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Tony. Ecod and so it would, master Slang. I'd then Thew what it was to keep choice of company.

Second Fellow. O he takes after his own father for that. To be sure old 'squire Lumpkin was the finest gentleman I ever set my eyes on. For winding the straight horn, or beating a thicket for a hare, or a wench, he never had his fellow. It was a saying in the place, that he kept the best horses, dogs, and girls in the whole county.

TONY. Ecod, and when I'm of age, I'll be no bastard, I promise you. I have been thinking of Bett Bouncer and the miller's grey mare to begin with. But, come, my boys, drink about and be merry, for you pay no reckoning. Well, Stingo, what's the matter?

Enter LANDLORD.

LANDLORD. There be two gentlemen in a post-chaise at the door. They have lost their way upo' the forest; and they are talking something about Mr. Hardcastle.

TONY. As fure as can be, one of them must be the gentleman that's coming down to court my fifter. Do they seem to be Londoners ?

LAND

L 3

LANDLORD. I believe they may. They look woundily like Frenchmen.

TONY. Then desire them to step this way, and I'll set them right in a twinkling. (Exit Landlord.) Gentlemen, as they may'nt be good enough company for you, step down for a moment, and I'll be with you in the squeezing of a lemon. [Exeunt mob.

TONY, folus. Father-in-law has been calling me whelp, and hound, this half year. Now, if I pleased, I could be fo revenged upon the old grumbletonian. But then I'm afraid-afraid of what! I shall foon be worth fifteen hundred a year, and let him frighten me out of that if he can.

Enter LANDLORD, conducting MARLOW and

HASTINGS.

MARLOW. What a tedious uncomfortable day have we had of it! We were told it was but forty miles across the country, and we have come above threescore.

HASTINGS. And all, Marlow, from that unaccountable reserve of yours, that would not let us inquire more frequently on the way.

MAR

Marlow. I own, Hastings, I am unwilling to lay myself under an obligation to every one I meet ; and often stand the chance of an unmannerly answer.

HASTINGS. At present, however, we are not likely to receive any answer.

Tony. No offence, gentlemen. But I'm told you have been inquiring for one Mr. Hardcastle in those parts. Do you know what part of the country you

are in?

HASTINGS. Not in the leaft, Sir, but should thank you for information.

TONY.
Nor the way you came?

HASTINGS.
No, Sir ? but if you can inform us

Tony. Why, gentlemen, if you know neither the road you are going, nor where you are, nor the road you came, the first thing I have to inform you is, that you have lost

your way.

MARLOW.
We wanted no ghost to tell us that.

Tony. Pray, gentlemen, may I be so bold as to ask the place from whence you came ?

Marlow. That's not necessary towards directing us where we are to go.

Tony. No offence ; but question for question is all fair,

Pray, gentlemen, is not this fame Hardcastle a cross-grain'd, oldfashion'd, whimsical fellow, with an ugly face; a daughter, and a pret

you know.

ty son

HASTINGS. We have not seen the gentleman, but he has the family you mention.

Tony. The daughter, a tall, trapesing, trolloping, talkative maypole--the son, a pretty, well-bred, agreeable youth, that every body is fond of.

Marlow. Our information differs in this. The daughter is said to be well-bred and beautiful; the son, an aukward booby, reared up, and spoiled at his mother's apron-string

Tony. He-he-hem!-Then, gentlemen, all I have to tell you is, that you won't reach Mr. Hardcastle's house this night, I believe.

HASTINGS. Unfortunate!

Tony. It's a damn'd long, dark, boggy, dirty, dangerous way. Stingo, tell the gentlemen the way to

Mr.

Mr. Hardcastle's! (Winking upon the Landlord.) Mr.
Hardcastle's of Quagmire Marsh, you understand

me.

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LANDLORD. Master Hardcastle's ! Lock-a-daisy, my masters, you're come a deadly deal wrong! When you came to the bottom of the hill, you should have cross’d down Squash-lane.

MARLOW. Cross down Squash-lane !

LANDLORD. Then you were to keep straight forward, 'till you came to four roads.

Marlow. Come to where four roads meet!

Tony. Aye ; but you must be sure to take only one of them.

Marlow. O Sir, you're facetious.

Tony. Then keeping to the right, you are to go fideways till you come upon Crack-skull common : there you must look sharp for the track of the wheel, and go forward, 'till you come to farmer Murrain's barn, Coming to the farmer's barn, you are to turn to the right, and then to the left, and then to the right about again, till you find out the ld mill.

MAR

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