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Marlow.

(Perusing) What's here? For the first course? for the second course ; for the desert. The devil, Sir, do you think we have brought down the whole joiner's company, or the corporation of Bedford, to eat up such a supper? Two or three little things clean and comfortable, will do.

Hastings.

But, let's hear it.

Marlow.

{Reading.) For the first course, at the top, a pig, and pruin sauce.

Hastings. Damn your pig, I say.

Marlow,

And damn your pruin sauce, say I.

Hardcastle.

And yet, gentlemen, to men that are hungry, pig with pruin sauce is very good eating.

Marlow.

At the bottom a calve's tongue and brains.
Hastings.

Let your brains be knock'd out, my good Sir, I don't like them.

Marlow.

Or you may clap them on a plate by themselves.
Hardcastle.

(Aside) Their impudence confounds me. (To them.) Gentlemen, you are my guests, make what alterations you please. Is there any thing else you wish to retrench or alter, gentlemen?

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Marloiv.

Item. A pork pye, a boiled rabbit and sausages, a

Florentine, a shaking pudding, and a dish of tiff—taff—

taffety cream.

: Hastings.

Confound your made dishes, I shall be as much at a loss in this house as at a green and yellow dinner at the French ambassador's table. I'm for plain eating.

Hardcastle.

I'm sorry, gentlemen, that I have nothing you like, but if there be any thing you have a particular fancy

Marloiv.

Why really, Sir, your bill of fare is so exquisite, that any one part of it is full as good as another. Send us what you please. So much for supper. And now to see that our beds are air'd, and properly taken care of.

Hardcastle.

I entreat you'll leave all that to me. You shall not stir a step.

Marloia.

Leave that to you! I protest, Sir, you must excuse me, I always look to these things myself.

Hardcastle.

I must insist, Sir, you'll make yourself easy on that head.

Marlow.

You See I'm resolv'd on it. (Aside.) A very troublesome fellow this, as ever I met with.

Hardcastle.

Well, Sir, I'm resolved at least to attend you. ( Aside.) This may be modern modesty, but I never saw any thing look so like old-fashioned impudence.

\Rxeunt Marlow and Hardcastle. Hastings (alone. ) .

So I find this fellow's civilities begin to grow troublesome. But who can be angry at those assiduities which are meant to please him? Ha! what do I see? Miss Neville, by all that's happy!

Enter Miss Neville.

Miss Neville, My dear Hastings! To what unexpected good fortune! to what accident, am I to ascribe this happy meeting?

Hastings.

Rather let me ask the same question, as I couldnever have hoped to meet my dearest Constance at an inn.

Miss Neville.

An inn! sure you mistake! my aunt, my guardian lives here. What could induce you to think this house an inn. . &

Hastings.

My fpiefid, Mr. Marlow, with whom I came down, and I, have been sent here as to an inn, I assure you. A young fellow whom we accidentally met at a house hard by directed us hither.

Miss Neville. Certainly it must be one of my hopeful cousin's tricks, of whom you have heard me talk so often, ha! ha! ha!

j^. Hastings.

He whom your aunt intends for you? he of whom I have such just apprehensions?

Miss Neville. You have nothing to fear from him, I assure you. You'd adore him if you knew how heartily he despises me. My aunt knows it too, and has undertaken to court me for him, and actually begins to think she has made a conquest.

Hastings.

Thou dear dissembler! You must know, my Constance, I have just seized this happy opportunity of my friend's visit here to get admittance into the family. The horses that carried us down are now fatigued with their journey, but they'll soon be refreshed ; and then, if my dearest girl will trust in her faithful Hastings, we shall soon be landed in France, where eveji among slaves the laws of marriage is respected.

Miss Neville.

I liave often told you, that though ready to obey you.. I yet should leave my little fortune behind with reluctance. The greatest part of it was left me by my uncle, the India director, and chiefly consists in jewels. I have been for some time persuading my aunt to let me wear them. I fancy I'm very near succeeding. The instant they are put into my possession you shall find me ready to make them and myself yours.

Hastings.

Perish the baubles ! your person is all I desire. In the mean time my friend Marlow must not be let into his mistake. I know the strange reserve of his temper | is such, that if abruptly informed of it, he would instantly quit the house before our plan was ripe for execution.

Miss Neville.

But how shall we keep him in the deception? Miss Hardcastle is just returned from walking; what if we

still continue to deceive him? This, this way

[They confer.

Enter Marlow.
Marlow.

The assiduities of these good people teize me beyond bearing. My host seems to think it ill manners to leave me alone, and so he claps not only himself but his old fashioned wife on my back. They talk of coming to sup with us too ; and then, I suppose, we are to run the gauntlet through all the rest of the family.—What have we got here !—

Hastings.

My dear Charles! Let me congratulate you!—The most fortunate accident!—Who do you think is just alighted?

Marlow.

Cannot guess.

Hastings.

Our mistresses, boy, Miss Hardcastle and Miss Neville. Give me leave to introduce Miss Constance Neville to your acquaintance. Happening to dine in the neighborhood, they called on their return to take fresh horses here. Miss Hardcastle has just stept into the next room, and will be back in an instant. Wasn't it lucky? eh!

Marlow.

(Aside) I have been mortified enough of all conscience, and here comes something to complete my embarrassment.

_ Hastings.

Well, but was'nt it the most fortunate thing in the world?

Marlow.

Oh ! yes. Very fortunate—- a most joyful encounter—But our dresses, George, you know are in disorder—What if we should postpone the happiness 'till

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