers to him, who meeting him in the Church spoke to him in the following manner: 'An accomplished Cavalier of Honour, when he has gained a general Esteem, will never be guilty of any Action that shall tarnish the Reputation he has acquired, or will be neglectful of taking those Measures, which if not nicely follow'd may be attended with the most mischievous and afflicting Consequences.' He was surprised at this Discourse and Compliments from a Person unknown to him; and after he had look'd upon her for some time, he gave her the following Answer: 'I never, Madam, said he, that I remember, broke my Word with any Person, or ever committed an indiscreet or dishonourable Action that might give any Occasion of Disgust; but, if I have, thro' Inadvertency, and contrary to my Intentions, done any thing to give Offence, I am more worthy of Forgiveness than Revenge; and therefore I desire to be acquainted with my Fault, that I may make Satisfaction, and ask Pardon for my Mistake.'

The Lady was so pleased with this Answer, that she was persuaded he was a Man of Honour, and deserved the Love of the greatest Lady. And upon this she discovered to him the extraordinary Passion that her Friend had for him, describing her Beauty and good Qualities; but it was all to little purpose, for Gonzalo's Morals were at this time very much out of the Mode; he persevered in his Constancy to his first Mistress, and thought it an Injury to Love, and dishonourable, to be so much as pleased with the Idea of any other Person than of the Fair One to whom he had vow'd perpetual Constancy and Love. 'I know not in what manner, said he, to receive this obliging Offer that this Lady makes me of her Affection, not being able to remember any thing that I have ever done for her to oblige her to this grateful Return, which would be a competent Reward for all the Actions of my Life spent in her Service, and even for the loss of that. But, Madam, I grieve, and must ask her Pardon, if I am obliged to refuse the Favour; My Heart is already engaged to another, and bound to her with such Vows and Imprecations, that it is dishonourable and impossible for me to consent to what she desires. If it had been my good Fortune to have been free, she should have had the sole Possession of me, and I should have gloried in the Happiness. Nevertheless I beg you not to think it Pride or Vanity that occasions this Refusal, or that I esteem it the less for being presented to me in such a manner; and if there be any thing else, besides the gratifying her Request, which she requires of me, I will shew her the Power she has over me, by a ready and punctual Obedience to her Commands.'

'You make indeed Sir, says she, as gallant an Excuse as it is possible, from a Spark who refuses the last Favours of a charming Lady. This would have been very fashionable in the Times of our Fore-fathers, and might perhaps have gained you the Name of Faithful and Conscientious, and have brought you into the Esteem of the old Matrons; but in this Age, I advise you to be careful of exposing your uncommon Principles, lest the whole Sex deride and point at you. By your outward Figure one would not imagine that you should be the only Person to refuse the Acceptance of that which others would sacrifice their Lives to obtain. I begin to suspect your Endowments, that Fame has been too lavish in your Favour, and that your Heart has been always insensible of the Pleasures of Love, to refuse such an Opportunity of making you entirely happy; and how can you ever have the Face after this to make your Courtship to the Ladies? Go on in the Pursuit of your Vanity, and you will quickly find how many Fair Ones of the Sex will die for the Loss of your pretty engaging Person.' 'Madam, replied Gonzalo, you give me a severer Chastisement than I deserve: You accuse me for want of Civility and Love, when those are the only Reasons that make me guilty of this Rudeness. I own that my Heart is already engaged to a Lady in Milan, and if I should break my Faith with her, you might with more Justice call me insensible and perfidious; and I think this is being honourable in the greatest Degree to the Lady whose Affections you offer me.' 'What! said she, are you one of those Ignorants who would be contented with a single Glory, as much to be contemned in the Pursuit of Love as War? Would any Lady of Wit or Sense esteem you the more, do you think, for this scrupulous Simplicity? No, no, the Ladies admire not this cold Temper, they would have their Gallants replenished with warm Desire and unbounded Passion; and though they wish to keep their Lovers to themselves, they would rather owe it to the Excess of their own Charms, than to the Indifferency of their Admirers. Take my Word for it, this Niceness will never recommend you to their Embraces; their Joys are heightened by their Endeavours to out-charm their Rivals; and they conclude a Man incapable of a desired Passion, who has so little of Nature, as to confine himself to one alone. But were this Fidelity, as you call it, so commendable, how are you certain that this Person, this Milaneze, for whom you sacrifice the growing Pleasures of your Life, makes you the same Return? Do you vainly believe yourself the only Object of her Heart? and that in your absence, no other warm Desires heat her glowing Breast? 'Tis stupid Folly! Had not her tender Inclinations taught her, you had never been happy in her Arms. When we have once tasted of the divine and ravishing Pleasures of Love, our Hearts are always wishing for those Joys; we know no other Satisfaction, and wisely, in the Absence of our Lovers, we long for Practice, and choose some other to supply his Post. The whole Sex are equally subject to the same Passion; Constancy is an idle and derided Fancy, stigmatizes a Man with Coldness, and now impracticable amongst the wiser Mortals. When a Gallant has enjoyed, received the luscious Harvest of his amorous Passion, he ought not, I must confess, to abandon the kind loving Creature: He should make a suitable Return, and be so faithful as to gratify her amorous Desires; but to forsake all others for her sake is foolish and unfashionable. And thus, my honest, virtuous Cavalier, I leave you to consider of what I have said; and for the future be wiser than to refuse an Opportunity like this, when Fortune presents it to you.'

