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ing to Montalva, who soon made for her a small, but elegant establishment, and visited her daily. The novelty of her character interested him. The sprightly graces of the French ladies, and the voluptuous allurements of the Italians, he was no stranger to ; but the mixture of gentleness and hauteur, of sensibility and firmness, which he found in Ellen Dudley, he had never before met with ; always grave, simple, and rational, the reserve and coldness of her manners would nost probably soon have disgusted the count, but for a circumstance that gave her a strong hold upon
his heart : this was her being pregnant; often, and deeply had he regretted the child of Valeria ; had she lived, he thought that he should at least have one being whom the ties of con. sanguinity would have attached to him; and frequently had he envied De Rosonio the possession of the little Isabel. The intelligence of Ellen's pregnancy gave to his bosom a degree of pleasure which it had long been a stranger to ; he redoubled the tenderness and attention with which he had hither to treated her, and she appeared more grateful for those attentions than she had yet been.
One day the count expressed a strong curiosity to know the particulars of her life.
“ It does not contain any incidents worthy of your attention, my lord (said she), my days have been latterly marked with error, and its natural consequences misery and disappointment; I was plunged into distress while I was yet a stranger to guilt; and from a scrupulous attention to the opinion of the world, despair taught me to brave it; I looked around me, and I saw that with the major part of mankind appearances were all, and that rank and wealth were deemed a suificient excuse for the greatest enormities; death had deprived me of the only being upon earth on whom I had a natural claim; I was poor and unprotected, and these I
found were considered as sufficient reasons why I was to be treated with insult or neglect; my temper became soured, and my disposition changed: that glow of benevolence, which I had hitherto felt for all the human race, was converted into misanthropy. I learned. to consider
fellow-creatures with suspicion and distrust, and to think that every appearance of kindness proceeded from interested motives; but my
heart was not made for a state of apathy, and in exchanging it for a warmer sentiment, I entailed upon myself endless regrets ; but I beg your pardon, my lord (continued she), I am giving you a detail of my sentiments, instead of
My father, who was a naval officer, was as brave and worthy a man as ever lived; he married, early in life, a woman whose birth was much superior to his own, and whose fortune would have been large but for her preference of him. My mother was under the guardianship of
an uncle, and if she married without his consent she forfeited nearly the whole of her property. Both my father and herself were, however, too much attached to regard this circumstance in the light of a serious obstacle to their union.
My income, small as it is, my dear Charlotte (said my father), will afford us the decent comforts of life, and could you but be content with them, I should esteem myself the happiest of men in calling you mine. '
". Was I desirous of more, I should be unworthy the possession of your invaluable heart (replied she), what indeed have we in this world to wish for beyond 'the joys of mutual affection, peace, and competence.'. With such sentiments as these, you will suppose that the union of the lovers soon took place, and for some time their felicity was great indeed. A summons to my father to join his ship was the first interruption it met with ; it was the first time that he ever felt reluctant to per-...
form his duty, my mother was far gone in a state of pregnancy, and he dreaded the effect which his departure might produce upon her health and spirits ; but the call of honour and of duty must be obeyed; and he tore himself away, after a thousand charges to 'her to be careful of her health for his sake, and for that of the dear expected one.
My mother assumed the heorine, but it was a character that her native softness rendered her ill calculated to support; and her anxiety of mind brought on a premature labour. I was born two months before the usual time, and for some weeks after my birth, my mother entertained daily apprehensions of losing me: her fears were however vain, I began to thrive; and on my father's return at the end of a year, I was a stout, healthy child; and, as he declared, while he pressed me to his bosom, the perfect image of my mother, Some years rolled away, and the occasional absences of my father served to