Front Cover
 Front Matter
 Half Title
 Title Page
 Conduct and behavior
 Friendship, love, marriage
 Back Cover

Group Title: Father's legacy to his daughters
Title: A father's legacy to his daughters
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00065171/00001
 Material Information
Title: A father's legacy to his daughters
Alternate Title: Father's legacy, &c
Father's legacy to his daughters, or, A gift for young ladies
Gift for young ladies
Physical Description: 67 p. : ; 12 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Gregory, John, 1724-1773
Watson, A ( Publisher )
Publisher: A. Watson
Place of Publication: Lowell
Publication Date: 1840
Subject: Young women -- Conduct of life -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Conduct of life -- Juvenile literature -- Early works to 1800   ( lcsh )
Young women -- Life skills guides -- Juvenile literature   ( lcsh )
Bldn -- 1840
Genre: non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: United States -- Massachusetts -- Lowell
Statement of Responsibility: by Dr. Gregory.
Funding: Preservation and Access for American and British Children's Literature, 1870-1889 (NEH PA-50860-00).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00065171
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 - 002230870
oclc - 50863156
notis - ALH1237

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Cover 1
        Cover 2
    Front Matter
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Half Title
        Page 3
    Title Page
        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
    Conduct and behavior
        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
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
    Friendship, love, marriage
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        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
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
    Back Cover
        Cover 1
        Cover 2
Full Text
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You had the misfortune to be deprived
of your mother, at a time of life when
you were inensifbl of your loss, and
could receive little bLenil, either from
her instruction, or hr e-aempcl. Before
this comes to your hand-, you will like-
wihae have lo t our flt:r.
I have h ,d any O mc!"lchcly refec-
tions on the i;-lorn a.i! L'pie's situation
you mut :c i, if' it hIuuld please God
to reino-e me f om you before you ar-
rive at ht t0i.d of life, vIhen you wilt-
be able to thii; an1l act for ycurzelves.
I know mwnkind too ..!. I know their
falselood, their dissipation, their coldness
to all the duties of friendship and hu-
manity. I know the little attention paid
to helpless infancy. You will meet with
few friends disinterested enough to do
A 5

you good offices, when you are incapable
of making them any return, by contri-
buting to their interest or their pleasure,
or to the iii; -i i. of their vanity.
I have been supported under the gloom
naturally arising from these reflections,
by a reliance on the goodness of that
Providence which has hitherto preserved
you, and given me the most pleasing
prospect of the goodness of your disposi-
tions; and by the secret hope, that your
mother's virtues will entail a blessing on
her children.
The anxiety I have for your happiness
has made me resolve to throw together
my sentiments, relating to your future
conduct in life. If I live for some years,
you will receive them with much greater
advantage, s.itcd to your different ge-
niuses and disoositions. If I die sooner,
you must recieve them in this very im-
jBrfect manner; the last proof of my
SYou will all remember your father's...
fondness, when perhaps every other
circumstance relating to him is forgotten.
This remembrance, I hope, will induce
you to give a serious attention to the
advices I am now going to leave with
you. I can request this attention with

the greater confidence, as my sentiments
on the most interesting points that re-
gard life and manners, were entirely
correspondent to your mother's, whose
jndrmont~ and taste I trusted much more
-h-,, -. own.
You must expect that the advice which
I shall give you will be very imperfect, as
there are many nameless delicacies in
female manners, of which none but a
woman can judge.
You will have one advantage by at-
tending to what I am going to leave with
you; you will hear, at least for once in
your lives, the genuine sentiments of a
man, who has no interest in flattering
or deceiving you. I shall throw my
reflections together without any studied
order, and shall only, to avoid confusion,
range them under a few general heads.
You will see, in a little treatise of mine
just published, in what an honorable
point of view I have considered your
sex; not as domestic drudgs, or the
slaves of our pleasures, but as our com-
panions and equals; as designed to soften
our hearts and polish our manners; and
as Thompson finely says,
To raise the virtues, animate the bliss,
And sweeten all the toils of human life.

I shall not repeat what I have there
said on this subject, and shall only ob-
serve, that from the view I have given of
3our natural character and place in
society, there arises a certain propriety
.of conduct peculiar to your sex. It is
this pecu;lar propriety of female manners
of which I intend to give you my senti-
ments, without touching on those gene-
ral rules of conduct by which men and
women are equally bound.
While I explain to you that system of
conduct which I think will tend most to
Your honor and happiness, 1 shall, at the
same time, endeavor to point out those
virtues and accomplishments which ren-
der you most respectable and most amia-
ble in the eyes of my own sex.



TIOUGH the duties of religion, strictly
speaking, are equally binding on both
sexes, yet certain differences in their na-
tural character and education, render
some vices in your sex peculi rly odious.
The nature halrdness of cur hearts, and
strength of our pss-ions, inflamed by the
uncontrolled license we are too eften
indulged with in our youth, are apt to
render our manners more dissolute, and
make us less susceptible of the finer
feelings of the heart. Your superior
delicacy, your modesty, and the usual
severity of your education, preserve you,
in a great measure, from any temptation
to those vices to which we are most sub-
jected. The natural isofness and sensi-
bility of your dispositions particularly
fit you for the practice of those duties
where the heart is chiefly concerned.
And this along with the natural warmth
of your imaginations, renders you tecu-
liarly susceptible of the feelings of devo-
There are many circumstances in your
situation that peculiarly require the sup-

ports of religion to enable you to act in
them with spirit and nronriptv. Your
whole life is often a i1 : ....
You cannot plunge into business, or
dissipate yourselves in pleasure and riot,
as men too often do, when under the
pressure of misfortunes. You must bear
your sorrows in silence, unknown and
unpitied. You must often put on a face
of serenity and cheerfulness, when your
hearts are torn with anguish, or sinking
in despair. Then your only resource is
in the consolations of religion. It is
chiefly owing to these that you bear
domestic misfortunes better than we do.
But you are sometimes in very different
circumstances, that i ... i- require the
restraints of religion. The natural vi-
vacity, and perhaps the natural vanity of
your sex, are very apt to lead you into a
dissipated state of life, that deceives you,
under the appearance of innocent plea-
sure; but which in reality wastes your
spirits, impairs your health, weakens all
the superior faculties of your minds, and
often sullies your reputations. Religion,
by checking this dissipation and rage for
pleasure, enables you to draw more hap-
piness, even from those very sources of
amusement, which when too frequently

applied to, are often productive of satiety
and di-n,1t.
E:. i.., .- is rather a matter of senti-
ment than reasoning. The important
and interesting articles of faith are
..i. .i:,-plain. Fix your attention on
these, and do not meddle with controver-
sy. If you get into that, you plunge into a
chaos, from which you will never be able
to extricate yourselves. It spoils the
temper, and, I suspect, has no good effect
on the heart.
Avoid all books, and all conversation,
that tend to shake your faith on those
great points of religion which should
serve to regulate your conduct, and on
which your hopes of future and eternal
happiness depend.
Never indulge yourselves in ridicule
on religious subjects; nor give counte-
nance to it in others, by *.. i .- diverted
with what they say. il .:, i.. people of
good breeding, will be a sufficient check.
I wish you to go no farther than the
Scriptures for your religious opinions.
Embrace those you find clearly revealed.
Never perplex yourselves about such as
you do not understand, but treat them
with silent and becoming reverence. I
would advise you to read only such reli-

