Letter 6th - Laura to Marianne
The noble Youth informed us that his name was Lindsay -- for particular reasons, however, I shall conceal it under that of Talbot. He told us that he was the son of an English Baronet, that his Mother had been many years no more, and that he had a Sister of the middle size. "My Father (he continued) is a mean and mercenary wretch -- it is only to such particular freinds as this Dear Party that I would thus betray his failings. Your Virtues, my amiable Polydore (addressing himself to my father), yours Dear Claudia, and yours my Charming Laura, call on me to repose in you my confidence." We bowed. "My Father, seduced by the false glare of Fortune and the Deluding Pomp of Title, insisted on my giving my hand to Lady Dorothea. ``No, never,'' exclaimed I. ``Lady Dorothea is lovely and Engaging; I prefer no woman to her; but know, Sir, that I scorn to marry her in compliance with your Wishes. No! Never shall it be said that I obliged my Father.''" We all admired the noble Manliness of his reply. He continued:
"Sir Edward was surprized; he had perhaps little expected to meet with so spirited an opposition to his will. ``Where, Edward in the name of wonder (said he) did you pick up this unmeaning gibberish? You have been studying Novels, I suspect.'' I scorned to answer: it would have been beneath my dignity. I mounted my Horse and followed by my faithful William, set forwards for my Aunt's."
"My Father's house is situated in Bedfordshire, Aunt's in Middlesex, and tho' I flatter myself with being a tolerable proficient in Geography, I know not how it happened, but I found myself entering this beautifull Vale which I find is in South Wales, when I had expected to have reached my Aunt's."
"After having wandered some time on the Banks of the Uske without knowing which way to go, I began to lament my cruel Destiny in the bitterest and most pathetic Manner. It was now perfectly dark, not a single star was there to direct my steps, and I know not what might have befallen me, had I not at length discerned thro' the solemn Gloom that surrounded me a distant Light, which, as I approached it, I discovered to be the chearfull Blaze of your fire. Impelled by the combination of Misfortunes under which I laboured, namely Fear, Cold, and Hunger, I hesitated not to ask admittance, which at length I have gained; and now, my Adorable Laura (continued he, taking my Hand) when may I hope to receive that reward of all the painfull sufferings I have undergone during the course of my attachment to you, to which I have ever aspired. Oh! when will you reward me with Yourself?"
"This instant, Dear and Amiable Edward," (replied I). We were immediately united by my Father, who, tho' he had never taken orders, had been bred to the Church.
Love and Freindship - Letter 5: Laura to Marianne | Love and Freindship | Love and Freindship - Letter 7: Laura to Marianne
Please Note: I have retained this mispelling in following my printed edition.