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WRITTEN AND SPOKEN BY
PROLOGUES, like cards of compliment, we find,
Shall my words, tipt with flattery, prepare
tend'rest care ?
As Farquhar has observ'd, our English law,
At such to-night, with other legal game,
• Alluding to Mr. Garrick's Prologue to the Jubilee.
Enter Serjeant Circuit and Charlotté.
Char. I TELL you, sir, his love to me is all à pretence : it is amazing that you, who are so acute, so quick in discerning on other occasions, should be so blind upon this.
Serj. But where are your proofs, Charlotte? What signifies your opening matters which your evidence cannot support?
Char. Surely, sir, strong circumstances in every court should have weight.
Serj. So they have collaterally, child, that is by way as it were of corroboration, or where matters are doubtful; then indeed, as Plowden wisely observes “ Les circonstances ajout beaucoup de-, poids aux faits.”—You understand me?
Char. Not perfectly well.
Serj. Then to explain by case in point; A, we will suppose, my dear, robs B. of a watch upon Hounslow heath--dy'e mind, child?
Char. I do, sir.
Serj. A is taken up and indicted ; B swears positively to the identity of A.-Dy’e observe ?
Serj. Then what does me A, but sets up the alibi C, to defeat the affidavit of B.--You take me?
Seri. So far you see then the balance is even. Char. True.
Serj. But then to turn the scale, child, against A, in favour of B, they produce the circumstance D, viz. B's watch found in the pocket of A; upon which, the testimony of C being contradicted by B-no, by D,-why then A, that is to say C, --no D,-joining B, they convict C,-no, no, A, -against the affidavit of. C.-So this being pretty clear, child, I leave the application to you.
Char. Very obliging, sir. But suppose now, sir, it should appear that the attention of sir Luke Limp is directed to some other object, would that not induce you to
Serj. Other object! Where?
Serj. Here! why the girl is non compos; there's nobody here, child, but a parcel of Abigails.
Char. No, sir?
Char. But remember, sir, my accusation is confined to sir Luke.
Serj. Well, well.
Char. Suppose then, sir, those powerful charms which made a conquest of you, may have extended their empire over the heart of sir Luke?
Serj. Why, hussy, you don't hint at your mother-in-law ?
Char. Indeed, sir, but I do.
Serj. Ay; why this is point blank treason against my sovereign authority : but can you, Charlotte, bring proof of any overt acts ?
Char. Overt acts!
Serj. Ay; that is any declaration by writing, or even word of mouth is sufficient; then let 'em demur if they dare.
Char. I can't say that, sir ; but another organ has been pretty explicit.
Char. In those cases a very infallible one--the eye.
Serj. Pshaw! nonsense and stuff. The eye! the eye has no authority in a court of law.
Char. Perhaps not, sir ; but it is a decisive evi. dence in a court of love.
Serj. Hark you, hussy, why you would not file an information against the virtue of madam your mother; you would not insinuate that she has been guilty of crim. con. ?
Char. Sir, you mnistake me; it is not the lady, but the gentleman I am about to impeach.
Serj. Have a care, Charlotte, I see on what ground your action is founded jealousy. Char. You were never more deceived in
your life ; for it is impossible, my dear sir, that jealousy can subsist without love.
Char. And from that passion (thank Heaven) I am pretty free at present.
Serj. Indeed !
Char. I own, sir, age procures honour, but I believe it is very rarely productive of love.
Serj. Mighty well.
Char. And tho' the loss of a leg can't be imputed to sir Luke Limp as a fault
Char. I hope, sir, at least you will allow it as a misfortune.
Serj. Indeed ?
Char. A pretty thing truly, for a girl, at my time of life, to be tied to a man with one foot in
Serj.. One foot in the grave! the rest of his