gious books as are addressed to the heart,
such as inspire pious and devout affec-
tions, such as are proper to direct you in
your conduct, and not such as tend to
entangle you in the endless maze of
opinions and systems.
Be punctual in the stated performance
of your private devotions, ..; and
evening. If you have an.- scn-biitly or
imagination, this will establish suc-h an
intercourse between you and the Supreme
Being, as will be of infinite consequence
to you in life. It will communicate an
habitual cheerfulness to your terrpers;
give a firmness and steadiness to your
virtue, and enable you to go 1! ... _-. all
the vicissitudes of human life with pro-
priety and dignity.
I wish you to be regular in your at-
tendance cn ipubiic worship, "nd in
receiving the communion. Ailow no-
thing to interriut your pubih or e iv ate
devotions, except ithe peformance of
some active duty in life, to which they
should always give place. In your
behaviour at public worship, observe an
exemplary attention and gravity.
That extreme strictness which I re-
commend to you in these duties, will be
considered by many of your acquaintance


as a superstitious attachment to forms;
but in the advice I give you on this and
other subjects, I have an eye to the spirit
and manners of the age. There is a
levity and dissipation in the present
manners, a coldness and listlessness in
whatever relates to religion, which can-
not fail to infect you,-unless you purpose-
ly cultivate in your minds a contrary
bias, and make the devotional taste
Avoid all grimace and ostentation in
your religious duties. They are the
usual cloaks of hypocrisy; at least they
show a weak and vain mind.
Do not make religion a -.i..; r, ofr
common conversation in mixed co-
panies. When it is introduced, rather
seem to decline it. At the same time,
never suffer any person to insult you by
any foolish ribaldry on yc., i. u
opinions, but show the sam-. .-t e 'u il
you would naturally do on .. Iij pli n: .1
any other personal insul'. 1t6[ ri-U
surest way to avoid this, is I.), 1 Irl..1. l
reserve on the subject, and by using no
freedom with others about their religious
Cultivate an enlarged charity for all
mankind, however they may differ from


you in their religious opinions. That
difference may probably arise from causes
in which you had no share, and from
which you can derive no merit.
Show your regard to religion by a
distinguishing respect to all its ministers
of whatever persuasion, who do not by
their lives dishonor their professions; but
never allow them the direction of your
consciences, lest they taint you with the
narrow spirit of their party.
The best effect of your religion will be
a diffusive humanity to all in distress.
Set apart a certain proportion of your
income as sacred to charitable purposes.
But in this, as well as in the practice of
evyry other duty, carefully avoid ostenta-
tion. Vanity is always defeating her
own purposes. Fame is one of the na-
tural rewards of virtue. Do not pursue
hernd she will follow you.
D3 ilto confine your charity to giving
money. You may have many opportu-
nities of showing a tender and compas-
sionate spirit, where your money is not
wanted. There is a false and unnatural
refinement in sensibility, which makes
some people shun the sight of every
object in distress. Never indulge this,
especially where your friends or acquain-
tances are concerned. Let the days of


their misfortunes, when the world forgets
or avoids them, be the season for you to
exercise your humanity and friendship.
The sight of human misery softens the
heart, and makes it better; it checks the
pride of health and prosperity, and the
distress it occasions is amply compen-
sated by the consciousness of doing your
duty, and by the secret endearments
which nature has annexed to all our
sympathetic sorrows.
Women are greatly deceived, when
they think they recommend themselves
to our sex by their indifference about
religion. Even those men who are
themselves unbelievers, dislike infidelity
in you. Every man who knows human
nature, connects a religious taste in your
sex with softness and sensibility of heart;
at least, we always consider the want of
it as a proof of that hard and masculine
spirit, which of all your faults we dislike
the most. Beside, men consider your
religion as one of their principal securi-
ties for that female virtue in which they
are most interested. If a gentleman
pretends an attachment to any of you,
and endeavors to shake your religious
principles, be assured he is either a fool,
or has designs on you which he dares not
openly avow.

16 .r- i '.
You will probably wonder at my hav-
ing educated you in a church different
from my own. The reason was plainly
this : I looked on the differences between
our churches to be of no real importance,
and that a preference of one to the other
was a mere matter of taste. Your mo-
ther was educated in the church of Eng-
land, and had an attachment to it, and I
had a prejudice in favor of every thing
she liked. It never was her desire that
you should be baptized by a clergyman of
the church of England, or be educated in
that church. On the contrary, the deli-
cacy of her regard to the smallest circum-
stance that could affect me in the eye of
the world, made her anxiously insist it
might be otherwise. But I could not
yield to her in that kind of generosity.
When I lost her, I became still more
determined to educate you in that church,
as I feel a secret pleasure in doing every
thing that appears to me to express my
affection and veneration for her memory.
I draw but a very faint and imperfect
picture of what your mother was, while I
endeavor to point out what you should be.

NOTE. The render will rememrner. Ihat such ob-
seivatllns asl espectcquially boti sexes arenllalong
as much as possible avoided.




ONE of the chiefest beauties in a
female character is that modest reserve,
that retiring delicacy, which avoids the
public eye, and is disconcerted even at
the gaze of admiration. I do not wish
you to be insensible to applause. If you
were, you must become, if not worse, at
least less amiable "iom En. Bt youmay
be dazzled by that admiration, which yet
rejoices your hearts.
When a girl ceases to blush, she-has
lost the most powerful charm of beauty.'
That extreme sensibility which it indi-
cates, may be a weakness and incum-
brance in our sex, as I have too often
felt; but in yours it is peculiarly en-
gaging. Pedants, who think themselves
philosophers, ask why a woman should
blush when she is conscious of no crime ?
It is a sufficient answer, that 'nature has
made you to blush when you are guilty
of no fault, and has forced us to love you
because vi do so. Blushing is so far
from being necessarily an attendant on
guilt, that it is the usual companion of

This modesty, which I think so essen-
tial in your sex, will naturally dispose
you to be rather silent in company,
especially in a large one. People of
sense and discernment will never mis-
take such silence for dullness. One may
take a share in conversation without
uttering a syllable. The expression in
the countenance shows it, and this never
escapes an observing eye.
I should be glad that you had an easy
dignity in your behavior at public places,
but not that confident ease, that unbashed
countenance, which seems to set the
company at defiance. If, while a gentle-
man is speaking to you, one of superior
rank addresses you, do not let your eager
attention and visible preference betray
S the flutter of your heart. Let your
pride on this occasion preserve you from
that meanness into which your vanity
would sink you.. Consider that you
expose yourselves to the ridicule of the
company, and affront one gentleman
only to swell the triumph of another,
who perhaps thinks he does you honor
in speaking to you.
Converse with men even of the first
rank, with that dignified modesty, which
may prevent the approach of the most


distant familiarity, and cia'i-,iur-nily
prevent them from feeling themselves
your superiors.
Wit is the most dangerous talent you
can possess. It must be guarded with
great discretion and good nature, other-
wise it will create you many enemies.
It is perfectly consistent with softness
and delicacy; yet they are seldom found
united. Wit is so 1 -..: ii.. to vanity,
that those who possess it become intoxi-
cated, and lose all self command.
Humor is a different quality. It will
make your company much solicited; but
be cautious how you indulge it. It is
often a great enemy to delicacy, and a
still greater one to dignity of character.
It may sometimes gain you applause, but
will never procure you respect.
Be even cautious in displaying your
good sense. It will be thought you as-
sume a superiority over the rest of the
company. But if you happen to have
any learning, keep it a profound secret,
especially from the men, who generally
look with a jealous and malignant eye
on a woman of great parts, and a culti-
vated understanding.
A man of real genius and candor is
far superior to this meanness. But such

