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A DÉSENNUYÉ E.
“L'expérience du monde brise le cœur, ou le bronze."-CHAMPFORT.
IN TWO VOLUMES.
13, GREAT MARLBOROUGH STREET.
COVENTRY, April 6th, 183–. — To-morrow, then, I shall be in London !- Am I welladvised in commencing my little Diary with the worn-out pen and mouldy ink of an inn standish, amid the jingling of bells, and jarring of waiters ? No matter ! — People are apt to inveigh against the stir and tumult of an inn, and protest they can neither collect their faculties for thinking, nor tranquillize them for sleeping, amid the bustle of such places. For my part, I care little for the tumult that affects only my senses. Let the “ party in number five” ring or wrangle as they please ; “I have no part in them or theirs.” Whether they eat their toast dry or
buttered, let me take mine ease in mine inn, congratulating myself that, thus far, my journey has been safe and pleasant.
Dear England ! How beautiful it looks after my seven years' banishment! how beautiful, and how prosperous! What neatness, what completeness, after the ragged aspect of things at Ballyshumna! Here I am not ashamed of living in comfort, or travelling for my enjoyment. The lofty pyramid of society, whose regular gradation is so perceptible, from the wide basis to the tapering apex, seems as if in England it held together the firmer for its polished corner-stones; and it is, at all events, a relief to one's selfishness to look upon snug cottages, and a healthy, happy peasantry, instead of that degradation of human nature which met my eye at every turn in the neighbourhood of Delaval Castle. The fortune of Rothschild, and the wisdom of Solomon, would not have enabled me to alleviate a fourth part of the distress I was fated to witness; and one of the few acts of kindness I have to acknowledge towards Colonel Delaval, is his bequest
of the family estates to his excellent brother, leaving me and my jointure free liberty to search the world for as much happiness as may lie at the purchase of pounds, shillings, and pence.
Yet, how strange a destiny is mine! A widow at five-and-twenty, with six thousand a-year, and an honourable position in society,-good health, good conscience, and (between myself and my Diary) a tolerably good appearance ; yet all this frustrated and embittered by my sad experience of the hollowness of the world ! Married at seventeen to the man of my choice, all seemed to smile upon me when I followed Colonel Delaval to Ireland ; nor could I forgive my sister Armine, for whispering, on the eve of our union, that an acquaintance of six weeks scarcely justified me in placing my happiness within his keeping. What prescience, alas! rendered her so wise? How came she to guess that Delaval, in withdrawing from the army on his marriage, and devoting himself to the pleasures of Irish squirehood, would become— but let the past be forgotten.