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6 But the man that divines
In any respect,
SCENE III. Sir John Flowerdale's Garden, with a
view of a Canal by Moon-light : the Sidé Scenes represent Box-hedges, intermixed with Statues and flowering Shrubs.
Enter Lionel leading CLARISSA. Lion. Hist-methought I heard a noise-should we be surprized together, at a juncture so critical, what might be the consequence !- I know not how it is; but at this, the happiest moment of my life, I feel a damp, a tremor, at my heart
Clar. Then, what should I do? If you tremble, I ought to be terrified indeed, who have discovered sentiments, which perhaps I should have hid, with a frankness that, by a man less generous, less noble-minded than yourself, might be construed to my disadvantage.
Lion. Oh! wound me not with so cruel an expression. -You love me, and have condescended to confess itYou have seen my torments and been kind enough to pity them--The world, indeed, may blame you
# The following Song is a duplicate for this place,
Oh, how fine :
Without lead or line.
And when we get
Into the det,
Clar. And yet, was it proclaimed to the world, what could the world say? I have suffered my tongue to speak my sentiments in a case which seems to justify a departure from the usual forms; convinced that your intentions were honestly confined to the improvement of my understanding, I have ventured to acknowledge that you have engaged and conquered my heart.
Lion. And is itmis it possible!
Clar. Be calm, and listen to me- -What I have done has not been lightly imagined, nor rashly undertaken: it is the work of reflection, of conviction; my love is not a sacrifice to my own fancy, but a tribute to your worth; did I think there was a more deserving man in the world
Lion. If, to value you above every earthly good, be to deserve you, so far I have merit; if, to have no hope, no wish in life comparable to the un-look'd-for prospect of obtaining your hand, can entitle me to your regard, so far I dare pretend.
Clar. That I have this day refused a man', with whom I could not be happy, I make no merit; born for quiet and simplicity, the crowds of the world, the noise attending pomp and distinction, have no charms for me: I wish to pass my life in rational tranquillity, with a friend, whose virtues I can respect, whose talents I can admire; who will make my esteem the basis of my affection.
Lion. O charming creature! yes, let me indulge the flattering idea; formed with the same sentiments, the same feelings, the same tender passion for each other, we seem designed to compose that sacred union, which nothing but death can annul.
Clar. One only thing remember.Secure in each other's affections, here we must rest; I would not give my father a moment's pain, to purchase the empire of the world.
Lion. Command, dispose of me as you please; the vows of innocence and virtue can bear to be viewed by the eye of Heaven.
Clar. Surely they can.
Leave to peace and love your breast.
[Exit. Enter Sir John FLOWERDALE.* Sir John. Who's there? -Lionel !
Lion. Ha! 'tis Sir John Flowerdale; where shall I hide me, how avoid him ?
[Aside. Sir John. Who's there? Lionel? Lion. 'Tis I, Sir; I am here—Lionel.
Sir John. My dear lad, I have been searching for you this half hour, and was at last told you had come into the garden. I have a piece of news, which, I am sure, will shock and surprize you-My daughter has refused Colonel Oldboy's son, who is this minute departed the house in violent reseptment of her ill treatment.
Lion. Is he gone, Sir?
Sir John. Yes, and the family are preparing to follow him. Oh, Lionel! I have been deceived about Clarissain this affair she has suffered me to deceive myself. The measures which I have been so long preparing, are broken in a moment; my hopes frustrated; and both parties, in the eye of the world, rendered light and ridiculous.
Lion. I am sorry to see you so much moved; pray Sir, recover yourself.
Sir John. I am sorry, Lionel, she has profited no better by your lessons of philosophy and morality, than to distress so kind a father.
Lion. Have juster thoughts of her, Sir; I believe her incapable of any attempt to impose upon you-Have but a little patience, ard things may yet be brought about.
* This scene has been selected by Dr. Enfield for his Exercises in E locution,
Sir John. No, Lionel, no; the matter is past, and there's an end to it; yet I would conjecture to what such an unexpected turn in her conduct can be owing; I would fain be satisfied of the motive that could urge her to so extraordinary a proceeding, without the least intimation, the least warning to me, or any of her friends.
Lion. Sir, the strictest gratitude calls upon me to grieve for whatever distresses.you, my kind benefactor: but I cannot persuade myself that your daughter has been guilty of blameable conduct towards a father whom she so loves and esteems.
Sir John. I think, indeed, there can be no settled aversion; and surely her affections are not engaged elsewhere?
Lion. Engaged, Sir I am not in a situation to speak on such a point--and I dare say, Sir, you do not expect
Sir John. I think, Lionel, she is not. But I must unburden myself on another point. My particular disappointment ought not to be detrimental to you, nor shall it: I well know how irksome it is to a generous mind to live in a state of dependence, and have long had it in my thoughts to make you easy for life.
Lion. Sir John, the state of my mind is at present a little disturbed—spare me—I beseech you spare me—why will you persist in a goodness that makes me ashamed of myself?
Sir John. There is an estate in this county which I purchased some years ago; by me it will never be missed, and whoever marries my daughter will have little reason to complain of my disposing of such a trifle for my own gratification. On the present marriage I intended to perfect a deed of gift in your favour, which has been for some time prepared; my lawyer has this day completed it, and it is yours, my dear Lionel, with every good wish that the warmest friend can bestow.
Lion. Sir, if you required of me some difficult task to be performed, I would submit to it; but you must excuse me, I cannot lay myself under more obligations.
Sir John. Your delicacy carries you too far; in this I confer a favour on myself: however, we'll talk no more
on the subject at present; let us walk towards the house, our friends will depart else without my bidding them adieu.
[Exeunt. Enter Diana and CLARISSA. Dian. So then, my dear Clarissa, you really give credit to the French man with regard to a plurality of worlds?*
Clar. I don't make it an absolute article of belief; but I think it an ingenious conjecture, with great probability on its side.
Dian. And we are a moon to the moon! Nay, child, I know something of astronomy, but that that little shining thing there, which seems not much larger than a silver plate, should, perhaps, contain great cities like London!+ [They retire to the farther part of the stage,
looking on the heavens.
Enter LIONEL. Lion. Am I to blame? surely my duty to my benefactor could not require that I should reveal to him the words of Clarissa. Nay, did not my duty to her require that I should conceal them for the present?-Whatever I may come to suffer; I will not tempt her from her virtuous resolution, that she will never give her father a moment's pain. There let the matter rest, till further events or further thoughts may guide us! Í used no falshood with him: nor will I. To gain even my Clarissa by falshood, would be to destroy my happiness in her when gained. [Aside.
* Entretiens sur la Pluralité des Mondes. Par M. DE FONTE. NELLE. Conversations on the Plurality of Worlds. By Fontenelle, First published in the year 1696. A very entertaining work, though written sometimes in too fippant a style. Our Bishop Wilkins had, however, before this, in the year 1683 publisbed A DISCOVERY of a New World, or A Discourse tending to prove that 'lis probable there may be another habitable World in the Moon, &c.
The Editor must not omit mentioning in this place, for the benefit of the young, scientific and religious Scholar, a work entitled ‘EIE OEOE, EIE MEEITHE; Or An Attempt to Shew how far The Philosophical Notion of A PLURALITY of Worlds is consistent, or not so, with the Language of The BIOLY SOKIPTURES. In one volune 8vo. 1801. It is a work of sound Reason, Ph sophy and Piety.
+ See before p. 47. Note.