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Title: History of Tom Jones, a Foundling
Author: Fielding, Henry, 1707-1754
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "History of Tom Jones, a Foundling" ***

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By Henry Fielding




Chapter i -- The introduction to the work, or bill of fare to the

Chapter ii -- A short description of squire Allworthy, and a fuller
account of Miss Bridget Allworthy, his sister.

Chapter iii -- An odd accident which befel Mr Allworthy at his return
home. The decent behaviour of Mrs Deborah Wilkins, with some proper
animadversions on bastards.

Chapter iv -- The reader's neck brought into danger by a description;
his escape; and the great condescension of Miss Bridget Allworthy.

Chapter v -- Containing a few common matters, with a very uncommon
observation upon them.

Chapter vi -- Mrs Deborah is introduced into the parish with a
simile. A short account of Jenny Jones, with the difficulties and
discouragements which may attend young women in the pursuit of

Chapter vii -- Containing such grave matter, that the reader cannot
laugh once through the whole chapter, unless peradventure he should
laugh at the author.

Chapter viii -- A dialogue between Mesdames Bridget and Deborah;
containing more amusement, but less instruction, than the former.

Chapter ix -- Containing matters which will surprize the reader.

Chapter x -- The hospitality of Allworthy; with a short sketch of the
characters of two brothers, a doctor and a captain, who were
entertained by that gentleman.

Chapter xi -- Containing many rules, and some examples, concerning
falling in love: descriptions of beauty, and other more prudential
inducements to matrimony.

Chapter xii -- Containing what the reader may, perhaps, expect to find
in it.

Chapter xiii -- Which concludes the first book; with an instance of
ingratitude, which, we hope, will appear unnatural.


Chapter i -- Showing what kind of a history this is; what it is like,
and what it is not like.

Chapter ii -- Religious cautions against showing too much favour to
bastards; and a great discovery made by Mrs Deborah Wilkins.

Chapter iii -- The description of a domestic government founded upon
rules directly contrary to those of Aristotle.

Chapter iv -- Containing one of the most bloody battles, or rather
duels, that were ever recorded in domestic history.

Chapter v -- Containing much matter to exercise the judgment and
reflection of the reader.

Chapter vi -- The trial of Partridge, the schoolmaster, for
incontinency; the evidence of his wife; a short reflection on the
wisdom of our law; with other grave matters, which those will like
best who understand them most.

Chapter vii -- A short sketch of that felicity which prudent couples
may extract from hatred: with a short apology for those people who
overlook imperfections in their friends.

Chapter viii -- A receipt to regain the lost affections of a wife,
which hath never been known to fail in the most desperate cases.

Chapter ix -- A proof of the infallibility of the foregoing receipt,
in the lamentations of the widow; with other suitable decorations of
death, such as physicians, &c., and an epitaph in the true stile.


Chapter i -- Containing little or nothing.

Chapter ii -- The heroe of this great history appears with very bad
omens. A little tale of so LOW a kind that some may think it not worth
their notice. A word or two concerning a squire, and more relating to
a gamekeeper and a schoolmaster.

Chapter iii -- The character of Mr Square the philosopher, and of Mr
Thwackum the divine; with a dispute concerning----

Chapter iv.

Containing a necessary apology for the author; and a childish
incident, which perhaps requires an apology likewise --

Chapter v. -- The opinions of the divine and the philosopher
concerning the two boys; with some reasons for their opinions, and
other matters.

Chapter vi -- Containing a better reason still for the
before-mentioned opinions.

Chapter vii -- In which the author himself makes his appearance on the

Chapter viii -- A childish incident, in which, however, is seen a
good-natured disposition in Tom Jones.

Chapter ix -- Containing an incident of a more heinous kind, with the
comments of Thwackum and Square.

Chapter x -- In which Master Blifil and Jones appear in different


Chapter i -- Containing five pages of paper.

Chapter ii -- A short hint of what we can do in the sublime, and a
description of Miss Sophia Western.

Chapter iii -- Wherein the history goes back to commemorate a trifling
incident that happened some years since; but which, trifling as it
was, had some future consequences.

Chapter iv -- Containing such very deep and grave matters, that some
readers, perhaps, may not relish it.

Chapter v -- Containing matter accommodated to every taste.

Chapter vi -- An apology for the insensibility of Mr Jones to all the
charms of the lovely Sophia; in which possibly we may, in a
considerable degree, lower his character in the estimation of those
men of wit and gallantry who approve the heroes in most of our modern

Chapter vii -- Being the shortest chapter in this book.

Chapter viii -- A battle sung by the muse in the Homerican style, and
which none but the classical reader can taste.

Chapter ix -- Containing matter of no very peaceable colour.

Chapter x -- A story told by Mr Supple, the curate. The penetration of
Squire Western. His great love for his daughter, and the return to it
made by her.

Chapter xi -- The narrow escape of Molly Seagrim, with some
observations for which we have been forced to dive pretty deep into

Chapter xii -- Containing much clearer matters; but which flowed from
the same fountain with those in the preceding chapter.

Chapter xiii -- A dreadful accident which befel Sophia. The gallant
behaviour of Jones, and the more dreadful consequence of that
behaviour to the young lady; with a short digression in favour of the
female sex.

Chapter xiv -- The arrival of a surgeon.--His operations, and a long
dialogue between Sophia and her maid.


Chapter i -- Of the SERIOUS in writing, and for what purpose it is

Chapter ii -- In which Mr Jones receives many friendly visits during
his confinement; with some fine touches of the passion of love, scarce
visible to the naked eye.

Chapter iii -- Which all who have no heart will think to contain much
ado about nothing.

Chapter iv -- A little chapter, in which is contained a little

Chapter v -- A very long chapter, containing a very great incident.

Chapter vi -- By comparing which with the former, the reader may
possibly correct some abuse which he hath formerly been guilty of in
the application of the word love.

Chapter vii -- In which Mr Allworthy appears on a sick-bed.

Chapter viii -- Containing matter rather natural than pleasing.

Chapter ix -- Which, among other things, may serve as a comment on
that saying of Aeschines, that "drunkenness shows the mind of a man,
as a mirrour reflects his person."

Chapter x -- Showing the truth of many observations of Ovid, and of
other more grave writers, who have proved beyond contradiction, that
wine is often the forerunner of incontinency.

Chapter xi -- In which a simile in Mr Pope's period of a mile
introduces as bloody a battle as can possibly be fought without the
assistance of steel or cold iron.

Chapter xii -- In which is seen a more moving spectacle than all the
blood in the bodies of Thwackum and Blifil, and of twenty other such,
is capable of producing.


Chapter i -- Of love.

Chapter ii -- The character of Mrs Western. Her great learning and
knowledge of the world, and an instance of the deep penetration which
she derived from those advantages.

Chapter iii -- Containing two defiances to the critics.

Chapter iv -- Containing sundry curious matters.

Chapter v -- In which is related what passed between Sophia and her

Chapter vi -- Containing a dialogue between Sophia and Mrs Honour,
which may a little relieve those tender affections which the foregoing
scene may have raised in the mind of a good-natured reader.

Chapter vii -- A picture of formal courtship in miniature, as it
always ought to be drawn, and a scene of a tenderer kind painted at
full length.

Chapter viii -- The meeting between Jones and Sophia.

Chapter ix -- Being of a much more tempestuous kind than the former.

Chapter x -- In which Mr Western visits Mr Allworthy.

Chapter xi -- A short chapter; but which contains sufficient matter to
affect the good-natured reader.

Chapter xii -- Containing love-letters, &c.

Chapter xiii -- The behaviour of Sophia on the present occasion; which
none of her sex will blame, who are capable of behaving in the same
manner. And the discussion of a knotty point in the court of

Chapter xiv -- A short chapter, containing a short dialogue between
Squire Western and his sister.


Chapter i -- A comparison between the world and the stage.

Chapter ii -- Containing a conversation which Mr Jones had with

Chapter iii -- Containing several dialogues.

Chapter iv -- A picture of a country gentlewoman taken from the life.

Chapter v -- The generous behaviour of Sophia towards her aunt.

Chapter vi -- Containing great variety of matter.

Chapter vii -- A strange resolution of Sophia, and a more strange
stratagem of Mrs Honour.

Chapter viii -- Containing scenes of altercation, of no very uncommon

Chapter ix -- The wise demeanour of Mr Western in the character of a
magistrate. A hint to justices of peace, concerning the necessary
qualifications of a clerk; with extraordinary instances of paternal
madness and filial affection.

Chapter x -- Containing several matters, natural enough perhaps, but

Chapter xi -- The adventure of a company of soldiers.

Chapter xii -- The adventure of a company of officers.

Chapter xiii -- Containing the great address of the landlady, the
great learning of a surgeon, and the solid skill in casuistry of the
worthy lieutenant.

Chapter xiv -- A most dreadful chapter indeed; and which few readers
ought to venture upon in an evening, especially when alone.

Chapter xv -- The conclusion of the foregoing adventure.


Chapter i -- A wonderful long chapter concerning the marvellous; being
much the longest of all our introductory chapters.

Chapter ii -- In which the landlady pays a visit to Mr Jones.

Chapter iii -- In which the surgeon makes his second appearance.

Chapter iv -- In which is introduced one of the pleasantest barbers
that was ever recorded in history, the barber of Bagdad, or he in Don
Quixote, not excepted.

Chapter v -- A dialogue between Mr Jones and the barber.

Chapter vi -- In which more of the talents of Mr Benjamin will appear,
as well as who this extraordinary person was.

Chapter vii -- Containing better reasons than any which have yet
appeared for the conduct of Partridge; an apology for the weakness of
Jones; and some further anecdotes concerning my landlady.

Chapter viii -- Jones arrives at Gloucester, and goes to the Bell; the
character of that house, and of a petty-fogger which he there meets

Chapter ix -- Containing several dialogues between Jones and
Partridge, concerning love, cold, hunger, and other matters; with the
lucky and narrow escape of Partridge, as he was on the very brink of
making a fatal discovery to his friend.

Chapter x -- In which our travellers meet with a very extraordinary

Chapter xi -- In which the Man of the Hill begins to relate his

Chapter xii -- In which the Man of the Hill continues his history.

Chapter xiii -- In which the foregoing story is farther continued.

Chapter xiv -- In which the Man of the Hill concludes his history.

Chapter xv -- A brief history of Europe; and a curious discourse
between Mr Jones and the Man of the Hill.


Chapter i -- Of those who lawfully may, and of those who may not,
write such histories as this.

Chapter ii -- Containing a very surprizing adventure indeed, which Mr
Jones met with in his walk with the Man of the Hill.

Chapter iii -- The arrival of Mr Jones with his lady at the inn; with
a very full description of the battle of Upton.

Chapter iv -- In which the arrival of a man of war puts a final end to
hostilities, and causes the conclusion of a firm and lasting peace
between all parties.

Chapter v -- An apology for all heroes who have good stomachs, with a
description of a battle of the amorous kind.

Chapter vi -- A friendly conversation in the kitchen, which had a very
common, though not very friendly, conclusion.

Chapter vii -- Containing a fuller account of Mrs Waters, and by what
means she came into that distressful situation from which she was
rescued by Jones.


Chapter i -- Containing instructions very necessary to be perused by
modern critics.

Chapter ii -- Containing the arrival of an Irish gentleman, with very
extraordinary adventures which ensued at the inn.

Chapter iii -- A dialogue between the landlady and Susan the
chamber-maid, proper to be read by all inn-keepers and their servants;
with the arrival, and affable behaviour of a beautiful young lady;
which may teach persons of condition how they may acquire the love of
the whole world.

Chapter iv -- Containing infallible nostrums for procuring universal
disesteem and hatred.

Chapter v -- Showing who the amiable lady, and her unamiable maid,

Chapter vi -- Containing, among other things, the ingenuity of
Partridge, the madness of Jones, and the folly of Fitzpatrick.

Chapter vii -- In which are concluded the adventures that happened at
the inn at Upton.

Chapter viii -- In which the history goes backward.

Chapter ix -- The escape of Sophia.


Chapter i -- A crust for the critics.

Chapter ii -- The adventures which Sophia met with after her leaving

Chapter iii -- A very short chapter, in which however is a sun, a
moon, a star, and an angel.

Chapter iv -- The history of Mrs Fitzpatrick.

Chapter v -- In which the history of Mrs Fitzpatrick is continued.

Chapter vi -- In which the mistake of the landlord throws Sophia into
a dreadful consternation.

Chapter vii -- In which Mrs Fitzpatrick concludes her history.

Chapter viii -- A dreadful alarm in the inn, with the arrival of an
unexpected friend of Mrs Fitzpatrick.

Chapter ix -- The morning introduced in some pretty writing. A
stagecoach. The civility of chambermaids. The heroic temper of
Sophia. Her generosity.  The return to it. The departure of the
company, and their arrival at London; with some remarks for the use of

Chapter x -- Containing a hint or two concerning virtue, and a few
more concerning suspicion.


Chapter i -- Showing what is to be deemed plagiarism in a modern
author, and what is to be considered as lawful prize.

Chapter ii -- In which, though the squire doth not find his daughter,
something is found which puts an end to his pursuit.

Chapter iii -- The departure of Jones from Upton, with what passed
between him and Partridge on the road.

Chapter iv -- The adventure of a beggar-man.

Chapter v -- Containing more adventures which Mr Jones and his
companion met on the road.

Chapter vi -- From which it may be inferred that the best things are
liable to be misunderstood and misinterpreted.

Chapter vii -- Containing a remark or two of our own and many more of
the good company assembled in the kitchen.

Chapter viii -- In which fortune seems to have been in a better humour
with Jones than we have hitherto seen her.

Chapter ix -- Containing little more than a few odd observations.

Chapter x -- In which Mr Jones and Mr Dowling drink a bottle together.

Chapter xi -- The disasters which befel Jones on his departure for
Coventry; with the sage remarks of Partridge.

Chapter xii -- Relates that Mr Jones continued his journey, contrary
to the advice of Partridge, with what happened on that occasion.

Chapter xiii -- A dialogue between Jones and Partridge.

Chapter xiv -- What happened to Mr Jones in his journey from St


Chapter i -- An Invocation.

Chapter ii -- What befel Mr Jones on his arrival in London.

Chapter iii -- A project of Mrs Fitzpatrick, and her visit to Lady

Chapter iv -- Which consists of visiting.

Chapter v -- An adventure which happened to Mr Jones at his lodgings,
with some account of a young gentleman who lodged there, and of the
mistress of the house, and her two daughters.

Chapter vi -- What arrived while the company were at breakfast, with
some hints concerning the government of daughters.

Chapter vii -- Containing the whole humours of a masquerade.

Chapter viii -- Containing a scene of distress, which will appear very
extraordinary to most of our readers.

Chapter ix -- Which treats of matters of a very different kind from
those in the preceding chapter.

Chapter x -- A chapter which, though short, may draw tears from some

Chapter xi -- In which the reader will be surprized.

Chapter xii -- In which the thirteenth book is concluded.


Chapter i -- An essay to prove that an author will write the better
for having some knowledge of the subject on which he writes.

Chapter ii -- Containing letters and other matters which attend

Chapter iii -- Containing various matters.

Chapter iv -- Which we hope will be very attentively perused by young
people of both sexes.

Chapter v -- A short account of the history of Mrs Miller.

Chapter vi -- Containing a scene which we doubt not will affect all
our readers.

Chapter vii -- The interview between Mr Jones and Mr Nightingale.

Chapter viii -- What passed between Jones and old Mr Nightingale; with
the arrival of a person not yet mentioned in this history.

Chapter ix -- Containing strange matters.

Chapter x -- A short chapter, which concludes the book.


Chapter i -- Too short to need a preface.

Chapter ii -- In which is opened a very black design against Sophia.

Chapter iii -- A further explanation of the foregoing design.

Chapter iv -- By which it will appear how dangerous an advocate a lady
is when she applies her eloquence to an ill purpose.

Chapter v -- Containing some matters which may affect, and others
which may surprize, the reader.

Chapter vi -- By what means the squire came to discover his daughter.

Chapter vii -- In which various misfortunes befel poor Jones.

Chapter viii -- Short and sweet.

Chapter ix -- Containing love-letters of several sorts.

Chapter x -- Consisting partly of facts, and partly of observations
upon them.

Chapter xi -- Containing curious, but not unprecedented matter.

Chapter xii -- A discovery made by Partridge.


Chapter i -- Of prologues.

Chapter ii -- A whimsical adventure which befel the squire, with the
distressed situation of Sophia.

Chapter iii -- What happened to Sophia during her confinement.

Chapter iv -- In which Sophia is delivered from her confinement.

Chapter v -- In which Jones receives a letter from Sophia, and goes to
a play with Mrs Miller and Partridge.

Chapter vi -- In which the history is obliged to look back.

Chapter vii -- In which Mr Western pays a visit to his sister, in
company with Mr Blifil.

Chapter viii -- Schemes of Lady Bellaston for the ruin of Jones.

Chapter ix -- In which Jones pays a visit to Mrs Fitzpatrick.

Chapter x -- The consequence of the preceding visit.


Chapter i -- Containing a portion of introductory writing.

Chapter ii -- The generous and grateful behaviour of Mrs Miller.

Chapter iii -- The arrival of Mr Western, with some matters concerning
the paternal authority.

Chapter iv -- An extraordinary scene between Sophia and her aunt.

Chapter v -- Mrs Miller and Mr Nightingale visit Jones in the prison.

Chapter vi -- In which Mrs Miller pays a visit to Sophia.

Chapter vii -- A pathetic scene between Mr Allworthy and Mrs Miller.

Chapter viii -- Containing various matters.

Chapter ix -- What happened to Mr Jones in the prison.


Chapter i -- A farewel to the reader.

Chapter ii -- Containing a very tragical incident.

Chapter iii -- Allworthy visits old Nightingale; with a strange
discovery that he made on that occasion.

Chapter iv -- Containing two letters in very different stiles.

Chapter v -- In which the history is continued.

Chapter vi -- In which the history is farther continued.

Chapter vii -- Continuation of the history.

Chapter viii -- Further continuation.

Chapter ix -- A further continuation.

Chapter x -- Wherein the history begins to draw towards a conclusion.

Chapter xi -- The history draws nearer to a conclusion.

Chapter xii -- Approaching still nearer to the end.

Chapter the last -- In which the history is concluded.

To the Honourable


One of the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury.


Notwithstanding your constant refusal, when I have asked leave to
prefix your name to this dedication, I must still insist on my right
to desire your protection of this work.

To you, Sir, it is owing that this history was ever begun. It was by
your desire that I first thought of such a composition. So many years
have since past, that you may have, perhaps, forgotten this
circumstance: but your desires are to me in the nature of commands;
and the impression of them is never to be erased from my memory.

Again, Sir, without your assistance this history had never been
completed. Be not startled at the assertion. I do not intend to draw
on you the suspicion of being a romance writer. I mean no more than
that I partly owe to you my existence during great part of the time
which I have employed in composing it: another matter which it may be
necessary to remind you of; since there are certain actions of which
you are apt to be extremely forgetful; but of these I hope I shall
always have a better memory than yourself.

Lastly, It is owing to you that the history appears what it now is. If
there be in this work, as some have been pleased to say, a stronger
picture of a truly benevolent mind than is to be found in any other,
who that knows you, and a particular acquaintance of yours, will doubt
whence that benevolence hath been copied? The world will not, I
believe, make me the compliment of thinking I took it from myself. I
care not: this they shall own, that the two persons from whom I have
taken it, that is to say, two of the best and worthiest men in the
world, are strongly and zealously my friends. I might be contented
with this, and yet my vanity will add a third to the number; and him
one of the greatest and noblest, not only in his rank, but in every
public and private virtue. But here, whilst my gratitude for the
princely benefactions of the Duke of Bedford bursts from my heart, you
must forgive my reminding you that it was you who first recommended me
to the notice of my benefactor.

And what are your objections to the allowance of the honour which I
have sollicited? Why, you have commended the book so warmly, that you
should be ashamed of reading your name before the dedication. Indeed,
sir, if the book itself doth not make you ashamed of your
commendations, nothing that I can here write will, or ought. I am not
to give up my right to your protection and patronage, because you have
commended my book: for though I acknowledge so many obligations to
you, I do not add this to the number; in which friendship, I am
convinced, hath so little share: since that can neither biass your
judgment, nor pervert your integrity. An enemy may at any time obtain
your commendation by only deserving it; and the utmost which the
faults of your friends can hope for, is your silence; or, perhaps, if
too severely accused, your gentle palliation.

In short, sir, I suspect, that your dislike of public praise is your
true objection to granting my request. I have observed that you have,
in common with my two other friends, an unwillingness to hear the
least mention of your own virtues; that, as a great poet says of one
of you, (he might justly have said it of all three), you

     _Do good by stealth, and blush to find it fame_.

If men of this disposition are as careful to shun applause, as others
are to escape censure, how just must be your apprehension of your
character falling into my hands; since what would not a man have
reason to dread, if attacked by an author who had received from him
injuries equal to my obligations to you!

And will not this dread of censure increase in proportion to the
matter which a man is conscious of having afforded for it? If his
whole life, for instance, should have been one continued subject of
satire, he may well tremble when an incensed satirist takes him in
hand. Now, sir, if we apply this to your modest aversion to panegyric,
how reasonable will your fears of me appear!

Yet surely you might have gratified my ambition, from this single
confidence, that I shall always prefer the indulgence of your
inclinations to the satisfaction of my own. A very strong instance of
which I shall give you in this address, in which I am determined to
follow the example of all other dedicators, and will consider not what
my patron really deserves to have written, but what he will be best
pleased to read.

Without further preface then, I here present you with the labours of
some years of my life. What merit these labours have is already known
to yourself. If, from your favourable judgment, I have conceived some
esteem for them, it cannot be imputed to vanity; since I should have
agreed as implicitly to your opinion, had it been given in favour of
any other man's production. Negatively, at least, I may be allowed to
say, that had I been sensible of any great demerit in the work, you
are the last person to whose protection I would have ventured to
recommend it.

From the name of my patron, indeed, I hope my reader will be
convinced, at his very entrance on this work, that he will find in the
whole course of it nothing prejudicial to the cause of religion and
virtue, nothing inconsistent with the strictest rules of decency, nor
which can offend even the chastest eye in the perusal. On the
contrary, I declare, that to recommend goodness and innocence hath
been my sincere endeavour in this history. This honest purpose you
have been pleased to think I have attained: and to say the truth, it
is likeliest to be attained in books of this kind; for an example is a
kind of picture, in which virtue becomes, as it were, an object of
sight, and strikes us with an idea of that loveliness, which Plato
asserts there is in her naked charms.

Besides displaying that beauty of virtue which may attract the
admiration of mankind, I have attempted to engage a stronger motive to
human action in her favour, by convincing men, that their true
interest directs them to a pursuit of her. For this purpose I have
shown that no acquisitions of guilt can compensate the loss of that
solid inward comfort of mind, which is the sure companion of innocence
and virtue; nor can in the least balance the evil of that horror and
anxiety which, in their room, guilt introduces into our bosoms. And
again, that as these acquisitions are in themselves generally
worthless, so are the means to attain them not only base and infamous,
but at best incertain, and always full of danger. Lastly, I have
endeavoured strongly to inculcate, that virtue and innocence can
scarce ever be injured but by indiscretion; and that it is this alone
which often betrays them into the snares that deceit and villainy
spread for them. A moral which I have the more industriously laboured,
as the teaching it is, of all others, the likeliest to be attended
with success; since, I believe, it is much easier to make good men
wise, than to make bad men good.

For these purposes I have employed all the wit and humour of which I
am master in the following history; wherein I have endeavoured to
laugh mankind out of their favourite follies and vices. How far I have
succeeded in this good attempt, I shall submit to the candid reader,
with only two requests: First, that he will not expect to find
perfection in this work; and Secondly, that he will excuse some parts
of it, if they fall short of that little merit which I hope may appear
in others.

I will detain you, sir, no longer. Indeed I have run into a preface,
while I professed to write a dedication. But how can it be otherwise?
I dare not praise you; and the only means I know of to avoid it, when
you are in my thoughts, are either to be entirely silent, or to turn
my thoughts to some other subject.

Pardon, therefore, what I have said in this epistle, not only without
your consent, but absolutely against it; and give me at least leave,
in this public manner, to declare that I am, with the highest respect
and gratitude,--


Your most obliged,

Obedient, humble servant,





Chapter i.

The introduction to the work, or bill of fare to the feast.

An author ought to consider himself, not as a gentleman who gives a
private or eleemosynary treat, but rather as one who keeps a public
ordinary, at which all persons are welcome for their money. In the
former case, it is well known that the entertainer provides what fare
he pleases; and though this should be very indifferent, and utterly
disagreeable to the taste of his company, they must not find any
fault; nay, on the contrary, good breeding forces them outwardly to
approve and to commend whatever is set before them. Now the contrary
of this happens to the master of an ordinary. Men who pay for what
they eat will insist on gratifying their palates, however nice and
whimsical these may prove; and if everything is not agreeable to their
taste, will challenge a right to censure, to abuse, and to d--n their
dinner without controul.

To prevent, therefore, giving offence to their customers by any such
disappointment, it hath been usual with the honest and well-meaning
host to provide a bill of fare which all persons may peruse at their
first entrance into the house; and having thence acquainted themselves
with the entertainment which they may expect, may either stay and
regale with what is provided for them, or may depart to some other
ordinary better accommodated to their taste.

As we do not disdain to borrow wit or wisdom from any man who is
capable of lending us either, we have condescended to take a hint from
these honest victuallers, and shall prefix not only a general bill of
fare to our whole entertainment, but shall likewise give the reader
particular bills to every course which is to be served up in this and
the ensuing volumes.

The provision, then, which we have here made is no other than _Human
Nature_. Nor do I fear that my sensible reader, though most luxurious
in his taste, will start, cavil, or be offended, because I have named
but one article. The tortoise--as the alderman of Bristol, well
learned in eating, knows by much experience--besides the delicious
calipash and calipee, contains many different kinds of food; nor can
the learned reader be ignorant, that in human nature, though here
collected under one general name, is such prodigious variety, that a
cook will have sooner gone through all the several species of animal
and vegetable food in the world, than an author will be able to
exhaust so extensive a subject.

An objection may perhaps be apprehended from the more delicate, that
this dish is too common and vulgar; for what else is the subject of
all the romances, novels, plays, and poems, with which the stalls
abound? Many exquisite viands might be rejected by the epicure, if it
was a sufficient cause for his contemning of them as common and
vulgar, that something was to be found in the most paltry alleys under
the same name. In reality, true nature is as difficult to be met with
in authors, as the Bayonne ham, or Bologna sausage, is to be found in
the shops.

But the whole, to continue the same metaphor, consists in the cookery
of the author; for, as Mr Pope tells us--

    "True wit is nature to advantage drest;
    What oft was thought, but ne'er so well exprest."

The same animal which hath the honour to have some part of his flesh
eaten at the table of a duke, may perhaps be degraded in another part,
and some of his limbs gibbeted, as it were, in the vilest stall in
town. Where, then, lies the difference between the food of the
nobleman and the porter, if both are at dinner on the same ox or calf,
but in the seasoning, the dressing, the garnishing, and the setting
forth? Hence the one provokes and incites the most languid appetite,
and the other turns and palls that which is the sharpest and keenest.

In like manner, the excellence of the mental entertainment consists
less in the subject than in the author's skill in well dressing it up.
How pleased, therefore, will the reader be to find that we have, in
the following work, adhered closely to one of the highest principles
of the best cook which the present age, or perhaps that of
Heliogabalus, hath produced. This great man, as is well known to all
lovers of polite eating, begins at first by setting plain things
before his hungry guests, rising afterwards by degrees as their
stomachs may be supposed to decrease, to the very quintessence of
sauce and spices. In like manner, we shall represent human nature at
first to the keen appetite of our reader, in that more plain and
simple manner in which it is found in the country, and shall hereafter
hash and ragoo it with all the high French and Italian seasoning of
affectation and vice which courts and cities afford. By these means,
we doubt not but our reader may be rendered desirous to read on for
ever, as the great person just above-mentioned is supposed to have
made some persons eat.

Having premised thus much, we will now detain those who like our bill
of fare no longer from their diet, and shall proceed directly to serve
up the first course of our history for their entertainment.

Chapter ii.

A short description of squire Allworthy, and a fuller account of Miss
Bridget Allworthy, his sister.

In that part of the western division of this kingdom which is commonly
called Somersetshire, there lately lived, and perhaps lives still, a
gentleman whose name was Allworthy, and who might well be called the
favourite of both nature and fortune; for both of these seem to have
contended which should bless and enrich him most. In this contention,
nature may seem to some to have come off victorious, as she bestowed
on him many gifts, while fortune had only one gift in her power; but
in pouring forth this, she was so very profuse, that others perhaps
may think this single endowment to have been more than equivalent to
all the various blessings which he enjoyed from nature. From the
former of these, he derived an agreeable person, a sound constitution,
a solid understanding, and a benevolent heart; by the latter, he was
decreed to the inheritance of one of the largest estates in the

This gentleman had in his youth married a very worthy and beautiful
woman, of whom he had been extremely fond: by her he had three
children, all of whom died in their infancy. He had likewise had the
misfortune of burying this beloved wife herself, about five years
before the time in which this history chuses to set out. This loss,
however great, he bore like a man of sense and constancy, though it
must be confest he would often talk a little whimsically on this head;
for he sometimes said he looked on himself as still married, and
considered his wife as only gone a little before him, a journey which
he should most certainly, sooner or later, take after her; and that he
had not the least doubt of meeting her again in a place where he
should never part with her more--sentiments for which his sense was
arraigned by one part of his neighbours, his religion by a second, and
his sincerity by a third.

He now lived, for the most part, retired in the country, with one
sister, for whom he had a very tender affection. This lady was now
somewhat past the age of thirty, an aera at which, in the opinion of
the malicious, the title of old maid may with no impropriety be
assumed. She was of that species of women whom you commend rather for
good qualities than beauty, and who are generally called, by their own
sex, very good sort of women--as good a sort of woman, madam, as you
would wish to know. Indeed, she was so far from regretting want of
beauty, that she never mentioned that perfection, if it can be called
one, without contempt; and would often thank God she was not as
handsome as Miss Such-a-one, whom perhaps beauty had led into errors
which she might have otherwise avoided. Miss Bridget Allworthy (for
that was the name of this lady) very rightly conceived the charms of
person in a woman to be no better than snares for herself, as well as
for others; and yet so discreet was she in her conduct, that her
prudence was as much on the guard as if she had all the snares to
apprehend which were ever laid for her whole sex. Indeed, I have
observed, though it may seem unaccountable to the reader, that this
guard of prudence, like the trained bands, is always readiest to go on
duty where there is the least danger. It often basely and cowardly
deserts those paragons for whom the men are all wishing, sighing,
dying, and spreading, every net in their power; and constantly attends
at the heels of that higher order of women for whom the other sex have
a more distant and awful respect, and whom (from despair, I suppose,
of success) they never venture to attack.

Reader, I think proper, before we proceed any farther together, to
acquaint thee that I intend to digress, through this whole history, as
often as I see occasion, of which I am myself a better judge than any
pitiful critic whatever; and here I must desire all those critics to
mind their own business, and not to intermeddle with affairs or works
which no ways concern them; for till they produce the authority by
which they are constituted judges, I shall not plead to their

Chapter iii.

An odd accident which befel Mr Allworthy at his return home. The
decent behaviour of Mrs Deborah Wilkins, with some proper
animadversions on bastards.

I have told my reader, in the preceding chapter, that Mr Allworthy
inherited a large fortune; that he had a good heart, and no family.
Hence, doubtless, it will be concluded by many that he lived like an
honest man, owed no one a shilling, took nothing but what was his own,
kept a good house, entertained his neighbours with a hearty welcome at
his table, and was charitable to the poor, i.e. to those who had
rather beg than work, by giving them the offals from it; that he died
immensely rich and built an hospital.

And true it is that he did many of these things; but had he done
nothing more I should have left him to have recorded his own merit on
some fair freestone over the door of that hospital. Matters of a much
more extraordinary kind are to be the subject of this history, or I
should grossly mis-spend my time in writing so voluminous a work; and
you, my sagacious friend, might with equal profit and pleasure travel
through some pages which certain droll authors have been facetiously
pleased to call _The History of England_.

Mr Allworthy had been absent a full quarter of a year in London, on
some very particular business, though I know not what it was; but
judge of its importance by its having detained him so long from home,
whence he had not been absent a month at a time during the space of
many years. He came to his house very late in the evening, and after a
short supper with his sister, retired much fatigued to his chamber.
Here, having spent some minutes on his knees--a custom which he never
broke through on any account--he was preparing to step into bed, when,
upon opening the cloathes, to his great surprize he beheld an infant,
wrapt up in some coarse linen, in a sweet and profound sleep, between
his sheets. He stood some time lost in astonishment at this sight;
but, as good nature had always the ascendant in his mind, he soon
began to be touched with sentiments of compassion for the little
wretch before him. He then rang his bell, and ordered an elderly
woman-servant to rise immediately, and come to him; and in the
meantime was so eager in contemplating the beauty of innocence,
appearing in those lively colours with which infancy and sleep always
display it, that his thoughts were too much engaged to reflect that he
was in his shirt when the matron came in. She had indeed given her
master sufficient time to dress himself; for out of respect to him,
and regard to decency, she had spent many minutes in adjusting her
hair at the looking-glass, notwithstanding all the hurry in which she
had been summoned by the servant, and though her master, for aught she
knew, lay expiring in an apoplexy, or in some other fit.

It will not be wondered at that a creature who had so strict a regard
to decency in her own person, should be shocked at the least deviation
from it in another. She therefore no sooner opened the door, and saw
her master standing by the bedside in his shirt, with a candle in his
hand, than she started back in a most terrible fright, and might
perhaps have swooned away, had he not now recollected his being
undrest, and put an end to her terrors by desiring her to stay without
the door till he had thrown some cloathes over his back, and was
become incapable of shocking the pure eyes of Mrs Deborah Wilkins,
who, though in the fifty-second year of her age, vowed she had never
beheld a man without his coat. Sneerers and prophane wits may perhaps
laugh at her first fright; yet my graver reader, when he considers the
time of night, the summons from her bed, and the situation in which
she found her master, will highly justify and applaud her conduct,
unless the prudence which must be supposed to attend maidens at that
period of life at which Mrs Deborah had arrived, should a little
lessen his admiration.

When Mrs Deborah returned into the room, and was acquainted by her
master with the finding the little infant, her consternation was
rather greater than his had been; nor could she refrain from crying
out, with great horror of accent as well as look, "My good sir! what's
to be done?" Mr Allworthy answered, she must take care of the child
that evening, and in the morning he would give orders to provide it a
nurse. "Yes, sir," says she; "and I hope your worship will send out
your warrant to take up the hussy its mother, for she must be one of
the neighbourhood; and I should be glad to see her committed to
Bridewell, and whipt at the cart's tail. Indeed, such wicked sluts
cannot be too severely punished. I'll warrant 'tis not her first, by
her impudence in laying it to your worship." "In laying it to me,
Deborah!" answered Allworthy: "I can't think she hath any such design.
I suppose she hath only taken this method to provide for her child;
and truly I am glad she hath not done worse." "I don't know what is
worse," cries Deborah, "than for such wicked strumpets to lay their
sins at honest men's doors; and though your worship knows your own
innocence, yet the world is censorious; and it hath been many an
honest man's hap to pass for the father of children he never begot;
and if your worship should provide for the child, it may make the
people the apter to believe; besides, why should your worship provide
for what the parish is obliged to maintain? For my own part, if it was
an honest man's child, indeed--but for my own part, it goes against me
to touch these misbegotten wretches, whom I don't look upon as my
fellow-creatures. Faugh! how it stinks! It doth not smell like a
Christian. If I might be so bold to give my advice, I would have it
put in a basket, and sent out and laid at the churchwarden's door. It
is a good night, only a little rainy and windy; and if it was well
wrapt up, and put in a warm basket, it is two to one but it lives till
it is found in the morning. But if it should not, we have discharged
our duty in taking proper care of it; and it is, perhaps, better for
such creatures to die in a state of innocence, than to grow up and
imitate their mothers; for nothing better can be expected of them."

There were some strokes in this speech which perhaps would have
offended Mr Allworthy, had he strictly attended to it; but he had now
got one of his fingers into the infant's hand, which, by its gentle
pressure, seeming to implore his assistance, had certainly out-pleaded
the eloquence of Mrs Deborah, had it been ten times greater than it
was. He now gave Mrs Deborah positive orders to take the child to her
own bed, and to call up a maid-servant to provide it pap, and other
things, against it waked. He likewise ordered that proper cloathes
should be procured for it early in the morning, and that it should be
brought to himself as soon as he was stirring.

Such was the discernment of Mrs Wilkins, and such the respect she bore
her master, under whom she enjoyed a most excellent place, that her
scruples gave way to his peremptory commands; and she took the child
under her arms, without any apparent disgust at the illegality of its
birth; and declaring it was a sweet little infant, walked off with it
to her own chamber.

Allworthy here betook himself to those pleasing slumbers which a heart
that hungers after goodness is apt to enjoy when thoroughly satisfied.
As these are possibly sweeter than what are occasioned by any other
hearty meal, I should take more pains to display them to the reader,
if I knew any air to recommend him to for the procuring such an

Chapter iv.

The reader's neck brought into danger by a description; his escape;
and the great condescension of Miss Bridget Allworthy.

The Gothic stile of building could produce nothing nobler than Mr
Allworthy's house. There was an air of grandeur in it that struck you
with awe, and rivalled the beauties of the best Grecian architecture;
and it was as commodious within as venerable without.

It stood on the south-east side of a hill, but nearer the bottom than
the top of it, so as to be sheltered from the north-east by a grove of
old oaks which rose above it in a gradual ascent of near half a mile,
and yet high enough to enjoy a most charming prospect of the valley

In the midst of the grove was a fine lawn, sloping down towards the
house, near the summit of which rose a plentiful spring, gushing out
of a rock covered with firs, and forming a constant cascade of about
thirty feet, not carried down a regular flight of steps, but tumbling
in a natural fall over the broken and mossy stones till it came to the
bottom of the rock, then running off in a pebly channel, that with
many lesser falls winded along, till it fell into a lake at the foot
of the hill, about a quarter of a mile below the house on the south
side, and which was seen from every room in the front. Out of this
lake, which filled the center of a beautiful plain, embellished with
groups of beeches and elms, and fed with sheep, issued a river, that
for several miles was seen to meander through an amazing variety of
meadows and woods till it emptied itself into the sea, with a large
arm of which, and an island beyond it, the prospect was closed.

On the right of this valley opened another of less extent, adorned
with several villages, and terminated by one of the towers of an old
ruined abby, grown over with ivy, and part of the front, which
remained still entire.

The left-hand scene presented the view of a very fine park, composed
of very unequal ground, and agreeably varied with all the diversity
that hills, lawns, wood, and water, laid out with admirable taste, but
owing less to art than to nature, could give. Beyond this, the country
gradually rose into a ridge of wild mountains, the tops of which were
above the clouds.

It was now the middle of May, and the morning was remarkably serene,
when Mr Allworthy walked forth on the terrace, where the dawn opened
every minute that lovely prospect we have before described to his eye;
and now having sent forth streams of light, which ascended the blue
firmament before him, as harbingers preceding his pomp, in the full
blaze of his majesty rose the sun, than which one object alone in this
lower creation could be more glorious, and that Mr Allworthy himself
presented--a human being replete with benevolence, meditating in what
manner he might render himself most acceptable to his Creator, by
doing most good to his creatures.

Reader, take care. I have unadvisedly led thee to the top of as high a
hill as Mr Allworthy's, and how to get thee down without breaking thy
neck, I do not well know. However, let us e'en venture to slide down
together; for Miss Bridget rings her bell, and Mr Allworthy is
summoned to breakfast, where I must attend, and, if you please, shall
be glad of your company.

The usual compliments having past between Mr Allworthy and Miss
Bridget, and the tea being poured out, he summoned Mrs Wilkins, and
told his sister he had a present for her, for which she thanked
him--imagining, I suppose, it had been a gown, or some ornament for
her person. Indeed, he very often made her such presents; and she, in
complacence to him, spent much time in adorning herself. I say in
complacence to him, because she always exprest the greatest contempt
for dress, and for those ladies who made it their study.

But if such was her expectation, how was she disappointed when Mrs
Wilkins, according to the order she had received from her master,
produced the little infant? Great surprizes, as hath been observed,
are apt to be silent; and so was Miss Bridget, till her brother began,
and told her the whole story, which, as the reader knows it already,
we shall not repeat.

Miss Bridget had always exprest so great a regard for what the ladies
are pleased to call virtue, and had herself maintained such a severity
of character, that it was expected, especially by Wilkins, that she
would have vented much bitterness on this occasion, and would have
voted for sending the child, as a kind of noxious animal, immediately
out of the house; but, on the contrary, she rather took the
good-natured side of the question, intimated some compassion for the
helpless little creature, and commended her brother's charity in what
he had done.

Perhaps the reader may account for this behaviour from her
condescension to Mr Allworthy, when we have informed him that the good
man had ended his narrative with owning a resolution to take care of
the child, and to breed him up as his own; for, to acknowledge the
truth, she was always ready to oblige her brother, and very seldom, if
ever, contradicted his sentiments. She would, indeed, sometimes make a
few observations, as that men were headstrong, and must have their own
way, and would wish she had been blest with an independent fortune;
but these were always vented in a low voice, and at the most amounted
only to what is called muttering.

However, what she withheld from the infant, she bestowed with the
utmost profuseness on the poor unknown mother, whom she called an
impudent slut, a wanton hussy, an audacious harlot, a wicked jade, a
vile strumpet, with every other appellation with which the tongue of
virtue never fails to lash those who bring a disgrace on the sex.

A consultation was now entered into how to proceed in order to
discover the mother. A scrutiny was first made into the characters of
the female servants of the house, who were all acquitted by Mrs
Wilkins, and with apparent merit; for she had collected them herself,
and perhaps it would be difficult to find such another set of

The next step was to examine among the inhabitants of the parish; and
this was referred to Mrs Wilkins, who was to enquire with all
imaginable diligence, and to make her report in the afternoon.

Matters being thus settled, Mr Allworthy withdrew to his study, as was
his custom, and left the child to his sister, who, at his desire, had
undertaken the care of it.

Chapter v.

Containing a few common matters, with a very uncommon observation upon

When her master was departed, Mrs Deborah stood silent, expecting her
cue from Miss Bridget; for as to what had past before her master, the
prudent housekeeper by no means relied upon it, as she had often known
the sentiments of the lady in her brother's absence to differ greatly
from those which she had expressed in his presence. Miss Bridget did
not, however, suffer her to continue long in this doubtful situation;
for having looked some time earnestly at the child, as it lay asleep
in the lap of Mrs Deborah, the good lady could not forbear giving it a
hearty kiss, at the same time declaring herself wonderfully pleased
with its beauty and innocence. Mrs Deborah no sooner observed this
than she fell to squeezing and kissing, with as great raptures as
sometimes inspire the sage dame of forty and five towards a youthful
and vigorous bridegroom, crying out, in a shrill voice, "O, the dear
little creature!--The dear, sweet, pretty creature! Well, I vow it is
as fine a boy as ever was seen!"

These exclamations continued till they were interrupted by the lady,
who now proceeded to execute the commission given her by her brother,
and gave orders for providing all necessaries for the child,
appointing a very good room in the house for his nursery. Her orders
were indeed so liberal, that, had it been a child of her own, she
could not have exceeded them; but, lest the virtuous reader may
condemn her for showing too great regard to a base-born infant, to
which all charity is condemned by law as irreligious, we think proper
to observe that she concluded the whole with saying, "Since it was her
brother's whim to adopt the little brat, she supposed little master
must be treated with great tenderness. For her part, she could not
help thinking it was an encouragement to vice; but that she knew too
much of the obstinacy of mankind to oppose any of their ridiculous

With reflections of this nature she usually, as has been hinted,
accompanied every act of compliance with her brother's inclinations;
and surely nothing could more contribute to heighten the merit of this
compliance than a declaration that she knew, at the same time, the
folly and unreasonableness of those inclinations to which she
submitted. Tacit obedience implies no force upon the will, and
consequently may be easily, and without any pains, preserved; but when
a wife, a child, a relation, or a friend, performs what we desire,
with grumbling and reluctance, with expressions of dislike and
dissatisfaction, the manifest difficulty which they undergo must
greatly enhance the obligation.

As this is one of those deep observations which very few readers can
be supposed capable of making themselves, I have thought proper to
lend them my assistance; but this is a favour rarely to be expected in
the course of my work. Indeed, I shall seldom or never so indulge him,
unless in such instances as this, where nothing but the inspiration
with which we writers are gifted, can possibly enable any one to make
the discovery.

Chapter vi.

Mrs Deborah is introduced into the parish with a simile. A short
account of Jenny Jones, with the difficulties and discouragements
which may attend young women in the pursuit of learning.

Mrs Deborah, having disposed of the child according to the will of her
master, now prepared to visit those habitations which were supposed to
conceal its mother.

Not otherwise than when a kite, tremendous bird, is beheld by the
feathered generation soaring aloft, and hovering over their heads, the
amorous dove, and every innocent little bird, spread wide the alarm,
and fly trembling to their hiding-places. He proudly beats the air,
conscious of his dignity, and meditates intended mischief.

So when the approach of Mrs Deborah was proclaimed through the street,
all the inhabitants ran trembling into their houses, each matron
dreading lest the visit should fall to her lot. She with stately steps
proudly advances over the field: aloft she bears her towering head,
filled with conceit of her own pre-eminence, and schemes to effect her
intended discovery.

The sagacious reader will not from this simile imagine these poor
people had any apprehension of the design with which Mrs Wilkins was
now coming towards them; but as the great beauty of the simile may
possibly sleep these hundred years, till some future commentator shall
take this work in hand, I think proper to lend the reader a little
assistance in this place.

It is my intention, therefore, to signify, that, as it is the nature
of a kite to devour little birds, so is it the nature of such persons
as Mrs Wilkins to insult and tyrannize over little people. This being
indeed the means which they use to recompense to themselves their
extreme servility and condescension to their superiors; for nothing
can be more reasonable, than that slaves and flatterers should exact
the same taxes on all below them, which they themselves pay to all
above them.

Whenever Mrs Deborah had occasion to exert any extraordinary
condescension to Mrs Bridget, and by that means had a little soured
her natural disposition, it was usual with her to walk forth among
these people, in order to refine her temper, by venting, and, as it
were, purging off all ill humours; on which account she was by no
means a welcome visitant: to say the truth, she was universally
dreaded and hated by them all.

On her arrival in this place, she went immediately to the habitation
of an elderly matron; to whom, as this matron had the good fortune to
resemble herself in the comeliness of her person, as well as in her
age, she had generally been more favourable than to any of the rest.
To this woman she imparted what had happened, and the design upon
which she was come thither that morning. These two began presently to
scrutinize the characters of the several young girls who lived in any
of those houses, and at last fixed their strongest suspicion on one
Jenny Jones, who, they both agreed, was the likeliest person to have
committed this fact.

This Jenny Jones was no very comely girl, either in her face or
person; but nature had somewhat compensated the want of beauty with
what is generally more esteemed by those ladies whose judgment is
arrived at years of perfect maturity, for she had given her a very
uncommon share of understanding. This gift Jenny had a good deal
improved by erudition. She had lived several years a servant with a
schoolmaster, who, discovering a great quickness of parts in the girl,
and an extraordinary desire of learning--for every leisure hour she
was always found reading in the books of the scholars--had the
good-nature, or folly--just as the reader pleases to call it--to
instruct her so far, that she obtained a competent skill in the Latin
language, and was, perhaps, as good a scholar as most of the young men
of quality of the age. This advantage, however, like most others of an
extraordinary kind, was attended with some small inconveniences: for
as it is not to be wondered at, that a young woman so well
accomplished should have little relish for the society of those whom
fortune had made her equals, but whom education had rendered so much
her inferiors; so is it matter of no greater astonishment, that this
superiority in Jenny, together with that behaviour which is its
certain consequence, should produce among the rest some little envy
and ill-will towards her; and these had, perhaps, secretly burnt in
the bosoms of her neighbours ever since her return from her service.

Their envy did not, however, display itself openly, till poor Jenny,
to the surprize of everybody, and to the vexation of all the young
women in these parts, had publickly shone forth on a Sunday in a new
silk gown, with a laced cap, and other proper appendages to these.

The flame, which had before lain in embryo, now burst forth. Jenny
had, by her learning, increased her own pride, which none of her
neighbours were kind enough to feed with the honour she seemed to
demand; and now, instead of respect and adoration, she gained nothing
but hatred and abuse by her finery. The whole parish declared she
could not come honestly by such things; and parents, instead of
wishing their daughters the same, felicitated themselves that their
children had them not.

Hence, perhaps, it was, that the good woman first mentioned the name
of this poor girl to Mrs Wilkins; but there was another circumstance
that confirmed the latter in her suspicion; for Jenny had lately been
often at Mr Allworthy's house. She had officiated as nurse to Miss
Bridget, in a violent fit of illness, and had sat up many nights with
that lady; besides which, she had been seen there the very day before
Mr Allworthy's return, by Mrs Wilkins herself, though that sagacious
person had not at first conceived any suspicion of her on that
account: for, as she herself said, "She had always esteemed Jenny as a
very sober girl (though indeed she knew very little of her), and had
rather suspected some of those wanton trollops, who gave themselves
airs, because, forsooth, they thought themselves handsome."

Jenny was now summoned to appear in person before Mrs Deborah, which
she immediately did. When Mrs Deborah, putting on the gravity of a
judge, with somewhat more than his austerity, began an oration with
the words, "You audacious strumpet!" in which she proceeded rather to
pass sentence on the prisoner than to accuse her.

Though Mrs Deborah was fully satisfied of the guilt of Jenny, from the
reasons above shewn, it is possible Mr Allworthy might have required
some stronger evidence to have convicted her; but she saved her
accusers any such trouble, by freely confessing the whole fact with
which she was charged.

This confession, though delivered rather in terms of contrition, as it
appeared, did not at all mollify Mrs Deborah, who now pronounced a
second judgment against her, in more opprobrious language than before;
nor had it any better success with the bystanders, who were now grown
very numerous. Many of them cried out, "They thought what madam's silk
gown would end in;" others spoke sarcastically of her learning. Not a
single female was present but found some means of expressing her
abhorrence of poor Jenny, who bore all very patiently, except the
malice of one woman, who reflected upon her person, and tossing up her
nose, said, "The man must have a good stomach who would give silk
gowns for such sort of trumpery!" Jenny replied to this with a
bitterness which might have surprized a judicious person, who had
observed the tranquillity with which she bore all the affronts to her
chastity; but her patience was perhaps tired out, for this is a virtue
which is very apt to be fatigued by exercise.

Mrs Deborah having succeeded beyond her hopes in her inquiry, returned
with much triumph, and, at the appointed hour, made a faithful report
to Mr Allworthy, who was much surprized at the relation; for he had
heard of the extraordinary parts and improvements of this girl, whom
he intended to have given in marriage, together with a small living,
to a neighbouring curate. His concern, therefore, on this occasion,
was at least equal to the satisfaction which appeared in Mrs Deborah,
and to many readers may seem much more reasonable.

Miss Bridget blessed herself, and said, "For her part, she should
never hereafter entertain a good opinion of any woman." For Jenny
before this had the happiness of being much in her good graces also.

The prudent housekeeper was again dispatched to bring the unhappy
culprit before Mr Allworthy, in order, not as it was hoped by some,
and expected by all, to be sent to the house of correction, but to
receive wholesome admonition and reproof; which those who relish that
kind of instructive writing may peruse in the next chapter.

Chapter vii.

Containing such grave matter, that the reader cannot laugh once
through the whole chapter, unless peradventure he should laugh at the

When Jenny appeared, Mr Allworthy took her into his study, and spoke
to her as follows: "You know, child, it is in my power as a
magistrate, to punish you very rigorously for what you have done; and
you will, perhaps, be the more apt to fear I should execute that
power, because you have in a manner laid your sins at my door.

"But, perhaps, this is one reason which hath determined me to act in a
milder manner with you: for, as no private resentment should ever
influence a magistrate, I will be so far from considering your having
deposited the infant in my house as an aggravation of your offence,
that I will suppose, in your favour, this to have proceeded from a
natural affection to your child, since you might have some hopes to
see it thus better provided for than was in the power of yourself, or
its wicked father, to provide for it. I should indeed have been highly
offended with you had you exposed the little wretch in the manner of
some inhuman mothers, who seem no less to have abandoned their
humanity, than to have parted with their chastity. It is the other
part of your offence, therefore, upon which I intend to admonish you,
I mean the violation of your chastity;--a crime, however lightly it
may be treated by debauched persons, very heinous in itself, and very
dreadful in its consequences.

"The heinous nature of this offence must be sufficiently apparent to
every Christian, inasmuch as it is committed in defiance of the laws
of our religion, and of the express commands of Him who founded that

"And here its consequences may well be argued to be dreadful; for what
can be more so, than to incur the divine displeasure, by the breach of
the divine commands; and that in an instance against which the highest
vengeance is specifically denounced?

"But these things, though too little, I am afraid, regarded, are so
plain, that mankind, however they may want to be reminded, can never
need information on this head. A hint, therefore, to awaken your sense
of this matter, shall suffice; for I would inspire you with
repentance, and not drive you to desperation.

"There are other consequences, not indeed so dreadful or replete with
horror as this; and yet such, as, if attentively considered, must, one
would think, deter all of your sex at least from the commission of
this crime.

"For by it you are rendered infamous, and driven, like lepers of old,
out of society; at least, from the society of all but wicked and
reprobate persons; for no others will associate with you.

"If you have fortunes, you are hereby rendered incapable of enjoying
them; if you have none, you are disabled from acquiring any, nay
almost of procuring your sustenance; for no persons of character will
receive you into their houses. Thus you are often driven by necessity
itself into a state of shame and misery, which unavoidably ends in the
destruction of both body and soul.

"Can any pleasure compensate these evils? Can any temptation have
sophistry and delusion strong enough to persuade you to so simple a
bargain? Or can any carnal appetite so overpower your reason, or so
totally lay it asleep, as to prevent your flying with affright and
terror from a crime which carries such punishment always with it?

"How base and mean must that woman be, how void of that dignity of
mind, and decent pride, without which we are not worthy the name of
human creatures, who can bear to level herself with the lowest animal,
and to sacrifice all that is great and noble in her, all her heavenly
part, to an appetite which she hath in common with the vilest branch
of the creation! For no woman, sure, will plead the passion of love
for an excuse. This would be to own herself the mere tool and bubble
of the man. Love, however barbarously we may corrupt and pervert its
meaning, as it is a laudable, is a rational passion, and can never be
violent but when reciprocal; for though the Scripture bids us love our
enemies, it means not with that fervent love which we naturally bear
towards our friends; much less that we should sacrifice to them our
lives, and what ought to be dearer to us, our innocence. Now in what
light, but that of an enemy, can a reasonable woman regard the man who
solicits her to entail on herself all the misery I have described to
you, and who would purchase to himself a short, trivial, contemptible
pleasure, so greatly at her expense! For, by the laws of custom, the
whole shame, with all its dreadful consequences, falls intirely upon
her. Can love, which always seeks the good of its object, attempt to
betray a woman into a bargain where she is so greatly to be the loser?
If such corrupter, therefore, should have the impudence to pretend a
real affection for her, ought not the woman to regard him not only as
an enemy, but as the worst of all enemies, a false, designing,
treacherous, pretended friend, who intends not only to debauch her
body, but her understanding at the same time?"

Here Jenny expressing great concern, Allworthy paused a moment, and
then proceeded: "I have talked thus to you, child, not to insult you
for what is past and irrevocable, but to caution and strengthen you
for the future. Nor should I have taken this trouble, but from some
opinion of your good sense, notwithstanding the dreadful slip you have
made; and from some hopes of your hearty repentance, which are founded
on the openness and sincerity of your confession. If these do not
deceive me, I will take care to convey you from this scene of your
shame, where you shall, by being unknown, avoid the punishment which,
as I have said, is allotted to your crime in this world; and I hope,
by repentance, you will avoid the much heavier sentence denounced
against it in the other. Be a good girl the rest of your days, and
want shall be no motive to your going astray; and, believe me, there
is more pleasure, even in this world, in an innocent and virtuous
life, than in one debauched and vicious.

"As to your child, let no thoughts concerning it molest you; I will
provide for it in a better manner than you can ever hope. And now
nothing remains but that you inform me who was the wicked man that
seduced you; for my anger against him will be much greater than you
have experienced on this occasion."

Jenny now lifted her eyes from the ground, and with a modest look and
decent voice thus began:--

"To know you, sir, and not love your goodness, would be an argument of
total want of sense or goodness in any one. In me it would amount to
the highest ingratitude, not to feel, in the most sensible manner, the
great degree of goodness you have been pleased to exert on this
occasion. As to my concern for what is past, I know you will spare my
blushes the repetition. My future conduct will much better declare my
sentiments than any professions I can now make. I beg leave to assure
you, sir, that I take your advice much kinder than your generous offer
with which you concluded it; for, as you are pleased to say, sir, it
is an instance of your opinion of my understanding."--Here her tears
flowing apace, she stopped a few moments, and then proceeded
thus:--"Indeed, sir, your kindness overcomes me; but I will endeavour
to deserve this good opinion: for if I have the understanding you are
so kindly pleased to allow me, such advice cannot be thrown away upon
me. I thank you, sir, heartily, for your intended kindness to my poor
helpless child: he is innocent, and I hope will live to be grateful
for all the favours you shall show him. But now, sir, I must on my
knees entreat you not to persist in asking me to declare the father of
my infant. I promise you faithfully you shall one day know; but I am
under the most solemn ties and engagements of honour, as well as the
most religious vows and protestations, to conceal his name at this
time. And I know you too well, to think you would desire I should
sacrifice either my honour or my religion."

Mr Allworthy, whom the least mention of those sacred words was
sufficient to stagger, hesitated a moment before he replied, and then
told her, she had done wrong to enter into such engagements to a
villain; but since she had, he could not insist on her breaking them.
He said, it was not from a motive of vain curiosity he had inquired,
but in order to punish the fellow; at least, that he might not
ignorantly confer favours on the undeserving.

As to these points, Jenny satisfied him by the most solemn assurances,
that the man was entirely out of his reach; and was neither subject to
his power, nor in any probability of becoming an object of his

The ingenuity of this behaviour had gained Jenny so much credit with
this worthy man, that he easily believed what she told him; for as she
had disdained to excuse herself by a lie, and had hazarded his further
displeasure in her present situation, rather than she would forfeit
her honour or integrity by betraying another, he had but little
apprehensions that she would be guilty of falsehood towards himself.

He therefore dismissed her with assurances that he would very soon
remove her out of the reach of that obloquy she had incurred;
concluding with some additional documents, in which he recommended
repentance, saying, "Consider, child, there is one still to reconcile
yourself to, whose favour is of much greater importance to you than

Chapter viii.

A dialogue between Mesdames Bridget and Deborah; containing more
amusement, but less instruction, than the former.

When Mr Allworthy had retired to his study with Jenny Jones, as hath
been seen, Mrs Bridget, with the good housekeeper, had betaken
themselves to a post next adjoining to the said study; whence, through
the conveyance of a keyhole, they sucked in at their ears the
instructive lecture delivered by Mr Allworthy, together with the
answers of Jenny, and indeed every other particular which passed in
the last chapter.

This hole in her brother's study-door was indeed as well known to Mrs
Bridget, and had been as frequently applied to by her, as the famous
hole in the wall was by Thisbe of old. This served to many good
purposes. For by such means Mrs Bridget became often acquainted with
her brother's inclinations, without giving him the trouble of
repeating them to her. It is true, some inconveniences attended this
intercourse, and she had sometimes reason to cry out with Thisbe, in
Shakspeare, "O, wicked, wicked wall!" For as Mr Allworthy was a
justice of peace, certain things occurred in examinations concerning
bastards, and such like, which are apt to give great offence to the
chaste ears of virgins, especially when they approach the age of
forty, as was the case of Mrs Bridget. However, she had, on such
occasions, the advantage of concealing her blushes from the eyes of
men; and _De non apparentibus, et non existentibus eadem est
ratio_--in English, "When a woman is not seen to blush, she doth not
blush at all."

Both the good women kept strict silence during the whole scene between
Mr Allworthy and the girl; but as soon as it was ended, and that
gentleman was out of hearing, Mrs Deborah could not help exclaiming
against the clemency of her master, and especially against his
suffering her to conceal the father of the child, which she swore she
would have out of her before the sun set.

At these words Mrs Bridget discomposed her features with a smile (a
thing very unusual to her). Not that I would have my reader imagine,
that this was one of those wanton smiles which Homer would have you
conceive came from Venus, when he calls her the laughter-loving
goddess; nor was it one of those smiles which Lady Seraphina shoots
from the stage-box, and which Venus would quit her immortality to be
able to equal. No, this was rather one of those smiles which might be
supposed to have come from the dimpled cheeks of the august Tisiphone,
or from one of the misses, her sisters.

With such a smile then, and with a voice sweet as the evening breeze
of Boreas in the pleasant month of November, Mrs Bridget gently
reproved the curiosity of Mrs Deborah; a vice with which it seems the
latter was too much tainted, and which the former inveighed against
with great bitterness, adding, "That, among all her faults, she
thanked Heaven her enemies could not accuse her of prying into the
affairs of other people."

She then proceeded to commend the honour and spirit with which Jenny
had acted. She said, she could not help agreeing with her brother,
that there was some merit in the sincerity of her confession, and in
her integrity to her lover: that she had always thought her a very
good girl, and doubted not but she had been seduced by some rascal,
who had been infinitely more to blame than herself, and very probably
had prevailed with her by a promise of marriage, or some other
treacherous proceeding.

This behaviour of Mrs Bridget greatly surprised Mrs Deborah; for this
well-bred woman seldom opened her lips, either to her master or his
sister, till she had first sounded their inclinations, with which her
sentiments were always consonant. Here, however, she thought she might
have launched forth with safety; and the sagacious reader will not
perhaps accuse her of want of sufficient forecast in so doing, but
will rather admire with what wonderful celerity she tacked about, when
she found herself steering a wrong course.

"Nay, madam," said this able woman, and truly great politician, "I
must own I cannot help admiring the girl's spirit, as well as your
ladyship. And, as your ladyship says, if she was deceived by some
wicked man, the poor wretch is to be pitied. And to be sure, as your
ladyship says, the girl hath always appeared like a good, honest,
plain girl, and not vain of her face, forsooth, as some wanton husseys
in the neighbourhood are."

"You say true, Deborah," said Miss Bridget. "If the girl had been one
of those vain trollops, of which we have too many in the parish, I
should have condemned my brother for his lenity towards her. I saw two
farmers' daughters at church, the other day, with bare necks. I
protest they shocked me. If wenches will hang out lures for fellows,
it is no matter what they suffer. I detest such creatures; and it
would be much better for them that their faces had been seamed with
the smallpox; but I must confess, I never saw any of this wanton
behaviour in poor Jenny: some artful villain, I am convinced, hath
betrayed, nay perhaps forced her; and I pity the poor wretch with all
my heart."

Mrs Deborah approved all these sentiments, and the dialogue concluded
with a general and bitter invective against beauty, and with many
compassionate considerations for all honest plain girls who are
deluded by the wicked arts of deceitful men.

Chapter ix.

Containing matters which will surprize the reader.

Jenny returned home well pleased with the reception she had met with
from Mr Allworthy, whose indulgence to her she industriously made
public; partly perhaps as a sacrifice to her own pride, and partly
from the more prudent motive of reconciling her neighbours to her, and
silencing their clamours.

But though this latter view, if she indeed had it, may appear
reasonable enough, yet the event did not answer her expectation; for
when she was convened before the justice, and it was universally
apprehended that the house of correction would have been her fate,
though some of the young women cryed out "It was good enough for her,"
and diverted themselves with the thoughts of her beating hemp in a
silk gown; yet there were many others who began to pity her condition:
but when it was known in what manner Mr Allworthy had behaved, the
tide turned against her. One said, "I'll assure you, madam hath had
good luck." A second cryed, "See what it is to be a favourite!" A
third, "Ay, this comes of her learning." Every person made some
malicious comment or other on the occasion, and reflected on the
partiality of the justice.

The behaviour of these people may appear impolitic and ungrateful to
the reader, who considers the power and benevolence of Mr Allworthy.
But as to his power, he never used it; and as to his benevolence, he
exerted so much, that he had thereby disobliged all his neighbours;
for it is a secret well known to great men, that, by conferring an
obligation, they do not always procure a friend, but are certain of
creating many enemies.

Jenny was, however, by the care and goodness of Mr Allworthy, soon
removed out of the reach of reproach; when malice being no longer able
to vent its rage on her, began to seek another object of its
bitterness, and this was no less than Mr Allworthy, himself; for a
whisper soon went abroad, that he himself was the father of the
foundling child.

This supposition so well reconciled his conduct to the general
opinion, that it met with universal assent; and the outcry against his
lenity soon began to take another turn, and was changed into an
invective against his cruelty to the poor girl. Very grave and good
women exclaimed against men who begot children, and then disowned
them. Nor were there wanting some, who, after the departure of Jenny,
insinuated that she was spirited away with a design too black to be
mentioned, and who gave frequent hints that a legal inquiry ought to
be made into the whole matter, and that some people should be forced
to produce the girl.

These calumnies might have probably produced ill consequences, at the
least might have occasioned some trouble, to a person of a more
doubtful and suspicious character than Mr Allworthy was blessed with;
but in his case they had no such effect; and, being heartily despised
by him, they served only to afford an innocent amusement to the good
gossips of the neighbourhood.

But as we cannot possibly divine what complection our reader may be
of, and as it will be some time before he will hear any more of Jenny,
we think proper to give him a very early intimation, that Mr Allworthy
was, and will hereafter appear to be, absolutely innocent of any
criminal intention whatever. He had indeed committed no other than an
error in politics, by tempering justice with mercy, and by refusing to
gratify the good-natured disposition of the mob,[*] with an object for
their compassion to work on in the person of poor Jenny, whom, in
order to pity, they desired to have seen sacrificed to ruin and
infamy, by a shameful correction in Bridewell.

  [*]Whenever this word occurs in our writings, it intends persons
  without virtue or sense, in all stations; and many of the highest
  rank are often meant by it.

So far from complying with this their inclination, by which all hopes
of reformation would have been abolished, and even the gate shut
against her if her own inclinations should ever hereafter lead her to
chuse the road of virtue, Mr Allworthy rather chose to encourage the
girl to return thither by the only possible means; for too true I am
afraid it is, that many women have become abandoned, and have sunk to
the last degree of vice, by being unable to retrieve the first slip.
This will be, I am afraid, always the case while they remain among
their former acquaintance; it was therefore wisely done by Mr
Allworthy, to remove Jenny to a place where she might enjoy the
pleasure of reputation, after having tasted the ill consequences of
losing it.

To this place therefore, wherever it was, we will wish her a good
journey, and for the present take leave of her, and of the little
foundling her child, having matters of much higher importance to
communicate to the reader.

Chapter x.

The hospitality of Allworthy; with a short sketch of the characters of
two brothers, a doctor and a captain, who were entertained by that

Neither Mr Allworthy's house, nor his heart, were shut against any
part of mankind, but they were both more particularly open to men of
merit. To say the truth, this was the only house in the kingdom where
you was sure to gain a dinner by deserving it.

Above all others, men of genius and learning shared the principal
place in his favour; and in these he had much discernment: for though
he had missed the advantage of a learned education, yet, being blest
with vast natural abilities, he had so well profited by a vigorous
though late application to letters, and by much conversation with men
of eminence in this way, that he was himself a very competent judge in
most kinds of literature.

It is no wonder that in an age when this kind of merit is so little in
fashion, and so slenderly provided for, persons possessed of it should
very eagerly flock to a place where they were sure of being received
with great complaisance; indeed, where they might enjoy almost the
same advantages of a liberal fortune as if they were entitled to it in
their own right; for Mr Allworthy was not one of those generous
persons who are ready most bountifully to bestow meat, drink, and
lodging on men of wit and learning, for which they expect no other
return but entertainment, instruction, flattery, and subserviency; in
a word, that such persons should be enrolled in the number of
domestics, without wearing their master's cloathes, or receiving

On the contrary, every person in this house was perfect master of his
own time: and as he might at his pleasure satisfy all his appetites
within the restrictions only of law, virtue, and religion; so he
might, if his health required, or his inclination prompted him to
temperance, or even to abstinence, absent himself from any meals, or
retire from them, whenever he was so disposed, without even a
sollicitation to the contrary: for, indeed, such sollicitations from
superiors always savour very strongly of commands. But all here were
free from such impertinence, not only those whose company is in all
other places esteemed a favour from their equality of fortune, but
even those whose indigent circumstances make such an eleemosynary
abode convenient to them, and who are therefore less welcome to a
great man's table because they stand in need of it.

Among others of this kind was Dr Blifil, a gentleman who had the
misfortune of losing the advantage of great talents by the obstinacy
of a father, who would breed him to a profession he disliked. In
obedience to this obstinacy the doctor had in his youth been obliged
to study physic, or rather to say he studied it; for in reality books
of this kind were almost the only ones with which he was unacquainted;
and unfortunately for him, the doctor was master of almost every other
science but that by which he was to get his bread; the consequence of
which was, that the doctor at the age of forty had no bread to eat.

Such a person as this was certain to find a welcome at Mr Allworthy's
table, to whom misfortunes were ever a recommendation, when they were
derived from the folly or villany of others, and not of the
unfortunate person himself. Besides this negative merit, the doctor
had one positive recommendation;--this was a great appearance of
religion. Whether his religion was real, or consisted only in
appearance, I shall not presume to say, as I am not possessed of any
touchstone which can distinguish the true from the false.

If this part of his character pleased Mr Allworthy, it delighted Miss
Bridget. She engaged him in many religious controversies; on which
occasions she constantly expressed great satisfaction in the doctor's
knowledge, and not much less in the compliments which he frequently
bestowed on her own. To say the truth, she had read much English
divinity, and had puzzled more than one of the neighbouring curates.
Indeed, her conversation was so pure, her looks so sage, and her whole
deportment so grave and solemn, that she seemed to deserve the name of
saint equally with her namesake, or with any other female in the Roman

As sympathies of all kinds are apt to beget love, so experience
teaches us that none have a more direct tendency this way than those
of a religious kind between persons of different sexes. The doctor
found himself so agreeable to Miss Bridget, that he now began to
lament an unfortunate accident which had happened to him about ten
years before; namely, his marriage with another woman, who was not
only still alive, but, what was worse, known to be so by Mr Allworthy.
This was a fatal bar to that happiness which he otherwise saw
sufficient probability of obtaining with this young lady; for as to
criminal indulgences, he certainly never thought of them. This was
owing either to his religion, as is most probable, or to the purity of
his passion, which was fixed on those things which matrimony only, and
not criminal correspondence, could put him in possession of, or could
give him any title to.

He had not long ruminated on these matters, before it occurred to his
memory that he had a brother who was under no such unhappy incapacity.
This brother he made no doubt would succeed; for he discerned, as he
thought, an inclination to marriage in the lady; and the reader
perhaps, when he hears the brother's qualifications, will not blame
the confidence which he entertained of his success.

This gentleman was about thirty-five years of age. He was of a middle
size, and what is called well-built. He had a scar on his forehead,
which did not so much injure his beauty as it denoted his valour (for
he was a half-pay officer). He had good teeth, and something affable,
when he pleased, in his smile; though naturally his countenance, as
well as his air and voice, had much of roughness in it: yet he could
at any time deposit this, and appear all gentleness and good-humour.
He was not ungenteel, nor entirely devoid of wit, and in his youth had
abounded in sprightliness, which, though he had lately put on a more
serious character, he could, when he pleased, resume.

He had, as well as the doctor, an academic education; for his father
had, with the same paternal authority we have mentioned before,
decreed him for holy orders; but as the old gentleman died before he
was ordained, he chose the church military, and preferred the king's
commission to the bishop's.

He had purchased the post of lieutenant of dragoons, and afterwards
came to be a captain; but having quarrelled with his colonel, was by
his interest obliged to sell; from which time he had entirely
rusticated himself, had betaken himself to studying the Scriptures,
and was not a little suspected of an inclination to methodism.

It seemed, therefore, not unlikely that such a person should succeed
with a lady of so saint-like a disposition, and whose inclinations
were no otherwise engaged than to the marriage state in general; but
why the doctor, who certainly had no great friendship for his brother,
should for his sake think of making so ill a return to the hospitality
of Allworthy, is a matter not so easy to be accounted for.

Is it that some natures delight in evil, as others are thought to
delight in virtue? Or is there a pleasure in being accessory to a
theft when we cannot commit it ourselves? Or lastly (which experience
seems to make probable), have we a satisfaction in aggrandizing our
families, even though we have not the least love or respect for them?

Whether any of these motives operated on the doctor, we will not
determine; but so the fact was. He sent for his brother, and easily
found means to introduce him at Allworthy's as a person who intended
only a short visit to himself.

The captain had not been in the house a week before the doctor had
reason to felicitate himself on his discernment. The captain was
indeed as great a master of the art of love as Ovid was formerly. He
had besides received proper hints from his brother, which he failed
not to improve to the best advantage.

Chapter xi.

Containing many rules, and some examples, concerning falling in love:
descriptions of beauty, and other more prudential inducements to

It hath been observed, by wise men or women, I forget which, that all
persons are doomed to be in love once in their lives. No particular
season is, as I remember, assigned for this; but the age at which Miss
Bridget was arrived, seems to me as proper a period as any to be fixed
on for this purpose: it often, indeed, happens much earlier; but when
it doth not, I have observed it seldom or never fails about this time.
Moreover, we may remark that at this season love is of a more serious
and steady nature than what sometimes shows itself in the younger
parts of life. The love of girls is uncertain, capricious, and so
foolish that we cannot always discover what the young lady would be
at; nay, it may almost be doubted whether she always knows this

Now we are never at a loss to discern this in women about forty; for
as such grave, serious, and experienced ladies well know their own
meaning, so it is always very easy for a man of the least sagacity to
discover it with the utmost certainty.

Miss Bridget is an example of all these observations. She had not been
many times in the captain's company before she was seized with this
passion. Nor did she go pining and moping about the house, like a
puny, foolish girl, ignorant of her distemper: she felt, she knew, and
she enjoyed, the pleasing sensation, of which, as she was certain it
was not only innocent but laudable, she was neither afraid nor

And to say the truth, there is, in all points, great difference
between the reasonable passion which women at this age conceive
towards men, and the idle and childish liking of a girl to a boy,
which is often fixed on the outside only, and on things of little
value and no duration; as on cherry-cheeks, small, lily-white hands,
sloe-black eyes, flowing locks, downy chins, dapper shapes; nay,
sometimes on charms more worthless than these, and less the party's
own; such are the outward ornaments of the person, for which men are
beholden to the taylor, the laceman, the periwig-maker, the hatter,
and the milliner, and not to nature. Such a passion girls may well be
ashamed, as they generally are, to own either to themselves or others.

The love of Miss Bridget was of another kind. The captain owed nothing
to any of these fop-makers in his dress, nor was his person much more
beholden to nature. Both his dress and person were such as, had they
appeared in an assembly or a drawing-room, would have been the
contempt and ridicule of all the fine ladies there. The former of
these was indeed neat, but plain, coarse, ill-fancied, and out of
fashion. As for the latter, we have expressly described it above. So
far was the skin on his cheeks from being cherry-coloured, that you
could not discern what the natural colour of his cheeks was, they
being totally overgrown by a black beard, which ascended to his eyes.
His shape and limbs were indeed exactly proportioned, but so large
that they denoted the strength rather of a ploughman than any other.
His shoulders were broad beyond all size, and the calves of his legs
larger than those of a common chairman. In short, his whole person
wanted all that elegance and beauty which is the very reverse of
clumsy strength, and which so agreeably sets off most of our fine
gentlemen; being partly owing to the high blood of their ancestors,
viz., blood made of rich sauces and generous wines, and partly to an
early town education.

Though Miss Bridget was a woman of the greatest delicacy of taste, yet
such were the charms of the captain's conversation, that she totally
overlooked the defects of his person. She imagined, and perhaps very
wisely, that she should enjoy more agreeable minutes with the captain
than with a much prettier fellow; and forewent the consideration of
pleasing her eyes, in order to procure herself much more solid

The captain no sooner perceived the passion of Miss Bridget, in which
discovery he was very quick-sighted, than he faithfully returned it.
The lady, no more than her lover, was remarkable for beauty. I would
attempt to draw her picture, but that is done already by a more able
master, Mr Hogarth himself, to whom she sat many years ago, and hath
been lately exhibited by that gentleman in his print of a winter's
morning, of which she was no improper emblem, and may be seen walking
(for walk she doth in the print) to Covent Garden church, with a
starved foot-boy behind carrying her prayer-book.

The captain likewise very wisely preferred the more solid enjoyments
he expected with this lady, to the fleeting charms of person. He was
one of those wise men who regard beauty in the other sex as a very
worthless and superficial qualification; or, to speak more truly, who
rather chuse to possess every convenience of life with an ugly woman,
than a handsome one without any of those conveniences. And having a
very good appetite, and but little nicety, he fancied he should play
his part very well at the matrimonial banquet, without the sauce of

To deal plainly with the reader, the captain, ever since his arrival,
at least from the moment his brother had proposed the match to him,
long before he had discovered any flattering symptoms in Miss Bridget,
had been greatly enamoured; that is to say, of Mr Allworthy's house
and gardens, and of his lands, tenements, and hereditaments; of all
which the captain was so passionately fond, that he would most
probably have contracted marriage with them, had he been obliged to
have taken the witch of Endor into the bargain.

As Mr Allworthy, therefore, had declared to the doctor that he never
intended to take a second wife, as his sister was his nearest
relation, and as the doctor had fished out that his intentions were to
make any child of hers his heir, which indeed the law, without his
interposition, would have done for him; the doctor and his brother
thought it an act of benevolence to give being to a human creature,
who would be so plentifully provided with the most essential means of
happiness. The whole thoughts, therefore, of both the brothers were
how to engage the affections of this amiable lady.

But fortune, who is a tender parent, and often doth more for her
favourite offspring than either they deserve or wish, had been so
industrious for the captain, that whilst he was laying schemes to
execute his purpose, the lady conceived the same desires with himself,
and was on her side contriving how to give the captain proper
encouragement, without appearing too forward; for she was a strict
observer of all rules of decorum. In this, however, she easily
succeeded; for as the captain was always on the look-out, no glance,
gesture, or word escaped him.

The satisfaction which the captain received from the kind behaviour of
Miss Bridget, was not a little abated by his apprehensions of Mr
Allworthy; for, notwithstanding his disinterested professions, the
captain imagined he would, when he came to act, follow the example of
the rest of the world, and refuse his consent to a match so
disadvantageous, in point of interest, to his sister. From what oracle
he received this opinion, I shall leave the reader to determine: but
however he came by it, it strangely perplexed him how to regulate his
conduct so as at once to convey his affection to the lady, and to
conceal it from her brother. He at length resolved to take all private
opportunities of making his addresses; but in the presence of Mr
Allworthy to be as reserved and as much upon his guard as was
possible; and this conduct was highly approved by the brother.

He soon found means to make his addresses, in express terms, to his
mistress, from whom he received an answer in the proper form, viz.:
the answer which was first made some thousands of years ago, and which
hath been handed down by tradition from mother to daughter ever since.
If I was to translate this into Latin, I should render it by these two
words, _Nolo Episcopari_: a phrase likewise of immemorial use on
another occasion.

The captain, however he came by his knowledge, perfectly well
understood the lady, and very soon after repeated his application with
more warmth and earnestness than before, and was again, according to
due form, rejected; but as he had increased in the eagerness of his
desires, so the lady, with the same propriety, decreased in the
violence of her refusal.

Not to tire the reader, by leading him through every scene of this
courtship (which, though in the opinion of a certain great author, it
is the pleasantest scene of life to the actor, is, perhaps, as dull
and tiresome as any whatever to the audience), the captain made his
advances in form, the citadel was defended in form, and at length, in
proper form, surrendered at discretion.

During this whole time, which filled the space of near a month, the
captain preserved great distance of behaviour to his lady in the
presence of the brother; and the more he succeeded with her in
private, the more reserved was he in public. And as for the lady, she
had no sooner secured her lover than she behaved to him before company
with the highest degree of indifference; so that Mr Allworthy must
have had the insight of the devil (or perhaps some of his worse
qualities) to have entertained the least suspicion of what was going

Chapter xii.

Containing what the reader may, perhaps, expect to find in it.

In all bargains, whether to fight or to marry, or concerning any other
such business, little previous ceremony is required to bring the
matter to an issue when both parties are really in earnest. This was
the case at present, and in less than a month the captain and his lady
were man and wife.

The great concern now was to break the matter to Mr Allworthy; and
this was undertaken by the doctor.

One day, then, as Allworthy was walking in his garden, the doctor came
to him, and, with great gravity of aspect, and all the concern which
he could possibly affect in his countenance, said, "I am come, sir, to
impart an affair to you of the utmost consequence; but how shall I
mention to you what it almost distracts me to think of!" He then
launched forth into the most bitter invectives both against men and
women; accusing the former of having no attachment but to their
interest, and the latter of being so addicted to vicious inclinations
that they could never be safely trusted with one of the other sex.
"Could I," said he, "sir, have suspected that a lady of such prudence,
such judgment, such learning, should indulge so indiscreet a passion!
or could I have imagined that my brother--why do I call him so? he is
no longer a brother of mine----"

"Indeed but he is," said Allworthy, "and a brother of mine too."

"Bless me, sir!" said the doctor, "do you know the shocking affair?"

"Look'ee, Mr Blifil," answered the good man, "it hath been my constant
maxim in life to make the best of all matters which happen. My sister,
though many years younger than I, is at least old enough to be at the
age of discretion. Had he imposed on a child, I should have been more
averse to have forgiven him; but a woman upwards of thirty must
certainly be supposed to know what will make her most happy. She hath
married a gentleman, though perhaps not quite her equal in fortune;
and if he hath any perfections in her eye which can make up that
deficiency, I see no reason why I should object to her choice of her
own happiness; which I, no more than herself, imagine to consist only
in immense wealth. I might, perhaps, from the many declarations I have
made of complying with almost any proposal, have expected to have been
consulted on this occasion; but these matters are of a very delicate
nature, and the scruples of modesty, perhaps, are not to be overcome.
As to your brother, I have really no anger against him at all. He hath
no obligations to me, nor do I think he was under any necessity of
asking my consent, since the woman is, as I have said, _sui juris_,
and of a proper age to be entirely answerable only, to herself for her

The doctor accused Mr Allworthy of too great lenity, repeated his
accusations against his brother, and declared that he should never
more be brought either to see, or to own him for his relation. He then
launched forth into a panegyric on Allworthy's goodness; into the
highest encomiums on his friendship; and concluded by saying, he
should never forgive his brother for having put the place which he
bore in that friendship to a hazard.

Allworthy thus answered: "Had I conceived any displeasure against your
brother, I should never have carried that resentment to the innocent:
but I assure you I have no such displeasure. Your brother appears to
me to be a man of sense and honour. I do not disapprove the taste of
my sister; nor will I doubt but that she is equally the object of his
inclinations. I have always thought love the only foundation of
happiness in a married state, as it can only produce that high and
tender friendship which should always be the cement of this union;
and, in my opinion, all those marriages which are contracted from
other motives are greatly criminal; they are a profanation of a most
holy ceremony, and generally end in disquiet and misery: for surely we
may call it a profanation to convert this most sacred institution into
a wicked sacrifice to lust or avarice: and what better can be said of
those matches to which men are induced merely by the consideration of
a beautiful person, or a great fortune?

"To deny that beauty is an agreeable object to the eye, and even
worthy some admiration, would be false and foolish. Beautiful is an
epithet often used in Scripture, and always mentioned with honour. It
was my own fortune to marry a woman whom the world thought handsome,
and I can truly say I liked her the better on that account. But to
make this the sole consideration of marriage, to lust after it so
violently as to overlook all imperfections for its sake, or to require
it so absolutely as to reject and disdain religion, virtue, and sense,
which are qualities in their nature of much higher perfection, only
because an elegance of person is wanting: this is surely inconsistent,
either with a wise man or a good Christian. And it is, perhaps, being
too charitable to conclude that such persons mean anything more by
their marriage than to please their carnal appetites; for the
satisfaction of which, we are taught, it was not ordained.

"In the next place, with respect to fortune. Worldly prudence,
perhaps, exacts some consideration on this head; nor will I absolutely
and altogether condemn it. As the world is constituted, the demands of
a married state, and the care of posterity, require some little regard
to what we call circumstances. Yet this provision is greatly
increased, beyond what is really necessary, by folly and vanity, which
create abundantly more wants than nature. Equipage for the wife, and
large fortunes for the children, are by custom enrolled in the list of
necessaries; and to procure these, everything truly solid and sweet,
and virtuous and religious, are neglected and overlooked.

"And this in many degrees; the last and greatest of which seems scarce
distinguishable from madness;--I mean where persons of immense
fortunes contract themselves to those who are, and must be,
disagreeable to them--to fools and knaves--in order to increase an
estate already larger even than the demands of their pleasures. Surely
such persons, if they will not be thought mad, must own, either that
they are incapable of tasting the sweets of the tenderest friendship,
or that they sacrifice the greatest happiness of which they are
capable to the vain, uncertain, and senseless laws of vulgar opinion,
which owe as well their force as their foundation to folly."

Here Allworthy concluded his sermon, to which Blifil had listened with
the profoundest attention, though it cost him some pains to prevent
now and then a small discomposure of his muscles. He now praised every
period of what he had heard with the warmth of a young divine, who
hath the honour to dine with a bishop the same day in which his
lordship hath mounted the pulpit.

Chapter xiii.

Which concludes the first book; with an instance of ingratitude,
which, we hope, will appear unnatural.

The reader, from what hath been said, may imagine that the
reconciliation (if indeed it could be so called) was only matter of
form; we shall therefore pass it over, and hasten to what must surely
be thought matter of substance.

The doctor had acquainted his brother with what had past between Mr
Allworthy and him; and added with a smile, "I promise you I paid you
off; nay, I absolutely desired the good gentleman not to forgive you:
for you know after he had made a declaration in your favour, I might
with safety venture on such a request with a person of his temper; and
I was willing, as well for your sake as for my own, to prevent the
least possibility of a suspicion."

Captain Blifil took not the least notice of this, at that time; but he
afterwards made a very notable use of it.

One of the maxims which the devil, in a late visit upon earth, left to
his disciples, is, when once you are got up, to kick the stool from
under you. In plain English, when you have made your fortune by the
good offices of a friend, you are advised to discard him as soon as
you can.

Whether the captain acted by this maxim, I will not positively
determine: so far we may confidently say, that his actions may be
fairly derived from this diabolical principle; and indeed it is
difficult to assign any other motive to them: for no sooner was he
possessed of Miss Bridget, and reconciled to Allworthy, than he began
to show a coldness to his brother which increased daily; till at
length it grew into rudeness, and became very visible to every one.

The doctor remonstrated to him privately concerning this behaviour,
but could obtain no other satisfaction than the following plain
declaration: "If you dislike anything in my brother's house, sir, you
know you are at liberty to quit it." This strange, cruel, and almost
unaccountable ingratitude in the captain, absolutely broke the poor
doctor's heart; for ingratitude never so thoroughly pierces the human
breast as when it proceeds from those in whose behalf we have been
guilty of transgressions. Reflections on great and good actions,
however they are received or returned by those in whose favour they
are performed, always administer some comfort to us; but what
consolation shall we receive under so biting a calamity as the
ungrateful behaviour of our friend, when our wounded conscience at the
same time flies in our face, and upbraids us with having spotted it in
the service of one so worthless!

Mr Allworthy himself spoke to the captain in his brother's behalf, and
desired to know what offence the doctor had committed; when the
hard-hearted villain had the baseness to say that he should never
forgive him for the injury which he had endeavoured to do him in his
favour; which, he said, he had pumped out of him, and was such a
cruelty that it ought not to be forgiven.

Allworthy spoke in very high terms upon this declaration, which, he
said, became not a human creature. He expressed, indeed, so much
resentment against an unforgiving temper, that the captain at last
pretended to be convinced by his arguments, and outwardly professed to
be reconciled.

As for the bride, she was now in her honeymoon, and so passionately
fond of her new husband that he never appeared to her to be in the
wrong; and his displeasure against any person was a sufficient reason
for her dislike to the same.

The captain, at Mr Allworthy's instance, was outwardly, as we have
said, reconciled to his brother; yet the same rancour remained in his
heart; and he found so many opportunities of giving him private hints
of this, that the house at last grew insupportable to the poor doctor;
and he chose rather to submit to any inconveniences which he might
encounter in the world, than longer to bear these cruel and ungrateful
insults from a brother for whom he had done so much.

He once intended to acquaint Allworthy with the whole; but he could
not bring himself to submit to the confession, by which he must take
to his share so great a portion of guilt. Besides, by how much the
worse man he represented his brother to be, so much the greater would
his own offence appear to Allworthy, and so much the greater, he had
reason to imagine, would be his resentment.

He feigned, therefore, some excuse of business for his departure, and
promised to return soon again; and took leave of his brother with so
well-dissembled content, that, as the captain played his part to the
same perfection, Allworthy remained well satisfied with the truth of
the reconciliation.

The doctor went directly to London, where he died soon after of a
broken heart; a distemper which kills many more than is generally
imagined, and would have a fair title to a place in the bill of
mortality, did it not differ in one instance from all other
diseases--viz., that no physician can cure it.

Now, upon the most diligent enquiry into the former lives of these two
brothers, I find, besides the cursed and hellish maxim of policy above
mentioned, another reason for the captain's conduct: the captain,
besides what we have before said of him, was a man of great pride and
fierceness, and had always treated his brother, who was of a different
complexion, and greatly deficient in both these qualities, with the
utmost air of superiority. The doctor, however, had much the larger
share of learning, and was by many reputed to have the better
understanding. This the captain knew, and could not bear; for though
envy is at best a very malignant passion, yet is its bitterness
greatly heightened by mixing with contempt towards the same object;
and very much afraid I am, that whenever an obligation is joined to
these two, indignation and not gratitude will be the product of all



Chapter i.

Showing what kind of a history this is; what it is like, and what it
is not like.

Though we have properly enough entitled this our work, a history, and
not a life; nor an apology for a life, as is more in fashion; yet we
intend in it rather to pursue the method of those writers, who profess
to disclose the revolutions of countries, than to imitate the painful
and voluminous historian, who, to preserve the regularity of his
series, thinks himself obliged to fill up as much paper with the
detail of months and years in which nothing remarkable happened, as he
employs upon those notable aeras when the greatest scenes have been
transacted on the human stage.

Such histories as these do, in reality, very much resemble a
newspaper, which consists of just the same number of words, whether
there be any news in it or not. They may likewise be compared to a
stage coach, which performs constantly the same course, empty as well
as full. The writer, indeed, seems to think himself obliged to keep
even pace with time, whose amanuensis he is; and, like his master,
travels as slowly through centuries of monkish dulness, when the world
seems to have been asleep, as through that bright and busy age so
nobly distinguished by the excellent Latin poet--

     _Ad confligendum venientibus undique poenis,
     Omnia cum belli trepido concussa tumultu
     Horrida contremuere sub altis aetheris auris;
     In dubioque fuit sub utrorum regna cadendum
     Omnibus humanis esset, terraque marique._

Of which we wish we could give our readers a more adequate translation
than that by Mr Creech--

     When dreadful Carthage frighted Rome with arms,
     And all the world was shook with fierce alarms;
     Whilst undecided yet, which part should fall,
     Which nation rise the glorious lord of all.

Now it is our purpose, in the ensuing pages, to pursue a contrary
method. When any extraordinary scene presents itself (as we trust will
often be the case), we shall spare no pains nor paper to open it at
large to our reader; but if whole years should pass without producing
anything worthy his notice, we shall not be afraid of a chasm in our
history; but shall hasten on to matters of consequence, and leave such
periods of time totally unobserved.

These are indeed to be considered as blanks in the grand lottery of
time. We therefore, who are the registers of that lottery, shall
imitate those sagacious persons who deal in that which is drawn at
Guildhall, and who never trouble the public with the many blanks they
dispose of; but when a great prize happens to be drawn, the newspapers
are presently filled with it, and the world is sure to be informed at
whose office it was sold: indeed, commonly two or three different
offices lay claim to the honour of having disposed of it; by which, I
suppose, the adventurers are given to understand that certain brokers
are in the secrets of Fortune, and indeed of her cabinet council.

My reader then is not to be surprized, if, in the course of this work,
he shall find some chapters very short, and others altogether as long;
some that contain only the time of a single day, and others that
comprise years; in a word, if my history sometimes seems to stand
still, and sometimes to fly. For all which I shall not look on myself
as accountable to any court of critical jurisdiction whatever: for as
I am, in reality, the founder of a new province of writing, so I am at
liberty to make what laws I please therein. And these laws, my
readers, whom I consider as my subjects, are bound to believe in and
to obey; with which that they may readily and cheerfully comply, I do
hereby assure them that I shall principally regard their ease and
advantage in all such institutions: for I do not, like a _jure divino_
tyrant, imagine that they are my slaves, or my commodity. I am,
indeed, set over them for their own good only, and was created for
their use, and not they for mine. Nor do I doubt, while I make their
interest the great rule of my writings, they will unanimously concur
in supporting my dignity, and in rendering me all the honour I shall
deserve or desire.

Chapter ii.

Religious cautions against showing too much favour to bastards; and a
great discovery made by Mrs Deborah Wilkins.

Eight months after the celebration of the nuptials between Captain
Blifil and Miss Bridget Allworthy, a young lady of great beauty,
merit, and fortune, was Miss Bridget, by reason of a fright, delivered
of a fine boy. The child was indeed to all appearances perfect; but
the midwife discovered it was born a month before its full time.

Though the birth of an heir by his beloved sister was a circumstance
of great joy to Mr Allworthy, yet it did not alienate his affections
from the little foundling, to whom he had been godfather, had given
his own name of Thomas, and whom he had hitherto seldom failed of
visiting, at least once a day, in his nursery.

He told his sister, if she pleased, the new-born infant should be bred
up together with little Tommy; to which she consented, though with
some little reluctance: for she had truly a great complacence for her
brother; and hence she had always behaved towards the foundling with
rather more kindness than ladies of rigid virtue can sometimes bring
themselves to show to these children, who, however innocent, may be
truly called the living monuments of incontinence.

The captain could not so easily bring himself to bear what he
condemned as a fault in Mr Allworthy. He gave him frequent hints, that
to adopt the fruits of sin, was to give countenance to it. He quoted
several texts (for he was well read in Scripture), such as, _He visits
the sins of the fathers upon the children; and the fathers have eaten
sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge_,&c. Whence he
argued the legality of punishing the crime of the parent on the
bastard. He said, "Though the law did not positively allow the
destroying such base-born children, yet it held them to be the
children of nobody; that the Church considered them as the children of
nobody; and that at the best, they ought to be brought up to the
lowest and vilest offices of the commonwealth."

Mr Allworthy answered to all this, and much more, which the captain
had urged on this subject, "That, however guilty the parents might be,
the children were certainly innocent: that as to the texts he had
quoted, the former of them was a particular denunciation against the
Jews, for the sin of idolatry, of relinquishing and hating their
heavenly King; and the latter was parabolically spoken, and rather
intended to denote the certain and necessary consequences of sin, than
any express judgment against it. But to represent the Almighty as
avenging the sins of the guilty on the innocent, was indecent, if not
blasphemous, as it was to represent him acting against the first
principles of natural justice, and against the original notions of
right and wrong, which he himself had implanted in our minds; by which
we were to judge not only in all matters which were not revealed, but
even of the truth of revelation itself. He said he knew many held the
same principles with the captain on this head; but he was himself
firmly convinced to the contrary, and would provide in the same manner
for this poor infant, as if a legitimate child had had fortune to have
been found in the same place."

While the captain was taking all opportunities to press these and such
like arguments, to remove the little foundling from Mr Allworthy's, of
whose fondness for him he began to be jealous, Mrs Deborah had made a
discovery, which, in its event, threatened at least to prove more
fatal to poor Tommy than all the reasonings of the captain.

Whether the insatiable curiosity of this good woman had carried her on
to that business, or whether she did it to confirm herself in the good
graces of Mrs Blifil, who, notwithstanding her outward behaviour to
the foundling, frequently abused the infant in private, and her
brother too, for his fondness to it, I will not determine; but she had
now, as she conceived, fully detected the father of the foundling.

Now, as this was a discovery of great consequence, it may be necessary
to trace it from the fountain-head. We shall therefore very minutely
lay open those previous matters by which it was produced; and for that
purpose we shall be obliged to reveal all the secrets of a little
family with which my reader is at present entirely unacquainted; and
of which the oeconomy was so rare and extraordinary, that I fear it
will shock the utmost credulity of many married persons.

Chapter iii.

The description of a domestic government founded upon rules directly
contrary to those of Aristotle.

My reader may please to remember he hath been informed that Jenny
Jones had lived some years with a certain schoolmaster, who had, at
her earnest desire, instructed her in Latin, in which, to do justice
to her genius, she had so improved herself, that she was become a
better scholar than her master.

Indeed, though this poor man had undertaken a profession to which
learning must be allowed necessary, this was the least of his
commendations. He was one of the best-natured fellows in the world,
and was, at the same time, master of so much pleasantry and humour,
that he was reputed the wit of the country; and all the neighbouring
gentlemen were so desirous of his company, that as denying was not his
talent, he spent much time at their houses, which he might, with more
emolument, have spent in his school.

It may be imagined that a gentleman so qualified and so disposed, was
in no danger of becoming formidable to the learned seminaries of Eton
or Westminster. To speak plainly, his scholars were divided into two
classes: in the upper of which was a young gentleman, the son of a
neighbouring squire, who, at the age of seventeen, was just entered
into his Syntaxis; and in the lower was a second son of the same
gentleman, who, together with seven parish-boys, was learning to read
and write.

The stipend arising hence would hardly have indulged the schoolmaster
in the luxuries of life, had he not added to this office those of
clerk and barber, and had not Mr Allworthy added to the whole an
annuity of ten pounds, which the poor man received every Christmas,
and with which he was enabled to cheer his heart during that sacred

Among his other treasures, the pedagogue had a wife, whom he had
married out of Mr Allworthy's kitchen for her fortune, viz., twenty
pounds, which she had there amassed.

This woman was not very amiable in her person. Whether she sat to my
friend Hogarth, or no, I will not determine; but she exactly resembled
the young woman who is pouring out her mistress's tea in the third
picture of the Harlot's Progress. She was, besides, a profest follower
of that noble sect founded by Xantippe of old; by means of which she
became more formidable in the school than her husband; for, to confess
the truth, he was never master there, or anywhere else, in her

Though her countenance did not denote much natural sweetness of
temper, yet this was, perhaps, somewhat soured by a circumstance which
generally poisons matrimonial felicity; for children are rightly
called the pledges of love; and her husband, though they had been
married nine years, had given her no such pledges; a default for which
he had no excuse, either from age or health, being not yet thirty
years old, and what they call a jolly brisk young man.

Hence arose another evil, which produced no little uneasiness to the
poor pedagogue, of whom she maintained so constant a jealousy, that he
durst hardly speak to one woman in the parish; for the least degree of
civility, or even correspondence, with any female, was sure to bring
his wife upon her back, and his own.

In order to guard herself against matrimonial injuries in her own
house, as she kept one maid-servant, she always took care to chuse her
out of that order of females whose faces are taken as a kind of
security for their virtue; of which number Jenny Jones, as the reader
hath been before informed, was one.

As the face of this young woman might be called pretty good security
of the before-mentioned kind, and as her behaviour had been always
extremely modest, which is the certain consequence of understanding in
women; she had passed above four years at Mr Partridge's (for that was
the schoolmaster's name) without creating the least suspicion in her
mistress. Nay, she had been treated with uncommon kindness, and her
mistress had permitted Mr Partridge to give her those instructions
which have been before commemorated.

But it is with jealousy as with the gout: when such distempers are in
the blood, there is never any security against their breaking out; and
that often on the slightest occasions, and when least suspected.

