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“ The road to emancipation is plain, strait, and open to you," said Sir George.

“ But," said the son, “ it seems to me that according to modern practice, emancipation, as you call it, costs a sight of money."

" Yours is free" “ What free, gratis for nothing, as the fellow in the Harlequin farce

says ?"

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“ Saddled with but one condition,” said Sir George.

“Ah! but one condition, governor, in my state,” replied the hopeful youth, “ may be something like the last feather that breaks the nag's back.”

“ What do you think it is?" asked Sir George. “ A tie-up by trustees,” said George, “ or perhaps some infernal appointment abroad."

-“ No; guess again, and nearer home,” said Sir George. “Can't," replied George, junior.

“ What d'ye think of the head to the establishment of which you have just been talking ?" said the baronet.

“ I have told you that before, governor," said George. “I think it would suit uncommon well."

Yes,” said Sir George; “ but the head to be differently put ondon't you comprehend-instead of my furnishing the head, furnish it yourself-get a wife.”

“ Whose?" said George, evidently borrowing an old joke, which, like many others, is handed down traditionally, through certain classes of society.

“ Whose but your own ?" said his father.

“ My own !" said George, starting back, evidently shocked at the notion of incurring such a responsibility.

“ Your own,” replied the baronet. “A charming, unaffected girl, with sixty thousand pounds, given her out and out, with her father's free will and consent."

“ I like the sound of it, governor,” said George; “ but I take it to be no go.”

Why?" said Sir George. “Why, I don't know," said the young gentleman; “ but I don't think, you see, that I am by any means what the world calls a marrying man."

“ Consider, George,” said the anxious father, " this fortune will put you—and me—both of us at our ease-and-"

- “ Yes,” interrupted the prudent-whenever self was concerned — youth; “ but depend upon it, whoever the respectable fogy may be, whom you have raked out somewhere, he'll want a tie-up, and then you know the thing's of no manner of use whatsoever.”

“ I doubt that,” said Sir George, he has his reasons for marrying his daughter, as we have ours, that she should be married into our family.

“ Who's the sire ?" said George. “ His name is Bruff,” was of course the answer. “ Unknown,” replied George;" can't calculate upon consequences.”

“ He is a colonel in the army, and wishes to see his only child well established in the world,” said Sir George.

“ Good !” replied the son, “ and so means to marry her to me that's

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not a bad notion--sixty thousand pounds would certainly come in well just now, governor; but have you ever seen her-had her trotted outwhat is she like-plain, pretty, or passable, or passée ?--not that it strikes me that matrimony suits my

book." “ I have not seen her,” said Sir George, “ but from her father's account of her—"

“Oh! is that all, governor ? That's no go,” said George;" hear you speak of me, and hear any body else do the same thing—you can't think what an uncommon dissimilarity there exists between the reports -I dare say, Mr. Bruff, or Gruff, or whatever his name is, thinks his daughter a queen of beauty, and may make you believe her so—but 1_

“Ay," interrupted the anxious parent,“ but sixty thousand pounds down"

Does,” continued George, “ I confess, make a very considerable alteration in the state of affairs ;—but perhaps you would be good enough just to let me a little into the secret. To begin with, who is Bruff, by himself Bruff?”.

I have told you; a very distinguished officer,” said Sir George. “ That's no clue," answered the dandy; “ there are plenty of those -where did you light upon him at the United Service ?”

No,” said Sir George, who, by virtue of the silver epaulettes of a deputy lieutenant, was enrolled in that gallant and distinguished society. “I have been in the habit of meeting him constantly at the Doldrum."

“ What is his line,-guardsman ?" asked George.

“ No,” said Sir George; “ but none the worse for that; since if he had had an opportunity of finishing his work before the Duke had finished the work altogether at Waterloo, Bruff might have been a general, titled and decorated."

“ I don't care, governor,” said George, “ general or corporal, it comes much to the same point if the girl has the stumpy, and thing decent to look at."

There,” said the solicitous parent, “ I am myself in the dark, and therefore unable to enlighten you.—I tell you I have never seen her." “Nor (he might have added) did I ever hear of her till within four-andtwenty hours of the moment when I concluded that she would make an excellent wife for you.This, however, he only “ mentally ejaculated," and left his darling son to conjure up some bright image of beauty, calculated at once to dazzle, charm, and fix him.”