( 7l

a one will seldom fall in your way; and
if by 'accident he should, do not be
anxious to show the full extent of your
knowledge. If he has any opportunities
of seeing you, he will soon discover it
himself; and if you have any advanta-
ges of person or manner, and keep your
own secret, he will probably give you
credit for a great deal more than you
possess. The great art of pleasing in
conversation, consists in making the
company pleased with themselves. You
will more readily hear than talk your-
selves into their good graces.
.'Be ware of detraction, especially where
your own sex are concerned.) You are
generally accused of being particularly
addicted to this vice; I think unjustly.
Men are fully as guilty of it when their
interests interfere. As your interests
more frequently clash, and as your feel-
ings are quicker than ours, your tempta-
tions to it are more frequent. For this
reason, be particularly tender "of the
reputation of your own sex, especially
when they happen to rival you in our
rreg-.' WVe look on this as the strongest
ipr, .,I ..f dignity and true greatness of
Show a compassionate sympathy to

unfortunate women, especially to those
who are rendered so by the villainy of
men. Indulge a secret pleasure, I may
say pride, in being the friends and refuge
of the unhappy, but without the vanity
of showing it.
Consider every species of indelicacy
in conversation, as shameful in itself, and
as highly disgusting to us. All double
entendre is of this sort. The dissolute-
ness of men's education allows them to
be diverted with a kind of wit, which
yet -they have delicacy enough to. be
shocked at, when it comes from your
mouths, or even when you hear it without
pain and contempt. Virgin purity is of
that delicate nature, that it cannot hear
certain things without contamination.
It is always in your power to avoid these.
dNo man, but a brute or a fool, will insult
a woman with conversation which he
sees gives her pain) nor will he dare do
it if she resent the iihury with becoming
spirit. There is a dignity in conscious*
virtue, which is able to awe the most
shameless and abandoned of men.
You will be reproached perhaps with
prudery. By prudery is usually meant
an affectation of delicacy. Now I do
not wish you to affect delicacy; I wish


you to possess it. At any rate, it is bet-
ter to run the risk of being thought
ridiculous than disgusting.
The men will complain of your re-
serve. They will assure you, that a
franker behavior would make you more
amiable. But trust me, they are not
sincere when they tell you so. I ac-
knowledge, that on some occasions, it
might render you more agreeable as
companions, but it would render you less
amiable as women; ai important dis-
tinction which many ofyour sex are not
aware of. After all, I wish you to have
great ease and openness in your conver-
sation. I only point out some considera-
tions which ought to regulate your
behavior in that respect.
Have a sacred regard to truth. Lying
is a mean and despicable vice. I have
known some women of excellent parts,
who were so much addicted to it, that
they could not be trusted in the relation
of any story, especially if it contained
any thing of the marvellous, or if they
themselves were the heroines of the tale.
This weakness did not proceed from a
bad heart, but was merely the effect of
vanity, or an unbridled imagination. I
do not mean to censure that lively em-

bellishment of a humorous story, which
is only intended to promote innocent
There is a certain gentleness of spirit
and manners extremely engaging in your
sex; not that indiscriminate attention,
that unmeaning simper, which smiles on
all alike. This arises, either from an
affectation of softness, or from perfect
There is a species of refinement in
luxury, just beginning to prevail among
the gentlemen of this country, to which
our ladies are yet as great strangers as
any women upon earth; I hope, for the
honor of the sex, they may ever continue
so: I mean the luxury of eating. It is
a despicable, selfish vice in men, but in
your sex it is beyond expression indeli-
cate and disgusting.
Every one who remembers a few years
back, is sensible of a very striking change
in the attention and respect formerly
paid by the gentlemen to the ladies.
Their drawing rooms are deserted; and
after dinner and supper, the gentlemen
are impatient till they retire. How ihey
came to lose this respect, which nature
and politeness so well entitle them to, I
shall not here particularly inquire. The

revolutions of manners in any country
depend on causes very various and com-
plicated. I shall only observe, that the
behavior of the ladies in the last age
was very reserved and stately. It would
now be reckoned ridiculously stiff and
formal. Whatever it was, it had certainly
the effect of making them more respected.
A fine woman, like other fine things
in nature, has her proper point of view,
from which she may be seen to most
advantage. To fix thji point requires
great judgment, and an intimate know-
ledge of the human heart. By the
present mode of female manners, the
ladies seem to expect that they shall
regain their ascendancy over us, by the
fullest display of their personal charms,
by being always in our eye at public
places, by conversing with us with the
same unreserved freedom as we do with
one another; in short, by resembling us
as nearly as they possibly can. But a
little time and experience will show the
folly of this expectation and conduct.
The power of a fine woman over the
hearts of men, even of the finest parts,
is even beyond what she conceives.
They are sensible of the pleasing illusion,
but they cannot, nor do they wish to

dissolve it. But if she is determined to
dispel the charm, it certainly is in her
power: she may soon reduce the angel
to a very ordinary girl.
There is a native dignity, an ingenuous
modesty to be expected in your sex,
which is your natural protection from
the familiarities of the men, and which
you should feel previous to the reflection
that it is your interest to keep yourselves
sacred from all personal freedoms. The
many nameless charms and endearments
of beauty should be reserved to bless the
arms of the happy man to whom you
give your heart, but who, if he has the
least delicacy, will despise them, if he
knows they have been prostituted to fifty
men before him. The sentiment, that a
woman may allow all innocent freedoms,
provided her virtue is secure, is both
grossly indelicate and dangerous, and
has proved fatal to many of your sex.
Let me now recommend to your atten-
tion that elegance, which is not so much
a quality of itself, as thehigh polish of
every other. It is what diffuses an inef-
fable grace over every look, every motion,
every sentence you utter. It is partly a
personal quality, in which respect it is
the gift of nature; but I speak of it

principally as a quality of the mind. In
a word, it is the perfection of taste in
life and manners; every virtue and every
excellence, in their most graceful and
amiable forms.
You may think perhaps I want to
throw every spark of nature out of your
composition, and to pnake you entirely
artificial. Far from it. I wish you to
possess the most perfect simplicity of
heart and manners. I think you may
possess dignity without pride, affability
without meanness, and simple elegance
without affectation. Milton had my idea,
when he says of Eve,
Grace was in all her steps, Heaven in her eye,
In every gesture dignity and love.


EVERY period of life has amusements
which are natural and proper to it. You
may indulge the variety of your tastes in
these, while you keep within the bounds
of that propriety which is suitable to
your sex.

Some amusements are conducive to
health, as various kinds of exercise; some
are connected with qualities really useful,
as different kinds of women's work, and
all the domestic concerns of a family;
some are elegant accomplishments, as
dress, dancing, music, and drawing.
Such books as improve your understand-
ing, enlarge your knowledge, and culti-
vate your taste, may be considered in a
higher point of view than mere amuse-
ments. There are a variety of others,
which are neither useful nor ornamental,
such as play of different kinds.
I would particularly recommend to
you those exercises that oblige you to be
much abroad in the open air, such as
walking, and riding on horseback. This
will give vigor to your constitutions, and
a bloom to your complexions. If you
accustom yourselves to go abroad always
in chairs and carriages, you will soon
become so enervated, as to be unable to
go out of doors without them. They
are.like most articles of luxury, useful
and agreeable when judiciously used;
but when made habitual, they become
both insipid and pernicious.
An attention to your health is a duty
you owe to yourselves and to your friends.