Thus it happened to Mrs Partridge, who had submitted four years to her
husband's teaching this young woman, and had suffered her often to
neglect her work, in order to pursue her learning. For, passing by one
day, as the girl was reading, and her master leaning over her, the
girl, I know not for what reason, suddenly started up from her chair:
and this was the first time that suspicion ever entered into the head
of her mistress. This did not, however, at that time discover itself,
but lay lurking in her mind, like a concealed enemy, who waits for a
reinforcement of additional strength before he openly declares himself
and proceeds upon hostile operations: and such additional strength
soon arrived to corroborate her suspicion; for not long after, the
husband and wife being at dinner, the master said to his maid, _Da
mihi aliquid potum:_ upon which the poor girl smiled, perhaps at the
badness of the Latin, and, when her mistress cast her eyes on her,
blushed, possibly with a consciousness of having laughed at her
master. Mrs Partridge, upon this, immediately fell into a fury, and
discharged the trencher on which she was eating, at the head of poor
Jenny, crying out, "You impudent whore, do you play tricks with my
husband before my face?" and at the same instant rose from her chair
with a knife in her hand, with which, most probably, she would have
executed very tragical vengeance, had not the girl taken the advantage
of being nearer the door than her mistress, and avoided her fury by
running away: for, as to the poor husband, whether surprize had
rendered him motionless, or fear (which is full as probable) had
restrained him from venturing at any opposition, he sat staring and
trembling in his chair; nor did he once offer to move or speak, till
his wife, returning from the pursuit of Jenny, made some defensive
measures necessary for his own preservation; and he likewise was
obliged to retreat, after the example of the maid.

This good woman was, no more than Othello, of a disposition

            To make a life of jealousy
     And follow still the changes of the moon
     With fresh suspicions--

With her, as well as him,

          --To be once in doubt,
     Was once to be resolvd--

she therefore ordered Jenny immediately to pack up her alls and
begone, for that she was determined she should not sleep that night
within her walls.

Mr Partridge had profited too much by experience to interpose in a
matter of this nature. He therefore had recourse to his usual receipt
of patience, for, though he was not a great adept in Latin, he
remembered, and well understood, the advice contained in these words

     --_Leve fit quod bene fertur onus_

in English:

     A burden becomes lightest when it is well borne--

which he had always in his mouth; and of which, to say the truth, he
had often occasion to experience the truth.

Jenny offered to make protestations of her innocence; but the tempest
was too strong for her to be heard. She then betook herself to the
business of packing, for which a small quantity of brown paper
sufficed, and, having received her small pittance of wages, she
returned home.

The schoolmaster and his consort passed their time unpleasantly enough
that evening, but something or other happened before the next morning,
which a little abated the fury of Mrs Partridge; and she at length
admitted her husband to make his excuses: to which she gave the
readier belief, as he had, instead of desiring her to recall Jenny,
professed a satisfaction in her being dismissed, saying, she was grown
of little use as a servant, spending all her time in reading, and was
become, moreover, very pert and obstinate; for, indeed, she and her
master had lately had frequent disputes in literature; in which, as
hath been said, she was become greatly his superior. This, however, he
would by no means allow; and as he called her persisting in the right,
obstinacy, he began to hate her with no small inveteracy.

Chapter iv.

Containing one of the most bloody battles, or rather duels, that were
ever recorded in domestic history.

For the reasons mentioned in the preceding chapter, and from some
other matrimonial concessions, well known to most husbands, and which,
like the secrets of freemasonry, should be divulged to none who are
not members of that honourable fraternity, Mrs Partridge was pretty
well satisfied that she had condemned her husband without cause, and
endeavoured by acts of kindness to make him amends for her false
suspicion. Her passions were indeed equally violent, whichever way
they inclined; for as she could be extremely angry, so could she be
altogether as fond.

But though these passions ordinarily succeed each other, and scarce
twenty-four hours ever passed in which the pedagogue was not, in some
degree, the object of both; yet, on extraordinary occasions, when the
passion of anger had raged very high, the remission was usually
longer: and so was the case at present; for she continued longer in a
state of affability, after this fit of jealousy was ended, than her
husband had ever known before: and, had it not been for some little
exercises, which all the followers of Xantippe are obliged to perform
daily, Mr Partridge would have enjoyed a perfect serenity of several

Perfect calms at sea are always suspected by the experienced mariner
to be the forerunners of a storm, and I know some persons, who,
without being generally the devotees of superstition, are apt to
apprehend that great and unusual peace or tranquillity will be
attended with its opposite. For which reason the antients used, on
such occasions, to sacrifice to the goddess Nemesis, a deity who was
thought by them to look with an invidious eye on human felicity, and
to have a peculiar delight in overturning it.

As we are very far from believing in any such heathen goddess, or from
encouraging any superstition, so we wish Mr John Fr----, or some other
such philosopher, would bestir himself a little, in order to find out
the real cause of this sudden transition from good to bad fortune,
which hath been so often remarked, and of which we shall proceed to
give an instance; for it is our province to relate facts, and we shall
leave causes to persons of much higher genius.

Mankind have always taken great delight in knowing and descanting on
the actions of others. Hence there have been, in all ages and nations,
certain places set apart for public rendezvous, where the curious
might meet and satisfy their mutual curiosity. Among these, the
barbers' shops have justly borne the pre-eminence. Among the Greeks,
barbers' news was a proverbial expression; and Horace, in one of his
epistles, makes honourable mention of the Roman barbers in the same

Those of England are known to be no wise inferior to their Greek or
Roman predecessors. You there see foreign affairs discussed in a
manner little inferior to that with which they are handled in the
coffee-houses; and domestic occurrences are much more largely and
freely treated in the former than in the latter. But this serves only
for the men. Now, whereas the females of this country, especially
those of the lower order, do associate themselves much more than those
of other nations, our polity would be highly deficient, if they had
not some place set apart likewise for the indulgence of their
curiosity, seeing they are in this no way inferior to the other half
of the species.

In enjoying, therefore, such place of rendezvous, the British fair
ought to esteem themselves more happy than any of their foreign
sisters; as I do not remember either to have read in history, or to
have seen in my travels, anything of the like kind.

This place then is no other than the chandler's shop, the known seat
of all the news; or, as it is vulgarly called, gossiping, in every
parish in England.

Mrs Partridge being one day at this assembly of females, was asked by
one of her neighbours, if she had heard no news lately of Jenny Jones?
To which she answered in the negative. Upon this the other replied,
with a smile, That the parish was very much obliged to her for having
turned Jenny away as she did.

Mrs Partridge, whose jealousy, as the reader well knows, was long
since cured, and who had no other quarrel to her maid, answered
boldly, She did not know any obligation the parish had to her on that
account; for she believed Jenny had scarce left her equal behind her.

"No, truly," said the gossip, "I hope not, though I fancy we have
sluts enow too. Then you have not heard, it seems, that she hath been
brought to bed of two bastards? but as they are not born here, my
husband and the other overseer says we shall not be obliged to keep

"Two bastards!" answered Mrs Partridge hastily: "you surprize me! I
don't know whether we must keep them; but I am sure they must have
been begotten here, for the wench hath not been nine months gone

Nothing can be so quick and sudden as the operations of the mind,
especially when hope, or fear, or jealousy, to which the two others
are but journeymen, set it to work. It occurred instantly to her, that
Jenny had scarce ever been out of her own house while she lived with
her. The leaning over the chair, the sudden starting up, the Latin,
the smile, and many other things, rushed upon her all at once. The
satisfaction her husband expressed in the departure of Jenny, appeared
now to be only dissembled; again, in the same instant, to be real; but
yet to confirm her jealousy, proceeding from satiety, and a hundred
other bad causes. In a word, she was convinced of her husband's guilt,
and immediately left the assembly in confusion.

As fair Grimalkin, who, though the youngest of the feline family,
degenerates not in ferocity from the elder branches of her house, and
though inferior in strength, is equal in fierceness to the noble tiger
himself, when a little mouse, whom it hath long tormented in sport,
escapes from her clutches for a while, frets, scolds, growls, swears;
but if the trunk, or box, behind which the mouse lay hid be again
removed, she flies like lightning on her prey, and, with envenomed
wrath, bites, scratches, mumbles, and tears the little animal.

Not with less fury did Mrs Partridge fly on the poor pedagogue. Her
tongue, teeth, and hands, fell all upon him at once. His wig was in an
instant torn from his head, his shirt from his back, and from his face
descended five streams of blood, denoting the number of claws with
which nature had unhappily armed the enemy.

Mr Partridge acted for some time on the defensive only; indeed he
attempted only to guard his face with his hands; but as he found that
his antagonist abated nothing of her rage, he thought he might, at
least, endeavour to disarm her, or rather to confine her arms; in
doing which her cap fell off in the struggle, and her hair being too
short to reach her shoulders, erected itself on her head; her stays
likewise, which were laced through one single hole at the bottom,
burst open; and her breasts, which were much more redundant than her
hair, hung down below her middle; her face was likewise marked with
the blood of her husband: her teeth gnashed with rage; and fire, such
as sparkles from a smith's forge, darted from her eyes. So that,
altogether, this Amazonian heroine might have been an object of terror
to a much bolder man than Mr Partridge.

He had, at length, the good fortune, by getting possession of her
arms, to render those weapons which she wore at the ends of her
fingers useless; which she no sooner perceived, than the softness of
her sex prevailed over her rage, and she presently dissolved in tears,
which soon after concluded in a fit.

That small share of sense which Mr Partridge had hitherto preserved
through this scene of fury, of the cause of which he was hitherto
ignorant, now utterly abandoned him. He ran instantly into the street,
hallowing out that his wife was in the agonies of death, and
beseeching the neighbours to fly with the utmost haste to her
assistance. Several good women obeyed his summons, who entering his
house, and applying the usual remedies on such occasions, Mrs
Partridge was at length, to the great joy of her husband, brought to

As soon as she had a little recollected her spirits, and somewhat
composed herself with a cordial, she began to inform the company of
the manifold injuries she had received from her husband; who, she
said, was not contented to injure her in her bed; but, upon her
upbraiding him with it, had treated her in the cruelest manner
imaginable; had tore her cap and hair from her head, and her stays
from her body, giving her, at the same time, several blows, the marks
of which she should carry to the grave.

The poor man, who bore on his face many more visible marks of the
indignation of his wife, stood in silent astonishment at this
accusation; which the reader will, I believe, bear witness for him,
had greatly exceeded the truth; for indeed he had not struck her once;
and this silence being interpreted to be a confession of the charge by
the whole court, they all began at once, _una voce_, to rebuke and
revile him, repeating often, that none but a coward ever struck a

Mr Partridge bore all this patiently; but when his wife appealed to
the blood on her face, as an evidence of his barbarity, he could not
help laying claim to his own blood, for so it really was; as he
thought it very unnatural, that this should rise up (as we are taught
that of a murdered person often doth) in vengeance against him.

To this the women made no other answer, than that it was a pity it had
not come from his heart, instead of his face; all declaring, that, if
their husbands should lift their hands against them, they would have
their hearts' bloods out of their bodies.

After much admonition for what was past, and much good advice to Mr
Partridge for his future behaviour, the company at length departed,
and left the husband and wife to a personal conference together, in
which Mr Partridge soon learned the cause of all his sufferings.

Chapter v.

Containing much matter to exercise the judgment and reflection of the

I believe it is a true observation, that few secrets are divulged to
one person only; but certainly, it would be next to a miracle that a
fact of this kind should be known to a whole parish, and not transpire
any farther.

And, indeed, a very few days had past, before the country, to use a
common phrase, rung of the schoolmaster of Little Baddington; who was
said to have beaten his wife in the most cruel manner. Nay, in some
places it was reported he had murdered her; in others, that he had
broke her arms; in others, her legs: in short, there was scarce an
injury which can be done to a human creature, but what Mrs Partridge
was somewhere or other affirmed to have received from her husband.

The cause of this quarrel was likewise variously reported; for as some
people said that Mrs Partridge had caught her husband in bed with his
maid, so many other reasons, of a very different kind, went abroad.
Nay, some transferred the guilt to the wife, and the jealousy to the

Mrs Wilkins had long ago heard of this quarrel; but, as a different
cause from the true one had reached her ears, she thought proper to
conceal it; and the rather, perhaps, as the blame was universally laid
on Mr Partridge; and his wife, when she was servant to Mr Allworthy,
had in something offended Mrs Wilkins, who was not of a very forgiving

But Mrs Wilkins, whose eyes could see objects at a distance, and who
could very well look forward a few years into futurity, had perceived
a strong likelihood of Captain Blifil's being hereafter her master;
and as she plainly discerned that the captain bore no great goodwill
to the little foundling, she fancied it would be rendering him an
agreeable service, if she could make any discoveries that might lessen
the affection which Mr Allworthy seemed to have contracted for this
child, and which gave visible uneasiness to the captain, who could not
entirely conceal it even before Allworthy himself; though his wife,
who acted her part much better in public, frequently recommended to
him her own example, of conniving at the folly of her brother, which,
she said, she at least as well perceived, and as much resented, as any
other possibly could.

Mrs Wilkins having therefore, by accident, gotten a true scent of the
above story,--though long after it had happened, failed not to satisfy
herself thoroughly of all the particulars; and then acquainted the
captain, that she had at last discovered the true father of the little
bastard, which she was sorry, she said, to see her master lose his
reputation in the country, by taking so much notice of.

The captain chid her for the conclusion of her speech, as an improper
assurance in judging of her master's actions: for if his honour, or
his understanding, would have suffered the captain to make an alliance
with Mrs Wilkins, his pride would by no means have admitted it. And to
say the truth, there is no conduct less politic, than to enter into
any confederacy with your friend's servants against their master: for
by these means you afterwards become the slave of these very servants;
by whom you are constantly liable to be betrayed. And this
consideration, perhaps it was, which prevented Captain Blifil from
being more explicit with Mrs Wilkins, or from encouraging the abuse
which she had bestowed on Allworthy.

But though he declared no satisfaction to Mrs Wilkins at this
discovery, he enjoyed not a little from it in his own mind, and
resolved to make the best use of it he was able.

He kept this matter a long time concealed within his own breast, in
hopes that Mr Allworthy might hear it from some other person; but Mrs
Wilkins, whether she resented the captain's behaviour, or whether his
cunning was beyond her, and she feared the discovery might displease
him, never afterwards opened her lips about the matter.

I have thought it somewhat strange, upon reflection, that the
housekeeper never acquainted Mrs Blifil with this news, as women are
more inclined to communicate all pieces of intelligence to their own
sex, than to ours. The only way, as it appears to me, of solving this
difficulty, is, by imputing it to that distance which was now grown
between the lady and the housekeeper: whether this arose from a
jealousy in Mrs Blifil, that Wilkins showed too great a respect to the
foundling; for while she was endeavouring to ruin the little infant,
in order to ingratiate herself with the captain, she was every day
more and more commending it before Allworthy, as his fondness for it
every day increased. This, notwithstanding all the care she took at
other times to express the direct contrary to Mrs Blifil, perhaps
offended that delicate lady, who certainly now hated Mrs Wilkins; and
though she did not, or possibly could not, absolutely remove her from
her place, she found, however, the means of making her life very
uneasy. This Mrs Wilkins, at length, so resented, that she very openly
showed all manner of respect and fondness to little Tommy, in
opposition to Mrs Blifil.

The captain, therefore, finding the story in danger of perishing, at
last took an opportunity to reveal it himself.

He was one day engaged with Mr Allworthy in a discourse on charity: in
which the captain, with great learning, proved to Mr Allworthy, that
the word charity in Scripture nowhere means beneficence or generosity.

"The Christian religion," he said, "was instituted for much nobler
purposes, than to enforce a lesson which many heathen philosophers had
taught us long before, and which, though it might perhaps be called a
moral virtue, savoured but little of that sublime, Christian-like
disposition, that vast elevation of thought, in purity approaching to
angelic perfection, to be attained, expressed, and felt only by grace.
Those," he said, "came nearer to the Scripture meaning, who understood
by it candour, or the forming of a benevolent opinion of our brethren,
and passing a favourable judgment on their actions; a virtue much
higher, and more extensive in its nature, than a pitiful distribution
of alms, which, though we would never so much prejudice, or even ruin
our families, could never reach many; whereas charity, in the other
and truer sense, might be extended to all mankind."

He said, "Considering who the disciples were, it would be absurd to
conceive the doctrine of generosity, or giving alms, to have been
preached to them. And, as we could not well imagine this doctrine
should be preached by its Divine Author to men who could not practise
it, much less should we think it understood so by those who can
practise it, and do not.

"But though," continued he, "there is, I am afraid, little merit in
these benefactions, there would, I must confess, be much pleasure in
them to a good mind, if it was not abated by one consideration. I
mean, that we are liable to be imposed upon, and to confer our
choicest favours often on the undeserving, as you must own was your
case in your bounty to that worthless fellow Partridge: for two or
three such examples must greatly lessen the inward satisfaction which
a good man would otherwise find in generosity; nay, may even make him
timorous in bestowing, lest he should be guilty of supporting vice,
and encouraging the wicked; a crime of a very black dye, and for which
it will by no means be a sufficient excuse, that we have not actually
intended such an encouragement; unless we have used the utmost caution
in chusing the objects of our beneficence. A consideration which, I
make no doubt, hath greatly checked the liberality of many a worthy
and pious man."

Mr Allworthy answered, "He could not dispute with the captain in the
Greek language, and therefore could say nothing as to the true sense
of the word which is translated charity; but that he had always
thought it was interpreted to consist in action, and that giving alms
constituted at least one branch of that virtue.

"As to the meritorious part," he said, "he readily agreed with the
captain; for where could be the merit of barely discharging a duty?
which," he said, "let the word charity have what construction it
would, it sufficiently appeared to be from the whole tenor of the New
Testament. And as he thought it an indispensable duty, enjoined both
by the Christian law, and by the law of nature itself; so was it
withal so pleasant, that if any duty could be said to be its own
reward, or to pay us while we are discharging it, it was this.

"To confess the truth," said he, "there is one degree of generosity
(of charity I would have called it), which seems to have some show of
merit, and that is, where, from a principle of benevolence and
Christian love, we bestow on another what we really want ourselves;
where, in order to lessen the distresses of another, we condescend to
share some part of them, by giving what even our own necessities
cannot well spare. This is, I think, meritorious; but to relieve our
brethren only with our superfluities; to be charitable (I must use the
word) rather at the expense of our coffers than ourselves; to save
several families from misery rather than hang up an extraordinary
picture in our houses or gratify any other idle ridiculous
vanity--this seems to be only being human creatures. Nay, I will
venture to go farther, it is being in some degree epicures: for what
could the greatest epicure wish rather than to eat with many mouths
instead of one? which I think may be predicated of any one who knows
that the bread of many is owing to his own largesses.

"As to the apprehension of bestowing bounty on such as may hereafter
prove unworthy objects, because many have proved such; surely it can
never deter a good man from generosity. I do not think a few or many
examples of ingratitude can justify a man's hardening his heart
against the distresses of his fellow-creatures; nor do I believe it
can ever have such effect on a truly benevolent mind. Nothing less
than a persuasion of universal depravity can lock up the charity of a
good man; and this persuasion must lead him, I think, either into
atheism, or enthusiasm; but surely it is unfair to argue such
universal depravity from a few vicious individuals; nor was this, I
believe, ever done by a man, who, upon searching his own mind, found
one certain exception to the general rule." He then concluded by
asking, "who that Partridge was, whom he had called a worthless

"I mean," said the captain, "Partridge the barber, the schoolmaster,
what do you call him? Partridge, the father of the little child which
you found in your bed."

Mr Allworthy exprest great surprize at this account, and the captain
as great at his ignorance of it; for he said he had known it above a
month: and at length recollected with much difficulty that he was told
it by Mrs Wilkins.

Upon this, Wilkins was immediately summoned; who having confirmed what
the captain had said, was by Mr Allworthy, by and with the captain's
advice, dispatched to Little Baddington, to inform herself of the
truth of the fact: for the captain exprest great dislike at all hasty
proceedings in criminal matters, and said he would by no means have Mr
Allworthy take any resolution either to the prejudice of the child or
its father, before he was satisfied that the latter was guilty; for
though he had privately satisfied himself of this from one of
Partridge's neighbours, yet he was too generous to give any such
evidence to Mr Allworthy.

Chapter vi.

The trial of Partridge, the schoolmaster, for incontinency; the
evidence of his wife; a short reflection on the wisdom of our law;
with other grave matters, which those will like best who understand
them most.

It may be wondered that a story so well known, and which had furnished
so much matter of conversation, should never have been mentioned to Mr
Allworthy himself, who was perhaps the only person in that country who
had never heard of it.

To account in some measure for this to the reader, I think proper to
inform him, that there was no one in the kingdom less interested in
opposing that doctrine concerning the meaning of the word charity,
which hath been seen in the preceding chapter, than our good man.
Indeed, he was equally intitled to this virtue in either sense; for as
no man was ever more sensible of the wants, or more ready to relieve
the distresses of others, so none could be more tender of their
characters, or slower to believe anything to their disadvantage.

Scandal, therefore, never found any access to his table; for as it
hath been long since observed that you may know a man by his
companions, so I will venture to say, that, by attending to the
conversation at a great man's table, you may satisfy yourself of his
religion, his politics, his taste, and indeed of his entire
disposition: for though a few odd fellows will utter their own
sentiments in all places, yet much the greater part of mankind have
enough of the courtier to accommodate their conversation to the taste
and inclination of their superiors.

But to return to Mrs Wilkins, who, having executed her commission with
great dispatch, though at fifteen miles distance, brought back such a
confirmation of the schoolmaster's guilt, that Mr Allworthy determined
to send for the criminal, and examine him _viva voce_. Mr Partridge,
therefore, was summoned to attend, in order to his defence (if he
could make any) against this accusation.

At the time appointed, before Mr Allworthy himself, at Paradise-hall,
came as well the said Partridge, with Anne, his wife, as Mrs Wilkins
his accuser.

And now Mr Allworthy being seated in the chair of justice, Mr
Partridge was brought before him. Having heard his accusation from the
mouth of Mrs Wilkins, he pleaded not guilty, making many vehement
protestations of his innocence.

Mrs Partridge was then examined, who, after a modest apology for being
obliged to speak the truth against her husband, related all the
circumstances with which the reader hath already been acquainted; and
at last concluded with her husband's confession of his guilt.

Whether she had forgiven him or no, I will not venture to determine;
but it is certain she was an unwilling witness in this cause; and it
is probable from certain other reasons, would never have been brought
to depose as she did, had not Mrs Wilkins, with great art, fished all
out of her at her own house, and had she not indeed made promises, in
Mr Allworthy's name, that the punishment of her husband should not be
such as might anywise affect his family.

Partridge still persisted in asserting his innocence, though he
admitted he had made the above-mentioned confession; which he however
endeavoured to account for, by protesting that he was forced into it
by the continued importunity she used: who vowed, that, as she was
sure of his guilt, she would never leave tormenting him till he had
owned it; and faithfully promised, that, in such case, she would never
mention it to him more. Hence, he said, he had been induced falsely to
confess himself guilty, though he was innocent; and that he believed
he should have confest a murder from the same motive.

Mrs Partridge could not bear this imputation with patience; and having
no other remedy in the present place but tears, she called forth a
plentiful assistance from them, and then addressing herself to Mr
Allworthy, she said (or rather cried), "May it please your worship,
there never was any poor woman so injured as I am by that base man;
for this is not the only instance of his falsehood to me. No, may it
please your worship, he hath injured my bed many's the good time and
often. I could have put up with his drunkenness and neglect of his
business, if he had not broke one of the sacred commandments. Besides,
if it had been out of doors I had not mattered it so much; but with my
own servant, in my own house, under my own roof, to defile my own
chaste bed, which to be sure he hath, with his beastly stinking
whores. Yes, you villain, you have defiled my own bed, you have; and
then you have charged me with bullocking you into owning the truth. It
is very likely, an't please your worship, that I should bullock him? I
have marks enow about my body to show of his cruelty to me. If you had
been a man, you villain, you would have scorned to injure a woman in
that manner. But you an't half a man, you know it. Nor have you been
half a husband to me. You need run after whores, you need, when I'm
sure--And since he provokes me, I am ready, an't please your worship,
to take my bodily oath that I found them a-bed together. What, you
have forgot, I suppose, when you beat me into a fit, and made the
blood run down my forehead, because I only civilly taxed you with
adultery! but I can prove it by all my neighbours. You have almost
broke my heart, you have, you have."

Here Mr Allworthy interrupted, and begged her to be pacified,
promising her that she should have justice; then turning to Partridge,
who stood aghast, one half of his wits being hurried away by surprize
and the other half by fear, he said he was sorry to see there was so
wicked a man in the world. He assured him that his prevaricating and
lying backward and forward was a great aggravation of his guilt; for
which the only atonement he could make was by confession and
repentance. He exhorted him, therefore, to begin by immediately
confessing the fact, and not to persist in denying what was so plainly
proved against him even by his own wife.

Here, reader, I beg your patience a moment, while I make a just
compliment to the great wisdom and sagacity of our law, which refuses
to admit the evidence of a wife for or against her husband. This, says
a certain learned author, who, I believe, was never quoted before in
any but a law-book, would be the means of creating an eternal
dissension between them. It would, indeed, be the means of much
perjury, and of much whipping, fining, imprisoning, transporting, and

Partridge stood a while silent, till, being bid to speak, he said he
had already spoken the truth, and appealed to Heaven for his
innocence, and lastly to the girl herself, whom he desired his worship
immediately to send for; for he was ignorant, or at least pretended to
be so, that she had left that part of the country.

Mr Allworthy, whose natural love of justice, joined to his coolness of
temper, made him always a most patient magistrate in hearing all the
witnesses which an accused person could produce in his defence, agreed
to defer his final determination of this matter till the arrival of
Jenny, for whom he immediately dispatched a messenger; and then having
recommended peace between Partridge and his wife (though he addressed
himself chiefly to the wrong person), he appointed them to attend
again the third day; for he had sent Jenny a whole day's journey from
his own house.

At the appointed time the parties all assembled, when the messenger
returning brought word, that Jenny was not to be found; for that she
had left her habitation a few days before, in company with a
recruiting officer.

Mr Allworthy then declared that the evidence of such a slut as she
appeared to be would have deserved no credit; but he said he could not
help thinking that, had she been present, and would have declared the
truth, she must have confirmed what so many circumstances, together
with his own confession, and the declaration of his wife that she had
caught her husband in the fact, did sufficiently prove. He therefore
once more exhorted Partridge to confess; but he still avowing his
innocence, Mr Allworthy declared himself satisfied of his guilt, and
that he was too bad a man to receive any encouragement from him. He
therefore deprived him of his annuity, and recommended repentance to
him on account of another world, and industry to maintain himself and
his wife in this.

There were not, perhaps, many more unhappy persons than poor
Partridge. He had lost the best part of his income by the evidence of
his wife, and yet was daily upbraided by her for having, among other
things, been the occasion of depriving her of that benefit; but such
was his fortune, and he was obliged to submit to it.

Though I called him poor Partridge in the last paragraph, I would have
the reader rather impute that epithet to the compassion in my temper
than conceive it to be any declaration of his innocence. Whether he
was innocent or not will perhaps appear hereafter; but if the historic
muse hath entrusted me with any secrets, I will by no means be guilty
of discovering them till she shall give me leave.

Here therefore the reader must suspend his curiosity. Certain it is
that, whatever was the truth of the case, there was evidence more than
sufficient to convict him before Allworthy; indeed, much less would
have satisfied a bench of justices on an order of bastardy; and yet,
notwithstanding the positiveness of Mrs Partridge, who would have
taken the sacrament upon the matter, there is a possibility that the
schoolmaster was entirely innocent: for though it appeared clear on
comparing the time when Jenny departed from Little Baddington with
that of her delivery that she had there conceived this infant, yet it
by no means followed of necessity that Partridge must have been its
father; for, to omit other particulars, there was in the same house a
lad near eighteen, between whom and Jenny there had subsisted
sufficient intimacy to found a reasonable suspicion; and yet, so blind
is jealousy, this circumstance never once entered into the head of the
enraged wife.

Whether Partridge repented or not, according to Mr Allworthy's advice,
is not so apparent. Certain it is that his wife repented heartily of
the evidence she had given against him: especially when she found Mrs
Deborah had deceived her, and refused to make any application to Mr
Allworthy on her behalf. She had, however, somewhat better success
with Mrs Blifil, who was, as the reader must have perceived, a much
better-tempered woman, and very kindly undertook to solicit her
brother to restore the annuity; in which, though good-nature might
have some share, yet a stronger and more natural motive will appear in
the next chapter.

These solicitations were nevertheless unsuccessful: for though Mr
Allworthy did not think, with some late writers, that mercy consists
only in punishing offenders; yet he was as far from thinking that it
is proper to this excellent quality to pardon great criminals
wantonly, without any reason whatever. Any doubtfulness of the fact,
or any circumstance of mitigation, was never disregarded: but the
petitions of an offender, or the intercessions of others, did not in
the least affect him. In a word, he never pardoned because the
offender himself, or his friends, were unwilling that he should be

Partridge and his wife were therefore both obliged to submit to their
fate; which was indeed severe enough: for so far was he from doubling
his industry on the account of his lessened income, that he did in a
manner abandon himself to despair; and as he was by nature indolent,
that vice now increased upon him, by which means he lost the little
school he had; so that neither his wife nor himself would have had any
bread to eat, had not the charity of some good Christian interposed,
and provided them with what was just sufficient for their sustenance.

As this support was conveyed to them by an unknown hand, they
imagined, and so, I doubt not, will the reader, that Mr Allworthy
himself was their secret benefactor; who, though he would not openly
encourage vice, could yet privately relieve the distresses of the
vicious themselves, when these became too exquisite and
disproportionate to their demerit. In which light their wretchedness
appeared now to Fortune herself; for she at length took pity on this
miserable couple, and considerably lessened the wretched state of
Partridge, by putting a final end to that of his wife, who soon after
caught the small-pox, and died.

The justice which Mr Allworthy had executed on Partridge at first met
with universal approbation; but no sooner had he felt its
consequences, than his neighbours began to relent, and to
compassionate his case; and presently after, to blame that as rigour
and severity which they before called justice. They now exclaimed
against punishing in cold blood, and sang forth the praises of mercy
and forgiveness.

These cries were considerably increased by the death of Mrs Partridge,
which, though owing to the distemper above mentioned, which is no
consequence of poverty or distress, many were not ashamed to impute to
Mr Allworthy's severity, or, as they now termed it, cruelty.

Partridge having now lost his wife, his school, and his annuity, and
the unknown person having now discontinued the last-mentioned charity,
resolved to change the scene, and left the country, where he was in
danger of starving, with the universal compassion of all his

Chapter vii.

A short sketch of that felicity which prudent couples may extract from
hatred: with a short apology for those people who overlook
imperfections in their friends.

Though the captain had effectually demolished poor Partridge, yet had
he not reaped the harvest he hoped for, which was to turn the
foundling out of Mr Allworthy's house.

On the contrary, that gentleman grew every day fonder of little Tommy,
as if he intended to counterbalance his severity to the father with
extraordinary fondness and affection towards the son.

This a good deal soured the captain's temper, as did all the other
daily instances of Mr Allworthy's generosity; for he looked on all
such largesses to be diminutions of his own wealth.

In this, we have said, he did not agree with his wife; nor, indeed, in
anything else: for though an affection placed on the understanding is,
by many wise persons, thought more durable than that which is founded
on beauty, yet it happened otherwise in the present case. Nay, the
understandings of this couple were their principal bone of contention,
and one great cause of many quarrels, which from time to time arose
between them; and which at last ended, on the side of the lady, in a
sovereign contempt for her husband; and on the husband's, in an utter
abhorrence of his wife.

As these had both exercised their talents chiefly in the study of
divinity, this was, from their first acquaintance, the most common
topic of conversation between them. The captain, like a well-bred man,
had, before marriage, always given up his opinion to that of the lady;
and this, not in the clumsy awkward manner of a conceited blockhead,
who, while he civilly yields to a superior in an argument, is desirous
of being still known to think himself in the right. The captain, on
the contrary, though one of the proudest fellows in the world, so
absolutely yielded the victory to his antagonist, that she, who had
not the least doubt of his sincerity, retired always from the dispute
with an admiration of her own understanding and a love for his.

But though this complacence to one whom the captain thoroughly
despised, was not so uneasy to him as it would have been had any hopes
of preferment made it necessary to show the same submission to a
Hoadley, or to some other of great reputation in the science, yet even
this cost him too much to be endured without some motive. Matrimony,
therefore, having removed all such motives, he grew weary of this
condescension, and began to treat the opinions of his wife with that
haughtiness and insolence, which none but those who deserve some
contempt themselves can bestow, and those only who deserve no contempt
can bear.

When the first torrent of tenderness was over, and when, in the calm
and long interval between the fits, reason began to open the eyes of
the lady, and she saw this alteration of behaviour in the captain, who
at length answered all her arguments only with pish and pshaw, she was
far from enduring the indignity with a tame submission. Indeed, it at
first so highly provoked her, that it might have produced some
tragical event, had it not taken a more harmless turn, by filling her
with the utmost contempt for her husband's understanding, which
somewhat qualified her hatred towards him; though of this likewise she
had a pretty moderate share.

The captain's hatred to her was of a purer kind: for as to any
imperfections in her knowledge or understanding, he no more despised
her for them, than for her not being six feet high. In his opinion of
the female sex, he exceeded the moroseness of Aristotle himself: he
looked on a woman as on an animal of domestic use, of somewhat higher
consideration than a cat, since her offices were of rather more
importance; but the difference between these two was, in his
estimation, so small, that, in his marriage contracted with Mr
Allworthy's lands and tenements, it would have been pretty equal which
of them he had taken into the bargain. And yet so tender was his
pride, that it felt the contempt which his wife now began to express
towards him; and this, added to the surfeit he had before taken of her
love, created in him a degree of disgust and abhorrence, perhaps
hardly to be exceeded.

One situation only of the married state is excluded from pleasure: and
that is, a state of indifference: but as many of my readers, I hope,
know what an exquisite delight there is in conveying pleasure to a
beloved object, so some few, I am afraid, may have experienced the
satisfaction of tormenting one we hate. It is, I apprehend, to come at
this latter pleasure, that we see both sexes often give up that ease
in marriage which they might otherwise possess, though their mate was
never so disagreeable to them. Hence the wife often puts on fits of
love and jealousy, nay, even denies herself any pleasure, to disturb
and prevent those of her husband; and he again, in return, puts
frequent restraints on himself, and stays at home in company which he
dislikes, in order to confine his wife to what she equally detests.
Hence, too, must flow those tears which a widow sometimes so
plentifully sheds over the ashes of a husband with whom she led a life
of constant disquiet and turbulency, and whom now she can never hope
to torment any more.

But if ever any couple enjoyed this pleasure, it was at present
experienced by the captain and his lady. It was always a sufficient
reason to either of them to be obstinate in any opinion, that the
other had previously asserted the contrary. If the one proposed any
amusement, the other constantly objected to it: they never loved or
hated, commended or abused, the same person. And for this reason, as
the captain looked with an evil eye on the little foundling, his wife
began now to caress it almost equally with her own child.

The reader will be apt to conceive, that this behaviour between the
husband and wife did not greatly contribute to Mr Allworthy's repose,
as it tended so little to that serene happiness which he had designed
for all three from this alliance; but the truth is, though he might be
a little disappointed in his sanguine expectations, yet he was far
from being acquainted with the whole matter; for, as the captain was,
from certain obvious reasons, much on his guard before him, the lady
was obliged, for fear of her brother's displeasure, to pursue the same
conduct. In fact, it is possible for a third person to be very
intimate, nay even to live long in the same house, with a married
couple, who have any tolerable discretion, and not even guess at the
sour sentiments which they bear to each other: for though the whole
day may be sometimes too short for hatred, as well as for love; yet
the many hours which they naturally spend together, apart from all
observers, furnish people of tolerable moderation with such ample
opportunity for the enjoyment of either passion, that, if they love,
they can support being a few hours in company without toying, or if
they hate, without spitting in each other's faces.

It is possible, however, that Mr Allworthy saw enough to render him a
little uneasy; for we are not always to conclude, that a wise man is
not hurt, because he doth not cry out and lament himself, like those
of a childish or effeminate temper. But indeed it is possible he might
see some faults in the captain without any uneasiness at all; for men
of true wisdom and goodness are contented to take persons and things
as they are, without complaining of their imperfections, or attempting
to amend them. They can see a fault in a friend, a relation, or an
acquaintance, without ever mentioning it to the parties themselves, or
to any others; and this often without lessening their affection.
Indeed, unless great discernment be tempered with this overlooking
disposition, we ought never to contract friendship but with a degree
of folly which we can deceive; for I hope my friends will pardon me
when I declare, I know none of them without a fault; and I should be
sorry if I could imagine I had any friend who could not see mine.
Forgiveness of this kind we give and demand in turn. It is an exercise
of friendship, and perhaps none of the least pleasant. And this
forgiveness we must bestow, without desire of amendment. There is,
perhaps, no surer mark of folly, than an attempt to correct the
natural infirmities of those we love. The finest composition of human
nature, as well as the finest china, may have a flaw in it; and this,
I am afraid, in either case, is equally incurable; though,
nevertheless, the pattern may remain of the highest value.

Upon the whole, then, Mr Allworthy certainly saw some imperfections in
the captain; but as this was a very artful man, and eternally upon his
guard before him, these appeared to him no more than blemishes in a
good character, which his goodness made him overlook, and his wisdom
prevented him from discovering to the captain himself. Very different
would have been his sentiments had he discovered the whole; which
perhaps would in time have been the case, had the husband and wife
long continued this kind of behaviour to each other; but this kind
Fortune took effectual means to prevent, by forcing the captain to do
that which rendered him again dear to his wife, and restored all her
tenderness and affection towards him.

Chapter viii.

A receipt to regain the lost affections of a wife, which hath never
been known to fail in the most desperate cases.

The captain was made large amends for the unpleasant minutes which he
passed in the conversation of his wife (and which were as few as he
could contrive to make them), by the pleasant meditations he enjoyed
when alone.

These meditations were entirely employed on Mr Allworthy's fortune;
for, first, he exercised much thought in calculating, as well as he
could, the exact value of the whole: which calculations he often saw
occasion to alter in his own favour: and, secondly and chiefly, he
pleased himself with intended alterations in the house and gardens,
and in projecting many other schemes, as well for the improvement of
the estate as of the grandeur of the place: for this purpose he
applied himself to the studies of architecture and gardening, and read
over many books on both these subjects; for these sciences, indeed,
employed his whole time, and formed his only amusement. He at last
completed a most excellent plan: and very sorry we are, that it is not
in our power to present it to our reader, since even the luxury of the
present age, I believe, would hardly match it. It had, indeed, in a
superlative degree, the two principal ingredients which serve to
recommend all great and noble designs of this nature; for it required
an immoderate expense to execute, and a vast length of time to bring
it to any sort of perfection. The former of these, the immense wealth
of which the captain supposed Mr Allworthy possessed, and which he
thought himself sure of inheriting, promised very effectually to
supply; and the latter, the soundness of his own constitution, and his
time of life, which was only what is called middle-age, removed all
apprehension of his not living to accomplish.

Nothing was wanting to enable him to enter upon the immediate
execution of this plan, but the death of Mr Allworthy; in calculating
which he had employed much of his own algebra, besides purchasing
every book extant that treats of the value of lives, reversions, &c.
From all which he satisfied himself, that as he had every day a chance
of this happening, so had he more than an even chance of its happening
within a few years.

But while the captain was one day busied in deep contemplations of
this kind, one of the most unlucky as well as unseasonable accidents
happened to him. The utmost malice of Fortune could, indeed, have
contrived nothing so cruel, so mal-a-propos, so absolutely destructive
to all his schemes. In short, not to keep the reader in long suspense,
just at the very instant when his heart was exulting in meditations on
the happiness which would accrue to him by Mr Allworthy's death, he
himself--died of an apoplexy.

This unfortunately befel the captain as he was taking his evening walk
by himself, so that nobody was present to lend him any assistance, if
indeed, any assistance could have preserved him. He took, therefore,
measure of that proportion of soil which was now become adequate to
all his future purposes, and he lay dead on the ground, a great
(though not a living) example of the truth of that observation of

        _Tu secanda marmora
        Locas sub ipsum funus; et sepulchri
        Immemor, struis domos._

Which sentiment I shall thus give to the English reader: "You provide
the noblest materials for building, when a pickaxe and a spade are
only necessary: and build houses of five hundred by a hundred feet,
forgetting that of six by two."

Chapter ix.

A proof of the infallibility of the foregoing receipt, in the
lamentations of the widow; with other suitable decorations of death,
such as physicians, &c., and an epitaph in the true stile.

Mr Allworthy, his sister, and another lady, were assembled at the
accustomed hour in the supper-room, where, having waited a
considerable time longer than usual, Mr Allworthy first declared he
began to grow uneasy at the captain's stay (for he was always most
punctual at his meals); and gave orders that the bell should be rung
without the doors, and especially towards those walks which the
captain was wont to use.

All these summons proving ineffectual (for the captain had, by
perverse accident, betaken himself to a new walk that evening), Mrs
Blifil declared she was seriously frightened. Upon which the other
lady, who was one of her most intimate acquaintance, and who well knew
the true state of her affections, endeavoured all she could to pacify
her, telling her--To be sure she could not help being uneasy; but that
she should hope the best. That, perhaps the sweetness of the evening
had inticed the captain to go farther than his usual walk: or he might
be detained at some neighbour's. Mrs Blifil answered, No; she was sure
some accident had befallen him; for that he would never stay out
without sending her word, as he must know how uneasy it would make
her. The other lady, having no other arguments to use, betook herself
to the entreaties usual on such occasions, and begged her not to
frighten herself, for it might be of very ill consequence to her own
health; and, filling out a very large glass of wine, advised, and at
last prevailed with her to drink it.

Mr Allworthy now returned into the parlour; for he had been himself in
search after the captain. His countenance sufficiently showed the
consternation he was under, which, indeed, had a good deal deprived
him of speech; but as grief operates variously on different minds, so
the same apprehension which depressed his voice, elevated that of Mrs
Blifil. She now began to bewail herself in very bitter terms, and
floods of tears accompanied her lamentations; which the lady, her
companion, declared she could not blame, but at the same time
dissuaded her from indulging; attempting to moderate the grief of her
friend by philosophical observations on the many disappointments to
which human life is daily subject, which, she said, was a sufficient
consideration to fortify our minds against any accidents, how sudden
or terrible soever. She said her brother's example ought to teach her
patience, who, though indeed he could not be supposed as much
concerned as herself, yet was, doubtless, very uneasy, though his
resignation to the Divine will had restrained his grief within due

"Mention not my brother," said Mrs Blifil; "I alone am the object of
your pity. What are the terrors of friendship to what a wife feels on
these occasions? Oh, he is lost! Somebody hath murdered him--I shall
never see him more!"--Here a torrent of tears had the same consequence
with what the suppression had occasioned to Mr Allworthy, and she
remained silent.

At this interval a servant came running in, out of breath, and cried
out, The captain was found; and, before he could proceed farther, he
was followed by two more, bearing the dead body between them.

Here the curious reader may observe another diversity in the
operations of grief: for as Mr Allworthy had been before silent, from
the same cause which had made his sister vociferous; so did the
present sight, which drew tears from the gentleman, put an entire stop
to those of the lady; who first gave a violent scream, and presently
after fell into a fit.

The room was soon full of servants, some of whom, with the lady
visitant, were employed in care of the wife; and others, with Mr
Allworthy, assisted in carrying off the captain to a warm bed; where
every method was tried, in order to restore him to life.

And glad should we be, could we inform the reader that both these
bodies had been attended with equal success; for those who undertook
the care of the lady succeeded so well, that, after the fit had
continued a decent time, she again revived, to their great
satisfaction: but as to the captain, all experiments of bleeding,
chafing, dropping, &c., proved ineffectual. Death, that inexorable
judge, had passed sentence on him, and refused to grant him a
reprieve, though two doctors who arrived, and were fee'd at one and
the same instant, were his counsel.

These two doctors, whom, to avoid any malicious applications, we shall
distinguish by the names of Dr Y. and Dr Z., having felt his pulse; to
wit, Dr Y. his right arm, and Dr Z. his left; both agreed that he was
absolutely dead; but as to the distemper, or cause of his death, they
differed; Dr Y. holding that he died of an apoplexy, and Dr Z. of an

Hence arose a dispute between the learned men, in which each delivered
the reasons of their several opinions. These were of such equal force,
that they served both to confirm either doctor in his own sentiments,
and made not the least impression on his adversary.

To say the truth, every physician almost hath his favourite disease,
to which he ascribes all the victories obtained over human nature. The
gout, the rheumatism, the stone, the gravel, and the consumption, have
all their several patrons in the faculty; and none more than the
nervous fever, or the fever on the spirits. And here we may account
for those disagreements in opinion, concerning the cause of a
patient's death, which sometimes occur, between the most learned of
the college; and which have greatly surprized that part of the world
who have been ignorant of the fact we have above asserted.

The reader may perhaps be surprized, that, instead of endeavouring to
revive the patient, the learned gentlemen should fall immediately into
a dispute on the occasion of his death; but in reality all such
experiments had been made before their arrival: for the captain was
put into a warm bed, had his veins scarified, his forehead chafed, and
all sorts of strong drops applied to his lips and nostrils.

The physicians, therefore, finding themselves anticipated in
everything they ordered, were at a loss how to apply that portion of
time which it is usual and decent to remain for their fee, and were
therefore necessitated to find some subject or other for discourse;
and what could more naturally present itself than that before

Our doctors were about to take their leave, when Mr Allworthy, having
given over the captain, and acquiesced in the Divine will, began to
enquire after his sister, whom he desired them to visit before their

This lady was now recovered of her fit, and, to use the common phrase,
as well as could be expected for one in her condition. The doctors,
therefore, all previous ceremonies being complied with, as this was a
new patient, attended, according to desire, and laid hold on each of
her hands, as they had before done on those of the corpse.

The case of the lady was in the other extreme from that of her
husband: for as he was past all the assistance of physic, so in
reality she required none.

There is nothing more unjust than the vulgar opinion, by which
physicians are misrepresented, as friends to death. On the contrary, I
believe, if the number of those who recover by physic could be opposed
to that of the martyrs to it, the former would rather exceed the
latter. Nay, some are so cautious on this head, that, to avoid a
possibility of killing the patient, they abstain from all methods of
curing, and prescribe nothing but what can neither do good nor harm. I
have heard some of these, with great gravity, deliver it as a maxim,
"That Nature should be left to do her own work, while the physician
stands by as it were to clap her on the back, and encourage her when
she doth well."

So little then did our doctors delight in death, that they discharged
the corpse after a single fee; but they were not so disgusted with
their living patient; concerning whose case they immediately agreed,
and fell to prescribing with great diligence.

Whether, as the lady had at first persuaded her physicians to believe
her ill, they had now, in return, persuaded her to believe herself so,
I will not determine; but she continued a whole month with all the
decorations of sickness. During this time she was visited by
physicians, attended by nurses, and received constant messages from
her acquaintance to enquire after her health.

At length the decent time for sickness and immoderate grief being
expired, the doctors were discharged, and the lady began to see
company; being altered only from what she was before, by that colour
of sadness in which she had dressed her person and countenance.

The captain was now interred, and might, perhaps, have already made a
large progress towards oblivion, had not the friendship of Mr
Allworthy taken care to preserve his memory, by the following epitaph,
which was written by a man of as great genius as integrity, and one
who perfectly well knew the captain.

                              HERE LIES,
                             THE BODY OF

                         CAPTAIN JOHN BLIFIL.

                     HAD THE HONOUR OF HIS BIRTH,
                          OF HIS EDUCATION.

                              HIS PARTS
                         AND TO HIS COUNTRY:
                      HIS LIFE, TO HIS RELIGION
                          AND HUMAN NATURE.
                        HE WAS A DUTIFUL SON,
                          A TENDER HUSBAND,
                       AN AFFECTIONATE FATHER,
                         A MOST KIND BROTHER,
                          A SINCERE FRIEND,
                         A DEVOUT CHRISTIAN,
                           AND A GOOD MAN.

                        HIS INCONSOLABLE WIDOW
                       HATH ERECTED THIS STONE,
                           THE MONUMENT OF
                             HIS VIRTUES
                        AND OF HER AFFECTION.



Chapter i.

Containing little or nothing.

The reader will be pleased to remember, that, at the beginning of the
second book of this history, we gave him a hint of our intention to
pass over several large periods of time, in which nothing happened
worthy of being recorded in a chronicle of this kind.

In so doing, we do not only consult our own dignity and ease, but the
good and advantage of the reader: for besides that by these means we
prevent him from throwing away his time, in reading without either
pleasure or emolument, we give him, at all such seasons, an
opportunity of employing that wonderful sagacity, of which he is
master, by filling up these vacant spaces of time with his own
conjectures; for which purpose we have taken care to qualify him in
the preceding pages.

For instance, what reader but knows that Mr Allworthy felt, at first,
for the loss of his friend, those emotions of grief, which on such
occasions enter into all men whose hearts are not composed of flint,
or their heads of as solid materials? Again, what reader doth not know
that philosophy and religion in time moderated, and at last
extinguished, this grief? The former of these teaching the folly and
vanity of it, and the latter correcting it as unlawful, and at the
same time assuaging it, by raising future hopes and assurances, which
enable a strong and religious mind to take leave of a friend, on his
deathbed, with little less indifference than if he was preparing for a
long journey; and, indeed, with little less hope of seeing him again.

Nor can the judicious reader be at a greater loss on account of Mrs
Bridget Blifil, who, he may be assured, conducted herself through the
whole season in which grief is to make its appearance on the outside
of the body, with the strictest regard to all the rules of custom and
decency, suiting the alterations of her countenance to the several
alterations of her habit: for as this changed from weeds to black,
from black to grey, from grey to white, so did her countenance change
from dismal to sorrowful, from sorrowful to sad, and from sad to
serious, till the day came in which she was allowed to return to her
former serenity.

We have mentioned these two, as examples only of the task which may be
imposed on readers of the lowest class. Much higher and harder
exercises of judgment and penetration may reasonably be expected from
the upper graduates in criticism. Many notable discoveries will, I
doubt not, be made by such, of the transactions which happened in the
family of our worthy man, during all the years which we have thought
proper to pass over: for though nothing worthy of a place in this
history occurred within that period, yet did several incidents happen
of equal importance with those reported by the daily and weekly
historians of the age; in reading which great numbers of persons
consume a considerable part of their time, very little, I am afraid,
to their emolument. Now, in the conjectures here proposed, some of the
most excellent faculties of the mind may be employed to much
advantage, since it is a more useful capacity to be able to foretel
the actions of men, in any circumstance, from their characters, than
to judge of their characters from their actions. The former, I own,
requires the greater penetration; but may be accomplished by true
sagacity with no less certainty than the latter.

As we are sensible that much the greatest part of our readers are very
eminently possessed of this quality, we have left them a space of
twelve years to exert it in; and shall now bring forth our heroe, at
about fourteen years of age, not questioning that many have been long
impatient to be introduced to his acquaintance.

Chapter ii.

The heroe of this great history appears with very bad omens. A little
tale of so LOW a kind that some may think it not worth their notice. A
word or two concerning a squire, and more relating to a gamekeeper and
a schoolmaster.

As we determined, when we first sat down to write this history, to
flatter no man, but to guide our pen throughout by the directions of
truth, we are obliged to bring our heroe on the stage in a much more
disadvantageous manner than we could wish; and to declare honestly,
even at his first appearance, that it was the universal opinion of all
Mr Allworthy's family that he was certainly born to be hanged.

Indeed, I am sorry to say there was too much reason for this
conjecture; the lad having from his earliest years discovered a
propensity to many vices, and especially to one which hath as direct a
tendency as any other to that fate which we have just now observed to
have been prophetically denounced against him: he had been already
convicted of three robberies, viz., of robbing an orchard, of stealing
a duck out of a farmer's yard, and of picking Master Blifil's pocket
of a ball.

The vices of this young man were, moreover, heightened by the
disadvantageous light in which they appeared when opposed to the
virtues of Master Blifil, his companion; a youth of so different a
cast from little Jones, that not only the family but all the
neighbourhood resounded his praises. He was, indeed, a lad of a
remarkable disposition; sober, discreet, and pious beyond his age;
qualities which gained him the love of every one who knew him: while
Tom Jones was universally disliked; and many expressed their wonder
that Mr Allworthy would suffer such a lad to be educated with his
nephew, lest the morals of the latter should be corrupted by his

An incident which happened about this time will set the characters of
these two lads more fairly before the discerning reader than is in the
power of the longest dissertation.

Tom Jones, who, bad as he is, must serve for the heroe of this
history, had only one friend among all the servants of the family; for
as to Mrs Wilkins, she had long since given him up, and was perfectly
reconciled to her mistress. This friend was the gamekeeper, a fellow
of a loose kind of disposition, and who was thought not to entertain
much stricter notions concerning the difference of _meum_ and _tuum_
than the young gentleman himself. And hence this friendship gave
occasion to many sarcastical remarks among the domestics, most of
which were either proverbs before, or at least are become so now; and,
indeed, the wit of them all may be comprised in that short Latin
proverb, "_Noscitur a socio;_" which, I think, is thus expressed in
English, "You may know him by the company he keeps."

To say the truth, some of that atrocious wickedness in Jones, of which
we have just mentioned three examples, might perhaps be derived from
the encouragement he had received from this fellow, who, in two or
three instances, had been what the law calls an accessary after the
fact: for the whole duck, and great part of the apples, were converted
to the use of the gamekeeper and his family; though, as Jones alone
was discovered, the poor lad bore not only the whole smart, but the
whole blame; both which fell again to his lot on the following

Contiguous to Mr Allworthy's estate was the manor of one of those
gentlemen who are called preservers of the game. This species of men,
from the great severity with which they revenge the death of a hare or
partridge, might be thought to cultivate the same superstition with
the Bannians in India; many of whom, we are told, dedicate their whole
lives to the preservation and protection of certain animals; was it
not that our English Bannians, while they preserve them from other
enemies, will most unmercifully slaughter whole horse-loads
themselves; so that they stand clearly acquitted of any such
heathenish superstition.

I have, indeed, a much better opinion of this kind of men than is
entertained by some, as I take them to answer the order of Nature, and
the good purposes for which they were ordained, in a more ample manner
than many others. Now, as Horace tells us that there are a set of
human beings

           _Fruges consumere nati,_

"Born to consume the fruits of the earth;" so I make no manner of
doubt but that there are others

          _Feras consumere nati,_

"Born to consume the beasts of the field;" or, as it is commonly
called, the game; and none, I believe, will deny but that those
squires fulfil this end of their creation.

Little Jones went one day a shooting with the gamekeeper; when
happening to spring a covey of partridges near the border of that
manor over which Fortune, to fulfil the wise purposes of Nature, had
planted one of the game consumers, the birds flew into it, and were
marked (as it is called) by the two sportsmen, in some furze bushes,
about two or three hundred paces beyond Mr Allworthy's dominions.

Mr Allworthy had given the fellow strict orders, on pain of forfeiting
his place, never to trespass on any of his neighbours; no more on
those who were less rigid in this matter than on the lord of this
manor. With regard to others, indeed, these orders had not been always
very scrupulously kept; but as the disposition of the gentleman with
whom the partridges had taken sanctuary was well known, the gamekeeper
had never yet attempted to invade his territories. Nor had he done it
now, had not the younger sportsman, who was excessively eager to
pursue the flying game, over-persuaded him; but Jones being very
importunate, the other, who was himself keen enough after the sport,
yielded to his persuasions, entered the manor, and shot one of the

The gentleman himself was at that time on horse-back, at a little
distance from them; and hearing the gun go off, he immediately made
towards the place, and discovered poor Tom; for the gamekeeper had
leapt into the thickest part of the furze-brake, where he had happily
concealed himself.

The gentleman having searched the lad, and found the partridge upon
him, denounced great vengeance, swearing he would acquaint Mr
Allworthy. He was as good as his word: for he rode immediately to his
house, and complained of the trespass on his manor in as high terms
and as bitter language as if his house had been broken open, and the
most valuable furniture stole out of it. He added, that some other
person was in his company, though he could not discover him; for that
two guns had been discharged almost in the same instant. And, says he,
"We have found only this partridge, but the Lord knows what mischief
they have done."

At his return home, Tom was presently convened before Mr Allworthy. He
owned the fact, and alledged no other excuse but what was really true,
viz., that the covey was originally sprung in Mr Allworthy's own

Tom was then interrogated who was with him, which Mr Allworthy
declared he was resolved to know, acquainting the culprit with the
circumstance of the two guns, which had been deposed by the squire and
both his servants; but Tom stoutly persisted in asserting that he was
alone; yet, to say the truth, he hesitated a little at first, which
would have confirmed Mr Allworthy's belief, had what the squire and
his servants said wanted any further confirmation.

The gamekeeper, being a suspected person, was now sent for, and the
question put to him; but he, relying on the promise which Tom had made
him, to take all upon himself, very resolutely denied being in company
with the young gentleman, or indeed having seen him the whole

Mr Allworthy then turned towards Tom, with more than usual anger in
his countenance, and advised him to confess who was with him;
repeating, that he was resolved to know. The lad, however, still
maintained his resolution, and was dismissed with much wrath by Mr
Allworthy, who told him he should have to the next morning to consider
of it, when he should be questioned by another person, and in another

Poor Jones spent a very melancholy night; and the more so, as he was
without his usual companion; for Master Blifil was gone abroad on a
visit with his mother. Fear of the punishment he was to suffer was on
this occasion his least evil; his chief anxiety being, lest his
constancy should fail him, and he should be brought to betray the
gamekeeper, whose ruin he knew must now be the consequence.

Nor did the gamekeeper pass his time much better. He had the same
apprehensions with the youth; for whose honour he had likewise a much
tenderer regard than for his skin.

In the morning, when Tom attended the reverend Mr Thwackum, the person
to whom Mr Allworthy had committed the instruction of the two boys, he
had the same questions put to him by that gentleman which he had been
asked the evening before, to which he returned the same answers. The
consequence of this was, so severe a whipping, that it possibly fell
little short of the torture with which confessions are in some
countries extorted from criminals.

Tom bore his punishment with great resolution; and though his master
asked him, between every stroke, whether he would not confess, he was
contented to be flead rather than betray his friend, or break the
promise he had made.

The gamekeeper was now relieved from his anxiety, and Mr Allworthy
himself began to be concerned at Tom's sufferings: for besides that Mr
Thwackum, being highly enraged that he was not able to make the boy
say what he himself pleased, had carried his severity much beyond the
good man's intention, this latter began now to suspect that the squire
had been mistaken; which his extreme eagerness and anger seemed to
make probable; and as for what the servants had said in confirmation
of their master's account, he laid no great stress upon that. Now, as
cruelty and injustice were two ideas of which Mr Allworthy could by no
means support the consciousness a single moment, he sent for Tom, and
after many kind and friendly exhortations, said, "I am convinced, my
dear child, that my suspicions have wronged you; I am sorry that you
have been so severely punished on this account." And at last gave him
a little horse to make him amends; again repeating his sorrow for what
had past.

Tom's guilt now flew in his face more than any severity could make it.
He could more easily bear the lashes of Thwackum, than the generosity
of Allworthy. The tears burst from his eyes, and he fell upon his
knees, crying, "Oh, sir, you are too good to me. Indeed you are.
Indeed I don't deserve it." And at that very instant, from the fulness
of his heart, had almost betrayed the secret; but the good genius of
the gamekeeper suggested to him what might be the consequence to the
poor fellow, and this consideration sealed his lips.

Thwackum did all he could to persuade Allworthy from showing any
compassion or kindness to the boy, saying, "He had persisted in an
untruth;" and gave some hints, that a second whipping might probably
bring the matter to light.

But Mr Allworthy absolutely refused to consent to the experiment. He
said, the boy had suffered enough already for concealing the truth,
even if he was guilty, seeing that he could have no motive but a
mistaken point of honour for so doing.

"Honour!" cryed Thwackum, with some warmth, "mere stubbornness and
obstinacy! Can honour teach any one to tell a lie, or can any honour
exist independent of religion?"

This discourse happened at table when dinner was just ended; and there
were present Mr Allworthy, Mr Thwackum, and a third gentleman, who now
entered into the debate, and whom, before we proceed any further, we
shall briefly introduce to our reader's acquaintance.

Chapter iii.

The character of Mr Square the philosopher, and of Mr Thwackum the
divine; with a dispute concerning----

The name of this gentleman, who had then resided some time at Mr
Allworthy's house, was Mr Square. His natural parts were not of the
first rate, but he had greatly improved them by a learned education.
He was deeply read in the antients, and a profest master of all the
works of Plato and Aristotle. Upon which great models he had
principally formed himself; sometimes according with the opinion of
the one, and sometimes with that of the other. In morals he was a
profest Platonist, and in religion he inclined to be an Aristotelian.

But though he had, as we have said, formed his morals on the Platonic
model, yet he perfectly agreed with the opinion of Aristotle, in
considering that great man rather in the quality of a philosopher or a
speculatist, than as a legislator. This sentiment he carried a great
way; indeed, so far, as to regard all virtue as matter of theory only.
This, it is true, he never affirmed, as I have heard, to any one; and
yet upon the least attention to his conduct, I cannot help thinking it
was his real opinion, as it will perfectly reconcile some
contradictions which might otherwise appear in his character.

This gentleman and Mr Thwackum scarce ever met without a disputation;
for their tenets were indeed diametrically opposite to each other.
Square held human nature to be the perfection of all virtue, and that
vice was a deviation from our nature, in the same manner as deformity
of body is. Thwackum, on the contrary, maintained that the human mind,
since the fall, was nothing but a sink of iniquity, till purified and
redeemed by grace. In one point only they agreed, which was, in all
their discourses on morality never to mention the word goodness. The
favourite phrase of the former, was the natural beauty of virtue; that
of the latter, was the divine power of grace. The former measured all
actions by the unalterable rule of right, and the eternal fitness of
things; the latter decided all matters by authority; but in doing
this, he always used the scriptures and their commentators, as the
lawyer doth his Coke upon Lyttleton, where the comment is of equal
authority with the text.

After this short introduction, the reader will be pleased to remember,
that the parson had concluded his speech with a triumphant question,
to which he had apprehended no answer; viz., Can any honour exist
independent on religion?

To this Square answered; that it was impossible to discourse
philosophically concerning words, till their meaning was first
established: that there were scarce any two words of a more vague and
uncertain signification, than the two he had mentioned; for that there
were almost as many different opinions concerning honour, as
concerning religion. "But," says he, "if by honour you mean the true
natural beauty of virtue, I will maintain it may exist independent of
any religion whatever. Nay," added he, "you yourself will allow it may
exist independent of all but one: so will a Mahometan, a Jew, and all
the maintainers of all the different sects in the world."

Thwackum replied, this was arguing with the usual malice of all the
enemies to the true Church. He said, he doubted not but that all the
infidels and hereticks in the world would, if they could, confine
honour to their own absurd errors and damnable deceptions; "but
honour," says he, "is not therefore manifold, because there are many
absurd opinions about it; nor is religion manifold, because there are
various sects and heresies in the world. When I mention religion, I
mean the Christian religion; and not only the Christian religion, but
the Protestant religion; and not only the Protestant religion, but the
Church of England. And when I mention honour, I mean that mode of
Divine grace which is not only consistent with, but dependent upon,
this religion; and is consistent with and dependent upon no other. Now
to say that the honour I here mean, and which was, I thought, all the
honour I could be supposed to mean, will uphold, much less dictate an
untruth, is to assert an absurdity too shocking to be conceived."

"I purposely avoided," says Square, "drawing a conclusion which I
thought evident from what I have said; but if you perceived it, I am
sure you have not attempted to answer it. However, to drop the article
of religion, I think it is plain, from what you have said, that we
have different ideas of honour; or why do we not agree in the same
terms of its explanation? I have asserted, that true honour and true
virtue are almost synonymous terms, and they are both founded on the
unalterable rule of right, and the eternal fitness of things; to which
an untruth being absolutely repugnant and contrary, it is certain that
true honour cannot support an untruth. In this, therefore, I think we
are agreed; but that this honour can be said to be founded on
religion, to which it is antecedent, if by religion be meant any
positive law--"

"I agree," answered Thwackum, with great warmth, "with a man who
asserts honour to be antecedent to religion! Mr Allworthy, did I

He was proceeding when Mr Allworthy interposed, telling them very
coldly, they had both mistaken his meaning; for that he had said
nothing of true honour.--It is possible, however, he would not have
easily quieted the disputants, who were growing equally warm, had not
another matter now fallen out, which put a final end to the
conversation at present.

Chapter iv.

Containing a necessary apology for the author; and a childish
incident, which perhaps requires an apology likewise.

Before I proceed farther, I shall beg leave to obviate some
misconstructions into which the zeal of some few readers may lead
them; for I would not willingly give offence to any, especially to men
who are warm in the cause of virtue or religion.

I hope, therefore, no man will, by the grossest misunderstanding or
perversion of my meaning, misrepresent me, as endeavouring to cast any
ridicule on the greatest perfections of human nature; and which do,
indeed, alone purify and ennoble the heart of man, and raise him above
the brute creation. This, reader, I will venture to say (and by how
much the better man you are yourself, by so much the more will you be
inclined to believe me), that I would rather have buried the
sentiments of these two persons in eternal oblivion, than have done
any injury to either of these glorious causes.

On the contrary, it is with a view to their service, that I have taken
upon me to record the lives and actions of two of their false and
pretended champions. A treacherous friend is the most dangerous enemy;
and I will say boldly, that both religion and virtue have received
more real discredit from hypocrites than the wittiest profligates or
infidels could ever cast upon them: nay, farther, as these two, in
their purity, are rightly called the bands of civil society, and are
indeed the greatest of blessings; so when poisoned and corrupted with
fraud, pretence, and affectation, they have become the worst of civil
curses, and have enabled men to perpetrate the most cruel mischiefs to
their own species.

Indeed, I doubt not but this ridicule will in general be allowed: my
chief apprehension is, as many true and just sentiments often came
from the mouths of these persons, lest the whole should be taken
together, and I should be conceived to ridicule all alike. Now the
reader will be pleased to consider, that, as neither of these men were
fools, they could not be supposed to have holden none but wrong
principles, and to have uttered nothing but absurdities; what
injustice, therefore, must I have done to their characters, had I
selected only what was bad! And how horribly wretched and maimed must
their arguments have appeared!

Upon the whole, it is not religion or virtue, but the want of them,
which is here exposed. Had not Thwackum too much neglected virtue, and
Square, religion, in the composition of their several systems, and had
not both utterly discarded all natural goodness of heart, they had
never been represented as the objects of derision in this history; in
which we will now proceed.

This matter then, which put an end to the debate mentioned in the last
chapter, was no other than a quarrel between Master Blifil and Tom
Jones, the consequence of which had been a bloody nose to the former;
for though Master Blifil, notwithstanding he was the younger, was in
size above the other's match, yet Tom was much his superior at the
noble art of boxing.

Tom, however, cautiously avoided all engagements with that youth; for
besides that Tommy Jones was an inoffensive lad amidst all his
roguery, and really loved Blifil, Mr Thwackum being always the second
of the latter, would have been sufficient to deter him.

But well says a certain author, No man is wise at all hours; it is
therefore no wonder that a boy is not so. A difference arising at play
between the two lads, Master Blifil called Tom a beggarly bastard.
Upon which the latter, who was somewhat passionate in his disposition,
immediately caused that phenomenon in the face of the former, which we
have above remembered.

Master Blifil now, with his blood running from his nose, and the tears
galloping after from his eyes, appeared before his uncle and the
tremendous Thwackum. In which court an indictment of assault, battery,
and wounding, was instantly preferred against Tom; who in his excuse
only pleaded the provocation, which was indeed all the matter that
Master Blifil had omitted.

It is indeed possible that this circumstance might have escaped his
memory; for, in his reply, he positively insisted, that he had made
use of no such appellation; adding, "Heaven forbid such naughty words
should ever come out of his mouth!"

Tom, though against all form of law, rejoined in affirmance of the
words. Upon which Master Blifil said, "It is no wonder. Those who will
tell one fib, will hardly stick at another. If I had told my master
such a wicked fib as you have done, I should be ashamed to show my

"What fib, child?" cries Thwackum pretty eagerly.

"Why, he told you that nobody was with him a shooting when he killed
the partridge; but he knows" (here he burst into a flood of tears),
"yes, he knows, for he confessed it to me, that Black George the
gamekeeper was there. Nay, he said--yes you did--deny it if you can,
that you would not have confest the truth, though master had cut you
to pieces."

At this the fire flashed from Thwackum's eyes, and he cried out in
triumph--"Oh! ho! this is your mistaken notion of honour! This is the
boy who was not to be whipped again!" But Mr Allworthy, with a more
gentle aspect, turned towards the lad, and said, "Is this true, child?
How came you to persist so obstinately in a falsehood?"

Tom said, "He scorned a lie as much as any one: but he thought his
honour engaged him to act as he did; for he had promised the poor
fellow to conceal him: which," he said, "he thought himself farther
obliged to, as the gamekeeper had begged him not to go into the
gentleman's manor, and had at last gone himself, in compliance with
his persuasions." He said, "This was the whole truth of the matter,
and he would take his oath of it;" and concluded with very
passionately begging Mr Allworthy "to have compassion on the poor
fellow's family, especially as he himself only had been guilty, and
the other had been very difficultly prevailed on to do what he did.
Indeed, sir," said he, "it could hardly be called a lie that I told;
for the poor fellow was entirely innocent of the whole matter. I
should have gone alone after the birds; nay, I did go at first, and he
only followed me to prevent more mischief. Do, pray, sir, let me be
punished; take my little horse away again; but pray, sir, forgive poor

Mr Allworthy hesitated a few moments, and then dismissed the boys,
advising them to live more friendly and peaceably together.

Chapter v.

The opinions of the divine and the philosopher concerning the two
boys; with some reasons for their opinions, and other matters.

It is probable, that by disclosing this secret, which had been
communicated in the utmost confidence to him, young Blifil preserved
his companion from a good lashing; for the offence of the bloody nose
would have been of itself sufficient cause for Thwackum to have
proceeded to correction; but now this was totally absorbed in the
consideration of the other matter; and with regard to this, Mr
Allworthy declared privately, he thought the boy deserved reward
rather than punishment, so that Thwackum's hand was withheld by a
general pardon.

Thwackum, whose meditations were full of birch, exclaimed against this
weak, and, as he said he would venture to call it, wicked lenity. To
remit the punishment of such crimes was, he said, to encourage them.
He enlarged much on the correction of children, and quoted many texts
from Solomon, and others; which being to be found in so many other
books, shall not be found here. He then applied himself to the vice of
lying, on which head he was altogether as learned as he had been on
the other.

Square said, he had been endeavouring to reconcile the behaviour of
Tom with his idea of perfect virtue, but could not. He owned there was
something which at first sight appeared like fortitude in the action;
but as fortitude was a virtue, and falsehood a vice, they could by no
means agree or unite together. He added, that as this was in some
measure to confound virtue and vice, it might be worth Mr Thwackum's
consideration, whether a larger castigation might not be laid on upon
the account.

As both these learned men concurred in censuring Jones, so were they
no less unanimous in applauding Master Blifil. To bring truth to
light, was by the parson asserted to be the duty of every religious
man; and by the philosopher this was declared to be highly conformable
with the rule of right, and the eternal and unalterable fitness of

All this, however, weighed very little with Mr Allworthy. He could not
be prevailed on to sign the warrant for the execution of Jones. There
was something within his own breast with which the invincible fidelity
which that youth had preserved, corresponded much better than it had
done with the religion of Thwackum, or with the virtue of Square. He
therefore strictly ordered the former of these gentlemen to abstain
from laying violent hands on Tom for what had past. The pedagogue was
obliged to obey those orders; but not without great reluctance, and
frequent mutterings that the boy would be certainly spoiled.

Towards the gamekeeper the good man behaved with more severity. He
presently summoned that poor fellow before him, and after many bitter
remonstrances, paid him his wages, and dismist him from his service;
for Mr Allworthy rightly observed, that there was a great difference
between being guilty of a falsehood to excuse yourself, and to excuse
another. He likewise urged, as the principal motive to his inflexible
severity against this man, that he had basely suffered Tom Jones to
undergo so heavy a punishment for his sake, whereas he ought to have
prevented it by making the discovery himself.

When this story became public, many people differed from Square and
Thwackum, in judging the conduct of the two lads on the occasion.
Master Blifil was generally called a sneaking rascal, a poor-spirited
wretch, with other epithets of the like kind; whilst Tom was honoured
with the appellations of a brave lad, a jolly dog, and an honest
fellow. Indeed, his behaviour to Black George much ingratiated him
with all the servants; for though that fellow was before universally
disliked, yet he was no sooner turned away than he was as universally
pitied; and the friendship and gallantry of Tom Jones was celebrated
by them all with the highest applause; and they condemned Master
Blifil as openly as they durst, without incurring the danger of
offending his mother. For all this, however, poor Tom smarted in the
flesh; for though Thwackum had been inhibited to exercise his arm on
the foregoing account, yet, as the proverb says, It is easy to find a
stick, &c. So was it easy to find a rod; and, indeed, the not being
able to find one was the only thing which could have kept Thwackum any
long time from chastising poor Jones.

Had the bare delight in the sport been the only inducement to the
pedagogue, it is probable Master Blifil would likewise have had his
share; but though Mr Allworthy had given him frequent orders to make
no difference between the lads, yet was Thwackum altogether as kind
and gentle to this youth, as he was harsh, nay even barbarous, to the
other. To say the truth, Blifil had greatly gained his master's
affections; partly by the profound respect he always showed his
person, but much more by the decent reverence with which he received
his doctrine; for he had got by heart, and frequently repeated, his
phrases, and maintained all his master's religious principles with a
zeal which was surprizing in one so young, and which greatly endeared
him to the worthy preceptor.

Tom Jones, on the other hand, was not only deficient in outward tokens
of respect, often forgetting to pull off his hat, or to bow at his
master's approach; but was altogether as unmindful both of his
master's precepts and example. He was indeed a thoughtless, giddy
youth, with little sobriety in his manners, and less in his
countenance; and would often very impudently and indecently laugh at
his companion for his serious behaviour.

Mr Square had the same reason for his preference of the former lad;
for Tom Jones showed no more regard to the learned discourses which
this gentleman would sometimes throw away upon him, than to those of
Thwackum. He once ventured to make a jest of the rule of right; and at
another time said, he believed there was no rule in the world capable
of making such a man as his father (for so Mr Allworthy suffered
himself to be called).

Master Blifil, on the contrary, had address enough at sixteen to
recommend himself at one and the same time to both these opposites.
With one he was all religion, with the other he was all virtue. And
when both were present, he was profoundly silent, which both
interpreted in his favour and in their own.

Nor was Blifil contented with flattering both these gentlemen to their
faces; he took frequent occasions of praising them behind their backs
to Allworthy; before whom, when they two were alone, and his uncle
commended any religious or virtuous sentiment (for many such came
constantly from him) he seldom failed to ascribe it to the good
instructions he had received from either Thwackum or Square; for he
knew his uncle repeated all such compliments to the persons for whose
use they were meant; and he found by experience the great impressions
which they made on the philosopher, as well as on the divine: for, to
say the truth, there is no kind of flattery so irresistible as this,
at second hand.

The young gentleman, moreover, soon perceived how extremely grateful
all those panegyrics on his instructors were to Mr Allworthy himself,
as they so loudly resounded the praise of that singular plan of
education which he had laid down; for this worthy man having observed
the imperfect institution of our public schools, and the many vices
which boys were there liable to learn, had resolved to educate his
nephew, as well as the other lad, whom he had in a manner adopted, in
his own house; where he thought their morals would escape all that
danger of being corrupted to which they would be unavoidably exposed
in any public school or university.

Having, therefore, determined to commit these boys to the tuition of a
private tutor, Mr Thwackum was recommended to him for that office, by
a very particular friend, of whose understanding Mr Allworthy had a
great opinion, and in whose integrity he placed much confidence. This
Thwackum was fellow of a college, where he almost entirely resided;
and had a great reputation for learning, religion, and sobriety of
manners. And these were doubtless the qualifications by which Mr
Allworthy's friend had been induced to recommend him; though indeed
this friend had some obligations to Thwackum's family, who were the
most considerable persons in a borough which that gentleman
represented in parliament.

Thwackum, at his first arrival, was extremely agreeable to Allworthy;
and indeed he perfectly answered the character which had been given of
him. Upon longer acquaintance, however, and more intimate
conversation, this worthy man saw infirmities in the tutor, which he
could have wished him to have been without; though as those seemed
greatly overbalanced by his good qualities, they did not incline Mr
Allworthy to part with him: nor would they indeed have justified such
a proceeding; for the reader is greatly mistaken, if he conceives that
Thwackum appeared to Mr Allworthy in the same light as he doth to him
in this history; and he is as much deceived, if he imagines that the
most intimate acquaintance which he himself could have had with that
divine, would have informed him of those things which we, from our
inspiration, are enabled to open and discover. Of readers who, from
such conceits as these, condemn the wisdom or penetration of Mr
Allworthy, I shall not scruple to say, that they make a very bad and
ungrateful use of that knowledge which we have communicated to them.

These apparent errors in the doctrine of Thwackum served greatly to
palliate the contrary errors in that of Square, which our good man no
less saw and condemned. He thought, indeed, that the different
exuberancies of these gentlemen would correct their different
imperfections; and that from both, especially with his assistance, the
two lads would derive sufficient precepts of true religion and virtue.
If the event happened contrary to his expectations, this possibly
proceeded from some fault in the plan itself; which the reader hath my
leave to discover, if he can: for we do not pretend to introduce any
infallible characters into this history; where we hope nothing will be
found which hath never yet been seen in human nature.

To return therefore: the reader will not, I think, wonder that the
different behaviour of the two lads above commemorated, produced the
different effects of which he hath already seen some instance; and
besides this, there was another reason for the conduct of the
philosopher and the pedagogue; but this being matter of great
importance, we shall reveal it in the next chapter.

Chapter vi.

Containing a better reason still for the before-mentioned opinions.

It is to be known then, that those two learned personages, who have
lately made a considerable figure on the theatre of this history, had,
from their first arrival at Mr Allworthy's house, taken so great an
affection, the one to his virtue, the other to his religion, that they
had meditated the closest alliance with him.

For this purpose they had cast their eyes on that fair widow, whom,
though we have not for some time made any mention of her, the reader,
we trust, hath not forgot. Mrs Blifil was indeed the object to which
they both aspired.

It may seem remarkable, that, of four persons whom we have
commemorated at Mr Allworthy's house, three of them should fix their
inclinations on a lady who was never greatly celebrated for her
beauty, and who was, moreover, now a little descended into the vale of
years; but in reality bosom friends, and intimate acquaintance, have a
kind of natural propensity to particular females at the house of a
friend--viz., to his grandmother, mother, sister, daughter, aunt,
niece, or cousin, when they are rich; and to his wife, sister,
daughter, niece, cousin, mistress, or servant-maid, if they should be

We would not, however, have our reader imagine, that persons of such
characters as were supported by Thwackum and Square, would undertake a
matter of this kind, which hath been a little censured by some rigid
moralists, before they had thoroughly examined it, and considered
whether it was (as Shakespear phrases it) "Stuff o' th' conscience,"
or no. Thwackum was encouraged to the undertaking by reflecting that
to covet your neighbour's sister is nowhere forbidden: and he knew it
was a rule in the construction of all laws, that "_Expressum facit
cessare tacitum._" The sense of which is, "When a lawgiver sets down
plainly his whole meaning, we are prevented from making him mean what
we please ourselves." As some instances of women, therefore, are
mentioned in the divine law, which forbids us to covet our neighbour's
goods, and that of a sister omitted, he concluded it to be lawful. And
as to Square, who was in his person what is called a jolly fellow, or
a widow's man, he easily reconciled his choice to the eternal fitness
of things.

Now, as both of these gentlemen were industrious in taking every
opportunity of recommending themselves to the widow, they apprehended
one certain method was, by giving her son the constant preference to
the other lad; and as they conceived the kindness and affection which
Mr Allworthy showed the latter, must be highly disagreeable to her,
they doubted not but the laying hold on all occasions to degrade and
vilify him, would be highly pleasing to her; who, as she hated the
boy, must love all those who did him any hurt. In this Thwackum had
the advantage; for while Square could only scarify the poor lad's
reputation, he could flea his skin; and, indeed, he considered every
lash he gave him as a compliment paid to his mistress; so that he
could, with the utmost propriety, repeat this old flogging line,
_"Castigo te non quod odio habeam, sed quod_ AMEM. I chastise thee not
out of hatred, but out of love." And this, indeed, he often had in his
mouth, or rather, according to the old phrase, never more properly
applied, at his fingers' ends.

For this reason, principally, the two gentlemen concurred, as we have
seen above, in their opinion concerning the two lads; this being,
indeed, almost the only instance of their concurring on any point;
for, beside the difference of their principles, they had both long ago
strongly suspected each other's design, and hated one another with no
little degree of inveteracy.

This mutual animosity was a good deal increased by their alternate
successes; for Mrs Blifil knew what they would be at long before they
imagined it; or, indeed, intended she should: for they proceeded with
great caution, lest she should be offended, and acquaint Mr Allworthy.
But they had no reason for any such fear; she was well enough pleased
with a passion, of which she intended none should have any fruits but
herself. And the only fruits she designed for herself were, flattery
and courtship; for which purpose she soothed them by turns, and a long
time equally. She was, indeed, rather inclined to favour the parson's
principles; but Square's person was more agreeable to her eye, for he
was a comely man; whereas the pedagogue did in countenance very nearly
resemble that gentleman, who, in the Harlot's Progress, is seen
correcting the ladies in Bridewell.

Whether Mrs Blifil had been surfeited with the sweets of marriage, or
disgusted by its bitters, or from what other cause it proceeded, I
will not determine; but she could never be brought to listen to any
second proposals. However, she at last conversed with Square with such
a degree of intimacy that malicious tongues began to whisper things of
her, to which, as well for the sake of the lady, as that they were
highly disagreeable to the rule of right and the fitness of things, we
will give no credit, and therefore shall not blot our paper with them.
The pedagogue, 'tis certain, whipped on, without getting a step nearer
to his journey's end.

Indeed he had committed a great error, and that Square discovered much
sooner than himself. Mrs Blifil (as, perhaps, the reader may have
formerly guessed) was not over and above pleased with the behaviour of
her husband; nay, to be honest, she absolutely hated him, till his
death at last a little reconciled him to her affections. It will not
be therefore greatly wondered at, if she had not the most violent
regard to the offspring she had by him. And, in fact, she had so
little of this regard, that in his infancy she seldom saw her son, or
took any notice of him; and hence she acquiesced, after a little
reluctance, in all the favours which Mr Allworthy showered on the
foundling; whom the good man called his own boy, and in all things put
on an entire equality with Master Blifil. This acquiescence in Mrs
Blifil was considered by the neighbours, and by the family, as a mark
of her condescension to her brother's humour, and she was imagined by
all others, as well as Thwackum and Square, to hate the foundling in
her heart; nay, the more civility she showed him, the more they
conceived she detested him, and the surer schemes she was laying for
his ruin: for as they thought it her interest to hate him, it was very
difficult for her to persuade them she did not.

Thwackum was the more confirmed in his opinion, as she had more than
once slily caused him to whip Tom Jones, when Mr Allworthy, who was an
enemy to this exercise, was abroad; whereas she had never given any
such orders concerning young Blifil. And this had likewise imposed
upon Square. In reality, though she certainly hated her own son--of
which, however monstrous it appears, I am assured she is not a
singular instance--she appeared, notwithstanding all her outward
compliance, to be in her heart sufficiently displeased with all the
favour shown by Mr Allworthy to the foundling. She frequently
complained of this behind her brother's back, and very sharply
censured him for it, both to Thwackum and Square; nay, she would throw
it in the teeth of Allworthy himself, when a little quarrel, or miff,
as it is vulgarly called, arose between them.

However, when Tom grew up, and gave tokens of that gallantry of temper
which greatly recommends men to women, this disinclination which she
had discovered to him when a child, by degrees abated, and at last she
so evidently demonstrated her affection to him to be much stronger
than what she bore her own son, that it was impossible to mistake her
any longer. She was so desirous of often seeing him, and discovered
such satisfaction and delight in his company, that before he was
eighteen years old he was become a rival to both Square and Thwackum;
and what is worse, the whole country began to talk as loudly of her
inclination to Tom, as they had before done of that which she had
shown to Square: on which account the philosopher conceived the most
implacable hatred for our poor heroe.

Chapter vii.

In which the author himself makes his appearance on the stage.

Though Mr Allworthy was not of himself hasty to see things in a
disadvantageous light, and was a stranger to the public voice, which
seldom reaches to a brother or a husband, though it rings in the ears
of all the neighbourhood; yet was this affection of Mrs Blifil to Tom,
and the preference which she too visibly gave him to her own son, of
the utmost disadvantage to that youth.

For such was the compassion which inhabited Mr Allworthy's mind, that
nothing but the steel of justice could ever subdue it. To be
unfortunate in any respect was sufficient, if there was no demerit to
counterpoise it, to turn the scale of that good man's pity, and to
engage his friendship and his benefaction.

When therefore he plainly saw Master Blifil was absolutely detested
(for that he was) by his own mother, he began, on that account only,
to look with an eye of compassion upon him; and what the effects of
compassion are, in good and benevolent minds, I need not here explain
to most of my readers.

Henceforward he saw every appearance of virtue in the youth through
the magnifying end, and viewed all his faults with the glass inverted,
so that they became scarce perceptible. And this perhaps the amiable
temper of pity may make commendable; but the next step the weakness of
human nature alone must excuse; for he no sooner perceived that
preference which Mrs Blifil gave to Tom, than that poor youth (however
innocent) began to sink in his affections as he rose in hers. This, it
is true, would of itself alone never have been able to eradicate Jones
from his bosom; but it was greatly injurious to him, and prepared Mr
Allworthy's mind for those impressions which afterwards produced the
mighty events that will be contained hereafter in this history; and to
which, it must be confest, the unfortunate lad, by his own wantonness,
wildness, and want of caution, too much contributed.

In recording some instances of these, we shall, if rightly understood,
afford a very useful lesson to those well-disposed youths who shall
hereafter be our readers; for they may here find, that goodness of
heart, and openness of temper, though these may give them great
comfort within, and administer to an honest pride in their own minds,
will by no means, alas! do their business in the world. Prudence and
circumspection are necessary even to the best of men. They are indeed,
as it were, a guard to Virtue, without which she can never be safe. It
is not enough that your designs, nay, that your actions, are
intrinsically good; you must take care they shall appear so. If your
inside be never so beautiful, you must preserve a fair outside also.
This must be constantly looked to, or malice and envy will take care
to blacken it so, that the sagacity and goodness of an Allworthy will
not be able to see through it, and to discern the beauties within. Let
this, my young readers, be your constant maxim, that no man can be
good enough to enable him to neglect the rules of prudence; nor will
Virtue herself look beautiful, unless she be bedecked with the outward
ornaments of decency and decorum. And this precept, my worthy
disciples, if you read with due attention, you will, I hope, find
sufficiently enforced by examples in the following pages.

I ask pardon for this short appearance, by way of chorus, on the
stage. It is in reality for my own sake, that, while I am discovering
the rocks on which innocence and goodness often split, I may not be
misunderstood to recommend the very means to my worthy readers, by
which I intend to show them they will be undone. And this, as I could
not prevail on any of my actors to speak, I myself was obliged to

Chapter viii.

A childish incident, in which, however, is seen a good-natured
disposition in Tom Jones.

The reader may remember that Mr Allworthy gave Tom Jones a little
horse, as a kind of smart-money for the punishment which he imagined
he had suffered innocently.

This horse Tom kept above half a year, and then rode him to a
neighbouring fair, and sold him.

At his return, being questioned by Thwackum what he had done with the
money for which the horse was sold, he frankly declared he would not
tell him.

"Oho!" says Thwackum, "you will not! then I will have it out of your
br--h;" that being the place to which he always applied for
information on every doubtful occasion.

Tom was now mounted on the back of a footman, and everything prepared
for execution, when Mr Allworthy, entering the room, gave the criminal
a reprieve, and took him with him into another apartment; where, being
alone with Tom, he put the same question to him which Thwackum had
before asked him.

Tom answered, he could in duty refuse him nothing; but as for that
tyrannical rascal, he would never make him any other answer than with
a cudgel, with which he hoped soon to be able to pay him for all his

Mr Allworthy very severely reprimanded the lad for his indecent and
disrespectful expressions concerning his master; but much more for his
avowing an intention of revenge. He threatened him with the entire
loss of his favour, if he ever heard such another word from his mouth;
for, he said, he would never support or befriend a reprobate. By these
and the like declarations, he extorted some compunction from Tom, in
which that youth was not over-sincere; for he really meditated some
return for all the smarting favours he had received at the hands of
the pedagogue. He was, however, brought by Mr Allworthy to express a
concern for his resentment against Thwackum; and then the good man,
after some wholesome admonition, permitted him to proceed, which he
did as follows:--

"Indeed, my dear sir, I love and honour you more than all the world: I
know the great obligations I have to you, and should detest myself if
I thought my heart was capable of ingratitude. Could the little horse
you gave me speak, I am sure he could tell you how fond I was of your
present; for I had more pleasure in feeding him than in riding him.
Indeed, sir, it went to my heart to part with him; nor would I have
sold him upon any other account in the world than what I did. You
yourself, sir, I am convinced, in my case, would have done the same:
for none ever so sensibly felt the misfortunes of others. What would
you feel, dear sir, if you thought yourself the occasion of them?
Indeed, sir, there never was any misery like theirs."

"Like whose, child?" says Allworthy: "What do you mean?"

"Oh, sir!" answered Tom, "your poor gamekeeper, with all his large
family, ever since your discarding him, have been perishing with all
the miseries of cold and hunger: I could not bear to see these poor
wretches naked and starving, and at the same time know myself to have
been the occasion of all their sufferings. I could not bear it, sir;
upon my soul, I could not." [Here the tears ran down his cheeks, and
he thus proceeded.] "It was to save them from absolute destruction I
parted with your dear present, notwithstanding all the value I had for
it: I sold the horse for them, and they have every farthing of the

Mr Allworthy now stood silent for some moments, and before he spoke
the tears started from his eyes. He at length dismissed Tom with a
gentle rebuke, advising him for the future to apply to him in cases of
distress, rather than to use extraordinary means of relieving them

This affair was afterwards the subject of much debate between Thwackum
and Square. Thwackum held, that this was flying in Mr Allworthy's
face, who had intended to punish the fellow for his disobedience. He
said, in some instances, what the world called charity appeared to him
to be opposing the will of the Almighty, which had marked some
particular persons for destruction; and that this was in like manner
acting in opposition to Mr Allworthy; concluding, as usual, with a
hearty recommendation of birch.

Square argued strongly on the other side, in opposition perhaps to
Thwackum, or in compliance with Mr Allworthy, who seemed very much to
approve what Jones had done. As to what he urged on this occasion, as
I am convinced most of my readers will be much abler advocates for
poor Jones, it would be impertinent to relate it. Indeed it was not
difficult to reconcile to the rule of right an action which it would
have been impossible to deduce from the rule of wrong.

Chapter ix.

Containing an incident of a more heinous kind, with the comments of
Thwackum and Square.

It hath been observed by some man of much greater reputation for
wisdom than myself, that misfortunes seldom come single. An instance
of this may, I believe, be seen in those gentlemen who have the
misfortune to have any of their rogueries detected; for here discovery
seldom stops till the whole is come out. Thus it happened to poor Tom;
who was no sooner pardoned for selling the horse, than he was
discovered to have some time before sold a fine Bible which Mr
Allworthy gave him, the money arising from which sale he had disposed
of in the same manner. This Bible Master Blifil had purchased, though
he had already such another of his own, partly out of respect for the
book, and partly out of friendship to Tom, being unwilling that the
Bible should be sold out of the family at half-price. He therefore
deposited the said half-price himself; for he was a very prudent lad,
and so careful of his money, that he had laid up almost every penny
which he had received from Mr Allworthy.

Some people have been noted to be able to read in no book but their
own. On the contrary, from the time when Master Blifil was first
possessed of this Bible, he never used any other. Nay, he was seen
reading in it much oftener than he had before been in his own. Now, as
he frequently asked Thwackum to explain difficult passages to him,
that gentleman unfortunately took notice of Tom's name, which was
written in many parts of the book. This brought on an inquiry, which
obliged Master Blifil to discover the whole matter.

Thwackum was resolved a crime of this kind, which he called sacrilege,
should not go unpunished. He therefore proceeded immediately to
castigation: and not contented with that he acquainted Mr Allworthy,
at their next meeting, with this monstrous crime, as it appeared to
him: inveighing against Tom in the most bitter terms, and likening him
to the buyers and sellers who were driven out of the temple.

Square saw this matter in a very different light. He said, he could
not perceive any higher crime in selling one book than in selling
another. That to sell Bibles was strictly lawful by all laws both
Divine and human, and consequently there was no unfitness in it. He
told Thwackum, that his great concern on this occasion brought to his
mind the story of a very devout woman, who, out of pure regard to
religion, stole Tillotson's Sermons from a lady of her acquaintance.

This story caused a vast quantity of blood to rush into the parson's
face, which of itself was none of the palest; and he was going to
reply with great warmth and anger, had not Mrs Blifil, who was present
at this debate, interposed. That lady declared herself absolutely of
Mr Square's side. She argued, indeed, very learnedly in support of his
opinion; and concluded with saying, if Tom had been guilty of any
fault, she must confess her own son appeared to be equally culpable;
for that she could see no difference between the buyer and the seller;
both of whom were alike to be driven out of the temple.

Mrs Blifil having declared her opinion, put an end to the debate.
Square's triumph would almost have stopt his words, had he needed
them; and Thwackum, who, for reasons before-mentioned, durst not
venture at disobliging the lady, was almost choaked with indignation.
As to Mr Allworthy, he said, since the boy had been already punished
he would not deliver his sentiments on the occasion; and whether he
was or was not angry with the lad, I must leave to the reader's own

Soon after this, an action was brought against the gamekeeper by
Squire Western (the gentleman in whose manor the partridge was
killed), for depredations of the like kind. This was a most
unfortunate circumstance for the fellow, as it not only of itself
threatened his ruin, but actually prevented Mr Allworthy from
restoring him to his favour: for as that gentleman was walking out one
evening with Master Blifil and young Jones, the latter slily drew him
to the habitation of Black George; where the family of that poor
wretch, namely, his wife and children, were found in all the misery
with which cold, hunger, and nakedness, can affect human creatures:
for as to the money they had received from Jones, former debts had
consumed almost the whole.

Such a scene as this could not fail of affecting the heart of Mr
Allworthy. He immediately gave the mother a couple of guineas, with
which he bid her cloath her children. The poor woman burst into tears
at this goodness, and while she was thanking him, could not refrain
from expressing her gratitude to Tom; who had, she said, long
preserved both her and hers from starving. "We have not," says she,
"had a morsel to eat, nor have these poor children had a rag to put
on, but what his goodness hath bestowed on us." For, indeed, besides
the horse and the Bible, Tom had sacrificed a night-gown, and other
things, to the use of this distressed family.

On their return home, Tom made use of all his eloquence to display the
wretchedness of these people, and the penitence of Black George
himself; and in this he succeeded so well, that Mr Allworthy said, he
thought the man had suffered enough for what was past; that he would
forgive him, and think of some means of providing for him and his

Jones was so delighted with this news, that, though it was dark when
they returned home, he could not help going back a mile, in a shower
of rain, to acquaint the poor woman with the glad tidings; but, like
other hasty divulgers of news, he only brought on himself the trouble
of contradicting it: for the ill fortune of Black George made use of
the very opportunity of his friend's absence to overturn all again.

Chapter x.

In which Master Blifil and Jones appear in different lights.

Master Blifil fell very short of his companion in the amiable quality
of mercy; but he as greatly exceeded him in one of a much higher kind,
namely, in justice: in which he followed both the precepts and example
of Thwackum and Square; for though they would both make frequent use
of the word mercy, yet it was plain that in reality Square held it to
be inconsistent with the rule of right; and Thwackum was for doing
justice, and leaving mercy to heaven. The two gentlemen did indeed
somewhat differ in opinion concerning the objects of this sublime
virtue; by which Thwackum would probably have destroyed one half of
mankind, and Square the other half.

Master Blifil then, though he had kept silence in the presence of
Jones, yet, when he had better considered the matter, could by no
means endure the thought of suffering his uncle to confer favours on
the undeserving. He therefore resolved immediately to acquaint him
with the fact which we have above slightly hinted to the readers. The
truth of which was as follows:

The gamekeeper, about a year after he was dismissed from Mr
Allworthy's service, and before Tom's selling the horse, being in want
of bread, either to fill his own mouth or those of his family, as he
passed through a field belonging to Mr Western espied a hare sitting
in her form. This hare he had basely and barbarously knocked on the
head, against the laws of the land, and no less against the laws of

The higgler to whom the hare was sold, being unfortunately taken many
months after with a quantity of game upon him, was obliged to make his
peace with the squire, by becoming evidence against some poacher. And
now Black George was pitched upon by him, as being a person already
obnoxious to Mr Western, and one of no good fame in the country. He
was, besides, the best sacrifice the higgler could make, as he had
supplied him with no game since; and by this means the witness had an
opportunity of screening his better customers: for the squire, being
charmed with the power of punishing Black George, whom a single
transgression was sufficient to ruin, made no further enquiry.

Had this fact been truly laid before Mr Allworthy, it might probably
have done the gamekeeper very little mischief. But there is no zeal
blinder than that which is inspired with the love of justice against
offenders. Master Blifil had forgot the distance of the time. He
varied likewise in the manner of the fact: and by the hasty addition
of the single letter S he considerably altered the story; for he said
that George had wired hares. These alterations might probably have
been set right, had not Master Blifil unluckily insisted on a promise
of secrecy from Mr Allworthy before he revealed the matter to him; but
by that means the poor gamekeeper was condemned without having an
opportunity to defend himself: for as the fact of killing the hare,
and of the action brought, were certainly true, Mr Allworthy had no
doubt concerning the rest.

Short-lived then was the joy of these poor people; for Mr Allworthy
the next morning declared he had fresh reason, without assigning it,
for his anger, and strictly forbad Tom to mention George any more:
though as for his family, he said he would endeavour to keep them from
starving; but as to the fellow himself, he would leave him to the
laws, which nothing could keep him from breaking.

Tom could by no means divine what had incensed Mr Allworthy, for of
Master Blifil he had not the least suspicion. However, as his
friendship was to be tired out by no disappointments, he now
determined to try another method of preserving the poor gamekeeper
from ruin.

Jones was lately grown very intimate with Mr Western. He had so
greatly recommended himself to that gentleman, by leaping over
five-barred gates, and by other acts of sportsmanship, that the squire
had declared Tom would certainly make a great man if he had but
sufficient encouragement. He often wished he had himself a son with
such parts; and one day very solemnly asserted at a drinking bout,
that Tom should hunt a pack of hounds for a thousand pound of his
money, with any huntsman in the whole country.

By such kind of talents he had so ingratiated himself with the squire,
that he was a most welcome guest at his table, and a favourite
companion in his sport: everything which the squire held most dear, to
wit, his guns, dogs, and horses, were now as much at the command of
Jones, as if they had been his own. He resolved therefore to make use
of this favour on behalf of his friend Black George, whom he hoped to
introduce into Mr Western's family, in the same capacity in which he
had before served Mr Allworthy.

The reader, if he considers that this fellow was already obnoxious to
Mr Western, and if he considers farther the weighty business by which
that gentleman's displeasure had been incurred, will perhaps condemn
this as a foolish and desperate undertaking; but if he should totally
condemn young Jones on that account, he will greatly applaud him for
strengthening himself with all imaginable interest on so arduous an

For this purpose, then, Tom applied to Mr Western's daughter, a young
lady of about seventeen years of age, whom her father, next after
those necessary implements of sport just before mentioned, loved and
esteemed above all the world. Now, as she had some influence on the
squire, so Tom had some little influence on her. But this being the
intended heroine of this work, a lady with whom we ourselves are
greatly in love, and with whom many of our readers will probably be in
love too, before we part, it is by no means proper she should make her
appearance at the end of a book.



Chapter i.

Containing five pages of paper.

As truth distinguishes our writings from those idle romances which are
filled with monsters, the productions, not of nature, but of
distempered brains; and which have been therefore recommended by an
eminent critic to the sole use of the pastry-cook; so, on the other
hand, we would avoid any resemblance to that kind of history which a
celebrated poet seems to think is no less calculated for the emolument
of the brewer, as the reading it should be always attended with a
tankard of good ale--

     While--history with her comrade ale,
     Soothes the sad series of her serious tale

For as this is the liquor of modern historians, nay, perhaps their
muse, if we may believe the opinion of Butler, who attributes
inspiration to ale, it ought likewise to be the potation of their
readers, since every book ought to be read with the same spirit and in
the same manner as it is writ. Thus the famous author of Hurlothrumbo
told a learned bishop, that the reason his lordship could not taste
the excellence of his piece was, that he did not read it with a fiddle
in his hand; which instrument he himself had always had in his own,
when he composed it.

That our work, therefore, might be in no danger of being likened to
the labours of these historians, we have taken every occasion of
interspersing through the whole sundry similes, descriptions, and
other kind of poetical embellishments. These are, indeed, designed to
supply the place of the said ale, and to refresh the mind, whenever
those slumbers, which in a long work are apt to invade the reader as
well as the writer, shall begin to creep upon him. Without
interruptions of this kind, the best narrative of plain matter of fact
must overpower every reader; for nothing but the ever lasting
watchfulness, which Homer has ascribed only to Jove himself, can be
proof against a newspaper of many volumes.

