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the Order, with a private Vow never to enquire after Con. ftantia ; whom he looked upon as given away to his Rival upon the Day on which, according to common Fame, their Marriage was to have been folemnized. Having in his Youth made a good Progress in Learning, that he might dedicate himself more entirely to Religion he entered into holy Orders, and in a few Years became Renowned for his Sanctity of Life, and those pious Sentiments which he inspired into all who conversed with him. It was this holy Man to whom Conftantia had determined to apply her self in Confession, tho'neither she nor any other besides the Prior of the Convent, knew any thing of his Name or Family. The gay, the amiable Theodofius had now taken upon him the Name of Father Francis, and was so far concealed'in a long Beard, a shaven Head, and a religious Habit, that it was impossible to discover the Man of the World in the venerable Conventual.
AS he was one Morning shut up in his Confessional, Constantia kneeling by him, opened the State of her Soul to him; and after having given him the History of a Life full of Innocence, she burst out in Tears, and entered upon that Part of her Story, in which he himself had so great à Share, My Behaviour, says she, has I fear been the Death of a Man who had no other Fault but that of loving me too inuch. Heaven only knows how dear he was to me whilft he lived, and how bitter the Remembrance of him has been to me since his Death. She here paused, and lifted up her Eyes that streamed with Tears towards the Father, who was so moved with the Sense of her Sorrows, that he could only command his Voice, which was broke with Sighs and Soba bings, so far as to bid her proceed. She followed his Directions, and in a Flood of Tears poured out her Heart before him. The Father could not forbear weeping aloud, insomuch that in the Agonies of his Grief the Seat shook under him. Constantia, who thought the good Man was thus moved by his Compassion towards her, and by the Horror of her Guilt, proceeded with the utmost Contrition to acquaint him with that Vow of Virginity in which She was going to engage her self, as the proper Atonement for her Sins, and the only Sacrifice she could make to the Memory of Theodosius.' The Father, who by this time had pretty well composed himself, burst out again in
Tears upon hearing that Name to which he had been so long disused, and upon receiving this Instance of an unparalleld Fidelity from one who he thought had several years fince given her self up to the Poffeffion of another. Amidst the Interruptions of his Sorrow, seeing his Penitent overwhelmed with Grief, he was only able to bid her from
Time to Time be comforted To tell her that her Sins were forgiven her- That her Guilt was not so great as she apprehended T hat the should not suffer her self to be afficted above measure. After which he recovered himselt enough to give her the Absolution in Form; directing her at the same time to repair to him again the next Day, that he might encourage her in the pious Refolutions she had taken, and give her suitable Exhortations for her Behaviour in it. Conftantia retired, and the next Morning renewed her Applications. Theodofius having manned his Soul with proper Thoughts and Reflections, exerted himself on this Occasion in the best Manner he could to animate his Pemitent in the Course of Life she was entering upon, and wear out of her Mind those groundless Fears and Apprehensions which had taken Possession of it; concluding, with a Promise to her, that he would from Time to Time continue his Admonitions when she should have taken upon her the holy Veil. The Rules of our re. fpective Orders, says he, will not permit that I should see you, but you may assure your self not only of having a
Place in my Prayers, but of receiving such frequent Instru· étions as I can convey to you by Letters. Go on chcarful
Jy in the glorious Course you have undertaken, and you will quickly find such a Peace and Satisfaction in your Mind, which it is not in the Power of the World to give.
CONSTANTIA's Heart was fo elevated with the Discourse of Father Francis, that the very next Day she entered upon her Vow. As soon as the solemnities of her Reception were over, she retired, as it is usual, with the Abbess into her own Apartment.
THE Abbess had been informed the Night before of all that had passed between her Noviciate and Father Francis. From whom she now delivered to her the following Letter: 6A S the first Fruits of those Joys and Confolations
H ' which you may expect from the Life you are now engaged in, I must acquaint you that Theodofius, whose
* Death sits so heavy upon your Thoughts, is still alive; ' and that the Father to whom you have confessed your ' self, was once that Theodosius whom you so much lament, • The Love which we have had for one another will make • us more happy in its Disappointment than it could have • done in its Success. Providence has disposed of us for • our Advantage, tho'not according to our Wishes. Con• sider your Theodosius still as dead, but affure your self of one who will not cease to pray for you in Father
FRANCIS. CONSTANTI A saw that the Hand-writing agreed with the Contents of the Letter; and upon reflecting on the Voice of the Person, the Behaviour, and above all the extreme Sorrow of the Father during her Confession, the discovered Theodofius in every particular. After having wept with Tears of Joy, It is enough, says she, Theodofius is still in Being; I shall live with Comfort and die in Peace.
