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Enter Sir BENJAMIN BACKBITE.
her, calling out for hurtshorn and water; then, Oh, dear Sir Benjamin! you have heard, I sup. madam, they began to fight with swords pose
Crab. With pistols, nephew--pistols ; I bave it Sir B. O! the strangest piece of business, to be from undoubted authority. sure !
Mrs. C. 0, Mr. Crabtree, then it is all true! Mrs. C. Well, I never was so surprised in my is dangerously wounded
Crab. Too true, indeed, madam, and Sir Peter life. I am so sorry for all parties, indeed. Sir B. Now I don't pity Sir Peter at all: he was
Sir B. By a tbrust in segoon quite through his
left sideso extravagantly partial to Mr. Surface. Mrs. C. Mr. Surface! Why, 'twas with Charles
Crab. By a bullet lodged in the thorax. Lady Teazle was detected.
Mrs. C. Mercy on me! Poor Sir Peter. Sir B. No such thing, I tell you-Mr. Surface
Crab. Yes, madam; though Charles would have is the gallant.
avoided the matter, if he could. Mrs. C. No, no, Charles is the man. 'Twas Mr.
Mrs. C. I told you who it was; I knew Charles
was the person. Surface brought Sir Peter on purpose tu discover them.
Sir B. My uncle, I see, knows nothing of the Sir B. I tell you I had it from oneMrs. C. And I bave it from one
Crab. But Sir Peter taxed him with the basest Sir B. Who had it from one, who had it
ingratitude. Mrs. C. From one immediately—but here comes
Sir B. That I told you, you know Lady Sneerwell; perhaps she knows ute whole
Crab. Do, nephew, let me speak!-and insisted affair.
Sir B. Satisfaction ! Just as I said
Crab. Ouds life, nepbew, allow others to know Lady S. So, my dear Mrs. Candour, here's a sad something too. A pair of pistols lay on the buaffair of our friend Teazle.
reau (for Mr. Surface, it seems, bad come bomo Mrs. C. Ay, my dear friend, who would have the night before late from Salthill, where be had thought
been to see the Montem with a friend, wbo has a Lady S. Well, there is no trusting appearances ; son at Eton), so, unluckily, the pistols were left though, indeed, she was always too lively for me. cbarged.
Mrs. C. To be sure, her manners were a little Sir B. I heard nothing of this. too free: but then she was so young!
Crab. Sir Peter forced Charles to take one; and Lady S. And had, indeed, some good qualities. they fired, it seems, pretty nearly together.
Mrs. C. So she bad, indeed. But have you heard Charles's shot took effect, as I tell you, and Sir the particulars ?
Peter's missed; but, what is very extraordinary, Lady S. No; but everybody says that Mr. Sur- the ball struck against a little bronze Shakspeare face
that stood over the fire-place, grazed out of the Sir B. Ay, there; I told yon Mr. Surface was window at a right angle, and wounded the postthe man.
man, who was just coming to the door with a dou. Mrs. C. No, no : indeed the assignation was with ble letter from Northamptonshire. Charles.
Sir B. My uncle's account is more circumstanLady S. With Charles ! You alarm me, Mrs. tial, I confess; but I believe mine is the only true Candour!
for all that. Mrs. C. Yes, yes, he was the lover. Mr. Sur- Lady S. I am more interested in this affair than face, to do bim justice, was only the informer. they imagine, and must have botter information. Sir B. Well, I'll not dispute with you, Mrs. Aside.
[Exit Lady SNEERWELL, Candour; but, be it which it may, I hope that Sir Sir B. Ab! Lady Sneerwell's alarm is very easily Peter's wound will not
accounted for. Mrs. C. Sir Peter's wound! 0, mercy! I did'nt Crab. Yes, yes, they certainly do say—but that's hear a word of their fighting.
neither here nor there. Lady S. Nor I, a syllable.
Mrs. C. But, pray, where is Sir Peter at present? Sir B. No! what, no mention of the duel ? Crab. Oh! they brought bim home, and he is Mrs. C. Not a word.
now in the house, though the servants are ordered Sir B. O, yes : they fought before they left the to deny him.
