Page images

and fupplicated their charity, though in a manner and with an addrefs that fhewed it was a humiliation to which fhe was unaccustomed, and overwhelmed her with fhame. The children were in a moment ready with their fixpences, which given, Mr. Richardfon obferved her accurately, and faid, "How is it that a woman like you, in the prime of life, is fo reduced

[ocr errors]

"as to be obliged to beg? furely you are "capable of earning an existence in a lefs "derogatory manner."

"Alas, Sir!" replied the woman, "that "is true; I can do all kinds of needle"work; and am willing, could I find any ❝employment; but I have no one to re

"commend me."

"I fear that argues a fault in your cha"racter," answered he; "for few people "that walk honestly through life until

[blocks in formation]
[ocr errors]

your age, but, however unfortunate, "fome one will exert their humanity for "them."


Alas, Sir!" replied fhe, "it is indeed "a fault in my character, which, though

"not profligate, has been very erroneous; "and which neither forrow nor repent66 ance can obliterate."

"True repentance obliterates our errors "even with our Maker, who himself is

[ocr errors]

'spotless; and shall frail humanity judge

"of its fellow-finner fo harfhly ?- For the

[ocr errors]

prefent take that half-crown, and if you "are really what you declare, repentant "for your errors, and willing to gain an "honeft existence by your induftry, call "on me to-morrow," giving his addrefs, " and I will endeavour to help you "farther."


The woman looked aftonished, and unable to reply; but fixing her eyes on them, and fupporting herself against a tree, fhe burst into tears; while Mr. Richardfon haftened along the Mall with his children, and foon reached the coach.

H 3


The Beggar-woman's Story.-The Difad vantages of a bad Character.

MR. Richardfon being employed the enfuing morning with his mercantile concerns, the children walked with Mrs. Beaumont until dinner; after which they amused themselves during the afternoon until fent for by their father.

In the mean time the poor woman they had seen in the Park the day before called as defired; and being admitted, Mr. Richardfon queftioned her refpecting her former life, and finding that though erroneous, there was nothing to injure the morals

morals of his children, he sent for them to

be present at the relation.

[ocr errors]


My children," faid he, "I wifhed

you to hear the relation of this poor "woman's misfortunes; from them may

[ocr errors]

you learn wisdom, and avoid those errors "that have wrought her ruin.”—Then turning to her, he added, "Fear not to

[ocr errors]

speak the truth; it fhall not injure you "with me, for falfehood is a crime of all "others I deteft."

[ocr errors]

The poor woman answered, Alas, "Sir! falfehood, vanity, and arrogance, "have been the bane of my life, and left

[ocr errors]

me destitute as you fee; therefore, with "God's affiftance, were I ever to be placed "in comfort, as I have been, I have ab "jured them for ever; I have read that "the wages of fin is death, and I am sure "the reward of falsehood, vanity, and "unbridled

H 4

« PreviousContinue »