Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Joscelyn: A Tale of the Revolution >> Chapter XXV: A Touch of Gout >> Page 227

image of pageExplore Inside

Page 227

Novel (Romance) | The Reprint Company | 1975, 1976
Transcription CHAPTER XXV.
The next day, after a sleepless and miserable night, Walter took
his departure from Beach Island, for Augusta, leaving Maj or Alison
in possession of the field. But this consideration gave him no concern.
He seemed to have no apprehension from the gallantries of that
courtier-like gentleman, and had no reason to question the fidelity of
Angelica, however much he might be surprised at her flexibility.
We may take for granted that the Major was not the person to
forbear any of the privileges to which his graces of manner and social
resources might prompt him to pretend; and we may assume that he
soon became quite as marked in his attentions to the beauty of Beach
Island as he had been to her of the "Sand Hills" of Augusta. His
approaches were destined to be quite as familiar, to Angelica, as they
had been to Annie Dunbar; and, with this advantage, that they were
scarcely received with so much coldness and hauteur. Youthful gal-
lantry needs to be kept in frequent exercise, if only to make its right
hand perfect in its cunning; and gay young gentlemen are very apt
to play the lover, if only that they may pleasantly pass the time. It
forms no subject of scruple, or even thought, with cavaliers of the
ballroom, that young damsels are liable to deceive themselves as to
the quality or character of the courtesies which they receive; and it is,
perhaps, quite as fortunate for the damsels that so many of them can,
with such facility, learn the secret of requiting the suitor in his own
Angelica was gay enough in spirit to welcome the cavalier with
smiles, without deigning him any further favors. Her vanity liked
homage, while her cunning disarmed it mostly of the power of harm.
Besides, what degree of love she could feel, was really enlisted in
behalf of Walter, who, with quite as fine a person as any which she
knew, was of a good house, with very fair prospects, had high repu-