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inftruments of defpotifm, the wretched Fitzofborne might have feen the refutation of that falfe philofophy which, founded upon the vifionary perfectability of the human fpecies, rejects the wife reftrictions which Infinite Wisdom has 'contrived as a barrier against the extreme atrocity of a fallible creature. But Fitzofborne could neither commune with his own heart, nor feek forgiveness at that throne of mercy which he had often prefumptuously blafphemed. Amongst the effects of these alarming doctrines, it is not the leaft lamentable that they feel the heart againft contrition. The unhappy finner, whom paffion betrays into guilt, trembles at the recollection of thofe crimes which the fyftematic villain juftifies. But the forrows of penitence lead to hope, while the pangs of impiety end in defpair.
Shrinking with horror from the dif grace of a public execution, Fitzofborne applied to the unbeliever's last refource, and with his own hand anticipated the ftroke of the guillotine. He died amongst men brutalized by guilt, or petrified by fuffering. He could not, therefore, expect the poor confolation of pity; but his laft moments were unexpectedly rendered more agonizing by the intelligence (which the keeper of the prifon communicated with all the unfeeling cruelty of his profeffion) that the Dictator, having received a very favourable account of his talents, had not only determined to liberate him from prifon, but also to advance him to fome confidential employment. Shuddering at the idea of that eternal fleep, the reality of which he yet wished to believe; clinging to life with greater earneftnefs, in proportion as the poffi
bility of living diminished; curfing his own impatience, which had irretrievably deftroyed the fair profpects which he might have realized; ftung by remorse and felf-accufation, without one ray of hope; Fitzofborne's terrible unlamented exit appeared to anticipate the horrors of futurity. But here let me drop the awful veil; and while juftice refuses the commiferating tear, let human nature, conscious of its own infirmities, humbly folicit the protection of Omnipotence against the magic of novelty, the delufions of fophiftry, and the arrogance of human Reason, whenever, proud of her own fupremacy, the prefumes to pass the interdicted bounds prefcribed to her finite powers.
The hiftory of my remaining characters will be comprized in a few pages. Mr. Powerfcourt prudently determined to let the first effervescence of
lord Monteith's grief fubfide before he requested to be intrufted with the care of those children whofe fociety the unhappy father fancied would alleviate his affliction. But the cheek of infancy is not always dimpled with fmiles. Its little foibles require calm correction; and though it is delightful "to teach. the young idea how to fhoot," its wild luxuriance must be tenderly repreffed. Calamity did not increase the number of the earl's virtues, and patience and application were ever wanted in the lift. He therefore foon found the prattle of childhood too mild an opiate to lull the tortures of corroding reflection. Lady Arabella too, who, on hearing that skill in education was the very highest ton, had determined to be governels to her fweet little nieces
herfelf, perceived that verbs and
fitions were very dull reading, and that the engagements of the fchool-room were abfolutely incompatible with mixing in the world. In lefs than three months after the death of their mother, the children were fixed at Powerfcourt to the mutual fatisfaction of all parties.
Love is faid to be the only paffion which can conquer death. But friendfhip, as belonging to the fame family, claims the like honour. Long after the lamented death of lady Monteith, the following fonnet flowed from her Lucy's pen:
O Friendship! folacer of grief! whose smile Can calm the terrors of life's ruthless storms, Come, with thy daughter's memory, and beguile
My penfive hours. Recall the fairy forms