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leave you comfortably settled at Bath with your sister.”
“ Leave me comfortably settled at Bath with my sister. Oh, Frederic! am I so cold-hearted as to be left comfortable at home, and the man of my heart exposed to death or danger? No, no, I am ready—go we will together; in health and happiness I will share your smiles, and in the hour of sorrow I will be near to comfort you. Yes, my adored husband, the tie that binds us together, death alone shall sever.”
She threw her snowy arms around his neck, and as her tears fell upon his cheek, in the bitterness of the moment he cursed the hour which fated him to be a soldier.
Frederic O'Hara was born in the north of Ireland. In his earlier days, like a great proportion of his countrymen, he was handsome, gay, enterprising, and extravagant; but as he ripened into manhood, his native good sense corrected the errors of youthful indiscretion; judgment took the reins, and a strong and cultivated mind soon rendered him an estimable member of the community. The family of the
O'Hara's was aboriginal, and at no very distant period had been both rich and powerful; but, amidst the many fluctuations of property in the political convulsions, in these times so frequent, so much of their estates had been forfeited, that the inheritance of this haughty Sept had dwindled from a territory to a mountain district. On this stood a castellated building, erected on the ruins of the hold of the O'Haras, which, with many fortresses of this description, were dismantled during the Protectorate of
Cromwell. : • The family estate had been confided by the present possessor to the management of his uncle, and still remained under his faithful sure veillance, when the unfortunate contest breaking out between the mother country and the colonies called the soldier into service. Never was there a harder struggle between love and glory; the latter, however, rose paramount, and the gallant Captain accompanied his regiment to the field.
Six months prior to the quarrel with the States, O'Hara married a lady named Moore ; and although it seldom happens that love and
interest go together in Ireland, yet in this case, there was an exception greatly in favour of the young soldier, as the object of his tenderest affections, unquestionably the reigning beauty of the fair circle in which she moved, was also seized in coheirship of a very considerable landed property. Fanny Moore was in her nineteenth year, and was more than handsome, possessed all the accomplishments of a finished education, with good sense and cheerful habits; she, with an only sister, was the issue of a second marriage. Her father's first wife was an English lady, with whom he got a considerable fortune ; she had one child, a son. The ·mother was a complaining, ill-tempered invalid; and obedient to her humour, the child was educated, or rather suffered to remain uneducated at home, till he had gained his tenth year. At this period, Jonathan (as he was called after his maternal grandfather) lost his mamma, but, most unfortunately for him, she was not removed from this world until she had radically destroyed the temper and disposition of the heir : vain was all his father's endeavours to restore him to some sort of discipline the boy was sulky and ungovernable ; gentle and harsh measures were alternately tried, but, alas ! with no good effect. By dint of sheer labour, that portion of reading and writing necessary for an Irish esquire was communicated to this refractory pupil; that is, the quantum sufficit for a receipt, or letter to a driver (bailiff) or dog-breaker. Jonathan had entered his thirteenth year, when his father, still in the prime of life, married the daughter of a respectable gentleman in the neighbourhood, whose pretensions to beauty and prudence were indisputable. But Jonathan differed in opinion from his father, and furiously resented the introduction of a step-mother. Mrs. Moore, amiable as lovely, endeavoured to win the stubborn brute by kindness and forbearance; the attempt always failed, and after a long distressing scene of family dissensions, protracted for seven years, the heir suddenly absconded from the house, and took up his abode with the Guager of the next village.
This last step mortally offended Moore ; his instant return was commanded under the most solemn denunciations of eternal displeasure ; but the youth, under the tutelage of the officer of customs, refused to obey the orders, declared himself unawed by those threats of parental vengeance, and in the course of a few days completed his ruin by espousing the Guager's daughter. Moore was a determined man; he immediately made a will in favour of his wife and her children, by which Jonathan was cut off from every thing not in direct tail, and, labouring to provide amply for the young favourites, he purchased properties, and erected mills. His industry was rewarded by a rapid accumulation of fortune, and when in the midst of this prosperous career, he fell a victim to his humanity, dying of a typhus fever communicated during a visit to an afflicted tenant. His relict, delicate in her constitution, and deploring the death of her excellent husband, found her health rapidly declining, and determined to reside for some years at Bath. To this she was especially induced by an accident which happened to her younger daughter, at first apparently so trifling as to be scarcely noticed, but unfortunately in a short time terminating in total lameness—wretched health