Mrs.c. I believe so, and Lady Teazle, I supLady S. Pray, let us hear.
poşe, attending him. Mrs. C. Ay, do oblige us with the duel.
Crab. Yes, yes ; and I saw one of the faculty Sir B. “ Sir,” says Šir Peter, immediatrly after enter just before me. the discovery, "you are a most ungrateful fellow." Sir B. Hey! who comes bere? Mrs. C. Ay, to Charles.
Crab. O, this is he : the physician, depend on't. Sir B. No, no-to Mr. Surface-"a most un- Mrs. C. O, certainly, it must be the physician; grateful fellow ; and old as I am, sir," says he, and now we shall know. I insist on immediate satisfaction."
Enter Sir OLIVER SURFACE. Mrs. C. Ay, that must have been to Charles ; for 'uis very unlikely Mr. Surface should figbt in Crab. Well, doctor, what hopes ? his own house.
Mrs. C. Ay, doctor, how's your patient? Sir B. Gad's life ma'am, not at all—" Giving Sir B. Now, doctor, isn't it a wound with a me immediate satisfaction.” On this, ma'am, Lady small-sword? Teazle, seeing Sir Peter in such danger, ran out Crab. A bullet lodged in the thorax, for a hunof the room in strong hysterics, and Charles after dred.
Sir 0. Doctor! a wound with a small-sword! Sir (). They are very provoking, indeed, Sir and a bullet in the thorax Oons, are you mad, Peter. good people ?
Enter Row LEY. Sir B. Perhaps, sir, you are not a doctor ?
Sir 0. Truly I am to thank you for my degree, if Row. I heard high words; what has ruffled you I am.
sir ? Crab. Only a friend of Sir Peter's, then, I pre- Sir P. Pshaw! what signifies asking ? Do I ever sume. But, sir, you must have heard of his ac- pass a day without my vexations ? cident?
Row. Well, I am not inquisitive. Sir O. Not a word!
Sir 0, Well, I am not inquisitive ; I come only Crab. Not of his being dangerously wounded ? to tell you that I have seen both my nephews in Sir 0. The devil be is!
the manner we proposed. Sir B. Run through the body
Sir P. A precious couple they are ! Crab. Shot in the breast
Row. Yes, and Sir Oliver is convinced that your Sir B. By one Mr. Surface
judgment was right, Sir Peter. Crab. Av, the younger.
Sir 0. Yes, I find Joseph is indeed the man, Sir 0. Hey! what the plague! you seem to dif after all. fer strangely in your accounts : however, you agree Row. Ay, os Sir Peter says, he is a man of senthat Si Peter is dangerously wounded.
timent. Sir B. O yes, we agree in that.
Sir 0. And acts up to the sentiments he proCrab. Yes, yes, I believe there can be no doubt fesses. of that.
Row. It certainly is edification to hear him Sir 0. Then, upon my word, for a person in that talk. situation, he is the most imprudent man alive; for Sir 0. Ob, be's a model for the young men of here he comes walking as if nothing at all were the the age !—But how's this, Sir Peter? You don't matter.
join us in your friend Joseph's praise, as I ex
pected. Enter Sir PETER TEAZLE.
Sir P. Sir Oliver, we live in a damned wicked Odd's beart, Sir Peter, you are come in good world, and the fewer we praise the better. time, I promise you; for we bad just giren you Row. What! do you say so, Sir Peter, who were over.
never mistaken in your life ? Sir B. Egad, uncle, this is the most sudden re- Sir P. Pshaw! Plague on you both! I see by covery.
your sneering you have heard the whole affair. I Sir 0. Why, man, wbat do you do out of bed shall go mad among you ! with a small-sword through your body, and a bul. Row. Then, to fret you no longer, Sir Peter, we let lodged in your thorax ?
are indeed acquainted with it all. I met Lady TeaSir P. A small-sword, and a bullet!
zle coming from Mr. Surface's so humble, that she Sir 0. Ay, these gentlemen would have killed deigned to request me to be her advocate with yolke you without law or physic, and wanted to dub me Sir. P. And does Sir Oliver know all this? a doctor, to make me an accomplice.
