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Sir Geo. But, brother, pray for what purpose do you think the law gives you a power to restrain her?
Bone. Brother, the law gives us many powers, which an honest man would scorn to make use of.
Sir Geo. So the advantage you receive from your wife's fortune, is to be her steward, while she lays it out in her own pleasures.
Bone. And that no inconsiderable one.
Sir Geo. No!
Bone. No: for the greatest pleasure I can enjoy is that of contributing to her's.
Sir Geo. You are a great deal too good for this world, indeed you are; and really, considering how good you are, you are tolerably lucky; for were I half so good, I should expect, whenever I returned home, to catch my wife in an intrigue; my servants robbing my house; my son married to a chambermaid; and my daughter run away with a footman.
Bone. These would be ill returns to your goodness.
Sir Geo. That's true; but they are very common ones for all that; and I wish somewhat worse does not happen to your son; for I must tell you, and I am sorry to tell it you, the town talk of him.
Bone. I hope they can say nothing ill of him.
Sir Geo. Nothing ill of him! they say every thing ill of him—0 brother, I think myself obliged to discover it to you,—this son, this eldest son of yours, the hopes of your family, whom I intended my heir; this profligate rascal, I tell it with tears in my eyes—keeps—keeps —a wench.
Bone. I know it—
Sir Geo. (in a passion). Know it!—wh—at—that he keeps a wench?
Bone. I am sorry for it.
Sir Geo. If he was a son of mine, I'd skin him— I'd flea him—I'd starve him. He shall never have a groat—a farthing of mine: I'll marry to morrow, and if I havn't an heir, I'll endow an hospital, or give my money to the Sinking Fund.
Bone. Come, brother, I am in hopes to reclaim him yet.
Sir Geo. His vices are all owing to you.
Bone. I never gave him instructions in that way.
Sir Geo. You have given him money, that is giving him instructions: whoever gives his son money is answerable for all the ill uses he puts it to.
Bone. Bather, whoever denies his son a reasonable allowance is answerable for all the ill methods he is forced into to get money.
Sir Geo. Reasonable! brother: why there is our dispute; I am not so rigid as some fathers; I am not for totally curbing a young man; I would not have him without a shilling or two in his pocket, to appear scandalous at a coffee-house—no—
Bone. Sir George, instead of disputing longer on this subject, will you go with me and visit my son ? — suppose we should find him at his studies?
Sir Geo. I as soon expect to find him at his prayers —Well, I will go, as I have no other business; though I know the world better than to expect either to convince myself or you.
Bone. I am ready to wait on you; my coach is at the door.
Sir Geo. If I should break the rascal's head, you'll forgive me—Keep—I'd keep him if he was a son of mine. [Exeunt.
SCENE at YOUNG BONCOUR's. YOUNG BONCOUR, MISS BONCOUR, MISS VALENCE, Come
Young Bone. Dear sister, how could you let this inundation of nonsense in upon us.
Miss Bone. Nay, don't blame me.
Miss Vol. 0! I was a witness to what passed; however, now they are gone, I must remind you of your promise, to let me hear that song. I think both the words and air admirable.
Miss Bone. You will make George proud if you praise his poetry.
Young Bone. Love or poverty makes most poets; and I hope I shall never want at least one of those motives— as Mr. Warbler is gone, I will attempt it myself.
SONG, BY G. BONCOUR.
I. While the sweet blushing spring glowing fresh in her prime,
All nature with smiles doth adorn;
And pluck every bud from the thorn.
Each moment, each pleasure improve,
And the sunshine that gilds it is love.
The rose now so blooming, of nature the grace,
In a moment is shrunk and decay'd,
Must soon, alas! wither and fade.
VOL. iv. c
Tn the May-morn of life then, while gladsome and gay,
Each moment, each pleasure improve, For life we shall find is at best but a day,
And the sunshine that gilds it is love.
Enter Boncour and Sir George.
Young Bone. My father! and uncle too—so, so! Bone. Dear George, don't let us interrupt your entertainment; your uncle and myself called only to see how you did, as we went by. If I had known you had had company, we should not have come up—Pray go on with your music.
Young Bone. Sir; you are always the kindest and
most condescending but from you, Sir, this is an
Sir Geo. Dear Sir, most obliging, and most gracious
Sir, you do me an infinite deal of honour indeed
you see he is at his studies, brother.
Bone. Pray, George, don't let us interrupt your entertainment.
Sir Geo. Upon my word my nephew shews an exceeding good taste in his morning diversions.
Young Bone. Yes, Sir, these ladies have been so good as to hear a silly trifle of my own writing.
Sir Geo. I am sorry we came too late, for I think nonsense is never so agreeable as when set to music.
Miss Bone. The music my brother design'd for me and this lady; and I doubt not, if he had had any expectation of your company, my dear uncle, he would have provided some more serious entertainment.
Sir Geo. Upon my word, Sir, you have a very pretty house here, completely finished and furnished—when I was a young fellow we had not .half so good a taste. Young Bone. No Sir, the age is improv'd since that ;ime when a knight of the shire used to jog to town
with a brace of geldings, and a single liveryman; and very prudently take a first floor in the Strand, when, f you ask'd in the shop for Sir Thomas, a dirty fellow aehind the counter call'd out, Maid, is Sir Thomas ibove ?—I dare swear, uncle, in your time, many a tradesman hath had half a dozen men of fashion in his bouse.
Sir Geo. If he had nine men of fashion in his house, he had fewer in his books, I believe.
Miss Bonc. And once in seven years came up Madam in the stage-coach, to see one comedy, one tragedy, go once to the opera, and rig out herself and family till the next general election, ha! ha! ha!
Sir Geo. Well, Miss Malapert, and what do you think you have said now? why, nothing more than that your grandmothers had ten times as much prudence as yourselves.
Enter Servant hastily.
Serv. Sir, I ask pardon. I thought your honour had been gone.
Bone. Speak out, Sir.
Serv. Sir, there be below Mons. de Pannier, with a new suit; and Mons. de la Mouton Maigre, with some embroidery for your honour.
Sir Geo. There is another virtue of the age! if you will be extravagant—can't you let your own tradesmen reap the benefit of it; is it not enough to send your money out of your own family, but you must send it out of your own country too?
Young Bone. I consider nothing farther than who serves me the best.
Bone. I must join your uncle here, George, —I am afraid it is fashion rather that guides you to the choice;