• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Frontispiece
 Title Page
 The bracelets
 Continuation of the bracelets
 Advertising
 Back Cover






Group Title: Bracelets, or, Amiability and industry rewarded
Title: The bracelets, or, Amiability and industry rewarded
CITATION PAGE TURNER PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00001671/00001
 Material Information
Title: The bracelets, or, Amiability and industry rewarded
Alternate Title: Amiability and industry rewarded
Physical Description: 63 p., 2 leaves of plates : ill. ; 15 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Edgeworth, Maria, 1767-1849
Croome, William, 1790-1860 ( Engraver )
Herrick, Henry Walker, 1824-1906 ( Engraver )
Appleton, George Swett, 1821-1878 ( Publisher )
D. Appleton and Company ( Publisher )
Publisher: Geo. S. Appleton, 164 Chestnut Street
D. Appleton & Co., 200 Broadway
Place of Publication: Philadelphia
New York
Publication Date: 1850
 Subjects
Subject: Friendship -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Pride and vanity -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Diligence -- Juvenile fiction   ( lcsh )
Publishers' advertisements -- 1850   ( rbgenr )
Hand-colored illustrations -- 1850   ( local )
Bldn -- 1850
Genre: Publishers' advertisements   ( rbgenr )
Hand-colored illustrations   ( local )
novel   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: by Maria Edgeworth ; with illustrations from original designs.
General Note: Wood engraved frontispiece signed by: W. Croome ; illustration following p. 38 signed by: Herrick and W. Croome.
General Note: Illustrations are hand-colored.
Funding: Brittle Books Program
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00001671
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002248879
oclc - 31526098
notis - ALK0604

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover 1
        Front Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Front Matter
    Frontispiece
        Plate
    Title Page
        Page 1
        Page 2
    The bracelets
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
    Continuation of the bracelets
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 38a
        Page 39
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
    Advertising
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
    Back Cover
        Back Cover 1
        Back Cover 2
Full Text







BRACELETS, 4

EsLEDGEWORTH







THE


BRACELETS;

OR,

AMIABILITY AND INDUSTRY REWARDED.


MARIA EDGEWORTH,
AUTHOR OF "POPULAR TALES," "MORAL TALES," ETC. KTC.



=Wit iuistuatfons from Ofgltfnal lestgns.




PHILADELPHIA:
GEO. S. APPLETON, 164 CHESTNUT STREET.
NEW YORK:b
D. APPLETON & CO,, 200 BROADWAY.
1850.











THE BRACELETS.


IN a beautiful and retired part of England lived
Mrs. Villars, a lady whose accurate understand-
ing,benevolent heart, and steady temper, peculiarly
fitted her for the most difficult, as well as most
important of all occupations-the education of
youth. This task she had undertaken; and
twenty young persons were put under her care,
with the perfect confidence of their parents. No
young people could be happier; they were good
and gqy, emulous, but not envious of each other;
for Mrs. Villars was impartially just. Her praise
they felt to be the reward of merit, and her blame
they knew to be the necessary consequence of
ill conduct; to the one, therefore, they patiently






4 THE BRACELETS.
submitted, and in the other consciously rejoiced.
They rose with fresh cheerfulness in the morning,
eager to pursue their various occupations; they
returned in the evening with renewed ardour to
their amusements, and retired to rest satisfied with
themselves and pleased with each other.
Nothing so much contributed to preserve a
spirit of emulation in this little society as a small
honorary distinction given annually, as the prize
of successful application. The prize this year
was peculiarly dear to each individual, as it was
the picture of a friend whom they all dearly loved
-it was the picture of Mrs. Villars in a small
bracelet. It wanted neither gold, pearls, nor pre-
cious stones, to give it value.
The two foremost candidates for the prize were
Cecilia and Leonora. Cecilia was the most in-
timate friend of Leonora, but Leonora was only
the favourite companion of Cecilia.
Cecilia was of an active, ambitious, enterpri-
sing disposition; more eager in the pursuit than






THE BRACELETS.


happy in the enjoyment of her wishes. Leonora
was of a contented, unaspiring, temperate charac-
ter, not easily roused to action, but indefatigable
when once excited. Leonora was proud, Cecilia
was vain. Her vanity made her more dependent
upon the approbation of others, and therefore
more anxious to please, than Leonora; but that
very vanity made her, at the same time, more apt
to offend. In short, Leonora was the most anx-
ious to avoid what was wrong, Cecilia the most
ambitious to do what was right. Few of their
companions loved, but many were led by Cecilia,
for she was often successful; many loved Leo-
nora, but none were ever governed by her, for
she was too indolent to govern.
On the first day of May, about six o'clock in
the evening, a great bell rang, to summon this
little society into a hall, where the prize was to
be decided. A number of small tables were placed
in a circle in the middle of the hall; seats for the
young competitors were raised one above another,


5






THE BRACELETS.


in a semicircle, some yards distant from the table;
and the judges' chairs, under canopies of lilacs
and luburnums, forming another semicircle, closed
the amphitheatre. Every one put their writings,
their drawings, their works of various kinds, up-
on the tables appropriated for each. How un-
steady were the last steps to these tables! How
each little hand trembled as it laid down its claims !
Till this moment every one thought herself se-
cure of success, but now each felt an equal cer-
tainty of being excelled; and the heart which a
few minutes before exulted with hope, now pal-
pitated with fear.
The works were examined, the preference ad-
judged; and the prize was declared to be the
happy Cecilia's. Mrs. Villars- came forward
smiling, with the bracelet in her hand.. Cecilia
was behind her companions, on the highest row;
all the others gave way, and she was on the floor
in an instant. Mrs. Villars clasped the bracelet
on her arm; the clasp was heard through the


6






THE BRACELETS.


whole hall, and a universal smile of congratula-
tion followed. Mrs. Villars kissed Cecilia's little
hand; and now," said she, "go and rejoice with
your companions; the remainder of the day is
yours."
Oh! you whose hearts are elated with success,
whose bosoms beat high with joy, in the moment
- of triumph, command yourselves; let that triumph
be moderate, that it may be lasting. Consider
that, though you are good, you may be better,
and though wise, you may be weak.
As soon as Mrs. Villars had given her the
bracelet, all Cecilia's little companions crowded
round her, and they all left the hall in an instant.
She was full of spirits and vanity--she ran on,
running down the flight of steps which led to the
garden. In her violent haste, Cecilia threw down
the little Louisa. Louisa had a china mandarin
in her hand, which her mother had sent ner that
very morning; it was all broke to pieces by the
fall.


7






THE BRACELETS.


