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fell on my unfortunate son George, trial, I resolved to try both, and be-
and though he may have been the which nothing can be permanent ;best dancer, the best archer, the best for without religious principle, what mechanic the best engineer, and the is there to depend upon? Whim, cae best conjuror in the world, yet it is price, temper, temptation, self-interunpleasing to be told so by the man est, may throw down the beauteous himself; but in the second volume, fabric in an instant ;—there is no cerwhich is written by his daughter, tain stay,—no rock of sure defence, these praises, coming from another, but religion ;--where that is, you feel do not shock one so much, and one is secure, -you feel there is something willing to believe that Mr Edgeworth that is proof against all worldly uncerwas most agreeable as a companion, - tainties. I ought not to forget that useful as a country gentleman,-and Miss E., with a proper tenderness to judicious as a parent. There are cer- her father's character, says he was not tainly some highly useful lessons to without religion, and was grateful to be gained from the book, not to men- God for all his many blessings, and I tion that it is one of the most entertain- hope it was 0; but still I looked in ing pieces of biography I ever read. vain to see where the power of reliHe was a man who made himself hap- gion influenced his conduct. I repy, because he was always usefully member I was struck with the same employed; and beloved, because he doubts, when I read the Essay on was always cheerful and good hu- Practical Education ; else why,-inmoured. He went on from day to stead of all the complicated machinery day, and year to year, improving him- there recommended, for leading the self, and he never thought he was too youthful mind to truth and virtue,old to acquire fresh knowledge. His why not substitute the all-powerful, practice reminds me of a passage in the all-simple, the all-comprehensive Madame de Sevigne, which, as you law, of Duty to God?' perhaps, bemay not like to wade through the six caụse this was a lesson that could volumes of her letters to find, I will be taught by the most ignorant and transcribe: 'Je ne puis souffrir que unlettered person ; and there is more les vielles gens disent, ' Je suis trop ingenuity in trying to arrive at the vieux pour me corriger:' Je pardon- same ends by means of human conherois plutôt aux jeunes gens de dire, trivance, instead of by the law of ‘Je suis trop jeune. La jeunesse, est God. But is this not like attempting si aimable qu'il faudroit l'adorer si to mount to heaven by a Tower of l'ame et esprit etoient aussi parfaits Babel, or tottering crumbling work que la corps. Mais quand on n'est of men's hands, instead of being raisplus jeune, c'est alors qu'il faut se ed above the flood in the ark of die perfectionner et tacher de regagner par vine authority? Do not, however, les bonnes qualites ce qu'on perd du be deterred by what I have said from côté des agréables. Il y a long temps reading the book, for it is more the que j'ai fait ces reflections, et par cette absence of what is right, than the preraison je veux tous les jours travailler sence of what is hurtful, that I comà mon esprit, à mon aine, à mon plain of. There are, however, some caur, et à mes sentimens.' There is circumstances relating to Mr E.'s sealso another truly delightful picture cond and third marriages, that one to contemplate in these volumes, and cannot but regret, and I need not anthat is the picture of family harmony, ticipate what your own sentiments that reigned through so large a do- will be on reading them. In justifimestic circle ; for he had four wives cation, or rather palliation of his avowand many children by each: But ed attachment to Honora Sneyd, durwhat charms me most of all is Missing the lifetime of his first wife, one Edgeworth herself. Such perfect a- may suppose he led a very irksome bandonment of all authorlike vanity, life with her : still I cannot bring my-such entire absence of selfishness self to think that the mother of such and devotedness to her father !-all a woman (to judge of her by her writthis elevates the mind, and gives ings) as Maria Edgeworth, could be something to reflect upon above the either ill-tempered or disagreeable. littleness of common life,—but here I Miss Edgeworth should ever come the enchantment ends. You vainly to England, I would certainly take a look about for a something that is wanting; that something, without By Mr and Miss Edgeworth.
« Not at
journey on purpose to see her, I feel me? It is not more than a mile from so greatly prepossessed in favour of the town, a very pretty walk, and we her and the whole family, by all that shall meet the breeze.” I willingly is said of them in this life of their fa- agreed to go, if her friend would not ther, that I heartily wish I could be consider it an intrusion. come acquainted with any of them.” all,” said she, “ Mrs Melmoth and I should have made some further ex- her daughter, had circumstances altracts from George's letter, if I had lowed, would have been among the not been called away to attend on first to welcome you here, and I am some visitors, but Fanny has promis- sure if you will waive the ceremony al to fill up my paper with a letter of a call, they will be very happy to she wrote last night to Richard. So be introduced to you, and, indeed, leaving my pen in such good hands, there will be charity in visiting them, I will myself conclude with being, for my poor Lucy has been confined dear Mr Editor, your obedient sere to her sopha more than two years, rant,
and—But I can tell you her story as JOHN DE COVERLEY. we walk along." This, however, she
was prevented doing by Mr Scamony,
who joined us as we left the door, and To Richard de Coverley, Esq.
