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in its effects, from every other kind of own country, to go to a strange land;
are BELIEVERS, *
MY AUNT PRISCILLA.--No. VI.
THE FORMATION OF HER HOUSEHOLD.
Thus of all the truths in the word | Miss Priscilla, she certainly was a pattern of God, it may be said, that so far as of every thing that a young lady ought to they are believed in virtue of this spi- be. Look where she would, old Deborah ritual apprehension, they will exert their often declared, she never could light upon appropriate influence upon the heart, such another. and consequently upon the life. That Deborah's situation in the household such a faith should not produce good was rather of an anomalous character. fruits, is as impossible as that the sun Many years had elapsed since the youngshould give light without heat. This est of the family had risen above the faith is the living head of all right affec- care of a nurse; and my grandınother tions and of all holy living ; without it all and her daughters had been too indereligion is a dull formality, a slavish pendent to require either a lady's maid, drudgery, or at best a rationalistic ho- a housekeeper, or a sempstress ; at least mage. Hence we are said to live by they would not have chosen that any one of faith, to walk by faith, to be sanctified the servants should have been professedly by faith, to overcome by faith, to be so denominated. Deborah's office, howsaved by faith. And the grand charac- ever, virtually combined a little of each. teristic of the people of God is, that they She had the charge of the store-room; the
superintendence of the brewing and wine making; was appealed to if any difficulty occurred among the junior servants in the prosecution of their business; got up
the fine linen; on the approach of winter My reminiscences in the present arti- reminded the young ladies that it was cle will be directed to the formation of high time to take to their furs and woolmy aunt Priscilla's household. I shall len garments, which through the summer hereafter have occasion to refer to the she had carefully secured, by sundry inindividuals who composed it, together fallible preventives, from the ravages of with her manner of dealing with them. moths. Then, she had a neat little room
My grandfather's establishment con- of her own, where, when more important sisted of four female servants and two business did not call her away, she usually men, most of them of old standing in the sat, darning stockings, making or repairfamily. The
upper female servant, like ing household linen, and making up the her namesake of old (her name was ladies' caps and robins. Her library conDeborah) was, at the time of my intro- sisted of the Bible, the Pilgrim's Progress, duction to the family, well stričken in the Book of Martyrs, and Culpepper's years. She had entered the house with Herbal : with the contents of these she my grandmother at the time of her mar- was pretty familiar, having sufficient riage, had nursed all the dear young leisure for reading, when she chose to ladies in their infancy, and dear master do so. It was considered quite her preSamnuel, who died at eight years old. She rogative to preside in the sick chamber, delighted to recount the various ac- and to prepare all gruels, possets, jellies, complishments of her young mistresses, etc., that might be required, either for the whose attainments she considered alto- use of the family or for the relief of the gether unparalleled. True, she had poor. Moreover, when the time apsometimes wished that Miss Leonora was proached for the half-yearly migrations not quite so grave and stiff; it did not of the family, she always went a week seem altogether natural for a young per- beforehand to see that the beds were son; but yet she was a very nice young well aired, and every thing ready for its lady, for all that. Many a bitter tear had reception. she shed to think that Miss Marianne, The delight of Deborah was unboundwho, for beauty and sprightliness, was ed at my being received as an inmate of certainly the flower of the flock, should my grandfather's family, and she seemed have been drawn in to form that un- naturally to assume the charge of me. I fortunate attachment, and make her dear slept in her chamber, and her parlour papa so angry; but it was a great comfort was my playroom; “for it would not to think that she was forgiven now; so do," she gravely observed, with a signibygones had better be bygones. As to ficant bend of her neck,
“ for grand* From Hodge's Way of Life, published by the
papa to be too much fatigued with the Religious Tract Society.
little darling's noise, or for the drawingroom to be disordered with the litter of dent. The four remaining jars were redolls and playthings.” I am sure my moved by my aunt, perhaps to avoid wild, undisciplined spirit must have laid giving vexation to my grandpapa and a heavy tax on the patience of the kind my aunt Leonora, who might not have old woman; but she was quite disposed been so ready as herself to treat this to be more than candid and forbearing to matter in a way most likely to correct the the little rebel, in whom she recognised faults in my character. I will just add, some of the features of her dear Miss that the four jars were afterwards placed Marianne. I recollect her being very on the mantel-shelf of my aunt's breakangry only once, and then I was very fast parlour, with a timepiece in the naughty. On her work table was laid a centre; and I can scarcely express the row of pairs of stockings, rolled up, which pleasure I felt, full fifteen or sixteen she had been mending. In spite of her years afterwards, on happening to meet gentle remonstrance, nothing would serve with a jar, which proved an exact match, me but one of these funny balls to play and completed the set. My dear aunt with. I seized one, and before she could was well pleased to transfer the now rescue it from my grasp, I had thrown it completed set to their original destinaụp, and knocked down a beautiful China tion in the drawing-room; and far more jar, one of a set-a very expensive set-a | so, in tracing the reminiscences thus set that could not be matched for love or awakened, and in cherishing the confidmoney--a set, too, that my poor dear ence that her kind and judicious firmgrandmother was particularly fond of- ness had left a good impression on my which she had presented to my aunt mind, and had been, in some degree, Priscilla for her drawing-room, when she successful in improving my character. should set up housekeeping—and which My grandfather's coachman and cook my aunt had placed, for security, under had been some years married; indeed I the care of old Deborah. The old wo- am not sure whether they were engaged man expatiated so angrily on each of as a married pair, or whether they marthese aggravating circumstances, that ried afterwards, and were allowed to rethough I could not understand one of tain their situation. Certainly they had the particulars, I had a general impres- been long in the family, and were much sion of having done some very fearful esteemed as trusty and able servants. piece of mischief, and quite dreaded the The two housemaids were of more recent sight of either of my aunts.