Gonzalo was astonished at these Expressions from a Woman; but it being about the Power of Love, he was not displeased with it; and would not have interrupted the Lady, had not she left off of her own Accord. 'I must confess, Madam, said he, there is a great deal of Reason in what you say, you seem perfectly to know the Foible of your own Sex, if I may call it so, and many of them, 'tis true, are not renowned for their Constancy; but all your Rhetorick can never persuade me of the Frailty of her whom I adore: And though I have never yet been so happy to arrive at the Goal, at which all Lovers bend their Course, I nevertheless believe myself more beloved, than ever any was by that fair Sex. I therefore beg you to talk to me no more of the Inconstancy of this Lady, or endeavour to persuade me to the Embraces of another, both Subjects are equally odious to me: One I cannot suffer, and to the other I can never consent.'

The Confident, finding it impossible to change his Inclinations, and that 'twas labouring in vain to endeavour to supplant the beloved Milaneze, returned to her Friend who had employed her in this Embassy, and acquainted her with all the Discourse she had had with Don Gonzalo; that his Heart was already engaged, and had vowed a Constancy which appeared impregnable and beyond the Force of Temptation. The Lady was piqued and fretted to have a Milaneze preferr'd before her, she thought her Charms equal, if not superiour to any; yet upon Reflection she could not blame the Don for his Constancy: She therefore, making a Virtue of Necessity, resolved to be contented, she praised him for his honourable Behaviour to both; she esteemed and valued him for his good though uncommon Principles; and the Heat and Passion of Desire, diminishing by Degrees, changed at length into a solid Friendship, that afterwards proved of great Service to Don Gonzalo in the Accidents of his future Years.

Whilst this past, at Milan the charming Livia was dying with Impatience to see her dear Don Gonzalo, and to give him the last Favours; this she concluded would rivet him fast to her Heart, and was what he merited for the Dangers he had run for her sake. She understood that her Husband was obliged to go out of Town upon some urgent Affairs, and was impatient till she had sent the Don this Letter.

'Destiny has, I hope, at least abated of its Rigour, and Fortune begins to shew a more favourable Countenance: What gives me these Thoughts is the Obligation my Husband lyes under to go out of Town, for some Days, upon Affairs of Consequence. I am ravished at the Opportunity: I leave you to tell me the same thing more significantly, when I see you; there can be nothing apprehended to interrupt what I have to communicate to you; therefore your speedy Arrival or Answer I expect with the greatest Impatience.

'Adieu.'

Don Gonzalo was ready to die with Joy at this good News, he was equipping himself with all Haste for his Journey; but whether the Advocate in the Church, who had been so free with the Constancy of the Sex, had made any Impression upon him, or for what other Reason I know not, he began to be wavering in his Thoughts. Sometimes he reflected upon the Danger of being taken by his Enemies upon the Way, and the Hazard he run of his Life; it might perhaps be a counterfeit Letter to draw him into a Snare, or if it should come from the very Livia, how did he know whether she resented not his Absence, and took this Method for a secure Revenge; or whether the Husband, having had some Suspicion of the Intrigue, might not force her to this Method, in order to repay the Injury. Innumerable Thoughts of this kind troubled his Breast, and made him doubtful what to do, or how to fix his Resolutions. He intended therefore to consult with a Friend of his, who knew of his Intrigue with Livia, and happened to be now at Mantua about this Affair; he went to him, shewed him the Lady's Letter, and desired his Advice. His Friend honestly told him his Opinion, pointed to him the Dangers he underwent, and the Imprudence to hazard his Life for such a Trifle as the Possession of an inconstant Woman: That though the present Satisfaction might be agreeable to his youthful Fancy, he would in Time be of another Opinion, when Years and Sense had more matured his Understanding; that the Pleasure was doubtful, but the future Punishment and Repentance certain: In fine, he used so many Arguments, and made so reforming a Sermon, that the Don defer'd his Journey that Evening, he went to Bed; the Thoughts of Honour, Fear, Disappointment, Desire, and the like, had made such a Combat in his Mind, that he slept not for the whole Night: His waking Pensiveness, and the warm Bed, brought his Mistress afresh into his Heart; and powerful Love became Conqueror of all the Passions, for no sooner broke the Day, but he resolved to shake off all timorous Apprehensions, and haste to his dear expecting Livia. He took with him some Mantuan Servants he could most confide in, and escaping the Danger of being taken by the way, he quickly arrived safely at Milan; taking up his Lodging at the House of a trusty Friend, he soon communicated his Arrival to Livia, and begg'd she would grant him the Favour to see her. Although Livia was impatient to see the Don, she could not forbear being concerned at his Stay in Milan, knowing how much he was exposed to the Jealousies and Suspicions of the French, who failed not, at least once a Week, to search every House where those of the discontented Party were thought to inhabit. She nevertheless writ a Billet to Don Gonzalo, wherein she expressed her Love as well as Fear, and desired him to come about the Evening in a Disguise to her House; that she would be at the Door ready to receive him, and it being the Time of Carnival, that he should acquaint her of some particular Sign or Token, whereby she might distinguish him from the other Persons in Masquerade who thronged the Streets. Don Gonzalo punctually obeyed the Lady's Commands, he came into the Street where Livia dwelt, whom he observed talking to some Cavaliers in Masks; these seeing Gonzalo advance near the Door with a Feather in his Hat after the Spanish Fashion, and believing by the Lady's Carriage that there was a Design of conversing together, they civilly withdrew to afford them the greater Liberty.

