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LIVIA not his fifter Olivia not Leontine's lifter? You amaze me!
Gar. No more his sister than I am ? I had it all from his own servant: 'I can get any thing from that quarter.
Miss Rich. But how? Tell me again, Garnet.
Gar. Why, madam, as I told you before, instead of going to Lyons, to bring home his fifter, who has been there with her aunt these ten years; he never went further than Paris ; there he saw and fell in love with this young lady, by the bye, of a prodigious family,
Miss Rich, And brought her home to my guardian, as his daughter ?
Gar. Yes and his daughter she will be. If he don't consent to their marriage, they talk of trying what a Scotch parson can do.
Miss Rich. Well, I own they have deceived me eAnd so demurely as Olivia carried it too! Would
it, Garnet, I told her all my secrets; and yet the fly cheat concealed all this from me?
Gar. And, upon my word, madam, I don't much blame her ; she was loath to trust one with her secrets that was so very bad at keeping her own.
Miss Rich. But to add to their deceit, the young gentleinan it seems, pretends to make me serious proposals. My guardian and he are to be bere presently, to open the affair in form. You know I am to lose half my fortune if I refuse him.
Gar. Yet, what can you do ? For being, as you are in love with Mr. Honeywood, madam
Miss Rich. How ! idiot ; what do you mean? In love with Mr. Honeywood ! Is this to provoke me ?
Gar. That is, madam, in friendship with him; I meant nothing more than friendship, as I hope to be married ; nothing more.
Miss Rich. Well, no more of this ! As to my guar. dian, and his son, they shall find me prepared to receive them ; I'm resolved to accept their proposal with seem. ing pleasure, to mortify them by compliance, and so throw the refusal at last
them, Gar. Delicious! and that will secure your whole fortune to yourself. Well, who could have thought so innocent a face could cover so much cuteness !
Miss Ricb. Why, girl, I only oppose my prudence to their cunning, and practise a leffon they have taught me against themselves.
Gar. Then you're likely not long to want employment, for here they come, and in close conference.
Leon. Excuse me, fir, if I seem to hesitate upon the point of putting to the lady so important a quertion.
Croak. Lord ! good fir, moderate your fears ; you're To plaguy shy, that one would think you had changed sexes. I tell you we must have the half or the whole. Coine, let me fee with what fpirit you begin ? Well, why don't you ? Eh! What? Well then- must, it seems-Miss Richland, my dear, I believe you guess at our business ; an affair which my son here comes open,
that nearly concerns your happiness. Miss Rich. Sir, I should be ungrateful not to be pleased with any thing that comes recommended by you.
Croak. How, boy, could you desire a finer opening ? Why don't you begin, I say?
(To Leoni.) Leont. 'Tis true, madam, my father, madam, has some intentions-hemof explaining an affairwhich -himself can beft explain, madam. Crsak. Yes, my it comes entirely from my
; it's all a request of his own, madam. And I will permit him to make the best of it. Leont. The whole affair is only this, madam ; my
father has a proposal to make, which he infifts none but himself shall deliver.
Croak. My mind misgives me, the fellow will never be brought on (Aside ) In short, madam, you see before you one that loves you; one whose whole happiness is all in you.
Miss Rich. I never had any doubts of your regard, sir; and I hope you can have none of duty.
Croak. That's not the thing, my little sweeting; my love ! No, no, another guess lover than I ; there he stands, madam, his very looks declare the force of his paflion-Call up a look, you dog-But then, had you seen him, as I have, weeping, speaking soliloquies and blank verle, sometimes melancholy, and sometimes abfent
Miss Rich. I fear, fir, he's absent now; or such a declaration would have conie most properly froin himself.
Croak. Himself! madam, he would die before he could make such a confession; and if he had not a channel for his passion thro' me, it would ere now have drowned his understanding.
Miss Rich. I must grant, fir, there are attractions in modest diffidence above the force of words. A filent addreis is the genuine eloquence of fincerity.
Croak. Madam, he has forgot to speak any other language ; Glence is become his mother tongue.
Miss Rich. And it must be confessed, fir, it speaks very powerfully in his favour. And yet I should be thought too forward in making such a confeflion; shan't I, Mr. Leontine?
Leon. Contusion! my reserve will undo me. modesty attracts her, impudence may disgust her. I'll try. (Afide.) Don't imagine from my silence, madam, that I want a due sense of the honour and happiness intended me.
My father, madam, tells me, your humble servant is not totally indifferent to you. He admires
you ; I adore you; and when we 'come together, upon my foul I believe we shall be the happiest couple in all St. James's.
Miss Rich. If I could flatter myself, you thought as you speak, firan.
Leont. Doubt my fincerity, madam? By your dear felf I swear. Ask the brave, if they desire glory ? ak cowards, if they covet fafety
Croak. Well, well, no more questions about it.
Leont. Ask the fick if they long for health ? afk mifers, if they love 'money? alkCroak. Ask a fool, if he can talk nonsense! What's
over the 'boy ? What fignifies asking, when there's not a soul to give you an answer ? If you would alk to the purpose, ask this lady's consent to make you happy.
Rich. Why, indeed, fir, his uncommon ardour almost compels me, forces me to comply. And yet I'm afraid he'll despise a conquest gained with too much ease : won't you, Mr. Leontine?
Leont, Confusion! (Aside.) O, by no means, 'madam, by no means. And yet, madam, you talk'd of force. There is nothing I would avoid so much as compulsion in a thing of this kind. "No, madam, I will still be generous, and leave you at liberty to refuse.
Croak. But I tell you, fir, the lady is not at liberty. It's a match. You see she says nothing. Silence gives confent.
Leönt. But, fir, she talked of 'force. Consider, fir, the cruelty of constraining her inclinations.