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not the propofed vifit of her lord's relations induced her to poftpone that defire till he could have been fully at liberty to enjoy the unreftrained pleafure of her fociety, the indifpofition of Mrs. Evans would have frustrated the fcheme. That excellent woman was now confined to her chamber by the increase of a dilorder under which fhe had laboured for many years; and though her fituation by no means excluded hope, her tender domeftic daughter could feldom fteal an hour from the pleafingly painful task of attending her, to breathe her fond wishes and fonder adicus to that dearest friend from whom fhe was now for the first time in her life going to be feparated.


Lighter than air, Hope's fummer-vilions die,
If but a fleeting cloud obscure the sky ;
If but a beam of fober Reason play,
Lo, Fancy's fairy frøft work melis away !
But can the wiles of art, the grasp of power,
Snatch the rich relics of a well-fpent hour?


THE young countefs, waving every form of state which might have proved inconvenient in a fick family, walked down to the parfonage, to bid farewell to her maternal friend, as fhe conftantly styled the respectable fufferer. She came juft at the time when Mrs. Evans was going to rife, and claiming admittance with the privilege of long-established intimacy, employed herfelf in airing the good lady's fhawl; while Lucy was bufily engaged in affifting her mother


to drefs, and in fixing her eafy chair in a proper fituation. Mrs. Evans looked at her noble gueft with a tender fmile. "I perceive, my deareft lady Monteith," faid fhe, "that there is no alteration in

your character. Your goodness and "amiable vivacity have fuffered no di"minution from the referve of rank. "or the etiquette of dignity; and fee We can

"the effect it has upon us. "confider you in no other light than "that of our old friend. I admit you "to a fick chamber, and treat you with "a little groaning, while Lucy finds "you fome employment, as if you "were ftill the playful Geraldine whom "I had used alternately to correct and "idolize. Do you remember dreffing my caɛ in a blue jacket and trowsers, teaching it to walk upright, and protefting that it was the very image of


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your coufin Henry; and afterwards,



"when you faw him crying at the com

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parifon, giving him the new gold "watch your father had juft bought "you, by way of confolation?"

"I have many unatoned fins to anfwer for to Henry Powerfcourt," faid lady Monteith gravely, "worfe than "tearing his best Virgil to paper my

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baby-house or causing the destruction "of his plaister of Paris bufts by dref

fing them in high-crowned hats and "hooped petticoats to frighten the "houfe-maids. I have blafted his faireft "profpects; but I have not forgot that "I owe him an indelible debt of grati "tude. I have just received from him "an affecting congratulation.. He "writes in a difpirited ftyle, and com

I plains of a low fever; but his wishes "for my happiness are breathed in such "a ftrong and affectionate manner, "that while I read his letter I felt-I


"know not what I felt, unless it was a " wish that I had the power of making "him as happy as he deferves."

During lady Monteith's fpeech Miss Evans was employed in mixing her mother's medicine. Her hands appeared to tremble, fhe dropped the cup, and, while apologizing for her awkwardness, burst into tears. "Your close confine"ment makes you nervous, my love," faid Mrs. Evans. "Go into the gar"den, and water your little nurflings; your friend will chat with me while

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you are gone; and I felt fo easy this ." morning, that I intended to omit the draught."

Lucy inftantly obeyed. Her mother's eyes followed her to the door; they were then lifted to Heaven, as if enforcing a filent ejaculation, and finally fettled upon lady Monteith with a look of fupplicating earnestness.

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