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Untitled

TYLNEY HALL. 30Q

that curfew voice to command the extinction of the flame she

cherished.

" Grace, from your cradle to this hour you have never

disobeyed me. A long course of duty must not now be effaced

by an act of deliberate opposition. The authority I

derive from nature must be sustained. The blood that beats

in your heart was derived from me, and the clothing of your

hand is flesh of my flesh; and can it be said then that I

have no right to dispose of one or control the affections of the

other ? No I by the death of your lamented mother I have

rather a twofold claim to direct you, and it is doubly incumbent

upon me to exercise the power so delegated, and

to enforce, if

necessary, your complete submission. Jf the

sovereignty of a king be a divine right, and I see no reason

to impugn the doctrine, how sacred must be the origin of

a parent's jurisdiction, where the subject is indebted to

the supreme head, not merely for liberty and protection, but

for life itself, and the means whereby life is sustained.

Domestic government indeed is, or ought necessarily to be,

a pure despotism, seeing that there is no intermediate estate

between the parent and the child, the ruler and the ruled.

His decrees, consequently, are arbitrary and absolute, ex-

acting and requiring implicit acquiescence. Unlike the

monarchical sway, it can in no case be conferred by election

or popular suffrage, nor can it, without criminality, be abdicated

and laid down. Ill, therefore, would it become me

to concede my own will in any point, and especially a point

of magnitude, thereby annulling, undermining, and vitiating

that paramount principle, which for the sake of domestic

polity, I am imperiously bound to uphold. The ancient

title of Dictator, attached to the first magistrate, who was

considered as Pater Familias, expresses my own view of the

case, and at this moment I have before me a memorable example

of the inexorable rigour with which the Romans conceived

it necessary to maintain such authority."

The last allusion was fatal to the courage and composure

of poor Grace. She had never known her father to revoke

a decision which he had backed by the example of Brutus ;

and the reference to the picture assured her at once that no

terms of compromise would be listened to, but that she must

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