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this vilest of passions, and among the vilest of Jar. Is he indeed so poor, then?-Oh! he wretches! Oh, I have no patience!-My own was the joy of my old heart-But must his little fortune is untouched, he says. Would creditors have all?-And have they sold his I were sure on't. house too? His father built it when he was Mrs. B. And so you may-'twould be a but a prating boy. The times that I have sin to doubt it. carried him in these arms! And, Jarvis, says Char. I will be sure on't-'twas madness he, when a beggar has asked charity of me, in me to give it to his management. But I'll why should people be poor? You shan't be demand it from him this morning. I have a poor, Jarvis; if I were a king nobody should melancholy occasion for it. be poor. Yet he is poor. And then he was so brave!-Oh, he was a brave little boy! And yet so merciful, he'd not have killed the gnat that stung him.
Mrs. B. What occasion?
Mrs. B. No; I have no need on't. Take it, and reward a lover with it.-The generous Lewson deserves much more-Why won't you make him happy?
Char. Because my sister's miserable. Mrs. B. You must not think so. I have my jewels left yet. And when all's gone, these I hands shall toil for our support. The poor should be industrious-Why those tears, Charlotte?
Mrs. B. Speak to him, Charlotte, for I cannot. Jar. I have a little money, madam; it might have been more, but I have loved the poor. All that I have is yours.
Mrs. B. No, Jarvis; we have enough yet. thank you though, and I will deserve your goodness.
Mrs. B. Not at home, Jarvis. see him another time.
Jar. But shall I see my master? And will he let me attend him in his distresses; I'll be Char. They flow in pity for you. no expense to him; and, 'twill kill me to be Mrs. B. All may be well yet. When he refused.-Where is he, madam? has nothing to lose, I shall fetter him in these arms again; and then what is it to be poor? Char. Cure him but of this destructive passion, and my uncle's death may retrieve all yet. Mrs. B. Ay, Charlotte, could we cure him! -But the disease of play admits no cure but poverty; and the loss of another fortune would but increase his shame and his affliction.— Will Mr. Lewson call this morning?
Char. He said so last night. He gave me bints too, that he had suspicions of our friend Stukely.
Mrs: B. Not of treachery to my husband? That he loves play I know, but surely he's
Char. He would fain be thought so;-therefore I doubt him. Honesty needs no pains to set itself off.
Char. To-morrow, or the next day — Oh, Jarvis! what a change is here! Jar. A change indeed, madam! my old heart aches at it. And yet, methinks-But here's somebody coming.
Re-enter Lucy, with STUKELY. Lucy. Mr. Stukely, madam. [Exit. Stuke. Good morning to you, ladies. Mr. Jarvis, your servant. Where's my friend, madam? [To Mrs. Beverley. Mrs. B. I should have asked that question you. Have you seen him to-day? Štuke. No, madam.
Char. Nor last night?
Stuke. Last night! Did he not come home then?
Lucy. Your old steward, madam. I had not since.-Where can he have staid?
Char. You call yourself his friend, sir-why good old man begged so hard for't. [Exit. do you encourage him in this madness of
Stuke. You have asked me that question Mrs. B. Is this well, Jarvis? I desired you before, madam; and I told you my concern to avoid me. was that I could not save him; Mr. Beverley Jar. Did you, madam? I am an old man, is a man, madam; and if the most friendly and had forgot. Perhaps, too, you forbade entreaties have no effect upon him, I have no my tears; but I am old, madam, and age will other means. My purse has been his, even be forgetful. to the injury of my fortune. If that has been Mrs. B. The faithful creature! how he moves encouragement I deserve censure; but I meant me! [To Charlotte. it to retrieve him.
Jar. I have forgot these apartments too. I Mrs. B. I don't doubt it, sir, and I thank remember none such in my young master's ycu-But where did you leave him last night? house; and yet I have lived in't these five- Stuke. At Wilson's, madam, if I ought to and-twenty years. His good father would not tell, in company I did not like. Possibly he have dismissed me. may be there still. Mr. Jarvis knows the house, I believe.
Mrs. B. He had no reason, Jarvis. Jar. I was faithful to him while he lived, and when he died he bequeathed me to his son. I have been faithful to him too.
Mrs. B. I know it, I know it, Jarvis. Jar. I have not a long time to live. I ed but to have died with him, and he dis
Jar. Shall I go, madam?
Char. He may go as from himself.
Mrs. B. Pr'ythee no more of this! 'Twas his poverty that dismissed you.
upbraid him-I have never upbraided him. Mrs. B. Nor have you, sir. Who told you Jar. Would I could bring him comfort! of suspicion? I have a heart it cannot reach. [Exil. Stuke. Then I am happy-I would say more
Stuke. Don't be too much alarmed, madam.-but am prevented.
