Tales for Fifteen: or, Imagination and Heart
by James Fenimore Cooper
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Tales for Fifteen: or, Imagination and Heart. by James Fenimore Cooper (writing under the pseudonym of "Jane Morgan")

{In 1840, when the Boston publisher George Roberts asked Cooper for a contribution to a new magazine, Cooper responded that he could reprint "Tales for Fifteen" if he could find a copy—Cooper himself didn't have one. Roberts found a copy in New York, and "Imagination" was reprinted in his "Boston Notion" (January 30, 1841), and in his "Roberts' Semi-Monthly Magazine" (Boston, February 1 and 15, 1841). Shortly thereafer, he also reprinted "Heart", in the "Boston Notion" (March 13 and 20, 1841) and in "Roberts' Semi-Monthly Magazine" (April 1 and 15, 1841).}

{George Roberts' reprint of "Imagination" was pirated in England, and included in "Imagination; A Tale for Young Women. With Other Tales by American Authors" which also included "The Block- House", by William Leggett and "The Country Cousin". (London: John Cunningham, 72 pp., 1841 [Series: The Novel Newspaper, 143]) and (London: N. Bruce, 72 pp., 1842 (Series: Standard Novels, 5]). It also appeared by itself as "Imagination: A Tale for Young Women" (London: J. Clements, 31 pp., 1841 [for the Romanticist and Novelist's Library]). There may well exist other pirated periodical versions.}

{Introductory Note: "Tales for Fifteen" was apparently written in 1821, when Cooper became afflicted with writer's block while composing his first best-selling novel, "The Spy". Cooper had envisaged a series of five stories, to be called "American Tales," and which were to deal respectively with "Imagination", "Heart", "Matter", "Manner", and "Matter and Manner". Only "Imagination" was completed; the half-written "Heart" was given a sudden and half-hearted ending; Cooper later asserted that he had allowed Charles Wiley to publish "Tales for Fifteen to help him out of some financial difficulties. In a letter to George Roberts in 1840, Cooper said of "Imagination" that "this tale was written on rainy day, half asleep and half awake, but I retain rather a favorable impression of it."}

{"Imagination", remains an amusing and cleverly- plotted story of a young girl whose imagination gets the better of her, presumably because of reading romantic novels. This, of course, was a commonplace notion in the 1820s, except that Cooper's heroine, misled by circumstances, comes to believe that her romantic fantasies are happening. This Don Quixote-like twist is less common, though Jane Austen's famous "Northanger Abbey" and Eaton Stannard Barrett's little-known but very funny "The Heroine; or, Adventures of Cherubina" (1813) fall within the genre. "Heart", a slim (indeed, truncated) account of faithful love, sinks into bathos; it is, perhaps, most interesting for its opening scene of a blase New York City crowd gathering around a fallen man — and doing nothing to help him.}

{Spelling and punctuation are as in the 1823 original, including inconsistent spellings (e.g., gaiety and gayety, Henly and Henley) except that, because of the typographical limitations of the Gutenberg system, the few words italicized in the original are represented by ALL CAPITALS. Annotations by the transcriber are enclosed in {curly brackets}. A very few obvious typographical errors have been marked by {sic}.}


BY JANE MORGAN. ================

NEW-YORK C. WILEY, 3 WALL STREET J. Seymour, printer 1823

Southern District of New-York ss. BE IT REMEMBERED, That on the thirteenth day of June, in the forty-seventh year of the Independence of the United States of America, Charles Wiley, of the said District, hath deposited in this office the title of a Book, the right whereof he claims as proprietor, in the words and figures following, to wit:

"Tales for Fifteen; or Imagination and Heart. By Jane Morgan."

In conformity with the Act of Congress of the United States entitled, "An Act for the encouragement of Learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times herein mentioned." And also to an Act, entitled, "an Act, supplementary to an Act, for the encouragement of Learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times herein mentioned, and extending the benefits thereof to the arts of designing, engraving, and etching historical and other prints." JAMES DILL, Clerk of the Southern District of New-York


WHEN the author of these little tales commenced them, it was her intention to form a short series of such stories as, it was hoped, might not be entirely without moral advantage; but unforeseen circumstances have prevented their completion, and, unwilling to delay the publication any longer, she commits them to the world in their present unfinished state, without any flattering anticipations of their reception. They are intended for the perusal of young women, at that tender age when the feelings of their nature begin to act on them most insidiously, and when their minds are least prepared by reason and experience to contend with their passions.

"Heart" was intended for a much longer tale, and is unavoidably incomplete; but it is unnecessary to point out defects that even the juvenile reader will soon detect. The author only hopes that if they do no good, her tales will, at least, do no harm.


I pray thee, gentle mortal, sing again: Mine ear is much enamoured of thy note, So is mine eye enthralled to thy shape; And thy fair virtue's force perforce doth move me, On the first view, to say, to swear, I love thee. MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM

{Shakespeare, "A Midsummer Night's Dream" Act III, Scene 1, lines 137-141}

"DO—write to me often, my dear Anna!" said the weeping Julia Warren, on parting, for the first time since their acquaintance, with the young lady whom she had honoured with the highest place in her affections. "Think how dreadfully solitary and miserable I shall be here, without a single companion, or a soul to converse with, now you are to be removed two hundred miles into the wilderness."

"Oh! trust me, my love, I shall not forget you now or ever," replied her friend, embracing the other slightly, and, perhaps, rather hastily for so tender an adieu; at the same time glancing her eye on the figure of a youth, who stood in silent contemplation of the scene. "And doubt not but I shall soon tire you with my correspondence, especially as I more than suspect it will be subjected to the criticisms of Mr. Charles Weston." As she concluded, the young lady curtisied to the youth in a manner that contradicted, by its flattery, the forced irony of her remark.

"Never, my dear girl!" exclaimed Miss Warren with extreme fervour. "The confidence of our friendship is sacred with me, and nothing, no, nothing, could ever tempt me to violate such a trust. Charles is very kind and very indulgent to all my whims, but he never could obtain such an influence over me as to become the depositary of my secrets. Nothing but a friend, like yourself, can do that, my dear Anna."

"Never! Miss Warren," said the youth with a lip that betrayed by its tremulous motion the interest he took in her speech—"never includes a long period of time. But," he added with a smile of good- humoured pleasantry, "if admitted to such a distinction, I should not feel myself competent to the task of commenting on so much innocence and purity, as I know I should find in your correspondence."

"Yes," said Anna, with a little of the energy of her friend's manner, "you may with truth say so, Mr. Weston. The imagination of my Julia is as pure as— as——-" but turning her eyes from the countenance of Julia to that of the youth, rather suddenly, the animated pleasure she saw delineated in his expressive, though plain features, drove the remainder of the speech from her recollection.

"As her heart!" cried Charles Weston with emphasis.

"As her heart, Sir," repeated the young lady coldly.

The last adieus were hastily exchanged, and Anna Miller was handed into her father's gig by Charles Weston in profound silence. Miss Emmerson, the maiden aunt of Julia, withdrew from the door, where she had been conversing with Mr. Miller, and the travellers departed. Julia followed the vehicle with her eyes until it was hid by the trees and shrubbery that covered the lawn, and then withdrew to her room to give vent to a sorrow that had sensibly touched her affectionate heart, and in no trifling degree haunted her lively imagination.

As Miss Emmerson by no means held the good qualities of the guest, who had just left them, in so high an estimation as did her niece, she proceeded quietly and with great composure in the exercise of her daily duties; not in the least suspecting the real distress that, from a variety of causes, this sudden separation had caused to her ward.

The only sister of this good lady had died in giving birth to a female infant, and the fever of 1805 had, within a very few years of the death of the mother, deprived the youthful orphan of her remaining parent. Her father was a merchant, just commencing the foundations of what would, in time, have been a large estate; and as both Miss Emmerson and her sister were possessed of genteel independencies, and the aunt had long declared her intention of remaining single, the fortune of Julia, if not brilliant, was thought rather large than otherwise. Miss Emmerson had been educated immediately after the war of the revolution, and at a time when the intellect of the women of this country by no means received that attention it is thought necessary to bestow on the minds of the future mothers of our families at the present hour; and when, indeed, the country itself required too much of the care of her rulers and patriots to admit of the consideration of lesser objects. With the best of hearts and affections devoted to the welfare of her niece, Miss Emmerson had early discovered her own incompetency to the labour of fitting Julia for the world in which she was to live, and shrunk with timid modesty from the arduous task of preparing herself, by application and study, for this sacred duty. The fashions of the day were rapidly running into the attainment of accomplishments among the young of her own sex, and the piano forte was already sending forth its sonorous harmony from one end of the Union to the other, while the glittering usefulness of the tambour-frame was discarded for the pallet and brush. The walls of our mansions were beginning to groan with the sickly green of imaginary fields, that caricatured the beauties of nature; and skies of sunny brightness, that mocked the golden hues of even an American sun. The experience of Miss Emmerson went no further than the simple evolutions of the country dance, or the deliberate and dignified procession of the minuet. No wonder, therefore, that her faculties were bewildered by the complex movements of the cotillion: and, in short, as the good lady daily contemplated the improvements of the female youth around her, she became each hour more convinced of her own inability to control, or in any manner to superintend, the education of her orphan niece. Julia was, consequently, entrusted to the government of a select boarding-school; and, as even the morals of the day were, in some degree, tinctured with the existing fashions, her mind as well as her manners were absolutely submitted to the discretion of an hireling. Notwithstanding this willing concession of power on the part of Miss Emmerson, there was no deficiency in ability to judge between right and wrong in her character; but the homely nature of her good sense, unassisted by any confidence in her own powers, was unable to compete with the dazzling display of accomplishments which met her in every house where she visited; and if she sometimes thought that she could not always discover much of the useful amid this excess of the agreeable, she rather attributed the deficiency to her own ignorance than to any error in the new system of instruction. From the age of six to that of sixteen, Julia had no other communications with Miss Emmerson than those endearments which neither could suppress, and a constant and assiduous attention on the part of the aunt to the health and attire of her niece.