never ceased congratulating himself Your letter, my dear brother, caus- on the honour and happiness of ed quite a sensation at the breakfast esquiring two such fair ladies, till he table this morning. Mamma reite- bowed off as we arrived at Mrs Melrated so frequently, “Dear me, what moth's. I had heard poor Mrs Mela pity! Dear me, how silly!" that at moth and her daughter mentioned length my father raised his eyes from frequently, but having sufficient emthe newspaper to inquire the cause. ployment in learning the history of “Cause enough,” replied Mamma, those I saw, I had not inquired into " the collars of Dick's new shirts are that of people unknown to me, and in all an inch too low. Was ever any uiter ignorance of every thing, except thing so unlucky?" Papa laughed a that I was to be introduced to a sick little at Mamma, but more at you, young lady, I was ushered into a very and I could have joined him heartily, elegant sort of dressing-room, with had not my aunt scolded him for French windows opening into a little laughing, scolded Mamma for not veranda covered with jessamine and having attended to her advice to make roses in full blow, and leading to a the collars higher, and almost scolded lawn so green, that it seemed as if the me for not knowing the fashion better. sun of the last three days had shed Pray when you next want a set of its mildest beams upon it. Near one shirts send an exact pattern, for how of these windows sat, or rather reare we to guess the proper height of a clined, a young lady supported by pilcollar in this ultima Bandyborough? lows, and evidently much out of
Eleven o'clock.--So far I had writ- health. Oh, my dear brother, I wish ten when the cool and refreshing you could have seen her, for my debreeze which has succeeded the in- scription can give but a faint idea of tense heat of this day, induced me to the interest excited by her appearstroll to Miss Wilmot's, whom I have ance. She is not beautiful, perhaps already described to you as my fa- not pretty ; but there is a grace in all vourite among the young ladies here, she says and does beyond the reach and whom I like every day better and of art, and an expression of mildness better. The result of my visit was and submission in her countenance, my introduction to a new and so very for which I can find no other name interesting an acquaintance, that I than that of heavenly. She seems to cannot resist resuming my pen at this be rather above the middle height; late hour to repeat to you the occur- her figure slight, but not emaciated, rences of the evening, while they are and her hand the whitest and the fresh in my recollection. Miss Wil- prettiest I ever saw. This white and mit was preparing for a walk, and pretty hand she extended to me as inmediately asked me to accompany Miss Wilmot introduced me, and her
. “ I am going,” said she, “ to gracefully thanked me for visiting one visit a very dear friend of mine, who so very useless in society as herself. is out of health. Will you go with Then iurning to Miss Wilmot, with
an affectionate smile, “ Emily,” said perceptible-a very little paler, pershe, “ I see that scrutinizing glance, haps, but that was all the conversaand I can answer it to your satisfac- tion fell into a new channel, and our tion-the traces of sadness you ob- party was immediately after increased serve are not caused by myown cares, I by the entrance of Mrs Melmoth, a have been sighing over the sorrows of woman of pleasing manners and appoor Miriam, and had scarcely closed pearance, but so much like many the book when you entered. I hope other people, that she would pass unyou have both read the Fall of Jeru- noticed, were it pot for traces of mensalem, and I hope you both admire tal suffering, which give dignity to it, that we may talk over its beauties the commonest characters, and must together.” We had both read, both always inspire respect. The converadmired it, and were very ready to sation of both mother and daughter place our chairs in the veranda, as she was easy, and rather cheerful; they requested us, and to talk over its searcely alluded to the melancholy beauties together. I will spare you situation of Miss Melmoth, and not the whole of our criticisms, but if at all to any past misfortunes. What you have read the poem, (which I their past misfortunes had been I hvope you have,) you will not be sure could only guess from the effect of my prised at our dwelling with chiefest unfortunate observation, till after two admiration on the interviews between very agreeable hours, and a promise Miriam and Javan, and that the ten- on my part of a future visit, I was derness of the lover, the filial affece again tête-a-tête with Miss Wilmot. tion of Miriain, the piety of Javan, Your curiosity must be still further and the charm of the poetry, were exercised, and I must defer till my long our theme. Miss Melmoth, as next letter the account she gave me, I have since recollected, joined but for this extreme verge of my paper little in this part of our conversation, will only allow me to say, Good night, but I shall never forget the animation my dearest brother, which brightened her fine counte
FANNY DE COVERLEY. nance as she pointed out the beauties of her favourite chorus, King of kings, and Lord of lords, nor the fervour of HISTORICAL NOTICES OF THE POPUher mammer and the sweetness of her
LAR SUPERSTITIONS, TRADITIONS, voice, as she read to us the prayer and hymn of Miriam. Even the author, had he been present, must have felt
No. III. that his verse could not have had more justice done to it, and when she A distant age asks where the fabric stood. ceased, it was difficult to find voice
COWPER. to thank her. We had chatterl in that way for some time, when a sude MR EDITOR, den stop was put to our conversation In my last communication I endeaby iny unfortunately remarking, that voured to illustrate, as far as my nar. there were many passages too affect- row limits would permit, the opinions ing to read aloud' with comfort, and which prevailed in ruder ages conthat amongst them was the scene of cerning witches, and the faith that Salone's death. “I cannot," said I, was placed in their supposed super« admire Salone, but the situation of natural powers. The witch of mopoor Miriam is so utterly destitute, dern times is now to occupy my ate when she weeps over the remains of tention. her own and only sister, that it is From those strolling tribes of tink scarcely possible to resist weeping ers and gypsies who traverse the with her!" The words were scarce country, pretending to gain their live ly uttered, when I perceived by the lihood' by mending broken kettles, rising colour in Miss Wilmot's face, pots, and pans, making born spoons, and by her hasty glance towards her besoms, &c. &c. the honest peasantry friend, that I had touched on a ten- have, from time immemorial, been der string; it seemed, however, that plentifully supplied with fortune-telconstant pressure had made it cease lers, necromancers, sorcerers, spaeto vibrate, for the change in Miss wives, and all the race of black-art Melmoth's countenance was scarcely professors. It is rather remarkable,
AND CUSTOMS OF TIVIOTDALE.