All men have their errors, and their times of seeing them. Perhaps my friend's time is not come yet. But he has an uncle; and old men Char. What a heart has that Jarvis!-A don't live for ever. You should look forward, creditor, sister. But the good old man has adam; we are taught how to value a second taken him away-"Don't distress his wifefortune by the loss of a first. Don't distress his sister." I could hear him [Knocking at the Door. say. ""Tis cruel to distress the afflicted"— Mrs. B. Hark!-No-that knocking was too And when he saw me at the door, he begged rude for Mr. Beverley. Pray heaven he be well! pardon that his friend had knocked so loud. Stuke. Never doubt it, madam. You shall Stuke. I wish I had known of this. Was be well too-Every thing shall be well. it a large demand, madam? [Knocking again. Char. I heard not that; but visits such as Mrs. B. The knocking is a little loud though these we must expect often-Why so distress-Who waits there? Will none of you an-ed, sister? This is no new affliction. swer?None of you, did I say?-Alas, what Mrs. B. No, Charlotte; but I am faint with was thinking of! I had forgot myself. watching quite sunk and spiritless - Will Char. I go, sister-But don't be alarmed you excuse me, sir? I'll to my chamber, and [Exit. try to rest a little.
[Exit. Stuke. What extraordinary accident have Stuke. Good thoughts go with you, madam. you to fear, inadam? My bait is taken then. [Aside.]-Poor Mrs. Beverley! How my heart grieves to see her thus! Char. Cure her, and be a friend then. Stuke. How cure her, madam? Char. Reclaim my brother.
Mrs. B. I beg your pardon; but 'tis ever thus with me in Mr. Beverley's absence. No. ou knocks at the door, but I fancy it is a messenger of ill news.
Stuke. You are too fearful, madam; 'twas! Stuke. Ay; give him a new creation, or but one night of absence; and if ill thoughts breathe another soul into him. I'll think on't, intrude (as love is always doubtful), think of madam. Advice, I see, is thankless. your worth and beauty, and drive them from your breast.
Mrs. B. What thoughts? I have no thoughts that wrong my husband.
Stuke. Such thoughts indeed would wrong him. The world is full of slander; and every wretch that knows himself unjust, charges his neighbour with like passions; and by the general frailty hides his own-If you are wise, and would be happy, turn a deaf ear to such reports. 'Tis ruin to believe them.
Mrs. B. Ay, worse than ruin. 'Twould be to sin against conviction. Why was it mentioned?
Stuke. To guard you against rumour. The sport of half mankind is mischief; and for a single error they make men devils. If their tales reach you, disbelieve them.
Mrs. B. What tales? By whom? Why told? I have heard nothing-or, if I had, with all his errors, my Beverley's firm faith admits no doubt-It is my safety, my seat of rest and joy, while the storm threatens round me. I'll not forsake it. [Stukely sighs, and looks down.] Why turn you, sir, away? and why that sigh?
Stuke. I was attentive, madam; and sighs will come, we know not why. Perhaps I have been too busy-If it should seem so, impute my zeal to friendship, that meant to guard you against evil tongues. Your Beverley is wronged, slandered most vilely-My life upon his truth.
Char. Useless I am sure it is, if, through mistaken friendship, or other motives, you feed his passion with your purse, and sooth it by example. Physicians, to cure fevers, keep from the patient's thirsty lip the cup that would inflame him. You give it to his hands. [4 knocking] Hark, sir!-These are my brother's desperate symptoms-Another creditor!" Stuke. One not so easily got rid of- What, Lewson!
Lew. Madam, your servant-Yours, sir. I was inquiring for you at your lodgings. Stuke. This morning! You had business then?
Lew. You'll call it by another name, perhaps. Where's Mr. Beverley, madam? Char. We have sent to inquire for him. Lew. Is he abroad then? He did not use to go out so early.
Char. No, nor stay out so late.
Lew. Is that the case? I am sorry for it. But Mr. Stukely, perhaps, may direct you to him.
Stuke. I have already, sir. But what was your business with me?
Lew. To congratulate you upon your late successes at play. Poor Beverley! But you are his friend; and there's a comfort in having successful friends.
Stuke. And what am I to understand by this Mrs. B. And mine too. Who is't that Lew. That Beverley's a poor man, with doubts it? But no matter-I am prepared, sir-rich friend; that's all.
Yet why this caution?--You are my husband's Stuke. Your words would mean something friend; I think you mine too; the common I suppose. Another time, sir, I shall desire friend of both. [Pauses] I had been uncon- an explanation.
