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SCENE I.-An Apartment at MR. BLANDFORD's. Enter BLANDFORD, SIR WILLIAM BELLMONT, and
BELLMONT, L. Bland. Well, Sir William, we have made a good day's work of it-the writings will be ready to-morrow morning.-Where is Belinda ? I thought she was in this room.
Tip. She is gone to her own room, sir: she is not well.
Sir W. She has changed her mind, perhaps.-I shall have no faith in this business till it is all concluded.
Bland. Changed her mind! say you ? No, no; I can depend upon her. I'll bring her to you this moment, and you and your son shall hear a declaration of her mind out of her own lips.-Tippet, where is Belinda ? Tip. I'll show you the way, sir.
[Exit with BLANDFORD, R. Sir W. Now we shall see what authority you have over your daughter.--I have your promise, George,, if she consents, you will be ready to comply with the wishes of your father?
Bell. Sir, you may depend—that is, as far as matters are in my power:- but you know, as I told you already, the lady has a settled, rooted aversion to me.
Sir W. Aversion !--she can change her mind, can't she? Women have no settled principle: they like to-day and dislike to-morrow.-Besides, has not her father promised her to you in marriage?-If the old gentleman likes you, what have you to do with her aversion?
Bell. To do with it? A great deal, I am afraid. You are not now to learn, that when a young lady marries against her inclination, billet-doux, assignations, plots, intrigues, and a terrible et cætera of female stratagem, mount into her brain, and the poor husband in the mean time
Sir W. Come, lad, don't play the rogue with your father. Did not you promise me, if she made no objection, that there would be no obstacle on your part ?
Bell. I promised, to be sure; but yet I can't help thinking
Sir W. And I can't help thinking that you know how to equivocale. Look you, George, your words were plain, downright English, and I expect that you will perform to the very letter. I have fixed my heart upon This match. Mr. Blandford and I have passed the day at the Crown and Rolls, to read over the deeds. I have been dining upon parchment, as I may say. I now tell you once for all, you must be observant of my will and pleasure. * Bell. To end all dispute, sir, if the lady_ she will never consent; I may safely promise. [Aside.]-If the lady, sir, can at once forget her engagements with my friend Beverley
Sir W. You will then forget Clarissa : fairly spoken. Come, I am satisfied. And now, now we shall see.
Re-enter BLANDFORD with Belinda, R. Bland. Odsheart, I am overjoyed, Sir William : my daughter is a complying girl, and obedient to her father. Young gentleman, I give you joy. Beli. Death to my hopes ! what does he mean!
[Aside. Bland. Sir William, give me your hand upon it.This will not only be a match of prudence, but of incli. nation.
Sir W. There, George, there is news for you.
Bell. Sure she won't bring this calamity upon me? [Aside.)-Can I believe what I hear, madam ? will you yourself pronounce the sentence ?
Belin. Sir, I must take shame to myself that I have been so long refractory to the dictates of the best of fathers, and blind also to your merits.
Bland. Toll loll loll.
Bell. Confusion ! [Aside.] My merit, I fear, is over. rated by you.
Belin. "Pardon me, sir, I must freely declare that iny heart has been fixed on a worthless man, whom I now renounce; and to you, sir, I am ready to resign myself,
Bland. There, there, all's fixed, and my blessing attend you both.
Bell. What a dilemma am I brought into! [Aside.
Sir W. George, what's the matter, boy? You a bridegroom! Wounds! at your age I could cut a caperover the moon upon such an occasion,
Bell. Sir, I must beg to be excused; I am more slack-mettled, sir : I cannot leap quite so high.
Sir W. Well, well, all in good time.- Mr. Blandford, where's the bottle you promised? I want to wash down the cobwebs of the law.
Bland. In truth so do I.--Who waits there? Lay a table in the next room.—Come, come, we'll go and drink a bumper to the young couple.
Sir W. With all my heart. George, you're a cup too low; come with us, my lad, we'll cheer your spirits come along, George.
