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tude. She kept her first appointment with extreme punctuality, and a pernicious system of nightly visits was adopted; these greatly forwarded the fellow's wicked intentions, while the wretched girl imagined wedlock, fine wedding clothes, and her comfortable establishment for life, to be their only tendency.

About this time, at the assizes, in a neighbouring town, sentence of death was pronounced upon a thief and house-breaker who had traversed the country in the garb of a tinker, and was caught in the very fact for which he was tried. Now this malefactor turned out to be no other than the mountebank's Merry-Andrew, before mentioned, the dancing master of Mary, and half the parish of F- besides. Consequently his execution occasioned a lively interest in those around, to whom any public spectacle, however shocking to humanity, is a gratifying show. Mary's sweetheart was among the number, and he contrived to excite so much curiosity in her, that she resolved to accompany him to the town, and behold the last motions of her favourite instructor. In vain did her poor mother exclaim against the barbarity of seeking out such a revolting sight, and command Mary to remain at home; the unfeeling young creature alleged that she should be very sorry to see

such a clever man as Mr hanged, and would cry as heartily as anybody; but with respect to staying at home, as most of the girls in the parish were to be present at the show, and as she had promised to a friend to be there, go she must, and go she would.

She accordingly went, and shed abundance of tears whilst the melancholy scene was performing, more from natural weakness, than any true sensibility; her lover stood by her side the whole time, wiping her eyes with an Indian silk handkerchief, and treating her with gingerbread from a stall hard by. After all was over, he persuaded her to retire with him into an alehouse, in order to refresh her exhausted spirits with a cordial previous to her return home. In the ale-house Mary remained, carousing with her conductor for the greater part of the day, and during that fatal night, through base arts as well as her own unjustifiable conduct, she lost her innocence for ever, and commenced a career of shame and profligacy, which disgraced and poisoned the few remaining years of her life.

The wanton was speedily abandoned by her seducer, already in quest of other prey, and her pregnancy could scarcely be concealed from the knowledge of her neighbours, by every method that she or her mother could devise. Then

Mary found what fruits such conduct as hers will ever produce; then came days of pain, and nights of tears, prospects of disgrace, and forebodings of starvation. Her mother and she loaded each other with mutual reproaches, and Mary was no longer to be seen without the walls of her cottage. However, one evening stealing forth to enjoy a little fresh air, she chanced to meet the occasion of her ruin, to whom she imparted her situation, and with many upbraiding expressions, declared that she would give him up to the session as the father of her child, and would prosecute him for its maintenance; which raised such a brutal fury in the villain, that he fell upon her with a large stick which he happened to have in his hand, beat her most barbarously, and it is supposed would have murdered her outright, had he not been prevented by the approach of a gentleman, at sight of whom he betook himself to his heels. The shrieks and cries of Mary had reached the ears of Sir Thomas Stewart's eldest son, a young man who had `newly left school, and was that day returning from his sport in the fields; with great benevolence he hastened to her assistance, and had her carried to her mother's cottage, where, during a long and dangerous illness, occasioned by the merciless blows she had sus

tained, he supplied her with medical advice, and every other comfort which opulence can procure for the relief of sickness and poverty.

But this goodness, and Mary's misfortunes, instead of producing the proper effects, only inspired her with plans of deeper guilt. Remembering the former foolish discourse of her mother respecting a lofty marriage, and feeling great confidence in the powers of her beauty, she set herself to captivate Mr. Stewart's affections, with all the art she could command; but her wicked intentions being suspected by the neighbours, and finally reaching the ears of Sir Thomas, he prudently sent his son to the University, and, in a transport of indignation, turned both Mary and her mother out of doors.

Though the old woman had latterly by no means encouraged her daughter in her base endeavours to ensnare the young gentleman, yet her former misconduct was thus severely punished. Feeble and half dead, she could with difficulty be conveyed to another habitation, furnished through the charitable compassion of a farmer who resided on an estate near Sir Thomas Stewart's; but the fatigue incident to her journey, and the vexation of her mind, filled with remorse, speedily brought her to her grave; and Mary Wilson found herself left

alone in the world, without a friend, or a character to obtain her one; without a farthing, since all pretence to solicit charity was buried with her mother; and almost as unable as unwilling to work, whereby she might preserve herself and the child she now suckled from perishing through absolute want.

Of few alternatives, this unhappy woman selected the very worst. She repaired to the town of Edinburgh, and there, from the depravity of mankind, picked up a precarious subsistence, fraught with wickedness of all sorts, and misery of every description. There, among the outcasts of humanity, compared with whom even the most brutish animal would suffer degradation, she lost, together with every remaining good quality of the soul, all traces of her former beauty. Disease laid his heaviest hand upon her. Famine wasted her to the bone, while drunkenness and riot were succeeded by that despondence or torpor, which but gave place to new draughts of gin, and to fresher transports of fury.

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Early in a cold morning of January, when as yet no inhabitants were to be seen on the streets, Dr. R., a humane physician, was returning from a professional visit, and passing

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