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h's International Copyrighted (in Hnohind, her
Colonies, and the United States) Edition of
^ the Works of the Best Authors.

/\ , ISTo. 79. I






A Lesson in Harmony



^ BY k

n ^

I ALFRED AUSTIN I

g Poet Laureate g

I " I

M 2?:

M Copyright, 1904, by Samuel French h

& . ]^



^ CAUTION : -Professionals and Amateurs are hereby notified

M that this play is fully copyrighted under the existing; laws ^

& of the United States Qovernment, and nobody is allowed ^

Sf to do this play without first having obtained permission of 1»

1^ Samuel French, 24 West 22d Street, New York City, U. S. A. K

I i

^? M 2*.



SAMUEL FRENCH

PUBLISHER

24 W. 22 D Street



n



g PRICE 25 CENTS g

K New York



London 5^

SAMUEL FRENCH, Ltd. S

26 Southampton St. ^

Strand, London, VV. C. M



'^FRENCH'S STANDARD DRAMA



Price 15 Cents each.— Bound Volumes $1.25.



VOL. L
I Ion

t Faclo

5 The Lady of Lyon*
4 RichehfU

I The Wife

6 Th« Hoiieyiiioon

T Th« School for Scandal

• Mouey

VOL. IL

9 The Stranger
10 Grandlather Whitehead
Jl Richard HI

15 Love't Sacrific*

13 The Gamester

14 A Cure for the Heartache

16 The Hunchback

16 Don Caesar de Boian

VOL. IIL

17 The Poor Gentleman

18 Hamlet

19 Charles II

90 Venice Preserved
tl Pizarro
»I The Lore Chasf
S8 Othello

94 Lend me Fire Shilling*

VOL. IV.

95 VIrglnim

96 King of the Commons

97 London Assurance

98 The Rent Day

99 Two Gentlenit-n of Verona

50 The Jealous Wife

51 The RiraU

82 Perfection

VOL. V. tl>ebts

88 A New Way to Pay Old
84 Look Before You Leap

8» KiBg John

86 NerTOui Man

87 Damon and Pythias
S8 Clandestine Marriage
29 William Tell

40 Day after the Wedding

VOL. VL

41 Speed the Plough
49 Romeo and Juliet

43 Feudal Times

44 Charles the Twelfth

45 The Bride

46 The Follies of a Night

47 Iron Chest [Fair Lady

48 Faint Heart Never Wou

VOL. YII.

49 Road to Ruin
to Macbeth

II Temper

89 Eradne

88 Bertram

84 The Duenna

t» Much Ado About Nothing

86 The Critie

VOL. VIII.
17 The Apostate

88 Twelfth Night

89 Brutus
80 Stmpson & Co
•1 Merchant of Venice
«9 Old Heads* Young Hearts

83 Meuntaineers [ringe

84 Three Weeks after Mar-

VOL. IX.

85 Love

86 A* Ton Like It

87 The Elder Brother

88 Werner
69 Gisippu*

TO Town and Countrj"
f 1 King Lear
19 Blue Devils

VOL. X.
« Henry VIII
94 Married and Single
98 Henrv IV

96 Paul TPry

97 Guy Mannering

98 Sweethearts and Wirt*
9f Serious Family

•0 Sue Stocps to Conquer



VOL. XL

81 Julius Csesar

82 Vicar of Wakefield

83 Leap Year

84 The Catspaw

85 The Passing Cloud

86 Drunkard

87 Rob Roy

88 George Barnwell

VOL. XU.

89 Ingomar

90 Sketches In India

91 Two Friends
9 J Jane Shore

93 Corsican Brothers

94 Mind yoiir own Busln

95 Writing on the Wall

96 Heir at Law

VOL. XIIL

97 Soldier's Daughter
9S Douglas

99 Marco Spada

100 Nature's Nobleman

101 Sardanapalus

102 Civilisation

103 The Robbers

104 Katharine and PetrucMo

VOL. XIV.