{fever of 1805 = New York City had suffered a major epidemic of yellow fever in the summer of 1805; tambour-frame = a circular frame used to hold material being embroidered}

Miss Emmerson had a brother residing in the city of New-York, who was a man of eminence at the bar, and who, having been educated fifty years ago, was, from that circumstance, just so much superior to his successors of his own sex by twenty years, as his sisters were the losers from the some cause. The family of Mr. Emmerson was large, and, besides several sons, he had two daughters, one of whom remained still unmarried in the house of her father. Katherine Emmerson was but eighteen months the senior of Julia Warren; but her father had adopted a different course from that which was ordinarily pursued with girls of her expectations. He had married a woman of sense, and now reaped the richest blessing of such a connexion in her ability to superintend the education of her daughter. A mother's care was employed to correct errors that a mother's tenderness could only discover; and in the place of general systems, and comprehensive theories, was substituted the close and rigorous watchfulness which adapted the remedy to the disease; which studied the disposition; and which knew the failings or merits of the pupil, and could best tell when to reward, and how to punish. The consequences were easily to be seen in the manners and character of their daughter. Her accomplishments, even where a master had been employed in their attainment, were naturally displayed, and suited to her powers. Her manners, instead of the artificial movements of prescribed rules, exhibited the chaste and delicate modesty of refinement, mingled with good principles—such as were not worn in order to be in character as a woman and a lady, but were deeply seated, and formed part, not only of her habits, but, if we may use the expression, of her nature also. Miss Emmerson had good sense enough to perceive the value of such an acquaintance for her ward; but, unfortunately for her wish to establish an intimacy between her nieces, Julia had already formed a friendship at school, and did not conceive her heart was large enough to admit two at the same time to its sanctuary. How much Julia was mistaken the sequel of our tale will show.

So long as Anna Miller was the inmate of the school, Julia was satisfied to remain also, but the father of Anna having determined to remove to an estate in the interior of the country, his daughter was taken from school; and while the arrangements were making for the reception of the family on the banks of the Gennessee, Anna was permitted to taste, for a short time, the pleasures of the world, at the residence of Miss Emmerson on the banks of the Hudson.

{Gennessee = Genesee River, which flows north through central New York State to Lake Ontario—at the time of Cooper's story it was still on the frontier of settlement}

Charles Weston was a distant relative of the good aunt, and was, like Julia, an orphan, who was moderately endowed with the goods of fortune. He was a student in the office of her uncle, and being a great favourite with Miss Emmerson, spent many of his leisure hours, during the heats of the summer, in the retirement of her country residence.

Whatever might be the composure of the maiden aunt, while Julia was weeping in her chamber over the long separation that was now to exist between herself and her friend, young Weston by no means displayed the same philosophic indifference. He paced the hall of the building with rapid steps, cast many a longing glance at the door of his cousin's room, and then rested himself with an apparent intention to read the volume he held in his hands; nor did he in any degree recover his composure until Julia re-appeared on the landing of the stairs, moving slowly towards their bottom, when, taking one long look at her lovely face, which was glowing with youthful beauty, and if possible more charming from the traces of tears in her eyes, he coolly pursued his studies. Julia had recovered her composure, and Charles Weston felt satisfied. Miss Emmerson and her niece took their seats quietly with their work at an open window of the parlour, and order appeared to be restored in some measure to the mansion. After pursuing their several occupations for some minutes with a silence that had lately been a stranger to them, the aunt observed—

"You appear to have something new in hand, my love. Surely you must abound with trimmings, and yet you are working another already?"

"It is for Anna Miller," said Julia with a flush of feeling.

"I was in hopes you would perform your promise to your cousin Katherine, now Miss Miller is gone, and make your portion of the garments for the Orphan Asylum," returned Miss Emmerson gravely.

"Oh! cousin Katherine must wait. I promised this trimming to Anna to remember me by, and I would not disappoint the dear girl for the world."

"It is not your cousin Katherine, but the Orphans, who will have to wait; and surely a promise to a relation is as sacred as one to an acquaintance."

"Acquaintance, aunt!" echoed the niece with displeasure. "Do not, I entreat you, call Anna an acquaintance merely. She is my friend—my very best friend, and I love her as such."

"Thank you, my dear," said the aunt dryly.

"Oh! I mean nothing disrespectful to yourself, dear aunt," continued Julia. "You know how much I owe to you, and ought to know that I love you as a mother."

"And would you prefer Miss Miller to a mother, then?"

"Surely not in respect, in gratitude, in obedience; but still I may love her, you know. Indeed, the feelings are so very different, that they do not at all interfere with each other—in my heart at least."

"No!" said Miss Emmerson, with a little curiosity—"I wish you would try and explain this difference to me, that I may comprehend the distinctions that you are fond of making."

"Why, nothing is easier, dear aunt!" said Julia with animation. "You I love because you are kind to me, attentive to my wants, considerate for my good; affectionate, and—and—from habit—and you are my aunt, and take care of me."

"Admirable reasons!" exclaimed Charles Weston, who had laid aside his book to listen to this conversation.

"They are forcible ones I must admit," said Miss Emmerson, smiling affectionately on her niece; "but now for the other kind of love."

"Why, Anna is my friend, you know," cried Julia, with eyes sparkling with enthusiasm. "I love her, because she has feelings congenial with my own; she has so much wit, is so amusing, so frank, so like a girl of talents—so like—like every thing I admire myself."

"It is a pity that one so highly gifted cannot furnish herself with frocks," said the aunt, with a little more than her ordinary dryness of manner, "and suffer you to work for those who want them more."

"You forget it is in order to remember me," said Julia, in a manner that spoke her own ideas of the value of the gift.

"One would think such a friendship would not require any thing to remind one of its existence," returned the aunt.

"Why! it is not that she will forget me without it, but that she may have something by her to remind her of me——-" said Julia rapidly, but pausing as the contradiction struck even herself.

"I understand you perfectly, my child," interrupted the aunt, "merely as an unnecessary security, you mean."

"To make assurance doubly sure," cried Charles Weston with a laugh.

"Oh! you laugh, Mr. Weston," said Julia with a little anger; "but I have often said, you were incapable of friendship."

"Try me!" exclaimed the youth fervently. "Do not condemn me without a trial."

"How can I?" said Julia, laughing in her turn. "You are not a girl."

"Can girls then only feel friendship?" inquired Charles, taking the seat which Miss Emmerson had relinquished.

"I sometimes think so," said Julia, with her own good-humoured smile. "You are too gross—too envious—in short, you never see such friendships between men as exist between women."

"Between girls, I will readily admit," returned the youth. "But let us examine this question after the manner of the courts—"

"Nay, if you talk law I shall quit you," interrupted the young lady gaily.

"Certainly one so learned in the subject need not dread a cross-examination," cried the youth, in her own manner.

"Well, proceed," cried the lady. "I have driven aunt Margaret from the field, and you will fare no better, I can assure you."

"Men, you say, are too gross to feel a pure friendship; in the first place, please to explain yourself on this point."

"Why I mean, that your friendships are generally interested; that it requires services and good offices to support it."

{interested = not pure, having an ulterior motive}

"While that of women depends on—"

"Feeling alone."

"But what excites this feeling?" asked Charles with a smile.

"What? why sympathy—and a knowledge of each other's good qualities."

"Then you think Miss Miller has more good qualities than Katherine Emmerson," said Weston.

"When did I ever say so?" cried Julia in surprise.

"I infer it from your loving her better, merely," returned the young man with a little of Miss Emmerson's dryness.

"It would be difficult to compare them," said Julia after a moment's pause. "Katherine is in the world, and has had an opportunity of showing her merit; that Anna has never enjoyed. Katherine is certainly a most excellent girl, and I like her very much; but there is no reason to think that Anna will not prove as fine a young woman as Katherine, when put to the trial."