The Excess of Joy which Gonzalo received when he found himself alone with his dear Livia was so great, that the Surprize made him incapable to express himself; he remained mute for some Time, but when he began to recover his Spirits, 'Oh, my charming Livia, said he, I adore you with that Respect, that I am ready to fall at your Feet a Victim to my Passion. No Dangers could detain me from obeying the agreeable Commands of my dear obliging Livia, I would choose rather to die in her Presence this Moment, than taste for ever the insipid Pleasures of Life without her.' 'My Gonzalo, said she, these are convincing Demonstrations of your Passion for me, and Inclination will make me have the Weakness at least to receive them as such; my Heart cannot be ungrateful, it pants in your Favour, and my Arms are open to receive you; the Dangers and Perils you have contemned for me I place to your Account, and shall be repaid in boundless Love. For my sake you have often run the Hazard of your Life, 'twould be ungrateful not to venture mine for you; but when the Satisfaction, the Happiness of my beloved Gonzalo is in the Case, no Fears of Torment, or a jealous Husband's Care, shall fright me from the Gratitude I owe my dear Gonzalo. This Minute I thought to have been happy, but an unlucky Chance has robb'd me of my Wishes, and distanced my expected Joy; with Pain I discover to you the Occasion of my Grief, lest you should think it Coldness or Unkindness in your Livia: My Husband, who I thought would have been absent for three or four Days, will unexpectedly return this Night to Milan; let not this give you any hard Thoughts of me, or make you repent the Dangers you have run, for if you will come to this Place about four Hours hence, I'll use my female Arts, and do all that is possible to give you a Sample of those future Joys which a better Opportunity, I hope, will yield us with more Satisfaction. And in case any thing should happen to prevent my coming, I will send my Maid to acquaint you with it.'

This unexpected Return a little mortified the Don; however, he was extremely pleased with the Assignation she had made him, and thought it then convenient for that Time to take his Leave: The remaining Time he wasted at home, armed himself for the Purpose, and came to the House at the appointed Hour. He was but just there, when he heard at a very little Distance, clashing of Swords, and a great Noise, as if several were engaged in a Rencounter; and one of them who was very much wounded, crying out Murder, and flying towards Livia's Gate, where he fell down dead, at the Time the Maid was opening the Door for Don Gonzalo, some of the Neighbours who came to their Windows at the Noise saw Gonzalo with a naked Sword in his Hand, which he had drawn for his Defense in the Clamour, enter the Door which was open. He was conducted into a private Apartment by the Servant, and every thing being quiet in the Street, Livia came down to invite her Lover into a more convenient Chamber, where there might be no Interruption to their mutual Satisfaction. But alas! in the midst of their tender Expressions for their reciprocal Joy and Content for this ravishing Opportunity, they were disturbed by a violent knocking at the Gate; for the Guard and Officers of Justice, finding in their Rounds a murdered Body lying at the Door, (and being informed by some Neighbours, of whom they made Enquiry, that truly they knew not the Occasion, but they saw a Man with a naked Sword go into the House,) made them desire Entrance, to be better informed of the Affair. Livia, who overheard them speaking French, doubted not but they had discovered by the Means of some of their Spies, that Gonzalo was at her House, and that they were come thither with Intentions to apprehend him, and was ready to die with Fear and Confusion. Gonzalo was nevertheless undaunted, and retained a Presence of Mind; and though he wished himself at Mantua safe with his Friend that advised him against this Attempt, he did what he thought most likely to save him in this Extremity: And being a little assisted by the trembling Livia, he mounted up into the Chimney with his drawn Sword, where he could not long have remained had it not happened that a large Nail had been drove into the Back for some other Occasion, upon which he rested one of his Feet to support the Weight of his whole Body, in which uneasy Condition he waited the Uncertainty of his Fate.