105 Game of Love

106 Midsummer Night's

107 Ernestine [Dream
Rag Picker of Paris

109 Flying Dutchman

110 Hypocrite

111 Therese

12 La Tour de Nesle
VOL. XV.

113 Ireland As It Is

114 Sea of Ice

115 Seven Clerks
16 Game of Life

117 Forty Thieves

118 Bryan Borolhme

19 Romance and Reality

120 Ugolino
VOL. XVL

121 The Tempest
l«a The Pilot

123 Carpenter of Rouen
lv4 King's Rival
125 Little Treasure
26 Dombey and Son

127 Parents and Guardians

128 Jewess

VOL. XVII. '
29 Camilla
130 Married Life

Wen lock of Wenlock

132 Rose of Ettrickvale

133 David Copperfield

134 Aline, or the Rose of
35 Pauline [Killarney

136 Jane Eyre
VOL. XVIII.

137 Nlifht and Morning
■"' jEthiop

139 Three Guardsmen

140 Tom Cringle

141 Henriette, the Forsaken
Eustache Baudin

143 Ernest Maltraver*

144 Bold Dragoons

VOL. XIX.

145 Dred, or the Dismal

[Swamp

146 Last Days of Pompeii

147 Esmeralda

148 Peter VVilklns

149 Ben the Boatswain

150 Jonathan Bradford

151 Retribution

152 Minerall

VOL. XX.

1 53 French Spy

154 Wept of Wish-ton Wish

155 Evil Genius
166 Ben Bolt

157 Sailor of France

158 Red Mask

1 59 Life of an Actrese

160 Wedding Day



VOL. XXI.

161 All's Fair in Lore

162 Hofer

163 Self

164 Cinderella

165 Phantom

166 Franklin [Moscow

167 The Gunmaker of

168 The Love of aPrincs
VOL. XXII.

169 Son of the Night
nORorvO'More

171 Golden Eagle

172 Rienri

173 Broken Sword

174 Rip Van Winkle

175 Isabelle

176 Heart of Mid Lothian
VOL. XXIII.

177 Actress of Padua

178 Floating Beacon

179 Bride of Lammermoor

180 Cataract of the Ganges

181 Robber of the Rhine

182 School of Reform

183 Wandering Boys

184 IVlazeppa
VOL. XXIV.

185 Young New York

186 The Victims

187 Romance after Marriage

188 Brigand

189 Poor of New York

190 Ambrose Gwinett

191 Raymond and Agnes

192 Gambler's Fats

VOL. XXV.

193 Father and Son

194 Mnssanlello
196 Sixteen String Jack

196 Vouthful Queen

197 Skeleton Witness

198 Innkeeper of Abbeville

199 Miller and his Men

200 Aladdin

VOL. XX VL

201 Adrienne the Actress

202 Undine

203 Jesse Brown

204 Asmodeus

205 Marmons

206 Blanche of Brandywlne

207 V-ola

208 Deseret Deserted

VOL. XXVII.

209 Americans in Paris

210 Victorine

211 Wizard of the Wave

212 Castle Spectre

213 Horse-shoe Robinson

214 Armand, Mrs. Mowatt

215 Fashion, Mrs. Mowatt

216 Glance at New York

VOL. XXVIIL

217 Inconstant

218 Uncle Tom's Cabin

219 Guide to the Stage

220 Ve'eran

221 Miller of New Jersey

222 Dork Hour before Dawn

223 Midsum'rNight'sDreani

[Laura Keene's Edition

224 Art and Artifice
VOL. XXIX.

225 Poor Young Man

226 Ossawattomie Brown

227 Pope of Rome

228 Oliver Twist
2'29 Pauvretta

230 Man in the Iron Mask

231 Knight of Arva

232 Moll Pitcher

VOL. XXX.

