Page images

Lady Henrietta. Yes its seldom a friend this lasts above a year-Is it, Mr. Warford ?

Warford. I hope there are instances, Madam.

Lady Henrietta. So do I, Sir-but I am afraid they are so rare-Heigho! if I don't mind, I shall catch your spleen, and be as grave and sentimental as yourself.

Warford. And why not, madam? Why be asham'd of sentiment ? 'Tis true it is the mode to ridicule and laugh at it; but I doubt if fashion and all its fopperies, can find a pleasure to supply its loss.

Lady Henrietta. Vastly well! Didn't I tell you, Miss Dazzle, he could be very pleasant? You really have talents, Mr. Warford; but the worst of them is, they go more to instruction than amusement.

Warford. Then I am satisfied, Lady Henrietta, and if I could convince you that happiness is not to be found, either in the fever of di Mipation, or the delusions of a gaming table.

Lady Henrietta. Fie! don't abuse gaming, the thing I doat on

Warford. Excuse me, madam ;--but if I might advise, you had better never play again.

Lady Henrietta. Oh! monstrous! Why, you tyrant, would you shut me from the world and cloister me in an old castle? If you did, I'd still game I would, if I betted on the ivy, and took odds on the ravens and rooks—Wou'dn't you, Miss Dazzle ?

Miss Dazzle. Me! I'd keep a rookery on purpose.

Lady Henrietta. Ay, that you would—but come I'm going to meet my uncle, Sir Thomas, at the library-would you believe it? He,


too, is to offended at my turning gamester, that he has forbid me his house, and adopted his little God-daughter for his heiress ;-but--let's walk.

Mifs Dazzle. With pleasure—we shall see you at Faro in the evening.

Lady Henrietta. Oh certainly-Nay, how you frown now, Mr. Warford ? Come, I'll make a bargain with you—if I lose a thousand pounds to-night, I'll promise never to game again never ! because, having nothing left to lose, I must e'en make a virtue of necessity, and reform in spite of myself-Come.


SCENE II.- Outside of Sir Charles Dazzle's


--Vieze of the Sea.

Enter Sir CHARLES, ( followed by a Servant with

a Portmanteau.)

Sir Charles. So, once more I'm escaped from the fever of London and got safe back to my favorite sea port-Take the things in.

[Exit Servant into house. I suppose my sister has so plucked the pigeons in my absence, that there's scarcely a feather left in the town.

Enter Miss Dazzle. Miss Dazzle. Welcome from London, brother - I have just left the idol of your heart, the charming Henrietta !---As usual, the banker's nephew was attending her.

Sir Charles. Ay, ay; its all pretty plain--buc I won't be scandalous.



[ocr errors]

Miss Dazzle. Well, if she's his to-day, she'll be yours to-morrow, I have seen Mr. Smalltrade-he talks of becoming a partner, and if you play your cards well, Lady Henrietta will be completely in your power.

Sir Charles. Yes; for when I've won all her money-I can be generous enough to become her protector ! [afide.] Well, fifter, we shall ruin them all ; and now-a-days you know you can't do your friend a greater sera vice.

Miss Dazzle. What! than to ruin him!

Sir Charles. To be sure-Where is the ruin'd man that doesn't spend twice the income of the richest citizen in London ? Don't many of them have executions in their house in the morning, and give galas at night? An't the very bailiffs turned into servants, and don't they still stake five thousand on a card ? Nay, I know a man that has done it all his life.

Miss Dazzle. Do you? Who?

Sir Charles. Myself !-I never had a shilling and I've always lived like a Nabob-And how have I done all this? How, but by hospitality! By entertaining my friends elegantly at one table, and genteelly picking their pockets at another.

Miss Dazzle. Very true; and when we've ruined the banker, his nephew and his visitor, they'll think themselves much obliged to usBut mind and humour Smalltrade, for, without ready money, we can't go on-Who's here?

Sir Charles. (looking out.) Where?-Oh! its a a hanger-on of mine-a mere Jackall, who dangles after me in hopes of preferment-I brought

him from London, thinking he might be useful.

Miss Dazzle. What, is it Pavè ?

Sir Charles. The same—The dog has a good heart;--great good humour, and is descended from a respectable family; but in running after people of rank, and high company, he has so reduced his fortune, that he now depends on me to get him promoted.

Miss Dazzle. Ay; I've heard of him-introduce him to a lord, or promise him an appointment, and he'll do any thing to serve you.

Sir Charles. Aye; so great is his furor, that an interview with a Prince, or an audience of a Minister, wou'd turn his brain-but I believe, were he once provided for, he wou'd neither betray his benefactor, nor disgrace his Country.

Enter Pavè, (a long roll of Paper ficking out of

bis Pocket.) Pavè, (running up to Sir Charles.) Sir Charles ! -hark ye. Whispers.)

Sir Charles. Lord Orville coming home! What then ?

Pavè. Then, Lord Orville is your acquaintance, and I am your friend, and-you understand - I'm always ready.

Sir Charles. Pray, fifter, have you any interest? If you have, this gentleman, Mr. Pave

Miss Daxzle. I shou'd be very happy; but I fancy there is nothing more difficult than to get a place.

Pavè. Yes there is, Ma'am,--to deserve it! And that I deserve it, is evident from my long

C 2


list of promifes—(takes out roll of paper) here it is Ma’am-My four first promises depend on Lord Orville, you see

my next is from you, Baronet.

Miss Dazzle. Pray, Mr. Pavé, do you find that when these great people make you promises, they always keep their words?

Pavè. Oh! Sir Charles will answer you that question, Ma'am-Heh!-Mum! Baronet !

Sir Charles, Nay, Pavè, you know the other day I referr'd you to a man in power.

Pavè. You did ;-and he referr'd me to another, who kindly sent me to a third, that politely hurried me to a fourth, till at last I got kicked down stairs by a person who said he knew none of us You see the scheme is this, Ma'am Nobody will speak first in your favor, but all promise to second any body who will, because, judging by themselves, they know nobody'll speak at all.

Miss Dazzle. Well, if I was you, Mr. Pavè, I'd try some more public mode of getting preferr'd-For instance now, fuppose you advertized,

Pavè. Don't mention it I did advertize once, and what do you think happened? A gentleman waited upon me, calling hinself Lord Sulwin-superb equipage-elegant appearance, free in his promises--secure in his interest I bowed, smiled, gave his lordship a thousand guineas, and he proved to be an attorney! A money lending rascal! And I've never seen or heard of him since !

Sir Charles. An attorney! Ha, ha, ha! Should you know him again? 3


« PreviousContinue »