"Pray," said the young lawyer with great gravity, "how many of these bosom, these confidential friends can a young woman have at the same time?"

"One, only one—any more than she could have two lovers," cried Julia quickly.

"Why then did you find it necessary to take that one from a set, that was untried in the practice of well-doing, when so excellent a subject as your cousin Katherine offered?"

"But Anna I know, I feel, is every thing that is good and sincere, and our sympathies drew us together. Katherine I loved naturally."

"How naturally?"

"Is it not natural to love your relatives?" said Julia in surprise.

"No," was the brief answer.

"Surely, Charles Weston, you think me a simpleton. Does not every parent love its child by natural instinct?"

"No: no more than you love any of your amusements from instinct. If the parent was present with a child that he did not know to be his own, would instinct, think you, discover their vicinity?"

"Certainly not, if they had never met before; but then, as soon as he knew it to be his, he would love it from nature."

"It is a complicated question, and one that involves a thousand connected feelings," said Charles. "But all love, at least all love of the heart, springs from the causes you mentioned to your aunt—good offices, a dependence on each other, and habit."

"Yes, and nature too," said the young lady rather positively; "and I contend, that natural lore, and love from sympathy, are two distinct things."

"Very different, I allow," said Charles; "only I very much doubt the durability of that affection which has no better foundation than fancy."

"You use such queer terms, Charles, that you do not treat the subject fairly. Calling innate evidence of worth by the name of fancy, is not candid."

"Now, indeed, your own terms puzzle me," said Charles, smiling. "What is innate evidence of worth?"

"Why, a conviction that another possesses all that you esteem yourself, and is discovered by congenial feelings and natural sympathies."

"Upon my word, Julia, you are quite a casuist on this subject. Does love, then, between the sexes depend on this congenial sympathy and innate evidence?"

"Now you talk on a subject that I do not understand," said Julia, blushing; and, catching up the highly prized work, she ran to her own room, leaving the young man in a state of mingled admiration and pity.


AN anxious fortnight was passed by Julia Warren, after this conversation, without bringing any tidings from her friend. She watched, with feverish restlessness, each steam-boat that passed the door on its busy way towards the metropolis, and met the servant each day at the gate of the lawn on his return from the city; but it was only to receive added disappointments. At length Charles Weston good-naturedly offered his own services, laughingly declaring, that his luck was never known to fail. Julia herself had written several long epistles to Anna, and it was now the proper time that some of these should be answered, independently of the thousand promises from her friend of writing regularly from every post-office that she might pass on her route to the Gennessee. But the happy moment had arrived when disappointments were to cease.

As usual, Julia was waiting with eager impatience at the gate, her lovely form occasionally gliding from the shrubbery to catch a glimpse of the passengers on the highway, when Charles appeared riding at a full gallop towards the house; his whole manner announced success, and Julia sprang into the middle of the road to take the letter which he extended towards her.

"I knew I should be successful, and it gives me almost as much pleasure as yourself that I have been so," said the youth, dismounting from his horse and opening the gate that his companion might pass.

"Thank you—thank you, dear Charles," said Julia kindly. "I never can forget how good you are to me- -how much you love to oblige not only me, but every one around. Excuse me now, I have this dear letter to read another time, I will thank you as I ought."

So saying, Julia ran into the summer-house, and fastening its door, gave herself up to the pleasure of reading a first letter. Notes and short epistles from her aunt, with divers letters from Anna written slyly in the school-room and slipped into her lap, she was already well acquainted with; but of real, genuine letters, stamped by the post-office, rumpled by the mail-bags, consecrated by the steam-boat, this was certainly the first. This, indeed, was a real letter: rivers rolled, and vast tracts of country lay, between herself and its writer, and that writer was a friend selected on the testimony of innate evidence. It was necessary for Julia to pause and breathe before she could open her letter; and by the time this was done, her busy fancy had clothed both epistle and writer with so much excellence, that she was prepared to peruse the contents with a respect bordering on enthusiasm: every word must be true—every idea purity itself. That our readers may know how accurately sixteen and a brilliant fancy had qualified her to judge, we shall give them the letter entire.

"My dearest love,

"Oh, Julia! here I am, and such a place!—no town, no churches, no Broadway, nothing that can make life desirable; and, I may add, no friend—nobody to see and talk with, but papa and mamma, and a house full of brothers and sisters. You can't think how I miss you, every minute more and more; but I am not without hopes of persuading pa to let me spend the winter with your aunt in town. I declare it makes me sick every time I think of her sweet house in Park-place. If ever I marry, and be sure I will, it shall be a man who lives in the city, and next door to my Julia. Oh! how charming that would be. Each of us to have one of those delightful new houses, with the new-fashioned basement stories; we would run in and out at all hours of the day, and it would be so convenient to lend and borrow each other's things. I do think there is no pleasure under heaven equal to that of wearing things that belong to your friend. Don't you remember how fond I was of wearing your clothes at school, though you were not so fond of changing as myself; but that was no wonder, for pa's stinginess kept me so shabbily dressed, that I was ashamed to let you be seen in them. Oh, Julia! I shall never forget those happy hours; nor you neither. Apropos—I hope you have not forgot the frock you promised to work for me, to remember you by. I long for it dreadfully, and hope you will send it before the river shuts. I suppose you and Charles Weston do nothing but ride round among those beautiful villas on the island, and take comfort. I do envy you your happiness, I can tell you; for I think any beau better than none, though Mr. Weston is not to my taste. I am going to write you six sheets of paper, for there is nothing that I so delight in as communing with a friend at a distance, especially situated as I am without a soul to say a word to, unless it be my own sisters. Adieu, my ever, ever beloved Julia—be to me as I am to you, a friend indeed, one tried and not found wanting. In haste, your


"Gennessee, June 15, 1816.

"P. S. Don't forget to jog aunt Emmerson's memory about asking me to Park-place.

"P. S. June 25th. Not having yet sent my letter, although I am sure you must be dying with anxiety to hear how we get on, I must add, that we have a companion here that would delight you—a Mr. Edward Stanley. What a delightful name! and he is as delightful as his name: his eye, his nose, his whole countenance, are perfect. In short, Julia, he is just such a man as we used to draw in our conversation at school. He is rich, and brave, and sensible, and I do nothing but talk to him of you. He says, he longs to see you; knows you must be handsome; is sure you are sensible; and feels that you are good. Oh! he is worth a dozen Charles Westons. But you may give my compliments to Mr. Weston, though I don't suppose he ever thinks it worth his while to remember such a chick as me. I should like to hear what he says about me, and I will tell you all Edward Stanley says of you. Once more, adieu. Your letters got here safe and in due season. I let Edward take a peep at them."

The first time Julia read this letter she was certainly disappointed. It contained no descriptions of the lovely scenery of the west. The moon had risen and the sun had set on the lakes of the interior, and Anna had said not one word of either. But the third and fourth time of reading began to afford more pleasure, and at the thirteenth perusal she pronounced it charming. There was evidently much to be understood; vacuums that the fancy could easily fill; and, before Julia had left the summer-house, the letter was extended, in her imagination, to the promised six sheets. She walked slowly through the shrubbery towards the house, musing on the contents of her letter, or rather what it might be supposed to contain, and unconsciously repeating to herself in a low tone—

"Young, handsome, rich, and sensible—just as we used to paint in our conversation. Oh, how delightful!"

"Delightful indeed, to possess all those fine qualities; and who is the happy individual that is so blessed?" asked Charles Weston, who had been lingering in the walks with an umbrella to shield her on her return from an approaching shower.

"Oh!" said Julia, starting, "I did not know you were near me. I have been reading Anna's sweet letter," pressing the paper to her bosom as she spoke.

"Doubtless you must be done by this time, Julia, and," pointing to the clouds, "you had better hasten to the house. I knew you would be terrified at the lightning all alone by yourself in that summer- house, so I came to protect you."

"You are very good, Charles, but does it lighten?" said Julia in terror, and hastening her retreat to the dwelling.

"Your letter must have interested you deeply not to have noticed the thunder—you, who are so timid and fearful of the flashes."

"Foolishly fearful, you would say, if you were not afraid of hurting my feelings, I know," said Julia.

"It is a natural dread, and therefore not to be laughed at," answered Charles mildly.

"Then there is natural fear, but no natural love, Mr. Charles; now you are finely caught," cried Julia exultingly.

"Well, be it so. With me fear is very natural, and I can almost persuade myself love also."

"I hope you are not a coward, Charles Weston. A cowardly man is very despicable. I could never love a cowardly man," said Julia, laughing.

"I don't know whether I am what you call a coward," said Charles gravely; "but when in danger I am always afraid."

