« السابقةمتابعة »
« out upon our rash adventure; were closely « pursued, and, in the last stage of our jour“ ney, overtaken. When we found ourselves “ cut off from any further progress, despair “ seized us, but it was the despair of lovers, “ resolute to sacrifice every thing rather than “ their fidelity and plighted faith. .
“ In this forlorn and hopeless moment, “ love, importunity, the interchange of mu“ tual vows and promises, and, above all, the 6 visionary hope that so we might compel “ my father to unite us, tempted us to seal our « contract without the ceremony that was
« needful to confirm and fanctify it. . “ I own the rafhness of the deed, nor aim to : “ palliate it's culpability; I prostrated myself « at my father's feet, confessed my weakness, « implored his pity and forgiveness, and, in .“ an agony of grief, besought him to consent " to join our hands, and save me from the « shame and misery that would else befall me. “ 'Twas in vain; we were torn asunder; à “ noble youth, unexceptionable in birth and « character, the younger son of the Lord « Pendennis, was discarded; he went upon his « adventures to India; I remained disconso.. « late, and in ignorance of his fate, till in the
i « course of time I was, in secrecy, delivered 6 of a son. .
« That son you are: Henry Delapoer, if " he lives, is your father.
« For the love of heaven keep this secret or buried from the world, till--but I can no € more; the meltings of a mother's heart for
« bid the rest.”
The mystery thus revealed, Henry awhile stood fixt in dumb surprize; the first emotions of his heart burs into unpremeditated prayer and pious thanks to God. Clasping the paper in his hands, with bended knees and eyes uplifted, in the fervour of his soul, he broke forth " I thank thee, Father of all mercies, that thou haft now. vouchsafed to take thy humble creature out of darkness into light, conducting me through various chances by thy all-gracious providence, and giving me at length to know what nature languilhed for in vain, the mystery of my birth. And, O my God, though I were born in guilt, yet fanctify me; though the child of disobedience, with my whole heart I'll ferve thee;, fo shall I gain in heaven what I have forfeited. on earth, a.. name and an inheritance.”.
CHAPTER III. . Some Folks are no nice Discerners of Times and
. . Seasons. A Few minutes only had passed, whilft 11 Henry was endeavouring to compose his agitated spirits, when behold! Ezekiel, followed by the women, returned to the cottage, full fraught with texts of holy writ applicable to the scene he had been present at, and which he was so impatient to discharge, that how to find room for them all, and what order to bring them out in, seemed to be the only thing that puzzled him; and though the hour was drawing towards bed-time, preach he must, and Henry must hear him, though any other person but Ezekiel could not have failed to notice the distraction of his thoughts; but times and seafons never were a part of that good man's studies, neither was he one who thought there could be too much of a good thing; and the best of all possible things, in his opinion, was his own preaching. . .
“ The wicked is trapped in his own snare,'' quoth Ezekiel; “ this is one of the proverbs of Solomon, and Solomon, my children, was
a wise 2 wise man, the wiseft man in all the world, every school-boy can tell you that: he was king of Israel ; it is not all kings are as wise as Solomon ; put down all they ever said in a book of proverbs, and one chapter, nay one single sentence of his shall be worth thein all; and he spake three thousand proverbs, his songs were a thousand and five; he could entertain the Queen of Sheba with something worth her notice, when she came to prove him with hard questions; I cannot tell you where Sheba was, I wish I could, but I know it was somewhere in the south, and that she travell’d out of a far country to hear his wisdom; now you can hear it and not move out of your chairs, and yet you cry out 'tis bed-time, yet a little sleep, a little Number, a little folding of the hands to sleep. A terrible judga ment 'hath lighted on this wicked Blachford, the cry of the widow is gone up against him, the perfecutor of the innocent man hath fallen by the hand of his own accomplice: If they say, come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause, behold they lay wait for their own blood, they lurk privily for their own lives.” Scarce had Ezekiel brought this sentence to
a close, a close, when the unexpected appearance of Doctor Zachary Cawdle cut him short. « May I believe my eyes ?” exclaimed Henry.
"Here I am sure enough,” replied Zachary, . « and no ghost, rather too fat for that still,
though a good span in the girdle lefs than I. was; but venienti occurrere morbo is my maxim, you understand me, brother Daw: if I had not play'd the doctor with the devil, he wou'd have played the devil with the doctor, I can tell you ; but I have parried him for this turn.”— Ezekiel groaned.--" Here's been fine doings amongst you; there's one head in the parish, that I wou'd not have on my shoulders for all •the money that belongs to it. Zooks and blood ! my old Sawney wou'd have made a posset of the Justice's brains, had’nt I ftept in at the nick.”_" Is the wound dangerous," quoth Ezekiel, after another groan.“ Dangerous !” replied Zachary, “ tis not so deep as a well, nor so wide as a church-door, but it will do: many an honeft man has walk'd out of the world, and not so good an apology for taking leave of it, as Master Blachford has, believe me, brother Doctor. My Sawney prognosticated he would do well, because forfooth he slept fo quietly; blockhead, quoth I, the fomnolency augurs injury to the brain by frac