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SOUTHERN LITERARY MESSENGER.

SEPTEMBER, 1844.

GERTRUDE; AN ORIGINAL NOVEL.,

- Judge n. Tuoker.

CHAPTER I.

"Well! my daughter ?" said Mrs. Austin, with cacy, and disgusted you, by teasing you about him. an approving smile, and in a tone of inquiry. Now this time I have said nothing, and left you to

The young lady was entering the room with an yourself. But though I was silent you could not air of recovered composure, though a slight tinge help knowing my wishes; and that, I suppose, was upon her cheek, and an excited flash of the eye, enough to determine you to disappoint them. Oband an almost imperceptible quivering of the lip stinate, disobedient, ungrateful girl!" showed that she was not entirely free from emo- Poor Gertrude borst into tears, and sinking on tion. In her step, and the carriage of her head the sofa, covered her face with her hands. She there was an expression of self-confidence and of- felt that she did not deserve this reproach—but she fended pride ; and, on the whole, it was plain, that did not expostulate. It was needless. The Mowhatever might be the feeling of the moment, self-ther, sensible of her injustice, instantly softened. reproach had no part in it.

“My dear Gertrude," she said, “you must for" Well! my daughter : is all settled ?" give my harshness. You have always been good "I hope so, Ma'am,” was the quiet reply. and dutiful, in every thing but this; and hence per"Mr. Crabshaw then is the happy man at last ?" haps it is, that I am the more impatient at finding

“I trust, Mother, I wish Mr. Crabshaw at least you so unreasonable and intractable. But what as much happiness as he deserves, but I do not ex. am I to think of your behavior ? I have had no pect that I shall ever contribute to it."

reason to suspect that you had gone, like a silly “How !" exclaimed Mrs. Austin, in a tone of girl, and fallen in love with somebody who was not unfeigned amazement; " is it possible that you thinking of you, and I do not know how to underhave rejected an offer that has made you the envy stand your obstinate rejection of the best offers.” of all the girls in the village ?"

“ Is it not enough, Mother, that I have as yet “I do not know, Mother, who may envy me, but seen no man whom I can love ?" I have certainly given Mr. Crabshaw an answer " Love !! repeated Mrs. Austin, with that scornwhich should forever free me from his unwelcome ful emphasis, with which the word is sometimes addresses."

uttered by ladies whose day of love is past; “ Love! "Upon my word, Miss ! you carry a high head. and what should you know about love ?" The unwelcome addresses of a man of ten thou- “Nothing, Mother, but what I am told, and of sand DOLLARS a year !!! It would be quite edifying that I understand and believe no more than what to be admitted to your confidence, and to learn how is self-evident-ihat whenever I do love any body high a poor country girl can lift her eyes, when well enough to be willing to leave all my friends, told that she is fine."

and spend my days with him, I shall not be uncon“Mother, you do me injustice. I do not lift my scious of it." eyes to any thing. It is not of ambition, but the “There you are mistaken, my dear. People are want of it, that you are wont to accuse me.” very often in love before they suspect it, and re

"Well ! be it so. I shall not dispute about the main in ignorance of their true feelings, until somename, you may choose to give your perverseness. thing happens to interpret them.” I know you will find a high sounding one. I re- "I do not know how that can be, Mother. I member how it was with Mr. Clutterbuch, and how love you, and my kind good father, and my liule you tried to persuade me that I wounded your deli-1 sister, and all my friends; and I could as soon be

Vol. X-65

name.

hungry, or thirsty without knowing it, as insensible At this moment Dr. Austin entered the room, to my affection for these."

and wearily threw himself on a sofa opposite to “O yes! But the love we are talking of is that on which Gertrude sat. Though but her stepquite a different affair."

father, he regarded and loved her as his own child, “ Different ! So I have been told before. I wish and unaccustomed to any reserves in his family, people would not call different things by the same thought nothing of breaking in upon a conversation

But if I love Mr. Crabshaw, it must be between his wife and her daughter. His presence because the love you speak of is more like dis- caused no interruption, though it might have modegust, contempt and aversion than any thing else. rated the coarseness of the last remark. But the I certainly have no pleasure in his company : I arrow had sped. The words had been uttered, and see no sense in any thing he says; his sentiments, were fixed in Gertrude's mind as a text and interto me, seem low and mean : I find nothing in his preter to what might follow. The lady went on. conduct to approve ; and I am always glad when " My dear daughter, you must bear in mind your he goes away.”