Lew. And why not now? I am no deale Stuke. For heaven's sake, madam, be so in long sentences. A minute or two will d still! I meant to guard you against suspicion, for me.
t to alarm it.
Stuke. But not for me, sir. —I am slow
apprehension, and must have time and priv-less, will be sufficient for us. We shall find acy. A lady's presence engages my attention. you at home, madam? Another morning I may be found at home. Lew. Another morning, then, I'll wait upon
[To Charlotte. Exit with Mrs. Beverley,
SCENE II-STUKELY's Lodgings.
Stuke. That Lewson suspects me, 'tis too
Char. How know him? Mere doubt and plain. Yet why should he suspect me?I ap supposition!
Lew. I shall have proof soon.
Char. And what then? Would you life to be his punisher?
pear the friend of Beverley as much as he. But I am rich, it seems; and so I am, thanks
risk to another's folly and my own wisdom. To what use is wisdom, but to take advantage of Lew. My life, madam! Don't be afraid. But the weak? This Beverley's my fool; I cheat let it content you that. I know this Stukely-him, and he calls me friend. But more bu Twould be as easy to make him honest as siness must be done yet-His wife's jewels are brave. unsold; so is the reversion of his uncle's estate: Char. And what do you intend to do. I must have these too. And then there's a Lew. Nothing, till I have proof. But me- treasure above all-I love his wife-Before she thinks, madam, I am acting here without author- knew this Beverley I loved her; but, like a ity. Could I have leave to call Mr. Bever- cringing fool, bowed at a distance, while he ley brother, his concerns would be my own. stepped in and won her- Never, never will Why will you make my services appear of I forgive him for it. Those hints this mornLicious? ing were well thrown in-Already they have Char. You know my reasons, and should fastened on her. If jealousy should weaken not press me. But I am cold, you say; and her affections, want may corrupt her virtuecold I will be, while a poor sister's destitute These jewels may do much He shall demand -But let us change this subject - Your busi- them of her; which, when mine, shall be conness here this morning is with my sister. Mis-verted to special purposes-fortunes press too hard upon her; yet, till today she has borne them nobly.
Lew. Where is she?
Char. Gone to her chamber. Her spirits
What now, Bates?
Bates. Is it a wonder then to see me? The forces are all in readiness, and only wait for
Enter MRS. Beverley.
Mrs. B. Good morning, sir; I heard your Foice, and, as I thought, inquiring for me. Where's Mr. Stukely, Charlotte?
Char. This moment gone-You have been in tears, sister; but here's a friend shall com
Lew. Or, if I add to your distresses, I'll beg your pardon, madam. The sale of your house and furniture was finished yesterday.
Stuke. At last night's rendezvous, waiting for me. Is Dawson with you?.
Bates. Dressed like a nobleman; with maney in his pocket, and a set of dice that shall deceive the devil.
Stuke. That fellow has a head to undo a nation; but for the rest, they are such lowmannered, ill-looking dogs, I wonder Beverley has not suspected them.
Bates. No matter for manners and looks. Do you supply them with money, and they are gentlemen by profession- The passion of gaming casts such a mist before the eyes, that Mrs. B. I know it, sir; I know too your the nobleman shall be surrounded with shargenerous reason for putting me in mind of it. pers, and imagine himself in the best company. But you have obliged me too much already. Stuke. There's that Williams too. It was Lew. There are trifles, madam, which Ihe, I suppose, that called at Beverley's with know you have set a value on; those I have the note this morning. What directions did purchased, and will deliver. I have a friend you give him?
too, that esteems you-He has bought largely, Bates. To knock loud and be clamorous. and will call nothing his, till he has seen you. Did not you see him? If a visit to him would not be painful, he has begged it may be this morning.
Stuke. No; the fool sneaked off with Jarvis. Had he appeared within doors as directed, the Mrs. B. Not painful in the least, my pain note had been discharged. I waited there on is from the kindness of my friends. Why am purpose. I want the women to think well of I to be obliged beyond the power of return? me, for Lewson's grown suspicious; he told Lew. You shall repay us at your own time. me so himself. I have a coach waiting at the door-Shall we have your company, madam? [To Charlotte. Char. No; my brother may return soon; I'll stay and receive him.
Mrs. B. He may want a comforter, perhaps. But don't upbraid him, Charlotte. We shan't be absent long. Come, sir, since I must be so obliged.
Bates. What answer did you make him? Stuke. A short one-That I would see him soon for further explanation.
Bates. We must take care of him. what have we to do with Beverley? Dawson and the rest are wondering at you.
