my asserting my innocence; for, by all that is sacred, I have never offered more than kissing.” “Kissing!” said the lady, with great discomposure of countenance, and more redness in her cheeks than anger in her eyes; “do you call that no crime? Kissing, Joseph, is as a prologue to a play. Can I believe a young fellow of your age and complexion will be content with kissing? No, Joseph, there is no woman who grants that but will grant more; and I am deceived greatly in you if you would not put her closely to it. What would you think, Joseph, if I admitted you to kiss me?” Joseph replied he would sooner die than have any such thought. “And yet, Joseph,” returned she, “ladies have admitted their footmen to such familiarities; and footmen, I confess to you, much less deserving them; fellows without half your charms—for such might almost excuse the crime. Tell me therefore, Joseph, if I should admit you to such freedom, what would you think of me?—tell me freely.” “Madam,” said Joseph, “I should think your ladyship condescended a great deal below yourself.” “Pugh!” said she; “that I am to answer to myself: but would not you insist on more? Would you be contented with a kiss? Would not your inclinations be all on fire rather by such a favour?” “Madam,” said Joseph, “if they were, I hope I should be able to controul them, without suffering them to get the better of my virtue.” You have heard, reader, poets talk of the statue of Surprise; you have heard likewise, or else you have heard very little, how Surprise made one of the sons of Crœsus speak, though he was dumb. You have seen the faces, in the eighteen-penny gallery, when, through the trap-door, to soft or no music, Mr. Bridgewater, Mr. William Mills, or some other of ghostly appearance, hath ascended, with a face all pale with powder, and a shirt all bloody with ribbons;—but from none of these, nor from Phidias or Praxiteles, if they should return to life—no, not from the inimitable pencil of my friend Hogarth, could you receive such an idea of surprise as would have entered in at your eyes had they beheld the Lady Booby when those last words issued out from the lips of Joseph. “Your virtue!” said the lady, recovering after a silence of two minutes; “I shall never survive it. Your virtue!—intolerable confidence! Have you the assurance to pretend, that when a lady demeans herself to throw aside the rules of decency, in order to honour you with the highest favour in her power, your virtue should resist her inclination? that, when she had conquered her own virtue, she should find an obstruction in yours?” “Madam,” said Joseph, “I can’t see why her having no virtue should be a reason against my having any; or why, because I am a man, or because I am poor, my virtue must be subservient to her pleasures.” “I am out of patience,” cries the lady: “did ever mortal hear of a man’s virtue? Did ever the greatest or the gravest men pretend to any of this kind? Will magistrates who punish lewdness, or parsons who preach against it, make any scruple of committing it? And can a boy, a stripling, have the confidence to talk of his virtue?” “Madam,” says Joseph, “that boy is the brother of Pamela, and would be ashamed that the chastity of his family, which is preserved in her, should be stained in him. If there are such men as your ladyship mentions, I am sorry for it; and I wish they had an opportunity of reading over those letters which my father hath sent me of my sister Pamela’s; nor do I doubt but such an example would amend them.” “You impudent villain!” cries the lady in a rage; “do you insult me with the follies of my relation, who hath exposed himself all over the country upon your sister’s account? a little vixen, whom I have always wondered my late Lady Booby ever kept in her house. Sirrah! get out of my sight, and prepare to set out this night; for I will order you your wages immediately, and you shall be stripped and turned away.” “Madam,” says Joseph, “I am sorry I have offended your ladyship, I am sure I never intended it.” “Yes, sirrah,” cries she, “you have had the vanity to misconstrue the little innocent freedom I took, in order to try whether what I had heard was true. O’ my conscience, you have had the assurance to imagine I was fond of you myself.” Joseph answered, he had only spoke out of tenderness for his virtue; at which words she flew into a violent passion, and refusing to hear more, ordered him instantly to leave the room.

He was no sooner gone than she burst forth into the following exclamation:—“Whither doth this violent passion hurry us? What meannesses do we submit to from its impulse! Wisely we resist its first and least approaches; for it is then only we can assure ourselves the victory. No woman could ever safely say, so far only will I go. Have I not exposed myself to the refusal of my footman? I cannot bear the reflection.” Upon which she applied herself to the bell, and rung it with infinite more violence than was necessary—the faithful Slipslop attending near at hand: to say the truth, she had conceived a suspicion at her last interview with her mistress, and had waited ever since in the antechamber, having carefully

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