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JUSTICE Woodcock's Hall.
Enter JUSTICE WOODCOCK, MRS. DEBORAH Wood
COCK, LUCINDA, EUSTACE, and Hodge. Mrs. Deb. Why, brother, do you think I can hear, or see, or make use of my senses? I tell you, I left that fellow locked up in her closet; and, while I have been with you, they have broke open the door, and got him out again.
J. Wood. Well, you hear what they say.
Mrs. Deb. I care not what they say; it's courage them in their impudence- Harkye, hussy, will you
face me down that I did not lock the fellow up?
Lucin. Really, aunt, I don't know what you mean ; when you talk intelligibly I'll answer you.
Eust. Seriously, madam, this is carrying the jest a little too far.
Mrs. Deb. What, then, I did not catch you together in her chamber, nor overhear your design of going off to-night, nor find the bundles packed upą,
Eust. Ha, ha, ha.
Mrs. Deb. Brother, as I am a christian woman, she confessed the whole affair to me from first to last; and in this very place was down upon her marrowbones for half an hour together, to beg I would conceal it from you.
Hodge. Oh lord! Oh lord !
brazen me too! Take that.
[Bores him. Hodge. I wish you would keep your hands to yourself; you strike me, because you have been telling his worship stories.
J. IVood. Why, sister, you are tipsy !
Mrs. Deb. I tipsy, brother !-1-that never touch a drop of any thing strong from year's end to year's end; but now and then a little aniseed water, when I have got the cholic.
Lucin. Well, aunt, you have been complaining of the stomach-ache all day; and may have taken too powerful a dose of your cordial.
J. Wood. Come, come, I see well enough how it is; this is a lie of her own invention, to make herself appear wise : but, you simpleton, did you not know I must find
Enter SIR WILLIAM MEADOWS, HAWTHORN,
Rosetta, and YOUNG MEADOWS.
Sir Will. Cocksbones, Jack, honest Jack, are you there?
Eust. Plague on't, this rencounter is unlucky-Sir William, your servant.
Sir Will. Your servant, again and again, heartily your servant ;-may I never do an ill turn, but I am glad to meet you.
J. Wood. Pray, Sir William, are you acquainted with this person
Sir Will. What, with Jack Eustace! why he's my kinsman: his mother and I was cousin Germans once removed ; and Jack's a very worthy young fellow :may I never do an ill turn, if I tell a word of a lie.
J. Wood. Well, but Sir William, let me tell you, you know nothing of the matter; this man is a musicmaster; a thrummer of wire, and a scraper of catgut, and teaches my daughter to sing.
Sir Will. What, Jack Eustace a music-master! no, no, I know him better.
Eust. 'Sdeath, why should I attempt to carry on this absurd farce any longer :- What that gentleman
very true, sir; I am no music-master, indeed.
J. Wood. You are not, you own it then?
as that lady represented me, [Pointing to Mrs. DEBORAH.] your daughter's lover; whom, with her own consent, i did intend to have carried off this night; but now that Sir William Meadows is here, to tell you who, and what I am, I throw myself upon your generosity, from which I expect greater advantages than I could reap from any imposition on your unsuspicious na. ture, Mrs. Deb. Well, brother, what have say
for yourself now? You have made a precious day's work of it! Had my advice been taken -O, I am ashamed of you
u! but you are a weak man, and it can't be helped : however, you should let wiser heads direct you.
Lucin. Dear papa, pardon me.
. Ay, do sir, forgive her ;-my cousin Jack will make her a good husband, I'll answer for it.
Ros. Stand out of the way, and let me speak two or three words to his worship.—Come, my dear sir, though you refuse all the world, I am sure you can deny me nothing: love is a venial fault-you know what I mean.
-Be reconciled to your daughter, I conjure you, by the memory of our past affections What, not a word !
Go, naughty man, I can't abide you ;
Are then your vows so soon forgot?
What would have been my hopeful lot.
Bless the fond pair, and crown their bliss :
And I'll reward you with a kiss.
Mrs. Deb. Come, turn out of the house, and be thankful my brother does not hang you, for he could do it-he's a justice of peace :-turn out of the house,
J. Wood. Who gave you authority to turn him out of the house -he shall stay where he is. Mrs. Deb. He shan't
marry my niece. J. Wood. Shan't he? but I'll show you the difference now; I say, he shall marry her, and what will you do about it?'
Mrs. Deb. And you will give him your estate too,
J. Wood. I like him the better, I would have him a vagabond
Mrs. Deb. Brother, brother !
Hawth. Come, come, madam, all's very well, and I see my neighbour is, what I always thought him, a man of sense and prudence.
Sir Will. May I never do an ill turn, but I say so too.
J. IVood. Here, young fellow, take my daughter, and bless
both together; but hark you, no money till I die; observe that.
Eust. Sir, in giving me your daughter, you bestow upon me more than the whole world would be without her.
Hawth. Adds me, sir, here are some of your neighbours come to visit you, and I suppose to make up the company
of your statute ball; yonder's music too, I see; shall we enjoy ourselves? If so, give me your hand.
J. Wood. Why, here's my hand, and we will enjoy ourselves; Heaven bless you both, children, 1 saySister Deborah, you are a fool.
Mrs. Deb. You are a fool, brother; and mark my
words -But I'll give myself no more trouble about you.
Hawth. Fiddlers, strike up.
Hence with cares, complaints, and frowning,
Welcome jollity and joy;
Mirth this happy night employ:
Laugh and sing some good old strain;
May they long in triumph reign.