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NADIR.-A TALE OF FORMER TIMES.
(Continued from Page 127.)
" to con
On the following day our hero was re sentences to what Nadir had been writing. joicing at his metamorphoses, when the By this means he had made hiinself known consort of a noble Lord sent to propose a to Elma, and had gained her confidence. mysterious interview, and he appointed the But it was necessary for him to inspire hour of their meeting. Another messenger | Nadir with suspicions, so as to cool his presents him with a note from a lady of ton, ardour; and Phanor had accordingly interinforming him of the time she was to begin cepted the correspondence between the two her toilet, and he promised to be punctual. lovers. Elma then determined to enquire Now comes a third deputy, bearer of an
of Phanor wherefore she was thus neglectepistle: the tenth muse invited him to din- | ed; the traitor expected as much; he wrote ner, after which she proposed to read a to her that Nadir had been severely woundpoem of her composition, in twelve cantos. ed in an affair of honour. “ I would have Nadir, however, recollecting his former wished,” added he in his letter, situation, shuddered, and declined the invi- ceal that accident from you; but he refuses tation. Once more his door is opened; a
every assistance, will not even allow me to letter, with at least fifty erasures, contained | be near bim, but is continually calling after, an hardly legible summons to tea from the and will see no other than Elma. If love wife of an army contractor, which Nadir | and compassion still prevail in your heart, engages to obey. It was reported, but we come to, and restore to us both our unvouch 'not for the truth of the assertion, || fortunate friend.” that he supped, uninvited, with an opera
It was subsequent to his having disdancer.
patched that letter that Phanor had parted Such was the rage amongst the fair of from Nadir to repair to the place he had the metropolis, that they thought them- | appointed; where he had not long to wait. selves disgraced who could not boast of || Elma, notwithstanding she had to bewail having made a conquest of him. Two cas the recent loss of her mother, could not kets can hardly contain the declarations, bear the mere idea of losing Nadir. She bracelets, and other pledges of love that hesitated not, but set off immediately, and, are sent to him, besides those that he pro without stopping on the road, met her false cures by stealth. One female alone is || friend on the second day. The first words doomed to resist him, and what a woman! she spoke were to enquire after the only She, who in him loves but him alone; she, man on whose account she considered life who rejects his declarations to remain faith as a boon; she wished to be introduced to ful to him-Elma.
him, she begs, she entreats, and wonders at In consequence of the treacherous || the pretences under which her solicitations schemes of Phanor, in excuse of which he are not granted. Phanor at last produces, might indeed have urged the bad principles apparently with regret, the paper on which of his education, and the influence of bad || the dying Nadir had written a last adieu, example, Elma had repaired to the capital. and conjured Elma to give her hand to-, Notwithstanding Phanor had never seen
Elma had read enough,-she surmised the Elma, the wit and feelings he had observed treachery, and shed abundance of tears. in her correspondence, the idea of possess- || Beauteous as she was, those tears added to ing'a woman who was indebted for her at- || her natural beauty. Phanor could no lontractions to nature alone, and I blush as I ger moderate his transports. After having repeat it, the secret pleasure he expected to tried means of persuasion, he presumed to derive in seducing her from his friend, have recourse to violence: but nothing is had induced him to execute a most abomi- || equal to the powers of defence of a true nable project. In the beginning he was lover.
She disengaged herself from the satisfied with adding a few tender and witty" grasp of the ruffian, threw a window open
and made her escape. The god of love, with each other who should have the hoprotected her, secured her fight, and direct. nour first of running him through. ed her course towards the metropolis. The intelligence was more than sufficient
She arrived exactly at the time when to induce our hero to renounce the hazardNadir experienced his sad disgrace, which ous career he had chosen. He had no time rendered him still dearer to her. She de to lose he knew ; he therefore hastened to termined to contiñue in town until she carry off his most precious effects, and the could find out her lover; but all her re lock of Elma's hair; be threw the two cassearches proved fruitless.
kets into the fire, made his escape through One day as Nadir was crossing a solitary | a private back door, and sought an obscure walk he descried a female seated on a 1 asylum. bench of turf, and who appeared plunged There he was at leisure to enquire of in deep reverie. He approached her with himself of what use had been to him the out being able to discover her features, ac fatal present that had been granted him in costed, under the most frivolous pretexts, consequence only of his inconsiderate deall who passed near her, till at last he re sires. He even was engaged for a time in cognised her to be Elma.