Bad health seldom fails to have an
influence on the spirits and temper. The
finest geniuses, the most delicate minds
have very frequently a correspondent
delicacy of bodily constitutions, which
they are too apt to neglect. Their luxury
lies in reading and late hours, equal
enemies to health and beauty.
But though good health be one of the
greatest blessings of life, never make a
boast of it, but enjoy it in, grateful
silence. We so naturally associate the
idea of female softness and delicacy with
a correspondent delicacy of constitution,
that when a woman speaks of her great
strength, her extraordinary apj.r'iLc, her
ability to bear excessive fatigue, we
recoil at the description in a way she is
little aware of.
The intention of your being taught
needlework, knitting, and such like, is
not on account of the intrinsic value of
all you can do with your hands, which is
trifling, but to enable you to judge more
perfectly of that kind of work, and to
direct the execution of it in others. An-
other principal end is to enable you to
fill up, in a tolerably agreeable way, some
of the many solitary hours you must
necessarily pass at home. It is a great

article in the happiness of life, to have
your pleasures as independent of others
as possible. By continually gadding
about in search of amusement, you lose
the respect of all your acquaintances,
whom you oppress with those visits,
which, by a more discreet management,
might have been courted.
The domestic economy of a family is
entirely a woman's province, and fur-
nishes a variety of subjects for the exer-
tion both of good sense and good taste.
If you ever come to have the charge of
a family, it ought to engage much of
your time and attention; nor can you be
excused from this by any extent of for-
tune, though with a narrow one the ruin
that follows the neglect of it may be
more immediate.
I am at the greatest loss what to advise
you in regard to books. There is no
impropriety in your reading history, or
cultivating any art or science to which
genius or accident leads you. The whole
volume of Nature lies open to your eye,
and furnishes an infinite variety of enter-
tainment. If I was sure that Nature
had given you such strong principles of
taste and sentiment as would remain
with you, and influence your future con-

duct, with the utmost pleasure would I
endeavor to direct your reading in such
a way as might form that taste to the
utmost perfection of truth and elegance.
"But when I reflect 'how easy it is to
warm a girl's imagination, and how dif-
ficult deeply and permanently to affect
her heart; how readily she enters into
every refinement of sentiment, and how
easily she can sacrifice them to vanity or
convenience ;" I think I may very proba-
bly do you an injury by artificially
creating a taste, which, if Nature never
gave it you, would only serve to embarass
your future conduct. I do not want to
make you any thing; I want to know
what Nature has made you, and to
perfect you on her plan. I do not wish
you to have sentiments that might perplex
you: I wish you to have sentiments that
may uniformly and steadily guide you,
and such as your hearts so thoroughly
approve, that you would not forego them
for any consideration this world could
Dress is an important article in female
life. The love of dress is natural to you,
and therefore it is proper and reasonable.
Good sense will regulate your expense
in it, and good taste will direct you to

dress in such a way as to conceal any,
blemishes, and set off your beauties, Kf
you have any, to the greatest advantage.
But much delicacy and judgment are
required in the application of this rule.
A fine woman shows her charms to most
advantage, when she seems most to
conceal them. The finest bosom in
nature is not so fine as what imagination
forms. The most perfect elegance of
dress appears always the most easy, and
the least studied.
Do not confine your attention to dress
to public appearances. Accustom your-
selves to an habitual neatness, so that in
the most careless undress, in your un-
guarded hours, you may have no reason
to be ashamed of your appearance. You
will not easily believe how much we
consider your dress as expressive of your
characters. Vanity, levity, slovenliness,
folly, appear through it. An elegant
simplicity is an equal proof of taste and
In dancing, the principal points you
are to attend to are ease and grace. I
would have you to dance with spirit; but
never allow yourselves to be..so far
transported with mirth, as to forget the
delicacy of your sex. Many a girl,

dancing in the gayety and innocence of
her heart, is thought to discover a spirit
she little dreams of.
I know no entertainment that gives
such pleasure to any person of sentiment
or humor, as the theatre. But I am
sorry to say, that there are few English
comedies a lady can see, without a shock
to delicacy. You will not readily sus-
pect the comments gentleman make on
your behavior on such occasions. Men
are often best acquainted with the most
worthless of your sex, and from them
too readily form their judgment of the
rest. A virtuous girl often hears very
indelicate things with a countenance no
wise embarrassed, because in truth she
does not understand them. Yet this is,
most ungenerously, ascribed to that com-
mand of features, and that ready presence
of mind, which you are thought to
possess in a degree far beyond us; or,
by still more malignant observers, it is
ascribed to hardened effrontery.
Sometimes a girl laughs with all the
simplicity of unsuspecting innocence,
for no other reason but being infected
with other people's laughing; she is
then believed to know more than she
should do. If she does happen to under-

stand an improper thing, she suffers a
very complicated distress: she feels her
modestyhurt in the most sensible man-
ner, and at the same time is ashamed of
appearing conscious of the injury. The
only way to avoid these inconveniences,
is never to go to a play that is particu-
larly offensive to delicacy. Tragedy
subjects you to no such distress. Its
sorrows will soften and ennoble your
I need say little about gaming, the
ladies in this country being as yet almost
strangers to it., It is a ruinous and in-
curable vice; and as it leads to all the
selfish and turbulent passions, is peculiar-
ly odious in your sex. I have no objec-
tion to your playing a little at any kind
of game,as a variety in your amusements,
provided that what you can possibly lose
is such a trifle as can neither interest
nor hurt you.
In this, as well as in all important
points of conduct, show a determined
resolution and steadiness. This is not
in the least inconsistent with that soft-
ness and gentleness so amiable in your
sex. On the contrary, it gives that
spirit to a mild and sweet disposition,
without which it is apt to degenerate

into insipidity. It makes you respecta-
ble in your own eyes, and dignifies you
in ours.,


THE luxury and dissipation that prevail
in genteel life, as they corrupt the heart
in many respects, so they render it inca-
pable of warm, sincere, and steady friend-
ship. A happy choice of friends will be
of the utmost consequence to you, as
they may assist you by their advice and
good offices. But the immediate grati-
fication which friendship affords to a
warm, open, and ingenuous heart, is of
itself a sufficient motive to court it.
In the choice of your friends, have
principal regard to goodness of heart
and fidelity. If they possess taste and
genius, that will still make them more
agreeable and useful companions, You
have particular reason to place confi-
dence in those who have shown affection
for you in your early days, when you
were incapable of making them any

return. This is an obligation for which
you cannot be too grateful; when you
read this, you will naturally think of
your mother's friend, to whom you owe
so much.
If you have the good fortune to meet
with any who deserve the name of friends,
unbosom yourselves to them with the
most unsuspicious confidence. It is one
of the world's maxims, never to trust
any person with a secret, the discovery
of which could give you any pain; but
it is the maxim of a little mind and a
cold heart, unless where it is the effect
of frequent disappointments and bad
usage. An open temper, if restrained
by tolerable prudence, will make you on
the whole much happier than a reserved
suspicious one, although you may some-
times suffer by it. Coldness and distrust
are but the too certain consequences of
age and experience; but they are un-
pleasant feelings, and need not be antici-
pated before their time.
But however open you may be in
talking of your own affairs, never dis-
close the secrets of one friend to another.
These are sacred deposits, which do not
belong to you, nor have you any right to
make use of them.