date; one had been engaged to fill the My aunt Priscilla soon afterwards came place of her who was discarded at the in, and received a full account of my time of my mother's marriage; the other naughtiness. She called me to her, and had not been long in the family at the told me that I should not take hold of time of my grandfather's death. The any thing without asking leave; and that, footman had been taken into the family by persisting in taking up the stockings, a mere lad. He was, at the time of which when Deborah had bidden me not, I had I am speaking, nearly forty years of age, been guilty of an act of disobedience. and looked still older, on account of his She endeavoured to make me sensible of old-fashioned livery, which my grandthe sin of disobedience, and expressed father would never consent to modernize. her hope that I should not again trans- To this, James had learned to accomgress; but she did not say a word about modate himself, as well as to all the the breaking of the jar, its beauty, its little peculiarities of the family; espevalue, or its loss. I believe, that on that cially to those of my grandfather, who occasion, Deborah thought I came off too wished every thing to go on like clockeasily; though she had often pleaded for work, and almost expected his clock to me to have indulgences, which my aunt go on without winding up. If, however, did not think proper to bestow, or for the he found that his wishes were observed passing over of offences which my aunt and remembered, and fulfilled with exdeemed it necessary to reprove. My actress and punctuality, he was a kind aunt's calm, yet firm remonstrance, made and liberal master, and never forgot the a deep impression on my mind. I felt interests of his servants. There is no really grieved for my disobedience, and I doubt he had long planned for James's think I was gradually brought into more settlement in life, and probably intended habitual subjection and propriety of be- to comply with the wish, more than once haviour, by my recollection of that inci- respectfully intimated, that having saved money, he should like to get into some found a sealed packet, directed to James way of business, and take to himself a Faulkner, the footman. This packet conwife. But as this wish was always cou- tained a lease of a small farm adjoinpled with the modest proviso, "when- ing my grandfather's country residence. ever it would be quite convenient to It was for a long term of years, at a low spare him;" and as my grandfather never rent, and a small allowance ordered to found it quite convenient to part with an be made to the said James Faulkner, for old servant, and take on a new one, who every year that should intervene between might prove untrusty or ill-behaved, or, the date of this lease, and his taking posat any rate, could not know his ways session of the farm. The lease was dated like James, who had been so long used to about seven years before. My grandthem,--James's settlement was from time father, though he had little taste for to time postponed, and he remained in farming, had kept the farm in his own his place
as long as my grandfather lived. hands, probably at a considerable loss. Such was the household, broken up by He had often been applied to, to let it, the death of my grandfather; a portion of but had uniformly replied, that it was which contributed to form that of my promised, and about to be entered upon. aunt Priscilla.