[Exit wilh BLAND, R. Bell. I attend you, sir.--Is this true, Belinda ? Belin. My real sentiments, sir. . Bell. Then you have undone us all.
Exit, R. Belin. Yes, I am resolv'd at length, and I will punish his falsehood and ingratitude by obeying my father's commands. But my friend Clarissa-has she deserv'd tbis of me? My resentments have hurried me too far Resume your strength, my heart, and let no sudden gust of passion make you false to friendship and to honour,
Enter TIPPET, L.
Tip. I have, madam.
Belin. After all the love I profess'd for him! After so many ardent vows and protestations he has made me.
Tip. After the hours he has kneel'd at your feet.
Belin. I will drive him from my thoughts-here, take this letter, Tippit-give it to him with your own hands.
Tip. Yes, madam.
Belin. Mighty well-take them all home to him. And in reiurn bring me back my foolish letters to him.
Tip. Madam, I won't quit the house without them.
Belin. That letter will inform him that his falsehood has compelled me into a compliance with my father's intentions, and be sure you confirm that to him.
Tip. He shall hear it on every side of his ears, I warrant him.
Belin. Very well, you may go-and, hark ye, Tippet! ask his man-as if from yourself-carelesslywhether his master ever talk'd of me—and what he said, Tippet.
Tip. Yes, madam.
Belin. But I don't care what he said, I don't want to know any thing about him—it does not concern me now -no-no-let him care as little for me as I do for himtell him I say so.
Tip. I shan't forget it, ma'am.
Belin. You see, Tippet, I am quite unconcerned-the barbarous wretch!
Tip. Oh, yes, ma'am, I see.
Belin. It is easy to see that I am not at all uneasyyou see that I am very gay upon it. (Laughs affectedly. Tip. Yes, ma'am.
(Laughs. Belin. False false Beverley ! 'Tell him I will never see his face any more.
Tip. I am gone, ma'am.
Belin. That upon no account will I ever exchange a word with him, hear from him, of him, or have any thing of any kind whatever to do with him-l'll never see his face again. Tip. I have my lesson, ma'am.
[Going. Enter a Servant, L. Serv. (L.) Mr. Beverley, madam. Tip. (L.) My lady won't see his face again.
Belin. Yes, I think I will see his face once moreshow him in. ( Exit Servant, L] I will see him once more, and tell him all myself. You may withdraw, Tippet.
Tip. Yes, ma'am.-Ah! she has a hankering after him still.
· Belin. Now will I upbraid bim, now tell him all his own, and
Enter BEVERLEY, L. Bev. Belinda !—how gladly do. I once again behold
Belin. And with what resentment have not I reason to behold, sir ?
Bev. You have, Belinda-you have reason, I grant it -but forgive the rash words, my folly utter'd
Belin. Oh! sir, mistake me not-they are not your words I quarrel with your actions, Mr.Beverley, your actions, sir !
Bev. They are not to be extenuated- but here is the pioture which caus'd that unlucky mistake between usI have recovered it from Sir John Restless
Belin. From Lady Restless, sir-
Bev. You must, you must accept it-Thus on my knees I beg you will — [Kneels-will you, Belinda ?
Belin. Leave me, sir-Mr. Beverley—Your falsehood,
Bev. My falsehood !-by all the
nay, you yourself have forced me into the arms of another.
Bev. What do I hear?
Belin. In obedience to the commands of a father, I have agreed to marry Mr. Bellmont.
Bev. Mr. Bellmont !-him !- marry him !-It is very well, ma'am-I expected it would come to this-and my Lady Restless is only mentioned on this occasion, as a retort for my accusation about Sir John-I understand it-and, by heaven! I believe the whole story.
Belin. You do, sir?
My pride is now piqued, and I am glad, ma'am-as glad as you can be, to break off for ever.
Belin. Oh! sir, I can be as indifferent on my part then, sir, you have only to send me back my letters, and
Bed. Oh! agreed, agreed-I'll go home this moment, and send them all and before I go, ma'am, here is your own picture, which you had given me with your own