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Chapter 67

Sees his Sister happily married — Visits Emilia, who receives him according to his Deserts.

Her brother being of opinion, that Mr. Clover’s proposal was not to be neglected, especially as Julia’s heart was engaged in his favour, communicated the affair to his uncle, who, with the approbation of Mrs. Trunnion, declared himself well satisfied with the young man’s addresses, and desired that they might be buckled with all expedition, without the knowledge or concurrence of her parents, to whom (on account of their unnatural barbarity) she was not bound to pay the least regard. Though our adventurer entertained the same sentiments of the matter, and the lover, dreading some obstruction, earnestly begged the immediate condescension of his mistress, she could not be prevailed upon to take such a material step, without having first solicited the permission of her father; resolved, nevertheless, to comply with the dictates of her own heart, should his objections be frivolous or unjust.

Urged by this determination, her admirer waited upon Mr. Gamaliel at the public-house, and, with the appearance of great deference and respect, made him acquainted with his affection for his daughter, communicated the particulars of his fortune, with the terms of settlement he was ready to make; and in conclusion told him, that he would marry her without a portion. This last offer seemed to have some weight with the father, who received it with civility, and promised in a day or two to favour him with a final answer to his demand. He, accordingly, that same evening consulted his wife, who, being exasperated at the prospect of her daughter’s independency, argued with the most virulent expostulation against the match, as an impudent scheme of her own planning, with a view of insulting her parents, towards whom she had already been guilty of the most vicious disobedience. In short, she used such remonstrances, as not only averted this weak husband’s inclination from the proposal which he had relished before, but even instigated him to apply for a warrant to apprehend his daughter, on the supposition that she was about to bestow herself in marriage without his privity or consent.

The justice of peace to whom this application was made, though he could not refuse the order, yet, being no stranger to the malevolence of the mother, which, together with Gamaliel’s simplicity, was notorious in the county, he sent an intimation of what had happened to the garrison; upon which a couple of sentinels were placed on the gate, and at the pressing solicitation of the lover, as well as the desire of the commodore, her brother, and aunt, Julia was wedded without further delay, the ceremony being performed by Mr. Jolter, because the parish priest prudently declined any occasion of giving offence, and the curate was too much in the interest of their enemies to be employed in that office.

This domestic concern being settled to the satisfaction of our hero, he escorted her next day to the house of her husband, who immediately wrote a letter to her father, declaring his reasons for having thus superseded his authority; and Mrs. Pickle’s mortification was unspeakable.

That the new-married couple might be guarded against all insult, our young gentleman and his friend Hatchway, with their adherents, lodged in Mr. Clover’s house for some weeks; during which they visited their acquaintance in the neighbourhood, according to custom. When the tranquility of their family was perfectly established, and the contract of the marriage executed in the presence of the old commodore and his lady, who gave her niece five hundred pounds to purchase jewels and clothes, Mr. Peregrine could no longer restrain his impatience to see his dear Emily; and told his uncle, that next day he proposed to ride across the country, in order to visit his friend Gauntlet, whom he had not heard of for a long time.

The old gentleman, looking steadfastly in his face, “Ah! D— n your cunning!” said he, “I find the anchor holds fast! I did suppose as how you would have slipt your cable, and changed your berth; but, I see, when a young fellow is once brought up by a pretty wench, he may man his capstans and viol block, if he wool; but he’ll as soon heave up the Pike of Teneriffe, as bring his anchor aweigh! Odds heartlikins! had I known the young woman was Ned Gauntlet’s daughter, I shouldn’t have thrown out signal for leaving off chase.”

Our adventurer was not a little surprised to hear the commodore talk in this style; and immediately conjectured that his friend Godfrey had informed him of the whole affair. Instead of listening to this approbation of his flame, with those transports of joy which he would have felt, had he retained his former sentiments, he was chagrined at Trunnion’s declaration, and offended at the presumption of the young soldier, in presuming to disclose the secret with which he had entrusted him. Reddening with these reflections, he assured the commodore that he never had serious thoughts of matrimony; so that if any person had told him he was under any engagement of that kind, he had abused his ear; for he protested that he would never contract such attachments without his knowledge and express permission.

Trunnion commended him for his pruden............

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