Doubtless it would have been so, if he My grandfather died after a very short could have “made it quite convenient" illness; and that of such a nature as to part with James. would have rendered him absolutely in- It was affecting to think, of the numecapable of attending to those concerns, rous individuals mentioned in my grandwhich, in too many instances, are con- father's will, how few lived to reap the signed to the tender mercies of a dying fruits of his kind solicitude. His relahour—the immortal interests of the soul, tives of a former generation, and most of and the temporal concerns of a surviving his contemporary friends, his first named family. In this instance, they had not executors, his wife, several of his chilbeen so delayed. My dear grandfather dren, and some who had served him, had always been thoughtful and con- were gone beyond the reach of his proviscientious in the concerns of religion; sion. His three daughters, five servants, and the last few years of his life were with, I think, four relations or friends, characterized by gradual, but rapid ad-alone remained as his legatees. vances in that principle which is the vital My grandfather's care for his widow spring of personal enjoyment and pious having been superseded by the previous activity; that entire renovation, which death of my grandmother, my aunts enleads to worshipping God in the spirit, tered immediately on the possession of rejoicing in Christ Jesus, and renouncing their property. all confidence in the flesh. As to his James Faulkner was not the only indiworldly affairs, my grandfather had al- vidual in the family whose intentions ways been a man of method and punctu- had been postponed, in deference to my ality. His will bore date a few days after grandfather's fondness for having things the birth of his first child Susanna, and go on as he had been accustomed to made provision for his widow, and for them. If the place of James Faulkner, as whatever children might survive him; a faithful and attentive servant, could but there was a codicil, dated twenty- not easily be filled, it was still less likely five years later, after the marriage of my that my grandfather should “find,” or mother. The property bequeathed to “make it quite convenient,” to part with her and her family was placed under such a daughter, such a companion, such some restrictions, which the peculiarity a comforter, as my aunt Priscilla. Walter of her circumstances seemed to require. Maurice, esq., of the Inner Temple, had A handsome provision was made for my long been a frequent and welcome visitor grandmother, with both the houses, for at the house, and my grandfather well her life, and after her death to descend- understood to what his visits tended. He t'e country house to my aunt Priscilla, cherished the connexion, but shrank or her representatives, and the town from the separation it involved. My house to my aunt Leonora. There were aunt Leonora carried her habits of secluseveral legacies to more remote relations sion so far, that even my grandfather and friends, and a liberal expression of seemed never to think of her as a comregard to each faithful servant of the panion; and if ever aunt Priscilla's marfamily. Together with tlie will was riage was hinted at, his usual reply was, “Well, well, all in good time; she must prospect of her sister leaving her. She train up little Marianne to fill her place.” thought it quite a pity that Priscilla
What my dear aunt might have con- should leave her : she had much better sidered the path of duty, had the life of remain, and let things go on as they had her father been prolonged, I cannot pre- done. tend to say. After his removal, there But Priscilla had other views and purseemed no obstacle in the way of the poses; and, in order to forming her long-intended union ; which accordingly household, was desirous of knowing took place a few months after my grand- whether any of the servants of her late father's death.
father would be at liberty to engage with It was by no means an easy matter to her. call down aunt Leonora from her close Aunt Leonora was consulted as to the seclusion and abstruse speculations, to disposal of the residuary property, inattend to the affairs of ordinary life. She cluding the carriage and horses, which seemed scarcely capable of comprehend aunt Priscilla observed she had no wish ing, that the death of her father would to retain, as Mr. Maurice kept an open involve any change in the affairs and ad- chaise, which she greatly preferred. A unt ministration of the family; and appeared Leonora should not think of parting with unconscious of any other difference than them, having been accustomed to them that of seeing his chair and his chamber so many years; though, by the way, she unoccupied. That she should be called could rarely be induced to go out for a upon to give orders about the disposition ride. However, it was her wish to keep of affairs, and to sign and sanction trans- them; and as she had the means of doing fers of property, seemed to her an insuf- so, if she chose, her wish was not opferable interruption and burden. I do posed. think, if aunt Leonora had lived half a With a little of aunt Priscilla's gentle century later, and had submitted her influence, her sister was induced to admit cranium to the manipulation of some that she should not need so many serphrenological professor, his science would vants; and she consented to reduce her have been greatly at fault, if he had not establishment to the old coachman and pronounced a most powerful develop cook, with one of the housemaids, and a ment of the organ of inhabitiveness. All respectable, well-educated young person, her desires seemed to be concentred in who had been occasionally employed in this, “ Let me be where I am, and go on the family, and who was to fill the place as I have been used to do."
of humble companion, if ever aunt LeoShe was with difficulty induced to be nora should prefer society to solitude; present at the reading of the will, and all and to render herself generally useful. the time manifested the most listless in- So much settled, aunt Leonora escaped difference and impatience to be gone. to her books, leaving her sister to arrange Perhaps she, in some degree, prided her- with the rest of the domestics; and, inself on her superiority to such sublunary deed, to arrange with those she intended matters.
to retain, as to the changes in their situShe was, however, made to understand, ations. The proposals made by my aunt that the town house, with all its furni- were equitable and considerate, and reature, was now her property, with so dily fallen in with by those to whom they many thousands in the funds, as also
were made. a share of the residue of the estate. Old William and Sarah were by no My aunt Priscilla ventured to ask her means disposcil, at their time of life, to where she thought of residing. “ Here, seek a new situation; besides, it was not where I am,” was the reply Why likely they should meet with one where should I think of moving ?” (This con- they could both be employed and reside persation, as well as my grandfather's together. And then, too, it would have death, took place in London.)
broken William's heart, to let any other When asked what she thought about person take to his horses; and Sarah dismissing or retaining the servants, she thought she should never manage the said, “Oh, they may all remain; Í do cooking for another family, so well as for not wish to part from them.'
the one she had been so used to. She It was hinted that she might not find was sure they could, between them, do it necessary or desirable to keep up so all that Miss Leonora would require, and large an establishment, especially in the think it no hardship.