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THE LIFE OF ROXANA

the playhouse, and the eighth stayed all day at home to write a letter to the Quaker, letting her know where I then was, and how soon we should go forwards in our journey, but did not mention where we intended to settle, as, indeed, we had not yet settled that ourselves.

One of the days, viz. that in which I went to the gardens of the Tuileries, I asked Thomas several questions about his father, mother, and other relations, being resolved, notwithstanding he was my own son, as he did not know it, to turn him off by some stratagem or another, if he had any manner of memory of me, either as his mother, or the Lady Roxana. I asked him if he had any particular memory of his mother or father; he answered, 'No, I scarce remember anything of either of them', said he, 'but I have heard from several people that I had one brother and three sisters, though I never saw them all, to know them, notwithstanding I lived with an aunt four years; I often asked after my mother, and some people said she went away with a man, but it was allowed by most people, that best knew her, that she, being brought to the greatest distress, was carried to the workhouse belonging to the parish, where she died soon after with grief.'

Nothing could give me more satisfaction than what Thomas had related; so now, I thought I would ask about the Lady Roxana (for he had been my nextdoor neighbour when I had that title conferred on me). 'Pray, Thomas', said I, 'did not you speak of a great person of quality, whose name I have forgot, that lived next door to my Lord —— 's, when you was his valet? pray who was she? I suppose a foreigner, by the name you called her.' 'Really, my lady', replied he, 'I do not know who she was; all I can say of her is, that she kept the greatest company, and was a beautiful woman, by report, but I never saw her; she was called the Lady Roxana, was a very good mistress, but her character was not so good as to private life as it ought to be. Though I once had an opportunity', continued he, 'of seeing a fine outlandish dress she danced in before the king, which I took as a great favour, for the cook took me up when the lady was out, and she desired my lady's woman to show it to me.'

All this answered right, and I had nothing to do but to keep my Turkish dress out of the way, to be myself unknown to my child, for as he had never seen Roxana, so he knew nothing of me.

In the interval, my husband had hired a stage-coach to carry us to the city of Menin, where he intended to go by water down the river Lys to Ghent, and there take coach to Isabella fort, opposite the city of Anvers, and cross the river to that place, and go from thence by land to Breda; and as he had agreed and settled this patrol, I was satisfied, and we set out next day. We went through several handsome towns and villages before we took water, but by water we went round part of the city of Courtrai, and several fortified towns. At Anvers we hired a coach to Breda, where we stayed two days to refresh ourselves, for we had been very much fatigued; as Willemstadt was situated so as to be convenient for our taking water for Rotterdam, we went there, and being shipped, had a safe and speedy voyage to that city.

As we had resolved in our journey to settle at the Hague, we did not intend to stay any longer at Rotterdam than while my husband had all our wealth delivered to him from the several merchants he had consigned it to. This business took up a month, during which time we lived in