“ But, governor,” said George, “there are two parties to all bargains -how d’ye know she'll have me?"

“ How?" said Sir George. “Because she is an amiable, well-regulated daughter, and obeys orders-my friend, the colonel, says, he can depend upon her immediate acquiescence in any proposal of his upon such a point.”

“What is her name, governor?" said George. “Jane," was the reply.

“ Jenny Bruff, don't 'sound aristocratic,” said George; “ not that I care for that-Jane itself is a deuced pretty name—but Bruff-eh !”

“ What's in a name, George ?" said the governor. “ Besides, that annoyance is soon got rid of by marrying her.”

“ True but then,” said George, contracting his brows, and passing


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his hand across his forehead," there is something serious in having a wife, governor."

“But something exceedingly agreeable in having her fortune," said the provident parent.

“Upon my life," said George, “now, really, joking apart, I know the money is an immense hit-a regular go—but, I declare even if she would accept me, I don't think I don't, upon my life, think I could undertake the responsibility. In fact, marrying- I don't know-I wish you would marry her yourself, which would answer all my purposes, governor."

" But perhaps not hers," said Sir George. “I don't exactly understand what you mean about responsibility; you will be more respectable as a married man; you will have your house, your establishment, your place in society, and your debts paid.'

"I admit that, governor," said George, “and being out of debt, would be an uncommon nice thing, even for the novelty of the feeling ; but then, marrying Miss Bruff, governor, taking a wife for life to clear off temporary encumbrances, is like putting on a perpetual blister to cure the toothach."

"Well, George,” said his father, “will you do me one favour?"

“ A thousand, governor,” replied the son, “ if they don't involve a disbursement of stumpy."

“Then have you any objection to be presented to the young lady ?" said Sir George; “see her—make her acquaintance, and that without her being in the slightest degree aware of the object of the visit. Say 'yes ! and I am sure from the anxiety which my friend Bruff has expressed on the point, he will speedily make some arrangement to make up the party.”

“ Where is Jenny Bruff, now, governor ?" said George. “She is in the country,” said Sir George.

“At boarding-school, or in a respectable lunatic asylum ?” asked the son.

Neither,” said Sir George; “ she is staying, as it is her custom to do for a considerable part of the year, at the house of some relations of her late mother-most excellent people—highly respectable, and full of_”

“ Never mind, governor," interrupted George, “I am prepared to go all lengths, let the end be what it may; for that which every man wants I want more than any man wants it on earth, and so commend me to a gentleman who wishes to perpetuate baronets through the female line of his family. I am entirely at your service: and although I may break a heart or two by turning Benedick, picking up and living pretty, I dare say I can make amends out of the military chest, eh, governor ?"

With very few further remarks, retorts, observations, or suggestions, the dialogue between the father, and one of his sons terminated, and they parted for the morning, under a sort of implied engagement to meet again during the course of the evening.

Frank who really and truly had received a severe shock from the unqualified levity - blasphemy it must be called — of George, and even more excited by the grounds of his apology for using words, of the sacred origin of which he avowed himself, by way of justification, so bitterly and blindly ignorant, had retired to his study, a


sanctum, rarely, if ever, invaded by either his father or his brother, whose tastes and pursuits, as we have said, and seen, were of a character so entirely opposed to his, that it would have cost them almost as much annoyance to make a descent upon his retreat, as it would have caused him to sustain it.

It is not to be supposed that Sandy Bruff, the colonel, had on his side, as one of the high contracting parties to the projected treaty, gone thus far with the preliminaries without the fact having, somehow or other, reached the well-ringed ears of Mrs. Smylar. The pert old thing (and though old in face, she was still young in figure, quick in motion, and active in all her turnings and twistings) was the first, and indeed the only person to whom Sandy Bruff communicated the steps he had taken. In furtherance of the great object she had constantly in view, she pressed their speedy completion upon her gallant master (if he might be her master called, whose mistress she was) in every possible way, and with every possible apparent motive, except those by which she was really and truly actuated. Nor is it to be im ned, that such being the case, she left any argument unbroached, any suggestion unmade to strengthen his resolution, and urge him to immediate proceedings to bring about the match ; pointing out to him especially what a capital thing it would be for him to get rid of all the worry of a large, cold, empty house in Harley-street, by living in which he was at a needless expense, and taking a small villa in the vicinity of town, or perhaps a snug house at Brighton, which she could entirely manage and make comfortable for him, with not more than three or four servants.