We shall leave to the reader to determine with what judgment we have
chosen the several occasions for inserting those ornamental parts of
our work. Surely it will be allowed that none could be more proper
than the present, where we are about to introduce a considerable
character on the scene; no less, indeed, than the heroine of this
heroic, historical, prosaic poem. Here, therefore, we have thought
proper to prepare the mind of the reader for her reception, by filling
it with every pleasing image which we can draw from the face of
nature. And for this method we plead many precedents. First, this is
an art well known to, and much practised by, our tragick poets, who
seldom fail to prepare their audience for the reception of their
principal characters.

Thus the heroe is always introduced with a flourish of drums and
trumpets, in order to rouse a martial spirit in the audience, and to
accommodate their ears to bombast and fustian, which Mr Locke's blind
man would not have grossly erred in likening to the sound of a
trumpet. Again, when lovers are coming forth, soft music often
conducts them on the stage, either to soothe the audience with the
softness of the tender passion, or to lull and prepare them for that
gentle slumber in which they will most probably be composed by the
ensuing scene.

And not only the poets, but the masters of these poets, the managers
of playhouses, seem to be in this secret; for, besides the aforesaid
kettle-drums, &c., which denote the heroe's approach, he is generally
ushered on the stage by a large troop of half a dozen scene-shifters;
and how necessary these are imagined to his appearance, may be
concluded from the following theatrical story:--

King Pyrrhus was at dinner at an ale-house bordering on the theatre,
when he was summoned to go on the stage. The heroe, being unwilling to
quit his shoulder of mutton, and as unwilling to draw on himself the
indignation of Mr Wilks (his brother-manager) for making the audience
wait, had bribed these his harbingers to be out of the way. While Mr
Wilks, therefore, was thundering out, "Where are the carpenters to
walk on before King Pyrrhus?" that monarch very quietly eat his
mutton, and the audience, however impatient, were obliged to entertain
themselves with music in his absence.

To be plain, I much question whether the politician, who hath
generally a good nose, hath not scented out somewhat of the utility of
this practice. I am convinced that awful magistrate my lord-mayor
contracts a good deal of that reverence which attends him through the
year, by the several pageants which precede his pomp. Nay, I must
confess, that even I myself, who am not remarkably liable to be
captivated with show, have yielded not a little to the impressions of
much preceding state. When I have seen a man strutting in a
procession, after others whose business was only to walk before him, I
have conceived a higher notion of his dignity than I have felt on
seeing him in a common situation. But there is one instance, which
comes exactly up to my purpose. This is the custom of sending on a
basket-woman, who is to precede the pomp at a coronation, and to strew
the stage with flowers, before the great personages begin their
procession. The antients would certainly have invoked the goddess
Flora for this purpose, and it would have been no difficulty for their
priests, or politicians to have persuaded the people of the real
presence of the deity, though a plain mortal had personated her and
performed her office. But we have no such design of imposing on our
reader; and therefore those who object to the heathen theology, may,
if they please, change our goddess into the above-mentioned
basket-woman. Our intention, in short, is to introduce our heroine
with the utmost solemnity in our power, with an elevation of stile,
and all other circumstances proper to raise the veneration of our
reader.--Indeed we would, for certain causes, advise those of our male
readers who have any hearts, to read no farther, were we not well
assured, that how amiable soever the picture of our heroine will
appear, as it is really a copy from nature, many of our fair
countrywomen will be found worthy to satisfy any passion, and to
answer any idea of female perfection which our pencil will be able to

And now, without any further preface, we proceed to our next chapter.

Chapter ii.

A short hint of what we can do in the sublime, and a description of
Miss Sophia Western.

Hushed be every ruder breath. May the heathen ruler of the winds
confine in iron chains the boisterous limbs of noisy Boreas, and the
sharp-pointed nose of bitter-biting Eurus. Do thou, sweet Zephyrus,
rising from thy fragrant bed, mount the western sky, and lead on those
delicious gales, the charms of which call forth the lovely Flora from
her chamber, perfumed with pearly dews, when on the 1st of June, her
birth-day, the blooming maid, in loose attire, gently trips it over
the verdant mead, where every flower rises to do her homage, till the
whole field becomes enamelled, and colours contend with sweets which
shall ravish her most.

So charming may she now appear! and you the feathered choristers of
nature, whose sweetest notes not even Handel can excell, tune your
melodious throats to celebrate her appearance. From love proceeds your
music, and to love it returns. Awaken therefore that gentle passion in
every swain: for lo! adorned with all the charms in which nature can
array her; bedecked with beauty, youth, sprightliness, innocence,
modesty, and tenderness, breathing sweetness from her rosy lips, and
darting brightness from her sparkling eyes, the lovely Sophia comes!

Reader, perhaps thou hast seen the statue of the _Venus de Medicis_.
Perhaps, too, thou hast seen the gallery of beauties at Hampton Court.
Thou may'st remember each bright Churchill of the galaxy, and all the
toasts of the Kit-cat. Or, if their reign was before thy times, at
least thou hast seen their daughters, the no less dazzling beauties of
the present age; whose names, should we here insert, we apprehend they
would fill the whole volume.

Now if thou hast seen all these, be not afraid of the rude answer
which Lord Rochester once gave to a man who had seen many things. No.
If thou hast seen all these without knowing what beauty is, thou hast
no eyes; if without feeling its power, thou hast no heart.

Yet is it possible, my friend, that thou mayest have seen all these
without being able to form an exact idea of Sophia; for she did not
exactly resemble any of them. She was most like the picture of Lady
Ranelagh: and, I have heard, more still to the famous dutchess of
Mazarine; but most of all she resembled one whose image never can
depart from my breast, and whom, if thou dost remember, thou hast
then, my friend, an adequate idea of Sophia.

But lest this should not have been thy fortune, we will endeavour with
our utmost skill to describe this paragon, though we are sensible that
our highest abilities are very inadequate to the task.

Sophia, then, the only daughter of Mr Western, was a middle-sized
woman; but rather inclining to tall. Her shape was not only exact, but
extremely delicate: and the nice proportion of her arms promised the
truest symmetry in her limbs. Her hair, which was black, was so
luxuriant, that it reached her middle, before she cut it to comply
with the modern fashion; and it was now curled so gracefully in her
neck, that few could believe it to be her own. If envy could find any
part of the face which demanded less commendation than the rest, it
might possibly think her forehead might have been higher without
prejudice to her. Her eyebrows were full, even, and arched beyond the
power of art to imitate. Her black eyes had a lustre in them, which
all her softness could not extinguish. Her nose was exactly regular,
and her mouth, in which were two rows of ivory, exactly answered Sir
John Suckling's description in those lines:--

      Her lips were red, and one was thin,
      Compar'd to that was next her chin.
         Some bee had stung it newly.

Her cheeks were of the oval kind; and in her right she had a dimple,
which the least smile discovered. Her chin had certainly its share in
forming the beauty of her face; but it was difficult to say it was
either large or small, though perhaps it was rather of the former
kind. Her complexion had rather more of the lily than of the rose; but
when exercise or modesty increased her natural colour, no vermilion
could equal it. Then one might indeed cry out with the celebrated Dr

     --Her pure and eloquent blood
     Spoke in her cheeks, and so distinctly wrought
     That one might almost say her body thought.

Her neck was long and finely turned: and here, if I was not afraid of
offending her delicacy, I might justly say, the highest beauties of
the famous _Venus de Medicis_ were outdone. Here was whiteness which
no lilies, ivory, nor alabaster could match. The finest cambric might
indeed be supposed from envy to cover that bosom which was much whiter
than itself.--It was indeed,

     _Nitor splendens Pario marmore purius_.

     A gloss shining beyond the purest brightness of Parian marble.

Such was the outside of Sophia; nor was this beautiful frame disgraced
by an inhabitant unworthy of it. Her mind was every way equal to her
person; nay, the latter borrowed some charms from the former; for when
she smiled, the sweetness of her temper diffused that glory over her
countenance which no regularity of features can give. But as there are
no perfections of the mind which do not discover themselves in that
perfect intimacy to which we intend to introduce our reader with this
charming young creature, so it is needless to mention them here: nay,
it is a kind of tacit affront to our reader's understanding, and may
also rob him of that pleasure which he will receive in forming his own
judgment of her character.

It may, however, be proper to say, that whatever mental
accomplishments she had derived from nature, they were somewhat
improved and cultivated by art: for she had been educated under the
care of an aunt, who was a lady of great discretion, and was
thoroughly acquainted with the world, having lived in her youth about
the court, whence she had retired some years since into the country.
By her conversation and instructions, Sophia was perfectly well bred,
though perhaps she wanted a little of that ease in her behaviour which
is to be acquired only by habit, and living within what is called the
polite circle. But this, to say the truth, is often too dearly
purchased; and though it hath charms so inexpressible, that the
French, perhaps, among other qualities, mean to express this, when
they declare they know not what it is; yet its absence is well
compensated by innocence; nor can good sense and a natural gentility
ever stand in need of it.

Chapter iii.

Wherein the history goes back to commemorate a trifling incident that
happened some years since; but which, trifling as it was, had some
future consequences.

The amiable Sophia was now in her eighteenth year, when she is
introduced into this history. Her father, as hath been said, was
fonder of her than of any other human creature. To her, therefore, Tom
Jones applied, in order to engage her interest on the behalf of his
friend the gamekeeper.

But before we proceed to this business, a short recapitulation of some
previous matters may be necessary.

Though the different tempers of Mr Allworthy and of Mr Western did not
admit of a very intimate correspondence, yet they lived upon what is
called a decent footing together; by which means the young people of
both families had been acquainted from their infancy; and as they were
all near of the same age, had been frequent playmates together.

The gaiety of Tom's temper suited better with Sophia, than the grave
and sober disposition of Master Blifil. And the preference which she
gave the former of these, would often appear so plainly, that a lad of
a more passionate turn than Master Blifil was, might have shown some
displeasure at it.

As he did not, however, outwardly express any such disgust, it would
be an ill office in us to pay a visit to the inmost recesses of his
mind, as some scandalous people search into the most secret affairs of
their friends, and often pry into their closets and cupboards, only to
discover their poverty and meanness to the world.

However, as persons who suspect they have given others cause of
offence, are apt to conclude they are offended; so Sophia imputed an
action of Master Blifil to his anger, which the superior sagacity of
Thwackum and Square discerned to have arisen from a much better

Tom Jones, when very young, had presented Sophia with a little bird,
which he had taken from the nest, had nursed up, and taught to sing.

Of this bird, Sophia, then about thirteen years old, was so extremely
fond, that her chief business was to feed and tend it, and her chief
pleasure to play with it. By these means little Tommy, for so the bird
was called, was become so tame, that it would feed out of the hand of
its mistress, would perch upon the finger, and lie contented in her
bosom, where it seemed almost sensible of its own happiness; though
she always kept a small string about its leg, nor would ever trust it
with the liberty of flying away.

One day, when Mr Allworthy and his whole family dined at Mr Western's,
Master Blifil, being in the garden with little Sophia, and observing
the extreme fondness that she showed for her little bird, desired her
to trust it for a moment in his hands. Sophia presently complied with
the young gentleman's request, and after some previous caution,
delivered him her bird; of which he was no sooner in possession, than
he slipt the string from its leg and tossed it into the air.

The foolish animal no sooner perceived itself at liberty, than
forgetting all the favours it had received from Sophia, it flew
directly from her, and perched on a bough at some distance.

Sophia, seeing her bird gone, screamed out so loud, that Tom Jones,
who was at a little distance, immediately ran to her assistance.

He was no sooner informed of what had happened, than he cursed Blifil
for a pitiful malicious rascal; and then immediately stripping off his
coat he applied himself to climbing the tree to which the bird

Tom had almost recovered his little namesake, when the branch on which
it was perched, and that hung over a canal, broke, and the poor lad
plumped over head and ears into the water.

Sophia's concern now changed its object. And as she apprehended the
boy's life was in danger, she screamed ten times louder than before;
and indeed Master Blifil himself now seconded her with all the
vociferation in his power.

The company, who were sitting in a room next the garden, were
instantly alarmed, and came all forth; but just as they reached the
canal, Tom (for the water was luckily pretty shallow in that part)
arrived safely on shore.

Thwackum fell violently on poor Tom, who stood dropping and shivering
before him, when Mr Allworthy desired him to have patience; and
turning to Master Blifil, said, "Pray, child, what is the reason of
all this disturbance?"

Master Blifil answered, "Indeed, uncle, I am very sorry for what I
have done; I have been unhappily the occasion of it all. I had Miss
Sophia's bird in my hand, and thinking the poor creature languished
for liberty, I own I could not forbear giving it what it desired; for
I always thought there was something very cruel in confining anything.
It seemed to be against the law of nature, by which everything hath a
right to liberty; nay, it is even unchristian, for it is not doing
what we would be done by; but if I had imagined Miss Sophia would have
been so much concerned at it, I am sure I never would have done it;
nay, if I had known what would have happened to the bird itself: for
when Master Jones, who climbed up that tree after it, fell into the
water, the bird took a second flight, and presently a nasty hawk
carried it away."

Poor Sophia, who now first heard of her little Tommy's fate (for her
concern for Jones had prevented her perceiving it when it happened),
shed a shower of tears. These Mr Allworthy endeavoured to assuage,
promising her a much finer bird: but she declared she would never have
another. Her father chid her for crying so for a foolish bird; but
could not help telling young Blifil, if he was a son of his, his
backside should be well flead.

Sophia now returned to her chamber, the two young gentlemen were sent
home, and the rest of the company returned to their bottle; where a
conversation ensued on the subject of the bird, so curious, that we
think it deserves a chapter by itself.

Chapter iv.

Containing such very deep and grave matters, that some readers,
perhaps, may not relish it.

Square had no sooner lighted his pipe, than, addressing himself to
Allworthy, he thus began: "Sir, I cannot help congratulating you on
your nephew; who, at an age when few lads have any ideas but of
sensible objects, is arrived at a capacity of distinguishing right
from wrong. To confine anything, seems to me against the law of
nature, by which everything hath a right to liberty. These were his
words; and the impression they have made on me is never to be
eradicated. Can any man have a higher notion of the rule of right, and
the eternal fitness of things? I cannot help promising myself, from
such a dawn, that the meridian of this youth will be equal to that of
either the elder or the younger Brutus."

Here Thwackum hastily interrupted, and spilling some of his wine, and
swallowing the rest with great eagerness, answered, "From another
expression he made use of, I hope he will resemble much better men.
The law of nature is a jargon of words, which means nothing. I know
not of any such law, nor of any right which can be derived from it. To
do as we would be done by, is indeed a Christian motive, as the boy
well expressed himself; and I am glad to find my instructions have
borne such good fruit."

"If vanity was a thing fit," says Square, "I might indulge some on the
same occasion; for whence only he can have learnt his notions of right
or wrong, I think is pretty apparent. If there be no law of nature,
there is no right nor wrong."

"How!" says the parson, "do you then banish revelation? Am I talking
with a deist or an atheist?"

"Drink about," says Western. "Pox of your laws of nature! I don't know
what you mean, either of you, by right and wrong. To take away my
girl's bird was wrong, in my opinion; and my neighbour Allworthy may
do as he pleases; but to encourage boys in such practices, is to breed
them up to the gallows."

Allworthy answered, "That he was sorry for what his nephew had done,
but could not consent to punish him, as he acted rather from a
generous than unworthy motive." He said, "If the boy had stolen the
bird, none would have been more ready to vote for a severe
chastisement than himself; but it was plain that was not his design:"
and, indeed, it was as apparent to him, that he could have no other
view but what he had himself avowed. (For as to that malicious purpose
which Sophia suspected, it never once entered into the head of Mr
Allworthy.) He at length concluded with again blaming the action as
inconsiderate, and which, he said, was pardonable only in a child.

Square had delivered his opinion so openly, that if he was now silent,
he must submit to have his judgment censured. He said, therefore, with
some warmth, "That Mr Allworthy had too much respect to the dirty
consideration of property. That in passing our judgments on great and
mighty actions, all private regards should be laid aside; for by
adhering to those narrow rules, the younger Brutus had been condemned
of ingratitude, and the elder of parricide."

"And if they had been hanged too for those crimes," cried Thwackum,
"they would have had no more than their deserts. A couple of
heathenish villains! Heaven be praised we have no Brutuses now-a-days!
I wish, Mr Square, you would desist from filling the minds of my
pupils with such antichristian stuff; for the consequence must be,
while they are under my care, its being well scourged out of them
again. There is your disciple Tom almost spoiled already. I overheard
him the other day disputing with Master Blifil that there was no merit
in faith without works. I know that is one of your tenets, and I
suppose he had it from you."

"Don't accuse me of spoiling him," says Square. "Who taught him to
laugh at whatever is virtuous and decent, and fit and right in the
nature of things? He is your own scholar, and I disclaim him. No, no,
Master Blifil is my boy. Young as he is, that lad's notions of moral
rectitude I defy you ever to eradicate."

Thwackum put on a contemptuous sneer at this, and replied, "Ay, ay, I
will venture him with you. He is too well grounded for all your
philosophical cant to hurt. No, no, I have taken care to instil such
principles into him--"

"And I have instilled principles into him too," cries Square. "What
but the sublime idea of virtue could inspire a human mind with the
generous thought of giving liberty? And I repeat to you again, if it
was a fit thing to be proud, I might claim the honour of having
infused that idea."--

"And if pride was not forbidden," said Thwackum, "I might boast of
having taught him that duty which he himself assigned as his motive."

"So between you both," says the squire, "the young gentleman hath been
taught to rob my daughter of her bird. I find I must take care of my
partridge-mew. I shall have some virtuous religious man or other set
all my partridges at liberty." Then slapping a gentleman of the law,
who was present, on the back, he cried out, "What say you to this, Mr
Counsellor? Is not this against law?"

The lawyer with great gravity delivered himself as follows:--

"If the case be put of a partridge, there can be no doubt but an
action would lie; for though this be _ferae naturae_, yet being
reclaimed, property vests: but being the case of a singing bird,
though reclaimed, as it is a thing of base nature, it must be
considered as _nullius in bonis_. In this case, therefore, I conceive
the plaintiff must be non-suited; and I should disadvise the bringing
any such action."

"Well," says the squire, "if it be _nullus bonus_, let us drink about,
and talk a little of the state of the nation, or some such discourse
that we all understand; for I am sure I don't understand a word of
this. It may be learning and sense for aught I know: but you shall
never persuade me into it. Pox! you have neither of you mentioned a
word of that poor lad who deserves to be commended: to venture
breaking his neck to oblige my girl was a generous-spirited action: I
have learning enough to see that. D--n me, here's Tom's health! I
shall love the boy for it the longest day I have to live."

Thus was the debate interrupted; but it would probably have been soon
resumed, had not Mr Allworthy presently called for his coach, and
carried off the two combatants.

Such was the conclusion of this adventure of the bird, and of the
dialogue occasioned by it; which we could not help recounting to our
reader, though it happened some years before that stage or period of
time at which our history is now arrived.

Chapter v.

Containing matter accommodated to every taste.

"Parva leves capiunt animos--Small things affect light minds," was the
sentiment of a great master of the passion of love. And certain it is,
that from this day Sophia began to have some little kindness for Tom
Jones, and no little aversion for his companion.

Many accidents from time to time improved both these passions in her
breast; which, without our recounting, the reader may well conclude,
from what we have before hinted of the different tempers of these
lads, and how much the one suited with her own inclinations more than
the other. To say the truth, Sophia, when very young, discerned that
Tom, though an idle, thoughtless, rattling rascal, was nobody's enemy
but his own; and that Master Blifil, though a prudent, discreet, sober
young gentleman, was at the same time strongly attached to the
interest only of one single person; and who that single person was the
reader will be able to divine without any assistance of ours.

These two characters are not always received in the world with the
different regard which seems severally due to either; and which one
would imagine mankind, from self-interest, should show towards them.
But perhaps there may be a political reason for it: in finding one of
a truly benevolent disposition, men may very reasonably suppose they
have found a treasure, and be desirous of keeping it, like all other
good things, to themselves. Hence they may imagine, that to trumpet
forth the praises of such a person, would, in the vulgar phrase, be
crying Roast-meat, and calling in partakers of what they intend to
apply solely to their own use. If this reason does not satisfy the
reader, I know no other means of accounting for the little respect
which I have commonly seen paid to a character which really does great
honour to human nature, and is productive of the highest good to
society. But it was otherwise with Sophia. She honoured Tom Jones, and
scorned Master Blifil, almost as soon as she knew the meaning of those
two words.

Sophia had been absent upwards of three years with her aunt; during
all which time she had seldom seen either of these young gentlemen.
She dined, however, once, together with her aunt, at Mr Allworthy's.
This was a few days after the adventure of the partridge, before
commemorated. Sophia heard the whole story at table, where she said
nothing: nor indeed could her aunt get many words from her as she
returned home; but her maid, when undressing her, happening to say,
"Well, miss, I suppose you have seen young Master Blifil to-day?" she
answered with much passion, "I hate the name of Master Blifil, as I do
whatever is base and treacherous: and I wonder Mr Allworthy would
suffer that old barbarous schoolmaster to punish a poor boy so cruelly
for what was only the effect of his good-nature." She then recounted
the story to her maid, and concluded with saying, "Don't you think he
is a boy of noble spirit?"

This young lady was now returned to her father; who gave her the
command of his house, and placed her at the upper end of his table,
where Tom (who for his great love of hunting was become a great
favourite of the squire) often dined. Young men of open, generous
dispositions are naturally inclined to gallantry, which, if they have
good understandings, as was in reality Tom's case, exerts itself in an
obliging complacent behaviour to all women in general. This greatly
distinguished Tom from the boisterous brutality of mere country
squires on the one hand, and from the solemn and somewhat sullen
deportment of Master Blifil on the other; and he began now, at twenty,
to have the name of a pretty fellow among all the women in the

Tom behaved to Sophia with no particularity, unless perhaps by showing
her a higher respect than he paid to any other. This distinction her
beauty, fortune, sense, and amiable carriage, seemed to demand; but as
to design upon her person he had none; for which we shall at present
suffer the reader to condemn him of stupidity; but perhaps we shall be
able indifferently well to account for it hereafter.

Sophia, with the highest degree of innocence and modesty, had a
remarkable sprightliness in her temper. This was so greatly increased
whenever she was in company with Tom, that had he not been very young
and thoughtless, he must have observed it: or had not Mr Western's
thoughts been generally either in the field, the stable, or the
dog-kennel, it might have perhaps created some jealousy in him: but so
far was the good gentleman from entertaining any such suspicions, that
he gave Tom every opportunity with his daughter which any lover could
have wished; and this Tom innocently improved to better advantage, by
following only the dictates of his natural gallantry and good-nature,
than he might perhaps have done had he had the deepest designs on the
young lady.

But indeed it can occasion little wonder that this matter escaped the
observation of others, since poor Sophia herself never remarked it;
and her heart was irretrievably lost before she suspected it was in

Matters were in this situation, when Tom, one afternoon, finding
Sophia alone, began, after a short apology, with a very serious face,
to acquaint her that he had a favour to ask of her which he hoped her
goodness would comply with.

Though neither the young man's behaviour, nor indeed his manner of
opening this business, were such as could give her any just cause of
suspecting he intended to make love to her; yet whether Nature
whispered something into her ear, or from what cause it arose I will
not determine; certain it is, some idea of that kind must have
intruded itself; for her colour forsook her cheeks, her limbs
trembled, and her tongue would have faltered, had Tom stopped for an
answer; but he soon relieved her from her perplexity, by proceeding to
inform her of his request; which was to solicit her interest on behalf
of the gamekeeper, whose own ruin, and that of a large family, must
be, he said, the consequence of Mr Western's pursuing his action
against him.

Sophia presently recovered her confusion, and, with a smile full of
sweetness, said, "Is this the mighty favour you asked with so much
gravity? I will do it with all my heart. I really pity the poor
fellow, and no longer ago than yesterday sent a small matter to his
wife." This small matter was one of her gowns, some linen, and ten
shillings in money, of which Tom had heard, and it had, in reality,
put this solicitation into his head.

Our youth, now, emboldened with his success, resolved to push the
matter farther, and ventured even to beg her recommendation of him to
her father's service; protesting that he thought him one of the
honestest fellows in the country, and extremely well qualified for the
place of a gamekeeper, which luckily then happened to be vacant.

Sophia answered, "Well, I will undertake this too; but I cannot
promise you as much success as in the former part, which I assure you
I will not quit my father without obtaining. However, I will do what I
can for the poor fellow; for I sincerely look upon him and his family
as objects of great compassion. And now, Mr Jones, I must ask you a

"A favour, madam!" cries Tom: "if you knew the pleasure you have given
me in the hopes of receiving a command from you, you would think by
mentioning it you did confer the greatest favour on me; for by this
dear hand I would sacrifice my life to oblige you."

He then snatched her hand, and eagerly kissed it, which was the first
time his lips had ever touched her. The blood, which before had
forsaken her cheeks, now made her sufficient amends, by rushing all
over her face and neck with such violence, that they became all of a
scarlet colour. She now first felt a sensation to which she had been
before a stranger, and which, when she had leisure to reflect on it,
began to acquaint her with some secrets, which the reader, if he doth
not already guess them, will know in due time.

Sophia, as soon as she could speak (which was not instantly), informed
him that the favour she had to desire of him was, not to lead her
father through so many dangers in hunting; for that, from what she had
heard, she was terribly frightened every time they went out together,
and expected some day or other to see her father brought home with
broken limbs. She therefore begged him, for her sake, to be more
cautious; and as he well knew Mr Western would follow him, not to ride
so madly, nor to take those dangerous leaps for the future.

Tom promised faithfully to obey her commands; and after thanking her
for her kind compliance with his request, took his leave, and departed
highly charmed with his success.

Poor Sophia was charmed too, but in a very different way. Her
sensations, however, the reader's heart (if he or she have any) will
better represent than I can, if I had as many mouths as ever poet
wished for, to eat, I suppose, those many dainties with which he was
so plentifully provided.

It was Mr Western's custom every afternoon, as soon as he was drunk,
to hear his daughter play on the harpsichord; for he was a great lover
of music, and perhaps, had he lived in town, might have passed for a
connoisseur; for he always excepted against the finest compositions of
Mr Handel. He never relished any music but what was light and airy;
and indeed his most favourite tunes were Old Sir Simon the King, St
George he was for England, Bobbing Joan, and some others.

His daughter, though she was a perfect mistress of music, and would
never willingly have played any but Handel's, was so devoted to her
father's pleasure, that she learnt all those tunes to oblige him.
However, she would now and then endeavour to lead him into her own
taste; and when he required the repetition of his ballads, would
answer with a "Nay, dear sir;" and would often beg him to suffer her
to play something else.

This evening, however, when the gentleman was retired from his bottle,
she played all his favourites three times over without any
solicitation. This so pleased the good squire, that he started from
his couch, gave his daughter a kiss, and swore her hand was greatly
improved. She took this opportunity to execute her promise to Tom; in
which she succeeded so well, that the squire declared, if she would
give him t'other bout of Old Sir Simon, he would give the gamekeeper
his deputation the next morning. Sir Simon was played again and again,
till the charms of the music soothed Mr Western to sleep. In the
morning Sophia did not fail to remind him of his engagement; and his
attorney was immediately sent for, ordered to stop any further
proceedings in the action, and to make out the deputation.

Tom's success in this affair soon began to ring over the country, and
various were the censures passed upon it; some greatly applauding it
as an act of good nature; others sneering, and saying, "No wonder that
one idle fellow should love another." Young Blifil was greatly enraged
at it. He had long hated Black George in the same proportion as Jones
delighted in him; not from any offence which he had ever received, but
from his great love to religion and virtue;--for Black George had the
reputation of a loose kind of a fellow. Blifil therefore represented
this as flying in Mr Allworthy's face; and declared, with great
concern, that it was impossible to find any other motive for doing
good to such a wretch.

Thwackum and Square likewise sung to the same tune. They were now
(especially the latter) become greatly jealous of young Jones with the
widow; for he now approached the age of twenty, was really a fine
young fellow, and that lady, by her encouragements to him, seemed
daily more and more to think him so.

Allworthy was not, however, moved with their malice. He declared
himself very well satisfied with what Jones had done. He said the
perseverance and integrity of his friendship was highly commendable,
and he wished he could see more frequent instances of that virtue.

But Fortune, who seldom greatly relishes such sparks as my friend Tom,
perhaps because they do not pay more ardent addresses to her, gave now
a very different turn to all his actions, and showed them to Mr
Allworthy in a light far less agreeable than that gentleman's goodness
had hitherto seen them in.

Chapter vi.

An apology for the insensibility of Mr Jones to all the charms of the
lovely Sophia; in which possibly we may, in a considerable degree,
lower his character in the estimation of those men of wit and
gallantry who approve the heroes in most of our modern comedies.

There are two sorts of people, who, I am afraid, have already
conceived some contempt for my heroe, on account of his behaviour to
Sophia. The former of these will blame his prudence in neglecting an
opportunity to possess himself of Mr Western's fortune; and the latter
will no less despise him for his backwardness to so fine a girl, who
seemed ready to fly into his arms, if he would open them to receive

Now, though I shall not perhaps be able absolutely to acquit him of
either of these charges (for want of prudence admits of no excuse; and
what I shall produce against the latter charge will, I apprehend, be
scarce satisfactory); yet, as evidence may sometimes be offered in
mitigation, I shall set forth the plain matter of fact, and leave the
whole to the reader's determination.

Mr Jones had somewhat about him, which, though I think writers are not
thoroughly agreed in its name, doth certainly inhabit some human
breasts; whose use is not so properly to distinguish right from wrong,
as to prompt and incite them to the former, and to restrain and
withhold them from the latter.

This somewhat may be indeed resembled to the famous trunk-maker in the
playhouse; for, whenever the person who is possessed of it doth what
is right, no ravished or friendly spectator is so eager or so loud in
his applause: on the contrary, when he doth wrong, no critic is so apt
to hiss and explode him.

To give a higher idea of the principle I mean, as well as one more
familiar to the present age; it may be considered as sitting on its
throne in the mind, like the Lord High Chancellor of this kingdom in
his court; where it presides, governs, directs, judges, acquits, and
condemns according to merit and justice, with a knowledge which
nothing escapes, a penetration which nothing can deceive, and an
integrity which nothing can corrupt.

This active principle may perhaps be said to constitute the most
essential barrier between us and our neighbours the brutes; for if
there be some in the human shape who are not under any such dominion,
I choose rather to consider them as deserters from us to our
neighbours; among whom they will have the fate of deserters, and not
be placed in the first rank.

Our heroe, whether he derived it from Thwackum or Square I will not
determine, was very strongly under the guidance of this principle; for
though he did not always act rightly, yet he never did otherwise
without feeling and suffering for it. It was this which taught him,
that to repay the civilities and little friendships of hospitality by
robbing the house where you have received them, is to be the basest
and meanest of thieves. He did not think the baseness of this offence
lessened by the height of the injury committed; on the contrary, if to
steal another's plate deserved death and infamy, it seemed to him
difficult to assign a punishment adequate to the robbing a man of his
whole fortune, and of his child into the bargain.

This principle, therefore, prevented him from any thought of making
his fortune by such means (for this, as I have said, is an active
principle, and doth not content itself with knowledge or belief only).
Had he been greatly enamoured of Sophia, he possibly might have
thought otherwise; but give me leave to say, there is great difference
between running away with a man's daughter from the motive of love,
and doing the same thing from the motive of theft.

Now, though this young gentleman was not insensible of the charms of
Sophia; though he greatly liked her beauty, and esteemed all her other
qualifications, she had made, however, no deep impression on his
heart; for which, as it renders him liable to the charge of stupidity,
or at least of want of taste, we shall now proceed to account.

The truth then is, his heart was in the possession of another woman.
Here I question not but the reader will be surprized at our long
taciturnity as to this matter; and quite at a loss to divine who this
woman was, since we have hitherto not dropt a hint of any one likely
to be a rival to Sophia; for as to Mrs Blifil, though we have been
obliged to mention some suspicions of her affection for Tom, we have
not hitherto given the least latitude for imagining that he had any
for her; and, indeed, I am sorry to say it, but the youth of both
sexes are too apt to be deficient in their gratitude for that regard
with which persons more advanced in years are sometimes so kind to
honour them.

That the reader may be no longer in suspense, he will be pleased to
remember, that we have often mentioned the family of George Seagrim
(commonly called Black George, the gamekeeper), which consisted at
present of a wife and five children.

The second of these children was a daughter, whose name was Molly, and
who was esteemed one of the handsomest girls in the whole country.

Congreve well says there is in true beauty something which vulgar
souls cannot admire; so can no dirt or rags hide this something from
those souls which are not of the vulgar stamp.

The beauty of this girl made, however, no impression on Tom, till she
grew towards the age of sixteen, when Tom, who was near three years
older, began first to cast the eyes of affection upon her. And this
affection he had fixed on the girl long before he could bring himself
to attempt the possession of her person: for though his constitution
urged him greatly to this, his principles no less forcibly restrained
him. To debauch a young woman, however low her condition was, appeared
to him a very heinous crime; and the good-will he bore the father,
with the compassion he had for his family, very strongly corroborated
all such sober reflections; so that he once resolved to get the better
of his inclinations, and he actually abstained three whole months
without ever going to Seagrim's house, or seeing his daughter.

Now, though Molly was, as we have said, generally thought a very fine
girl, and in reality she was so, yet her beauty was not of the most
amiable kind. It had, indeed, very little of feminine in it, and would
have become a man at least as well as a woman; for, to say the truth,
youth and florid health had a very considerable share in the

Nor was her mind more effeminate than her person. As this was tall and
robust, so was that bold and forward. So little had she of modesty,
that Jones had more regard for her virtue than she herself. And as
most probably she liked Tom as well as he liked her, so when she
perceived his backwardness she herself grew proportionably forward;
and when she saw he had entirely deserted the house, she found means
of throwing herself in his way, and behaved in such a manner that the
youth must have had very much or very little of the heroe if her
endeavours had proved unsuccessful. In a word, she soon triumphed over
all the virtuous resolutions of Jones; for though she behaved at last
with all decent reluctance, yet I rather chuse to attribute the
triumph to her, since, in fact, it was her design which succeeded.

In the conduct of this matter, I say, Molly so well played her part,
that Jones attributed the conquest entirely to himself, and considered
the young woman as one who had yielded to the violent attacks of his
passion. He likewise imputed her yielding to the ungovernable force of
her love towards him; and this the reader will allow to have been a
very natural and probable supposition, as we have more than once
mentioned the uncommon comeliness of his person: and, indeed, he was
one of the handsomest young fellows in the world.

As there are some minds whose affections, like Master Blifil's, are
solely placed on one single person, whose interest and indulgence
alone they consider on every occasion; regarding the good and ill of
all others as merely indifferent, any farther than as they contribute
to the pleasure or advantage of that person: so there is a different
temper of mind which borrows a degree of virtue even from self-love.
Such can never receive any kind of satisfaction from another, without
loving the creature to whom that satisfaction is owing, and without
making its well-being in some sort necessary to their own ease.

Of this latter species was our heroe. He considered this poor girl as
one whose happiness or misery he had caused to be dependent on
himself. Her beauty was still the object of desire, though greater
beauty, or a fresher object, might have been more so; but the little
abatement which fruition had occasioned to this was highly
overbalanced by the considerations of the affection which she visibly
bore him, and of the situation into which he had brought her. The
former of these created gratitude, the latter compassion; and both,
together with his desire for her person, raised in him a passion which
might, without any great violence to the word, be called love; though,
perhaps, it was at first not very judiciously placed.

This, then, was the true reason of that insensibility which he had
shown to the charms of Sophia, and that behaviour in her which might
have been reasonably enough interpreted as an encouragement to his
addresses; for as he could not think of abandoning his Molly, poor and
destitute as she was, so no more could he entertain a notion of
betraying such a creature as Sophia. And surely, had he given the
least encouragement to any passion for that young lady, he must have
been absolutely guilty of one or other of those crimes; either of
which would, in my opinion, have very justly subjected him to that
fate, which, at his first introduction into this history, I mentioned
to have been generally predicted as his certain destiny.

Chapter vii.

Being the shortest chapter in this book.

Her mother first perceived the alteration in the shape of Molly; and
in order to hide it from her neighbours, she foolishly clothed her in
that sack which Sophia had sent her; though, indeed, that young lady
had little apprehension that the poor woman would have been weak
enough to let any of her daughters wear it in that form.

Molly was charmed with the first opportunity she ever had of showing
her beauty to advantage; for though she could very well bear to
contemplate herself in the glass, even when dressed in rags; and
though she had in that dress conquered the heart of Jones, and perhaps
of some others; yet she thought the addition of finery would much
improve her charms, and extend her conquests.

Molly, therefore, having dressed herself out in this sack, with a new
laced cap, and some other ornaments which Tom had given her, repairs
to church with her fan in her hand the very next Sunday. The great are
deceived if they imagine they have appropriated ambition and vanity to
themselves. These noble qualities flourish as notably in a country
church and churchyard as in the drawing-room, or in the closet.
Schemes have indeed been laid in the vestry which would hardly
disgrace the conclave. Here is a ministry, and here is an opposition.
Here are plots and circumventions, parties and factions, equal to
those which are to be found in courts.

Nor are the women here less practised in the highest feminine arts
than their fair superiors in quality and fortune. Here are prudes and
coquettes. Here are dressing and ogling, falsehood, envy, malice,
scandal; in short, everything which is common to the most splendid
assembly, or politest circle. Let those of high life, therefore, no
longer despise the ignorance of their inferiors; nor the vulgar any
longer rail at the vices of their betters.

Molly had seated herself some time before she was known by her
neighbours. And then a whisper ran through the whole congregation,
"Who is she?" but when she was discovered, such sneering, gigling,
tittering, and laughing ensued among the women, that Mr Allworthy was
obliged to exert his authority to preserve any decency among them.

Chapter viii.

A battle sung by the muse in the Homerican style, and which none but
the classical reader can taste.

Mr Western had an estate in this parish; and as his house stood at
little greater distance from this church than from his own, he very
often came to Divine Service here; and both he and the charming Sophia
happened to be present at this time.

Sophia was much pleased with the beauty of the girl, whom she pitied
for her simplicity in having dressed herself in that manner, as she
saw the envy which it had occasioned among her equals. She no sooner
came home than she sent for the gamekeeper, and ordered him to bring
his daughter to her; saying she would provide for her in the family,
and might possibly place the girl about her own person, when her own
maid, who was now going away, had left her.

Poor Seagrim was thunderstruck at this; for he was no stranger to the
fault in the shape of his daughter. He answered, in a stammering
voice, "That he was afraid Molly would be too awkward to wait on her
ladyship, as she had never been at service." "No matter for that,"
says Sophia; "she will soon improve. I am pleased with the girl, and
am resolved to try her."

Black George now repaired to his wife, on whose prudent counsel he
depended to extricate him out of this dilemma; but when he came
thither he found his house in some confusion. So great envy had this
sack occasioned, that when Mr Allworthy and the other gentry were gone
from church, the rage, which had hitherto been confined, burst into an
uproar; and, having vented itself at first in opprobrious words,
laughs, hisses, and gestures, betook itself at last to certain missile
weapons; which, though from their plastic nature they threatened
neither the loss of life or of limb, were however sufficiently
dreadful to a well-dressed lady. Molly had too much spirit to bear
this treatment tamely. Having therefore--but hold, as we are diffident
of our own abilities, let us here invite a superior power to our

Ye Muses, then, whoever ye are, who love to sing battles, and
principally thou who whilom didst recount the slaughter in those
fields where Hudibras and Trulla fought, if thou wert not starved with
thy friend Butler, assist me on this great occasion. All things are
not in the power of all.

As a vast herd of cows in a rich farmer's yard, if, while they are
milked, they hear their calves at a distance, lamenting the robbery
which is then committing, roar and bellow; so roared forth the
Somersetshire mob an hallaloo, made up of almost as many squalls,
screams, and other different sounds as there were persons, or indeed
passions among them: some were inspired by rage, others alarmed by
fear, and others had nothing in their heads but the love of fun; but
chiefly Envy, the sister of Satan, and his constant companion, rushed
among the crowd, and blew up the fury of the women; who no sooner came
up to Molly than they pelted her with dirt and rubbish.

Molly, having endeavoured in vain to make a handsome retreat, faced
about; and laying hold of ragged Bess, who advanced in the front of
the enemy, she at one blow felled her to the ground. The whole army of
the enemy (though near a hundred in number), seeing the fate of their
general, gave back many paces, and retired behind a new-dug grave; for
the churchyard was the field of battle, where there was to be a
funeral that very evening. Molly pursued her victory, and catching up
a skull which lay on the side of the grave, discharged it with such
fury, that having hit a taylor on the head, the two skulls sent
equally forth a hollow sound at their meeting, and the taylor took
presently measure of his length on the ground, where the skulls lay
side by side, and it was doubtful which was the more valuable of the
two. Molly then taking a thigh-bone in her hand, fell in among the
flying ranks, and dealing her blows with great liberality on either
side, overthrew the carcass of many a mighty heroe and heroine.

Recount, O Muse, the names of those who fell on this fatal day. First,
Jemmy Tweedle felt on his hinder head the direful bone. Him the
pleasant banks of sweetly-winding Stour had nourished, where he first
learnt the vocal art, with which, wandering up and down at wakes and
fairs, he cheered the rural nymphs and swains, when upon the green
they interweaved the sprightly dance; while he himself stood fiddling
and jumping to his own music. How little now avails his fiddle! He
thumps the verdant floor with his carcass. Next, old Echepole, the
sowgelder, received a blow in his forehead from our Amazonian heroine,
and immediately fell to the ground. He was a swinging fat fellow, and
fell with almost as much noise as a house. His tobacco-box dropped at
the same time from his pocket, which Molly took up as lawful spoils.
Then Kate of the Mill tumbled unfortunately over a tombstone, which
catching hold of her ungartered stocking inverted the order of nature,
and gave her heels the superiority to her head. Betty Pippin, with
young Roger her lover, fell both to the ground; where, oh perverse
fate! she salutes the earth, and he the sky. Tom Freckle, the smith's
son, was the next victim to her rage. He was an ingenious workman, and
made excellent pattens; nay, the very patten with which he was knocked
down was his own workmanship. Had he been at that time singing psalms
in the church, he would have avoided a broken head. Miss Crow, the
daughter of a farmer; John Giddish, himself a farmer; Nan Slouch,
Esther Codling, Will Spray, Tom Bennet; the three Misses Potter, whose
father keeps the sign of the Red Lion; Betty Chambermaid, Jack Ostler,
and many others of inferior note, lay rolling among the graves.

Not that the strenuous arm of Molly reached all these; for many of
them in their flight overthrew each other.

But now Fortune, fearing she had acted out of character, and had
inclined too long to the same side, especially as it was the right
side, hastily turned about: for now Goody Brown--whom Zekiel Brown
caressed in his arms; nor he alone, but half the parish besides; so
famous was she in the fields of Venus, nor indeed less in those of
Mars. The trophies of both these her husband always bore about on his
head and face; for if ever human head did by its horns display the
amorous glories of a wife, Zekiel's did; nor did his well-scratched
face less denote her talents (or rather talons) of a different kind.

No longer bore this Amazon the shameful flight of her party. She stopt
short, and, calling aloud to all who fled, spoke as follows: "Ye
Somersetshire men, or rather ye Somersetshire women, are ye not
ashamed thus to fly from a single woman? But if no other will oppose
her, I myself and Joan Top here will have the honour of the victory."
Having thus said, she flew at Molly Seagrim, and easily wrenched the
thigh-bone from her hand, at the same time clawing off her cap from
her head. Then laying hold of the hair of Molly with her left hand,
she attacked her so furiously in the face with the right, that the
blood soon began to trickle from her nose. Molly was not idle this
while. She soon removed the clout from the head of Goody Brown, and
then fastening on her hair with one hand, with the other she caused
another bloody stream to issue forth from the nostrils of the enemy.

When each of the combatants had borne off sufficient spoils of hair
from the head of her antagonist, the next rage was against the
garments. In this attack they exerted so much violence, that in a very
few minutes they were both naked to the middle.

It is lucky for the women that the seat of fistycuff war is not the
same with them as among men; but though they may seem a little to
deviate from their sex, when they go forth to battle, yet I have
observed, they never so far forget, as to assail the bosoms of each
other; where a few blows would be fatal to most of them. This, I know,
some derive from their being of a more bloody inclination than the
males. On which account they apply to the nose, as to the part whence
blood may most easily be drawn; but this seems a far-fetched as well
as ill-natured supposition.

Goody Brown had great advantage of Molly in this particular; for the
former had indeed no breasts, her bosom (if it may be so called), as
well in colour as in many other properties, exactly resembling an
antient piece of parchment, upon which any one might have drummed a
considerable while without doing her any great damage.

Molly, beside her present unhappy condition, was differently formed in
those parts, and might, perhaps, have tempted the envy of Brown to
give her a fatal blow, had not the lucky arrival of Tom Jones at this
instant put an immediate end to the bloody scene.

This accident was luckily owing to Mr Square; for he, Master Blifil,
and Jones, had mounted their horses, after church, to take the air,
and had ridden about a quarter of a mile, when Square, changing his
mind (not idly, but for a reason which we shall unfold as soon as we
have leisure), desired the young gentlemen to ride with him another
way than they had at first purposed. This motion being complied with,
brought them of necessity back again to the churchyard.

Master Blifil, who rode first, seeing such a mob assembled, and two
women in the posture in which we left the combatants, stopt his horse
to enquire what was the matter. A country fellow, scratching his head,
answered him: "I don't know, measter, un't I; an't please your honour,
here hath been a vight, I think, between Goody Brown and Moll

"Who, who?" cries Tom; but without waiting for an answer, having
discovered the features of his Molly through all the discomposure in
which they now were, he hastily alighted, turned his horse loose, and,
leaping over the wall, ran to her. She now first bursting into tears,
told him how barbarously she had been treated. Upon which, forgetting
the sex of Goody Brown, or perhaps not knowing it in his rage--for, in
reality, she had no feminine appearance but a petticoat, which he
might not observe--he gave her a lash or two with his horsewhip; and
then flying at the mob, who were all accused by Moll, he dealt his
blows so profusely on all sides, that unless I would again invoke the
muse (which the good-natured reader may think a little too hard upon
her, as she hath so lately been violently sweated), it would be
impossible for me to recount the horse-whipping of that day.

Having scoured the whole coast of the enemy, as well as any of Homer's
heroes ever did, or as Don Quixote or any knight-errant in the world
could have done, he returned to Molly, whom he found in a condition
which must give both me and my reader pain, was it to be described
here. Tom raved like a madman, beat his breast, tore his hair, stamped
on the ground, and vowed the utmost vengeance on all who had been
concerned. He then pulled off his coat, and buttoned it round her, put
his hat upon her head, wiped the blood from her face as well as he
could with his handkerchief, and called out to the servant to ride as
fast as possible for a side-saddle, or a pillion, that he might carry
her safe home.

Master Blifil objected to the sending away the servant, as they had
only one with them; but as Square seconded the order of Jones, he was
obliged to comply.

The servant returned in a very short time with the pillion, and Molly,
having collected her rags as well as she could, was placed behind him.
In which manner she was carried home, Square, Blifil, and Jones

Here Jones having received his coat, given her a sly kiss, and
whispered her, that he would return in the evening, quitted his Molly,
and rode on after his companions.

Chapter ix.

Containing matter of no very peaceable colour.

Molly had no sooner apparelled herself in her accustomed rags, than
her sisters began to fall violently upon her, particularly her eldest
sister, who told her she was well enough served. "How had she the
assurance to wear a gown which young Madam Western had given to
mother! If one of us was to wear it, I think," says she, "I myself
have the best right; but I warrant you think it belongs to your
beauty. I suppose you think yourself more handsomer than any of
us."--"Hand her down the bit of glass from over the cupboard," cries
another; "I'd wash the blood from my face before I talked of my
beauty."--"You'd better have minded what the parson says," cries the
eldest, "and not a harkened after men voke."--"Indeed, child, and so
she had," says the mother, sobbing: "she hath brought a disgrace upon
us all. She's the vurst of the vamily that ever was a whore."

"You need not upbraid me with that, mother," cries Molly; "you
yourself was brought-to-bed of sister there, within a week after you
was married."

"Yes, hussy," answered the enraged mother, "so I was, and what was the
mighty matter of that? I was made an honest woman then; and if you was
to be made an honest woman, I should not be angry; but you must have
to doing with a gentleman, you nasty slut; you will have a bastard,
hussy, you will; and that I defy any one to say of me."

In this situation Black George found his family, when he came home for
the purpose before mentioned. As his wife and three daughters were all
of them talking together, and most of them crying, it was some time
before he could get an opportunity of being heard; but as soon as such
an interval occurred, he acquainted the company with what Sophia had
said to him.

Goody Seagrim then began to revile her daughter afresh. "Here," says
she, "you have brought us into a fine quandary indeed. What will madam
say to that big belly? Oh that ever I should live to see this day!"

Molly answered with great spirit, "And what is this mighty place which
you have got for me, father?" (for he had not well understood the
phrase used by Sophia of being about her person). "I suppose it is to
be under the cook; but I shan't wash dishes for anybody. My gentleman
will provide better for me. See what he hath given me this afternoon.
He hath promised I shall never want money; and you shan't want money
neither, mother, if you will hold your tongue, and know when you are
well." And so saying, she pulled out several guineas, and gave her
mother one of them.

The good woman no sooner felt the gold within her palm, than her
temper began (such is the efficacy of that panacea) to be mollified.
"Why, husband," says she, "would any but such a blockhead as you not
have enquired what place this was before he had accepted it? Perhaps,
as Molly says, it may be in the kitchen; and truly I don't care my
daughter should be a scullion wench; for, poor as I am, I am a
gentlewoman. And thof I was obliged, as my father, who was a
clergyman, died worse than nothing, and so could not give me a
shilling of _potion_, to undervalue myself by marrying a poor man; yet
I would have you to know, I have a spirit above all them things. Marry
come up! it would better become Madam Western to look at home, and
remember who her own grandfather was. Some of my family, for aught I
know, might ride in their coaches, when the grandfathers of some voke
walked a-voot. I warrant she fancies she did a mighty matter, when she
sent us that old gownd; some of my family would not have picked up
such rags in the street; but poor people are always trampled
upon.--The parish need not have been in such a fluster with Molly. You
might have told them, child, your grandmother wore better things new
out of the shop."

"Well, but consider," cried George, "what answer shall I make to

"I don't know what answer," says she; "you are always bringing your
family into one quandary or other. Do you remember when you shot the
partridge, the occasion of all our misfortunes? Did not I advise you
never to go into Squire Western's manor? Did not I tell you many a
good year ago what would come of it? But you would have your own
headstrong ways; yes, you would, you villain."

Black George was, in the main, a peaceable kind of fellow, and nothing
choleric nor rash; yet did he bear about him something of what the
antients called the irascible, and which his wife, if she had been
endowed with much wisdom, would have feared. He had long experienced,
that when the storm grew very high, arguments were but wind, which
served rather to increase, than to abate it. He was therefore seldom
unprovided with a small switch, a remedy of wonderful force, as he had
often essayed, and which the word villain served as a hint for his

No sooner, therefore, had this symptom appeared, than he had immediate
recourse to the said remedy, which though, as it is usual in all very
efficacious medicines, it at first seemed to heighten and inflame the
disease, soon produced a total calm, and restored the patient to
perfect ease and tranquillity.

This is, however, a kind of horse-medicine, which requires a very
robust constitution to digest, and is therefore proper only for the
vulgar, unless in one single instance, viz., where superiority of
birth breaks out; in which case, we should not think it very
improperly applied by any husband whatever, if the application was not
in itself so base, that, like certain applications of the physical
kind which need not be mentioned, it so much degrades and contaminates
the hand employed in it, that no gentleman should endure the thought
of anything so low and detestable.

The whole family were soon reduced to a state of perfect quiet; for
the virtue of this medicine, like that of electricity, is often
communicated through one person to many others, who are not touched by
the instrument. To say the truth, as they both operate by friction, it
may be doubted whether there is not something analogous between them,
of which Mr Freke would do well to enquire, before he publishes the
next edition of his book.

A council was now called, in which, after many debates, Molly still
persisting that she would not go to service, it was at length
resolved, that Goody Seagrim herself should wait on Miss Western, and
endeavour to procure the place for her eldest daughter, who declared
great readiness to accept it: but Fortune, who seems to have been an
enemy of this little family, afterwards put a stop to her promotion.

Chapter x.

A story told by Mr Supple, the curate. The penetration of Squire
Western. His great love for his daughter, and the return to it made by

The next morning Tom Jones hunted with Mr Western, and was at his
return invited by that gentleman to dinner.

The lovely Sophia shone forth that day with more gaiety and
sprightliness than usual. Her battery was certainly levelled at our
heroe; though, I believe, she herself scarce yet knew her own
intention; but if she had any design of charming him, she now

Mr Supple, the curate of Mr Allworthy's parish, made one of the
company. He was a good-natured worthy man; but chiefly remarkable for
his great taciturnity at table, though his mouth was never shut at it.
In short, he had one of the best appetites in the world. However, the
cloth was no sooner taken away, than he always made sufficient amends
for his silence: for he was a very hearty fellow; and his conversation
was often entertaining, never offensive.

At his first arrival, which was immediately before the entrance of the
roast-beef, he had given an intimation that he had brought some news
with him, and was beginning to tell, that he came that moment from Mr
Allworthy's, when the sight of the roast-beef struck him dumb,
permitting him only to say grace, and to declare he must pay his
respect to the baronet, for so he called the sirloin.

When dinner was over, being reminded by Sophia of his news, he began
as follows: "I believe, lady, your ladyship observed a young woman at
church yesterday at even-song, who was drest in one of your outlandish
garments; I think I have seen your ladyship in such a one. However, in
the country, such dresses are

     _Rara avis in terris, nigroque simillima cygno._

That is, madam, as much as to say, 'A rare bird upon the earth, and
very like a black swan.' The verse is in Juvenal. But to return to
what I was relating. I was saying such garments are rare sights in the
country; and perchance, too, it was thought the more rare, respect
being had to the person who wore it, who, they tell me, is the
daughter of Black George, your worship's gamekeeper, whose sufferings,
I should have opined, might have taught him more wit, than to dress
forth his wenches in such gaudy apparel. She created so much confusion
in the congregation, that if Squire Allworthy had not silenced it, it
would have interrupted the service: for I was once about to stop in
the middle of the first lesson. Howbeit, nevertheless, after prayer
was over, and I was departed home, this occasioned a battle in the
churchyard, where, amongst other mischief, the head of a travelling
fidler was very much broken. This morning the fidler came to Squire
Allworthy for a warrant, and the wench was brought before him. The
squire was inclined to have compounded matters; when, lo! on a sudden
the wench appeared (I ask your ladyship's pardon) to be, as it were,
at the eve of bringing forth a bastard. The squire demanded of her who
was the father? But she pertinaciously refused to make any response.
So that he was about to make her mittimus to Bridewell when I

"And is a wench having a bastard all your news, doctor?" cries
Western; "I thought it might have been some public matter, something
about the nation."

"I am afraid it is too common, indeed," answered the parson; "but I
thought the whole story altogether deserved commemorating. As to
national matters, your worship knows them best. My concerns extend no
farther than my own parish."

"Why, ay," says the squire, "I believe I do know a little of that
matter, as you say. But, come, Tommy, drink about; the bottle stands
with you."

Tom begged to be excused, for that he had particular business; and
getting up from table, escaped the clutches of the squire, who was
rising to stop him, and went off with very little ceremony.

The squire gave him a good curse at his departure; and then turning to
the parson, he cried out, "I smoke it: I smoke it. Tom is certainly
the father of this bastard. Zooks, parson, you remember how he
recommended the veather o' her to me. D--n un, what a sly b--ch 'tis.
Ay, ay, as sure as two-pence, Tom is the veather of the bastard."

"I should be very sorry for that," says the parson.

"Why sorry," cries the squire: "Where is the mighty matter o't? What,
I suppose dost pretend that thee hast never got a bastard? Pox! more
good luck's thine? for I warrant hast a done a _therefore_ many's the
good time and often."

"Your worship is pleased to be jocular," answered the parson; "but I
do not only animadvert on the sinfulness of the action--though that
surely is to be greatly deprecated--but I fear his unrighteousness may
injure him with Mr Allworthy. And truly I must say, though he hath the
character of being a little wild, I never saw any harm in the young
man; nor can I say I have heard any, save what your worship now
mentions. I wish, indeed, he was a little more regular in his
responses at church; but altogether he seems

     _Ingenui vultus puer ingenuique pudoris._

That is a classical line, young lady; and, being rendered into
English, is, `a lad of an ingenuous countenance, and of an ingenuous
modesty;' for this was a virtue in great repute both among the Latins
and Greeks. I must say, the young gentleman (for so I think I may call
him, notwithstanding his birth) appears to me a very modest, civil
lad, and I should be sorry that he should do himself any injury in
Squire Allworthy's opinion."

"Poogh!" says the squire: "Injury, with Allworthy! Why, Allworthy
loves a wench himself. Doth not all the country know whose son Tom is?
You must talk to another person in that manner. I remember Allworthy
at college."

"I thought," said the parson, "he had never been at the university."

"Yes, yes, he was," says the squire: "and many a wench have we two had
together. As arrant a whore-master as any within five miles o'un. No,
no. It will do'n no harm with he, assure yourself; nor with anybody
else. Ask Sophy there--You have not the worse opinion of a young
fellow for getting a bastard, have you, girl? No, no, the women will
like un the better for't."

This was a cruel question to poor Sophia. She had observed Tom's
colour change at the parson's story; and that, with his hasty and
abrupt departure, gave her sufficient reason to think her father's
suspicion not groundless. Her heart now at once discovered the great
secret to her which it had been so long disclosing by little and
little; and she found herself highly interested in this matter. In
such a situation, her father's malapert question rushing suddenly upon
her, produced some symptoms which might have alarmed a suspicious
heart; but, to do the squire justice, that was not his fault. When she
rose therefore from her chair, and told him a hint from him was always
sufficient to make her withdraw, he suffered her to leave the room,
and then with great gravity of countenance remarked, "That it was
better to see a daughter over-modest than over-forward;"--a sentiment
which was highly applauded by the parson.

There now ensued between the squire and the parson a most excellent
political discourse, framed out of newspapers and political pamphlets;
in which they made a libation of four bottles of wine to the good of
their country: and then, the squire being fast asleep, the parson
lighted his pipe, mounted his horse, and rode home.

When the squire had finished his half-hour's nap, he summoned his
daughter to her harpsichord; but she begged to be excused that
evening, on account of a violent head-ache. This remission was
presently granted; for indeed she seldom had occasion to ask him
twice, as he loved her with such ardent affection, that, by gratifying
her, he commonly conveyed the highest gratification to himself. She
was really, what he frequently called her, his little darling, and she
well deserved to be so; for she returned all his affection in the most
ample manner. She had preserved the most inviolable duty to him in all
things; and this her love made not only easy, but so delightful, that
when one of her companions laughed at her for placing so much merit in
such scrupulous obedience, as that young lady called it, Sophia
answered, "You mistake me, madam, if you think I value myself upon
this account; for besides that I am barely discharging my duty, I am
likewise pleasing myself. I can truly say I have no delight equal to
that of contributing to my father's happiness; and if I value myself,
my dear, it is on having this power, and not on executing it."

This was a satisfaction, however, which poor Sophia was incapable of
tasting this evening. She therefore not only desired to be excused
from her attendance at the harpsichord, but likewise begged that he
would suffer her to absent herself from supper. To this request
likewise the squire agreed, though not without some reluctance; for he
scarce ever permitted her to be out of his sight, unless when he was
engaged with his horses, dogs, or bottle. Nevertheless he yielded to
the desire of his daughter, though the poor man was at the same time
obliged to avoid his own company (if I may so express myself), by
sending for a neighbouring farmer to sit with him.

Chapter xi.

The narrow escape of Molly Seagrim, with some observations for which
we have been forced to dive pretty deep into nature.

Tom Jones had ridden one of Mr Western's horses that morning in the
chase; so that having no horse of his own in the squire's stable, he
was obliged to go home on foot: this he did so expeditiously that he
ran upwards of three miles within the half-hour.

Just as he arrived at Mr Allworthy's outward gate, he met the
constable and company with Molly in their possession, whom they were
conducting to that house where the inferior sort of people may learn
one good lesson, viz., respect and deference to their superiors; since
it must show them the wide distinction Fortune intends between those
persons who are to be corrected for their faults, and those who are
not; which lesson if they do not learn, I am afraid they very rarely
learn any other good lesson, or improve their morals, at the house of

A lawyer may perhaps think Mr Allworthy exceeded his authority a
little in this instance. And, to say the truth, I question, as here
was no regular information before him, whether his conduct was
strictly regular. However, as his intention was truly upright, he
ought to be excused in _foro conscientiae_; since so many arbitrary
acts are daily committed by magistrates who have not this excuse to
plead for themselves.

Tom was no sooner informed by the constable whither they were
proceeding (indeed he pretty well guessed it of himself), than he
caught Molly in his arms, and embracing her tenderly before them all,
swore he would murder the first man who offered to lay hold of her. He
bid her dry her eyes and be comforted; for, wherever she went, he
would accompany her. Then turning to the constable, who stood
trembling with his hat off, he desired him, in a very mild voice, to
return with him for a moment only to his father (for so he now called
Allworthy); for he durst, he said, be assured, that, when he had
alledged what he had to say in her favour, the girl would be

The constable, who, I make no doubt, would have surrendered his
prisoner had Tom demanded her, very readily consented to this request.
So back they all went into Mr Allworthy's hall; where Tom desired them
to stay till his return, and then went himself in pursuit of the good
man. As soon as he was found, Tom threw himself at his feet, and
having begged a patient hearing, confessed himself to be the father of
the child of which Molly was then big. He entreated him to have
compassion on the poor girl, and to consider, if there was any guilt
in the case, it lay principally at his door.

"If there is any guilt in the case!" answered Allworthy warmly: "Are
you then so profligate and abandoned a libertine to doubt whether the
breaking the laws of God and man, the corrupting and ruining a poor
girl be guilt? I own, indeed, it doth lie principally upon you; and so
heavy it is, that you ought to expect it should crush you."

"Whatever may be my fate," says Tom, "let me succeed in my
intercessions for the poor girl. I confess I have corrupted her! but
whether she shall be ruined, depends on you. For Heaven's sake, sir,
revoke your warrant, and do not send her to a place which must
unavoidably prove her destruction."

Allworthy bid him immediately call a servant. Tom answered there was
no occasion; for he had luckily met them at the gate, and relying upon
his goodness, had brought them all back into his hall, where they now
waited his final resolution, which upon his knees he besought him
might be in favour of the girl; that she might be permitted to go home
to her parents, and not be exposed to a greater degree of shame and
scorn than must necessarily fall upon her. "I know," said he, "that is
too much. I know I am the wicked occasion of it. I will endeavour to
make amends, if possible; and if you shall have hereafter the goodness
to forgive me, I hope I shall deserve it."

Allworthy hesitated some time, and at last said, "Well, I will
discharge my mittimus.--You may send the constable to me." He was
instantly called, discharged, and so was the girl.

It will be believed that Mr Allworthy failed not to read Tom a very
severe lecture on this occasion; but it is unnecessary to insert it
here, as we have faithfully transcribed what he said to Jenny Jones in
the first book, most of which may be applied to the men, equally with
the women. So sensible an effect had these reproofs on the young man,
who was no hardened sinner, that he retired to his own room, where he
passed the evening alone, in much melancholy contemplation.

Allworthy was sufficiently offended by this transgression of Jones;
for notwithstanding the assertions of Mr Western, it is certain this
worthy man had never indulged himself in any loose pleasures with
women, and greatly condemned the vice of incontinence in others.
Indeed, there is much reason to imagine that there was not the least
truth in what Mr Western affirmed, especially as he laid the scene of
those impurities at the university, where Mr Allworthy had never been.
In fact, the good squire was a little too apt to indulge that kind of
pleasantry which is generally called rhodomontade: but which may, with
as much propriety, be expressed by a much shorter word; and perhaps we
too often supply the use of this little monosyllable by others; since
very much of what frequently passes in the world for wit and humour,
should, in the strictest purity of language, receive that short
appellation, which, in conformity to the well-bred laws of custom, I
here suppress.

But whatever detestation Mr Allworthy had to this or to any other
vice, he was not so blinded by it but that he could discern any virtue
in the guilty person, as clearly indeed as if there had been no
mixture of vice in the same character. While he was angry therefore
with the incontinence of Jones, he was no less pleased with the honour
and honesty of his self-accusation. He began now to form in his mind
the same opinion of this young fellow, which, we hope, our reader may
have conceived. And in balancing his faults with his perfections, the
latter seemed rather to preponderate.

It was to no purpose, therefore, that Thwackum, who was immediately
charged by Mr Blifil with the story, unbended all his rancour against
poor Tom. Allworthy gave a patient hearing to their invectives, and
then answered coldly: "That young men of Tom's complexion were too
generally addicted to this vice; but he believed that youth was
sincerely affected with what he had said to him on the occasion, and
he hoped he would not transgress again." So that, as the days of
whipping were at an end, the tutor had no other vent but his own mouth
for his gall, the usual poor resource of impotent revenge.

But Square, who was a less violent, was a much more artful man; and as
he hated Jones more perhaps than Thwackum himself did, so he contrived
to do him more mischief in the mind of Mr Allworthy.

The reader must remember the several little incidents of the
partridge, the horse, and the Bible, which were recounted in the
second book. By all which Jones had rather improved than injured the
affection which Mr Allworthy was inclined to entertain for him. The
same, I believe, must have happened to him with every other person who
hath any idea of friendship, generosity, and greatness of spirit, that
is to say, who hath any traces of goodness in his mind.

Square himself was not unacquainted with the true impression which
those several instances of goodness had made on the excellent heart of
Allworthy; for the philosopher very well knew what virtue was, though
he was not always perhaps steady in its pursuit; but as for Thwackum,
from what reason I will not determine, no such thoughts ever entered
into his head: he saw Jones in a bad light, and he imagined Allworthy
saw him in the same, but that he was resolved, from pride and
stubbornness of spirit, not to give up the boy whom he had once
cherished; since by so doing, he must tacitly acknowledge that his
former opinion of him had been wrong.

Square therefore embraced this opportunity of injuring Jones
in the tenderest part, by giving a very bad turn to all these
before-mentioned occurrences. "I am sorry, sir," said he, "to own I
have been deceived as well as yourself. I could not, I confess, help
being pleased with what I ascribed to the motive of friendship, though
it was carried to an excess, and all excess is faulty and vicious: but
in this I made allowance for youth. Little did I suspect that the
sacrifice of truth, which we both imagined to have been made to
friendship, was in reality a prostitution of it to a depraved and
debauched appetite. You now plainly see whence all the seeming
generosity of this young man to the family of the gamekeeper
proceeded. He supported the father in order to corrupt the daughter,
and preserved the family from starving, to bring one of them to shame
and ruin. This is friendship! this is generosity! As Sir Richard
Steele says, `Gluttons who give high prices for delicacies, are very
worthy to be called generous.' In short I am resolved, from this
instance, never to give way to the weakness of human nature more, nor
to think anything virtue which doth not exactly quadrate with the
unerring rule of right."

The goodness of Allworthy had prevented those considerations from
occurring to himself; yet were they too plausible to be absolutely and
hastily rejected, when laid before his eyes by another. Indeed what
Square had said sunk very deeply into his mind, and the uneasiness
which it there created was very visible to the other; though the good
man would not acknowledge this, but made a very slight answer, and
forcibly drove off the discourse to some other subject. It was well
perhaps for poor Tom, that no such suggestions had been made before he
was pardoned; for they certainly stamped in the mind of Allworthy the
first bad impression concerning Jones.

Chapter xii.

Containing much clearer matters; but which flowed from the same
fountain with those in the preceding chapter.

The reader will be pleased, I believe, to return with me to Sophia.
She passed the night, after we saw her last, in no very agreeable
manner. Sleep befriended her but little, and dreams less. In the
morning, when Mrs Honour, her maid, attended her at the usual hour,
she was found already up and drest.

Persons who live two or three miles' distance in the country are
considered as next-door neighbours, and transactions at the one house
fly with incredible celerity to the other. Mrs Honour, therefore, had
heard the whole story of Molly's shame; which she, being of a very
communicative temper, had no sooner entered the apartment of her
mistress, than she began to relate in the following manner:--

"La, ma'am, what doth your la'ship think? the girl that your la'ship
saw at church on Sunday, whom you thought so handsome; though you
would not have thought her so handsome neither, if you had seen her
nearer, but to be sure she hath been carried before the justice for
being big with child. She seemed to me to look like a confident slut:
and to be sure she hath laid the child to young Mr Jones. And all the
parish says Mr Allworthy is so angry with young Mr Jones, that he
won't see him. To be sure, one can't help pitying the poor young man,
and yet he doth not deserve much pity neither, for demeaning himself
with such kind of trumpery. Yet he is so pretty a gentleman, I should
be sorry to have him turned out of doors. I dares to swear the wench
was as willing as he; for she was always a forward kind of body. And
when wenches are so coming, young men are not so much to be blamed
neither; for to be sure they do no more than what is natural. Indeed
it is beneath them to meddle with such dirty draggle-tails; and
whatever happens to them, it is good enough for them. And yet, to be
sure, the vile baggages are most in fault. I wishes, with all my
heart, they were well to be whipped at the cart's tail; for it is pity
they should be the ruin of a pretty young gentleman; and nobody can
deny but that Mr Jones is one of the most handsomest young men that

She was running on thus, when Sophia, with a more peevish voice than
she had ever spoken to her in before, cried, "Prithee, why dost thou
trouble me with all this stuff? What concern have I in what Mr Jones
doth? I suppose you are all alike. And you seem to me to be angry it
was not your own case."

"I, ma'am!" answered Mrs Honour, "I am sorry your ladyship should have
such an opinion of me. I am sure nobody can say any such thing of me.
All the young fellows in the world may go to the divil for me. Because
I said he was a handsome man? Everybody says it as well as I. To be
sure, I never thought as it was any harm to say a young man was
handsome; but to be sure I shall never think him so any more now; for
handsome is that handsome does. A beggar wench!--"

"Stop thy torrent of impertinence," cries Sophia, "and see whether my
father wants me at breakfast."

Mrs Honour then flung out of the room, muttering much to herself, of
which "Marry come up, I assure you," was all that could be plainly

Whether Mrs Honour really deserved that suspicion, of which her
mistress gave her a hint, is a matter which we cannot indulge our
reader's curiosity by resolving. We will, however, make him amends in
disclosing what passed in the mind of Sophia.

The reader will be pleased to recollect, that a secret affection for
Mr Jones had insensibly stolen into the bosom of this young lady. That
it had there grown to a pretty great height before she herself had
discovered it. When she first began to perceive its symptoms, the
sensations were so sweet and pleasing, that she had not resolution
sufficient to check or repel them; and thus she went on cherishing a
passion of which she never once considered the consequences.

This incident relating to Molly first opened her eyes. She now first
perceived the weakness of which she had been guilty; and though it
caused the utmost perturbation in her mind, yet it had the effect of
other nauseous physic, and for the time expelled her distemper. Its
operation indeed was most wonderfully quick; and in the short
interval, while her maid was absent, so entirely removed all symptoms,
that when Mrs Honour returned with a summons from her father, she was
become perfectly easy, and had brought herself to a thorough
indifference for Mr Jones.

The diseases of the mind do in almost every particular imitate those
of the body. For which reason, we hope, that learned faculty, for whom
we have so profound a respect, will pardon us the violent hands we
have been necessitated to lay on several words and phrases, which of
right belong to them, and without which our descriptions must have
been often unintelligible.

Now there is no one circumstance in which the distempers of the mind
bear a more exact analogy to those which are called bodily, than that
aptness which both have to a relapse. This is plain in the violent
diseases of ambition and avarice. I have known ambition, when cured at
court by frequent disappointments (which are the only physic for it),
to break out again in a contest for foreman of the grand jury at an
assizes; and have heard of a man who had so far conquered avarice, as
to give away many a sixpence, that comforted himself, at last, on his
deathbed, by making a crafty and advantageous bargain concerning his
ensuing funeral, with an undertaker who had married his only child.

In the affair of love, which, out of strict conformity with the Stoic
philosophy, we shall here treat as a disease, this proneness to
relapse is no less conspicuous. Thus it happened to poor Sophia; upon
whom, the very next time she saw young Jones, all the former symptoms
returned, and from that time cold and hot fits alternately seized her

The situation of this young lady was now very different from what it
had ever been before. That passion which had formerly been so
exquisitely delicious, became now a scorpion in her bosom. She
resisted it therefore with her utmost force, and summoned every
argument her reason (which was surprisingly strong for her age) could
suggest, to subdue and expel it. In this she so far succeeded, that
she began to hope from time and absence a perfect cure. She resolved
therefore to avoid Tom Jones as much as possible; for which purpose
she began to conceive a design of visiting her aunt, to which she made
no doubt of obtaining her father's consent.

But Fortune, who had other designs in her head, put an immediate stop
to any such proceeding, by introducing an accident, which will be
related in the next chapter.

Chapter xiii.

A dreadful accident which befel Sophia. The gallant behaviour of
Jones, and the more dreadful consequence of that behaviour to the
young lady; with a short digression in favour of the female sex.

Mr Western grew every day fonder and fonder of Sophia, insomuch that
his beloved dogs themselves almost gave place to her in his
affections; but as he could not prevail on himself to abandon these,
he contrived very cunningly to enjoy their company, together with that
of his daughter, by insisting on her riding a hunting with him.

Sophia, to whom her father's word was a law, readily complied with his
desires, though she had not the least delight in a sport, which was of
too rough and masculine a nature to suit with her disposition. She had
however another motive, beside her obedience, to accompany the old
gentleman in the chase; for by her presence she hoped in some measure
to restrain his impetuosity, and to prevent him from so frequently
exposing his neck to the utmost hazard.

The strongest objection was that which would have formerly been an
inducement to her, namely, the frequent meeting with young Jones, whom
she had determined to avoid; but as the end of the hunting season now
approached, she hoped, by a short absence with her aunt, to reason
herself entirely out of her unfortunate passion; and had not any doubt
of being able to meet him in the field the subsequent season without
the least danger.

On the second day of her hunting, as she was returning from the chase,
and was arrived within a little distance from Mr Western's house, her
horse, whose mettlesome spirit required a better rider, fell suddenly
to prancing and capering in such a manner that she was in the most
imminent peril of falling. Tom Jones, who was at a little distance
behind, saw this, and immediately galloped up to her assistance. As
soon as he came up, he leapt from his own horse, and caught hold of
hers by the bridle. The unruly beast presently reared himself an end
on his hind legs, and threw his lovely burthen from his back, and
Jones caught her in his arms.

She was so affected with the fright, that she was not immediately able
to satisfy Jones, who was very sollicitous to know whether she had
received any hurt. She soon after, however, recovered her spirits,
assured him she was safe, and thanked him for the care he had taken of
her. Jones answered, "If I have preserved you, madam, I am
sufficiently repaid; for I promise you, I would have secured you from
the least harm at the expense of a much greater misfortune to myself
than I have suffered on this occasion."

"What misfortune?" replied Sophia eagerly; "I hope you have come to no

"Be not concerned, madam," answered Jones. "Heaven be praised you have
escaped so well, considering the danger you was in. If I have broke my
arm, I consider it as a trifle, in comparison of what I feared upon
your account."

Sophia then screamed out, "Broke your arm! Heaven forbid."

"I am afraid I have, madam," says Jones: "but I beg you will suffer me
first to take care of you. I have a right hand yet at your service, to
help you into the next field, whence we have but a very little walk to
your father's house."

Sophia seeing his left arm dangling by his side, while he was using
the other to lead her, no longer doubted of the truth. She now grew
much paler than her fears for herself had made her before. All her
limbs were seized with a trembling, insomuch that Jones could scarce
support her; and as her thoughts were in no less agitation, she could
not refrain from giving Jones a look so full of tenderness, that it
almost argued a stronger sensation in her mind, than even gratitude
and pity united can raise in the gentlest female bosom, without the
assistance of a third more powerful passion.

Mr Western, who was advanced at some distance when this accident
happened, was now returned, as were the rest of the horsemen. Sophia
immediately acquainted them with what had befallen Jones, and begged
them to take care of him. Upon which Western, who had been much
alarmed by meeting his daughter's horse without its rider, and was now
overjoyed to find her unhurt, cried out, "I am glad it is no worse. If
Tom hath broken his arm, we will get a joiner to mend un again."

The squire alighted from his horse, and proceeded to his house on
foot, with his daughter and Jones. An impartial spectator, who had met
them on the way, would, on viewing their several countenances, have
concluded Sophia alone to have been the object of compassion: for as
to Jones, he exulted in having probably saved the life of the young
lady, at the price only of a broken bone; and Mr Western, though he
was not unconcerned at the accident which had befallen Jones, was,
however, delighted in a much higher degree with the fortunate escape
of his daughter.

The generosity of Sophia's temper construed this behaviour of Jones
into great bravery; and it made a deep impression on her heart: for
certain it is, that there is no one quality which so generally
recommends men to women as this; proceeding, if we believe the common
opinion, from that natural timidity of the sex, which is, says Mr
Osborne, "so great, that a woman is the most cowardly of all the
creatures God ever made;"--a sentiment more remarkable for its
bluntness than for its truth. Aristotle, in his Politics, doth them, I
believe, more justice, when he says, "The modesty and fortitude of men
differ from those virtues in women; for the fortitude which becomes a
woman, would be cowardice in a man; and the modesty which becomes a
man, would be pertness in a woman." Nor is there, perhaps, more of
truth in the opinion of those who derive the partiality which women
are inclined to show to the brave, from this excess of their fear. Mr
Bayle (I think, in his article of Helen) imputes this, and with
greater probability, to their violent love of glory; for the truth of
which, we have the authority of him who of all others saw farthest
into human nature, and who introduces the heroine of his Odyssey, the
great pattern of matrimonial love and constancy, assigning the glory
of her husband as the only source of her affection towards him.[*]

  [*] The English reader will not find this in the poem; for the
  sentiment is entirely left out in the translation.

However this be, certain it is that the accident operated very
strongly on Sophia; and, indeed, after much enquiry into the matter, I
am inclined to believe, that, at this very time, the charming Sophia
made no less impression on the heart of Jones; to say truth, he had
for some time become sensible of the irresistible power of her charms.

Chapter xiv.

The arrival of a surgeon.--His operations, and a long dialogue between
Sophia and her maid.

When they arrived at Mr Western's hall, Sophia, who had tottered along
with much difficulty, sunk down in her chair; but by the assistance of
hartshorn and water, she was prevented from fainting away, and had
pretty well recovered her spirits, when the surgeon who was sent for
to Jones appeared. Mr Western, who imputed these symptoms in his
daughter to her fall, advised her to be presently blooded by way of
prevention. In this opinion he was seconded by the surgeon, who gave
so many reasons for bleeding, and quoted so many cases where persons
had miscarried for want of it, that the squire became very
importunate, and indeed insisted peremptorily that his daughter should
be blooded.

Sophia soon yielded to the commands of her father, though entirely
contrary to her own inclinations, for she suspected, I believe, less
danger from the fright, than either the squire or the surgeon. She
then stretched out her beautiful arm, and the operator began to
prepare for his work.

While the servants were busied in providing materials, the surgeon,
who imputed the backwardness which had appeared in Sophia to her
fears, began to comfort her with assurances that there was not the
least danger; for no accident, he said, could ever happen in bleeding,
but from the monstrous ignorance of pretenders to surgery, which he
pretty plainly insinuated was not at present to be apprehended. Sophia
declared she was not under the least apprehension; adding, "If you
open an artery, I promise you I'll forgive you." "Will you?" cries
Western: "D--n me, if I will. If he does thee the least mischief, d--n
me if I don't ha' the heart's blood o'un out." The surgeon assented to
bleed her upon these conditions, and then proceeded to his operation,
which he performed with as much dexterity as he had promised; and with
as much quickness: for he took but little blood from her, saying, it
was much safer to bleed again and again, than to take away too much at

Sophia, when her arm was bound up, retired: for she was not willing
(nor was it, perhaps, strictly decent) to be present at the operation
on Jones. Indeed, one objection which she had to bleeding (though she
did not make it) was the delay which it would occasion to setting the
broken bone. For Western, when Sophia was concerned, had no
consideration but for her; and as for Jones himself, he "sat like
patience on a monument smiling at grief." To say the truth, when he
saw the blood springing from the lovely arm of Sophia, he scarce
thought of what had happened to himself.

The surgeon now ordered his patient to be stript to his shirt, and
then entirely baring the arm, he began to stretch and examine it, in
such a manner that the tortures he put him to caused Jones to make
several wry faces; which the surgeon observing, greatly wondered at,
crying, "What is the matter, sir? I am sure it is impossible I should
hurt you." And then holding forth the broken arm, he began a long and
very learned lecture of anatomy, in which simple and double fractures
were most accurately considered; and the several ways in which Jones
might have broken his arm were discussed, with proper annotations
showing how many of these would have been better, and how many worse
than the present case.

Having at length finished his laboured harangue, with which the
audience, though it had greatly raised their attention and admiration,
were not much edified, as they really understood not a single syllable
of all he had said, he proceeded to business, which he was more
expeditious in finishing, than he had been in beginning.

Jones was then ordered into a bed, which Mr Western compelled him to
accept at his own house, and sentence of water-gruel was passed upon

Among the good company which had attended in the hall during the
bone-setting, Mrs Honour was one; who being summoned to her mistress
as soon as it was over, and asked by her how the young gentleman did,
presently launched into extravagant praises on the magnanimity, as she
called it, of his behaviour, which, she said, "was so charming in so
pretty a creature." She then burst forth into much warmer encomiums on
the beauty of his person; enumerating many particulars, and ending
with the whiteness of his skin.

This discourse had an effect on Sophia's countenance, which would not
perhaps have escaped the observance of the sagacious waiting-woman,
had she once looked her mistress in the face, all the time she was
speaking: but as a looking-glass, which was most commodiously placed
opposite to her, gave her an opportunity of surveying those features,
in which, of all others, she took most delight; so she had not once
removed her eyes from that amiable object during her whole speech.

Mrs Honour was so intirely wrapped up in the subject on which she
exercised her tongue, and the object before her eyes, that she gave
her mistress time to conquer her confusion; which having done, she
smiled on her maid, and told her, "she was certainly in love with this
young fellow."--"I in love, madam!" answers she: "upon my word, ma'am,
I assure you, ma'am, upon my soul, ma'am, I am not."--"Why, if you
was," cries her mistress, "I see no reason that you should be ashamed
of it; for he is certainly a pretty fellow."--"Yes, ma'am," answered
the other, "that he is, the most handsomest man I ever saw in my life.
Yes, to be sure, that he is, and, as your ladyship says, I don't know
why I should be ashamed of loving him, though he is my betters. To be
sure, gentlefolks are but flesh and blood no more than us servants.
Besides, as for Mr Jones, thof Squire Allworthy hath made a gentleman
of him, he was not so good as myself by birth: for thof I am a poor
body, I am an honest person's child, and my father and mother were
married, which is more than some people can say, as high as they hold
their heads. Marry, come up! I assure you, my dirty cousin! thof his
skin be so white, and to be sure it is the most whitest that ever was
seen, I am a Christian as well as he, and nobody can say that I am
base born: my grandfather was a clergyman,[*] and would have been very
angry, I believe, to have thought any of his family should have taken
up with Molly Seagrim's dirty leavings."

  [*] This is the second person of low condition whom we have recorded
  in this history to have sprung from the clergy. It is to be hoped
  such instances will, in future ages, when some provision is made for
  the families of the inferior clergy, appear stranger than they can
  be thought at present.

Perhaps Sophia might have suffered her maid to run on in this manner,
from wanting sufficient spirits to stop her tongue, which the reader
may probably conjecture was no very easy task; for certainly there
were some passages in her speech which were far from being agreeable
to the lady. However, she now checked the torrent, as there seemed no
end of its flowing. "I wonder," says she, "at your assurance in daring
to talk thus of one of my father's friends. As to the wench, I order
you never to mention her name to me. And with regard to the young
gentleman's birth, those who can say nothing more to his disadvantage,
may as well be silent on that head, as I desire you will be for the

"I am sorry I have offended your ladyship," answered Mrs Honour. "I am
sure I hate Molly Seagrim as much as your ladyship can; and as for
abusing Squire Jones, I can call all the servants in the house to
witness, that whenever any talk hath been about bastards, I have
always taken his part; for which of you, says I to the footmen, would
not be a bastard, if he could, to be made a gentleman of? And, says I,
I am sure he is a very fine gentleman; and he hath one of the whitest
hands in the world; for to be sure so he hath: and, says I, one of the
sweetest temperedest, best naturedest men in the world he is; and,
says I, all the servants and neighbours all round the country loves
him. And, to be sure, I could tell your ladyship something, but that I
am afraid it would offend you."--"What could you tell me, Honour?"
says Sophia. "Nay, ma'am, to be sure he meant nothing by it, therefore
I would not have your ladyship be offended."--"Prithee tell me," says
Sophia; "I will know it this instant."--"Why, ma'am," answered Mrs
Honour, "he came into the room one day last week when I was at work,
and there lay your ladyship's muff on a chair, and to be sure he put
his hands into it; that very muff your ladyship gave me but yesterday.
La! says I, Mr Jones, you will stretch my lady's muff, and spoil it:
but he still kept his hands in it: and then he kissed it--to be sure I
hardly ever saw such a kiss in my life as he gave it."--"I suppose he
did not know it was mine," replied Sophia. "Your ladyship shall hear,
ma'am. He kissed it again and again, and said it was the prettiest
muff in the world. La! sir, says I, you have seen it a hundred times.
Yes, Mrs Honour, cried he; but who can see anything beautiful in the
presence of your lady but herself?--Nay, that's not all neither; but I
hope your ladyship won't be offended, for to be sure he meant nothing.
One day, as your ladyship was playing on the harpsichord to my master,
Mr Jones was sitting in the next room, and methought he looked
melancholy. La! says I, Mr Jones, what's the matter? a penny for your
thoughts, says I. Why, hussy, says he, starting up from a dream, what
can I be thinking of, when that angel your mistress is playing? And
then squeezing me by the hand, Oh! Mrs Honour, says he, how happy will
that man be!--and then he sighed. Upon my troth, his breath is as
sweet as a nosegay.--But to be sure he meant no harm by it. So I hope
your ladyship will not mention a word; for he gave me a crown never to
mention it, and made me swear upon a book, but I believe, indeed, it
was not the Bible."

Till something of a more beautiful red than vermilion be found out, I
shall say nothing of Sophia's colour on this occasion. "Ho--nour,"
says she, "I--if you will not mention this any more to me--nor to
anybody else, I will not betray you--I mean, I will not be angry; but
I am afraid of your tongue. Why, my girl, will you give it such
liberties?"--"Nay, ma'am," answered she, "to be sure, I would sooner
cut out my tongue than offend your ladyship. To be sure I shall never
mention a word that your ladyship would not have me."--"Why, I would
not have you mention this any more," said Sophia, "for it may come to
my father's ears, and he would be angry with Mr Jones; though I really
believe, as you say, he meant nothing. I should be very angry myself,
if I imagined--"--"Nay, ma'am," says Honour, "I protest I believe he
meant nothing. I thought he talked as if he was out of his senses;
nay, he said he believed he was beside himself when he had spoken the
words. Ay, sir, says I, I believe so too. Yes, says he, Honour.--But I
ask your ladyship's pardon; I could tear my tongue out for offending
you." "Go on," says Sophia; "you may mention anything you have not
told me before."--"Yes, Honour, says he (this was some time
afterwards, when he gave me the crown), I am neither such a coxcomb,
or such a villain, as to think of her in any other delight but as my
goddess; as such I will always worship and adore her while I have
breath.--This was all, ma'am, I will be sworn, to the best of my
remembrance. I was in a passion with him myself, till I found he meant
no harm."--"Indeed, Honour," says Sophia, "I believe you have a real
affection for me. I was provoked the other day when I gave you
warning; but if you have a desire to stay with me, you shall."--"To be
sure, ma'am," answered Mrs Honour, "I shall never desire to part with
your ladyship. To be sure, I almost cried my eyes out when you gave me
warning. It would be very ungrateful in me to desire to leave your
ladyship; because as why, I should never get so good a place again. I
am sure I would live and die with your ladyship; for, as poor Mr Jones
said, happy is the man----"

Here the dinner bell interrupted a conversation which had wrought such
an effect on Sophia, that she was, perhaps, more obliged to her
bleeding in the morning, than she, at the time, had apprehended she
should be. As to the present situation of her mind, I shall adhere to
a rule of Horace, by not attempting to describe it, from despair of
success. Most of my readers will suggest it easily to themselves; and
the few who cannot, would not understand the picture, or at least
would deny it to be natural, if ever so well drawn.



Chapter i.

Of the SERIOUS in writing, and for what purpose it is introduced.

Peradventure there may be no parts in this prodigious work which will
give the reader less pleasure in the perusing, than those which have
given the author the greatest pains in composing. Among these probably
may be reckoned those initial essays which we have prefixed to the
historical matter contained in every book; and which we have
determined to be essentially necessary to this kind of writing, of
which we have set ourselves at the head.

For this our determination we do not hold ourselves strictly bound to
assign any reason; it being abundantly sufficient that we have laid it
down as a rule necessary to be observed in all prosai-comi-epic
writing. Who ever demanded the reasons of that nice unity of time or
place which is now established to be so essential to dramatic poetry?
What critic hath been ever asked, why a play may not contain two days
as well as one? Or why the audience (provided they travel, like
electors, without any expense) may not be wafted fifty miles as well
as five? Hath any commentator well accounted for the limitation which
an antient critic hath set to the drama, which he will have contain
neither more nor less than five acts? Or hath any one living attempted
to explain what the modern judges of our theatres mean by that word
_low_; by which they have happily succeeded in banishing all humour
from the stage, and have made the theatre as dull as a drawing-room!
Upon all these occasions the world seems to have embraced a maxim of
our law, viz., _cuicunque in arte sua perito credendum est:_ for it
seems perhaps difficult to conceive that any one should have had
enough of impudence to lay down dogmatical rules in any art or science
without the least foundation. In such cases, therefore, we are apt to
conclude there are sound and good reasons at the bottom, though we are
unfortunately not able to see so far.

Now, in reality, the world have paid too great a compliment to
critics, and have imagined them men of much greater profundity than
they really are. From this complacence, the critics have been
emboldened to assume a dictatorial power, and have so far succeeded,
that they are now become the masters, and have the assurance to give
laws to those authors from whose predecessors they originally received

The critic, rightly considered, is no more than the clerk, whose
office it is to transcribe the rules and laws laid down by those great
judges whose vast strength of genius hath placed them in the light of
legislators, in the several sciences over which they presided. This
office was all which the critics of old aspired to; nor did they ever
dare to advance a sentence, without supporting it by the authority of
the judge from whence it was borrowed.

But in process of time, and in ages of ignorance, the clerk began to
invade the power and assume the dignity of his master. The laws of
writing were no longer founded on the practice of the author, but on
the dictates of the critic. The clerk became the legislator, and those
very peremptorily gave laws whose business it was, at first, only to
transcribe them.

Hence arose an obvious, and perhaps an unavoidable error; for these
critics being men of shallow capacities, very easily mistook mere form
for substance. They acted as a judge would, who should adhere to the
lifeless letter of law, and reject the spirit. Little circumstances,
which were perhaps accidental in a great author, were by these critics
considered to constitute his chief merit, and transmitted as
essentials to be observed by all his successors. To these
encroachments, time and ignorance, the two great supporters of
imposture, gave authority; and thus many rules for good writing have
been established, which have not the least foundation in truth or
nature; and which commonly serve for no other purpose than to curb and
restrain genius, in the same manner as it would have restrained the
dancing-master, had the many excellent treatises on that art laid it
down as an essential rule that every man must dance in chains.

To avoid, therefore, all imputation of laying down a rule for
posterity, founded only on the authority of _ipse dixit_--for which,
to say the truth, we have not the profoundest veneration--we shall
here waive the privilege above contended for, and proceed to lay
before the reader the reasons which have induced us to intersperse
these several digressive essays in the course of this work.

And here we shall of necessity be led to open a new vein of knowledge,
which if it hath been discovered, hath not, to our remembrance, been
wrought on by any antient or modern writer. This vein is no other than
that of contrast, which runs through all the works of the creation,
and may probably have a large share in constituting in us the idea of
all beauty, as well natural as artificial: for what demonstrates the
beauty and excellence of anything but its reverse? Thus the beauty of
day, and that of summer, is set off by the horrors of night and
winter. And, I believe, if it was possible for a man to have seen only
the two former, he would have a very imperfect idea of their beauty.

But to avoid too serious an air; can it be doubted, but that the
finest woman in the world would lose all benefit of her charms in the
eye of a man who had never seen one of another cast? The ladies
themselves seem so sensible of this, that they are all industrious to
procure foils: nay, they will become foils to themselves; for I have
observed (at Bath particularly) that they endeavour to appear as ugly
as possible in the morning, in order to set off that beauty which they
intend to show you in the evening.

Most artists have this secret in practice, though some, perhaps, have
not much studied the theory. The jeweller knows that the finest
brilliant requires a foil; and the painter, by the contrast of his
figures, often acquires great applause.

A great genius among us will illustrate this matter fully. I cannot,
indeed, range him under any general head of common artists, as he hath
a title to be placed among those

       _Inventas qui vitam excoluere per artes._
        Who by invented arts have life improved.

I mean here the inventor of that most exquisite entertainment, called
the English Pantomime.

This entertainment consisted of two parts, which the inventor
distinguished by the names of the serious and the comic. The serious
exhibited a certain number of heathen gods and heroes, who were
certainly the worst and dullest company into which an audience was
ever introduced; and (which was a secret known to few) were actually
intended so to be, in order to contrast the comic part of the
entertainment, and to display the tricks of harlequin to the better

This was, perhaps, no very civil use of such personages: but the
contrivance was, nevertheless, ingenious enough, and had its effect.
And this will now plainly appear, if, instead of serious and comic, we
supply the words duller and dullest; for the comic was certainly
duller than anything before shown on the stage, and could be set off
only by that superlative degree of dulness which composed the serious.
So intolerably serious, indeed, were these gods and heroes, that
harlequin (though the English gentleman of that name is not at all
related to the French family, for he is of a much more serious
disposition) was always welcome on the stage, as he relieved the
audience from worse company.

Judicious writers have always practised this art of contrast with
great success. I have been surprized that Horace should cavil at this
art in Homer; but indeed he contradicts himself in the very next line:

     _Indignor quandoque bonus dormitat Homerus;
     Verum opere in longo fas est obrepere somnum._

     I grieve if e'er great Homer chance to sleep,
     Yet slumbers on long works have right to creep.

For we are not here to understand, as perhaps some have, that an
author actually falls asleep while he is writing. It is true, that
readers are too apt to be so overtaken; but if the work was as long as
any of Oldmixon, the author himself is too well entertained to be
subject to the least drowsiness. He is, as Mr Pope observes,

     Sleepless himself to give his readers sleep.

To say the truth, these soporific parts are so many scenes of serious
artfully interwoven, in order to contrast and set off the rest; and
this is the true meaning of a late facetious writer, who told the
public that whenever he was dull they might be assured there was a
design in it.

In this light, then, or rather in this darkness, I would have the
reader to consider these initial essays. And after this warning, if he
shall be of opinion that he can find enough of serious in other parts
of this history, he may pass over these, in which we profess to be
laboriously dull, and begin the following books at the second chapter.

Chapter ii.

In which Mr Jones receives many friendly visits during his
confinement; with some fine touches of the passion of love, scarce
visible to the naked eye.

Tom Jones had many visitors during his confinement, though some,
perhaps, were not very agreeable to him. Mr Allworthy saw him almost
every day; but though he pitied Tom's sufferings, and greatly approved
the gallant behaviour which had occasioned them; yet he thought this
was a favourable opportunity to bring him to a sober sense of his
indiscreet conduct; and that wholesome advice for that purpose could
never be applied at a more proper season than at the present, when the
mind was softened by pain and sickness, and alarmed by danger; and
when its attention was unembarrassed with those turbulent passions
which engage us in the pursuit of pleasure.

At all seasons, therefore, when the good man was alone with the youth,
especially when the latter was totally at ease, he took occasion to
remind him of his former miscarriages, but in the mildest and
tenderest manner, and only in order to introduce the caution which he
prescribed for his future behaviour; "on which alone," he assured him,
"would depend his own felicity, and the kindness which he might yet
promise himself to receive at the hands of his father by adoption,
unless he should hereafter forfeit his good opinion: for as to what
had past," he said, "it should be all forgiven and forgotten. He
therefore advised him to make a good use of this accident, that so in
the end it might prove a visitation for his own good."

Thwackum was likewise pretty assiduous in his visits; and he too
considered a sick-bed to be a convenient scene for lectures. His
stile, however, was more severe than Mr Allworthy's: he told his
pupil, "That he ought to look on his broken limb as a judgment from
heaven on his sins. That it would become him to be daily on his knees,
pouring forth thanksgivings that he had broken his arm only, and not
his neck; which latter," he said, "was very probably reserved for some
future occasion, and that, perhaps, not very remote. For his part," he
said, "he had often wondered some judgment had not overtaken him
before; but it might be perceived by this, that Divine punishments,
though slow, are always sure." Hence likewise he advised him, "to
foresee, with equal certainty, the greater evils which were yet
behind, and which were as sure as this of overtaking him in his state
of reprobacy. These are," said he, "to be averted only by such a
thorough and sincere repentance as is not to be expected or hoped for
from one so abandoned in his youth, and whose mind, I am afraid, is
totally corrupted. It is my duty, however, to exhort you to this
repentance, though I too well know all exhortations will be vain and
fruitless. But _liberavi animam meam._ I can accuse my own conscience
of no neglect; though it is at the same time with the utmost concern I
see you travelling on to certain misery in this world, and to as
certain damnation in the next."

Square talked in a very different strain; he said, "Such accidents as
a broken bone were below the consideration of a wise man. That it was
abundantly sufficient to reconcile the mind to any of these
mischances, to reflect that they are liable to befal the wisest of
mankind, and are undoubtedly for the good of the whole." He said, "It
was a mere abuse of words to call those things evils, in which there
was no moral unfitness: that pain, which was the worst consequence of
such accidents, was the most contemptible thing in the world;" with
more of the like sentences, extracted out of the second book of
Tully's Tusculan questions, and from the great Lord Shaftesbury. In
pronouncing these he was one day so eager, that he unfortunately bit
his tongue; and in such a manner, that it not only put an end to his
discourse, but created much emotion in him, and caused him to mutter
an oath or two: but what was worst of all, this accident gave
Thwackum, who was present, and who held all such doctrine to be
heathenish and atheistical, an opportunity to clap a judgment on his
back. Now this was done with so malicious a sneer, that it totally
unhinged (if I may so say) the temper of the philosopher, which the
bite of his tongue had somewhat ruffled; and as he was disabled from
venting his wrath at his lips, he had possibly found a more violent
method of revenging himself, had not the surgeon, who was then luckily
in the room, contrary to his own interest, interposed and preserved
the peace.

Mr Blifil visited his friend Jones but seldom, and never alone. This
worthy young man, however, professed much regard for him, and as great
concern at his misfortune; but cautiously avoided any intimacy, lest,
as he frequently hinted, it might contaminate the sobriety of his own
character: for which purpose he had constantly in his mouth that
proverb in which Solomon speaks against evil communication. Not that
he was so bitter as Thwackum; for he always expressed some hopes of
Tom's reformation; "which," he said, "the unparalleled goodness shown
by his uncle on this occasion, must certainly effect in one not
absolutely abandoned:" but concluded, "if Mr Jones ever offends
hereafter, I shall not be able to say a syllable in his favour."

As to Squire Western, he was seldom out of the sick-room, unless when
he was engaged either in the field or over his bottle. Nay, he would
sometimes retire hither to take his beer, and it was not without
difficulty that he was prevented from forcing Jones to take his beer
too: for no quack ever held his nostrum to be a more general panacea
than he did this; which, he said, had more virtue in it than was in
all the physic in an apothecary's shop. He was, however, by much
entreaty, prevailed on to forbear the application of this medicine;
but from serenading his patient every hunting morning with the horn
under his window, it was impossible to withhold him; nor did he ever
lay aside that hallow, with which he entered into all companies, when
he visited Jones, without any regard to the sick person's being at
that time either awake or asleep.

This boisterous behaviour, as it meant no harm, so happily it effected
none, and was abundantly compensated to Jones, as soon as he was able
to sit up, by the company of Sophia, whom the squire then brought to
visit him; nor was it, indeed, long before Jones was able to attend
her to the harpsichord, where she would kindly condescend, for hours
together, to charm him with the most delicious music, unless when the
squire thought proper to interrupt her, by insisting on Old Sir Simon,
or some other of his favourite pieces.