There is another case in which I
suspect it is proper to be secret, not so
much from motives of prudence, as
delicacy. I mean love matters. Though
a woman has no reason to be ashamed
of an attachment to a man of merit, yet
nature, whose authority is superior to
philosophy, has annexed a sense of shame
to it. It is even long before a woman of
delicacy dares avow to her own heart
that she loves ; and when all the subter-
fuges of ingenuity to conceal it from
herself fail, she feels a violence done
both to her pride and to her modesty.
This, I should imagine, must always be
the case where she is not sure of .a
return to her attachment.
In such a situation, to lay the heart
open to any person whatever, does not
appear to me consistent with the perfec-
tion of female delicacy. But perhaps I
am in the wrong. At the same time I
must tell you, that, in point of prudence,
it concerns you to attend well to the
consequences of such a discovery. These
secrets, however important in your own
estimation, may appear very -ril0:- to
vour friend, who possibly will not enter
into your feelings, but may rather con-
sider them as a subject of pleasantry.

For this reason, love secrets are of all
others the worst kept. But the conse-
quences to you may be very serious, as
no man of spirit and delicacy ever valued
a heart much hackneyed in the ways of
If, therefore, you must have a friend
to pour out your heart to, be sure of her
honor and secrecy. Let her not be a
married woman, especially if she live
happily with her husband. There are
certain unguarded moments, in which
such a woman, though the best and wor-
thiest of her sex, may let hints escape,
which, at other times, or to any other
person than her husband, she would be
incapable of; nor will a husband in this
case feel himself under the same obliga-
tion of secrecy and honor, as if you had
put your confidence originally in himself,
especially on a subject which the world
is apt to treat so lightly.
If all other circumstances are equal,
there are obvious advantages in your
makiu~ friends of one another. The
tiese f blood, and your being so much
united in one common interest, form an
additional bond of union to your friend-
ship. If your brothers should have the
good fortune to have hearts susceptible

to friendship, to possess truth, honor,
sense, and delicacy of sentiment, they
are the fittest and most unexceptionable
confidants. By placing confidence in
them, you will recieve every advantage
which you could hope for from the
friendAhip of men, without any of the
inconveeniences that attend such con-
nexions with our sex.
Beware of making confidants of your
,servants. Dignity, not properly under-
stood, very readily degenerates into pride,
which enters into no friendships, because
it cannot bear an equal, and is so fond
of flattery as to grasp at it even from
servants and defendants. The most
intimate confidants, therefore, of proud
people, are valets de chambre and wait-
ing women. Show the utmost humanity
to your servants; make their situation
as comfortable to them as possible: but
if you make them your confidants, you
s:pnil tlihm, and debase yourselves.
.r allow any person, under the
pretended sanction of friendship, to be
so familiar as to lose a proper respect
for you. Never allow them to tease you
on any subject that is disagreeable, or
where you have once taken your resolu-
lion.', MAlny will tell you, that .this

reserve is inconsistent with the freedom
which friendship allows. But a certain
respect is as necessary in friendship as
in love. Without it, you may be liked
as a child, but you will never be beloved
as an equal.
The temper and dispositions of the
heart in your sex make you enter more
readily and warmly into friendships than
man. Your natural propensity to it is so
strong, that you often run into intimacies
which you soon have sufficient cause to
repent of; and this makes your friend-
ships so very fluctuating.
Another great obstacle to the sincerity
as well as the steadiness of your friend-
ships, is the great clashing of your
interests in the pursuits of love, ambition,
or vanity. For these reasons, it should
appear at first view more eligible for
you to contract your friendships with the
men. Among other obvious advantages
ot an easy intercourse between the two
sexes, it occasions an emulation and
exertion in each to excel and be agreeable:
hence their respective excellencies are
mutually communicated and blended.
As their interests in no degree interfere,
there can be no foundation for jealousy
or suspicion ofrivalship. The friendship

,of a man for a woman is always blended
with a tenderness, which he never feels
for one of his own sex, even where love
is in no degree concerned. Besides we
are conscious of a natural title you have
to our protection and good offices, and
therefore we feel an additional obligation
of honor to serve you, and to observe an
inviolable secrecy, whenever you confide
in us.
But apply these observations with
great caution. Thousands of women of
the best hearts and the finest parts, have
been ruined by men who approached
them under the specious name of friend-
ship. But supposing a man to have the
most undoubted honor, yet his friendship
to a woman is so near a kin to love, that
if she be very agreeable in her person,
she will probably very soon find a lover,
where she only wished to meet a friend.
Let me here, however, warn you against
that weakness so common among vain
women, the imagination that every man
who takes particular notice of you is a
lover. Nothing can expose you more to
ridicule, than the taking up a man on
the suspicion of being your lover, who
perhaps never once thought of you in
that view, and giving yourselves those

airs so common among silly women on
such occasions.
There is a kind of unmeaning gallantry
much practised by some men, which if
you have any discernment, you will find
really harmless. Men of this sort will
attend you to public places, and be useful
to you by a number of little observances,
which those of a superior class do not so
well understand, or have not leisure to
regard, or perhaps are too proud to sub-
mit to. Look on the compliments of
such men as words of course, which they
repeat to every agreeable woman of their
acquaintance. There is a familiarity
they are apt to assume, which a proper
dignity in your behavior will be easily
able to check.
There is a different species of men
whom you may like as agreeable com-
panions, men of worth, taste, and genius,
whose conversation, in some respects,
may be superior to what you generally
meet with among your own sex. It will
be foolish in you to deprive yourselves
of an useful and agreeable acquaintance,
merely because idle people say he is
your lover. Such a man may like your
company, without having any design on
your person.

People whose sentiments, and particu-
larly whose tastes correspond, naturally
like to associate together, although
neither of them havi the most distant
view of any further connexion. But as
this similarity of minds often gives rise
to a more tender attachment than friend-
ship, it will be prudent to keep a watchful
eye over yourselves, lest your hearts
become too far engaged before you are
aware of it. At the same time, I do not
think that your sex, at least in this part
of the world, have much of that sensibility
which disposes to such attachments.
What is commonly called love among
you is rather i. iI. !. and a partiality
to the man who prefers you to the rest
of your sex; and such a man you often
marry, with little of either personal
esteem or affection. Indeed, without an
unusual share of natural sensibility, and
very peculiar good fortune, a woman in
this country has very little probability of
marrying for love.
It is a maxim laid down among you,
and a very prudent one it is, That love
is not to begin on your part, but is to be
entirely the consequence of our attach-
ment to you. Now supposing a woman
to have sense and taste, she will not find

many men to whom she can possibly be
supposed to bear any considerable share
of esteem. Among these few, it is a very
great chance if any of them distinguishes
her particularly. Love, at least with us,
is exceedingly capricious, and will not
always fix where reason says it should.
But supposing one of them should become
particularly attached to her, it is still
extremely improbable that he should be
the man in the world her heart most ap-
proved of.
As, therefore, Nature has not given
you that unlimited range in your choice,
which we enjoy, she has wisely and be-
nevolently assigned to you a greater
flexibility of taste on this subject. Some
agreeable qualities recommend a gentle-
man to your common good liking and
friendship. In the course of his ac-
quaintance, he contracts an attachment
to you. When you perceive it, it excites
your gratitude; this gratitude rises into
a preference, and this preference perhaps
at last advances to some degree of
attachment, especially if it meets with
crosses and difficulties, for these, and a
state of suspense, are very great excite-
ments to attachment, and are the food of
love in both sexes. If attachment was

