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Amelia

IV.1.
Containing Very Mysterious Matter
Miss Matthews did not in the least fall short of Mr. Booth in expressions of
tenderness. Her eyes, the most eloquent orators on such occasions, exerted
their utmost force; and at the conclusion of his speech she cast a look as
languishingly sweet as ever Cleopatra gave to Antony. In real fact, this Mr. Booth
had been her first love, and had made those impressions on her young heart,
which the learned in this branch of philosophy affirm, and perhaps truly, are
never to be eradicated.
When Booth had finished his story a silence ensued of some minutes; an interval
which the painter would describe much better than the writer. Some readers may,
however, be able to make pretty pertinent conjectures by what I have said above,
especially when they are told that Miss Matthews broke the silence by a sigh,
and cried, "Why is Mr. Booth unwilling to allow me the happiness of thinking my
misfortunes have been of some little advantage to him? sure the happy Amelia
would not be so selfish to envy me that pleasure. No; not if she was as much the
fondest as she is the happiest of women." "Good heavens! madam," said he, "do
you call my poor Amelia the happiest of women?" "Indeed I do," answered she
briskly. "O Mr. Booth! there is a speck of white in her fortune, which, when it falls
to the lot of a sensible woman, makes her full amends for all the crosses which
can attend her. Perhaps she may not be sensible of it; but if it had been my blest
fate--O Mr. Booth! could I have thought, when we were first acquainted, that the
most agreeable man in the world had been capable of making the kind, the
tender, the affectionate husband--happy Amelia, in those days, was unknown;
Heaven had not then given her a prospect of the happiness it intended her; but
yet it did intend it her; for sure there is a fatality in the affairs of love; and the
more I reflect on my own life, the more I am convinced of it.--O heavens! how a
thousand little circumstances crowd into my mind! When you first marched into
our town, you had then the colours in your hand; as you passed under the
window where I stood, my glove, by accident, dropt into the street; you stoopt,
took up my glove, and, putting it upon the spike belonging to your colours, lifted it
up to the window. Upon this a young lady who stood by said, 'So, miss, the
young officer hath accepted your challenge.' I blushed then, and I blush now,
when I confess to you I thought you the prettiest young fellow I had ever seen;
and, upon my soul, I believe you was then the prettiest fellow in the world." Booth
here made a low bow, and cried, "O dear madam, how ignorant was I of my own
happiness!" "Would you really have thought so?" answered she. "However, there
is some politeness if there be no sincerity in what you say."--Here the governor of
the enchanted castle interrupted them, and, entering the room without any
ceremony, acquainted the lady and gentleman that it was locking-up time; and,
addressing Booth by the name of captain, asked him if he would not please to
have a bed; adding, that he might have one in the next room to the lady, but that
 
 
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