233 Black Eyed Susan

234 Satan in Paris

235 Rosina Meadows [ess

236 West End, or Irish Heir-

237 Six Dagrees of Crime

238 The Lady and the Devil

239 Avenger, or Moor of Sici-

240 Masks and Faces , [ly



VOL. XXXL

241 Merry Wives of Windsor

242 Mary's Birthday

243 Shandy Maguire

244 Wild Oats

245 Michael Erie
46 Idiot Witness

247 Willow Copse

248 People's Lawyer
VOL. XXXIL

249 The Boy Martyr*

250 Lucretia Borgia

251 Surgeon of Paris

252 Patrician's Daughter

253 Shoemaker of Toulouse

254 Momentous Question

255 Love and Loyalty

256 Robber's Wife
VOL. XXXIIL

257 Dumb Girl of Genoa
Wreck Ashore

259 Clari

Rural Felicity

261 Wallace

262 Madelaine

263 The Fireman

264 Grist to the Mill
VOL. XXXIV.

65 Two Loves and a Life

266 Annie Blake

267 Steward
Captain Kyd
Nick of the Wood*

270 Marble Heart
Second Lore

272 Dream at Sea

Vol. XXXV.

273 Breach of Promise

274 Review

275 Lady of the Lake

276 Still Water Run* Deep

277 The Scholar

278 Helping Hands

279 Faust and Marguerite

280 Last Man

VOL. xxxvr.

381 Belle's Stratagem

282 Old and Young

283 RaflFaella

284 Ruth Oakley

285 British Slave

286 A Life's Ransom

287 Giralda
28S Time Tries All

VOL. XXXVII.

289 Ella Rosenburg

290 Warlock of the Glen

291 Zelina

292 Beatrice

293 Neighbor Jackwood

294 Wonder
296 Robert Emmet

296 Green Bushes
VOL. XXXVIIL

297 Flowers of the Forest

298 A Bachelor of Arts

299 The Midnight Banquet

300 Husband of an Hour
801 Love's Labor Lost

302 Naiad Queen

303 Caprice

304 Cradle of Liberty
VOL. XXXIX.

305 The Lost Ship

306 Country Squire

307 Fraud and jts Victims

308 Putnam

309 King and Deserter

310 La Fiammina

311 A Hard Struggle

312 Gwinnette Vaughan
VOL. XL.

313 The Love Knot [Judge
SULavater, or Not a Bad

315 The Noble Heart

316 torlolanus

317 The Winter's Tale

318 Eveleen Wilson

319 Ivanhoe

320 Jonathan !n England



{French's Standard Drama Continued on ^d page of Cover.)



SAMUEL FRENCH. 26 West sad Street. New York City.

New and Explicit Des';riptiYe Catalogue Mailed Free on Request.



LESSON IN HARMONY



Br



ALFRED AUSTIN



Poet Laureate



Copyright, 1904, by Samuel French



CAUTION :— Professionals and Amateurs are hereby notified

that this play is fully copyrighted under the existing laws of

the United States Government, and nobody is allowed

to do this play w^ithout first having obtained

permission of Samuel French, 24 'West

22d St., New York City, U. S. A.



New Yobk:
SAMUEL FRENCH,

PUBLISHER,

26 WEST 22nd STREET.



London :
SAIVIUEL FRENCH, Ltd.,

26 Southampton St.,
Strand, London, W. C.



l^li-of^



I



<\oi-



LIBRARY of OONGBESS
Two Copies ReceivBd

NOV 28 1904

, Copyrient Entry

CUSS /jb XXq. Noi



Copyright, 1904,

By

SAMUEL FRENCH



A LESSON IN HARMONY.

Produced at the Garrick Theatre on Thursday, June
i6th, 1904, with the following cast:

Phil. Leslie, In the city Mr. David Domville

Ida Leslie, His wife Miss Jessie Bateman

Otho Hazlewood, His friend

Mr. Arthur Bourchier

Scene. — A suburban garden near London.

