Though Captain Tickle had made no explicit declaration of his passion, his conduct spoke it in stronger terms than any language; yet there was something extremely mysterious in it, which much perplexed the bosom of the gentle Matilda. After looking at her with the most passionate air, he would fall into a reverie, and heave the most piteous sighs, as if agitated by contending passions, or some deep and secret cause of melancholy. He would appear as if ready to have unfolded all his devotion at her feet, / and then start back, and restrain himself, as if checked by some powerful obstacle: yet from the civilities he constantly received from Matilda and her father, and his prospects in life, he had much reason to hope his suit would be successful. He one day, after hearing some amiable sentiments, delivered in Matilda’s affecting manner, pressed her hand, and then suddenly, with his eyes suffused with tears, exclaimed, ‘No! it must not, cannot be.’ She inquired as much as politeness would admit, the cause of his agitation and melancholy; but he always imputed it to an unhappy habit and frame of pensiveness, arising from nervous affection.