The words were hardly uttered before a flash of lightning, followed instantly by a tremendously heavy clap of thunder, nearly stupified them both. The suddenness of the shock had, for a moment, paralyzed the energy of the youth, while Julia was nearly insensible. Soon recovering himself, however, Charles drew her after him into the house, in time to escape a torrent of rain. The storm was soon over, and their natural fear and surprise were a source of mirth for Julia. Women are seldom ashamed of their fears, for their fright is thought to be feminine end attractive; but men are less easy under the imputation of terror, as it is thought to indicate an absence of manly qualities.

"Oh! you will never make a hero, Charles," cried Julia, laughing heartily. "It is well you chose the law instead of the army as a profession."

"I don't know," said the youth, a little nettled," I think I could muster courage to face a bullet."

"But remember, that you shut your eyes, and bent nearly double at the flash—now you owned all this yourself."

"At least he was candid, and acknowledged his infirmities," said Miss Emmerson, who had been listening.

"I think most men would have done as I did, at so heavy and so sudden a clap of thunder, and so very near too," said Charles, striving to conceal the uneasiness he felt.

"When apprehension for Julia must have increased your terror," said the aunt kindly.

"Why, no—I rather believe I thought only of myself at the moment," returned Charles; "but then, Julia, you must do me the justice to say, that instantly I thought of the danger of your taking cold and drew you into the house."

"Oh! you ran from another clap," said Julia, laughing till her dark eyes flashed with pleasure, and shaking her head until her glossy hair fell in ringlets over her shoulders; "you will never make a hero, Charles."

"Do you know any one who would have behaved better, Miss Warren?" said the young man angrily.

"Yes—why—I don't know. Yes, I have heard of one, I think," answered Julia, slightly colouring; "but, dear Charles, excuse my laughter," she continued, holding out her hand; "if you are not a hero, you are very, very, good."

But Charles Weston, at the moment, would rather be thought a hero than very, very, good; he, therefore, rose, and affecting a smile, endeavoured to say something trifling as he retired.

"You have mortified Charles," said Miss Emmerson, so soon as he was out of hearing.

"I am sure I hope not," said Julia, with a good deal of anxiety; "he is the last person I would wish to offend, he is so very kind."

"No young man of twenty is pleased with being thought no hero," returned the aunt.

"And yet all are not so," said Julia, "I hardly know what you mean by a hero; if you mean such men as Washington, Greene, or Warren, all are surely not so. These were heroes in deeds, but others may be equally brave."

{Greene = Nathanael Greene (1742-1786), Revolutionary General; Warren = Joseph Warren (1741-1775), Revolutionary war hero, killed at the Battle of Bunker Hill}

"I mean by a hero, a man whose character is unstained by any low or degenerate vices, or even feelings," said Julia, with a little more than her ordinary enthusiasm; "whose courage is as natural as it is daring; who is above fear, except of doing wrong; whose person is an index of his mind, and whose mind is filled with images of glory; that's what I call a hero, aunt."

"Then he must be handsome as well as valiant," said Miss Emmerson, with a smile that was hardly perceptible.

"Why that is—is—not absolutely material," replied Julia, blushing; "but one would wish to have him handsome too."

"Oh! by all means; it would render his virtues more striking. But I think you intimated that you knew such a being," returned Miss Emmerson, fixing her mild eyes on Julia in a manner that denoted great interest.

"Did I," said Julia, colouring scarlet; "I am sure—I have forgotten—it must be a mistake, surely, dear aunt."

"Very possibly I misunderstood you, my dear," said Miss Emmerson, rising and withdrawing from the room, in apparent indifference to the subject.

Julia continued musing on the dialogue which had passed, and soon had recourse to the letter of her friend, the postscript of which was all, however, that she thought necessary to read: on this she dwelt until the periods were lengthened into paragraphs, each syllable into words, and each letter into syllables. Anna Miller had furnished the outlines of a picture, that the imagination of Julia had completed. The name of Edward Stanley was repeated internally so often that she thought it the sweetest name she had ever heard. His eyes, his nose, his countenance, were avowed to be handsome; and her fancy soon gave a colour and form to each. He was sensible; how sensible, her friend had not expressly stated; but then the powers of Anna, great as they undoubtedly were, could not compass the mighty extent of so gigantic a mind. Brave, too, Anna had called him. This she must have learnt from acts of desperate courage that he had performed in the war which had so recently terminated; or perhaps he might have even distinguished himself in the presence of Anna, by some exploit of cool and determined daring. Her heart burned to know all the particulars, but how was she to inquire them. Anna, dear, indiscreet girl, had already shown her letters, and her delicacy shrunk from the exposure of her curiosity to its object. After a multitude of expedients had been adopted and rejected as impracticable, Julia resorted to the course of committing her inquiries to paper, most solemnly enjoining her friend never to expose her weakness to Mr. Stanley. This, thought Julia, she never could do; it would be unjust to me, and indelicate in her. So Julia wrote as follows, first seeking her own apartment, and carefully locking the door, that she might devote her whole attention to friendship, and her letter.

"Dearest Anna,

"Your kind letter reach'd me after many an anxious hour spent in expectation, and repays me ten-fold for all my uneasiness. Surely, Anna, there is no one that can write half so agreeably as yourself. I know there must be a long—long—epistle for me on the road, containing those descriptions and incidents you promised to favour me with: how I long to read them, and to show them to my aunt Margaret, who, I believe, does not suspect you to be capable of doing that which I know, or rather feel, you can. Knowing from any thing but feeling and the innate evidence of our sympathies, seems to me something like heresy in friendship. Oh, Anna! how could you be so cruel as to show my letters to any one, and that to a gentleman and a stranger? I never would have served you so, not even to good Charles Weston, whom I esteem so highly, and who really wants neither judgment nor good nature, though he is dreadfully deficient in fancy. Yet Charles is a most excellent young man, and I gave him the compliments you desired; he was so much flattered by your notice that he could make no reply, though I doubt not he prized the honour as he ought. We are all very happy here, only for the absence of my Anna; but so long as miles of weary roads and endless rivers run between us, perfect happiness can never reign in the breast of your Julia. Anna, I conjure you by all the sacred delicacy that consecrates our friendship, never to show this letter, unless you would break my heart: you never will, I am certain, and therefore I will write to my Anna in the unreserved manner in which we conversed, when fate, less cruel than at present, suffered us to live in the sunshine of each other's smiles. You speak of a certain person in your letter, whom, for obvious reasons, I will in future call ANTONIO. You describe him with the partiality of a friend; but how can I doubt his being worthy of all that you say, and more—sensible, brave, rich, and handsome. From his name, I suppose, of course, he is well connected. What a constellation of attractions to centre in one man! But you have not told me all—his age, his family, his profession; though I presume he has borne arms in the service of his country, and that his manly breast is already covered with the scars of honour. Ah! Anna, "he jests at scars who never felt a wound." But, my dear creature, you say that he talks of me: what under the sun can you find to say of such a poor girl as myself? Though I suppose you have, in the fondness of affection, described my person to him already. I wonder if he likes black eyes and fair complexion. You can't conceive what a bloom the country has given me; I really begin to look more like a milk-maid than a lady. Dear, good aunt Margaret has been quite sick since you left us, and for two days I was hardly out of her room; this has put me back a little in colour, or I should be as ruddy as the morn. But nothing ought ever to tempt me to neglect my aunt, and I hope nothing ever will. Be assured that I shall beg her to write you to spend the winter with us, for I feel already that without you life is a perfect blank. You indeed must have something to enliven it with a little in your new companions, but here is nobody, just now, but Charles Weston. Yet he is an excellent companion, and does every thing he can to make us all happy and comfortable. Heigho! how I do wish I could see you, my Anna, and spend one sweet half hour in the dear confidence of mutual sympathy. But lie quiet, my throbbing heart, the day approaches when I shall meet my friend again, and more than receive a reward for all our griefs. Ah! Anna, never betray your Julia, and write to me FULLY, CONFIDINGLY, and often.

"Yours, with all the tenderness of friendship that is founded on mutual sympathy, congenial souls, and innate evidence of worth. JULIA."

"P.S. I should like to know whether Antonio has any scars in his face, and what battles he was in. Only think, my dear, poor Charles Weston was frightened by a clap of thunder—but Charles has an excellent heart."

This letter was written and read, sealed and kissed, when Miss Emmerson tapped gently at the door of her niece and begged admission. Julia flew to open it, and received her aunt with the guileless pleasure her presence ever gave her. A few words of introductory matter were exchanged, when, being both seated at their needles again, Miss Emmerson asked—

"To whom have you been writing, my love?"

"To my Anna."

"Do you recollect, my child, that in writing to Miss Miller, you are writing to one out of your own family, and whose interests are different from yours?"

"I do not understand you, aunt," cried Julia in surprise.

"I mean that you should be guarded in your correspondence—tell no secrets out"—

"Tell no secrets to my Anna!" exclaimed the niece in a species of horror. "That would be a death-blow to our friendship indeed."

"Then let it die," said Miss Emmerson, coolly; "the affection that cannot survive the loss of such an excitement, had better be suffered to expire as soon as possible, or it may raise false expectations."