"Oh! my mandarin!" cried Louisa, burst-
mg into tears. The crowd behind Cecilia sud-
denly stopped. Louisa sat on the lowest step,
fixing her eyes upon the broken pieces; then,
turning round, she hid her face in her hands upon
the step above her. In turning, Louisa threw
down the remains of the mandarin; the head,
which she had placed in the socket, fell from the
shoulders, and rolled bounding along the gravel-
walk. Cecilia pointed to the head and to the
socket, and burst out laughing; the crowd behind
laughed too. At any other time they would have
been more inclined to cry with Louisa; but Cecilia
had just been successful, and sympathy with the
victorious often makes us forget justice. Leonora,
however, preserved her usual consistency. "Poor
Louisa!" said she, looking first at her, and then
reproachfully at Cecilia. Cecilia turned sharply
round, colouring, half with shame and half with
vexation. "I could not help it, Leonora," said
she.


8s






THE BRACELETS.


But you could have helped laughing, Cecilia."
"I didn't laugh at Louisa; and I surely may
laugh, for it does nobody any harm." "I am
sure, however," replied Leonora, "I should not
have laughed if I had-" "No, to be sure you
wouldn't, because Louisa is your favourite. I can
buy her another mandarin the next time that old
pedlar comes to the door, if that's all. I can do
no more. Can I ?" said she, turning round to
her companions. "No, to be sure," said they,
" that's all fair."
Cecilia looked triumphantly at Leonora. Leo-
nora let go her hand; she ran on, and the crowd
followed. When she got to the end of the gar-
den, she turned round to see if Leonora had
followed her too; but was vexed to see her still
sitting on the steps with Louisa. "I 'm sure I
can do no more than buy her another! Can I ?"
said she, again appealing to her companions.
No, to be sure," said they, eager to begin their
plays. How many did they begin and leave off


9






10


THE BRACELETS.


before Cecilia could be satisfied with any. Her
thoughts were discomposed, and her mind was
running upon something else; no wonder then
that she did not play with her usual address. She
grew still more impatient; she threw down the
nine-pins: "Come, let us play at something else
-at threading the needle," said she, holding out
her hand. They all yielded to the hand which
wore the bracelet. But Cecilia, dissatisfied with
herself, was discontented with everybody else;
her tone grew more and more peremptory,-one
was too rude, another too stiff; one was too slow,
another too quick; in short, everything went
wrong, and everybody was tired of her humours.
-The triumph of success is absolute, but short.
Cecilia's companions at length recollected that,
though she had embroidered a tulip and painted
a peach better than they, yet that they could play
as well, and keep their tempers better: she was
thrown out. Walking towards the house in a
peevish mood, sne met Leonora; she passed on.






THE BRACELETS.


"Cecilia!" cried Leonora. "Well, what do
.you want with me ?" Are we friends ?" You
know best." "We are; if you will let me tell
Louisa that you are sorry-" Cecilia, interrupt-
ing her, "0! pray let me hear no more about
Louisa!" What! not confess that you were in
the wrong! Oh, Cecilia! I had a better opinion
of you." Your opinion is of no consequence
to me now; for you don't love me." No, not
when you are unjust, Cecilia." "Unjust! I am
not unjust; and if I were, you are not my go-
verness." No, but am I not your friend ?" "I
don't desire to have such a friend, who would
quarrel with me for happening to throw down lit-
tle Louisa-how could I tell that she had a man-
darin in her hand? and when it was broken,
could I do more than promise her another ? Was
that unjust ?" But you know, Cecilia-" "1
know," ironically, 6"I know, Leonora, that you
love Louisa better than you do me; that's the
injustice!". If I did," replied Leonora gravely,


11






THE BRACELETS.


" it would be no injustice, if she deserved it bet-
ter." "How can you compare Louisa to me!"
exclaimed Cecilia, indignantly.
Leonora made no answer, for she was really
hurt at her friend's conduct; she walked on to
join the rest of her companions. They were
dancing in a round upon the grass. Leonora de-
clined dancing, but they prevailed upon her to
sing for them; her voice was not so sprightly,
but it was sweeter than usual. Who sung so
sweetly as Leonora? or who danced so nimbly'
as Louisa?
Away she was flying, all spirits and gayety,
when Leonora's eyes full of tears, caught hers.
Louisa silently let go her companions' hands,
and quitting the dance, ran up to Leonora to in-
quire what was the matter with her.
"Nothing," replied she, "that need interrupt
you,-Go, my dear, and dance again."
Louisa immediately ran away to her garden,
and pulling off her little straw hat, she lined it


12






THE BRACELETS.


with the freshest strawberry leaves, and was upon
her knees before the strawberry bed when Cecilia
came by. Cecilia was not disposed to be pleased
with Louisa at that instant, for two reasons: be"
cause she was jealous of her, and because she
had injured her. The injury, however, Louisa
had already forgotten; perhaps, to tell things just
as they were, she was not quite so much inclined
to kiss Cecilia as she would have been before the
fall of her mandarin, but this was the utmost ex-
tent of her malice, if it can be called malice.
What are you doing there, little one?" said
Cecilia in a sharp tone. Are you eating your
early strawberries here all alone ?" "No," said
Louisa, mysteriously; "I am not eating them."
" What are you doing with them-can't you
answer then? I'm not playing with you, child!"
"Oh! as to that, Cecilia, you know I need not
answer you unless I choose it; not but what I
would, if you would only ask me civilly-and if
you would not call me child." ( Why should not


13






THE BRACELETS.


I call you child ?" "Because-because-I don't
know;-but I wish you would stand out of my
light, Cecilia, for you are trampling upon all my
strawberries." "I have not touched one, you
covetous little creature !" "Indeed-indeed, Ce-
cilia, I am not covetous. I have not eaten one
of them-they are all for your friend Leonora.
See how unjust you are." Unjust! that's a cant
word you learned of my friend Leonora, as you
call her, but she is not my friend now." "Not
your friend now !" exclaimed Louisa. "Then I
am sure you must have done something very
naughty." "How !" said Cecilia, catching hold
of her. Let me go-Letme go!" cried Louisa,
struggling. I won't give you one of my straw-
berries, for I don't like you at all." You don't,
don't you?" said Cecilia, provoked; and catching
the hat from Louisa, she flung the strawberries
over the hedge. "Will nobody help me!" ex-
claimed Louisa, snatching her hat again, and run-
ning away with all her force.


14






THE BRACELETS.


Whit have I done ?" said Cecilia, recollecting
herself. "Louisa! Louisa!" She called very
loud, but Louisa would not turn back! she was
running to her companions.
They were still dancing, hand in hand, upon the
grass, whilst Leonora, sitting in the middle, sang
to them.
"Stop! stop! and hear me!" cried Louisa,
breaking through them; and rushing up to Leo-
nora, she threw her hat at her feet, and panting
for breath-
It was full---almost full of my own strawber-
ries," said she, "the first I ever got out of my
own garden. They should all have been for you,
Leonora, but now I have not one left. They
are all gone !" said she; and she hid her face in
Leonora's lap.
"Gone! gone where ?" said every one at once,
running up to her. Cecilia! Cecilia !" said she,
sobbing. "Cecilia!" repeated Leonora; "what
of Cecilia ?" Yes, it was-it was."