not excited in y6ur sex in this manner,
there is not one of a million of you that
could ever marry with any degree of
A man of taste and delicacy marries a
woman because he loves her more than
any other. A woman of equal taste and
delicacy marries him because she esteems
him, and because he gives her that pre-
ference. But if a man unfortunately
becomes attached to a woman whose
heart is secretly pre-engaged, his attach-
ment, instead of obtaining a suitable
return, is particularly offensive, and if he
persists to tease her, he makes himself
equally the object of her scorn and
The effects of love among men are
diversified by their different tempers.
An artful man may counterfeit every one
of them so as easily to impose on a young
girl of an open, generous, and feeling
eart, if she is not extremely on her
guard. The finest parts in such a girl
may not always prove sufficient for her
security. The dark and crooked paths
of cunning are unsearchable, and incon-
ceiveable to an honorable and elevated
The following, I apprehend, are the

most genuine effects of an honorable
passion among the men, and the most
difficult to counterfeit. A man of delica-
cy often betrays his passion by his too
great anxiety to conceal it, especially if
he has little hopes of success. Irue love,
in all its stages, seeks concealment, and
never expects success. It renders a man
not only, ri.:-icUild], but timid to the
highest degree in his behavior to the
woman he loves. To conceal the awe
he stands in of her, he may sometimes
affect pleasantry, but it sits awkwardly
on him, and he quickly relapses into
seriousness, if not into dulness. He
magnifies all her real perfections in his
imagination, and is either blind to her
failings, or converts them into beauties.
Like a person conscious of guilt, he is
jealous that every eye observes him; and
to avoid this, he shuns all the little
observances of common gallantry.
His heart and his character will be
improved in every respect by his attach-
ment. His manners will become more
gentle, and his conversation more agreea-
ble; but diffidence and embarrassment
will always make him appear to disad-
vantage in the company of his mistress.
If the fascination continue long, it will

totally depress his spirit, and extinguish
every active, vigorous, and manly princi-
ple of his mind. You will find this
subject beautifully and pathetically paint-
ed in Thomson's Spring.
When you observe in a gentleman's
behavior the marks which I have de-
scribed above, reflect seriously what you
are to do. If his attachment is agreeable
to you, I leave you to do as nature, good
sense, and delicacy shall direct you. If
you love him, let me advise you never to
discover to him the full extent of your
love-no, not although you marry him.
That sufficiently shows your preference,
which is all he is entitled to know. If
he has delicacy, he will ask for no
stronger proof of your affection for your
sake; if he has sense, he will not ask it
for his own. : This is an unpleasant truth,
but it is rimy duty to let you know it;
violent love cannot subsist, at least can-
not be expressed for any time together,
on both sides; otherwise the certain
consequence, however concealed, is sa-
tiety and disgust. Nature in this case
has laid the reserve on you.
If you see evident proofs of a gentle-
man's attachment and you are deter-
mined to shut your heart against him,

as you ever hope to be used with
generosity by the person who shall en-
gage your own heart, treat him honorably
and humanely. Do not let him linger
in a miserable suspense, but be anxious
to let him know your sentiments with
regard to him.
However people's hearts may deceive
them, there is scarcely a person that can
love for any time, without at least some
distant hope of success. If you really
wish to undeceive a lover, you may do it
in a variety of ways. There is a certain
species of easy familiarity in your be-
havior, which may satisfy him, if he has
any discernment left, that he has nothing
to hope for. But perhaps your particular
temper may not admit of this. You may
easily show that you want to avoid his
company; but if he is a man whose
friendship you wish to preserve, you may
not choose this method, because then you
lose him in every capacity. You may
get a common friend to explain matters
to him, or fall in with many other devices,
if you are seriously anxious to put him
out of suspense.
But if you are resolved against every.
such method, at least do not shun oppor-
tunities of letting him explain himself.

If you do this, you act barbarously and
unjustly. If he brings you to an expla-
nation, give him a polite, but resolute
and decisive answer. In whatever way
you convey your sentiments to him, if he
is a man of spirit and delicacy, he will
give you no further trouble, nor apply to
your friends for their intercession. This
last is a method of courtship which every
man of spirit will disdain. He will never
whine nor sue for your pity. That would
mortify him almost as much as your
scorn. In short, you may possibly break
such a heart, but you cannot bend it.
Great pride always accompanies delica-
cy, however concealed under the appear-
ance of the utmost gentleness and
modesty, and is the passion of all others
the most difficult to conquer.
There is a case where a woman may
coquette justifiably to the utmost verge
which her conscience will allow. It is
where a gentleman purposely declines to
make his addresses, till such time as he
thinks himself perfectly sure of her con-
sent. This at bottom is intended to
force a woman to give up the undoubted
privilege of her sex, the privilege of her
refusing; it is intended to force her to
explain herself, in effect, before the gen-

tleman deigns to do it, and by this means
to oblige her to violate the modesty and
delicacy of her sex, and to invert the
clearest order of nature. All this sacri-
fice is proposed to be made merely to
gratify a most despicable vanity in a man
who would degrade the very woman
whom he wishes to make his wife.
It is of great importance to distinguish
whether a gentleman who has the ap-
pearance of being your lover delays to
speak explicitly, from the motive I have
mentioned, or from a diffidence insepara-
ble from true attachment. In the one
case, you can scarcely use him too ill:
in the other, you ought to use him with
great kindness; and the greatest kindness
you can show him, if you are determined
not to listen to his addresses, is to let
him know it as soon as possible.
I know the many excuses with which
women endeavor to justify themselves to
the world, and to their own consciences,
when they act otherwise. Sometimes
they plead ignorance, or at least uncer-
tainty of the gentleman's real sentiments.
That may often be the case. Sometimes
they plead decorums of their sex, which
enjoin an equal behavior to all men, and
forbid them to consider any man as a

lover, till he has directly told them so.
Perhaps few women carry their ideas of
female delicacy and decorum so far as I
do. But I must say you are not entitled
to plead the obligation of these virtues,
in opposition to the superior ones of gra-
titude, justice, and humanity. The man
is entitled to all these, who prefers you
to the rest of your sex, and perhaps whose
greatest weakness is this very preference.
The truth of the matter is, vanity and
the love of admiration are so prevailing
passions among you, that you may be
considered to make a very great sacrifice
when you give up a lover, till every art
of coquetry fails to keep him, or till he
forces you to an explanation. You can
be fond of the love when you are indiffe-
rent to, or even despise the lover.
But the deepest and most artful coquetry
is employed by women of superior taste
and sense, to engage and fix the heart
of a man whom the world and who they
themselves esteem, although they are
determined never to marry him. But
his conversation amuses them, and his
attachment is the highest gratification
to their vanity; nay, they can sometimes
be gratified with the utter ruin of his
fortune, fame, and happiness. God for-

bid I should ever think so of all of your
sex. I know many of them have princi-
ples, have generosity and dignity of soul,
that elevates them above the worthless
vanity I have been speaking of.
Such a woman I am persuaded, may
always convert a lover, if she cannot give
him her affections, into a warm and
steady friend, provided he is a man of
sense, resolution, and candor. If she
explains herself to him with a generous
openness and freedom, he must feel the
stroke as a man; but he will likewise
bear it as a man: what he suffers he
will suffer in silence. Every sentiment
of esteem will remain; but love, though
it requires very little food, and is easily
surfeited with too much, yet it requires
some. He will view her in the light of
a married woman: and though passion
subsides, yet a man of a candid and
generous heart always retains a tender-
ness for a woman he has once loved, and
who has used him well, beyond what he
feels for any other of her sex.
If he has not confided his own secret
to any body, he has an undoubted title to
ask you not to divulge it. If a woman
chooses to trust any of her companions
with her own unfortunate attachments,

