I am inclined to think that Miss Howard was the master mind in that affair.
The plutocracy can recruit measurably more respectable janissaries, if only because it can make self-interest less obviously costly to amour propre.
Give them grace to cultivate in her heart a supreme reverence and love for Thee, a grateful attachment to the Gospel of Thy Son, her Saviour, a due regard for all its ordinances and institutions, a temper of kindness and goodwill to all mankind, and an invincible love of sincerity and truth.
Naturally he was aware of the horror and indignation with which any ordinary courtship of his would be received, hence he looked about for some likely candidate upon whose parents he might exert a suitable pressure.
I say this because we all know one another, and it will not do to throw false dice with me; and as to the enchantment of my master, God knows the truth; leave it as it is; it only makes it worse to stir it."
It was evident, from the manner in which she held her course, that she was going to some fixed destination; and this, and her keeping in the busy streets, and I suppose the strange fascination in the secrecy and mystery of so following anyone, made me adhere to my first purpose.
It may be said that married men of forty are usually ready and generous enough to fling passing glances at any specimen of moderate beauty they may discern by the way.
How plainly he would conjure up the scene upon her decks, the passengers striving to while away the tediousness of their floating captivity with chess and draughts--the latter of divers kinds-- with books and tobacco, with chat and flirtation; whereas, here he was, at no very great distance either, undergoing, in this savage wilderness, a captivity which was terribly real--a prisoner of war among a tribe of sullen and partially crushed barbarians, with almost certain death, as a sacrifice to their slain compatriots, staring him in the face, and a strong probability of that death being a cruel and lingering one withal.
He frequented the gaming-tables while engaged in preparing his work upon religion, and carried on a disreputable intrigue while writing his ‘Adolphe.’
For some time George strove to keep the liaison a secret.
The Christian precepts (the commandment of love is not aprecept in the strict sense of the word, but the expression of thevery essence of the religion) are the five commandments of theSermon on the Mount—all negative in character.
Every war, even the most humanely conducted, with all its ordinaryconsequences, the destruction of harvests, robberies, the licenseand debauchery, and the murder with the justifications of itsnecessity and justice, the exaltation and glorification ofmilitary exploits, the worship of the flag, the patrioticsentiments, the feigned solicitude for the wounded, and so on,does more in one year to pervert men’s minds than thousands ofrobberies, murders, and arsons perpetrated during hundreds ofyears by individual men under the influence of passion.
And what possible claim could the Miss Dashwoods, who were related to him only by half blood, which she considered as no relationship at all, have on his generosity to so large an amount.