Sir 0. Every circumstance. Sir P. Why, what is all this?
Sir P. What of the closet and the screen, hey? Sir B. We rejoice, Sir Peter, that the story of Sir 0. Yes, yes, and the little French williner the duel is not true, and are sincerely sorry for o, I have been vastly diverted with the story! your other misfortune.
Ha! ha! ha!
( Aside. Sir 0. I never laughed more in my life, I assure Crab. Though, Sir Peter, you were certainly you: Ha! ha! ha! vastly to blame to marry at your years.
Sir P. O, vastly diverting! Ha! ha! ha! Sir P. Sir, what business is that of yours? Row. To be sure, Joseph with his sentiments :
Mrs. C. Though, indeed, as Sir Peter made so Ha! ha! ha good a husband, he is very much to be pitied. Sir P. Yes, yes, his sentiments ! Ha! ha! ha!
Sir P. Plague on your pity, ma'am! I desire Hypocritical villain! none of it.
Sir 0. Ay, and that rogue Charles to pull Sir Sir B. However, Sir Peter, you must not mind Peter out of the closet: Ha! ha! ha! the lau bing and jests you will meet with on the Sir P. lla! ha! 'Twas devilish entertaining, to occasion.
be sure ! Sir P. Sir, sir, I desire to be master in my own Sir 0. Ha! ha! ha! Egad, Sir Peter, I should house.
like to have seen your face when the screen was Crab. 'Tis no uncommon case, that's one comfort. thrown down. Ha! ba!
Sir P. I insist on being left to myself: without Sir P. Yes, yes, my face when the screen was ceremony-I insist on your leaving my house di- thrown down: Ha, ha, ha! Oh, I must never show rectly.
my head again! Mrs. C. Well, well, we are going, and depend Sir 0. But come, come; it isn't fair to laugh at on't we'll make the best report of it we can. you neither, my old friend; though, upon my soul, Sur P. Leave my house!
I can't help it. Crab. And tell how hardly you've been treated. Sir P. O pray don't restrain your mirth on my Sir P. Leave my house!
account: it does not hurt me at all! I laugh at the Sir B. And how patiently you bear it.
whole affair myself. Yes, yes, I think being a (Ereunt Mrs. Candou R, Sir Benjamin, and standing jest for all one's acquaintance a very happy CRABTREE.
situation. O yes, and then of a morning to read Sir P. Leave my house !--.Fiends! vipers ! fu- the paragraphs about Mr. S-, Lady T--, and ries ! O, that their own venom would choke them! Sir P--, will be so entertaining! I shall cer
tainly leave town to-morroid, and never look maa- Joseph S. Come, come; it is not too late yut. kind in the face again.
[Knocking at the door.) But hark! this is probably Row. Without affectation, Sir Peter, you may my uncle, Sir Oliver: retire to that room; we'll despise the ridicule of fools : but I see Lady Teazle consult further when he is gone. going towards the next room ; I am sure you must Lady S. Well, but if he should find you out, too? desire a reconciliation as earnestly as she does. Joseph S. Oh, I have no fear of that. Sir Peter
Sir 0. Perhaps my being here prevents her will hold his tongue for his own credit's sakemand coming to you. Well, I'll leave honest Rowley to you may depend on it, I shall soon discover Sir mediate between you ; but he must bring you all Oliver's weak side! presently to Mr. Surface's, where I am now return- Lady S. I have no diffidence of your abilities! ing, if not to reclaim a libertine, at least to expose only be constant to one roguery at a time. hypocrisy:
[Erit Lady SNCERWELL. Sir P. Ab, I'll be present at your discovering Joseph S. I will, I will. So ! 'tis confounded yourself there with all my heart; though 'tis a hard, after such bad fortune, to be baited by one's vile uulucky place for discoveries. She is not confederate in evil. Well, at all erents, my chacoming here, you see. Rowley.
racter is so much better than Charles's, that I cerRow. No, but she has left the door of that rcom tainly-Hey!-what!-this is not Sir Oliver, open, you perceive. See, she is in tears.
but old Stanley again. Plague on't! that he Sir P. Certainly a little mortification appears should return to teazo me just now--I shall have very becoming in a wife. Don't you think it will Sir Oliver come and find him here-anddo her good to let her pine a little ? Row. Oh, this is ungenerous in you !