Notwithstanding the nicest guard which Sophia endeavoured to set on
her behaviour, she could not avoid letting some appearances now and
then slip forth: for love may again be likened to a disease in this,
that when it is denied a vent in one part, it will certainly break out
in another. What her lips, therefore, concealed, her eyes, her
blushes, and many little involuntary actions, betrayed.

One day, when Sophia was playing on the harpsichord, and Jones was
attending, the squire came into the room, crying, "There, Tom, I have
had a battle for thee below-stairs with thick parson Thwackum. He hath
been a telling Allworthy, before my face, that the broken bone was a
judgment upon thee. D--n it, says I, how can that be? Did he not come
by it in defence of a young woman? A judgment indeed! Pox, if he never
doth anything worse, he will go to heaven sooner than all the parsons
in the country. He hath more reason to glory in it than to be ashamed
of it."--"Indeed, sir," says Jones, "I have no reason for either; but
if it preserved Miss Western, I shall always think it the happiest
accident of my life."--"And to gu," said the squire, "to zet Allworthy
against thee vor it! D--n un, if the parson had unt his petticuoats
on, I should have lent un o flick; for I love thee dearly, my boy, and
d--n me if there is anything in my power which I won't do for thee.
Sha't take thy choice of all the horses in my stable to-morrow
morning, except only the Chevalier and Miss Slouch." Jones thanked
him, but declined accepting the offer. "Nay," added the squire, "sha't
ha the sorrel mare that Sophy rode. She cost me fifty guineas, and
comes six years old this grass." "If she had cost me a thousand,"
cries Jones passionately, "I would have given her to the dogs." "Pooh!
pooh!" answered Western; "what! because she broke thy arm? Shouldst
forget and forgive. I thought hadst been more a man than to bear
malice against a dumb creature."--Here Sophia interposed, and put an
end to the conversation, by desiring her father's leave to play to
him; a request which he never refused.

The countenance of Sophia had undergone more than one change during
the foregoing speeches; and probably she imputed the passionate
resentment which Jones had expressed against the mare, to a different
motive from that from which her father had derived it. Her spirits
were at this time in a visible flutter; and she played so intolerably
ill, that had not Western soon fallen asleep, he must have remarked
it. Jones, however, who was sufficiently awake, and was not without an
ear any more than without eyes, made some observations; which being
joined to all which the reader may remember to have passed formerly,
gave him pretty strong assurances, when he came to reflect on the
whole, that all was not well in the tender bosom of Sophia; an opinion
which many young gentlemen will, I doubt not, extremely wonder at his
not having been well confirmed in long ago. To confess the truth, he
had rather too much diffidence in himself, and was not forward enough
in seeing the advances of a young lady; a misfortune which can be
cured only by that early town education, which is at present so
generally in fashion.

When these thoughts had fully taken possession of Jones, they
occasioned a perturbation in his mind, which, in a constitution less
pure and firm than his, might have been, at such a season, attended
with very dangerous consequences. He was truly sensible of the great
worth of Sophia. He extremely liked her person, no less admired her
accomplishments, and tenderly loved her goodness. In reality, as he
had never once entertained any thought of possessing her, nor had ever
given the least voluntary indulgence to his inclinations, he had a
much stronger passion for her than he himself was acquainted with. His
heart now brought forth the full secret, at the same time that it
assured him the adorable object returned his affection.

Chapter iii.

Which all who have no heart will think to contain much ado about

The reader will perhaps imagine the sensations which now arose in
Jones to have been so sweet and delicious, that they would rather tend
to produce a chearful serenity in the mind, than any of those
dangerous effects which we have mentioned; but in fact, sensations of
this kind, however delicious, are, at their first recognition, of a
very tumultuous nature, and have very little of the opiate in them.
They were, moreover, in the present case, embittered with certain
circumstances, which being mixed with sweeter ingredients, tended
altogether to compose a draught that might be termed bitter-sweet;
than which, as nothing can be more disagreeable to the palate, so
nothing, in the metaphorical sense, can be so injurious to the mind.

For first, though he had sufficient foundation to flatter himself in
what he had observed in Sophia, he was not yet free from doubt of
misconstruing compassion, or at best, esteem, into a warmer regard. He
was far from a sanguine assurance that Sophia had any such affection
towards him, as might promise his inclinations that harvest, which, if
they were encouraged and nursed, they would finally grow up to
require. Besides, if he could hope to find no bar to his happiness
from the daughter, he thought himself certain of meeting an effectual
bar in the father; who, though he was a country squire in his
diversions, was perfectly a man of the world in whatever regarded his
fortune; had the most violent affection for his only daughter, and had
often signified, in his cups, the pleasure he proposed in seeing her
married to one of the richest men in the county. Jones was not so vain
and senseless a coxcomb as to expect, from any regard which Western
had professed for him, that he would ever be induced to lay aside
these views of advancing his daughter. He well knew that fortune is
generally the principal, if not the sole, consideration, which
operates on the best of parents in these matters: for friendship makes
us warmly espouse the interest of others; but it is very cold to the
gratification of their passions. Indeed, to feel the happiness which
may result from this, it is necessary we should possess the passion
ourselves. As he had therefore no hopes of obtaining her father's
consent; so he thought to endeavour to succeed without it, and by such
means to frustrate the great point of Mr Western's life, was to make a
very ill use of his hospitality, and a very ungrateful return to the
many little favours received (however roughly) at his hands. If he saw
such a consequence with horror and disdain, how much more was he
shocked with what regarded Mr Allworthy; to whom, as he had more than
filial obligations, so had he for him more than filial piety! He knew
the nature of that good man to be so averse to any baseness or
treachery, that the least attempt of such a kind would make the sight
of the guilty person for ever odious to his eyes, and his name a
detestable sound in his ears. The appearance of such unsurmountable
difficulties was sufficient to have inspired him with despair, however
ardent his wishes had been; but even these were contruoled by
compassion for another woman. The idea of lovely Molly now intruded
itself before him. He had sworn eternal constancy in her arms, and she
had as often vowed never to out-live his deserting her. He now saw her
in all the most shocking postures of death; nay, he considered all the
miseries of prostitution to which she would be liable, and of which he
would be doubly the occasion; first by seducing, and then by deserting
her; for he well knew the hatred which all her neighbours, and even
her own sisters, bore her, and how ready they would all be to tear her
to pieces. Indeed, he had exposed her to more envy than shame, or
rather to the latter by means of the former: for many women abused her
for being a whore, while they envied her her lover, and her finery,
and would have been themselves glad to have purchased these at the
same rate. The ruin, therefore, of the poor girl must, he foresaw,
unavoidably attend his deserting her; and this thought stung him to
the soul. Poverty and distress seemed to him to give none a right of
aggravating those misfortunes. The meanness of her condition did not
represent her misery as of little consequence in his eyes, nor did it
appear to justify, or even to palliate, his guilt, in bringing that
misery upon her. But why do I mention justification? His own heart
would not suffer him to destroy a human creature who, he thought,
loved him, and had to that love sacrificed her innocence. His own good
heart pleaded her cause; not as a cold venal advocate, but as one
interested in the event, and which must itself deeply share in all the
agonies its owner brought on another.

When this powerful advocate had sufficiently raised the pity of Jones,
by painting poor Molly in all the circumstances of wretchedness; it
artfully called in the assistance of another passion, and represented
the girl in all the amiable colours of youth, health, and beauty; as
one greatly the object of desire, and much more so, at least to a good
mind, from being, at the same time, the object of compassion.

Amidst these thoughts, poor Jones passed a long sleepless night, and
in the morning the result of the whole was to abide by Molly, and to
think no more of Sophia.

In this virtuous resolution he continued all the next day till the
evening, cherishing the idea of Molly, and driving Sophia from his
thoughts; but in the fatal evening, a very trifling accident set all
his passions again on float, and worked so total a change in his mind,
that we think it decent to communicate it in a fresh chapter.

Chapter iv.

A little chapter, in which is contained a little incident.

Among other visitants, who paid their compliments to the young
gentleman in his confinement, Mrs Honour was one. The reader, perhaps,
when he reflects on some expressions which have formerly dropt from
her, may conceive that she herself had a very particular affection for
Mr Jones; but, in reality, it was no such thing. Tom was a handsome
young fellow; and for that species of men Mrs Honour had some regard;
but this was perfectly indiscriminate; for having being crossed in the
love which she bore a certain nobleman's footman, who had basely
deserted her after a promise of marriage, she had so securely kept
together the broken remains of her heart, that no man had ever since
been able to possess himself of any single fragment. She viewed all
handsome men with that equal regard and benevolence which a sober and
virtuous mind bears to all the good. She might indeed be called a
lover of men, as Socrates was a lover of mankind, preferring one to
another for corporeal, as he for mental qualifications; but never
carrying this preference so far as to cause any perturbation in the
philosophical serenity of her temper.

The day after Mr Jones had that conflict with himself which we have
seen in the preceding chapter, Mrs Honour came into his room, and
finding him alone, began in the following manner:--"La, sir, where do
you think I have been? I warrants you, you would not guess in fifty
years; but if you did guess, to be sure I must not tell you
neither."--"Nay, if it be something which you must not tell me," said
Jones, "I shall have the curiosity to enquire, and I know you will not
be so barbarous to refuse me."--"I don't know," cries she, "why I
should refuse you neither, for that matter; for to be sure you won't
mention it any more. And for that matter, if you knew where I have
been, unless you knew what I have been about, it would not signify
much. Nay, I don't see why it should be kept a secret for my part; for
to be sure she is the best lady in the world." Upon this, Jones began
to beg earnestly to be let into this secret, and faithfully promised
not to divulge it. She then proceeded thus:--"Why, you must know, sir,
my young lady sent me to enquire after Molly Seagrim, and to see
whether the wench wanted anything; to be sure, I did not care to go,
methinks; but servants must do what they are ordered.--How could you
undervalue yourself so, Mr Jones?--So my lady bid me go and carry her
some linen, and other things. She is too good. If such forward sluts
were sent to Bridewell, it would be better for them. I told my lady,
says I, madam, your la'ship is encouraging idleness."--"And was my
Sophia so good?" says Jones. "My Sophia! I assure you, marry come up,"
answered Honour. "And yet if you knew all--indeed, if I was as Mr
Jones, I should look a little higher than such trumpery as Molly
Seagrim." "What do you mean by these words," replied Jones, "if I knew
all?" "I mean what I mean," says Honour. "Don't you remember putting
your hands in my lady's muff once? I vow I could almost find in my
heart to tell, if I was certain my lady would never come to the
hearing on't." Jones then made several solemn protestations. And
Honour proceeded--"Then to be sure, my lady gave me that muff; and
afterwards, upon hearing what you had done"--"Then you told her what I
had done?" interrupted Jones. "If I did, sir," answered she, "you need
not be angry with me. Many's the man would have given his head to have
had my lady told, if they had known,--for, to be sure, the biggest
lord in the land might be proud--but, I protest, I have a great mind
not to tell you." Jones fell to entreaties, and soon prevailed on her
to go on thus. "You must know then, sir, that my lady had given this
muff to me; but about a day or two after I had told her the story, she
quarrels with her new muff, and to be sure it is the prettiest that
ever was seen. Honour, says she, this is an odious muff; it is too big
for me, I can't wear it: till I can get another, you must let me have
my old one again, and you may have this in the room on't--for she's a
good lady, and scorns to give a thing and take a thing, I promise you
that. So to be sure I fetched it her back again, and, I believe, she
hath worn it upon her arm almost ever since, and I warrants hath given
it many a kiss when nobody hath seen her."

Here the conversation was interrupted by Mr Western himself, who came
to summon Jones to the harpsichord; whither the poor young fellow went
all pale and trembling. This Western observed, but, on seeing Mrs
Honour, imputed it to a wrong cause; and having given Jones a hearty
curse between jest and earnest, he bid him beat abroad, and not poach
up the game in his warren.

Sophia looked this evening with more than usual beauty, and we may
believe it was no small addition to her charms, in the eye of Mr
Jones, that she now happened to have on her right arm this very muff.

She was playing one of her father's favourite tunes, and he was
leaning on her chair, when the muff fell over her fingers, and put her
out. This so disconcerted the squire, that he snatched the muff from
her, and with a hearty curse threw it into the fire. Sophia instantly
started up, and with the utmost eagerness recovered it from the

Though this incident will probably appear of little consequence to
many of our readers; yet, trifling as it was, it had so violent an
effect on poor Jones, that we thought it our duty to relate it. In
reality, there are many little circumstances too often omitted by
injudicious historians, from which events of the utmost importance
arise. The world may indeed be considered as a vast machine, in which
the great wheels are originally set in motion by those which are very
minute, and almost imperceptible to any but the strongest eyes.

Thus, not all the charms of the incomparable Sophia; not all the
dazzling brightness, and languishing softness of her eyes; the harmony
of her voice, and of her person; not all her wit, good-humour,
greatness of mind, or sweetness of disposition, had been able so
absolutely to conquer and enslave the heart of poor Jones, as this
little incident of the muff. Thus the poet sweetly sings of Troy--

      _--Captique dolis lachrymisque coacti
      Quos neque Tydides, nec Larissaeus Achilles,
      Non anni domuere decem, non mille Carinae._

      What Diomede or Thetis' greater son,
      A thousand ships, nor ten years' siege had done
      False tears and fawning words the city won.

The citadel of Jones was now taken by surprize. All those
considerations of honour and prudence which our heroe had lately with
so much military wisdom placed as guards over the avenues of his
heart, ran away from their posts, and the god of love marched in, in

Chapter v.

A very long chapter, containing a very great incident.

But though this victorious deity easily expelled his avowed enemies
from the heart of Jones, he found it more difficult to supplant the
garrison which he himself had placed there. To lay aside all allegory,
the concern for what must become of poor Molly greatly disturbed and
perplexed the mind of the worthy youth. The superior merit of Sophia
totally eclipsed, or rather extinguished, all the beauties of the poor
girl; but compassion instead of contempt succeeded to love. He was
convinced the girl had placed all her affections, and all her prospect
of future happiness, in him only. For this he had, he knew, given
sufficient occasion, by the utmost profusion of tenderness towards
her: a tenderness which he had taken every means to persuade her he
would always maintain. She, on her side, had assured him of her firm
belief in his promise, and had with the most solemn vows declared,
that on his fulfilling or breaking these promises, it depended,
whether she should be the happiest or most miserable of womankind. And
to be the author of this highest degree of misery to a human being,
was a thought on which he could not bear to ruminate a single moment.
He considered this poor girl as having sacrificed to him everything in
her little power; as having been at her own expense the object of his
pleasure; as sighing and languishing for him even at that very
instant. Shall then, says he, my recovery, for which she hath so
ardently wished; shall my presence, which she hath so eagerly
expected, instead of giving her that joy with which she hath flattered
herself, cast her at once down into misery and despair? Can I be such
a villain? Here, when the genius of poor Molly seemed triumphant, the
love of Sophia towards him, which now appeared no longer dubious,
rushed upon his mind, and bore away every obstacle before it.

At length it occurred to him, that he might possibly be able to make
Molly amends another way; namely, by giving her a sum of money. This,
nevertheless, he almost despaired of her accepting, when he
recollected the frequent and vehement assurances he had received from
her, that the world put in balance with him would make her no amends
for his loss. However, her extreme poverty, and chiefly her egregious
vanity (somewhat of which hath been already hinted to the reader),
gave him some little hope, that, notwithstanding all her avowed
tenderness, she might in time be brought to content herself with a
fortune superior to her expectation, and which might indulge her
vanity, by setting her above all her equals. He resolved therefore to
take the first opportunity of making a proposal of this kind.

One day, accordingly, when his arm was so well recovered that he could
walk easily with it slung in a sash, he stole forth, at a season when
the squire was engaged in his field exercises, and visited his fair
one. Her mother and sisters, whom he found taking their tea, informed
him first that Molly was not at home; but afterwards the eldest sister
acquainted him, with a malicious smile, that she was above stairs
a-bed. Tom had no objection to this situation of his mistress, and
immediately ascended the ladder which led towards her bed-chamber; but
when he came to the top, he, to his great surprize, found the door
fast; nor could he for some time obtain any answer from within; for
Molly, as she herself afterwards informed him, was fast asleep.

The extremes of grief and joy have been remarked to produce very
similar effects; and when either of these rushes on us by surprize, it
is apt to create such a total perturbation and confusion, that we are
often thereby deprived of the use of all our faculties. It cannot
therefore be wondered at, that the unexpected sight of Mr Jones should
so strongly operate on the mind of Molly, and should overwhelm her
with such confusion, that for some minutes she was unable to express
the great raptures, with which the reader will suppose she was
affected on this occasion. As for Jones, he was so entirely possessed,
and as it were enchanted, by the presence of his beloved object, that
he for a while forgot Sophia, and consequently the principal purpose
of his visit.

This, however, soon recurred to his memory; and after the first
transports of their meeting were over, he found means by degrees to
introduce a discourse on the fatal consequences which must attend
their amour, if Mr Allworthy, who had strictly forbidden him ever
seeing her more, should discover that he still carried on this
commerce. Such a discovery, which his enemies gave him reason to think
would be unavoidable, must, he said, end in his ruin, and consequently
in hers. Since therefore their hard fates had determined that they
must separate, he advised her to bear it with resolution, and swore he
would never omit any opportunity, through the course of his life, of
showing her the sincerity of his affection, by providing for her in a
manner beyond her utmost expectation, or even beyond her wishes, if
ever that should be in his power; concluding at last, that she might
soon find some man who would marry her, and who would make her much
happier than she could be by leading a disreputable life with him.

Molly remained a few moments in silence, and then bursting into a
flood of tears, she began to upbraid him in the following words: "And
this is your love for me, to forsake me in this manner, now you have
ruined me! How often, when I have told you that all men are false and
perjury alike, and grow tired of us as soon as ever they have had
their wicked wills of us, how often have you sworn you would never
forsake me! And can you be such a perjury man after all? What
signifies all the riches in the world to me without you, now you have
gained my heart, so you have--you have--? Why do you mention another
man to me? I can never love any other man as long as I live. All other
men are nothing to me. If the greatest squire in all the country would
come a suiting to me to-morrow, I would not give my company to him.
No, I shall always hate and despise the whole sex for your sake."--

She was proceeding thus, when an accident put a stop to her tongue,
before it had run out half its career. The room, or rather garret, in
which Molly lay, being up one pair of stairs, that is to say, at the
top of the house, was of a sloping figure, resembling the great Delta
of the Greeks. The English reader may perhaps form a better idea of
it, by being told that it was impossible to stand upright anywhere but
in the middle. Now, as this room wanted the conveniency of a closet,
Molly had, to supply that defect, nailed up an old rug against the
rafters of the house, which enclosed a little hole where her best
apparel, such as the remains of that sack which we have formerly
mentioned, some caps, and other things with which she had lately
provided herself, were hung up and secured from the dust.

This enclosed place exactly fronted the foot of the bed, to which,
indeed, the rug hung so near, that it served in a manner to supply the
want of curtains. Now, whether Molly, in the agonies of her rage,
pushed this rug with her feet; or Jones might touch it; or whether the
pin or nail gave way of its own accord, I am not certain; but as Molly
pronounced those last words, which are recorded above, the wicked rug
got loose from its fastening, and discovered everything hid behind it;
where among other female utensils appeared--(with shame I write it,
and with sorrow will it be read)--the philosopher Square, in a posture
(for the place would not near admit his standing upright) as
ridiculous as can possibly be conceived.

The posture, indeed, in which he stood, was not greatly unlike that of
a soldier who is tied neck and heels; or rather resembling the
attitude in which we often see fellows in the public streets of
London, who are not suffering but deserving punishment by so standing.
He had a nightcap belonging to Molly on his head, and his two large
eyes, the moment the rug fell, stared directly at Jones; so that when
the idea of philosophy was added to the figure now discovered, it
would have been very difficult for any spectator to have refrained
from immoderate laughter.

I question not but the surprize of the reader will be here equal to
that of Jones; as the suspicions which must arise from the appearance
of this wise and grave man in such a place, may seem so inconsistent
with that character which he hath, doubtless, maintained hitherto, in
the opinion of every one.

But to confess the truth, this inconsistency is rather imaginary than
real. Philosophers are composed of flesh and blood as well as other
human creatures; and however sublimated and refined the theory of
these may be, a little practical frailty is as incident to them as to
other mortals. It is, indeed, in theory only, and not in practice, as
we have before hinted, that consists the difference: for though such
great beings think much better and more wisely, they always act
exactly like other men. They know very well how to subdue all
appetites and passions, and to despise both pain and pleasure; and
this knowledge affords much delightful contemplation, and is easily
acquired; but the practice would be vexatious and troublesome; and,
therefore, the same wisdom which teaches them to know this, teaches
them to avoid carrying it into execution.

Mr Square happened to be at church on that Sunday, when, as the reader
may be pleased to remember, the appearance of Molly in her sack had
caused all that disturbance. Here he first observed her, and was so
pleased with her beauty, that he prevailed with the young gentlemen to
change their intended ride that evening, that he might pass by the
habitation of Molly, and by that means might obtain a second chance of
seeing her. This reason, however, as he did not at that time mention
to any, so neither did we think proper to communicate it then to the

Among other particulars which constituted the unfitness of things in
Mr Square's opinion, danger and difficulty were two. The difficulty
therefore which he apprehended there might be in corrupting this young
wench, and the danger which would accrue to his character on the
discovery, were such strong dissuasives, that it is probable he at
first intended to have contented himself with the pleasing ideas which
the sight of beauty furnishes us with. These the gravest men, after a
full meal of serious meditation, often allow themselves by way of
dessert: for which purpose, certain books and pictures find their way
into the most private recesses of their study, and a certain liquorish
part of natural philosophy is often the principal subject of their

But when the philosopher heard, a day or two afterwards, that the
fortress of virtue had already been subdued, he began to give a larger
scope to his desires. His appetite was not of that squeamish kind
which cannot feed on a dainty because another hath tasted it. In
short, he liked the girl the better for the want of that chastity,
which, if she had possessed it, must have been a bar to his pleasures;
he pursued and obtained her.

The reader will be mistaken, if he thinks Molly gave Square the
preference to her younger lover: on the contrary, had she been
confined to the choice of one only, Tom Jones would undoubtedly have
been, of the two, the victorious person. Nor was it solely the
consideration that two are better than one (though this had its proper
weight) to which Mr Square owed his success: the absence of Jones
during his confinement was an unlucky circumstance; and in that
interval some well-chosen presents from the philosopher so softened
and unguarded the girl's heart, that a favourable opportunity became
irresistible, and Square triumphed over the poor remains of virtue
which subsisted in the bosom of Molly.

It was now about a fortnight since this conquest, when Jones paid the
above-mentioned visit to his mistress, at a time when she and Square
were in bed together. This was the true reason why the mother denied
her as we have seen; for as the old woman shared in the profits
arising from the iniquity of her daughter, she encouraged and
protected her in it to the utmost of her power; but such was the envy
and hatred which the elder sister bore towards Molly, that,
notwithstanding she had some part of the booty, she would willingly
have parted with this to ruin her sister and spoil her trade. Hence
she had acquainted Jones with her being above-stairs in bed, in hopes
that he might have caught her in Square's arms. This, however, Molly
found means to prevent, as the door was fastened; which gave her an
opportunity of conveying her lover behind that rug or blanket where he
now was unhappily discovered.

Square no sooner made his appearance than Molly flung herself back in
her bed, cried out she was undone, and abandoned herself to despair.
This poor girl, who was yet but a novice in her business, had not
arrived to that perfection of assurance which helps off a town lady in
any extremity; and either prompts her with an excuse, or else inspires
her to brazen out the matter with her husband, who, from love of
quiet, or out of fear of his reputation--and sometimes, perhaps, from
fear of the gallant, who, like Mr Constant in the play, wears a
sword--is glad to shut his eyes, and content to put his horns in his
pocket. Molly, on the contrary, was silenced by this evidence, and
very fairly gave up a cause which she had hitherto maintained with so
many tears, and with such solemn and vehement protestations of the
purest love and constancy.

As to the gentleman behind the arras, he was not in much less
consternation. He stood for a while motionless, and seemed equally at
a loss what to say, or whither to direct his eyes. Jones, though
perhaps the most astonished of the three, first found his tongue; and
being immediately recovered from those uneasy sensations which Molly
by her upbraidings had occasioned, he burst into a loud laughter, and
then saluting Mr Square, advanced to take him by the hand, and to
relieve him from his place of confinement.

Square being now arrived in the middle of the room, in which part only
he could stand upright, looked at Jones with a very grave countenance,
and said to him, "Well, sir, I see you enjoy this mighty discovery,
and, I dare swear, take great delight in the thoughts of exposing me;
but if you will consider the matter fairly, you will find you are
yourself only to blame. I am not guilty of corrupting innocence. I
have done nothing for which that part of the world which judges of
matters by the rule of right, will condemn me. Fitness is governed by
the nature of things, and not by customs, forms, or municipal laws.
Nothing is indeed unfit which is not unnatural."--"Well reasoned, old
boy," answered Jones; "but why dost thou think that I should desire to
expose thee? I promise thee, I was never better pleased with thee in
my life; and unless thou hast a mind to discover it thyself, this
affair may remain a profound secret for me."--"Nay, Mr Jones," replied
Square, "I would not be thought to undervalue reputation. Good fame is
a species of the Kalon, and it is by no means fitting to neglect it.
Besides, to murder one's own reputation is a kind of suicide, a
detestable and odious vice. If you think proper, therefore, to conceal
any infirmity of mine (for such I may have, since no man is perfectly
perfect), I promise you I will not betray myself. Things may be
fitting to be done, which are not fitting to be boasted of; for
by the perverse judgment of the world, that often becomes the
subject of censure, which is, in truth, not only innocent but
laudable."--"Right!" cries Jones: "what can be more innocent than the
indulgence of a natural appetite? or what more laudable than the
propagation of our species?"--"To be serious with you," answered
Square, "I profess they always appeared so to me."--"And yet," said
Jones, "you was of a different opinion when my affair with this girl
was first discovered."--"Why, I must confess," says Square, "as the
matter was misrepresented to me, by that parson Thwackum, I might
condemn the corruption of innocence: it was that, sir, it was
that--and that--: for you must know, Mr Jones, in the consideration of
fitness, very minute circumstances, sir, very minute circumstances
cause great alteration."--"Well," cries Jones, "be that as it will, it
shall be your own fault, as I have promised you, if you ever hear any
more of this adventure. Behave kindly to the girl, and I will never
open my lips concerning the matter to any one. And, Molly, do you be
faithful to your friend, and I will not only forgive your infidelity
to me, but will do you all the service I can." So saying, he took a
hasty leave, and, slipping down the ladder, retired with much

Square was rejoiced to find this adventure was likely to have no worse
conclusion; and as for Molly, being recovered from her confusion, she
began at first to upbraid Square with having been the occasion of her
loss of Jones; but that gentleman soon found the means of mitigating
her anger, partly by caresses, and partly by a small nostrum from his
purse, of wonderful and approved efficacy in purging off the ill
humours of the mind, and in restoring it to a good temper.

She then poured forth a vast profusion of tenderness towards her new
lover; turned all she had said to Jones, and Jones himself, into
ridicule; and vowed, though he once had the possession of her person,
that none but Square had ever been master of her heart.

Chapter vi.

By comparing which with the former, the reader may possibly correct
some abuse which he hath formerly been guilty of in the application of
the word love.

The infidelity of Molly, which Jones had now discovered, would,
perhaps, have vindicated a much greater degree of resentment than he
expressed on the occasion; and if he had abandoned her directly from
that moment, very few, I believe, would have blamed him.

Certain, however, it is, that he saw her in the light of compassion;
and though his love to her was not of that kind which could give him
any great uneasiness at her inconstancy, yet was he not a little
shocked on reflecting that he had himself originally corrupted her
innocence; for to this corruption he imputed all the vice into which
she appeared now so likely to plunge herself.

This consideration gave him no little uneasiness, till Betty, the
elder sister, was so kind, some time afterwards, entirely to cure him
by a hint, that one Will Barnes, and not himself, had been the first
seducer of Molly; and that the little child, which he had hitherto so
certainly concluded to be his own, might very probably have an equal
title, at least, to claim Barnes for its father.

Jones eagerly pursued this scent when he had first received it; and in
a very short time was sufficiently assured that the girl had told him
truth, not only by the confession of the fellow, but at last by that
of Molly herself.

This Will Barnes was a country gallant, and had acquired as many
trophies of this kind as any ensign or attorney's clerk in the
kingdom. He had, indeed, reduced several women to a state of utter
profligacy, had broke the hearts of some, and had the honour of
occasioning the violent death of one poor girl, who had either drowned
herself, or, what was rather more probable, had been drowned by him.

Among other of his conquests, this fellow had triumphed over the heart
of Betty Seagrim. He had made love to her long before Molly was grown
to be a fit object of that pastime; but had afterwards deserted her,
and applied to her sister, with whom he had almost immediate success.
Now Will had, in reality, the sole possession of Molly's affection,
while Jones and Square were almost equally sacrifices to her interest
and to her pride.

Hence had grown that implacable hatred which we have before seen
raging in the mind of Betty; though we did not think it necessary to
assign this cause sooner, as envy itself alone was adequate to all the
effects we have mentioned.

Jones was become perfectly easy by possession of this secret with
regard to Molly; but as to Sophia, he was far from being in a state of
tranquillity; nay, indeed, he was under the most violent perturbation;
his heart was now, if I may use the metaphor, entirely evacuated, and
Sophia took absolute possession of it. He loved her with an unbounded
passion, and plainly saw the tender sentiments she had for him; yet
could not this assurance lessen his despair of obtaining the consent
of her father, nor the horrors which attended his pursuit of her by
any base or treacherous method.

The injury which he must thus do to Mr Western, and the concern which
would accrue to Mr Allworthy, were circumstances that tormented him
all day, and haunted him on his pillow at night. His life was a
constant struggle between honour and inclination, which alternately
triumphed over each other in his mind. He often resolved, in the
absence of Sophia, to leave her father's house, and to see her no
more; and as often, in her presence, forgot all those resolutions, and
determined to pursue her at the hazard of his life, and at the
forfeiture of what was much dearer to him.

This conflict began soon to produce very strong and visible effects:
for he lost all his usual sprightliness and gaiety of temper, and
became not only melancholy when alone, but dejected and absent in
company; nay, if ever he put on a forced mirth, to comply with Mr
Western's humour, the constraint appeared so plain, that he seemed to
have been giving the strongest evidence of what he endeavoured to
conceal by such ostentation.

It may, perhaps, be a question, whether the art which he used to
conceal his passion, or the means which honest nature employed to
reveal it, betrayed him most: for while art made him more than ever
reserved to Sophia, and forbad him to address any of his discourse to
her, nay, to avoid meeting her eyes, with the utmost caution; nature
was no less busy in counterplotting him. Hence, at the approach of the
young lady, he grew pale; and if this was sudden, started. If his eyes
accidentally met hers, the blood rushed into his cheeks, and his
countenance became all over scarlet. If common civility ever obliged
him to speak to her, as to drink her health at table, his tongue was
sure to falter. If he touched her, his hand, nay his whole frame,
trembled. And if any discourse tended, however remotely, to raise the
idea of love, an involuntary sigh seldom failed to steal from his
bosom. Most of which accidents nature was wonderfully industrious to
throw daily in his way.

All these symptoms escaped the notice of the squire: but not so of
Sophia. She soon perceived these agitations of mind in Jones, and was
at no loss to discover the cause; for indeed she recognized it in her
own breast. And this recognition is, I suppose, that sympathy which
hath been so often noted in lovers, and which will sufficiently
account for her being so much quicker-sighted than her father.

But, to say the truth, there is a more simple and plain method of
accounting for that prodigious superiority of penetration which we
must observe in some men over the rest of the human species, and one
which will serve not only in the case of lovers, but of all others.
From whence is it that the knave is generally so quick-sighted to
those symptoms and operations of knavery, which often dupe an honest
man of a much better understanding? There surely is no general
sympathy among knaves; nor have they, like freemasons, any common sign
of communication. In reality, it is only because they have the same
thing in their heads, and their thoughts are turned the same way.
Thus, that Sophia saw, and that Western did not see, the plain
symptoms of love in Jones can be no wonder, when we consider that the
idea of love never entered into the head of the father, whereas the
daughter, at present, thought of nothing else.

When Sophia was well satisfied of the violent passion which tormented
poor Jones, and no less certain that she herself was its object, she
had not the least difficulty in discovering the true cause of his
present behaviour. This highly endeared him to her, and raised in her
mind two of the best affections which any lover can wish to raise in a
mistress--these were, esteem and pity--for sure the most outrageously
rigid among her sex will excuse her pitying a man whom she saw
miserable on her own account; nor can they blame her for esteeming one
who visibly, from the most honourable motives, endeavoured to smother
a flame in his own bosom, which, like the famous Spartan theft, was
preying upon and consuming his very vitals. Thus his backwardness, his
shunning her, his coldness, and his silence, were the forwardest, the
most diligent, the warmest, and most eloquent advocates; and wrought
so violently on her sensible and tender heart, that she soon felt for
him all those gentle sensations which are consistent with a virtuous
and elevated female mind. In short, all which esteem, gratitude, and
pity, can inspire in such towards an agreeable man--indeed, all which
the nicest delicacy can allow. In a word, she was in love with him to

One day this young couple accidentally met in the garden, at the end
of the two walks which were both bounded by that canal in which Jones
had formerly risqued drowning to retrieve the little bird that Sophia
had there lost.

This place had been of late much frequented by Sophia. Here she used
to ruminate, with a mixture of pain and pleasure, on an incident
which, however trifling in itself, had possibly sown the first seeds
of that affection which was now arrived to such maturity in her heart.

Here then this young couple met. They were almost close together
before either of them knew anything of the other's approach. A
bystander would have discovered sufficient marks of confusion in the
countenance of each; but they felt too much themselves to make any
observation. As soon as Jones had a little recovered his first
surprize, he accosted the young lady with some of the ordinary forms
of salutation, which she in the same manner returned; and their
conversation began, as usual, on the delicious beauty of the morning.
Hence they past to the beauty of the place, on which Jones launched
forth very high encomiums. When they came to the tree whence he had
formerly tumbled into the canal, Sophia could not help reminding him
of that accident, and said, "I fancy, Mr Jones, you have some little
shuddering when you see that water."--"I assure you, madam," answered
Jones, "the concern you felt at the loss of your little bird will
always appear to me the highest circumstance in that adventure. Poor
little Tommy! there is the branch he stood upon. How could the little
wretch have the folly to fly away from that state of happiness in
which I had the honour to place him? His fate was a just punishment
for his ingratitude."--"Upon my word, Mr Jones," said she, "your
gallantry very narrowly escaped as severe a fate. Sure the remembrance
must affect you."--"Indeed, madam," answered he, "if I have any reason
to reflect with sorrow on it, it is, perhaps, that the water had not
been a little deeper, by which I might have escaped many bitter
heart-aches that Fortune seems to have in store for me."--"Fie, Mr
Jones!" replied Sophia; "I am sure you cannot be in earnest now. This
affected contempt of life is only an excess of your complacence to me.
You would endeavour to lessen the obligation of having twice ventured
it for my sake. Beware the third time." She spoke these last words
with a smile, and a softness inexpressible. Jones answered with a
sigh, "He feared it was already too late for caution:" and then
looking tenderly and stedfastly on her, he cried, "Oh, Miss Western!
can you desire me to live? Can you wish me so ill?" Sophia, looking
down on the ground, answered with some hesitation, "Indeed, Mr Jones,
I do not wish you ill."--"Oh, I know too well that heavenly temper,"
cries Jones, "that divine goodness, which is beyond every other
charm."--"Nay, now," answered she, "I understand you not. I can stay
no longer."--"I--I would not be understood!" cries he; "nay, I can't
be understood. I know not what I say. Meeting you here so
unexpectedly, I have been unguarded: for Heaven's sake pardon me, if I
have said anything to offend you. I did not mean it. Indeed, I would
rather have died--nay, the very thought would kill me."--"You surprize
me," answered she. "How can you possibly think you have offended
me?"--"Fear, madam," says he, "easily runs into madness; and there is
no degree of fear like that which I feel of offending you. How can I
speak then? Nay, don't look angrily at me: one frown will destroy me.
I mean nothing. Blame my eyes, or blame those beauties. What am I
saying? Pardon me if I have said too much. My heart overflowed. I have
struggled with my love to the utmost, and have endeavoured to conceal
a fever which preys on my vitals, and will, I hope, soon make it
impossible for me ever to offend you more."

Mr Jones now fell a trembling as if he had been shaken with the fit of
an ague. Sophia, who was in a situation not very different from his,
answered in these words: "Mr Jones, I will not affect to misunderstand
you; indeed, I understand you too well; but, for Heaven's sake, if you
have any affection for me, let me make the best of my way into the
house. I wish I may be able to support myself thither."

Jones, who was hardly able to support himself, offered her his arm,
which she condescended to accept, but begged he would not mention a
word more to her of this nature at present. He promised he would not;
insisting only on her forgiveness of what love, without the leave of
his will, had forced from him: this, she told him, he knew how to
obtain by his future behaviour; and thus this young pair tottered and
trembled along, the lover not once daring to squeeze the hand of his
mistress, though it was locked in his.

Sophia immediately retired to her chamber, where Mrs Honour and the
hartshorn were summoned to her assistance. As to poor Jones, the only
relief to his distempered mind was an unwelcome piece of news, which,
as it opens a scene of different nature from those in which the reader
hath lately been conversant, will be communicated to him in the next

Chapter vii.

In which Mr Allworthy appears on a sick-bed.

Mr Western was become so fond of Jones that he was unwilling to part
with him, though his arm had been long since cured; and Jones, either
from the love of sport, or from some other reason, was easily
persuaded to continue at his house, which he did sometimes for a
fortnight together without paying a single visit at Mr Allworthy's;
nay, without ever hearing from thence.

Mr Allworthy had been for some days indisposed with a cold, which had
been attended with a little fever. This he had, however, neglected; as
it was usual with him to do all manner of disorders which did not
confine him to his bed, or prevent his several faculties from
performing their ordinary functions;--a conduct which we would by no
means be thought to approve or recommend to imitation; for surely the
gentlemen of the Aesculapian art are in the right in advising, that
the moment the disease has entered at one door, the physician should
be introduced at the other: what else is meant by that old adage,
_Venienti occurrite morbo?_ "Oppose a distemper at its first
approach." Thus the doctor and the disease meet in fair and equal
conflict; whereas, by giving time to the latter, we often suffer him
to fortify and entrench himself, like a French army; so that the
learned gentleman finds it very difficult, and sometimes impossible,
to come at the enemy. Nay, sometimes by gaining time the disease
applies to the French military politics, and corrupts nature over to
his side, and then all the powers of physic must arrive too late.
Agreeable to these observations was, I remember, the complaint of the
great Doctor Misaubin, who used very pathetically to lament the late
applications which were made to his skill, saying, "Bygar, me believe
my pation take me for de undertaker, for dey never send for me till de
physicion have kill dem."

Mr Allworthy's distemper, by means of this neglect, gained such
ground, that, when the increase of his fever obliged him to send for
assistance, the doctor at his first arrival shook his head, wished he
had been sent for sooner, and intimated that he thought him in very
imminent danger. Mr Allworthy, who had settled all his affairs in this
world, and was as well prepared as it is possible for human nature to
be for the other, received this information with the utmost calmness
and unconcern. He could, indeed, whenever he laid himself down to
rest, say with Cato in the tragical poem--

                               Let guilt or fear
     Disturb man's rest: Cato knows neither of them;
     Indifferent in his choice to sleep or die.

In reality, he could say this with ten times more reason and
confidence than Cato, or any other proud fellow among the antient or
modern heroes; for he was not only devoid of fear, but might be
considered as a faithful labourer, when at the end of harvest he is
summoned to receive his reward at the hands of a bountiful master.

The good man gave immediate orders for all his family to be summoned
round him. None of these were then abroad, but Mrs Blifil, who had
been some time in London, and Mr Jones, whom the reader hath just
parted from at Mr Western's, and who received this summons just as
Sophia had left him.

The news of Mr Allworthy's danger (for the servant told him he was
dying) drove all thoughts of love out of his head. He hurried
instantly into the chariot which was sent for him, and ordered the
coachman to drive with all imaginable haste; nor did the idea of
Sophia, I believe, once occur to him on the way.

And now the whole family, namely, Mr Blifil, Mr Jones, Mr Thwackum, Mr
Square, and some of the servants (for such were Mr Allworthy's orders)
being all assembled round his bed, the good man sat up in it, and was
beginning to speak, when Blifil fell to blubbering, and began to
express very loud and bitter lamentations. Upon this Mr Allworthy
shook him by the hand, and said, "Do not sorrow thus, my dear nephew,
at the most ordinary of all human occurrences. When misfortunes befal
our friends we are justly grieved; for those are accidents which might
often have been avoided, and which may seem to render the lot of one
man more peculiarly unhappy than that of others; but death is
certainly unavoidable, and is that common lot in which alone the
fortunes of all men agree: nor is the time when this happens to us
very material. If the wisest of men hath compared life to a span,
surely we may be allowed to consider it as a day. It is my fate to
leave it in the evening; but those who are taken away earlier have
only lost a few hours, at the best little worth lamenting, and much
oftener hours of labour and fatigue, of pain and sorrow. One of the
Roman poets, I remember, likens our leaving life to our departure from
a feast;--a thought which hath often occurred to me when I have seen
men struggling to protract an entertainment, and to enjoy the company
of their friends a few moments longer. Alas! how short is the most
protracted of such enjoyments! how immaterial the difference between
him who retires the soonest, and him who stays the latest! This is
seeing life in the best view, and this unwillingness to quit our
friends is the most amiable motive from which we can derive the fear
of death; and yet the longest enjoyment which we can hope for of this
kind is of so trivial a duration, that it is to a wise man truly
contemptible. Few men, I own, think in this manner; for, indeed, few
men think of death till they are in its jaws. However gigantic and
terrible an object this may appear when it approaches them, they are
nevertheless incapable of seeing it at any distance; nay, though they
have been ever so much alarmed and frightened when they have
apprehended themselves in danger of dying, they are no sooner cleared
from this apprehension than even the fears of it are erased from their
minds. But, alas! he who escapes from death is not pardoned; he is
only reprieved, and reprieved to a short day.

"Grieve, therefore, no more, my dear child, on this occasion: an event
which may happen every hour; which every element, nay, almost every
particle of matter that surrounds us is capable of producing, and
which must and will most unavoidably reach us all at last, ought
neither to occasion our surprize nor our lamentation.

"My physician having acquainted me (which I take very kindly of him)
that I am in danger of leaving you all very shortly, I have determined
to say a few words to you at this our parting, before my distemper,
which I find grows very fast upon me, puts it out of my power.

"But I shall waste my strength too much. I intended to speak
concerning my will, which, though I have settled long ago, I think
proper to mention such heads of it as concern any of you, that I may
have the comfort of perceiving you are all satisfied with the
provision I have there made for you.

"Nephew Blifil, I leave you the heir to my whole estate, except only
£500 a-year, which is to revert to you after the death of your mother,
and except one other estate of £500 a-year, and the sum of £6000,
which I have bestowed in the following manner:

"The estate of £500 a-year I have given to you, Mr Jones: and as I
know the inconvenience which attends the want of ready money, I have
added £1000 in specie. In this I know not whether I have exceeded or
fallen short of your expectation. Perhaps you will think I have given
you too little, and the world will be as ready to condemn me for
giving you too much; but the latter censure I despise; and as to the
former, unless you should entertain that common error which I have
often heard in my life pleaded as an excuse for a total want of
charity, namely, that instead of raising gratitude by voluntary acts
of bounty, we are apt to raise demands, which of all others are the
most boundless and most difficult to satisfy.--Pardon me the bare
mention of this; I will not suspect any such thing."

Jones flung himself at his benefactor's feet, and taking eagerly hold
of his hand, assured him his goodness to him, both now and all other
times, had so infinitely exceeded not only his merit but his hopes,
that no words could express his sense of it. "And I assure you, sir,"
said he, "your present generosity hath left me no other concern than
for the present melancholy occasion. Oh, my friend, my father!" Here
his words choaked him, and he turned away to hide a tear which was
starting from his eyes.

Allworthy then gently squeezed his hand, and proceeded thus: "I am
convinced, my child, that you have much goodness, generosity, and
honour, in your temper: if you will add prudence and religion to
these, you must be happy; for the three former qualities, I admit,
make you worthy of happiness, but they are the latter only which will
put you in possession of it.

"One thousand pound I have given to you, Mr Thwackum; a sum I am
convinced which greatly exceeds your desires, as well as your wants.
However, you will receive it as a memorial of my friendship; and
whatever superfluities may redound to you, that piety which you so
rigidly maintain will instruct you how to dispose of them.

"A like sum, Mr Square, I have bequeathed to you. This, I hope, will
enable you to pursue your profession with better success than
hitherto. I have often observed with concern, that distress is more
apt to excite contempt than commiseration, especially among men of
business, with whom poverty is understood to indicate want of ability.
But the little I have been able to leave you will extricate you from
those difficulties with which you have formerly struggled; and then I
doubt not but you will meet with sufficient prosperity to supply what
a man of your philosophical temper will require.

"I find myself growing faint, so I shall refer you to my will for my
disposition of the residue. My servants will there find some tokens to
remember me by; and there are a few charities which, I trust, my
executors will see faithfully performed. Bless you all. I am setting
out a little before you."--

Here a footman came hastily into the room, and said there was an
attorney from Salisbury who had a particular message, which he said he
must communicate to Mr Allworthy himself: that he seemed in a violent
hurry, and protested he had so much business to do, that, if he could
cut himself into four quarters, all would not be sufficient.

"Go, child," said Allworthy to Blifil, "see what the gentleman wants.
I am not able to do any business now, nor can he have any with me, in
which you are not at present more concerned than myself. Besides, I
really am--I am incapable of seeing any one at present, or of any
longer attention." He then saluted them all, saying, perhaps he should
be able to see them again, but he should be now glad to compose
himself a little, finding that he had too much exhausted his spirits
in discourse.

Some of the company shed tears at their parting; and even the
philosopher Square wiped his eyes, albeit unused to the melting mood.
As to Mrs Wilkins, she dropt her pearls as fast as the Arabian trees
their medicinal gums; for this was a ceremonial which that gentlewoman
never omitted on a proper occasion.

After this Mr Allworthy again laid himself down on his pillow, and
endeavoured to compose himself to rest.

Chapter viii.

Containing matter rather natural than pleasing.

Besides grief for her master, there was another source for that briny
stream which so plentifully rose above the two mountainous cheek-bones
of the housekeeper. She was no sooner retired, than she began to
mutter to herself in the following pleasant strain: "Sure master might
have made some difference, methinks, between me and the other
servants. I suppose he hath left me mourning; but, i'fackins! if that
be all, the devil shall wear it for him, for me. I'd have his worship
know I am no beggar. I have saved five hundred pound in his service,
and after all to be used in this manner.--It is a fine encouragement
to servants to be honest; and to be sure, if I have taken a little
something now and then, others have taken ten times as much; and now
we are all put in a lump together. If so be that it be so, the legacy
may go to the devil with him that gave it. No, I won't give it up
neither, because that will please some folks. No, I'll buy the gayest
gown I can get, and dance over the old curmudgeon's grave in it. This
is my reward for taking his part so often, when all the country have
cried shame of him, for breeding up his bastard in that manner; but he
is going now where he must pay for all. It would have become him
better to have repented of his sins on his deathbed, than to glory in
them, and give away his estate out of his own family to a misbegotten
child. Found in his bed, forsooth! a pretty story! ay, ay, those that
hide know where to find. Lord forgive him! I warrant he hath many more
bastards to answer for, if the truth was known. One comfort is, they
will all be known where he is a going now.--`The servants will find
some token to remember me by.' Those were the very words; I shall
never forget them, if I was to live a thousand years. Ay, ay, I shall
remember you for huddling me among the servants. One would have
thought he might have mentioned my name as well as that of Square; but
he is a gentleman forsooth, though he had not cloths on his back when
he came hither first. Marry come up with such gentlemen! though he
hath lived here this many years, I don't believe there is arrow a
servant in the house ever saw the colour of his money. The devil shall
wait upon such a gentleman for me." Much more of the like kind she
muttered to herself; but this taste shall suffice to the reader.

Neither Thwackum nor Square were much better satisfied with their
legacies. Though they breathed not their resentment so loud, yet from
the discontent which appeared in their countenances, as well as from
the following dialogue, we collect that no great pleasure reigned in
their minds.

About an hour after they had left the sick-room, Square met Thwackum
in the hall and accosted him thus: "Well, sir, have you heard any news
of your friend since we parted from him?"--"If you mean Mr Allworthy,"
answered Thwackum, "I think you might rather give him the appellation
of your friend; for he seems to me to have deserved that title."--"The
title is as good on your side," replied Square, "for his bounty, such
as it is, hath been equal to both."--"I should not have mentioned it
first," cries Thwackum, "but since you begin, I must inform you I am
of a different opinion. There is a wide distinction between voluntary
favours and rewards. The duty I have done in his family, and the care
I have taken in the education of his two boys, are services for which
some men might have expected a greater return. I would not have you
imagine I am therefore dissatisfied; for St Paul hath taught me to
be content with the little I have. Had the modicum been less, I
should have known my duty. But though the Scriptures obliges me to
remain contented, it doth not enjoin me to shut my eyes to my own
merit, nor restrain me from seeing when I am injured by an unjust
comparison."--"Since you provoke me," returned Square, "that injury is
done to me; nor did I ever imagine Mr Allworthy had held my friendship
so light, as to put me in balance with one who received his wages. I
know to what it is owing; it proceeds from those narrow principles
which you have been so long endeavouring to infuse into him, in
contempt of everything which is great and noble. The beauty and
loveliness of friendship is too strong for dim eyes, nor can it be
perceived by any other medium than that unerring rule of right, which
you have so often endeavoured to ridicule, that you have perverted
your friend's understanding."--"I wish," cries Thwackum, in a rage, "I
wish, for the sake of his soul, your damnable doctrines have not
perverted his faith. It is to this I impute his present behaviour, so
unbecoming a Christian. Who but an atheist could think of leaving the
world without having first made up his account? without confessing his
sins, and receiving that absolution which he knew he had one in the
house duly authorized to give him? He will feel the want of these
necessaries when it is too late, when he is arrived at that place
where there is wailing and gnashing of teeth. It is then he will find
in what mighty stead that heathen goddess, that virtue, which you and
all other deists of the age adore, will stand him. He will then summon
his priest, when there is none to be found, and will lament the want
of that absolution, without which no sinner can be safe."--"If it be
so material," says Square, "why don't you present it him of your own
accord?" "It hath no virtue," cries Thwackum, "but to those who have
sufficient grace to require it. But why do I talk thus to a heathen
and an unbeliever? It is you that taught him this lesson, for which
you have been well rewarded in this world, as I doubt not your
disciple will soon be in the other."--"I know not what you mean by
reward," said Square; "but if you hint at that pitiful memorial of our
friendship, which he hath thought fit to bequeath me, I despise it;
and nothing but the unfortunate situation of my circumstances should
prevail on me to accept it."

The physician now arrived, and began to inquire of the two disputants,
how we all did above-stairs? "In a miserable way," answered Thwackum.
"It is no more than I expected," cries the doctor: "but pray what
symptoms have appeared since I left you?"--"No good ones, I am
afraid," replied Thwackum: "after what past at our departure, I think
there were little hopes." The bodily physician, perhaps, misunderstood
the curer of souls; and before they came to an explanation, Mr Blifil
came to them with a most melancholy countenance, and acquainted them
that he brought sad news, that his mother was dead at Salisbury; that
she had been seized on the road home with the gout in her head and
stomach, which had carried her off in a few hours. "Good-lack-a-day!"
says the doctor. "One cannot answer for events; but I wish I had been
at hand, to have been called in. The gout is a distemper which it is
difficult to treat; yet I have been remarkably successful in it."
Thwackum and Square both condoled with Mr Blifil for the loss of his
mother, which the one advised him to bear like a man, and the other
like a Christian. The young gentleman said he knew very well we were
all mortal, and he would endeavour to submit to his loss as well as he
could. That he could not, however, help complaining a little against
the peculiar severity of his fate, which brought the news of so great
a calamity to him by surprize, and that at a time when he hourly
expected the severest blow he was capable of feeling from the malice
of fortune. He said, the present occasion would put to the test those
excellent rudiments which he had learnt from Mr Thwackum and Mr
Square; and it would be entirely owing to them, if he was enabled to
survive such misfortunes.

It was now debated whether Mr Allworthy should be informed of the
death of his sister. This the doctor violently opposed; in which, I
believe, the whole college would agree with him: but Mr Blifil said,
he had received such positive and repeated orders from his uncle,
never to keep any secret from him for fear of the disquietude which it
might give him, that he durst not think of disobedience, whatever
might be the consequence. He said, for his part, considering the
religious and philosophic temper of his uncle, he could not agree with
the doctor in his apprehensions. He was therefore resolved to
communicate it to him: for if his uncle recovered (as he heartily
prayed he might) he knew he would never forgive an endeavour to keep a
secret of this kind from him.

The physician was forced to submit to these resolutions, which the two
other learned gentlemen very highly commended. So together moved Mr
Blifil and the doctor toward the sick-room; where the physician first
entered, and approached the bed, in order to feel his patient's pulse,
which he had no sooner done, than he declared he was much better; that
the last application had succeeded to a miracle, and had brought the
fever to intermit: so that, he said, there appeared now to be as
little danger as he had before apprehended there were hopes.

To say the truth, Mr Allworthy's situation had never been so bad as
the great caution of the doctor had represented it: but as a wise
general never despises his enemy, however inferior that enemy's force
may be, so neither doth a wise physician ever despise a distemper,
however inconsiderable. As the former preserves the same strict
discipline, places the same guards, and employs the same scouts,
though the enemy be never so weak; so the latter maintains the same
gravity of countenance, and shakes his head with the same significant
air, let the distemper be never so trifling. And both, among many
other good ones, may assign this solid reason for their conduct, that
by these means the greater glory redounds to them if they gain the
victory, and the less disgrace if by any unlucky accident they should
happen to be conquered.

Mr Allworthy had no sooner lifted up his eyes, and thanked Heaven for
these hopes of his recovery, than Mr Blifil drew near, with a very
dejected aspect, and having applied his handkerchief to his eye,
either to wipe away his tears, or to do as Ovid somewhere expresses
himself on another occasion

     _Si nullus erit, tamen excute nullum,_

     If there be none, then wipe away that none,

he communicated to his uncle what the reader hath been just before
acquainted with.

Allworthy received the news with concern, with patience, and with
resignation. He dropt a tender tear, then composed his countenance,
and at last cried, "The Lord's will be done in everything."

He now enquired for the messenger; but Blifil told him it had been
impossible to detain him a moment; for he appeared by the great hurry
he was in to have some business of importance on his hands; that he
complained of being hurried and driven and torn out of his life, and
repeated many times, that if he could divide himself into four
quarters, he knew how to dispose of every one.

Allworthy then desired Blifil to take care of the funeral. He said, he
would have his sister deposited in his own chapel; and as to the
particulars, he left them to his own discretion, only mentioning the
person whom he would have employed on this occasion.

Chapter ix.

Which, among other things, may serve as a comment on that saying of
Aeschines, that "drunkenness shows the mind of a man, as a mirrour
reflects his person."

The reader may perhaps wonder at hearing nothing of Mr Jones in the
last chapter. In fact, his behaviour was so different from that of the
persons there mentioned, that we chose not to confound his name with

When the good man had ended his speech, Jones was the last who
deserted the room. Thence he retired to his own apartment, to give
vent to his concern; but the restlessness of his mind would not suffer
him to remain long there; he slipped softly therefore to Allworthy's
chamber-door, where he listened a considerable time without hearing
any kind of motion within, unless a violent snoring, which at last his
fears misrepresented as groans. This so alarmed him, that he could not
forbear entering the room; where he found the good man in the bed, in
a sweet composed sleep, and his nurse snoring in the above mentioned
hearty manner, at the bed's feet. He immediately took the only method
of silencing this thorough bass, whose music he feared might disturb
Mr Allworthy; and then sitting down by the nurse, he remained
motionless till Blifil and the doctor came in together and waked the
sick man, in order that the doctor might feel his pulse, and that the
other might communicate to him that piece of news, which, had Jones
been apprized of it, would have had great difficulty of finding its
way to Mr Allworthy's ear at such a season.

When he first heard Blifil tell his uncle this story, Jones could
hardly contain the wrath which kindled in him at the other's
indiscretion, especially as the doctor shook his head, and declared
his unwillingness to have the matter mentioned to his patient. But as
his passion did not so far deprive him of all use of his
understanding, as to hide from him the consequences which any violent
expression towards Blifil might have on the sick, this apprehension
stilled his rage at the present; and he grew afterwards so satisfied
with finding that this news had, in fact, produced no mischief, that
he suffered his anger to die in his own bosom, without ever mentioning
it to Blifil.

The physician dined that day at Mr Allworthy's; and having after
dinner visited his patient, he returned to the company, and told them,
that he had now the satisfaction to say, with assurance, that his
patient was out of all danger: that he had brought his fever to a
perfect intermission, and doubted not by throwing in the bark to
prevent its return.

This account so pleased Jones, and threw him into such immoderate
excess of rapture, that he might be truly said to be drunk with
joy--an intoxication which greatly forwards the effects of wine; and
as he was very free too with the bottle on this occasion (for he drank
many bumpers to the doctor's health, as well as to other toasts) he
became very soon literally drunk.

Jones had naturally violent animal spirits: these being set on float
and augmented by the spirit of wine, produced most extravagant
effects. He kissed the doctor, and embraced him with the most
passionate endearments; swearing that next to Mr Allworthy himself, he
loved him of all men living. "Doctor," added he, "you deserve a statue
to be erected to you at the public expense, for having preserved a
man, who is not only the darling of all good men who know him, but a
blessing to society, the glory of his country, and an honour to human
nature. D--n me if I don't love him better than my own soul."

"More shame for you," cries Thwackum. "Though I think you have reason
to love him, for he hath provided very well for you. And perhaps it
might have been better for some folks that he had not lived to see
just reason of revoking his gift."

Jones now looking on Thwackum with inconceivable disdain, answered,
"And doth thy mean soul imagine that any such considerations could
weigh with me? No, let the earth open and swallow her own dirt (if I
had millions of acres I would say it) rather than swallow up my dear
glorious friend."

     _Quis desiderio sit pudor aut modus
     Tam chari capitis?_[*]

  [*] "What modesty or measure can set bounds to our desire of so dear
  a friend?" The word _desiderium_ here cannot be easily translated.
  It includes our desire of enjoying our friend again, and the grief
  which attends that desire.

The doctor now interposed, and prevented the effects of a wrath which
was kindling between Jones and Thwackum; after which the former gave a
loose to mirth, sang two or three amorous songs, and fell into every
frantic disorder which unbridled joy is apt to inspire; but so far was
he from any disposition to quarrel, that he was ten times better
humoured, if possible, than when he was sober.

To say truth, nothing is more erroneous than the common observation,
that men who are ill-natured and quarrelsome when they are drunk, are
very worthy persons when they are sober: for drink, in reality, doth
not reverse nature, or create passions in men which did not exist in
them before. It takes away the guard of reason, and consequently
forces us to produce those symptoms, which many, when sober, have art
enough to conceal. It heightens and inflames our passions (generally
indeed that passion which is uppermost in our mind), so that the angry
temper, the amorous, the generous, the good-humoured, the avaricious,
and all other dispositions of men, are in their cups heightened and

And yet as no nation produces so many drunken quarrels, especially
among the lower people, as England (for indeed, with them, to drink
and to fight together are almost synonymous terms), I would not,
methinks, have it thence concluded, that the English are the
worst-natured people alive. Perhaps the love of glory only is at the
bottom of this; so that the fair conclusion seems to be, that our
countrymen have more of that love, and more of bravery, than any other
plebeians. And this the rather, as there is seldom anything
ungenerous, unfair, or ill-natured, exercised on these occasions: nay,
it is common for the combatants to express good-will for each other
even at the time of the conflict; and as their drunken mirth generally
ends in a battle, so do most of their battles end in friendship.

But to return to our history. Though Jones had shown no design of
giving offence, yet Mr Blifil was highly offended at a behaviour which
was so inconsistent with the sober and prudent reserve of his own
temper. He bore it too with the greater impatience, as it appeared to
him very indecent at this season; "When," as he said, "the house was a
house of mourning, on the account of his dear mother; and if it had
pleased Heaven to give him some prospect of Mr Allworthy's recovery,
it would become them better to express the exultations of their hearts
in thanksgiving, than in drunkenness and riots; which were properer
methods to encrease the Divine wrath, than to avert it." Thwackum, who
had swallowed more liquor than Jones, but without any ill effect on
his brain, seconded the pious harangue of Blifil; but Square, for
reasons which the reader may probably guess, was totally silent.

Wine had not so totally overpowered Jones, as to prevent his
recollecting Mr Blifil's loss, the moment it was mentioned. As no
person, therefore, was more ready to confess and condemn his own
errors, he offered to shake Mr Blifil by the hand, and begged his
pardon, saying, "His excessive joy for Mr Allworthy's recovery had
driven every other thought out of his mind."

Blifil scornfully rejected his hand; and with much indignation
answered, "It was little to be wondered at, if tragical spectacles
made no impression on the blind; but, for his part, he had the
misfortune to know who his parents were, and consequently must be
affected with their loss."

Jones, who, notwithstanding his good humour, had some mixture of the
irascible in his constitution, leaped hastily from his chair, and
catching hold of Blifil's collar, cried out, "D--n you for a rascal,
do you insult me with the misfortune of my birth?" He accompanied
these words with such rough actions, that they soon got the better of
Mr Blifil's peaceful temper; and a scuffle immediately ensued, which
might have produced mischief, had it not been prevented by the
interposition of Thwackum and the physician; for the philosophy of
Square rendered him superior to all emotions, and he very calmly
smoaked his pipe, as was his custom in all broils, unless when he
apprehended some danger of having it broke in his mouth.

The combatants being now prevented from executing present vengeance on
each other, betook themselves to the common resources of disappointed
rage, and vented their wrath in threats and defiance. In this kind of
conflict, Fortune, which, in the personal attack, seemed to incline to
Jones, was now altogether as favourable to his enemy.

A truce, nevertheless, was at length agreed on, by the mediation of
the neutral parties, and the whole company again sat down at the
table; where Jones being prevailed on to ask pardon, and Blifil to
give it, peace was restored, and everything seemed _in statu quo_.

But though the quarrel was, in all appearance, perfectly reconciled,
the good humour which had been interrupted by it, was by no means
restored. All merriment was now at an end, and the subsequent
discourse consisted only of grave relations of matters of fact, and of
as grave observations upon them; a species of conversation, in which,
though there is much of dignity and instruction, there is but little
entertainment. As we presume therefore to convey only this last to the
reader, we shall pass by whatever was said, till the rest of the
company having by degrees dropped off, left only Square and the
physician together; at which time the conversation was a little
heightened by some comments on what had happened between the two young
gentlemen; both of whom the doctor declared to be no better than
scoundrels; to which appellation the philosopher, very sagaciously
shaking his head, agreed.

Chapter x.

Showing the truth of many observations of Ovid, and of other more
grave writers, who have proved beyond contradiction, that wine is
often the forerunner of incontinency.

Jones retired from the company, in which we have seen him engaged,
into the fields, where he intended to cool himself by a walk in the
open air before he attended Mr Allworthy. There, whilst he renewed
those meditations on his dear Sophia, which the dangerous illness of
his friend and benefactor had for some time interrupted, an accident
happened, which with sorrow we relate, and with sorrow doubtless will
it be read; however, that historic truth to which we profess so
inviolable an attachment, obliges us to communicate it to posterity.

It was now a pleasant evening in the latter end of June, when our
heroe was walking in a most delicious grove, where the gentle breezes
fanning the leaves, together with the sweet trilling of a murmuring
stream, and the melodious notes of nightingales, formed altogether the
most enchanting harmony. In this scene, so sweetly accommodated to
love, he meditated on his dear Sophia. While his wanton fancy roamed
unbounded over all her beauties, and his lively imagination painted
the charming maid in various ravishing forms, his warm heart melted
with tenderness; and at length, throwing himself on the ground, by the
side of a gently murmuring brook, he broke forth into the following

"O Sophia, would Heaven give thee to my arms, how blest would be my
condition! Curst be that fortune which sets a distance between us. Was
I but possessed of thee, one only suit of rags thy whole estate, is
there a man on earth whom I would envy! How contemptible would the
brightest Circassian beauty, drest in all the jewels of the Indies,
appear to my eyes! But why do I mention another woman? Could I think
my eyes capable of looking at any other with tenderness, these hands
should tear them from my head. No, my Sophia, if cruel fortune
separates us for ever, my soul shall doat on thee alone. The chastest
constancy will I ever preserve to thy image. Though I should never
have possession of thy charming person, still shalt thou alone have
possession of my thoughts, my love, my soul. Oh! my fond heart is so
wrapt in that tender bosom, that the brightest beauties would for me
have no charms, nor would a hermit be colder in their embraces.
Sophia, Sophia alone shall be mine. What raptures are in that name! I
will engrave it on every tree."

At these words he started up, and beheld--not his Sophia--no, nor a
Circassian maid richly and elegantly attired for the grand Signior's
seraglio. No; without a gown, in a shift that was somewhat of the
coarsest, and none of the cleanest, bedewed likewise with some
odoriferous effluvia, the produce of the day's labour, with a
pitchfork in her hand, Molly Seagrim approached. Our hero had his
penknife in his hand, which he had drawn for the before-mentioned
purpose of carving on the bark; when the girl coming near him, cryed
out with a smile, "You don't intend to kill me, squire, I hope!"--"Why
should you think I would kill you?" answered Jones. "Nay," replied
she, "after your cruel usage of me when I saw you last, killing me
would, perhaps, be too great kindness for me to expect."

Here ensued a parley, which, as I do not think myself obliged to
relate it, I shall omit. It is sufficient that it lasted a full
quarter of an hour, at the conclusion of which they retired into the
thickest part of the grove.

Some of my readers may be inclined to think this event unnatural.
However, the fact is true; and perhaps may be sufficiently accounted
for by suggesting, that Jones probably thought one woman better than
none, and Molly as probably imagined two men to be better than one.
Besides the before-mentioned motive assigned to the present behaviour
of Jones, the reader will be likewise pleased to recollect in his
favour, that he was not at this time perfect master of that wonderful
power of reason, which so well enables grave and wise men to subdue
their unruly passions, and to decline any of these prohibited
amusements. Wine now had totally subdued this power in Jones. He was,
indeed, in a condition, in which, if reason had interposed, though
only to advise, she might have received the answer which one
Cleostratus gave many years ago to a silly fellow, who asked him, if
he was not ashamed to be drunk? "Are not you," said Cleostratus,
"ashamed to admonish a drunken man?"--To say the truth, in a court of
justice drunkenness must not be an excuse, yet in a court of
conscience it is greatly so; and therefore Aristotle, who commends the
laws of Pittacus, by which drunken men received double punishment for
their crimes, allows there is more of policy than justice in that law.
Now, if there are any transgressions pardonable from drunkenness, they
are certainly such as Mr Jones was at present guilty of; on which head
I could pour forth a vast profusion of learning, if I imagined it
would either entertain my reader, or teach him anything more than he
knows already. For his sake therefore I shall keep my learning to
myself, and return to my history.

It hath been observed, that Fortune seldom doth things by halves. To
say truth, there is no end to her freaks whenever she is disposed to
gratify or displease. No sooner had our heroe retired with his Dido,

     _Speluncam_ Blifil _dux et divinus eandem

the parson and the young squire, who were taking a serious walk,
arrived at the stile which leads into the grove, and the latter caught
a view of the lovers just as they were sinking out of sight.

Blifil knew Jones very well, though he was at above a hundred yards'
distance, and he was as positive to the sex of his companion, though
not to the individual person. He started, blessed himself, and uttered
a very solemn ejaculation.

Thwackum expressed some surprize at these sudden emotions, and asked
the reason of them. To which Blifil answered, "He was certain he had
seen a fellow and wench retire together among the bushes, which he
doubted not was with some wicked purpose." As to the name of Jones, he
thought proper to conceal it, and why he did so must be left to the
judgment of the sagacious reader; for we never chuse to assign motives
to the actions of men, when there is any possibility of our being

The parson, who was not only strictly chaste in his own person, but a
great enemy to the opposite vice in all others, fired at this
information. He desired Mr Blifil to conduct him immediately to the
place, which as he approached he breathed forth vengeance mixed with
lamentations; nor did he refrain from casting some oblique reflections
on Mr Allworthy; insinuating that the wickedness of the country was
principally owing to the encouragement he had given to vice, by having
exerted such kindness to a bastard, and by having mitigated that just
and wholesome rigour of the law which allots a very severe punishment
to loose wenches.

The way through which our hunters were to pass in pursuit of their
game was so beset with briars, that it greatly obstructed their walk,
and caused besides such a rustling, that Jones had sufficient warning
of their arrival before they could surprize him; nay, indeed, so
incapable was Thwackum of concealing his indignation, and such
vengeance did he mutter forth every step he took, that this alone must
have abundantly satisfied Jones that he was (to use the language of
sportsmen) found sitting.

Chapter xi.

In which a simile in Mr Pope's period of a mile introduces as bloody a
battle as can possibly be fought without the assistance of steel or
cold iron.

As in the season of _rutting_ (an uncouth phrase, by which the vulgar
denote that gentle dalliance, which in the well-wooded[*] forest of
Hampshire, passes between lovers of the ferine kind), if, while the
lofty-crested stag meditates the amorous sport, a couple of puppies,
or any other beasts of hostile note, should wander so near the temple
of Venus Ferina that the fair hind should shrink from the place,
touched with that somewhat, either of fear or frolic, of nicety or
skittishness, with which nature hath bedecked all females, or hath at
least instructed them how to put it on; lest, through the indelicacy
of males, the Samean mysteries should be pryed into by unhallowed
eyes: for, at the celebration of these rites, the female priestess
cries out with her in Virgil (who was then, probably, hard at work on
such celebration),

      _--Procul, o procul este, profani;
      Proclamat vates, totoque absistite luco._

      --Far hence be souls profane,
      The sibyl cry'd, and from the grove abstain.--DRYDEN.

  [*] This is an ambiguous phrase, and may mean either a forest well
  cloathed with wood, or well stript of it.

If, I say, while these sacred rites, which are in common to _genus
omne animantium,_ are in agitation between the stag and his mistress,
any hostile beasts should venture too near, on the first hint given by
the frighted hind, fierce and tremendous rushes forth the stag to the
entrance of the thicket; there stands he centinel over his love,
stamps the ground with his foot, and with his horns brandished aloft
in air, proudly provokes the apprehended foe to combat.

Thus, and more terrible, when he perceived the enemy's approach,
leaped forth our heroe. Many a step advanced he forwards, in order to
conceal the trembling hind, and, if possible, to secure her retreat.
And now Thwackum, having first darted some livid lightning from his
fiery eyes, began to thunder forth, "Fie upon it! Fie upon it! Mr
Jones. Is it possible you should be the person?"--"You see," answered
Jones, "it is possible I should be here."--"And who," said Thwackum,
"is that wicked slut with you?"--"If I have any wicked slut with me,"
cries Jones, "it is possible I shall not let you know who she is."--"I
command you to tell me immediately," says Thwackum: "and I would not
have you imagine, young man, that your age, though it hath somewhat
abridged the purpose of tuition, hath totally taken away the authority
of the master. The relation of the master and scholar is indelible;
as, indeed, all other relations are; for they all derive their
original from heaven. I would have you think yourself, therefore, as
much obliged to obey me now, as when I taught you your first
rudiments."--"I believe you would," cries Jones; "but that will not
happen, unless you had the same birchen argument to convince
me."--"Then I must tell you plainly," said Thwackum, "I am resolved to
discover the wicked wretch."--"And I must tell you plainly," returned
Jones, "I am resolved you shall not." Thwackum then offered to
advance, and Jones laid hold of his arms; which Mr Blifil endeavoured
to rescue, declaring, "he would not see his old master insulted."

Jones now finding himself engaged with two, thought it necessary to
rid himself of one of his antagonists as soon as possible. He
therefore applied to the weakest first; and, letting the parson go, he
directed a blow at the young squire's breast, which luckily taking
place, reduced him to measure his length on the ground.

Thwackum was so intent on the discovery, that, the moment he found
himself at liberty, he stept forward directly into the fern, without
any great consideration of what might in the meantime befal his
friend; but he had advanced a very few paces into the thicket, before
Jones, having defeated Blifil, overtook the parson, and dragged him
backward by the skirt of his coat.

This parson had been a champion in his youth, and had won much honour
by his fist, both at school and at the university. He had now indeed,
for a great number of years, declined the practice of that noble art;
yet was his courage full as strong as his faith, and his body no less
strong than either. He was moreover, as the reader may perhaps have
conceived, somewhat irascible in his nature. When he looked back,
therefore, and saw his friend stretched out on the ground, and found
himself at the same time so roughly handled by one who had formerly
been only passive in all conflicts between them (a circumstance which
highly aggravated the whole), his patience at length gave way; he
threw himself into a posture of offence; and collecting all his force,
attacked Jones in the front with as much impetuosity as he had
formerly attacked him in the rear.

Our heroe received the enemy's attack with the most undaunted
intrepidity, and his bosom resounded with the blow. This he presently
returned with no less violence, aiming likewise at the parson's
breast; but he dexterously drove down the fist of Jones, so that it
reached only his belly, where two pounds of beef and as many of
pudding were then deposited, and whence consequently no hollow sound
could proceed. Many lusty blows, much more pleasant as well as easy to
have seen, than to read or describe, were given on both sides: at last
a violent fall, in which Jones had thrown his knees into Thwackum's
breast, so weakened the latter, that victory had been no longer
dubious, had not Blifil, who had now recovered his strength, again
renewed the fight, and by engaging with Jones, given the parson a
moment's time to shake his ears, and to regain his breath.

And now both together attacked our heroe, whose blows did not retain
that force with which they had fallen at first, so weakened was he by
his combat with Thwackum; for though the pedagogue chose rather to
play _solos_ on the human instrument, and had been lately used to
those only, yet he still retained enough of his antient knowledge to
perform his part very well in a _duet_.

The victory, according to modern custom, was like to be decided by
numbers, when, on a sudden, a fourth pair of fists appeared in the
battle, and immediately paid their compliments to the parson; and the
owner of them at the same time crying out, "Are not you ashamed, and
be d--n'd to you, to fall two of you upon one?"

The battle, which was of the kind that for distinction's sake is
called royal, now raged with the utmost violence during a few minutes;
till Blifil being a second time laid sprawling by Jones, Thwackum
condescended to apply for quarter to his new antagonist, who was now
found to be Mr Western himself; for in the heat of the action none of
the combatants had recognized him.

In fact, that honest squire, happening, in his afternoon's walk with
some company, to pass through the field where the bloody battle was
fought, and having concluded, from seeing three men engaged, that two
of them must be on a side, he hastened from his companions, and with
more gallantry than policy, espoused the cause of the weaker party. By
which generous proceeding he very probably prevented Mr Jones from
becoming a victim to the wrath of Thwackum, and to the pious
friendship which Blifil bore his old master; for, besides the
disadvantage of such odds, Jones had not yet sufficiently recovered
the former strength of his broken arm. This reinforcement, however,
soon put an end to the action, and Jones with his ally obtained the

Chapter xii.

In which is seen a more moving spectacle than all the blood in the
bodies of Thwackum and Blifil, and of twenty other such, is capable of

The rest of Mr Western's company were now come up, being just at the
instant when the action was over. These were the honest clergyman,
whom we have formerly seen at Mr Western's table; Mrs Western, the
aunt of Sophia; and lastly, the lovely Sophia herself.

At this time, the following was the aspect of the bloody field. In one
place lay on the ground, all pale, and almost breathless, the
vanquished Blifil. Near him stood the conqueror Jones, almost covered
with blood, part of which was naturally his own, and part had been
lately the property of the Reverend Mr Thwackum. In a third place
stood the said Thwackum, like King Porus, sullenly submitting to the
conqueror. The last figure in the piece was Western the Great, most
gloriously forbearing the vanquished foe.

Blifil, in whom there was little sign of life, was at first the
principal object of the concern of every one, and particularly of Mrs
Western, who had drawn from her pocket a bottle of hartshorn, and was
herself about to apply it to his nostrils, when on a sudden the
attention of the whole company was diverted from poor Blifil, whose
spirit, if it had any such design, might have now taken an opportunity
of stealing off to the other world, without any ceremony.

For now a more melancholy and a more lovely object lay motionless
before them. This was no other than the charming Sophia herself, who,
from the sight of blood, or from fear for her father, or from some
other reason, had fallen down in a swoon, before any one could get to
her assistance.

Mrs Western first saw her and screamed. Immediately two or three
voices cried out, "Miss Western is dead." Hartshorn, water, every
remedy was called for, almost at one and the same instant.

The reader may remember, that in our description of this grove we
mentioned a murmuring brook, which brook did not come there, as such
gentle streams flow through vulgar romances, with no other purpose
than to murmur. No! Fortune had decreed to ennoble this little brook
with a higher honour than any of those which wash the plains of
Arcadia ever deserved.

Jones was rubbing Blifil's temples, for he began to fear he had given
him a blow too much, when the words, Miss Western and Dead, rushed at
once on his ear. He started up, left Blifil to his fate, and flew to
Sophia, whom, while all the rest were running against each other,
backward and forward, looking for water in the dry paths, he caught up
in his arms, and then ran away with her over the field to the rivulet
above mentioned; where, plunging himself into the water, he contrived
to besprinkle her face, head, and neck very plentifully.

Happy was it for Sophia that the same confusion which prevented her
other friends from serving her, prevented them likewise from
obstructing Jones. He had carried her half ways before they knew what
he was doing, and he had actually restored her to life before they
reached the waterside. She stretched out her arms, opened her eyes,
and cried, "Oh! heavens!" just as her father, aunt, and the parson
came up.

Jones, who had hitherto held this lovely burthen in his arms, now
relinquished his hold; but gave her at the same instant a tender
caress, which, had her senses been then perfectly restored, could not
have escaped her observation. As she expressed, therefore, no
displeasure at this freedom, we suppose she was not sufficiently
recovered from her swoon at the time.

This tragical scene was now converted into a sudden scene of joy. In
this our heroe was certainly the principal character; for as he
probably felt more ecstatic delight in having saved Sophia than she
herself received from being saved, so neither were the congratulations
paid to her equal to what were conferred on Jones, especially by Mr
Western himself, who, after having once or twice embraced his
daughter, fell to hugging and kissing Jones. He called him the
preserver of Sophia, and declared there was nothing, except her, or
his estate, which he would not give him; but upon recollection, he
afterwards excepted his fox-hounds, the Chevalier, and Miss Slouch
(for so he called his favourite mare).

All fears for Sophia being now removed, Jones became the object of the
squire's consideration.--"Come, my lad," says Western, "d'off thy
quoat and wash thy feace; for att in a devilish pickle, I promise
thee. Come, come, wash thyself, and shat go huome with me; and we'l
zee to vind thee another quoat."

Jones immediately complied, threw off his coat, went down to the
water, and washed both his face and bosom; for the latter was as much
exposed and as bloody as the former. But though the water could clear
off the blood, it could not remove the black and blue marks which
Thwackum had imprinted on both his face and breast, and which, being
discerned by Sophia, drew from her a sigh and a look full of
inexpressible tenderness.

Jones received this full in his eyes, and it had infinitely a stronger
effect on him than all the contusions which he had received before. An
effect, however, widely different; for so soft and balmy was it, that,
had all his former blows been stabs, it would for some minutes have
prevented his feeling their smart.

The company now moved backwards, and soon arrived where Thwackum had
got Mr Blifil again on his legs. Here we cannot suppress a pious wish,
that all quarrels were to be decided by those weapons only with which
Nature, knowing what is proper for us, hath supplied us; and that cold
iron was to be used in digging no bowels but those of the earth. Then
would war, the pastime of monarchs, be almost inoffensive, and battles
between great armies might be fought at the particular desire of
several ladies of quality; who, together with the kings themselves,
might be actual spectators of the conflict. Then might the field be
this moment well strewed with human carcasses, and the next, the dead
men, or infinitely the greatest part of them, might get up, like Mr
Bayes's troops, and march off either at the sound of a drum or fiddle,
as should be previously agreed on.

I would avoid, if possible, treating this matter ludicrously, lest
grave men and politicians, whom I know to be offended at a jest, may
cry pish at it; but, in reality, might not a battle be as well decided
by the greater number of broken heads, bloody noses, and black eyes,
as by the greater heaps of mangled and murdered human bodies? Might
not towns be contended for in the same manner? Indeed, this may be
thought too detrimental a scheme to the French interest, since they
would thus lose the advantage they have over other nations in the
superiority of their engineers; but when I consider the gallantry and
generosity of that people, I am persuaded they would never decline
putting themselves upon a par with their adversary; or, as the phrase
is, making themselves his match.

But such reformations are rather to be wished than hoped for: I shall
content myself, therefore, with this short hint, and return to my

Western began now to inquire into the original rise of this quarrel.
To which neither Blifil nor Jones gave any answer; but Thwackum said
surlily, "I believe the cause is not far off; if you beat the bushes
well you may find her."--"Find her?" replied Western: "what! have you
been fighting for a wench?"--"Ask the gentleman in his waistcoat
there," said Thwackum: "he best knows." "Nay then," cries Western, "it
is a wench certainly.--Ah, Tom, Tom, thou art a liquorish dog. But
come, gentlemen, be all friends, and go home with me, and make final
peace over a bottle." "I ask your pardon, sir," says Thwackum: "it is
no such slight matter for a man of my character to be thus injuriously
treated, and buffeted by a boy, only because I would have done my
duty, in endeavouring to detect and bring to justice a wanton harlot;
but, indeed, the principal fault lies in Mr Allworthy and yourself;
for if you put the laws in execution, as you ought to do, you will
soon rid the country of these vermin."

"I would as soon rid the country of foxes," cries Western. "I think we
ought to encourage the recruiting those numbers which we are every day
losing in the war.--But where is she? Prithee, Tom, show me." He then
began to beat about, in the same language and in the same manner as if
he had been beating for a hare; and at last cried out, "Soho! Puss is
not far off. Here's her form, upon my soul; I believe I may cry stole
away." And indeed so he might; for he had now discovered the place
whence the poor girl had, at the beginning of the fray, stolen away,
upon as many feet as a hare generally uses in travelling.

Sophia now desired her father to return home; saying she found herself
very faint, and apprehended a relapse. The squire immediately complied
with his daughter's request (for he was the fondest of parents). He
earnestly endeavoured to prevail with the whole company to go and sup
with him: but Blifil and Thwackum absolutely refused; the former
saying, there were more reasons than he could then mention, why he
must decline this honour; and the latter declaring (perhaps rightly)
that it was not proper for a person of his function to be seen at any
place in his present condition.

Jones was incapable of refusing the pleasure of being with his Sophia;
so on he marched with Squire Western and his ladies, the parson
bringing up the rear. This had, indeed, offered to tarry with his
brother Thwackum, professing his regard for the cloth would not permit
him to depart; but Thwackum would not accept the favour, and, with no
great civility, pushed him after Mr Western.

Thus ended this bloody fray; and thus shall end the fifth book of this



Chapter i.

Of love.

In our last book we have been obliged to deal pretty much with the
passion of love; and in our succeeding book shall be forced to handle
this subject still more largely. It may not therefore in this place be
improper to apply ourselves to the examination of that modern
doctrine, by which certain philosophers, among many other wonderful
discoveries, pretend to have found out, that there is no such passion
in the human breast.

Whether these philosophers be the same with that surprising sect, who
are honourably mentioned by the late Dr Swift, as having, by the mere
force of genius alone, without the least assistance of any kind of
learning, or even reading, discovered that profound and invaluable
secret that there is no God; or whether they are not rather the same
with those who some years since very much alarmed the world, by
showing that there were no such things as virtue or goodness really
existing in human nature, and who deduced our best actions from pride,
I will not here presume to determine. In reality, I am inclined to
suspect, that all these several finders of truth, are the very
identical men who are by others called the finders of gold. The method
used in both these searches after truth and after gold, being indeed
one and the same, viz., the searching, rummaging, and examining into a
nasty place; indeed, in the former instances, into the nastiest of all
places, A BAD MIND.

But though in this particular, and perhaps in their success, the
truth-finder and the gold-finder may very properly be compared
together; yet in modesty, surely, there can be no comparison between
the two; for who ever heard of a gold-finder that had the impudence or
folly to assert, from the ill success of his search, that there was no
such thing as gold in the world? whereas the truth-finder, having
raked out that jakes, his own mind, and being there capable of tracing
no ray of divinity, nor anything virtuous or good, or lovely, or
loving, very fairly, honestly, and logically concludes that no such
things exist in the whole creation.

To avoid, however, all contention, if possible, with these
philosophers, if they will be called so; and to show our own
disposition to accommodate matters peaceably between us, we shall here
make them some concessions, which may possibly put an end to the

First, we will grant that many minds, and perhaps those of the
philosophers, are entirely free from the least traces of such a

Secondly, that what is commonly called love, namely, the desire of
satisfying a voracious appetite with a certain quantity of delicate
white human flesh, is by no means that passion for which I here
contend. This is indeed more properly hunger; and as no glutton is
ashamed to apply the word love to his appetite, and to say he LOVES
such and such dishes; so may the lover of this kind, with equal
propriety, say, he HUNGERS after such and such women.

Thirdly, I will grant, which I believe will be a most acceptable
concession, that this love for which I am an advocate, though it
satisfies itself in a much more delicate manner, doth nevertheless
seek its own satisfaction as much as the grossest of all our

And, lastly, that this love, when it operates towards one of a
different sex, is very apt, towards its complete gratification, to
call in the aid of that hunger which I have mentioned above; and which
it is so far from abating, that it heightens all its delights to a
degree scarce imaginable by those who have never been susceptible of
any other emotions than what have proceeded from appetite alone.

In return to all these concessions, I desire of the philosophers to
grant, that there is in some (I believe in many) human breasts a kind
and benevolent disposition, which is gratified by contributing to the
happiness of others. That in this gratification alone, as in
friendship, in parental and filial affection, as indeed in general
philanthropy, there is a great and exquisite delight. That if we will
not call such disposition love, we have no name for it. That though
the pleasures arising from such pure love may be heightened and
sweetened by the assistance of amorous desires, yet the former can
subsist alone, nor are they destroyed by the intervention of the
latter. Lastly, that esteem and gratitude are the proper motives to
love, as youth and beauty are to desire, and, therefore, though such
desire may naturally cease, when age or sickness overtakes its object;
yet these can have no effect on love, nor ever shake or remove, from a
good mind, that sensation or passion which hath gratitude and esteem
for its basis.

To deny the existence of a passion of which we often see manifest
instances, seems to be very strange and absurd; and can indeed proceed
only from that self-admonition which we have mentioned above: but how
unfair is this! Doth the man who recognizes in his own heart no traces
of avarice or ambition, conclude, therefore, that there are no such
passions in human nature? Why will we not modestly observe the same
rule in judging of the good, as well as the evil of others? Or why, in
any case, will we, as Shakespear phrases it, "put the world in our own

Predominant vanity is, I am afraid, too much concerned here. This is
one instance of that adulation which we bestow on our own minds, and
this almost universally. For there is scarce any man, how much soever
he may despise the character of a flatterer, but will condescend in
the meanest manner to flatter himself.

To those therefore I apply for the truth of the above observations,
whose own minds can bear testimony to what I have advanced.

Examine your heart, my good reader, and resolve whether you do believe
these matters with me. If you do, you may now proceed to their
exemplification in the following pages: if you do not, you have, I
assure you, already read more than you have understood; and it would
be wiser to pursue your business, or your pleasures (such as they
are), than to throw away any more of your time in reading what you can
neither taste nor comprehend. To treat of the effects of love to you,
must be as absurd as to discourse on colours to a man born blind;
since possibly your idea of love may be as absurd as that which we are
told such blind man once entertained of the colour scarlet; that
colour seemed to him to be very much like the sound of a trumpet: and
love probably may, in your opinion, very greatly resemble a dish of
soup, or a surloin of roast-beef.

Chapter ii.

The character of Mrs Western. Her great learning and knowledge of the
world, and an instance of the deep penetration which she derived from
those advantages.

The reader hath seen Mr Western, his sister, and daughter, with young
Jones, and the parson, going together to Mr Western's house, where the
greater part of the company spent the evening with much joy and
festivity. Sophia was indeed the only grave person; for as to Jones,
though love had now gotten entire possession of his heart, yet the
pleasing reflection on Mr Allworthy's recovery, and the presence of
his mistress, joined to some tender looks which she now and then could
not refrain from giving him, so elevated our heroe, that he joined the
mirth of the other three, who were perhaps as good-humoured people as
any in the world.

Sophia retained the same gravity of countenance the next morning at
breakfast; whence she retired likewise earlier than usual, leaving her
father and aunt together. The squire took no notice of this change in
his daughter's disposition. To say the truth, though he was somewhat
of a politician, and had been twice a candidate in the country
interest at an election, he was a man of no great observation. His
sister was a lady of a different turn. She had lived about the court,
and had seen the world. Hence she had acquired all that knowledge
which the said world usually communicates; and was a perfect mistress
of manners, customs, ceremonies, and fashions. Nor did her erudition
stop here. She had considerably improved her mind by study; she had
not only read all the modern plays, operas, oratorios, poems, and
romances--in all which she was a critic; but had gone through Rapin's
History of England, Eachard's Roman History, and many French _Mémoires
pour servir à l'Histoire_: to these she had added most of the
political pamphlets and journals published within the last twenty
years. From which she had attained a very competent skill in politics,
and could discourse very learnedly on the affairs of Europe. She was,
moreover, excellently well skilled in the doctrine of amour, and knew
better than anybody who and who were together; a knowledge which she
the more easily attained, as her pursuit of it was never diverted by
any affairs of her own; for either she had no inclinations, or they
had never been solicited; which last is indeed very probable; for her
masculine person, which was near six foot high, added to her manner
and learning, possibly prevented the other sex from regarding her,
notwithstanding her petticoats, in the light of a woman. However, as
she had considered the matter scientifically, she perfectly well knew,
though she had never practised them, all the arts which fine ladies
use when they desire to give encouragement, or to conceal liking, with
all the long appendage of smiles, ogles, glances, &c., as they are at
present practised in the beau-monde. To sum the whole, no species of
disguise or affectation had escaped her notice; but as to the plain
simple workings of honest nature, as she had never seen any such, she
could know but little of them.

By means of this wonderful sagacity, Mrs Western had now, as she
thought, made a discovery of something in the mind of Sophia. The
first hint of this she took from the behaviour of the young lady in
the field of battle; and the suspicion which she then conceived, was
greatly corroborated by some observations which she had made that
evening and the next morning. However, being greatly cautious to avoid
being found in a mistake, she carried the secret a whole fortnight in
her bosom, giving only some oblique hints, by simpering, winks, nods,
and now and then dropping an obscure word, which indeed sufficiently
alarmed Sophia, but did not at all affect her brother.

Being at length, however, thoroughly satisfied of the truth of her
observation, she took an opportunity, one morning, when she was alone
with her brother, to interrupt one of his whistles in the following

"Pray, brother, have you not observed something very extraordinary in my
niece lately?"--"No, not I," answered Western; "is anything the matter
with the girl?"--"I think there is," replied she; "and something of
much consequence too."--"Why, she doth not complain of anything,"
cries Western; "and she hath had the small-pox."--"Brother," returned
she, "girls are liable to other distempers besides the small-pox, and
sometimes possibly to much worse." Here Western interrupted her with
much earnestness, and begged her, if anything ailed his daughter, to
acquaint him immediately; adding, "she knew he loved her more than his
own soul, and that he would send to the world's end for the best
physician to her." "Nay, nay," answered she, smiling, "the distemper
is not so terrible; but I believe, brother, you are convinced I know
the world, and I promise you I was never more deceived in my life, if
my niece be not most desperately in love."--"How! in love!" cries
Western, in a passion; "in love, without acquainting me! I'll
disinherit her; I'll turn her out of doors, stark naked, without a
farthing. Is all my kindness vor 'ur, and vondness o'ur come to this,
to fall in love without asking me leave?"--"But you will not,"
answered Mrs Western, "turn this daughter, whom you love better than
your own soul, out of doors, before you know whether you shall approve
her choice. Suppose she should have fixed on the very person whom you
yourself would wish, I hope you would not be angry then?"--"No, no,"
cries Western, "that would make a difference. If she marries the man I
would ha' her, she may love whom she pleases, I shan't trouble my head
about that." "That is spoken," answered the sister, "like a sensible
man; but I believe the very person she hath chosen would be the very
person you would choose for her. I will disclaim all knowledge of the
world, if it is not so; and I believe, brother, you will allow I have
some."--"Why, lookee, sister," said Western, "I do believe you have as
much as any woman; and to be sure those are women's matters. You know
I don't love to hear you talk about politics; they belong to us, and
petticoats should not meddle: but come, who is the man?"--"Marry!"
said she, "you may find him out yourself if you please. You, who are
so great a politician, can be at no great loss. The judgment which can
penetrate into the cabinets of princes, and discover the secret
springs which move the great state wheels in all the political
machines of Europe, must surely, with very little difficulty, find out
what passes in the rude uninformed mind of a girl."--"Sister," cries
the squire, "I have often warn'd you not to talk the court gibberish
to me. I tell you, I don't understand the lingo: but I can read a
journal, or the _London Evening Post._ Perhaps, indeed, there may be
now and tan a verse which I can't make much of, because half the
letters are left out; yet I know very well what is meant by that, and
that our affairs don't go so well as they should do, because of
bribery and corruption."--"I pity your country ignorance from my
heart," cries the lady.--"Do you?" answered Western; "and I pity your
town learning; I had rather be anything than a courtier, and a
Presbyterian, and a Hanoverian too, as some people, I believe,
are."--"If you mean me," answered she, "you know I am a woman,
brother; and it signifies nothing what I am. Besides--"--"I do know
you are a woman," cries the squire, "and it's well for thee that art
one; if hadst been a man, I promise thee I had lent thee a flick long
ago."--"Ay, there," said she, "in that flick lies all your fancied
superiority. Your bodies, and not your brains, are stronger than ours.
Believe me, it is well for you that you are able to beat us; or, such
is the superiority of our understanding, we should make all of you
what the brave, and wise, and witty, and polite are already--our
slaves."--"I am glad I know your mind," answered the squire. "But
we'll talk more of this matter another time. At present, do tell me
what man is it you mean about my daughter?"--"Hold a moment," said
she, "while I digest that sovereign contempt I have for your sex; or
else I ought to be angry too with you. There--I have made a shift to
gulp it down. And now, good politic sir, what think you of Mr Blifil?
Did she not faint away on seeing him lie breathless on the ground? Did
she not, after he was recovered, turn pale again the moment we came up
to that part of the field where he stood? And pray what else should be
the occasion of all her melancholy that night at supper, the next
morning, and indeed ever since?"--"'Fore George!" cries the squire,
"now you mind me on't, I remember it all. It is certainly so, and I am
glad on't with all my heart. I knew Sophy was a good girl, and would
not fall in love to make me angry. I was never more rejoiced in my
life; for nothing can lie so handy together as our two estates. I had
this matter in my head some time ago: for certainly the two estates
are in a manner joined together in matrimony already, and it would be
a thousand pities to part them. It is true, indeed, there be larger
estates in the kingdom, but not in this county, and I had rather bate
something, than marry my daughter among strangers and foreigners.
Besides, most o' zuch great estates be in the hands of lords, and I
heate the very name of _themmun_. Well but, sister, what would you
advise me to do; for I tell you women know these matters better than
we do?"--"Oh, your humble servant, sir," answered the lady: "we are
obliged to you for allowing us a capacity in anything. Since you are
pleased, then, most politic sir, to ask my advice, I think you may
propose the match to Allworthy yourself. There is no indecorum in the
proposal's coming from the parent of either side. King Alcinous, in Mr
Pope's Odyssey, offers his daughter to Ulysses. I need not caution so
politic a person not to say that your daughter is in love; that would
indeed be against all rules."--"Well," said the squire, "I will
propose it; but I shall certainly lend un a flick, if he should refuse
me." "Fear not," cries Mrs Western; "the match is too advantageous to
be refused." "I don't know that," answered the squire: "Allworthy is a
queer b--ch, and money hath no effect o'un." "Brother," said the lady,
"your politics astonish me. Are you really to be imposed on by
professions? Do you think Mr Allworthy hath more contempt for money
than other men because he professes more? Such credulity would better
become one of us weak women, than that wise sex which heaven hath
formed for politicians. Indeed, brother, you would make a fine plenipo
to negotiate with the French. They would soon persuade you, that they
take towns out of mere defensive principles." "Sister," answered the
squire, with much scorn, "let your friends at court answer for the
towns taken; as you are a woman, I shall lay no blame upon you; for I
suppose they are wiser than to trust women with secrets." He
accompanied this with so sarcastical a laugh, that Mrs Western could
bear no longer. She had been all this time fretted in a tender part
(for she was indeed very deeply skilled in these matters, and very
violent in them), and therefore, burst forth in a rage, declared her
brother to be both a clown and a blockhead, and that she would stay no
longer in his house.

The squire, though perhaps he had never read Machiavel, was, however,
in many points, a perfect politician. He strongly held all those wise
tenets, which are so well inculcated in that Politico-Peripatetic
school of Exchange-alley. He knew the just value and only use of
money, viz., to lay it up. He was likewise well skilled in the exact
value of reversions, expectations, &c., and had often considered the
amount of his sister's fortune, and the chance which he or his
posterity had of inheriting it. This he was infinitely too wise to
sacrifice to a trifling resentment. When he found, therefore, he had
carried matters too far, he began to think of reconciling them; which
was no very difficult task, as the lady had great affection for her
brother, and still greater for her niece; and though too susceptible
of an affront offered to her skill in politics, on which she much
valued herself, was a woman of a very extraordinary good and sweet

Having first, therefore, laid violent hands on the horses, for whose
escape from the stable no place but the window was left open, he next
applied himself to his sister; softened and soothed her, by unsaying
all he had said, and by assertions directly contrary to those which
had incensed her. Lastly, he summoned the eloquence of Sophia to his
assistance, who, besides a most graceful and winning address, had the
advantage of being heard with great favour and partiality by her aunt.

The result of the whole was a kind smile from Mrs Western, who said,
"Brother, you are absolutely a perfect Croat; but as those have their
use in the army of the empress queen, so you likewise have some good
in you. I will therefore once more sign a treaty of peace with you,
and see that you do not infringe it on your side; at least, as you are
so excellent a politician, I may expect you will keep your leagues,
like the French, till your interest calls upon you to break them."

Chapter iii.

Containing two defiances to the critics.

The squire having settled matters with his sister, as we have seen in
the last chapter, was so greatly impatient to communicate the proposal
to Allworthy, that Mrs Western had the utmost difficulty to prevent
him from visiting that gentleman in his sickness, for this purpose.

Mr Allworthy had been engaged to dine with Mr Western at the time when
he was taken ill. He was therefore no sooner discharged out of the
custody of physic, but he thought (as was usual with him on all
occasions, both the highest and the lowest) of fulfilling his

In the interval between the time of the dialogue in the last chapter,
and this day of public entertainment, Sophia had, from certain obscure
hints thrown out by her aunt, collected some apprehension that the
sagacious lady suspected her passion for Jones. She now resolved to
take this opportunity of wiping out all such suspicion, and for that
purpose to put an entire constraint on her behaviour.

First, she endeavoured to conceal a throbbing melancholy heart with
the utmost sprightliness in her countenance, and the highest gaiety in
her manner. Secondly, she addressed her whole discourse to Mr Blifil,
and took not the least notice of poor Jones the whole day.

The squire was so delighted with this conduct of his daughter, that he
scarce eat any dinner, and spent almost his whole time in watching
opportunities of conveying signs of his approbation by winks and nods
to his sister; who was not at first altogether so pleased with what
she saw as was her brother.

In short, Sophia so greatly overacted her part, that her aunt was at
first staggered, and began to suspect some affectation in her niece;
but as she was herself a woman of great art, so she soon attributed
this to extreme art in Sophia. She remembered the many hints she had
given her niece concerning her being in love, and imagined the young
lady had taken this way to rally her out of her opinion, by an
overacted civility: a notion that was greatly corroborated by the
excessive gaiety with which the whole was accompanied. We cannot here
avoid remarking, that this conjecture would have been better founded
had Sophia lived ten years in the air of Grosvenor Square, where young
ladies do learn a wonderful knack of rallying and playing with that
passion, which is a mighty serious thing in woods and groves an
hundred miles distant from London.

