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madam-who loves you with the most ardent passion, whose whole happiness is placed in you
Miss RICHLAND. I fear, Sir, I shall never find whom you mean, by this description of him.
Honeywood. Ah, madam, it but too plainly points him out; though he should be too humble himself to urge his pretensions, or you too modest to understand them.
Miss RICHLAND. Well; it would be affectation any longer to pretend ignorance; and I will own, Sir, I have long been prejudiced in his favour. It was but natural to wish to make his heart mine, as he seemed himself ignorant of its value.
HoneywOOD. I see me always loved him. (Afide.) I find, madam, you're already sensible of his worth, his pasfion. How happy is my friend, to be the favourite of one with such sense to distinguish merit, and such beauty to reward it.
Miss RichLAND. Your friend, Sir! What friend ?
Honeywood. My best friend-my friend Mr. Lofty, madam.
Miss RICHLAND. He, Sir!
Honeywood. Yes, he, madam. He is, indeed, what your varmest wishes might have formed him. And to
his other qualities, he adds that of the most palfionate regard for you.
Miss RICHLAND. Amazement !-No more of this, I beg you, Sir.
HONEYWOOD. I see your confusion, madam, and know how to interpret it. And, fince I so plainly read the language of your heart, shall I make my friend happy, by communicating your sentiments ?
Miss RICHLAND. Mr. Honeywood, let me tell you, that you wrong my sentiments and yourself. When I first applied to your friendship, I expected advice and assistance; but, now, Sir, I see that it is vain to expect happiness from him, who has been so bad an economist of his own; and that I must disclaim his friendship, who ceases to be a friend to himself. [Exit.
HoneyWoop. How is this ! she has confessed the loved him, and yet the seemed to part in displeasure. Can I have done any thing to reproach myself with? No: I believe not : yet, after all, these things should not be done by a third person ; I should have spared her confufion. My friendship carried me a little too far.
Enter CROAKER, with the Letter in his Hand,
and Mrs. CROAKER.
fu. preme wish that I Mould be quite wretched upon this occasion ? ha! ha!
Croaker, mimicking. Ha! ha! ha! And so, my dear, it's your supreme pleasure to give me no better consolation ?
Mrs. CROAKER. Pofitively, my dear; what is this incendiary stuff and trumpery to me?
travel through the air like the house of Loretto, for aught I care, if I'm to be miserable in it.
CROAKER. Would to heaven it were converted into an house of correction for your benefit. Have we not every thing to alarm us? Perhaps, this very moment the tragedy is beginning.
Mrs. CROAKER. Then let us reserve our distress till the rising of the curtain, or give them the money they want, and have done with them.
CROAKER. Give them my money!--And pray, what right have they to my money?
Mrs. CROAKER. And pray, what right then have you to my good humour ?
CROAKER. And so your good humour advises me to part with my money? Why then, to tell your good humour a piece of my mind, I'd sooner part with my wife. Here's Mr. Honeywood, see what he'll say to it. My dear Honeywood, look at this incendiary letter dropped at my door. It will freeze you with terror; and yet lovey here can read it-can read it, and laugh.
CROAKER. If he does, I'll suffer to be hanged the next minute in the rogue's place, that's all.
Mrs. CROAker. Speak, Mr. Honeywood; is there any thing more foolish than my husband's fright upon this occafion ?
HoneywOOD. It would not become me to decide, madam; but doubtless, the greatness of his terrors, now, will but invite them to renew their villainy another time.
CROAKER. How, Sir! do you maintain that I should lie down under such an injury, and shew, neither by my tears, or complaints, that I have something of the spirit of a man in me?
HoneyWOOD. Pardon me, Sir. You ought to make the loudest complaints, if you desire redress. The fureft way to have redress, is to be earnest in the pursuit of it.
Mrs. CROAKER. But don't you think that laughing off our fears is the best way!
HONEYWOOD. What is the best, madam, few can fay? but I'll maintain it to be a very wise way.
CROAKER. But we're talking of the best. Surely the best way is to face the enemy in the field, and not wait till he plunders us in our very bed-chamber.
HONEYWOOD. Why, Sir, as to the best, that-that's a very wise
Mrs. CROAKER. But can any thing be more absurd, than to double our distresses by our apprehensions, and put it in the power of every low fellow, that can scrawl ten words of wretched spelling, to torment us?
HONEYWOOD. Without doubt, nothing more absurd.
CROAKER. How! would it not be more absurd to despise the rattle till we are bit by the snake ?