Fiction > Hannah Webster Foster > The Coquette
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Hannah Webster Foster (1759–1840).  The Coquette, or The History of Eliza Wharton.  1855.
 
Letter XLIV
 
TO MRS. LUCY SUMNER.
HARTFORD.  
  I am extremely depressed, my dear Lucy. The agitating scenes through which I have lately passed have broken my spirits, and rendered me unfit for society. Major Sanford has visited me, and taken his leave. He is gone to the southward on a tour of two or three months. I declined any further conversation with him on the subject of love. At present I wish not to hear it mentioned by any one.
  1
  I have received a very friendly and consolatory letter from Mrs. Richman. She invites me to spend a few months with her, which, with my mamma’s consent, I shall do. I hope the change of situation and company will dissipate the gloom which hangs over my mind.  2
  It is a common observation, that we know not the value of a blessing but by deprivation. This is strictly verified in my case. I was insensible of my regard for Mr. Boyer till this fatal separation took place. His merit and worth now appear in the brightest colors. I am convinced of that excellence which I once slighted, and the shade of departed happiness haunts me perpetually. I am sometimes tempted to write to him and confess my faults; to tell him the situation of my mind, and to offer him my hand; but he has precluded all hopes of success by the severity of his letter to me. At any rate, I shall do nothing of the kind till my return from New Haven.  3
  I am the more willing to leave home as my affairs are made a town talk. My mamma persuades me to disregard it; but how can I rise superior to “the world’s dread laugh, which scarce the firm philosopher can scorn”?  4
  Pray remember me to Mr. Sumner. You are happy, my friend, in the love and esteem of a worthy man, but more happy still in deserving them. Adieu.
ELIZA WHARTON.  
  5
 
 
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