To say the truth, in discovering the deceit of others, it matters much
that our own art be wound up, if I may use the expression, in the same
key with theirs: for very artful men sometimes miscarry by fancying
others wiser, or, in other words, greater knaves, than they really
are. As this observation is pretty deep, I will illustrate it by the
following short story. Three countrymen were pursuing a Wiltshire
thief through Brentford. The simplest of them seeing "The Wiltshire
House," written under a sign, advised his companions to enter it, for
there most probably they would find their countryman. The second, who
was wiser, laughed at this simplicity; but the third, who was wiser
still, answered, "Let us go in, however, for he may think we should
not suspect him of going amongst his own countrymen." They accordingly
went in and searched the house, and by that means missed overtaking
the thief, who was at that time but a little way before them; and who,
as they all knew, but had never once reflected, could not read.

The reader will pardon a digression in which so invaluable a secret is
communicated, since every gamester will agree how necessary it is to
know exactly the play of another, in order to countermine him. This
will, moreover, afford a reason why the wiser man, as is often seen,
is the bubble of the weaker, and why many simple and innocent
characters are so generally misunderstood and misrepresented; but what
is most material, this will account for the deceit which Sophia put on
her politic aunt.

Dinner being ended, and the company retired into the garden, Mr
Western, who was thoroughly convinced of the certainty of what his
sister had told him, took Mr Allworthy aside, and very bluntly
proposed a match between Sophia and young Mr Blifil.

Mr Allworthy was not one of those men whose hearts flutter at any
unexpected and sudden tidings of worldly profit. His mind was, indeed,
tempered with that philosophy which becomes a man and a Christian. He
affected no absolute superiority to all pleasure and pain, to all joy
and grief; but was not at the same time to be discomposed and ruffled
by every accidental blast, by every smile or frown of fortune. He
received, therefore, Mr Western's proposal without any visible
emotion, or without any alteration of countenance. He said the
alliance was such as he sincerely wished; then launched forth into a
very just encomium on the young lady's merit; acknowledged the offer
to be advantageous in point of fortune; and after thanking Mr Western
for the good opinion he had professed of his nephew, concluded, that
if the young people liked each other, he should be very desirous to
complete the affair.

Western was a little disappointed at Mr Allworthy's answer, which was
not so warm as he expected. He treated the doubt whether the young
people might like one another with great contempt, saying, "That
parents were the best judges of proper matches for their children:
that for his part he should insist on the most resigned obedience from
his daughter: and if any young fellow could refuse such a bed-fellow,
he was his humble servant, and hoped there was no harm done."

Allworthy endeavoured to soften this resentment by many eulogiums on
Sophia, declaring he had no doubt but that Mr Blifil would very gladly
receive the offer; but all was ineffectual; he could obtain no other
answer from the squire but--"I say no more--I humbly hope there's no
harm done--that's all." Which words he repeated at least a hundred
times before they parted.

Allworthy was too well acquainted with his neighbour to be offended at
this behaviour; and though he was so averse to the rigour which some
parents exercise on their children in the article of marriage, that he
had resolved never to force his nephew's inclinations, he was
nevertheless much pleased with the prospect of this union; for the
whole country resounded the praises of Sophia, and he had himself
greatly admired the uncommon endowments of both her mind and person.

To which I believe we may add, the consideration of her vast fortune,
which, though he was too sober to be intoxicated with it, he was too
sensible to despise.

And here, in defiance of all the barking critics in the world, I must
and will introduce a digression concerning true wisdom, of which Mr
Allworthy was in reality as great a pattern as he was of goodness.

True wisdom then, notwithstanding all which Mr Hogarth's poor poet may
have writ against riches, and in spite of all which any rich well-fed
divine may have preached against pleasure, consists not in the
contempt of either of these. A man may have as much wisdom in the
possession of an affluent fortune, as any beggar in the streets; or
may enjoy a handsome wife or a hearty friend, and still remain as wise
as any sour popish recluse, who buries all his social faculties, and
starves his belly while he well lashes his back.

To say truth, the wisest man is the likeliest to possess all worldly
blessings in an eminent degree; for as that moderation which wisdom
prescribes is the surest way to useful wealth, so can it alone qualify
us to taste many pleasures. The wise man gratifies every appetite and
every passion, while the fool sacrifices all the rest to pall and
satiate one.

It may be objected, that very wise men have been notoriously
avaricious. I answer, Not wise in that instance. It may likewise be
said, That the wisest men have been in their youth immoderately fond
of pleasure. I answer, They were not wise then.

Wisdom, in short, whose lessons have been represented as so hard to
learn by those who never were at her school, only teaches us to extend
a simple maxim universally known and followed even in the lowest life,
a little farther than that life carries it. And this is, not to buy at
too dear a price.

Now, whoever takes this maxim abroad with him into the grand market of
the world, and constantly applies it to honours, to riches, to
pleasures, and to every other commodity which that market affords, is,
I will venture to affirm, a wise man, and must be so acknowledged in
the worldly sense of the word; for he makes the best of bargains,
since in reality he purchases everything at the price only of a little
trouble, and carries home all the good things I have mentioned, while
he keeps his health, his innocence, and his reputation, the common
prices which are paid for them by others, entire and to himself.

From this moderation, likewise, he learns two other lessons, which
complete his character. First, never to be intoxicated when he hath
made the best bargain, nor dejected when the market is empty, or when
its commodities are too dear for his purchase.

But I must remember on what subject I am writing, and not trespass too
far on the patience of a good-natured critic. Here, therefore, I put
an end to the chapter.

Chapter iv.

Containing sundry curious matters.

As soon as Mr Allworthy returned home, he took Mr Blifil apart, and
after some preface, communicated to him the proposal which had been
made by Mr Western, and at the same time informed him how agreeable
this match would be to himself.

The charms of Sophia had not made the least impression on Blifil; not
that his heart was pre-engaged; neither was he totally insensible of
beauty, or had any aversion to women; but his appetites were by nature
so moderate, that he was able, by philosophy, or by study, or by some
other method, easily to subdue them: and as to that passion which we
have treated of in the first chapter of this book, he had not the
least tincture of it in his whole composition.

But though he was so entirely free from that mixed passion, of which
we there treated, and of which the virtues and beauty of Sophia formed
so notable an object; yet was he altogether as well furnished with
some other passions, that promised themselves very full gratification
in the young lady's fortune. Such were avarice and ambition, which
divided the dominion of his mind between them. He had more than once
considered the possession of this fortune as a very desirable thing,
and had entertained some distant views concerning it; but his own
youth, and that of the young lady, and indeed principally a reflection
that Mr Western might marry again, and have more children, had
restrained him from too hasty or eager a pursuit.

This last and most material objection was now in great measure
removed, as the proposal came from Mr Western himself. Blifil,
therefore, after a very short hesitation, answered Mr Allworthy, that
matrimony was a subject on which he had not yet thought; but that he
was so sensible of his friendly and fatherly care, that he should in
all things submit himself to his pleasure.

Allworthy was naturally a man of spirit, and his present gravity arose
from true wisdom and philosophy, not from any original phlegm in his
disposition; for he had possessed much fire in his youth, and had
married a beautiful woman for love. He was not therefore greatly
pleased with this cold answer of his nephew; nor could he help
launching forth into the praises of Sophia, and expressing some wonder
that the heart of a young man could be impregnable to the force of
such charms, unless it was guarded by some prior affection.

Blifil assured him he had no such guard; and then proceeded to
discourse so wisely and religiously on love and marriage, that he
would have stopt the mouth of a parent much less devoutly inclined
than was his uncle. In the end, the good man was satisfied that his
nephew, far from having any objections to Sophia, had that esteem for
her, which in sober and virtuous minds is the sure foundation of
friendship and love. And as he doubted not but the lover would, in a
little time, become altogether as agreeable to his mistress, he
foresaw great happiness arising to all parties by so proper and
desirable an union. With Mr Blifil's consent therefore he wrote the
next morning to Mr Western, acquainting him that his nephew had very
thankfully and gladly received the proposal, and would be ready to
wait on the young lady, whenever she should be pleased to accept his

Western was much pleased with this letter, and immediately returned an
answer; in which, without having mentioned a word to his daughter, he
appointed that very afternoon for opening the scene of courtship.

As soon as he had dispatched this messenger, he went in quest of his
sister, whom he found reading and expounding the _Gazette_ to parson
Supple. To this exposition he was obliged to attend near a quarter of
an hour, though with great violence to his natural impetuosity, before
he was suffered to speak. At length, however, he found an opportunity
of acquainting the lady, that he had business of great consequence to
impart to her; to which she answered, "Brother, I am entirely at your
service. Things look so well in the north, that I was never in a
better humour."

The parson then withdrawing, Western acquainted her with all which had
passed, and desired her to communicate the affair to Sophia, which she
readily and chearfully undertook; though perhaps her brother was a
little obliged to that agreeable northern aspect which had so
delighted her, that he heard no comment on his proceedings; for they
were certainly somewhat too hasty and violent.

Chapter v.

In which is related what passed between Sophia and her aunt.

Sophia was in her chamber, reading, when her aunt came in. The moment
she saw Mrs Western, she shut the book with so much eagerness, that
the good lady could not forbear asking her, What book that was which
she seemed so much afraid of showing? "Upon my word, madam," answered
Sophia, "it is a book which I am neither ashamed nor afraid to own I
have read. It is the production of a young lady of fashion, whose good
understanding, I think, doth honour to her sex, and whose good heart
is an honour to human nature." Mrs Western then took up the book, and
immediately after threw it down, saying--"Yes, the author is of a very
good family; but she is not much among people one knows. I have never
read it; for the best judges say, there is not much in it."--"I dare
not, madam, set up my own opinion," says Sophia, "against the best
judges, but there appears to me a great deal of human nature in it;
and in many parts so much true tenderness and delicacy, that it hath
cost me many a tear."--"Ay, and do you love to cry then?" says the
aunt. "I love a tender sensation," answered the niece, "and would pay
the price of a tear for it at any time."--"Well, but show me," said
the aunt, "what was you reading when I came in; there was something
very tender in that, I believe, and very loving too. You blush, my
dear Sophia. Ah! child, you should read books which would teach you a
little hypocrisy, which would instruct you how to hide your thoughts a
little better."--"I hope, madam," answered Sophia, "I have no thoughts
which I ought to be ashamed of discovering."--"Ashamed! no," cries the
aunt, "I don't think you have any thoughts which you ought to be
ashamed of; and yet, child, you blushed just now when I mentioned the
word loving. Dear Sophy, be assured you have not one thought which I
am not well acquainted with; as well, child, as the French are with
our motions, long before we put them in execution. Did you think,
child, because you have been able to impose upon your father, that you
could impose upon me? Do you imagine I did not know the reason of your
overacting all that friendship for Mr Blifil yesterday? I have seen a
little too much of the world, to be so deceived. Nay, nay, do not
blush again. I tell you it is a passion you need not be ashamed of. It
is a passion I myself approve, and have already brought your father
into the approbation of it. Indeed, I solely consider your
inclination; for I would always have that gratified, if possible,
though one may sacrifice higher prospects. Come, I have news which
will delight your very soul. Make me your confident, and I will
undertake you shall be happy to the very extent of your wishes." "La,
madam," says Sophia, looking more foolishly than ever she did in her
life, "I know not what to say--why, madam, should you suspect?"--"Nay,
no dishonesty," returned Mrs Western. "Consider, you are speaking to
one of your own sex, to an aunt, and I hope you are convinced you
speak to a friend. Consider, you are only revealing to me what I know
already, and what I plainly saw yesterday, through that most artful of
all disguises, which you had put on, and which must have deceived any
one who had not perfectly known the world. Lastly, consider it is a
passion which I highly approve." "La, madam," says Sophia, "you come
upon one so unawares, and on a sudden. To be sure, madam, I am not
blind--and certainly, if it be a fault to see all human perfections
assembled together--but is it possible my father and you, madam, can
see with my eyes?" "I tell you," answered the aunt, "we do entirely
approve; and this very afternoon your father hath appointed for you to
receive your lover." "My father, this afternoon!" cries Sophia, with
the blood starting from her face.--"Yes, child," said the aunt, "this
afternoon. You know the impetuosity of my brother's temper. I
acquainted him with the passion which I first discovered in you that
evening when you fainted away in the field. I saw it in your fainting.
I saw it immediately upon your recovery. I saw it that evening at
supper, and the next morning at breakfast (you know, child, I have
seen the world). Well, I no sooner acquainted my brother, but he
immediately wanted to propose it to Allworthy. He proposed it
yesterday, Allworthy consented (as to be sure he must with joy), and
this afternoon, I tell you, you are to put on all your best airs."
"This afternoon!" cries Sophia. "Dear aunt, you frighten me out of my
senses." "O, my dear," said the aunt, "you will soon come to yourself
again; for he is a charming young fellow, that's the truth on't."
"Nay, I will own," says Sophia, "I know none with such perfections. So
brave, and yet so gentle; so witty, yet so inoffensive; so humane, so
civil, so genteel, so handsome! What signifies his being base born,
when compared with such qualifications as these?" "Base born? What do
you mean?" said the aunt, "Mr Blifil base born!" Sophia turned
instantly pale at this name, and faintly repeated it. Upon which the
aunt cried, "Mr Blifil--ay, Mr Blifil, of whom else have we been
talking?" "Good heavens," answered Sophia, ready to sink, "of Mr
Jones, I thought; I am sure I know no other who deserves--" "I
protest," cries the aunt, "you frighten me in your turn. Is it Mr
Jones, and not Mr Blifil, who is the object of your affection?" "Mr
Blifil!" repeated Sophia. "Sure it is impossible you can be in
earnest; if you are, I am the most miserable woman alive." Mrs Western
now stood a few moments silent, while sparks of fiery rage flashed
from her eyes. At length, collecting all her force of voice, she
thundered forth in the following articulate sounds:

"And is it possible you can think of disgracing your family by allying
yourself to a bastard? Can the blood of the Westerns submit to such
contamination? If you have not sense sufficient to restrain such
monstrous inclinations, I thought the pride of our family would have
prevented you from giving the least encouragement to so base an
affection; much less did I imagine you would ever have had the
assurance to own it to my face."

"Madam," answered Sophia, trembling, "what I have said you have
extorted from me. I do not remember to have ever mentioned the name of
Mr Jones with approbation to any one before; nor should I now had I
not conceived he had your approbation. Whatever were my thoughts of
that poor, unhappy young man, I intended to have carried them with me
to my grave--to that grave where only now, I find, I am to seek
repose." Here she sunk down in her chair, drowned in her tears, and,
in all the moving silence of unutterable grief, presented a spectacle
which must have affected almost the hardest heart.

All this tender sorrow, however, raised no compassion in her aunt. On
the contrary, she now fell into the most violent rage.--"And I would
rather," she cried, in a most vehement voice, "follow you to your
grave, than I would see you disgrace yourself and your family by such
a match. O Heavens! could I have ever suspected that I should live to
hear a niece of mine declare a passion for such a fellow? You are the
first--yes, Miss Western, you are the first of your name who ever
entertained so grovelling a thought. A family so noted for the
prudence of its women"--here she ran on a full quarter of an hour,
till, having exhausted her breath rather than her rage, she concluded
with threatening to go immediately and acquaint her brother.

Sophia then threw herself at her feet, and laying hold of her hands,
begged her with tears to conceal what she had drawn from her; urging
the violence of her father's temper, and protesting that no
inclinations of hers should ever prevail with her to do anything which
might offend him.

Mrs Western stood a moment looking at her, and then, having
recollected herself, said, "That on one consideration only she would
keep the secret from her brother; and this was, that Sophia should
promise to entertain Mr Blifil that very afternoon as her lover, and
to regard him as the person who was to be her husband."

Poor Sophia was too much in her aunt's power to deny her anything
positively; she was obliged to promise that she would see Mr Blifil,
and be as civil to him as possible; but begged her aunt that the match
might not be hurried on. She said, "Mr Blifil was by no means
agreeable to her, and she hoped her father would be prevailed on not
to make her the most wretched of women."

Mrs Western assured her, "That the match was entirely agreed upon, and
that nothing could or should prevent it. I must own," said she, "I
looked on it as on a matter of indifference; nay, perhaps, had some
scruples about it before, which were actually got over by my thinking
it highly agreeable to your own inclinations; but now I regard it as
the most eligible thing in the world: nor shall there be, if I can
prevent it, a moment of time lost on the occasion."

Sophia replied, "Delay at least, madam, I may expect from both your
goodness and my father's. Surely you will give me time to endeavour to
get the better of so strong a disinclination as I have at present to
this person."

The aunt answered, "She knew too much of the world to be so deceived;
that as she was sensible another man had her affections, she should
persuade Mr Western to hasten the match as much as possible. It would
be bad politics, indeed," added she, "to protract a siege when the
enemy's army is at hand, and in danger of relieving it. No, no,
Sophy," said she, "as I am convinced you have a violent passion which
you can never satisfy with honour, I will do all I can to put your
honour out of the care of your family: for when you are married those
matters will belong only to the consideration of your husband. I hope,
child, you will always have prudence enough to act as becomes you; but
if you should not, marriage hath saved many a woman from ruin."

Sophia well understood what her aunt meant; but did not think proper
to make her an answer. However, she took a resolution to see Mr
Blifil, and to behave to him as civilly as she could, for on that
condition only she obtained a promise from her aunt to keep secret the
liking which her ill fortune, rather than any scheme of Mrs Western,
had unhappily drawn from her.

Chapter vi.

Containing a dialogue between Sophia and Mrs Honour, which may a
little relieve those tender affections which the foregoing scene may
have raised in the mind of a good-natured reader.

Mrs Western having obtained that promise from her niece which we have
seen in the last chapter, withdrew; and presently after arrived Mrs
Honour. She was at work in a neighbouring apartment, and had been
summoned to the keyhole by some vociferation in the preceding
dialogue, where she had continued during the remaining part of it. At
her entry into the room, she found Sophia standing motionless, with
the tears trickling from her eyes. Upon which she immediately ordered
a proper quantity of tears into her own eyes, and then began, "O
Gemini, my dear lady, what is the matter?"--"Nothing," cries Sophia.
"Nothing! O dear Madam!" answers Honour, "you must not tell me that,
when your ladyship is in this taking, and when there hath been such a
preamble between your ladyship and Madam Western."--"Don't teaze me,"
cries Sophia; "I tell you nothing is the matter. Good heavens! why was
I born?"--"Nay, madam," says Mrs Honour, "you shall never persuade me
that your la'ship can lament yourself so for nothing. To be sure I am
but a servant; but to be sure I have been always faithful to your
la'ship, and to be sure I would serve your la'ship with my life."--"My
dear Honour," says Sophia, "'tis not in thy power to be of any service
to me. I am irretrievably undone."--"Heaven forbid!" answered the
waiting-woman; "but if I can't be of any service to you, pray tell me,
madam--it will be some comfort to me to know--pray, dear ma'am, tell
me what's the matter."--"My father," cries Sophia, "is going to marry
me to a man I both despise and hate."--"O dear, ma'am," answered the
other, "who is this wicked man? for to be sure he is very bad, or your
la'ship would not despise him."--"His name is poison to my tongue,"
replied Sophia: "thou wilt know it too soon." Indeed, to confess the
truth, she knew it already, and therefore was not very inquisitive as
to that point. She then proceeded thus: "I don't pretend to give your
la'ship advice, whereof your la'ship knows much better than I can
pretend to, being but a servant; but, i-fackins! no father in England
should marry me against my consent. And, to be sure, the 'squire is so
good, that if he did but know your la'ship despises and hates the
young man, to be sure he would not desire you to marry him. And if
your la'ship would but give me leave to tell my master so. To be sure,
it would be more properer to come from your own mouth; but as your
la'ship doth not care to foul your tongue with his nasty name--"--"You
are mistaken, Honour," says Sophia; "my father was determined before
he ever thought fit to mention it to me."--"More shame for him," cries
Honour: "you are to go to bed to him, and not master: and thof a man
may be a very proper man, yet every woman mayn't think him handsome
alike. I am sure my master would never act in this manner of his own
head. I wish some people would trouble themselves only with what
belongs to them; they would not, I believe, like to be served so, if
it was their own case; for though I am a maid, I can easily believe as
how all men are not equally agreeable. And what signifies your la'ship
having so great a fortune, if you can't please yourself with the man
you think most handsomest? Well, I say nothing; but to be sure it is a
pity some folks had not been better born; nay, as for that matter, I
should not mind it myself; but then there is not so much money; and
what of that? your la'ship hath money enough for both; and where can
your la'ship bestow your fortune better? for to be sure every one must
allow that he is the most handsomest, charmingest, finest, tallest,
properest man in the world."--"What do you mean by running on in this
manner to me?" cries Sophia, with a very grave countenance. "Have I
ever given any encouragement for these liberties?"--"Nay, ma'am, I ask
pardon; I meant no harm," answered she; "but to be sure the poor
gentleman hath run in my head ever since I saw him this morning. To be
sure, if your la'ship had but seen him just now, you must have pitied
him. Poor gentleman! I wishes some misfortune hath not happened to
him; for he hath been walking about with his arms across, and looking
so melancholy, all this morning: I vow and protest it made me almost
cry to see him."--"To see whom?" says Sophia. "Poor Mr Jones,"
answered Honour. "See him! why, where did you see him?" cries Sophia.
"By the canal, ma'am," says Honour. "There he hath been walking all
this morning, and at last there he laid himself down: I believe he
lies there still. To be sure, if it had not been for my modesty, being
a maid, as I am, I should have gone and spoke to him. Do, ma'am, let
me go and see, only for a fancy, whether he is there still."--"Pugh!"
says Sophia. "There! no, no: what should he do there? He is gone
before this time, to be sure. Besides, why--what--why should you go to
see? besides, I want you for something else. Go, fetch me my hat and
gloves. I shall walk with my aunt in the grove before dinner." Honour
did immediately as she was bid, and Sophia put her hat on; when,
looking in the glass, she fancied the ribbon with which her hat was
tied did not become her, and so sent her maid back again for a ribbon
of a different colour; and then giving Mrs Honour repeated charges not
to leave her work on any account, as she said it was in violent haste,
and must be finished that very day, she muttered something more about
going to the grove, and then sallied out the contrary way, and walked,
as fast as her tender trembling limbs could carry her, directly
towards the canal.

Jones had been there as Mrs Honour had told her; he had indeed spent
two hours there that morning in melancholy contemplation on his
Sophia, and had gone out from the garden at one door the moment she
entered it at another. So that those unlucky minutes which had been
spent in changing the ribbons, had prevented the lovers from meeting
at this time;--a most unfortunate accident, from which my fair readers
will not fail to draw a very wholesome lesson. And here I strictly
forbid all male critics to intermeddle with a circumstance which I
have recounted only for the sake of the ladies, and upon which they
only are at liberty to comment.

Chapter vii.

A picture of formal courtship in miniature, as it always ought to be
drawn, and a scene of a tenderer kind painted at full length.

It was well remarked by one (and perhaps by more), that misfortunes do
not come single. This wise maxim was now verified by Sophia, who was
not only disappointed of seeing the man she loved, but had the
vexation of being obliged to dress herself out, in order to receive a
visit from the man she hated.

That afternoon Mr Western, for the first time, acquainted his daughter
with his intention; telling her, he knew very well that she had heard
it before from her aunt. Sophia looked very grave upon this, nor could
she prevent a few pearls from stealing into her eyes. "Come, come,"
says Western, "none of your maidenish airs; I know all; I assure you
sister hath told me all."

"Is it possible," says Sophia, "that my aunt can have betrayed me
already?"--"Ay, ay," says Western; "betrayed you! ay. Why, you
betrayed yourself yesterday at dinner. You showed your fancy very
plainly, I think. But you young girls never know what you would be at.
So you cry because I am going to marry you to the man you are in love
with! Your mother, I remember, whimpered and whined just in the same
manner; but it was all over within twenty-four hours after we were
married: Mr Blifil is a brisk young man, and will soon put an end to
your squeamishness. Come, chear up, chear up; I expect un every

Sophia was now convinced that her aunt had behaved honourably to her:
and she determined to go through that disagreeable afternoon with as
much resolution as possible, and without giving the least suspicion in
the world to her father.

Mr Blifil soon arrived; and Mr Western soon after withdrawing, left
the young couple together.

Here a long silence of near a quarter of an hour ensued; for the
gentleman who was to begin the conversation had all the unbecoming
modesty which consists in bashfulness. He often attempted to speak,
and as often suppressed his words just at the very point of utterance.
At last out they broke in a torrent of far-fetched and high-strained
compliments, which were answered on her side by downcast looks, half
bows, and civil monosyllables. Blifil, from his inexperience in the
ways of women, and from his conceit of himself, took this behaviour
for a modest assent to his courtship; and when, to shorten a scene
which she could no longer support, Sophia rose up and left the room,
he imputed that, too, merely to bashfulness, and comforted himself
that he should soon have enough of her company.

He was indeed perfectly well satisfied with his prospect of success;
for as to that entire and absolute possession of the heart of his
mistress which romantic lovers require, the very idea of it never
entered his head. Her fortune and her person were the sole objects of
his wishes, of which he made no doubt soon to obtain the absolute
property; as Mr Western's mind was so earnestly bent on the match; and
as he well knew the strict obedience which Sophia was always ready to
pay to her father's will, and the greater still which her father would
exact, if there was occasion. This authority, therefore, together with
the charms which he fancied in his own person and conversation, could
not fail, he thought, of succeeding with a young lady, whose
inclinations were, he doubted not, entirely disengaged.

Of Jones he certainly had not even the least jealousy; and I have
often thought it wonderful that he had not. Perhaps he imagined the
character which Jones bore all over the country (how justly, let the
reader determine), of being one of the wildest fellows in England,
might render him odious to a lady of the most exemplary modesty.
Perhaps his suspicions might be laid asleep by the behaviour of
Sophia, and of Jones himself, when they were all in company together.
Lastly, and indeed principally, he was well assured there was not
another self in the case. He fancied that he knew Jones to the bottom,
and had in reality a great contempt for his understanding, for not
being more attached to his own interest. He had no apprehension that
Jones was in love with Sophia; and as for any lucrative motives, he
imagined they would sway very little with so silly a fellow. Blifil,
moreover, thought the affair of Molly Seagrim still went on, and
indeed believed it would end in marriage; for Jones really loved him
from his childhood, and had kept no secret from him, till his
behaviour on the sickness of Mr Allworthy had entirely alienated his
heart; and it was by means of the quarrel which had ensued on this
occasion, and which was not yet reconciled, that Mr Blifil knew
nothing of the alteration which had happened in the affection which
Jones had formerly borne towards Molly.

From these reasons, therefore, Mr Blifil saw no bar to his success
with Sophia. He concluded her behaviour was like that of all other
young ladies on a first visit from a lover, and it had indeed entirely
answered his expectations.

Mr Western took care to way-lay the lover at his exit from his
mistress. He found him so elevated with his success, so enamoured with
his daughter, and so satisfied with her reception of him, that the old
gentleman began to caper and dance about his hall, and by many other
antic actions to express the extravagance of his joy; for he had not
the least command over any of his passions; and that which had at any
time the ascendant in his mind hurried him to the wildest excesses.

As soon as Blifil was departed, which was not till after many hearty
kisses and embraces bestowed on him by Western, the good squire went
instantly in quest of his daughter, whom he no sooner found than he
poured forth the most extravagant raptures, bidding her chuse what
clothes and jewels she pleased; and declaring that he had no other use
for fortune but to make her happy. He then caressed her again and
again with the utmost profusion of fondness, called her by the most
endearing names, and protested she was his only joy on earth.

Sophia perceiving her father in this fit of affection, which she did
not absolutely know the reason of (for fits of fondness were not
unusual to him, though this was rather more violent than ordinary),
thought she should never have a better opportunity of disclosing
herself than at present, as far at least as regarded Mr Blifil; and
she too well foresaw the necessity which she should soon be under of
coming to a full explanation. After having thanked the squire,
therefore, for all his professions of kindness, she added, with a look
full of inexpressible softness, "And is it possible my papa can be so
good to place all his joy in his Sophy's happiness?" which Western
having confirmed by a great oath, and a kiss; she then laid hold of
his hand, and, falling on her knees, after many warm and passionate
declarations of affection and duty, she begged him "not to make her
the most miserable creature on earth by forcing her to marry a man
whom she detested. This I entreat of you, dear sir," said she, "for
your sake, as well as my own, since you are so very kind to tell me
your happiness depends on mine."--"How! what!" says Western, staring
wildly. "Oh! sir," continued she, "not only your poor Sophy's
happiness; her very life, her being, depends upon your granting her
request. I cannot live with Mr Blifil. To force me into this marriage
would be killing me."--"You can't live with Mr Blifil?" says Western.
"No, upon my soul I can't," answered Sophia. "Then die and be d--d,"
cries he, spurning her from him. "Oh! sir," cries Sophia, catching
hold of the skirt of his coat, "take pity on me, I beseech you. Don't
look and say such cruel--Can you be unmoved while you see your Sophy
in this dreadful condition? Can the best of fathers break my heart?
Will he kill me by the most painful, cruel, lingering death?"--"Pooh!
pooh!" cries the squire; "all stuff and nonsense; all maidenish
tricks. Kill you, indeed! Will marriage kill you?"--"Oh! sir,"
answered Sophia, "such a marriage is worse than death. He is not even
indifferent; I hate and detest him."--"If you detest un never so
much," cries Western, "you shall ha'un." This he bound by an oath too
shocking to repeat; and after many violent asseverations, concluded in
these words: "I am resolved upon the match, and unless you consent to
it I will not give you a groat, not a single farthing; no, though I
saw you expiring with famine in the street, I would not relieve you
with a morsel of bread. This is my fixed resolution, and so I leave
you to consider on it." He then broke from her with such violence,
that her face dashed against the floor; and he burst directly out of
the room, leaving poor Sophia prostrate on the ground.

When Western came into the hall, he there found Jones; who seeing his
friend looking wild, pale, and almost breathless, could not forbear
enquiring the reason of all these melancholy appearances. Upon which
the squire immediately acquainted him with the whole matter,
concluding with bitter denunciations against Sophia, and very pathetic
lamentations of the misery of all fathers who are so unfortunate to
have daughters.

Jones, to whom all the resolutions which had been taken in favour of
Blifil were yet a secret, was at first almost struck dead with this
relation; but recovering his spirits a little, mere despair, as he
afterwards said, inspired him to mention a matter to Mr Western, which
seemed to require more impudence than a human forehead was ever gifted
with. He desired leave to go to Sophia, that he might endeavour to
obtain her concurrence with her father's inclinations.

If the squire had been as quicksighted as he was remarkable for the
contrary, passion might at present very well have blinded him. He
thanked Jones for offering to undertake the office, and said, "Go, go,
prithee, try what canst do;" and then swore many execrable oaths that
he would turn her out of doors unless she consented to the match.

Chapter viii.

The meeting between Jones and Sophia.

Jones departed instantly in quest of Sophia, whom he found just risen
from the ground, where her father had left her, with the tears
trickling from her eyes, and the blood running from her lips. He
presently ran to her, and with a voice full at once of tenderness and
terrour, cried, "O my Sophia, what means this dreadful sight?" She
looked softly at him for a moment before she spoke, and then said, "Mr
Jones, for Heaven's sake how came you here?--Leave me, I beseech you,
this moment."--"Do not," says he, "impose so harsh a command upon
me--my heart bleeds faster than those lips. O Sophia, how easily could
I drain my veins to preserve one drop of that dear blood."--"I have
too many obligations to you already," answered she, "for sure you
meant them such." Here she looked at him tenderly almost a minute, and
then bursting into an agony, cried, "Oh, Mr Jones, why did you save my
life? my death would have been happier for us both."--"Happier for us
both!" cried he. "Could racks or wheels kill me so painfully as
Sophia's--I cannot bear the dreadful sound. Do I live but for her?"
Both his voice and looks were full of inexpressible tenderness when he
spoke these words; and at the same time he laid gently hold on her
hand, which she did not withdraw from him; to say the truth, she
hardly knew what she did or suffered. A few moments now passed in
silence between these lovers, while his eyes were eagerly fixed on
Sophia, and hers declining towards the ground: at last she recovered
strength enough to desire him again to leave her, for that her certain
ruin would be the consequence of their being found together; adding,
"Oh, Mr Jones, you know not, you know not what hath passed this cruel
afternoon."--"I know all, my Sophia," answered he; "your cruel father
hath told me all, and he himself hath sent me hither to you."--"My
father sent you to me!" replied she: "sure you dream."--"Would to
Heaven," cries he, "it was but a dream! Oh, Sophia, your father hath
sent me to you, to be an advocate for my odious rival, to solicit you
in his favour. I took any means to get access to you. O speak to me,
Sophia! comfort my bleeding heart. Sure no one ever loved, ever doated
like me. Do not unkindly withhold this dear, this soft, this gentle
hand--one moment, perhaps, tears you for ever from me--nothing less
than this cruel occasion could, I believe, have ever conquered the
respect and awe with which you have inspired me." She stood a moment
silent, and covered with confusion; then lifting up her eyes gently
towards him, she cried, "What would Mr Jones have me say?"--"O do but
promise," cries he, "that you never will give yourself to
Blifil."--"Name not," answered she, "the detested sound. Be assured I
never will give him what is in my power to withhold from him."--"Now
then," cries he, "while you are so perfectly kind, go a little
farther, and add that I may hope."--"Alas!" says she, "Mr Jones,
whither will you drive me? What hope have I to bestow? You know my
father's intentions."--"But I know," answered he, "your compliance
with them cannot be compelled."--"What," says she, "must be the
dreadful consequence of my disobedience? My own ruin is my least
concern. I cannot bear the thoughts of being the cause of my father's
misery."--"He is himself the cause," cries Jones, "by exacting a power
over you which Nature hath not given him. Think on the misery which I
am to suffer if I am to lose you, and see on which side pity will turn
the balance."--"Think of it!" replied she: "can you imagine I do not
feel the ruin which I must bring on you, should I comply with your
desire? It is that thought which gives me resolution to bid you fly
from me for ever, and avoid your own destruction."--"I fear no
destruction," cries he, "but the loss of Sophia. If you would save me
from the most bitter agonies, recall that cruel sentence. Indeed, I
can never part with you, indeed I cannot."

The lovers now stood both silent and trembling, Sophia being unable to
withdraw her hand from Jones, and he almost as unable to hold it; when
the scene, which I believe some of my readers will think had lasted
long enough, was interrupted by one of so different a nature, that we
shall reserve the relation of it for a different chapter.

Chapter ix.

Being of a much more tempestuous kind than the former.

Before we proceed with what now happened to our lovers, it may be
proper to recount what had past in the hall during their tender

Soon after Jones had left Mr Western in the manner above mentioned,
his sister came to him, and was presently informed of all that had
passed between her brother and Sophia relating to Blifil.

This behaviour in her niece the good lady construed to be an absolute
breach of the condition on which she had engaged to keep her love for
Mr Jones a secret. She considered herself, therefore, at full liberty
to reveal all she knew to the squire, which she immediately did in the
most explicit terms, and without any ceremony or preface.

The idea of a marriage between Jones and his daughter, had never once
entered into the squire's head, either in the warmest minutes of his
affection towards that young man, or from suspicion, or on any other
occasion. He did indeed consider a parity of fortune and circumstances
to be physically as necessary an ingredient in marriage, as difference
of sexes, or any other essential; and had no more apprehension of his
daughter's falling in love with a poor man, than with any animal of a
different species.

He became, therefore, like one thunderstruck at his sister's relation.
He was, at first, incapable of making any answer, having been almost
deprived of his breath by the violence of the surprize. This, however,
soon returned, and, as is usual in other cases after an intermission,
with redoubled force and fury.

The first use he made of the power of speech, after his recovery from
the sudden effects of his astonishment, was to discharge a round
volley of oaths and imprecations. After which he proceeded hastily to
the apartment where he expected to find the lovers, and murmured, or
rather indeed roared forth, intentions of revenge every step he went.

As when two doves, or two wood-pigeons, or as when Strephon and
Phyllis (for that comes nearest to the mark) are retired into some
pleasant solitary grove, to enjoy the delightful conversation of Love,
that bashful boy, who cannot speak in public, and is never a good
companion to more than two at a time; here, while every object is
serene, should hoarse thunder burst suddenly through the shattered
clouds, and rumbling roll along the sky, the frightened maid starts
from the mossy bank or verdant turf, the pale livery of death succeeds
the red regimentals in which Love had before drest her cheeks, fear
shakes her whole frame, and her lover scarce supports her trembling
tottering limbs.

Or as when two gentlemen, strangers to the wondrous wit of the place,
are cracking a bottle together at some inn or tavern at Salisbury, if
the great Dowdy, who acts the part of a madman as well as some of his
setters-on do that of a fool, should rattle his chains, and dreadfully
hum forth the grumbling catch along the gallery; the frighted
strangers stand aghast; scared at the horrid sound, they seek some
place of shelter from the approaching danger; and if the well-barred
windows did admit their exit, would venture their necks to escape the
threatening fury now coming upon them.

So trembled poor Sophia, so turned she pale at the noise of her
father, who, in a voice most dreadful to hear, came on swearing,
cursing, and vowing the destruction of Jones. To say the truth, I
believe the youth himself would, from some prudent considerations,
have preferred another place of abode at this time, had his terror on
Sophia's account given him liberty to reflect a moment on what any
otherways concerned himself, than as his love made him partake
whatever affected her.

And now the squire, having burst open the door, beheld an object which
instantly suspended all his fury against Jones; this was the ghastly
appearance of Sophia, who had fainted away in her lover's arms. This
tragical sight Mr Western no sooner beheld, than all his rage forsook
him; he roared for help with his utmost violence; ran first to his
daughter, then back to the door calling for water, and then back again
to Sophia, never considering in whose arms she then was, nor perhaps
once recollecting that there was such a person in the world as Jones;
for indeed I believe the present circumstances of his daughter were
now the sole consideration which employed his thoughts.

Mrs Western and a great number of servants soon came to the assistance
of Sophia with water, cordials, and everything necessary on those
occasions. These were applied with such success, that Sophia in a very
few minutes began to recover, and all the symptoms of life to return.
Upon which she was presently led off by her own maid and Mrs Western:
nor did that good lady depart without leaving some wholesome
admonitions with her brother, on the dreadful effects of his passion,
or, as she pleased to call it, madness.

The squire, perhaps, did not understand this good advice, as it was
delivered in obscure hints, shrugs, and notes of admiration: at least,
if he did understand it, he profited very little by it; for no sooner
was he cured of his immediate fears for his daughter, than he relapsed
into his former frenzy, which must have produced an immediate battle
with Jones, had not parson Supple, who was a very strong man, been
present, and by mere force restrained the squire from acts of

The moment Sophia was departed, Jones advanced in a very suppliant
manner to Mr Western, whom the parson held in his arms, and begged him
to be pacified; for that, while he continued in such a passion, it
would be impossible to give him any satisfaction.

"I wull have satisfaction o' thee," answered the squire; "so doff thy
clothes. _At unt_ half a man, and I'll lick thee as well as wast ever
licked in thy life." He then bespattered the youth with abundance of
that language which passes between country gentlemen who embrace
opposite sides of the question; with frequent applications to him to
salute that part which is generally introduced into all controversies
that arise among the lower orders of the English gentry at
horse-races, cock-matches, and other public places. Allusions to this
part are likewise often made for the sake of the jest. And here, I
believe, the wit is generally misunderstood. In reality, it lies in
desiring another to kiss your a-- for having just before threatened to
kick his; for I have observed very accurately, that no one ever
desires you to kick that which belongs to himself, nor offers to kiss
this part in another.

It may likewise seem surprizing that in the many thousand kind
invitations of this sort, which every one who hath conversed with
country gentlemen must have heard, no one, I believe, hath ever seen a
single instance where the desire hath been complied with;--a great
instance of their want of politeness; for in town nothing can be more
common than for the finest gentlemen to perform this ceremony every
day to their superiors, without having that favour once requested of

To all such wit, Jones very calmly answered, "Sir, this usage may
perhaps cancel every other obligation you have conferred on me; but
there is one you can never cancel; nor will I be provoked by your
abuse to lift my hand against the father of Sophia."

At these words the squire grew still more outrageous than before; so
that the parson begged Jones to retire; saying, "You behold, sir, how
he waxeth wrath at your abode here; therefore let me pray you not to
tarry any longer. His anger is too much kindled for you to commune
with him at present. You had better, therefore, conclude your visit,
and refer what matters you have to urge in your behalf to some other

Jones accepted this advice with thanks, and immediately departed. The
squire now regained the liberty of his hands, and so much temper as to
express some satisfaction in the restraint which had been laid upon
him; declaring that he should certainly have beat his brains out; and
adding, "It would have vexed one confoundedly to have been hanged for
such a rascal."

The parson now began to triumph in the success of his peace-making
endeavours, and proceeded to read a lecture against anger, which might
perhaps rather have tended to raise than to quiet that passion in some
hasty minds. This lecture he enriched with many valuable quotations
from the antients, particularly from Seneca; who hath indeed so well
handled this passion, that none but a very angry man can read him
without great pleasure and profit. The doctor concluded this harangue
with the famous story of Alexander and Clitus; but as I find that
entered in my common-place under title Drunkenness, I shall not insert
it here.

The squire took no notice of this story, nor perhaps of anything he
said; for he interrupted him before he had finished, by calling for a
tankard of beer; observing (which is perhaps as true as any
observation on this fever of the mind) that anger makes a man dry.

No sooner had the squire swallowed a large draught than he renewed the
discourse on Jones, and declared a resolution of going the next
morning early to acquaint Mr Allworthy. His friend would have
dissuaded him from this, from the mere motive of good-nature; but his
dissuasion had no other effect than to produce a large volley of oaths
and curses, which greatly shocked the pious ears of Supple; but he did
not dare to remonstrate against a privilege which the squire claimed
as a freeborn Englishman. To say truth, the parson submitted to please
his palate at the squire's table, at the expense of suffering now and
then this violence to his ears. He contented himself with thinking he
did not promote this evil practice, and that the squire would not
swear an oath the less, if he never entered within his gates. However,
though he was not guilty of ill manners by rebuking a gentleman in his
own house, he paid him off obliquely in the pulpit: which had not,
indeed, the good effect of working a reformation in the squire
himself; yet it so far operated on his conscience, that he put the
laws very severely in execution against others, and the magistrate was
the only person in the parish who could swear with impunity.

Chapter x.

In which Mr Western visits Mr Allworthy.

Mr Allworthy was now retired from breakfast with his nephew, well
satisfied with the report of the young gentleman's successful visit to
Sophia (for he greatly desired the match, more on account of the young
lady's character than of her riches), when Mr Western broke abruptly
in upon them, and without any ceremony began as follows:--

"There, you have done a fine piece of work truly! You have brought up
your bastard to a fine purpose; not that I believe you have had any
hand in it neither, that is, as a man may say, designedly: but there
is a fine kettle-of-fish made on't up at our house." "What can be the
matter, Mr Western?" said Allworthy. "O, matter enow of all
conscience: my daughter hath fallen in love with your bastard, that's
all; but I won't ge her a hapeny, not the twentieth part of a brass
varden. I always thought what would come o' breeding up a bastard like
a gentleman, and letting un come about to vok's houses. It's well vor
un I could not get at un: I'd a lick'd un; I'd a spoil'd his
caterwauling; I'd a taught the son of a whore to meddle with meat for
his master. He shan't ever have a morsel of meat of mine, or a varden
to buy it: if she will ha un, one smock shall be her portion. I'd
sooner ge my esteate to the zinking fund, that it may be sent to
Hanover to corrupt our nation with." "I am heartily sorry," cries
Allworthy. "Pox o' your sorrow," says Western; "it will do me
abundance of good when I have lost my only child, my poor Sophy, that
was the joy of my heart, and all the hope and comfort of my age; but I
am resolved I will turn her out o' doors; she shall beg, and starve,
and rot in the streets. Not one hapeny, not a hapeny shall she ever
hae o' mine. The son of a bitch was always good at finding a hare
sitting, an be rotted to'n: I little thought what puss he was looking
after; but it shall be the worst he ever vound in his life. She shall
be no better than carrion: the skin o'er is all he shall ha, and zu
you may tell un." "I am in amazement," cries Allworthy, "at what you
tell me, after what passed between my nephew and the young lady no
longer ago than yesterday." "Yes, sir," answered Western, "it was
after what passed between your nephew and she that the whole matter
came out. Mr Blifil there was no sooner gone than the son of a whore
came lurching about the house. Little did I think when I used to love
him for a sportsman that he was all the while a poaching after my
daughter." "Why truly," says Allworthy, "I could wish you had not
given him so many opportunities with her; and you will do me the
justice to acknowledge that I have always been averse to his staying
so much at your house, though I own I had no suspicion of this kind."
"Why, zounds," cries Western, "who could have thought it? What the
devil had she to do wi'n? He did not come there a courting to her; he
came there a hunting with me." "But was it possible," says Allworthy,
"that you should never discern any symptoms of love between them, when
you have seen them so often together?" "Never in my life, as I hope to
be saved," cries Western: "I never so much as zeed him kiss her in all
my life; and so far from courting her, he used rather to be more
silent when she was in company than at any other time; and as for the
girl, she was always less civil to'n than to any young man that came
to the house. As to that matter, I am not more easy to be deceived
than another; I would not have you think I am, neighbour." Allworthy
could scarce refrain laughter at this; but he resolved to do a
violence to himself; for he perfectly well knew mankind, and had too
much good-breeding and good-nature to offend the squire in his present
circumstances. He then asked Western what he would have him do upon
this occasion. To which the other answered, "That he would have him
keep the rascal away from his house, and that he would go and lock up
the wench; for he was resolved to make her marry Mr Blifil in spite of
her teeth." He then shook Blifil by the hand, and swore he would have
no other son-in-law. Presently after which he took his leave; saying
his house was in such disorder that it was necessary for him to make
haste home, to take care his daughter did not give him the slip; and
as for Jones, he swore if he caught him at his house, he would qualify
him to run for the geldings' plate.

When Allworthy and Blifil were again left together, a long silence
ensued between them; all which interval the young gentleman filled up
with sighs, which proceeded partly from disappointment, but more from
hatred; for the success of Jones was much more grievous to him than
the loss of Sophia.

At length his uncle asked him what he was determined to do, and he
answered in the following words:--"Alas! sir, can it be a question
what step a lover will take, when reason and passion point different
ways? I am afraid it is too certain he will, in that dilemma, always
follow the latter. Reason dictates to me, to quit all thoughts of a
woman who places her affections on another; my passion bids me hope
she may in time change her inclinations in my favour. Here, however, I
conceive an objection may be raised, which, if it could not fully be
answered, would totally deter me from any further pursuit. I mean the
injustice of endeavouring to supplant another in a heart of which he
seems already in possession; but the determined resolution of Mr
Western shows that, in this case, I shall, by so doing, promote the
happiness of every party; not only that of the parent, who will thus
be preserved from the highest degree of misery, but of both the
others, who must be undone by this match. The lady, I am sure, will be
undone in every sense; for, besides the loss of most part of her own
fortune, she will be not only married to a beggar, but the little
fortune which her father cannot withhold from her will be squandered
on that wench with whom I know he yet converses. Nay, that is a
trifle; for I know him to be one of the worst men in the world; for
had my dear uncle known what I have hitherto endeavoured to conceal,
he must have long since abandoned so profligate a wretch." "How!" said
Allworthy; "hath he done anything worse than I already know? Tell me,
I beseech you?" "No," replied Blifil; "it is now past, and perhaps he
may have repented of it." "I command you, on your duty," said
Allworthy, "to tell me what you mean." "You know, sir," says Blifil,
"I never disobeyed you; but I am sorry I mentioned it, since it may
now look like revenge, whereas, I thank Heaven, no such motive ever
entered my heart; and if you oblige me to discover it, I must be his
petitioner to you for your forgiveness." "I will have no conditions,"
answered Allworthy; "I think I have shown tenderness enough towards
him, and more perhaps than you ought to thank me for." "More, indeed,
I fear, than he deserved," cries Blifil; "for in the very day of your
utmost danger, when myself and all the family were in tears, he filled
the house with riot and debauchery. He drank, and sung, and roared;
and when I gave him a gentle hint of the indecency of his actions, he
fell into a violent passion, swore many oaths, called me rascal, and
struck me." "How!" cries Allworthy; "did he dare to strike you?" "I am
sure," cries Blifil, "I have forgiven him that long ago. I wish I
could so easily forget his ingratitude to the best of benefactors; and
yet even that I hope you will forgive him, since he must have
certainly been possessed with the devil: for that very evening, as Mr
Thwackum and myself were taking the air in the fields, and exulting in
the good symptoms which then first began to discover themselves, we
unluckily saw him engaged with a wench in a manner not fit to be
mentioned. Mr Thwackum, with more boldness than prudence, advanced to
rebuke him, when (I am sorry to say it) he fell upon the worthy man,
and beat him so outrageously that I wish he may have yet recovered the
bruises. Nor was I without my share of the effects of his malice,
while I endeavoured to protect my tutor; but that I have long
forgiven; nay, I prevailed with Mr Thwackum to forgive him too, and
not to inform you of a secret which I feared might be fatal to him.
And now, sir, since I have unadvisedly dropped a hint of this matter,
and your commands have obliged me to discover the whole, let me
intercede with you for him." "O child!" said Allworthy, "I know not
whether I should blame or applaud your goodness, in concealing such
villany a moment: but where is Mr Thwackum? Not that I want any
confirmation of what you say; but I will examine all the evidence of
this matter, to justify to the world the example I am resolved to make
of such a monster."

Thwackum was now sent for, and presently appeared. He corroborated
every circumstance which the other had deposed; nay, he produced the
record upon his breast, where the handwriting of Mr Jones remained
very legible in black and blue. He concluded with declaring to Mr
Allworthy, that he should have long since informed him of this matter,
had not Mr Blifil, by the most earnest interpositions, prevented him.
"He is," says he, "an excellent youth: though such forgiveness of
enemies is carrying the matter too far."

In reality, Blifil had taken some pains to prevail with the parson,
and to prevent the discovery at that time; for which he had many
reasons. He knew that the minds of men are apt to be softened and
relaxed from their usual severity by sickness. Besides, he imagined
that if the story was told when the fact was so recent, and the
physician about the house, who might have unravelled the real truth,
he should never be able to give it the malicious turn which he
intended. Again, he resolved to hoard up this business, till the
indiscretion of Jones should afford some additional complaints; for he
thought the joint weight of many facts falling upon him together,
would be the most likely to crush him; and he watched, therefore, some
such opportunity as that with which fortune had now kindly presented
him. Lastly, by prevailing with Thwackum to conceal the matter for a
time, he knew he should confirm an opinion of his friendship to Jones,
which he had greatly laboured to establish in Mr Allworthy.

Chapter xi.

A short chapter; but which contains sufficient matter to affect the
good-natured reader.

It was Mr Allworthy's custom never to punish any one, not even to turn
away a servant, in a passion. He resolved therefore to delay passing
sentence on Jones till the afternoon.

The poor young man attended at dinner, as usual; but his heart was too
much loaded to suffer him to eat. His grief too was a good deal
aggravated by the unkind looks of Mr Allworthy; whence he concluded
that Western had discovered the whole affair between him and Sophia;
but as to Mr Blifil's story, he had not the least apprehension; for of
much the greater part he was entirely innocent; and for the residue,
as he had forgiven and forgotten it himself, so he suspected no
remembrance on the other side. When dinner was over, and the servants
departed, Mr Allworthy began to harangue. He set forth, in a long
speech, the many iniquities of which Jones had been guilty,
particularly those which this day had brought to light; and concluded
by telling him, "That unless he could clear himself of the charge, he
was resolved to banish him his sight for ever."

Many disadvantages attended poor Jones in making his defence; nay,
indeed, he hardly knew his accusation; for as Mr Allworthy, in
recounting the drunkenness, &c., while he lay ill, out of modesty sunk
everything that related particularly to himself, which indeed
principally constituted the crime; Jones could not deny the charge.
His heart was, besides, almost broken already; and his spirits were so
sunk, that he could say nothing for himself; but acknowledged the
whole, and, like a criminal in despair, threw himself upon mercy;
concluding, "That though he must own himself guilty of many follies
and inadvertencies, he hoped he had done nothing to deserve what would
be to him the greatest punishment in the world."

Allworthy answered, "That he had forgiven him too often already, in
compassion to his youth, and in hopes of his amendment: that he now
found he was an abandoned reprobate, and such as it would be criminal
in any one to support and encourage. Nay," said Mr Allworthy to him,
"your audacious attempt to steal away the young lady, calls upon me to
justify my own character in punishing you. The world who have already
censured the regard I have shown for you may think, with some colour
at least of justice, that I connive at so base and barbarous an
action--an action of which you must have known my abhorrence: and
which, had you had any concern for my ease and honour, as well as for
my friendship, you would never have thought of undertaking. Fie upon
it, young man! indeed there is scarce any punishment equal to your
crimes, and I can scarce think myself justifiable in what I am now
going to bestow on you. However, as I have educated you like a child
of my own, I will not turn you naked into the world. When you open
this paper, therefore, you will find something which may enable you,
with industry, to get an honest livelihood; but if you employ it to
worse purposes, I shall not think myself obliged to supply you
farther, being resolved, from this day forward, to converse no more
with you on any account. I cannot avoid saying, there is no part of
your conduct which I resent more than your ill-treatment of that good
young man (meaning Blifil) who hath behaved with so much tenderness
and honour towards you."

These last words were a dose almost too bitter to be swallowed. A
flood of tears now gushed from the eyes of Jones, and every faculty of
speech and motion seemed to have deserted him. It was some time before
he was able to obey Allworthy's peremptory commands of departing;
which he at length did, having first kissed his hands with a passion
difficult to be affected, and as difficult to be described.

The reader must be very weak, if, when he considers the light in which
Jones then appeared to Mr Allworthy, he should blame the rigour of his
sentence. And yet all the neighbourhood, either from this weakness, or
from some worse motive, condemned this justice and severity as the
highest cruelty. Nay, the very persons who had before censured the
good man for the kindness and tenderness shown to a bastard (his own,
according to the general opinion), now cried out as loudly against
turning his own child out of doors. The women especially were
unanimous in taking the part of Jones, and raised more stories on the
occasion than I have room, in this chapter, to set down.

One thing must not be omitted, that, in their censures on this
occasion, none ever mentioned the sum contained in the paper which
Allworthy gave Jones, which was no less than five hundred pounds; but
all agreed that he was sent away penniless, and some said naked, from
the house of his inhuman father.

Chapter xii.

Containing love-letters, &c.

Jones was commanded to leave the house immediately, and told, that his
clothes and everything else should be sent to him whithersoever he
should order them.

He accordingly set out, and walked above a mile, not regarding, and
indeed scarce knowing, whither he went. At length a little brook
obstructing his passage, he threw himself down by the side of it; nor
could he help muttering with some little indignation, "Sure my father
will not deny me this place to rest in!"

Here he presently fell into the most violent agonies, tearing his hair
from his head, and using most other actions which generally accompany
fits of madness, rage, and despair.

When he had in this manner vented the first emotions of passion, he
began to come a little to himself. His grief now took another turn,
and discharged itself in a gentler way, till he became at last cool
enough to reason with his passion, and to consider what steps were
proper to be taken in his deplorable condition.

And now the great doubt was, how to act with regard to Sophia. The
thoughts of leaving her almost rent his heart asunder; but the
consideration of reducing her to ruin and beggary still racked him, if
possible, more; and if the violent desire of possessing her person
could have induced him to listen one moment to this alternative, still
he was by no means certain of her resolution to indulge his wishes at
so high an expense. The resentment of Mr Allworthy, and the injury he
must do to his quiet, argued strongly against this latter; and lastly,
the apparent impossibility of his success, even if he would sacrifice
all these considerations to it, came to his assistance; and thus
honour at last backed with despair, with gratitude to his benefactor,
and with real love to his mistress, got the better of burning desire,
and he resolved rather to quit Sophia, than pursue her to her ruin.

It is difficult for any who have not felt it, to conceive the glowing
warmth which filled his breast on the first contemplation of this
victory over his passion. Pride flattered him so agreeably, that his
mind perhaps enjoyed perfect happiness; but this was only momentary:
Sophia soon returned to his imagination, and allayed the joy of his
triumph with no less bitter pangs than a good-natured general must
feel, when he surveys the bleeding heaps, at the price of whose blood
he hath purchased his laurels; for thousands of tender ideas lay
murdered before our conqueror.

Being resolved, however, to pursue the paths of this giant honour, as
the gigantic poet Lee calls it, he determined to write a farewel
letter to Sophia; and accordingly proceeded to a house not far off,
where, being furnished with proper materials, he wrote as follows:--


  "When you reflect on the situation in which I write, I am sure your
  good-nature will pardon any inconsistency or absurdity which my
  letter contains; for everything here flows from a heart so full,
  that no language can express its dictates.

  "I have resolved, madam, to obey your commands, in flying for ever
  from your dear, your lovely sight. Cruel indeed those commands are;
  but it is a cruelty which proceeds from fortune, not from my Sophia.
  Fortune hath made it necessary, necessary to your preservation, to
  forget there ever was such a wretch as I am.

  "Believe me, I would not hint all my sufferings to you, if I
  imagined they could possibly escape your ears. I know the goodness
  and tenderness of your heart, and would avoid giving you any of
  those pains which you always feel for the miserable. O let nothing,
  which you shall hear of my hard fortune, cause a moment's concern;
  for, after the loss of you, everything is to me a trifle.

  "O Sophia! it is hard to leave you; it is harder still to desire you
  to forget me; yet the sincerest love obliges me to both. Pardon my
  conceiving that any remembrance of me can give you disquiet; but if
  I am so gloriously wretched, sacrifice me every way to your relief.
  Think I never loved you; or think truly how little I deserve you;
  and learn to scorn me for a presumption which can never be too
  severely punished.--I am unable to say more.--May guardian angels
  protect you for ever!"

He was now searching his pockets for his wax, but found none, nor
indeed anything else, therein; for in truth he had, in his frantic
disposition, tossed everything from him, and amongst the rest, his
pocket-book, which he had received from Mr Allworthy, which he had
never opened, and which now first occurred to his memory.

The house supplied him with a wafer for his present purpose, with
which, having sealed his letter, he returned hastily towards the brook
side, in order to search for the things which he had there lost. In
his way he met his old friend Black George, who heartily condoled with
him on his misfortune; for this had already reached his ears, and
indeed those of all the neighbourhood.

Jones acquainted the gamekeeper with his loss, and he as readily went
back with him to the brook, where they searched every tuft of grass in
the meadow, as well where Jones had not been as where he had been; but
all to no purpose, for they found nothing; for, indeed, though the
things were then in the meadow, they omitted to search the only place
where they were deposited; to wit, in the pockets of the said George;
for he had just before found them, and being luckily apprized of their
value, had very carefully put them up for his own use.

The gamekeeper having exerted as much diligence in quest of the lost
goods, as if he had hoped to find them, desired Mr Jones to recollect
if he had been in no other place: "For sure," said he, "if you had
lost them here so lately, the things must have been here still; for
this is a very unlikely place for any one to pass by." And indeed it
was by great accident that he himself had passed through that field,
in order to lay wires for hares, with which he was to supply a
poulterer at Bath the next morning.

Jones now gave over all hopes of recovering his loss, and almost all
thoughts concerning it, and turning to Black George, asked him
earnestly if he would do him the greatest favour in the world?

George answered with some hesitation, "Sir, you know you may command
me whatever is in my power, and I heartily wish it was in my power to
do you any service." In fact, the question staggered him; for he had,
by selling game, amassed a pretty good sum of money in Mr Western's
service, and was afraid that Jones wanted to borrow some small matter
of him; but he was presently relieved from his anxiety, by being
desired to convey a letter to Sophia, which with great pleasure he
promised to do. And indeed I believe there are few favours which he
would not have gladly conferred on Mr Jones; for he bore as much
gratitude towards him as he could, and was as honest as men who love
money better than any other thing in the universe, generally are.

Mrs Honour was agreed by both to be the proper means by which this
letter should pass to Sophia. They then separated; the gamekeeper
returned home to Mr Western's, and Jones walked to an alehouse at half
a mile's distance, to wait for his messenger's return.

George no sooner came home to his master's house than he met with Mrs
Honour; to whom, having first sounded her with a few previous
questions, he delivered the letter for her mistress, and received at
the same time another from her, for Mr Jones; which Honour told him
she had carried all that day in her bosom, and began to despair of
finding any means of delivering it.

The gamekeeper returned hastily and joyfully to Jones, who, having
received Sophia's letter from him, instantly withdrew, and eagerly
breaking it open, read as follows:--


  "It is impossible to express what I have felt since I saw you. Your
  submitting, on my account, to such cruel insults from my father,
  lays me under an obligation I shall ever own. As you know his
  temper, I beg you will, for my sake, avoid him. I wish I had any
  comfort to send you; but believe this, that nothing but the last
  violence shall ever give my hand or heart where you would be sorry
  to see them bestowed."

Jones read this letter a hundred times over, and kissed it a hundred
times as often. His passion now brought all tender desires back into
his mind. He repented that he had writ to Sophia in the manner we have
seen above; but he repented more that he had made use of the interval
of his messenger's absence to write and dispatch a letter to Mr
Allworthy, in which he had faithfully promised and bound himself to
quit all thoughts of his love. However, when his cool reflections
returned, he plainly perceived that his case was neither mended nor
altered by Sophia's billet, unless to give him some little glimpse of
hope, from her constancy, of some favourable accident hereafter. He
therefore resumed his resolution, and taking leave of Black George,
set forward to a town about five miles distant, whither he had desired
Mr Allworthy, unless he pleased to revoke his sentence, to send his
things after him.

Chapter xiii.

The behaviour of Sophia on the present occasion; which none of her sex
will blame, who are capable of behaving in the same manner. And the
discussion of a knotty point in the court of conscience.

Sophia had passed the last twenty-four hours in no very desirable
manner. During a large part of them she had been entertained by her
aunt with lectures of prudence, recommending to her the example of the
polite world, where love (so the good lady said) is at present
entirely laughed at, and where women consider matrimony, as men do
offices of public trust, only as the means of making their fortunes,
and of advancing themselves in the world. In commenting on which text
Mrs Western had displayed her eloquence during several hours.

These sagacious lectures, though little suited either to the taste or
inclination of Sophia, were, however, less irksome to her than her own
thoughts, that formed the entertainment of the night, during which she
never once closed her eyes.

But though she could neither sleep nor rest in her bed, yet, having no
avocation from it, she was found there by her father at his return
from Allworthy's, which was not till past ten o'clock in the morning.
He went directly up to her apartment, opened the door, and seeing she
was not up, cried, "Oh! you are safe then, and I am resolved to keep
you so." He then locked the door, and delivered the key to Honour,
having first given her the strictest charge, with great promises of
rewards for her fidelity, and most dreadful menaces of punishment in
case she should betray her trust.

Honour's orders were, not to suffer her mistress to come out of her
room without the authority of the squire himself, and to admit none to
her but him and her aunt; but she was herself to attend her with
whatever Sophia pleased, except only pen, ink, and paper, of which she
was forbidden the use.

The squire ordered his daughter to dress herself and attend him at
dinner; which she obeyed; and having sat the usual time, was again
conducted to her prison.

In the evening the gaoler Honour brought her the letter which she
received from the gamekeeper. Sophia read it very attentively twice or
thrice over, and then threw herself upon the bed, and burst into a
flood of tears. Mrs Honour expressed great astonishment at this
behaviour in her mistress; nor could she forbear very eagerly begging
to know the cause of this passion. Sophia made her no answer for some
time, and then, starting suddenly up, caught her maid by the hand, and
cried, "O Honour! I am undone." "Marry forbid," cries Honour: "I wish
the letter had been burnt before I had brought it to your la'ship. I'm
sure I thought it would have comforted your la'ship, or I would have
seen it at the devil before I would have touched it." "Honour," says
Sophia, "you are a good girl, and it is vain to attempt concealing
longer my weakness from you; I have thrown away my heart on a man who
hath forsaken me." "And is Mr Jones," answered the maid, "such a
perfidy man?" "He hath taken his leave of me," says Sophia, "for ever
in that letter. Nay, he hath desired me to forget him. Could he have
desired that if he had loved me? Could he have borne such a thought?
Could he have written such a word?" "No, certainly, ma'am," cries
Honour; "and to be sure, if the best man in England was to desire me
to forget him, I'd take him at his word. Marry, come up! I am sure
your la'ship hath done him too much honour ever to think on him;--a
young lady who may take her choice of all the young men in the
country. And to be sure, if I may be so presumptuous as to offer my
poor opinion, there is young Mr Blifil, who, besides that he is come
of honest parents, and will be one of the greatest squires all
hereabouts, he is to be sure, in my poor opinion, a more handsomer and
a more politer man by half; and besides, he is a young gentleman of a
sober character, and who may defy any of the neighbours to say black
is his eye; he follows no dirty trollops, nor can any bastards be laid
at his door. Forget him, indeed! I thank Heaven I myself am not so
much at my last prayers as to suffer any man to bid me forget him
twice. If the best he that wears a head was for to go for to offer to
say such an affronting word to me, I would never give him my company
afterwards, if there was another young man in the kingdom. And as I
was a saying, to be sure, there is young Mr Blifil." "Name not his
detested name," cries Sophia. "Nay, ma'am," says Honour, "if your
la'ship doth not like him, there be more jolly handsome young men that
would court your la'ship, if they had but the least encouragement. I
don't believe there is arrow young gentleman in this county, or in the
next to it, that if your la'ship was but to look as if you had a mind
to him, would not come about to make his offers directly." "What a
wretch dost thou imagine me," cries Sophia, "by affronting my ears
with such stuff! I detest all mankind." "Nay, to be sure, ma'am,"
answered Honour, "your la'ship hath had enough to give you a surfeit
of them. To be used ill by such a poor, beggarly, bastardly
fellow."--"Hold your blasphemous tongue," cries Sophia: "how dare you
mention his name with disrespect before me? He use me ill? No, his
poor bleeding heart suffered more when he writ the cruel words than
mine from reading them. O! he is all heroic virtue and angelic
goodness. I am ashamed of the weakness of my own passion, for blaming
what I ought to admire. O, Honour! it is my good only which he
consults. To my interest he sacrifices both himself and me. The
apprehension of ruining me hath driven him to despair." "I am very
glad," says Honour, "to hear your la'ship takes that into your
consideration; for to be sure, it must be nothing less than ruin to
give your mind to one that is turned out of doors, and is not worth a
farthing in the world." "Turned out of doors!" cries Sophia hastily:
"how! what dost thou mean?" "Why, to be sure, ma'am, my master no
sooner told Squire Allworthy about Mr Jones having offered to make
love to your la'ship than the squire stripped him stark naked, and
turned him out of doors!" "Ha!" says Sophia, "I have been the cursed,
wretched cause of his destruction! Turned naked out of doors! Here,
Honour, take all the money I have; take the rings from my fingers.
Here, my watch: carry him all. Go find him immediately." "For Heaven's
sake, ma'am," answered Mrs Honour, "do but consider, if my master
should miss any of these things, I should be made to answer for them.
Therefore let me beg your la'ship not to part with your watch and
jewels. Besides, the money, I think, is enough of all conscience; and
as for that, my master can never know anything of the matter." "Here,
then," cries Sophia, "take every farthing I am worth, find him out
immediately, and give it him. Go, go, lose not a moment."

Mrs Honour departed according to orders, and finding Black George
below-stairs, delivered him the purse, which contained sixteen
guineas, being, indeed, the whole stock of Sophia; for though her
father was very liberal to her, she was much too generous to be rich.

Black George having received the purse, set forward towards the
alehouse; but in the way a thought occurred to him, whether he should
not detain this money likewise. His conscience, however, immediately
started at this suggestion, and began to upbraid him with ingratitude
to his benefactor. To this his avarice answered, That his conscience
should have considered the matter before, when he deprived poor Jones
of his £500. That having quietly acquiesced in what was of so much
greater importance, it was absurd, if not downright hypocrisy, to
affect any qualms at this trifle. In return to which, Conscience, like
a good lawyer, attempted to distinguish between an absolute breach of
trust, as here, where the goods were delivered, and a bare concealment
of what was found, as in the former case. Avarice presently treated
this with ridicule, called it a distinction without a difference, and
absolutely insisted that when once all pretensions of honour and
virtue were given up in any one instance, that there was no precedent
for resorting to them upon a second occasion. In short, poor
Conscience had certainly been defeated in the argument, had not Fear
stept in to her assistance, and very strenuously urged that the real
distinction between the two actions, did not lie in the different
degrees of honour but of safety: for that the secreting the £500 was a
matter of very little hazard; whereas the detaining the sixteen
guineas was liable to the utmost danger of discovery.

By this friendly aid of Fear, Conscience obtained a compleat victory
in the mind of Black George, and, after making him a few compliments
on his honesty, forced him to deliver the money to Jones.

Chapter xiv.

A short chapter, containing a short dialogue between Squire Western
and his sister.

Mrs Western had been engaged abroad all that day. The squire met her
at her return home; and when she enquired after Sophia, he acquainted
her that he had secured her safe enough. "She is locked up in
chamber," cries he, "and Honour keeps the key." As his looks were full
of prodigious wisdom and sagacity when he gave his sister this
information, it is probable he expected much applause from her for
what he had done; but how was he disappointed when, with a most
disdainful aspect, she cried, "Sure, brother, you are the weakest of
all men. Why will you not confide in me for the management of my
niece? Why will you interpose? You have now undone all that I have
been spending my breath in order to bring about. While I have been
endeavouring to fill her mind with maxims of prudence, you have been
provoking her to reject them. English women, brother, I thank heaven,
are no slaves. We are not to be locked up like the Spanish and Italian
wives. We have as good a right to liberty as yourselves. We are to be
convinced by reason and persuasion only, and not governed by force. I
have seen the world, brother, and know what arguments to make use of;
and if your folly had not prevented me, should have prevailed with her
to form her conduct by those rules of prudence and discretion which I
formerly taught her." "To be sure," said the squire, "I am always in
the wrong." "Brother," answered the lady, "you are not in the wrong,
unless when you meddle with matters beyond your knowledge. You must
agree that I have seen most of the world; and happy had it been for my
niece if she had not been taken from under my care. It is by living at
home with you that she hath learnt romantic notions of love and
nonsense." "You don't imagine, I hope," cries the squire, "that I have
taught her any such things." "Your ignorance, brother," returned she,
"as the great Milton says, almost subdues my patience."[*] "D--n
Milton!" answered the squire: "if he had the impudence to say so to my
face, I'd lend him a douse, thof he was never so great a man.
Patience! An you come to that, sister, I have more occasion of
patience, to be used like an overgrown schoolboy, as I am by you. Do
you think no one hath any understanding, unless he hath been about at
court. Pox! the world is come to a fine pass indeed, if we are all
fools, except a parcel of round-heads and Hanover rats. Pox! I hope
the times are a coming when we shall make fools of them, and every man
shall enjoy his own. That's all, sister; and every man shall enjoy his
own. I hope to zee it, sister, before the Hanover rats have eat up all
our corn, and left us nothing but turneps to feed upon."--"I protest,
brother," cries she, "you are now got beyond my understanding. Your
jargon of turneps and Hanover rats is to me perfectly
unintelligible."--"I believe," cries he, "you don't care to hear o'em;
but the country interest may succeed one day or other for all
that."--"I wish," answered the lady, "you would think a little of your
daughter's interest; for, believe me, she is in greater danger than
the nation."--"Just now," said he, "you chid me for thinking on her,
and would ha' her left to you."--"And if you will promise to interpose
no more," answered she, "I will, out of my regard to my niece,
undertake the charge."--"Well, do then," said the squire, "for you
know I always agreed, that women are the properest to manage women."

  [*] The reader may, perhaps, subdue his own patience, if he searches
  for this in Milton.]

Mrs Western then departed, muttering something with an air of disdain,
concerning women and management of the nation. She immediately
repaired to Sophia's apartment, who was now, after a day's
confinement, released again from her captivity.



Chapter i.

A comparison between the world and the stage.

The world hath been often compared to the theatre; and many grave
writers, as well as the poets, have considered human life as a great
drama, resembling, in almost every particular, those scenical
representations which Thespis is first reported to have invented, and
which have been since received with so much approbation and delight in
all polite countries.

This thought hath been carried so far, and is become so general, that
some words proper to the theatre, and which were at first
metaphorically applied to the world, are now indiscriminately and
literally spoken of both; thus stage and scene are by common use grown
as familiar to us, when we speak of life in general, as when we
confine ourselves to dramatic performances: and when transactions
behind the curtain are mentioned, St James's is more likely to occur
to our thoughts than Drury-lane.

It may seem easy enough to account for all this, by reflecting that
the theatrical stage is nothing more than a representation, or, as
Aristotle calls it, an imitation of what really exists; and hence,
perhaps, we might fairly pay a very high compliment to those who by
their writings or actions have been so capable of imitating life, as
to have their pictures in a manner confounded with, or mistaken for,
the originals.

But, in reality, we are not so fond of paying compliments to these
people, whom we use as children frequently do the instruments of their
amusement; and have much more pleasure in hissing and buffeting them,
than in admiring their excellence. There are many other reasons which
have induced us to see this analogy between the world and the stage.

Some have considered the larger part of mankind in the light of
actors, as personating characters no more their own, and to which in
fact they have no better title, than the player hath to be in earnest
thought the king or emperor whom he represents. Thus the hypocrite may
be said to be a player; and indeed the Greeks called them both by one
and the same name.

The brevity of life hath likewise given occasion to this comparison.
So the immortal Shakespear--

      --Life's a poor player,
      That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
      And then is heard no more.

For which hackneyed quotation I will make the reader amends by a very
noble one, which few, I believe, have read. It is taken from a poem
called the Deity, published about nine years ago, and long since
buried in oblivion; a proof that good books, no more than good men, do
always survive the bad.

      From Thee[*] all human actions take their springs,
      The rise of empires and the fall of kings!
      See the vast Theatre of Time display'd,
      While o'er the scene succeeding heroes tread!
      With pomp the shining images succeed,
      What leaders triumph, and what monarchs bleed!
      Perform the parts thy providence assign'd,
      Their pride, their passions, to thy ends inclin'd:
      Awhile they glitter in the face of day,
      Then at thy nod the phantoms pass away;
      No traces left of all the busy scene,
      But that remembrance says--_The things have been!_

  [*] The Deity.

In all these, however, and in every other similitude of life to the
theatre, the resemblance hath been always taken from the stage only.
None, as I remember, have at all considered the audience at this great

But as Nature often exhibits some of her best performances to a very
full house, so will the behaviour of her spectators no less admit the
above-mentioned comparison than that of her actors. In this vast
theatre of time are seated the friend and the critic; here are claps
and shouts, hisses and groans; in short, everything which was ever
seen or heard at the Theatre-Royal.

Let us examine this in one example; for instance, in the behaviour of
the great audience on that scene which Nature was pleased to exhibit
in the twelfth chapter of the preceding book, where she introduced
Black George running away with the £500 from his friend and

Those who sat in the world's upper gallery treated that incident, I am
well convinced, with their usual vociferation; and every term of
scurrilous reproach was most probably vented on that occasion.

If we had descended to the next order of spectators, we should have
found an equal degree of abhorrence, though less of noise and
scurrility; yet here the good women gave Black George to the devil,
and many of them expected every minute that the cloven-footed
gentleman would fetch his own.

The pit, as usual, was no doubt divided; those who delight in heroic
virtue and perfect character objected to the producing such instances
of villany, without punishing them very severely for the sake of
example. Some of the author's friends cryed, "Look'e, gentlemen, the
man is a villain, but it is nature for all that." And all the young
critics of the age, the clerks, apprentices, &c., called it low, and
fell a groaning.

As for the boxes, they behaved with their accustomed politeness. Most
of them were attending to something else. Some of those few who
regarded the scene at all, declared he was a bad kind of man; while
others refused to give their opinion, till they had heard that of the
best judges.

Now we, who are admitted behind the scenes of this great theatre of
Nature (and no author ought to write anything besides dictionaries and
spelling-books who hath not this privilege), can censure the action,
without conceiving any absolute detestation of the person, whom
perhaps Nature may not have designed to act an ill part in all her
dramas; for in this instance life most exactly resembles the stage,
since it is often the same person who represents the villain and the
heroe; and he who engages your admiration to-day will probably attract
your contempt to-morrow. As Garrick, whom I regard in tragedy to be
the greatest genius the world hath ever produced, sometimes
condescends to play the fool; so did Scipio the Great, and Laelius the
Wise, according to Horace, many years ago; nay, Cicero reports them to
have been "incredibly childish." These, it is true, played the fool,
like my friend Garrick, in jest only; but several eminent characters
have, in numberless instances of their lives, played the fool
egregiously in earnest; so far as to render it a matter of some doubt
whether their wisdom or folly was predominant; or whether they were
better intitled to the applause or censure, the admiration or
contempt, the love or hatred, of mankind.

Those persons, indeed, who have passed any time behind the scenes of
this great theatre, and are thoroughly acquainted not only with the
several disguises which are there put on, but also with the fantastic
and capricious behaviour of the Passions, who are the managers and
directors of this theatre (for as to Reason, the patentee, he is known
to be a very idle fellow and seldom to exert himself), may most
probably have learned to understand the famous _nil admirari_ of
Horace, or in the English phrase, to stare at nothing.

A single bad act no more constitutes a villain in life, than a single
bad part on the stage. The passions, like the managers of a playhouse,
often force men upon parts without consulting their judgment, and
sometimes without any regard to their talents. Thus the man, as well
as the player, may condemn what he himself acts; nay, it is common to
see vice sit as awkwardly on some men, as the character of Iago would
on the honest face of Mr William Mills.

Upon the whole, then, the man of candour and of true understanding is
never hasty to condemn. He can censure an imperfection, or even a
vice, without rage against the guilty party. In a word, they are the
same folly, the same childishness, the same ill-breeding, and the same
ill-nature, which raise all the clamours and uproars both in life and
on the stage. The worst of men generally have the words rogue and
villain most in their mouths, as the lowest of all wretches are the
aptest to cry out low in the pit.

Chapter ii.

Containing a conversation which Mr Jones had with himself.

Jones received his effects from Mr Allworthy's early in the morning,
with the following answer to his letter:--


  "I am commanded by my uncle to acquaint you, that as he did not
  proceed to those measures he had taken with you, without the
  greatest deliberation, and after the fullest evidence of your
  unworthiness, so will it be always out of your power to cause the
  least alteration in his resolution. He expresses great surprize at
  your presumption in saying you have resigned all pretensions to a
  young lady, to whom it is impossible you should ever have had any,
  her birth and fortune having made her so infinitely your superior.
  Lastly, I am commanded to tell you, that the only instance of your
  compliance with my uncle's inclinations which he requires, is, your
  immediately quitting this country. I cannot conclude this without
  offering you my advice, as a Christian, that you would seriously
  think of amending your life. That you may be assisted with grace so
  to do, will be always the prayer of

  "Your humble servant,

  "W. BLIFIL."

Many contending passions were raised in our heroe's mind by this
letter; but the tender prevailed at last over the indignant and
irascible, and a flood of tears came seasonably to his assistance, and
possibly prevented his misfortunes from either turning his head, or
bursting his heart.

He grew, however, soon ashamed of indulging this remedy; and starting
up, he cried, "Well, then, I will give Mr Allworthy the only instance
he requires of my obedience. I will go this moment--but whither?--why,
let Fortune direct; since there is no other who thinks it of any
consequence what becomes of this wretched person, it shall be a matter
of equal indifference to myself. Shall I alone regard what no
other--Ha! have I not reason to think there is another?--one whose
value is above that of the whole world!--I may, I must imagine my
Sophia is not indifferent to what becomes of me. Shall I then leave
this only friend--and such a friend? Shall I not stay with
her?--Where--how can I stay with her? Have I any hopes of ever seeing
her, though she was as desirous as myself, without exposing her to the
wrath of her father, and to what purpose? Can I think of soliciting
such a creature to consent to her own ruin? Shall I indulge any
passion of mine at such a price? Shall I lurk about this country like
a thief, with such intentions?--No, I disdain, I detest the thought.
Farewel, Sophia; farewel, most lovely, most beloved--" Here passion
stopped his mouth, and found a vent at his eyes.

And now having taken a resolution to leave the country, he began to
debate with himself whither he should go. The world, as Milton phrases
it, lay all before him; and Jones, no more than Adam, had any man to
whom he might resort for comfort or assistance. All his acquaintance
were the acquaintance of Mr Allworthy; and he had no reason to expect
any countenance from them, as that gentleman had withdrawn his favour
from him. Men of great and good characters should indeed be very
cautious how they discard their dependents; for the consequence to the
unhappy sufferer is being discarded by all others.

What course of life to pursue, or to what business to apply himself,
was a second consideration: and here the prospect was all a melancholy
void. Every profession, and every trade, required length of time, and
what was worse, money; for matters are so constituted, that "nothing
out of nothing" is not a truer maxim in physics than in politics; and
every man who is greatly destitute of money, is on that account
entirely excluded from all means of acquiring it.

At last the Ocean, that hospitable friend to the wretched, opened her
capacious arms to receive him; and he instantly resolved to accept her
kind invitation. To express myself less figuratively, he determined to
go to sea.

This thought indeed no sooner suggested itself, than he eagerly
embraced it; and having presently hired horses, he set out for Bristol
to put it in execution.

But before we attend him on this expedition, we shall resort awhile to
Mr Western's, and see what further happened to the charming Sophia.

Chapter iii.

Containing several dialogues.

The morning in which Mr Jones departed, Mrs Western summoned Sophia
into her apartment; and having first acquainted her that she had
obtained her liberty of her father, she proceeded to read her a long
lecture on the subject of matrimony; which she treated not as a
romantic scheme of happiness arising from love, as it hath been
described by the poets; nor did she mention any of those purposes for
which we are taught by divines to regard it as instituted by sacred
authority; she considered it rather as a fund in which prudent women
deposit their fortunes to the best advantage, in order to receive a
larger interest for them than they could have elsewhere.

When Mrs Western had finished, Sophia answered, "That she was very
incapable of arguing with a lady of her aunt's superior knowledge and
experience, especially on a subject which she had so very little
considered, as this of matrimony."

"Argue with me, child!" replied the other; "I do not indeed expect it.
I should have seen the world to very little purpose truly, if I am to
argue with one of your years. I have taken this trouble, in order to
instruct you. The antient philosophers, such as Socrates, Alcibiades,
and others, did not use to argue with their scholars. You are to
consider me, child, as Socrates, not asking your opinion, but only
informing you of mine." From which last words the reader may possibly
imagine, that this lady had read no more of the philosophy of
Socrates, than she had of that of Alcibiades; and indeed we cannot
resolve his curiosity as to this point.

"Madam," cries Sophia, "I have never presumed to controvert any
opinion of yours; and this subject, as I said, I have never yet
thought of, and perhaps never may."

"Indeed, Sophy," replied the aunt, "this dissimulation with me is very
foolish. The French shall as soon persuade me that they take foreign
towns in defence only of their own country, as you can impose on me to
believe you have never yet thought seriously of matrimony. How can
you, child, affect to deny that you have considered of contracting an
alliance, when you so well know I am acquainted with the party with
whom you desire to contract it?--an alliance as unnatural, and
contrary to your interest, as a separate league with the French would
be to the interest of the Dutch! But however, if you have not hitherto
considered of this matter, I promise you it is now high time, for my
brother is resolved immediately to conclude the treaty with Mr Blifil;
and indeed I am a sort of guarantee in the affair, and have promised
your concurrence."

"Indeed, madam," cries Sophia, "this is the only instance in which I
must disobey both yourself and my father. For this is a match which
requires very little consideration in me to refuse."

"If I was not as great a philosopher as Socrates himself," returned
Mrs Western, "you would overcome my patience. What objection can you
have to the young gentleman?"

"A very solid objection, in my opinion," says Sophia--"I hate him."

"Will you never learn a proper use of words?" answered the aunt.
"Indeed, child, you should consult Bailey's Dictionary. It is
impossible you should hate a man from whom you have received no
injury. By hatred, therefore, you mean no more than dislike, which is
no sufficient objection against your marrying of him. I have known
many couples, who have entirely disliked each other, lead very
comfortable genteel lives. Believe me, child, I know these things
better than you. You will allow me, I think, to have seen the world,
in which I have not an acquaintance who would not rather be thought to
dislike her husband than to like him. The contrary is such
out-of-fashion romantic nonsense, that the very imagination of it is

"Indeed, madam," replied Sophia, "I shall never marry a man I dislike.
If I promise my father never to consent to any marriage contrary to
his inclinations, I think I may hope he will never force me into that
state contrary to my own."

"Inclinations!" cries the aunt, with some warmth. "Inclinations! I am
astonished at your assurance. A young woman of your age, and
unmarried, to talk of inclinations! But whatever your inclinations may
be, my brother is resolved; nay, since you talk of inclinations, I
shall advise him to hasten the treaty. Inclinations!"

Sophia then flung herself upon her knees, and tears began to trickle
from her shining eyes. She entreated her aunt, "to have mercy upon
her, and not to resent so cruelly her unwillingness to make herself
miserable;" often urging, "that she alone was concerned, and that her
happiness only was at stake."

As a bailiff, when well authorized by his writ, having possessed
himself of the person of some unhappy debtor, views all his tears
without concern; in vain the wretched captive attempts to raise
compassion; in vain the tender wife bereft of her companion, the
little prattling boy, or frighted girl, are mentioned as inducements
to reluctance. The noble bumtrap, blind and deaf to every circumstance
of distress, greatly rises above all the motives to humanity, and into
the hands of the gaoler resolves to deliver his miserable prey.

Not less blind to the tears, or less deaf to every entreaty of Sophia
was the politic aunt, nor less determined was she to deliver over the
trembling maid into the arms of the gaoler Blifil. She answered with
great impetuosity, "So far, madam, from your being concerned alone,
your concern is the least, or surely the least important. It is the
honour of your family which is concerned in this alliance; you are
only the instrument. Do you conceive, mistress, that in an
intermarriage between kingdoms, as when a daughter of France is
married into Spain, the princess herself is alone considered in the
match? No! it is a match between two kingdoms, rather than between two
persons. The same happens in great families such as ours. The alliance
between the families is the principal matter. You ought to have a
greater regard for the honour of your family than for your own person;
and if the example of a princess cannot inspire you with these noble
thoughts, you cannot surely complain at being used no worse than all
princesses are used."

"I hope, madam," cries Sophia, with a little elevation of voice, "I
shall never do anything to dishonour my family; but as for Mr Blifil,
whatever may be the consequence, I am resolved against him, and no
force shall prevail in his favour."

Western, who had been within hearing during the greater part of the
preceding dialogue, had now exhausted all his patience; he therefore
entered the room in a violent passion, crying, "D--n me then if
shatunt ha'un, d--n me if shatunt, that's all--that's all; d--n me if

Mrs Western had collected a sufficient quantity of wrath for the use
of Sophia; but she now transferred it all to the squire. "Brother,"
said she, "it is astonishing that you will interfere in a matter
which you had totally left to my negotiation. Regard to my family
hath made me take upon myself to be the mediating power, in order to
rectify those mistakes in policy which you have committed in your
daughter's education. For, brother, it is you--it is your
preposterous conduct which hath eradicated all the seeds that I had
formerly sown in her tender mind. It is you yourself who have taught
her disobedience."--"Blood!" cries the squire, foaming at the mouth,
"you are enough to conquer the patience of the devil! Have I ever
taught my daughter disobedience?--Here she stands; speak honestly,
girl, did ever I bid you be disobedient to me? Have not I done
everything to humour and to gratify you, and to make you obedient to
me? And very obedient to me she was when a little child, before you
took her in hand and spoiled her, by filling her head with a pack of
court notions. Why--why--why--did I not overhear you telling her she
must behave like a princess? You have made a Whig of the girl; and how
should her father, or anybody else, expect any obedience from
her?"--"Brother," answered Mrs Western, with an air of great disdain,
"I cannot express the contempt I have for your politics of all kinds;
but I will appeal likewise to the young lady herself, whether I have
ever taught her any principles of disobedience. On the contrary,
niece, have I not endeavoured to inspire you with a true idea of the
several relations in which a human creature stands in society? Have I
not taken infinite pains to show you, that the law of nature hath
enjoined a duty on children to their parents? Have I not told you what
Plato says on that subject?--a subject on which you was so notoriously
ignorant when you came first under my care, that I verily believe you
did not know the relation between a daughter and a father."--"'Tis a
lie," answered Western. "The girl is no such fool, as to live to
eleven years old without knowing that she was her father's
relation."--"O! more than Gothic ignorance," answered the lady. "And
as for your manners, brother, I must tell you, they deserve a
cane."--"Why then you may gi' it me, if you think you are able," cries
the squire; "nay, I suppose your niece there will be ready enough to
help you."--"Brother," said Mrs Western, "though I despise you beyond
expression, yet I shall endure your insolence no longer; so I desire
my coach may be got ready immediately, for I am resolved to leave your
house this very morning."--"And a good riddance too," answered he; "I
can bear your insolence no longer, an you come to that. Blood! it is
almost enough of itself to make my daughter undervalue my sense, when
she hears you telling me every minute you despise me."--"It is
impossible, it is impossible," cries the aunt; "no one can undervalue
such a boor."--"Boar," answered the squire, "I am no boar; no, nor
ass; no, nor rat neither, madam. Remember that--I am no rat. I am a
true Englishman, and not of your Hanover breed, that have eat up the
nation."--"Thou art one of those wise men," cries she, "whose
nonsensical principles have undone the nation; by weakening the hands
of our government at home, and by discouraging our friends and
encouraging our enemies abroad."--"Ho! are you come back to your
politics?" cries the squire: "as for those I despise them as much as I
do a f--t." Which last words he accompanied and graced with the very
action, which, of all others, was the most proper to it. And whether
it was this word or the contempt exprest for her politics, which most
affected Mrs Western, I will not determine; but she flew into the most
violent rage, uttered phrases improper to be here related, and
instantly burst out of the house. Nor did her brother or her niece
think proper either to stop or to follow her; for the one was so much
possessed by concern, and the other by anger, that they were rendered
almost motionless.

The squire, however, sent after his sister the same holloa which
attends the departure of a hare, when she is first started before the
hounds. He was indeed a great master of this kind of vociferation, and
had a holla proper for most occasions in life.

Women who, like Mrs Western, know the world, and have applied
themselves to philosophy and politics, would have immediately availed
themselves of the present disposition of Mr Western's mind, by
throwing in a few artful compliments to his understanding at the
expense of his absent adversary; but poor Sophia was all simplicity.
By which word we do not intend to insinuate to the reader, that she
was silly, which is generally understood as a synonymous term with
simple; for she was indeed a most sensible girl, and her understanding
was of the first rate; but she wanted all that useful art which
females convert to so many good purposes in life, and which, as it
rather arises from the heart than from the head, is often the property
of the silliest of women.

Chapter iv.

A picture of a country gentlewoman taken from the life.

Mr Western having finished his holla, and taken a little breath, began
to lament, in very pathetic terms, the unfortunate condition of men,
who are, says he, "always whipt in by the humours of some d--n'd b--
or other. I think I was hard run enough by your mother for one man;
but after giving her a dodge, here's another b-- follows me upon the
foil; but curse my jacket if I will be run down in this manner by any

Sophia never had a single dispute with her father, till this unlucky
affair of Blifil, on any account, except in defence of her mother,
whom she had loved most tenderly, though she lost her in the eleventh
year of her age. The squire, to whom that poor woman had been a
faithful upper-servant all the time of their marriage, had returned
that behaviour by making what the world calls a good husband. He very
seldom swore at her (perhaps not above once a week) and never beat
her; she had not the least occasion for jealousy, and was perfect
mistress of her time; for she was never interrupted by her husband,
who was engaged all the morning in his field exercises, and all the
evening with bottle companions. She scarce indeed ever saw him but at
meals; where she had the pleasure of carving those dishes which she
had before attended at the dressing. From these meals she retired
about five minutes after the other servants, having only stayed to
drink "the king over the water." Such were, it seems, Mr Western's
orders; for it was a maxim with him, that women should come in with
the first dish, and go out after the first glass. Obedience to these
orders was perhaps no difficult task; for the conversation (if it may
be called so) was seldom such as could entertain a lady. It consisted
chiefly of hallowing, singing, relations of sporting adventures,
b--d--y, and abuse of women, and of the government.

These, however, were the only seasons when Mr Western saw his wife;
for when he repaired to her bed, he was generally so drunk that he
could not see; and in the sporting season he always rose from her
before it was light. Thus was she perfect mistress of her time, and
had besides a coach and four usually at her command; though unhappily,
indeed, the badness of the neighbourhood, and of the roads, made this
of little use; for none who had set much value on their necks would
have passed through the one, or who had set any value on their hours,
would have visited the other. Now to deal honestly with the reader,
she did not make all the return expected to so much indulgence; for
she had been married against her will by a fond father, the match
having been rather advantageous on her side; for the squire's estate
was upward of £3000 a year, and her fortune no more than a bare £8000.
Hence perhaps she had contracted a little gloominess of temper, for
she was rather a good servant than a good wife; nor had she always the
gratitude to return the extraordinary degree of roaring mirth, with
which the squire received her, even with a good-humoured smile. She
would, moreover, sometimes interfere with matters which did not
concern her, as the violent drinking of her husband, which in the
gentlest terms she would take some of the few opportunities he gave
her of remonstrating against. And once in her life she very earnestly
entreated him to carry her for two months to London, which he
peremptorily denied; nay, was angry with his wife for the request ever
after, being well assured that all the husbands in London are

For this last, and many other good reasons, Western at length heartily
hated his wife; and as he never concealed this hatred before her
death, so he never forgot it afterwards; but when anything in the
least soured him, as a bad scenting day, or a distemper among his
hounds, or any other such misfortune, he constantly vented his spleen
by invectives against the deceased, saying, "If my wife was alive now,
she would be glad of this."

These invectives he was especially desirous of throwing forth before
Sophia; for as he loved her more than he did any other, so he was
really jealous that she had loved her mother better than him. And this
jealousy Sophia seldom failed of heightening on these occasions; for
he was not contented with violating her ears with the abuse of her
mother, but endeavoured to force an explicit approbation of all this
abuse; with which desire he never could prevail upon her by any
promise or threats to comply.

Hence some of my readers will, perhaps, wonder that the squire had not
hated Sophia as much as he had hated her mother; but I must inform
them, that hatred is not the effect of love, even through the medium
of jealousy. It is, indeed, very possible for jealous persons to kill
the objects of their jealousy, but not to hate them. Which sentiment
being a pretty hard morsel, and bearing something of the air of a
paradox, we shall leave the reader to chew the cud upon it to the end
of the chapter.

Chapter v.

The generous behaviour of Sophia towards her aunt.

Sophia kept silence during the foregoing speech of her father, nor did
she once answer otherwise than with a sigh; but as he understood none
of the language, or, as he called it, lingo of the eyes, so he was not
satisfied without some further approbation of his sentiments, which he
now demanded of his daughter; telling her, in the usual way, "he
expected she was ready to take the part of everybody against him, as
she had always done that of the b-- her mother." Sophia remaining
still silent, he cryed out, "What, art dumb? why dost unt speak? Was
not thy mother a d--d b-- to me? answer me that. What, I suppose you
despise your father too, and don't think him good enough to speak to?"

"For Heaven's sake, sir," answered Sophia, "do not give so cruel a
turn to my silence. I am sure I would sooner die than be guilty of any
disrespect towards you; but how can I venture to speak, when every
word must either offend my dear papa, or convict me of the blackest
ingratitude as well as impiety to the memory of the best of mothers;
for such, I am certain, my mamma was always to me?"

"And your aunt, I suppose, is the best of sisters too!" replied the
squire. "Will you be so kind as to allow that she is a b--? I may
fairly insist upon that, I think?"

"Indeed, sir," says Sophia, "I have great obligations to my aunt. She
hath been a second mother to me."

"And a second wife to me too," returned Western; "so you will take her
part too! You won't confess that she hath acted the part of the vilest
sister in the world?"

"Upon my word, sir," cries Sophia, "I must belie my heart wickedly if
I did. I know my aunt and you differ very much in your ways of
thinking; but I have heard her a thousand times express the greatest
affection for you; and I am convinced, so far from her being the worst
sister in the world, there are very few who love a brother better."

"The English of all which is," answered the squire, "that I am in the
wrong. Ay, certainly. Ay, to be sure the woman is in the right, and
the man in the wrong always."

"Pardon me, sir," cries Sophia. "I do not say so."

"What don't you say?" answered the father: "you have the impudence to
say she's in the right: doth it not follow then of course that I am in
the wrong? And perhaps I am in the wrong to suffer such a Presbyterian
Hanoverian b-- to come into my house. She may 'dite me of a plot for
anything I know, and give my estate to the government."

"So far, sir, from injuring you or your estate," says Sophia, "if my
aunt had died yesterday, I am convinced she would have left you her
whole fortune."

Whether Sophia intended it or no, I shall not presume to assert; but
certain it is, these last words penetrated very deep into the ears of
her father, and produced a much more sensible effect than all she had
said before. He received the sound with much the same action as a man
receives a bullet in his head. He started, staggered, and turned pale.
After which he remained silent above a minute, and then began in the
following hesitating manner: "Yesterday! she would have left me her
esteate yesterday! would she? Why yesterday, of all the days in the
year? I suppose if she dies to-morrow, she will leave it to somebody
else, and perhaps out of the vamily."--"My aunt, sir," cries Sophia,
"hath very violent passions, and I can't answer what she may do under
their influence."

"You can't!" returned the father: "and pray who hath been the occasion
of putting her into those violent passions? Nay, who hath actually put
her into them? Was not you and she hard at it before I came into the
room? Besides, was not all our quarrel about you? I have not
quarrelled with sister this many years but upon your account; and now
you would throw the whole blame upon me, as thof I should be the
occasion of her leaving the esteate out o' the vamily. I could have
expected no better indeed; this is like the return you make to all the
rest of my fondness."

"I beseech you then," cries Sophia, "upon my knees I beseech you, if I
have been the unhappy occasion of this difference, that you will
endeavour to make it up with my aunt, and not suffer her to leave your
house in this violent rage of anger: she is a very good-natured woman,
and a few civil words will satisfy her. Let me entreat you, sir."

"So I must go and ask pardon for your fault, must I?" answered
Western. "You have lost the hare, and I must draw every way to find
her again? Indeed, if I was certain"--Here he stopt, and Sophia
throwing in more entreaties, at length prevailed upon him; so that
after venting two or three bitter sarcastical expressions against his
daughter, he departed as fast as he could to recover his sister,
before her equipage could be gotten ready.

Sophia then returned to her chamber of mourning, where she indulged
herself (if the phrase may be allowed me) in all the luxury of tender
grief. She read over more than once the letter which she had received
from Jones; her muff too was used on this occasion; and she bathed
both these, as well as herself, with her tears. In this situation the
friendly Mrs Honour exerted her utmost abilities to comfort her
afflicted mistress. She ran over the names of many young gentlemen:
and having greatly commended their parts and persons, assured Sophia
that she might take her choice of any. These methods must have
certainly been used with some success in disorders of the like kind,
or so skilful a practitioner as Mrs Honour would never have ventured
to apply them; nay, I have heard that the college of chambermaids hold
them to be as sovereign remedies as any in the female dispensary; but
whether it was that Sophia's disease differed inwardly from those
cases with which it agreed in external symptoms, I will not assert;
but, in fact, the good waiting-woman did more harm than good, and at
last so incensed her mistress (which was no easy matter) that with an
angry voice she dismissed her from her presence.

Chapter vi.

Containing great variety of matter.

The squire overtook his sister just as she was stepping into the
coach, and partly by force, and partly by solicitations, prevailed
upon her to order her horses back into their quarters. He succeeded in
this attempt without much difficulty; for the lady was, as we have
already hinted, of a most placable disposition, and greatly loved her
brother, though she despised his parts, or rather his little knowledge
of the world.

Poor Sophia, who had first set on foot this reconciliation, was now
made the sacrifice to it. They both concurred in their censures on her
conduct; jointly declared war against her, and directly proceeded to
counsel, how to carry it on in the most vigorous manner. For this
purpose, Mrs Western proposed not only an immediate conclusion of the
treaty with Allworthy, but as immediately to carry it into execution;
saying, "That there was no other way to succeed with her niece, but by
violent methods, which she was convinced Sophia had not sufficient
resolution to resist. By violent," says she, "I mean rather, hasty
measures; for as to confinement or absolute force, no such things must
or can be attempted. Our plan must be concerted for a surprize, and
not for a storm."

These matters were resolved on, when Mr Blifil came to pay a visit to
his mistress. The squire no sooner heard of his arrival, than he stept
aside, by his sister's advice, to give his daughter orders for the
proper reception of her lover: which he did with the most bitter
execrations and denunciations of judgment on her refusal.

The impetuosity of the squire bore down all before him; and Sophia, as
her aunt very wisely foresaw, was not able to resist him. She agreed,
therefore, to see Blifil, though she had scarce spirits or strength
sufficient to utter her assent. Indeed, to give a peremptory denial to
a father whom she so tenderly loved, was no easy task. Had this
circumstance been out of the case, much less resolution than what she
was really mistress of, would, perhaps, have served her; but it is no
unusual thing to ascribe those actions entirely to fear, which are in
a great measure produced by love.