she may, as it is her own affair alone:
but if she has any generosity or gratitude,
she will not betray a secret which does
not belong to her.
Male coquetry is much more inexcusa-
ble than female, as well as more perni-
cious; but it is rare in this country.
Very few men will give themselves the
trouble to gain or retain any woman's
affections, unless they have views on her
either of an honorable or dishonorable
kind. Men employed in the pursuits of
business, ambition, or pleasure, will not
give themselves the trouble to engage a
woman's affections merely from the
vanity of conquest, and of triumphing
over the heart of an innocent and
defenceless girl. Beside, people never
value muwh1 what is entirely in their
power. A man of parts', sentiment, and
address, if he lays aside all regard to
truth and humanity, may engage the
hearts of fifty women at the same time,
and may likewise conduct his coquetry
with so much art, as to put it out of the
power of any of them to specify a single
expression that could be said to be
directly expressive of love.
This ambiguity of behaviorithis art
of keeping one in suspense, is the great

secret of coquetry in both sexes. It is
the more cruer in us, because we can
carry it wh'af length we please, and con-
tinue it as long as we please, without
your being so much as.at liberty to
complain or expostulate; whereas we
can break our chain, ana force you to
explain, whenever we become impatient
of our situation.
I have insisted the more particularly
on this subject of courtship, because it
may most readily happen to you at that
early period of life when you can have
little experience or knowledge of the
world, when your passions are warm,
and your judgments not arrived at such
full maturity as to be able to correct
them. I wish you to possess such high
principles of honor and generosity as
will render you incapable of deceiving,
and at the same time to possess that
acute discernment which may secure you
against being deceived.
A woman, in this country, may easily
prevent the first impressions of love, and
every motive of prudence and delicacy
should make her guard against them, till
such time as she has received the most
convincing proof of the attachment of a
man of such merit, as will justify a re-

ciprocal regard. Your hearts indeed
may be shut inflexibly and permanently
against all the merit a man can possess.
That may be your misfortune, but cannot
be your fault. In such a situation, you
would be equally unjust to yourself and
your lover, if you gave him your hand,
when your heart revolted against him.
But miserable will be your fate, if you
allow an attachment to steal on you
before you are sure of a return; or, what
is infinitely worse, where Are wanting
those qualities which alone can insure
happiness in a married state.
I know nothing that renders a woman
more despicable, than her thinking it
essential to happiness to be married.
Beside the gross indelicacy of the senti-
ment, it is a false one, as thousands of
women have experienced. But if it
was true, the belief that it is so, and the
consequent impatience to be married, is
the most effectual way to prevent it.
You must not think from this, that I
do not wish you to marry. On the con-
trary, I am of opinion, that you may
attain a superior degree of happiness in
a married state, to what you can possibly
find in any other. I know the forlorn
an unprotected situation of an old maid,

the chagrin, and peevishness which are
apt to infect their tempers, and the great
difficulty of making a transition with
dignity and cheerfulness, from the period
of youth, beauty, admiration, and respect,
into the calm, silent, unnoticed retreat of
declining years.
I see some unmarried women of active,
vigorous minds, and a great vivacity of
spirits, degrading themselves; sometimes
by entering into a dissipated course of
life, unsuitable to their years, and expos-
ing themselves to the ridicule of girls,
who might have been their grandchildren;
sometimes by oppressing their acquain-
tances by impertinent intrusion into their
private affairs; and sometimes by being
the propagators of scandal and defama-
tion. All this is owing to an exuberant
activity of spirit, which if it had found
employment at home, would have ren-
dered them respectable and useful mem-
bers of society.
I see other women in the same situa-
tion, gentle, modest, blessed with sense,
taste, delicacy, and every milder femi-
nine virtue of the heart, but of weak
spirits, bashful, and timid: I see such
women sinking into obscurity and in-
significance, and gradually losing every

elegant accomplishment; for this evident
reason, that they are not united to a
partner who has sense, and worth, and
taste to know their value; one who is
able to draw forth their concealed quali-
ties, and show them to advantage; who
can give that support to their feeble
spirits which they stand so much in need
of; and who, by his affection and tender-
ness, might make such a woman happy
in exerting every talent, and accomplish-
ing herself in every elegant art that could
contribute to his amusement.
In short, I am of opinion, that a
married state, if entered into from
proper motives of esteem and affection,
will be the happiest for yourselves, and
make you most respectable in the eyes
of the world, and the most useful mem-
bers of society. But I must confess I
:am not enough of a patriot, to wish you
to marry for the good of the public. I
wish you to marry for no other reason
but to make yourselves happier. When
I am so particular in my advices aleut
your conduct, I own my heart beats with
the fond hope of making you worthy the
attachment of men who will deserve you,
and be sensible of your merit." But hea-
ven forbid you should ever relinquish the

FRIENDSHIP, LOVE, .I l!:if.,.o.. 57
ease and independence of a -ri.gle life,
to become the slaves of a I".'1, or a
tyrant's caprice.
As these have been always my senti-
ments, I shall do you but justice, when I
leave you in such independent circum-
stances as may lay you under no tempta-
tion to do from necessity what you would
never do from choice. This will likewise
save you from that cruel mortification to
a woman of spirit, the suspicion that a
gentleman thinks he does you an honor
or a favor when he asks you for his wife.
If I live till you arrive at that age
when you shall be capable to judge for
yourselves, and do not strangely alter
my sentiments, I shall act towards you
in a very different manner from what
most parents do. My opinion has always
been, that when that period arrives, the
parental authority ceases.
I hope I shall always treat you with
that affection and easy confidence which
may dispose you to look on me as your
friend. In that capacity alone I shall
think myself entitled to ..;-. ~, : ni,
opinion; in the doing of v. Im. h. I si...ill
think myself highly criminal if I did
not to the utmost of my power, endeavor
to divest myself of all personal vanity,

and all prejudices in favor of my parti-
cular taste. If you did not choose to
follow my advice, I should not on that
account cease to love you as my children.
Though my right to your obedience was
expired, yet I should think nothing could
release me from the ties of nature and
You may perhaps imagine, that the
reserved behavior which I recommend to
you, and your appearing seldom at pub-
lic places, must cut off all opportunities
of your being acquainted with gentlemen;
I am very far from intending this. I
advise you to no reserve, but what will
render you more respected and beloved
by our sex. I do not think public places
suited to make people acquainted together.
They can only be distinguished there by
their looks and external behavior. But
it is in private companies alone where
you can expect easy and agreeable con-
versation, which I should never wish you
to decline. If you do not allow gentle-
ipen to become acquainted with you, you
can never expect to marry with attach-
ment on either side. Love is very seldom
produced at first sight; at least it must
have, in that case, a very unjustifiable
foundation. True love is founded on

esteem, in a correspondence of taste and
sentiments, and steals on the heart im-
There is one advice I shall leave you,
to which I beg your particular attention:
before your affections become in the least
engaged to any man, examine your
tempers, your tastes, and your hearts,
very severely, and settle it in your own
minds, what are the requisites to your
happiness in a married state; and as it
is almost impossible that you should get
every thing you wish, come to a steady
determination what you are to consider
as essential, and what may be sacrificed.
If you have hearts disposed by nature
for love and friendship, and possess those
feelings which enable you to enter into
all the refinements and delicacies of these
attachments, consider well, for heaven's
sake, and as you value your future hap-
piness, before you give them any indul-
gence. If you have the misfortune (for
a very great misfortune it commonly is
to your sex) to have such a temper and
such sentiments deeply rooted in you, if
you have spirit and resolution to resist
the solicitations of vanity, the persecu-
tion of friends, (for you will have lost
the only friend that would never perse-

