Page images
PDF
EPUB

1

a thousand Varieties, feem the favourite Retreat of all the rural Deities.-Flora has here bestowed her choiceft Graces; and the Dryads fport in every Labyrinth and Grove of this immortal Monument of the Glory of Lewis XIV. who certainly went, amidst a Thirst of Empire, the only Way to deferve the Name of Great, by becoming the Patron of all the Diftinguished and Learned in every Profeffion; and, like Auguftus, cherished thofe Artifts that were sure to make him live for ever. Here he laid, more than by his Conquefts, the Foundation of an univerfal Empire; and, if any Thing contributes, fome Time or other, to give his Country that Diftinction, 'twill proceed from their cultivating Wisdom, Difcipline, and liberal Arts; and, thereby procuring a Refpect, Efteem, and Veneration, from all Nations, who now, in general, act by her Maxims, speak her Language, and imbibe all the Politenefs and Gentility, fo natural to her. In fhort, fhe fits fupreme in Literature; and gives her Laws with fo much amiable Sweetnefs, that the whole World yields ready and willing Homage.

We were taking our laft View of this Pride of France. when, walking thro' one of the Alleys, we met two Ladies, one of them masqued, who, at our Approach, would have directed their Steps another Way; but, feeing them under fome Embarraffment, we would have retired; and I faid to Sharpley, Let us, Sir, turn down the next Walk; when

I

the

the mafqued Lady exclaimed, Good God! What do I fee? and fainted in the Arms of her Companion. The Sweetness of the Voice attracted all Ears but mine, who had been deaf fo long, and blind to all Female Perfection; fo I kept on my Way with Mr. Du Plessis, while Sharpley, the Marquis, and Balompiere, flew to the Affiftance of the Ladies. The fainting Fair-one had juft come to herself, and handfomely returned Thanks for their kind Intentions; but feemed to caft her Eyes on every Side, as if to feek fomewhat fhe wanted; and heaving a repining Sigh, when he could not discover it. The other Lady inforced her Compliments, and would have withdrawn; but the Marquis enquired of a Footman, who attended them, if they had any Convenience waiting to carry them Home? Which he answering in the Negative, infifted upon their accepting his Coach; and Sharpley offered his Service to attend on them; which, after fome Denials, they, with feeming Reluctance, accepted; and, ordering the Coachman to drive to St. Clou, left them, full of Admiration at their uncommon Beauty. We went to Paris that Evening, in a Coach we borrowed of the Marchionefs De Gefveres, where we found Mr. Sharpley had just arrived before us. He appeared so grave, and fo much upon the Reserve, that he was bantered by the whole Company, who told him his Civility to the unknown Ladies had

[blocks in formation]

བ་ མ་ ་

loft him his Heart. He smiled, and made an eva-
five Answer, which only confirmed us in the Truth
of our Obfervation. When we went to reft, he
made an Excufe to vifit me in my Apartment, and
then told me he feared he was a miferable Crea-
ture, if he could not gain the Attention of one of
the Ladies he had conveyed Home to his Addreffes.
My Friend, he cried, in Rapture, Never was fo
finished a Piece in the Creation, as this lovely Crea-
ture; and the Beauties of her Mind far excel those
of her Perfon; befides, fhe is fo inartfully merry
and debonaire, that she exactly suits my Temper,
and I cannot live without poffeffing her; lend me
your Affiftance, dear Joey, and I'll be your Slave
the Remainder of my Life. The other is alfo a
perfect Beauty, but too melancholy and penfive for
my Difpofition; and, if I judge rightly, has fome
great Load of Sorrow at her Heart, by her frequent
Sighing, and the involuntary Tears that trickled
now and then adown her lovely Face: In fhort, they
are our Countrywomen; the one the Daughter,
and the other the Niece, to an elderly Lady, that
has refided fome Years in France. They keep lit-
tle Company, and have done me the Honour to
give me a general Invitation to fee them at their
Houfe at St. Clou, which is a large and fpacious Edi-
fice;
and they live, in all Refpects, like Perfons of
the first Quality. Oh! how happy fhould I be,
could I obtain fo dear a Companion, to folace the

future

future Hours of my Life! One Thing surprised me, which was, that the melancholy one, who is the Niece, enquired particularly after the Names of the Gentlemen fhe faw us with at Versailles; and, amongst the rest, afked who the Gentleman in Scarlet and Gold was, who left the Walk, with the old one, in Complaifance to them; and I had no fooner told them you was our Countryman, and that your Name was Thompson, than fhe fainted away, and wept moft pitiously; and, in that Condition, was borne off to Bed; her Coufin and Aunt affuring me they were Accidents very frequent with her, and that she had been troubled with such Fits from her Infancy: However, the Discourse was still continued; and my Charmer particularly enquired, If you was married, and what Part of the World you came from laft? I fatisfied their Enquiries; and it's my Opinion, (tho' I know it's what you neither like nor defire) that you have, at first Sight, fmitten the Niece, in a Manner that I should be rejoiced to melt her Coufin to, after Years of longing Servitude. I congratulated Sharpley on his good Fortune, and promifed him, if I could any Way ferve him in his Amour, I would; and, after mutually embracing one another, we parted and went to Bed.

[blocks in formation]
[ocr errors]

CHA P. LVI.

Sharpley makes great Progrefs in his Amour. --Recommends a Page to Thompson, at the Request of Serena.-He fets out for the Marquis de Houdaincourt's Seat in Normandy. They are attacked by Banditti.His Life faved by his Page.-The Story of the Marquis, and the beautiful Marguerite d'Aulnay.-They releafe her from her Confinement. She is married to the Marquis.

Y Friend was now almost conftantly at the Feet of his Miftrefs; and, tho' he could not prevail upon me to accompany him to her Hotel, yet I heard, from Time to Time, from him, that he had Reason to think himself a very happy Man, and that Serena, that was the Name of his Beloved, made him all the Returns that fo faithful and tender a Paffion deserved. Ifhould, had it been neceffary to him, have made no Difficulty of vifiting that Lady, and her Family, as they often had requested, by him, that I would; but the Account he gave me before, of the Senfibility of the Niece, deterred me. I had too much Honour to trifle with a Lady in fo important an Affair, as that which concerned, I prefumed, the Happiness of

her

« EelmineJätka »