Mr. H. Bacon, Bacon, Bacon—how odd it sounds! I could never be tired of hearing it. There was Lord Chancellor Bacon. Methinks I have some of the Verulam blood in me already.—Methinks I could look through Nature—there was Friar Bacon, a conjurer,—I feel as if I could conjure too——
Enter a Servant.
Servant. Two young ladies and an old lady are at the door, inquiring if you see company, Madam.
Mr. H. “Surname and arms”—
Melesinda. Show them up.—My dear Mr. Bacon, moderate your joy.
Enter three Ladies, being part of those who were at the Assembly.
1st Lady. My dear Melesinda, how do you do?
2nd Lady. How do you do? We have been so concerned for you——
Old Lady. We have been so concerned—(seeing him)—Mr. Hogsflesh——
Mr. H. There’s no such person—nor there never was—nor ’tis not fit there should be—“surname and arms”—
Belvil. It is true what my friend would express; we have been all in a mistake, ladies. Very true, the name of this gentleman was what you call it, but it is so no longer. The succession to the long-contested Bacon estate is at length decided, and with it my friend succeeds to the name of his deceased relative.
Mr. H. “His Majesty has been graciously pleased”—
1st Lady. I am sure we all join in hearty congratulation—(sighs).
2nd Lady. And wish you joy with all our hearts—(heigh ho!)
Old Lady. And hope you will enjoy the name and estate many years—(cries).
Belvil. Ha! ha! ha! mortify them a little, Jack.
1st Lady. Hope you intend to stay—
2nd Lady. With us some time—
Old Lady. In these parts—
Mr. H. Ladies, for your congratulations I thank you; for the favors you have lavished on me, and in particular for this lady’s (turning to the old Lady) good opinion, I rest your debtor. As to any future favors—(accosts them severally in the order in which he was refused by them at the assembly)—Madam, shall always acknowledge your politeness; but at present, you see, I am engaged with a partner. Always be happy to respect you as a friend, but you must not look for anything further. Must beg of you to be less particular in your addresses to me. Ladies all, with this piece of advice, of Bath and you
Your ever grateful servant takes his leave. Lay your plans surer when you plot to grieve; See, while you kindly mean to mortify Another, the wild arrow do not fly, And gall yourself. For once you’ve been mistaken; Your shafts have miss’d their aim—Hogsflesh has saved his Bacon.
[Footnote 1: Prefixed to the Author’s works published in 1818.]