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my brother by our grandfather. My father never knew how this mischief happened, which brought me under contribution to a cowherd, who saw me tumble the mare into a dry ditch, and whose secrecy I was obliged to purchase, by giving him, for a considerable time, a cup of ale every night. I shall pass by the wild girlish tricks I and my companions were constantly playing, as they can administer nothing entertaining, and mention one only, to show an odd curiosity in a nobleman. I and four of my companions, were rolling ourselves down a hill, and turning heels over head, when the Earl of C-d was passing in his coach, drawn by six beautiful grey horses, by the road, divided from the scene of our diversion by a quickset hedge and a ditch. He stopped his coach to be a spectator of our gambols; but finding that we put an end to our pastime on our perceiving him (for the youngest of us was seventeen, and consequently had sense enough to think the showing our naked tails not over decent), he called to us, and promising to give us a crown apiece, if we would begin and pursue our diversion ; our modesty gave way to our avarice, we indulged his lordship’s optics, and he, having been amply satisfied by the unreservedness of our performance, kept his word.
I said that I was as active and strong in all the labours of husbandry, as any of our servants; I will therefore give one instance of this. About the beginning of August, 1685, I was employed to stack wheat, and was on the top of one near fifty-four foot high, when I perceived in the road near our farm, the judges and other magistrates in their robes, preceded by kettle-drums, trumpets, and heralds, in their rich coats, coming up the hill, in order to proclaim King James. Animated by the martial music, and desirous to have a nearer view of this glorious sight, which, with the glare of the gold and silver coats, the heralds, trumpets, and kettle-drums wore, kad, in a manner, dazzled my sight, I leaped down, ran to, and cleared with a leap a five-barred gate, which was between me and the road they passed, calling to my mother to come and see the show, as I imagined every man there at le:ust a prince. My mother hearing the procession was to proclaim King James, went back and wept bitterly for some tiine, but would never tell me the reason for her tears.
Nothing remarkable occurs to my memory from the time of this monarch’s being proclaimed to that in which he was
MY FATHER RAISES A TROOT OF CAVALRY.
forced to throw himself into the arms of the Irish subjects, having been driven from the throne of England by King William. The Irish very readily espoused his cause, and among others (from a consciousness of its being a duty incumbent on him to support his lawful sovereign, notwithstanding his being of a different religion, which he thought not reason sufficient to affect his loyalty) my father sold all his standing corn, and other things of value, to Mr. Ascham, a neighbouring farmer, and was thus enabled, with what ready money he had by him before, to raise a troop of horse, and provide them with accoutrements, and everything necessary to take the field; and having furnished himself with a fine horse, and whatever else was requisite, he set out at the head of this troop, which was called by his name, Cavenaugh's, to join the rest of the army. I remember I was very fond of riding this horse, for a reason which would have prevented any other of my sex venturing upon him; I inean his mettle ; for he was so fiery, that not one of the troop durst mount him. You will perhaps wonder how I could; but I had so often fed him with bread and oats, that he would stand for me to take him up, when at grass, though he would have given twenty men work enough to catch him. When I had once hold of him, I would put on his bridle and lead him into a ditch and bestride him barebacked. I have often mounted him when saddled, and took great pleasure to draw and snap the pistols, and have not seldom made my friends apprehend for my life. I mention this, not as worth notice, but only to show my inclinations, while a girl, were always masculine.
My father having sold his corn standing, as I have already observed, without my mother's knowledge, occasioned a quarrel, in which some of Mr. Aschain's and our men were wounded. After
my father was gone to the army, my mother sent reapers into the field to cut the corn; these met with others, sent by the then proprietor, upon the same errand. Words immediately arose, and they very soon came to blows, making use of their sickles, a desperate weapon. The noise soon reached my mother's ears, who understanding how the matter was, withdrew her troops ; but not without some difficulty, and having regaled them in her house with a good breakfast and strong liquors, they were at length appeased and dismissed.
