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JARVIS. A raven that bodes nothing but mischief; a cofsin and cross bones; a bundle of rue; a sprig of deadly night shade; am Honeywood stopping his mouth, at last pushes him off.)
[Exit Jarvis. HoneyWOOD. I must own my old monitor is not entirely wrong. There is something in my friend Croaker's converfation that quite depresses me. His very mirth is an antidote to all gaiety, and his appearance has a stronger effect on my spirits than an undertaker's shop.-Mr. Croaker, this is such a satisfaction
CROAKER. A pleasant morning to Mr. Honeywood, and many of them. How is this ! you look most shock
ingly to day, my dear friend. I hope this weather does not affect your spirits. To be sure, if this weather continues-I say nothing-But God send we be all better this day three months.
HONEYWood. I heartily concur in the wish, though I own not in your apprehensions.
CROAKER. May be not! indeed what fignifies what weather we have in a country going to ruin like ours? taxes rising and trade falling. Money Aying out of the kingdom, and Jefuits swarming into it. I know at this time no less than an hundred and twenty-seven Jesuits between Charing.cross and Temple-bar.
HONEYWOOD. The Jesuits will scarce pervert you or me, I should hope.
CROAKER. May be not. Indeed what signifies whom they pervert in a country that has scarce any religion to lofe? I'm only afraid for our wives and daughters.
HONEYWOOD. I have no apprehensions for the ladies, I assure you.
CROAKER. May be not. Indeed what signifies whether they
perverted or no? the women in my time were good for something. I have seen a lady drest from top to toe in her own manufactures formerly. But
now a-days the devil a thing of their own manufactures about them, except their faces.
HONEYWOOD. But, however these faults may be practised abroad, you don't find them at home, either with Mrs. Croaker, Olivia, or Miss Richland.
CROAKER. The best of them will never be canoniz'd for a faint when she's dead. By the bye, my dear friend, I don't find this match between Miss Richland and my son much relished, either by one side or t'other.
Honeywood. I thought otherwise.
CROAKER. Ah, Mr. Honeywood, a little of your fine serious advice to the young lady might go far: I know the has a very exalted opinion of your understanding.
HONEYWOOD. But would not that be ufurping an authority that more properly belongs to yourself?
CROAKER. My dear friend, you know but little of my authority at home. People think, indeed, because they see me come out in a morning thus, with a pleasant face, and to make my friends merry, that all's well within. But I have cares that would break an heart of stone. My wife has fo encroached upon every one of my privileges, that I'm now no more than a mere lodger in my own house.
HONEYWOOD. But a little spirit exerted on your fide might perhaps restore your authority.
CROAKER. No, though I had the spirit of a lion! I do rouze sometimes. But what then! always haggling and haggling. A man is tired of getting the better before his wife is tired of losing the victory.
Honeywood. It's a melancholy confideration indeed, that our chief comforts often produce our greatest anxieties, and that an encrease of our possessions is but an inlet to new disquietudes.
CROAKER. Ah, my dear friend, these were the very words of poor Dick Doleful to me not a week before he made away with himself. Indeed, Mr. Honeywood, I never see you but you put me in mind of
poor Dick. Ah there was merit neglected for you! and fo true a friend; we lov'd each other for thirty years,
he never asked me to lend him a fingle farthing
HONEYWOOD. Pray what could induce him to commit fo rash an action at laft?
CROAKER. I don't know, some people were malicious enough to say was keeping company with me; because we used to meet now and then and open our hearts
to each other. To be sure I loved to hear him talk, and he loved to hear me talk; poor dear Dick. He us'd to say that Croaker rhim'd to joker ; and so we „us'd to laugh-Poor Dick. (Going to cry.)
CROAKER. Ay, he grew fick of this miserable life, where we do nothing but eat and grow hungry, dress and undress, get up and lie down; while reason, that should watch like a nurse by our fide, falls as fast asleep as we do.
HONEYWOOD. To say truth, if we compare that part of life which is to come, by that which we have past, the prospect is hideous.
CROAKER. Life at the greatest and best is but a froward child, that must be humour'd and coax'd a little till it falls asleep, and then all the care is over.
HONEYWOOD Very true, Sir, nothing can exceed the vanity of our existence, but the folly of our pursuits. We wept when we came into the world, and every day tells us why.
CROAKER. Ah, my dear friend, it is a perfe&t fatisfaction to be miserable with you. My son Leontine shan't lose the benefit of such fine conversation. I'll just step