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fortune, taste, and sincerity; such, ma-
dai, would be, in my opinion, the pro-
per husband.' Ay, Sir,' faid she, but
do you know of any such person ?--
No, madam,' returned he, 'it is im-
possible to know any person that deserves
to be her husband : she's too great a trea-

sure for one man's possession: The's a god• dess. Upon my soul, I speak what I • think, she's an angel.'--- Ah, Mr.

Thornhill, you only flatter my poor girl : • but we have been thinking of marrying ther to one of your tenants, whose mother • is lately dead, and who wants a mana

ger: you know whom I mean, farmer • Williams; a warm man, Mr. Thornhill, • able to give her good bread; and who • has several times made her proposals :' (which was actually the cafe) - but, Sir,' concluded she, “ I should be glad to have

your approbation of our choice.'

How, Madam,' replied he, my ap. s probation! My approbation of such a ' choice ! Never. What! Sacrifice so much ! beauty, and sense, and goodness, to a crea

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ture insensible of the blessing! Excuse

me, I can never approve of such a piece • of injustice! And I have my reafons ! Indeed, Sir,' cried Deborah, if you ? have your reasons, that's another affair ; • but I should be glad to know those rea• fons.'- Excuse me, madam,' returned he, they lie too deep for discovery :' (laying his hand upon his bosom) they

remain buried, rivetted here.'

After he was gone, upon general consultation, we could not tell what to make of these fine sentiments. Olivia considered them as instances of the most exalted pafsion; but I was not quite so sanguine : it seemed to me pretty plain, that they had more of love than matrimony in them: yet, whatever they might portend, it was resolved to profecute the scheme of farmer Williams, who, from my daughter's first appearance in the country, had paid her his addresses.

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CH A P. XVI.

Scarce

any

virtue found to resist the power of long and pleasing temptation.

A

SI only studied my child's real hap

piness, the assiduity of Mr. Williams pleased me, as he was in easy circumstances, prudent, and sincere. It required but very little encouragement to revive his former passion; so that in an evening or two he and Mr. Thornhill met at our house, and surveyed each other for fome time with looks of anger : but Williams owed his landlord no rent, and little regarded his indignation. Olivia, on her fide, acted the coquet to perfection, if that might be called acting which was her real character, pretending to lavish all her tenderness on her new lover. Mr. Thornhill appeared quite dejected at this preference, and with a pensive air took leave;

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though I own it puzzled me to find him for much in pain as he appeared to be, when he had it in his power so easily to remove the cause, by declaring an honourable passion. But whatever uneasiness he seemed to endure, it could easily be perceived that Olivia's anguish was still greater, After any of these interviews between her lovers, of which there were several, she usually retired to folitude, and there indulged her grief. It was in such a situation I found her one evening, after she had been for fome time supporting a fictitious gayety

You now see, my child,' said I, that

your confidence in Mr. Thornhill's paf. fion was all a dream : he permits the

rivalry of another, every way his inferior, • though he knows it lies in his power to • secure you to himself by a candid decla( ration.'

Yes, pappa,' returned the, but he has his reasons for this de

lay: I know he has. The sincerity of « his looks and words convince me of his • real esteem. A short time, I hope, will

• discover

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