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ceive answer that the lady is to be otherwise disposed of. This, Sir Lucius, I call being ill-used.

Sir Lucius. Very ill, upon my conscience! Pray, can you divine the cause of it?

Acres. Why, there's the matter! She has another lover, one Beverley, who, I am told, is now in Bath. Odds slanders and lies! he must be at the bottom of it.

Sir Lucius. A rival in the case, is there?—and you think he has supplanted you unfairly?

Acres. Unfairly! to be sure he has. He never could have done it fairly.

Sir Lucius. Then sure you know what is to be done? Acres. Not I, upon my soul.

Sir Lucius. We wear no swords here—but you understand me.

Acres. What! fight him?
Sir Lucius. Ay, to be sure; what can I mean else?
Acres. But he has given me no provocation.

Sir Lucius. Now I think he has given you the greatest provocation in the world. Can a man commit a more heinous offense against another than to fall in love with the same woman? Oh, by my soul, it is the most unpardonable breach of friendship.

Acres. Breach of friendship! Ay, ay; but I have no acquaintance with this man. I never saw him in my life.

Sir Lucius. That's no argument at all--he has the less right, then, to take such a liberty.

Acres. 'Gad, that's true—I grow full of anger, Sir Lucius-I fire apace! Odds hilts and blades! I find a man may have a deal of valor in him and not know it. But couldn't I contrive to have a little right on my side?

Sir Lucius. What the devil signifies right when your honor is concerned? Do you think Achilles or my little Alexander the Great ever inquired where the right lay? No. by my soul, they drew their broadswords, and left the lazy sons of peace to settle the justice of it.

Acres. Your words are a grenadier's march to my heart. I believe courage must be catching. I certainly do feel a kind of valor rising, as it were a kind of courage, as I may say-Odds flints, pans, and triggers! I'll challenge him directly.

Sir Lucius. Ah! my little friend, if I had Blunderbuss Hall here I could show you a range of ancestry, in the O'Trigger line, that would furnish the New Room, every one of whom had killed his man. For though the man. sion-house and dirty acres have slipped through my fingers, I thank Heaven our honor and the family pictures are as fresh as ever.

Acres. Oh, Sir Lucius, I have had ancestors too! every man of them colonel or captain in the militia! Odds balls and barrels! say no more _I'm braced for it. The thunder of your words has soured the milk of human kindness in my breast! Zounds! as the man in the play says, “I could do such deeds”.

Sir Lucius. Come, come, there must be no passion at all in the case; these things should always be done civilly.

Acres. I must be in a passion, Sir Lucius-I must be in a rage !— Dear Sir Lucius, let me be in a rage, if you love me.

Come, here's pen and paper. (Sits doun to write.) I would the ink were red! Indite, I say, indite. How shall I begin? Odds bullets and blades! I'll write a good bold hand, however.

Sir Lucius. Pray compose yourself. (Sits down.)

Acres. Come, now, shall I begin with an oath? Do, Sir Lucius, let me begin with a dam'me!

Sir Lucius. Pho, pho! do the thing decently, and like a Christian. Begin now—“ Sir”—

Acres. That's too civil by half.

Sir Lucius. To prevent the confusion that might arise”—

Acres. (Writing and repeating.) “To prevent the confusion which might arise"-Well?

Sir Lucius. “From our both addressing the same lady”— Acres. Ay—there's the reason


Sir Lucius. “I shall expect the honor of your company

Acres. Zounds, I'm not asking him to dinner!
Sir Lucius. Pray, be easy.
Acres. Well, then, “honor of your company
Sir Lucius. “ To settle our pretensions”-
Acres. Well?


Sir Lucius. Let me see-aye, King's Mead-fields will do_"in King's Mead-fields."

Acres. So, that's down. Well, I'll fold it up presently; my own crest—a hand and dagger-shall be the seal.

Sir Lucius. You see, now, this little explanation will put a stop at once to all confusion or misunderstanding that might arise between you.

Acres. Ay, we fight to prevent any misunderstanding.

Sir Lucius. Now, I'll leave you to fix your own time. Take my advice and you ’ll decide it this evening, if you can; then, let the worse come of it, 't will be off your mind to-morrow. Acres. Very true.

Very true. Sir Lucius. So I shall see nothing more of you, unless it be by letter, till the evening. I would do myself the honor to carry your message, but, to tell you a secret, I believe I shall have just such another affair on my own hands. There is a gay captain here who put a jest on me lately at the expense of my country, and I only want to fall in with the gentleman to call him out.