Entar Sir Oliver SURFACE. Sir P. Well, I know not what to think. You Gad's life, Mr. Stanley, why have you come back remember the letter I found of hers, evidently in. to plague me at this iime ?
You must not stay tended for Charles?
now, upon my word. Row. A mere forgery, Sir Peter, laid in your Sir 0. Sir, I hear your uncle Oliver is expected way on purpose. This is one of the points which here, and though he has been so penurious to you, I intend Snake shall give you conviction of. I'll try what he'll do for me.
Sir P. I wish I were once satisfied of that. She Joseph S. Sir, 'tis impossible for you to stay looks this way.
What a remarkably elegant turn now, so I must beg- Come any other time, and of the head she bas! Rowley, I'll go to her. I promise you, you shall be assisted. Row. Certainly.
Sir 0. No: Sir Oliver and I must be acquainted. Sir P. Though when it is known that we are re- Joseph S. Zounds, sir ! then I insist on your conciled, people will laugh at me ten times more. quitting the room directly.
Row. Let them laughi, and retort tbeir malice Sir O. Nay, sironly by showing them you are happy in spite of it. Joseph S. Sir, I insist on't : here, William ! sho:
Šir . I'faith, so I will! and, if I'm not mis- this gentleman out. Since you compel ine, sir,taken, we may yet be the happiest couple in the not one inoment- this is such insolence ! county.
[Going to push him out. Row. Nay, Sir Peter, he who once lays aside
Enter CHARLES SURFACE. suspicion,
Sir P. Hold, master Rowley! If you have any Charles S. Hey day! what's the matter now! regard for me, never let me hear you utter any- What the devil. have you got hold of my little thing like a sentiment: I have had enough of them broker here? Zounds, brother, don't hurt little to serve me the rest of my life.
Premium. What's the matter, my little fellow?
Joseph S. So ! he has been with you too, has he? SCENE III.-The Library.
Charles S. To be sure lie has, Why, he's as
honest a little — But sure, Joseph, you have not Enter Lady SNEERWELT, and Joseph SURPACE.
been borrowing money too, have you? Lady S. Impossible! Will not Sir Peter imme. Joseph S. Borrowing! No! But, brother, you diately be reconciled to Charles, and of consequence know we expect Sir Oliver here everyno longer oppose his union with Maria ? The Charles S. O Gad, that's true! Noll mustn't find thought is distraction to ine.
the little broker bere, to be sure ! Joseph S. Can passion furnishi a remedy?
Joseph S. Yet Mr. Stanley insistsLady S. No, nor cunning neither. O! I was a Charles S. Stanley! why his name's Premium. fool, an idiot, to league with such a blunderer! Joseph S. No, sir, Stanley.
Joseph S. Sure, Lady Sneerwell, I am the greatest Charles S. No, no, Premium. sufferer; yet you see I bear the accident with Joseph S. Well, no matter which--butcalmness.' Well, I admit I have been to blame. Charles S. Ay, ay, Stanley or Premium, 'tis the I confess I deviated from the direct road of wrong, same thing, as you say; for I suppose he goes by but I don't think we're so t tally defeated neither. half a hundred names, besides A. B. at the coffee
Lady S. No!
Joseph S. You tell me you have made a trial of Joseph S. 'Sdeath, here's Sir Oliver at the door. Snake since we met, and íhat you still believe him Now I beg, Mr. Stanleyfaithful to us.
Charles S. Ay, ay, and I beg, Mr. PremiumLady S. I do believe so.
Sir 0. GentlemenJoseph S. And that be has undertaken, should it Joseph S. Sir, by heaven you shall go ! be necessary, to swear and prove, that Charles is Charles S. Ay, out with him, certainly ! at this time contracted by vows and honour to your Sir 0. This violenceJadyship, which some of his former letters to you Joseph S. Sir, 'tis your own fault. will serve to support.
