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Wid. Oh, exceedingly! If any thing could persuade me to alter my own name, I verily believe nothing in the world would do it so soon, as to be called Mrs. Welldon.
Well. Why, indeed Welldon doth sound something better than Lackitt.
Wid. Oh, a great deal better. Not that there is so much in the name neither. But, I don't know, there is something; I should like mightily to be called Mrs. Welldon.
Well. I'm glad you like my name.
Wil. Of all things. But then there's the misfortune, one cannot change one's name without changing one's condition.
Well. You'll hardly think it worth that, I believe.
Wid. Think it worth what, Sir? Changing my condition! Indeed, Sir, I think it worth every thing, But alas, Mr. Welldon! I have been a widow but six weeks ; 'tis too soon to think of changing one's condition yet: indeed it is: pray don't desire it of me : not but that you may persuade me to any thing, sooner than any person in the world.
Well. Who, 1, Mrs. Lackitt ?
Wid. Indeed you may, Mr. Welldon, sooner than any man living. Lord, there's a great deal in saving a decency: I never minded it before ; well I am glad you spoke first, to excuse my modesty. But, what? modesty means nothing, and is the virtue of a girl, that does not know what she would be at: a widow should be wiser. Now I will own to you, (but I
won't confess neither) I have had a great respect for you a great while. I beg your pardon, Sir; and I must declare to you, indeed I must, if you desire to
dispose of all I have in the world in an honourable · way, which I don't pretend to be any way deserving your consideration, my fortune and person, if you won't understand me without telling you so, are both at your service, 'gad so ! another time
Enter STANMORE. Stan. So, Mrs. Lackitt, your widowhood's weaning a-pace, I see which way 'tis going. Welldon, you're a happy man. The women and their favours come home to you.
Wid. A fiddle of favour, Mr. Stanmore: I am a lone woman, you know it, left in a great deal of business, and business must be followed, or lost. I have several stocks and plantations upon my hands, and other things to dispose of, which Mr. Welldon may have occasion for.
Well. We were just upon the brink of a bargain, as you came in.
Stan. Let me drive it on for you.
Well. So you must, I believe, you or somebody for me.
Stan. I'll stand by you : I understand more of this business than you can pretend to.
Well. I don't pretend to it: 'tis quite out of my way indeed.
Stan. If the widow gets you to herself, she will certainly be too hard for you: I know her of old : she has no conscience in a corner ; a very Jew in a bar. gain, and would circumcise you to get more of you.
Well. Is this true, widow ?
Wid. Speak as you find, Mr. Welldon, I have offered you very fair! think upon't, and let me hear of you; the sooner the better, Mr. Welldon. [Exit.
Stan. I assure you, my friend, she'll cheat you if she can.
Well. I don't know that; but I can cheat her, if I will,
Stan. Cheat her ; how ?
Well. I can marry her; and then I am sure I have it in my power to cheat her.
Stan. Can you marry her ? · Well. Yes, faith, so she says: her pretty person and fortune, (which, one with another, you know are not contemptible) are both at my service.
Stan. Contemptible ! very considerable, egad ; ve. ry desirable; why she's worth ten thousand pounds, man; a clear estate : no charge upon't, but a boobily son: he indeed was to have half; but his father begot him, and she breeds him up not to know or have more than she has a mind to: and she has a mind to something else, it seems. Well. There's a great deal to be made of this
[Musing Stan. A handsome fortune may be made on't; and I advise you to't by all means.
Well. To marry her! an old wanton witch! I hate
Stan. No matter for that: let her go to the devil for you. She'll cheat her son of a good estate for you : that's a perquisite of a widow's portion always.
Well. I have a design, and will follow her at least, till I have a pennyworth of the plantation.
Stan. I speak as a friend, when I advise you to marry her, for 'tis directly against the interest of my own family. My cousin Jack has belaboured her a good while that way.
Well. What, honest Jack! I'll not hinder him. I'll give over the thoughts of it.
Stan. He'll make nothing on't; she does not care for him. I'm glad you have her in your power. .
Well. I may be able to serve him.
Stan. Here's a ship come into the river; I was in hopes it had been from England.
Well. From England !
Stan. No.. I was 'disappointed; I long to see this handsome cousin of yours; the picture you gave me of her has charmed me.
Well. You'll see whether it has flattered her or no, in a little time. If she be recovered of that illness that was the reason of her staying behind us, I know she will come with the first opportunity. We shall see her, or hear of her death.
Stan. We'll hope the best. The ships from England are expected every day.
Well. What ship is this?
Stan. A rover, a buccaneer, a trader in slaves; that's the commodity we deal in, you know. If you have a curiosity to see our manner of marketing, I'll wait upon you.
Well. We'll take my sister with us. [Exeunt.
An open Place. Enter Lieutenant-Governor and BLAND
FORD. · Gou. There's no resisting your fortune, Blandford; you draw all the prizes.
Blan. I draw for our lord governor, you know, his fortune favours me.
Gov. I grudge him nothing this time; but if fortune had favoured me in the last sale, the fair slave had been mine ; Clemene had been mine.
Blan. Are you still in love with her ? Gov. Every day more in love with her.. Enter Captain DRIVER, teazed and pulled about by Widow
LACKITT, and several planters. Enter, at another door, WELLDON, Lucy, and STANMORE.
Wid. Here have I six slaves in my lot, and not a man among them; all women and children; what can I do with 'em, Captain : pray consider I am a woman myself, and can't get my own slaves, as some of my neighbours do.
1st Plant. I have all men in mine : pray, Captain,