A lady in answer to a letter in which her suitor intimates his wish to discontinue acquaintance.
I acknowledge the receipt of your last letter, which now lies before me, and in which you convey the intimation, that the position in which, for some time past, we have regarded each other, must henceforth be abandoned.
Until the receipt of this letter, I had regarded you in the light of my future husband; you were, therefore, as you have reason to know, so completely the possessor of my affections, that I looked with indifference upon every other suitor. The remembrance of you never failed to give a fresh zest to the pleasures of life, and you were in my thoughts at the very moment in which I received your letter.
But deem me not so devoid of proper pride as to wish you to revoke your determination, from which I will not attempt to dissuade you, whether you may have made it in cool deliberation, or in precipitate haste. Sir, I shall endeavor to banish you from my affections, as readily and completely as you have banished me; and all that I shall now require from you is this, that you will return to me whatever letters you may have of mine, and which I may have written under a foolish confidence in your attachment, and when you were accredited as the future husband of,
Yours as may be,
A lady on declining further addresses.
In my behavior toward you, of late, you have no doubt observed a certain alteration in my speech and manner, amounting perhaps to coolness, or you may have thought, aversion; if so, you will be less surprised at the receipt of this letter, which is meant to intimate that your addresses to me must henceforth cease. It is true that many protestations of a sincere attachment have passed between us; but, Sir, those protestations were made under the supposition that neither party would descend to deception; this you have done; in what particular I will not advert to, since your own consciousness will not fail to satisfy you fully on that point.
The subject of my letter will not admit of my being prolix; I have, therefore, only this to add, that I expect you will return whatever letters you may have of mine in your possession. I herewith send you yours, also certain presents, which I wish no longer to regard as mine, and which I received from your hands, when I believed you incapable of deception, or of wounding the happiness of,
Source: Thornwell, Emily. The Lady's Guide to Perfect Gentility. (New York: Derby & Jackson, 1857), 167-169.