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muttered something which I could not hear, and then, letting go her cloak, and pressing her hands together, burst into


It was not the action of an ordinary beggar, and my curiosity was strongly excited by it. I desired her to follow me to the house of a friend hard by, whose beneficence I have often had occasion to know. When she arrived there, she was so fatigued and worn out, that it was not till after some means used to restore her, that she was able to give us an account of her misfortunes.

Her name, she told us, was Collins; the place of her birth one of the northern counties of England. Her father, who had died several years ago, left her remaining parent with the charge of her, then a child, and one brother, a lad of seventeen. By his industry, however, joined to that of her mother, they were tolerably supported; their father having died possessed

of a small farm, with the right of pasturage on an adjoining common, from which they obtained a decent livelihood: that, last summer, her brother having become acquainted with a recruiting serjeant, who was quartered in a neighbouring village, was by him enticed to enlist as a soldier, and soon after was marched off, along with some other recruits, to join his regiment: that this, she believed, broke her mother's heart, for that she had never afterwards had a day's health, and, at length, had died about three weeks ago; that, immediately after her death, the steward employed by the 'squire of whom their farm was held, took possession of every thing for the arrears of their rent: that, as she had heard her brother's regiment was in Scotland when he enlisted, she had wandered hither in quest of him, as she had no other relation in the world to own her. But she found, on arriving here, that the regiment had been embark

ed several months before, and was gone a great way off, she could not tell whither.

"This news," said she, " laid hold of my heart; and I have had something wrong here," putting her hand to her bosom, "ever since. I got a bed and some victuals in the house of a woman here in town, to whom I told my story, and who seemed to pity me. I had then a little bundle of things, which I had been allowed to take with me after my mother's death; but the night before last, somebody stole it from me while I slept; and so the woman said she would keep me no longer, and turned me out into the street, where I have since remained, and am almost famished for want."

She was now in better hands; but our assistance had come too late. A frame, naturally delicate, had yielded to the fatigues of her journey, and the hardships of her situation. She declined by slow

but uninterrupted degrees, and yesterday breathed her last. A short while before she expired, she asked to see me; and taking from her bosom a little silver locket, which she told me had been her mother's, and which all her distresses could not make her part with, begged I would keep it for her dear brother, and give it him, if ever he should return home, as a token of her remembrance.

I felt this poor girl's fate strongly ; but I tell not her story merely to indulge my feelings; I would make the reflections it may excite in my readers, useful to others who may suffer from similar causes. There are many, I fear, from whom their country has called brothers, sons, or fathers, to bleed in her service, forlorn, like poor Nancy Collins, with "no relation in the world to own them." Their sufferings are often unknown, when they are such as most demand compassion. The mind. that cannot obtrude its distresses on the

ear of pity, is formed to feel their poignancy the deepest.

In our idea of military operations, we are too apt to forget the misfortunes of the people. In defeat, we think of the fall, and in victory, of the glory of commanders; we seldom allow ourselves to consider how many, in a lower rank, both events make wretched: how many, amidst the acclamations of national triumph, are left to the helpless misery of the widowed and the orphan, and, while victory celebrates her festival, feel, in their distant hovels, the extremities of want and wretchedness.

It was with pleasure I saw, among the resolutions of a late patriotic assembly in this city, an agreement to assist the poor families of our absent soldiers and seamen. With no less satisfaction I read in some late newspapers, a benevolent advertisement for a meeting of gentlemen, to consider of a subscription for the same

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