low whom you brought for Sir Oliver to examine, relative to Charles's affairs ?

Row. Below, waiting his commands, and no one can give him better intelligence. This, Sir Oliver, is a friendly Jew, who, to do him justice, has done every thing in his power to bring your nephew to a proper sense of his extravagance.

Sir P. Pray let us have him in.
Row. Desire Mr. Moses to walk up stairs.

Sir P. But, pray, why should you suppose he will speak the truth?

Row. Oh! I have convinced him that he has no chance of recovering certain sums advanced to Charles, but through the bounty of Sir Oliver, who he knows is arrived ; so that you may depend on his fidelity to his own interests : I have also another evidence in my power, one

Snake, whom I have detected in a matter little short of | forgery, and shall shortly produce to remove some of your prejudices, Sir Peter, relative to Charles and Lady Teazle.

Sir P. I have heard too much on that subject.
Row. Here comes the honest Israelite.

Enter MOSES, R.
This is Sir Oliver.

Sir 0. Sir, I understand you have lately had great dealings with my nephew, Charles.

Moses. (Crosses to Sir 0.] Yes, Sir Oliver, I have done all I could for him ; but he was ruined before he came to me for assistance.

Sir 0. That was unlucky, truly; for you have had no opportunity of showing your talents.

Moses. None at all; I hadn't the pleasure of knowing his distresses till he was some thousands worse than nothing.

Sir 0. Unfortunate, indeed !-But I suppose you have done all in your power for him, honest Moses?

Muses. Yes, he knows that ;—this very evening I was to have brought him a gentleman from the city, who does not know him, and will, I believe, advance him some money.

Sir P. What,-one, Charles never had money from before?

Moses. Yes Mr. Premium, of Crutched Friars, formerly a broker.

Sir P. Egad, Sir Oliver, a thought strikes me !-Charles, you say, does not know Mr. Premium ?

[ocr errors]

Moses. Not at all.

Sir P. Now then, Sir Oliver, you may have a better opportunity of satisfying yourself than by an old roinancing tale of a poor relation: go with my friend Moses, and represent Premium, and then, I'll answer for it, you'll see your nephew in all his glory.

Sir 0. Egad, I like this idea better than the other, and I may visit Joseph afterwards as old Stanley.

Sir P. True-so you may.

Row. Well, this is taking Charles rather at a disadvantage, to sure;--however, Moses, you understand Şir Peter, and will be faithful ?

Moses. You may depend upon me; [Looks at his watch.] this is near the time I was to have gone. [Crosses L.

Sir 0. I'll accompany you as soon as you please, Moses

But hold ! I have forgot one thing—how the plague shall I be able to pass for a Jew ?

Moses. There's no need—the principal is Christian.

Sir 0. Is he? I'nı very sorry to hear it. But then again, an't I rather too smartly dressed to look like a money lender?

Sir P. Not at all ; 'twould not be out of character, if you went in your own carriage, would it, Moses ?

Moses. Not in the least.

Sir 0. Well-but how must I talk ?-there's certainly some cant of usury and mode of treating that I ought to know.

Sir P. O! there's not much to learn. The great point, as I take it, is to be exorbitant enough in your demands -hey, Moses ?

Moses. Yes, that's a very great point.

Sir O. I'll answer for't I'll not be wanting in that. I'll ask him eight or ten per cent. on the loan, at least.

Moses. If you ask him no more than that, you'll be discovered immediately.

Sir 0. Hey !- what the plague !how much then ?

Moses. That depends upon the circumstances. If he appears not very anxious for the supply, you should require only forty or fifty per cent. ; but if you find him in great distress, and want the monies very bad, you may ask double.

Sir P. A good honest trade you're learniog, Sir Oliver! Sir 0. Truly, I think so---and not unprofitable.

Moses. Then, you kuow, you hav’n't the monies yourself, but are forced to borrow them for him of a friend

Sir 0. Oh! I borrow it of a friend, do 1 ?

Nioses. Yes ; and your friend is an unconscionable dog : but you can't help that.

Sir 0. My friend an unconscionable dog, is he?

Moses. Yes, and he himself has not the monies by him, but is forced to sell stock at a great loss.

Sir 0. He is forced to sell stock at a great loss, is he? Well, that's very kind of him.

Sir P. l'faith, Sir Oliver-Mr. Premium, I mean,-you'll soon be master of the trade.

Sir O. Moses shall give me farther instructions as we go together.

Sir P. You will not have much time, for your nephew lives hard by.

Sir 0. 0! never fear : my tutor appears so able, that though Charles lived in the next street, it must be my own fault if I am not a complete rogue before I turn the corner.

[Exeunt Sir Oliver Surface und Moses, L. Sir P. So, now, I think Sir Oliver will be convinced : you are partial, Rowley, and would have prepared Charles for the other plot.