15






THE BRACELETS.


"Come along with me," said Leonora, unwil-
ling to have her friend exposed; "come, and I
will get you some more strawberries." "Oh, I
don't mind the strawberries, indeed; but I wanted
to have had the pleasure of giving them to
you."
Leonora took her up in her arms to carry her
away, but it was too late.
What, Cecilia! Cecilia, who won the prize!
It could not surely be Cecilia," whispered every
busy tongue.
At this instant the bell summoned them in.
"There she is !-There she is !" cried they,
pointing to an arbour, where Cecilia was standing,
ashamed and alone; and as they passed her,
some lifted up their hands and eyes with astonish-
ment, others whispered and huddled mysteriously
together, as if to avoid her. Leonora walked on,
her head a little higher than usual.
Leonora!" said Cecilia, timorously, as she
passed.


16







THE BRACELETS.


"Oh, Cecilia! who would have thought that
you had a bad heart ?"
Cecilia turned her head aside and burst into
tears.
Oh no, indeed, she has not a bad heart," cried
Louisa, running up to her, and throwing her arms
round her neck; "she's very sorry!-are not
you, Cecilia ? But don't cry any more, for I for-
give you with all my heart; and I love you now,
though I said I did not when I was in a passion."'
0, you sweet-tempered girl! how I love you,"
said Cecilia, kissing her.
"Well then, if you do, come along with me,
and ary your eyes, for they are so red."
"Go, my dear, and I'll come presently."
"Then I will keep a place for you next to me;
but you must make haste, or you will have to
come in when we have all set down to supper,
and then you will be so stared at! So don't stay
now."
Cecilia followed Louisa with her eyes till she


17






THE BRACELETS.


was out of sight. And is Louisa," said she to
herself, "the only one who would stop to pity me ?
Mrs. Villars told me that this day should be
Smine; she little thought how it would end !" Say-
mg these words, Cecilia threw herself down upon
the ground; her arm leaned upon a heap of turf
which she had raised in the morning, and which
in the pride and gayety of her heart, she had
called her throne.
At this instant, Mrs. Villars came out to enjoy
the serenity of the evening, and passing by the
arbour where Cecilia lay, she started; Cecilia
rose hastily.
"Who is there ?" said Mrs. Villars. It is I,
madam." And who is I?" Cecilia." "Why,
what keeps you here, my dear-where are your
companions ? this is, perhaps, one of the happiest
days of your life."
O no, madam !" said Cecilia, hardly able to
repress her tears.
"Why, my dear, what is the matter ?"


18






THE BRACELETS.


Cecilia hesitated.
"Speak, my dear. You know that when I ask
you to tell me any thing as your friend, I never
punish you as your governess; therefore you need
not be afraid to tell me what is the matter."
No, madam, I am not afraid, but ashamed.
You asked me why I was not with my compa-
nions. Why, madam, because they have all
left me, and-" And what, my dear ?" "And I
see that they all dislike me. And yet I don't
know why they should, for I take as much pains
to please as any of them. Al my masters seem
satisfied with me; and you yourself, ma'am, were
pleased this very morning to give me this brace-
let; and I am sure you would not have given it
to any one who did not deserve it." "Certainly
not. You did deserve it for your application-
for your successful application. The prize was for
the most assiduous, not for the most amiable."
" Then if it had been for the most amiable it
would not have been for me ?"


19






THE BRACELETS.


Mrs. Villars, smiling-" Why, what do you
think yourself, Cecilia? You are better able to
judge than I am. I can determine whether or no
you apply to what I give you to learn; whether
you attend to what I desire you to do, and avoid
what I desire you not to do. I know that I like
you as a pupil, but I cannot know that I should
like you as a companion, unless I were your com-
panion; therefore I must judge of what I should
do by seeing what others do in the same circum-
stances."
"0, pray don't, ma'am; for then you would
not love me neither. And yet I think you would
love me; for I hope that I am as ready to oblige,
and as good-natured, as--" "Yes, Cecilia, I
don't doubt but that you would be very good-na-
tured to me, but I am afraid that I should not
like you unless you were good-tempered too."
" But, ma'am, by good-natured I mean good-tem-
pered-it 's all the same thing." "No, indeed, I
understand by them two very different things.


20






THE BRACELETS.


You are good-natured, Cecilia, for you are desi-
rous to oblige and serve your companions, to gain
them praise and save them from blame, to give
them pleasure, and to relieve them from pain;
but Leonora is good-tempered, for she can bear
with their foibles, and acknowledge her own.
Without disputing about the right, she sometimes
yields to those who are in the wrong. In short,
her temper is perfectly good, for it can bear and
forbear."
I wish that mine could," said Cecilia, sighing.
6 It may," replied Mrs. Villars; but it is not
wishes alone which can improve us in any thing.
Turn the same exertion and perseverance which
have won you the prize to-day to this object, and
you will meet with the same success; perhaps
not on the first, the second, or the third attempt,
but depend upon it that you will at last; every
new effort will weaken your bad habits and
strengthen your good ones. But you must not
expect to succeed all at once; I repeat it to you,


21






THE BRACELETS.


for habit must be counteracted by habit. It
would be as extravagant in us to expect that all
our faults could be destroyed by one punishment,
were it ever so severe, as it was in the Roman
emperor we were reading of a few days ago to
wish that all the heads of his enemies were upon
one neck, that he might cut them off by one
blow."
Here Mrs. Villars took Cecilia by the hand, and
they began to walk home. Such was the nature
of Cecilia's mind, that, when any object was for-
cibly impressed on her imagination, it caused a
temporary suspension of her reasoning faculties.
Hope was too strong a stimulus for her spirits;
and when fear did take possession of her mind, it
was attended with total debility. Her vanity was
now as much mortified as in the morning it had
been elated. She walked on with Mrs. Villars in
silence until they came under the shade of the elm-
tree walk, and then, fixing her 'eyes upon Mrs.
Villars, she stopped short. Do you think, ma-


22






THE BRACELETS.


dam," said she, with hesitation, "do you think,
madam, that I have a bad heart ?"
A bad heart, my dear! why, what put that
into your head ?"
"Leonora said that I had, ma'am, and I felt
ashamed when she said so."
"But, my dear, how can Leonora tell whether
your heart be good or bad? However, in the
first place, tell me what you mean by a bad
heart."
Indeed, I do not know what is meant by it,
ma'am; but it is something which every body
hates."
And why do they hate it ?"
"Because they think that it will hurt them,
ma'am, I believe; and that those who have bad
hearts take delight in doing mischief; and that
they never do any body good but for their own
ends."
Then the best definition which you can give
me of a bad heart is that it is some constant pro-


