When I left college, I was sent out to Jamaica, to espouse a bride already courted for me.
My father said nothing about her money;
but he told me Miss Mason was the boast of Spanish Town for her beauty: and this was no lie.
I found her a fine woman, in the style of Blanche Ingram: tall, dark, and majestic.
Her family wished to secure me because I was of a good race; and so did she.
They showed her to me in parties, splendidly dressed.
I seldom saw her alone, and had very little private conversation with her.
She flattered me, and lavishly displayed for my pleasure her charms and accomplishments.
All the men in her circle seemed to admire her and envy me.
I was dazzled, stimulated: my senses were excited; and being ignorant, raw, and inexperienced, I thought I loved her.
There is no folly so besotted that the idiotic rivalries of society,
the prurience, the rashness, the blindness of youth, will not hurry a man to its commission.
Her relatives encouraged me; competitors piqued me;
she allured me: a marriage was achieved almost before I knew where I was.
Oh, I have no respect for myself when I think of that act! An agony of inward contempt masters me.
I never loved, I never esteemed, I did not even know her.
I was not sure of the existence of one virtue in her nature:
I had marked neither modesty, nor benevolence, nor candour, nor refinement in her mind or manners
and, I married her: gross, grovelling, mole-eyed blockhead that I was!
With less sin I might have -- but let me remember to whom I am speaking."