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Hannah Webster Foster (1759–1840). The Coquette, or The History of Eliza Wharton. 1855.



You commanded me, my dear mamma, to write to you. That command I cheerfully obey, in testimony of my ready submission and respect. No other avocation could arrest my time, which is now completely occupied in scenes of amusement.

Mrs. Sumner is agreeably settled and situated. She appears to be possessed of every blessing which can render life desirable. Almost every day since our arrival has been engrossed by visitants. Our evenings we have devoted to company abroad; and that more generally than we should otherwise have done, as my stay is limited to so short a period. The museum, the theatres, the circus, and the assemblies have been frequented.

Mrs. Sumner has made me several presents; notwithstanding which, the articles requisite to a fashionable appearance have involved me in considerable expense. I fear that you will think me extravagant when you are told how much.

Mr. Boyer tarried in town about a week, having business. He appeared a little concerned at my taste for dissipation, as he once termed it. He even took the liberty to converse seriously on the subject.

I was displeased with his freedom, and reminded him that I had the disposal of my own time as yet, and that, while I escaped the censure of my own heart, I hoped that no one else would presume to arraign it. He apologized, and gave up his argument.

I was much surprised, the first time I went to the play, to see Major Sanford in the very next box. He immediately joined our party; and wherever I have been since, I have been almost sure to meet him.

Mr. Boyer has taken his departure; and I do not expect to see him again till I return home.

O mamma, I am embarrassed about this man. His worth I acknowledge; nay, I esteem him very highly. But can there be happiness with such a disparity of dispositions?

I shall soon return to the bosom of domestic tranquillity, to the arms of maternal tenderness, where I can deliberate and advise at leisure about this important matter. Till when, I am, &c.,