Clarissa Harlowe LETTERS OF VOLUME V

LETTER I. Lovelace to Belford.—An agreeable airing with the lady. Delightfully easy she. Obsequiously respectful he. Miss Howe’s plot now no longer his terror. Gives the particulars of their agreeable conversation while abroad.

LETTER II. From the same.—An account of his ipecacuanha plot. Instructs Dorcas how to act surprise and terror. Monosyllables and trisyllables to what likened. Politeness lives not in a storm. Proclamation criers. The lady now sees she loves him. Her generous tenderness for him. He has now credit for a new score. Defies Mrs. Townsend.

LETTER III. Clarissa to Miss Howe.—Acknowledged tenderness for Lovelace. Love for a man of errors punishable.

LETTER IV. Lovelace to Belford.—Suspicious inquiry after him and the lady by a servant in livery from one Captain Tomlinson. Her terrors on the occasion. His alarming management. She resolves not to stir abroad. He exults upon her not being willing to leave him.

LETTER V. VI. From the same.—Arrival of Captain Tomlinson, with a pretended commission from Mr. John Harlowe to set on foot a general reconciliation, provided he can be convinced that they are actually married. Different conversations on this occasion.—The lady insists that the truth be told to Tomlinson. She carries her point through to the disappointment of one of his private views. He forms great hopes of success from the effects of his ipecacuanha contrivance.

LETTER VII. Lovelace to Belford.—He makes such a fair representation to Tomlinson of the situation between him and the lady, behaves so plausibly, and makes an overture so generous, that she is all kindness and unreserved to him. Her affecting exultation on her amended prospects. His unusual sensibility upon it. Reflection on the good effects of education. Pride an excellent substitute to virtue.

LETTER VIII. From the same.—Who Tomlinson is. Again makes Belford object, in order to explain his designs by answering the objections. John Harlowe a sly sinner. Hard- hearted reasons for giving the lady a gleam of joy. Illustrated by a story of two sovereigns at war. Extracts from Clarissa’s letter to Miss Howe. She rejoices in her present agreeable prospects. Attributes much to Mr. Hickman. Describes Captain Tomlinson. Gives a character of Lovelace, [which is necessary to be attended to: especially by those who have thought favourably of him for some of his liberal actions, and hardly of her for the distance she at first kept him at.]

LETTER IX. Lovelace to Belford.—Letter from Lord M. His further arts and precautions. His happy day promised to be soon. His opinion of the clergy, and of going to church. She pities every body who wants pity. Loves every body. He owns he should be the happiest of men, could he get over his prejudices against matrimony. Draughts of settlements. Ludicrously accounts for the reason why she refuses to hear them read to her. Law and gospel two different things. Sally flings her handkerchief in his face.

LETTER X. From the same.—Has made the lady more than once look about her. She owns that he is more than indifferent to her. Checks him with sweetness of temper for his encroaching freedoms. Her proof of true love. He ridicules marriage purity. Severely reflects upon public freedoms between men and their wives. Advantage he once made upon such an occasion. Has been after a license. Difficulty in procuring one. Great faults and great virtues often in the same person. He is willing to believe that women have no souls. His whimsical reasons.

LETTER XI. Lovelace to Belford.—Almost despairs of succeeding (as he had hoped) by love and gentleness. Praises her modesty. His encroaching freedoms resented by her. The woman, he observes, who resents not initiatory freedoms, must be lost. He reasons, in his free way, upon her delicacy. Art of the Eastern monarchs.

LETTER XII. From the same.—A letter from Captain Tomlinson makes all up. Her uncle Harlowe’s pretended proposal big with art and plausible delusion. She acquiesces in it. He writes to the pretended Tomlinson, on an affecting hint of her’s, requesting that her uncle Harlowe would, in person, give his niece to him; or permit Tomlinson to be his proxy on the occasion.—And now for a little of mine, he says, which he has ready to spring.

LETTER XIII. Belford to Lovelace.—Again earnestly expostulates with him in the lady’s favour. Remembers and applauds the part she bore in the conversation at his collation. The frothy wit of libertines how despicable. Censures the folly, the weakness, the grossness, the unpermanency of sensual love. Calls some of his contrivances trite, stale, and poor. Beseeches him to remove her from the vile house. How many dreadful stories could the horrid Sinclair tell the sex! Serious reflections on the dying state of his uncle.