“That'll do, that'll do," said Bruff, as the assiduous wasp-waisted verd antique brought him his hot white-wine-whey, after he was in bed. “That'll do, Smylar-eh!- I think you are right about Jenny, eh!--so am 1-eh!"

During which little pithy observation, interrupted only by sips from the gentle diaphoretic prescribed and prepared by herself for a cold which the gentle giant thought he had caught in a draught of air at the Doldrum, Mrs. Smylar, with a readiness and condescension far below her sphere in the establishment, performed the operation of “ tucking him up" in the most comfortable manner, taking leave of him (as we presume for the night) by saying,

“Rely upen it, colonel, the happiest day you will ever have will be that upon which Miss Jane is married.”

“ That'll do, that'll do," said Bruff; “ I quite agree with you-good night, old woman; for the present-eh !—that'll do.”

And so, for the present, Mrs. Smylar retired.

And now that we have got sufficiently forward in our history, to see that all the four persons to whom the matrimonial scheme, by which Jane Bruff is to be settled for life, are unanimously agreed upon the wisdom and propriety of the arrangement, it becomes necessary for us to look at, and examine the character and qualities of the intended and predestined bride herself, in order to ascertain in what degree the important fifth character in our dramatis personæ may agree with the others, two of whom, be it understood, she had never heard of in her life, and one of whom, with all her affectionate regard for him, she felt conscious was entirely under the control of another.

Jane Bruff was—but what she was, must, we perceive, form the subject of another chapter.



(Containing some pieces never before published.)


English travellers on arriving at Vienna generally paid their compliments to the chargé d'affaires. It happened that two travellers came with introductions to Mr. Liston, and being pleasant men he often met them, and paid them great attention. One day, however, a friend mentioned to Mr. Liston that the Englishmen were writing their travels, and that Mr. Liston was to occupy a conspicuous place in their narrative respecting Vienna and the emperor, and so forth. Mr. Liston, it seems, had been very communicative to the travellers, telling them a great deal about the emperor and his court; but that all this was to be published, and with a high varnish, perhaps, brought before the eyes of the emperor, appeared a serious matter to Mr. Liston.

It happened that the travellers and he were invited to the same party that evening, and they met at supper, and Mr. Liston observing his opportunity, spoke out freely and said, " It was the fashion in those days for young Englishmen to write travels, and sometimes to expatiate with great freedom on very trifling matters; but that if any one should take the liberty of bringing his name into print he would blow his brains out!” The travellers were silent, and nothing more was heard about publishing the travels. The bold and able diplomatist is strikingly visible in this incident.

In my intercourse with Sir Robert Liston I have said to him at times that he should write his own life. His answer was, that he should not know where to begin ; alluding, no doubt, to the various and long-protracted missions in which he had been employed as ambassador. But it was not in bookmaking, in the common meaning of the phrase, that Sir Robert Liston was destined to be known. In the great volume of the world he hath written of himself very fully, and in characters which time will not easily efface.

In more places than I can name Sir Robert officiated as ambassador. In) America, Vienna, Frankfort, Holland, Denmark, Constantinople twice; three quarters of the whole world received Sir Robert as the representative of the sovereignty of Great Britain, speaking to them all mildly, but firmly, of Britain's industry, her rights, her power; and this man, who carried with him the fame and fortunes of a great nation, and who exhibited in his own person so eminent an illustration of its moderation, its courage, and its temperance, was the son of a plain Scotch farmer. In the small cottage where his mother lived I have often visited Sir Robert. “ When will you be able, Robbie, to buy me this bonnie place ?" said the mother to her son one day. But on the same spot some, five-and-twenty years ago, the ambassador erected a

. Concluded from No. ccxxviii., page 483.

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