BOOK I. CONTAINING AS MUCH OF THE BIRTH OF THE FOUNDLING AS IS NECESSARY OR PROPER TO ACQUAINT THE READER WITH IN THE BEGINNING OF THIS HISTORY.
3. Chapter iii. An odd accident which befel Mr Allworthy...
There were some strokes in this speech which perhaps would have
offended Mr Allworthy, had he strictly attended to it; but he had now
got one of his fingers into the infant's hand, which, by its gentle
pressure, seeming to implore his assistance, had certainly out-pleaded
the eloquence of Mrs Deborah, had it been ten times greater than it
was. He now gave Mrs Deborah positive orders to take the child to her
own bed, and to call up a maid-servant to provide it pap, and other
things, against it waked. He likewise ordered that proper cloathes
should be procured for it early in the morning, and that it should be
brought to himself as soon as he was stirring.
Such was the discernment of Mrs Wilkins, and such the respect she bore
her master, under whom she enjoyed a most excellent place, that her
scruples gave way to his peremptory commands; and she took the child
under her arms, without any apparent disgust at the illegality of its
birth; and declaring it was a sweet little infant, walked off with it
to her own chamber.
Allworthy here betook himself to those pleasing slumbers which a heart
that hungers after goodness is apt to enjoy when thoroughly satisfied.
As these are possibly sweeter than what are occasioned by any other
hearty meal, I should take more pains to display them to the reader,
if I knew any air to recommend him to for the procuring such an