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their chance) why he will have to cover himself, and perhaps a wife, who, ** Nonurn parturit in mensem"—not only Laubel in abuandance, but a clear terminable income of about Twenty Pounds!

That a very large majority of critical writers are always ready to take the good-natured side of the question, and to aid "their fellow labourer in the vineyard," I have every reason to acknowledge, and I am happy—most happy, in this opportunity of confessing that no author that ever <lid livey or possibly ever will live, can be under greater obligations to them than I am.—But since the few may at last lead and convert the many, —and play-writing is my chief source of income, I trust there is no impropriety in my vindicating my vocation to the utmost of my power.—I beg it to be understood, that I bear no malice even to those critics who call modern comedy, modern trash; because if the sale of their publications depend on their severity, who knows but' they are writing against their opinions, and are all the time secretly thinking me a wonderfully fine dramatist I—-To the reviewers I can bear no malice, because when they state that my new comedy is worth nothing, they actually state the fact—for by that time / have expended all its profits. To the public at large, who have for more than twenty years bestowed on me such uniform and unceasing indulgence, what can I say for not better meriting that indulgence? Why briefly, in the words of many of my own sentimental heroes*—

"The fault is ift my Head, and not my Heart." March ith, 1808.



J.N every Prologue for these thousand years,
You've beard of nothing but the Author's fears;
His pains of labour have rung thro' the house,
And, like the mountain, oft produe'd a mouse.
For once, you'll hear no melancholy story,
Before the Play, the Author will not bore ye;
And why should he, a trembling culprit, sue,
Whose only crime—his wish to pleasure you i
They talk of parties form'd, of critics' spite,
Of Newspapers condemning, wrong, or right,
Merc bugbears, rais'd poor Authors to affright.
Should he with mirth a tedious hour beguile,
He'll gain his wish'd-for recompense, a smile;
Should his plain tale some interest impart,
Your hands will speak the feelings of your heart.
More would 1 talk,—but since I well discover,
You'll not be sorry when the Prologue's over,
I'm gone—yet no—allow me just to say,
If any come to see a foreign Play,
We wish the Gentleman had staid away.
But, be there any, who will freely scan us,
And wait to know us, ere they try to damn us,
Like patient jurors, faithfully attend,
Nor give their verdict, till they hear the end-
Such are most welcome, and we've little fear, (Boxes.)
•That such are tobe sound, there! (Galleries) there! (Pit) and here!


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Sir Arthur St. Albyn Mr. Popi.

Algernon St. Albyn Mr. C. Kemble.

Modern • Mr. Lewis.

Danvers ......... Mr. Brunton.

Lord Blushdale Mr. Fawcrtt.

Solace • Mr. Emery.

Trusty Mr. Chapman.

Geoff!ry Mr. Simmons.

Legis • Mr. Cbeswelu

Servants, ice,

Selina > • Miss Smith.

Cicely • • « Miss Norton.

Deborah Mrs. Davenport.

SceneThe Country,





SCENE I.—An ■Apartment in Sir Arthur St. Albyn's


Sir Arthur discovered, reading.

Sir Arthur.

"PROCRASTINATION is the thief of time." *• (Puts down book, and rises). Ay, ay, when waste, extravagance, and shew, first drove me to the want of temporary aid, had I but sacrificed some luxury, and met the present danger by retrenching, I had repaired my fortune, and been happy—but pride, false pride, was so engrafted here, that, ere I would reduce one tittle of my pomp, and be the sneer of those, whom wealth makes envious, I still plunged on in the same heated whirlpool; buoyed up by bubbling, and deceiving hopes, which now dissolve, and 1 must sink for ever.—Yet,rio—one prospect still remains—the marriage of my niece—and if my last remaining friend—if Mr. Danvers wou'd arrive—

Enter a Servant.

Serv. Sir, Mr. Danvers is this moment arrived from London.

B Sir Sir Art. Admit him then.

[Exit Servant. Now, now I may regain my former height—and soar beyond the reach of malice, envy, arid uigratitude.


Danv. Sir Arthur, I give you joy, and myself joy, and your niece joy ;—-for, ifconntibial bliss can be rendered permanent, by love, money, wit, and personal accomplishments, shew me a more happy, handsome couple, than Mr. and Mrs. Danvers.

Sir Art. What, your uncle, Lord Blushdale, wrll consent.

Dam'. He will,—and on the terms I pointed out—namely, on his part he agrees to give up that bond of yours to the late lord, of sixteen thousand pounds—:—

Sir Art. Which you persuaded him to lend.—Go on. T

Danv. On my part, I agree to advance to you the whole of your niece's fortune,—and on your part, you agree that the day I become her partner, I become yours in all your large mines and copper works, and depend on't, both firms shall flourish, Sir Arthur.

Sir Art. You have revivod, restored me;—for though Selina, when we last conversed, seemed "somewhat adverse to the marriage, yet all my wishes are so truly hers, that I've but little fear. And as a proof, by this, (Giving paper) I bind myself in heavy penalties to see the marriage solemnized.

Danv. ( Taking paper.) Sir, you're all kindness; and I've but little to fear, unless a rival has forestalled—

Sir Art. (With great impatience.) What rival? Whom?

Danv. Your son.


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