"The Empire of his Soul was hers; enchanted by inexplicable, irresistable Magick!"

— Manley, Delarivier (c. 1670-1724)

Place of Publication
Printed for John Morphew and J. Woodward
"The Empire of his Soul was hers; enchanted by inexplicable, irresistable Magick!"
Metaphor in Context
He had observ'd, that Charlot had been, but with disgust, deny'd the gay Part of reading: 'Tis natural for young People to chuse the diverting, before the instructive; he sent for her into the Gallery, where was a noble Library in all Languages, a Collection of the most valuable Authors, with a mixture of the most Amorous. He told her, that now her Understanding was increas'd, with her Statue, he resolv'd to make her Mistress of her own Conduct; and as the first thing that he intended to oblige her in, thatGovernante who had hitherto had the care of her Actions, should be dismiss'd; because he had observ'd the severity of her Temper had sometimes been displeasing to her; that she shou'd henceforward have none above her, that she shou'd need to stand in awe of; and to confirm to her that good opinion he seem'd to have, he presented her with the Key of that Gallery, to improve her Mind, and seek her Diversion, amongst those Authors he had formerly forbid her the use of. Charlot made him a very low Curtsie, and, with a blushing Grace, return'd him Thanks for the two favours he bestow'd upon her. She assur'd him, that no Action of hers shou'd make him repent the distinction; that her whole endeavour should be to walk in that Path he made familiar to her; and that Virtue shou'd ever be her only Guide. Tho' this was not what the Duke wanted, 'twas nothing but what he expected: He observ'd formerly, that she was a great lover of Poetry, especially when 'twas forbid her; he took down an Ovid, aud opening it just at the love of Myrra for her Father, conscious red overspread his Face; he gave it her to read, she obey'd him with a visible delight; nothing is more pleasing to young Girls, than in being first consider'd as Women. Charlot saw the Duke entertain'd her with an Air of Consideration more than usual, passionate and respectful; this taught her to refuge in the native Pride and Cunning of the Sex, she assum'd an Air more haughty. The leaving a Girl just beginning to believe herself capable of attaining that Empire over Mankind, which they are all born and taught by Instinct to expect. She took the Book, and plac'd herself by the Duke, his Eyes Feasted hemselves upon her Face, thence wander'd over her snowy Bosom, and saw the young swelling Breasts just beginning to distinguish themselves, and which were gently heav'd at the Impression Myrra's Sufferings made upon her Heart, by this dangerous reading, he pretended to shew her, that there were Pleasures her Sex were born for, and which she might consequently long to taste! Curiosity is an early and dangerous Enemy to Virtue, the young Charlot, who had by a noble Incli- of Gratitude a strong propension of Affection for the Duke, whom she call'd and estem'd her Papa, being a Girl of wonderful reflection, and consequently Application, wrought her Imagination up to such a lively heighth at the Fathers Anger after the possession of his Daughter, which she judg'd highly unkind and unnatural, that she drop'd her Book, Tears fill'd her Eyes, Sobs rose to oppress her, and she pull'd out her Handkerchief to cover the Disorder. The Duke, who was Master of all Mankind, could trace 'em in all the Meanders of Dissimulation and Cunning, was not at a loss how to interpret the Agitation of a Girl who knew no Hipocrisy, all was Artless, the beautiful product of Innocence and Nature; he drew her gently to him, drunk her Tears with his Kisses, suck'd her Sighs and gave her by that dangerous Commerce (her Soul before prepar'd to softness) new and unfelt Desires; her Virtue was becalm'd, or rather unapprehensive of him for an Invader; he prest her Lips with his, the nimble beatings of his Heart, apparently seen and felt thro' his open Breast! the glowings! the tremblings of his Limbs! the glorious Sparkles from his guilty Eyes! his shortness of Breath, and eminent Disorder, were things all new to her, that had never seen, heard, or read before of those powerful Operations, struck from the Fire of the two meeting Sex; nor had she leisure to examine his disorders, possess'd by greater of her own! greater! because that Modesty opposing Nature, forc'd a struggle of Dissimulation. But the Duke's pursuing Kisses overcame the very Thoughts of any thing, but that new and lazy Poison stealing to her Heart, and spreading swiftly and imperceptibly thro' all her Veins, she clos'd her Eyes with languishing Delight! deliver'd up the possession of her Lips and Breath to the amorous Invader; return'd his eagar grasps, and, in a word, gave her whole Person into his Arms, in meltings full of delight! The Duke by that lovely Extasie, carry'd beyond himself, sunk over the expiring Fair, in Raptures too powerful for description! calling her his admirable Charlot! his charming Angel! his adorable Goddess! but all was so far modest, that he attempted not beyond her Lips and Breast, but cry'd that she shou'd never be anothers. The Empire of his Soul was hers; enchanted by inexplicable, irresistable Magick! she had Power beyond the Gods themselves! Charlot return'd from that amiable Disorder, was a new charm'd at the Duke's Words; Words that set her so far above what was mortal, the Woman assum'd in her, and she wou'd have no notice taken of the Transports she had shown. He saw and favour'd her modesty, secure of that fatal Sting he had fix'd within her Breast, that Taste of delight, which powerful Love and Nature wou'd call upon her to repeat. He own'd he lov'd her; that he never cou'd love any other; that 'twas impossible for him to live a day, an hour, without seeing her; that in her absence he had felt more than ever had been felt by Mortal; he begg'd her to have pity on him, to return his Love, or else he shou'd be the most lost, undone thing alive. Charlot, amaz'd and charm'd, felt all those dangerous perturbations of Nature that arise from an amorous Constitution, with Pride and Pleasure, she saw herself necessary to the happiness of one, that she had hitherto esteemed so much above her, ignorant of the Power of Love, that Leveller of Mankind; that blender of Distinction and Hearts. Her soft Answer was, That she was indeed reciprocally Charm'd, she knew not how; all he had said and done was wonderful and pleasing to her; and if he wou'd still more please her (if there were a more) it shou'd be never to be parted from her. The Duke had one of those violent Passions, where, to heighten it, resistance was not at all necessary; it had already reach'd the ultimate, it cou'd not be more ardent; yet was he loth to rush upon the possession of the Fair, lest the too early pretension might disgust her: He wou'd steal himself into her Soul, he wou'd make himself necessary to her quiet, as she was to his.
(pp. 62-6)
Searching "empire" and "soul" in HDIS (Prose)
At least 11 entries in ECCO and ESTC (1709, 1716).

See Secret Memoirs and Manners of several Persons of Quality, of Both Sexes. From the New Atalantis, an Island in the Mediteranean. Written Originally in Italian (London: Printed for John Morphew and J. Woodward, 1709).
Free indirect Discourse
Date of Entry

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.