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Enter MRS, CROAKER.
regard, sir; and I hope you can have none of my Croaker. But I tell you, sir, the lady is not at duty.
liberty. It's a match. You see she says nothing. Croaker. That's not the thing, my little sweet- Silence gives consent. ing; my love! No, no, another guess lover than Leontine. But, sir, she talked of force. Consi1: there he stands, madam, his very looks declare der, sir, the cruelty of constraining her inclinations. the force of his passion-Call up a look, you dog! Croaker. But I say there's no cruelty. Don't (Aside.)-But then, had you seen him, as I have, you know, blockhead, that girls have always a weeping, speaking soliloquies and blank verse, roundabout way of saying yes before company ? sometirnes melancholy, and sometimes absent- So get you both gone together into the next room,
Miss Richland. I fear, sir, he's absent now; or and hang him that interrupts the tender explanasuch a declaration would have come most properly tion. Get you gone, I say: I'll not hear a word. from himself.
Leontine. But, sir, I must beg leave to insistCroaker. Himself! madam, he would die before Croaker. Get off, you puppy, or I'll beg leave to he wuld make such a confession; and if he had insist upon knocking you down. Stupid whelp! Dot a channel for his passion through me, it would But I don't wonder : the boy takes entirely after his ere now have drowned his understanding. mother. Miss Richland. I must grant, sir, there are at
(Exeunt MISS RICHLAND and LEONTINE. tractions in modest diffidence above the force of words. A silent address is the genuine eloquence
Mrs. Croaker. Mr. Croaker, I bring you some. of sincerity.
thing, my dear, that I believe will make you smile. Croaker. Madam, he has forgot to speak any
Croaker. I'll hold you a guinea of that, my dear. other language; silence is become his mother tongue.
Mrs. Croaker. A letter; and as I knew the Miss Richland. And it must be confessed, sir
, hand, I ventured to open it. it speaks very powerfully in his favour. And yet Croaker. And how can you expect your breakI shall be thought too forward in making such a ing open my letters should give me pleasure ? confession; shan't I, Mr. Leontine?
Mrs. Croaker. Poo! it's from your sister at Leonline. Confusion! my reserve will undo me. Lyons, and contains good news ; read it. But, if modesty attracts her, impudence may dis
Croaker. What a Frenchified cover is here! gust her. I'll try. [Aside.) Don't imagine from my That sister of mine has some good qualities, but I silence, madam, that I want a due sense of the hon- could never tcach her to fold a letter. our and happiness intended me. My father, mad- Mrs. Croaker. Fold a fiddlestick. Read what am, tells me, your humble servant is not totally in- it contains. different to you. He admires you; I adore you; and
CROAKER (reading.) when we come together, upon my soul I believe "DEAR NICK, we shall be the happiest couple in all St. James's. "An English gentleman, of large fortune, has
Miss Richland. If I could flatter myself you for some time made private, though honourable prothought as you speak, sir
posals to your daughter Olivia. They love each Leonline. Doubt my sincerity, madam ? By your other tenderly, and I find she has consented, withdear self I swear. Ask the brave if they desire out letting any of the family know, to crown his glory? ask cowards if they covet safety
addresses. As such good offers don't come every Croaker. Well, well, no more questions about it. day, your own good sense, his large fortune and
Leontinc. Ask the sick if they long for health ? family considerations, will induce you to forgive ask misers if they love money ? ask
“ Yours ever, Croaker. Ask a fool if he can talk nonsense?
" RACHAEL CPOKER What's come over the boy? What signifies asking,
My daughter Olivia privately contracted to a when there's not a soul to give you an answer ? If man of large fortune! This is good news indeed. you would ask to the purpose, ask this lady's con- My heart never foretold me of this. And yet, how sent to make you happy.
slily the little baggage has carried it since she came Miss Richland. Why indeed, sir, his uncom- home; not a word on't to the old ones for the world. mon ardour almost compels me--forces me to com- Yet I thought I saw something she wanted to conply. And yet I'm afraid he'll despise a conquest
ceal, gained with too much ease; won't you, Mr. Leon
Mrs. Croaker. Well, if they have concealed tine?
their amour, they shai't conceal their wedding; Leontine. Confusion ! [Aside.] Oh, by no means that shall be public, I'm resolved. madam, by no means. And yet, madam, you talk
Croaker. I tell thice, woman, the wedding is the ed of force. There is nothing I would avoid so most foolish part of the ceremony, I can never get much as coinpulsion in a thing of this kind. No, this woman to think of the most serious part of the madam, I will still be generous, an't leave you at nuptial engagement. liberty to refuse.
