Between the Lines

From a 19th-century British broadside:


The love and tenderness I have hitherto expressed to
you is false, and I know feel that my indifference towards
you increases every day, and the more I see you the more
you appear ridiculous in my eyes, and contemptible–
I feel inclined and in every respect disposed and determined
to hate you. Believe me I never had any inclination
to offer you my hand. Our last conversation I assure you
left a tedious and wretched insipidity which has not
possessed me with an exalted opinion of your character,
your inconstant temper would make me miserable,
and if ever we are united, I shall experience nothing but
the hatred of my parents, added to everlasting dis-
pleasure in living with you. I have a true heart to bestow,
but however I do not wish you for a moment to think
it is in your service, as I could not give it to one more
inconstant and capricious than yourself, and one less
capable to do honour to my choice, and my family.
You, Madam, I beg and desire will be persuaded that I
think seriously, and you will do me a great favour to
avoid me. I shall excuse you taking the trouble to
give me an answer to this, as your letters are full of
nonsense and impertinence, and have not a shadow of
wit and good sense. Adieu, and believe me truly, I am
so averse to you, that it is impossible I should ever be,
Madam, your Affectionate Servant and Lover, R.G.

“By reading every other line of the above letter the true meaning will be found out.”

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