what they cost, and to make her amends I gave her three guineas more than they cost her.
This good (though unhappy) Quaker had the misfortune to have had a bad husband, and he was gone beyond sea. She had a good house, and well furnished, and had some jointure of her own estate which supported her and her children, so that she did not want; but she was not at all above such a help as my being there was to her; so she was as glad of me as I was of her.
However, as I knew there was no way to fix this new acquaintance like making myself a friend to her, I began with making her some handsome presents and the like to her children. And first, opening my bundles one day in my chamber, I heard her in another room, and called her in with a kind of familiar way. There I showed her some of my fine clothes, and having among the rest of my things a piece of very fine new holland, which I had bought a little before, worth about £95. an ell, I pulled it out: 'Here, my friend', says I, 'I will make you a present, if you will accept of it'; and with that I laid the piece of holland in her lap.
I could see she was surprised, and that she could hardly speak. 'What dost thou mean?' says she. 'Indeed I cannot have the face to accept so fine a present as this'; adding, 'Tis fit for thy own use, but 'tis above my wear, indeed.' I thought she had meant she must not wear it so fine because she was a Quaker. So I returned, 'Why; do not you Quakers wear fine linen neither?' 'Yes', says she, 'we wear fine linen when we can afford it, but this is too good for me.' However, I made her take it, and she was very thankful too. But my end was answered another way, for by this I engaged her so, that, as I found her a woman of understanding, and of honesty too, I might, upon any occasion, have a confidence in her, which was, indeed, what I very much wanted.
By accustoming myself to converse with her, I had not only learned to dress like a Quaker, but so used myself to 'thee 'and 'thou', that I talked like a Quaker too, as readily and naturally as if I had been born among them; and, in a word, I passed for a Quaker among all people that did not know me. I went but little abroad, but I had been so used to a coach that I knew not how well to go without one; besides, I thought it would be a farther disguise to me, so I told my Quaker friend one day that I thought I lived too close, that I wanted air. She proposed taking a hackney-coach sometimes, or a boat; but I told her I had always had a coach of my own till now, and I could find in my heart to have one again.
She seemed to think it strange at first, considering how close I lived, but had nothing to say when she found I did not value the expense; so, in short, I resolved I would have a coach. When we came to talk of equipages, she extolled the having all things plain. I said so too; so I left it to her direction, and a coachmaker was sent for, and he provided me a plain coach, no gilding or painting, lined with a light grey cloth, and my coachman had a coat of the same, and no lace on his hat.
When all was ready I dressed myself in the dress I bought of her, and said, 'Come, I'll be a Quaker to-day, and you and I'll go abroad'; which we did, and there was not a Quaker in the town looked less like a counterfeit than I did. But all this was my particular plot, to be the more completely concealed, and that I might depend upon being not known, and yet need not be confined like a prisoner and be always in fear; so that all the rest was grimace.