23





THE BRACELETS.


pensity to hurt others, and to do wrong for the
sake of doing wrong."
".Yes, ma'am, but that is not all neither; there
is still something else meant; something which I
cannot express-which, indeed, I never distinctly
understood; but of which, therefore, I was the
more afraid."
Well, then, to begin with what you do under-
stand, tell me, Cecilia, do you really think it pos-
sible to be wicked merely for the love of wicked-
ness? No human being becomes wicked all at
once; a man begins by doing wrong because it is,
or because he thinks it is for his interest; if he
continue to do so, he must conquer his sense of
shame, and lose his love of virtue. But how can
you, Cecilia, who feel such a strong sense of
shame, and such an eager desire to improve, ima-
gine that you have a bad heart ?"
"Indeed, madam, I never did, until every body
told me so, and then I began to be frightened
about it. This very evening, ma'am, when I was


24






THE BRACELETS.


in a passion, I threw little Louisa's strawberries
away; which, I am sure, I was very sorry for
afterwards; and Leonora and every body cried
out that I had a bad heart; but I am sure that I
was only in a passion."
Very likely. And when you are in a passion,
as you call it, Cecilia, you see that you are
tempted to do harm to others; if they do not
feel angry themselves, they do not sympathize
with you; they do not perceive the motive which
actuates you, and then they say that you have a
bad heart. I dare say, however, when your pas-
sion is over, and when you recollect yourself, you
are very sorry for what you have done and said;
are not you?"
"Yes, indeed, madam, very sorry."
SThen make that sorrow of use to you, Ceci-
lia, and fix it steadily in your thoughts, as you
hope to be good and happy, that, if you suffer
yourself to yield to your passion upon every tri-
fling occasion, anger and its consequences, will


25






THE BRACELETS.


become familiar to your mind; and in the same
proportion your sense of shame will be weakened,
till what -you began with doing from sudden im-
pulse you will end with doing from habit and
choice; and then you would, indeed, according to
our definition, have a bad heart."
"Oh, madam! I hope-I am sure I never
shall."
No, indeed, Cecilia; I do, indeed, believe
that you never will; on the contrary, I think that
you have a very good disposition, and, what is
of infinitely more consequence to you, an active
desire of improvement. Show me that you have
as much perseverance as you have candour, and
I shall not despair of your becoming every thing
that I could wish."
Here Cecilia's countenance brightened, and she
ran up the steps in almost as high spirits as she
ran down them in the morning.
Good night to you, Cecilia," said Mrs. Villars,
as she was crossing the hall. "Good night to


26






THE BRACELETS.


you, madam," said Cecilia; and she ran up stairs
'to bed.
She could not go to sleep, but she lay awake
reflecting upon the events of the preceding day,
and forming resolutions for the future; at the
same time, considering that she had resolved, and
resolved without effect, she wished to give her
mind some more powerful motive; ambition she
knew to be its most powerful incentive.
"Have I not," said she to herself, "already
won the prize of application, and cannot the same
application procure me a much higher prize?
Mrs. Villars said that if the prize had been pro-
mised to the most amiable it would not have been
given to me; perhaps it would not yesterday-
perhaps it might not to-morrow; but that is no
reason that I should despair of ever deserving it."
In consequence of this reasoning, Cecilia form-
ed a design of proposing to her companions
that they should give a prize, the first of the en-
suing month (the first of June), to the most


27






THE BRACELETS.


amiable. Mrs. Villars applauded the scheme,
and her companions adopted it with the greatest
alacrity.
"Let the prize," said they, "be a bracelet of
our own hair;" and instantly their shining scis-
sors were procured, and each contributed a lock
of her hair. They formed the most beautiful
gradation of colours, from the palest auburn to
the brightest black. Who was to have the hon-
our of plaiting them was now the question.
Caroline begged that she might, as she could
plait very neatly, she said.
Cecilia, however, was equally sure that she
could do'it much better, and a dispute would in-
evitably have ensued, if Cecilia, recollecting her-
self just as her colour rose to scarlet, had not
yielded-yielded with no very good grace indeed,
but as well as could be expected for the first time.
For it is habit which confers ease; and without
ease, even in moral actions, there can be no grace.
The bracelet was plaited in the neatest manner


28






THE BRACELETS.


by Caroline, finished round the edge with silver
twist, and on it was worked, in the smallest silver
letters, this motto, TO THE MOST AMIABLE. The
moment it was completed, every body begged
to try it on. It fastened with little silver clasps,
and as it was made large enough for the eldest
girls, it was too large for the youngest; of this
they bitterly complained, and unanimously en-
treated that it might be cut to fit them.
"How foolish!" exclaimed Cecilia. "Don't
you perceive that, if you win it, you have nothing
to do but to put the clasps a little further from
the edge ? but if we get it, we can't make it
larger."
Very true," said they, but you need not to
have called us foolish, Cecilia !"
It was by such hasty and unguarded expres-
sions as these that Cecilia offended; a slight dif-
ference in the manner makes a very material one
in the effect. Cecilia lost more love by general


29






THE BRACELETS.


petulance than she could gain by the greatest
particular exertions.
How far she succeeded in curing herself of
this defect, how far she became deserving of the
bracelet, and to whom the bracelet was given,
shall be told in the history of the first of June.



CONTINUATION OF THE BRACELETS.
THE first of June was now arrived, and all the
young competitors were in a state of the most
anxious suspense. Leonora and Cecilia continued
to be the foremost candidates; their quarrel had
never been finally adjusted, and their different
pretensions now retarded all thoughts of a recon-
ciliation. Cecilia, though she was capable of ac-
knowledging any of her faults in public before
all her companions,'could not humble herself in
private to Leonora; Leonora was her equal, they
were her inferiors; and submission is much easier


30






THE BRACELETS.


to a vain mind, where it appears to be voluntary,
than when it is the necessary tribute to justice or
candour. So strongly did Cecilia feel this truth
that she even delayed making any apology, or
coming to any explanation with Leonora, until
success should once more give her the palm.
If I win the bracelet to-day, said she to her-
self, I will solicit the return of Leonora's friend-
ship; it will be more valuable to me than even
the bracelet; and at such a time, and asked in
such a manner, she surely cannot refuse it to me.
Animated with this hope of a double triumph,
Cecilia canvassed with the most zealous activity;
by constant attention and exertion she had con-
siderably abated the violence of her temper, and
changed the course of her habits. Her powers
of pleasing were now excited, instead of her
abilities to excel; and, if her talents appeared
less brilliant, her character was acknowledged to
be more amiable; so great an influence upon our
manners and conduct have the objects of our


S 31






THIE BRAC LB TS.