Charles S. Out with him, to be sure. Laily S. This, indeed, might have assisted.
[Both furcing Sir Oliver out,
lieve me sincere when I tell you—and upon my Enter Lady Teazle and Sir Peter, Maria, und soul I would not say so if I was not—that it I do ROWLEY.
not appear mortified at the exposure of my follies, Sir P. My old friend, Sir Oliver-hey! What it is because I feel at this moment the warmest in the name of wonder – here are dutiful nephews- satisfaction in seeing you, my liberal benefactor. assault tbeir uncles at a first visit!
Sir 0. Charles, I believe you; give me your Lady T. Indeed, Sir Oliver, 'twas well we came band again; the ill looking little fellow over the in to rescue you.
settee has made your peace. Row. Truly, it was ; for 1 perceive, Sir Oliver, Charles S. Then, sir, my gratitude to the origithe character of old Stanley was no protection to nal is still increased. you
Lady T. [Advancing, Maria on her left hand. ] Sır 0. Nor of Premium either; the necessities Yet, I believe, Sir Oliver, bere is one whom of the former could not extort a shilling from that Charles is still inore anxious to be reconciled 10. benevolent gentleman; and with the other, I stood Sir 0. Oh, I bave heard of his attachment there; a chance of faring worse than my ancestors, and and, with the young lady's pardon, if I construe being knocked down without being bid for. right-tbat blushJoseph S. Charles !
Sir P. Well, child, speak your sentiments ! Charles S. Joseph !
Maria. Sir, I have little to say, but that I shall Joseph S. 'Tis now complete !
rejoice to hear that he is happy; for me-whatCharles S. Very!
ever claim I bad to his attention, I willingly resign Sir 0. Sir Peter, my friend, and Rowley toom to one who has a better title. look on that elder nephew of mine. You know Charles S. How, Maria! what he has already received from my bounty ; and Sir P. Hey-day! what's the mystery now ?you also know how gladly, I wold bave regarded While he appeared an incorrigible rake, you would half my fortune as held in trust for him : judge give your hand to no one else'; and now that he is then my disappointment in discovering him to be likely to reform, I'll warrant you won't bave him. destitute of truth, charity, and gratitude.
Maria. His own heart and Lady Sneerwell know Sir P. Sir Oliver, I should be more surprised at the cause. this declaration, if I had not myself found him to Charles S. Lady Sneerwell! be selfish, treacherous, and bypocritical.
Joseph S. Brother, it is with great concern I am Lady T. And if the gentleman pleads not guilty obliged to speak on this point, but my regard to to these, pray let him call me to his character. justice compels me, and Lady Sneerweil's injuries
Sir P. Then, I believe, we need add no more : can no longer be concealed. [Opens the door, if he knows himself, he will consider it as the most perfect punishment, that he is known to the
Enter Lady SNEERWELL. world.
Sir P. So! another French milliner! Egad, he Charles S. If they talk this way to honesty, what has one in every room in the bouse, I suppose. will they say to me, by and by ?
[Aside. Lady S. Ungrateful Charles ! Well may you be (Sir PETER, Lady TEAZLE, and Maria, retire. surprised, and feel for the indelicate situation your Sir 0. As for that prodigal, his brother, there— perfidy has forced me into.
Charles S. Ay, now comes my turn : the damned Charles S. Pray, uncle, is this another plot of family pictures will ruin me.
[Aside. yours ? For, as I have life, I don't understand it. Joseph S. Sir Oliver-uncle, will you honour me Joseph S. I believe, sir, there is but the evidence with a hearing ?
of one person more necessary to make it extremely Charles S. Now if Joseph would make one of clear. bis long speeches, I might recollect myself a little. Sir P. And that person, I imagine, is Mr. Snake.
[Aside Rowley, you were perfectly right to bring him Sir 0. I suppose you would undertake to justify with us, and pray let bim appear. yourself?
[To Joseph. Row. Walk in, Mr. Snake. Joseph S. I trust I could.
