continued from Wednesday, Miss Georgiana Stanhope to Miss XXX
Last night Mr Watts by appointment drank tea with us. As soon as his Carriage stopped at the Door, Mary went to the Window.
'Would you beleive it, Sophy' (said she) 'the old Fool wants to have his new Chaise just the colour of the old one, and hung as low too. But it shan't--I will carry my point. And if he won't let it be as high as the Duttons, and blue spotted with Silver, I won't have him. Yes I will too. Here he comes. I know he'll be rude; I know he'll be ill tempered and won't say one civil thing to me! nor behave at all like a Lover.' She then sate down and Mr Watts entered.
'Ladies your most obedient.' We paid our Compliments and he seated himself.
'Fine Weather, Ladies.' Then turning to Mary,'Well Miss Stanhope, I hope you have at last settled the Matter in your own mind; and will be so good as to let me know whether you will condescend to marry me or not.'
'I think Sir' (said Mary) 'You might have asked in a genteeler way than that. I do not know whether I shall have you if you behave so odd.'
'Mary!' (said my Mother). 'Well Mama, if he will be so cross...'
'Hush, hush, Mary, you shall not be rude to Mr Watts.'
'Pray, Madam, do not lay any restraint on Miss Stanhope by obliging her to be civil. If she does not choose to accept my hand, I can offer it else where, for as I am by no means guided by a particular preference to you above your Sisters it is equally the same to me which I marry of the three.' Was there ever such a Wretch! Sophy reddened with anger and I felt so spiteful!
'Well then' (said Mary in a peevish Accent) 'I will have you if I must.'
'I should have thought, Miss Stanhope, that when such Settlements are offered as I have offered to you there can be no great violence done to the inclinations in accepting of them.'
Mary mumbled out something, which I who sate close to her could just distinguish to be 'What's the use of a great Jointure if Men live forever?' And then audibly 'Remember the pinmoney; two hundred a year.'
'A hundred and seventy-five Madam.'
Two hundred indeed Sir' said my Mother.
'And Remember I am to have a new Carriage hung as high as the Duttons', and blue spotted with silver; and I shall expect a new saddle horse, a suit of fine lace, and an infinite number of the most valuable Jewels. Diamonds such as never were seen! and Pearls, Rubies, Emeralds, and Beads out of number. You must set up your Phaeton which must be cream coloured with a wreath of silver flowers round it, You must buy 4 of the finest Bays in the Kingdom and you must drive me in it every day. This is not all; You must entirely new furnish your House after my Taste, You must hire two more Footmen to attend me, two Women to wait on me, must always let me do just as I please and make a very good husband.'
Here she stopped, I beleive rather out of breath.
'This is all very reasonable, Mr Watts, for my Daughter to expect.'
'And it is very reasonable, Mrs Stanhope, that your daughter should be disappointed.' He was going on but Mary interrupted him, 'You must build me an elegant Greenhouse and stock it with plants. You must let me spend every Winter in Bath, every Spring in Town, Every Summer in taking some Tour, and every Autumn at a Watering Place, and if we are at home the rest of the year' (Sophy and I laughed) 'You must do nothing but give Balls and Masquerades. You must build a room on purpose and a Theatre to act Plays in. The first Play we have shall be Which is the Man, and I will do Lady Bell Bloomer.'
'And pray Miss Stanhope' (said Mr Watts) 'What am I to expect from you in return for all this?'
'Expect? why you may expect to have me pleased.'
'It would be odd if I did not. Your expectations, Madam, are too high for me, and I must apply to Miss Sophy who perhaps may not have raised her's so much.'
'You are mistaken, Sir, in supposing so,' (said Sophy) 'For tho' they may not be exactly in the same Line, yet my expectations are to the full as high as my Sister's for I expect my Husband to be good tempered and Chearful; to consult my Happiness in all his Actions, and to love me with Constancy and Sincerity.
'Mr Watts stared.These are very odd Ideas truly, young Lady. You had better discard them before you marry, or you will be obliged to do it afterwards.'
My Mother in the meantime was lecturing Mary who was sensible that she had gone too far, and when Mr Watts was just turning towards me in order I beleive to address me, she spoke to him in a voice half humble, half sulky.
'You are mistaken, Mr Watts, if you think I was in earnest when I said I expected so much. However I must have a new Chaise.'
'Yes Sir, you must allow that Mary has a right to expect that.'
'Mrs Stanhope, I mean and have always meant to have a new one on my Marriage. But it shall be the colour of my present one.'
'I think, Mr Watts, you should pay my Girl the compliment of consulting her Taste on such Matters.'
Mr Watts would not agree to this, and for some time insisted upon its being a Chocolate colour, while Mary was as eager for having it blue with silver Spots. At length however Sophy proposed that to please Mr W. it should be a dark brown and to please Mary it should be hung rather high and have a silver Border. This was at length agreed to, tho' reluctantly on both sides, as each had intended to carry their point entire. We then proceeded to other Matters, and it was settled that they should be married as soon as the Writings could be completed. Mary was very eager for a Special Licence and Mr Watts talked of Banns. A common Licence was at last agreed on. Mary is to have all the Family Jewels which are very inconsiderable I beleive and Mr W. promised to buy her a Saddle horse; but in return she is not to expect to go to Town or any other public place for these three Years. She is to have neither Greenhouse, Theatre or Phaeton; to be contented with one Maid without an additional Footman. It engrossed the whole Evening to settle these affairs; Mr W. supped with us and did not go till twelve. As soon as he was gone Mary exclaimed 'Thank Heaven! he's off at last; how I do hate him!' It was in vain that Mama represented to her the impropriety she was guilty of in disliking him who was to be her Husband, for she persisted in declaring her aversion to him and hoping she might never see him again. What a Wedding will this be! Adeiu my dear Anne. Yr faithfully Sincere