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CHAPTER XIV.

THE LONDON SEASON.

“Half the misery of human life consists in our making a wrong estimate of it, and on being disappointed when we find out our fault. We do not often begin it at the right end. We put a much higher figure in the sum than it will bear, and we cry like a school-boy when the addition is wrong.”

We should surely find it a profitable habit -profitable, I mean, merely in the way

of personal enjoyment—to keep the scale of our expectations invariably low; for they are then as certainly met with a rebound in the reality, as confident hopes find their sure depression.

Lady Carew's visions of the enjoyment to be derived from the London season had recently become contracted into the expectation of a repetition of Lea experiences, removed to a town house. She had not calculated on the effects, on one of Sir Harry's volatile mind, of the constant change of thought and diversion of feeling, produced by the perpetual sight of different faces, and the fulfilment of many and varying engagements.

It was inevitable that Sir Harry and Lady Carew should be much asked out, and that the society of the beautiful young bride should be greatly courted; while she herself received the attentions and adulation which her appearance, her position, and her novelty alike demanded. Sir Harry possessed a large circle of unexceptional visiting acquaintance, with whom he seemed to be fairly popular ; as they wisely overlooked his peculiarities, in the fact of his personating one of the oldest baronetcies in Great Britain—which is in itself a kind of moral worth, and is therefore frequently, and rightly, held to be a passport

for

every

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