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belenged (as Fernando knew) to an opulent merchant.
The youth rang, and a porter answered him, who scarcely seemed to give him time to speak, when he closed the gate with rudeness in his face; the young man walked away, and D'Rosonio saw that the flush of indignation which overspread his cheek at this unworthy treatment, gave way the next moment to an ashy paleness; his eyes filled with tears, and he cast them to Heaven with an expression of despair that sensibly touched the heart of the young count. He followed the youth for some time in silence, for he hesitated how to accost him, at last, he said
“ You seem fatigued, have you much farther to go before you reach your home?"
“ Alas! signor (replied the young man), I have no home; my unhappy parent and myself have indeed the shelter of a roof, but Heaven knows hos soon we may be deprived of it."
filled with tears as he spoke, and Fernando exclaimed
No, you shall not be deprived of it. I will provide you a home; my father will befriend you.”
May Heaven bless you, signor (cried the youth). Oh! not for myself, but for
do I thank you; I am young, and might struggle with my ill fortune, but age, sickness, and poverty join to oppress him. Oh! how will he rejoice, that at the moment when we had resigned all hope, Heaven sent' us a friend. Will you, generous signor, allow my father the happiness of thanking you ?'
D'Rosonio assented, and the young man led him to an abode that might indeed be stiled the habitation of wretchedness. The lower order of the Neapolitans live in a state of abject poverty, which Fernando had no idea of: his father's vassals enjoyed from the benevolence of Count D'Rosonio, all the decent comforts of life, and he
shuddered when he entered the mi'serable habitation of Camillo Schedoni,
Stretched on a couch at the further end of the room into which Camillo conducted Fernando, lay an emaciated old man, who, in a tone, the hollowness of which startled D’Rosonio
; asked, “ Is it you Camillo, what says
your uncle ?"
“He would not see me, dear father (replied the youth), but thank Heaven, we have found that humanity from a stranger that he denies to show to his own flesh and blood, Providence has sent this generous signor to our assistance."
The old man tried to turn round; he raised his eyes, and surveyed D'Rosonio with earnestness.
“ You are very young, signor (said he), and at your age to be alive to the duties of humanity, shows a good and feeling heart ; accept the thanks and blessing of a poor old man, and believe
that your benevolence will not be ill bestowed.”
That I do indeed believe (cried Fernando), and if (as I conjecture), unexpected and unmerited misfortune has reduced you'to your present distressed situation, in my father, the Count D'Rosonio, you will find a powerful friend."
" Thousands have cause to bless the noble naine of D'Rosonio (replied the old man), and most truly do I rejoice to think that the virtues of the sire will be continued in the son."
“ The worthy and distressed said Fernando), never sought the protection of my father in vain.. For the present take this (continued he, putting his purse into the youth's hand), and for every thing new cessary
future comfort, I will answer for
father." He was then about to depart, but the old man begged so earnestly that he would hear the cause of the wretched ness he had so generously relieved, that
he complied; and the father of Camillo related his simple tale.
“ The merchant, at whose door you this day saw my son supplicate in vain for admittance, signor, is my brother"
“Good heaven! (cried Fernando), and does he then know your actual situation? does he know"-(that you are perishing for want, he was about to add, but motives of delicacy induced him to suppress the latter part of his speech: young as D Rosonio was, the natural nobleness of his temper revolted at the thought of wounding the object of his benevolence, even by a word. How few, how very few are there, who possess this intuitive delicacy of sentiment! and how often is the meed that benevolence bestows rendered little, by the ungracious manner in which it is given !).
But to return : “ Yes, signor, he does indeed know that I am sinking under the pressure of calamity (said the old man), and though in the possession of riches which he does not want and can