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Marianne hung down her head with every appearance of shame and humiliation, as her sister spoke these words. She was, however, of a frank and candid disposition, and she therefore confessed that she had been wrong in her behavior; but again added, that her feelings were not at her own command, and that she could not, consequently, promise to like her brother better.
"What is it you find fault with in him?" asked Selina, who very naturally wondered that one, whom she admired so much, had not found favor in her sister's eyes.
"I really can hardly say," replied Marianne; "but I think the chief thing is, he is such a man of business: I never did like mere men of business, and I never shall."
"Dear Marianne," said Selina, very gravely, 'you should be quite sure that you understand what you are talking about, before you pronounce upon any one in this manner. You compel me to speak of family matters in order to vindicate my husband, and to show you the folly of judging hastily of characters which you have no means of understanding."
"You must not mistake me, Selina," said Marianne, interrupting her sister, "nor suppose that I am unwilling to believe Mr. Wentworth an excellent man. I give him credit for a thousand good qualities, but still I must say, that a man whose whole soul is in business, who goes early in the morning to his counting-house, and comes home late, too tired to be agreeable, who never spends a day of pleasure, nor gives his thoughts to anything but pounds, shillings, and pence, is, and must be to
me, the kind of man who can neither excite interest nor affection."
"Marianne!" exclaimed Selina, "you do not know what you say. When I married Mr. Wentworth, he was what the world calls a rich man, and only waited for a suitable opportunity for disposing of his business, before we should retire into the country to enjoy that life of leisure which, notwithstanding your low opinion of him, he is well calculated to enjoy. Two years ago my father fell into pecuniary difficulties, with which you were too young to be made acquainted. But for the noble generosity of Mr. Wentworth, he must have become a bankrupt; but this brother, whom you so little understand, with a nobility of heart too seldom met with, determined, from that time, to continue, and even to extend his arduous and lucrative business; and he now works on as you see, from morning till night, never, as you complain, allowing himself a day of pleasure, in order that my father may retain his position in society, and that he, my mother, and you, may suffer no diminution of your accustomed enjoyments."
"Is it possible?" exclaimed Marianne, for she was at once astonished and shocked at her own injustice. "Is it possible that while I was thinking so hardly of Mr. Wentworth, I was actually living upon the fruits of his labor?"
"It is as I have told you,” replied Selina, "and I have made you acquainted with the true state of the case, in order that you may take warning for the future, and learn not to think and speak of persons whom you do not know, merely from the caprice of the moment; that you may learn too, to
take in some measure upon trust, those whom your friends have found, after long acquaintance, to be worthy of their regard; and that even before you can love them, you may at least behave kindly to them, for the sake of such friends, remembering, in connexion with what I have now told you, the old adage you are so fond of, 'Love me, love my dog."
THE VALUE OF A NAME.
"I SHOULD like," said Frederic Ashton to his mother, a few days after their conversation on the subject of "True Greatness," ""to do something to make myself a name. I do not mean so much, to to be talked about, as to be seen. I should like to build some great castle that men would wonder at as they passed by, and from which I could look out upon the surrounding country; and then, whatever might be thought of me, merely as a man, I should have a great establishment, and great influence."
My dear child," said Mrs. Ashton, "is it possible you can wish to be the master of a great establishment, when you have not yet learned to master yourself?"
"But, dearest mother," said the boy, looking half ashamed of his presumption, "you know, you can master me; for, however determined or selfwilled I may be, so soon as I see that cloud upon your brow, and that look of sorrow about your mouth which makes you speak in a low, deep voice, as if grief was at your heart, I feel all over, I can not tell you how-but as weak and foolish as a little child; and so vexed with myself, that I determine never to act contrary to your wishes again."
"And how long," asked Mrs. Ashton, " do you generally keep this resolution ?"
"Frederic had by this time crept round his mother's chair, and was extremely glad to find himself screened from her observation, while the last question was asked, and repeated; but he was still more glad to see his brother approaching, and to have an excuse for running off to meet him, which he did at his utmost speed.
"And would not you like, Henry," said he, "to build yourself a great house, like Eaton Hall, for instance; that strangers would come from a great way off to see, and that all the world would talk about, and wonder at ?"
"Let us see," said Mrs. Ashton, whom by this time they had joined, “how much either of you know of the history of Eaton Hall; for if you are ignorant with what name it is associated, either as builder or possessor, I do not see how either should your estimation be so very enviable.”
"I know it is situated in Cheshire,” said Henry, "and not far from the river Dee."
"And to what ancient family does it owe its original structure ?" asked Mrs. Ashton.
The two boys looked earnestly at each other, but neither of them was able to reply, and their 、mother then asked them again, of what importance in the acquisition of a great name, could be the building of a great house, when even in this instance, neither the present possessor nor the original founder of this splendid edifice was remembered? "But I will assist you," said she, " for it is of importance that we make ourselves acquainted with every fact which history has recorded of the distinguished men, and celebrated places, of our native country. I have seldom," she added,