BOOK VI. CONTAINING ABOUT THREE WEEKS.
10. Chapter x. In which Mr Western visits Mr Allworthy.
Thwackum was now sent for, and presently appeared. He corroborated
every circumstance which the other had deposed; nay, he produced the
record upon his breast, where the handwriting of Mr Jones remained
very legible in black and blue. He concluded with declaring to Mr
Allworthy, that he should have long since informed him of this matter,
had not Mr Blifil, by the most earnest interpositions, prevented him.
"He is," says he, "an excellent youth: though such forgiveness of
enemies is carrying the matter too far."
In reality, Blifil had taken some pains to prevail with the parson,
and to prevent the discovery at that time; for which he had many
reasons. He knew that the minds of men are apt to be softened and
relaxed from their usual severity by sickness. Besides, he imagined
that if the story was told when the fact was so recent, and the
physician about the house, who might have unravelled the real truth,
he should never be able to give it the malicious turn which he
intended. Again, he resolved to hoard up this business, till the
indiscretion of Jones should afford some additional complaints; for he
thought the joint weight of many facts falling upon him together,
would be the most likely to crush him; and he watched, therefore, some
such opportunity as that with which fortune had now kindly presented
him. Lastly, by prevailing with Thwackum to conceal the matter for a
time, he knew he should confirm an opinion of his friendship to Jones,
which he had greatly laboured to establish in Mr Allworthy.