When Livia had thus provided for the Security of her Gallant, finding that the Guards threatned to break open the Door, she took the Key and unlocked it herself with an Authority becoming the Mistress of the House, and one of her Condition, asked the Captain what made him dare to disturb her at that unseasonable Hour, especially in the Absence of her Husband. The Captain begg'd her Pardon very civilly, that he was forced to this Rudeness contrary to his Inclinations; for there being a Murder committed in the Street, and being informed that the Offender had taken Refuge in this House, they were obliged to obey their Orders. 'Upon my Word, Captain, says Livia, you have been falsly informed, for during my Husband's Absence I have kept my Doors locked and the Key always in my own Possession; yet nevertheless to clear me from the Scandal of harbouring any body in my House from the Hands of Justice, search about, I beseech you, all the Chambers and Doors shall be open to you.'

The Concern the Gallant was in when he heard the French in the Chamber is scarcely to be imagined; he began to detest intriguing and the Deceits of Love, and his Heart told him that he was in a fair Way to be punished by the Justice of Heaven, for endeavouring to commit so horrible an Offence, to the irreparable Prejudice of an innocent Person. But Providence had not yet designed his Death, for the Guards not discovering any Person in the House retired, and the Don with a great deal of Joy leaped from his dark Apartment with an Intention to embrace his Livia, and to heighten the coming Pleasure by the Thoughts of the Dangers they had escaped. But wanton Fortune play'd him another Trick, for the Husband arriving just at that Time, finding his Doors open and a Crowd in the Street, knew not to what to attribute the Reason. The arrival of the Husband gave Livia more Astonishment than the Guards had done before; Fear and Concern made her look pale like Death; and finding by her Husband that he took Notice at the Change of her Countenance, 'Would you believe it, my dear Husband, said she, these Guards have extremely disordered me, they have had the Insolence to search your House in your Absence; I'll shew you the Chambers where they looked in every Corner, here (carrying him into the Room where Gonzalo was again got into the Chimney that he might hear their Discourse) but alas! my dear Life, they saw no more than you do now; and soon went satisfied away just as you came in.' At this the Husband went down himself to lock the Doors fast, and in the mean Time Livia excused herself to her Lover, for being obliged to entertain her Husband longer than she desired.

The House being thus secured, the Husband was retiring to his Apartment to repose himself, when there was a fresh Alarm at the Door; this gave fresh Apprehension to Gonzalo, and was likely to delay his Torture; for there being no more than a thin Iron upon which he could rest one Foot only, he was so tired that he could scarcely endure his Post, being all the while upon the Rack. The Person who had before acquainted the Officers of Justice that he had seen a Man with a naked Sword retire into Livia's House when the Man fell dead at the Door, was carried to Prison; and being more strictly examined, codfirmed his Deposition with such Imprecations and Oaths, that the Guard could do no less than immediately obey the Orders to search the House again; this made them thunder so violently at the Door. The Husband came down himself to open the Door, and resenting in his Expressions the Dishonour they did his House by this Disturbance, when he assured them there was no body concealed, he let fall some Words at which the Officers thought themselves affronted; and therefore took the Master of the House and all the Servants into their Custody, and without hearkning to any Reasons or Excuses, carried them all Prisoners to the Castle. Gonzalo still in the Chimney knew not what to make of all this Noise and Confusion; and Livia seeing her Husband drag'd to Prison, was not less concerned, but upon second Thoughts she began to take Comfort: Two things contributed to her Consolation, one was the Innocency of her Husband, and the other, that contrary to her Expectations she had a lucky Opportunity to gratify her own, as well as her Gallant's Desires; and her Joy ought to exceed her Grief in the same Degree that a warm wishing Lover is preferable to a dull indifferent Husband.

Full of the Delight of these amorous Thoughts she went into the Chamber where Don Gonzalo was still confined to his sooty Prison. 'Now, my Life, said she, with great Joy, we have Time to reap a full Harvest of that Happiness we have so long desired; there is no ill-natured Obstacle to interrupt our Pleasures; the Storms, the vexatious Disappointmens are all past, and my heaving Bosom, panting with Love, invites you to a full Possession. Fly with eager Joy into the Arms of Venus, she longs to clasp her warlike Mars within her tender Arms. The little Boy has made his Quiver of me, and has stuck all his keen Arrows in my wounded Heart.' 'Oh! my dear Livia, cried the Don, let us give a Truce to Words, we will take such Joys that those cannot express: Fancy can scarcely reach the Expectation. Then let me embrace you thus, my dearest Livia, thou ample Recompence for all my Dangers past, and generous Purchaser of all my future Days.' In these Raptures they had happily passed the Night, when in the Morning the Don returned to his Apartment at his Friend's House: He guessed by the Hour Gonzalo came in, how he had spent the Night; and like a Friend gave him that Counsel, like other Advisers, which he would not follow himself, to avoid such dangerous Practices. But bold Love fears no Danger, the Satisfaction was too great to be quitted so soon, and a lucky Fate contributed to the Prolongation; for the Husband being detained seven Days in the Prison before he could give a satisfactory Proof of his Innocence, Don Gonzalo omitted not a single Moment when an Opportunity presented to pay his Visit: But to be sure he failed not to pass every wished-for Night, notwithstanding the Peril and Hazard of a Discovery, in the Arms and Embraces of his charming loving Livia.