Time. — To-day.



A LESSON IN HARMONY.

Scene. — Villa and garden at Maplehursf.
Time. — lo a. m. on a summer morning.
(Ida discovered syringing a bed of roses.)

IDA LESLIE.

(Putting down the syringe to cut a rosebud zvith
a pair of garden scissors hanging from her zvaist.
As she does so a letter falls, unobserved by herself,
out of the bosom of her dress, into the Uower bed.)
What a beauty! That will put Phil in a good hu-
mour, if anything will. When we were engaged he
used to give me roses. But / was not gathered
then ! A-h !

PHIL. LESLIE.

(Calling from inside the house.) I must be off,
Ida ; where are you ?

IDA LESLIE.

Here, Phil, here, in the garden.

PHIL. LESLIE.

(Coming out of the house dressed to go to town.)
Just one kiss (pause), and I must start. (Going to
gate.) I want to catch the 10.15 if I can.

5



6 A LESSON IN HARMONY.

IDA LESLIE.

' Yes, but just one rose.

PHIL. LESLIE.

(Intently reading Financial Times.) Rose }i.

IDA LESLIE.

Yes, but do look at it, it's a Fellenberg.

PHIL. LESLIE.

Fell i^.

IDA LESLIE.

(Putting it in his coat.) Is it not a love?

PHIL. LESLIE.

(A little impatiently.) Beautiful, beautiful! But
I am in a great hurry this morning.

IDA LESLIE.

Husbands always are.

PHIL. LESLIE.

So are lovers, they say, don't they?

IDA LESLIE.

Yes , but lovers are in a hurry to get to one,

husbands to get away from one. I may engage the
maid, may I not ? How nice to have one, all to my-
self ! It will save me such a lot of money. I shall
be able to dress ever so much more cheaply.

PHIL. LESLIE.

I am afraid I must ask you to wait a little.



A LESSON IN HARMONY.
IDA LESLIE.

Oh, Phil ! You promised you



PHIL. LESLIE.

Things in the city are so — so very uncertain just
now.

IDA LESLIE.

Very well, I will wait. But you'll order that Vic-
toria to-day, won't you? Or shall / run up and see
to it?

PHIL. LESLIE.

Do be patient, dear, please, till things mend. (Ida
moves L.) And please practise that Lesson in Har-
mony to-day, won't you?

IDA LESLIE.

{With a gesture of impatience.) Bother! 1

never set my heart on anything, but {She

moves towards the house R.)

PHIL. LESLIE.

I shall have to run to catch the train. Don't for-
get about sending my white waistcoats to the wash.
{Goes out of gate.)

IDA LESLIE.

{Going into house.) All right.

PHIL. LESLIE.

{Hurrying hack and turning round calls out.)
Ida! Ida! Ida! Mind, dear, you speak to the



g A LESSON IN HARMONY.

butcher about hanging his meat longer. It was so
beastly tough last night.

IDA LESLIE.

Was it? (From off R.)

PHIL. LESLIE.

Yes, that it was! (He moves toward gate and
Ida goes into the house.)

(Otho falls out of hammock.)

PHIL. LESLIE.

What's that?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Only me.

PHIL. LESLIE.

I thought it was an earthquake. (Helps Otho off^
ground.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Are you off?

PHIL. LESLIE.

Yes!

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Then good-bye, old fellow ; for I must leave you
to-day.

PHIL. LESLIE.

Please don't go to-day.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I'm afraid I must.



A LESSON IN HARMONY.



PHIL. LESLIE.



I want you particularly to stay till to-morrow.
{Looking at his watch.) I can't catch the 10.15
now. Well, the 10.30 must do.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

It's all right about Gwen. Her father is quite sat-
isfied, and we are to be married in September. Isn't
it a good one of her? (Shozving a photograph.)

PHIL. LESLIE.