reflection that would have induced any His first idea prompted bim to accost other besides himself to return the book to her, but curiosity and vanity, which so fre- | Alzor, and to sue for the restoration of quently misguide us contrary to our real | Elma to his embrace. interest, suggested the thought of trying But after having hesitated for some time, whether the aspect of the adorable Adonis Nadir, however, drew a should not eclipse the distant remote image event from those that had lately occurred. of the once candid Nadir. Compliments, | “ Wherefore have I been miserable ?" said declarations, indifference, rage, all that he to himself. “ Because I had not chosen may be calculated to awaken tenderness, a situation in life that might have made or provoke jealousy, is put in practice, but me otherwise. I could only shine in acawith not the least success. Elma remains demical assemblies, or in voluptuous bouinflexible. Ah! Nadir, with one single | doirs; whilst, whenever I chanced to meet word you might have made her happy, with men of great property, I always found whereas—. But become the sport of a that gold served them as a substitute for wild error, are you still deserving of appre- accomplishments and merit. Is it not in ciating and enjoying real happiness ? behalf, and for the sake of the rich, that
An elderly woman approaching Elma, wisdom occasionally forgets itself, and that whispered something in her ear, and they justice even will slumber? The whole of soon after withdrew together. Nadir || nature pays a tribute to the rich : to grapiqucd at bis ill success, thought not of tify the rich, does not the poet sit up all following them, till such time as they were night by the light of a half replenished gone a great distance, and entirely out | lamp ; the mariner brave the stormy seas, of sight.
and the pale miner dig the bowels of his A thousand new triumphs soon afforded mother earth? The rich man is every him consolation, and made him forget what thing: men, therefore, use craft, and submit he considered as an affront. Tired, in some to cringe with a view of obtaining riches. respect, of his high reputation, he endea | When, by pronouncing a single word, I voured to persuade himself that he was may become rich; wherefore should I much to be envied, when he was informed hesitate?"-Opulence ! repeated Nadir at all at once, that an extravagant nymph three different times. He had scarcely uthad forsaken him for a favourite of Plutus; | tered the word when an individual, whose that another belle, who thought he had features were entirely unknown to him, neglected her, had just stabbed herself, came forward, and addressing him in the after having exposed all his infidelity; that most respectful manner, said :-“ My Lord, a third, incensed at his inconstancy," had I have just been paying the price of the bribed his cook; that a jealous husband rich mansion that you approved of."
Next had procured bravos to murder him; and presenting his hand to support the amazed that many disappointed lovers contended || Nadir, he ushered him into an elegant car,
drawn by a pair of coursers, whose bits are the company began chattering aloud, and whitened by impatient foam; they start burst out a laughing. During the concert with emulous ardour, and soon reached the many a wife and husband, negligently lollassigned spot. Thirty attendants have ing on a couch at a great distance from been contending for the honour of receive | each other, received or gave an assignation ing their master in their arms. They con for the next day. When at last the music ducted him to an apartment equally elegant ceased, all present gave in their opiniou, and sumptuous. In the twinkling of an according to custom. The curtain, at the eye, his plain tunic is soon replaced by a | farther extremity of the room, is instantly costly flowing robe. Half a score pierdrawn up, when a company of dancers are glasses reflect his image, and he smiles) discovered, who perform a luxurious pantowith proud satisfaction at his splendid ap- | mime. Now the conversation is at an end; pearance.
all the eyes are fixed on the stage, all feelThe clock had just struck six, when com ings are alive. The imaginations of the pany was announced. Successively were | youthful virgins were in a blaze, married introduced ladies, men of letters, and women even take lessons of voluptuousness. monied men. Some among the former, by The financiers shake their purses, and dint of art, concealed the ravages of years : the young men plan contrivances to dupe others, young and lively, laughed at the the seniors. pretensions of their grand-mothers ; each After the pantom ime was concluded, of them, in a whisper to Nadir, would al- Nadir's high taste was extolled to the skies; ternately censure her most amiable com but the party were hardly out of the portico panions, and extol her own merit and when they made game of him : “ He shows graces. The financiers would speak of the || all the stupid haughtiness of an upstart," stocks and bankruptcies, or yawn insigo said one; “ true," interrupted another, nificantly; finally, the wits worried the “ but his steward and his cook are wonderwhole company with a display of their ful clever fellows:” and our hero, who had erudition and profound knowledge; the only heard the flattering encomiums, fanpoets alone made themselves agreeable, by cied he had procured numbers of friends reading lines in praise of my lord, although in consequence of the elegant entertainment it might be observed that one word was he had given them. Extended on a down used to mean a whole sentence, or that bed, he soon fell asleep. “What!" thought sometimes also, the thoughts and ideas were he,“ is that all that is required from a man the quintessence of wit. In the mean time of fortune?" a gorgeous dinner had been served, to which When he awoke he did not think proall the guests eagerly sat down; Nadir per to ring the bell for his servants to wait alone, feeding upon the mere smoke of opu- upon him. He was desirous of inspecting lence, hardly tasted any of the dishes. The privately the whole range of his apartments, moment the repast was ended, the literati, ; in order the better to enjoy the splendid without exception, sneak off unperceived. furniture. By mere chance, or perhaps Nadir and the rest sat dawn to cards. Alzor, brought him to the window of a " Cards,” said an ancient sage,“ dispense library filled with thousands of volumes, from being witty such as are unqualified to which the bookseller alone had
Gold pieces in plenty roll on opened. From that same window he the table, and some among the ladies, by could look into a lonely street. dint of stolen glances, secure their success.
