[This letter is continued from one started on Tuesday, 17th January 1809]
Wednesday.– I expected to have a Letter from somebody today, but I have not. Twice every day, I think of a Letter from Portsmouth.– Miss Murden has been sitting with us this morng–as yet she seems very well pleased with her situation. The worst part of her being in Southampton will be the necessity of our walking with her now & then, for she talks so loud that one is quite ashamed, but our Dining hours are luckily very different, which we shall take all reasonable advantage of.– Mrs Hy D. has been brought to bed some time. I suppose we must stand to the next.
The Queen’s Birthday moves the Assembly to this night, instead of last–& as it is always fully attended, Martha and I expect an amusing shew.– We were in hopes of being independant of other companions by having the attendance of Mr Austen & Capt. Harwood, but as they fail us, we are obliged to look out for other help, & have fixed on the Wallops as least likely to be troublesome.– I have called on them this morng & found them very willing;– & I am sorry that you must wait a whole week for the particulars of the Eveng.– I propose being asked to dance by our acquaintance Mr Smith, now Capt Smith, who has lately re-appeared in Southampton–but I shall decline it.– He saw Charles last August.–
What an alarming Bride Mrs Coln Tilson must have been! Such a parade is one of the most immodest peices of Modesty that one can imagine. To attract notice could have been her only wish.– It augurs ill for his family–it announces not great sense, & therefore ensures boundless Influence.– I hope Fanny’s visit is now taking place.– You have said scarcely anything of her lately, but I trust you are as good friends as ever.–
[Letter is then continued upside down at top of page one]
Martha sends her Love, & hopes to have the pleasure of seeing you when you return to Southampton. You are to understand this message, as being merely for the sake of a Message, to oblige me.– Yrs affec:tely– J. Austen.
Henry never sent his Love to me in your last–but I send him Mine.–
Edwd Austen’s Esq.