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should have been broken but for the circumstances which occurred last night-and how was it broken then ? Ah, Julia! was it not the voice of your own feelings that echoed through mine, and the sound you had yourself awakened terrified and appalled you! But be calm, for the echo has died away. Henceforth all shall be silent, though sleepless as before, and the rosy words on that dear lily I will try and remember only as the inscription on those of the statues of Isis, which shall haunt me with the mysterious sounds of_I am all that has been, that shall be, and none among mortals has hitherto taken off my veil.'
“To prove the sincerity of my resolution, I would leave you to-morrow, but that the scene of yesterday rushes back upon my memory, and I cannot divest myself of the painful yet delightful idea, that during this journey I may be again some slight protection and of some trifling use to you; and to leave you ill, deserted, and neglected, is more than I can, than i ought to do. Once in England, you will, at least, be within reach of your own family, and then, or perhaps before then, never will I knowingly obtrude myself into your presence; but I will not conceal from you, that a shudder comes over me, when I think that there may be a crisis in your fate, too terrible, too overwhelming for even you to bear up against. Yes, a moment may come, when your endurance, which is as a rock, and your virtue, which is as a beacon, may be wrecked in the dark treachery of an unexpected whirlpool.
“I know an instance, and only one, of a woman who had endured more, because she had loved more than you and who was a better wife, because there was more scope for sacrifices and exertion in her lot than even in yours. Yes, Julia, that woman had loved her husband deeply and devotedly for years-had anticipated his every wish-concealed his every faultpromoted his every interest, real or imaginary-endured the violence of his temper, which vented itself in acts of personal brutality, that even by his own acknowledgment amounted to madness-had writhed severely, but silently, under the interference, jealousies, and falsehoods of his family; nay, more, had played the Greselda, when her hearth and home had been polluted by the presence of his mistresses(when of her own sphere of life)--and in point of
money had left herself pennyless to supply his extravagance. All this she did, and all this she bore without a murmur for years, or without even letting her own mother guess at its existence; and on one occasion, when he had committed a personal outrage on her, of so sanguinary and brutal a nature, that he left his house and wrote to her, saying, that having eternally disgraced himself, he should fly the country, and announce ill-health as the reason of his retirement from public life'-she generously but foolishly pitying this Lucifer spirit in his fall, who never knew pity for, or remorse about his conduct to her, brought him back, forgave, and hushed up everything. But to be under such an obligation to a woman, and that woman his wife! was what his mean sordid nature could never brook; and from that moment he organized a deep-laid plot against his poor victim. .
“He spent a whole year in looking out for a mistress, as he would for a house or a horse, and when he found one to his mind, (a low person, who, with her sisters, kept a school near a watering-place, the next thing was to take a villa for his wife, so as to have London to himself. This done, finding utter neglect not sufficient, and eternally telling her that they would be happier apart, he then spent six months in endeavouring to goad her into an open rupture, which, for the sake of her children, she was determined not to be goaded into.
“One day, in especial, she implored him, with tears, to tell her what she had done to displease him, or could do to please him : not in reality being able to say, his only answer was, 'the fact is, I never shall be able to get anything out of my mother, as long as I am on terms with you!'
" Against this there was of course no appeal-time passed on, and having received his strict orders not to presume to go to London, which was within an hour's drive, she did as she was desired; till one day, her amiable husband having announced his intention of honouring her with his company at dinner, she waited till nine o'clock, when one of his grooms brought a letter from him, stating that he was dangerously ill. His wife believing this, set off for town, whereupon, arriving at his house thus unexpectedly, she found not the invalid she expected, but unequivocal proofs of her husband's new and guilty liaison.
Indignant and disgusted at the falsehood and wickedness of his whole conduct, she remained in town that night, and wrote him a letter, couched in pretty strong language, that is, calling him by the names he deserved-which, among the well-regulated portion of society whose words are always irreproachable, let their deeds be what they may, is, I believe, considered an unpardonable offence in a wife.