ambition. Cecilia was now, if possible, more
than ever desirous of doing what was right, but
she had not yet acquired sufficient fear of doing
wrong. This was the fundamental error of her
mind; it arose in a great measure from her early
education.
Her mother died when she was very young;
and though her father had supplied her place in
the best and kindest manner, he had insensibly
infused into his daughter's mind a portion of that
enterprising, independent spirit, which he justly
deemed essential to the character of her brother.
This brother was some years older than Cecilia,
but he had always been the favourite companion
of her youth; what her father's precepts incul-
cated, his example enforced, and even Cecilia's
virtues consequently became such as were more
estimable in a man than desirable in a female.
All small objects and small errors she had been
taught to disregard as trifles; and her impatient
disposition was perpetually leading her into more


32






THE BRACELETS.


material faults; yet her candour in confessing
these, she had been suffered to believe, was suffi-
cient reparation and atonement.
Leonora, on the contrary, who had been edu-
cated by her mother in a manner more suited to
her sex, had a character and virtues more pecu-
liar to a female; her judgment had been early
cultivated, and her good sense employed in the
regulation of her conduct; she had been habitu-
ated to that restraint, which, as a woman, she
was to expect in life, and early accustomed to
yield; compliance in her seemed natural and
graceful.
Yet, notwithstanding the gentleness of her
temper, she was in reality more independent than
Cecilia; she had more reliance upon her own
judgment, and more satisfaction in her own ap-
probation. Though far from insensible to praise,
she was not liable to be misled by the indiscrimi-
nate love of admiration; the uniform kindness of
her manner, the consistency and equality of her


33






THE BRACELETS.


character, had fixed the esteem and passive love
of her companions.
By passive love, we mean that species of affec-
tion which makes us unwilling to offend, rather
than anxious to oblige; which is more a habit
than an emotion of the mind. For Cecilia, her
companions felt active love, for she was active in
showing her love to them.
Active love arises spontaneously in the mind,
after feeling particular instances of kindness,
without reflection on the past conduct or general
character; it exceeds the merits of its object, and
is connected with a feeling of generosity, rather
than with a sense of justice.
Without determining which species of love is
the more flattering to others, we can easily decide
which is the most agreeable feeling to our own
minds; we give our hearts more credit for being
generous than for being just; and we feel more
self-complacency when we give our love volun-
tarily, than when we yield it as a tribute which'


34






THE BRACELETS,


we cannot withhold. Though Cecilia's compa-
nions might not know all this in theory, they
proved it in practice; for they loved her in a
much higher proportion to her merits than they
loved Leonora.
Each of the young judges were to signify their
choice by putting a red or a white shell into a vase
prepared for the purpose. Cecilia's colour was
red, Leonora's white. In the morning nothing
was to be seen but these shells, nothing talked of
but the long-expected event of the evening. Ce-
cilia, following Leonora's example, had made it a
point of honour not to inquire of any individual
her vote previous to their final determination.
They were both sitting together in Louisa's
room; Louisa was recovering from the measles.
Every one, during her illness, had been desirous
of attending her; but Leonora and Cecilia were
the only two that were permitted to see her, as
they alone had had the distemper. They were
both assiduous in their care of Louisa; but Leo-


35






THE BRACELETS.


nora's want of exertion to overcome any disa.
greeable feelings of sensibility often deprived her
of presence of mind, and prevented her being so
constantly useful as Cecilia. Cecilia, on the con-
trary, often made too much noise and bustle with
her officious assistance, and was too anxious to
invent amusements and procure comforts for
Louisa, without perceiving that illness takes
away the power of enjoying them.
As she was sitting in the window in the
morning, exerting herself to entertain Louisa, she
heard the voice of an old pedlar who often used
to come to the house. Down stairs she ran im-
mediately to ask Mrs. Villars's permission to
bring him into the hall.
Mrs. Villars consented, and away Cecilia ran
to proclaim the news to her companions; then
first returning into the hall, she found the pedlar
just unbuckling his box, and taking it off his
shoulders. What would you be pleased to want,
Miss ?" said he, I've all kinds of tweezer-


36






THE BRACELETS.


cases, rings, and lockets of all sorts," continued
he, opening all the glittering drawers successively.
"Oh!" said Cecilia, shutting the drawer of
lockets which tempted her most, these are not
the things which I want; have you any china
figures, any mandarins ?"
"Alack-a-day, Miss, I had a great stock of
that same china ware, but now I'm quite out of
them kind of things; but I believe," said he,
rummaging in one of the deepest drawers," I be-
lieve I have one left, and here it is."
Oh, that is the very thing! what's its price ?"
"Only three shillings, ma'am." Cecilia paid
the money, and was just going to carry off the
mandarin, when the pedlar took out of his great-
coat pocket a neat mahogany case; it was about
a foot long, and fastened at each end by two lit-
tle clasps; it had besides a small lock in the
middle.
What is that ?" said Cecilia, eagerly.
"It 's only a china figure, Miss, which I am go-


37






THE BRACELETS.


ing to carry to an elderly lady, who lives nigh at
hand, and who is mighty fond of such things."
"Could you let me look at it ?"
And welcome, Miss," said he, and opened the
case.
S"0 goodness! how beautiful!" exclaimed Ce-
cilia.
It was a figure of Flora, crowned with roses,
and carrying a basket of flowers in her hand.
Cecilia contemplated it with delight. "How I
should like to give this to Louisa," said she to
herself; and at last breaking silence, "Did you
promise it to the old lady ?"
no, Miss; I didn't promise it-she never
saw it; and if so be that you'd like to take it,
I'd make no more words about it."
And how much does it cost ?"
"Why, Miss, as to that, I'11 let you have it
for half-a-guinea."
Cecilia immediately produced the box in which
she kept her treasure, and emptying it upon the


38






THE BRACELETS.


table, she began to count the shillings; alas! there
were but six shillings. "How provoking !" said
she; then I can't have it-where 's the manda-
rin ? O I have it," said she, taking it up, and
looking at it with the utmost disgust. "Is this
the same that I had before ?"
"Yes, Miss, the very same," replied the pedlar,
who, during this time, had been examining the
little box out of which Cecilia had taken her mo-
ney; it was of silver.
"Why, ma'am," said he, "since you've taken
such a fancy to the piece, if you've a mind to
make up the remainder of the money, I will take
this here little box, if you care to part with it."
Now this box was .a keepsake from Leonora
to Cecilia. "No," said Cecilia hastily, blushing
a little, and stretching out her hand to receive it.
"Oh, Miss !" said he, returning it carelessly,
"I hope there's no offence; I meant but to serve
you, that's all. Such a rare piece of china-work
has no cause to go a begging," added he, putting


39






THE BRACELETS.


