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may be fairly asked—what business has he in the play ? and what business can be done there without him?
Though “ The Brothers" is not the best comedy which the author has written; it is, nevertheless, acknowledged by all critics-a very good one.
ACT THE FIRST.
A rocky Shore, with a Fisherman's Cabin in the Cliff: a
violent Tempest, with Thunder and Lightning: a Ship discovered stranded on the Coast. After having looked out of their Cabin, as if waiting for the abatement of the Storm,
Enter OLD GOODWIN, PHILIP, and Fanny. Philip. It blows a rank storm; 'tis well, father, we hauled 'the boat ashore before the weather came on; she's safe bestowed, however, let what will happen.
0. Good. Ay, Philip, we had need be provident : except that poor skiff, my child, what have we left in this world that we can call our own!
Philip. To my thoughts, now, we live as happily in this poor hut, as we did yonder in the great house, when you was 'Squire Belfield's principal tenant, and as topping a farmer as any in the whole county of Cornwall.
0. Good. Ah, child !
Philip. Nay, never droop; to be sure, father, the 'squire has dealt hardly with you; and a mighty point truly he has gained--the ruin of an honest man! If those are to be the uses of a great estate, Heaven continue me what I am!
Fanny. Ay, ay, brother; a good conscience in a coarse drugget, is better than an aching heart in a
0. Good. Well, children, well, if you can bear misfortunes patiently, 'twere an ill office for me to repine ; we have long tilled the earth for a subsistence; now, Philip, we must plough the ocean: in those waves lies our harvest; there, my brave lad, we have an equal inheritance with the best.
Philip. True, father; the sea, that feeds us, provides us an habitation here in the hollow of the cliff; I trust, the 'squire will exact no rent for this dwelling.--Alas! that ever two brothers should have been so opposite, as our merciless landlord, and the poor young gentleman they say, is now dead.
0. Good. Sirrah, I charge you, name not that unhappy youth to me any more; I was endeavouring to forget him, and his misfortunes, when the sight of that vessel in distress brought him afresh to my remembrance; for, it seems, he perished by sea : the more shame upon him, whose cruelty and injustice drove him thither! but come-the wind lulls apace; launch the boat, and make a trip to yonder vessel : if we can assist in lightening her, perhaps she may ride it out.
Philip. 'Tis to no purpose; the crew are coming ashore in their boat-I saw them enter the creek.
0. Good. Did you so ? Then do you and your sister step into the cabin ; make a good fire, and provide such fish, and other stores, as you have within: I will go down, and meet them : whoever they may be, that have suffered this misfortune on
our coasts, let us remember, children, never to regard any man as an enemy, who stands in need of our protection.
[Erit. Philip. I am strongly tempted to go down to the creek too; if father should light on any mischief — well, for once in my life, I'll disobey him ; sister, you can look to mátters within doors ; I'll go round by the point, and be there as soon as he. Fanny. Do so, Philip ; 'twill be best.
Enter Old Goodwin, followed by Francis and se
veral SAILORS, carrying Goods and Chests from the Wreck.
0. Good. This way, my friends, this way; there's stowage enough within for all your goods.
Francis. Come, bear a hand, my brave lads, there's no time to lose; follow that honest man, and set down your chests where he directs you.
Sailor. 'Truth, I care not how soon I'm quit of mine ; 'tis plaguy heavy.
Enter SAILORS. 1 Sailor. Here's a pretty spot of work! plague on't, what a night has this been ! I thought this damn'd lee-shore would catch us at last.
2 Sailor. Why, 'twas unpossible to claw her off; well, there's an end of her—the Charming Sally Privateer !-Poor soul; a better sea boat never swam upon the salt sea.
3 Sailor. I knew we should have no luck after we took
up that woman there from the packet that sunk alongside us.
Sailor. What, Madam Violetta, as they call her? Why, 'tis like enough--But, hush, here comes our captain's nephew; he's a brave lad, and a seaman's