dream? - Close to a window he saw seated Nadir was in a run of bad luck, but as he in a plain modest undress, but still enshewed not the least ill humour, he was uni- l chanting. It was she and he cried versally complimented on account of his out, “ It is she!"-she heard his voice equanimity. The play being over, sorbets turned round her head, but not recognising and ice creams were brought up; but dull, bim, immediately let down the blinds. silence prevailed, not even a word of
What is Nadir to do? He thinks of dal was uttered. On a sudden a concert going to throw himself at her feet. Would of lyres, harps, flutes, and the most ep it not be humbling himself too much? He chanting voices began. Then it was that would lay bis fortune at hier feet ;- but are No. 63.-Vol. X.
Was it a
riches thus to be parted with ? No: he, on the mantle-piece. You may easily would offer her his hand:-he! could he judge of my surprise, when on turning thus inconsiderately resign himself to eter round I found that the bird was flown. I nal bondage ? A thousand confused ran down stairs, and ballooed out with all thoughts agitated his mind, when his my might; an old woman now making her steward, who had entered the library on appearance, I caught hold of her arm, and tip-toe, expressed great surprize at seeing put several questions to her. Alas! my him, at that early hour, in that solitude and kind gentlemais,' answered she to me, the in such an emotion. Nadir told him what | dear child is labouring under some secret had happened, and the other smiled: affliction that makes her seek solitude ; “ My Lord,” said he, “ that house appears but she is so good natured, and so virtuous, to be the abode of honest mediocrity; but pray do not attempt to seduce her.' perhaps exposed to want. I agree with “ I replied to the old woman that I had your Lordship,- you must
must not forsakebeen commissioned by a friend, on his death Elma; but it would be unbecoming in you || bed, to return those jewels and the money to speak to her before you have sent her to their right owner. The good woman, presents, unquestionable pledges of your delighted at the idea of Elma getting rich, affection, and of which I offer to be the promised to seek after her, wherever she bearer."
might be, and to bring her to reason; so Nadir was no longer the man he had that I left the whole in the possession of been; pride and haughtiness, with a mix- | the old dame." (This part of the story was ture of licentious bluntness had taken pos- | not very correct, but a steward is no more session of his soul. He dispatched the com bound to speak the truth than to be displaisant messenger, and, notwithstanding interested.) “ My Lord,” continued he, “I he expected his return with some degree doubt not but we shaļl find out Elma. of impatience, he doubted not but Elma Keep up your spirits, and wait for the would be flattered at sight of his gifts, and event. A crowd of people are waiting to would repay him in proportion to the high pay their respects to you. Allow me to invalue of the presents. The Ambassador, troduce them, some may be bearers of however, did not appear to be satisfied | agreeable tidings. For my part I consider with the result of his mission : “My Lord,” | gold as the principal of all enjoyments, said he, “ the young woman, I confess, is since it can purchase them all, and is the handsome enough, but she behaved in the real antidote to the sorrows of love." This most ridiculous manner. I addressed her said, the fellow retired, and the visitors most courteously, but she did not even lift were admitted. up her eyes from her tambour frame. The first who made his appearance was When I mentioned your name, together | a projector, who proposed to Nadir's acwith all the titles that were best calculated || ceptance a scheme, in consequence of which to please her vanity, and produced your he might derive immense riches without costly presents, I could see her tears flow being one single taël out of pocket. A seon the letters she was embroidering; the cond brought him bonds to a large amount, name most likely of some of her village as a compliment for not having crossed him sweethearts." - Don't you sảy that Elma || in a certain fiuancial operation. The third was embroidering?”—“ She had just finish was a young nobleman, over head and ears ed, my Lord; but, would you believe it, || in debt, who, for a trifling sum in ready she threatened to leave the room, if I would money, offered to make a transfer of a connot withdraw myself."~" Tell me what | siderable patrimony.