situation and circumstances. You know you have “Pshaw! That is only because he is your lover, no fortune. The small property left by your father and girls are always so, at first. It is disagree- was dissipated in my widowhood, by the necessary able to be always teased and harassed with atten- expenses of a helpless family; and a young woman tions, which are often ill-timed ; but let engage- so situated, must make up her mind to lay aside ment once establish confidence and security, and all romantic notions, and never think of marrying so put an end to that sort of troublesome importu- any man who is not rich enough to establish her in nity, and who knows how soon you might love life. You have my example to serve you as a him ?"

warning, though you can never know the trouble “And suppose I should not, Mother; what then and anxiety I experienced, when left by your poor would become of the engagement ?"

father in such narrow circumstances. But I form" But that is not to be supposed.”

ed what I thought the best plan for you. Instead “Js love then sure to follow ?"

of trying to save a scanty pittance which must soon "I do not exactly say that.”

be gone, I thought it best to give you an education " Then again, my dear Mother, let me ask what that might qualify you for the highest places in is to become of the engagement if it does not ?" society; and now, if you throw yourself away upon

" That will depend on circumstances. If a more a poor man, you defeat my plan, disappoint my advantageous offer, or one more acceptable and hopes, and prepare for yourself the same distresses equally advantageous should be made, it might be which I experienced.” broken off; but, if not, then let the marriage take “But Mother, I have no thought, as yet, of marplace, and let love come afterwards."

rying any body, and would rather live single all my The only answer to this was a look of perplexed life, than marry a man whom I cannot love. I am amazement. Gertrude could hardly believe that thankful for your attention to my education, and she had heard aright. Yet her ears could not have wish I could have profited by it more. But, my deceived her; and she dared not trust herself to dear Mother, you did not endeavor to improve my utter to a mother she loved and respected, the only mind in order to qualify me to be the wise of one reply to such a proposition that rose to her lips. whose principles I disapprove, and whose under

Mrs. Austin felt that she had struck a hard blow. standing I cannot respect." But she had of late learned to blame herself for “ Live single all your life!" exclaimed the Moher neglect of this important point in the training ther, giving the go-by to the latter part of this of a daughter; and, far from wishing to recall it, speech. " And how are you to live? Who is to she was glad it had been given, and determined to maintain you, when you have power to do somefollow it up. “My dear child,” she continued, “ a thing for yourself, and will not ? Here is poor Dr. pure-minded and simple girl like you cannot un- Austin with his large family of children to provide derstand these things. None but a married woman for, and nothing but his profession and this little can understand the feelings of a woman toward the farm to depend on : and because he is so good as father of her children.”

to give you home, and maintain you without charge Gertrude was indeed a pure-minded girl; but till this time, you have no right to expect him to there was a significant emphasis in these words, do so always." and they were accompanied by a meaning look, The Doctor rose from his seat, walked direetly from which her earnest gaze was instantly with-across the room to Gertrude, laid his hand gently drawn. Ideas which the delicate instincts of wo- on her head, and bending over her, kissed her forsman had taught her to chase from her mind had head. “Bless you, my dear noble girl," said he. been summoned by the words of her own mother : " I honor your pure and virtuous heart, and love and, with downcast eyes, a burning blush, and a you better than ever for what you have done. I starting tear, she sat the image of wounded deli- have just seen Mr. Crabshaw, and was pleased, cacy and violated modesty.

and not at all surprised to learn the result of his

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addresses. Set you heart at rest, my child. Are give for my opinions were always the best reasons you not my own child? And have you not another against them." and a better father, who, while you cherish your “ By no means, my dear. I know few women just and noble sentiments will never forsake you, of better sense. But ladies are ladies,' and I or leave you without a friend and protector when have known the sex too long to be surprised at I am gone? You say right. You are not fit to be hearing a woman, and especially a fine woman, the wife of a weak or vicious man. But there are reason backward." men of sense and virtue among the rich, as well “Yes, but I don't reason backward. I know as the poor, and it is not unreasonable to hope that what I am saying, and I did not say that Gertrude some one of these will be found desirous to grace was so very superlative as you make her out to be.” his establishment, with one worthy to share his May be so ; but I own I am at a loss to fix on wealth and honors, and capable of appreciating his that precise amount of merit in a lady, which must worth. Now dry your tears, dear,” he added, condemn her to be sold like cattle in a market, gently raising her, "and go to your chamber, for I while either more or less would leave her free to wish to have some private talk with your mother.” follow the dictates of her best feelings, and consult

