Adelaide was indeed one of the many melancholy proofs of the effects of headstrong passions and perverted principles. Lord Lindore had married her from a point of honour; and although he possessed too much refinement to treat her ill, yet his indifference was not the less cutting to a spirit haughty as hers. Like many others, she had vainly imagined that, in renouncing virtue itself for the man she loved, she was for ever ensuring his boundless gratitude and adoration; and she only awoke from her delusive dream to find herself friendless in a foreign land, an outcast from society, an object of indifference even to him for whom she had abandoned all.
But Lady Juliana would see nothing of all this. She was charmed at what she termed this proof of her daughter’s affection, in wishing to have her with her; and the prospect of going abroad seemed like a vision of paradise to her. Instant preparations were made for her departure, and in the bustle attendant on them, Mary and her affairs sank into utter insignificance. Indeed, she seemed rather anxious to get her disposed of in any way that might prevent her interfering with her own plans; and a consent to her marriage, such as it was, was easily obtained.
“Marry whom you please,” said she; “only remember I am not responsible for the consequences. I have always told you what a wretched thing a love-marriage is, therefore you are not to blame me for your future misery.”
Mary readily subscribed to the conditions; but, as she embraced her mother at parting, she timidly whispered a hope that she would ever consider her house as her home. A smile of contempt was the only reply she received, and they parted never more to meet. Lady Juliana found foreign manners and principles too congenial to her tastes ever to return to Britain.
“O most gentle Jupiter! what tedious homily of love have you wearied your parishioners withal, and never cried, Have patience, good people!"
As You Like it.
THE only obstacle to her union thus removed, Mary thought she might now venture to let her Aunt Grizzy into the secret; and accordingly, with some little embarrassment, she made the disclosure of the mutual attachment subsisting between Colonel Lennox and herself. Grizzy received the communication with all the astonishment which ladies usually experience upon being made acquainted with a marriage which they had not had the prescience to foresee and foretell—or even one which they had; for, common and natural as the event seems to be, it is one which perhaps in no instance ever took place without occasioning the greatest amazement to some one individual or another; and it will also be generally found that either the good or the bad fortune of one or other of the parties is the subject of universal wonder. In short, a marriage which excites no surprise, pity, or indignation, must be something that has never yet been witnessed on the face of this round world. It is greatly to be feared none of my readers will sympathise in the feelings of the good spinster on this occasion, as she poured them forth in the following extempore or improvisatorial strain:-