Stuke. Why, let them wonder. I have designs above their narrow reach. They see Lew. 'Tis I that am obliged. An hour, or me lend him money, and they stare at me.
Bev. No; think'st thou I'd ruin thee too? I have enough of shame already-My wife! my wife! Wouldst thou believe it, Jarvis? I have
But they are fools. I want him to believe me beggared by him. Bates. And what then? Stuke. Ay, there's the question; but no not seen her all this long night-I, who have matter; at night you may know more. He loved her so, that every hour of absence seemed "waits for me at Wilson's.-I told the women as a gap in life! but other bonds have held where to find him. -Ŏh, I have played the boy! dropping my counters in the stream, and reaching to redeem them, lost myself!
Bates. To what purpose?
Stuke. To save suspicion. It looked friendly, and they thanked me.-Old Jarvis was dispatched to him.
Jar. For pity's sake, sir!—I have no heart to see this change.
Bev. Nor I to bear it-How speaks the world of me, Jarvis?
Bates. And may entreat him homeStuke. No; he expects money from me, but I'll have none. Ilis wife's jewels must go Jar. As of a good man dead-Of one who, Women are easy creatures, and refuse walking in a dream, fell down a precipice. nothing where they love. Follow to Wilson's The world is for sorry you. -Come, sir.
Let drudging fools by honesty grow great;
SCENE I.- A Gaming-house, with a Table,
Beo. Ay, and pities me- Says it not so? But I was born to infamy. I'll tell thee what it says; it calls me villain, a treacherous hus[Exeunt. band, a cruel father, a false brother, one lost to nature and her charities; or, to say all in one short word, it calls me- -gamester. Go to thy mistress-I'll see her presently. Jar. And why not now? Rude people press upon her; loud, bawling creditors; wretches Beo. Why, what a world is this! The slave who know no pity-I met one at the doorthat digs for gold receives his daily pittance, he would have seen my mistress: I wanted and sleeps contented; while those for whom means of present payment, so promised it tohe labours convert their good to mischief, morrow: but others may be pressing, and she making abundance the means of want. What has grief enough already.-Your absence hangs Lad I to do with play? I wanted nothing-too heavy on her.
BEVERLEY discovered sitting.
My wishes and my means were equal. The Bev. Tell her I'll come then. I have a mopoor followed me with blessings, love scattered ment's business.
But what hast thou to do, roses on my pillow, and morning waked me with my distresses? Thy honesty has left thee to delight-Oh, bitter thought, that leads to poor; and age wants comfort. Keep what what I was, by what I am! I would forget thou hast, lest, between thee and the grave, Loth--Who's there? misery steal in. I have a friend shall counsel -This is that friend.
Enter a Waiter.
Stuke. How fares it, Beverley? Honest Mr. Jarvis, well met. That viper, Williams! was it not he that troubled you this morning?
Jar. My mistress heard him then; I am sorry that she heard him.
Beo. And Jarvis promised payment.
Stuke. That must not be. Tell him I'll sa- . tisfy him.
Jar. Will you, sir? Heaven will reward you
Jarvis! Why this intrusion?-Your absence for it. had been kinder.
Beo. Generous Stukely! Friendship like
Jar. I came in duty, sir. If it be trouble-yours, had it ability like will, would more than
Bev. It is I would be private-hid even from myself. Who sent you hither?
Jar. One that would persuade you home again. My mistress is not well-her tears told
Bev. Go with thy duty there then-Pr'ythee, be gone-I have no business for thee.
Jar. Yes, sir; to lead you from this place. I am your servant still. Your prosperous fortune blessed my old age: If that has left you, I must not leave you.
balance the wrongs of fortune.
Stuke. You think too kindly of me — Make haste to Williams; his clamours may be rude else. [To Jarcis. Jar. And my master will go home again— Alas! sir, we know of hearts there breaking for his absence. [Exil
Bev. 'Would I were dead! Stuke. Ha! ha ha! Pr'ythee, be a man, and leave dying to disease and old age. Fortune may be ours again; at least we'll try for't. Beo. No; it has fooled us on too far. Beo. Not leave me! Recall past time then; Stuke. Ay, ruined us; and therefore we'll or, through this sea of storms and darkness, sit down contented. These are the despond show me a star to guide me.-But what canst ings of men without money; but let the shinthou? ing ore chink in the pocket, and folly turns Jar. The little that I can I will. You have to wisdom. We are fortune's children-True, been generous to me-I would not offend you, she's a fickle mother; but shall we droop be sir-butcause she's peevish? - No; she has smiles in
store, and these her frowns are meant to bright
Stuke. No matter; I have changed my mind -Leave me to a prison; 'tis the reward of friendship.
