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Leontine. Some new mark, I suppose, of Mr. | incendiary? [Seizing the Postboy.] Hold him Honeywood's sincerity. But we shall have satis- fast, the dog: he has the gallows in his face. Come, faction: he shall give me instant satisfaction. you dog, confess; confess all, and hang yourself. Postboy. Zounds! master, what do you throttle me for?
Croaker [beating him.] Dog, do you resist? do you resist?
Postboy. Zounds! master, I'm not he: there's the man that we thought was the rogue, and turns out to be one of the company. Croaker. How!
Olivia. It must not be, my Leontine, if you value my esteem or my happiness. Whatever be our fate, let us not add guilt to our misfortunesConsider that our innocence will shortly be all that we have left us. You must forgive him.
Leontine. Forgive him! Has he not in every instance betrayed us? Forced to borrow money from him, which appears a mere trick to delay us; promised to keep my father engaged till we were out of danger, and here brought him to the very scene of our escape?
Olivia. Don't be precipitate. We may yet be own. mistaken.
Honeywood. Mr. Croaker, we have all been under a strange mistake here; I find there is nobody guilty; it was all an error; entirely an error of our
Croaker. And I say, sir, that you're in an error; for there's guilt and double guilt, a plot, a damned! Enter POSTBOY, dragging in JARVIS; HONEYWOOD jesuitical, pestilential plot, and I must have proo
entering soon after.
Postboy. Ay, master, we have him fast enough. Here is the incendiary dog. I'm entitled to the reward; I'll take my oath I saw him ask for the money at the bar, and then run for it.
Honeywood. Come, bring him along. Let us see him. Let him learn to blush for his crimes. [Discovering his mistake.] Death! what's here? Jarvis, Leontine, Olivia! What can all this mean? to you.
Jarvis. Why, I'll tell you what it means: that Jarvis. What signifies explanations when the
I was an old fool, and that you are my master-thing is done?
Leontine. Yes, sir, I find you have kept your word with me. After such baseness, I wonder how you can venture to see the man you have injured?
Enter CROAKER, out of breath.
Honeywood. Do but hear me.
Croaker. What, you intend to bring 'em off, I suppose? I'll hear nothing.
Honeywood. Madam, you seem at least calm enough to hear reason.
Olivia. Excuse me.
Honeywood. Good Jarvis, let me then explain it
Honeywood. Will nobody hear me? Was there ever such a set, so blinded by passion and prejudice! [To the Postboy.] My good friend, I believe, you'll be surprised when I assure you—
Postboy. Sure me nothing-I'm sure of nothing but a good beating.
Croaker. Come then you, madam, if you ever hope for any favour or forgiveness, tell me sincerely all you know of this affair.
Honeywood. My dear Leontine, by my life, my
Leontine. Peace, peace, for shame; and do not continue to aggravate baseness by hypocrisy. I know you, sir, I know you.
Honeywood. Why won't you hear me? By all that's just, I know not
Leontine. Hear you, sir, to what purpose? I now see through all your low arts; your ever complying with every opinion; your never refusing any request: your friendship's as common as a prostitute's favours, and as fallacious; all these, sir, have long been contemptible to the world, and are now perfectly so to me.
Honeywood. Ha! contemptible to the world! that reaches me. [Aside.
Leontine. All the seeming sincerity of your whole affair; my son is either married, or going to professions, I now find, were only allurements to be so, to this lady, whom he imposed upon me as betray; and all your seeming regret for their con- his sister. Ay, certainly so; and yet I don't find sequences, only calculated to cover the cowardice it afflicts me so much as one might think. There's of your heart. Draw, villain! the advantage of fretting away our misfortunes beforehand, we never feel them when they come.
Enter MISS RICHLAND and SIR WILLIAM.
Olivia. Unhappily, sir, I'm but too much the cause of your suspicions: you see before you, sir, one that with false pretences has stepped into your family to betray it; not your daughter
Croaker. Not my daughter?