"Why, dear aunt, in destroying confidence of this nature, you destroy the great object of friendship. Who ever beard of a friendship without secrets?"

"I never had a secret in my life," said Miss Emmerson simply, "and yet I have had many a friend."

"Well," said Julia, "yours must have been queer friends; pray, dear aunt, name one or two of them."

"Your mother was my friend," said Miss Emmerson, with strong emotion, "and I hope her daughter also is one."

"Me, my beloved aunt!" cried Julia, throwing herself into the arms of Miss Emmerson and bursting into tears; "I am more than a friend, I am your child— your daughter."

"Whatever be the name you give it, Julia, you are very near and dear to me," said the aunt, tenderly kissing her charge: "but tell me, my love, did you ever feel such emotion in your intercourse with Miss Miller?"

It was some time before Julia could reply; when, having suppressed the burst of her feelings, she answered with a smile—

"Oh! that question is not fair. You have brought me up; nursed me in sickness; are kind and good to me; and the idea that you should suppose I did not love you, was dreadful—But you know I do."

"I firmly believe so, my child; it is you that I would have know what it is that you love: I am satisfied for myself. I repeat, did Anna Miller ever excite such emotions?"

"Certainly not: my love to you is natural; but my friendship for Anna rests on sympathy, and a perfect knowledge of her character."

"I am glad, however, that you know her so well, since you are so intimate. What testimony have you of all this excellence?"

"Innate evidence. I see it—I feel it—Yes, that is the best testimony—I feel her good qualities. Yes, my friendship for Anna forms the spring of my existence; while any accident or evil to you would afflict me the same as if done to myself—this is pure nature, you know."

"I know it is pleasing to learn it, come from what it will," said the aunt, smiling, and rising to withdraw.


SEVERAL days passed after this conversation, in the ordinary quiet of a well regulated family. Notwithstanding the house of Miss Emmerson stood in the midst of the numberless villas that adorn Manhattan Island, the habits of its mistress were retiring and domestic. Julia was not of an age to mingle much in society, and Anna had furnished her with a theme for her meditations, that rather rendered her averse from the confusion of company. Her mind was constantly employed in canvassing the qualities of the unseen Antonio. Her friend had furnished her with a catalogue of his perfections in gross, which her active thoughts were busily arranging into form and substance. But little practised in the world or its disappoinments {sic}, the visionary girl had already figured to herself a person to suit these qualities, and the animal was no less pleasing, than the moral being of her fancy. What principally delighted Julia in these contemplations on the acquaintance of Anna, was the strong inclination he had expressed to know herself. This flattered her tendency to believe in the strength of mutual sympathy, and the efficacy of innate evidence of merit. In the midst of this pleasing employment of her fancy, she received a second letter from her friend, in answer to the one we have already given to our readers; it was couched in the following words:

"My own dear Julia, my Friend,

"I received your letter with the pleasure I shall always hear from you, and am truly obliged to you for your kind offer to make interest with year aunt to have me spend the next winter in town. To be with you, is the greatest pleasure I have on earth; besides, as I know I can write to you as freely as I think, one can readily tell what a tiresome place this must be to pass a winter in. There are, absolutely, but three young men in the whole county who can be thought in any manner as proper matches for us; and one has no chance here of forming such an association as to give a girl an opportunity of meeting with her congenial spirit, so that I hope and trust your desire to see me will continue as strong as mine will ever be to see my Julia. You say that I have forgotten to give you the description of our journey and of the lakes that I promised to send you. No, my Julia, I have not forgotten the promise, nor you; but the thought of enjoying such happiness without your dear company, has been too painful to dwell upon. Of this you may judge for yourself. Our first journey was made in the steam-boat to Albany; she is a moving world. The vessel ploughs through the billowy waters in onward progress, and the soul is left in silent harmony to enjoy the change. The passage of the Highlands is most delightful. Figure to yourself, my Julia, the rushing waters, lessening from their expanded width to the degeneracy of the stagnant pool—rocks rise on rocks in overhanging mountains, until the weary eye, refusing its natural office, yields to the fancy what its feeble powers can never conquer. Clouds impend over their summits, and the thoughts pierce the vast abyss. Ah! Julia, these are moments of awful romance; how the soul longs for the consolations of friendship. Albany is one of the most picturesque places in the world; situated most delightfully on the banks of the Hudson, which here meanders in sylvan beauty through meadows of ever-green and desert islands. Words are wanting to paint the melancholy beauties of the ride to Schenectady, through gloomy forests, where the silvery pine waves in solemn grandeur to the sighings of Eolus, while Boreas threatens in vain their firm-rooted trunks. But the lakes! Ah! Julia—the lakes! The most beautiful is the Seneca, named after a Grecian king. The limpid water, ne'er ruffled by the rude breathings of the wind, shines with golden tints to the homage of the rising sun, while the light bark gallantly lashes the surge, rocking before the propelling gale, and forcibly brings to the appalled mind the fleeting hours of time. But I must pause— my pen refuses to do justice to the subject, and the remainder will furnish us hours of conversation during the tedious moments of the delightful visit to Park-Place. You speak of Antonio—dear girl, with me the secret is hallowed. He is yet here; his whole thoughts are of Julia—from my description only, he has drawn your picture, which is the most striking in the world; and nothing can tear the dear emblem from his keeping. He called here yesterday in his phaeton, and insisted on my riding a few short miles in his company: I assented, for I knew it was to talk of my friend. He already feels your worth, and handed me the following verses, which he begged me to offer as the sincere homage of his heart. He intends accompanying my father and me to town next winter—provided I go.

"Oh! charming image of an artless fair, "Whose eyes, with lightning, fire the very soul; "Whose face portrays the mind, and ebon hair "Gives grace and harmony unto the whole.

"In vain I gaze entranc'd, in vain deplore "The leagues that roll between the maid and me; "Lonely I wander on the desert shore, "And Julia's lovely form can never see.

"But fly, ye fleeting hours, I beg ye fly, "And bring the time when Anna seeks her friend; "Haste—Oh haste, or Edward sure must die. "Arrive—and quickly Edward's sorrows end."

I know you will think with me, that these lines are beautiful, and merely a faint image of his manly heart. In the course of our ride, during which he did nothing but converse on your beauty and merit, he gave me a detailed narrative of his life. It was long, but I can do no less than favour you with an abridgment of it. Edward Stanley was early left an orphan: no father's guardian eye directed his footsteps; no mother's fostering care cherished his infancy. His estate was princely, and his family noble, being a wronged branch of an English potentate. During his early youth he had to contend against the machinations of a malignant uncle, who would have robbed him of his large possessions, and left him in black despair, to have eaten the bread of penury. His courage and understanding, however, conquered this difficulty, and at the age of fourteen he was quietly admitted to an university. Here he continued peacefully to wander amid the academic bowers, until the blast of war rung in his ears, and called him to the field of honour. Edward was ever foremost in the hour of danger. It was his fate to meet the enemy often, and as often did "he pluck honour from the pale- fac'd moon." He fought at Chippewa—bled at the side of the gallant Lawrence-and nearly laid down his life on the ensanguined plains of Marengo. But it would be a fruitless task to include all the scenes of his danger and his glory. Thanks to the kind fates which shield the lives of the brave, he yet lives to adore my Julia. That you may be as happy as you deserve, and happier than your heart- stricken friend, is the constant prayer of your ANNA."

"P. S. Write me soon, and make my very best respects to your excellent aunt. It was laughable enough that Charles Weston should be afraid of a flash of lightning. I mentioned it to Antonio, who cried, while manly indignation clouded his brow, 'chill penury repressed his noble rage, and froze the genial current of the soul.' However, say nothing to Charles about it, I charge you."