my father bore arms for King James, the neighboure ing papists, in time of divine service, came to, and blocked up the church door of Leslip, with butchers' blocks, and other lumber. My mother was then in the church; I was at home, but hearing the noise, and fearing my mother might receive some hurt, I snatched up a spit, and thus armed, sallied forth to force my way, and come to her assistance; but being resisted by a serjeant, I thrust my spit through the calf of his leg, removed the things which had blocked up the door, and called to my mother, bidding her come away, for dinner was ready. In the scuffle, the reverend Mr. Malary, the clerk, with several others, were wounded, and I taken into custody for having hurt the serjeant; but upon being heard, and representing the hardship of being interrupted in our worship, when my father was actually in arms for the service of the prince for whom they pretended great zeal, though in fact, they ought rather to be esteemed his concealed enemies, since, by such actions, they alienated the hearts of his subjects, and gave ground to his enemies to raise a clamour, I was acquitted. The battle of the Boyne put an end to all my
father's hopes for King James; for his army was there defeated, and he, with the rest of the shattered troops, trusted their safety to the swiftness of their horses' heels, rather than to the strength of their own arms. My father, in company with a very handsome young French gentleman, who served as lieutenant in the king's forces, made the best of his way to our house, without staying to bait on the road. My mother, who understood what belonged to good manners, as she had been genteelty educated by her father, Bryan Bembrick, of Wheatly, in the bishopric of Durham, Esq. ; who had a particular care to bring up his children in a polite manner, received the stranger with great civility, and having ordered them a hot supper, prepared my bed for his reception that night; but he lay no longer than till three of the morning, when my father, alarmed with the noise of some of his friends who fled from the conquerers, imagining they were the victorious forces of King William, in pursuit of the defeated remains of King James's army, roused the French officer, and got out their horses with the utmost expedition. While they were saddling, my father took a short, but sorrowful leave of his wife and children, whom, with tears in his eyes,
he blessed and recommended to the Divine protection : then turning to my mother, My dear, said he, do not be dejected; comfort yourself, that whatever misfortunes befall us, we suffer in a just cause, and for having done what is the duty of every loyal subject; at least, my conscience tells me, that I have acted as I ought, and as I was bound to do by my oath of allegiance, from which I know no power on earth that can absolve me. The Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away, blessed be the name of the Lord. His ways are inscrutable, and I humbly submit to his decrees, which are all founded in wisdom. As for you, keep at home with your children, and be their support, for you being a protestant, need apprehend no danger from the enemy; may they hereafter repay your maternal care and tenderness by a filial duty, and prove your comfort; but never torment yourself with uneasy thoughts for your unfortunate husband. Think of me
God forbid, said she, and bursting into a flood of tears ; my father, who could not bear to see her weep, as he loved her with a sincere tenderness, ran out of the room, and he and the officer mounting their horses, fled with precipitation. My mother was in too great affliction to admit of any rest, and rose immediately ; but we, who did not take my father's departure so much to heart, lay till daybreak.
About twelve months after this, we had news of King James's forces, commanded by Monsieur St. Ruth, being defeated at the battle of Aghrim, where General Ginkle obtained a complete victory. In this battle my father was dangerously wounded; though, by the skill of able surgeons, who attended him, he was in a fair way of recovery; but the night before he intended to return to his family, one Kelly, an Irish papist, who served him, taking the advantage of his hurt, and of a dark night, ran away with his horses to General Ginkle's army. This villanous ingratitude from a man whom he had always treated with great humanity, had such an effect on my father, that he was seized with a fever, which carried him off in a short time.
After the battle, in which the French general St. Ruth was killed, the English laid siege to Limerick. Captain Bodeaux, who, after the battle of the Boyne, fled with my father to our house, was here in garrison, and commanded that body of troops which defended the bridge, in which post he behaved with so much gallantry, that he was admired,
and his death lamented, by even his enemies, who, to their great surprise, found, on stripping this brave officer, that it was a woman had given such proofs of an invincible courage.
Though my mother had, during my father's illness, procured him a pardon for having appeared in arms, and levied inen for the service of King James, yet, notwithstanding, the government seized upon all his effects.
I had, by this time, attained to an age of maturity, and happening to take the eye of a son of my mother's first cousin, named Thomas Howel, whose uncle, on the father's side, was a bishop, himself a student, and fellow of Dublin college, he made warm love to me; and for two years together carried on his addresses : his assiduity, and the opinion I had of his sincerity, were not without effect in his favour; and such that I found my esteem for him greater than my concern for my own interest; for having no fortune to bring him, except a barrel of brass crowns, which King James was not in a condition to pay in silver, I would not consent to his ruin ; though he might, as he proposed, support us, by keeping a Latin school. When we eagerly wish à thing, we seldom examine thoroughly the consequences which may attend the possession of what we desire; and, if we cannot help seeing the evils probably consequential of the completion of our wishes, we easily satisfy ourselves with arguments which flatter our inclinations, however weak: this was his case ; for when I laid before him the certain poverty which would attend his marrying a woman without a fortune, he removed the objection, at least as to his own part, with the airy prospect of preferments in the church : and in the interim, with what money he could get by a school, sufficient, as he flattered himself, to maintain me like a lady; and when I represented to him the deplorable condition of a clergyman's widow, with, possibly, a number of children; he answered, that his economy should ward against that evil. I, who looked upon all this as a castle in the air, would not consent to what he wished and thought, his happiness, though I could not esteem it other than his undoing, as well as my own ruin; and therefore very seriously begged of him to give over his pursuits, but to no purpose: he still continued his visits and solicitations, which were more frequent, longer, and more urgent than usual. One day he came to see me when I was the only person in the house,