Charming ! Lucky man ! But don't go to-day.
Ida's low and hipped, and I want you to stay and
amuse her. Besides you promised to help me with
that new bin of Lafitte.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

That settles it. I'll stay. How are things in the
city? (Sits in hammock.)

PHIL. LESLIE.

Much better. The anxiety is not over yet, but we
shall know to-day. I shall just catch the 10.30
going quietly. Mind you cheer up Ida.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Trust me! (Waving his hand, as Phil goes
through gate and off R.) Good luck to you, old
man.

(Exit Phil.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

(Alone.) Dear old Phil ! Thinks of nothing but



10 A LESSON IN HARMONY.

making money for his pretty little wife. Well, what
better can a man do? / shall. (Taking out the
photograph and kissing it.) This is a charming
place! It's difficult to believe it's so near town.
Thank Heaven, a playwright can live anywhere, and
Gwen and I will live — well, nowhere ; in fact, any-
where. (Putting back the photograph.) Bless her!
And we'll have still better roses than these ! ( Going
to the Hozver bed dozvn R. zvhere Ida plucked the
rosebud, and stooping to pick up a piece of paper.)
And we won't have pieces of paper lying in the
flower beds. Verses!

Better to love and lose ;
To worship from head to shoes ;
I sigh and I weep and I moan ;
For thou art my unknown known.

Nothing less! And what rubbish! What! To
Ida! From L. G. I thought I knew the writing.
That fatuous young philanderer, Sir Lothario Great-
rex ! Makes love to every woman that will let him.
I wonder how this got into the flower bed. She was
syringing the roses just now. It looks as though

(Picks up syringe.)

(Ida comes out of the house.)

IDA LESLIE.

Oh, how kind of you, Mr. Hazlewood, to syringe
my roses. I have been busy seeing to Phil's white
waistcoats. He's so particular, and makes such a
fuss about them !

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Husbands do. They're such brutes.



A LESSON IN HARMONY. n

IDA LESLIE.

I don't say that; but men are rather tiresome,
sometimes, about trifles — I mean, when they are
married.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Exactly. What can it matter whether waistcoats
are clean or dirty?

IDA LESLIE.

Oh!

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I mean, " when we are married " ?

IDA LESLIE.

{Comes L. C.) And I had to see the butcher,
too, for Phil grumbles about the meat.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I say, don't you think I should make a fine gar-
dener ?

IDA LESLIE.

Did you think the saddle of mutton was tough last
night ?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Tough ! Why, it might have been lamb. It was
as tender as — well, as men are, before they are mar-
ried. I am sure it was not married mutton.

IDA LESLIE.

Why?



12 A LESSON IN HARMONY.



OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Because It melted like — like a man, before he is
married.



IDA LESLIE.

You are laughing at me. {Sits C.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Upon my word, Mrs. Leslie, I never was more
serious in my life. It was excellent. {He sits down
R. of her on the stone seat of a sundial.)

IDA LESLIE.

I wonder what it is makes men so different, after
marriage, from what they were before ?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I can't say, you see, never having been married.

IDA LESLIE.

But you agree with me, don't you?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Of course I agree with you — as I am not mar-
ried. If I were, I suppose I should disagree with
you.

IDA LESLIE.

T sometimes think marriage is a dreadful mis-
take.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Of course it is. It is the oldest form of error.
Unfortunately, too, it is the most persistent, for we



A LESSON IN HARMONY. 13

seem quite incapable of getting rid of it. Man has
changed his reHgion several times ; no form of phi-
losophy lasts more than a generation, and, as for
political institutions, we alter them every session.
But though everybody, at least everybody who is
sensible and charming, concurs in condemning mar-
riage, no one seems able to teach us how to get rid
of it.

IDA LESLIE.

How true ! And how cleverly you put it. I wish
I could talk like you.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

So you would, my dear lady, if you were not mar-
ried. Marriage begins by enslaving the body, and
ends by subjecting the mind. No married person
can feel, think, or act freely.

