TO A LOVER
82. There are two descriptions of Lovers on whom all advice would be wasted; namely, those in whose minds passion so wholly overpowers reason as to deprive the party of his sober senses. Few people are entitled to more compassion than young men thus affected: it is a species of insanity that assails them; and, when it produces self-destruction, which it does in England more frequently than in all the other countries in the world put together, the mortal remains of the sufferer ought to be dealt with in as tender a manner as that of which the most merciful construction of the law will allow. If SIR SAMUEL ROMILLY’S remains were, as they were, in fact, treated as those of a person labouring under ‘temporary mental derangement,’ surely the youth who destroys his life on account of unrequited love, ought to be considered in as mild a light! SIR SAMUEL was represented, in the evidence taken before the Coroner’s Jury, to have been inconsolable for the loss of his wife; that this loss had so dreadful an effect upon his mind, that it bereft him of his reason, made life insupportable, and led him to commit the act of suicide: and, on this ground alone, his remains and his estate were rescued from the awful, though just and wise, sentence of the law. But, unfortunately for the reputation of the administration of that just and wise law, there had been, only about two years before, a poor man, at Manchester, buried in crossroads, and under circumstances which entitled his remains to mercy much more clearly than in the case of SIR SAMUEL ROMILLY.
83. This unfortunate youth, whose name was SMITH, and who was a shoemaker, was in love with a young woman, who, in spite of all his importunities and his proofs of ardent passion, refused to marry him, and even discovered her liking for another; and he, unable to support life, accompanied by the thought of her being in possession of any body but himself, put an end to his life by the means of a rope. If, in any case, we are to presume the existence of insanity; if, in any case, we are led to believe