Mrs. Croaker. What, would you have me thins
of their funeral ? But come, tell me, my dear, don't Mrs. Croaker. Sir, this honouryou owe more to me than you care to confess? Lofty. “And, Dubardieu! if the man comes Would you have ever been known to Mr. Lofty, from the Cornish borough, you must do him; you who has undertaken Miss Richland's claim at the must do him, I say.”—Madam, I ask ten thousand Treasury, but for me? Who was it first made him pardons.—“And if the Russian ambassador calls; an acquaintance at Lady Shabbaroon's rout? Who but he will scarce call to-day, I believe.”—And got him to promise us his interest ? Is not he a now, madam, I have just got time to express my back-stairs favourite, one that can do what he happiness in having the honour of being permitted pleases with those that do what they please ? Is to profess myself your most obedient humble sernot he an acquaintance that all your groaning and vant. lamentation could never have got us ?
Mrs. Croaker. Sir, the happiness and honour Croaker. He is a man of importance, I grant are all mine; and yet, I'm only robbing the public you. And yet what amazes me is, that, while he while I detain you. is giving away places to all the world, he can't get Lofty. Sink the public, madam, when the fair one for himself.
are to be attended. Ah, could all my hours be so Mrs. Croaker. That perhaps may be owing to charmingly devoted! Sincerely, don't you pity ns his nicety. Great men are not easily satisfied. poor creatures in affairs ? Thus it is eternally; st Enter French SERVANT.
licited for places here, teased for pensions there, and Servant. An expresse from Monsieur Lofty. courted every where. I know you pity me. Yes, He vil be vait upon your honours instrammant. I see you do. He be only giving four five instruction, read two Mrs. Croaker. Excuse me, sir, "Toils of em tree memorial, call upon von ambassadeur. He pires pleasures are,” as Waller says. vil be vid you in one tree minutes.
Lofty. Waller, Waller, is he of the house? Mrs. Croaker. You see now, my dear. What Mrs. Crouker. The modern poet of that name, an extensive department! Well, friend, let your sir. master know, that we are extremely honoured by Lofty. Oh, a modern! we men of business de this honour. Was there any thing ever in a higher spise the moderns; and as for the ancients, we have style of breeding? All messages among the great no time to read them. Poetry is a pretty thing are now done by express.
cnough for our wives and daughters; but not for Croaker. To be sure, no man does little things us. Why now, here I stand that know nothing with more solemnity, or claims more respect, than of books. I say, madam, I know nothing of he. But he's in the right on't. In our bad world, books; and yet, I believe, upon a land-carriage respect is given where respect is claimed. fishery, a stamp act, or a jag-hire, I can talk my
Mrs. Croaker. Never mind the world, my dear; two hours without feeling the want of them. you were never in a pleasanter place in your life. Mrs. Croaker. The world is no stranger to Mr Let us now think of receiving him with proper re- Lofty's eminence in every capacity. spect-a loud rapping at the door, )--and there Lofty. I vow to gad, madam, you make me blush. he is, by the thundering rap.
I'm nothing, nothing, nothing in the world; a mere Croaker. Ay, verily, there he is! as close upon obscure gentleman. To be sure, indeed, one or two the heels of his own express as an endorsement of the present ministers are pleased to represent me upon the back of a bill. Well, I'll leave you to re- as a formidable man. I know they are pleased to ceive him, whilst I go to chide my little Olivia for bespatter me at all their little dirty levees. Yet, intending to steal a marriage without mine or her upon my soul, I wonder what they see in me to aunt's consent. I must seem to be angry, or she treat me so! Measures, not men, have always been tvo may begin to despise my authority. (Erit. my mark; and I vow, by all that's honourable, my
Enter LOFTY, speaking to his Servant. resentment has never done the men, as mere men, Lofty. “And if the Venetian ambassador, or any manner of harm—that is as mere men. that teasing creature the marquis should call, I'm Alrs. Croaker. What importance, and yet what not at home. Dam'me, I'll be a pack-horse to modesty! none of them.” My dear madam, I have just Lofty. Oh, if you talk of modesty, madam, there, snatched a moment—"And if the expresses to his I own, I'm accessible to praise : inodesty is my foi grace he ready, let them be sent off; they're of im- ble: it was so the Duke of Brentford used to say portance."— Madam, I ask a thousand pardons. of me. "I love Jack Losty,” he used to say: 'no Mrs. Croaker. Sir, this honour.
man has a finer knowledge of things; quite a man Lofty. “And, Dubardieu! if the person calls of information; and, when he speaks upon his legs about the commission, let him know that it is made by the Lord he's prodigious, he scouts them; and ulit. As for Lord Cumbercourt's stale request, it yet all men have their faults; too much modesty is can keep cold: you understand me."-Madam, 1 his,” says his grace. usk ten thousand pardons.