In pursuance, therefore, of her father's peremptory command, Sophia
now admitted Mr Blifil's visit. Scenes like this, when painted at
large, afford, as we have observed, very little entertainment to the
reader. Here, therefore, we shall strictly adhere to a rule of Horace;
by which writers are directed to pass over all those matters which
they despair of placing in a shining light;--a rule, we conceive, of
excellent use as well to the historian as to the poet; and which, if
followed, must at least have this good effect, that many a great evil
(for so all great books are called) would thus be reduced to a small

It is possible the great art used by Blifil at this interview would
have prevailed on Sophia to have made another man in his circumstances
her confident, and to have revealed the whole secret of her heart to
him; but she had contracted so ill an opinion of this young gentleman,
that she was resolved to place no confidence in him; for simplicity,
when set on its guard, is often a match for cunning. Her behaviour to
him, therefore, was entirely forced, and indeed such as is generally
prescribed to virgins upon the second formal visit from one who is
appointed for their husband.

But though Blifil declared himself to the squire perfectly satisfied
with his reception; yet that gentleman, who, in company with his
sister, had overheard all, was not so well pleased. He resolved, in
pursuance of the advice of the sage lady, to push matters as forward
as possible; and addressing himself to his intended son-in-law in the
hunting phrase, he cried, after a loud holla, "Follow her, boy, follow
her; run in, run in; that's it, honeys. Dead, dead, dead. Never be
bashful, nor stand shall I, shall I? Allworthy and I can finish all
matters between us this afternoon, and let us ha' the wedding

Blifil having conveyed the utmost satisfaction into his countenance,
answered, "As there is nothing, sir, in this world which I so eagerly
desire as an alliance with your family, except my union with the most
amiable and deserving Sophia, you may easily imagine how impatient I
must be to see myself in possession of my two highest wishes. If I
have not therefore importuned you on this head, you will impute it
only to my fear of offending the lady, by endeavouring to hurry on so
blessed an event faster than a strict compliance with all the rules of
decency and decorum will permit. But if, by your interest, sir, she
might be induced to dispense with any formalities--"

"Formalities! with a pox!" answered the squire. "Pooh, all stuff and
nonsense! I tell thee, she shall ha' thee to-morrow: you will know the
world better hereafter, when you come to my age. Women never gi' their
consent, man, if they can help it, 'tis not the fashion. If I had
stayed for her mother's consent, I might have been a batchelor to this
day.--To her, to her, co to her, that's it, you jolly dog. I tell thee
shat ha' her to-morrow morning."

Blifil suffered himself to be overpowered by the forcible rhetoric of
the squire; and it being agreed that Western should close with
Allworthy that very afternoon, the lover departed home, having first
earnestly begged that no violence might be offered to the lady by this
haste, in the same manner as a popish inquisitor begs the lay power to
do no violence to the heretic delivered over to it, and against whom
the church hath passed sentence.

And, to say the truth, Blifil had passed sentence against Sophia; for,
however pleased he had declared himself to Western with his reception,
he was by no means satisfied, unless it was that he was convinced of
the hatred and scorn of his mistress: and this had produced no less
reciprocal hatred and scorn in him. It may, perhaps, be asked, Why
then did he not put an immediate end to all further courtship? I
answer, for that very reason, as well as for several others equally
good, which we shall now proceed to open to the reader.

Though Mr Blifil was not of the complexion of Jones, nor ready to eat
every woman he saw; yet he was far from being destitute of that
appetite which is said to be the common property of all animals. With
this, he had likewise that distinguishing taste, which serves to
direct men in their choice of the object or food of their several
appetites; and this taught him to consider Sophia as a most delicious
morsel, indeed to regard her with the same desires which an ortolan
inspires into the soul of an epicure. Now the agonies which affected
the mind of Sophia, rather augmented than impaired her beauty; for her
tears added brightness to her eyes, and her breasts rose higher with
her sighs. Indeed, no one hath seen beauty in its highest lustre who
hath never seen it in distress. Blifil therefore looked on this human
ortolan with greater desire than when he viewed her last; nor was his
desire at all lessened by the aversion which he discovered in her to
himself. On the contrary, this served rather to heighten the pleasure
he proposed in rifling her charms, as it added triumph to lust; nay,
he had some further views, from obtaining the absolute possession of
her person, which we detest too much even to mention; and revenge
itself was not without its share in the gratifications which he
promised himself. The rivalling poor Jones, and supplanting him in her
affections, added another spur to his pursuit, and promised another
additional rapture to his enjoyment.

Besides all these views, which to some scrupulous persons may seem to
savour too much of malevolence, he had one prospect, which few readers
will regard with any great abhorrence. And this was the estate of Mr
Western; which was all to be settled on his daughter and her issue;
for so extravagant was the affection of that fond parent, that,
provided his child would but consent to be miserable with the husband
he chose, he cared not at what price he purchased him.

For these reasons Mr Blifil was so desirous of the match that he
intended to deceive Sophia, by pretending love to her; and to deceive
her father and his own uncle, by pretending he was beloved by her. In
doing this he availed himself of the piety of Thwackum, who held, that
if the end proposed was religious (as surely matrimony is), it
mattered not how wicked were the means. As to other occasions, he used
to apply the philosophy of Square, which taught, that the end was
immaterial, so that the means were fair and consistent with moral
rectitude. To say truth, there were few occurrences in life on which
he could not draw advantage from the precepts of one or other of those
great masters.

Little deceit was indeed necessary to be practised on Mr Western; who
thought the inclinations of his daughter of as little consequence as
Blifil himself conceived them to be; but as the sentiments of Mr
Allworthy were of a very different kind, so it was absolutely
necessary to impose on him. In this, however, Blifil was so well
assisted by Western, that he succeeded without difficulty; for as Mr
Allworthy had been assured by her father that Sophia had a proper
affection for Blifil, and that all which he had suspected concerning
Jones was entirely false, Blifil had nothing more to do than to
confirm these assertions; which he did with such equivocations, that
he preserved a salvo for his conscience; and had the satisfaction of
conveying a lie to his uncle, without the guilt of telling one. When
he was examined touching the inclinations of Sophia by Allworthy, who
said, "He would on no account be accessary to forcing a young lady
into a marriage contrary to her own will;" he answered, "That the real
sentiments of young ladies were very difficult to be understood; that
her behaviour to him was full as forward as he wished it, and that if
he could believe her father, she had all the affection for him which
any lover could desire. As for Jones," said he, "whom I am loth to
call villain, though his behaviour to you, sir, sufficiently justifies
the appellation, his own vanity, or perhaps some wicked views, might
make him boast of a falsehood; for if there had been any reality in
Miss Western's love to him, the greatness of her fortune would never
have suffered him to desert her, as you are well informed he hath.
Lastly, sir, I promise you I would not myself, for any consideration,
no, not for the whole world, consent to marry this young lady, if I
was not persuaded she had all the passion for me which I desire she
should have."

This excellent method of conveying a falsehood with the heart only,
without making the tongue guilty of an untruth, by the means of
equivocation and imposture, hath quieted the conscience of many a
notable deceiver; and yet, when we consider that it is Omniscience on
which these endeavour to impose, it may possibly seem capable of
affording only a very superficial comfort; and that this artful and
refined distinction between communicating a lie, and telling one, is
hardly worth the pains it costs them.

Allworthy was pretty well satisfied with what Mr Western and Mr Blifil
told him: and the treaty was now, at the end of two days, concluded.
Nothing then remained previous to the office of the priest, but the
office of the lawyers, which threatened to take up so much time, that
Western offered to bind himself by all manner of covenants, rather
than defer the happiness of the young couple. Indeed, he was so very
earnest and pressing, that an indifferent person might have concluded
he was more a principal in this match than he really was; but this
eagerness was natural to him on all occasions: and he conducted every
scheme he undertook in such a manner, as if the success of that alone
was sufficient to constitute the whole happiness of his life.

The joint importunities of both father and son-in-law would probably
have prevailed on Mr Allworthy, who brooked but ill any delay of
giving happiness to others, had not Sophia herself prevented it, and
taken measures to put a final end to the whole treaty, and to rob both
church and law of those taxes which these wise bodies have thought
proper to receive from the propagation of the human species in a
lawful manner. Of which in the next chapter.

Chapter vii.

A strange resolution of Sophia, and a more strange stratagem of Mrs

Though Mrs Honour was principally attached to her own interest, she
was not without some little attachment to Sophia. To say truth, it was
very difficult for any one to know that young lady without loving her.
She no sooner therefore heard a piece of news, which she imagined to
be of great importance to her mistress, than, quite forgetting the
anger which she had conceived two days before, at her unpleasant
dismission from Sophia's presence, she ran hastily to inform her of
the news.

The beginning of her discourse was as abrupt as her entrance into the
room. "O dear ma'am!" says she, "what doth your la'ship think? To be
sure I am frightened out of my wits; and yet I thought it my duty to
tell your la'ship, though perhaps it may make you angry, for we
servants don't always know what will make our ladies angry; for, to be
sure, everything is always laid to the charge of a servant. When our
ladies are out of humour, to be sure we must be scolded; and to be
sure I should not wonder if your la'ship should be out of humour; nay,
it must surprize you certainly, ay, and shock you too."--"Good Honour,
let me know it without any longer preface," says Sophia; "there are
few things, I promise you, which will surprize, and fewer which will
shock me."--"Dear ma'am," answered Honour, "to be sure, I overheard my
master talking to parson Supple about getting a licence this very
afternoon; and to be sure I heard him say, your la'ship should be
married to-morrow morning." Sophia turned pale at these words, and
repeated eagerly, "To-morrow morning!"--"Yes, ma'am," replied the
trusty waiting-woman, "I will take my oath I heard my master say
so."--"Honour," says Sophia, "you have both surprized and shocked me
to such a degree that I have scarce any breath or spirits left. What
is to be done in my dreadful situation?"--"I wish I was able to advise
your la'ship," says she. "Do advise me," cries Sophia; "pray, dear
Honour, advise me. Think what you would attempt if it was your own
case."--"Indeed, ma'am," cries Honour, "I wish your la'ship and I
could change situations; that is, I mean without hurting your la'ship;
for to be sure I don't wish you so bad as to be a servant; but because
that if so be it was my case, I should find no manner of difficulty in
it; for, in my poor opinion, young Squire Blifil is a charming, sweet,
handsome man."--"Don't mention such stuff," cries Sophia. "Such
stuff!" repeated Honour; "why, there. Well, to be sure, what's one
man's meat is another man's poison, and the same is altogether as true
of women."--"Honour," says Sophia, "rather than submit to be the wife
of that contemptible wretch, I would plunge a dagger into my
heart."--"O lud! ma'am!" answered the other, "I am sure you frighten
me out of my wits now. Let me beseech your la'ship not to suffer such
wicked thoughts to come into your head. O lud! to be sure I tremble
every inch of me. Dear ma'am, consider, that to be denied Christian
burial, and to have your corpse buried in the highway, and a stake
drove through you, as farmer Halfpenny was served at Ox Cross; and, to
be sure, his ghost hath walked there ever since, for several people
have seen him. To be sure it can be nothing but the devil which can
put such wicked thoughts into the head of anybody; for certainly it is
less wicked to hurt all the world than one's own dear self; and so I
have heard said by more parsons than one. If your la'ship hath such a
violent aversion, and hates the young gentleman so very bad, that you
can't bear to think of going into bed to him; for to be sure there may
be such antipathies in nature, and one had lieverer touch a toad than
the flesh of some people."--

Sophia had been too much wrapt in contemplation to pay any great
attention to the foregoing excellent discourse of her maid;
interrupting her therefore, without making any answer to it, she said,
"Honour, I am come to a resolution. I am determined to leave my
father's house this very night; and if you have the friendship for me
which you have often professed, you will keep me company."--"That I
will, ma'am, to the world's end," answered Honour; "but I beg your
la'ship to consider the consequence before you undertake any rash
action. Where can your la'ship possibly go?"--"There is," replied
Sophia, "a lady of quality in London, a relation of mine, who spent
several months with my aunt in the country; during all which time she
treated me with great kindness, and expressed so much pleasure in my
company, that she earnestly desired my aunt to suffer me to go with
her to London. As she is a woman of very great note, I shall easily
find her out, and I make no doubt of being very well and kindly
received by her."--"I would not have your la'ship too confident of
that," cries Honour; "for the first lady I lived with used to invite
people very earnestly to her house; but if she heard afterwards they
were coming, she used to get out of the way. Besides, though this lady
would be very glad to see your la'ship, as to be sure anybody would be
glad to see your la'ship, yet when she hears your la'ship is run away
from my master--" "You are mistaken, Honour," says Sophia: "she looks
upon the authority of a father in a much lower light than I do; for
she pressed me violently to go to London with her, and when I refused
to go without my father's consent, she laughed me to scorn, called me
silly country girl, and said, I should make a pure loving wife, since
I could be so dutiful a daughter. So I have no doubt but she will both
receive me and protect me too, till my father, finding me out of his
power, can be brought to some reason."

"Well, but, ma'am," answered Honour, "how doth your la'ship think of
making your escape? Where will you get any horses or conveyance? For
as for your own horse, as all the servants know a little how matters
stand between my master and your la'ship, Robin will be hanged before
he will suffer it to go out of the stable without my master's express
orders." "I intend to escape," said Sophia, "by walking out of the
doors when they are open. I thank Heaven my legs are very able to
carry me. They have supported me many a long evening"--"Yes, to be
sure," cries Honour, "I will follow your la'ship through the world;
but your la'ship had almost as good be alone: for I should not be able
to defend you, if any robbers, or other villains, should meet with
you. Nay, I should be in as horrible a fright as your la'ship; for to
be certain, they would ravish us both. Besides, ma'am, consider how
cold the nights are now; we shall be frozen to death."--"A good brisk
pace," answered Sophia, "will preserve us from the cold; and if you
cannot defend me from a villain, Honour, I will defend you; for I will
take a pistol with me. There are two always charged in the
hall."--"Dear ma'am, you frighten me more and more," cries Honour:
"sure your la'ship would not venture to fire it off! I had rather run
any chance than your la'ship should do that."--"Why so?" says Sophia,
smiling; "would not you, Honour, fire a pistol at any one who should
attack your virtue?"--"To be sure, ma'am," cries Honour, "one's virtue
is a dear thing, especially to us poor servants; for it is our
livelihood, as a body may say: yet I mortally hate fire-arms; for so
many accidents happen by them."--"Well, well," says Sophia, "I believe
I may ensure your virtue at a very cheap rate, without carrying any
arms with us; for I intend to take horses at the very first town we
come to, and we shall hardly be attacked in our way thither. Look'ee,
Honour, I am resolved to go; and if you will attend me, I promise you
I will reward you to the very utmost of my power."

This last argument had a stronger effect on Honour than all the
preceding. And since she saw her mistress so determined, she desisted
from any further dissuasions. They then entered into a debate on ways
and means of executing their project. Here a very stubborn difficulty
occurred, and this was the removal of their effects, which was much
more easily got over by the mistress than by the maid; for when a lady
hath once taken a resolution to run to a lover, or to run from him,
all obstacles are considered as trifles. But Honour was inspired by no
such motive; she had no raptures to expect, nor any terrors to shun;
and besides the real value of her clothes, in which consisted a great
part of her fortune, she had a capricious fondness for several gowns,
and other things; either because they became her, or because they were
given her by such a particular person; because she had bought them
lately, or because she had had them long; or for some other reasons
equally good; so that she could not endure the thoughts of leaving the
poor things behind her exposed to the mercy of Western, who, she
doubted not, would in his rage make them suffer martyrdom.

The ingenious Mrs Honour having applied all her oratory to dissuade
her mistress from her purpose, when she found her positively
determined, at last started the following expedient to remove her
clothes, viz., to get herself turned out of doors that very evening.
Sophia highly approved this method, but doubted how it might be
brought about. "O, ma'am," cries Honour, "your la'ship may trust that
to me; we servants very well know how to obtain this favour of our
masters and mistresses; though sometimes, indeed, where they owe us
more wages than they can readily pay, they will put up with all our
affronts, and will hardly take any warning we can give them; but the
squire is none of those; and since your la'ship is resolved upon
setting out to-night, I warrant I get discharged this afternoon." It
was then resolved that she should pack up some linen and a night-gown
for Sophia, with her own things; and as for all her other clothes, the
young lady abandoned them with no more remorse than the sailor feels
when he throws over the goods of others, in order to save his own

Chapter viii.

Containing scenes of altercation, of no very uncommon kind.

Mrs Honour had scarce sooner parted from her young lady, than
something (for I would not, like the old woman in Quevedo, injure the
devil by any false accusation, and possibly he might have no hand in
it)--but something, I say, suggested itself to her, that by
sacrificing Sophia and all her secrets to Mr Western, she might
probably make her fortune. Many considerations urged this discovery.
The fair prospect of a handsome reward for so great and acceptable a
service to the squire, tempted her avarice; and again, the danger of
the enterprize she had undertaken; the uncertainty of its success;
night, cold, robbers, ravishers, all alarmed her fears. So forcibly
did all these operate upon her, that she was almost determined to go
directly to the squire, and to lay open the whole affair. She was,
however, too upright a judge to decree on one side, before she had
heard the other. And here, first, a journey to London appeared very
strongly in support of Sophia. She eagerly longed to see a place in
which she fancied charms short only of those which a raptured saint
imagines in heaven. In the next place, as she knew Sophia to have much
more generosity than her master, so her fidelity promised her a
greater reward than she could gain by treachery. She then
cross-examined all the articles which had raised her fears on the
other side, and found, on fairly sifting the matter, that there was
very little in them. And now both scales being reduced to a pretty
even balance, her love to her mistress being thrown into the scale of
her integrity, made that rather preponderate, when a circumstance
struck upon her imagination which might have had a dangerous effect,
had its whole weight been fairly put into the other scale. This was
the length of time which must intervene before Sophia would be able to
fulfil her promises; for though she was intitled to her mother's
fortune at the death of her father, and to the sum of £3000 left her
by an uncle when she came of age; yet these were distant days, and
many accidents might prevent the intended generosity of the young
lady; whereas the rewards she might expect from Mr Western were
immediate. But while she was pursuing this thought the good genius of
Sophia, or that which presided over the integrity of Mrs Honour, or
perhaps mere chance, sent an accident in her way, which at once
preserved her fidelity, and even facilitated the intended business.

Mrs Western's maid claimed great superiority over Mrs Honour on
several accounts. First, her birth was higher; for her great-grandmother
by the mother's side was a cousin, not far removed, to an Irish peer.
Secondly, her wages were greater. And lastly, she had been at London,
and had of consequence seen more of the world. She had always behaved,
therefore, to Mrs Honour with that reserve, and had always exacted of
her those marks of distinction, which every order of females preserves
and requires in conversation with those of an inferior order. Now as
Honour did not at all times agree with this doctrine, but would
frequently break in upon the respect which the other demanded, Mrs
Western's maid was not at all pleased with her company; indeed, she
earnestly longed to return home to the house of her mistress, where
she domineered at will over all the other servants. She had been
greatly, therefore, disappointed in the morning, when Mrs Western had
changed her mind on the very point of departure; and had been in what
is vulgarly called a glouting humour ever since.

In this humour, which was none of the sweetest, she came into the room
where Honour was debating with herself in the manner we have above
related. Honour no sooner saw her, than she addressed her in the
following obliging phrase: "Soh, madam, I find we are to have the
pleasure of your company longer, which I was afraid the quarrel
between my master and your lady would have robbed us of."--"I don't
know, madam," answered the other, "what you mean by we and us. I
assure you I do not look on any of the servants in this house to be
proper company for me. I am company, I hope, for their betters every
day in the week. I do not speak on your account, Mrs Honour; for you
are a civilized young woman; and when you have seen a little more of
the world, I should not be ashamed to walk with you in St James's
Park."--"Hoity toity!" cries Honour, "madam is in her airs, I protest.
Mrs Honour, forsooth! sure, madam, you might call me by my sir-name;
for though my lady calls me Honour, I have a sir-name as well as other
folks. Ashamed to walk with me, quotha! marry, as good as yourself, I
hope."--"Since you make such a return to my civility," said the other,
"I must acquaint you, Mrs Honour, that you are not so good as me. In
the country, indeed, one is obliged to take up with all kind of
trumpery; but in town I visit none but the women of women of quality.
Indeed, Mrs Honour, there is some difference, I hope, between you and
me."--"I hope so too," answered Honour: "there is some difference in
our ages, and--I think in our persons." Upon speaking which last
words, she strutted by Mrs Western's maid with the most provoking air
of contempt; turning up her nose, tossing her head, and violently
brushing the hoop of her competitor with her own. The other lady put
on one of her most malicious sneers, and said, "Creature! you are
below my anger; and it is beneath me to give ill words to such an
audacious saucy trollop; but, hussy, I must tell you, your breeding
shows the meanness of your birth as well as of your education; and
both very properly qualify you to be the mean serving-woman of a
country girl."--"Don't abuse my lady," cries Honour: "I won't take
that of you; she's as much better than yours as she is younger, and
ten thousand times more handsomer."

Here ill luck, or rather good luck, sent Mrs Western to see her maid
in tears, which began to flow plentifully at her approach; and of
which being asked the reason by her mistress, she presently acquainted
her that her tears were occasioned by the rude treatment of that
creature there--meaning Honour. "And, madam," continued she, "I could
have despised all she said to me; but she hath had the audacity to
affront your ladyship, and to call you ugly--Yes, madam, she called
you ugly old cat to my face. I could not bear to hear your ladyship
called ugly."--"Why do you repeat her impudence so often?" said Mrs
Western. And then turning to Mrs Honour, she asked her "How she had
the assurance to mention her name with disrespect?"--"Disrespect,
madam!" answered Honour; "I never mentioned your name at all: I said
somebody was not as handsome as my mistress, and to be sure you know
that as well as I."--"Hussy," replied the lady, "I will make such a
saucy trollop as yourself know that I am not a proper subject of your
discourse. And if my brother doth not discharge you this moment, I
will never sleep in his house again. I will find him out, and have you
discharged this moment."--"Discharged!" cries Honour; "and suppose I
am: there are more places in the world than one. Thank Heaven, good
servants need not want places; and if you turn away all who do not
think you handsome, you will want servants very soon; let me tell you

Mrs Western spoke, or rather thundered, in answer; but as she was
hardly articulate, we cannot be very certain of the identical words;
we shall therefore omit inserting a speech which at best would not
greatly redound to her honour. She then departed in search of her
brother, with a countenance so full of rage, that she resembled one of
the furies rather than a human creature.

The two chambermaids being again left alone, began a second bout at
altercation, which soon produced a combat of a more active kind. In
this the victory belonged to the lady of inferior rank, but not
without some loss of blood, of hair, and of lawn and muslin.

Chapter ix.

The wise demeanour of Mr Western in the character of a magistrate. A
hint to justices of peace, concerning the necessary qualifications of
a clerk; with extraordinary instances of paternal madness and filial

Logicians sometimes prove too much by an argument, and politicians
often overreach themselves in a scheme. Thus had it like to have
happened to Mrs Honour, who, instead of recovering the rest of her
clothes, had like to have stopped even those she had on her back from
escaping; for the squire no sooner heard of her having abused his
sister, than he swore twenty oaths he would send her to Bridewell.

Mrs Western was a very good-natured woman, and ordinarily of a
forgiving temper. She had lately remitted the trespass of a
stage-coachman, who had overturned her post-chaise into a ditch; nay,
she had even broken the law, in refusing to prosecute a highwayman who
had robbed her, not only of a sum of money, but of her ear-rings; at
the same time d--ning her, and saying, "Such handsome b--s as you
don't want jewels to set them off, and be d--n'd to you." But now, so
uncertain are our tempers, and so much do we at different times differ
from ourselves, she would hear of no mitigation; nor could all the
affected penitence of Honour, nor all the entreaties of Sophia for her
own servant, prevail with her to desist from earnestly desiring her
brother to execute justiceship (for it was indeed a syllable more than
justice) on the wench.

But luckily the clerk had a qualification, which no clerk to a justice
of peace ought ever to be without, namely, some understanding in the
law of this realm. He therefore whispered in the ear of the justice
that he would exceed his authority by committing the girl to
Bridewell, as there had been no attempt to break the peace; "for I am
afraid, sir," says he, "you cannot legally commit any one to Bridewell
only for ill-breeding."

In matters of high importance, particularly in cases relating to the
game, the justice was not always attentive to these admonitions of his
clerk; for, indeed, in executing the laws under that head, many
justices of peace suppose they have a large discretionary power, by
virtue of which, under the notion of searching for and taking away
engines for the destruction of the game, they often commit trespasses,
and sometimes felony, at their pleasure.

But this offence was not of quite so high a nature, nor so dangerous
to the society. Here, therefore, the justice behaved with some
attention to the advice of his clerk; for, in fact, he had already had
two informations exhibited against him in the King's Bench, and had no
curiosity to try a third.

The squire, therefore, putting on a most wise and significant
countenance, after a preface of several hums and hahs, told his
sister, that upon more mature deliberation, he was of opinion, that
"as there was no breaking up of the peace, such as the law," says he,
"calls breaking open a door, or breaking a hedge, or breaking a head,
or any such sort of breaking, the matter did not amount to a felonious
kind of a thing, nor trespasses, nor damages, and, therefore, there
was no punishment in the law for it."

Mrs Western said, "she knew the law much better; that she had known
servants very severely punished for affronting their masters;" and
then named a certain justice of the peace in London, "who," she said,
"would commit a servant to Bridewell at any time when a master or
mistress desired it."

"Like enough," cries the squire; "it may be so in London; but the law
is different in the country." Here followed a very learned dispute
between the brother and sister concerning the law, which we would
insert, if we imagined many of our readers could understand it. This
was, however, at length referred by both parties to the clerk, who
decided it in favour of the magistrate; and Mrs Western was, in the
end, obliged to content herself with the satisfaction of having Honour
turned away; to which Sophia herself very readily and cheerfully

Thus Fortune, after having diverted herself, according to custom, with
two or three frolicks, at last disposed all matters to the advantage
of our heroine; who indeed succeeded admirably well in her deceit,
considering it was the first she had ever practised. And, to say the
truth, I have often concluded, that the honest part of mankind would
be much too hard for the knavish, if they could bring themselves to
incur the guilt, or thought it worth their while to take the trouble.

Honour acted her part to the utmost perfection. She no sooner saw
herself secure from all danger of Bridewell, a word which had raised
most horrible ideas in her mind, than she resumed those airs which her
terrors before had a little abated; and laid down her place, with as
much affectation of content, and indeed of contempt, as was ever
practised at the resignation of places of much greater importance. If
the reader pleases, therefore, we chuse rather to say she
resigned--which hath, indeed, been always held a synonymous expression
with being turned out, or turned away.

Mr Western ordered her to be very expeditious in packing; for his
sister declared she would not sleep another night under the same roof
with so impudent a slut. To work therefore she went, and that so
earnestly, that everything was ready early in the evening; when,
having received her wages, away packed bag and baggage, to the great
satisfaction of every one, but of none more than of Sophia; who,
having appointed her maid to meet her at a certain place not far from
the house, exactly at the dreadful and ghostly hour of twelve, began
to prepare for her own departure.

But first she was obliged to give two painful audiences, the one to
her aunt, and the other to her father. In these Mrs Western herself
began to talk to her in a more peremptory stile than before: but her
father treated her in so violent and outrageous a manner, that he
frightened her into an affected compliance with his will; which so
highly pleased the good squire, that he changed his frowns into
smiles, and his menaces into promises: he vowed his whole soul was
wrapt in hers; that her consent (for so he construed the words, "You
know, sir, I must not, nor can, refuse to obey any absolute command of
yours") had made him the happiest of mankind. He then gave her a large
bank-bill to dispose of in any trinkets she pleased, and kissed and
embraced her in the fondest manner, while tears of joy trickled from
those eyes which a few moments before had darted fire and rage against
the dear object of all his affection.

Instances of this behaviour in parents are so common, that the reader,
I doubt not, will be very little astonished at the whole conduct of Mr
Western. If he should, I own I am not able to account for it; since
that he loved his daughter most tenderly, is, I think, beyond dispute.
So indeed have many others, who have rendered their children most
completely miserable by the same conduct; which, though it is almost
universal in parents, hath always appeared to me to be the most
unaccountable of all the absurdities which ever entered into the brain
of that strange prodigious creature man.

The latter part of Mr Western's behaviour had so strong an effect on
the tender heart of Sophia, that it suggested a thought to her, which
not all the sophistry of her politic aunt, nor all the menaces of her
father, had ever once brought into her head. She reverenced her father
so piously, and loved him so passionately, that she had scarce ever
felt more pleasing sensations, than what arose from the share she
frequently had of contributing to his amusement, and sometimes,
perhaps, to higher gratifications; for he never could contain the
delight of hearing her commended, which he had the satisfaction of
hearing almost every day of her life. The idea, therefore, of the
immense happiness she should convey to her father by her consent to
this match, made a strong impression on her mind. Again, the extreme
piety of such an act of obedience worked very forcibly, as she had a
very deep sense of religion. Lastly, when she reflected how much she
herself was to suffer, being indeed to become little less than a
sacrifice, or a martyr, to filial love and duty, she felt an agreeable
tickling in a certain little passion, which though it bears no
immediate affinity either to religion or virtue, is often so kind as
to lend great assistance in executing the purposes of both.

Sophia was charmed with the contemplation of so heroic an action, and
began to compliment herself with much premature flattery, when Cupid,
who lay hid in her muff, suddenly crept out, and like Punchinello in a
puppet-show, kicked all out before him. In truth (for we scorn to
deceive our reader, or to vindicate the character of our heroine by
ascribing her actions to supernatural impulse) the thoughts of her
beloved Jones, and some hopes (however distant) in which he was very
particularly concerned, immediately destroyed all which filial love,
piety, and pride had, with their joint endeavours, been labouring to
bring about.

But before we proceed any farther with Sophia, we must now look back
to Mr Jones.

Chapter x.

Containing several matters, natural enough perhaps, but low.

The reader will be pleased to remember, that we left Mr Jones, in the
beginning of this book, on his road to Bristol; being determined to
seek his fortune at sea, or rather, indeed, to fly away from his
fortune on shore.

It happened (a thing not very unusual), that the guide who undertook
to conduct him on his way, was unluckily unacquainted with the road;
so that having missed his right track, and being ashamed to ask
information, he rambled about backwards and forwards till night came
on, and it began to grow dark. Jones suspecting what had happened,
acquainted the guide with his apprehensions; but he insisted on it,
that they were in the right road, and added, it would be very strange
if he should not know the road to Bristol; though, in reality, it
would have been much stranger if he had known it, having never past
through it in his life before.

Jones had not such implicit faith in his guide, but that on their
arrival at a village he inquired of the first fellow he saw, whether
they were in the road to Bristol. "Whence did you come?" cries the
fellow. "No matter," says Jones, a little hastily; "I want to know if
this be the road to Bristol?"--"The road to Bristol!" cries the
fellow, scratching his head: "why, measter, I believe you will hardly
get to Bristol this way to-night."--"Prithee, friend, then," answered
Jones, "do tell us which is the way."--"Why, measter," cries the
fellow, "you must be come out of your road the Lord knows whither; for
thick way goeth to Glocester."--"Well, and which way goes to Bristol?"
said Jones. "Why, you be going away from Bristol," answered the
fellow. "Then," said Jones, "we must go back again?"--"Ay, you must,"
said the fellow. "Well, and when we come back to the top of the hill,
which way must we take?"--"Why, you must keep the strait road."--"But
I remember there are two roads, one to the right and the other to the
left."--"Why, you must keep the right-hand road, and then gu strait
vorwards; only remember to turn vurst to your right, and then to your
left again, and then to your right, and that brings you to the
squire's; and then you must keep strait vorwards, and turn to the

Another fellow now came up, and asked which way the gentlemen were
going; of which being informed by Jones, he first scratched his head,
and then leaning upon a pole he had in his hand, began to tell him,
"That he must keep the right-hand road for about a mile, or a mile and
a half, or such a matter, and then he must turn short to the left,
which would bring him round by Measter Jin Bearnes's."--"But which is
Mr John Bearnes's?" says Jones. "O Lord!" cries the fellow, "why,
don't you know Measter Jin Bearnes? Whence then did you come?"

These two fellows had almost conquered the patience of Jones, when a
plain well-looking man (who was indeed a Quaker) accosted him thus:
"Friend, I perceive thou hast lost thy way; and if thou wilt take my
advice, thou wilt not attempt to find it to-night. It is almost dark,
and the road is difficult to hit; besides, there have been several
robberies committed lately between this and Bristol. Here is a very
creditable good house just by, where thou may'st find good
entertainment for thyself and thy cattle till morning." Jones, after a
little persuasion, agreed to stay in this place till the morning, and
was conducted by his friend to the public-house.

The landlord, who was a very civil fellow, told Jones, "He hoped he
would excuse the badness of his accommodation; for that his wife was
gone from home, and had locked up almost everything, and carried the
keys along with her." Indeed the fact was, that a favourite daughter
of hers was just married, and gone that morning home with her husband;
and that she and her mother together had almost stript the poor man of
all his goods, as well as money; for though he had several children,
this daughter only, who was the mother's favourite, was the object of
her consideration; and to the humour of this one child she would with
pleasure have sacrificed all the rest, and her husband into the

Though Jones was very unfit for any kind of company, and would have
preferred being alone, yet he could not resist the importunities of
the honest Quaker; who was the more desirous of sitting with him, from
having remarked the melancholy which appeared both in his countenance
and behaviour; and which the poor Quaker thought his conversation
might in some measure relieve.

After they had past some time together, in such a manner that my
honest friend might have thought himself at one of his silent
meetings, the Quaker began to be moved by some spirit or other,
probably that of curiosity, and said, "Friend, I perceive some sad
disaster hath befallen thee; but pray be of comfort. Perhaps thou hast
lost a friend. If so, thou must consider we are all mortal. And why
shouldst thou grieve, when thou knowest thy grief will do thy friend
no good? We are all born to affliction. I myself have my sorrows as
well as thee, and most probably greater sorrows. Though I have a clear
estate of £100 a year, which is as much as I want, and I have a
conscience, I thank the Lord, void of offence; my constitution is
sound and strong, and there is no man can demand a debt of me, nor
accuse me of an injury; yet, friend, I should be concerned to think
thee as miserable as myself."

Here the Quaker ended with a deep sigh; and Jones presently answered,
"I am very sorry, sir, for your unhappiness, whatever is the occasion
of it."--"Ah! friend," replied the Quaker, "one only daughter is the
occasion; one who was my greatest delight upon earth, and who within
this week is run away from me, and is married against my consent. I
had provided her a proper match, a sober man and one of substance; but
she, forsooth, would chuse for herself, and away she is gone with a
young fellow not worth a groat. If she had been dead, as I suppose thy
friend is, I should have been happy."--"That is very strange, sir,"
said Jones. "Why, would it not be better for her to be dead, than to
be a beggar?" replied the Quaker: "for, as I told you, the fellow is
not worth a groat; and surely she cannot expect that I shall ever give
her a shilling. No, as she hath married for love, let her live on love
if she can; let her carry her love to market, and see whether any one
will change it into silver, or even into halfpence."--"You know your
own concerns best, sir," said Jones. "It must have been," continued
the Quaker, "a long premeditated scheme to cheat me: for they have
known one another from their infancy; and I always preached to her
against love, and told her a thousand times over it was all folly and
wickedness. Nay, the cunning slut pretended to hearken to me, and to
despise all wantonness of the flesh; and yet at last broke out at a
window two pair of stairs: for I began, indeed, a little to suspect
her, and had locked her up carefully, intending the very next morning
to have married her up to my liking. But she disappointed me within a
few hours, and escaped away to the lover of her own chusing; who lost
no time, for they were married and bedded and all within an hour. But
it shall be the worst hour's work for them both that ever they did;
for they may starve, or beg, or steal together, for me. I will never
give either of them a farthing." Here Jones starting up cried, "I
really must be excused: I wish you would leave me."--"Come, come,
friend," said the Quaker, "don't give way to concern. You see there
are other people miserable besides yourself."--"I see there are
madmen, and fools, and villains in the world," cries Jones. "But let
me give you a piece of advice: send for your daughter and son-in-law
home, and don't be yourself the only cause of misery to one you
pretend to love."--"Send for her and her husband home!" cries the
Quaker loudly; "I would sooner send for the two greatest enemies I
have in the world!"--"Well, go home yourself, or where you please,"
said Jones, "for I will sit no longer in such company."--"Nay,
friend," answered the Quaker, "I scorn to impose my company on any
one." He then offered to pull money from his pocket, but Jones pushed
him with some violence out of the room.

The subject of the Quaker's discourse had so deeply affected Jones,
that he stared very wildly all the time he was speaking. This the
Quaker had observed, and this, added to the rest of his behaviour,
inspired honest Broadbrim with a conceit, that his companion was in
reality out of his senses. Instead of resenting the affront,
therefore, the Quaker was moved with compassion for his unhappy
circumstances; and having communicated his opinion to the landlord, he
desired him to take great care of his guest, and to treat him with the
highest civility.

"Indeed," says the landlord, "I shall use no such civility towards
him; for it seems, for all his laced waistcoat there, he is no more a
gentleman than myself, but a poor parish bastard, bred up at a great
squire's about thirty miles off, and now turned out of doors (not for
any good to be sure). I shall get him out of my house as soon as
possible. If I do lose my reckoning, the first loss is always the
best. It is not above a year ago that I lost a silver spoon."

"What dost thou talk of a parish bastard, Robin?" answered the Quaker.
"Thou must certainly be mistaken in thy man."

"Not at all," replied Robin; "the guide, who knows him very well, told
it me." For, indeed, the guide had no sooner taken his place at the
kitchen fire, than he acquainted the whole company with all he knew or
had ever heard concerning Jones.

The Quaker was no sooner assured by this fellow of the birth and low
fortune of Jones, than all compassion for him vanished; and the honest
plain man went home fired with no less indignation than a duke would
have felt at receiving an affront from such a person.

The landlord himself conceived an equal disdain for his guest; so that
when Jones rung the bell in order to retire to bed, he was acquainted
that he could have no bed there. Besides disdain of the mean condition
of his guest, Robin entertained violent suspicion of his intentions,
which were, he supposed, to watch some favourable opportunity of
robbing the house. In reality, he might have been very well eased of
these apprehensions, by the prudent precautions of his wife and
daughter, who had already removed everything which was not fixed to
the freehold; but he was by nature suspicious, and had been more
particularly so since the loss of his spoon. In short, the dread of
being robbed totally absorbed the comfortable consideration that he
had nothing to lose.

Jones being assured that he could have no bed, very contentedly betook
himself to a great chair made with rushes, when sleep, which had
lately shunned his company in much better apartments, generously paid
him a visit in his humble cell.

As for the landlord, he was prevented by his fears from retiring to
rest. He returned therefore to the kitchen fire, whence he could
survey the only door which opened into the parlour, or rather hole,
where Jones was seated; and as for the window to that room, it was
impossible for any creature larger than a cat to have made his escape
through it.

Chapter xi.

The adventure of a company of soldiers.

The landlord having taken his seat directly opposite to the door of
the parlour, determined to keep guard there the whole night. The guide
and another fellow remained long on duty with him, though they neither
knew his suspicions, nor had any of their own. The true cause of their
watching did, indeed, at length, put an end to it; for this was no
other than the strength and goodness of the beer, of which having
tippled a very large quantity, they grew at first very noisy and
vociferous, and afterwards fell both asleep.

But it was not in the power of liquor to compose the fears of Robin.
He continued still waking in his chair, with his eyes fixed stedfastly
on the door which led into the apartment of Mr Jones, till a violent
thundering at his outward gate called him from his seat, and obliged
him to open it; which he had no sooner done, than his kitchen was
immediately full of gentlemen in red coats, who all rushed upon him in
as tumultuous a manner as if they intended to take his little castle
by storm.

The landlord was now forced from his post to furnish his numerous
guests with beer, which they called for with great eagerness; and upon
his second or third return from the cellar, he saw Mr Jones standing
before the fire in the midst of the soldiers; for it may easily be
believed, that the arrival of so much good company should put an end
to any sleep, unless that from which we are to be awakened only by the
last trumpet.

The company having now pretty well satisfied their thirst, nothing
remained but to pay the reckoning, a circumstance often productive of
much mischief and discontent among the inferior rank of gentry, who
are apt to find great difficulty in assessing the sum, with exact
regard to distributive justice, which directs that every man shall pay
according to the quantity which he drinks. This difficulty occurred
upon the present occasion; and it was the greater, as some gentlemen
had, in their extreme hurry, marched off, after their first draught,
and had entirely forgot to contribute anything towards the said

A violent dispute now arose, in which every word may be said to have
been deposed upon oath; for the oaths were at least equal to all the
other words spoken. In this controversy the whole company spoke
together, and every man seemed wholly bent to extenuate the sum which
fell to his share; so that the most probable conclusion which could be
foreseen was, that a large portion of the reckoning would fall to the
landlord's share to pay, or (what is much the same thing) would remain

All this while Mr Jones was engaged in conversation with the serjeant;
for that officer was entirely unconcerned in the present dispute,
being privileged by immemorial custom from all contribution.

The dispute now grew so very warm that it seemed to draw towards a
military decision, when Jones, stepping forward, silenced all their
clamours at once, by declaring that he would pay the whole reckoning,
which indeed amounted to no more than three shillings and fourpence.

This declaration procured Jones the thanks and applause of the whole
company. The terms honourable, noble, and worthy gentleman, resounded
through the room; nay, my landlord himself began to have a better
opinion of him, and almost to disbelieve the account which the guide
had given.

The serjeant had informed Mr Jones that they were marching against the
rebels, and expected to be commanded by the glorious Duke of
Cumberland. By which the reader may perceive (a circumstance which we
have not thought necessary to communicate before) that this was the
very time when the late rebellion was at the highest; and indeed the
banditti were now marched into England, intending, as it was thought,
to fight the king's forces, and to attempt pushing forward to the

Jones had some heroic ingredients in his composition, and was a hearty
well-wisher to the glorious cause of liberty, and of the Protestant
religion. It is no wonder, therefore, that in circumstances which
would have warranted a much more romantic and wild undertaking, it
should occur to him to serve as a volunteer in this expedition.

Our commanding officer had said all in his power to encourage and
promote this good disposition, from the first moment he had been
acquainted with it. He now proclaimed the noble resolution aloud,
which was received with great pleasure by the whole company, who all
cried out, "God bless King George and your honour;" and then added,
with many oaths, "We will stand by you both to the last drops of our

The gentleman who had been all night tippling at the alehouse, was
prevailed on by some arguments which a corporal had put into his
hands, to undertake the same expedition. And now the portmanteau
belonging to Mr Jones being put up in the baggage-cart, the forces
were about to move forwards; when the guide, stepping up to Jones,
said, "Sir, I hope you will consider that the horses have been kept
out all night, and we have travelled a great ways out of our way."
Jones was surprized at the impudence of this demand, and acquainted
the soldiers with the merits of his cause, who were all unanimous in
condemning the guide for his endeavours to put upon a gentleman. Some
said, he ought to be tied neck and heels; others that he deserved to
run the gantlope; and the serjeant shook his cane at him, and wished
he had him under his command, swearing heartily he would make an
example of him.

Jones contented himself however with a negative punishment, and walked
off with his new comrades, leaving the guide to the poor revenge of
cursing and reviling him; in which latter the landlord joined, saying,
"Ay, ay, he is a pure one, I warrant you. A pretty gentleman, indeed,
to go for a soldier! He shall wear a laced wastecoat truly. It is an
old proverb and a true one, all is not gold that glisters. I am glad
my house is well rid of him."

All that day the serjeant and the young soldier marched together; and
the former, who was an arch fellow, told the latter many entertaining
stories of his campaigns, though in reality he had never made any; for
he was but lately come into the service, and had, by his own
dexterity, so well ingratiated himself with his officers, that he had
promoted himself to a halberd; chiefly indeed by his merit in
recruiting, in which he was most excellently well skilled.

Much mirth and festivity passed among the soldiers during their march.
In which the many occurrences that had passed at their last quarters
were remembered, and every one, with great freedom, made what jokes he
pleased on his officers, some of which were of the coarser kind, and
very near bordering on scandal. This brought to our heroe's mind the
custom which he had read of among the Greeks and Romans, of indulging,
on certain festivals and solemn occasions, the liberty to slaves, of
using an uncontrouled freedom of speech towards their masters.

Our little army, which consisted of two companies of foot, were now
arrived at the place where they were to halt that evening. The
serjeant then acquainted his lieutenant, who was the commanding
officer, that they had picked up two fellows in that day's march, one
of which, he said, was as fine a man as ever he saw (meaning the
tippler), for that he was near six feet, well proportioned, and
strongly limbed; and the other (meaning Jones) would do well enough
for the rear rank.

The new soldiers were now produced before the officer, who having
examined the six-feet man, he being first produced, came next to
survey Jones: at the first sight of whom, the lieutenant could not
help showing some surprize; for besides that he was very well dressed,
and was naturally genteel, he had a remarkable air of dignity in his
look, which is rarely seen among the vulgar, and is indeed not
inseparably annexed to the features of their superiors.

"Sir," said the lieutenant, "my serjeant informed me that you are
desirous of enlisting in the company I have at present under my
command; if so, sir, we shall very gladly receive a gentleman who
promises to do much honour to the company by bearing arms in it."

Jones answered: "That he had not mentioned anything of enlisting
himself; that he was most zealously attached to the glorious cause for
which they were going to fight, and was very desirous of serving as a
volunteer;" concluding with some compliments to the lieutenant, and
expressing the great satisfaction he should have in being under his

The lieutenant returned his civility, commended his resolution, shook
him by the hand, and invited him to dine with himself and the rest of
the officers.

Chapter xii.

The adventure of a company of officers.

The lieutenant, whom we mentioned in the preceding chapter, and who
commanded this party, was now near sixty years of age. He had entered
very young into the army, and had served in the capacity of an ensign
at the battle of Tannieres; here he had received two wounds, and had
so well distinguished himself, that he was by the Duke of Marlborough
advanced to be a lieutenant, immediately after that battle.

In this commission he had continued ever since, viz., near forty
years; during which time he had seen vast numbers preferred over his
head, and had now the mortification to be commanded by boys, whose
fathers were at nurse when he first entered into the service.

Nor was this ill success in his profession solely owing to his having
no friends among the men in power. He had the misfortune to incur the
displeasure of his colonel, who for many years continued in the
command of this regiment. Nor did he owe the implacable ill-will which
this man bore him to any neglect or deficiency as an officer, nor
indeed to any fault in himself; but solely to the indiscretion of his
wife, who was a very beautiful woman, and who, though she was
remarkably fond of her husband, would not purchase his preferment at
the expense of certain favours which the colonel required of her.

The poor lieutenant was more peculiarly unhappy in this, that while he
felt the effects of the enmity of his colonel, he neither knew, nor
suspected, that he really bore him any; for he could not suspect an
ill-will for which he was not conscious of giving any cause; and his
wife, fearing what her husband's nice regard to his honour might have
occasioned, contented herself with preserving her virtue without
enjoying the triumphs of her conquest.

This unfortunate officer (for so I think he may be called) had many
good qualities besides his merit in his profession; for he was a
religious, honest, good-natured man; and had behaved so well in his
command, that he was highly esteemed and beloved not only by the
soldiers of his own company, but by the whole regiment.

The other officers who marched with him were a French lieutenant, who
had been long enough out of France to forget his own language, but not
long enough in England to learn ours, so that he really spoke no
language at all, and could barely make himself understood on the most
ordinary occasions. There were likewise two ensigns, both very young
fellows; one of whom had been bred under an attorney, and the other
was son to the wife of a nobleman's butler.

As soon as dinner was ended, Jones informed the company of the
merriment which had passed among the soldiers upon their march; "and
yet," says he, "notwithstanding all their vociferation, I dare swear
they will behave more like Grecians than Trojans when they come to the
enemy."--"Grecians and Trojans!" says one of the ensigns, "who the
devil are they? I have heard of all the troops in Europe, but never of
any such as these."

"Don't pretend to more ignorance than you have, Mr Northerton," said
the worthy lieutenant. "I suppose you have heard of the Greeks and
Trojans, though perhaps you never read Pope's Homer; who, I remember,
now the gentleman mentions it, compares the march of the Trojans to
the cackling of geese, and greatly commends the silence of the
Grecians. And upon my honour there is great justice in the cadet's

"Begar, me remember dem ver well," said the French lieutenant: "me ave
read them at school in dans Madam Daciere, des Greek, des Trojan, dey
fight for von woman--ouy, ouy, me ave read all dat."

"D--n Homo with all my heart," says Northerton; "I have the marks of
him on my a-- yet. There's Thomas, of our regiment, always carries a
Homo in his pocket; d--n me, if ever I come at it, if I don't burn it.
And there's Corderius, another d--n'd son of a whore, that hath got me
many a flogging."

"Then you have been at school, Mr Northerton?" said the lieutenant.

"Ay, d--n me, have I," answered he; "the devil take my father for
sending me thither! The old put wanted to make a parson of me, but
d--n me, thinks I to myself, I'll nick you there, old cull; the devil
a smack of your nonsense shall you ever get into me. There's Jemmy
Oliver, of our regiment, he narrowly escaped being a pimp too, and
that would have been a thousand pities; for d--n me if he is not one
of the prettiest fellows in the whole world; but he went farther than
I with the old cull, for Jimmey can neither write nor read."

"You give your friend a very good character," said the lieutenant,
"and a very deserved one, I dare say. But prithee, Northerton, leave
off that foolish as well as wicked custom of swearing; for you are
deceived, I promise you, if you think there is wit or politeness in
it. I wish, too, you would take my advice, and desist from abusing the
clergy. Scandalous names, and reflections cast on any body of men,
must be always unjustifiable; but especially so, when thrown on so
sacred a function; for to abuse the body is to abuse the function
itself; and I leave to you to judge how inconsistent such behaviour is
in men who are going to fight in defence of the Protestant religion."

Mr Adderly, which was the name of the other ensign, had sat hitherto
kicking his heels and humming a tune, without seeming to listen to the
discourse; he now answered, "_O, Monsieur, on ne parle pas de la
religion dans la guerre_."--"Well said, Jack," cries Northerton: "if
_la religion_ was the only matter, the parsons should fight their own
battles for me."

"I don't know, gentlemen," said Jones, "what may be your opinion; but
I think no man can engage in a nobler cause than that of his religion;
and I have observed, in the little I have read of history, that no
soldiers have fought so bravely as those who have been inspired with a
religious zeal: for my own part, though I love my king and country, I
hope, as well as any man in it, yet the Protestant interest is no
small motive to my becoming a volunteer in the cause."

Northerton now winked on Adderly, and whispered to him slily, "Smoke
the prig, Adderly, smoke him." Then turning to Jones, said to him, "I
am very glad, sir, you have chosen our regiment to be a volunteer in;
for if our parson should at any time take a cup too much, I find you
can supply his place. I presume, sir, you have been at the university;
may I crave the favour to know what college?"

"Sir," answered Jones, "so far from having been at the university, I
have even had the advantage of yourself, for I was never at school."

"I presumed," cries the ensign, "only upon the information of your
great learning."--"Oh! sir," answered Jones, "it is as possible for a
man to know something without having been at school, as it is to have
been at school and to know nothing."

"Well said, young volunteer," cries the lieutenant. "Upon my word,
Northerton, you had better let him alone; for he will be too hard for

Northerton did not very well relish the sarcasm of Jones; but he
thought the provocation was scarce sufficient to justify a blow, or a
rascal, or scoundrel, which were the only repartees that suggested
themselves. He was, therefore, silent at present; but resolved to take
the first opportunity of returning the jest by abuse.

It now came to the turn of Mr Jones to give a toast, as it is called;
who could not refrain from mentioning his dear Sophia. This he did the
more readily, as he imagined it utterly impossible that any one
present should guess the person he meant.

But the lieutenant, who was the toast-master, was not contented with
Sophia only. He said, he must have her sir-name; upon which Jones
hesitated a little, and presently after named Miss Sophia Western.
Ensign Northerton declared he would not drink her health in the same
round with his own toast, unless somebody would vouch for her. "I knew
one Sophy Western," says he, "that was lain with by half the young
fellows at Bath; and perhaps this is the same woman." Jones very
solemnly assured him of the contrary; asserting that the young lady he
named was one of great fashion and fortune. "Ay, ay," says the ensign,
"and so she is: d--n me, it is the same woman; and I'll hold half a
dozen of Burgundy, Tom French of our regiment brings her into company
with us at any tavern in Bridges-street." He then proceeded to
describe her person exactly (for he had seen her with her aunt), and
concluded with saying, "that her father had a great estate in

The tenderness of lovers can ill brook the least jesting with the
names of their mistresses. However, Jones, though he had enough of the
lover and of the heroe too in his disposition, did not resent these
slanders as hastily as, perhaps, he ought to have done. To say the
truth, having seen but little of this kind of wit, he did not readily
understand it, and for a long time imagined Mr Northerton had really
mistaken his charmer for some other. But now, turning to the ensign
with a stern aspect, he said, "Pray, sir, chuse some other subject for
your wit; for I promise you I will bear no jesting with this lady's
character." "Jesting!" cries the other, "d--n me if ever I was more in
earnest in my life. Tom French of our regiment had both her and her
aunt at Bath." "Then I must tell you in earnest," cries Jones, "that
you are one of the most impudent rascals upon earth."

He had no sooner spoken these words, than the ensign, together with a
volley of curses, discharged a bottle full at the head of Jones, which
hitting him a little above the right temple, brought him instantly to
the ground.

The conqueror perceiving the enemy to lie motionless before him, and
blood beginning to flow pretty plentifully from his wound, began now
to think of quitting the field of battle, where no more honour was to
be gotten; but the lieutenant interposed, by stepping before the door,
and thus cut off his retreat.

Northerton was very importunate with the lieutenant for his liberty;
urging the ill consequences of his stay, asking him, what he could
have done less? "Zounds!" says he, "I was but in jest with the fellow.
I never heard any harm of Miss Western in my life." "Have not you?"
said the lieutenant; "then you richly deserve to be hanged, as well
for making such jests, as for using such a weapon: you are my
prisoner, sir; nor shall you stir from hence till a proper guard comes
to secure you."

Such an ascendant had our lieutenant over this ensign, that all that
fervency of courage which had levelled our poor heroe with the floor,
would scarce have animated the said ensign to have drawn his sword
against the lieutenant, had he then had one dangling at his side: but
all the swords being hung up in the room, were, at the very beginning
of the fray, secured by the French officer. So that Mr Northerton was
obliged to attend the final issue of this affair.

The French gentleman and Mr Adderly, at the desire of their commanding
officer, had raised up the body of Jones, but as they could perceive
but little (if any) sign of life in him, they again let him fall,
Adderly damning him for having blooded his wastecoat; and the
Frenchman declaring, "Begar, me no tush the Engliseman de mort: me
have heard de Englise ley, law, what you call, hang up de man dat tush
him last."

When the good lieutenant applied himself to the door, he applied
himself likewise to the bell; and the drawer immediately attending, he
dispatched him for a file of musqueteers and a surgeon. These
commands, together with the drawer's report of what he had himself
seen, not only produced the soldiers, but presently drew up the
landlord of the house, his wife, and servants, and, indeed, every one
else who happened at that time to be in the inn.

To describe every particular, and to relate the whole conversation of
the ensuing scene, is not within my power, unless I had forty pens,
and could, at once, write with them all together, as the company now
spoke. The reader must, therefore, content himself with the most
remarkable incidents, and perhaps he may very well excuse the rest.

The first thing done was securing the body of Northerton, who being
delivered into the custody of six men with a corporal at their head,
was by them conducted from a place which he was very willing to leave,
but it was unluckily to a place whither he was very unwilling to go.
To say the truth, so whimsical are the desires of ambition, the very
moment this youth had attained the above-mentioned honour, he would
have been well contented to have retired to some corner of the world,
where the fame of it should never have reached his ears.

It surprizes us, and so perhaps, it may the reader, that the
lieutenant, a worthy and good man, should have applied his chief care,
rather to secure the offender, than to preserve the life of the
wounded person. We mention this observation, not with any view of
pretending to account for so odd a behaviour, but lest some critic
should hereafter plume himself on discovering it. We would have these
gentlemen know we can see what is odd in characters as well as
themselves, but it is our business to relate facts as they are; which,
when we have done, it is the part of the learned and sagacious reader
to consult that original book of nature, whence every passage in our
work is transcribed, though we quote not always the particular page
for its authority.

The company which now arrived were of a different disposition. They
suspended their curiosity concerning the person of the ensign, till
they should see him hereafter in a more engaging attitude. At present,
their whole concern and attention were employed about the bloody
object on the floor; which being placed upright in a chair, soon began
to discover some symptoms of life and motion. These were no sooner
perceived by the company (for Jones was at first generally concluded
to be dead) than they all fell at once to prescribing for him (for as
none of the physical order was present, every one there took that
office upon him).

Bleeding was the unanimous voice of the whole room; but unluckily
there was no operator at hand; every one then cried, "Call the
barber;" but none stirred a step. Several cordials was likewise
prescribed in the same ineffective manner; till the landlord ordered
up a tankard of strong beer, with a toast, which he said was the best
cordial in England.

The person principally assistant on this occasion, indeed the only one
who did any service, or seemed likely to do any, was the landlady: she
cut off some of her hair, and applied it to the wound to stop the
blood; she fell to chafing the youth's temples with her hand; and
having exprest great contempt for her husband's prescription of beer,
she despatched one of her maids to her own closet for a bottle of
brandy, of which, as soon as it was brought, she prevailed on Jones,
who was just returned to his senses, to drink a very large and
plentiful draught.

Soon afterwards arrived the surgeon, who having viewed the wound,
having shaken his head, and blamed everything which was done, ordered
his patient instantly to bed; in which place we think proper to leave
him some time to his repose, and shall here, therefore, put an end to
this chapter.

Chapter xiii.

Containing the great address of the landlady, the great learning of a
surgeon, and the solid skill in casuistry of the worthy lieutenant.

When the wounded man was carried to his bed, and the house began again
to clear up from the hurry which this accident had occasioned, the
landlady thus addressed the commanding officer: "I am afraid, sir,"
said she, "this young man did not behave himself as well as he should
do to your honours; and if he had been killed, I suppose he had but
his desarts: to be sure, when gentlemen admit inferior parsons into
their company, they oft to keep their distance; but, as my first
husband used to say, few of 'em know how to do it. For my own part, I
am sure I should not have suffered any fellows to _include_ themselves
into gentlemen's company; but I thoft he had been an officer himself,
till the serjeant told me he was but a recruit."

"Landlady," answered the lieutenant, "you mistake the whole matter.
The young man behaved himself extremely well, and is, I believe, a
much better gentleman than the ensign who abused him. If the young
fellow dies, the man who struck him will have most reason to be sorry
for it: for the regiment will get rid of a very troublesome fellow,
who is a scandal to the army; and if he escapes from the hands of
justice, blame me, madam, that's all."

"Ay! ay! good lack-a-day!" said the landlady; "who could have thoft
it? Ay, ay, ay, I am satisfied your honour will see justice done; and
to be sure it oft to be to every one. Gentlemen oft not to kill poor
folks without answering for it. A poor man hath a soul to be saved, as
well as his betters."

"Indeed, madam," said the lieutenant, "you do the volunteer wrong: I
dare swear he is more of a gentleman than the officer."

"Ay!" cries the landlady; "why, look you there, now: well, my first
husband was a wise man; he used to say, you can't always know the
inside by the outside. Nay, that might have been well enough too; for
I never _saw'd_ him till he was all over blood. Who would have thoft
it? mayhap, some young gentleman crossed in love. Good lack-a-day, if
he should die, what a concern it will be to his parents! why, sure the
devil must possess the wicked wretch to do such an act. To be sure, he
is a scandal to the army, as your honour says; for most of the
gentlemen of the army that ever I saw, are quite different sort of
people, and look as if they would scorn to spill any Christian blood
as much as any men: I mean, that is, in a civil way, as my first
husband used to say. To be sure, when they come into the wars, there
must be bloodshed: but that they are not to be blamed for. The more of
our enemies they kill there, the better: and I wish, with all my
heart, they could kill every mother's son of them."

"O fie, madam!" said the lieutenant, smiling; "_all_ is rather too
bloody-minded a wish."

"Not at all, sir," answered she; "I am not at all bloody-minded, only
to our enemies; and there is no harm in that. To be sure it is natural
for us to wish our enemies dead, that the wars may be at an end, and
our taxes be lowered; for it is a dreadful thing to pay as we do. Why
now, there is above forty shillings for window-lights, and yet we have
stopt up all we could; we have almost blinded the house, I am sure.
Says I to the exciseman, says I, I think you oft to favour us; I am
sure we are very good friends to the government: and so we are for
sartain, for we pay a mint of money to 'um. And yet I often think to
myself the government doth not imagine itself more obliged to us, than
to those that don't pay 'um a farthing. Ay, ay, it is the way of the

She was proceeding in this manner when the surgeon entered the room.
The lieutenant immediately asked how his patient did. But he resolved
him only by saying, "Better, I believe, than he would have been by
this time, if I had not been called; and even as it is, perhaps it
would have been lucky if I could have been called sooner."--"I hope,
sir," said the lieutenant, "the skull is not fractured."--"Hum," cries
the surgeon: "fractures are not always the most dangerous symptoms.
Contusions and lacerations are often attended with worse phaenomena,
and with more fatal consequences, than fractures. People who know
nothing of the matter conclude, if the skull is not fractured, all is
well; whereas, I had rather see a man's skull broke all to pieces,
than some contusions I have met with."--"I hope," says the lieutenant,
"there are no such symptoms here."--"Symptoms," answered the surgeon,
"are not always regular nor constant. I have known very unfavourable
symptoms in the morning change to favourable ones at noon, and return
to unfavourable again at night. Of wounds, indeed, it is rightly and
truly said, _Nemo repente fuit turpissimus_. I was once, I remember,
called to a patient who had received a violent contusion in his tibia,
by which the exterior cutis was lacerated, so that there was a profuse
sanguinary discharge; and the interior membranes were so divellicated,
that the os or bone very plainly appeared through the aperture of the
vulnus or wound. Some febrile symptoms intervening at the same time
(for the pulse was exuberant and indicated much phlebotomy), I
apprehended an immediate mortification. To prevent which, I presently
made a large orifice in the vein of the left arm, whence I drew twenty
ounces of blood; which I expected to have found extremely sizy and
glutinous, or indeed coagulated, as it is in pleuretic complaints;
but, to my surprize, it appeared rosy and florid, and its consistency
differed little from the blood of those in perfect health. I then
applied a fomentation to the part, which highly answered the
intention; and after three or four times dressing, the wound began to
discharge a thick pus or matter, by which means the cohesion--But
perhaps I do not make myself perfectly well understood?"--"No,
really," answered the lieutenant, "I cannot say I understand a
syllable."--"Well, sir," said the surgeon, "then I shall not tire your
patience; in short, within six weeks my patient was able to walk upon
his legs as perfectly as he could have done before he received the
contusion."--"I wish, sir," said the lieutenant, "you would be so kind
only to inform me, whether the wound this young gentleman hath had the
misfortune to receive, is likely to prove mortal."--"Sir," answered
the surgeon, "to say whether a wound will prove mortal or not at first
dressing, would be very weak and foolish presumption: we are all
mortal, and symptoms often occur in a cure which the greatest of our
profession could never foresee."--"But do you think him in danger?"
says the other.--"In danger! ay, surely," cries the doctor: "who is
there among us, who, in the most perfect health, can be said not to be
in danger? Can a man, therefore, with so bad a wound as this be said
to be out of danger? All I can say at present is, that it is well I
was called as I was, and perhaps it would have been better if I had
been called sooner. I will see him again early in the morning; and in
the meantime let him be kept extremely quiet, and drink liberally of
water-gruel."--"Won't you allow him sack-whey?" said the
landlady.--"Ay, ay, sack-whey," cries the doctor, "if you will,
provided it be very small."--"And a little chicken broth too?" added
she.--"Yes, yes, chicken broth," said the doctor, "is very
good."--"Mayn't I make him some jellies too?" said the landlady.--"Ay,
ay," answered the doctor, "jellies are very good for wounds, for they
promote cohesion." And indeed it was lucky she had not named soup or
high sauces, for the doctor would have complied, rather than have lost
the custom of the house.

The doctor was no sooner gone, than the landlady began to trumpet
forth his fame to the lieutenant, who had not, from their short
acquaintance, conceived quite so favourable an opinion of his physical
abilities as the good woman, and all the neighbourhood, entertained
(and perhaps very rightly); for though I am afraid the doctor was a
little of a coxcomb, he might be nevertheless very much of a surgeon.

The lieutenant having collected from the learned discourse of the
surgeon that Mr Jones was in great danger, gave orders for keeping Mr
Northerton under a very strict guard, designing in the morning to
attend him to a justice of peace, and to commit the conducting the
troops to Gloucester to the French lieutenant, who, though he could
neither read, write, nor speak any language, was, however, a good

In the evening, our commander sent a message to Mr Jones, that if a
visit would not be troublesome, he would wait on him. This civility
was very kindly and thankfully received by Jones, and the lieutenant
accordingly went up to his room, where he found the wounded man much
better than he expected; nay, Jones assured his friend, that if he had
not received express orders to the contrary from the surgeon, he
should have got up long ago; for he appeared to himself to be as well
as ever, and felt no other inconvenience from his wound but an extreme
soreness on that side of his head.

"I should be very glad," quoth the lieutenant, "if you was as well as
you fancy yourself, for then you could be able to do yourself justice
immediately; for when a matter can't be made up, as in case of a blow,
the sooner you take him out the better; but I am afraid you think
yourself better than you are, and he would have too much advantage
over you."

"I'll try, however," answered Jones, "if you please, and will be so
kind to lend me a sword, for I have none here of my own."

"My sword is heartily at your service, my dear boy," cries the
lieutenant, kissing him; "you are a brave lad, and I love your spirit;
but I fear your strength; for such a blow, and so much loss of blood,
must have very much weakened you; and though you feel no want of
strength in your bed, yet you most probably would after a thrust or
two. I can't consent to your taking him out tonight; but I hope you
will be able to come up with us before we get many days' march
advance; and I give you my honour you shall have satisfaction, or the
man who hath injured you shan't stay in our regiment."

"I wish," said Jones, "it was possible to decide this matter to-night:
now you have mentioned it to me, I shall not be able to rest."

"Oh, never think of it," returned the other: "a few days will make no
difference. The wounds of honour are not like those in your body: they
suffer nothing by the delay of cure. It will be altogether as well for
you to receive satisfaction a week hence as now."

"But suppose," says Jones, "I should grow worse, and die of the
consequences of my present wound?"

"Then your honour," answered the lieutenant, "will require no
reparation at all. I myself will do justice to your character, and
testify to the world your intention to have acted properly, if you had

"Still," replied Jones, "I am concerned at the delay. I am almost
afraid to mention it to you who are a soldier; but though I have been
a very wild young fellow, still in my most serious moments, and at the
bottom, I am really a Christian."

"So am I too, I assure you," said the officer; "and so zealous a one,
that I was pleased with you at dinner for taking up the cause of your
religion; and I am a little offended with you now, young gentleman,
that you should express a fear of declaring your faith before any

"But how terrible must it be," cries Jones, "to any one who is really
a Christian, to cherish malice in his breast, in opposition to the
command of Him who hath expressly forbid it? How can I bear to do this
on a sick-bed? Or how shall I make up my account, with such an article
as this in my bosom against me?"

"Why, I believe there is such a command," cries the lieutenant; "but a
man of honour can't keep it. And you must be a man of honour, if you
will be in the army. I remember I once put the case to our chaplain
over a bowl of punch, and he confessed there was much difficulty in
it; but he said, he hoped there might be a latitude granted to
soldiers in this one instance; and to be sure it is our duty to hope
so; for who would bear to live without his honour? No, no, my dear
boy, be a good Christian as long as you live; but be a man of honour
too, and never put up an affront; not all the books, nor all the
parsons in the world, shall ever persuade me to that. I love my
religion very well, but I love my honour more. There must be some
mistake in the wording the text, or in the translation, or in the
understanding it, or somewhere or other. But however that be, a man
must run the risque, for he must preserve his honour. So compose
yourself to-night, and I promise you you shall have an opportunity of
doing yourself justice." Here he gave Jones a hearty buss, shook him
by the hand, and took his leave.

But though the lieutenant's reasoning was very satisfactory to
himself, it was not entirely so to his friend. Jones therefore, having
revolved this matter much in his thoughts, at last came to a
resolution, which the reader will find in the next chapter.

Chapter xiv.

A most dreadful chapter indeed; and which few readers ought to venture
upon in an evening, especially when alone.

Jones swallowed a large mess of chicken, or rather cock, broth, with a
very good appetite, as indeed he would have done the cock it was made
of, with a pound of bacon into the bargain; and now, finding in
himself no deficiency of either health or spirit, he resolved to get
up and seek his enemy.

But first he sent for the serjeant, who was his first acquaintance
among these military gentlemen. Unluckily that worthy officer having,
in a literal sense, taken his fill of liquor, had been some time
retired to his bolster, where he was snoring so loud that it was not
easy to convey a noise in at his ears capable of drowning that which
issued from his nostrils.

However, as Jones persisted in his desire of seeing him, a vociferous
drawer at length found means to disturb his slumbers, and to acquaint
him with the message. Of which the serjeant was no sooner made
sensible, than he arose from his bed, and having his clothes already
on, immediately attended. Jones did not think fit to acquaint the
serjeant with his design; though he might have done it with great
safety, for the halberdier was himself a man of honour, and had killed
his man. He would therefore have faithfully kept this secret, or
indeed any other which no reward was published for discovering. But as
Jones knew not those virtues in so short an acquaintance, his caution
was perhaps prudent and commendable enough.

He began therefore by acquainting the serjeant, that as he was now
entered into the army, he was ashamed of being without what was
perhaps the most necessary implement of a soldier; namely, a sword;
adding, that he should be infinitely obliged to him, if he could
procure one. "For which," says he, "I will give you any reasonable
price; nor do I insist upon its being silver-hilted; only a good
blade, and such as may become a soldier's thigh."

The serjeant, who well knew what had happened, and had heard that
Jones was in a very dangerous condition, immediately concluded, from
such a message, at such a time of night, and from a man in such a
situation, that he was light-headed. Now as he had his wit (to use
that word in its common signification) always ready, he bethought
himself of making his advantage of this humour in the sick man. "Sir,"
says he, "I believe I can fit you. I have a most excellent piece of
stuff by me. It is not indeed silver-hilted, which, as you say, doth
not become a soldier; but the handle is decent enough, and the blade
one of the best in Europe. It is a blade that--a blade that--in short,
I will fetch it you this instant, and you shall see it and handle it.
I am glad to see your honour so well with all my heart."

Being instantly returned with the sword, he delivered it to Jones, who
took it and drew it; and then told the serjeant it would do very well,
and bid him name his price.

The serjeant now began to harangue in praise of his goods. He said
(nay he swore very heartily), "that the blade was taken from a French
officer, of very high rank, at the battle of Dettingen. I took it
myself," says he, "from his side, after I had knocked him o' the head.
The hilt was a golden one. That I sold to one of our fine gentlemen;
for there are some of them, an't please your honour, who value the
hilt of a sword more than the blade."

Here the other stopped him, and begged him to name a price. The
serjeant, who thought Jones absolutely out of his senses, and very
near his end, was afraid lest he should injure his family by asking
too little. However, after a moment's hesitation, he contented himself
with naming twenty guineas, and swore he would not sell it for less to
his own brother.

"Twenty guineas!" says Jones, in the utmost surprize: "sure you think
I am mad, or that I never saw a sword in my life. Twenty guineas,
indeed! I did not imagine you would endeavour to impose upon me. Here,
take the sword--No, now I think on't, I will keep it myself, and show
it your officer in the morning, acquainting him, at the same time,
what a price you asked me for it."

The serjeant, as we have said, had always his wit (_in sensu
praedicto_) about him, and now plainly saw that Jones was not in the
condition he had apprehended him to be; he now, therefore,
counterfeited as great surprize as the other had shown, and said, "I
am certain, sir, I have not asked you so much out of the way. Besides,
you are to consider, it is the only sword I have, and I must run the
risque of my officer's displeasure, by going without one myself. And
truly, putting all this together, I don't think twenty shillings was
so much out of the way."

"Twenty shillings!" cries Jones; "why, you just now asked me twenty
guineas."--"How!" cries the serjeant, "sure your honour must have
mistaken me: or else I mistook myself--and indeed I am but half awake.
Twenty guineas, indeed! no wonder your honour flew into such a
passion. I say twenty guineas too. No, no, I mean twenty shillings, I
assure you. And when your honour comes to consider everything, I hope
you will not think that so extravagant a price. It is indeed true, you
may buy a weapon which looks as well for less money. But----"

Here Jones interrupted him, saying, "I will be so far from making any
words with you, that I will give you a shilling more than your
demand." He then gave him a guinea, bid him return to his bed, and
wished him a good march; adding, he hoped to overtake them before the
division reached Worcester.

The serjeant very civilly took his leave, fully satisfied with his
merchandize, and not a little pleased with his dexterous recovery from
that false step into which his opinion of the sick man's
light-headedness had betrayed him.

As soon as the serjeant was departed, Jones rose from his bed, and
dressed himself entirely, putting on even his coat, which, as its
colour was white, showed very visibly the streams of blood which had
flowed down it; and now, having grasped his new-purchased sword in his
hand, he was going to issue forth, when the thought of what he was
about to undertake laid suddenly hold of him, and he began to reflect
that in a few minutes he might possibly deprive a human being of life,
or might lose his own. "Very well," said he, "and in what cause do I
venture my life? Why, in that of my honour. And who is this human
being? A rascal who hath injured and insulted me without provocation.
But is not revenge forbidden by Heaven? Yes, but it is enjoined by the
world. Well, but shall I obey the world in opposition to the express
commands of Heaven? Shall I incur the Divine displeasure rather than
be called--ha--coward--scoundrel?--I'll think no more; I am resolved,
and must fight him."

The clock had now struck twelve, and every one in the house were in
their beds, except the centinel who stood to guard Northerton, when
Jones softly opening his door, issued forth in pursuit of his enemy,
of whose place of confinement he had received a perfect description
from the drawer. It is not easy to conceive a much more tremendous
figure than he now exhibited. He had on, as we have said, a
light-coloured coat, covered with streams of blood. His face, which
missed that very blood, as well as twenty ounces more drawn from him
by the surgeon, was pallid. Round his head was a quantity of bandage,
not unlike a turban. In the right hand he carried a sword, and in the
left a candle. So that the bloody Banquo was not worthy to be compared
to him. In fact, I believe a more dreadful apparition was never raised
in a church-yard, nor in the imagination of any good people met in a
winter evening over a Christmas fire in Somersetshire.

When the centinel first saw our heroe approach, his hair began gently
to lift up his grenadier cap; and in the same instant his knees fell
to blows with each other. Presently his whole body was seized with
worse than an ague fit. He then fired his piece, and fell flat on his

Whether fear or courage was the occasion of his firing, or whether he
took aim at the object of his terror, I cannot say. If he did,
however, he had the good fortune to miss his man.

Jones seeing the fellow fall, guessed the cause of his fright, at
which he could not forbear smiling, not in the least reflecting on the
danger from which he had just escaped. He then passed by the fellow,
who still continued in the posture in which he fell, and entered the
room where Northerton, as he had heard, was confined. Here, in a
solitary situation, he found--an empty quart pot standing on the
table, on which some beer being spilt, it looked as if the room had
lately been inhabited; but at present it was entirely vacant.

Jones then apprehended it might lead to some other apartment; but upon
searching all round it, he could perceive no other door than that at
which he entered, and where the centinel had been posted. He then
proceeded to call Northerton several times by his name; but no one
answered; nor did this serve to any other purpose than to confirm the
centinel in his terrors, who was now convinced that the volunteer was
dead of his wounds, and that his ghost was come in search of the
murderer: he now lay in all the agonies of horror; and I wish, with
all my heart, some of those actors who are hereafter to represent a
man frighted out of his wits had seen him, that they might be taught
to copy nature, instead of performing several antic tricks and
gestures, for the entertainment and applause of the galleries.

Perceiving the bird was flown, at least despairing to find him, and
rightly apprehending that the report of the firelock would alarm the
whole house, our heroe now blew out his candle, and gently stole back
again to his chamber, and to his bed; whither he would not have been
able to have gotten undiscovered, had any other person been on the
same staircase, save only one gentleman who was confined to his bed by
the gout; for before he could reach the door to his chamber, the hall
where the centinel had been posted was half full of people, some in
their shirts, and others not half drest, all very earnestly enquiring
of each other what was the matter.

The soldier was now found lying in the same place and posture in which
we just now left him. Several immediately applied themselves to raise
him, and some concluded him dead; but they presently saw their
mistake, for he not only struggled with those who laid their hands on
him, but fell a roaring like a bull. In reality, he imagined so many
spirits or devils were handling him; for his imagination being
possessed with the horror of an apparition, converted every object he
saw or felt into nothing but ghosts and spectres.

At length he was overpowered by numbers, and got upon his legs; when
candles being brought, and seeing two or three of his comrades
present, he came a little to himself; but when they asked him what was
the matter? he answered, "I am a dead man, that's all, I am a dead
man, I can't recover it, I have seen him." "What hast thou seen,
Jack?" says one of the soldiers. "Why, I have seen the young volunteer
that was killed yesterday." He then imprecated the most heavy curses
on himself, if he had not seen the volunteer, all over blood, vomiting
fire out of his mouth and nostrils, pass by him into the chamber where
Ensign Northerton was, and then seizing the ensign by the throat, fly
away with him in a clap of thunder.

This relation met with a gracious reception from the audience. All the
women present believed it firmly, and prayed Heaven to defend them
from murder. Amongst the men too, many had faith in the story; but
others turned it into derision and ridicule; and a serjeant who was
present answered very coolly, "Young man, you will hear more of this,
for going to sleep and dreaming on your post."

The soldier replied, "You may punish me if you please; but I was as
broad awake as I am now; and the devil carry me away, as he hath the
ensign, if I did not see the dead man, as I tell you, with eyes as big
and as fiery as two large flambeaux."

The commander of the forces, and the commander of the house, were now
both arrived; for the former being awake at the time, and hearing the
centinel fire his piece, thought it his duty to rise immediately,
though he had no great apprehensions of any mischief; whereas the
apprehensions of the latter were much greater, lest her spoons and
tankards should be upon the march, without having received any such
orders from her.

Our poor centinel, to whom the sight of this officer was not much more
welcome than the apparition, as he thought it, which he had seen
before, again related the dreadful story, and with many additions of
blood and fire; but he had the misfortune to gain no credit with
either of the last-mentioned persons: for the officer, though a very
religious man, was free from all terrors of this kind; besides, having
so lately left Jones in the condition we have seen, he had no
suspicion of his being dead. As for the landlady, though not over
religious, she had no kind of aversion to the doctrine of spirits; but
there was a circumstance in the tale which she well knew to be false,
as we shall inform the reader presently.

But whether Northerton was carried away in thunder or fire, or in
whatever other manner he was gone, it was now certain that his body
was no longer in custody. Upon this occasion the lieutenant formed a
conclusion not very different from what the serjeant is just mentioned
to have made before, and immediately ordered the centinel to be taken
prisoner. So that, by a strange reverse of fortune (though not very
uncommon in a military life), the guard became the guarded.

Chapter xv.

The conclusion of the foregoing adventure.

Besides the suspicion of sleep, the lieutenant harboured another and
worse doubt against the poor centinel, and this was, that of
treachery; for as he believed not one syllable of the apparition, so
he imagined the whole to be an invention formed only to impose upon
him, and that the fellow had in reality been bribed by Northerton to
let him escape. And this he imagined the rather, as the fright
appeared to him the more unnatural in one who had the character of as
brave and bold a man as any in the regiment, having been in several
actions, having received several wounds, and, in a word, having
behaved himself always like a good and valiant soldier.

That the reader, therefore, may not conceive the least ill opinion of
such a person, we shall not delay a moment in rescuing his character
from the imputation of this guilt.

Mr Northerton then, as we have before observed, was fully satisfied
with the glory which he had obtained from this action. He had perhaps
seen, or heard, or guessed, that envy is apt to attend fame. Not that
I would here insinuate that he was heathenishly inclined to believe in
or to worship the goddess Nemesis; for, in fact, I am convinced he
never heard of her name. He was, besides, of an active disposition,
and had a great antipathy to those close quarters in the castle of
Gloucester, for which a justice of peace might possibly give him a
billet. Nor was he moreover free from some uneasy meditations on a
certain wooden edifice, which I forbear to name, in conformity to the
opinion of mankind, who, I think, rather ought to honour than to be
ashamed of this building, as it is, or at least might be made, of more
benefit to society than almost any other public erection. In a word,
to hint at no more reasons for his conduct, Mr Northerton was desirous
of departing that evening, and nothing remained for him but to
contrive the quomodo, which appeared to be a matter of some

Now this young gentleman, though somewhat crooked in his morals, was
perfectly straight in his person, which was extremely strong and well
made. His face too was accounted handsome by the generality of women,
for it was broad and ruddy, with tolerably good teeth. Such charms did
not fail making an impression on my landlady, who had no little relish
for this kind of beauty. She had, indeed, a real compassion for the
young man; and hearing from the surgeon that affairs were like to go
ill with the volunteer, she suspected they might hereafter wear no
benign aspect with the ensign. Having obtained, therefore, leave to
make him a visit, and finding him in a very melancholy mood, which she
considerably heightened by telling him there were scarce any hopes of
the volunteer's life, she proceeded to throw forth some hints, which
the other readily and eagerly taking up, they soon came to a right
understanding; and it was at length agreed that the ensign should, at
a certain signal, ascend the chimney, which communicating very soon
with that of the kitchen, he might there again let himself down; for
which she would give him an opportunity by keeping the coast clear.

But lest our readers, of a different complexion, should take this
occasion of too hastily condemning all compassion as a folly, and
pernicious to society, we think proper to mention another particular
which might possibly have some little share in this action. The ensign
happened to be at this time possessed of the sum of fifty pounds,
which did indeed belong to the whole company; for the captain having
quarrelled with his lieutenant, had entrusted the payment of his
company to the ensign. This money, however, he thought proper to
deposit in my landlady's hand, possibly by way of bail or security
that he would hereafter appear and answer to the charge against him;
but whatever were the conditions, certain it is, that she had the
money and the ensign his liberty.

The reader may perhaps expect, from the compassionate temper of this
good woman, that when she saw the poor centinel taken prisoner for a
fact of which she knew him innocent, she should immediately have
interposed in his behalf; but whether it was that she had already
exhausted all her compassion in the above-mentioned instance, or that
the features of this fellow, though not very different from those of
the ensign, could not raise it, I will not determine; but, far from
being an advocate for the present prisoner, she urged his guilt to his
officer, declaring, with uplifted eyes and hands, that she would not
have had any concern in the escape of a murderer for all the world.

Everything was now once more quiet, and most of the company returned
again to their beds; but the landlady, either from the natural
activity of her disposition, or from her fear for her plate, having no
propensity to sleep, prevailed with the officers, as they were to
march within little more than an hour, to spend that time with her
over a bowl of punch.

Jones had lain awake all this while, and had heard great part of the
hurry and bustle that had passed, of which he had now some curiosity
to know the particulars. He therefore applied to his bell, which he
rung at least twenty times without any effect: for my landlady was in
such high mirth with her company, that no clapper could be heard there
but her own; and the drawer and chambermaid, who were sitting together
in the kitchen (for neither durst he sit up nor she lie in bed alone),
the more they heard the bell ring the more they were frightened, and
as it were nailed down in their places.

At last, at a lucky interval of chat, the sound reached the ears of
our good landlady, who presently sent forth her summons, which both
her servants instantly obeyed. "Joe," says the mistress, "don't you
hear the gentleman's bell ring? Why don't you go up?"--"It is not my
business," answered the drawer, "to wait upon the chambers--it is
Betty Chambermaid's."--"If you come to that," answered the maid, "it
is not my business to wait upon gentlemen. I have done it indeed
sometimes; but the devil fetch me if ever I do again, since you make
your preambles about it." The bell still ringing violently, their
mistress fell into a passion, and swore, if the drawer did not go up
immediately, she would turn him away that very morning. "If you do,
madam," says he, "I can't help it. I won't do another servant's
business." She then applied herself to the maid, and endeavoured to
prevail by gentle means; but all in vain: Betty was as inflexible as
Joe. Both insisted it was not their business, and they would not do

The lieutenant then fell a laughing, and said, "Come, I will put an
end to this contention;" and then turning to the servants, commended
them for their resolution in not giving up the point; but added, he
was sure, if one would consent to go the other would. To which
proposal they both agreed in an instant, and accordingly went up very
lovingly and close together. When they were gone, the lieutenant
appeased the wrath of the landlady, by satisfying her why they were
both so unwilling to go alone.

They returned soon after, and acquainted their mistress, that the sick
gentleman was so far from being dead, that he spoke as heartily as if
he was well; and that he gave his service to the captain, and should
be very glad of the favour of seeing him before he marched.

The good lieutenant immediately complied with his desires, and sitting
down by his bed-side, acquainted him with the scene which had happened
below, concluding with his intentions to make an example of the

Upon this Jones related to him the whole truth, and earnestly begged
him not to punish the poor soldier, "who, I am confident," says he,
"is as innocent of the ensign's escape, as he is of forging any lie,
or of endeavouring to impose on you."

The lieutenant hesitated a few moments, and then answered: "Why, as
you have cleared the fellow of one part of the charge, so it will be
impossible to prove the other, because he was not the only centinel.
But I have a good mind to punish the rascal for being a coward. Yet
who knows what effect the terror of such an apprehension may have?
and, to say the truth, he hath always behaved well against an enemy.
Come, it is a good thing to see any sign of religion in these fellows;
so I promise you he shall be set at liberty when we march. But hark,
the general beats. My dear boy, give me another buss. Don't discompose
nor hurry yourself; but remember the Christian doctrine of patience,
and I warrant you will soon be able to do yourself justice, and to
take an honourable revenge on the fellow who hath injured you." The
lieutenant then departed, and Jones endeavoured to compose himself to



Chapter i.

A wonderful long chapter concerning the marvellous; being much the
longest of all our introductory chapters.

As we are now entering upon a book in which the course of our history
will oblige us to relate some matters of a more strange and surprizing
kind than any which have hitherto occurred, it may not be amiss, in
the prolegomenous or introductory chapter, to say something of that
species of writing which is called the marvellous. To this we shall,
as well for the sake of ourselves as of others, endeavour to set some
certain bounds, and indeed nothing can be more necessary, as
critics[*] of different complexions are here apt to run into very
different extremes; for while some are, with M. Dacier, ready to
allow, that the same thing which is impossible may be yet
probable,[**] others have so little historic or poetic faith, that they
believe nothing to be either possible or probable, the like to which
hath not occurred to their own observation.

  [*] By this word here, and in most other parts of our work, we mean
  every reader in the world.
  [**] It is happy for M. Dacier that he was not an Irishman.

First, then, I think it may very reasonably be required of every
writer, that he keeps within the bounds of possibility; and still
remembers that what it is not possible for man to perform, it is
scarce possible for man to believe he did perform. This conviction
perhaps gave birth to many stories of the antient heathen deities (for
most of them are of poetical original). The poet, being desirous to
indulge a wanton and extravagant imagination, took refuge in that
power, of the extent of which his readers were no judges, or rather
which they imagined to be infinite, and consequently they could not be
shocked at any prodigies related of it. This hath been strongly urged
in defence of Homer's miracles; and it is perhaps a defence; not, as
Mr Pope would have it, because Ulysses told a set of foolish lies to
the Phaeacians, who were a very dull nation; but because the poet
himself wrote to heathens, to whom poetical fables were articles of
faith. For my own part, I must confess, so compassionate is my temper,
I wish Polypheme had confined himself to his milk diet, and preserved
his eye; nor could Ulysses be much more concerned than myself, when
his companions were turned into swine by Circe, who showed, I think,
afterwards, too much regard for man's flesh to be supposed capable of
converting it into bacon. I wish, likewise, with all my heart, that
Homer could have known the rule prescribed by Horace, to introduce
supernatural agents as seldom as possible. We should not then have
seen his gods coming on trivial errands, and often behaving themselves
so as not only to forfeit all title to respect, but to become the
objects of scorn and derision. A conduct which must have shocked the
credulity of a pious and sagacious heathen; and which could never have
been defended, unless by agreeing with a supposition to which I have
been sometimes almost inclined, that this most glorious poet, as he
certainly was, had an intent to burlesque the superstitious faith of
his own age and country.

But I have rested too long on a doctrine which can be of no use to a
Christian writer; for as he cannot introduce into his works any of
that heavenly host which make a part of his creed, so it is horrid
puerility to search the heathen theology for any of those deities who
have been long since dethroned from their immortality. Lord
Shaftesbury observes, that nothing is more cold than the invocation of
a muse by a modern; he might have added, that nothing can be more
absurd. A modern may with much more elegance invoke a ballad, as some
have thought Homer did, or a mug of ale, with the author of Hudibras;
which latter may perhaps have inspired much more poetry, as well as
prose, than all the liquors of Hippocrene or Helicon.

The only supernatural agents which can in any manner be allowed to us
moderns, are ghosts; but of these I would advise an author to be
extremely sparing. These are indeed, like arsenic, and other dangerous
drugs in physic, to be used with the utmost caution; nor would I
advise the introduction of them at all in those works, or by those
authors, to which, or to whom, a horse-laugh in the reader would be
any great prejudice or mortification.

As for elves and fairies, and other such mummery, I purposely omit the
mention of them, as I should be very unwilling to confine within any
bounds those surprizing imaginations, for whose vast capacity the
limits of human nature are too narrow; whose works are to be
considered as a new creation; and who have consequently just right to
do what they will with their own.

Man therefore is the highest subject (unless on very extraordinary
occasions indeed) which presents itself to the pen of our historian,
or of our poet; and, in relating his actions, great care is to be
taken that we do not exceed the capacity of the agent we describe.

Nor is possibility alone sufficient to justify us; we must keep
likewise within the rules of probability. It is, I think, the opinion
of Aristotle; or if not, it is the opinion of some wise man, whose
authority will be as weighty when it is as old, "That it is no excuse
for a poet who relates what is incredible, that the thing related is
really matter of fact." This may perhaps be allowed true with regard
to poetry, but it may be thought impracticable to extend it to the
historian; for he is obliged to record matters as he finds them,
though they may be of so extraordinary a nature as will require no
small degree of historical faith to swallow them. Such was the
successless armament of Xerxes described by Herodotus, or the
successful expedition of Alexander related by Arrian. Such of later
years was the victory of Agincourt obtained by Harry the Fifth, or
that of Narva won by Charles the Twelfth of Sweden. All which
instances, the more we reflect on them, appear still the more

Such facts, however, as they occur in the thread of the story, nay,
indeed, as they constitute the essential parts of it, the historian is
not only justifiable in recording as they really happened, but indeed
would be unpardonable should he omit or alter them. But there are
other facts not of such consequence nor so necessary, which, though
ever so well attested, may nevertheless be sacrificed to oblivion in
complacence to the scepticism of a reader. Such is that memorable
story of the ghost of George Villiers, which might with more propriety
have been made a present of to Dr Drelincourt, to have kept the ghost
of Mrs Veale company, at the head of his Discourse upon Death, than
have been introduced into so solemn a work as the History of the

To say the truth, if the historian will confine himself to what really
happened, and utterly reject any circumstance, which, though never so
well attested, he must be well assured is false, he will sometimes
fall into the marvellous, but never into the incredible. He will often
raise the wonder and surprize of his reader, but never that
incredulous hatred mentioned by Horace. It is by falling into fiction,
therefore, that we generally offend against this rule, of deserting
probability, which the historian seldom, if ever, quits, till he
forsakes his character and commences a writer of romance. In this,
however, those historians who relate public transactions, have the
advantage of us who confine ourselves to scenes of private life. The
credit of the former is by common notoriety supported for a long time;
and public records, with the concurrent testimony of many authors,
bear evidence to their truth in future ages. Thus a Trajan and an
Antoninus, a Nero and a Caligula, have all met with the belief of
posterity; and no one doubts but that men so very good, and so very
bad, were once the masters of mankind.

But we who deal in private character, who search into the most retired
recesses, and draw forth examples of virtue and vice from holes and
corners of the world, are in a more dangerous situation. As we have no
public notoriety, no concurrent testimony, no records to support and
corroborate what we deliver, it becomes us to keep within the limits
not only of possibility, but of probability too; and this more
especially in painting what is greatly good and amiable. Knavery and
folly, though never so exorbitant, will more easily meet with assent;
for ill-nature adds great support and strength to faith.

Thus we may, perhaps, with little danger, relate the history of
Fisher; who having long owed his bread to the generosity of Mr Derby,
and having one morning received a considerable bounty from his hands,
yet, in order to possess himself of what remained in his friend's
scrutore, concealed himself in a public office of the Temple, through
which there was a passage into Mr Derby's chambers. Here he overheard
Mr Derby for many hours solacing himself at an entertainment which he
that evening gave his friends, and to which Fisher had been invited.
During all this time, no tender, no grateful reflections arose to
restrain his purpose; but when the poor gentleman had let his company
out through the office, Fisher came suddenly from his lurking-place,
and walking softly behind his friend into his chamber, discharged a
pistol-ball into his head. This may be believed when the bones of
Fisher are as rotten as his heart. Nay, perhaps, it will be credited,
that the villain went two days afterwards with some young ladies to
the play of Hamlet; and with an unaltered countenance heard one of the
ladies, who little suspected how near she was to the person, cry out,
"Good God! if the man that murdered Mr Derby was now present!"
manifesting in this a more seared and callous conscience than even
Nero himself; of whom we are told by Suetonius, "that the
consciousness of his guilt, after the death of his mother, became
immediately intolerable, and so continued; nor could all the
congratulations of the soldiers, of the senate, and the people, allay
the horrors of his conscience."

But now, on the other hand, should I tell my reader, that I had known
a man whose penetrating genius had enabled him to raise a large
fortune in a way where no beginning was chaulked out to him; that he
had done this with the most perfect preservation of his integrity, and
not only without the least injustice or injury to any one individual
person, but with the highest advantage to trade, and a vast increase
of the public revenue; that he had expended one part of the income of
this fortune in discovering a taste superior to most, by works where
the highest dignity was united with the purest simplicity, and another
part in displaying a degree of goodness superior to all men, by acts
of charity to objects whose only recommendations were their merits, or
their wants; that he was most industrious in searching after merit in
distress, most eager to relieve it, and then as careful (perhaps too
careful) to conceal what he had done; that his house, his furniture,
his gardens, his table, his private hospitality, and his public
beneficence, all denoted the mind from which they flowed, and were all
intrinsically rich and noble, without tinsel, or external ostentation;
that he filled every relation in life with the most adequate virtue;
that he was most piously religious to his Creator, most zealously
loyal to his sovereign; a most tender husband to his wife, a kind
relation, a munificent patron, a warm and firm friend, a knowing and a
chearful companion, indulgent to his servants, hospitable to his
neighbours, charitable to the poor, and benevolent to all mankind.
Should I add to these the epithets of wise, brave, elegant, and indeed
every other amiable epithet in our language, I might surely say,

      _--Quis credet? nemo Hercule! nemo;
      Vel duo, vel nemo;_

and yet I know a man who is all I have here described. But a single
instance (and I really know not such another) is not sufficient to
justify us, while we are writing to thousands who never heard of the
person, nor of anything like him. Such _rarae aves_ should be remitted
to the epitaph writer, or to some poet who may condescend to hitch him
in a distich, or to slide him into a rhime with an air of carelessness
and neglect, without giving any offence to the reader.

In the last place, the actions should be such as may not only be
within the compass of human agency, and which human agents may
probably be supposed to do; but they should be likely for the very
actors and characters themselves to have performed; for what may be
only wonderful and surprizing in one man, may become improbable, or
indeed impossible, when related of another.

This last requisite is what the dramatic critics call conversation of
character; and it requires a very extraordinary degree of judgment,
and a most exact knowledge of human nature.

It is admirably remarked by a most excellent writer, that zeal can no
more hurry a man to act in direct opposition to itself, than a rapid
stream can carry a boat against its own current. I will venture to
say, that for a man to act in direct contradiction to the dictates of
his nature, is, if not impossible, as improbable and as miraculous as
anything which can well be conceived. Should the best parts of the
story of M. Antoninus be ascribed to Nero, or should the worst
incidents of Nero's life be imputed to Antoninus, what would be more
shocking to belief than either instance? whereas both these being
related of their proper agent, constitute the truly marvellous.

Our modern authors of comedy have fallen almost universally into the
error here hinted at; their heroes generally are notorious rogues, and
their heroines abandoned jades, during the first four acts; but in the
fifth, the former become very worthy gentlemen, and the latter women
of virtue and discretion: nor is the writer often so kind as to give
himself the least trouble to reconcile or account for this monstrous
change and incongruity. There is, indeed, no other reason to be
assigned for it, than because the play is drawing to a conclusion; as
if it was no less natural in a rogue to repent in the last act of a
play, than in the last of his life; which we perceive to be generally
the case at Tyburn, a place which might indeed close the scene of some
comedies with much propriety, as the heroes in these are most commonly
eminent for those very talents which not only bring men to the
gallows, but enable them to make an heroic figure when they are there.

Within these few restrictions, I think, every writer may be permitted
to deal as much in the wonderful as he pleases; nay, if he thus keeps
within the rules of credibility, the more he can surprize the reader
the more he will engage his attention, and the more he will charm him.
As a genius of the highest rank observes in his fifth chapter of the
Bathos, "The great art of all poetry is to mix truth with fiction, in
order to join the credible with the surprizing."

For though every good author will confine himself within the bounds of
probability, it is by no means necessary that his characters, or his
incidents, should be trite, common, or vulgar; such as happen in every
street, or in every house, or which may be met with in the home
articles of a newspaper. Nor must he be inhibited from showing many
persons and things, which may possibly have never fallen within the
knowledge of great part of his readers. If the writer strictly
observes the rules above-mentioned, he hath discharged his part; and
is then intitled to some faith from his reader, who is indeed guilty
of critical infidelity if he disbelieves him.

For want of a portion of such faith, I remember the character of a
young lady of quality, which was condemned on the stage for being
unnatural, by the unanimous voice of a very large assembly of clerks
and apprentices; though it had the previous suffrages of many ladies
of the first rank; one of whom, very eminent for her understanding,
declared it was the picture of half the young people of her

Chapter ii.

In which the landlady pays a visit to Mr Jones.

When Jones had taken leave of his friend the lieutenant, he
endeavoured to close his eyes, but all in vain; his spirits were too
lively and wakeful to be lulled to sleep. So having amused, or rather
tormented, himself with the thoughts of his Sophia till it was open
daylight, he called for some tea; upon which occasion my landlady
herself vouchsafed to pay him a visit.

This was indeed the first time she had seen him, or at least had taken
any notice of him; but as the lieutenant had assured her that he was
certainly some young gentleman of fashion, she now determined to show
him all the respect in her power; for, to speak truly, this was one of
those houses where gentlemen, to use the language of advertisements,
meet with civil treatment for their money.

She had no sooner begun to make his tea, than she likewise began to
discourse:--"La! sir," said she, "I think it is great pity that such a
pretty young gentleman should under-value himself so, as to go about
with these soldier fellows. They call themselves gentlemen, I warrant
you; but, as my first husband used to say, they should remember it is
we that pay them. And to be sure it is very hard upon us to be obliged
to pay them, and to keep 'um too, as we publicans are. I had twenty of
'um last night, besides officers: nay, for matter o' that, I had
rather have the soldiers than officers: for nothing is ever good
enough for those sparks; and I am sure, if you was to see the bills;
la! sir, it is nothing. I have had less trouble, I warrant you, with a
good squire's family, where we take forty or fifty shillings of a
night, besides horses. And yet I warrants me, there is narrow a one of
those officer fellows but looks upon himself to be as good as arrow a
squire of £500 a year. To be sure it doth me good to hear their men
run about after 'um, crying your honour, and your honour. Marry come
up with such honour, and an ordinary at a shilling a head. Then
there's such swearing among 'um, to be sure it frightens me out o' my
wits: I thinks nothing can ever prosper with such wicked people. And
here one of 'um has used you in so barbarous a manner. I thought
indeed how well the rest would secure him; they all hang together; for
if you had been in danger of death, which I am glad to see you are
not, it would have been all as one to such wicked people. They would
have let the murderer go. Laud have mercy upon 'um; I would not have
such a sin to answer for, for the whole world. But though you are
likely, with the blessing, to recover, there is laa for him yet; and
if you will employ lawyer Small, I darest be sworn he'll make the
fellow fly the country for him; though perhaps he'll have fled the
country before; for it is here to-day and gone to-morrow with such
chaps. I hope, however, you will learn more wit for the future, and
return back to your friends; I warrant they are all miserable for your
loss; and if they was but to know what had happened--La, my seeming! I
would not for the world they should. Come, come, we know very well
what all the matter is; but if one won't, another will; so pretty a
gentleman need never want a lady. I am sure, if I was you, I would see
the finest she that ever wore a head hanged, before I would go for a
soldier for her.--Nay, don't blush so" (for indeed he did to a violent
degree). "Why, you thought, sir, I knew nothing of the matter, I
warrant you, about Madam Sophia."--"How," says Jones, starting up, "do
you know my Sophia?"--"Do I! ay marry," cries the landlady; "many's
the time hath she lain in this house."--"With her aunt, I suppose,"
says Jones. "Why, there it is now," cries the landlady. "Ay, ay, ay, I
know the old lady very well. And a sweet young creature is Madam
Sophia, that's the truth on't."--"A sweet creature," cries Jones; "O

  Angels are painted fair to look like her.
  There's in her all that we believe of heav'n,
  Amazing brightness, purity, and truth,
  Eternal joy and everlasting love.