cute you) and can support the prospect
of the many inconveniences attending
the state of an old maid, which I formerly
pointed out, then you may indulge your-
selves in that kind of sentimental reading
and conversation, which is most cor-
respondent to your feelings.
But if you find, on a strict self exami-
nation, that marriage is absolutely
essential to your happiness, keep the
secret inviolable in your own bosoms,
for the reason I formerly mentioned; but
shun as you would the most fatal poison,
all that species of reading and conversa-
tion which warms the imagination,
which engages and softens the heart, and
raises the taste above the level of com-
mori life. If you do otherwise, consider
the terrible conflict of passions this may
afterward raise in your breasts.
If this refinement once takes deep root
in your minds, and you do not obey its
dictates, but marry from vulgar and
mercenary views, you may never be able
to eradicate it entirely, and then it will
imbitter all your married days. Instead
of meeting with sense, delicacy, tender-
ness, a lover, a friend, an equal compan-
ion, in a husband, you may be tired with
insipidity and dulness; shocked with in-

delicacy, or mortified by indifference.
You will find none to compassionate, or
even understand your sufferings; for your
husbands may not use you (Ci.:lly,4ind
may give you as much money for your
clothes, personal expense, and domestic
necessaries as is suitable to their fortunes.
The world therefore would look on you
as unreasonable women, who did not
deserve to be happy, if you were not so.
To avoid these complicated evils, if you
are determined at all events to marry, I
would advise you to make all your read-
ing and amusements of such a kind, as
do not affect the heart nor the imagina-
tion, except in the way of wit or humor.
I have no view by these advices to
lead your tastes; I only want to persuade
you of the necessity of knowing your
own minds, which, though seemingly
very easy, is what your sex seldom attain
on many important occasions in life, but
particularly on this of which I am
speaking. There is not a quality I more
anxiously wish you to possess, than that
collected, decisive spirit which rests on
itself, which enables you to see where
your true happiness lies, and to pursue
it with the most determined resolution.
In matters of business, follow the advice

of those who know them better than
yoursaves, and in whose integrity you
can confide ; but in matters of taste, that
defend on your own feelings, consult
no one friend whatever, but consult your
own hearts.
; If a gentleman makes his address to
you, or gives you reason to believe he
will do so, before you allow your affec-
tions to be engaged, endeavor in the most
prudent and secret manner, to procure
from your friends every necessary piece
of information concerning him ; such as
his character for sense, his morals, his
temper, fortune, and family; whether it
is distinguished for parts and worth, or
for folly, knavery, and loathsome heredi-
tary diseases When your friends
inform you of these, they have fulfilled
their duty. If they go further, they have
not that deference for you which a
becoming dignity on your part would
effectually command.
Whatever your views are in marrying,
take every possible precaution to prevent
their being disappointed. If fortune,
and the pleasures it brings, are your aim,
it is not sufficient that the settlements
of a jointure and children' provisions be
ample, and properly secured; it is ne-

cessary that you should enjoy the fortune
during your own life. The principal
security you can have for this will
depend on your marrying a good natured
generous man, who despises money, and
who will let you live where you can best
enjoy that pleasure, that pomp and
parade of life for which you married
From what I have said you will easily
see that I could never pretend to advise
whom you should marry; but I can with
great confidence advise whom you should
not marry.
Avoid a companion that may entail
any hereditary disease on your posterity,
particularly (that most dreadful of all
human calamities,) madness. It is the
height of imprudence to run into such a
danger, and in. my opinion highly
Do not marry a fool he is the most
intractable of all animals; he is led by
his passions and caprices, and is incapa-
ble of hearing the voice of reason. It
may probably too hurt your vanity, to
have husbands for whom you have reason
to blush and tremble every time they
open their lips in company. But the
worst circumstance that attends a fool, is

his constant jealousy of his wife being
thought to govern him. This renders it
impossible to lead him, and he is contin-
ually doing absurd and disagreeable
things, for no other reason but to show
he dares do them.
A rake is always a suspicious husband,
because he has' only known the most
worthless of your sex. He likewise
entails the worst diseases on his wife
and children, if he has the misfortune to
Have any.
If you have a sense of religion your-
selves, do not think of husbands who
have none. If they have tolerable
understandings, they will be glad that
you have religion, for their own sakes,
and for the sake of their families; but
it will sink you in their esteem. If they
are weak men, they will be continually
teasing and shocking you about your
principles. If you have children, you
will suffer the most bitter distress, in
seeing all your endeavors to form their
minds to virtue and piety, all your endea-
vors to secure their present and eternal
happiness, frustrated, and turned into
As I look on your choice of a husband
to be of the greatest consequence to your

happiness, I hope you will make it with
the utmost circumspection. Do not give
way to a sudden sallv of passioP, and
dignify it with the name of love. ,Genu-
ine love is not founded in caprice) it is
founded in nature, on honorable views,
on virtue, on similarity of tastes and
sympathy of souls.
If you have these sentiments, you will |
never marry any one, when you are not
in that situation in point of fortune,
which is necessary to the happiness of
either of you. What that competency
may be, can only be determined by your
own tastes. It would be ungenerous in
you to take advantage of a lover's
attachment to plunge him into distress;
if he has any honor, no personal gratifi-
cation will ever tempt him to enter into
any connexion, which will render, you
unhappy. If you have as much between
you as to satisfy all your reasonable
demands, it is sufficient.
I shall conclude with endeavoring to
remove a difficulty which must naturally
occur to any woman of reflection on the
subject of marriage. What is to become
of all these refinements of delicacy, that
dignity of manners, which checked all
familiarities, and suspended desire in

respectful and awful admiration ? In
answer to this, I shall only observe, that
if motives of interest or vanity have had
any share in your resolution to marry,
none of these chimerical notions will
give you any pain; nay, they will very
quickly appear as ridiculous in your own
eyes, as they probably always did in the
eyes of your husbands. They have been
sentiments which have floated in your
imaginations, but have never reached
our hearts. But if these sentiments
ave been truly genuine, and if you have
had the singular happy fate to attach
those who understand them, you have
no reason to be afraid.
Marriage indeed, will at once dispel
the enchantment raised by external
beauty; but the virtues and graces that
first warmed the heart, that reserve and
delieqa.\ 'Ihi6h always left the lover with
..!..ili!N; further to wish, and often
made him doubtful of your sensibility or
attachment, may and ought ever to
remain. The tumult of passion will
necessarily subside; but it will be suc-
ceeded by an endearment, that affects
the heart in a more equal, more sensible,
arid tender manner. But I must check
myself, and not indulge in descriptions

that may mislead you, and that too sensi-
bly awake the remembrance of my happier
days, which, perhaps, it were better for
me to forget forever.
I have thus given you my opinion on
some of the most important articles of
your future life, chiefly calculated for
that period when you are just entering
the world. I have endeavored to avoid
some peculiarities of opinion,which, from
their contradiction to lh.: ,: rn,'ra.l prae:iie-
of the world, I might rea-onatly have
suspected were not s,o well founded.
But in writing to you, I am afraid my
heart has been too warmly interested,
to allow me to keep this resolution.
This may have produced some embarass-
ment, and some seeming contradictions.
What I have written has been the amuse-
ment of some solitary hours, and has
served to divert some melancholy reflec-
tions. Iam conscious I undertook a task
to which I was very unequal; but I have
discharged a part of my duty. You will
at least be pleased with it, as the last
mark of your father's love and attention.




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