He would have longer perhaps continued his Residence in this City, had not Monsieur Mompoier (who was then Governor of Milan for the King of France) hearing Gonzalo was in Town, searched his Mother's House for him. It was therefore high time to be gone, and taking his Way by Bergamo and Brescia, he arrived safely at Mantua, where he told his Adventures to his old Friend, who soundly rallied him for his Folly and the Blindness of his Passion.

Here the Mariner finished his Story, which by the Variety of Accidents very much pleased the Company. Not long after, we had more Reason to be contented, for one of the Seamen, with great Joy, claimed the usual Reward given by the Passengers to the first Discoverer of Land; others soon climbed up the Shrouds to know the Truth, his Opinion was confirmed, the good News spread a general Joy, and in two Days we were got into the Downs, safe from the Dangers of so perilous a Voyage. This happened at the Time when the English Fleet, in Conjunction with the French, were preparing to engage the Dutch. This occasioned fresh Afflictions, for there was a terrible Engagement between the British and Dutch Fleets; and it was fought with such Courage and Resolution, that both Sides were very much disabled, and it remained doubtful whose Right it was to boast of the Victory, which each pretended to; however, the English lost so many of their Seamen, that they found it necessary to recruit; and the Orders for pressing all who had been at Sea were executed with such Haste and Diligence, that poor Charles and I were seized almost as soon as on shore, by the Press-Gang, and forced into the Ship for Service.

This Misfortune troubled me more than when I was first carried a Slave to Turkey. But Patience was our only Comfort, and I found there was no Discharge to be expected unless I would discover my Sex, which would occasion a Vexation not to be born, the parting me from my dear Charles, the greatest Affliction that could happen to me. I therefore chose this milder Fate, and without endeavouring to be released, submitted to my Destiny.

We were carried on board, where we found the Mariners employed in repairing their Tackle, and setting every thing in order with the greatest Application. It was about the middle of June when we met with the Dutch Fleet; their Number of Ships was something less than ours: Their Fleet was divided into three Squadrons, the first was commanded by Trump, who seeing the British Fleet retiring towards their own Coasts mistook it for Fear, followed them, and a sharp Engagement ensued, both Fleets attacking one the other with the most undaunted Courage and Resolution. It was about five in the Evening when our Ship, which belonged to the blue Squadron, was engaged; and the Fire continued violently on both Sides till eleven, when the Darkness of the Night parted us. This was a much sharper Engagement than any I had ever yet experienced, and I never was so sensible of Fear. The Misery and Complaints of the poor wounded Mariners moved my Heart to pity their Condition, and I was ready to betray my Disguise by my watry Eyes.

After the second Engagement, many of the Seamen were permitted to go on Shore to refresh themselves, upon their Promise of returning on board upon the first Orders. Charles and I were of this Number, we were very uneasy at our last Disaster, and resolved at any rate to quit the Service. There happened to be about this Time a considerable Fair, where many Londoners came well stocked with Variety of Goods of all Kinds, as well as fashionable Clothes of all Sorts, ready made, to supply the Country Gentry of both Sexes; hither my Charles and I repaired, believing that our Escape and Safety could not be better accomplished, than by changing our Garb; therefore, with some of the Gold which Sabina the fair amorous Turk had presented me, I bought the richest Attire I could meet with, and every thing belonging to the female Sex answerable to it. Charles likewise bought him a genteel modish Suit, and to prevent his being known, he cut off his own Hair, and bought one of the best Perukes the Fair would afford. We quitted our slavish and Sea Garb, and thus accoutered, it was impossible to know us. My Circumstances now forced me to rely upon his Honour, we were constrained to pass for Man and Wife, and he gave me all the Assurances of solemn Vows and Imprecations, that the Ceremony should be solemnized at the first convenient Opportunity: 'Twould have been too scrupulous not to have trusted to his Honour. Convenience, and a Desire of being more firmly his, gained my Consent. We now passed for Londoners that were come thither for our Diversion, we lived as well as our Stock would permit; and when what we were indebted to the House was discharged, we found only two Crowns remaining. Charles therefore resolved to enquire after his Relations, to acquaint them of the Accidents he had met with, and to request them that they would pardon all his former Faults, and send him a Bill sufficient to defray his Expences up to Town. To this Purpose he intended to write when he came home, for we were now diverting ourselves amongst the rest at a Droll. The House was thronged, and therefore if we intended to see it, we must sit on a Bench upon the Stage; which is esteemed the best Place, though exposed to the Sight of the whole Booth. I took Notice that there was a Person in the Pit who all the Time the Droll was acting, had his Eyes continually upon Charles or me; I was afraid it might have been some Volunteer or Officer who had been on board our Ship, but I could not remember I had ever seen him, and that Uneasiness vanished. When the Play was ended he came upon the Stage, looking wishfully upon Charles, when approaching after a ceremonious Manner, 'Sir, said he, I must ask your Pardon, if I mistake you for another, though I should not make you this Address had I not some Reason for my Opinion: I have a Cousin who has been absent from his Father and Mother for some Time, and they know not what is become of him, and you are so perfectly like him, that I think I may be positive you are the same Person; I wish you would confirm me in my Thoughts, that I may not only myself congratulate you upon your Return, but also be the first Messenger of the News to your aged Parents, who will be ready to expire with Joy at the Advice of your Arrival.'

