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his chair a little, and entering with great readiness into

2023-12-01 11:27:53 [method] source:Headwind and Evil Waves Network

The precise train of thought pursued by Elinor, during this morning stroll, we shall not attempt to follow; but that she was fully aware of the importance of the decision was evident, by the unusual absence of manner, which seemed to have struck even her four-footed friend Bruno. She had, indeed, made an important discovery lately, one which was startling, and even painful to her. She found that there are moments in life, when each individual is called upon to think and to act alone. It is a truth which most of us are forced to feel, as we go through this world; though, happily, it is but seldom that such hours occur. In general, the sympathy, the counsel of friends, is of the very highest value; and yet, there are moments when neither can avail. At such times, we are forced to look higher, to acknowledge that human wisdom does not reach far enough to guide us, that our wounds need a purer balm than any offered by human sympathy. Until recently, Elinor had always been soothed and supported by the affection and guidance of her aunt, but she must now depend upon herself alone. To a young person, called upon for the first time to take an important step, with no other guide than individual judgment and conscience, the responsibility of action may well be startling; even a wise and experienced man will often pause at such moments, doubtful of the course he shall pursue. It is an easy matter to settle a question, when passion, feeling, interest, or prejudice gives the bias; but where these are all silent, and cool judgment is left alone to decide, the greatest men feel, to a painful degree, how limited are their powers; the high responsibility which is attached to free-will rises before them, and they shrink from the idea of trusting their own welfare to their own short-sighted reason alone. Most men, at such times, take refuge in a sort of fatalism; they stand inactive, until urged in this or that direction by the press of outward circumstances; or they rush blindly forward, under impatience of suspense, preferring risk to inaction.

his chair a little, and entering with great readiness into

The occasion of our young friend's anxiety and thoughtfulness was, no doubt, a trifling one to all but herself; the cause of her hesitation, however, was honourable; the opinions, feelings, and motives under which she eventually acted, were alike natural and creditable.

his chair a little, and entering with great readiness into

"Are you acquainted with the difference That holds this present question, in the court?" Merchant of Venice.

his chair a little, and entering with great readiness into

{ William Shakespeare, "The Merchant of Venice", IV.i.171-172}

AS the time for the trial approached, the parties collected in Philadelphia. Harry and his friends were often seen in the streets, looking busy and thoughtful. Mr. Reed also appeared, and took up his quarters at one of the great hotels, in company with Mr. Clapp and his client, who generally received the name of William Stanley, although he had not yet established a legal claim to it. There was much curiosity to see this individual, as the case had immediately attracted general attention in the town, where the families interested were so well known, and the singular circumstances of the suit naturally excited additional interest.

After the court opened its session, it became doubtful at one moment, whether the cause would he tried at that term; but others which preceded it having been disposed of, the Stanley suit was at length called.

On one side appeared William Stanley, the plaintiff, with Messrs. Reed and Clapp as counsel; a number of witnesses had been summoned by them, and were now present, mingled with the audience. On the other hand were the defendants, Mr. Wyllys, Hazlehurst, Ellsworth, and Mr. Grant, a distinguished lawyer of Philadelphia, appearing more particularly for Mrs. Stanley; they were also supported by witnesses of their own.

While the preliminary steps were going on, the jury forming, and the parties interested making their arrangements, the court-room filled rapidly with the friends of Hazlehurst, and a crowd of curious spectators. Among the individuals known to us, were Robert Hazlehurst, Mr. Stryker, and Charlie Hubbard, the young artist, who found that his want of inches interfered with his view of the scene, and springing on a bench, he remained there, and contrived to keep much the same station throughout the trial, his fine, intelligent countenance following the proceedings with the liveliest interest: Harry soon perceived him, and the young men exchanged friendly smiles. Mr. Stryker was looking on with cold, worldly curiosity; while Robert Hazlehurst watched over his brother's interest with much anxiety. In one sense the audience was unequally divided at first, for while Harry had many warm, personal friends present, the sailor was a stranger to all; the aspect of things partially changed, however, for among that portion of the crowd who had no particular sympathies with the defendants, a number soon took sides with the plaintiff. The curiosity to see the sailor was very great; at one moment, in the opening of the trial, all eyes were fixed on him; nor did Harry escape his share of scrutiny.

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