the Flora deliberately into the case; then turning
the key with a jerk, he let it drop into his pocket,
and lifting up his box by the leather straps, he
was preparing to depart.
Oh, stay one minute !" said Cecilia, in whose
mind there had passed a very warm conflict du-
ring the pedlar's harangue. "Louisa would so
like this Flora," said she, arguing with herself;
" besides, it would be so generous in me to give
it to her instead of that ugly mandarin; that
would be doing only common justice, for I pro-
mised it to her, and she expects it. Though,
when I come to look at this mandarin, it is not
even so good as hers was; the gilding is all rub-
bed off, so that I absolutely must buy this for her.
0 yes, I will, and she will be so delighted! and
then every body will say it is the prettiest thing
they ever saw, and the broken mandarin will be
forgotten forever."
Here Cecilia's hand moved, and she was just
going to decide: "0! but stop," said she to her-


40






THE BRACELETS.


self; consider Leonora gave me this box, and
it is a keepsake; however, now we have quar-
reled, and I dare say that she would not mind my
parting with it; I 'm sure that I should not care
if she was to give away my keepsake the smell-
ing bottle, or the ring which I gave her; so what
does it signify; besides, is it not my own, and
have I not a right to do what I please with it ?"
At this dangerous instant for Cecilia, a party
of her companions opened the door; she knew
that they came as purchasers, and she dreaded her
Flora's becoming the prize of some higher bidder.
" Here," said she, hastily putting the box into the
pedlar's hand, without looking at it; "take it,
and give me the Flora." Her hand trembled,
though she snatched it impatiently; she ran by,
without seeming to mind any of her companions
-she almost wished to turn back.
Let those who are tempted to do wrong by the
hopes of future gratification, or the prospect of
certain concealment and impunity, remember that,


41






THE BRACELETS.


unless they are totally depraved, they bear in
their own hearts a monitor who will prevent their
enjoying what they have ill obtained.
In vain Cecilia ran to the rest of her compan-
ions, to display her present, in hopes that the
applause of others would restore her own self-
complacency; in vain she saw the Flora pass in
due pomp from hand to hand, each viewing with
the other in extolling the beauty of the gift and
the generosity of the giver. Cecilia was still
displeased with herself, with them, and even with
their praise; from Louisa's gratitude, however,
she yet expected much pleasure, and immediately
she ran up stairs to her room.
In the mean time Leonora had gone into the
hall to buy a bodkin; she had just broken hers.
In giving her change, the pedlar took out of his
pocket, with some half-pence, the very box which
Cecilia had sold him. Leonora did not in the
least suspect the truth, for her mind was above
suspicion; and besides, she had the utmost con-


42






THE BRACELETS.


fidence in Cecilia. "I should like to have that
box," said she,' for it is like one of which I was
very fond."
The pedlar named the price, and Leonora took
the box; she intended to give it to little Louisa.
On going to her room she found her asleep,
and she sat down softly by her bed-side. Louisa
opened her eyes.
"I hope I didn't disturb you," said Leonora.
"0 no; I didn't hear you come in; but what
have you got there ?"
It is only a little box; would you like to have
it ? I bought it on purpose for you, as I thought
perhaps it would please you; because it's like
that which I gave Cecilia."
"O yes! that out of which she used to give
me Barbary drops. I am very much obliged to
you. I always thought that exceedingly pretty;
and this, indeed, is as like it as possible. I can't
unscrew it; will you try ?"
Leonora unscrewed it.


43






THE BRACELETS.


Goodness !" exclaimed Louisa, "this must be
Cecilia's box; look, don't you see a great L at
the bottom of it ?"
Leonora's colour changed. Yes," she replied
calmly, "I see that, but it is no proof that it is
Cecilia's; you know that I bought this box just
now of the pedlar."
"That may be," said Louisa; "but I remem-
ber scratching that L with my own needle, and
Cecilia scolded me for it, too. Do go and ask
her if she has lost her box-do," repeated Louisa,
pulling her by the sleeve, as she did not seem to
listen.
Leonora indeed did not hear, for she was lost
in thought; she was comparing circumstances,
which had before escaped her attention. She re-
collected that Cecilia had passed her as she came
into the hall, without seeming to see her, but had
blushed as she passed. She remembered that the
pedlar appeared unwilling to part with the box,
and was going to put it again into his pocket


44






THE BRACELETS.


with the half-pence; "' and why should he keep
it in his pocket and not show it with his other
things ?" Combining all these circumstances,
Leonora had no longer any doubt of the truth;
for though she had honourable confidence in her
friends, she had too much penetration to be im-
plicitly credulous. "Louisa," she began, but at
this instant she heard a step, which, by its quick-
ness, she knew to be Cecilia's, coming along the
passage. "If you love me, Louisa," said Leo-
nora, "say nothing about the box."
" Nay, but why not? I dare say she has lost
it."
"No, my dear, I am afraid she has not."
Louisa looked surprised.
But I have reasons for desiring you not to
say any thing about it."
"Well, then, I won't, indeed."
Cecilia opened the door, came forward smil-
ing, as if secure of a good reception, and, ta-
king the Flora out of the case, she placed it on


45






THE BRACELETS.


the mantel-piece, opposite to Louisa's bed. "Dear,
how beautiful," cried Louisa, starting up.
"Yes," said Cecilia," and guess who it 's for ?"
"For me, perhaps!" said the ingenuous Louisa.
"Yes, take it, and keep it for my sake; you
know that I broke your mandarin."
S"0! but this is a great deal prettier and
larger than that."
Yes, I know it is; and I meant that it should
be so. I should only have done what I was
bound to do if I had only given you a mandarin."
"Well, and that would have been enough,
surely; but what a beautiful crown of roses! and
then that basket of flowers! they almost look as
if I could smell them. Dear Cecilia! I'm very
much obliged to you, but I won't take it by way
of payment for the mandarin you broke; for I'm
sure you could not help that; and, besides, I
should have broken it myself by this time. You
shall give it to me entirely, and I'11 keep it as
long as I live as your keepsake."


46






THE BRACELETS.


