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has remained here ever since. Let me
entreat you, for your own sake and for hers, to
be more quiet."

Mr. Bounderby silently gazed about him
for some moments, in every direction except
Mrs. Sparsit's direction; and then, abruptly
turning upon the niece of Lady Scadgers,
said to that wretched woman:

"Now, ma'am! We shall be happy to hear
any little apology you may think proper to
offer, for going about the country at express
pace, with no other luggage than a Cock-and-
a-Bull, ma'am!"

"Sir," whispered Mrs. Sparsit, "my nerves
are at present too much shaken, and my
health is at present too much impaired, in
your service, to admit of my doing more than
taking refuge in tears."

Which she did.

"Well, ma'am," said Bounderby, "without
making any observation to you that may
not be made with propriety to a woman of
good family, what I have got to add to that,
is, that there's something else in which it
appears to me you may take refuge, namely,
a coach. And the coach in which we came
here, being at the door, you'll allow me to
hand you down to it, and pack you home to
the Bank: where the best course for you to
pursue, will be to put your feet into the
hottest water you can bear, and take a glass
of scalding rum and butter after you get into
bed." With these words, Mr. Bounderby
extended his right hand to the weeping lady
and escorted her to the conveyance in
question, shedding many plaintive sneezes by the
way. He soon returned alone.

"Now, as you showed me in your face,
Tom Gradgrind, that you wanted to speak to
me," he resumed, "here I am. But, I am not
in a very agreeable state, I tell you plainly;
not relishing this business even as it is, and
not considering that I am at any time as
dutifully and submissively treated by your
daughter, as Josiah Bounderby of Coketown
ought to be treated by his wife. You have
your opinion, I dare say; and I have mine, I
know. If you mean to say anything to me
to-night, that goes against this candid remark,
you had better let it alone."

Mr. Gradgrind, it will be observed, being
much softened, Mr. Bounderby took particular
pains to harden himself at all points. It was
his amiable nature.

"My dear Bounderby," Mr. Gradgrind
began in reply.

"Now, you'll excuse me," said Bounderby,
"but I don't want to be too dear. That, to
start with. When I begin to be dear to a
man, I generally find that his intention is to
come over me. I am not speaking to you
politely; but, as you are aware, I am not
polite. If you like politeness, you know
where to get it. You have your gentleman
friends you know, and they'll serve you with
as much of the article as you want. I don't
keep it myself."

"Bounderby," urged Mr. Gradgrind, "we
are all liable to mistakes——"

"I thought you couldn't make 'em,"
interrupted Bounderby.

"Perhaps I thought so. But, I say we are
all liable to mistakes; and I should feel
sensible of your delicacy, and grateful for
it, if you would spare me these references to
Harthouse. I shall not associate him in our
conversation with your intimacy and
encouragement; pray do not persist in connecting
him with mine."

"I never mentioned his name!" said

"Well, well!" returned Mr. Gradgrind,
with a patient, even a submissive, air. And
he sat for a little while pondering. "Bounderby,
I see reason to doubt whether we have
ever quite understood Louisa."

"Who do you mean by We?"

"Let me say, I, then," he returned, in answer
to the coarsely blurted question; "I doubt
whether I have understood Louisa. I doubt
whether I have been quite right in the manner
of her education."

"There you hit it," returned Bounderby.
"There I agree with you. You have found
it out at last, have you? Education! I'll
tell you what education isTo be tumbled
out of doors, neck and crop, and put upon the
shortest allowance of everything except blows.
That's what I call education."

"I think your good sense will perceive,"
Mr. Gradgrind remonstrated in all humility,
"that whatever the merits of such a system
may be, it would be difficult of general
application to girls."

"I don't see it at all, sir," returned the
obstinate Bounderby.

"Well," sighed Mr. Gradrind, "we will not
enter into the question. I assure you I have
no desire to be controversial. I seek to repair
what is amiss, if I possibly can; and I hope
you will assist me in a good spirit, Bounderby,
for I have been very much distressed."

"I don't understand you, yet," said
Bounderby, with determined obstinacy, "and
therefore I won't make any promises."

"ln the course of a few hours, my dear
Bounderby," Mr. Gradgrind proceeded, in the
same depressed and propitiatory manner, "I
appear to myself to have become better
informed as to Louisa's character, than in
previous years. The enlightenment has been
painfully forced upon me, and the discovery is
not mine. I think there areBounderby,
you will be surprised to hear me say this
I think there are qualities in Louisa,
whichwhich have been harshly neglected,
andand a little perverted. Andand I
would suggest to you, thatthat if you would
kindly meet me in a timely endeavour to leave
her to her better nature for a whileand to
encourage it to develop itself by tenderness
and considerationitit would be the better
for the happiness of all of us. Louisa," said
Mr. Gradgrind, shading his face with his