Obrázky stránek

fentiments, to form connections, which, of an old money-lender-upon good how advantageous foever they may securities ; though, at the same time, prove, in a pecuniary point of view, he has neither the vivacity nor the are little calculated either to feed and taste with which men of genius gestimulate his mind, or to improve his nerally decorate their pleasures, and morals and deportment, he was early from which the dissipations of youth betrayed to the sottilh tyranny of ap- seem principally to derive their strong petite, which damped 'the generous and dangerous allurements. fires of his dawning ambitions, re So motley a character may rather laxed the finews of industry and reso- be considered as deformed by acci. lution, which time ought ftill more dent, than corrupted by ireentional firmly to have braced, and blunted in viciousness, or abandoned to systemasome degree the fine feelings fo tic depravity. To make it every friendly at once to genius and virtue: thing that can be expected of human so that, except those who are ac- nature, nothing more seems requisite quainted with the former efforts of his than the addition of that acute, that genius, few would at present suspect delicate sympathy, which, spurning Appetentius of being a youth of any the grossness of sei.sual appetite, seeks endowments, much above the common for enjoyment in exercising the feelmass of mercantile capacity.

ings of benevolence and compaffion; It is true, he still, among others, or that cool and manly philosophy, poffefses an appetite for fame; but which abltracts itself from the fordid this, like the rest, is not very refined, idolatry of selfishness, to soar, on and seems to prefer obtaining applause Reason's wing, in search of the geby finifter means, or from those whose nuine loveliness and divinity of approbation can confer no credit, to truth. the toil of earning a liberal admiration Appetentius, (who, from his inby facrificing such indulgences as are fancy, has been too much confined incompatible with study, or confining among people, who have no idea of himself to such application and pur- any distinctions but those conferred suit, as are absolutely requisite to en- by money, and who know of no other sure any considerable approximation use of money but to enable its pofto excellence, whatever may be the sessors to eat and drink expensively) original powers and energy of the has become immoderately attached to mind.

his bottle, and the luxuries of the taHis moral capacities are under the ble, and can neglect without remorse, fame unhappy don.inion of his senses. Horace and Virgil, Socrates or AnIt is true, he still continues faithful to toninus, for any lottish blockhead who his early and disinterested attach- invites him to bear a part in these enments, with whom he once delighted joyments; and though he is delighted to Mare the intellectual banquet; but with the sentimental ribaldry of Sterne, revelry and debauch too often lead it is evident, that with him, as with him to far different feasts. He has that celebrated writer, the language still all the frankness and easy gene- of sensibility, and the delineations of rosity of youth, and will readily Ihare extravagant tenderness, are little other his purse, either with a friend or with than spices to stimulate his defres, an object of misfortune ; but money is or apologies for the indulgence of principally regarded by him, as a mi- pafsions he does not choofe to be at nister of sensual enjoyment and giddy the trouble to subdue. pleasure ; and to purchafe these, he Such is the present, and I fear the will sometimes pursue emolument with permanent character of a youth, who, an avidity ill-suited to his juvenile with the training of a proper educayears, and count over his expected tion, might have been, and by the gains, with the arithmetical accuracy bold exertion pf his judgment, may

yet become an ornament to science and The soft reflection of the lunar beam human nature : for the capacities of illuminated the clean and noiseless feeling, no more than the capacities ftreets. The serenity of the sky seen of reason and of fancy, were with- above the lofty walls, and through held from the catalogue of his natural the spacious avenues toward the west endowments,--as the following nar- end of the metropolis, together with rative (at the same time that it shews the gentle pressure of the feeble hand, the gross degree of degradation, to naturally, at such an hour, clinging which appetite may fink the human to the pro'ecting arm it loved, awakcharacter) will sufficiently evince. ened all the tenderness of the heart,

Among other circumstances that and prompted the ready tongue of gave hopes of the reformation of Ap- Appetentius to pour forth all the vows petentius, was an early attachment to which love and wine could inspire ; an amiable

young female, who wanted so that the listering fair-one, incapaneither inclination to exert her influ- ble of marking the silent lapse of time, ence in the behalf of virtue, nor, ex- continued walking backward and forcept in the present instance, judgment ward for more than an hour, past the to discern where such exertion was door of her parents, before she had required. But as it is the mind, and resolution to a'cend the steps, and not appetite, that generally speaks in knock for undefired admittance; or epistolary correspondence, the moral he, with a thousand protestations of and sentimental appeals of the lover, pure and unalterable conftancy, to foon gained fo entire an ascendency quit her fair and half-unwilling wilover the partial heart of Pathetica, ling'hand, and bid her farewell

. that little is now to be expected from But · Love is a jeit, and vows are that quarter, but the flattering at- wind,' says Prior. tentions, which have rather a disposi Appetentius had not proceeded tion to feed the vanity than to correct more than the length of a couple of the foibles of a headitrong youth. streets, from the ipot where he left

