Nature, however, was exhausted in him; and if any thing had been wanting to finish the work of fate, the desolation of his native cottage had been sufficient. He stretched himself on the pallet on which bis widowed mother had passed many a sleepless night, and he never rose from it again.
The villagers, when they heard that George Somers had returned, crowded to see him, offering every comfort and assistance that their humble means afforded. Ho was too weak, however, to talk; ho could only look his thanks. His mother was his constant attendant; and he seemed unwilling to be helped by any other hand.
There is something in sickness, that breaks down the pride of manhood, that softens the heart, and brings it back to the feelings of infancy. Who that has languished, even in advanced life, in sickness and despondency; who that has pined on a weary bed, in the neglect and loneliness of a foreign land, but has thought on the mother “that looked on his childhood,” that smoothed his pillow, and administered to his helplessness? Oh! there is an enduring tenderness in the love of a mother to a son, that transcends all other affections of the heart. It is neither chilled by selfishness, nor daunted by danger, nor weakened by worthlessness, nor stifled by ingratitude. She will sacrifice every comfort to his convenience; she will surrender every pleasure to his enjoyment; she will glory in his fame, and exult in his prosperity: and if adversity overtake him, be will be the dearer to her by misfortune: and if disgrace settle upon his name, she will still love and cherish him; and if the world beside cast him off, she will be all the world to him.
Poor George Somers had known well what it was to be in sickness, and nono to soothe—lonely, and in prison, and none to visit him. He could not endure his mother from his sight; if she moved away, his