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all other matters. It often happens that the greater the pains taken to divert the current of an affection, the more powerful and impetuous it becomes. It is true that, so far, you have always had, as a father, , parental authority ; but, remember, a time comes when the youth grown to manhood considers himself emancipated from the trammels of authority; a time comes when he deems it his prerogative to think and act for himself. Moreton may be more easily drawn by a silken thread than forcibly brought to moorings by a cable.”
“Susan," replied the captain, testily, “you talk as all women do on matters of importance-like a simpleton; like one who knows not the world; who has no notion of the expedients which sometimes must be had recourse to. As regards his entering the service, that I can manage. He is made for the army, the very man for an officer's life, and he will win the heart of an heiress! His natural taste inclines towards a soldier's vocation. From infancy fond of dogs and horses, delighting in field sports; at school he
has fought his way like a young Hector; and these are the youths of England who are destined to defend her rights—who turn out men and heroes! So far as pertaineth to the hope which I cherish of a good match, which I trust he'll make, how can you look only to the dark side? You are aware, Susan, ours is a take-all, bring-nothing family. Seven girls !” (Here he gave a sigh.) “They will want much more than I can give them. It is true they are tolerably good-looking, and they are of the De Bohun blood, which ought to be an efficient off-set against the lack of dowry. Besides, Susan, you are aware the estate is deeply mortgaged.
“If Moreton shall not marry well, that evil time must come when Elleringay shall pass to other hands—when the hall of
father's shall be another's. Amongst the higher classes matches of expediency are got up every day, or how do you suppose the good old families and their estates would hang together!—otherwise the broad acres of many a fair domain would long ago have gone to ill-bred merchants; to a class whose only superiority consists in the heaps which niggardly parsimony and vulgar pursuits had accumulated. This expediency may, perhaps, be reckoned amongst some of the drawbacks which there are to mar the peace of upper life. It would be downright stoliditymadness in fact-for a man of birth, one young,
handsome, and courageous, and sprung from the Plantagenets, to descend to a portionless wife! It is all very fine to talk about affection and such stuff in the hearing of school-girls! The great fact must present itself to every person of sense, that without a competency there is no happiness. To sigh and dream about pretty faces and suchlike nonsense,
is ridiculous in a man of mind; and I am convinced, when Moreton grows up and knows something of his position and my affairs, he will have the prudence to act accordingly."
In the delivery of these sentiments, Godfrey was not a little animated. He was painfully reminded of his financial position, and painfully reminded of those ills that must some day come upon his house, if the son, in his own language, did not act prudently. It wounded him to the quick when he contemplated such a melancholy wind-up as that of Elleringay Manor House becoming the home of one who did not bear his name. Mrs. De Bohun was a person of correct principles and good understanding, yet not possessed of that penetration and depth which were such characteristics of her husband. She had more ingenuous goodness and less of his pride. Had the captain continued his profession, he would have been more likely to have risen from strategic scheming than from fearless courage. If he had seen the garrison could not easily be carried by storm, he would have held parley with the enemy, matured his plans, and gained conquest by artifice. Had he been possessed of power and high command, he was precisely the person to be imperious, overbearing, and haughty—to carry out those false notions of exclusivism and prerogative of order with which his mind was so strongly imbued. The Fates had decided otherwise, and his capabilities of exercising arbitrary influence were circumscribed, just as nature
wills it that ferocious animals are less physically endowed than the more docile tribes. Mrs. De Bohun wisely considered that avarice and vanity were evils which brought with them their often severe but certain correctives; she wisely deemed that humbler associations were more likely to be followed by happiness; consequently there was an opposition between the false notions of her husband and her own more unprejudiced reasonings, which not unfrequently gave rise to altercations that disturbed the repose of their domestic hearth.
“ You seem to suppose, Godfrey,” replied she, after a silence" you seem to suppose that all our desires ought to be directed towards the attainment of an exalted position; that in such consists our chief good. Happiness is not thus always to be found. Those matches of expediency, as you term them, are, in the majority of instances, matches of misery. Besides, the higher classes do not form the prototype of all that is to be observed; it is a mistake to look to their order for all that is estimable, or for the true