“Now mark the sequel. Upon the receipt of this: violent letter, the husband went to a very distant relative of his wife's, (for as he used to tell her in a manly and honourable manner, she had neither father, nor brother, and therefore was completely in his power,) and to this relation he declared upon oath, (though the whole world knew to the contrary,) that it was false about his having a mistress; and that the violence of his wife's temper made it impossible for him to live with her! That he merely wished the separation to be temporary, as a short time might bring her to her senses. He then artfully proceeded to give her credit for every possible good quality-temper excepted-which was strange, as he had been for years in the habit of saying that he did not give her as much credit as others did, for the goodness and equanimity of her temper, as he considered it merely constitutional. However, it suited his purpose at this juncture that she should be a termagant, and, accordingly, such he declared her-adducing, as proofs of his assertion, the letters of an outraged and injured wife, who, after years of devotion and endurance found, or rather knew herself, and her children, to be turned out of their home, to make way for an abandoned woman, and to save an adulterer the expense of two establishments. Of this she was at the time fully aware; and events have proved the truth of her information. But her relation being a man of strict integrity and chivalric honour himself-though withal of a north-pole temperament, and a great respecter of the commérage de société, and cucumber conveniences of marital authority, did not conceive that there could be any appeal from the solemn word of honour of a soi-disant gentleman !-and therefore gave implicit credence to the husband's statement; negociating the whole business much after the fashion of the worthy Scotch professor, who, being disturbed in the solution of his problems, by a company of cats
that held a concert under his window, threw up the sash, and in the most gentlemanlike and gentle manner, addressed them, as he would have liked himself and his family to have been accosted, by the civil appellations of ladies and gentlemen-accompanied by an equally courteous request, that they would choose some other scene of action, and not molest him.
“Strange to say, this well-bred and pacific line of conduct had not the slightest effect upon his feline tormentors; which induced him to proceed to what he thought a very strong and decisive measure; which was, again opening the window, and in a clear and sonorous voice, reading the riot act to them; but, mirabile dictu! this also was unavailing; and the poor professor might have been suffering from their persecution till now, had not a friend opportunely come in, and fired a pistol amongst them; which produced more effect than all the learned gentleman's bland remonstrances.
" What chance then had mere truth, simplicity, and good intentions, on the part of this distant relation, against the subtle and serpent-like craft of the clever and unprincipled husband ?-who, to the depravity and pliancy of the most abject intrigue, united the vaunting of the most lofty hypocrisy—which, by placing his conduct beyond the reach of investigation, enabled him to stalk triumphantly through the world on the stilts of falsehood. Hopeless of redress from virtuous imbecility on the one side, and clever villany on the other, the poor wife grew desperate, and refused to sign the forced and degrading deed of separation; but into this she was soon compelled by her husband, who, while he was all blandness and apparent fairness to others, the attorneys, &c., wrote her the most intimidating and brutal letters-again reminding her that she had neither father nor brother, and that she had no redress, there being but one law for a woman on such occasions-a law which no woman of the slightest delicacy or feeling would or could resort to. Here, then, his every point was gained ;-and her last struggle was, to remain in her house a few weeks longer, and join in society, that her separation from her husband might not be confounded with that of a notoriously bad character, which had taken place at the time, on very disgraceful grounds.
-- " This the husband agreed to, adding, with his usual crafty plausibility, to her relative and the attorneys, that whatever redounded to his wife's respectability must conduce to his.
“ So much for his words, while his actions were to try by every underhand means possible to prevent her being noticed by any one.
“She went with her children to a miserable and secluded village in Wales; there she remained for two years; her dear friends in London, of course forgetting her with all possible expedition, and thinking it expedient to join forces with her husband; he being a rising man, who kept a good chef, gave political dinners and agreeable soirées to the most agreeable and notorious demireps in London. As for his immoralities—fellow feeling of course made them
wondrous kind' on that score; and for certain meannesses and brutalities, which the world, bad as it is, does not and cannot openly countenance, a few colossal and skilful falsehoods soon gilded them into positive virtues or venial errors. Meanwhile his poor wife, added to the great and deep wrongs she had to bear, was surrounded by coarseness and vulgarity, which, while the miserable stipend her husband allowed her, compelled her to endure, the habits of her life and her own natural refinement made almost unendurable. Still there were her children, and in looking forward to what they would be, from feeling justly proud of what they were, she endeavoured to forget the past, by living in the future; and the whole neighbourhood vying with each other in kindness and attention to her, enabled her in some degree to wade through the present. But at length the difficulty of getting masters, and the vulgarity of the locale, induced her. for her children's sake, to return to England, and settle about two days' journey from London. This so infuriated her husband, who dreaded the truths that might transpire by her returning so near her former ground, and which her absence and his diplomatic falsehoods had so successfully lulled to sleep, that he resolved upon the last cruelty and outrage in his power to inflict, that of tearing her children from her ; but not having a single thing to bring against her, this required even more than his usual caution and plausibility; for though the law of the land gives a father, however openly and notoriously