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Row. Yes, and Sir Oliver is convinced that your judgment was right, Sir Peter.
Širo. Yes, I find Joseph is indeed the man, after all.
Row. Ay, as Sir Peter says, he is a man of sentiment.
Sir O. And acts up to the sentiments he professes. Row. It cerlainly is edification to hear him talk.
Sir O. Oh, he's a model for the young men of the age!—But how's this, Sir Peter? You don't join us in your friend Joseph's praise, as I expected.
Sir P. Sir Oliver, we live in a damned wicked world, and the fewer we praise the better.
Row. What! do you say so, Sir Peter, who were never mistaken in your life?
Sir P. Pshaw! Plague on you both! I see by your sneering you have heard the whole affair. I shall go mad among you!
Row. Then, to fret you no longer, Sir Peter, we are indeed acquainted with it all. I met Lady Teazle coming from Mr. Surface's so humble, that she deigned to request me to be her advocate with you.
Sir P. And does Sir Oliver know all this?
Sir O. Yes, yes, and the little French milliner. 0, I have been vastly diverted with the story! Ha! ha! ha!
Sir P. 'Twas very pleasant.
Row. To be sure, Joseph with his sentiments: Ha! ha! ha!
Sir P. Yes, yes, his sentiments! Ha! ha! ha! Hypocritical villain!
Sir O. Ay, and that rogue Charles to pull Sir Peter out of the closet: Ha! ha! ha!
Sir P. Ha! ha! 'Twas devilish entertaining, to be sure!
Sir 0. Ha! ha! ha! Egad, Sir Peter, I should
you: ha! ha! ha!
like to have seen your face when the screen thrown down: Ha! ha!
Sir P. Yes, yes, my face when the screen was thrown down: Ha! ha! ha! Oh, I must never shew my head again! Sir O. But come, come; it isn't fair to laugh at
you neither, my old friend; though, upon my soul, I can't help it.
Sir P. O pray don't restrain your mirth on my account: it does not hurt me at all! I laugh at the whole affair myself. Yes, yes, I think being a standing jest for all one's acquaintance a very happy situation. O yes, and then of a morning to read the paragraphs about Mr. S--,Lady T-Mand Sir P---, will be so entertaining! I shall certainly leave town to-morrow, and never look mankind in the face again.
Row. Without affectation, Sir Peter, you may despise the ridicule of fools: but I see Lady Teazle going towards the next room; I am sure you must desire a reconciliation as earnestly as she does.
Sir O. Perhaps my being here prevents her coming to you. Well, I'll leave honest Rowley to mediate between you; but he must bring you all presently to Mr. Surface's, where I am now returning, if not to reclaim a libertine, at least to expose hypocrisy. (Exit.
Sir P. Ah, I'll be present at your discovering yourself there with all my heart; though 'tis a vile unlucky place for discoveries. She is not coming here, you see, Rowley.
Row. No, but she has left the door of that room open, you perceive. See, she is in tears.
Sir P. Certainly a little mortification appears very becoming in a wife. Don't you think it will do her good to let her pine a little?
Row. Oh, this is ungenerous in yon!
Sir P. Well, I know not what to think. You remember the letter I found of hers, evidently intented for Charles? - Row, A mere forgery, Sir Peter, laid in your way
on purpose. This is one of the points which I intend Snake shall give you conviction of.
Sir P. I wish I were once satisfied of that. She looks this way. What a remarkably elegant turn of the head she has! Rowley, I'll go to her.
Sir P. Though when it is known that we are reconciled, people will laugh at me ten times more.
Row. Let them laugh, and retort their malice only by shewing them you are happy in spite of it.
Sir P. l'faith, so I will! and , if I'm not mistaken, we may yet be the happiest couple in the country.
Row. Nay, Sir Peter, he who once lays aside suspicion
Sir P. Hold, master Rowley! If you have any regard for me, never let me hear you utter any thing like a sentiment: I have had enough of them to serve me the rest of my life
[Exeunt Scent III.—The Library. Enter LADY SNEERWELL and JOSEPH SURFACE. Lady S. Impossible! Will not Sir Peter immediately be reconciled to Charles, and of consequence no longer oppose his union with Maria ? The thought is distraction to me.
Joseph S. Can passion furnish a remedy?
Lady S. No, nor cunning neither. O! I was a fool, an idiot, to league with such a blunderer!
Joseph S. Sure, Lady Sneerwell, I am the greatest sufferer; yet you see I bear the accident with calmness. Well, I admit I have been to blame. I confess I deviated from the direct road of wrong, but I don't think we're so totally defeated neither.
Lady S. No!
Joseph S. You tell me you have made a trial of Snake since we met, and that you still believe him faithful to us.
Lady S. I do believe so.
Joseph S. And that he has undertaken, should it be necessary, to swear and prove, that Charles is at
this time contracted by vows and honour to your ladyship, which some of his formers letters to you will serve to support.
Lady S. This, indeed, might have assisted.
Joseph S. Come, come; it is not too late yet. [Knocking at the door.] But, hark! this is probably my uncle, Sir Oliver: retire to that room; we'll consult farther when he is gone.
Lady S. Well, but if he should find you out, too ?
Joseph S. Oh, I have no fear of that. Sir Peter will hold his tongue for his own credit's sake-and you may depend on it, I shall soon discover Sir Oliver's weak side?
Lady S. I have no diffidence of your abilities! only be constant to one roguery at a time. [Exit LADY SNEERWELL.
Joseph S. I will, I will. So! 'tis coufounded hard, aster such bad fortune, to be baited by one's confederate in evil. Well, at all events, my character is so much better than Charles's, that I certainly-Hey!what!-this is not Sir Oliver, but old Stanley again. Plague on't! that he should return to tease me just now - shall have Sir Oliver come and find him hereand
Enter SIR OLIVER SURFACE. Gad's life, Mr. Stanley, why have you come back to plague me at this time? You must not stay now, upon
Sir 0. Sir, I hear your uncle Oliver is expected here, and though he has been so penurious to you I'll try what he'll do for me.
Joseph S. Sir, 'tis impossible for you to stay now, so I must beg-Come any other time, and I promise you, you shall be assisted.
Sir (). No! Sir Oliver and I must be acquainted.
Joseph S. Zounds, sir! then I insist on your quitting the room directly.
Sir O. Nay, sir.
this gentleman out. Since you compel me, sir, -not one moment - this is such insolence!
[Going to push him out. Enter CHARLES SURFACE. Charles S. Hey day! what's the matter now! What the devil, have you got hold of my little broker here? Zounds, brother, don't hurt lillle Premium. What's the matter, my little fellow?
Joseph S. So ! he has b en with you too, has he?
Charles S. To be sure he has. Why, he's as honest a little-But sure, Joseph, you have not been borrowing money too, have you ?
Joseph S. Borrowing! No! But, brother, you know we expect Sir Oli er here every
Charles S. O Gad, that's true! Noll must'nt find the little broker here, to be sure ?
Joseph S. Yet Mr. Stanley insists—
Charles S. Ay, ay, Stanley or Preminm, 'tis the same thing, as you say; for I suppose he goes by half a hundred names, besides A B. at the coffee-house.
Joseph S. PSdeath! here's Sir Oliver at the door.
and I beg, Mr. Premium-
[Both forcing Sir Oliver out. Enter LADY TEAZLE and Sir Peter, Maria,
and RowLEY. Sir P. My old friend , Sir Oliver-hey! What in the name of wonder-here are dutiful nephews-assault their uncle at a first visit!