Mrs. Croaker. And yet, I dare say, you don't
want assurance when you come to solicit for your every thing in my power to deserve it. Her infriends.
delicacy surprises me. Lofty. O, there indeed I'm in bronze. Apro- Olivia. Sure, Leontine, there's nothing so inpos! I have just been mentioning Miss Richland's delicate in being sensible of your merit. If so, 1 case to a certain personage; we must name no fear I shall be the most guilty thing alive. names. When I ask, I'm not to be put off, madam. Leontine. But you mistake, my dear. The No, no, I take my friend by the button. A fine same attention I used to advance my merit with girl, sir; great justice in her case. A friend of you, I practised to lessen it with her What more mine. Borough interest. Business must be done, could I do? Mr. Secretary. I say, Mr. Secretary, her busi- Olivia. Let us now rather consider what is to ness must be done, sir. That's my way, madam. be done. We have both dissembled too long. I
Mrs. Croaker. Bless me! you said all this to the have always been ashamed-I am now quite weary secretary of state, did you?
of it. Sure I could never have undergone so much Lofty. I did not say the secretary, did I ? Well, for any other but you. curse it, since you have found me out, I will not Leontine. And you shall find my gratitude equal deny it. It was to the secretary.
to your kindest compliance. Though our friends Mrs. Croaker. This was going to the fountain- should totally forsake us, Olivia, we can draw upon head at once, not applying to the understrappers, content for the deficiencies of fortune. as Mr. Honeywood would have had us.
Olivia. Then why should we defer our scheme Lofty. Honeywood! hel he! He was, indeed, a of humble happiness, when it is now in our powfine solicitor. I suppose you have heard what has er? I may be the favourite of your father, it is true; just happened to him?
but can it ever be thought, that his present kind. Mrs. Croaker. Poor dear man; no accident, 1 ness to a supposed child will continue to a known hope?
deceiver? Lofty. Undone, madam, that's all. His credi.
Leontine. I have many reasons to believe it will. tors have taken him into custody. A prisoner in As his attachments are but few they are lasting. his own house,
His own marriage was a private one, as ours may Mrs. Croaker. A prisoner in his own house! be. Besides, I have sounded him already at a disHow? At this very time? I'm quite unhappy for tance, and find all his answers exactly to our wish. him.
Nay, by an expression or two that dropped from Lofty. Why, so am I. The man, to be sure, him, I am induced to think he knows of this affair. was immensely good-natured. But then I could Olivia. Indeed ! But that would be a happiness never find that he had any thing in him,
too great to be expected. Mrs. Croaker. His manner, to be sure, was ex- Leonline. However it be, I'm certain you have cessive harmless; some, indeed, thought it a little power over him; and I am persuaded, if you indull. For my part, I always concealed my opinion. formed him of our situation, that he would be dis
Lofty, It can't be concealed, madam; the man posed to pardon it. was dull, dull as the last new comedy! a poor im- Olivia. You had equal expectations, Leontine, practicable creature! I tried once or twice to know from your last scheme with Miss Richland, which if he was fit for business; but he had scarce talents you find has succeeded most wretchedly. to be groom-porter to an orange-barrow.
Leontine. And that's the best reason for trying Mrs. Croaker. How differently does Miss Rich another. land think of bim! For, I believe, with all his
Olivia. If it must be so, I submit. faults, she loves him.
Leontine. As we could wish, he comes this way. Lofty. Loves him ! does she? You should cure Now my dearest Olivia, be resolute. I'll just reher of that by all means. Let me see; what if she tire within hearing, to come in at a proper time, were sent to him this instant, in his present doleful either to share your danger, or confirm your vicsituation ? My life for it, that works her cure.
(Erit. Distress is a perfect antidote to love. Suppose we join her in the next room? Miss Richland is a fine
Enter CROAKER. girl, has a fine fortune, and must not be thrown
Croaker. Yes, I must forgive her; and yet not away. Upoh my honour, madam, I have a regard too easily neither. It will be proper to keep up the for Miss Richland; and rather than she should be decorums of resentment a little, if it be only to im thrown away, I should think it no indignity to
her with an idea of my authority. marry her myself.
Olivia. How I tremble to approach him!