Olivia. Not your daughter-but a mean deceiver-who-support me, I can not
Honeywood. Help, she's going; give her air. Croaker. Ay, ay, take the young woman to the air; I would not hurt a hair of her head, whosever daughter she may be-not so bad as that neither. [Exeunt all but Croaker. Croaker. Yes, yes, all's out; I now see the
that my nephew intends setting off from this please! How have I over-taxed all my abilities, place? lest the approbation of a single fool should escape Miss Richland. My maid assured me he was me! But all is now over; I have survived my repucome to this inn, and my own knowledge of his in-tation, my fortune, my friendships, and nothing tending to leave the kingdom suggested the rest. remains henceforward for me but solitude and reBut what do I see! my guardian here before us! pentance. Who, my dear sir, could have expected meeting
Miss Richland. Is it true, Mr. Honeywood, tha you here? to what accident do we owe this plea-you are setting off, without taking leave of your sure? friends? The report is, that you are quitting En gland: Can it be?
Croaker. To a fool, I believe.
Miss Richland. But to what purpose did you come?
Croaker. To play the fool.
Miss Richland. But with whom?
Croaker. Why, Mr. Honeywood brought me here to do nothing now I am here; and my son is oing to be married to I don't know who, that is nere: so now you are as wise as I am.
Honeywood. Yes, madam; and though I am so unhappy as to have fallen under your displeasure, yet, thank Heaven! I leave you to happiness; to one who loves you, and deserves your love; to one who has power to procure you affluence, and generosity to improve your enjoyment of it.
Miss Richland. And are you sure, sir, that the gentleman you mean is what you describe him?
Honeywood. I have the best assurances of ithis serving me. He does indeed deserve the highest happiness, and that is in your power to confer. As for me, weak and wavering as I have been, obliged by all, and incapable of serving any, what happiness can I find but in solitude? what hope, but in being forgotten?
Miss Richland. A thousand! to live among friends that esteem you, whose happiness it will be to be permitted to oblige you.
Miss Richland. Married! to whom, sir? Croaker. To Olivia, my daughter, as I took her to be; but who the devil she is, or whose daughter she is, I know no more than the man in the moon.
Honeywood. No, madam, my resolution is fixed. Inferiority among strangers is easy; but among
Sir William. Then, sir, I can inform you; and, though a stranger, yet you shall find me a friend to your family. It will be enough, at present, to assure you, that both in point of birth and fortune the young lady is at least your son's equal. Being left by her father, Sir James WoodvilleCroaker. Sir James Woodville! What, of the those that once were equals, insupportable. Nay, west? to show you how far my resolution can go, I can Sir William. Being left by him, I say, to the now speak with calmness of my former follies, my care of a mercenary wretch, whose only aim was vanity, my dissipation, my weakness. I will even to secure her fortune to himself, she was sent to confess, that, among the number of my other preFrance, under pretence of education; and there sumptions, I had the insolence to think of loving every art was tried to fix her for life in a convent, you. Yes, madam, while I was pleading the pascontrary to her inclinations. Of this I was inform- sion of another, my heart was tortured with its ed upon my arrival at Paris; and, as I had been own. But it is over: it was unworthy our friendOnce her father's friend, I did all in my power to ship, and let it be forgotten.
Miss Richland. You amaze me!
Honeywood. But you'll forgive it, I know you
frustrate her guardian's base intentions. I had even meditated to rescue her from his authority, when your son stepped in with more pleasing vio-will; since the confession should not have come lence, gave her liberty, and you a daughter. from me even now, but to convince you of the sincerity of my intention of-never mentioning it more. [Going. Miss Richland. Stay, sir, one moment-Ha! he here
Croaker. But I intend to have a daughter of my own choosing, sir. A young lady, sir, whose fortune, by my interest with those who have interest, will be double what my son has a right to expect. Do you know Mr. Lofty, sir?
Sir William. Yes, sir; and know that you are deceived in him. But step this way, and I'll convince you.
[Croaker and Sir William seem to confer.
Lofty. Is the coast clear? None but friends? I have followed you here with a trifling piece of intelligence; but it goes no farther, things are not yet ripe for a discovery. I have spirits working at a certain board; your affair at the treasury will be done in less than-a thousand years. Mum!
Honeywood. Obstinate man, still to persist in his outrage! Insulted by him, despised by all, I now begin to grow contemptible even to myself.
Miss Richland. Sooner, sir, I should hope.