Louisa stopped short and coloured. The word
keepsake recalled the box to her mind, and all
the train of ideas which the Flora had banished.
"But," said she, looking up wishfully in Cecilia's
-face, and holding the Flora doubtfully, "did
you--"
Leonora, who was just quitting the room, turn-
ed her head back, and gave Louisa a look, which
silenced her.
Cecilia was so infatuated with her vanity, that
she neither perceived Leonora's sign, nor Louisa's
confusion, but continued showing off her present,
by placing it in various situations, till at length
she put it into the case, and laying it down with
an affected carelessness upon the bed, "I must
go now, Louisa. Good bye," said she, running up
and kissing her; but I 'U come again presently ;"
then clapping the door after her, she went.
But as soon as the fermentation of her spirits
subsided, the sense of shame, which had been
scarcely felt when mixed with so many other


47






THE BRACELETS.


sensations, rose uppermost in her mind. What?"
said she to herself," is it possible that I have sold
what I promised to keep for ever? and what
Leonora gave me? and I have concealed it too,
and have been making a parade of my gener-
osity. O! what would Leonora, what would
Louisa, what would every body think of me, if
the truth were known ?"
HIumiliated and grieved by these reflections,
Cecilia began to search in her own mind for some
consoling idea. She began to compare her con-
duct with the conduct of others of her own age;
and at length, fixing her comparison upon her
brother George, as the companion of whom, from
her infancy, she had been habitually the most
emulous, she recollected that an almost similar
circumstance had once happened to him, and that
he had not only escaped disgrace, but had ac-
quired glory by an intrepid confession of his fault.
Her father's words to her brother, on that occa-
sion, she also perfectly recollected.






THE BRACELETS.


"Come to me, George," he said, holding out
his hand; you are a generous, brave boy. They
who dare to confess their faults will make great
and good men."
These were his words; but Cecilia, in repeat-
ing them to herself, forgot to lay that emphasis
on the word men, which would have placed it in
contradistinction to the word women. She wil-
lingly believed that the observation extended
equally to both sexes, and flattered herself that
she should exceed her brother in merit, if she
owned a fault which she thought that it would be
so much more difficult to confess. "Yes, but,"
said she, stopping herself, "how can I confess it ?
This very evening, in a few hours, the prize will
be decided; Leonora or I shall win it. I have
now as good a chance as Leonora, perhaps a
better; and must I give up all my hopes ? all that
I have been labouring for this month past! 0, I
never can;-if it were to-morrow, or yesterday,
or any day but this, I would not hesitate, but now
D


49






THE BRACELETS.


I am almost certain of the prize, and if I win it
-well, why then I will-I think, I will tell all-
yes, I will; I am determined," said Cecilia.
Here a bell summoned them to dinner. Leo-
nora sat opposite to her, and she was not a little
surprised to see Cecilia look so gay and unre-
strained. Surely," said she to herself, "if Cecilia
had done this, that I suspect, she would not, she
could not look as she does." But Leonora little
knew the cause of her gayety; Cecilia was never
in higher spirits, or better pleased with herself,
than when she had resolved upon a sacrifice or a
confession.
"Must not this evening be given to the most
amiable ? Whose, then, will it be ?" All eyes
glanced first at Cecilia and then at Leonora. Ce-
cilia smiled; Leonora blushed. I see that it is
not yet decided," said Mrs. Villars; and imme.
diately they ran up stairs, amidst confused whis-
perings..
Cecilia's voice could be distinguished far above


50






THE BRACELETS. 51
the rest. "How can she be so happy ?" said
Leonora to herself. "0, Cecilia, there was a
time when you could not have neglected me so!
-when we were always together, the best of
friends and companions, our wishes, tastes, and
pleasures the same. Surely she did once love
me," said Leonora; "but now she is quite changed.
She has even sold my keepsake, and would rather
win a bracelet of hair from girls whom she did
not always think so much superior to Leonora,
than have my esteem, my confidence, and my
friendship, for her whole life; yes, for her whole
life, for I am sure she will be an amiable woman.
Oh that this bracelet had never been thought of,
or that I was certain of her winning it; for I am
certain that I do not wish to win it from her. I
would rather, a thousand times rather, that we
were as we used to be, than have all the glory in
the world. And how pleasing Cecilia can be
when she wishes to please! how candid she is!
how much she can improve herself!-let me be






THE BRACELETS.


just, though she has offended me-she is wonder-
fully improved within this last month; for one
fault, and that against myself, should I forget all
her merits ?"
As Leonora said these last words, she could
but just hear the voices of her companions; they
had left her alone in the gallery. She knocked
softly at Louisa's door-s- Come in," said Louisa.
"I m not asleep. Oh," said she, starting up with
the Flora in her hand, the instant that the door
was opened. "I 'm so glad you are come, Leo-
nora, for I did so long to hear what you were
all making such a noise about-have you forgot
that the bracelet--"
"O yes! is this the evening ?"
"Well, here 's my white shell for you. I 've
kept it in my pocket this fortnight; and though
Cecilia did give me this Flora, I still love you a
great deal better."
"I thank you, Louisa," said Leonora, gratefully.
"I will take your shell, and I shall value it as


52






THE BRACELETS.


long as I live. But here is a red one, and if you
wish to show me that you love me, you will give
this to Cecilia. I know that she is particularly
anxious for your preference, and I am sure that
she deserves it."
Yes, if I could I would choose both of you;
but you know I can only choose which I like the
best."
If you mean, my dear Louisa," said Leonora,
"that you like me the best, I am very much
obliged to you; for, indeed I wish you to love me;
but it is enough for me to know it in private. I
should not feel the least more pleasure at hearing
it in public, or in having it made known to all my
companions, especially at a time when it would
give poor Cecilia a great deal of pain."
But why should it give her pain ? I don't like
her for being jealous of you."
Nay, Louisa, surely you don't think Cecilia
jealous; she only tries to excel and to please.
She is'more anxious to succeed than I am, it is


,53






THE BRACELETS.


true, because she has a great deal more activity,
and perhaps more ambition; and it would really
mortify her to lose this prize. You know that
she proposed it herself; it has been her object
for this month past, and I am sure she has taken
great pains to obtain it."
But, dear Leonora, why should you lose it ?"
Indeed, my dear, it would be no loss to me;
and, if it were, I would willingly suffer it for Ce-
cilia; for, though we seem not to be such good
friends as we used to be, I love her very much,
and she will love me again, I'm sure she will;
when she no longer fears me as a rival, she will
again love me as a friend."
Here Leonora heard a number of her compan-
ions running along the gallery. They all knocked
hastily at the door, calling, Leonora! Leonora!
will you never come? Cecilia has been with us
this half hour."
Leonora smiled. "Well, Louisa," said she,
smiling, "will you promise me ?"


54






THE BRACELETS.


SO, I 'm sure, by the way they speak to you,
that they won't give you the prize !" said the lit-
tle Louisa; and the tears started into her eyes.
They love me though, for all that; and as for
the prize, you know whom I wish to have it."
"Leonora! Leonora !" called her impatient
companions; "don't you hear us ? What are
you about ?"
she never will take any trouble about any
thing," said one of the party; "let's go away."
"0 go! go! make haste," cried Louisa; "don't
stay, they are so angry-I will, I will, indeed !"
"Remember, then, that you have promised
me," said Leonora, and she left the room. During
all this time Cecilia had been in the garden with
her companions. The ambition which she had
felt to win the first prize, the prize of superior ta-
lents and superior application, was not to be com-
pared to the absolute anxiety which she now ex-
pressed to win this simple testimony of the love
and approbation of her equals and rivals.


