But here I will conclude, having a very different subject, as a proof of what I have advanced, to touch in my next. Till when, I am your most affectionate and faithful,
My dear Miss Darnford,
I now proceed with my journal, which I brought down to Tuesday evening; and of course I begin with
Towards evening came Sir Jacob Swynford, on horseback, attended by two servants in liveries. I was abroad; for I had got leave for a whole afternoon, attended by my Polly; which time I passed in visiting no less than four poor sick families, whose hearts I made glad. But I should be too tedious, were I to give you the particulars; besides, I have a brief list of cases, which, when you’ll favour me with your company, I may shew you: for I oblige myself, though not desired, to keep an account of what I do with no less than two hundred pounds a year, that Mr. B. allows me to expend in acts of charity and benevolence.
Lady Davers told me afterwards, that Sir Jacob carried it mighty stiff and formal when he alighted. He strutted about the court-yard in his boots, with his whip in his hand; and though her ladyship went to the great door, in order to welcome him, he turned short, and, whistling, followed the groom into the stable, as if he had been at an inn, only, instead of taking off his hat, pulling its broad brim over his eyes, for a compliment. In she went in a pet, as she says, saying to the countess, “A surly brute he always was! My uncle! He’s more of an ostler than a gentleman; I’m resolved I’ll not stir to meet him again. And yet the wretch loves respect from others, though he never practises common civility himself.”
The countess said, she was glad he was come, for she loved to divert herself with such odd characters now-and-then.
And now let me give you a short description of him as I found him, when I came in, that you may the better conceive what sort of a gentleman he is.
He is about sixty-five years of age, a coarse, strong, big-boned man, with large irregular features; he has a haughty supercilious look, a swaggering gait, and a person not at all bespeaking one’s favour in behalf of his mind; and his mind, as you shall hear by and bye, not clearing up those prepossessions in his disfavour, with which his person and features at first strike one. His voice is big and surly; his eyes little and fiery; his mouth large, with yellow and blackish teeth, what are left of them being broken off to a tolerable regular height, looked as if they were ground down to his gums, by constant use. But with all these imperfections, he has an air that sets him somewhat above the mere vulgar, and makes one think half his disadvantages rather owing to his own haughty humour, than to nature; for he seems to be a perfect tyrant at first sight, a man used to prescribe, and not to be prescribed to; and has the advantage of a shrewd penetrating look, but which seems rather acquired than natural.