How have I sunk by too great an assiduity to into proper hands, that know where to push and
where to parry; Honeywood?
that know how the land lies-eh, |
Miss Pichland. It has fallen into yours.
Lofty. Well, to keep you no longer in suspense, your thing is done. It is done, I say-that's all. I have just had assurances from Lord Neverout, that the claim has been examined, and found admissible. Quietus is the word, madam.
Honeywood. But how? his lordship has been at Newmarket these ten days.
Lofty. Indeed! Then Sir Gilbert Goose must have been most damnably mistaken. I had it of
Lofty. Let him go on, let him go on, I say. You'll find it come to something presently.
Lofty. Zounds! sir, but I am discomposed, and will be discomposed. To be treated thus! Who am I? Was it for this I have been dreaded both by
Miss Richland. He! why Sir Gilbert and his ins and outs? Have I been libelled in the Gazetteer, family have been in the country this month. and praised in the St. James's? have I been chaired
Lofty. This month! it must certainly be so-at Wildman's, and a speaker at Merchant-Tailor's Sir Gilbert's letter did come to me from New- Hall? have I had my hand to addresses, and my market, so that he must have met his lordship there; head in the print-shops; and talk to me of suspects? and so it came about. I have his letter about me; Croaker. My dear sir, be pacified. What can I'll read it to you. [Taking out a large bundle.] you have but asking pardon?
That's from Paoli of Corsica, that from the MarLofty. Sir, I will not be pacified-Suspects! quis of Squilachi.-Have you a mind to see a letter Who am I? To be used thus! Have I paid court from Count Poniatowski, now King of Poland?- to men in favour to serve my friends; the lords of Honest Pon- -[Searching.] O, sir, what are you the treasury, Sir William Honeywood, and the here too? I'll tell you what, honest friend, if you rest of the gang, and talk to me of suspects? Who have not absolutely delivered my letter to Sir Wil- am I, I say, who am I? liam Honeywood, you may return it. The thing Sir William. Since, sir, you are so pressing for will do without him. an answer, I'll tell you who you are:-A gentleSir William. Sir, I have delivered it; and must man, as well acquainted with politics as with men inform you, it was received with the most mortify-in power; as well acquainted with persons of fashing contempt. ion as with modesty; with lords of the treasury as Croaker. Contempt! Mr. Lofty, what can that with truth; and with all, as you are with Sir William Honeywood. I am Sir William Honeywood. [Discovering his ensigns of the Bath. Croaker. Sir William Honeywood! Honeywood. Astonishment! my uncle! [Aside. Lofty. So then, my confounded genius has been all this time only leading me up to the garret, in order to fling me out of the window.
Croaker. What, Mr. Importance, and are these your works? Suspect you! You, who have been dreaded by the ins and outs; you, who have had your hands to addresses, and your head stuck up in print-shops. If you were served right, you should have your head stuck up in a pillory.
Sir William. Yes, sir; I believe you'll be amazed, if after waiting some time in the antechamber, after being surveyed with insolent curiosity by the passing servants, I was at last assured, that Sir William Honeywood knew no such person, and I must certainly have been imposed upon. Lofty. Good! let me die; very good. Ha! ha!
Croaker. And so it does, indeed; and all my suspicions are over.
Lofty. Your suspicions! What, then, you have been suspecting, you have been suspecting, have you? Mr. Croaker, you and I were friends; we are friends no longer. Never talk to me. It's over; I say, it's over.
Croaker. Now, for my life, I can't find out half the goodness of it.
Lofty. You can't. Ha! ha!
Croaker. No, for the soul of me! I think it was as confounded a bad answer as ever was sent from one private gentleman to another.
Croaker. As I hope for your favour I did not mean to offend. It escaped me. Don't be discomposed.
Lofty. Ay, stick it where you will; for by the lord, it cuts but a very poor figure where it sticks at present.
Sir William. Well, Mr. Croaker, I hope you now see how incapable this gentleman is of serv
Lofty. And so you can't find out the force of the message? Why, I was in the house at that very ing you, and how little Miss Richland has to extime. Ha! ha! It was I that sent that very an-pect from his influence. swer to my own letter. Ha! ha!
Croaker. Indeed! How? Why?