{Highlands = the Hudson Highlands, a mountainous region in Putnam and Dutchess Counties, through which the Hudson River passes in a deep and picturesque gorge; Eolus = God of the winds; Boreas = God of the North wind; Seneca = one of the Finger Lakes in central New York State; Grecian king = both the Senecas of antiquity, the rhetorician (54 BC-39 AD) and his son the philosopher/statesman (4 BC-65 AD), were, of course, Romans—in any case, Lake Seneca is named after the Seneca nation of the Iroquois Indians; Park-Place = already in 1816 a fashionable street in lower Manhattan; Chippewa = an American army defeated the British at Chippewa, in Canada near Niagara Falls, on July 5, 1814; Lawrence = Captain James ("Don't give up the ship!") Lawrence (1781- 1813) of the U.S. Frigate Chesapeake was killed on June 1, 1813, as his ship was captured by H.M.S. Shannon outside Boston harbor; Marengo = battle won by Napoleon against the Austrians on June 14, 1800—"Antonio's" military career was truly an amazing one!; pluck honor.... = slightly misquoted from Shakespeare, "King Henry IV, Part I," Act I, Scene 3, line 202; chill penury.... = slightly misquoted from Thomas Gray, "Elegy in a Country Churchyard" verse 13}

Julia fairly gasped for breath as she read this epistle: her very soul was entranced by the song. Whatever of seeming contradiction there might be in the letter of her friend, her active mind soon reconciled. She was now really beloved, and in a manner most grateful to her heart—by the sole power of sympathy and congenial feelings. Whatever might be the adoration of Edward Stanley, it was more than equalled by the admiration of this amiable girl. Her very soul seemed to her to be devoted to his worship; she thought of him constantly, and pictured out his various distresses and dangers; she wept at his sufferings, and rejoiced in his prosperity—and all this in the short space of one hour. Julia was yet in the midst of this tumult of feeling, when another letter was placed in her hands, and on opening it she read as follows:

"Dear Julia,

"I should have remembered my promise, and come out and spent a week with you, had not one of Mary's little boys been quite sick; of course I went to her until he recovered. But if you will ask aunt Margaret to send for me, I will come tomorrow with great pleasure, for I am sure you must find it solitary, now Miss Miller has left you. Tell aunt to send by the servant a list of such books as she wants from Goodrich's, and I will get them for her, or indeed any thing else that I can do for her or you. Give my love to aunt, and tell her that, knowing her eyes are beginning to fail, I have worked her a cap, which I shall bring with me. Mamma desires her love to you both, and believe me to be affectionately your cousin, KATHERINE EMMERSON."

This was well enough; but as it was merely a letter of business, one perusal, and that a somewhat hasty one, was sufficient. Julia loved its writer more than she suspected herself, but there was nothing in her manner or character that seemed calculated to excite strong emotion. In short, all her excellences were so evident that nothing was left dependent on innate evidence; and our heroine seldom dwelt with pleasure on any character that did not give a scope to her imagination. In whatever light she viewed the conduct or disposition of her cousin, she was met by obstinate facts that admitted of no cavil nor of any exaggeration.

Turning quickly, therefore, from this barren contemplation to one better suited to her inclinations, Julia's thoughts resumed the agreeable reverie from which she had been awakened. She also could paint, and after twenty trials she at length sketched an outline of the figure of a man that answered to Anna's description, and satisfied her own eye. Without being conscious of the theft, she had copied from a print of the Apollo, and clothed it in the uniform which Bonaparte is said to have worn. A small scar was traced on the cheek in such a manner that although it might be fancied as the ravages of a bullet, it admirably answered all the purposes of a dimple. Two epaulettes graced the shoulders of the hero; and before the picture was done, although it was somewhat at variance with republican principles, an aristocratical star glittered on its breast. Had he his birth-right, thought Julia, it would be there in reality; and this idea amply justified the innovation. To this image, which it took several days to complete, certain verses were addressed also, but they were never submitted to the confidence of her friend. The whole subject was now beginning to be too sacred even for such a communication; and as the mind of Julia every hour became more entranced with its new master, her delicacy shrunk from an exposure of her weakness: it was getting too serious for the light compositions of epistolary correspondence.

We furnish a copy of the lines, as they me not only indicative of her feelings, but may give the reader some idea of the powers of her imagination.

"Beloved image of a god-like mind, "In sacred privacy thy power I feel; "What bright perfection in thy form's combin'd! "How sure to injure, and how kind to heal.

"Thine eagle eye bedazzles e'en the brain, "Thy gallant brow bespeaks the front of Jove; "While smiles enchant me, tears in torrents rain, "And each seductive charm impels to love.

"Ah! hapless maid, why daring dost thou prove "The hidden dangers of the urchin's dart; "Why fix thine eye on this, the god of love, "And heedless think thee to retain thy heart!"

This was but one of fifty similar effusions, in which Julia poured forth her soul. The flame was kept alive by frequent letters from her friend, in all of which she dwelt with rapture on the moment of their re-union, and never failed to mention Antonio in a manner that added new fuel to the fire that already began to consume Julia, and, in some degree, to undermine her health, at least she thought so.

In the mean time Katherine Emmerson paid her promised visit to her friends, and our heroine was in some degree drawn from her musings on love and friendship. The manners of this young lady were conspicuously natural; she had a confirmed habit of calling things by their right names, and never dwelt in the least in superlatives. Her affections seemed centered in the members of her own family; nor had she ever given Julia the least reason to believe she preferred her to her own sister, notwithstanding that sister was married, and beyond the years of romance. Yet Julia loved her cousin, and was hardly ever melancholy or out of spirits when in her company. The cheerful and affectionate good humour of Katherine was catching, and all were pleased with her, although but few discovered the reason. Charles Weston soon forgot his displeasure, and with the exception of Julia's hidden uneasiness, the house was one quiet scene of peaceful content. The party were sitting at their work the day after the arrival of Katherine, when Julia thought it a good opportunity to intimate her wish to have the society of her friend during the ensuing winter.

"Why did Mr. Miller give up his house in town, I wonder?" said Julia; "I am sure it was inconsiderate to his family."

"Rather say, my child, that it was in consideration to his children that he did so," observed Miss Emmerson; "his finances would not bear the expense, and suffer him to provide for his family after his death."

"I am sure a little money might be spent now, to indulge his children in society, and they would be satisfied with less hereafter," continued Julia. "Mr. Miller must be rich; and think, aunt, he has seven grown up daughters that he has dragged with him into the wilderness; only think, Katherine, how solitary they must be."

"Had I six sisters I could be solitary no where," said Katherine, simply; "besides, I understand that the country where Mr. Miller resides is beautiful and populous."

"Oh! there are men and women enough, I dare say," cried Julia; "and the family is large—eleven in the whole; but they must feel the want of friends in such a retired place."

"What, with six sisters!" said Katherine, laughing and shaking her head.

"There is a difference between a sister end a friend, you know," said Julia, a little surprised.

"I—indeed I have yet to learn that," exclaimed the other, in a little more astonishment.

"Why you feel affection for your sisters from nature and habit; but friendship is voluntary, spontaneous, and a much stronger feeling—friendship is a sentiment."

"And cannot one feel this sentiment, as you call it, for a sister?" asked Katherine, smiling.

"I should think not," returned Julia, musing; "I never had a sister; but it appears to me that the very familiarity of sisters would be destructive to friendship."

"Why I thought it was the confidence—the familiarity—the secrets—which form the very essence of friendship." cried Katherine; "at least so I have always heard."

"True," said Julia, eagerly, "you speak true—the confidence and the secrets—but not the—the—I am not sure that I express myself well—but the intimate knowledge that one has of one's own sister—that I should think would be destructive to the delicacy of friendship."

"Julia means that a prophet has never honour in his own country," cried Charles with a laugh—"a somewhat doubtful compliment to your sex, ladies, under her application of it."

"But what becomes of your innate evidence of worth in friendship," asked Miss Emmerson; "I thought that was the most infallible of all kinds of testimony: surely that must bring you intimately acquainted with each other's secret foibles too."

"Oh! no—that is a species of sentimental knowledge," returned Julia; "it only dwells on the loftier parts of the character, and never descends to the minute knowledge which makes us suffer so much in each other's estimation: it leaves all these to be filled by the—by the—by the—what shall I call it?"

"Imagination," said Katherine, dryly.

"Well, by the imagination then: but it is an imagination that is purified by sentiment, and"—

"Already rendered partial by the innate evidence of worth," interrupted Charles.

Julia had lost herself in the mazes of her own ideas, and changed the subject under a secret suspicion that her companions were amusing themselves at her expense; she, therefore, proceeded directly to urge the request of Anna Miller.

"Oh! aunt, now we are on the subject of friends, I wish to request you would authorize me to invite my Anna to pass the next winter with us in Park- Place."

"I confess, my love," said Miss Emmerson, glancing her eye at Katherine, "that I had different views for ourselves next winter: has not Miss Miller a married sister living in town?"

"Yes, but she has positively refused to ask the dear girl, I know," said Julia. "Anna is not a favourite with her sister."

"Very odd that," said the aunt gravely; "there must be a reason for her dislike then: what can be the cause of this unusual distaste for each other?"

"Oh!" cried Julia, "it is all the fault of Mrs. Welton; they quarrelled about something, I don't know what, but Anna assures me Mrs. Welton is entirely in fault."

"Indeed!—and you are perfectly sure that Mrs. Welton is in fault—perhaps Anna has, however, laid too strong a stress upon the error of her sister," observed the aunt.

"Oh! not at all, dear aunt. I can assure you, on my own knowledge," continued Julia, "Anna was anxious for a reconciliation, and offered to come and spend the winter with her sister, but Mrs. Welton declared positively that she would not have so selfish a creature round her children: now this Anna told me herself one day, and wept nearly to break her heart at the time."

"Perhaps Mrs. Welton was right then," said Miss Emmerson, "and prudence, if not some other reason, justified her refusal."