Enter SNAKE. Sir 0. Nay, if you desert your roguery in its distress, and try to be justified-you have even I thought his testimony might be wanted : lowless principle ihan I thought you had.-[To ever, it happens unluckily, that he comes to conCharles.] Well, sir! you could justify yourself too, front Lady Sneerwell, not to support her. I suppose ?
Lady S. A villain! Treacherous to me at last!Charles S. Not that I know of, Sir Oliver. Speak, fellow; have you, too, conspired against
Sir 0. What!-Little Premium bas been let too me? much into the secret, I suppose ?
Snake. I beg your ladyship ten thousand parCharles S. True, sir; but they were family se. dons : you paid me extremely liberally for the lie crets, and should not be mentioned again, you in question; but I, unfortunately, have been ofknow.
fered double to speak the truth. Row. Come, Sir Oliver, I know you cannot speak Sir P. Plot and counter-plot ! I wish your ladyof Charles's follies with anger.
ship joy of your negotiation. Sir 0. Odd's heart, no more I can ; nor with Lady S. The torments of shame and disappointgravity either. Sir Peter, do you know, the rogue ment on you all! bar ained with me for all his ancestors; sold me Lady Ť. Hold, Lady Sneerwell: before you go, judges and generals by the foot, and maiden aunts let me thank you for the trouble you and that gena: cheap as broken china.
tleman bave taken, in writing letters from me to Charles S. To be sure, Sir Oliver, I did make a Charles, and answering them yourself; and let me little free with the family canvass, that's the truth also request you to make my respects to the scanon't. My ancestors may certainly rise up in judg- dalous college, of which you are president, and inment against me; there's no denying it; but be- form them, that Lady Teazle, licentiate, begs leave to return the diploma they granted her, as she Sir 0. Well, well; we'll not traduce you by leaves off practice, and kills characters no longer. saying anything in your praise, never fear.
Lady S. You, too, madam--provoking-insolent. ‘Lady T. See, Sir Oliver, there needs no persua.
Sir 0. Ay, ay, that's as it should be; and, egad
Charles S. Thank you, dear uncle ! Lady T. O no!
Sir P. What, you rogue! don't you ask the Sir O. Well, sir, and what have you to say now? girl's consent first!
Joseph S. Sir, I am so confounded, to find that Charles S. Oh, I have done that a long time-a Lady Sneerwell could be guilty of suborning Mr. minute ago and she has looked yes. Snake in this manner, to impose on us all, that I Maria. For shame, Charles !— I protest, Sir Peter, know not what to say: however, lest ber revenge- there has not been a word. ful spirit should prompt ber to injure my brother, Sir 0. Well, then, the fewer the better ;-may I had certainly better follow her directly. For the your love for each other never know abatement! man who attempts to-
[Exit. Sir P. And may you live as happily together as Sir P. Moral to the last!
Lady Teazle and I intend to do! Sir O. Ay, and marry her, Joseph, if you can. Charles S. Rowley, my old friend, I am sure you Egad ! you'll do very well together.
congratulate me; and I suspect that lowe you much. Row. "I believe we have no more occasion for Sir P. Ay, honest Rowley always said you would Mr. Snake, at present.
reform. Snake. Before I go, I beg pardon once for all, Charles S. Why, as to reforming, Sir Peter, I'll for whatever uneasiness I have been the humble make no promises, and that I take to be a proof instrument of causing to the parties present. that I intend to set about it, but here shall be my
Sir P. Well, well, you have made atonement by monitor-my gentle guide.-Ah! can I leave tha a good deed at last
virtuous path those eyes illumine? Snake. But I must request of the company, that it shall never be known.
Though thou, dear maid, should'st wave thy Sir P. Hey - What the plague ! - Are you beauty's sway, ashamed of having done a right thing once in your Thou still must rule, because i will obey. life?
A humble fugitive from fully view, Snake. Ah, sir, consider,- I live by the badness No sanctuary near but Love and you ; of my character; and it it were once known that I
[To the andience. had been betrayed into an honest action, I should You can, indeed, each anxious fear remove, lose every friend I have in the world. [Exit. For even Scandal dies, if you approre.