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stance give unspeakable dignity to each parent in the other's eye, and serve to increase and confirm that union, which youthful passion, and less durable motives, first occasioned to take place? I rather choose to mention this argument, because neither exalted understanding nor elegance of manners are necessary to give it force. It is felt by the peasant as well as by the prince; and, if we believe some observers on human life, its influence is not less, but greater, in the lower than in the higher ranks.
Before I proceed to any further remarks, I must say a few words, to prevent or remove deception, which very probably leads many into error on this subject. It is no other than a man's supposing what would not give him happiness, cannot give it to another. Because, perhaps, there are few married women, whose persons, conversation, manners, and conduct, are altogether to his taste, he takes upon him to conclude, that the husbands, in these numerous instances, must lead a miserable life. Is it needful to say any thing to show the fallacy of this? The tastes and disposi. tions of men are as various as their faces ; and therefore what is displeasing to one, may be, not barely tolerable, but agreeable to another. I have known a husband delighted with his wife's fluency and poignancy of speech in scolding her servants, and another who was not able to bear the least noise of the kind with patience.
Men may talk in raptures of youth and beauty, wit and sprightliness, and a hundred other shining qualities; but after seven years union, not one of them is compared to good family management, which is seen at every meal and felt every hour in the husband's purse.
To this, however, I must apply the caution given above. Such a wife may not appear quite killing to a stranger
a visit. There are a few distinguished examples of women of the first rate understandings, who have all the elegance of court breeding in the parlour, and all the frugality and activity of a farmer's wife in the kitchen; but
I have not found this to be the case in general. I learned from a certain author many years ago, that “ a great care of household affairs generally spoils the free, careless air of a fine lady ;" and I have seen no reason to disbelieve it since.
HAPPINESS, HOW SECURED IN THE MARRIED STATE.
Nothing lovelier can be found
My brother Tranquillus being gone out of town for some days, my sister Jenny sent me word she would come and dine with me, and therefore desired me to have no other company, I took care accordingly, and was not a little pleased to see her enter the room with a decent and matronlike behaviour, which I thought very much became her. I saw she had a great deal to say to me, and easily discovered, in her eyes, and the air of her countenance, that she had abundance of satisfaction in her heart, which she longed to communicate. However, I was resolved to let her break into her discourse her own way, and reduced her to a thousand little devices and intimations, to bring to the mention of her husband. But finding I was resolved not to name him, she began of her own accord. My husband,” said she, “ gives his humble service to you,” to which I only answered, “ 1 hope he is well;" and without waiting for a reply, fell into other subjects. She at last was out of all patience, and said, with a smile and manner that I thought had more beauty and spirit than I had ever observed before in her, “I did not think, brother, you had been so ill-natured. You have seen, ever since I came in, that I had a mind to talk of my husband, and you will not be so kind as to give me an occasion.". - I did not know,” said I, “ but it might be a disagreeable subject to you. You do not take me for so · old-fashioned a fellow, as to think of entertaining a young lady
with the discourse of her husband. I know nothing is more acceptable than to speak to one that is to be so, but to speak of one who is so ! indeed, Jenny, I am a better bred man than you think me. She showed a little dislike at my raillery; and, by her bridling up, I perceived she expected to be treated hereafter not as Jenny Distaff, but Mrs. Tranquillus. I was very well pleased with this change in her humour; and, on talking with her on several subjects, I could not but fancy that I saw a great deal of her husband's way and manner in her remarks, her phrases, the tone of her voice, and the very air of her countenance. me an unspeakable satisfaction, not only because I had found a husband, from whom she could learn many things that were laudable, but also because I looked upon her imi. tation of him as an infallible sign that she entirely loved him. This is an observation that I never knew to fail, though I do not remember that any other has made it. The natural shyness of her sex hindered her from telling me the greatness of her own passion ; but I easily collected it from the representation she gave me of him. thing," says she, “ in Tranquillus, that I can wish for; and enjoy in him, what indeed you have told me were to be met with in a good husband, the fondness of a lover, the tenderness of a parent, and the intimacy of a friend.”
It transported me, to see her eyes swimming in tears of affection when she spoke. “ And is there not, dear sister,” said I, "more pleasure in the possession of such a man, than in all the little impertinencies of balls, assemblies, and equipage, which it cost me so much pains to make you condemn ?” She answered, smilingly, “ Tranquillus has made me a sincere convert in a few weeks, though I am afraid you could not have done it in your whole life. To tell you truly, I have only one fear hanging upon me, which is apt to give me trouble in the midst of all my satisfactions : I am afraid, you must know, that I shall not always make the same amiable appearance in his eye that I do at present. You
" I have every
know, brother Bickerstaff, that you have the reputation of a conjuror; and, if you have any one secret in your art to make your sister always beautiful, I should be happier than if I were mistress of all the worlds you have shown me in a starry night. “ Jenny,” said I, “ without having recourse to magic, I shall give you one plain rule, that will not fail of making you always amiable to a man who has so great a passion for you, and is of so equal and reasonable a temper as Tranquillus. Endeavour to please, and you must please; be always in the same disposition as you are when you ask for this secret, and you may take my word, you will never want it. An inviolable fidelity, good humour, and complacency of temper, outlive all the charms of a fine face, and make the decays of it invisible.”
We discoursed very long upon this head, which was equally agreeable to us both; for, I must confess, as I tenderly love her, I take as much pleasure in giving her instructions for her welfare, as she herself does in receiving them. I proceeded, therefore, to inculcate these sentiments, by relating a very particular passage that happened within my own knowledge.
There were several of us making merry at a friend's house in a country village, when the sexton of the parish church entered the room in a sort of surprise, and told us, " that as he was digging a grave in the chancel, a little blow of his pick-axe opened a decayed coffin, in which there were several written papers.” Our curiosity was immediately raised, so that we went to the place where the sexton had been at work, and found a great concourse of people about the grave. Among the rest, there was an old woman, who told us, the person buried there was a lady whose name I do not think fit to mention, though there is nothing in the story but what tends very much to her honour. This lady lived several years an exemplary pattern of conjugal love, and, dying soon after her husband, who every way answered her character in virtue and affection, made