’I have no scruple in saying, in the presence of our friends here, that I am a man who has, for some years, contended against the pressure of pecuniary difficulties.’
Again I contend that we are no farther advanced than we were before.’
They are wonderfully virtuous, I dare say — some people contend for that, at least; and I am sure I don’t want to contradict them — but they have not very fine natures, and they may be thankful that, like their coarse rough skins, they are not easily wounded.’
Who is this bent lady, supporting herself by a stick, and showing me a countenance in which there are some traces of old pride and beauty, feebly contending with a querulous, imbecile, fretful wandering of the mind?
That I suffered much in these contentions, that they filled me with unhappiness and remorse, and yet that I had a sustaining sense that it was required of me, in right and honour, to keep away from myself, with shame, the thought of turning to the dear girl in the withering of my hopes, from whom I had frivolously turned when they were bright and fresh — which consideration was at the root of every thought I had concerning her — is all equally true.