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intend to make a trial of their hearts; and my friend Rowley and I have planned something for the purpose.
Row. And Sir Peter shall own for once he has been mistaken.
Sir P. Oh! my life on Joseph's honour.
Sir O. Well-come, give us a bolile of good wine, and we'll drink the lads' health, and tell you our scheme.
Sir P. Allons then!
Sir O. And don't, Sir Peter, be so severe against your old friend's son. Odds my life! I am not sorry that he has run out of the course a little : for my part, I hate to see prudence clinging to the green suckers of youth; 'tis like ivy round a sapling, and spoils the growth of the tree.
SCENE 1.—Sir Peter Teazle's.
and ROWLEY. Sir P. Well, then, we will see this fellow first, and have our wine afterwards:—but how is this, Master Rowley? I don't see the jet of your scheme.
Row. Why, sir, this Mr. Stanley, whom I was speaking of, is nearly related to them by their mother. He was once a merchant in Dublin, but has been ruined by a series of undeserved missortunes.
He has applied, by leller, since his confinement, both to Mr. Surface and Charles; from the former he has received nothing but evasive promises of future service, while Charles has done all that his extravagance has left him power to do; and he is, at this time, endeavouring to raise a sum of money, part of which, in the midst of his own distresses, I know he intends for the service of poor Stanley.
Sir O. Ah! he is my brother's son.
ther, that Stanley has obtained permission to apply personally to his friends, and as they have neither of them ever seen him, let Sir Oliver assume his character, and he will have a fair opportunity of judging, at least, of the benevolence of their dispositions; and believe me, sir , you will find in the youngest brother, one, who, in the midst of folly and dissipation, has still, as our immortal bard expresses it, -'a heart to pily, and a hand , open as day, for melting charity.'
Sir P. Pshaw! What signifies his having an open hand or purse either, when he has nothing left to give? Well, well-make the trial, if you please. But where is the fellow 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.
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 lo 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.
Sir O. Sir, I understand you have lately had great dealings with my nephew, Charles.
Moses. Yes, Sir Oliver, I have done all I could for him; but he was ruined before he came to me for assistance.
Sir O. That was unlucky, truly; for you have had no opportunily of shewing 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, hor Moses?
Moses. 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. YesMr. Premium, of Crutched Friars' formerly a broker.
Sir P. Egad, Sir Oliver, a thought strikes me! Charles, you say, does not know Mr. Premium?
Moses. Not at all.
Sir P. Now then, Sir Oliver, you may have a better opportunity of satisfying yourself than by an old romancing 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 D. 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 be sure;--however, Moses, you understand Sir 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.
Sir O. 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 O. Is he? I'm 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 O. Well-but how must I talk?-there's cer-tainly some cant of usury and mode of treating that I ought to know.
Sir P. 0! there's not much to learn. The great point, as I take it, is to be exorbilant enough in your demands—hey, Moses?
Moses. Yes, that's a very great point.
Sir O. I'll answer fort't l’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 O. 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 forly or fifty per cent.; but if you find him in great distress, and want the moneys very bad, you may ask double.
Sir Þ. A good honest trade you're learning, Sir Oliver.
Sir 0. Truly, I think so-and not unprofitable.
Moses. Then, you know, you hav’n’t the moneys yourself, but are forced to borrow them for him of a friend.
Sir 0. Oh! I borrow it of a friend, do I?
Moses. Yes; and your friend is an unconscionable dog: but you can't help that.
Sir O. My friend an unconscionable dog, is he?
Moses. Yes, and he himself has not the moneys by him, but is forced to sell stock at a great loss.
Sir O. 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 and Moses.
Sir P. So, now, I think Sir Oliver will be con · vinced: 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.] I should be glad to be convinced 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 me his opinion sincerely.
Maria. No, sir; he was engaged.
Sir P. 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 condemns his vices, my heart suggests 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.