however, that few of this sort of people tice done to it within the limits to were anciently stigmatized with the which I am confined. Her prolonged character of niischievous witches, but life, for she was upwards of ninety that they all along occupied a kind of years of age when it forsook her, was middle etation between witches and one continued scene of adventure. We other people, approaching to that of a never, therefore, hear a story confortune-teller. If the modern witches cerning her which is not filled with of Tiviotdale be not solely confined to ghosts and bozles, witches and warthis class of people, there are, as far locks, predictions and prophecies; in as I have been able to learn, exceed- short, with all those fine things by ingly few exceptions. There may, which the tales of witchery are chaindeed, be some old women, who, by racterized. Among the commonality, the eccentricity of their habits, draw the truth of her unearthly connection upon themselves the reputation of be- and intercourse was never questioned; ing witches; but this character, I hence she was believed to be a witch, should suppose, is ascribed to them “as sure as there ever was a witch ;" only by such people as are unacquaint- and, that she possessed powers derived with their manner of life. "It of- ed from this source superior to other ten happens, indeed, that those who people, was equally undisputed. are publicly reputed uncannie are the Eppy's personal accomplishments best and most decent old women of were sufficiently suited to her prothe community, who, from the in- fession, for every female charm was firmities incidental to old age, are un- exquisitely caricatured in her perable to stir much abroad, and indus- son. The accomplishments of her triously employ their time within mind were also most harmoniousdoors in the usual occupations of do- ly in unison with those of her permestic life, and, while thus engaged, son; in place of delicacy, rudeness, their character is all the while suffers to its consummation, was manifesta ing, by their being supposed secretly ed in her deportment; in place of to practise the black art. This, if the charming timorousness so characseldom the case in our own days, was, teristic of her sex, she possessed a I make no hesitation to say, the case
masculine boldness. But, without atevery day an hundred years ago. The tempting minutely to describe her gypsey fortune-tellers, on the other beauty, it may, in general, be menhand, retaining their usual and uni- tioned, that the structure which she versally suspicious character, pass to inherited from Nature was abundantand fro, without remaining so long in ly well calculated for the purposes one place as to submit it to the exa. of her profession; for even her mination of any one; so that, with
“ whiskin' beard,” hanging in gracethem, the reputation of having a ful tresses from a long pointed chin, black connection" may accumulate, which, as if intended to protect three but never decrease ; and hence they tremendous tusks that projected out are now almost the only source from of her mouth, crooked up in a semiwhich the country is supplied with circular curve, till it almost embraced persons upon whom the voice of the à nose of nearly equal dimensions, public confers a character any way as and equally as symmetrical in its consimilating to that of a witch of for. formation; or the harmonious tones of mer times.
her ventriloquial voice were enough In order to render what I proposed to strike those who looked on her to give you, in illustration of this, a- visage, or who listened to her promusing to your readers, and at the phecies, with a conviction of her prosame time subservient to my purpose, ficiency and profundity in her art. I have selected as my heroine the far- This was, in fact, the case. She was famed Euphemia Stevenson, alius looked upon by the common people as Black Eppy, alias Eppy the Witch, a sort of oracle, and, for this reason, alias Eppy Sooty. The latter is the was regarded with awe, Damne by which this vulpinary ve conscious of the value of her personal teran of the black art was universally attractions in the way of her trade, known throughout the upper districts and, accordingly, did 'not fail to avail of Tiviotdale. In the history of this herself of the advantages which they old virago there is something very re
afforded her of aggrandizing her remarkable, and which cannot have jus- nown. But, that she might add more