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SCENE-A Road in the Country.
Belford. Pray who is the present possessor of the Brookby estate ?
Arbury. A man of the name of Goodwin. B. Is he a good neighbour to you ?
A. Far from it! ard I wish he had settled a hundred miles off, rather than come here to spoil our neighbourhood.
B. I am sorry to hear that: but what is your objection to him ?
A. O, there is nothing in which we agree.' In the first place he is quite of
the other side in politics; and that, you know, is enough to prevent all intimacy.
B. I am not entirely of that opinion: but what else ?
A. He is no sportsman, and refuses to join in our association for protecting the game. Neither does he choose to be a member of any of our clubs.
B. Has he been asked ?
A. I don't know that he has directly; but he might easily propose himself, if he liked it. But he is of a close unsociable temper, and I believe very niggardly.
B. How has he shown it ?
A. His style of living is not equal to his fortune; and I have heard of several instances of his attention to petty economy. B. Perhaps he spends his
A. Not he, I dare say. It was but
last week that a poor fellow who had lost his all by a fire, went to him with a subscription-paper, in which were the names of all the gentlemen in the neighbourhood ; and all the answer he got was, that he would consider of it.
B. And did he consider?
A. I don't know, but I suppose it was only an excuse.
Then his predecessor had a park well stocked with deer, and used to make liberal presents of venison to all his neighbours. But this frugal gentleman has sold them all off, and got a flock of sheep instead.
B. I don't see much harm in that, now mutton is so dear.
A. To be sure he has a right to do as he pleases with his park, but that is not the way to be beloved, you know. As to myself, I have reason to think he bears me particular ill-will.
B. Then he is much in the wrong, for I believe you are as free from ill
will to others as any man living. But how has he shown it, pray ?
A. In twenty instances. He had a horse upon sale the other day to which I took a liking, and bid money for it. As soon as he found I was about it, he sent it off to a fair on the other side of the county. My wife, you know, is passionately fond of cultivating flowers. Riding lately by his grounds, she observed something new, and took a great longing for a root or cutting of it. My gardener mentioned her wish to his (contrary, I own, to my inclination,) and he told his master; but instead of obliging her, he charged the gardener on no account to touch the plant. A little while ago, I turned off a man for saucy behaviour ; but as he had lived many years with me, and was
very useful servant, I meant to take him again upon his submission, which I did not doubt would soon happen.
Instead of that, he goes and offers himself to my civil neighbour, who, without deigning to apply to me even for a character, entertains him immediately. In short, he has not the least of a gentleman about him, and I would give any thing to be well rid of him.
B. Nothing, to be sure, can be more unpleasant in the country, than a bad neighbour, and I am concerned it is your lot to have one. But there is a man who seems as if he wanted to speak
you. [A countryman approaches. A. Ah! it is the poor fellow that was burnt out. Well, Richard, how go you on ?- what has the subscription produced you ?
Richard. Thank your honour, my losses are nearly all made up.
A. I am very glad of that ; but when I saw the paper last, it did not reach above half
way. R. It did not, Sir ; but you may