Next comes letters had Elma been working ?"_"I did || agent to inform him that his ship Fortune not pay great attention, my Lord; I think is arrived, bringing in with her several however, I read Nad."" Oh! my good | rich prizes. Now enters another agent, to friend, how happy I am! come, take me let him know that some articles of merimmediately to Elma."~" Will you, my chandize which he had put up to sale, Lord, have patience enough to hear me to were claimed by a broker; and that one of the end ? I took very little notice of the his creditors is a bankrupt. Last of all he lady's menaces, but deposited my valuables ll is addressed, in a mysterious way, by a cer
tain go-between, who presents him with a she had entered into a conspiracy with the list of such men in power whose interest crafty steward, who was to become her hushe may purchase, with a statement of the band. With a view of bringing their procompliment each of them expects, and of ljects to a speedy issue, they persuaded him the services he can render. Nadir had to solicit the lucrative and honourable post framed a code of laws for himself. Not for l of banker to the court. Nadir could not, the whole empire would he have wronged | with any propriety, refuse the means of inone single individual of a denarium; but increasing his wealth. He therefore began imitation of many a Right Hon. Gentle canvassing, even among the clerks, who man, and in consequence of the corrupt took particular care to mortify him, somemorals of the age, he thought himself au times at his own table; but, however, he thorised to plunder the revenues of the cceeded, and prepared to dispose of the state, that is to say, the mass of his fellow riches of the empire, as his fancy, or rather subjects. Impudence alone was requisite, that of the two accomplices should direct. in those days, for a man who was entrusted | They acted so very incautiously, that cerwith the management of public affairs, to tain officious hints caused Nadir first to acquire wealth, and Nadir soon amassed || suspect, and finally to discover their perimmense treasures: but his steward had || fidious man@uvres. Without the least hetaken it in his head to share in the spoils of sitation he determined to remove them. the nation, and determined to succeed,|| Yet, in order to accomplish this measure, either by hook or by crook, he commenced some length of time, much artfulness, and his operations in the following manner: especially great sacrifices were required!
One morning, as his master was taking He had entrusted them with so many crihis morning walk in his garden, he went tical secrets! Nadir, besides, was appreup to him with the intelligence, that not- || hensive lest they should find imitators, withstanding all his researches, and the leave many behind them, and began to enormous expence he had been at, Elma mistrust all who surrounded him; in short, was not to be found: in vain had he sent he thought it indispensable to stand himemissaries all over the whole extent of the self sentinel over his strong box. If, for a empire. Were it not for his unlimited moment excessive fatigue weighs his eyelids zeal, he never could have been prevailed down, he dreams he hears the grating of upon to speak the fatal truth; but although the file. Amusements, repose, the very Elma is lost for ever, it is no reason why shadow of happiness have deserted him. my Lord should renounce a world wherein “ Where then does happiness reside?" said success awaits him in all quarters. My | Nadir, one day; " is it in those elevated Lord cannot dispense keeping a mistress,
ranks from whence imperious orders are who will outshine and eclipse all the wives issued ; whence one of your smiles, equally and mistresses of his most liberal friends. powerful as those of the Great Being, cou
The steward having met with very slight || veys satisfaction and joy through every resistance from his master, introduced him heart? Withheld by a morality that was the next day to a cyprian, whom Venus | not applicable to myself, have I misinterherself could not have seen without feeling || preted the sense of Alzor's present? The jealous. The artful coquette knew how to last term of his book is Grandeur. Did he flatter Nadir, soon captivated him, and be not mean to reveal to me the summit of hold him now become tributary to all lier human felicity ? Alas! I have hitherto whims and caprices. He had a house fur-crept through the rugged path that leads nished for her, close to that he himself in- to it; however, I have acquired experience, habited. A certain door joined both their and I plainly discover that grandeur alone apartments; but one, more secret still, can suit Nadir.-Grandeur! fly, come and opened into the chamber of Mr. Steward. | crown my brow with wreaths of immortal Nadir imagined that Daphne sought only glory! to please him; she was so condescending ! Oh! Daphne was a true, downright mis (To be concluded in our next.) tress! In order the better to fleece hin,