"How can you say so, dear aunt?" interrupted Julia, with a little impatience, "when I tell you that Anna herself—my Anna, told me with her own lips, here in this very house, that Mrs. Welton was entirely to blame, and that she had never done any thing in her life to justify the treatment or the remark—now Anna told me this with her own mouth."

As Julia spoke, the ardour of her feelings brought the colour to her cheeks and an animation to her eyes that rendered her doubly handsome; and Charles Weston, who had watched her varying countenance with delight, sighed as she concluded, and rising, left the room.

"I understand that your father intends spending his winter in Carolina, for his health," said Miss Emmerson to Katherine.

"Yes," returned the other in a low tone, and bending over her work to conceal her feelings; "mother has persuaded him to avoid our winter."

"And you are to be left behind?"

"I am afraid so," was the modest reply.

"And your brother and sister go to Washington together?"

"That is the arrangement, I believe."

Miss Emmerson said no more, but she turned an expressive look on her ward, which Julia was too much occupied with her thoughts to notice. The illness of her father, and the prospect of a long separation from her sister, were too much for the fortitude of Katherine at any time, and hastily gathering her work in her hand, she left the room just in time to prevent the tears which streamed down her cheeks from meeting the eyes of her companions.

"We ought to ask Katherine to make one of our family, in the absence of her mother and sister," said Miss Emmerson, as soon as the door was closed.

"Ah! yes," cried Julia, fervently, "by all means: poor Katherine, how solitary she would be any where else—I will go this instant and ask her."

"But—stop a moment, my love; you will remember that we have not room for more than one guest. If Katherine is asked, Miss Miller cannot be invited. Let us look at what we are about, and leave nothing to repent of hereafter."

"Ah! it is true," said Julia, re-seating herself in great disappointment; "where will poor Katherine stay then?"

"I know my brother expects that I will take her under my charge; and, indeed, I think he has right to ask it of me."

"But she has no such right as my Anna, who is my bosom friend, you know. Katherine has a right here, it is true, but it is only such a right"—

"As your own," interrupted the aunt gravely; "you are the daughter of my sister, and Katherine is the daughter of my brother."

"True—true—if it be right, lawful right, that is to decide it, then Katherine must come, I suppose," said Julia, a little piqued.

"Let us proceed with caution, my love," said Miss Emmerson, kissing her niece—"Do you postpone your invitation until September, when, if you continue of the same mind, we will give Anna the desired invitation: in the mean while prepare yourself for what I know will be a most agreeable surprise."


ALTHOUGH Julia spent most of her time with her aunt and cousin, opportunities for meditation were not wanting: in the retirement of her closet she perused and re-perused the frequent letters of her friend. The modesty of Julia, or rather shame, would have prevented her from making Anna acquainted with all her feelings, but it would have been treason to her friendship not to have poured out a little of her soul at the feet of Miss Miller. Accordingly, in her letters, Julia did not avoid the name of Antonio. She mentioned it often, but with womanly delicacy, if not with discretion. The seeds of constant association had, unknown to herself, taken deep root, and it was not in the power of Anna Miller to eradicate impressions which had been fastened by the example of the aunt, and cherished by the society of her cousin. Although deluded, weak, and even indiscreet, Julia was not indelicate. Yet enough escaped her to have given any experienced eye an insight into the condition of her mind, had Anna chosen to have exposed her letters to any one. The danger of such a correspondence should alone deter any prudent female from its indulgence. Society has branded the man with scorn who dares abuse the confidence of a woman in this manner; and the dread of the indignation of his associates makes it an offence which is rarely committed by the other sex: but there is no such obligation imposed on women, and that frequently passes for a joke which harrows every feeling that is dear to the female breast, and violates all that is delicate and sensitive in our nature. Surely, where it is necessary from any adventitious circumstances to lay the heart open in this manner, it should only be done to those whose characters are connected with our own, and who feel ridicule inflicted on us, as disgrace heaped on themselves. A peculiar evil of these confidential friendships is, that they are most liable to occur, when, from their youth, their victims are the least guarded; and, at the same time, from inconstancy, the most liable to change. Happily, however, for Julia's peace of mind, she foresaw no such dangers from her intimacy with Anna, and letter and answer passed between them, at short intervals, during the remainder of the summer. We shall give but one more specimen of each, as they have strong resemblance to one another—we select two that were written late in August.

"My own and beloved Julia,

"Your letters are the only consolation that my anxious heart can know in the dreary solitude of this place. Oh! my friend, how would your tender heart bleed did you but know the least of my sufferings; but they are all requited by the delightful anticipations of Park-Place. I hope your dear aunt has not found it necessary to lay down her carriage in the change of the times: write me in your next about it. Antonio has been here again, and he solicited an audience with me in private—of course I granted it, for friendship hallows all that is done under its mantle. It was a moonlight night— mild Luna shedding a balmy light on surrounding objects, and, if possible, rendering my heart more sensitive than ever. One solitary glimmering star showed by its paly quiverings the impress of evening, while not a cloud obscured the vast firmament of heaven. On such an evening Antonio could do nothing but converse of my absent friend; he dwelt on the indescribable grace of your person, the lustre of your eye, and the vermilion of your lips, until exhausted language could furnish no more epithets of rapture: then the transition to your mind was natural and easy; and it was while listening to his honied accents that I thought my Julia herself was talking.

"Soft as the dews from heaven descend, his gentle accents fell."

Ah, Julia! nothing but a strong pre-possession, and my friendship for you, could remove the danger of such a scene. Yes! friend of my heart, I must acknowledge my weakness. There is a youth in New-York, who has long been master of my too sensitive heart, and without him life will be a burthen. Cruel fate divides us now, but when invited by your aunt to Park-Place, Oh, rapture unutterable! I shall be near my Regulus. This, surely, is all that can be wanting to stimulate my Julia to get the invitation from her aunt. Antonio says that if I go to the city this fall, he will hover near me on the road to guard the friend of Julia; and that he will eagerly avail himself of my presence to seek her society. I am called from my delightful occupation by one of my troublesome sisters, who wishes me to assist her in some trifle or other. Make my most profound respects to your dear, good aunt, and believe me your own true friend,


{Regulus = prince}

At length Julia thought she had made the discovery of Anna's reason for her evident desire to spend the winter in town—like herself, her friend had become the victim of the soft passion, and from that moment Julia determined that Katherine Emmerson must seek another residence, in order that Anna might breathe love's atmosphere. How much a desire to see Antonio governed this decision, we cannot say, but we are certain that, if in the least, Julia was herself ignorant of the power. With her, it seemed to be the result of pure, disinterested, and confiding friendship. In answer, our heroine wrote as follows:

"My beloved Anna,

"Your kind, consolatory letters are certainly the solace of my life. Ah! Anna, I have long thought that some important secret lay heavy at your heart. The incoherency of your letters, and certain things too trifling to mention, had made me suspect that some unusual calamity had befallen you. You do not mention who Regulus is. I am burning with curiosity to know, although I doubt not but he is every way worthy of your choice.

"I have in vain run over in my mind every young man that we know, but not one of them that I can find has any of the qualities of a hero. Do relieve my curiosity in your next, and I may have it in my power to write you something of his movements. Oh! Anna, why will you dwell on the name of Antonio—I am sure I ought not to listen as I do to what he says—and when we meet, I am afraid that he will not find all the attractions which your too partial friendship has portrayed. If he should be thus disappointed, Oh! Anna—Anna—what would become of your friend—But I will not dwell an the horrid idea. Charles Weston is yet here, and Katherine Emmerson too; so that but for the thoughts of my absent Anna, and perhaps a little uneasiness on the subject of Antonio, I might be perfectly happy. You know how good and friendly Katherine is, and really Charles does all in his power to please. If he were only a little more heroical, he would be a charming young man: for although he is not very handsome, I don't think you notice it in the least when you are intimate with him. Poor Charles, he was terribly mortified about the flash of lightning—but then all are not brave alike. Adieu, my Anna—and if you do converse more with a certain person about, you know whom, let it be with discretion, or you may raise expectations she will not equal. Your own JULIA."

"P. S. I had almost forgotten to say that aunt has promised me that I can ask you to stay with us, if, after the 20th September, I wish it, as you may be sure that I will. Aunt keeps her carriage yet, and I hope will never want it in her old age."