He had scarcely uttered these Words, when Charles, who had fixedly looked upon him, perfectly remembred his Figure and Person; and throwing his Arms about his Neck, and kissing him first on one Cheek and then on the other, after the Mode of the Beaus, 'Could I ever think, says he, of being so happy to see you at this Place! Or how is it possible that you should know me after the Alteration that all the Hardships I have suffered must have occasioned in my Face? I concluded myself so altered, that my nearest Relations would not be able to know me at my first Appearance: Since we were educated together, you may perhaps remember that I was desperately in Love with a young Lady called Lucinda, that she was on a sudden carried away, and the Person who committed the Fact remained undiscovered; it was for the Love of this Lady that I forsook my Relations, and left my Country in search either of her or Death: For her I have had the Affliction to have wasted so many Years in Misery and Hardship, when I was rewarded with unexpected Happiness, by finding her where I could scarcely wish, even in the Bonds of Slavery. As she was the Cause of my leaving my Friends and Country, so she is the happy Occasion of my Return, which I hope will not be ungrateful to my Relations, or unhappy to us.' Richardson (which was the Name of my Husband's Cousin) knowing me to be the same Lucinda who was so beloved by his Cousin, saluted me with all Respect, was extremely glad to see us, and expressed his Joy in every Action. He invited us to come and stay at his House, and would not receive any Denial. He happened to marry a rich Heiress of this Country, where they were settled and lived comfortably, and possessed the Affections of their Neighbours, by living as hospitably as their Fortunes would permit. Our Treasure was very near expended, but the Smiles of Fortune were every Day more in our Favour; and thinking this kind Proffer not the least Proof of it, we willingly accepted the Invitation. His Coach carried us to his House, where his Wife received us with all good Manners and Civility. The good Entertainment we met with soon recovered us from the Fatigue of the Voyage, and we were yet more overjoyed when we heard that my Charles's Father and Mother were still alive, and enjoyed a healthful old Age. We therefore desired that he would write to our Father, to acquaint him with our Arrival, and that he would please to send us some Bills to enable him to come and pay his Duty to him. I was in great Pain to know the Condition of my Parents, but no one here was able to give me any Information; I was therefore obliged to wait till I should arrive at London. In the mean Time Charles thought it not improper to write the following Letter himself.

'I am sensible what Excess of Trouble and Grief my undutiful Disobedience must have occasioned to the best of Parents, whose unwearied Indulgence deserved the greatest Thankfulness and Submission. But so averse is unexperienced Youth to the wise Maxims of riper Years, that they generally foolishly refuse the Advice of those whose Aim is solely at their Establishment and Welfare. This I have Reason to know by sad Experience, it being sufficiently imprinted in me by the manifold Hardships and Misfortunes I have suffered ever since I became undutiful; and the Consideration of what Pains I have undergone will, I hope, the sooner move my dear Father to pardon my undutiful Behaviour. It was not Disrespect or want of Reverence for my Parents that drew me into my first Crime; my tender Heart fell into the first bewitching Passion Love. I was ashamed to own my Crime, which had I revealed to my indulgent Parents, considering the Object, they would perhaps have thought pardonable in such tender Years, and might have used their Interest to make me happy in the Choice that was rooted so firmly in my Heart: I durst not venture to disclose my Passion for fear of being forbid what I found I could not live without, the Possession of my beloved Lucinda; she had left her Relations, but whether she was forced away, or fled by her own Consent, no one knew, and even I, who was a Party in the Plot, was ignorant of the Event. When she was gone, I could not stay behind, I was uneasy till I had searched the World for her, left you my dear Relations, my Country, and all my Expectations, with a Design never to return till I had found the powerful Charmer. Fortune rewarded my Constancy, and, when least expected, threw her into my Arms; and we are both returned from Turkish Slavery with Hopes of Pardon and Forgiveness from my much injured Parents. I hope my Fault will appear the less, when you consider I have not loved below myself, neither for Riches or Degree. You was a Witness of the first Seeds, when in our Childhood there was a growing Inclination between me and Lucinda, the Daughter of Mr. W. It was then your Diversion, not Dislike, and now 'tis grown mature, will I hope meet with your Excuse and Approbation. I have many surprizing Accidents to acquaint you withal; but the most grateful to my Remembrance, next to your Forgiveness, is the Reception my Cousin is pleased to give us after our fatiguing Voyage, and in so free and generous a Manner, that I shall always think myself obliged to acknowledge it. This Tenderness from my Relations stirs up my Shame, and sets my Heart a bleeding at the Remembrance of my Undutifulness; and I cannot too humbly or too often implore your Pardon for all past Miscarriages, with Assurances of a contrary Behaviour for the Time to come. I dare not approach you until I have Demonstrations of your Forgiveness under your own Hand, when upon your Permission I will pay my Duty to you with the greatest Expedition, if the Joy of the News will give me Leave to live so long. Our Journey has been very expensive; I need say no more to a Father I always found so indulgent. If I am so happy to succeed in the only Thing I covet, the being re-established in your Favour, I shall endeavour for the future by my Deportment, and all my Actions, to shew myself