IDA LESLIE.

(Sighing.) I am sure / cannot. I often wonder
why people marry at all — men at least. A woman
must, I suppose.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Well, scarcely ; unless a man must too. It re-
quires two musts.

IDA LESLIE.

It is all must, in marriage.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Perhaps that is the reason why it so soon grows
musty.

IDA LESLIE.

(After impatiently gathering some honeysuckle,



14 A LESSON IN HARMONY.

and returning to her seat near Otho, ivho has not
moved. ) Shall you ever marry, Mr. Hazlewood ?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I? After what I have just said? Marriage is the
makeshift of monotonous minds, the last resource of
persons who have exhausted every form of pleasure,
and are not such fools as to believe in the discovery
of a new one. But it is as well to reserve something
for one's old age. Some people reserve austere vir-
tue as the consolation of that melancholy period;
others, a cellar of old port, and a chest of fine cigars.
I shall keep marriage in reserve as the mitigation of
that evil day. When I have no longer a leg to stand
on I shall lie down and propose — to my house-
keeper. (Rise.)

IDA LESLIE.

I'm afraid you're very naughty, Mr. Hazlewood.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Naughty ? I make hay while the sun shines.

IDA LESLIE.

Does it shine very much ?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Fairly well ; for an austere climate like ours.

IDA LESLIE.

(Sighing.) I wish I were a man!

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Would you make hay? It does not require to be
a man to do that. (She looks at him.) All flesh



A LESSON IN HARMONY. 15

is grass ; and therefore make hay of it. Many
women seem to think so.

IDA LESLIE.

Now, you are cynical.

{Ida rises and plucks a curled leaf off one of the
roses. Otho remains seated.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

{Aside — taking the photograph from his pocket,
and looking at it.) Gwen, darhng, may I give this
dear, silly, little woman a good lesson? May I,
Gwen? {Puts back the photograph.) Yes, I think
so. She sadly needs it. {Goes up to her.)

IDA LESLIE.

Tell me, Mr. Hazlewood, what is your idea of hap-
piness ?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.
{Up C.) Loving, and being loved.

IDA LESLIE.

Are you incapable of loving? {Moves down.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

T? How can you ask such a question? {Fol-
lows her.)

IDA LESLIE.

Then, I am sure you are loved.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

By whom?



l6 A LESSON IN HARMONY.

IDA LESLIE.

Dear Mr. Hazlewood, will you tell me who it is?
I promise not to betray you.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I am sure you won't.

IDA LESLIE.

Who is it then ?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Why do you want to know?

IDA LESLIE.

A woman's curiosity.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Fatal curiosity.

IDA LESLIE.

Fatal?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Often.

IDA LESLIE.

Why fatal?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

(Raising his eyes, looking at her earnestly, and
then dropping them.) Can't you guess?

IDA LESLIE.

I? (A pause.)



A LESSON IN HARMONY.



OTHO HAZLEWOOD.



17



(Leaning towards her.) Forgive me! Did you
suspect I was in love?



IDA LESLIE.



How should I? I don't know anybody so —
clever — or so — so nice. Why, see ! I was miser-
able this morning, and you have brightened me up,
interested me, and made me feel quite happy.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Then, since you are happy, may I tell you what
would make me so?

IDA LESLIE.

Oh, do! I should so like to hear it. (Sits C.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

{Leaning over her.) Loving and being loved by
one you love — that is my ideal, my dream of hap-
piness. But the surroundings should be in harmony
with one's feelings. The frame should be worthy
of the picture ; and one fair and fascinating should be
encompassed by all that is fascinating and fair. If
you ask me what I long for at this moment, it is that
I should be transported into some distant land of be-
witching beauty, blessed with blue skies, blue seas,
blue mountains, and whose only denizens, save two
voyaging selves, were every delicious scent, and
every dulcet sound.

