Japhet, in Search of a Father eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 432 pages of information about Japhet, in Search of a Father.

“It is very kind of you, Japhet, to think of me; but—­”

“But what?” replied Mrs Cophagus.  “Surely thou wilt not refuse, Susannah.  It would savour much of ingratitude on thy part.”

“I will not then be ungrateful,” replied Susannah, leaving the room; and in a short time she returned in a Leghorn bonnet and shawl like her sister’s.  “Do not I prove that I am not ungrateful, Japhet, since to do credit to thy carriage, I am content to depart from the rules of our persuasion?” said Susannah, smiling.

“I feel the kindness and the sacrifice you are making to please me, Susannah,” replied I; “but let us lose no time.”

I handed her down to the carriage, and we drove to the Park.  It was a beautiful day, and the Park was filled with pedestrians as well as carriages.  Susannah was much astonished, as well as pleased.  “Now, Susannah,” said I, “if you were to call this Vanity Fair, you would not be far wrong; but still, recollect that even all this is productive of much good.  Reflect how many industrious people find employment and provision for their families by the building of these gay vehicles, their painting and ornamenting.  How many are employed at the loom, and at the needle, in making these costly dresses.  This vanity is the cause of wealth not being hoarded, but finding its way through various channels, so as to produce comfort and happiness to thousands.”

“Your observations are just, Japhet, but you have lived in the world, and seen much of it.  I am as one just burst from an egg-shell, all amazement.  I have been living in a little world of my own thoughts, surrounded by a mist of ignorance, and not being able to penetrate farther, have considered myself wise when I was not.”

“My dear Susannah, this is a chequered world, but not a very bad one—­there is in it much of good as well as evil.  The sect to which you belong avoid it—­they know it not—­and they are unjust towards it.  During the time that I lived at Reading, I will candidly state to you that I met with many who called themselves of the persuasion, who were wholly unworthy of it, but they made up in outward appearance and hypocrisy, what they wanted in their conduct to their fellow-creatures.  Believe me, Susannah, there are pious and good, charitable and humane, conscientious and strictly honourable people among those who now pass before your view in such gay procession; but society requires that the rich should spend their money in superfluities, that the poor may be supported.  Be not deceived, therefore, in future, by the outward garments, which avail nothing.”

“You have induced me much to alter my opinions already, Japhet; so has that pleasant friend of thine, Mr Masterton, who has twice called since we have been in London, but is it not time that we should return?”

“It is indeed later than I thought it was, Susannah,” replied I, looking at my watch, “and I am afraid that my father will be impatient for my return.  I will order them to drive home.”

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Japhet, in Search of a Father from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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