'Your most Obedient
and Dutiful Son.'

This Letter was sent by the first Post, and my Cousin in the mean Time gave us what Diversion the Place afforded, till we could receive an Answer. Upon this our Happiness depended, and made the Impatience the more insupportable. This Pain did not long torment us; for, in less than eight Days, my Spouse received an Answer. Fears and Hopes caused such a Trembling and Feebleness in his Hands, that he could scarcely open the Letter. I observed his Countenance with great Attention; I found upon his reading his Aspect began to clear, his Eyes to sparkle, and a pleasing Joy encreasing in his Face, my Heart kept Time with him exactly, and it augur'd to me our good Success. He shewed me the Letter, which gave me an intire Satisfaction: He forgave us both, and assured my Spouse of a perfect Forgetfulness of all that was past, thanked our Cousin for this kind Entertainment, and drew a Bill of a hundred Guineas to bear our Charges up to Town, which he desired might be as soon as possible; for he long'd to see a Son after whom he grieved, and who according to his Thoughts had been long out of this World.

We secured Places in the Stage-Coach for the next Journey they went to London; and after we had taken our Leaves, and returned Thanks to our Cousin for all the Civilities we had received, early in the Morning we were ready, when the Coach came at the Hour appointed. They both of them grieved to part with us, and I was so obliged to, and had contracted such a Friendship for my she-Cousin, that I could not restrain my Tears when we separated. Three uneasy Days brought us to our Journey's End, and I had now the Pleasure of seeing dear London again. There was a Coach ready to receive us at the Inn where the Stage-Coach set up, with Orders to carry us to my Husband's Father's House. I could not forbear in our Way reflecting upon my present happy Condition, and all the various Changes of Providence; how I first left my Parents, and intended to fly into the Arms of my dear Charles, how fatally I was disappointed, and fell into the Snare laid for me by an old decrepid Lover whom I hated; that to escape from that Confinement I rather chose to submit to one of more equal Years; how I was afterwards taken and forced into Slavery, where I could expect no other but to end my Days: And that this very Accident, which appeared the most terrible that could happen to me, was the greatest Piece of Good-Fortune, since by my good Stars I there met my dear Charles, with whom I am safely arrived beyond Expectation to my own Country, kindly received by his Relations, and all our Fatigues and Troubles likely to end in a continued Happiness and Contentment to us both, and a pleasing Satisfaction to our Relations.

By this Time the Coach had brought us to the Gate, the youngest of his Sisters was expecting us, ready there to receive us. She was so transported with Joy at the Sight of her Brother, that she threw her Arms about his Neck, and was ready to stifle him with Kisses and Embraces. The Father and the Mother alarmed with this Joy, came with all Haste to the Door. My Husband at their first Appearance fell on his Knees before them, begg'd their Blessing, and Forgiveness for all the Faults and Omissions past. The old Father raised him from the Ground, hugg'd him to his Breast, and kissed him with all Endearment, his aged Eyes trickling down Tears of Joy. The Mother's Content was not less, but her Surprize was so great, that she had not Words to express herself. I was not yet out of the Memory of his two Sisters, my former Play-fellows; they came and saluted me, and were very glad to see me. The old Couple gave me a hearty Welcome, and the Joy appeared so universal, that finding myself so well received by his Family, and with so much Civility, Kindness and Respect, I was not able to bear the Satisfaction, but fell into a Swoon with Excess of Joy, in which I might have died had not they taken all Care to recover me. I came quickly to myself, when the Supper was set upon the Table. When that was ended, they obliged me to give an Account of my several Adventures. I gave them so lively a Description of the Misfortunes that I had suffered, that no one was so hard-hearted to refrain from paying the Tribute of their Tears. I was now longing to hear what had happened to my Parents, who were so kind to provide a rich Fortune for me when I was so undutiful to leave them; but, to my Grief, my Spouse's Father acquainted me, that my Mother, being not able to live without me, died with Grief for my Loss two Months after I went away; that my Father was discontented and melancholy, and being wasted and decay'd with Grief upon the same Occasion, died within the Space of two Years: That the Estate was left to my Uncle, a Brother of his, upon this Condition nevertheless, that in case I should ever return home, he should be obliged to give me three Parts in four of the whole. My present Joy was a little eclipsed by the Loss of my Father and Mother, and I could not forgive myself when I thought I was accessary to their Deaths. The whole Family used all the Means possible to comfort me; they told me that there was a Time allotted by Providence when every one should die, that the Decree was not to be prevented by human Means, that it was in vain to grieve for what there could be no Remedy; and what Reason had we to lament their quitting this World below, when they were gone to enjoy one much more transcending in Happiness above?