About the time this letter was written, Miss Emmerson made both of her nieces acquainted with the promised project that was to give them the agreeable surprise:—she had long contemplated going to see "the Falls," and she now intended putting her plan into execution. Katherine was herself pressed to make one of the party, but the young lady, at the same time she owned her wish to see this far-famed cataract, declined the offer firmly, but gratefully, on account of her desire to spend the remaining time with her father and mother, before they went to the south. Charles Weston looked from Katherine to Julia during this dialogue, and for an instant was at a loss to know which he thought the handsomest of the cousins. But Julia entered into the feelings of the others so quickly, and so gracefully offered to give up the journey, in order that Miss Emmerson might continue with her brother, that, aided by her superior beauty, she triumphed. It was evident, that consideration for her niece was a strong inducement with the aunt for making the journey, and the contest became as disinterested as it was pleasing to the auditors. But the authority of Miss Emmerson prevailed, and Charles was instantly enlisted as their escort for the journey. Julia never looked more beautiful or amiable than during this short controversy. It had been mentioned by the aunt that she should take the house of Mr. Miller in her road, and the information excited an emotion that brought all her lustre to her eyes, and bloom to her cheeks. Charles thought it was a burst of generous friendship, and admired the self-denial with which she urged her aunt to relinquish the idea. But Julia was constitutionally generous, and it was the excess of the quality that made her enthusiastic and visionary. If she did not deserve all of Charles's admiration, she was entitled to no small share of it. As soon as the question was determined in favour of going, Miss Emmerson and Katherine withdrew, leaving Charles alone with the heroine of our tale. Under the age of five-and- twenty, men commonly act at the instigation of sudden impulse, and young Weston was not yet twenty-one. He had long admired Julia for her beauty and good feelings; he did not see one half of her folly, and he knew all of her worth; her enthusiastic friendship for Miss Miller was forgotten; even her mirth at his own want of heroism had at the moment escaped his memory— and the power of the young lady over him was never greater.

"How admirable in you, Julia," he said, seating himself by her side, "to urge what was against your own wishes, in order to oblige your aunt!"

"Do you think so, Charles?" said the other simply; "but you see I urged it feebly, for I did not prevail."

"No, for you mistook your aunt's wishes, it seems: she desires to go—but then all the loveliness of the act was yours."

At the word loveliness, Julia raised her eyes to his face with a slight blush—it was new language for Charles Weston to use, and it was just suited to her feelings. After a moment's pause. however, she replied—

"You use strong language, cousin Charles, such as is unusual for you."

"Julia, although I may not often have expressed it, I have long thought you to be very lovely!" exclaimed the young man, borne away with his ardour at the moment.

"Upon my word, Charles, you improve," said Julia, blushing yet more deeply, and, if possible, looking still handsomer than before.

"Julia—Miss Warren—you tear my secret from me before its time—I love you, Julia, and would wish to make you my wife."

This was certainly very plain English, nor did Julia misunderstand a syllable of what he said—but it was entirely new and unexpected to her; she had lived with Charles Weston with the confidence of a kinswoman, but had never dreamt of him as a lover. Indeed, she saw nothing in him that looked like a being to excite or to entertain such a passion; and although from the moment of his declaration she began insensibly to think differently of him, nothing was farther from her mind than to return his offered affection. But then the opportunity of making a sacrifice to her secret love was glorious, and her frankness forbade her to conceal the truth. Indeed, what better way was there to destroy the unhappy passion of Charles, than to convince him of its hopelessness? These thoughts flashed through her mind with the rapidity of lightning—and trembling with the agitation and novelty of her situation, she answered in a low voice—

"That, Charles, can never be."

"Why never, Julia?" cried the youth, giving way at once to his long-suppressed feelings—"why never? Try me, prove me! there is nothing I will not do to gain your love."

Oh! how seductive to a female ear is the first declaration of an attachment, especially when urged by youth and merit!—it assails her heart in the most vulnerable part, and if it be not fortified unusually well, seldom fails of success. Happily for Julia, the image of Antonio presented itself to save her from infidelity to her old attachment, and she replied—

"You are kind and good, Charles, and I esteem you highly—but ask no more, I beg of you."

"Why, if you grant me this, why forbid me to hope for more?" said the youth eagerly, and looking really handsome.

Julia hesitated a moment, and let her dark eyes fall before his ardent gaze, at a loss what to say—but the face of Apollo in the imperial uniform interposed to save her.

"I owe it to your candour, Mr. Weston, to own my weakness—" she said, and hesitated.

"Go on, Julia—my Julia," said Charles, in an unusually soft voice; "kill me at once, or bid me live!"

Again Julia paused, and again she looked on her companion with kinder eyes than usual—when she felt the picture which lay next her heart, and proceeded—

"Yes, Mr. Weston, this heart, this foolish, weak heart is no longer my own."

"How!" exclaimed Charles, in astonishment, "and have I then a rival, and a successful one too?"

"You have," said Julia, burying her face in her hands to conceal her blushes.—"But, Mr. Weston, on your generosity I depend for secrecy—be as generous as myself."

"Yes—yes—I will conceal my misery from others," cried Charles, springing on his feet and rushing from the room; "would to God I could conceal it from myself!"

Julia was sensibly touched with his distress, and for an instant there was some regret mingled with self- satisfaction at her own candour—but then the delightful reflection soon presented itself of the gratitude of Antonio when he learnt her generous conduct, and her self-denial in favour of a man whom she had as yet never seen.—At the same time she was resolutely determined never to mention the occurrence herself—not even to her Anna.

Miss Emmerson was enabled to discover some secret uneasiness between Charles and Julia, although she was by no means able to penetrate the secret. The good aunt had long anxiously wished for just such a declaration as had been made to her niece, and it was one of the last of her apprehensions that it would not have been favourably received. Of simple and plain habits herself, Miss Emmerson was but little versed in the human heart; she thought that Julia was evidently happy and pleased with her young kinsman, and she considered him in every respect a most eligible connexion for her charge: their joint fortunes would make an ample estate, and they were alike affectionate and good-tempered—what more could be wanting? Nothing however passed in the future intercourse of the young couple to betray their secrets, and Miss Emmerson soon forgot her surmises. Charles was much hurt at Julia's avowal, and had in vain puzzled his brains to discover who his rival could be. No young man that was in the least (so he thought) suitable to his mistress, visited her, and he gave up his conjectures in despair of discovering this unknown lover, until accident or design should draw him into notice. Little did he suspect the truth. On the other hand, Julia spent her secret hours in the delightful consciousness of having now done something that rendered her worthy of Antonio, with occasional regret that she was compelled by delicacy and love to refuse Charles so hastily as she had done.

Very soon after this embarrassing explanation, Julia received a letter from her friend that was in no way distinguishable from the rest, except that it contained the real name of Regulus, which she declared to be Henry Frederick St. Albans. If Charles was at a loss to discover Julia's hidden love, Julia herself was equally uncertain how to know who this Mr. St. Albans was. After a vast deal of musing, she remembered that Anna was absent from school without leave one evening, and had returned alone with a young man who was unknown to the mistress. This incident was said, by some, to have completed her education rather within the usual time. Julia had herself thought her friend indiscreet, but on the whole, hardly treated—and they left the school together. This must have been St. Albans, and Anna stood fully exculpated in her eyes. The letter also announced the flattering fact, that Antonio had already left the country, ordering his servants and horses home, and that he had gone to New-York with the intention of hovering around Julia, in a mask, that she could not possibly remove, during the dangers of their expected journey. Anna acknowledged that she had betrayed Antonio's secret, but pleaded her duty to her friend in justification. She did not think that Julia would be able to penetrate his disguise, as he had declared his intentions so to conceal himself, by paint and artifice, as to be able to escape detection. Here was a new source of pleasure to our heroine: Antonio was already on the wing for the city, perhaps arrived—nay, might have seen her, might even now be within a short distance of the summer-house where she was sitting at the time, and watching her movements. As this idea suggested itself, Julia started, and unconsciously arranging her hair, by bringing forward a neglected curl, moved with trembling steps towards the dwelling. At each turn of the walk our heroine threw a timid eye around in quest of an unknown figure, and more than once fancied she saw the face of the god of music peering at her from the friendly covert of her aunt's shrubbery—and twice she mistook the light green of a neighbouring cornfield, waving in the wind, for the coat of Antonio. Julia had so long associated the idea of her hero with the image in her bosom, that she had given it perfect identity; but, on more mature reflection, she was convinced of her error: he would come disguised, Anna had told her, and had ordered his servants home; where that home was, Julia was left in ignorance—but she fervently hoped, not far removed from her beloved aunt. The idea of a separation from this affectionate relative, who had proved a mother to her in her infancy, gave great pain to her best feelings; and Julia again internally prayed that the residence of Antonio might not be far distant.— What the disguise of her lover would be, Julia could not imagine—probably, that of a wandering harper: but then she remembered that there were no harpers in America, and the very singularity might betray his secret. Music is the "food of love," and Julia fancied for a moment that Antonio might appear as an itinerant organist—but it was only for a moment; for as soon as she figured to herself the Apollo form, bending under the awkward load of a music-grinder, she turned in disgust from the picture. His taste, thought Julia will protect me from such a sight—she might have added, his convenience too. Various disguises presented themselves to our heroine, until, on a view of the whole subject, she concluded that Antonio would not appear as a musician at all, but in some capacity in which he might continue unsuspected, near her person, and execute his project of shielding her from the dangers of travelling. It was then only as a servant that he could appear, and, after mature reflection, Julia confidently expected to see him in the character of a coachman.

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