Might I presume, sir,—if I interrupt you—
Croaker. No, child, where I have an affection, Leontine And yet, trust me, Olivia, I had every it is not a little thing that can interrupt me. Af. reason to expect Miss Richland's refusal, as I did | fection gets over little things.
Olivia Sir, you're too kind. I'm sensible how
Enter LEONTINE. ill I deserve this partiality; yet, Heaven knows, there is nothing I would not do to gain it.
Leontine. Permit him thus to answer for him Croaker. And you have but too well succeeded, self. (Kneeling.) Thus, sir, let me speak my you little hussy, you. With those endearing ways gratitude for this unmerited forgiveness. Yes, sir, of yours, on my conscience, I could be brought to this even exceeds all your former tenderness, i forgive any thing, unless it were a very great of now can boast the most indulgent of fathers. The fence indeed.
life he gave, compared to this, was but a trifling Olivia. But mine is such an offence-When blessing. you know my guilt-Yes, you shall know it, Crouker. And, good sir, who sent for you, with though I feel the greatest pain in the confession, that fine tragedy face, and flourishing manner?
Croaker. Why, then, if it be so very great a I don't know what we have to do with your gratipain, you may spare yourself the trouble; for I tude upon this occasion. know every syllable of the matter before you begin. Leontine. How, sir! Is it possible to be silent Olivia. Indeed! then I'm undone.
when so much obliged? Would you refuse me Croaker. Ay, miss, you wanted to steal a match, the pleasure of being grateful? of adding my thanks without letting me know it, did you? But I'm to my Olivia's? of sharing in the transports that not worth being consulted, I suppose, when there's you have thus occasioned? to be a marriage in my own family. No, I'm to
Croaker. Lord, sir, we can be happy enough have no hand in the disposal of my own children. without your coming in to make op the party. I No, I'm nobody. I'm to be a mere article of fami- don't know what's the matter with the boy all this ly lumber; a piece of cracked china to be stuck up day; he has got into such a rhodomontade manner in a corner.
all this morning! Olivia. Dear sir, nothing but the dread of your
Leontine. But, sir, I that have so large a part authority could induce us to conceal it from you.
in the benefit, is it not my duty to show my joy? Croaker. No, no, my consequence is no more; is the being admitted to your favour so slight an I'm as little minded as a dead Russian in winter, obligation? is the happiness of marrying my Olijust stuck up with a pipe in its mouth till there via so small a blessing? comes a thaw-It goes to my heart to vex her,
Croaker. Marrying Olivia! marrying Olivia!
(Aside. marrying his own sister! Sure the boy is out of Olivia. I was prepared, sir, for your anger, and his senses. His own sister. despaired of pardon, even while I presumed to ask Leontine. My sister! it. But your severity shall never abate my affec- Olivia. Sister! How have I been mistaken! tion, as my punishment is but justice.
(Aside. Croaker. And yet you should not despair nei
Leontine. Some cursed mistake in all this, I find. ther, Livy. We ought to hope all for the best.
(Aside. Olivia. And do you permit me to hope, sir ? Croaker. What does the booby mean? or has Can I ever expect to be forgiven? But hope has he any meaning ? Eh, what do you mean, you too long deceived me.
blockhead, you? Croaker. Why then, child, it shan't deceive you Leontine. Mean, sir,—why, sir-only when my now, for I forgive you this very moment; I forgive sister is to be married, that I have the pleasure of you all! and now you are indeed my daughter. marrying her, sir, that is, of giving her away, sir, Olivia. O transport! this kindness overpowers - I have made a point of it.
Croaker. O, is that all? Give her away. You Croaker. I was always against severity to our have made a point of it. Then you had as good children. We have been young and giddy our- make a point of first giving away yourself, as I'm selves, and we can't expect boys and girls to be old going to prepare the writings between you and before their time.
Miss Richland this very minute. What a fuss is wlivia. What generosity! But can you forget here about nothing! Why, what's the matter now? the many falsehoods, the dissimulation
I thought I had made you at least as happy as you Croaker. You did indeed dissemble, you urchin could wish. you; but where's the girl that won't lissemble for Olivia. O! yes, sir; very happy. a husband? My wife and I had never been mar- Croaker. Do you foresee any thing, child ? You ried, if we had not dissembled a little beforehand. look as if you did. I think if any thing was to be
Olivia. It shall be my future care never to put foreseen, I have as sharp a look-out as another; such generosity to a second trial. And as for the and yet I foresee nothing.
(Erit. partner of my offence and folly, from his native honour, and the just sense he has of his duty, I can
LEONTINE, OLIVIA answer for him that
Olivia. What can it mean?