Acres. By my valor, I should like to see you fight first. Odds life! I should like to see you kill him, if it was only to get a little lesson.

Sir Lucius. I shall be very proud of instructing you. Well, for the present—but remember now, when you meet your antagonist, do everything in a mild and agreeable manner. Let your courage be as keen, but at the same time as polished, as your sword. (Exit Sir LUCIUS.) ACRES sealing the letter, while David his servant enters.

David. Then, by the mass, sir, I would do no such thing! Ne'er a Sir Lucifer in the kingdom should make me fight when I wa’n't so minded. Oons! what will the old lady say when she hears o't!

Acres. But my honor, David, my honor! I must be very careful of my honor.

David. Ay, by the mass, and I would be very careful of it; and I think, in return, my honor couldn't do less than be very careful of me.

Acres. Odds blades! David, no gentleman will ever risk the loss of his honor!

David. I say, then, it would be but civil in honor never to risk the loss of a gentleman. Look ye, master, this honor seems to me a marvelous false friend; ay, truly, a very courtier-like servant. Put the case, I was a gentleman (which, thank Heaven, no one can say of me), well -my honor makes me quarrel with another gentleman of my acquaintance. So—we fight. (Pleasant enough that!) Boh! I kill him (the more's my luck). Now, pray, who gets the profit of it? Why, my honor. But put the case that he kills me! By the mass! I go to the worms, and my honor whips over to my enemy.

Acres. No, David, in that case-odds crowns and laurels! your honor follows you to the grave.

David. Now that's just the place where I could make a shift to do without it.

Acres. Zounds! David, you are a coward !-It doesn't become my valor to listen to you. What, shall I disgrace my ancestors? Think of that, David-think what it would be to disgrace my ancestors!

David. Under favor, the surest way of not disgracing them is to keep as long as you can out of their company. Look’ee now, master, to go to them in such haste—with an ounce of lead in your brains—I should think might as well be let alone. Our ancestors are very good kind of folks; but they are the last people I should choose to have a visiting acquaintance with.

Acrcs. But, David, now, you don't think there is such very, very, very great danger, hey?-Odds life! people often fight without any mischief done!

David. By the mass, I think 't is ten to one against you !-Oons! here to meet some lion-headed fellow, I warrant, with his d-d double-barreled swords and cut-andthrust pistols! Lord bless us! it makes me tremble to think o't-those be such desperate bloody-minded weapons! well, I never could abide 'em!—from a child I never could fancy 'em-I suppose there an't been so merciless a beast in the world as your loaded pistol.

Acres. Zounds! I won't be afraid-odds fire and fury! you sha’n’t make me afraid-Here is the challenge, and I have sent for my dear friend, Jack Absolute, to carry it for


David. Ay, i’ the name of mischief, let him be the mes

go off.

senger.-For my part, I wouldn't lend a hand to it for the best horse in your stable. By the mass, it don't look like another letter!—It is, as I may say, a designing and malicious-looking letter!—and I warrant smells of gunpowder, like a soldier's pouch Oons! I wouldn't swear it mayn't

(Drops it in alarm.) Acres. (Starting.) Out, you poltroon !--you ha'n't the valor of a grasshopper.

David. Well, I say no more't will be sad news, to be sure, at Clod Hall-but I ha' done. How Phillips will howl when she hears of it!-ay, poor bitch, she little thinks what shooting her master's going after !and I warrant old Crop, who has carried your honor, field and road, these ten years, will curse the hour he was born!

(Whimpering.) Acres. It won't do, David-so get along, you cowardI am determined to fight while I'm in the mind.

Enter SERVANT. Servant. Captain Absolute, sir. Acres. O! show him up.

(Exit SERVANT.) David. (On his knees.) Well, Heaven send we be all alive this time to-morrow.

Acres. What's that!—Don't provoke me, David! David. Good-bye, master. (Exit DAVID, whimpering.)

Acres. Get along, you cowardly, dastardly, croaking raven.


Captain Absolute. What's the matter, Bob?

Acres. A vile, sheep-hearted blockhead; if I hadn't the valor of St. George, and the dragon to boot

Captain Absolute. But what did you want with me, Bob?

Acres. Oh! there (Gives him the challenge.)

Captain Absolute. To Ensign Beverley.” (Aside.) So, what's going on now? Well, what's this?

Acres. A challenge!

Captain Absolute. Indeed! Why, you won't fight him, will you, Bob?

Acres. 'Egad, but I will, Jack. Sir Lucius has wrought me to it. He has left me full of rage—and I'll

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