Gertrude moved towards the door, but paused her happiness. If poor Gertrude has been improand looked back at her mother. Her heart sank ved exactly up to that point, I can only regret that as she beheld the fixed and stony look of baffled her education was so much attended to.” policy, which all the husband's tenderness had fail- “There it is again! You know I only mean to ed to soften. But the warm-hearted girl was not say that Gertrude has merit enough to give her a to be repelled by it, and, running to her, she threw right to expect to make a good match." herself upon her neck and wept. Then smiling “And I mean to say precisely the same thing. through her tears, she rushed into the extended The only point of difference between us seems to arms of her kind protector, and, after kissing him be, what constitutes a good match. Now I mainwith grateful fondness, left the room.

taiq that the only good match is a happy match, Without waiting to hear what her husband might and that the chance for happiness is very bad bewish to communicate, Mrs. Austin immediately tween two people, who are closely connected for began to expostulate at his interference with a life, and who dislike each other." mother in the management of her daughter. For “But people cannot live on love, and they who this he excused himself by reminding her, that he love each other must be unhappy when they see had been appealed to in a wảy which made it ne- each other suffering for the want of comforts and cessary that he should not be silent, unless he meant even necessaries." to leave Gertrude under the mortifying belief that “Very true. But I see no reason why they she was an unwelcome burden to her only protec- should want necessaries, because they love each tor. The words of Mrs. Austin, as spoken by her, other.” were sufficiently distressing, but, adopted by his

" You know I am not so absurd as to mean to silence, they must have rendered the young lady's say that.” situation absolutely intolerable. So much her “ Well then ! the matter stands thus. There mother was forced to admit, but she still insisted can be no happiness in marriage without love, or that he had no call to say more than was necessary without necessaries. The conclusion should be to save himself from misconstruction, and she that Gertrude should neither marry a man she does boldly threw down the gauntlet in favor of “pruden- not love, nor one who cannot support hier. The tial matches."

question between us is about the first of these pro“ You ought to consider,” said the lady," the positions, and as I affirm both, you cannot convince education that Gertrude has received. There is me that either is wrong, by proving, what I already not a girl in the land that has had a finer opportu- believe, that the other is right.” nity, and all her teachers give her credit for talents. “ You are quite too logical for me. And then for her looks, she may not be a regular know what I mean, and you know that when I beauty, but you may go far before you find a pret- speak of necessaries, I do not mean victuals and tier face or figure.”

clothes alone. A fine young woman accustomed “All that is very true, my dear, and if I were to admiration cannot be expected to sit down conto speak of Gertrude's pretensions, I should use tented in the chimney corner and card wool to much stronger language than yours. I know no spin her a petticoat. When ambition has been young woman so beautiful, so intelligent, so accom- cultivated it must have some indulgence, and be plished, so amiable, so good, so altogether lovely allowed to display itself after marriage in jewels as she is, and this is the very reason why I have and equipages and entertainments and all that.” no mind to see her knocked off, like damaged goods, “The whole of this marriage is 'gowd and a to the first bidder.”

carriage, said the husband playfully : and then “Ah! That's always the way with you. To added, in a graver tone, “ My dear Catharine, the hear you talk, one would think that the reasons I'very language you use shows that you are strug

But you

woman.

gling against the best feelings of your heart, and

CHAPTER II. the convictions of your own excellent understand. ing. Why else do you use the word Ambition,

Mrs. Austin has said that her daughter was a when you are speaking of Avarice and Ostenta- pretty girl, and her husband said that she was beaution? Ambition itself is a bad passion, though some-tiful. All this was true: and more.