55






THE BRACELETS.


To employ her exuberant activity, she had been
dragging branches of lilacs, and laburnums, roses,
and sweet-briar, to ornament the bower in which
her fate was to be decided. It was excessively
hot, but her mind was engaged, and she was in-
defatigable. She stood still, at last, to admire
her works; her companions all joined in loud ap-
plause. They were not a little prejudiced in her
favour by the great eagerness which she ex-
pressed to win their prize, and by the great im-
portance which she seemed to affix to the prefer-
ence of each individual. At lasf, "Where is
Leonora?" cried one of them, and immediately,
as we have seen, they ran to call her.
Cecilia was left alone.- Overcome with heat
and too violent exertion, she had hardly strength
to support herself; each moment appeared to her
intolerably long; she was in a state of the utmost
suspense, and all her courage failed her; even
hope forsook her, and hope is a cordial which
leaves the mind depressed and enfeebled. "The


56






THE BRACELETS.


time is now come," said Cecilia; in a few mo-
ments it will be decided. In a few moments!
goodness! how much I do hazard! If I should
not win the prize, how shall I confess what I have
done? How shall I beg Leonora to forgive me ?
I, who hoped to restore my friendship to her as
an honour!-they are gone to seek for her-the
moment she appears I shall be forgotten-what
shall-what shall I do ?" said Cecilia, covering
her face with her hands.
Such was her situation, when Leonora, accom-
panied by her companions, opened the hall-door;
they most of them ran forward to Cecilia. As
Leonora came into the bower, she held out her
hand to Cecilia--" We are not rivals, but friends,
I hope," said she. Cecilia clasped her hand, but
she was in too great agitation to speak.
The table was now set in the arbour-the vase
was now placed in the middle. "Well!" said
Cecilia, eagerly, "who begins?" Caroline, one
of her friends, came forward first, and then all the


57






THE BRACELETS.


others successively. Cecilia's emotion was hard-
ly conceivable.-" Now they are all in. Count
them, Caroline !"
"One, two, three, four; the numbers are both
equal." There was a dead silence.
No, they are not," exclaimed Cecilia, pressing
forward and putting a shell into the vase-" I
have not given mine, and I give it to Leonora."
Then snatching the bracelet, It is yours, Leo-
nqra," said she;" take it, and give me back your
friendship." The whole assembly gave a uni-
versal clap and shout of applause.
"I cannot be surprised at this from you, Ce-
cilia," said Leonora; "and do you then still love
-me as you used to do ?"
Leonora! stop! don't praise me; I don't
deserve this," said she, turning to her loudly ap-
plauding companions;" you will soon despise
me-O Leonora, you will n9ver forgive me !-I
have deceived you-I have sold-"
At this instant Mrs. Villars appeared-the


58






THE BRACELETS.


crowd divided-she had heard all that passed
from her window.
"I applaud your generosity, Cecilia," said she,
but I am to tell you that in this instance it is un-
successful; you have it not in your power to give
the prize to Leonora-it is yours-I have another
vote to give you-you have forgotten Louisa."
"Louisa! but surely, ma'am, Louisa loves Leo-
nora better than she does me !"
"She commissioned me, however," said Mrs.
Villars, to give you a red shell, and you will find
it in this box."
Cecilia started, and turned as pale as death-
it was the fatal box.
Mrs. Villars produced another box-she opened
it-it contained the Flora-" And Louisa also de-
sired me," said she, "to return you this Flora"
-she put it into Cecilia's hand--Cecilia trem-
bled so that she could not hold it; Leonora
caught it.
0, madam! 0, Leonora! "exclaimed Cecilia;


59






THE BRACELETS.


" now I have no hope left. I intended, I was just
going to tell-"
"Dear Cecilia," said Leonora, "you need not
tell it me; I know it already, and I forgive you
with all my heart."
Yes, I can prove to you," said Mrs. Villars,
" that Leonora has forgiven you: it is she who
has given you the prize; it was she who persua-
ded Louisa to give you her vote. I went to see
her a little while ago, and perceiving, by her coun-
tenance, that something was the matter, I pressed
her to tell me what it was.
"' Why, madam,' said she,' Leonora has made
me promise to give my shell to Cecilia. Now I
don't love Cecilia half so well as I do Leonora;
besides, I would not have Cecilia think I vote for
her because she gave me a Flora.' Whilst Loui-
sa was speaking," continued Mrs. Villars, 6 I saw
the silver box lying on the bed; I took it up, and
asked if it was not yours, and how she came
by it.


60






THE BRACELETS.


Indeed, madam,' said Louisa, 'I could have
been almost certain that it was Cecilia's; but Leo-
nora gave it me, and she said that she bought it
of the pedlar this morning. If any body else had
told me so, I could not have believed them, be-
cause I remembered the box so well; but I can't
help believing Leonora.'
"'But did you not ask Cecilia about it?'
said I.
"' No, madam,' replied Louisa,' for Leonora
forbade me.'
"I guessed her reason. 'Well,' said I, 'give
me the .box, and I will carry your shell in it to
Cecilia.'
"( Then, madam,' said she, if I must give it
her, pray do take the Flora, and return it to her
first, that she may not think it is for that I do
it.'"
O, generous Leonora !" exclaimed Cecilia;
" but indeed, Louisa, I cannot take your shell."
Then, dear Cecilia, accept of mine instead of


61






THE BRACELETS.


it; you cannot refuse it-I only follow your ex-
ample. As for e bracelet," added Leonora,
taking Cecilia's and, "I assure you I don't wish
for it, and you/do, and you deserve it."
"No," said Cecilia, "indeed I do not deserve
it; next to yo surely, Louisa deserves it best."
"Louisa! 0 es, Louisa," exclaimed every
body with one voice.
"Yes," said Mrs. Villars, "and let Cecilia
carry the bracelet to her; she deserves that re-
ward. For one fault I cannot forget all your
merits, Cecilia; nor, I am sure, will your com-
panions."
Then, surely, not your best friend," said Leo-
nora, kissing her.
Every body present was moved-they looked
up to Leonora with respectful and affectionate
admiration.
O, Leonora, how I love you! and how I wish
to be like you!" exclaimed Cecilia; "to be as
good, as generous!"


62






THE BRACELETS. 63
"Rather wish, Cecilia," interrupted Mrs. Vil-
lars, to be as just; to be as strictly honourable,
and as invariably consistent.
Remember that many of our sex are capable
of great efforts, of making what they call great
sacrifices to virtue or to friendship; but few treat
their friends with habitual gentleness, or uniform-
ly conduct themselves with prudence and good
sense."





THE ENID





A



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WASTE NOT, WANT NOT:
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LAZY LAWRENCE;
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