"And could I ever have imagined that you had known my Sophia!"--"I
wish," says the landlady, "you knew half so much of her. What would
you have given to have sat by her bed-side? What a delicious neck she
hath! Her lovely limbs have stretched themselves in that very bed you
now lie in."--"Here!" cries Jones: "hath Sophia ever laid here?"--"Ay,
ay, here; there, in that very bed," says the landlady; "where I wish
you had her this moment; and she may wish so too for anything I know
to the contrary, for she hath mentioned your name to me."--"Ha!" cries
he; "did she ever mention her poor Jones? You flatter me now: I can
never believe so much."--"Why, then," answered she, "as I hope to be
saved, and may the devil fetch me if I speak a syllable more than the
truth, I have heard her mention Mr Jones; but in a civil and modest
way, I confess; yet I could perceive she thought a great deal more
than she said."--"O my dear woman!" cries Jones, "her thoughts of me I
shall never be worthy of. Oh, she is all gentleness, kindness,
goodness! Why was such a rascal as I born, ever to give her soft bosom
a moment's uneasiness? Why am I cursed? I, who would undergo all the
plagues and miseries which any daemon ever invented for mankind, to
procure her any good; nay, torture itself could not be misery to me,
did I but know that she was happy."--"Why, look you there now," says
the landlady; "I told her you was a constant lovier."--"But pray,
madam, tell me when or where you knew anything of me; for I never was
here before, nor do I remember ever to have seen you."--"Nor is it
possible you should," answered she; "for you was a little thing when I
had you in my lap at the squire's."--"How, the squire's?" says Jones:
"what, do you know that great and good Mr Allworthy then?"--"Yes,
marry, do I," says she: "who in the country doth not?"--"The fame of
his goodness indeed," answered Jones, "must have extended farther than
this; but heaven only can know him--can know that benevolence which it
copied from itself, and sent upon earth as its own pattern. Mankind
are as ignorant of such divine goodness, as they are unworthy of it;
but none so unworthy of it as myself. I, who was raised by him to such
a height; taken in, as you must well know, a poor base-born child,
adopted by him, and treated as his own son, to dare by my follies to
disoblige him, to draw his vengeance upon me. Yes, I deserve it all;
for I will never be so ungrateful as ever to think he hath done an act
of injustice by me. No, I deserve to be turned out of doors, as I am.
And now, madam," says he, "I believe you will not blame me for turning
soldier, especially with such a fortune as this in my pocket." At
which words he shook a purse, which had but very little in it, and
which still appeared to the landlady to have less.

My good landlady was (according to vulgar phrase) struck all of a heap
by this relation. She answered coldly, "That to be sure people were
the best judges what was most proper for their circumstances. But
hark," says she, "I think I hear somebody call. Coming! coming! the
devil's in all our volk; nobody hath any ears. I must go down-stairs;
if you want any more breakfast the maid will come up. Coming!" At
which words, without taking any leave, she flung out of the room; for
the lower sort of people are very tenacious of respect; and though
they are contented to give this gratis to persons of quality, yet they
never confer it on those of their own order without taking care to be
well paid for their pains.

Chapter iii.

In which the surgeon makes his second appearance.

Before we proceed any farther, that the reader may not be mistaken in
imagining the landlady knew more than she did, nor surprized that she
knew so much, it may be necessary to inform him that the lieutenant
had acquainted her that the name of Sophia had been the occasion of
the quarrel; and as for the rest of her knowledge, the sagacious
reader will observe how she came by it in the preceding scene. Great
curiosity was indeed mixed with her virtues; and she never willingly
suffered any one to depart from her house, without enquiring as much
as possible into their names, families, and fortunes.

She was no sooner gone than Jones, instead of animadverting on her
behaviour, reflected that he was in the same bed which he was informed
had held his dear Sophia. This occasioned a thousand fond and tender
thoughts, which we would dwell longer upon, did we not consider that
such kind of lovers will make a very inconsiderable part of our
readers. In this situation the surgeon found him, when he came to
dress his wound. The doctor perceiving, upon examination, that his
pulse was disordered, and hearing that he had not slept, declared that
he was in great danger; for he apprehended a fever was coming on,
which he would have prevented by bleeding, but Jones would not submit,
declaring he would lose no more blood; "and, doctor," says he, "if you
will be so kind only to dress my head, I have no doubt of being well
in a day or two."

"I wish," answered the surgeon, "I could assure your being well in a
month or two. Well, indeed! No, no, people are not so soon well of
such contusions; but, sir, I am not at this time of day to be
instructed in my operations by a patient, and I insist on making a
revulsion before I dress you."

Jones persisted obstinately in his refusal, and the doctor at last
yielded; telling him at the same time that he would not be answerable
for the ill consequence, and hoped he would do him the justice to
acknowledge that he had given him a contrary advice; which the patient
promised he would.

The doctor retired into the kitchen, where, addressing himself to the
landlady, he complained bitterly of the undutiful behaviour of his
patient, who would not be blooded, though he was in a fever.

"It is an eating fever then," says the landlady; "for he hath devoured
two swinging buttered toasts this morning for breakfast."

"Very likely," says the doctor: "I have known people eat in a fever;
and it is very easily accounted for; because the acidity occasioned by
the febrile matter may stimulate the nerves of the diaphragm, and
thereby occasion a craving which will not be easily distinguishable
from a natural appetite; but the aliment will not be concreted, nor
assimilated into chyle, and so will corrode the vascular orifices, and
thus will aggravate the febrific symptoms. Indeed, I think the
gentleman in a very dangerous way, and, if he is not blooded, I am
afraid will die."

"Every man must die some time or other," answered the good woman; "it
is no business of mine. I hope, doctor, you would not have me hold him
while you bleed him. But, hark'ee, a word in your ear; I would advise
you, before you proceed too far, to take care who is to be your

"Paymaster!" said the doctor, staring; "why, I've a gentleman under my
hands, have I not?"

"I imagined so as well as you," said the landlady; "but, as my first
husband used to say, everything is not what it looks to be. He is an
arrant scrub, I assure you. However, take no notice that I mentioned
anything to you of the matter; but I think people in business oft
always to let one another know such things."

"And have I suffered such a fellow as this," cries the doctor, in a
passion, "to instruct me? Shall I hear my practice insulted by one who
will not pay me? I am glad I have made this discovery in time. I will
see now whether he will be blooded or no." He then immediately went
upstairs, and flinging open the door of the chamber with much
violence, awaked poor Jones from a very sound nap, into which he was
fallen, and, what was still worse, from a delicious dream concerning

"Will you be blooded or no?" cries the doctor, in a rage. "I have told
you my resolution already," answered Jones, "and I wish with all my
heart you had taken my answer; for you have awaked me out of the
sweetest sleep which I ever had in my life."

"Ay, ay," cries the doctor; "many a man hath dozed away his life.
Sleep is not always good, no more than food; but remember, I demand of
you for the last time, will you be blooded?"--"I answer you for the
last time," said Jones, "I will not."--"Then I wash my hands of you,"
cries the doctor; "and I desire you to pay me for the trouble I have
had already. Two journeys at 5s. each, two dressings at 5s. more, and
half a crown for phlebotomy."--"I hope," said Jones, "you don't intend
to leave me in this condition."--"Indeed but I shall," said the other.
"Then," said Jones, "you have used me rascally, and I will not pay you
a farthing."--"Very well," cries the doctor; "the first loss is the
best. What a pox did my landlady mean by sending for me to such
vagabonds!" At which words he flung out of the room, and his patient
turning himself about soon recovered his sleep; but his dream was
unfortunately gone.

Chapter iv.

In which is introduced one of the pleasantest barbers that was ever
recorded in history, the barber of Bagdad, or he in Don Quixote, not

The clock had now struck five when Jones awaked from a nap of seven
hours, so much refreshed, and in such perfect health and spirits, that
he resolved to get up and dress himself; for which purpose he unlocked
his portmanteau, and took out clean linen, and a suit of cloaths; but
first he slipt on a frock, and went down into the kitchen to bespeak
something that might pacify certain tumults he found rising within his

Meeting the landlady, he accosted her with great civility, and asked,
"What he could have for dinner?"--"For dinner!" says she; "it is an
odd time a day to think about dinner. There is nothing drest in the
house, and the fire is almost out."--"Well, but," says he, "I must
have something to eat, and it is almost indifferent to me what; for,
to tell you the truth, I was never more hungry in my life."--"Then,"
says she, "I believe there is a piece of cold buttock and carrot,
which will fit you."--"Nothing better," answered Jones; "but I should
be obliged to you, if you would let it be fried." To which the
landlady consented, and said, smiling, "she was glad to see him so
well recovered;" for the sweetness of our heroe's temper was almost
irresistible; besides, she was really no ill-humoured woman at the
bottom; but she loved money so much, that she hated everything which
had the semblance of poverty.

Jones now returned in order to dress himself, while his dinner was
preparing, and was, according to his orders, attended by the barber.

This barber, who went by the name of Little Benjamin, was a fellow of
great oddity and humour, which had frequently let him into small
inconveniencies, such as slaps in the face, kicks in the breech,
broken bones, &c. For every one doth not understand a jest; and those
who do are often displeased with being themselves the subjects of it.
This vice was, however, incurable in him; and though he had often
smarted for it, yet if ever he conceived a joke, he was certain to be
delivered of it, without the least respect of persons, time, or place.

He had a great many other particularities in his character, which I
shall not mention, as the reader will himself very easily perceive
them, on his farther acquaintance with this extraordinary person.

Jones being impatient to be drest, for a reason which may be easily
imagined, thought the shaver was very tedious in preparing his suds,
and begged him to make haste; to which the other answered with much
gravity, for he never discomposed his muscles on any account,
"_Festina lente_, is a proverb which I learned long before I ever
touched a razor."--"I find, friend, you are a scholar," replied Jones.
"A poor one," said the barber, "_non omnia possumus omnes._"--"Again!"
said Jones; "I fancy you are good at capping verses."--"Excuse me,
sir," said the barber, "_non tanto me dignor honore_." And then
proceeding to his operation, "Sir," said he, "since I have dealt in
suds, I could never discover more than two reasons for shaving; the
one is to get a beard, and the other to get rid of one. I conjecture,
sir, it may not be long since you shaved from the former of these
motives. Upon my word, you have had good success; for one may say of
your beard, that it is _tondenti gravior_."--"I conjecture," says
Jones, "that thou art a very comical fellow."--"You mistake me widely,
sir," said the barber: "I am too much addicted to the study of
philosophy; _hinc illae lacrymae_, sir; that's my misfortune. Too much
learning hath been my ruin."--"Indeed," says Jones, "I confess,
friend, you have more learning than generally belongs to your trade;
but I can't see how it can have injured you."--"Alas! sir," answered
the shaver, "my father disinherited me for it. He was a
dancing-master; and because I could read before I could dance, he took
an aversion to me, and left every farthing among his other
children.--Will you please to have your temples--O la! I ask your
pardon, I fancy there is _hiatus in manuscriptis_. I heard you was
going to the wars; but I find it was a mistake."--"Why do you conclude
so?" says Jones. "Sure, sir," answered the barber, "you are too wise a
man to carry a broken head thither; for that would be carrying coals
to Newcastle."

"Upon my word," cries Jones, "thou art a very odd fellow, and I like
thy humour extremely; I shall be very glad if thou wilt come to me
after dinner, and drink a glass with me; I long to be better
acquainted with thee."

"O dear sir!" said the barber, "I can do you twenty times as great a
favour, if you will accept of it."--"What is that, my friend?" cries
Jones. "Why, I will drink a bottle with you if you please; for I
dearly love good-nature; and as you have found me out to be a comical
fellow, so I have no skill in physiognomy, if you are not one of the
best-natured gentlemen in the universe." Jones now walked downstairs
neatly drest, and perhaps the fair Adonis was not a lovelier figure;
and yet he had no charms for my landlady; for as that good woman did
not resemble Venus at all in her person, so neither did she in her
taste. Happy had it been for Nanny the chambermaid, if she had seen
with the eyes of her mistress, for that poor girl fell so violently in
love with Jones in five minutes, that her passion afterwards cost her
many a sigh. This Nanny was extremely pretty, and altogether as coy;
for she had refused a drawer, and one or two young farmers in the
neighbourhood, but the bright eyes of our heroe thawed all her ice in
a moment.

When Jones returned to the kitchen, his cloth was not yet laid; nor
indeed was there any occasion it should, his dinner remaining _in
statu quo_, as did the fire which was to dress it. This disappointment
might have put many a philosophical temper into a passion; but it had
no such effect on Jones. He only gave the landlady a gentle rebuke,
saying, "Since it was so difficult to get it heated he would eat the
beef cold." But now the good woman, whether moved by compassion, or by
shame, or by whatever other motive, I cannot tell, first gave her
servants a round scold for disobeying the orders which she had never
given, and then bidding the drawer lay a napkin in the Sun, she set
about the matter in good earnest, and soon accomplished it.

This Sun, into which Jones was now conducted, was truly named, as
_lucus a non lucendo_; for it was an apartment into which the sun had
scarce ever looked. It was indeed the worst room in the house; and
happy was it for Jones that it was so. However, he was now too hungry
to find any fault; but having once satisfied his appetite, he ordered
the drawer to carry a bottle of wine into a better room, and expressed
some resentment at having been shown into a dungeon.

The drawer having obeyed his commands, he was, after some time,
attended by the barber, who would not indeed have suffered him to wait
so long for his company had he not been listening in the kitchen to
the landlady, who was entertaining a circle that she had gathered
round her with the history of poor Jones, part of which she had
extracted from his own lips, and the other part was her own ingenious
composition; for she said "he was a poor parish boy, taken into the
house of Squire Allworthy, where he was bred up as an apprentice, and
now turned out of doors for his misdeeds, particularly for making love
to his young mistress, and probably for robbing the house; for how
else should he come by the little money he hath; and this," says she,
"is your gentleman, forsooth!"--"A servant of Squire Allworthy!" says
the barber; "what's his name?"--"Why he told me his name was Jones,"
says she: "perhaps he goes by a wrong name. Nay, and he told me, too,
that the squire had maintained him as his own son, thof he had
quarrelled with him now."--"And if his name be Jones, he told you the
truth," said the barber; "for I have relations who live in that
country; nay, and some people say he is his son."--"Why doth he not go
by the name of his father?"--"I can't tell that," said the barber;
"many people's sons don't go by the name of their father."--"Nay,"
said the landlady, "if I thought he was a gentleman's son, thof he was
a bye-blow, I should behave to him in another guess manner; for many
of these bye-blows come to be great men, and, as my poor first husband
used to say, never affront any customer that's a gentleman."

Chapter v.

A dialogue between Mr Jones and the barber.

This conversation passed partly while Jones was at dinner in his
dungeon, and partly while he was expecting the barber in the parlour.
And, as soon as it was ended, Mr Benjamin, as we have said, attended
him, and was very kindly desired to sit down. Jones then filling out a
glass of wine, drank his health by the appellation of _doctissime
tonsorum_. "_Ago tibi gratias, domine_" said the barber; and then
looking very steadfastly at Jones, he said, with great gravity, and
with a seeming surprize, as if he had recollected a face he had seen
before, "Sir, may I crave the favour to know if your name is not
Jones?" To which the other answered, "That it was."--"_Proh deum atque
hominum fidem_!" says the barber; "how strangely things come to pass!
Mr Jones, I am your most obedient servant. I find you do not know me,
which indeed is no wonder, since you never saw me but once, and then
you was very young. Pray, sir, how doth the good Squire Allworthy? how
doth _ille optimus omnium patronus_?"--"I find," said Jones, "you do
indeed know me; but I have not the like happiness of recollecting
you."--"I do not wonder at that," cries Benjamin; "but I am surprized
I did not know you sooner, for you are not in the least altered. And
pray, sir, may I, without offence, enquire whither you are travelling
this way?"--"Fill the glass, Mr Barber," said Jones, "and ask no more
questions."--"Nay, sir," answered Benjamin, "I would not be
troublesome; and I hope you don't think me a man of an impertinent
curiosity, for that is a vice which nobody can lay to my charge; but I
ask pardon; for when a gentleman of your figure travels without his
servants, we may suppose him to be, as we say, _in casu incognito_,
and perhaps I ought not to have mentioned your name."--"I own," says
Jones, "I did not expect to have been so well known in this country as
I find I am; yet, for particular reasons, I shall be obliged to you if
you will not mention my name to any other person till I am gone from
hence."--"_Pauca verba_," answered the barber;" and I wish no other
here knew you but myself; for some people have tongues; but I promise
you I can keep a secret. My enemies will allow me that virtue."--"And
yet that is not the characteristic of your profession, Mr Barber,"
answered Jones. "Alas! sir," replied Benjamin, "_Non si male nunc et
olim sic erit_. I was not born nor bred a barber, I assure you. I have
spent most of my time among gentlemen, and though I say it, I
understand something of gentility. And if you had thought me as worthy
of your confidence as you have some other people, I should have shown
you I could have kept a secret better. I should not have degraded your
name in a public kitchen; for indeed, sir, some people have not used
you well; for besides making a public proclamation of what you told
them of a quarrel between yourself and Squire Allworthy, they added
lies of their own, things which I knew to be lies."--"You surprize me
greatly," cries Jones. "Upon my word, sir," answered Benjamin, "I tell
the truth, and I need not tell you my landlady was the person. I am
sure it moved me to hear the story, and I hope it is all false; for I
have a great respect for you, I do assure you I have, and have had
ever since the good-nature you showed to Black George, which was
talked of all over the country, and I received more than one letter
about it. Indeed, it made you beloved by everybody. You will pardon
me, therefore; for it was real concern at what I heard made me ask
many questions; for I have no impertinent curiosity about me: but I
love good-nature and thence became _amoris abundantia erga te_."

Every profession of friendship easily gains credit with the miserable;
it is no wonder therefore, if Jones, who, besides his being miserable,
was extremely open-hearted, very readily believed all the professions
of Benjamin, and received him into his bosom. The scraps of Latin,
some of which Benjamin applied properly enough, though it did not
savour of profound literature, seemed yet to indicate something
superior to a common barber; and so indeed did his whole behaviour.
Jones therefore believed the truth of what he had said, as to his
original and education; and at length, after much entreaty, he said,
"Since you have heard, my friend, so much of my affairs, and seem so
desirous to know the truth, if you will have patience to hear it, I
will inform you of the whole."--"Patience!" cries Benjamin, "that I
will, if the chapter was never so long; and I am very much obliged to
you for the honour you do me."

Jones now began, and related the whole history, forgetting only a
circumstance or two, namely, everything which passed on that day in
which he had fought with Thwackum; and ended with his resolution to go
to sea, till the rebellion in the North had made him change his
purpose, and had brought him to the place where he then was.

Little Benjamin, who had been all attention, never once interrupted
the narrative; but when it was ended he could not help observing, that
there must be surely something more invented by his enemies, and told
Mr Allworthy against him, or so good a man would never have dismissed
one he had loved so tenderly, in such a manner. To which Jones
answered, "He doubted not but such villanous arts had been made use of
to destroy him."

And surely it was scarce possible for any one to have avoided making
the same remark with the barber, who had not indeed heard from Jones
one single circumstance upon which he was condemned; for his actions
were not now placed in those injurious lights in which they had been
misrepresented to Allworthy; nor could he mention those many false
accusations which had been from time to time preferred against him to
Allworthy: for with none of these he was himself acquainted. He had
likewise, as we have observed, omitted many material facts in his
present relation. Upon the whole, indeed, everything now appeared in
such favourable colours to Jones, that malice itself would have found
it no easy matter to fix any blame upon him.

Not that Jones desired to conceal or to disguise the truth; nay, he
would have been more unwilling to have suffered any censure to fall on
Mr Allworthy for punishing him, than on his own actions for deserving
it; but, in reality, so it happened, and so it always will happen; for
let a man be never so honest, the account of his own conduct will, in
spite of himself, be so very favourable, that his vices will come
purified through his lips, and, like foul liquors well strained, will
leave all their foulness behind. For though the facts themselves may
appear, yet so different will be the motives, circumstances, and
consequences, when a man tells his own story, and when his enemy tells
it, that we scarce can recognise the facts to be one and the same.

Though the barber had drank down this story with greedy ears, he was
not yet satisfied. There was a circumstance behind which his
curiosity, cold as it was, most eagerly longed for. Jones had
mentioned the fact of his amour, and of his being the rival of Blifil,
but had cautiously concealed the name of the young lady. The barber,
therefore, after some hesitation, and many hums and hahs, at last
begged leave to crave the name of the lady, who appeared to be the
principal cause of all this mischief. Jones paused a moment, and then
said, "Since I have trusted you with so much, and since, I am afraid,
her name is become too publick already on this occasion, I will not
conceal it from you. Her name is Sophia Western."

"_Proh deum atque hominum fidem_! Squire Western hath a daughter grown
a woman!"--"Ay, and such a woman," cries Jones, "that the world cannot
match. No eye ever saw anything so beautiful; but that is her least
excellence. Such sense! such goodness! Oh, I could praise her for
ever, and yet should omit half her virtues!"--"Mr Western a daughter
grown up!" cries the barber: "I remember the father a boy; well,
_Tempus edax rerum_."

The wine being now at an end, the barber pressed very eagerly to be
his bottle; but Jones absolutely refused, saying, "He had already
drank more than he ought: and that he now chose to retire to his room,
where he wished he could procure himself a book."--"A book!" cries
Benjamin; "what book would you have? Latin or English? I have some
curious books in both languages; such as _Erasmi Colloquia, Ovid de
Tristibus, Gradus ad Parnassum;_ and in English I have several of the
best books, though some of them are a little torn; but I have a great
part of Stowe's Chronicle; the sixth volume of Pope's Homer; the third
volume of the Spectator; the second volume of Echard's Roman History;
the Craftsman; Robinson Crusoe; Thomas a Kempis; and two volumes of
Tom Brown's Works."

"Those last," cries Jones, "are books I never saw, so if you please
lend me one of those volumes." The barber assured him he would be
highly entertained, for he looked upon the author to have been one of
the greatest wits that ever the nation produced. He then stepped to
his house, which was hard by, and immediately returned; after which,
the barber having received very strict injunctions of secrecy from
Jones, and having sworn inviolably to maintain it, they separated; the
barber went home, and Jones retired to his chamber.

Chapter vi.

In which more of the talents of Mr Benjamin will appear, as well as
who this extraordinary person was.

In the morning Jones grew a little uneasy at the desertion of his
surgeon, as he apprehended some inconvenience, or even danger, might
attend the not dressing his wound; he enquired of the drawer, what
other surgeons were to be met with in that neighbourhood. The drawer
told him, there was one not far off; but he had known him often refuse
to be concerned after another had been sent before him; "but, sir,"
says he, "if you will take my advice, there is not a man in the
kingdom can do your business better than the barber who was with you
last night. We look upon him to be one of the ablest men at a cut in
all this neighbourhood. For though he hath not been her above three
months, he hath done several great cures."

The drawer was presently dispatched for Little Benjamin, who being
acquainted in what capacity he was wanted, prepared himself
accordingly, and attended; but with so different an air and aspect
from that which he wore when his basin was under his arm, that he
could scarce be known to be the same person.

"So, tonsor," says Jones, "I find you have more trades than one; how
came you not to inform me of this last night?"--"A surgeon," answered
Benjamin, with great gravity, "is a profession, not a trade. The
reason why I did not acquaint you last night that I professed this
art, was, that I then concluded you was under the hands of another
gentleman, and I never love to interfere with my brethren in their
business. _Ars omnibus communis_. But now, sir, if you please, I will
inspect your head, and when I see into your skull, I will give my
opinion of your case."

Jones had no great faith in this new professor; however, he suffered
him to open the bandage and to look at his wound; which as soon as he
had done, Benjamin began to groan and shake his head violently. Upon
which Jones, in a peevish manner, bid him not play the fool, but tell
him in what condition he found him. "Shall I answer you as a surgeon,
or a friend?" said Benjamin. "As a friend, and seriously," said Jones.
"Why then, upon my soul," cries Benjamin, "it would require a great
deal of art to keep you from being well after a very few dressings;
and if you will suffer me to apply some salve of mine, I will answer
for the success." Jones gave his consent, and the plaister was applied

"There, sir," cries Benjamin: "now I will, if you please, resume my
former self; but a man is obliged to keep up some dignity in his
countenance whilst he is performing these operations, or the world
will not submit to be handled by him. You can't imagine, sir, of how
much consequence a grave aspect is to a grave character. A barber may
make you laugh, but a surgeon ought rather to make you cry."

"Mr Barber, or Mr Surgeon, or Mr Barber-surgeon," said Jones. "O dear
sir!" answered Benjamin, interrupting him, "_Infandum, regina, jubes
renovare dolorem_. You recall to my mind that cruel separation of the
united fraternities, so much to the prejudice of both bodies, as all
separations must be, according to the old adage, _Vis unita fortior_;
which to be sure there are not wanting some of one or of the other
fraternity who are able to construe. What a blow was this to me, who
unite both in my own person!" "Well, by whatever name you please to be
called," continued Jones, "you certainly are one of the oddest, most
comical fellows I ever met with, and must have something very
surprizing in your story, which you must confess I have a right to
hear."--"I do confess it," answered Benjamin, "and will very readily
acquaint you with it, when you have sufficient leisure, for I promise
you it will require a good deal of time." Jones told him, he could
never be more at leisure than at present. "Well, then," said Benjamin,
"I will obey you; but first I will fasten the door, that none may
interrupt us." He did so, and then advancing with a solemn air to
Jones, said: "I must begin by telling you, sir, that you yourself have
been the greatest enemy I ever had." Jones was a little startled at
this sudden declaration. "I your enemy, sir!" says he, with much
amazement, and some sternness in his look. "Nay, be not angry," said
Benjamin, "for I promise you I am not. You are perfectly innocent of
having intended me any wrong; for you was then an infant: but I shall,
I believe, unriddle all this the moment I mention my name. Did you
never hear, sir, of one Partridge, who had the honour of being reputed
your father, and the misfortune of being ruined by that honour?" "I
have, indeed, heard of that Partridge," says Jones, "and have always
believed myself to be his son." "Well, sir," answered Benjamin, "I am
that Partridge; but I here absolve you from all filial duty, for I do
assure you, you are no son of mine." "How!" replied Jones, "and is it
possible that a false suspicion should have drawn all the ill
consequences upon you, with which I am too well acquainted?" "It is
possible," cries Benjamin, "for it is so: but though it is natural
enough for men to hate even the innocent causes of their sufferings,
yet I am of a different temper. I have loved you ever since I heard of
your behaviour to Black George, as I told you; and I am convinced,
from this extraordinary meeting, that you are born to make me amends
for all I have suffered on that account. Besides, I dreamt, the night
before I saw you, that I stumbled over a stool without hurting myself;
which plainly showed me something good was towards me: and last night
I dreamt again, that I rode behind you on a milk-white mare, which is
a very excellent dream, and betokens much good fortune, which I am
resolved to pursue unless you have the cruelty to deny me."

"I should be very glad, Mr Partridge," answered Jones, "to have it in
my power to make you amends for your sufferings on my account, though
at present I see no likelihood of it; however, I assure you I will
deny you nothing which is in my power to grant."

"It is in your power sure enough," replied Benjamin; "for I desire
nothing more than leave to attend you in this expedition. Nay, I have
so entirely set my heart upon it, that if you should refuse me, you
will kill both a barber and a surgeon in one breath."

Jones answered, smiling, that he should be very sorry to be the
occasion of so much mischief to the public. He then advanced many
prudential reasons, in order to dissuade Benjamin (whom we shall
hereafter call Partridge) from his purpose; but all were in vain.
Partridge relied strongly on his dream of the milk-white mare.
"Besides, sir," says he, "I promise you I have as good an inclination
to the cause as any man can possibly have; and go I will, whether you
admit me to go in your company or not."

Jones, who was as much pleased with Partridge as Partridge could be
with him, and who had not consulted his own inclination but the good
of the other in desiring him to stay behind, when he found his friend
so resolute, at last gave his consent; but then recollecting himself,
he said, "Perhaps, Mr Partridge, you think I shall be able to support
you, but I really am not;" and then taking out his purse, he told out
nine guineas, which he declared were his whole fortune.

Partridge answered, "That his dependence was only on his future
favour; for he was thoroughly convinced he would shortly have enough
in his power. At present, sir," said he, "I believe I am rather the
richer man of the two; but all I have is at your service, and at your
disposal. I insist upon your taking the whole, and I beg only to
attend you in the quality of your servant; _Nil desperandum est Teucro
duce et auspice Teucro_": but to this generous proposal concerning the
money, Jones would by no means submit.

It was resolved to set out the next morning, when a difficulty arose
concerning the baggage; for the portmanteau of Mr Jones was too large
to be carried without a horse.

"If I may presume to give my advice," says Partridge, "this
portmanteau, with everything in it, except a few shirts, should be
left behind. Those I shall be easily able to carry for you, and the
rest of your cloaths will remain very safe locked up in my house."

This method was no sooner proposed than agreed to; and then the barber
departed, in order to prepare everything for his intended expedition.

Chapter vii.

Containing better reasons than any which have yet appeared for the
conduct of Partridge; an apology for the weakness of Jones; and some
further anecdotes concerning my landlady.

Though Partridge was one of the most superstitious of men, he would
hardly perhaps have desired to accompany Jones on his expedition
merely from the omens of the joint-stool and white mare, if his
prospect had been no better than to have shared the plunder gained in
the field of battle. In fact, when Partridge came to ruminate on the
relation he had heard from Jones, he could not reconcile to himself
that Mr Allworthy should turn his son (for so he most firmly believed
him to be) out of doors, for any reason which he had heard assigned.
He concluded, therefore, that the whole was a fiction, and that Jones,
of whom he had often from his correspondents heard the wildest
character, had in reality run away from his father. It came into his
head, therefore, that if he could prevail with the young gentleman to
return back to his father, he should by that means render a service to
Allworthy, which would obliterate all his former anger; nay, indeed,
he conceived that very anger was counterfeited, and that Allworthy had
sacrificed him to his own reputation. And this suspicion indeed he
well accounted for, from the tender behaviour of that excellent man to
the foundling child; from his great severity to Partridge, who,
knowing himself to be innocent, could not conceive that any other
should think him guilty; lastly, from the allowance which he had
privately received long after the annuity had been publickly taken
from him, and which he looked upon as a kind of smart-money, or rather
by way of atonement for injustice; for it is very uncommon, I believe,
for men to ascribe the benefactions they receive to pure charity, when
they can possibly impute them to any other motive. If he could by any
means therefore persuade the young gentleman to return home, he
doubted not but that he should again be received into the favour of
Allworthy, and well rewarded for his pains; nay, and should be again
restored to his native country; a restoration which Ulysses himself
never wished more heartily than poor Partridge.

As for Jones, he was well satisfied with the truth of what the other
had asserted, and believed that Partridge had no other inducements but
love to him, and zeal for the cause; a blameable want of caution and
diffidence in the veracity of others, in which he was highly worthy of
censure. To say the truth, there are but two ways by which men become
possessed of this excellent quality. The one is from long experience,
and the other is from nature; which last, I presume, is often meant by
genius, or great natural parts; and it is infinitely the better of the
two, not only as we are masters of it much earlier in life, but as it
is much more infallible and conclusive; for a man who hath been
imposed on by ever so many, may still hope to find others more honest;
whereas he who receives certain necessary admonitions from within,
that this is impossible, must have very little understanding indeed,
if he ever renders himself liable to be once deceived. As Jones had
not this gift from nature, he was too young to have gained it by
experience; for at the diffident wisdom which is to be acquired this
way, we seldom arrive till very late in life; which is perhaps the
reason why some old men are apt to despise the understandings of all
those who are a little younger than themselves.

Jones spent most part of the day in the company of a new acquaintance.
This was no other than the landlord of the house, or rather the
husband of the landlady. He had but lately made his descent
downstairs, after a long fit of the gout, in which distemper he was
generally confined to his room during one half of the year; and during
the rest, he walked about the house, smoaked his pipe, and drank his
bottle with his friends, without concerning himself in the least with
any kind of business. He had been bred, as they call it, a gentleman;
that is, bred up to do nothing; and had spent a very small fortune,
which he inherited from an industrious farmer his uncle, in hunting,
horse-racing, and cock-fighting, and had been married by my landlady
for certain purposes, which he had long since desisted from answering;
for which she hated him heartily. But as he was a surly kind of
fellow, so she contented herself with frequently upbraiding him by
disadvantageous comparisons with her first husband, whose praise she
had eternally in her mouth; and as she was for the most part mistress
of the profit, so she was satisfied to take upon herself the care and
government of the family, and, after a long successless struggle, to
suffer her husband to be master of himself.

In the evening, when Jones retired to his room, a small dispute arose
between this fond couple concerning him:--"What," says the wife, "you
have been tippling with the gentleman, I see?"--"Yes," answered the
husband, "we have cracked a bottle together, and a very gentlemanlike
man he is, and hath a very pretty notion of horse-flesh. Indeed, he is
young, and hath not seen much of the world; for I believe he hath been
at very few horse-races."--"Oho! he is one of your order, is he?"
replies the landlady: "he must be a gentleman to be sure, if he is a
horse-racer. The devil fetch such gentry! I am sure I wish I had never
seen any of them. I have reason to love horse-racers truly!"--"That
you have," says the husband; "for I was one, you know."--"Yes,"
answered she, "you are a pure one indeed. As my first husband used to
say, I may put all the good I have ever got by you in my eyes, and see
never the worse."--"D--n your first husband!" cries he. "Don't d--n a
better man than yourself," answered the wife: "if he had been alive,
you durst not have done it."--"Then you think," says he, "I have not
so much courage as yourself; for you have d--n'd him often in my
hearing."--"If I did," says she, "I have repented of it many's the
good time and oft. And if he was so good to forgive me a word spoken
in haste or so, it doth not become such a one as you to twitter me. He
was a husband to me, he was; and if ever I did make use of an ill word
or so in a passion, I never called him rascal; I should have told a
lie, if I had called him rascal." Much more she said, but not in his
hearing; for having lighted his pipe, he staggered off as fast as he
could. We shall therefore transcribe no more of her speech, as it
approached still nearer and nearer to a subject too indelicate to find
any place in this history.

Early in the morning Partridge appeared at the bedside of Jones, ready
equipped for the journey, with his knapsack at his back. This was his
own workmanship; for besides his other trades, he was no indifferent
taylor. He had already put up his whole stock of linen in it,
consisting of four shirts, to which he now added eight for Mr Jones;
and then packing up the portmanteau, he was departing with it towards
his own house, but was stopt in his way by the landlady, who refused
to suffer any removals till after the payment of the reckoning.

The landlady was, as we have said, absolute governess in these
regions; it was therefore necessary to comply with her rules; so the
bill was presently writ out, which amounted to a much larger sum than
might have been expected, from the entertainment which Jones had met
with. But here we are obliged to disclose some maxims, which publicans
hold to be the grand mysteries of their trade. The first is, If they
have anything good in their house (which indeed very seldom happens)
to produce it only to persons who travel with great equipages. 2dly,
To charge the same for the very worst provisions, as if they were the
best. And lastly, If any of their guests call but for little, to make
them pay a double price for everything they have; so that the amount
by the head may be much the same.

The bill being made and discharged, Jones set forward with Partridge,
carrying his knapsack; nor did the landlady condescend to wish him a
good journey; for this was, it seems, an inn frequented by people of
fashion; and I know not whence it is, but all those who get their
livelihood by people of fashion, contract as much insolence to the
rest of mankind, as if they really belonged to that rank themselves.

Chapter viii.

Jones arrives at Gloucester, and goes to the Bell; the character of
that house, and of a petty-fogger which he there meets with.

Mr Jones and Partridge, or Little Benjamin (which epithet of Little
was perhaps given him ironically, he being in reality near six feet
high), having left their last quarters in the manner before described,
travelled on to Gloucester without meeting any adventure worth

Being arrived here, they chose for their house of entertainment the
sign of the Bell, an excellent house indeed, and which I do most
seriously recommend to every reader who shall visit this antient city.
The master of it is brother to the great preacher Whitefield; but is
absolutely untainted with the pernicious principles of Methodism, or
of any other heretical sect. He is indeed a very honest plain man,
and, in my opinion, not likely to create any disturbance either in
church or state. His wife hath, I believe, had much pretension to
beauty, and is still a very fine woman. Her person and deportment
might have made a shining figure in the politest assemblies; but
though she must be conscious of this and many other perfections, she
seems perfectly contented with, and resigned to, that state of life to
which she is called; and this resignation is entirely owing to the
prudence and wisdom of her temper; for she is at present as free from
any Methodistical notions as her husband: I say at present; for she
freely confesses that her brother's documents made at first some
impression upon her, and that she had put herself to the expense of a
long hood, in order to attend the extraordinary emotions of the
Spirit; but having found, during an experiment of three weeks, no
emotions, she says, worth a farthing, she very wisely laid by her
hood, and abandoned the sect. To be concise, she is a very friendly
good-natured woman; and so industrious to oblige, that the guests must
be of a very morose disposition who are not extremely well satisfied
in her house.

Mrs Whitefield happened to be in the yard when Jones and his attendant
marched in. Her sagacity soon discovered in the air of our heroe
something which distinguished him from the vulgar. She ordered her
servants, therefore, immediately to show him into a room, and
presently afterwards invited him to dinner with herself; which
invitation he very thankfully accepted; for indeed much less agreeable
company than that of Mrs Whitefield, and a much worse entertainment
than she had provided, would have been welcome after so long fasting
and so long a walk.

Besides Mr Jones and the good governess of the mansion, there sat down
at table an attorney of Salisbury, indeed the very same who had
brought the news of Mrs Blifil's death to Mr Allworthy, and whose
name, which I think we did not before mention, was Dowling: there was
likewise present another person, who stiled himself a lawyer, and who
lived somewhere near Linlinch, in Somersetshire. This fellow, I say,
stiled himself a lawyer, but was indeed a most vile petty-fogger,
without sense or knowledge of any kind; one of those who may be termed
train-bearers to the law; a sort of supernumeraries in the profession,
who are the hackneys of attorneys, and will ride more miles for
half-a-crown than a postboy.

During the time of dinner, the Somersetshire lawyer recollected the
face of Jones, which he had seen at Mr Allworthy's; for he had often
visited in that gentleman's kitchen. He therefore took occasion to
enquire after the good family there with that familiarity which would
have become an intimate friend or acquaintance of Mr Allworthy; and
indeed he did all in his power to insinuate himself to be such, though
he had never had the honour of speaking to any person in that family
higher than the butler. Jones answered all his questions with much
civility, though he never remembered to have seen the petty-fogger
before; and though he concluded, from the outward appearance and
behaviour of the man, that he usurped a freedom with his betters, to
which he was by no means intitled.

As the conversation of fellows of this kind is of all others the most
detestable to men of any sense, the cloth was no sooner removed than
Mr Jones withdrew, and a little barbarously left poor Mrs Whitefield
to do a penance, which I have often heard Mr Timothy Harris, and other
publicans of good taste, lament, as the severest lot annexed to their
calling, namely, that of being obliged to keep company with their

Jones had no sooner quitted the room, than the petty-fogger, in a
whispering tone, asked Mrs Whitefield, "If she knew who that fine
spark was?" She answered, "She had never seen the gentleman
before."--"The gentleman, indeed!" replied the petty-fogger; "a pretty
gentleman, truly! Why, he's the bastard of a fellow who was hanged for
horse-stealing. He was dropt at Squire Allworthy's door, where one of
the servants found him in a box so full of rain-water, that he would
certainly have been drowned, had he not been reserved for another
fate."--"Ay, ay, you need not mention it, I protest: we understand
what that fate is very well," cries Dowling, with a most facetious
grin.--"Well," continued the other, "the squire ordered him to be
taken in; for he is a timbersome man everybody knows, and was afraid
of drawing himself into a scrape; and there the bastard was bred up,
and fed, and cloathified all to the world like any gentleman; and
there he got one of the servant-maids with child, and persuaded her to
swear it to the squire himself; and afterwards he broke the arm of one
Mr Thwackum a clergyman, only because he reprimanded him for following
whores; and afterwards he snapt a pistol at Mr Blifil behind his back;
and once, when Squire Allworthy was sick, he got a drum, and beat it
all over the house to prevent him from sleeping; and twenty other
pranks he hath played, for all which, about four or five days ago,
just before I left the country, the squire stripped him stark naked,
and turned him out of doors."

"And very justly too, I protest," cries Dowling; "I would turn my own
son out of doors, if he was guilty of half as much. And pray what is
the name of this pretty gentleman?"

"The name o' un?" answered Petty-fogger; "why, he is called Thomas

"Jones!" answered Dowling a little eagerly; "what, Mr Jones that lived
at Mr Allworthy's? was that the gentleman that dined with us?"--"The
very same," said the other. "I have heard of the gentleman," cries
Dowling, "often; but I never heard any ill character of him."--"And I
am sure," says Mrs Whitefield, "if half what this gentleman hath said
be true, Mr Jones hath the most deceitful countenance I ever saw; for
sure his looks promise something very different; and I must say, for
the little I have seen of him, he is as civil a well-bred man as you
would wish to converse with."

Petty-fogger calling to mind that he had not been sworn, as he usually
was, before he gave his evidence, now bound what he had declared with
so many oaths and imprecations that the landlady's ears were shocked,
and she put a stop to his swearing, by assuring him of her belief.
Upon which he said, "I hope, madam, you imagine I would scorn to tell
such things of any man, unless I knew them to be true. What interest
have I in taking away the reputation of a man who never injured me? I
promise you every syllable of what I have said is fact, and the whole
country knows it."

As Mrs Whitefield had no reason to suspect that the petty-fogger had
any motive or temptation to abuse Jones, the reader cannot blame her
for believing what he so confidently affirmed with many oaths. She
accordingly gave up her skill in physiognomy, and hence-forwards
conceived so ill an opinion of her guest, that she heartily wished him
out of her house.

This dislike was now farther increased by a report which Mr Whitefield
made from the kitchen, where Partridge had informed the company, "That
though he carried the knapsack, and contented himself with staying
among servants, while Tom Jones (as he called him) was regaling in the
parlour, he was not his servant, but only a friend and companion, and
as good a gentleman as Mr Jones himself."

Dowling sat all this while silent, biting his fingers, making faces,
grinning, and looking wonderfully arch; at last he opened his lips,
and protested that the gentleman looked like another sort of man. He
then called for his bill with the utmost haste, declared he must be at
Hereford that evening, lamented his great hurry of business, and
wished he could divide himself into twenty pieces, in order to be at
once in twenty places.

The petty-fogger now likewise departed, and then Jones desired the
favour of Mrs Whitefield's company to drink tea with him; but she
refused, and with a manner so different from that with which she had
received him at dinner, that it a little surprized him. And now he
soon perceived her behaviour totally changed; for instead of that
natural affability which we have before celebrated, she wore a
constrained severity on her countenance, which was so disagreeable to
Mr Jones, that he resolved, however late, to quit the house that

He did indeed account somewhat unfairly for this sudden change; for
besides some hard and unjust surmises concerning female fickleness and
mutability, he began to suspect that he owed this want of civility to
his want of horses; a sort of animals which, as they dirty no sheets,
are thought in inns to pay better for their beds than their riders,
and are therefore considered as the more desirable company; but Mrs
Whitefield, to do her justice, had a much more liberal way of
thinking. She was perfectly well-bred, and could be very civil to a
gentleman, though he walked on foot. In reality, she looked on our
heroe as a sorry scoundrel, and therefore treated him as such, for
which not even Jones himself, had he known as much as the reader,
could have blamed her; nay, on the contrary, he must have approved her
conduct, and have esteemed her the more for the disrespect shown
towards himself. This is indeed a most aggravating circumstance, which
attends depriving men unjustly of their reputation; for a man who is
conscious of having an ill character, cannot justly be angry with
those who neglect and slight him; but ought rather to despise such as
affect his conversation, unless where a perfect intimacy must have
convinced them that their friend's character hath been falsely and
injuriously aspersed.

This was not, however, the case of Jones; for as he was a perfect
stranger to the truth, so he was with good reason offended at the
treatment he received. He therefore paid his reckoning and departed,
highly against the will of Mr Partridge, who having remonstrated much
against it to no purpose, at last condescended to take up his knapsack
and to attend his friend.

Chapter ix.

Containing several dialogues between Jones and Partridge, concerning
love, cold, hunger, and other matters; with the lucky and narrow
escape of Partridge, as he was on the very brink of making a fatal
discovery to his friend.

The shadows began now to descend larger from the high mountains; the
feathered creation had betaken themselves to their rest. Now the
highest order of mortals were sitting down to their dinners, and the
lowest order to their suppers. In a word, the clock struck five just
as Mr Jones took his leave of Gloucester; an hour at which (as it was
now mid-winter) the dirty fingers of Night would have drawn her sable
curtain over the universe, had not the moon forbid her, who now, with
a face as broad and as red as those of some jolly mortals, who, like
her, turn night into day, began to rise from her bed, where she had
slumbered away the day, in order to sit up all night. Jones had not
travelled far before he paid his compliments to that beautiful planet,
and, turning to his companion, asked him if he had ever beheld so
delicious an evening? Partridge making no ready answer to his
question, he proceeded to comment on the beauty of the moon, and
repeated some passages from Milton, who hath certainly excelled all
other poets in his description of the heavenly luminaries. He then
told Partridge the story from the Spectator, of two lovers who had
agreed to entertain themselves when they were at a great distance from
each other, by repairing, at a certain fixed hour, to look at the
moon; thus pleasing themselves with the thought that they were both
employed in contemplating the same object at the same time. "Those
lovers," added he, "must have had souls truly capable of feeling all
the tenderness of the sublimest of all human passions."--"Very
probably," cries Partridge: "but I envy them more, if they had bodies
incapable of feeling cold; for I am almost frozen to death, and am
very much afraid I shall lose a piece of my nose before we get to
another house of entertainment. Nay, truly, we may well expect some
judgment should happen to us for our folly in running away so by night
from one of the most excellent inns I ever set my foot into. I am sure
I never saw more good things in my life, and the greatest lord in the
land cannot live better in his own house than he may there. And to
forsake such a house, and go a rambling about the country, the Lord
knows whither, _per devia rura viarum_, I say nothing for my part; but
some people might not have charity enough to conclude we were in our
sober senses."--"Fie upon it, Mr Partridge!" says Jones, "have a
better heart; consider you are going to face an enemy; and are you
afraid of facing a little cold? I wish, indeed, we had a guide to
advise which of these roads we should take."--"May I be so bold," says
Partridge, "to offer my advice? _Interdum stultus opportuna
loquitur_"--"Why, which of them," cries Jones, "would you
recommend?"--"Truly neither of them," answered Partridge. "The only
road we can be certain of finding, is the road we came. A good hearty
pace will bring us back to Gloucester in an hour; but if we go
forward, the Lord Harry knows when we shall arrive at any place; for I
see at least fifty miles before me, and no house in all the
way."--"You see, indeed, a very fair prospect," says Jones, "which
receives great additional beauty from the extreme lustre of the moon.
However, I will keep the left-hand track, as that seems to lead
directly to those hills, which we were informed lie not far from
Worcester. And here, if you are inclined to quit me, you may, and
return back again; but for my part, I am resolved to go forward."

"It is unkind in you, sir," says Partridge, "to suspect me of any such
intention. What I have advised hath been as much on your account as on
my own: but since you are determined to go on, I am as much determined
to follow. _I prae sequar te_."

They now travelled some miles without speaking to each other, during
which suspense of discourse Jones often sighed, and Benjamin groaned
as bitterly, though from a very different reason. At length Jones made
a full stop, and turning about, cries, "Who knows, Partridge, but the
loveliest creature in the universe may have her eyes now fixed on that
very moon which I behold at this instant?" "Very likely, sir,"
answered Partridge; "and if my eyes were fixed on a good surloin of
roast beef, the devil might take the moon and her horns into the
bargain." "Did ever Tramontane make such an answer?" cries Jones.
"Prithee, Partridge, wast thou ever susceptible of love in thy life,
or hath time worn away all the traces of it from thy memory?"
"Alack-a-day!" cries Partridge, "well would it have been for me if I
had never known what love was. _Infandum regina jubes renovare
dolorem_. I am sure I have tasted all the tenderness, and sublimities,
and bitternesses of the passion." "Was your mistress unkind, then?"
says Jones. "Very unkind, indeed, sir," answered Partridge; "for she
married me, and made one of the most confounded wives in the world.
However, heaven be praised, she's gone; and if I believed she was in
the moon, according to a book I once read, which teaches that to be
the receptacle of departed spirits, I would never look at it for fear
of seeing her; but I wish, sir, that the moon was a looking-glass for
your sake, and that Miss Sophia Western was now placed before it." "My
dear Partridge," cries Jones, "what a thought was there! A thought
which I am certain could never have entered into any mind but that of
a lover. O Partridge! could I hope once again to see that face; but,
alas! all those golden dreams are vanished for ever, and my only
refuge from future misery is to forget the object of all my former
happiness." "And do you really despair of ever seeing Miss Western
again?" answered Partridge; "if you will follow my advice I will
engage you shall not only see her but have her in your arms." "Ha! do
not awaken a thought of that nature," cries Jones: "I have struggled
sufficiently to conquer all such wishes already." "Nay," answered
Partridge, "if you do not wish to have your mistress in your arms you
are a most extraordinary lover indeed." "Well, well," says Jones, "let
us avoid this subject; but pray what is your advice?" "To give it you
in the military phrase, then," says Partridge, "as we are soldiers,
`To the right about.' Let us return the way we came; we may yet reach
Gloucester to-night, though late; whereas, if we proceed, we are
likely, for aught I see, to ramble about for ever without coming
either to house or home." "I have already told you my resolution is to
go on," answered Jones; "but I would have you go back. I am obliged to
you for your company hither; and I beg you to accept a guinea as a
small instance of my gratitude. Nay, it would be cruel in me to suffer
you to go any farther; for, to deal plainly with you, my chief end and
desire is a glorious death in the service of my king and country." "As
for your money," replied Partridge, "I beg, sir, you will put it up; I
will receive none of you at this time; for at present I am, I believe,
the richer man of the two. And as your resolution is to go on, so mine
is to follow you if you do. Nay, now my presence appears absolutely
necessary to take care of you, since your intentions are so desperate;
for I promise you my views are much more prudent; as you are resolved
to fall in battle if you can, so I am resolved as firmly to come to no
hurt if I can help it. And, indeed, I have the comfort to think there
will be but little danger; for a popish priest told me the other day
the business would soon be over, and he believed without a battle." "A
popish priest!" cries Jones, "I have heard is not always to be
believed when he speaks in behalf of his religion." "Yes, but so far,"
answered the other, "from speaking in behalf of his religion, he
assured me the Catholicks did not expect to be any gainers by the
change; for that Prince Charles was as good a Protestant as any in
England; and that nothing but regard to right made him and the rest of
the popish party to be Jacobites."--"I believe him to be as much a
Protestant as I believe he hath any right," says Jones; "and I make no
doubt of our success, but not without a battle. So that I am not so
sanguine as your friend the popish priest." "Nay, to be sure, sir,"
answered Partridge, "all the prophecies I have ever read speak of a
great deal of blood to be spilt in the quarrel, and the miller with
three thumbs, who is now alive, is to hold the horses of three kings,
up to his knees in blood. Lord, have mercy upon us all, and send
better times!" "With what stuff and nonsense hast thou filled thy
head!" answered Jones: "this too, I suppose, comes from the popish
priest. Monsters and prodigies are the proper arguments to support
monstrous and absurd doctrines. The cause of King George is the cause
of liberty and true religion. In other words, it is the cause of
common sense, my boy, and I warrant you will succeed, though Briarius
himself was to rise again with his hundred thumbs, and to turn
miller." Partridge made no reply to this. He was, indeed, cast into
the utmost confusion by this declaration of Jones. For, to inform the
reader of a secret, which he had no proper opportunity of revealing
before, Partridge was in truth a Jacobite, and had concluded that
Jones was of the same party, and was now proceeding to join the
rebels. An opinion which was not without foundation. For the tall,
long-sided dame, mentioned by Hudibras--that many-eyed, many-tongued,
many-mouthed, many-eared monster of Virgil, had related the story of
the quarrel between Jones and the officer, with the usual regard to
truth. She had, indeed, changed the name of Sophia into that of the
Pretender, and had reported, that drinking his health was the cause
for which Jones was knocked down. This Partridge had heard, and most
firmly believed. 'Tis no wonder, therefore, that he had thence
entertained the above-mentioned opinion of Jones; and which he had
almost discovered to him before he found out his own mistake. And at
this the reader will be the less inclined to wonder, if he pleases to
recollect the doubtful phrase in which Jones first communicated his
resolution to Mr Partridge; and, indeed, had the words been less
ambiguous, Partridge might very well have construed them as he did;
being persuaded as he was that the whole nation were of the same
inclination in their hearts; nor did it stagger him that Jones had
travelled in the company of soldiers; for he had the same opinion of
the army which he had of the rest of the people.

But however well affected he might be to James or Charles, he was
still much more attached to Little Benjamin than to either; for which
reason he no sooner discovered the principles of his fellow-traveller
than he thought proper to conceal and outwardly give up his own to the
man on whom he depended for the making his fortune, since he by no
means believed the affairs of Jones to be so desperate as they really
were with Mr Allworthy; for as he had kept a constant correspondence
with some of his neighbours since he left that country, he had heard
much, indeed more than was true, of the great affection Mr Allworthy
bore this young man, who, as Partridge had been instructed, was to be
that gentleman's heir, and whom, as we have said, he did not in the
least doubt to be his son.

He imagined therefore that whatever quarrel was between them, it would
be certainly made up at the return of Mr Jones; an event from which he
promised great advantages, if he could take this opportunity of
ingratiating himself with that young gentleman; and if he could by any
means be instrumental in procuring his return, he doubted not, as we
have before said, but it would as highly advance him in the favour of
Mr Allworthy.

We have already observed, that he was a very good-natured fellow, and
he hath himself declared the violent attachment he had to the person
and character of Jones; but possibly the views which I have just
before mentioned, might likewise have some little share in prompting
him to undertake this expedition, at least in urging him to continue
it, after he had discovered that his master and himself, like some
prudent fathers and sons, though they travelled together in great
friendship, had embraced opposite parties. I am led into this
conjecture, by having remarked, that though love, friendship, esteem,
and such like, have very powerful operations in the human mind;
interest, however, is an ingredient seldom omitted by wise men, when
they would work others to their own purposes. This is indeed a most
excellent medicine, and, like Ward's pill, flies at once to the
particular part of the body on which you desire to operate, whether it
be the tongue, the hand, or any other member, where it scarce ever
fails of immediately producing the desired effect.

Chapter x.

In which our travellers meet with a very extraordinary adventure.

Just as Jones and his friend came to the end of their dialogue in the
preceding chapter, they arrived at the bottom of a very steep hill.
Here Jones stopt short, and directing his eyes upwards, stood for a
while silent. At length he called to his companion, and said,
"Partridge, I wish I was at the top of this hill; it must certainly
afford a most charming prospect, especially by this light; for the
solemn gloom which the moon casts on all objects, is beyond expression
beautiful, especially to an imagination which is desirous of
cultivating melancholy ideas."--"Very probably," answered Partridge;
"but if the top of the hill be properest to produce melancholy
thoughts, I suppose the bottom is the likeliest to produce merry ones,
and these I take to be much the better of the two. I protest you have
made my blood run cold with the very mentioning the top of that
mountain; which seems to me to be one of the highest in the world. No,
no, if we look for anything, let it be for a place under ground, to
screen ourselves from the frost."--"Do so," said Jones; "let it be but
within hearing of this place, and I will hallow to you at my return
back."--"Surely, sir, you are not mad," said Partridge.--"Indeed, I
am," answered Jones, "if ascending this hill be madness; but as you
complain so much of the cold already, I would have you stay below. I
will certainly return to you within an hour."--"Pardon me, sir," cries
Partridge; "I have determined to follow you wherever you go." Indeed
he was now afraid to stay behind; for though he was coward enough in
all respects, yet his chief fear was that of ghosts, with which the
present time of night, and the wildness of the place, extremely well

At this instant Partridge espied a glimmering light through some
trees, which seemed very near to them. He immediately cried out in a
rapture, "Oh, sir! Heaven hath at last heard my prayers, and hath
brought us to a house; perhaps it may be an inn. Let me beseech you,
sir, if you have any compassion either for me or yourself, do not
despise the goodness of Providence, but let us go directly to yon
light. Whether it be a public-house or no, I am sure if they be
Christians that dwell there, they will not refuse a little house-room
to persons in our miserable condition." Jones at length yielded to the
earnest supplications of Partridge, and both together made directly
towards the place whence the light issued.

They soon arrived at the door of this house, or cottage, for it might
be called either, without much impropriety. Here Jones knocked several
times without receiving any answer from within; at which Partridge,
whose head was full of nothing but of ghosts, devils, witches, and
such like, began to tremble, crying, "Lord, have mercy upon us! surely
the people must be all dead. I can see no light neither now, and yet I
am certain I saw a candle burning but a moment before.--Well! I have
heard of such things."--"What hast thou heard of?" said Jones. "The
people are either fast asleep, or probably, as this is a lonely place,
are afraid to open their door." He then began to vociferate pretty
loudly, and at last an old woman, opening an upper casement, asked,
Who they were, and what they wanted? Jones answered, They were
travellers who had lost their way, and having seen a light in the
window, had been led thither in hopes of finding some fire to warm
themselves. "Whoever you are," cries the woman, "you have no business
here; nor shall I open the door to any one at this time of night."
Partridge, whom the sound of a human voice had recovered from his
fright, fell to the most earnest supplications to be admitted for a
few minutes to the fire, saying, he was almost dead with the cold; to
which fear had indeed contributed equally with the frost. He assured
her that the gentleman who spoke to her was one of the greatest
squires in the country; and made use of every argument, save one,
which Jones afterwards effectually added; and this was, the promise of
half-a-crown;--a bribe too great to be resisted by such a person,
especially as the genteel appearance of Jones, which the light of the
moon plainly discovered to her, together with his affable behaviour,
had entirely subdued those apprehensions of thieves which she had at
first conceived. She agreed, therefore, at last, to let them in; where
Partridge, to his infinite joy, found a good fire ready for his

The poor fellow, however, had no sooner warmed himself, than those
thoughts which were always uppermost in his mind, began a little to
disturb his brain. There was no article of his creed in which he had a
stronger faith than he had in witchcraft, nor can the reader conceive
a figure more adapted to inspire this idea, than the old woman who now
stood before him. She answered exactly to that picture drawn by Otway
in his Orphan. Indeed, if this woman had lived in the reign of James
the First, her appearance alone would have hanged her, almost without
any evidence.

Many circumstances likewise conspired to confirm Partridge in his
opinion. Her living, as he then imagined, by herself in so lonely a
place; and in a house, the outside of which seemed much too good for
her, but its inside was furnished in the most neat and elegant manner.
To say the truth, Jones himself was not a little surprized at what he
saw; for, besides the extraordinary neatness of the room, it was
adorned with a great number of nicknacks and curiosities, which might
have engaged the attention of a virtuoso.

While Jones was admiring these things, and Partridge sat trembling
with the firm belief that he was in the house of a witch, the old
woman said, "I hope, gentlemen, you will make what haste you can; for
I expect my master presently, and I would not for double the money he
should find you here."--"Then you have a master?" cried Jones.
"Indeed, you will excuse me, good woman, but I was surprized to see
all those fine things in your house."--"Ah, sir," said she, "if the
twentieth part of these things were mine, I should think myself a rich
woman. But pray, sir, do not stay much longer, for I look for him in
every minute."--"Why, sure he would not be angry with you," said
Jones, "for doing a common act of charity?"--"Alack-a-day, sir!" said
she, "he is a strange man, not at all like other people. He keeps no
company with anybody, and seldom walks out but by night, for he doth
not care to be seen; and all the country people are as much afraid of
meeting him; for his dress is enough to frighten those who are not
used to it. They call him, the Man of the Hill (for there he walks by
night), and the country people are not, I believe, more afraid of the
devil himself. He would be terribly angry if he found you
here."--"Pray, sir," says Partridge, "don't let us offend the
gentleman; I am ready to walk, and was never warmer in my life. Do
pray, sir, let us go. Here are pistols over the chimney: who knows
whether they be charged or no, or what he may do with them?"--"Fear
nothing, Partridge," cries Jones; "I will secure thee from
danger."--"Nay, for matter o' that, he never doth any mischief," said
the woman; "but to be sure it is necessary he should keep some arms
for his own safety; for his house hath been beset more than once; and
it is not many nights ago that we thought we heard thieves about it:
for my own part, I have often wondered that he is not murdered by some
villain or other, as he walks out by himself at such hours; but then,
as I said, the people are afraid of him; and besides, they think, I
suppose, he hath nothing about him worth taking."--"I should imagine,
by this collection of rarities," cries Jones, "that your master had
been a traveller."--"Yes, sir," answered she, "he hath been a very
great one: there be few gentlemen that know more of all matters than
he. I fancy he hath been crost in love, or whatever it is I know not;
but I have lived with him above these thirty years, and in all that
time he hath hardly spoke to six living people." She then again
solicited their departure, in which she was backed by Partridge; but
Jones purposely protracted the time, for his curiosity was greatly
raised to see this extraordinary person. Though the old woman,
therefore, concluded every one of her answers with desiring him to be
gone, and Partridge proceeded so far as to pull him by the sleeve, he
still continued to invent new questions, till the old woman, with an
affrighted countenance, declared she heard her master's signal; and at
the same instant more than one voice was heard without the door,
crying, "D--n your blood, show us your money this instant. Your money,
you villain, or we will blow your brains about your ears."

"O, good heaven!" cries the old woman, "some villains, to be sure,
have attacked my master. O la! what shall I do? what shall I
do?"--"How!" cries Jones, "how!--Are these pistols loaded?"--"O, good
sir, there is nothing in them, indeed. O pray don't murder us,
gentlemen!" (for in reality she now had the same opinion of those
within as she had of those without). Jones made her no answer; but
snatching an old broad sword which hung in the room, he instantly
sallied out, where he found the old gentleman struggling with two
ruffians, and begging for mercy. Jones asked no questions, but fell so
briskly to work with his broad sword, that the fellows immediately
quitted their hold; and without offering to attack our heroe, betook
themselves to their heels and made their escape; for he did not
attempt to pursue them, being contented with having delivered the old
gentleman; and indeed he concluded he had pretty well done their
business, for both of them, as they ran off, cried out with bitter
oaths that they were dead men.

Jones presently ran to lift up the old gentleman, who had been thrown
down in the scuffle, expressing at the same time great concern lest he
should have received any harm from the villains. The old man stared a
moment at Jones, and then cried, "No, sir, no, I have very little
harm, I thank you. Lord have mercy upon me!"--"I see, sir," said
Jones, "you are not free from apprehensions even of those who have had
the happiness to be your deliverers; nor can I blame any suspicions
which you may have; but indeed you have no real occasion for any; here
are none but your friends present. Having mist our way this cold
night, we took the liberty of warming ourselves at your fire, whence
we were just departing when we heard you call for assistance, which, I
must say, Providence alone seems to have sent you."--"Providence,
indeed," cries the old gentleman, "if it be so."--"So it is, I assure
you," cries Jones. "Here is your own sword, sir; I have used it in
your defence, and I now return it into your hand." The old man having
received the sword, which was stained with the blood of his enemies,
looked stedfastly at Jones during some moments, and then with a sigh
cried out, "You will pardon me, young gentleman; I was not always of a
suspicious temper, nor am I a friend to ingratitude."

"Be thankful then," cries Jones, "to that Providence to which you owe
your deliverance: as to my part, I have only discharged the common
duties of humanity, and what I would have done for any fellow-creature
in your situation."--"Let me look at you a little longer," cries the
old gentleman. "You are a human creature then? Well, perhaps you are.
Come pray walk into my little hutt. You have been my deliverer

The old woman was distracted between the fears which she had of her
master, and for him; and Partridge was, if possible, in a greater
fright. The former of these, however, when she heard her master speak
kindly to Jones, and perceived what had happened, came again to
herself; but Partridge no sooner saw the gentleman, than the
strangeness of his dress infused greater terrors into that poor fellow
than he had before felt, either from the strange description which he
had heard, or from the uproar which had happened at the door.

To say the truth, it was an appearance which might have affected a
more constant mind than that of Mr Partridge. This person was of the
tallest size, with a long beard as white as snow. His body was
cloathed with the skin of an ass, made something into the form of a
coat. He wore likewise boots on his legs, and a cap on his head, both
composed of the skin of some other animals.

As soon as the old gentleman came into his house, the old woman began
her congratulations on his happy escape from the ruffians. "Yes,"
cried he, "I have escaped, indeed, thanks to my preserver."--"O the
blessing on him!" answered she: "he is a good gentleman, I warrant
him. I was afraid your worship would have been angry with me for
letting him in; and to be certain I should not have done it, had not I
seen by the moon-light, that he was a gentleman, and almost frozen to
death. And to be certain it must have been some good angel that sent
him hither, and tempted me to do it."

"I am afraid, sir," said the old gentleman to Jones, "that I have
nothing in this house which you can either eat or drink, unless you
will accept a dram of brandy; of which I can give you some most
excellent, and which I have had by me these thirty years." Jones
declined this offer in a very civil and proper speech, and then the
other asked him, "Whither he was travelling when he mist his way?"
saying, "I must own myself surprized to see such a person as you
appear to be, journeying on foot at this time of night. I suppose,
sir, you are a gentleman of these parts; for you do not look like one
who is used to travel far without horses?"

"Appearances," cried Jones, "are often deceitful; men sometimes look
what they are not. I assure you I am not of this country; and whither
I am travelling, in reality I scarce know myself."

"Whoever you are, or whithersoever you are going," answered the old
man, "I have obligations to you which I can never return."

"I once more," replied Jones, "affirm that you have none; for there
can be no merit in having hazarded that in your service on which I set
no value; and nothing is so contemptible in my eyes as life."

"I am sorry, young gentleman," answered the stranger, "that you have
any reason to be so unhappy at your years."

"Indeed I am, sir," answered Jones, "the most unhappy of
mankind."--"Perhaps you have had a friend, or a mistress?" replied the
other. "How could you," cries Jones, "mention two words sufficient to
drive me to distraction?"--"Either of them are enough to drive any man
to distraction," answered the old man. "I enquire no farther, sir;
perhaps my curiosity hath led me too far already."

"Indeed, sir," cries Jones, "I cannot censure a passion which I feel
at this instant in the highest degree. You will pardon me when I
assure you, that everything which I have seen or heard since I first
entered this house hath conspired to raise the greatest curiosity in
me. Something very extraordinary must have determined you to this
course of life, and I have reason to fear your own history is not
without misfortunes."

Here the old gentleman again sighed, and remained silent for some
minutes: at last, looking earnestly on Jones, he said, "I have read
that a good countenance is a letter of recommendation; if so, none
ever can be more strongly recommended than yourself. If I did not feel
some yearnings towards you from another consideration, I must be the
most ungrateful monster upon earth; and I am really concerned it is no
otherwise in my power than by words to convince you of my gratitude."

Jones, after a moment's hesitation, answered, "That it was in his
power by words to gratify him extremely. I have confest a curiosity,"
said he, "sir; need I say how much obliged I should be to you, if you
would condescend to gratify it? Will you suffer me therefore to beg,
unless any consideration restrains you, that you would be pleased to
acquaint me what motives have induced you thus to withdraw from the
society of mankind, and to betake yourself to a course of life to
which it sufficiently appears you were not born?"

"I scarce think myself at liberty to refuse you anything after what
hath happened," replied the old man. "If you desire therefore to hear
the story of an unhappy man, I will relate it to you. Indeed you judge
rightly, in thinking there is commonly something extraordinary in the
fortunes of those who fly from society; for however it may seem a
paradox, or even a contradiction, certain it is, that great
philanthropy chiefly inclines us to avoid and detest mankind; not on
account so much of their private and selfish vices, but for those of a
relative kind; such as envy, malice, treachery, cruelty, with every
other species of malevolence. These are the vices which true
philanthropy abhors, and which rather than see and converse with, she
avoids society itself. However, without a compliment to you, you do
not appear to me one of those whom I should shun or detest; nay, I
must say, in what little hath dropt from you, there appears some
parity in our fortunes: I hope, however, yours will conclude more

Here some compliments passed between our heroe and his host, and then
the latter was going to begin his history, when Partridge interrupted
him. His apprehensions had now pretty well left him, but some effects
of his terrors remained; he therefore reminded the gentleman of that
excellent brandy which he had mentioned. This was presently brought,
and Partridge swallowed a large bumper.

The gentleman then, without any farther preface, began as you may read
in the next chapter.

Chapter xi.

In which the Man of the Hill begins to relate his history.

"I was born in a village of Somersetshire, called Mark, in the year
1657. My father was one of those whom they call gentlemen farmers. He
had a little estate of about £300 a year of his own, and rented
another estate of near the same value. He was prudent and industrious,
and so good a husbandman, that he might have led a very easy and
comfortable life, had not an arrant vixen of a wife soured his
domestic quiet. But though this circumstance perhaps made him
miserable, it did not make him poor; for he confined her almost
entirely at home, and rather chose to bear eternal upbraidings in his
own house, than to injure his fortune by indulging her in the
extravagancies she desired abroad.

"By this Xanthippe" (so was the wife of Socrates called, said
Partridge)--"by this Xanthippe he had two sons, of which I was the
younger. He designed to give us both good education; but my elder
brother, who, unhappily for him, was the favourite of my mother,
utterly neglected his learning; insomuch that, after having been five
or six years at school with little or no improvement, my father, being
told by his master that it would be to no purpose to keep him longer
there, at last complied with my mother in taking him home from the
hands of that tyrant, as she called his master; though indeed he gave
the lad much less correction than his idleness deserved, but much
more, it seems, than the young gentleman liked, who constantly
complained to his mother of his severe treatment, and she as
constantly gave him a hearing."

"Yes, yes," cries Partridge, "I have seen such mothers; I have been
abused myself by them, and very unjustly; such parents deserve
correction as much as their children."

Jones chid the pedagogue for his interruption, and then the stranger

"My brother now, at the age of fifteen, bade adieu to all learning,
and to everything else but to his dog and gun; with which latter he
became so expert, that, though perhaps you may think it incredible, he
could not only hit a standing mark with great certainty, but hath
actually shot a crow as it was flying in the air. He was likewise
excellent at finding a hare sitting, and was soon reputed one of the
best sportsmen in the country; a reputation which both he and his
mother enjoyed as much as if he had been thought the finest scholar.

"The situation of my brother made me at first think my lot the harder,
in being continued at school: but I soon changed my opinion; for as I
advanced pretty fast in learning, my labours became easy, and my
exercise so delightful, that holidays were my most unpleasant time;
for my mother, who never loved me, now apprehending that I had the
greater share of my father's affection, and finding, or at least
thinking, that I was more taken notice of by some gentlemen of
learning, and particularly by the parson of the parish, than my
brother, she now hated my sight, and made home so disagreeable to me,
that what is called by school-boys Black Monday, was to me the whitest
in the whole year.

"Having at length gone through the school at Taunton, I was thence
removed to Exeter College in Oxford, where I remained four years; at
the end of which an accident took me off entirely from my studies; and
hence, I may truly date the rise of all which happened to me
afterwards in life.

"There was at the same college with myself one Sir George Gresham, a
young fellow who was intitled to a very considerable fortune, which he
was not, by the will of his father, to come into full possession of
till he arrived at the age of twenty-five. However, the liberality of
his guardians gave him little cause to regret the abundant caution of
his father; for they allowed him five hundred pounds a year while he
remained at the university, where he kept his horses and his whore,
and lived as wicked and as profligate a life as he could have done had
he been never so entirely master of his fortune; for besides the five
hundred a year which he received from his guardians, he found means to
spend a thousand more. He was above the age of twenty-one, and had no
difficulty in gaining what credit he pleased.

"This young fellow, among many other tolerable bad qualities, had one
very diabolical. He had a great delight in destroying and ruining the
youth of inferior fortune, by drawing them into expenses which they
could not afford so well as himself; and the better, and worthier, and
soberer any young man was, the greater pleasure and triumph had he in
his destruction. Thus acting the character which is recorded of the
devil, and going about seeking whom he might devour.

"It was my misfortune to fall into an acquaintance and intimacy with
this gentleman. My reputation of diligence in my studies made me a
desirable object of his mischievous intention; and my own inclination
made it sufficiently easy for him to effect his purpose; for though I
had applied myself with much industry to books, in which I took great
delight, there were other pleasures in which I was capable of taking
much greater; for I was high-mettled, had a violent flow of animal
spirits, was a little ambitious, and extremely amorous.

"I had not long contracted an intimacy with Sir George before I became
a partaker of all his pleasures; and when I was once entered on that
scene, neither my inclination nor my spirit would suffer me to play an
under part. I was second to none of the company in any acts of
debauchery; nay, I soon distinguished myself so notably in all riots
and disorders, that my name generally stood first in the roll of
delinquents; and instead of being lamented as the unfortunate pupil of
Sir George, I was now accused as the person who had misled and
debauched that hopeful young gentleman; for though he was the
ringleader and promoter of all the mischief, he was never so
considered. I fell at last under the censure of the vice-chancellor,
and very narrowly escaped expulsion.

"You will easily believe, sir, that such a life as I am now describing
must be incompatible with my further progress in learning; and that in
proportion as I addicted myself more and more to loose pleasure, I
must grow more and more remiss in application to my studies. This was
truly the consequence; but this was not all. My expenses now greatly
exceeded not only my former income, but those additions which I
extorted from my poor generous father, on pretences of sums being
necessary for preparing for my approaching degree of batchelor of
arts. These demands, however, grew at last so frequent and exorbitant,
that my father by slow degrees opened his ears to the accounts which
he received from many quarters of my present behaviour, and which my
mother failed not to echo very faithfully and loudly; adding, `Ay,
this is the fine gentleman, the scholar who doth so much honour to his
family, and is to be the making of it. I thought what all this
learning would come to. He is to be the ruin of us all, I find, after
his elder brother hath been denied necessaries for his sake, to
perfect his education forsooth, for which he was to pay us such
interest: I thought what the interest would come to,' with much more
of the same kind; but I have, I believe, satisfied you with this

"My father, therefore, began now to return remonstrances instead of
money to my demands, which brought my affairs perhaps a little sooner
to a crisis; but had he remitted me his whole income, you will imagine
it could have sufficed a very short time to support one who kept pace
with the expenses of Sir George Gresham.

"It is more than possible that the distress I was now in for money,
and the impracticability of going on in this manner, might have
restored me at once to my senses and to my studies, had I opened my
eyes before I became involved in debts from which I saw no hopes of
ever extricating myself. This was indeed the great art of Sir George,
and by which he accomplished the ruin of many, whom he afterwards
laughed at as fools and coxcombs, for vying, as he called it, with a
man of his fortune. To bring this about, he would now and then advance
a little money himself, in order to support the credit of the
unfortunate youth with other people; till, by means of that very
credit, he was irretrievably undone.

"My mind being by these means grown as desperate as my fortune, there
was scarce a wickedness which I did not meditate, in order for my
relief. Self-murder itself became the subject of my serious
deliberation; and I had certainly resolved on it, had not a more
shameful, though perhaps less sinful, thought expelled it from my
head."--Here he hesitated a moment, and then cried out, "I protest, so
many years have not washed away the shame of this act, and I shall
blush while I relate it." Jones desired him to pass over anything that
might give him pain in the relation; but Partridge eagerly cried out,
"Oh, pray, sir, let us hear this; I had rather hear this than all the
rest; as I hope to be saved, I will never mention a word of it." Jones
was going to rebuke him, but the stranger prevented it by proceeding
thus: "I had a chum, a very prudent, frugal young lad, who, though he
had no very large allowance, had by his parsimony heaped up upwards of
forty guineas, which I knew he kept in his escritore. I took therefore
an opportunity of purloining his key from his breeches-pocket, while
he was asleep, and thus made myself master of all his riches: after
which I again conveyed his key into his pocket, and counterfeiting
sleep--though I never once closed my eyes, lay in bed till after he
arose and went to prayers--an exercise to which I had long been

"Timorous thieves, by extreme caution, often subject themselves to
discoveries, which those of a bolder kind escape. Thus it happened to
me; for had I boldly broke open his escritore, I had, perhaps, escaped
even his suspicion; but as it was plain that the person who robbed him
had possessed himself of his key, he had no doubt, when he first
missed his money, but that his chum was certainly the thief. Now as he
was of a fearful disposition, and much my inferior in strength, and I
believe in courage, he did not dare to confront me with my guilt, for
fear of worse bodily consequences which might happen to him. He
repaired therefore immediately to the vice-chancellor, and upon
swearing to the robbery, and to the circumstances of it, very easily
obtained a warrant against one who had now so bad a character through
the whole university.

"Luckily for me, I lay out of the college the next evening; for that
day I attended a young lady in a chaise to Witney, where we staid all
night, and in our return, the next morning, to Oxford, I met one of my
cronies, who acquainted me with sufficient news concerning myself to
make me turn my horse another way."

"Pray, sir, did he mention anything of the warrant?" said Partridge.
But Jones begged the gentleman to proceed without regarding any
impertinent questions; which he did as follows:--

"Having now abandoned all thoughts of returning to Oxford, the next
thing which offered itself was a journey to London. I imparted this
intention to my female companion, who at first remonstrated against
it; but upon producing my wealth, she immediately consented. We then
struck across the country, into the great Cirencester road, and made
such haste, that we spent the next evening, save one, in London.

"When you consider the place where I now was, and the company with
whom I was, you will, I fancy, conceive that a very short time brought
me to an end of that sum of which I had so iniquitously possessed

"I was now reduced to a much higher degree of distress than before:
the necessaries of life began to be numbered among my wants; and what
made my case still the more grievous was, that my paramour, of whom I
was now grown immoderately fond, shared the same distresses with
myself. To see a woman you love in distress; to be unable to relieve
her, and at the same time to reflect that you have brought her into
this situation, is perhaps a curse of which no imagination can
represent the horrors to those who have not felt it."--"I believe it
from my soul," cries Jones, "and I pity you from the bottom of my
heart:" he then took two or three disorderly turns about the room, and
at last begged pardon, and flung himself into his chair, crying, "I
thank Heaven, I have escaped that!"

"This circumstance," continued the gentleman, "so severely aggravated
the horrors of my present situation, that they became absolutely
intolerable. I could with less pain endure the raging in my own
natural unsatisfied appetites, even hunger or thirst, than I could
submit to leave ungratified the most whimsical desires of a woman on
whom I so extravagantly doated, that, though I knew she had been the
mistress of half my acquaintance, I firmly intended to marry her. But
the good creature was unwilling to consent to an action which the
world might think so much to my disadvantage. And as, possibly, she
compassionated the daily anxieties which she must have perceived me
suffer on her account, she resolved to put an end to my distress. She
soon, indeed, found means to relieve me from my troublesome and
perplexed situation; for while I was distracted with various
inventions to supply her with pleasures, she very kindly--betrayed me
to one of her former lovers at Oxford, by whose care and diligence I
was immediately apprehended and committed to gaol.

"Here I first began seriously to reflect on the miscarriages of my
former life; on the errors I had been guilty of; on the misfortunes
which I had brought on myself; and on the grief which I must have
occasioned to one of the best of fathers. When I added to all these
the perfidy of my mistress, such was the horror of my mind, that life,
instead of being longer desirable, grew the object of my abhorrence;
and I could have gladly embraced death as my dearest friend, if it had
offered itself to my choice unattended by shame.

"The time of the assizes soon came, and I was removed by habeas corpus
to Oxford, where I expected certain conviction and condemnation; but,
to my great surprize, none appeared against me, and I was, at the end
of the sessions, discharged for want of prosecution. In short, my chum
had left Oxford, and whether from indolence, or from what other motive
I am ignorant, had declined concerning himself any farther in the

"Perhaps," cries Partridge, "he did not care to have your blood upon
his hands; and he was in the right on't. If any person was to be
hanged upon my evidence, I should never be able to lie alone
afterwards, for fear of seeing his ghost."

"I shall shortly doubt, Partridge," says Jones, "whether thou art more
brave or wise."--"You may laugh at me, sir, if you please," answered
Partridge; "but if you will hear a very short story which I can tell,
and which is most certainly true, perhaps you may change your opinion.
In the parish where I was born--" Here Jones would have silenced him;
but the stranger interceded that he might be permitted to tell his
story, and in the meantime promised to recollect the remainder of his

Partridge then proceeded thus: "In the parish where I was born, there
lived a farmer whose name was Bridle, and he had a son named Francis,
a good hopeful young fellow: I was at the grammar-school with him,
where I remember he was got into Ovid's Epistles, and he could
construe you three lines together sometimes without looking into a
dictionary. Besides all this, he was a very good lad, never missed
church o' Sundays, and was reckoned one of the best psalm-singers in
the whole parish. He would indeed now and then take a cup too much,
and that was the only fault he had."--"Well, but come to the ghost,"
cries Jones. "Never fear, sir; I shall come to him soon enough,"
answered Partridge. "You must know, then, that farmer Bridle lost a
mare, a sorrel one, to the best of my remembrance; and so it fell out
that this young Francis shortly afterward being at a fair at Hindon,
and as I think it was on--, I can't remember the day; and being as he
was, what should he happen to meet but a man upon his father's mare.
Frank called out presently, Stop thief; and it being in the middle of
the fair, it was impossible, you know, for the man to make his escape.
So they apprehended him and carried him before the justice: I remember
it was Justice Willoughby, of Noyle, a very worthy good gentleman; and
he committed him to prison, and bound Frank in a recognisance, I think
they call it--a hard word compounded of _re_ and _cognosco_; but it
differs in its meaning from the use of the simple, as many other
compounds do. Well, at last down came my Lord Justice Page to hold the
assizes; and so the fellow was had up, and Frank was had up for a
witness. To be sure, I shall never forget the face of the judge, when
he began to ask him what he had to say against the prisoner. He made
poor Frank tremble and shake in his shoes. `Well you, fellow,' says my
lord, `what have you to say? Don't stand humming and hawing, but speak
out.' But, however, he soon turned altogether as civil to Frank, and
began to thunder at the fellow; and when he asked him if he had
anything to say for himself, the fellow said, he had found the horse.
`Ay!' answered the judge, `thou art a lucky fellow: I have travelled
the circuit these forty years, and never found a horse in my life: but
I'll tell thee what, friend, thou wast more lucky than thou didst know
of; for thou didst not only find a horse, but a halter too, I promise
thee.' To be sure, I shall never forget the word. Upon which everybody
fell a laughing, as how could they help it? Nay, and twenty other
jests he made, which I can't remember now. There was something about
his skill in horse-flesh which made all the folks laugh. To be
certain, the judge must have been a very brave man, as well as a man
of much learning. It is indeed charming sport to hear trials upon life
and death. One thing I own I thought a little hard, that the
prisoner's counsel was not suffered to speak for him, though he
desired only to be heard one very short word, but my lord would not
hearken to him, though he suffered a counsellor to talk against him
for above half-an-hour. I thought it hard, I own, that there should be
so many of them; my lord, and the court, and the jury, and the
counsellors, and the witnesses, all upon one poor man, and he too in
chains. Well, the fellow was hanged, as to be sure it could be no
otherwise, and poor Frank could never be easy about it. He never was
in the dark alone, but he fancied he saw the fellow's spirit."--"Well,
and is this thy story?" cries Jones. "No, no," answered Partridge. "O
Lord have mercy upon me! I am just now coming to the matter; for one
night, coming from the alehouse, in a long, narrow, dark lane, there
he ran directly up against him; and the spirit was all in white, and
fell upon Frank; and Frank, who was a sturdy lad, fell upon the spirit
again, and there they had a tussel together, and poor Frank was
dreadfully beat: indeed he made a shift at last to crawl home; but
what with the beating, and what with the fright, he lay ill above a
fortnight; and all this is most certainly true, and the whole parish
will bear witness to it."

The stranger smiled at this story, and Jones burst into a loud fit of
laughter; upon which Partridge cried, "Ay, you may laugh, sir; and so
did some others, particularly a squire, who is thought to be no better
than an atheist; who, forsooth, because there was a calf with a white
face found dead in the same lane the next morning, would fain have it
that the battle was between Frank and that, as if a calf would set
upon a man. Besides, Frank told me he knew it to be a spirit, and
could swear to him in any court in Christendom; and he had not drank
above a quart or two or such a matter of liquor, at the time. Lud have
mercy upon us, and keep us all from dipping our hands in blood, I

"Well, sir," said Jones to the stranger, "Mr Partridge hath finished
his story, and I hope will give you no future interruption, if you
will be so kind to proceed." He then resumed his narration; but as he
hath taken breath for a while, we think proper to give it to our
reader, and shall therefore put an end to this chapter.

Chapter xii.

In which the Man of the Hill continues his history.

"I had now regained my liberty," said the stranger; "but I had lost my
reputation; for there is a wide difference between the case of a man
who is barely acquitted of a crime in a court of justice, and of him
who is acquitted in his own heart, and in the opinion of the people. I
was conscious of my guilt, and ashamed to look any one in the face; so
resolved to leave Oxford the next morning, before the daylight
discovered me to the eyes of any beholders.

"When I had got clear of the city, it first entered into my head to
return home to my father, and endeavour to obtain his forgiveness; but
as I had no reason to doubt his knowledge of all which had past, and
as I was well assured of his great aversion to all acts of dishonesty,
I could entertain no hopes of being received by him, especially since
I was too certain of all the good offices in the power of my mother;
nay, had my father's pardon been as sure, as I conceived his
resentment to be, I yet question whether I could have had the
assurance to behold him, or whether I could, upon any terms, have
submitted to live and converse with those who, I was convinced, knew
me to have been guilty of so base an action.

"I hastened therefore back to London, the best retirement of either
grief or shame, unless for persons of a very public character; for
here you have the advantage of solitude without its disadvantage,
since you may be alone and in company at the same time; and while you
walk or sit unobserved, noise, hurry, and a constant succession of
objects, entertain the mind, and prevent the spirits from preying on
themselves, or rather on grief or shame, which are the most
unwholesome diet in the world; and on which (though there are many who
never taste either but in public) there are some who can feed very
plentifully and very fatally when alone.

"But as there is scarce any human good without its concomitant evil,
so there are people who find an inconvenience in this unobserving
temper of mankind; I mean persons who have no money; for as you are
not put out of countenance, so neither are you cloathed or fed by
those who do not know you. And a man may be as easily starved in
Leadenhall-market as in the deserts of Arabia.

"It was at present my fortune to be destitute of that great evil, as
it is apprehended to be by several writers, who I suppose were
overburthened with it, namely, money."--"With submission, sir," said
Partridge, "I do not remember any writers who have called it
_malorum_; but _irritamenta malorum_. _Effodiuntur opes, irritamenta
malorum_"--"Well, sir," continued the stranger, "whether it be an
evil, or only the cause of evil, I was entirely void of it, and at the
same time of friends, and, as I thought, of acquaintance; when one
evening, as I was passing through the Inner Temple, very hungry, and
very miserable, I heard a voice on a sudden hailing me with great
familiarity by my Christian name; and upon turning about, I presently
recollected the person who so saluted me to have been my
fellow-collegiate; one who had left the university above a year, and
long before any of my misfortunes had befallen me. This gentleman,
whose name was Watson, shook me heartily by the hand; and expressing
great joy at meeting me, proposed our immediately drinking a bottle
together. I first declined the proposal, and pretended business, but
as he was very earnest and pressing, hunger at last overcame my pride,
and I fairly confessed to him I had no money in my pocket; yet not
without framing a lie for an excuse, and imputing it to my having
changed my breeches that morning. Mr Watson answered, `I thought,
Jack, you and I had been too old acquaintance for you to mention such
a matter.' He then took me by the arm, and was pulling me along; but I
gave him very little trouble, for my own inclinations pulled me much
stronger than he could do.

"We then went into the Friars, which you know is the scene of all
mirth and jollity. Here, when we arrived at the tavern, Mr Watson
applied himself to the drawer only, without taking the least notice of
the cook; for he had no suspicion but that I had dined long since.
However, as the case was really otherwise, I forged another falsehood,
and told my companion I had been at the further end of the city on
business of consequence, and had snapt up a mutton-chop in haste; so
that I was again hungry, and wished he would add a beef-steak to his
bottle."--"Some people," cries Partridge, "ought to have good
memories; or did you find just money enough in your breeches to pay
for the mutton-chop?"--"Your observation is right," answered the
stranger, "and I believe such blunders are inseparable from all
dealing in untruth.--But to proceed--I began now to feel myself
extremely happy. The meat and wine soon revived my spirits to a high
pitch, and I enjoyed much pleasure in the conversation of my old
acquaintance, the rather as I thought him entirely ignorant of what
had happened at the university since his leaving it.

"But he did not suffer me to remain long in this agreeable delusion;
for taking a bumper in one hand, and holding me by the other, `Here,
my boy,' cries he, `here's wishing you joy of your being so honourably
acquitted of that affair laid to your charge.' I was thunderstruck
with confusion at those words, which Watson observing, proceeded thus:
`Nay, never be ashamed, man; thou hast been acquitted, and no one now
dares call thee guilty; but, prithee, do tell me, who am thy friend--I
hope thou didst really rob him? for rat me if it was not a meritorious
action to strip such a sneaking, pitiful rascal; and instead of the
two hundred guineas, I wish you had taken as many thousand. Come,
come, my boy, don't be shy of confessing to me: you are not now
brought before one of the pimps. D--n me if I don't honour you for it;
for, as I hope for salvation, I would have made no manner of scruple
of doing the same thing.'

"This declaration a little relieved my abashment; and as wine had now
somewhat opened my heart, I very freely acknowledged the robbery, but
acquainted him that he had been misinformed as to the sum taken, which
was little more than a fifth part of what he had mentioned.

"`I am sorry for it with all my heart,' quoth he, `and I wish thee
better success another time. Though, if you will take my advice, you
shall have no occasion to run any such risque. Here,' said he, taking
some dice out of his pocket, `here's the stuff. Here are the
implements; here are the little doctors which cure the distempers of
the purse. Follow but my counsel, and I will show you a way to empty
the pocket of a queer cull without any danger of the nubbing cheat.'"

"Nubbing cheat!" cries Partridge: "pray, sir, what is that?"

"Why that, sir," says the stranger, "is a cant phrase for the gallows;
for as gamesters differ little from highwaymen in their morals, so do
they very much resemble them in their language.

"We had now each drank our bottle, when Mr Watson said, the board was
sitting, and that he must attend, earnestly pressing me at the same
time to go with him and try my fortune. I answered he knew that was at
present out of my power, as I had informed him of the emptiness of my
pocket. To say the truth, I doubted not from his many strong
expressions of friendship, but that he would offer to lend me a small
sum for that purpose, but he answered, `Never mind that, man; e'en
boldly run a levant' [Partridge was going to inquire the meaning of
that word, but Jones stopped his mouth]: `but be circumspect as to the
man. I will tip you the proper person, which may be necessary, as you
do not know the town, nor can distinguish a rum cull from a queer

"The bill was now brought, when Watson paid his share, and was
departing. I reminded him, not without blushing, of my having no
money. He answered, `That signifies nothing; score it behind the door,
or make a bold brush and take no notice.--Or--stay,' says he; `I will
go down-stairs first, and then do you take up my money, and score the
whole reckoning at the bar, and I will wait for you at the corner.' I
expressed some dislike at this, and hinted my expectations that he
would have deposited the whole; but he swore he had not another
sixpence in his pocket.

"He then went down, and I was prevailed on to take up the money and
follow him, which I did close enough to hear him tell the drawer the
reckoning was upon the table. The drawer past by me up-stairs; but I
made such haste into the street, that I heard nothing of his
disappointment, nor did I mention a syllable at the bar, according to
my instructions.

"We now went directly to the gaming-table, where Mr Watson, to my
surprize, pulled out a large sum of money and placed it before him, as
did many others; all of them, no doubt, considering their own heaps as
so many decoy birds, which were to intice and draw over the heaps of
their neighbours.

"Here it would be tedious to relate all the freaks which Fortune, or
rather the dice, played in this her temple. Mountains of gold were in
a few moments reduced to nothing at one part of the table, and rose as
suddenly in another. The rich grew in a moment poor, and the poor as
suddenly became rich; so that it seemed a philosopher could nowhere
have so well instructed his pupils in the contempt of riches, at least
he could nowhere have better inculcated the incertainty of their

"For my own part, after having considerably improved my small estate,
I at last entirely demolished it. Mr Watson too, after much variety of
luck, rose from the table in some heat, and declared he had lost a
cool hundred, and would play no longer. Then coming up to me, he asked
me to return with him to the tavern; but I positively refused, saying,
I would not bring myself a second time into such a dilemma, and
especially as he had lost all his money and was now in my own
condition. `Pooh!' says he, `I have just borrowed a couple of guineas
of a friend, and one of them is at your service.' He immediately put
one of them into my hand, and I no longer resisted his inclination.

"I was at first a little shocked at returning to the same house whence
we had departed in so unhandsome a manner; but when the drawer, with
very civil address, told us, `he believed we had forgot to pay our
reckoning,' I became perfectly easy, and very readily gave him a
guinea, bid him pay himself, and acquiesced in the unjust charge which
had been laid on my memory.

"Mr Watson now bespoke the most extravagant supper he could well think
of; and though he had contented himself with simple claret before,
nothing now but the most precious Burgundy would serve his purpose.

"Our company was soon encreased by the addition of several gentlemen
from the gaming-table; most of whom, as I afterwards found, came not
to the tavern to drink, but in the way of business; for the true
gamesters pretended to be ill, and refused their glass, while they
plied heartily two young fellows, who were to be afterwards pillaged,
as indeed they were without mercy. Of this plunder I had the good
fortune to be a sharer, though I was not yet let into the secret.

"There was one remarkable accident attended this tavern play; for the
money by degrees totally disappeared; so that though at the beginning
the table was half covered with gold, yet before the play ended, which
it did not till the next day, being Sunday, at noon, there was scarce
a single guinea to be seen on the table; and this was the stranger as
every person present, except myself, declared he had lost; and what
was become of the money, unless the devil himself carried it away, is
difficult to determine."

"Most certainly he did," says Partridge, "for evil spirits can carry
away anything without being seen, though there were never so many folk
in the room; and I should not have been surprized if he had carried
away all the company of a set of wicked wretches, who were at play in
sermon time. And I could tell you a true story, if I would, where the
devil took a man out of bed from another man's wife, and carried him
away through the keyhole of the door. I've seen the very house where
it was done, and nobody hath lived in it these thirty years."

Though Jones was a little offended by the impertinence of Partridge,
he could not however avoid smiling at his simplicity. The stranger did
the same, and then proceeded with his story, as will be seen in the
next chapter.

Chapter xiii.

In which the foregoing story is farther continued.

"My fellow-collegiate had now entered me in a new scene of life. I
soon became acquainted with the whole fraternity of sharpers, and was
let into their secrets; I mean, into the knowledge of those gross
cheats which are proper to impose upon the raw and unexperienced; for
there are some tricks of a finer kind, which are known only to a few
of the gang, who are at the head of their profession; a degree of
honour beyond my expectation; for drink, to which I was immoderately
addicted, and the natural warmth of my passions, prevented me from
arriving at any great success in an art which requires as much
coolness as the most austere school of philosophy.

"Mr Watson, with whom I now lived in the closest amity, had unluckily
the former failing to a very great excess; so that instead of making a
fortune by his profession, as some others did, he was alternately rich
and poor, and was often obliged to surrender to his cooler friends,
over a bottle which they never tasted, that plunder that he had taken
from culls at the public table.

"However, we both made a shift to pick up an uncomfortable livelihood;
and for two years I continued of the calling; during which time I
tasted all the varieties of fortune, sometimes flourishing in
affluence, and at others being obliged to struggle with almost
incredible difficulties. To-day wallowing in luxury, and to-morrow
reduced to the coarsest and most homely fare. My fine clothes being
often on my back in the evening, and at the pawn-shop the next

"One night, as I was returning pennyless from the gaming-table, I
observed a very great disturbance, and a large mob gathered together
in the street. As I was in no danger from pickpockets, I ventured into
the croud, where upon enquiry I found that a man had been robbed and
very ill used by some ruffians. The wounded man appeared very bloody,
and seemed scarce able to support himself on his legs. As I had not
therefore been deprived of my humanity by my present life and
conversation, though they had left me very little of either honesty or
shame, I immediately offered my assistance to the unhappy person, who
thankfully accepted it, and, putting himself under my conduct, begged
me to convey him to some tavern, where he might send for a surgeon,
being, as he said, faint with loss of blood. He seemed indeed highly
pleased at finding one who appeared in the dress of a gentleman; for
as to all the rest of the company present, their outside was such that
he could not wisely place any confidence in them.

"I took the poor man by the arm, and led him to the tavern where we
kept our rendezvous, as it happened to be the nearest at hand. A
surgeon happening luckily to be in the house, immediately attended,
and applied himself to dressing his wounds, which I had the pleasure
to hear were not likely to be mortal.

"The surgeon having very expeditiously and dextrously finished his
business, began to enquire in what part of the town the wounded man
lodged; who answered, `That he was come to town that very morning;
that his horse was at an inn in Piccadilly, and that he had no other
lodging, and very little or no acquaintance in town.'

"This surgeon, whose name I have forgot, though I remember it began
with an R, had the first character in his profession, and was
serjeant-surgeon to the king. He had moreover many good qualities, and
was a very generous good-natured man, and ready to do any service to
his fellow-creatures. He offered his patient the use of his chariot to
carry him to his inn, and at the same time whispered in his ear, `That
if he wanted any money, he would furnish him.'

"The poor man was not now capable of returning thanks for this
generous offer; for having had his eyes for some time stedfastly on
me, he threw himself back in his chair, crying, `Oh, my son! my son!'
and then fainted away.

"Many of the people present imagined this accident had happened
through his loss of blood; but I, who at the same time began to
recollect the features of my father, was now confirmed in my
suspicion, and satisfied that it was he himself who appeared before
me. I presently ran to him, raised him in my arms, and kissed his cold
lips with the utmost eagerness. Here I must draw a curtain over a
scene which I cannot describe; for though I did not lose my being, as
my father for a while did, my senses were however so overpowered with
affright and surprize, that I am a stranger to what passed during some
minutes, and indeed till my father had again recovered from his swoon,
and I found myself in his arms, both tenderly embracing each other,
while the tears trickled a-pace down the cheeks of each of us.

"Most of those present seemed affected by this scene, which we, who
might be considered as the actors in it, were desirous of removing
from the eyes of all spectators as fast as we could; my father
therefore accepted the kind offer of the surgeon's chariot, and I
attended him in it to his inn.

"When we were alone together, he gently upbraided me with having
neglected to write to him during so long a time, but entirely omitted
the mention of that crime which had occasioned it. He then informed me
of my mother's death, and insisted on my returning home with him,
saying, `That he had long suffered the greatest anxiety on my account;
that he knew not whether he had most feared my death or wished it,
since he had so many more dreadful apprehensions for me. At last, he
said, a neighbouring gentleman, who had just recovered a son from the
same place, informed him where I was; and that to reclaim me from this
course of life was the sole cause of his journey to London.' He
thanked Heaven he had succeeded so far as to find me out by means of
an accident which had like to have proved fatal to him; and had the
pleasure to think he partly owed his preservation to my humanity, with
which he profest himself to be more delighted than he should have been
with my filial piety, if I had known that the object of all my care
was my own father.