Leontine. He knows something, and yet for mygether within my oath. For certain, if an honest life I can't tell what.
man is to get any thing by a thing, there's no reaOlivia. It can't be the connexion between us, son why all things should not be done in civility. I'm pretty certain.
Honeywood. Doubtless, all trades must live, Mr Leontine. Whatever it be, my dearest, I'm re- Twitch; and yours is a necessary one. solved to put it out of fortune's power to repeat our
(Gives him money. mortification. I'll haste and prepare for our jour- Bailiff. Oh! your honour : I hope your honour ney to Scotland this very evening. My friend takes nothing amiss as I does, as I does nothing Honeywood has promised me his advice and assist- but my duty in so doing. I'm sure no man can ance. I'll go to him and repose our distresses on say I ever give a gentleman, that was a gentleman, his friendly bosom; and I know so much of his ill usage. If I saw that a gentleman was a gentlehonest heart, that if he can't relieve our uneasi- man, I have taken money not to see him for ten nesses, he will at least share them. [Ereunt weeks together.
Honeywood. Tenderness is a virtue, Mr. Twitch.
Bailiff. Ay, sir, it's a perfect treasure. I love to ACT III.
see a gentleman with a tender heart. I don't know,
but I think I have a tender heart myself. If all SCENE-YOUNG HONEYWOOD'S HOUSE, that I have lost by my heart was put together, it BAILIFF, HONEYWOOD, FOLLOWER.
would make a-but no matter for that.
Honeywood. Don't account it lost, Mr. Twitch. Bailiff. Lookye, sir, I have arrested as good men The ingratitude of the world can never deprive us es you in my time: no disparagement of you nei- of the conscious happiness of having acted with ther: men that would go forty guineas on a game humanity ourselves. of cribbage. I challenge the town to show a man Bailif. Humanity, sir, is a jewel. It's better in more genteeler practice than myself. than gold. I love humanity. People may say,
Honeyrcood. Without all question, Mr. I that we in our way have no humanity; but I'll show forget your name, sir.
you my humanity this moment. There's my folBailiff
. How can you forget what you never lower here. Little Flanigan, with a wife and four knew? he! he! he!
children, a guinea or two would be more to him Honeywood. May I beg leave to ask your name? than twice as much to another. Now, as I can't Bailiff. Yes, you may.
show him any humanity myself, I must beg leave Honeywood. Then, pray, sir, what is your name? you'll do it for me.
Bailiff. That I didn't promise to tell you. He! Honeywood. I assure you, Mr. Twitch, yours he! he! A joke breaks no bones, as we say among is a most powerful recommendation. us that practise the law.
(Giving money to the follower. Honeywood. You may have reason for keeping Bailiff. Sir, you're a gentleman, I see you know it a secret, perhaps ?
what to do with your money. But, to business: Bailiff. The law does nothing without reason. we are to be with you here as your friends, I supI'm ashamed to tell my name to no man, sir. If pose. But set in case company comes. - Little you can show cause, as why, upon a special capus, Flanigan here, to be sure, has a good face; a very that I should prove my name-But, come, Timo- good face; but then, he is a little seedy, as we say thy Twitch is my name. And, now you know among us that practise the law. Not well in my name, what have you to say to that? - clothes. Smoke the pocket-holes.
Honeywood. Nothing in the world, good Mr. Honeyroood. Well, that shall be remedied withTwitch, but that I have a favour to ask, that's all. out delay. Bailiff. Ay, favours are more easily asked than
Enter SEKVANT. granted, as we say among us thal practise the law. Servant. Sir, Miss Richland is below. I have taken an oath against granting favours. Honeyrood. How unlucky: Detain her a mi Would you have me perjure myself?
ment. We must improve my good friend little Honeyroood. But my request will come recom- Mr. Flanigan's appearance first. Here, let Mr. mended in so strong a manner as, I believe, you'll Flanigan have a suit of my clothes--quick-the have no scruple. [Pulling out his purse.] The brown and silver-Do you hear? thing is only this: I believe I shall be able to dis- Servant. That your honour gave away to tho charge this trifle in two or three days at farthest ; begging gentleman that makes verses, because it but as I would not have the affair known for the was as good as new. world, I have thoughts of keeping you, and your Honeywood. The white and gold then. good friend here, about me, till the debt is discharg. Serdant. That, your honour, I made bold in ed; for which I shall be properly grateful. sell
, because it was good for nothing. Bailif. Oh! that's another maxum, and alto-l Honeywcoorl
, the first that comer to hand