IDA LESLIE.

{Sighing deeply.) A-h ! How delightful ! Too
delightful for words! Too heavenly for real life.



l8 A LESSON IN HARMONY.

(Laying her hand on his arm.) But go on! Do
go on ! I love to hear you.
(Enter Servant from house.)

SERVANT.

Sir Lothario Greatrex.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I'll stroll round the garden.

IDA LESLIE.

No. (To Servant.) Tell Sir Lothario I am not
at home.

(Exit Servant into house.)

(Ida contin/iies to walk among the flower beds;
Otho joins her.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

You're very fond of this little place, aren't you ?

IDA LESLIE.

Fairly so.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Only fairly.

IDA LESLIE.

Do you want me to tell the truth? (Moves to
sundial.)

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Please.

IDA LESLIE.

Sometimes I like it.



A LESSON IN HARMONY. 19

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Sometimes !

IDA LESLIE.

Don't they say that prisoners, after an outburst of
revolt, play with their chains !

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I've heard so. Most men, when they have saved
a little money, build themselves a prison, in the shape
of a house, too costly for them to go away from,
and then provide themselves with the gaoler.

IDA LESLIE.

In the shape of a wife ?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Precisely; and they have to go through life to-
gether, to dinners, to theatres, to the seaside —
chained to each other like convicts.

IDA LESLIE.

(Impatienth.) It is just like that. (Crosses to
L.) Oh!

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

A friend of mine said rather a good thing the
other day. He doesn't obect to being married, but
he objected to being always married.

IDA LESLIE.

What did he mean ?

# OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Well, I suppose he meant that he'd like to loosen



so A LESSON IN HARMONY.

the coupling chain for a Httle, but not to snap it al-
together, eh? That's about it, isn't it?

IDA LESLIE.

(Picking a flower impatiently.) I don't know
what I should like. {Turning to him.) I wish you
would tell me. (Boy rings bell at gate.)

(Enter Boy with note which he gives to Otho and
exits. )

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

But . (Looking at the note and reading it

intently, and saying significantly, zvhile doing so,
*' Um! Um!") It's Phil's writing. (Ida sits on
hammock.) Supposing, my dear Mrs. Leslie, you
had to give up your house, your garden, and every-
thing you now have, would you not mind? (He
puts letter in his pocket.)

IDA LESLIE.

It depends. I scarcely think any woman minds
leaving her house, no matter how nice it is, for one
that is still nicer. I fear we are rather fond of —
well, pretty things.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Naturally. So are men. Every nice woman is
compounded, in equal proportions, of the spiritual
and the material, and has the right to expect that
romance shall be elegant, and passion not attended
with discomfort. Just as no man makes love to a
woman in curl papers, so no woman would run away
with a man in his slippers. But — (again looking
at the letter) supposing you had to leave your nice



A LESSON IN HARMONY.



21



house, and charming garden, for one less nice and
less charming, you would mind that, wouldn't you ?

IDA LESLIE.

Well, naturally. But there is no danger of that,
I think.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

I hope not. (Looking at her compassionately.)

IDA LESLIE.

(Alarmed.) Surely there is no such danger, is
there? (Seising hold of his ami.) That note! It
is my husband's writing! (He puts the letter be-
hind him.) Is anything wrong?

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Mrs. Leslie, you know things have been very un-
settled and uncertain, in the city, of late.

IDA LESLIE.

Phil is ruined I Tell me the truth. Tell me, at
once. Let me know the worst.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

Gently, my dear lady. Let me beg you not to
upset yourself.

IDA LESLIE.

Oh, but my husband, my poor husband. What
will he do? Tell me what he says.

OTHO HAZLEWOOD.

But your dream? The earthly paradise? The



2,2. A LESSON IN HARMONY.

island home in the Aegean, blue skies, blue seas, blue
mountains ?

IDA LESLIE.

How can you ? — at such a moment ? Dreams in-


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