LETTER XIV. Lovelace to Belford.—Cannot yet procure a license. Has secured a retreat, if not victory. Defends in anger the simplicity of his inventive contrivances. Enters upon his general defence, compared with the principles and practices of other libertines. Heroes and warlike kings worse men than he. Epitome of his and the lady’s story after ten years’ cohabitation. Caution to those who would censure him. Had the sex made virtue a recommendation to their favour, he says, he should have had a greater regard to his morals than he has had.

LETTER XV. From the same.—Preparative to his little mine, as he calls it. Loves to write to the moment. Alarm begins. Affectedly terrified.

LETTER XVI. From the same.—The lady frighted out of her bed by dreadful cries of fire. She awes him into decency. On an extorted promise of forgiveness, he leaves her. Repenting, he returns; but finds her door fastened. What a triumph has her sex obtained by her virtue! But how will she see him next morning,as he has given her.

LETTER XVII. Lovelace to Belford.—Dialogue with Clarissa, the door between them. Her letter to him. She will not see him for a week.

LETTER XVIII. From the same.—Copies of letters that pass between them. Goes to the commons to try to get the license. She shall see him, he declares, on his return. Love and compassion hard to be separated. Her fluctuating reasons on their present situation. Is jealous of her superior qualities. Does justice to her immovable virtue.

LETTER XIX. From the same.—The lady escaped. His rage. Makes a solemn vow of revenge, if once more he gets her into his power. His man Will. is gone in search of her. His hopes; on what grounded. He will advertise her. Describes her dress. Letter left behind her. Accuses her (that is to say, LOVELACE accuses her,) of niceness, prudery, affectation.

LETTER XX. From the same.—A letter from Miss Howe to Clarissa falls into his hands; which, had it come to her’s, would have laid open and detected all his designs. In it she acquits Clarissa of prudery, coquetry, and undue reserve. Admires,applauds, blesses her for the example she has set for her sex, and for the credit she has done it, by her conduct in the most difficult situations. [This letter may be considered as a kind of summary of Clarissa’s trials,her persecutions, and exemplary conduct hitherto; and of Mr. Lovelace’s intrigues, plots, and views, so far as Miss Howe could be supposed to know them, or to guess at them.] A letter from Lovelace, which farther shows the fertility of his contriving genius.

LETTER XXI. Clarissa to Miss Howe.—Informs her of Lovelace’s villany, and of her escape. Her only concern,what. The course she intends to pursue.

LETTER XXII. Lovelace to Belford.—Exults on hearing, from his man Will., that the lady has refuged herself at Hampstead. Observations in a style of levity on some passages in the letter she left behind her. Intimates that Tomlinson is arrived to aid his purposes. The chariot is come; and now, dressed like a bridegroom,attended by a footman she never saw, he is already, he says, at Hampstead.

LETTER XXIII. XXIV. Lovelace to Belford.—Exults on his contrivances.—By what means he gets into the lady’s presence at Mrs. Moore’s. Her terrors, fits, exclamations. His plausible tales to Mrs. Moore and Miss Rawlins. His intrepid behaviour to the lady. Copies of letters from Tomlinson, and of pretended ones from his own relations, calculated to pacify and delude her.

LETTER XXV. XXVI. From the same.—His farther arts, inventions, and intrepidity. She puts home questions to him. ’Ungenerous and ungrateful she calls him. He knows not the value of the heart he had insulted. He had a plain path before him,after he had tricked her out of her father’s house! But that now her mind was raised above fortune, and above him.’ His precautionary contrivances.

LETTER XXVII. XXVIII. XXX. XXXI. XXXII. From the same.—Character of widow Bevis. Prepossesses the women against Miss Howe. Leads them to think she is in love with him. Apt himself to think so;and why. Women like not novices; and why. Their vulgar aphorism animadverted on. Tomlinson arrives. Artful conversation between them. Miss Rawlins’s prudery. His forged letter in imitation of Miss Howe’s,No. IV. Other contrivances to delude the lady, and attach the women to his party.

LETTER XXXIII. XXXIV. XXXV. XXXVI. From the same.—Particulars of several interesting conversations between himself,Tomlinson, and the lady. Artful management of the two former. Her noble spirit. He tells Tomlinson before her that he never had any proof of affection from her. She frankly owns the regard she once had for him. ’He had brought her,’ she tells Tomlinson and him, ’more than once to own it to him. Nor did his own vanity, she was sure, permit him to doubt of it. He had kept her soul in suspense an hundred times.’ Both men affected in turn by her noble behaviour, and great sentiments. Their pleas, prayers, prostrations, to move her to relent. Her distress.