Bev. Is this a time for levity?-But you are single in the ruin, and therefore may talk Bev. Perish mankind first!— Leave you to lightly of it; with me 'tis complicated misery. a prison! No! fallen as you see me, I'm not Stuke. You censure me unjustly; I but as- that wretch: nor would I change this heart, sumed these spirits to cheer my friend. Heav- o'ercharged as 'tis with folly and misfortune, en knows he wants a comforter.
Bev. What new misfortune? Stuke. I would have brought you money, but lenders want securities. What's to be done? All that was mine is yours already. Bee. And there's the double weight that sinks me. I have undone my friend too; one who, to save a drowning wretch, reached out his hand, and perished with him. Stuke. Have better thoughts.
for one most prudent and most happy, if callous to a friend's distress.
Stuke. You are too warm.
Beo. In such a cause, not to be warm is to be frozen. Farewell-I'll meet you at your lodgings.
Stuke. Reflect a little. The jewels may be lost-Better not hazard them-I was too pressing.
Beo. And I ungrateful. Reflection takes up time.-I have no leisure for't-WWithin an hour expect me.
Beo. Whence are they to proceed? I have nothing left. [Exit. Stuke.[Sighing] Then we're indeed undone- Stuke. The thoughtless, shallow prodigal! What! nothing? No moveables, nor useless We shall have sport at night then-but hold trinkets?-Bawbles locked up in caskets, to -The jewels are not ours yet-The lady may starve their owners? I have ventured deeply refuse them--The husband may relent too for you. 'Tis more than probable-I'll write a note to BevBeo. Therefore this heart-ache; for I am erley, and the contents shall spur him to delost beyond all hope. mand them-But am I grown this rogue through Stuke. No; means may be found to save avarice? No; I have warmer motives, love and us-Jarvis is rich-Who made him so? This revenge- Ruin the husband, and the wife's is no time for ceremony. virtue may be bid for.
Bev. And is it for dishonesty? The good old man! Shall I rob him too? My friend would grieve for't.-No; let the little that he has buy food and clothing for him. Stuke. Good morning then. [Going. Bev. So hasty! why, then good morning. Stuke. And when we meet again upbraid Bates. Not till their leader bids then. me-Say it was I that tempted you-Tell Stuke. Give them the word, and follow me; Lewson so, and tell him I have wronged you I must advise with you-This is a day of bu-He has suspicions of me, and will thank you. siness. Beo. No; we have been companions in rash voyage, and the same storm has wrecked us both: mine shall be self-upbraidings.
Look to your men, Bates; there's money stirring. We meet to-night upon this spot. Hasten, and tell them.-Hasten, I say, the rogues will scatter else.
Stuke. And will they feed us? You deal unkindly by me. I have sold and borrowed for you while land or credit lasted; and now, when fortune should be tried, and my heart whispers me success, I am deserted-turned loose to beggary, while you have hoards. Beo. What hoards? Name them, and take them!
Beo. And shall this thriftless hand seize them too? My poor, poor wife! Must she lose all? I would not wound her so.
Stuke. Nor I, but from necessity. One effort more, and fortune may grow kind.-I have unusual hopes.
Bec. Think of some other means then.
Stuke. Ay, and your friend a poor oneBut I have done: and for these trinkets of a woman, why let her keep them to deck her pride with, and show a laughing world that she has finery to starve in.
SCENE II-BEVERLEY'S Lodgings.
Enter BEVERLEY and CHARLOTTE. Char. Your looks are changed too;-there's wildness in them. My wretched sister! How will it grieve her to see you thus!
Bev. No, no; a little rest will ease me. And for your Lewson's kindness to her it has my thanks; I have no more to give him.
Char. Yes; a sister and her fortune. I trifle with him, and he complains-My looks, he says, are cold upon him. He thinks too
Bev. That I have lost your fortune—He dares not think so.
Char. Nor does he-you are too quick at guessing-He cares not if you had. That care is mine-I lent it you to husband, and now I claim it.
Beo. You have suspicions then?
Bev. Ay; would and cannot-Leave it to time then; 'twill satisfy all doubts.
Beo. No; she shall yield up all-My friend demands it. But need we have talked lightly Char. Mine are already satisfied. of her? The jewels that she values are truth Bev. 'Tis well. And when the subject is and innocence-Those will adorn her for ever; renewed, speak to me like a sister, and I will and, for the rest, she wore them for a hus-answer like a brother.
band's pride, and to his wants will give them. Char. To tell me I'm a beggar.-Why, tell Alas! you know her not.—Where shall we meet? it now. I, that can bear the ruin of those