Scotty wept over his poor old mother in Edinburgh--a lady, he insisted, gently born-- who was in reduced circumstances
, who had pinched herself to pay the lump sum to the ship-owners for his apprenticeship, whose sacrificing dream had been to see him a merchantman officer and a gentleman, and who was heartbroken because he had deserted his ship in Australia and joined another as a common sailor before the mast.
It was the cumulative effect of having a mother in reduced circumstances
and grumbling about it, of being compelled to work and grumbling about that, and of achieving in her work only a semi-success and grumbling about that also, that--backed by her looks--enabled Claire to give quite a number of people, and Bill Dawlish in particular, the impression that she was a modern martyr, only sustained by her indomitable courage.
The death of his father in reduced circumstances
necessitated the removal of his mother and the family of eight brothers and sisters to the village of Lansingburg, on the Hudson River.