She was times ennobled by its objects. But, bad as it is, beautiful and she was fascinating. I am not fond it is so much less hideous and loathsome than the of descriptions, but if I knew wherein consisted others, that they are glad to wear it as a mask. the peculiar charm, the power of which I have so As long as you can cheat yourself with a word, often felt, I would try to describe it. Perhaps it you may make a merit of providing an ambitious was in her manner, in which, with all her cultivamarriage for your daughter. But call it by its tion, and her high and deep thoughts, there was a right name. Call it a mercenary marriage, and childlike simplicity that at once awakened the fond you yourself will shudder at the sound.”

feelings so natural in all good hearts, toward amia. “Lord! Mr. Austin how strangely you talk. ble and cheerful children. Perhaps it was in her Let a girl marry prudently, I say, and she will voice, soft, low, distinct when scarcely andible, soon learn to love her husband."

winning its way to the ear through other sounds, “My dear, we are man and wife, and to you I so that no word of hers was ever lost. In its can talk plainly, and present ideas which should saddest tones it was never complaining, and in its never enter a maiden's mind but in the privacy more cheerful moods there was a playful melody of her chamber. Reflect a moment on all that reminding the hearer of the careless and rapid disis implied in what you have just said. It may tinctness of the wild notes of the mocking-bird. be true of a coarse, vulgar-minded, sensual, brutish Perhaps it was in her eye. I never saw but one

But is it true of the pure, the refined, the other such, and the light of that, it was the light delicate female, true to the instincts of her sex, of life to me) is quenched for ever. It was blue which prompt to yield the person to him who has and calm and deep as a well. It was not always the heart, and to no other ? Can such a woman bright, but the thoughts that rose in her mind look upon the man who has been forced on her by glanced through it, as the light that glances from a the tyranny of friends or the tyranny of circum- window, casts back the pale moon-beams, and substances, but as one who has profaned her person, stitutes a ray from within for the cold reflection rifled her charms, and degraded and dishonored her from without. In short she was lovely, and she was in her own eyes ? I do not think of your sex more beloved. highly than they deserve. I will not offend you

Henry Austin was several years older than her. willi the appearance of a doubt, by asking if you He was the eldest son of Dr. Austin, the first child married me, depending on marriage to bring love. of an early marriage;" and, at the time of his But you have been twice married; and when you father's union with the mother of Gertrude, he was gave your virgin charms to Mr. Courtney, was it entering on manhood and its duties. Bred 10 the before your heart was his ?".

bar, he had united his labors to those of his father, The tears sprung to the yet beautiful eyes of for the support of the numerous family whose comMrs. Austin, and her husband kissed them away. fort mainly depended on them. He was a band

“Those tears," said he,“ are an answer to my some youth, of high principles, fine talents, great question. A woman, happy in a second marriage, steadiness, and strength of character, and honoradoes not weep to remember a first husband who ble ambition. His education qualified him for the was not master of her heart as well as her person. dangerous task of assisting in that of his new None, better than yourself, can understand the sister (for so he called her) and it was from his workings of a virtuous female heart. Let things lips that she learned those last and finishing lesbe called by their right names, and none will feel sons on which the final character of the mind so more sensibly, that, apart from the arbitrary con- much depends. It is an old story-as old as Abeventions of society, Prudence not Virtue makes lard and Eloisa—that a girl of ingenuous and the chief distinction between the despised street-curious mind, under the instruction of a bold and walker, and the woman who sells herself in mar- original thinker, is apt to learn—and to leach-one riage."

lesson not dreamed of in the philosophy of those The argumentum ad hominem is a troublesome who bring them together. There is nothing very thing to either sex. To a lady it is unanswerable, seductive in the rudiments of learning, and a young especially when accompanied by a compliment. lady is not apt to fall in love with her teacher of Mrs. Austin if not convinced, was silent. Poor grammar, geography, mathematics or datural phiGertrude heard no more of prudent marriages, and losophy. But when we come to the Philosophy of secure in the wild freedom of her guileless heart, History, and the metaphysics of the affections, to her gratitude to her kind and generous protector Taste and Belles Lettres and the beanties of poewas unbounded.

