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petual fountain of domestic sweets;" but should that expectation be disappointed, (and fome of his married friends had complained that they had been taken-in on a fimilar occafion,) would any body pretend to fay that he had no right to make himfelf as comfortable as was in his power? He had already a fine house, elegant carriages, and a numerous retinue; he was very feldom at home, to be fure, but he believed that the housekeeper and the fteward went on very well; and fhould he (which was fcarcely poffible) find no more attractions in his own fire-fide, when graced by the presence of a charming wife, he faw nothing in the marriage ceremony which forbade his making himself happy elsewhere.
The more correct principles and refined imagination of lady Monteith taught her to confider the man whom the K 3 vowed
vowed to love, honour, and obey, as the partner of all her joys and forrows, the lord of her destiny, the guardian of her character, and the guide of her conduct. Confcious that death alone could diffolve the folemn bond into which he had juft entered, her moft anxious wishes were pointed to one end, that of being for ever amiable in her husband's eyes. She determined to study his difpofition with the most assiduous care, to comply with his peculiarities, and by imperceptible, because gentle means, gradually to infpire that delicacy of tafte and fentiment which even her partial judgment difcovered to be wanting in his character. Had her obfervations been more profound, shade after shade muft have appeared; yet, perhaps, had the even feen the whole portrait in its true colours, her strong predilection, and the fanguine hopes
which inexperienced youth (and I must add youthful vanity too) had tempted her to form of being able to make a complete revolution in his character, would have encouraged her to attempt the hazardous experiment. She never reflected, that the tender indulgence to which fhe had been accustomed muft render the perpetual renunciation of her own defires a painful task, nor was her experience fufficient to teach her, that the refinements which he meant to introduce, like delicate exotics, could only Sourish in a congenial foil.
The first inftance that the bridegroom gave of that habitual felf-indulgence, and difregard to the wishes of others, which might be faid to be the predominant feature in his mind, was an impatience to leave Powerscourt long before fir William had finished half his plans of feftal glee. His lordship had, with vi
fible ennui, endured the tediousness of a public day, and given fuch half-civil anfwers to the exclamation of "I hear"tily with you joy, my lord!" which burft upon him from every quarter, as to excite a doubt in the congratulators, whether he really was or was not glad that he was married. At dinner, he was only amufed by obferving the indifcriminating appetites of country gentlemen; and when the cloth was removed, as he found himself the object of general attention, he determined to give no vexatious preference s and therefore confining all confideration to his own reveries, he continued drawing lines upon the table with the madeira or claret, and proceeded no further in the way of difcourfe than by a hum or a fmile. While his righthand neighbour was defcribing the best method of improving land, his left ex
plained the advantages of inland navigation, and the gentleman oppofite addreffed to him a long narrative expla natory of the difficulties attending a lawfuit which had been awarded to him at the laft Caernarvon affizes. Their manner was verbose, and they talked all together: his lordship, therefore, concluded that they faid nothing worthy of attention, and that the chagrin he felt arofe from the want of fuperior fociety.
He feized the first opportunity of withdrawing from the company to the countess's dreffing-room, and on entering flung himself upon a fofa, with fo loud a yawn as to alarm her ladyship and Mifs Evans with ferious apprehenfions that he was taken ill. "Are not you "well ?" exclaimed the former with
tender anxiety. "It is impoffible to "be well among fuch boors," returned his lordship. "I have been talk'd-at K 5