THE Letters which the Father sent her afterwards are yet extant in the Nunnery where she resided ; and are of ten read to the young Religious, in order to inspire them with good Relolutions and Sentiments of Virtue. It so happened, that after Constantia had lived about ten Years in the Cloyster a violent Fever broke out in the Place, which swept away great Multitudes, and among others
Theodosius. Upon his Death-bed he sent his Benediction in a very moving Manner to Conftantia ; who at that time was her self so far gone in the same fatal Distem per, that The lay delirious. Upon the Interval which generally precedes Death in Sicknesses of this Nature, the Abbess finde ing that the Physicians had given her over, told her that Theodosius was just gone before her, and that he had sent her his Benediction in his last Moments. Conftantia re. ceived it with Pleasure: And now, says she, "If I do not ask any thing improper, let me be buried by Theodofius. My Vow reaches no farther than the Grave. What I ask is, I hope, no Violation of it ---- She died soon after, and was interred according to her Request.
THEIR Tombs are still to be seen, with a short Latia Inscription over them to the following Purpose. .
Here lie the Bodies of Father Francis and Sister Cor. fance. They were lovely in their Lives, and in their Deaths they were not divided.
C : Saturday,
Saturday, September 8.
Si forte neceffe eft, Fingere cinétutis non exaudita Cethegis, Continget : labiturque licentia sumpta pudenter. Hor. | Have often wilhed, that as in our Constitution there are | several Persons whose Business it is to watch over our
Laws, our Liberties and Commerce, certain Men might be set apart, as Super-intendants of our Language, to hin. der any Words of a Foreign Coin from passing among us; and in particular to prohibit any French Phrases from becoming Current in this Kingdom, when thole of our own Stampare altogether as valuable. The present War has so adulterated our Tongue with strange Words that it would be impossible for one of our Great Grandfathers to know what his Pofterity have been doing, were he to read their Exploits in a Modern News-Paper, Our Warriours are very industrious in propagating the French Language, at the same time that they are so gloriously successful in beating down their Power. Our Soldiers are Men of strong Heads for A&ion, and perform such Feats as they are not able to express. They want Words in their own Tongue to tell us what it is they archieve, and therefore send us over Accounts of their Performances in a Jargon of Phrases, which they learn among their conquered Enemies. They ought however to be provided with Secretaries, and assisted by our Foreign Ministers, to tell their Story for them in plain English, and to let us know in our Mother-Tongue what it is our brave Country-Men are about. The French would indeed be in the right to publish the News of the presens War in English Phrases, and make their Campaigns unintelligible. "Their People might flatter themselves that Things are not so bad as they really are, were they thus palliated with Foreign Terms, and thrown into Shades and Obscurity : But the English cannot be too clear in their Narrative of those Actions, which have raised their Country to a higher Pitch of Glory than it ever yet arrived at, and which will be still the more admired the better they are explained.
FOR my part, by that time a Siege is carried on two or three Days, I am altogether loft and bewildered in it, and meet with so many inexplicable Difficulties, that I Scarce know which Side has the better of it, till I am informed by the Tower Guns, that the Place is surrendred. I do indeed make some Allowances for this Part of the War, Fortifications having been Foreign Inventions, and upon that Account abounding in foreign Terms. But when we have won Battels which may be described in our own Language, why are our Papers filled with so many unin. telligible Exploits, and the French obliged to lend us a part of their Tongue before we can know how they are Conquered? They must be made accessary to their own Disgrace, as the Britains were formerly so artificially wrought in the Curtain of the Roman Theatre, that they seemed to draw it up, in order to give the Spectators an Opportunity of seeing eheir own Defeat celebrated upon the Stage: For so Mr. Dryden has translated that Verse in Virgil.
Atque intertexti tollant aulaa Britanni. which interwoven Britains seem to raise, And shew the Triumph that their shame displays,
THE Histories of all our former Wars are transmitted to us in our Vernacular Idiom, to use the Phrase of a great Modern Critick. I do not find in any of our Chronicles, that Edward the Third ever reconnoitred the Enemy, tho he often discovered the Posture of the French, and as often vanquished them in Battel. The Black Prince passed many a River without the help of Pontoons, and filled a Ditch with Faggots as successfully as the Generals of our Times do it with Fascines. Our Commanders lose half their Praise, and our People half their Joy, by means of those hard Words and dark Expressions in which our News Papers do so much abound. "I have seen many a prudent Citizen, after having read every Article, enquire of his next Neighbour what News the Mail had brought.
I remember in that remarkable Year when our Country was delivered from the greatest Fears and Apprehensions, and raised to the greatest height of Gladness it had ever felt Gnce it was a Nation; I mean the Year of Blenheim, I had the Copy of a Letter sertt me out of the Country, .