These sorts of Consolations, which were administered to me every Day, began to take Place, and in some Degree diminish my Grief. I then thought it convenient to claim the Fortune that belonged to me. I was apprehensive of some Difficulties, being well acquainted with my Uncle's covetous Inclination; I therefore consulted with my Husband and his Father about it, who were of Opinion, that I should in the first Place make him a civil Visit to try if I could persuade him in a friendly manner to do me Justice, and that if he refused, I should use other Methods to compel him to it. In Compliance with this Advice I went to my Uncle, who had already heard of my Arrival, but would not by any Means own me as a Relation. I gave him many undeniable Signs and Demonstrations, told him many particular Actions and Events in the Family which no other Person could know, but it was all to little Purpose; for he stormed and swore that he knew me not; that it was all a Trick and Cheat contrived to rob him of what he had; that I was a false Impostor, for he had sufficient Testimony to prove that Lucinda, whose Name and Person I assumed, died in France above five Years since. I replied with as much Modesty as I was capable of using on this Occasion to all he said, endeavouring to bring him to Consideration; but he still grew the more out of Temper, and was at last so outragious as to bid me go out of the House, and to threaten me if ever I came there again to send me to the House of Correction.

After this Mortification I returned to my Spouse, and gave him an Account how my Uncle received me. He promised me to go to him with his Father the next Day: They were as good as their Promise, but their Reasons were not of more Force; my Uncle still persisted and swore that he knew me not, and that I had not the least Resemblance to his Niece Lucinda. He thought by this Means to keep Possession of what belonged to me. Finding there was no Hopes of obtaining our Right in this peaceable Application, we were obliged to have Recourse to publick Justice; and though he gave us all the Trouble and Delay that his litigious Inclinations could procure, he found himself at last so hampered and involved in this Law-Suit, and so little Success to be expected on his Side, when I should produce the Cloud of Witnesses, who could do no otherwise than testify in my Favour to prove me beyond Doubt the Person I pretended to be, that he underhand made Applications of an amicable Agreement, in case I would release some Part of my Demand. I considered on my Side, that Law-Suits were tedious and vexatious, and Right, though very plain, yet sometimes very uncertain to be obtained; that of two Evils the least was to be chosen: For which Reasons, with many more of the same Kind, I was prevailed upon to make him an Abatement, and consented to accept of the half of what was due, in Hopes that this friendly Compliance might in Time make me, or mine, Possessors of the rest, after the Death of my Uncle, who had no Children of his own. He soon closed with my Agreement, and we were very good Friends and perfectly reconciled.

The Ceremony of my Marriage being performed abroad was not so satisfactory to my Parents; they would therefore be better pleased to have it celebrated after the Custom of this Country. We soon gave our Consents to all they would please to command; Relations were invited, and every thing prepared to solemnize the Wedding a second time: Grief was laid aside, and Mirth and Joy reigned without Interruption, and I may say, that I have scarcely been sensible of a Minute of Affliction since that happy Time, when this Marriage was reiterated, which was in the Year—to both our Satisfactions, as well as the Joy and Delight of our Relations. When this was past, we retired to a Country Seat that stood pleasantly, and belonged to the Family, where, tired with the Vanity of this World, we resolved to live retired, and be a mutual Happiness to each other. Providence has given a Blessing to our Designs, by making me the Mother of three hopeful Boys. The eldest has a Spirit of rambling, and is already gone to seek his Fortune in the World; so powerful are the latent Seeds of the Parents: And if any Judgment may be made from his Temper, and those surprizing Accidents that have already happened to him, he will in Time, I am afraid, furnish some Minutes for a Narration more surprizing than any that have befallen his Relations. Yet Providence, together with the sad Example of the Sufferings of his Parents in this lively Plan drawn by themselves, will make him, I hope, return to his Duty. And had not this Intention, joined with the importunate Desires of some Ladies, who often oblige me with their Visits, prevailed with me to publish this in Prevention of a false Account that was coming abroad, as I understood to my Prejudice, these Memoirs would scarcely have seen the Light; being not over-desirous of having that renewed to the World, which was the Product of my younger Years, and which I wish may remain for ever in Oblivion.

 
 
 

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