try, then, if the teacher be a man of genius and spirit, and the pupil apt and enthusiastic, circam

stances can hardly exist, which shall prevent them think to analyse the character of her love for him from loving. What can be more natural ? To the she called her brother; and, whatever it might be, inquistive mind there is no pleasure like that arising her own so exactly corresponded with it, that her from the perception of new truths. To the benevo- heart felt nothing of that void to which those are lent, few things are so sweet as to impart truth to doomed who pour out their affections on the insenthe candid and ingenuous seeker. Thus each be- sible, and receive nothing in return. I am not sure comes to the other a source of enjoyment, welling that the delights of mutual love are ever so sweet, up from the depths of the heart, like a perennial as in that short interval in which the true nature of spring, pure, fresh and inexhaustible. The whole our feelings is not fully understood. Then we live philosophy of love is that it disposes us to live with altogether in the present moment, without casting those who can make us happy, and to be happy one glance toward that dark future, where, though with those with whom we live. Hence, if, after nothing is seen distinctly, ugly shadows will somegiving the characters of Henry and Gertrude, 1 times fit through the gloom, and scare us into unwere to say they did not love one another, I ought defined apprehensions. The longer that interval is not to be believed.

protracted, the more deeply does the passion sink I do not mean to say that they knew it. It was into the soul. The mind sleeps securely in the not until she began to be courted that he thought sweet dream, and when it awakes, it finds every of her as a being to be married; and hence, until fibre of the heart tied down by the Liliputian finthen, he never thought of marrying her. Then, gers of the tiny imps, that do the bidding of the indeed, he learned the secret of his heart; but he God of Love. kept it to himself. She was slower in discovering But others very often detect this state of feeling hers. Teased by the addresses of those alone who while the parties are wholly unconscious of it. were unacceptable to her, the idea of marrying The keen eye of Mrs. Austin was not blind to any body was only made absurd to her mind by what was passing. Though so far influenced by their importunities. Thinking of marriage only in the sentiments of her husband, as to have relinconnexion with disagreeable people, she could only quished the idea of selling her daughter in loveless think of it as a disagreeable thing; and it was not marriage, she was not at all shaken in the opinion until she had been repeatedly told that she must that wealth, as well as love, is necessary to connumarry somebody, that it occurred to her, that she bial happiness. Her first husband had been a man would rather marry“ Brother Henry," with whom of small property, but fine talents; and he had she lived so happily, than any body else. But, at married her, when fairly entered on a career of the time of which I write, she had not yet come to professional success, which promised, not only this conclusion, and said truly that she had no affluence, but distinction. He had realized but thought of marrying any one.

little, though no man's prospects were more flatIt is a common remark, that the politic often tering, when suddenly death put an end to his defeat their own designs. A strenuous effort to career, and left her a widow in narrow circumovercome an opposing principle or feeling must stances. With the difficulties of her situation she succeed, or it imparts its own energy to the reaction struggled resolutely, practising economy in every of the mind, which thus throws off the assailant thing, but the education of her daughter, in whom farther from his object. Such was the effect of she hoped to live over again the life of ambition the decided demonstration made by Mrs. Austin in which had been thus cut short. I here use the favor of Mr. Crabshaw. The mind of Gertrude word in its true sense. For herself, Mrs. Austin soon freed itself from the gross ideas suggested by was indeed an ambitious woman. It was only the gross hint of her mother, but the thought of when seeking to regulate the destiny of her daughsuch a man as the father of her children remained. ter that she could succeed in cheating herself into What then? Were they to resemble him? To wear that delusion, which dignifies avarice with the his stolid look, relieved only by his silly smile ? name of a passion less grovelling, though perhaps not To talk bis prosing truisms or vapid niaiseries ? less fatal. She was ambitious; and, had her husTo inherit his porse-proud arrogance and his petty band lived, and had his life fulfilled the promise of meapness ? If she was 10 have children, she wonld his youth, her heart would have asked no more rather have them like any body else; and of all than to share his honors, in circumstances far short men, whom would she so soon have them resemble of affluence. But, when he was taken from her, as him, whom she saw the beloved and admired of she naturally felt less the disappointment of ambiall, the pride of his father's heart, and the copy of tious aspirations than the loss of indulgences, his virtues ? Such thoughts will come; and the to which; in reliance on his growing fortunes, he result of it was, that, for the next twenty-four had permitted her to habituate herself; and her hours, the image of Henry Austin was more in the fall from that place in fashionable and wealthy mind of Gertrude than it ever had been before. society, which had seemed her proper position.

To that pare and innocent and sunny mind such Hènce she had learned to doubt the truth of the thoughts brought nothing painful. She did not' maxim that a good mind, a good education and a

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