Lofty. In one word, things between Sir William and me must be behind the curtain. A party has many eyes. He sides with Lord Buzzard, I side with Sir Gilbert Goose. So that unriddles the mystery.
Croaker. Ay, sir, too well I see it; and I can't but say I have had some boding of it these ten days. So I'm resolved, since my son has placed his affections on a lady of moderate fortune, to be satisfied with his choice, and not run the hazard of another Mr. Lofty in helping him to a better.
Sir William. I approve your resolution; and
here they come to receive a confirmation of your my soul, I had no hand in the matter. So now,
Enter MRS. CROAKER, JARVIS, LEONTINE, and
Sir William. No, sir, you have been obliged to
Mrs. Croaker. Where's my husband? Come, come, lovey, you must forgive them. Jarvis here a kinder, fairer friend, for that favour-to Miss has been to tell me the whole affair; and I say, you Richland. Would she complete our joy, and make must forgive them. Our own was a stolen match, the man she has honoured by her friendship happy you know, my dear; and we never had any reason in her love, I should then forget all, and be as blest as the welfare of my dearest kinsman can make to repent of it.
Croaker. I wish we could both say so. Howev-me. Miss Richland. After what is past it would be er, this gentleman, Sir William Honeywood, has been beforehand with you in obtaining their pardon. but affectation to pretend to indifference. Yes, I So if the two poor fools have a mind to marry, I will own an attachment, which I find was more think we can tack them together without crossing than friendship. And if my entreaties can not alter the Tweed for it. [Joining their hands. his resolution to quit the country, I will even try Leontine. How blest and unexpected! What, if my hand has not power to detain him. [Giving what can we say to such goodness? But our fu- her hand.] And as for ture obedience shall be the best reply. this gentleman, to whom we owe
Croaker. Well, now I see content in every face; but Heaven send we be all better this day three months!
Sir William. Henceforth, nephew, learn to re
Sir William. Excuse me, sir, if I interrupt your thanks, as I have here an interest that calls me. [Turning to Honeywood.] Yes, sir, you are surprised to see me; and I own that a desire of correcting your follies led me hither. I saw with indignation the errors of a mind that only sought applause from others; that easiness of disposition spect yourself. He who seeks only for applause which, though inclined to the right, had not cou- from without, has all his happiness in another's rage to condemn the wrong. I saw with regret those splendid errors, that still took name from Honeywood. Yes, sir, I now too plainly persome neighbouring duty; your charity, that was but ceive my errors; my vanity in attempting to please injustice; your benevolence, that was but weak- all by fearing to offend any; my meanness, in apness; and your friendship but credulity. I saw proving folly lest fools should disapprove. Hencewith regret, great talents and extensive learning forth, therefore, it shall be my study to reserve my only employed to add sprightliness to error, and in-pity for real distress; my friendship for true merit; crease your perplexities. I saw your mind with and my love for her, who first taught me what it a thousand natural charms; but the greatness of its is to be happy beauty served only to heighten my pity for its prostitution.
Honeywood. Heavens! how can I have deserved all this? How express my happiness, my gratitude? A moment like this overpays an age of apprehension.
Honeywood. Cease to upbraid me, sir: I have for some time but too strongly felt the justice of your reproaches. But there is one way still left me. Yes, sir, I have determined this very hour to quit forever a place where I have made myself the voluntary slave of all, and to seek among strangers that fortitude which may give strength to the mind, and marshal all its dissipated virtues. Yet ere I depart, permit me to solicit favour for this gentleman; who, notwithstanding what has happened, has laid me under the most signal obligations. Mr. Lofty
SPOKEN BY MRS. BULKLEY.
As puffing quacks some caitiff wretch procure
Lofty. Mr. Honeywood, I'm resolved upon a reformation as well as you. I now begin to find that the man who first invented the art of speaking truth, was a much cunninger fellow than I thought The author, in expectation of an Epilogue from a friend at him. And to prove that I design to speak truth Oxford, deferred writing one himself till the very last hour. for the future, I must now assure you, that you What is here offered, owes all its success to the graceful manowe your late enlargement to another; as, upon ner of the actress who spoke it.
Young man, cries one (a bard laid up in clover,)
| As some unhappy wight at some new play,