Row. No, upon my word, Sir Peter.

Sir P. Well, go bring me this Snake, and I'll hear what he has to say, presently.— I see Maria, and want to speak with her. [Exit Rowley, R.] I should be glad to be coue vinced my suspicions of Lady Teazle and Charles were unjust. I have never yet opened my mind on this subject to my friend Joseph-I am determined I will do it-he will give nie his opinion sincerely.

Enter MARIA, L.
So, child, has Mr. Surface returned with you?

Maria. (L.) No, sir ; he was engaged.

Sir P. (R.) Well, Maria, do you not reflect, the more you converse with that amiable young man, what return his partiality for you deserves ?

Maria. Indeed, Sir Peter, your frequent importunity on this subject distresses me extremely—you compel me to declare, that I know no man who has ever paid me a particular attention, whom I would not prefer to Mr. Surface.

Sir P. So-here's perverseness !-No, no, Maria, 'tis Charles only whom you would prefer. ' "Tis evident his vices and follies have won your heart.

Maria. This is unkind, sir. You know I have obeyed you in neither seeing nor corresponding with him : I have

heard enough to convince me that he is unworthy my regard. Yet I cannot think it culpable, if, while my understanding severely condemus his vices, my heart snggests some pity for his distresses.

Sir P. Well, well, pity him as much as you please; but give your heart and hand to a worthier object. Maria. Never to his brother !

[Crosses, R. Sir P. Go-perverse and obstinate! but take care, madain ; you have never yet known what the authority of a guardian is : don't compel me to inform you of it.

Maria. I can only say, you shall not have just reason. "Tis true, by my father's will, I am for a short period bound to regard you as his substitute ; but must cease to think you so, when you would compel me to be miserable.

[Exit Maria, R. Sir P. Was ever man so crossed as I am ? Every thing couspiring to fret me! I had not been involved in matrimony a fortnight, before her father, a hale and hearty man, died, on purpose, I believe, for the pleasure of plaguing me with the care of his daughter. [Lady Teazle sings without.] But here comes my helpmate! She appears in great good humour. How happy I should be if I could tease her into loving me, though but a little!

Enter LADY TEAZLE, R. Lady T. Lud! Sir Deter, I hope you havn't been quarrelling with Maria ? It is not using me well to be illhumoured when I am not by.

Sir P. (L.) Ah! Lady Teazle, you might have the power to make me good-humoured at all times.

Lady T. (R.) I am sure I wish I had ; for I want you to be in a charining sweet temper at this moment. Do be good-humoured now, and let me have two hundred pounds, will you ?

Sir P. Two hundred pounds! What, an't I to be in a good humour without paying for it? But speak to me thus, and i' faith there's nothing I could refuse you. You shall have it; [Gives her notes] but seal me a bond for the repayment. Lady T. O no--there-my note of hand will do as well.

[Offering her hand. Sir P. And you shall no longer reproach me with not giving you an independent settlement. I mean shortly to surprise you :--but shall we always live thus, hey? Lady ?' . If you please. I'm sure I don't care how soon we leave off quarrelling, provided you'll own you were tired first.

Sir P. Well-then, let our future contest be, who shall be most obliging.

Lady T. I assure you, Sir Peter, good nature becomes you-you look now as you did before we were married, when you used to walk with me under the elms, and tell ine stories of what a gallant you were in your youth, and chuck me under the chin, you would; and ask me if I thought I could love an old fellow, who would deny me nothing-didn't you ?

Sir P. Yes, yes, and you were as kind and attentive

Lady T. Ay, so I was, and would always take your part, when my acquaintarice used to abuse you, and turn you into ridicule.

Sir P. Indeed !

Lady T. Ay, and when my cousin Sophy has called you a stiff, peevish old bachelor, and laughed at me for thinking of marrying one who might be my father, I have always defended you, and said, I didn't think you so ugly by any means.

Sir P. Thank yoni. Lady T. And i dared say you'd make a very good sort of a husband.

Sir P. And you prophesied right; and we shall now be the happiest couple

Lady T. And never differ again ?

Sir P. No, never !-though at the same time, indeed, my dear Lady Teazle, you must watch your temper very seriously ; for in all our little quarrels, my dear, if you recollect, my love, you always bėgin first.

Lady T. I beg your pardon, my dear Sir Peter : indeed, you always gave the provocation.

Sir P. Now see, my angel ! take care-contradicting isn't the way to keep friends.

Lady T. Then don't you begin it, my love !
Sir P. There, now! you-you are going on.

You don't perceive, my life, that you are just doing the very thing which you know always makes me angry.

Lady T. Nay, you know if you will be angry without any reason, my dear

Sir P. There ! now you want to quarrel again.

Lndy T. No, I am sure I don't ibut if you will be $0 peevish

Sir P. There now! who begins first?

« VorigeDoorgaan »