To this fair one, my hero conti- the sole object of his tender thoughts, nues to be attached with all the ar- when he was greeted by one of those dour common to his tender years, unhappy victims of shame and misery, and all the purity consistent with his whom the pride of unfeeling relations character. That this latter is not 'precludes from the retreats of repentvery eminent, the reader will natu- ance, and whom the policy of British rally conclude from the sketch already laws leaves to rove at large, to seduce given ; and I blush for the depravity the youthful and unwary. of human nature, while 1 relate an The person of Victima was atincident which will render it still more tractively elegant; and recent depraevident.

vity had not yet destroyed the allurThe lover, not a very considerable ing delicacy of youth ; so that it was time ago, after having (as is his cuf- not difficult for the heated fancy of tom) circulated the glass pretty free- Appetentius, as there was fome corly, in a large party at his own house, respondence of size and form, to trace

a day when his Pathetica was in the unfortunate courtezan some reamong the number of his mother's and semblance of the amiable mistress, his fifter's visitors, felt himself called from whom he had so recently parted. upon, by the pleasing customs of gal. Tenderness and compassion were conlantry, to conduct his mistress home sequently the first impressions, and, at the appointed hour; and accord- under the mark of these, he suffered ingly quitted, with elated heart, his those disloyal desires to steal upon his boon (that is, intoxicated) companions, heart, which, had they openly atfor that purpose ; and, for once in his tacked him, he would perhaps with life, left without regret his wine of no great difficulty have refifted. In Oporto, and his Spanish olives. short, curiosity and sympathy were



fucceeded by appetite, and the sensual lation from a stranger's pity. Would youch sufered himself to be conducted you believe – no, you, who thus feel to one of those manfions, whose ex- for a stranger's sufferings, never can istence even vice itfelf has but too believe that no farther off than the many realons to deplore.

village of E-, I have an uncleIt has been juftly, or (as fome a respectable uncle (if opulence can will have it) romantically observed, create respect, where the feelings of that there is a charm in serious af- nature are absent) who might, but fection which frequently operates as a who would not, fave me from my preservative of virtue; which in the ruin.' present intrance was forcibly illus If Appetentius was interested at the trated; for here (even in this unhal- mention of a place, with all the beauJowed retreat) the ideal form of his tiful scenery of which (to him renPathetica intruded, and damped the dered classical by the descriptive muse unhallowed fires of the youth. And of a friend) he was so intimately acwhen he beheld the woeful object of quainted, what was his surprise when his incontinent desires, turn filently he heard her mention, in proof of her away to wipe off the starting tears that veracity, a school to which his visits dinmed the over-acted vivacity of her had so often been directed, and when, features, the touch of fenfibility vi- unconscious to whom she spoke, among brated fadly at his heart, and he re the teachers and scholars with whom called to mind all the too-much neg- she had been intimate a few years lected lessons of that tender monitreis. before, she repeated the names of his

He sat down, pensively, upon a fifter and the dear object of his love, chair; and, after some moments of together with circumstances of the filence, · You are unhappy,' said he, truth of which he himself was not unwith a fig!!, and look of unusual be- conscious ! nignity; poor girl! you are un • Ah little did I think,' said she, happy, and bring not your heart to fobbing, when I sported with the the pleasures to which you are com- innocent Serena, and warned the pelled to adminifter.'

blooming Pathetica of those base deThe unhappy Victima was over- figns, which it was notorious to half powered with the nature and manner the village that the licentious husband of this address. The voice of fym- of her governess entertained against pathy had never before vibrated with- her honour, that I should ever in a in those walls, where a bloated ty- few short years become an object from rant fattened upon the vices the could whom both would turn with indignano longer enjoy, and the fons of re

tion and contempt.? velry and debauch reeled to unparti I have already given the reader to cipated joy. She burit into tears. understand that the heart of Appeten

*Oh! fir-I am not used to this. tius was by no means conftitutionally I never dreamed of it. Though suf- hostile to the impressions of sensibility, ceptible, too susceptible, of the frail- any more than his head was incompeties of nature, lonever thought tọtent to the cultivation of philosophy; have been dependent on indiscrimi- but as the latter was neglected, fo did nate'.

the other, by its transient occurrence She could say no more. The swell- and evanescence, but too much assume ing torrents of shame and anguish the appearance of humour and caprice; stopped her utterance. Appetentius filling up, at times, the vacuum of endeavoured to console her. · Alas!' fatiated appetite, and too often givsaid she, “were not others more in- ing way to its imperious didates. fensible to the voice of nature, than I The sympathetic power, however, to that of virtue, I should not now never more forcibly exerted itself in receive the first faint gleam of conso- his bolom than during the ejaculation

[ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]
[graphic][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]
« PředchozíPokračovat »