"Vice had not so depraved my heart as to excite in it an insensibility
of so much paternal affection, though so unworthily bestowed. I
presently promised to obey his commands in my return home with him, as
soon as he was able to travel, which indeed he was in a very few days,
by the assistance of that excellent surgeon who had undertaken his

"The day preceding my father's journey (before which time I scarce
ever left him), I went to take my leave of some of my most intimate
acquaintance, particularly of Mr Watson, who dissuaded me from burying
myself, as he called it, out of a simple compliance with the fond
desires of a foolish old fellow. Such sollicitations, however, had no
effect, and I once more saw my own home. My father now greatly
sollicited me to think of marriage; but my inclinations were utterly
averse to any such thoughts. I had tasted of love already, and perhaps
you know the extravagant excesses of that most tender and most violent
passion."--Here the old gentleman paused, and looked earnestly at
Jones; whose countenance, within a minute's space, displayed the
extremities of both red and white. Upon which the old man, without
making any observations, renewed his narrative.

"Being now provided with all the necessaries of life, I betook myself
once again to study, and that with a more inordinate application than
I had ever done formerly. The books which now employed my time solely
were those, as well antient as modern, which treat of true philosophy,
a word which is by many thought to be the subject only of farce and
ridicule. I now read over the works of Aristotle and Plato, with the
rest of those inestimable treasures which antient Greece had
bequeathed to the world.

"These authors, though they instructed me in no science by which men
may promise to themselves to acquire the least riches or worldly
power, taught me, however, the art of despising the highest
acquisitions of both. They elevate the mind, and steel and harden it
against the capricious invasions of fortune. They not only instruct in
the knowledge of Wisdom, but confirm men in her habits, and
demonstrate plainly, that this must be our guide, if we propose ever
to arrive at the greatest worldly happiness, or to defend ourselves,
with any tolerable security, against the misery which everywhere
surrounds and invests us.

"To this I added another study, compared to which, all the philosophy
taught by the wisest heathens is little better than a dream, and is
indeed as full of vanity as the silliest jester ever pleased to
represent it. This is that Divine wisdom which is alone to be found in
the Holy Scriptures; for they impart to us the knowledge and assurance
of things much more worthy our attention than all which this world can
offer to our acceptance; of things which Heaven itself hath
condescended to reveal to us, and to the smallest knowledge of which
the highest human wit unassisted could never ascend. I began now to
think all the time I had spent with the best heathen writers was
little more than labour lost: for, however pleasant and delightful
their lessons may be, or however adequate to the right regulation of
our conduct with respect to this world only; yet, when compared with
the glory revealed in Scripture, their highest documents will appear
as trifling, and of as little consequence, as the rules by which
children regulate their childish little games and pastime. True it is,
that philosophy makes us wiser, but Christianity makes us better men.
Philosophy elevates and steels the mind, Christianity softens and
sweetens it. The former makes us the objects of human admiration, the
latter of Divine love. That insures us a temporal, but this an eternal
happiness.--But I am afraid I tire you with my rhapsody."

"Not at all," cries Partridge; "Lud forbid we should be tired with
good things!"

"I had spent," continued the stranger, "about four years in the most
delightful manner to myself, totally given up to contemplation, and
entirely unembarrassed with the affairs of the world, when I lost the
best of fathers, and one whom I so entirely loved, that my grief at
his loss exceeds all description. I now abandoned my books, and gave
myself up for a whole month to the effects of melancholy and despair.
Time, however, the best physician of the mind, at length brought me
relief."--"Ay, ay; _Tempus edax rerum_" said Partridge.--"I then,"
continued the stranger, "betook myself again to my former studies,
which I may say perfected my cure; for philosophy and religion may be
called the exercises of the mind, and when this is disordered, they
are as wholesome as exercise can be to a distempered body. They do
indeed produce similar effects with exercise; for they strengthen and
confirm the mind, till man becomes, in the noble strain of Horace--

     _Fortis, et in seipso totus teres atque rotundus,
     Externi ne quid valeat per laeve morari;
     In quem manca ruit semper Fortuna._"[*]

     [*] Firm in himself, who on himself relies,
     Polish'd and round, who runs his proper course
     And breaks misfortunes with superior force.--MR FRANCIS.

Here Jones smiled at some conceit which intruded itself into his
imagination; but the stranger, I believe, perceived it not, and
proceeded thus:--

"My circumstances were now greatly altered by the death of that best
of men; for my brother, who was now become master of the house,
differed so widely from me in his inclinations, and our pursuits in
life had been so very various, that we were the worst of company to
each other: but what made our living together still more disagreeable,
was the little harmony which could subsist between the few who
resorted to me, and the numerous train of sportsmen who often attended
my brother from the field to the table; for such fellows, besides the
noise and nonsense with which they persecute the ears of sober men,
endeavour always to attack them with affront and contempt. This was so
much the case, that neither I myself, nor my friends, could ever sit
down to a meal with them without being treated with derision, because
we were unacquainted with the phrases of sportsmen. For men of true
learning, and almost universal knowledge, always compassionate the
ignorance of others; but fellows who excel in some little, low,
contemptible art, are always certain to despise those who are
unacquainted with that art.

"In short, we soon separated, and I went, by the advice of a
physician, to drink the Bath waters; for my violent affliction, added
to a sedentary life, had thrown me into a kind of paralytic disorder,
for which those waters are accounted an almost _certain_ cure. The
second day after my arrival, as I was walking by the river, the sun
shone so intensely hot (though it was early in the year), that I
retired to the shelter of some willows, and sat down by the river
side. Here I had not been seated long before I heard a person on the
other side of the willows sighing and bemoaning himself bitterly. On a
sudden, having uttered a most impious oath, he cried, `I am resolved
to bear it no longer,' and directly threw himself into the water. I
immediately started, and ran towards the place, calling at the same
time as loudly as I could for assistance. An angler happened luckily
to be a-fishing a little below me, though some very high sedge had hid
him from my sight. He immediately came up, and both of us together,
not without some hazard of our lives, drew the body to the shore. At
first we perceived no sign of life remaining; but having held the body
up by the heels (for we soon had assistance enough), it discharged a
vast quantity of water at the mouth, and at length began to discover
some symptoms of breathing, and a little afterwards to move both its
hands and its legs.

"An apothecary, who happened to be present among others, advised that
the body, which seemed now to have pretty well emptied itself of
water, and which began to have many convulsive motions, should be
directly taken up, and carried into a warm bed. This was accordingly
performed, the apothecary and myself attending.

"As we were going towards an inn, for we knew not the man's lodgings,
luckily a woman met us, who, after some violent screaming, told us
that the gentleman lodged at her house.

"When I had seen the man safely deposited there, I left him to the
care of the apothecary; who, I suppose, used all the right methods
with him, for the next morning I heard he had perfectly recovered his

"I then went to visit him, intending to search out, as well as I
could, the cause of his having attempted so desperate an act, and to
prevent, as far as I was able, his pursuing such wicked intentions for
the future. I was no sooner admitted into his chamber, than we both
instantly knew each other; for who should this person be but my good
friend Mr Watson! Here I will not trouble you with what past at our
first interview; for I would avoid prolixity as much as
possible."--"Pray let us hear all," cries Partridge; "I want mightily
to know what brought him to Bath."

"You shall hear everything material," answered the stranger; and then
proceeded to relate what we shall proceed to write, after we have
given a short breathing time to both ourselves and the reader.

Chapter xiv.

In which the Man of the Hill concludes his history.

"Mr Watson," continued the stranger, "very freely acquainted me, that
the unhappy situation of his circumstances, occasioned by a tide of
ill luck, had in a manner forced him to a resolution of destroying

"I now began to argue very seriously with him, in opposition to this
heathenish, or indeed diabolical, principle of the lawfulness of
self-murder; and said everything which occurred to me on the subject;
but, to my great concern, it seemed to have very little effect on him.
He seemed not at all to repent of what he had done, and gave me reason
to fear he would soon make a second attempt of the like horrible kind.

"When I had finished my discourse, instead of endeavouring to answer
my arguments, he looked me stedfastly in the face, and with a smile
said, `You are strangely altered, my good friend, since I remember
you. I question whether any of our bishops could make a better
argument against suicide than you have entertained me with; but unless
you can find somebody who will lend me a cool hundred, I must either
hang, or drown, or starve; and, in my opinion, the last death is the
most terrible of the three.'

"I answered him very gravely that I was indeed altered since I had
seen him last. That I had found leisure to look into my follies and to
repent of them. I then advised him to pursue the same steps; and at
last concluded with an assurance that I myself would lend him a
hundred pound, if it would be of any service to his affairs, and he
would not put it into the power of a die to deprive him of it.

"Mr Watson, who seemed almost composed in slumber by the former part
of my discourse, was roused by the latter. He seized my hand eagerly,
gave me a thousand thanks, and declared I was a friend indeed; adding
that he hoped I had a better opinion of him than to imagine he had
profited so little by experience, as to put any confidence in those
damned dice which had so often deceived him. `No, no,' cries he; `let
me but once handsomely be set up again, and if ever Fortune makes a
broken merchant of me afterwards, I will forgive her.'

"I very well understood the language of setting up, and broken
merchant. I therefore said to him, with a very grave face, Mr Watson,
you must endeavour to find out some business or employment, by which
you may procure yourself a livelihood; and I promise you, could I see
any probability of being repaid hereafter, I would advance a much
larger sum than what you have mentioned, to equip you in any fair and
honourable calling; but as to gaming, besides the baseness and
wickedness of making it a profession, you are really, to my own
knowledge, unfit for it, and it will end in your certain ruin.

"`Why now, that's strange,' answered he; `neither you, nor any of my
friends, would ever allow me to know anything of the matter, and yet I
believe I _am_ as good a hand at every game as any of you all; and I
heartily wish I was to play with you only for your whole fortune: I
should desire no better sport, and I would let you name your game into
the bargain: but come, my dear boy, have you the hundred in your

"I answered I had only a bill for £50, which I delivered him, and
promised to bring him the rest next morning; and after giving him a
little more advice, took my leave.

"I was indeed better than my word; for I returned to him that very
afternoon. When I entered the room, I found him sitting up in his bed
at cards with a notorious gamester. This sight, you will imagine,
shocked me not a little; to which I may add the mortification of
seeing my bill delivered by him to his antagonist, and thirty guineas
only given in exchange for it.

"The other gamester presently quitted the room, and then Watson
declared he was ashamed to see me; `but,' says he, `I find luck runs
so damnably against me, that I will resolve to leave off play for
ever. I have thought of the kind proposal you made me ever since, and
I promise you there shall be no fault in me, if I do not put it in

"Though I had no great faith in his promises, I produced him the
remainder of the hundred in consequence of my own; for which he gave
me a note, which was all I ever expected to see in return for my

"We were prevented from any further discourse at present by the
arrival of the apothecary; who, with much joy in his countenance, and
without even asking his patient how he did, proclaimed there was great
news arrived in a letter to himself, which he said would shortly be
public, `That the Duke of Monmouth was landed in the west with a vast
army of Dutch; and that another vast fleet hovered over the coast of
Norfolk, and was to make a descent there, in order to favour the
duke's enterprize with a diversion on that side.'

"This apothecary was one of the greatest politicians of his time. He
was more delighted with the most paultry packet, than with the best
patient, and the highest joy he was capable of, he received from
having a piece of news in his possession an hour or two sooner than
any other person in the town. His advices, however, were seldom
authentic; for he would swallow almost anything as a truth--a humour
which many made use of to impose upon him.

"Thus it happened with what he at present communicated; for it was
known within a short time afterwards that the duke was really landed,
but that his army consisted only of a few attendants; and as to the
diversion in Norfolk, it was entirely false.

"The apothecary staid no longer in the room than while he acquainted
us with his news; and then, without saying a syllable to his patient
on any other subject, departed to spread his advices all over the

"Events of this nature in the public are generally apt to eclipse all
private concerns. Our discourse therefore now became entirely
political.[*] For my own part, I had been for some time very seriously
affected with the danger to which the Protestant religion was so
visibly exposed under a Popish prince, and thought the apprehension of
it alone sufficient to justify that insurrection; for no real security
can ever be found against the persecuting spirit of Popery, when armed
with power, except the depriving it of that power, as woeful
experience presently showed. You know how King James behaved after
getting the better of this attempt; how little he valued either his
royal word, or coronation oath, or the liberties and rights of his
people. But all had not the sense to foresee this at first; and
therefore the Duke of Monmouth was weakly supported; yet all could
feel when the evil came upon them; and therefore all united, at last,
to drive out that king, against whose exclusion a great party among us
had so warmly contended during the reign of his brother, and for whom
they now fought with such zeal and affection."

"What you say," interrupted Jones, "is very true; and it has often
struck me, as the most wonderful thing I ever read of in history, that
so soon after this convincing experience which brought our whole
nation to join so unanimously in expelling King James, for the
preservation of our religion and liberties, there should be a party
among us mad enough to desire the placing his family again on the
throne." "You are not in earnest!" answered the old man; "there can be
no such party. As bad an opinion as I have of mankind, I cannot
believe them infatuated to such a degree. There may be some hot-headed
Papists led by their priests to engage in this desperate cause, and
think it a holy war; but that Protestants, that are members of the
Church of England, should be such apostates, such _felos de se_, I
cannot believe it; no, no, young man, unacquainted as I am with what
has past in the world for these last thirty years, I cannot be so
imposed upon as to credit so foolish a tale; but I see you have a mind
to sport with my ignorance."--"Can it be possible," replied Jones,
"that you have lived so much out of the world as not to know that
during that time there have been two rebellions in favour of the son
of King James, one of which is now actually raging in the very heart
of the kingdom." At these words the old gentleman started up, and in a
most solemn tone of voice, conjured Jones by his Maker to tell him if
what he said was really true; which the other as solemnly affirming,
he walked several turns about the room in a profound silence, then
cried, then laughed, and at last fell down on his knees, and blessed
God, in a loud thanksgiving prayer, for having delivered him from all
society with human nature, which could be capable of such monstrous
extravagances. After which, being reminded by Jones that he had broke
off his story, he resumed it again in this manner:--

"As mankind, in the days I was speaking of, was not yet arrived at
that pitch of madness which I find they are capable of now, and which,
to be sure, I have only escaped by living alone, and at a distance
from the contagion, there was a considerable rising in favour of
Monmouth; and my principles strongly inclining me to take the same
part, I determined to join him; and Mr Watson, from different motives
concurring in the same resolution (for the spirit of a gamester will
carry a man as far upon such an occasion as the spirit of patriotism),
we soon provided ourselves with all necessaries, and went to the duke
at Bridgewater.

"The unfortunate event of this enterprize, you are, I conclude, as
well acquainted with as myself. I escaped, together with Mr Watson,
from the battle at Sedgemore, in which action I received a slight
wound. We rode near forty miles together on the Exeter road, and then
abandoning our horses, scrambled as well as we could through the
fields and bye-roads, till we arrived at a little wild hut on a
common, where a poor old woman took all the care of us she could, and
dressed my wound with salve, which quickly healed it."

"Pray, sir, where was the wound?" says Partridge. The stranger
satisfied him it was in his arm, and then continued his narrative.
"Here, sir," said he, "Mr Watson left me the next morning, in order,
as he pretended, to get us some provision from the town of Collumpton;
but--can I relate it, or can you believe it?--this Mr Watson, this
friend, this base, barbarous, treacherous villain, betrayed me to a
party of horse belonging to King James, and at his return delivered me
into their hands.

"The soldiers, being six in number, had now seized me, and were
conducting me to Taunton gaol; but neither my present situation, nor
the apprehensions of what might happen to me, were half so irksome to
my mind as the company of my false friend, who, having surrendered
himself, was likewise considered as a prisoner, though he was better
treated, as being to make his peace at my expense. He at first
endeavoured to excuse his treachery; but when he received nothing but
scorn and upbraiding from me, he soon changed his note, abused me as
the most atrocious and malicious rebel, and laid all his own guilt to
my charge, who, as he declared, had solicited, and even threatened
him, to make him take up arms against his gracious as well as lawful

"This false evidence (for in reality he had been much the forwarder of
the two) stung me to the quick, and raised an indignation scarce
conceivable by those who have not felt it. However, fortune at length
took pity on me; for as we were got a little beyond Wellington, in a
narrow lane, my guards received a false alarm, that near fifty of the
enemy were at hand; upon which they shifted for themselves, and left
me and my betrayer to do the same. That villain immediately ran from
me, and I am glad he did, or I should have certainly endeavoured,
though I had no arms, to have executed vengeance on his baseness.

"I was now once more at liberty; and immediately withdrawing from the
highway into the fields, I travelled on, scarce knowing which way I
went, and making it my chief care to avoid all public roads and all
towns--nay, even the most homely houses; for I imagined every human
creature whom I saw desirous of betraying me.

"At last, after rambling several days about the country, during which
the fields afforded me the same bed and the same food which nature
bestows on our savage brothers of the creation, I at length arrived at
this place, where the solitude and wildness of the country invited me
to fix my abode. The first person with whom I took up my habitation
was the mother of this old woman, with whom I remained concealed till
the news of the glorious revolution put an end to all my apprehensions
of danger, and gave me an opportunity of once more visiting my own
home, and of enquiring a little into my affairs, which I soon settled
as agreeably to my brother as to myself; having resigned everything to
him, for which he paid me the sum of a thousand pounds, and settled on
me an annuity for life.

"His behaviour in this last instance, as in all others, was selfish
and ungenerous. I could not look on him as my friend, nor indeed did
he desire that I should; so I presently took my leave of him, as well
as of my other acquaintance; and from that day to this, my history is
little better than a blank."

"And is it possible, sir," said Jones, "that you can have resided here
from that day to this?"--"O no, sir," answered the gentleman; "I have
been a great traveller, and there are few parts of Europe with which I
am not acquainted." "I have not, sir," cried Jones, "the assurance to
ask it of you now; indeed it would be cruel, after so much breath as
you have already spent: but you will give me leave to wish for some
further opportunity of hearing the excellent observations which a man
of your sense and knowledge of the world must have made in so long a
course of travels."--"Indeed, young gentleman," answered the stranger,
"I will endeavour to satisfy your curiosity on this head likewise, as
far as I am able." Jones attempted fresh apologies, but was prevented;
and while he and Partridge sat with greedy and impatient ears, the
stranger proceeded as in the next chapter.

  [*] _The rest of this paragraph and the two following paragraphs
  in the first edition were as follows_:

  "For my own part, I had been for some time very seriously affected
  with the danger to which the Protestant religion was so visibly
  exposed, that nothing but the immediate interposition of Providence
  seemed capable of preserving it; for King James had indeed declared
  war against the Protestant cause. He had brought known papists into
  the army and attempted to bring them into the Church and into the
  University. Popish priests swarmed through the nation, appeared
  publicly in their habits, and boasted that they should shortly walk
  in procession through the streets. Our own clergy were forbid to
  preach against popery, and bishops were ordered to supend those who
  did; and to do the business at once an illegal ecclesiastical
  commission was erected, little inferior to an inquisition, of which,
  probably, it was intended to be the ringleader. Thus, as our duty to
  the king can never be called more than our second duty, he had
  discharged us from this by making it incompatible with our
  preserving the first, which is surely to heaven. Besides this, he
  had dissolved his subjects from their allegiance by breaking his
  Coronation Oath, to which their allegiance is annexed; for he had
  imprisoned bishops because they would not give up their religion,
  and turned out judges because they would not absolutely surrender
  the law into his hands; nay, he seized this himself, and when he
  claimed a dispensing power, he declared himself, in fact, as
  absolute as any tyrant ever was or can be. I have recapitulated
  these matters in full lest some of them should have been omitted in
  history; and I think nothing less than such provocations as I have
  here mentioned, nothing less than certain and imminent danger to
  their religion and liberties, can justify or even mitigate the
  dreadful sin of rebellion in any people."

  "I promise you, sir," says Jones, "all these facts, and more, I have
  read in history, but I will tell you a fact which is not yet
  recorded and of which I suppose you are ignorant. There is actually
  now a rebellion on foot in this kingdom in favour of the son of that
  very King James, a professed papist, more bigoted, if possible, than
  his father, and this carried on by Protestants against a king who
  hath never in one single instance made the least invasion on our

  "Prodigious indeed!" answered the stranger. "You tell me what would
  be incredible of a nation which did not deserve the character that
  Virgil gives of a woman, _varium et mutabile semper_. Surely this is
  to be unworthy of the care which Providence seems to have taken of
  us in the preservation of our religion against the powerful designs
  and constant machinations of Popery, a preservation so strange and
  unaccountable that I almost think we may appeal to it as to a
  miracle for the proof of its holiness. Prodigious indeed! A
  Protestant rebellion in favour of a popish prince! The folly of
  mankind is as wonderful as their knavery--But to conclude my story:
  I resolved to take arms in defence of my country, of my religion,
  and my liberty, and Mr. Watson joined in the same resolution. We
  soon provided ourselves with an necessaries and joined the Duke at

  "The unfortunate event of this enterprise you are perhaps better
  acquainted with than myself. I escaped together with Mr. Watson from
  the battle at Sedgemore,...

Chapter xv.

A brief history of Europe; and a curious discourse between Mr Jones
and the Man of the Hill.

"In Italy the landlords are very silent. In France they are more
talkative, but yet civil. In Germany and Holland they are generally
very impertinent. And as for their honesty, I believe it is pretty
equal in all those countries. The _laquais à louange_ are sure to lose
no opportunity of cheating you; and as for the postilions, I think
they are pretty much alike all the world over. These, sir, are the
observations on men which I made in my travels; for these were the
only men I ever conversed with. My design, when I went abroad, was to
divert myself by seeing the wondrous variety of prospects, beasts,
birds, fishes, insects, and vegetables, with which God has been
pleased to enrich the several parts of this globe; a variety which, as
it must give great pleasure to a contemplative beholder, so doth it
admirably display the power, and wisdom, and goodness of the Creator.
Indeed, to say the truth, there is but one work in his whole creation
that doth him any dishonour, and with that I have long since avoided
holding any conversation."

"You will pardon me," cries Jones; "but I have always imagined that
there is in this very work you mention as great variety as in all the
rest; for, besides the difference of inclination, customs and climates
have, I am told, introduced the utmost diversity into human nature."

"Very little indeed," answered the other: "those who travel in order
to acquaint themselves with the different manners of men might spare
themselves much pains by going to a carnival at Venice; for there they
will see at once all which they can discover in the several courts of
Europe. The same hypocrisy, the same fraud; in short, the same follies
and vices dressed in different habits. In Spain, these are equipped
with much gravity; and in Italy, with vast splendor. In France, a
knave is dressed like a fop; and in the northern countries, like a
sloven. But human nature is everywhere the same, everywhere the object
of detestation and scorn.

"As for my own part, I past through all these nations as you perhaps
may have done through a croud at a shew-jostling to get by them,
holding my nose with one hand, and defending my pockets with the
other, without speaking a word to any of them, while I was pressing on
to see what I wanted to see; which, however entertaining it might be
in itself, scarce made me amends for the trouble the company gave me."

"Did not you find some of the nations among which you travelled less
troublesome to you than others?" said Jones. "O yes," replied the old
man: "the Turks were much more tolerable to me than the Christians;
for they are men of profound taciturnity, and never disturb a stranger
with questions. Now and then indeed they bestow a short curse upon
him, or spit in his face as he walks the streets, but then they have
done with him; and a man may live an age in their country without
hearing a dozen words from them. But of all the people I ever saw,
heaven defend me from the French! With their damned prate and
civilities, and doing the honour of their nation to strangers (as they
are pleased to call it), but indeed setting forth their own vanity;
they are so troublesome, that I had infinitely rather pass my life
with the Hottentots than set my foot in Paris again. They are a nasty
people, but their nastiness is mostly without; whereas, in France, and
some other nations that I won't name, it is all within, and makes them
stink much more to my reason than that of Hottentots does to my nose.

"Thus, sir, I have ended the history of my life; for as to all that
series of years during which I have lived retired here, it affords no
variety to entertain you, and may be almost considered as one
day.[*] The retirement has been so compleat, that I could hardly have
enjoyed a more absolute solitude in the deserts of the Thebais than
here in the midst of this populous kingdom. As I have no estate, I am
plagued with no tenants or stewards: my annuity is paid me pretty
regularly, as indeed it ought to be; for it is much less than what I
might have expected in return for what I gave up. Visits I admit none;
and the old woman who keeps my house knows that her place entirely
depends upon her saving me all the trouble of buying the things that I
want, keeping off all sollicitation or business from me, and holding
her tongue whenever I am within hearing. As my walks are all by night,
I am pretty secure in this wild unfrequented place from meeting any
company. Some few persons I have met by chance, and sent them home
heartily frighted, as from the oddness of my dress and figure they
took me for a ghost or a hobgoblin. But what has happened to-night
shows that even here I cannot be safe from the villany of men; for
without your assistance I had not only been robbed, but very probably

  [*] the rest of this paragraph is omitted in the third edition

Jones thanked the stranger for the trouble he had taken in relating
his story, and then expressed some wonder how he could possibly endure
a life of such solitude; "in which," says he, "you may well complain
of the want of variety. Indeed I am astonished how you have filled up,
or rather killed, so much of your time."

"I am not at all surprized," answered the other, "that to one whose
affections and thoughts are fixed on the world my hours should appear
to have wanted employment in this place: but there is one single act,
for which the whole life of man is infinitely too short: what time can
suffice for the contemplation and worship of that glorious, immortal,
and eternal Being, among the works of whose stupendous creation not
only this globe, but even those numberless luminaries which we may
here behold spangling all the sky, though they should many of them be
suns lighting different systems of worlds, may possibly appear but as
a few atoms opposed to the whole earth which we inhabit? Can a man who
by divine meditations is admitted as it were into the conversation of
this ineffable, incomprehensible Majesty, think days, or years, or
ages, too long for the continuance of so ravishing an honour? Shall
the trifling amusements, the palling pleasures, the silly business of
the world, roll away our hours too swiftly from us; and shall the pace
of time seem sluggish to a mind exercised in studies so high, so
important, and so glorious? As no time is sufficient, so no place is
improper, for this great concern. On what object can we cast our eyes
which may not inspire us with ideas of his power, of his wisdom, and
of his goodness? It is not necessary that the rising sun should dart
his fiery glories over the eastern horizon; nor that the boisterous
winds should rush from their caverns, and shake the lofty forest; nor
that the opening clouds should pour their deluges on the plains: it is
not necessary, I say, that any of these should proclaim his majesty:
there is not an insect, not a vegetable, of so low an order in the
creation as not to be honoured with bearing marks of the attributes of
its great Creator; marks not only of his power, but of his wisdom and
goodness. Man alone, the king of this globe, the last and greatest
work of the Supreme Being, below the sun; man alone hath basely
dishonoured his own nature; and by dishonesty, cruelty, ingratitude,
and treachery, hath called his Maker's goodness in question, by
puzzling us to account how a benevolent being should form so foolish
and so vile an animal. Yet this is the being from whose conversation
you think, I suppose, that I have been unfortunately restrained, and
without whose blessed society, life, in your opinion, must be tedious
and insipid."

"In the former part of what you said," replied Jones, "I most heartily
and readily concur; but I believe, as well as hope, that the
abhorrence which you express for mankind in the conclusion, is much
too general. Indeed, you here fall into an error, which in my little
experience I have observed to be a very common one, by taking the
character of mankind from the worst and basest among them; whereas,
indeed, as an excellent writer observes, nothing should be esteemed as
characteristical of a species, but what is to be found among the best
and most perfect individuals of that species. This error, I believe,
is generally committed by those who from want of proper caution in the
choice of their friends and acquaintance, have suffered injuries from
bad and worthless men; two or three instances of which are very
unjustly charged on all human nature."

"I think I had experience enough of it," answered the other: "my first
mistress and my first friend betrayed me in the basest manner, and in
matters which threatened to be of the worst of consequences--even to
bring me to a shameful death."

"But you will pardon me," cries Jones, "if I desire you to reflect who
that mistress and who that friend were. What better, my good sir,
could be expected in love derived from the stews, or in friendship
first produced and nourished at the gaming-table? To take the
characters of women from the former instance, or of men from the
latter, would be as unjust as to assert that air is a nauseous and
unwholesome element, because we find it so in a jakes. I have lived
but a short time in the world, and yet have known men worthy of the
highest friendship, and women of the highest love."

"Alas! young man," answered the stranger, "you have lived, you
confess, but a very short time in the world: I was somewhat older than
you when I was of the same opinion."

"You might have remained so still," replies Jones, "if you had not
been unfortunate, I will venture to say incautious, in the placing
your affections. If there was, indeed, much more wickedness in the
world than there is, it would not prove such general assertions
against human nature, since much of this arrives by mere accident, and
many a man who commits evil is not totally bad and corrupt in his
heart. In truth, none seem to have any title to assert human nature to
be necessarily and universally evil, but those whose own minds afford
them one instance of this natural depravity; which is not, I am
convinced, your case."

"And such," said the stranger, "will be always the most backward to
assert any such thing. Knaves will no more endeavour to persuade us of
the baseness of mankind, than a highwayman will inform you that there
are thieves on the road. This would, indeed, be a method to put you on
your guard, and to defeat their own purposes. For which reason, though
knaves, as I remember, are very apt to abuse particular persons, yet
they never cast any reflection on human nature in general." The old
gentleman spoke this so warmly, that as Jones despaired of making a
convert, and was unwilling to offend, he returned no answer.

The day now began to send forth its first streams of light, when Jones
made an apology to the stranger for having staid so long, and perhaps
detained him from his rest. The stranger answered, "He never wanted
rest less than at present; for that day and night were indifferent
seasons to him; and that he commonly made use of the former for the
time of his repose and of the latter for his walks and lucubrations.
However," said he, "it is now a most lovely morning, and if you can
bear any longer to be without your own rest or food, I will gladly
entertain you with the sight of some very fine prospects which I
believe you have not yet seen."

Jones very readily embraced this offer, and they immediately set
forward together from the cottage. As for Partridge, he had fallen
into a profound repose just as the stranger had finished his story;
for his curiosity was satisfied, and the subsequent discourse was not
forcible enough in its operation to conjure down the charms of sleep.
Jones therefore left him to enjoy his nap; and as the reader may
perhaps be at this season glad of the same favour, we will here put an
end to the eighth book of our history.



Chapter i.

Of those who lawfully may, and of those who may not, write such
histories as this.

Among other good uses for which I have thought proper to institute
these several introductory chapters, I have considered them as a kind
of mark or stamp, which may hereafter enable a very indifferent reader
to distinguish what is true and genuine in this historic kind of
writing, from what is false and counterfeit. Indeed, it seems likely
that some such mark may shortly become necessary, since the favourable
reception which two or three authors have lately procured for their
works of this nature from the public, will probably serve as an
encouragement to many others to undertake the like. Thus a swarm of
foolish novels and monstrous romances will be produced, either to the
great impoverishing of booksellers, or to the great loss of time and
depravation of morals in the reader; nay, often to the spreading of
scandal and calumny, and to the prejudice of the characters of many
worthy and honest people.

I question not but the ingenious author of the Spectator was
principally induced to prefix Greek and Latin mottos to every paper,
from the same consideration of guarding against the pursuit of those
scribblers, who having no talents of a writer but what is taught by
the writing-master, are yet nowise afraid nor ashamed to assume the
same titles with the greatest genius, than their good brother in the
fable was of braying in the lion's skin.

By the device therefore of his motto, it became impracticable for any
man to presume to imitate the Spectators, without understanding at
least one sentence in the learned languages. In the same manner I have
now secured myself from the imitation of those who are utterly
incapable of any degree of reflection, and whose learning is not equal
to an essay.

I would not be here understood to insinuate, that the greatest merit
of such historical productions can ever lie in these introductory
chapters; but, in fact, those parts which contain mere narrative only,
afford much more encouragement to the pen of an imitator, than those
which are composed of observation and reflection. Here I mean such
imitators as Rowe was of Shakespear, or as Horace hints some of the
Romans were of Cato, by bare feet and sour faces.

To invent good stories, and to tell them well, are possibly very rare
talents, and yet I have observed few persons who have scrupled to aim
at both: and if we examine the romances and novels with which the
world abounds, I think we may fairly conclude, that most of the
authors would not have attempted to show their teeth (if the
expression may be allowed me) in any other way of writing; nor could
indeed have strung together a dozen sentences on any other subject

     _Scribimus indocti doctique passim_,[*]

     [*] --Each desperate blockhead dares to write:
     Verse is the trade of every living wight.--FRANCIS.

may be more truly said of the historian and biographer, than of any
other species of writing; for all the arts and sciences (even
criticism itself) require some little degree of learning and
knowledge. Poetry, indeed, may perhaps be thought an exception; but
then it demands numbers, or something like numbers: whereas, to the
composition of novels and romances, nothing is necessary but paper,
pens, and ink, with the manual capacity of using them. This, I
conceive, their productions show to be the opinion of the authors
themselves: and this must be the opinion of their readers, if indeed
there be any such.

Hence we are to derive that universal contempt which the world, who
always denominate the whole from the majority, have cast on all
historical writers who do not draw their materials from records. And
it is the apprehension of this contempt that hath made us so
cautiously avoid the term romance, a name with which we might
otherwise have been well enough contented. Though, as we have good
authority for all our characters, no less indeed than the vast
authentic doomsday-book of nature, as is elsewhere hinted, our labours
have sufficient title to the name of history. Certainly they deserve
some distinction from those works, which one of the wittiest of men
regarded only as proceeding from a _pruritus_, or indeed rather from a
looseness of the brain.

But besides the dishonour which is thus cast on one of the most useful
as well as entertaining of all kinds of writing, there is just reason
to apprehend, that by encouraging such authors we shall propagate much
dishonour of another kind; I mean to the characters of many good and
valuable members of society; for the dullest writers, no more than the
dullest companions, are always inoffensive. They have both enough of
language to be indecent and abusive. And surely if the opinion just
above cited be true, we cannot wonder that works so nastily derived
should be nasty themselves, or have a tendency to make others so.

To prevent therefore, for the future, such intemperate abuses of
leisure, of letters, and of the liberty of the press, especially as
the world seems at present to be more than usually threatened with
them, I shall here venture to mention some qualifications, every one
of which are in a pretty high degree necessary to this order of

The first is, genius, without a full vein of which no study, says
Horace, can avail us. By genius I would understand that power or
rather those powers of the mind, which are capable of penetrating into
all things within our reach and knowledge, and of distinguishing their
essential differences. These are no other than invention and judgment;
and they are both called by the collective name of genius, as they are
of those gifts of nature which we bring with us into the world.
Concerning each of which many seem to have fallen into very great
errors; for by invention, I believe, is generally understood a
creative faculty, which would indeed prove most romance writers to
have the highest pretensions to it; whereas by invention is really
meant no more (and so the word signifies) than discovery, or finding
out; or to explain it at large, a quick and sagacious penetration into
the true essence of all the objects of our contemplation. This, I
think, can rarely exist without the concomitancy of judgment; for how
we can be said to have discovered the true essence of two things,
without discerning their difference, seems to me hard to conceive. Now
this last is the undisputed province of judgment, and yet some few men
of wit have agreed with all the dull fellows in the world in
representing these two to have been seldom or never the property of
one and the same person.

But though they should be so, they are not sufficient for our purpose,
without a good share of learning; for which I could again cite the
authority of Horace, and of many others, if any was necessary to prove
that tools are of no service to a workman, when they are not sharpened
by art, or when he wants rules to direct him in his work, or hath no
matter to work upon. All these uses are supplied by learning; for
nature can only furnish us with capacity; or, as I have chose to
illustrate it, with the tools of our profession; learning must fit
them for use, must direct them in it, and, lastly, must contribute
part at least of the materials. A competent knowledge of history and
of the belles-lettres is here absolutely necessary; and without this
share of knowledge at least, to affect the character of an historian,
is as vain as to endeavour at building a house without timber or
mortar, or brick or stone. Homer and Milton, who, though they added
the ornament of numbers to their works, were both historians of our
order, were masters of all the learning of their times.

Again, there is another sort of knowledge, beyond the power of
learning to bestow, and this is to be had by conversation. So
necessary is this to the understanding the characters of men, that
none are more ignorant of them than those learned pedants whose lives
have been entirely consumed in colleges, and among books; for however
exquisitely human nature may have been described by writers, the true
practical system can be learnt only in the world. Indeed the like
happens in every other kind of knowledge. Neither physic nor law are
to be practically known from books. Nay, the farmer, the planter, the
gardener, must perfect by experience what he hath acquired the
rudiments of by reading. How accurately soever the ingenious Mr Miller
may have described the plant, he himself would advise his disciple to
see it in the garden. As we must perceive, that after the nicest
strokes of a Shakespear or a Jonson, of a Wycherly or an Otway, some
touches of nature will escape the reader, which the judicious action
of a Garrick, of a Cibber, or a Clive,[*] can convey to him; so, on the
real stage, the character shows himself in a stronger and bolder light
than he can be described. And if this be the case in those fine and
nervous descriptions which great authors themselves have taken from
life, how much more strongly will it hold when the writer himself
takes his lines not from nature, but from books? Such characters are
only the faint copy of a copy, and can have neither the justness nor
spirit of an original.

  [*] There is a peculiar propriety in mentioning this great actor,
  and these two most justly celebrated actresses, in this place, as
  they have all formed themselves on the study of nature only, and not
  on the imitation of their predecessors. Hence they have been able to
  excel all who have gone before them; a degree of merit which the
  servile herd of imitators can never possibly arrive at.

Now this conversation in our historian must be universal, that is,
with all ranks and degrees of men; for the knowledge of what is called
high life will not instruct him in low; nor, _e converso_, will his
being acquainted with the inferior part of mankind teach him the
manners of the superior. And though it may be thought that the
knowledge of either may sufficiently enable him to describe at least
that in which he hath been conversant, yet he will even here fall
greatly short of perfection; for the follies of either rank do in
reality illustrate each other. For instance, the affectation of high
life appears more glaring and ridiculous from the simplicity of the
low; and again, the rudeness and barbarity of this latter, strikes
with much stronger ideas of absurdity, when contrasted with, and
opposed to, the politeness which controuls the former. Besides, to say
the truth, the manners of our historian will be improved by both these
conversations; for in the one he will easily find examples of
plainness, honesty, and sincerity; in the other of refinement,
elegance, and a liberality of spirit; which last quality I myself have
scarce ever seen in men of low birth and education.

Nor will all the qualities I have hitherto given my historian avail
him, unless he have what is generally meant by a good heart, and be
capable of feeling. The author who will make me weep, says Horace,
must first weep himself. In reality, no man can paint a distress well
which he doth not feel while he is painting it; nor do I doubt, but
that the most pathetic and affecting scenes have been writ with tears.
In the same manner it is with the ridiculous. I am convinced I never
make my reader laugh heartily but where I have laughed before him;
unless it should happen at any time, that instead of laughing with me
he should be inclined to laugh at me. Perhaps this may have been the
case at some passages in this chapter, from which apprehension I will
here put an end to it.

Chapter ii.

Containing a very surprizing adventure indeed, which Mr Jones met with
in his walk with the Man of the Hill.

Aurora now first opened her casement, _Anglice_ the day began to
break, when Jones walked forth in company with the stranger, and
mounted Mazard Hill; of which they had no sooner gained the summit
than one of the most noble prospects in the world presented itself to
their view, and which we would likewise present to the reader, but for
two reasons: first, we despair of making those who have seen this
prospect admire our description; secondly, we very much doubt whether
those who have not seen it would understand it.

Jones stood for some minutes fixed in one posture, and directing his
eyes towards the south; upon which the old gentleman asked, What he
was looking at with so much attention? "Alas! sir," answered he with a
sigh, "I was endeavouring to trace out my own journey hither. Good
heavens! what a distance is Gloucester from us! What a vast track of
land must be between me and my own home!"--"Ay, ay, young gentleman,"
cries the other, "and by your sighing, from what you love better than
your own home, or I am mistaken. I perceive now the object of your
contemplation is not within your sight, and yet I fancy you have a
pleasure in looking that way." Jones answered with a smile, "I find,
old friend, you have not yet forgot the sensations of your youth. I
own my thoughts were employed as you have guessed."

They now walked to that part of the hill which looks to the
north-west, and which hangs over a vast and extensive wood. Here they
were no sooner arrived than they heard at a distance the most violent
screams of a woman, proceeding from the wood below them. Jones
listened a moment, and then, without saying a word to his companion
(for indeed the occasion seemed sufficiently pressing), ran, or rather
slid, down the hill, and, without the least apprehension or concern
for his own safety, made directly to the thicket, whence the sound had

He had not entered far into the wood before he beheld a most shocking
sight indeed, a woman stript half naked, under the hands of a ruffian,
who had put his garter round her neck, and was endeavouring to draw
her up to a tree. Jones asked no questions at this interval, but fell
instantly upon the villain, and made such good use of his trusty oaken
stick that he laid him sprawling on the ground before he could defend
himself, indeed almost before he knew he was attacked; nor did he
cease the prosecution of his blows till the woman herself begged him
to forbear, saying, she believed he had sufficiently done his

The poor wretch then fell upon her knees to Jones, and gave him a
thousand thanks for her deliverance. He presently lifted her up, and
told her he was highly pleased with the extraordinary accident which
had sent him thither for her relief, where it was so improbable she
should find any; adding, that Heaven seemed to have designed him as
the happy instrument of her protection. "Nay," answered she, "I could
almost conceive you to be some good angel; and, to say the truth, you
look more like an angel than a man in my eye." Indeed he was a
charming figure; and if a very fine person, and a most comely set of
features, adorned with youth, health, strength, freshness, spirit, and
good-nature, can make a man resemble an angel, he certainly had that

The redeemed captive had not altogether so much of the human-angelic
species: she seemed to be at least of the middle age, nor had her face
much appearance of beauty; but her cloaths being torn from all the
upper part of her body, her breasts, which were well formed and
extremely white, attracted the eyes of her deliverer, and for a few
moments they stood silent, and gazing at each other; till the ruffian
on the ground beginning to move, Jones took the garter which had been
intended for another purpose, and bound both his hands behind him. And
now, on contemplating his face, he discovered, greatly to his
surprize, and perhaps not a little to his satisfaction, this very
person to be no other than ensign Northerton. Nor had the ensign
forgotten his former antagonist, whom he knew the moment he came to
himself. His surprize was equal to that of Jones; but I conceive his
pleasure was rather less on this occasion.

Jones helped Northerton upon his legs, and then looking him stedfastly
in the face, "I fancy, sir," said he, "you did not expect to meet me
any more in this world, and I confess I had as little expectation to
find you here. However, fortune, I see, hath brought us once more
together, and hath given me satisfaction for the injury I have
received, even without my own knowledge."

"It is very much like a man of honour, indeed," answered Northerton,
"to take satisfaction by knocking a man down behind his back. Neither
am I capable of giving you satisfaction here, as I have no sword; but
if you dare behave like a gentleman, let us go where I can furnish
myself with one, and I will do by you as a man of honour ought."

"Doth it become such a villain as you are," cries Jones, "to
contaminate the name of honour by assuming it? But I shall waste no
time in discourse with you. Justice requires satisfaction of you now,
and shall have it." Then turning to the woman, he asked her, if she
was near her home; or if not, whether she was acquainted with any
house in the neighbourhood, where she might procure herself some
decent cloaths, in order to proceed to a justice of the peace.

She answered she was an entire stranger in that part of the world.
Jones then recollecting himself, said, he had a friend near who would
direct them; indeed, he wondered at his not following; but, in fact,
the good Man of the Hill, when our heroe departed, sat himself down on
the brow, where, though he had a gun in his hand, he with great
patience and unconcern had attended the issue.

Jones then stepping without the wood, perceived the old man sitting as
we have just described him; he presently exerted his utmost agility,
and with surprizing expedition ascended the hill.

The old man advised him to carry the woman to Upton, which, he said,
was the nearest town, and there he would be sure of furnishing her
with all manner of conveniencies. Jones having received his direction
to the place, took his leave of the Man of the Hill, and, desiring him
to direct Partridge the same way, returned hastily to the wood.

Our heroe, at his departure to make this enquiry of his friend, had
considered, that as the ruffian's hands were tied behind him, he was
incapable of executing any wicked purposes on the poor woman. Besides,
he knew he should not be beyond the reach of her voice, and could
return soon enough to prevent any mischief. He had moreover declared
to the villain, that if he attempted the least insult, he would be
himself immediately the executioner of vengeance on him. But Jones
unluckily forgot, that though the hands of Northerton were tied, his
legs were at liberty; nor did he lay the least injunction on the
prisoner that he should not make what use of these he pleased.
Northerton therefore having given no parole of that kind, thought he
might without any breach of honour depart; not being obliged, as he
imagined, by any rules, to wait for a formal discharge. He therefore
took up his legs, which were at liberty, and walked off through the
wood, which favoured his retreat; nor did the woman, whose eyes were
perhaps rather turned toward her deliverer, once think of his escape,
or give herself any concern or trouble to prevent it.

Jones therefore, at his return, found the woman alone. He would have
spent some time in searching for Northerton, but she would not permit
him; earnestly entreating that he would accompany her to the town
whither they had been directed. "As to the fellow's escape," said she,
"it gives me no uneasiness; for philosophy and Christianity both
preach up forgiveness of injuries. But for you, sir, I am concerned at
the trouble I give you; nay, indeed, my nakedness may well make me
ashamed to look you in the face; and if it was not for the sake of
your protection, I should wish to go alone."

Jones offered her his coat; but, I know not for what reason, she
absolutely refused the most earnest solicitations to accept it. He
then begged her to forget both the causes of her confusion. "With
regard to the former," says he, "I have done no more than my duty in
protecting you; and as for the latter, I will entirely remove it, by
walking before you all the way; for I would not have my eyes offend
you, and I could not answer for my power of resisting the attractive
charms of so much beauty."

Thus our heroe and the redeemed lady walked in the same manner as
Orpheus and Eurydice marched heretofore; but though I cannot believe
that Jones was designedly tempted by his fair one to look behind him,
yet as she frequently wanted his assistance to help her over stiles,
and had besides many trips and other accidents, he was often obliged
to turn about. However, he had better fortune than what attended poor
Orpheus, for he brought his companion, or rather follower, safe into
the famous town of Upton.

Chapter iii.

The arrival of Mr Jones with his lady at the inn; with a very full
description of the battle of Upton.

Though the reader, we doubt not, is very eager to know who this lady
was, and how she fell into the hands of Mr Northerton, we must beg him
to suspend his curiosity for a short time, as we are obliged, for some
very good reasons which hereafter perhaps he may guess, to delay his
satisfaction a little longer.

Mr Jones and his fair companion no sooner entered the town, than they
went directly to that inn which in their eyes presented the fairest
appearance to the street. Here Jones, having ordered a servant to show
a room above stairs, was ascending, when the dishevelled fair, hastily
following, was laid hold on by the master of the house, who cried,
"Heyday, where is that beggar wench going? Stay below stairs, I desire
you." But Jones at that instant thundered from above, "Let the lady
come up," in so authoritative a voice, that the good man instantly
withdrew his hands, and the lady made the best of her way to the

Here Jones wished her joy of her safe arrival, and then departed, in
order, as he promised, to send the landlady up with some cloaths. The
poor woman thanked him heartily for all his kindness, and said, she
hoped she should see him again soon, to thank him a thousand times
more. During this short conversation, she covered her white bosom as
well as she could possibly with her arms; for Jones could not avoid
stealing a sly peep or two, though he took all imaginable care to
avoid giving any offence.

Our travellers had happened to take up their residence at a house of
exceeding good repute, whither Irish ladies of strict virtue, and many
northern lasses of the same predicament, were accustomed to resort in
their way to Bath. The landlady therefore would by no means have
admitted any conversation of a disreputable kind to pass under her
roof. Indeed, so foul and contagious are all such proceedings, that
they contaminate the very innocent scenes where they are committed,
and give the name of a bad house, or of a house of ill repute, to all
those where they are suffered to be carried on.

Not that I would intimate that such strict chastity as was preserved
in the temple of Vesta can possibly be maintained at a public inn. My
good landlady did not hope for such a blessing, nor would any of the
ladies I have spoken of, or indeed any others of the most rigid note,
have expected or insisted on any such thing. But to exclude all vulgar
concubinage, and to drive all whores in rags from within the walls, is
within the power of every one. This my landlady very strictly adhered
to, and this her virtuous guests, who did not travel in rags, would
very reasonably have expected of her.

Now it required no very blameable degree of suspicion to imagine that
Mr Jones and his ragged companion had certain purposes in their
intention, which, though tolerated in some Christian countries,
connived at in others, and practised in all, are however as expressly
forbidden as murder, or any other horrid vice, by that religion which
is universally believed in those countries. The landlady, therefore,
had no sooner received an intimation of the entrance of the above-said
persons than she began to meditate the most expeditious means for
their expulsion. In order to this, she had provided herself with a
long and deadly instrument, with which, in times of peace, the
chambermaid was wont to demolish the labours of the industrious
spider. In vulgar phrase, she had taken up the broomstick, and was
just about to sally from the kitchen, when Jones accosted her with a
demand of a gown and other vestments, to cover the half-naked woman

Nothing can be more provoking to the human temper, nor more dangerous
to that cardinal virtue, patience, than solicitations of extraordinary
offices of kindness on behalf of those very persons with whom we are
highly incensed. For this reason Shakespear hath artfully introduced
his Desdemona soliciting favours for Cassio of her husband, as the
means of inflaming, not only his jealousy, but his rage, to the
highest pitch of madness; and we find the unfortunate Moor less able
to command his passion on this occasion, than even when he beheld his
valued present to his wife in the hands of his supposed rival. In
fact, we regard these efforts as insults on our understanding, and to
such the pride of man is very difficultly brought to submit.

My landlady, though a very good-tempered woman, had, I suppose, some
of this pride in her composition, for Jones had scarce ended his
request, when she fell upon him with a certain weapon, which, though
it be neither long, nor sharp, nor hard, nor indeed threatens from its
appearance with either death or wound, hath been however held in great
dread and abhorrence by many wise men--nay, by many brave ones;
insomuch, that some who have dared to look into the mouth of a loaded
cannon, have not dared to look into a mouth where this weapon was
brandished; and rather than run the hazard of its execution, have
contented themselves with making a most pitiful and sneaking figure in
the eyes of all their acquaintance.

To confess the truth, I am afraid Mr Jones was one of these; for
though he was attacked and violently belaboured with the aforesaid
weapon, he could not be provoked to make any resistance; but in a most
cowardly manner applied, with many entreaties, to his antagonist to
desist from pursuing her blows; in plain English, he only begged her
with the utmost earnestness to hear him; but before he could obtain
his request, my landlord himself entered into the fray, and embraced
that side of the cause which seemed to stand very little in need of

There are a sort of heroes who are supposed to be determined in their
chusing or avoiding a conflict by the character and behaviour of the
person whom they are to engage. These are said to know their men, and
Jones, I believe, knew his woman; for though he had been so submissive
to her, he was no sooner attacked by her husband, than he demonstrated
an immediate spirit of resentment, and enjoined him silence under a
very severe penalty; no less than that, I think, of being converted
into fuel for his own fire.

The husband, with great indignation, but with a mixture of pity,
answered, "You must pray first to be made able. I believe I am a
better man than yourself; ay, every way, that I am;" and presently
proceeded to discharge half-a-dozen whores at the lady above stairs,
the last of which had scarce issued from his lips, when a swinging
blow from the cudgel that Jones carried in his hand assaulted him over
the shoulders.

It is a question whether the landlord or the landlady was the most
expeditious in returning this blow. My landlord, whose hands were
empty, fell to with his fist, and the good wife, uplifting her broom
and aiming at the head of Jones, had probably put an immediate end to
the fray, and to Jones likewise, had not the descent of this broom
been prevented--not by the miraculous intervention of any heathen
deity, but by a very natural though fortunate accident, viz., by the
arrival of Partridge; who entered the house at that instant (for fear
had caused him to run every step from the hill), and who, seeing the
danger which threatened his master or companion (which you chuse to
call him), prevented so sad a catastrophe, by catching hold of the
landlady's arm, as it was brandished aloft in the air.

The landlady soon perceived the impediment which prevented her blow;
and being unable to rescue her arm from the hands of Partridge, she
let fall the broom; and then leaving Jones to the discipline of her
husband, she fell with the utmost fury on that poor fellow, who had
already given some intimation of himself, by crying, "Zounds! do you
intend to kill my friend?"

Partridge, though not much addicted to battle, would not however stand
still when his friend was attacked; nor was he much displeased with
that part of the combat which fell to his share; he therefore returned
my landlady's blows as soon as he received them: and now the fight was
obstinately maintained on all parts, and it seemed doubtful to which
side Fortune would incline, when the naked lady, who had listened at
the top of the stairs to the dialogue which preceded the engagement,
descended suddenly from above, and without weighing the unfair
inequality of two to one, fell upon the poor woman who was boxing with
Partridge; nor did that great champion desist, but rather redoubled
his fury, when he found fresh succours were arrived to his assistance.

Victory must now have fallen to the side of the travellers (for the
bravest troops must yield to numbers) had not Susan the chambermaid
come luckily to support her mistress. This Susan was as two-handed a
wench (according to the phrase) as any in the country, and would, I
believe, have beat the famed Thalestris herself, or any of her subject
Amazons; for her form was robust and man-like, and every way made for
such encounters. As her hands and arms were formed to give blows with
great mischief to an enemy, so was her face as well contrived to
receive blows without any great injury to herself, her nose being
already flat to her face; her lips were so large, that no swelling
could be perceived in them, and moreover they were so hard, that a
fist could hardly make any impression on them. Lastly, her cheek-bones
stood out, as if nature had intended them for two bastions to defend
her eyes in those encounters for which she seemed so well calculated,
and to which she was most wonderfully well inclined.

This fair creature entering the field of battle, immediately filed to
that wing where her mistress maintained so unequal a fight with one of
either sex. Here she presently challenged Partridge to single combat.
He accepted the challenge, and a most desperate fight began between

Now the dogs of war being let loose, began to lick their bloody lips;
now Victory, with golden wings, hung hovering in the air; now Fortune,
taking her scales from her shelf, began to weigh the fates of Tom
Jones, his female companion, and Partridge, against the landlord, his
wife, and maid; all which hung in exact balance before her; when a
good-natured accident put suddenly an end to the bloody fray, with
which half of the combatants had already sufficiently feasted. This
accident was the arrival of a coach and four; upon which my landlord
and landlady immediately desisted from fighting, and at their entreaty
obtained the same favour of their antagonists: but Susan was not so
kind to Partridge; for that Amazonian fair having overthrown and
bestrid her enemy, was now cuffing him lustily with both her hands,
without any regard to his request of a cessation of arms, or to those
loud exclamations of murder which he roared forth.

No sooner, however, had Jones quitted the landlord, than he flew to
the rescue of his defeated companion, from whom he with much
difficulty drew off the enraged chambermaid: but Partridge was not
immediately sensible of his deliverance, for he still lay flat on the
floor, guarding his face with his hands; nor did he cease roaring till
Jones had forced him to look up, and to perceive that the battle was
at an end.

The landlord, who had no visible hurt, and the landlady, hiding her
well-scratched face with her handkerchief, ran both hastily to the
door to attend the coach, from which a young lady and her maid now
alighted. These the landlady presently ushered into that room where Mr
Jones had at first deposited his fair prize, as it was the best
apartment in the house. Hither they were obliged to pass through the
field of battle, which they did with the utmost haste, covering their
faces with their handkerchiefs, as desirous to avoid the notice of any
one. Indeed their caution was quite unnecessary; for the poor
unfortunate Helen, the fatal cause of all the bloodshed, was entirely
taken up in endeavouring to conceal her own face, and Jones was no
less occupied in rescuing Partridge from the fury of Susan; which
being happily effected, the poor fellow immediately departed to the
pump to wash his face, and to stop that bloody torrent which Susan had
plentifully set a-flowing from his nostrils.

Chapter iv.

In which the arrival of a man of war puts a final end to hostilities,
and causes the conclusion of a firm and lasting peace between all

A serjeant and a file of musqueteers, with a deserter in their
custody, arrived about this time. The serjeant presently enquired for
the principal magistrate of the town, and was informed by my landlord,
that he himself was vested in that office. He then demanded his
billets, together with a mug of beer, and complaining it was cold,
spread himself before the kitchen fire.

Mr Jones was at this time comforting the poor distressed lady, who sat
down at a table in the kitchen, and leaning her head upon her arm, was
bemoaning her misfortunes; but lest my fair readers should be in pain
concerning a particular circumstance, I think proper here to acquaint
them, that before she had quitted the room above stairs, she had so
well covered herself with a pillowbeer which she there found, that her
regard to decency was not in the least violated by the presence of so
many men as were now in the room.

One of the soldiers now went up to the serjeant, and whispered
something in his ear; upon which he stedfastly fixed his eyes on the
lady, and having looked at her for near a minute, he came up to her,
saying, "I ask pardon, madam; but I am certain I am not deceived; you
can be no other person than Captain Waters's lady?"

The poor woman, who in her present distress had very little regarded
the face of any person present, no sooner looked at the serjeant than
she presently recollected him, and calling him by his name, answered,
"That she was indeed the unhappy person he imagined her to be;" but
added, "I wonder any one should know me in this disguise." To which
the serjeant replied, "He was very much surprized to see her ladyship
in such a dress, and was afraid some accident had happened to
her."--"An accident hath happened to me, indeed," says she, "and I am
highly obliged to this gentleman" (pointing to Jones) "that it was not
a fatal one, or that I am now living to mention it."--"Whatever the
gentleman hath done," cries the serjeant, "I am sure the captain will
make him amends for it; and if I can be of any service, your ladyship
may command me, and I shall think myself very happy to have it in my
power to serve your ladyship; and so indeed may any one, for I know
the captain will well reward them for it."

The landlady, who heard from the stairs all that past between the
serjeant and Mrs Waters, came hastily down, and running directly up to
her, began to ask pardon for the offences she had committed, begging
that all might be imputed to ignorance of her quality: for, "Lud!
madam," says she, "how should I have imagined that a lady of your
fashion would appear in such a dress? I am sure, madam, if I had once
suspected that your ladyship was your ladyship, I would sooner have
burnt my tongue out, than have said what I have said; and I hope your
ladyship will accept of a gown, till you can get your own cloaths."

"Prithee, woman," says Mrs Waters, "cease your impertinence: how can
you imagine I should concern myself about anything which comes from
the lips of such low creatures as yourself? But I am surprized at your
assurance in thinking, after what is past, that I will condescend to
put on any of your dirty things. I would have you know, creature, I
have a spirit above that."

Here Jones interfered, and begged Mrs Waters to forgive the landlady,
and to accept her gown: "for I must confess," cries he, "our
appearance was a little suspicious when first we came in; and I am
well assured all this good woman did was, as she professed, out of
regard to the reputation of her house."

"Yes, upon my truly was it," says she: "the gentleman speaks very much
like a gentleman, and I see very plainly is so; and to be certain the
house is well known to be a house of as good reputation as any on the
road, and though I say it, is frequented by gentry of the best
quality, both Irish and English. I defy anybody to say black is my
eye, for that matter. And, as I was saying, if I had known your
ladyship to be your ladyship, I would as soon have burnt my fingers as
have affronted your ladyship; but truly where gentry come and spend
their money, I am not willing that they should be scandalized by a set
of poor shabby vermin, that, wherever they go, leave more lice than
money behind them; such folks never raise my compassion, for to be
certain it is foolish to have any for them; and if our justices did as
they ought, they would be all whipt out of the kingdom, for to be
certain it is what is most fitting for them. But as for your ladyship,
I am heartily sorry your ladyship hath had a misfortune, and if your
ladyship will do me the honour to wear my cloaths till you can get
some of your ladyship's own, to be certain the best I have is at your
ladyship's service."

Whether cold, shame, or the persuasions of Mr Jones prevailed most on
Mrs Waters, I will not determine, but she suffered herself to be
pacified by this speech of my landlady, and retired with that good
woman, in order to apparel herself in a decent manner.

My landlord was likewise beginning his oration to Jones, but was
presently interrupted by that generous youth, who shook him heartily
by the hand, and assured him of entire forgiveness, saying, "If you
are satisfied, my worthy friend, I promise you I am;" and indeed, in
one sense, the landlord had the better reason to be satisfied; for he
had received a bellyfull of drubbing, whereas Jones had scarce felt a
single blow.

Partridge, who had been all this time washing his bloody nose at the
pump, returned into the kitchen at the instant when his master and the
landlord were shaking hands with each other. As he was of a peaceable
disposition, he was pleased with those symptoms of reconciliation; and
though his face bore some marks of Susan's fist, and many more of her
nails, he rather chose to be contented with his fortune in the last
battle than to endeavour at bettering it in another.

The heroic Susan was likewise well contented with her victory, though
it had cost her a black eye, which Partridge had given her at the
first onset. Between these two, therefore, a league was struck, and
those hands which had been the instruments of war became now the
mediators of peace.

Matters were thus restored to a perfect calm; at which the serjeant,
though it may seem so contrary to the principles of his profession,
testified his approbation. "Why now, that's friendly," said he; "d--n
me, I hate to see two people bear ill-will to one another after they
have had a tussel. The only way when friends quarrel is to see it out
fairly in a friendly manner, as a man may call it, either with a fist,
or sword, or pistol, according as they like, and then let it be all
over; for my own part, d--n me if ever I love my friend better than
when I am fighting with him! To bear malice is more like a Frenchman
than an Englishman."

He then proposed a libation as a necessary part of the ceremony at all
treaties of this kind. Perhaps the reader may here conclude that he
was well versed in antient history; but this, though highly probable,
as he cited no authority to support the custom, I will not affirm with
any confidence. Most likely indeed it is, that he founded his opinion
on very good authority, since he confirmed it with many violent oaths.

Jones no sooner heard the proposal than, immediately agreeing with the
learned serjeant, he ordered a bowl, or rather a large mug, filled
with the liquor used on these occasions, to be brought in, and then
began the ceremony himself. He placed his right hand in that of the
landlord, and, seizing the bowl with his left, uttered the usual
words, and then made his libation. After which, the same was observed
by all present. Indeed, there is very little need of being particular
in describing the whole form, as it differed so little from those
libations of which so much is recorded in antient authors and their
modern transcribers. The principal difference lay in two instances;
for, first, the present company poured the liquor only down their
throats; and, secondly, the serjeant, who officiated as priest, drank
the last; but he preserved, I believe, the antient form, in swallowing
much the largest draught of the whole company, and in being the only
person present who contributed nothing towards the libation besides
his good offices in assisting at the performance.

The good people now ranged themselves round the kitchen fire, where
good humour seemed to maintain an absolute dominion; and Partridge not
only forgot his shameful defeat, but converted hunger into thirst, and
soon became extremely facetious. We must however quit this agreeable
assembly for a while, and attend Mr Jones to Mrs Waters's apartment,
where the dinner which he had bespoke was now on the table. Indeed, it
took no long time in preparing, having been all drest three days
before, and required nothing more from the cook than to warm it over

Chapter v.

An apology for all heroes who have good stomachs, with a description
of a battle of the amorous kind.

Heroes, notwithstanding the high ideas which, by the means of
flatterers, they may entertain of themselves, or the world may
conceive of them, have certainly more of mortal than divine about
them. However elevated their minds may be, their bodies at least
(which is much the major part of most) are liable to the worst
infirmities, and subject to the vilest offices of human nature. Among
these latter, the act of eating, which hath by several wise men been
considered as extremely mean and derogatory from the philosophic
dignity, must be in some measure performed by the greatest prince,
heroe, or philosopher upon earth; nay, sometimes Nature hath been so
frolicsome as to exact of these dignified characters a much more
exorbitant share of this office than she hath obliged those of the
lowest order to perform.

To say the truth, as no known inhabitant of this globe is really more
than man, so none need be ashamed of submitting to what the
necessities of man demand; but when those great personages I have just
mentioned condescend to aim at confining such low offices to
themselves--as when, by hoarding or destroying, they seem desirous to
prevent any others from eating--then they surely become very low and

Now, after this short preface, we think it no disparagement to our
heroe to mention the immoderate ardour with which he laid about him at
this season. Indeed, it may be doubted whether Ulysses, who by the way
seems to have had the best stomach of all the heroes in that eating
poem of the Odyssey, ever made a better meal. Three pounds at least of
that flesh which formerly had contributed to the composition of an ox
was now honoured with becoming part of the individual Mr Jones.

This particular we thought ourselves obliged to mention, as it may
account for our heroe's temporary neglect of his fair companion, who
eat but very little, and was indeed employed in considerations of a
very different nature, which passed unobserved by Jones, till he had
entirely satisfied that appetite which a fast of twenty-four hours had
procured him; but his dinner was no sooner ended than his attention to
other matters revived; with these matters therefore we shall now
proceed to acquaint the reader.

Mr Jones, of whose personal accomplishments we have hitherto said very
little, was, in reality, one of the handsomest young fellows in the
world. His face, besides being the picture of health, had in it the
most apparent marks of sweetness and good-nature. These qualities were
indeed so characteristical in his countenance, that, while the spirit
and sensibility in his eyes, though they must have been perceived by
an accurate observer, might have escaped the notice of the less
discerning, so strongly was this good-nature painted in his look, that
it was remarked by almost every one who saw him.

It was, perhaps, as much owing to this as to a very fine complexion
that his face had a delicacy in it almost inexpressible, and which
might have given him an air rather too effeminate, had it not been
joined to a most masculine person and mien: which latter had as much
in them of the Hercules as the former had of the Adonis. He was
besides active, genteel, gay, and good-humoured; and had a flow of
animal spirits which enlivened every conversation where he was

When the reader hath duly reflected on these many charms which all
centered in our heroe, and considers at the same time the fresh
obligations which Mrs Waters had to him, it will be a mark more of
prudery than candour to entertain a bad opinion of her because she
conceived a very good opinion of him.

But, whatever censures may be passed upon her, it is my business to
relate matters of fact with veracity. Mrs Waters had, in truth, not
only a good opinion of our heroe, but a very great affection for him.
To speak out boldly at once, she was in love, according to the present
universally-received sense of that phrase, by which love is applied
indiscriminately to the desirable objects of all our passions,
appetites, and senses, and is understood to be that preference which
we give to one kind of food rather than to another.

But though the love to these several objects may possibly be one and
the same in all cases, its operations however must be allowed to be
different; for, how much soever we may be in love with an excellent
surloin of beef, or bottle of Burgundy; with a damask rose, or Cremona
fiddle; yet do we never smile, nor ogle, nor dress, nor flatter, nor
endeavour by any other arts or tricks to gain the affection of the
said beef, &c. Sigh indeed we sometimes may; but it is generally in
the absence, not in the presence, of the beloved object. For otherwise
we might possibly complain of their ingratitude and deafness, with the
same reason as Pasiphae doth of her bull, whom she endeavoured to
engage by all the coquetry practised with good success in the
drawing-room on the much more sensible as well as tender hearts of the
fine gentlemen there.

The contrary happens in that love which operates between persons of
the same species, but of different sexes. Here we are no sooner in
love than it becomes our principal care to engage the affection of the
object beloved. For what other purpose indeed are our youth instructed
in all the arts of rendering themselves agreeable? If it was not with
a view to this love, I question whether any of those trades which deal
in setting off and adorning the human person would procure a
livelihood. Nay, those great polishers of our manners, who are by some
thought to teach what principally distinguishes us from the brute
creation, even dancing-masters themselves, might possibly find no
place in society. In short, all the graces which young ladies and
young gentlemen too learn from others, and the many improvements
which, by the help of a looking-glass, they add of their own, are in
reality those very _spicula et faces amoris_ so often mentioned by
Ovid; or, as they are sometimes called in our own language, the whole
artillery of love.

Now Mrs Waters and our heroe had no sooner sat down together than the
former began to play this artillery upon the latter. But here, as we
are about to attempt a description hitherto unassayed either in prose
or verse, we think proper to invoke the assistance of certain aërial
beings, who will, we doubt not, come kindly to our aid on this

"Say then, ye Graces! you that inhabit the heavenly mansions of
Seraphina's countenance; for you are truly divine, are always in her
presence, and well know all the arts of charming; say, what were the
weapons now used to captivate the heart of Mr Jones."

"First, from two lovely blue eyes, whose bright orbs flashed lightning
at their discharge, flew forth two pointed ogles; but, happily for our
heroe, hit only a vast piece of beef which he was then conveying into
his plate, and harmless spent their force. The fair warrior perceived
their miscarriage, and immediately from her fair bosom drew forth a
deadly sigh. A sigh which none could have heard unmoved, and which was
sufficient at once to have swept off a dozen beaus; so soft, so sweet,
so tender, that the insinuating air must have found its subtle way to
the heart of our heroe, had it not luckily been driven from his ears
by the coarse bubbling of some bottled ale, which at that time he was
pouring forth. Many other weapons did she assay; but the god of eating
(if there be any such deity, for I do not confidently assert it)
preserved his votary; or perhaps it may not be _dignus vindice nodus_,
and the present security of Jones may be accounted for by natural
means; for as love frequently preserves from the attacks of hunger, so
may hunger possibly, in some cases, defend us against love.

"The fair one, enraged at her frequent disappointments, determined on
a short cessation of arms. Which interval she employed in making ready
every engine of amorous warfare for the renewing of the attack when
dinner should be over.

"No sooner then was the cloth removed than she again began her
operations. First, having planted her right eye sidewise against Mr
Jones, she shot from its corner a most penetrating glance; which,
though great part of its force was spent before it reached our heroe,
did not vent itself absolutely without effect. This the fair one
perceiving, hastily withdrew her eyes, and levelled them downwards, as
if she was concerned for what she had done; though by this means she
designed only to draw him from his guard, and indeed to open his eyes,
through which she intended to surprize his heart. And now, gently
lifting up those two bright orbs which had already begun to make an
impression on poor Jones, she discharged a volley of small charms at
once from her whole countenance in a smile. Not a smile of mirth, nor
of joy; but a smile of affection, which most ladies have always ready
at their command, and which serves them to show at once their
good-humour, their pretty dimples, and their white teeth.

"This smile our heroe received full in his eyes, and was immediately
staggered with its force. He then began to see the designs of the
enemy, and indeed to feel their success. A parley now was set on foot
between the parties; during which the artful fair so slily and
imperceptibly carried on her attack, that she had almost subdued the
heart of our heroe before she again repaired to acts of hostility. To
confess the truth, I am afraid Mr Jones maintained a kind of Dutch
defence, and treacherously delivered up the garrison, without duly
weighing his allegiance to the fair Sophia. In short, no sooner had
the amorous parley ended and the lady had unmasked the royal battery,
by carelessly letting her handkerchief drop from her neck, than the
heart of Mr Jones was entirely taken, and the fair conqueror enjoyed
the usual fruits of her victory."

Here the Graces think proper to end their description, and here we
think proper to end the chapter.

Chapter vi.

A friendly conversation in the kitchen, which had a very common,
though not very friendly, conclusion.

While our lovers were entertaining themselves in the manner which is
partly described in the foregoing chapter, they were likewise
furnishing out an entertainment for their good friends in the kitchen.
And this in a double sense, by affording them matter for their
conversation, and, at the same time, drink to enliven their spirits.

There were now assembled round the kitchen fire, besides my landlord
and landlady, who occasionally went backward and forward, Mr
Partridge, the serjeant, and the coachman who drove the young lady and
her maid.

Partridge having acquainted the company with what he had learnt from
the Man of the Hill concerning the situation in which Mrs Waters had
been found by Jones, the serjeant proceeded to that part of her
history which was known to him. He said she was the wife of Mr Waters,
who was a captain in their regiment, and had often been with him at
quarters. "Some folks," says he, "used indeed to doubt whether they
were lawfully married in a church or no. But, for my part, that's no
business of mine: I must own, if I was put to my corporal oath, I
believe she is little better than one of us; and I fancy the captain
may go to heaven when the sun shines upon a rainy day. But if he does,
that is neither here nor there; for he won't want company. And the
lady, to give the devil his due, is a very good sort of lady, and
loves the cloth, and is always desirous to do strict justice to it;
for she hath begged off many a poor soldier, and, by her good-will,
would never have any of them punished. But yet, to be sure, Ensign
Northerton and she were very well acquainted together at our last
quarters; that is the very right and truth of the matter. But the
captain he knows nothing about it; and as long as there is enough for
him too, what does it signify? He loves her not a bit the worse, and I
am certain would run any man through the body that was to abuse her;
therefore I won't abuse her, for my part. I only repeat what other
folks say; and, to be certain, what everybody says, there must be some
truth in."--"Ay, ay, a great deal of truth, I warrant you," cries
Partridge; "_Veritas odium parit_"--"All a parcel of scandalous
stuff," answered the mistress of the house. "I am sure, now she is
drest, she looks like a very good sort of lady, and she behaves
herself like one; for she gave me a guinea for the use of my
cloaths."--"A very good lady indeed!" cries the landlord; "and if you
had not been a little too hasty, you would not have quarrelled with
her as you did at first."--"You need mention that with my truly!"
answered she: "if it had not been for your nonsense, nothing had
happened. You must be meddling with what did not belong to you, and
throw in your fool's discourse."--"Well, well," answered he; "what's
past cannot be mended, so there's an end of the matter."--"Yes," cries
she, "for this once; but will it be mended ever the more hereafter?
This is not the first time I have suffered for your numscull's pate. I
wish you would always hold your tongue in the house, and meddle only
in matters without doors, which concern you. Don't you remember what
happened about seven years ago?"--"Nay, my dear," returned he, "don't
rip up old stories. Come, come, all's well, and I am sorry for what I
have done." The landlady was going to reply, but was prevented by the
peace-making serjeant, sorely to the displeasure of Partridge, who was
a great lover of what is called fun, and a great promoter of those
harmless quarrels which tend rather to the production of comical than
tragical incidents.

The serjeant asked Partridge whither he and his master were travelling?
"None of your magisters," answered Partridge; "I am no man's servant, I
assure you; for, though I have had misfortunes in the world, I write
gentleman after my name; and, as poor and simple as I may appear now, I
have taught grammar-school in my time; _sed hei mihi! non sum quod
fui_."--"No offence, I hope, sir," said the serjeant; "where, then, if
I may venture to be so bold, may you and your friend be
travelling?"--"You have now denominated us right," says Partridge.
"_Amici sumus._ And I promise you my friend is one of the greatest
gentlemen in the kingdom" (at which words both landlord and landlady
pricked up their ears). "He is the heir of Squire Allworthy."--"What,
the squire who doth so much good all over the country?" cries my
landlady. "Even he," answered Partridge.--"Then I warrant," says she,
"he'll have a swinging great estate hereafter."--"Most certainly,"
answered Partridge.--"Well," replied the landlady, "I thought the first
moment I saw him he looked like a good sort of gentleman; but my
husband here, to be sure, is wiser than anybody."--"I own, my dear,"
cries he, "it was a mistake."--"A mistake, indeed!" answered she; "but
when did you ever know me to make such mistakes?"--"But how comes it,
sir," cries the landlord, "that such a great gentleman walks about the
country afoot?"--"I don't know," returned Partridge; "great gentlemen
have humours sometimes. He hath now a dozen horses and servants at
Gloucester; and nothing would serve him, but last night, it being very
hot weather, he must cool himself with a walk to yon high hill, whither
I likewise walked with him to bear him company; but if ever you catch
me there again: for I was never so frightened in all my life. We met
with the strangest man there."--"I'll be hanged," cries the landlord,
"if it was not the Man of the Hill, as they call him; if indeed he be a
man; but I know several people who believe it is the devil that lives
there."--"Nay, nay, like enough," says Partridge; "and now you put me
in the head of it, I verily and sincerely believe it was the devil,
though I could not perceive his cloven foot: but perhaps he might have
the power given him to hide that, since evil spirits can appear in what
shapes they please."--"And pray, sir," says the serjeant, "no offence,
I hope; but pray what sort of a gentleman is the devil? For I have
heard some of our officers say there is no such person; and that it is
only a trick of the parsons, to prevent their being broke; for, if it
was publickly known that there was no devil, the parsons would be of no
more use than we are in time of peace."--"Those officers," says
Partridge, "are very great scholars, I suppose."--"Not much of
schollards neither," answered the serjeant; "they have not half your
learning, sir, I believe; and, to be sure, I thought there must be a
devil, notwithstanding what they said, though one of them was a
captain; for methought, thinks I to myself, if there be no devil, how
can wicked people be sent to him? and I have read all that upon a
book."--"Some of your officers," quoth the landlord, "will find there
is a devil, to their shame, I believe. I don't question but he'll pay
off some old scores upon my account. Here was one quartered upon me
half a year, who had the conscience to take up one of my best beds,
though he hardly spent a shilling a day in the house, and suffered his
men to roast cabbages at the kitchen fire, because I would not give
them a dinner on a Sunday. Every good Christian must desire there
should be a devil for the punishment of such wretches."--"Harkee,
landlord," said the serjeant, "don't abuse the cloth, for I won't take
it."--"D--n the cloth!" answered the landlord, "I have suffered enough
by them."--"Bear witness, gentlemen," says the serjeant, "he curses the
king, and that's high treason."--"I curse the king! you villain," said
the landlord. "Yes, you did," cries the serjeant; "you cursed the
cloth, and that's cursing the king. It's all one and the same; for
every man who curses the cloth would curse the king if he durst; so for
matter o' that, it's all one and the same thing."--"Excuse me there, Mr
Serjeant," quoth Partridge, "that's a _non sequitur_."--"None of your
outlandish linguo," answered the serjeant, leaping from his seat; "I
will not sit still and hear the cloth abused."--"You mistake me,
friend," cries Partridge. "I did not mean to abuse the cloth; I only
said your conclusion was a _non sequitur_.[*]"--"You
are another," cries the serjeant," an you come to that. No more a
_sequitur_ than yourself. You are a pack of rascals, and I'll prove it;
for I will fight the best man of you all for twenty pound." This
challenge effectually silenced Partridge, whose stomach for drubbing
did not so soon return after the hearty meal which he had lately been
treated with; but the coachman, whose bones were less sore, and whose
appetite for fighting was somewhat sharper, did not so easily brook the
affront, of which he conceived some part at least fell to his share. He
started therefore from his seat, and, advancing to the serjeant, swore
he looked on himself to be as good a man as any in the army, and
offered to box for a guinea. The military man accepted the combat, but
refused the wager; upon which both immediately stript and engaged, till
the driver of horses was so well mauled by the leader of men, that he
was obliged to exhaust his small remainder of breath in begging for

  [*] This word, which the serjeant unhappily mistook for an affront,
  is a term in logic, and means that the conclusion does not follow
  from the premises.

The young lady was now desirous to depart, and had given orders for
her coach to be prepared; but all in vain, for the coachman was
disabled from performing his office for that evening. An antient
heathen would perhaps have imputed this disability to the god of
drink, no less than to the god of war; for, in reality, both the
combatants had sacrificed as well to the former deity as to the
latter. To speak plainly, they were both dead drunk, nor was Partridge
in a much better situation. As for my landlord, drinking was his
trade; and the liquor had no more effect on him than it had on any
other vessel in his house.

The mistress of the inn, being summoned to attend Mr Jones and his
companion at their tea, gave a full relation of the latter part of the
foregoing scene; and at the same time expressed great concern for the
young lady, "who," she said, "was under the utmost uneasiness at being
prevented from pursuing her journey. She is a sweet pretty creature,"
added she, "and I am certain I have seen her face before. I fancy she
is in love, and running away from her friends. Who knows but some
young gentleman or other may be expecting her, with a heart as heavy
as her own?"

Jones fetched a heavy sigh at those words; of which, though Mrs Waters
observed it, she took no notice while the landlady continued in the
room; but, after the departure of that good woman, she could not
forbear giving our heroe certain hints on her suspecting some very
dangerous rival in his affections. The aukward behaviour of Mr Jones
on this occasion convinced her of the truth, without his giving her a
direct answer to any of her questions; but she was not nice enough in
her amours to be greatly concerned at the discovery. The beauty of
Jones highly charmed her eye; but as she could not see his heart, she
gave herself no concern about it. She could feast heartily at the
table of love, without reflecting that some other already had been, or
hereafter might be, feasted with the same repast. A sentiment which,
if it deals but little in refinement, deals, however, much in
substance; and is less capricious, and perhaps less ill-natured and
selfish, than the desires of those females who can be contented enough
to abstain from the possession of their lovers, provided they are
sufficiently satisfied that no one else possesses them.

Chapter vii.

Containing a fuller account of Mrs Waters, and by what means she came
into that distressful situation from which she was rescued by Jones.

Though Nature hath by no means mixed up an equal share either of
curiosity or vanity in every human composition, there is perhaps no
individual to whom she hath not allotted such a proportion of both as
requires much arts, and pains too, to subdue and keep under;--a
conquest, however, absolutely necessary to every one who would in any
degree deserve the characters of wisdom or good breeding.

As Jones, therefore, might very justly be called a well-bred man, he
had stifled all that curiosity which the extraordinary manner in which
he had found Mrs Waters must be supposed to have occasioned. He had,
indeed, at first thrown out some few hints to the lady; but, when he
perceived her industriously avoiding any explanation, he was contented
to remain in ignorance, the rather as he was not without suspicion
that there were some circumstances which must have raised her blushes,
had she related the whole truth.

Now since it is possible that some of our readers may not so easily
acquiesce under the same ignorance, and as we are very desirous to
satisfy them all, we have taken uncommon pains to inform ourselves of
the real fact, with the relation of which we shall conclude this book.

This lady, then, had lived some years with one Captain Waters, who was
a captain in the same regiment to which Mr Northerton belonged. She
past for that gentleman's wife, and went by his name; and yet, as the
serjeant said, there were some doubts concerning the reality of their
marriage, which we shall not at present take upon us to resolve.

Mrs Waters, I am sorry to say it, had for some time contracted an
intimacy with the above-mentioned ensign, which did no great credit to
her reputation. That she had a remarkable fondness for that young
fellow is most certain; but whether she indulged this to any very
criminal lengths is not so extremely clear, unless we will suppose
that women never grant every favour to a man but one, without granting
him that one also.

The division of the regiment to which Captain Waters belonged had two
days preceded the march of that company to which Mr Northerton was the
ensign; so that the former had reached Worcester the very day after
the unfortunate re-encounter between Jones and Northerton which we
have before recorded.

Now, it had been agreed between Mrs Waters and the captain that she
would accompany him in his march as far as Worcester, where they were
to take their leave of each other, and she was thence to return to
Bath, where she was to stay till the end of the winter's campaign
against the rebels.

With this agreement Mr Northerton was made acquainted. To say the
truth, the lady had made him an assignation at this very place, and
promised to stay at Worcester till his division came thither; with
what view, and for what purpose, must be left to the reader's
divination; for, though we are obliged to relate facts, we are not
obliged to do a violence to our nature by any comments to the
disadvantage of the loveliest part of the creation.

Northerton no sooner obtained a release from his captivity, as we have
seen, than he hasted away to overtake Mrs Waters; which, as he was a
very active nimble fellow, he did at the last-mentioned city, some few
hours after Captain Waters had left her. At his first arrival he made
no scruple of acquainting her with the unfortunate accident; which he
made appear very unfortunate indeed, for he totally extracted every
particle of what could be called fault, at least in a court of honour,
though he left some circumstances which might be questionable in a
court of law.

Women, to their glory be it spoken, are more generally capable of that
violent and apparently disinterested passion of love, which seeks only
the good of its object, than men. Mrs Waters, therefore, was no sooner
apprized of the danger to which her lover was exposed, than she lost
every consideration besides that of his safety; and this being a
matter equally agreeable to the gentleman, it became the immediate
subject of debate between them.

After much consultation on this matter, it was at length agreed that
the ensign should go across the country to Hereford, whence he might
find some conveyance to one of the sea-ports in Wales, and thence
might make his escape abroad. In all which expedition Mrs Waters
declared she would bear him company; and for which she was able to
furnish him with money, a very material article to Mr Northerton, she
having then in her pocket three bank-notes to the amount of £90,
besides some cash, and a diamond ring of pretty considerable value on
her finger. All which she, with the utmost confidence, revealed to
this wicked man, little suspecting she should by these means inspire
him with a design of robbing her. Now, as they must, by taking horses
from Worcester, have furnished any pursuers with the means of
hereafter discovering their route, the ensign proposed, and the lady
presently agreed, to make their first stage on foot; for which purpose
the hardness of the frost was very seasonable.

The main part of the lady's baggage was already at Bath, and she had
nothing with her at present besides a very small quantity of linen,
which the gallant undertook to carry in his own pockets. All things,
therefore, being settled in the evening, they arose early the next
morning, and at five o'clock departed from Worcester, it being then
above two hours before day, but the moon, which was then at the full,
gave them all the light she was capable of affording.

Mrs Waters was not of that delicate race of women who are obliged to
the invention of vehicles for the capacity of removing themselves from
one place to another, and with whom consequently a coach is reckoned
among the necessaries of life. Her limbs were indeed full of strength
and agility, and, as her mind was no less animated with spirit, she
was perfectly able to keep pace with her nimble lover.

Having travelled on for some miles in a high road, which Northerton
said he was informed led to Hereford, they came at the break of day to
the side of a large wood, where he suddenly stopped, and, affecting to
meditate a moment with himself, expressed some apprehensions from
travelling any longer in so public a way. Upon which he easily
persuaded his fair companion to strike with him into a path which
seemed to lead directly through the wood, and which at length brought
them both to the bottom of Mazard Hill.

Whether the execrable scheme which he now attempted to execute was the
effect of previous deliberation, or whether it now first came into his
head, I cannot determine. But being arrived in this lonely place,
where it was very improbable he should meet with any interruption, he
suddenly slipped his garter from his leg, and, laying violent hands on
the poor woman, endeavoured to perpetrate that dreadful and detestable
fact which we have before commemorated, and which the providential
appearance of Jones did so fortunately prevent.

Happy was it for Mrs Waters that she was not of the weakest order of
females; for no sooner did she perceive, by his tying a knot in his
garter, and by his declarations, what his hellish intentions were,
than she stood stoutly to her defence, and so strongly struggled with
her enemy, screaming all the while for assistance, that she delayed
the execution of the villain's purpose several minutes, by which means
Mr Jones came to her relief at that very instant when her strength
failed and she was totally overpowered, and delivered her from the
ruffian's hands, with no other loss than that of her cloaths, which
were torn from her back, and of the diamond ring, which during the
contention either dropped from her finger, or was wrenched from it by

Thus, reader, we have given thee the fruits of a very painful enquiry
which for thy satisfaction we have made into this matter. And here we
have opened to thee a scene of folly as well as villany, which we
could scarce have believed a human creature capable of being guilty
of, had we not remembered that this fellow was at that time firmly
persuaded that he had already committed a murder, and had forfeited
his life to the law. As he concluded therefore that his only safety
lay in flight, he thought the possessing himself of this poor woman's
money and ring would make him amends for the additional burthen he was
to lay on his conscience.

And here, reader, we must strictly caution thee that thou dost not
take any occasion, from the misbehaviour of such a wretch as this, to
reflect on so worthy and honourable a body of men as are the officers
of our army in general. Thou wilt be pleased to consider that this
fellow, as we have already informed thee, had neither the birth nor
education of a gentleman, nor was a proper person to be enrolled among
the number of such. If, therefore, his baseness can justly reflect on
any besides himself, it must be only on those who gave him his



Chapter i.

Containing instructions very necessary to be perused by modern

Reader, it is impossible we should know what sort of person thou wilt
be; for, perhaps, thou may'st be as learned in human nature as
Shakespear himself was, and, perhaps, thou may'st be no wiser than
some of his editors. Now, lest this latter should be the case, we
think proper, before we go any farther together, to give thee a few
wholesome admonitions; that thou may'st not as grossly misunderstand
and misrepresent us, as some of the said editors have misunderstood
and misrepresented their author.

First, then, we warn thee not too hastily to condemn any of the
incidents in this our history as impertinent and foreign to our main
design, because thou dost not immediately conceive in what manner such
incident may conduce to that design. This work may, indeed, be
considered as a great creation of our own; and for a little reptile of
a critic to presume to find fault with any of its parts, without
knowing the manner in which the whole is connected, and before he
comes to the final catastrophe, is a most presumptuous absurdity. The
allusion and metaphor we have here made use of, we must acknowledge to
be infinitely too great for our occasion; but there is, indeed, no
other, which is at all adequate to express the difference between an
author of the first rate and a critic of the lowest.

Another caution we would give thee, my good reptile, is, that thou
dost not find out too near a resemblance between certain characters
here introduced; as, for instance, between the landlady who appears in
the seventh book and her in the ninth. Thou art to know, friend, that
there are certain characteristics in which most individuals of every
profession and occupation agree. To be able to preserve these
characteristics, and at the same time to diversify their operations,
is one talent of a good writer. Again, to mark the nice distinction
between two persons actuated by the same vice or folly is another;
and, as this last talent is found in very few writers, so is the true
discernment of it found in as few readers; though, I believe, the
observation of this forms a very principal pleasure in those who are
capable of the discovery; every person, for instance, can distinguish
between Sir Epicure Mammon and Sir Fopling Flutter; but to note the
difference between Sir Fopling Flutter and Sir Courtly Nice requires a
more exquisite judgment: for want of which, vulgar spectators of plays
very often do great injustice in the theatre; where I have sometimes
known a poet in danger of being convicted as a thief, upon much worse
evidence than the resemblance of hands hath been held to be in the
law. In reality, I apprehend every amorous widow on the stage would
run the hazard of being condemned as a servile imitation of Dido, but
that happily very few of our play-house critics understand enough of
Latin to read Virgil.

In the next place, we must admonish thee, my worthy friend (for,
perhaps, thy heart may be better than thy head), not to condemn a
character as a bad one, because it is not perfectly a good one. If
thou dost delight in these models of perfection, there are books enow
written to gratify thy taste; but, as we have not, in the course of
our conversation, ever happened to meet with any such person, we have
not chosen to introduce any such here. To say the truth, I a little
question whether mere man ever arrived at this consummate degree of
excellence, as well as whether there hath ever existed a monster bad
enough to verify that

      _----nulla virtute redemptum
       A vitiis_----[*]

  [*] Whose vices are not allayed with a single virtue

in Juvenal; nor do I, indeed, conceive the good purposes served by
inserting characters of such angelic perfection, or such diabolical
depravity, in any work of invention; since, from contemplating either,
the mind of man is more likely to be overwhelmed with sorrow and shame
than to draw any good uses from such patterns; for in the former
instance he may be both concerned and ashamed to see a pattern of
excellence in his nature, which he may reasonably despair of ever
arriving at; and in contemplating the latter he may be no less
affected with those uneasy sensations, at seeing the nature of which
he is a partaker degraded into so odious and detestable a creature.

In fact, if there be enough of goodness in a character to engage the
admiration and affection of a well-disposed mind, though there should
appear some of those little blemishes _quas humana parum cavit
natura_, they will raise our compassion rather than our abhorrence.
Indeed, nothing can be of more moral use than the imperfections which
are seen in examples of this kind; since such form a kind of surprize,
more apt to affect and dwell upon our minds than the faults of very
vicious and wicked persons. The foibles and vices of men, in whom
there is great mixture of good, become more glaring objects from the
virtues which contrast them and shew their deformity; and when we find
such vices attended with their evil consequence to our favourite
characters, we are not only taught to shun them for our own sake, but
to hate them for the mischiefs they have already brought on those we

And now, my friend, having given you these few admonitions, we will,
if you please, once more set forward with our history.

Chapter ii.

Containing the arrival of an Irish gentleman, with very extraordinary
adventures which ensued at the inn.

Now the little trembling hare, which the dread of all her numerous
enemies, and chiefly of that cunning, cruel, carnivorous animal, man,
had confined all the day to her lurking-place, sports wantonly o'er
the lawns; now on some hollow tree the owl, shrill chorister of the
night, hoots forth notes which might charm the ears of some modern
connoisseurs in music; now, in the imagination of the half-drunk
clown, as he staggers through the churchyard, or rather charnelyard,
to his home, fear paints the bloody hobgoblin; now thieves and
ruffians are awake, and honest watchmen fast asleep; in plain English,
it was now midnight; and the company at the inn, as well those who
have been already mentioned in this history, as some others who
arrived in the evening, were all in bed. Only Susan Chambermaid was
now stirring, she being obliged to wash the kitchen before she retired
to the arms of the fond expecting hostler.

In this posture were affairs at the inn when a gentleman arrived there
post. He immediately alighted from his horse, and, coming up to Susan,
enquired of her, in a very abrupt and confused manner, being almost
out of breath with eagerness, Whether there was any lady in the house?
The hour of night, and the behaviour of the man, who stared very
wildly all the time, a little surprized Susan, so that she hesitated
before she made any answer; upon which the gentleman, with redoubled
eagerness, begged her to give him a true information, saying, He had
lost his wife, and was come in pursuit of her. "Upon my shoul," cries
he, "I have been near catching her already in two or three places, if
I had not found her gone just as I came up with her. If she be in the
house, do carry me up in the dark and show her to me; and if she be
gone away before me, do tell me which way I shall go after her to meet
her, and, upon my shoul, I will make you the richest poor woman in the
nation." He then pulled out a handful of guineas, a sight which would
have bribed persons of much greater consequence than this poor wench
to much worse purposes.

Susan, from the account she had received of Mrs Waters, made not the
least doubt but that she was the very identical stray whom the right
owner pursued. As she concluded, therefore, with great appearance of
reason, that she never could get money in an honester way than by
restoring a wife to her husband, she made no scruple of assuring the
gentleman that the lady he wanted was then in the house; and was
presently afterwards prevailed upon (by very liberal promises, and
some earnest paid into her hands) to conduct him to the bedchamber of
Mrs Waters.

It hath been a custom long established in the polite world, and that
upon very solid and substantial reasons, that a husband shall never
enter his wife's apartment without first knocking at the door. The
many excellent uses of this custom need scarce be hinted to a reader
who hath any knowledge of the world; for by this means the lady hath
time to adjust herself, or to remove any disagreeable object out of
the way; for there are some situations in which nice and delicate
women would not be discovered by their husbands.

To say the truth, there are several ceremonies instituted among the
polished part of mankind, which, though they may, to coarser
judgments, appear as matters of mere form, are found to have much of
substance in them, by the more discerning; and lucky would it have
been had the custom above mentioned been observed by our gentleman in
the present instance. Knock, indeed, he did at the door, but not with
one of those gentle raps which is usual on such occasions. On the
contrary, when he found the door locked, he flew at it with such
violence, that the lock immediately gave way, the door burst open, and
he fell headlong into the room.

He had no sooner recovered his legs than forth from the bed, upon his
legs likewise, appeared--with shame and sorrow are we obliged to
proceed--our heroe himself, who, with a menacing voice, demanded of
the gentleman who he was, and what he meant by daring to burst open
his chamber in that outrageous manner.

The gentleman at first thought he had committed a mistake, and was
going to ask pardon and retreat, when, on a sudden, as the moon shone
very bright, he cast his eyes on stays, gowns, petticoats, caps,
ribbons, stockings, garters, shoes, clogs, &c., all which lay in a
disordered manner on the floor. All these, operating on the natural
jealousy of his temper, so enraged him, that he lost all power of
speech; and, without returning any answer to Jones, he endeavoured to
approach the bed.

Jones immediately interposing, a fierce contention arose, which soon
proceeded to blows on both sides. And now Mrs Waters (for we must
confess she was in the same bed), being, I suppose, awakened from her
sleep, and seeing two men fighting in her bedchamber, began to scream
in the most violent manner, crying out murder! robbery! and more
frequently rape! which last, some, perhaps, may wonder she should
mention, who do not consider that these words of exclamation are used
by ladies in a fright, as fa, la, la, ra, da, &c., are in music, only
as the vehicles of sound, and without any fixed ideas.

Next to the lady's chamber was deposited the body of an Irish
gentleman who arrived too late at the inn to have been mentioned
before. This gentleman was one of those whom the Irish call a
calabalaro, or cavalier. He was a younger brother of a good family,
and, having no fortune at home, was obliged to look abroad in order to
get one; for which purpose he was proceeding to the Bath, to try his
luck with cards and the women.

This young fellow lay in bed reading one of Mrs Behn's novels; for he
had been instructed by a friend that he would find no more effectual
method of recommending himself to the ladies than the improving his
understanding, and filling his mind with good literature. He no
sooner, therefore, heard the violent uproar in the next room, than he
leapt from his bolster, and, taking his sword in one hand, and the
candle which burnt by him in the other, he went directly to Mrs
Waters's chamber.

If the sight of another man in his shirt at first added some shock to
the decency of the lady, it made her presently amends by considerably
abating her fears; for no sooner had the calabalaro entered the room
than he cried out, "Mr Fitzpatrick, what the devil is the maning of
this?" Upon which the other immediately answered, "O, Mr Maclachlan! I
am rejoiced you are here.--This villain hath debauched my wife, and is
got into bed with her."--"What wife?" cries Maclachlan; "do not I know
Mrs Fitzpatrick very well, and don't I see that the lady, whom the
gentleman who stands here in his shirt is lying in bed with, is none
of her?"

Fitzpatrick, now perceiving, as well by the glimpse he had of the
lady, as by her voice, which might have been distinguished at a
greater distance than he now stood from her, that he had made a very
unfortunate mistake, began to ask many pardons of the lady; and then,
turning to Jones, he said, "I would have you take notice I do not ask
your pardon, for you have bate me; for which I am resolved to have
your blood in the morning."

Jones treated this menace with much contempt; and Mr Maclachlan
answered, "Indeed, Mr Fitzpatrick, you may be ashamed of your own
self, to disturb people at this time of night; if all the people in
the inn were not asleep, you would have awakened them as you have me.
The gentleman has served you very rightly. Upon my conscience, though
I have no wife, if you had treated her so, I would have cut your

Jones was so confounded with his fears for his lady's reputation, that
he knew neither what to say or do; but the invention of women is, as
hath been observed, much readier than that of men. She recollected
that there was a communication between her chamber and that of Mr
Jones; relying, therefore, on his honour and her own assurance, she
answered, "I know not what you mean, villains! I am wife to none of
you. Help! Rape! Murder! Rape!"--And now, the landlady coming into the
room, Mrs Waters fell upon her with the utmost virulence, saying, "She
thought herself in a sober inn, and not in a bawdy-house; but that a
set of villains had broke into her room, with an intent upon her
honour, if not upon her life; and both, she said, were equally dear to

The landlady now began to roar as loudly as the poor woman in bed had
done before. She cried, "She was undone, and that the reputation of
her house, which was never blown upon before, was utterly destroyed."
Then, turning to the men, she cried, "What, in the devil's name, is
the reason of all this disturbance in the lady's room?" Fitzpatrick,
hanging down his head, repeated, "That he had committed a mistake, for
which he heartily asked pardon," and then retired with his countryman.
Jones, who was too ingenious to have missed the hint given him by his
fair one, boldly asserted, "That he had run to her assistance upon
hearing the door broke open, with what design he could not conceive,
unless of robbing the lady; which, if they intended, he said, he had
the good fortune to prevent." "I never had a robbery committed in my
house since I have kept it," cries the landlady; "I would have you to
know, sir, I harbour no highwaymen here; I scorn the word, thof I say
it. None but honest, good gentlefolks, are welcome to my house; and, I
thank good luck, I have always had enow of such customers; indeed as
many as I could entertain. Here hath been my lord--," and then she
repeated over a catalogue of names and titles, many of which we might,
perhaps, be guilty of a breach of privilege by inserting.

Jones, after much patience, at length interrupted her, by making an
apology to Mrs Waters, for having appeared before her in his shirt,
assuring her "That nothing but a concern for her safety could have
prevailed on him to do it." The reader may inform himself of her
answer, and, indeed, of her whole behaviour to the end of the scene,
by considering the situation which she affected, it being that of a
modest lady, who was awakened out of her sleep by three strange men in
her chamber. This was the part which she undertook to perform; and,
indeed, she executed it so well, that none of our theatrical actresses
could exceed her, in any of their performances, either on or off the

And hence, I think, we may very fairly draw an argument, to prove how
extremely natural virtue is to the fair sex; for, though there is not,
perhaps, one in ten thousand who is capable of making a good actress,
and even among these we rarely see two who are equally able to
personate the same character, yet this of virtue they can all
admirably well put on; and as well those individuals who have it not,
as those who possess it, can all act it to the utmost degree of

When the men were all departed, Mrs Waters, recovering from her fear,
recovered likewise from her anger, and spoke in much gentler accents
to the landlady, who did not so readily quit her concern for the
reputation of the house, in favour of which she began again to number
the many great persons who had slept under her roof; but the lady
stopt her short, and having absolutely acquitted her of having had any
share in the past disturbance, begged to be left to her repose, which,
she said, she hoped to enjoy unmolested during the remainder of the
night. Upon which the landlady, after much civility and many
courtsies, took her leave.

Chapter iii.

A dialogue between the landlady and Susan the chamber-maid, proper to
be read by all inn-keepers and their servants; with the arrival, and
affable behaviour of a beautiful young lady; which may teach persons
of condition how they may acquire the love of the whole world.

The landlady, remembering that Susan had been the only person out of
bed when the door was burst open, resorted presently to her, to
enquire into the first occasion of the disturbance, as well as who the
strange gentleman was, and when and how he arrived.

Susan related the whole story which the reader knows already, varying
the truth only in some circumstances, as she saw convenient, and
totally concealing the money which she had received. But whereas her
mistress had, in the preface to her enquiry, spoken much in compassion
for the fright which the lady had been in concerning any intended
depredations on her virtue, Susan could not help endeavouring to quiet
the concern which her mistress seemed to be under on that account, by
swearing heartily she saw Jo