Chapter 6


The meeting between Joseph and Pamela was not without tears of joy on both sides; and their embraces were full of tenderness and affection. They were, however, regarded with much more pleasure by the nephew than by the aunt, to whose flame they were fuel only; and this was increased by the addition of dress, which was indeed not wanted to set off the lively colours in which Nature had drawn health, strength, comeliness, and youth. In the afternoon Joseph, at their request, entertained them with an account of his adventures: nor could Lady Booby conceal her dissatisfaction at those parts in which Fanny was concerned, especially when Mr. Booby launched forth into such rapturous praises of her beauty. She said, applying to her niece, that she wondered her nephew, who had pretended to marry for love, should think such a subject proper to amuse his wife with; adding, that, for her part, she should be jealous of a husband who spoke so warmly in praise of another woman. Pamela answered, indeed, she thought she had cause; but it was an instance of Mr. Booby’s aptness to see more beauty in women than they were mistresses of. At which words both the women fixed their eyes on two looking-glasses; and Lady Booby replied, that men were, in the general, very ill judges of beauty; and then, whilst both contemplated only their own faces, they paid a cross compliment to each other’s charms. When the hour of rest approached, which the lady of the house deferred as long as decently she could, she informed Joseph (whom for the future we shall call Mr. Joseph, he having as good a title to that appellation as many others—I mean that incontested one of good clothes) that she had ordered a bed to be provided for him. He declined this favour to his utmost; for his heart had long been with his Fanny; but she insisted on his accepting it, alledging that the parish had no proper accommodation for such a person as he was now to esteem himself. The squire and his lady both joining with her, Mr. Joseph was at last forced to give over his design of visiting Fanny that evening; who, on her side, as impatiently expected him till midnight, when, in complacence to Mr. Adams’s family, who had sat up two hours out of respect to her, she retired to bed, but not to sleep; the thoughts of her love kept her waking, and his not returning according to his promise filled her with uneasiness; of which, however, she could not assign any other cause than merely that of being absent from him.

Mr. Joseph rose early in the morning, and visited her in whom his soul delighted. She no sooner heard his voice in the parson’s parlour than she leapt from her bed, and, dressing herself in a few minutes, went down to him. They passed two hours with inexpressible happiness together; and then, having appointed Monday, by Mr. Adams’s permission, for their marriage, Mr. Joseph returned, according to his promise, to breakfast at the Lady Booby’s, with whose behaviour, since the evening, we shall now acquaint the reader.

She was no sooner retired to her chamber than she asked Slipslop “What she thought of this wonderful creature her nephew had married?”—“Madam?” said Slipslop, not yet sufficiently understanding what answer she was to make. “I ask you,” answered the lady, “what you think of the dowdy, my niece, I think I am to call her?” Slipslop, wanting no further hint, began to pull her to pieces, and so miserably defaced her, that it would have been impossible for any one to have known the person. The lady gave her all the assistance she could, and ended with saying, “I think, Slipslop, you have done her justice; but yet, bad as she is, she is an angel compared to this Fanny.” Slipslop then fell on Fanny, whom she hacked and hewed in the like barbarous manner, concluding with an observation that there was always something in those low-life creatures which must eternally extinguish them from their betters. “Really,” said the lady, “I think there is one exception to your rule; I am certain you may guess who I mean.”—“Not I, upon my word, madam,” said Slipslop. “I mean a young fellow; sure you are the dullest wretch,” said the lady. “O la! I am indeed. Yes, truly, madam, he is an accession,” answered Slipslop. “Ay, is he not, Slipslop?” returned the lady. “Is he not so genteel that a prince might, without a blush, acknowledge him for his son? His behaviour is such that would not shame the best education. He borrows from his station a condescension in everything to his superiors, yet unattended by that mean servility which is called good behaviour in such persons. Everything he doth hath no mark of the base motive of fear, but visibly shows some respect and gratitude, and carries with it the persuasion of love. And then for his virtues: such piety to his parents, such tender affection to his sister, such integrity in his friendship, such bravery, such goodness, that, if he had been born a gentleman, his wife would have possessed the most invaluable

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