Cléante. To tell you the truth, father, I cannot promise you to be glad that she is to become my stepmother. I should tell a lie if I said so to you; but as for receiving her well and showing her a friendly countenance, I promise to obey you punctually on this head.

Harpagon. Take care you do, at least.

Cléante. You shall see that you shall have no cause to complain.

Harpagon. You had better.

Scene V.—Harpagon, Valère, Master Jacques.

Harpagon. You will have to help me in this, Valère. Now, Master Jacques, draw near, I have left you for the last.

Jacques. Is it to your coachman, Sir, or to your cook, that you wish to speak? For I am both the one and the other.

Harpagon. It is to both.

Jacques. But to which of the two first?

Harpagon. To the cook.

Jacques. Then wait a minute, if you please.

(Master Jacques takes off his livery coat, and appears in a cook’s dress).

Harpagon. What the deuce does that ceremony mean?

Master Jacques. You have but to speak now.

Harpagon. I have promised, Master Jacques, to give a supper to-night.

Jacques (aside). Most miraculous!

Harpagon. Just tell me: will you dish us up something good?

Jacques. Yes, if you give me plenty of money.

Harpagon. The deuce, always money. It seems to me as if they could speak of nothing else; money, money, money! It is the only word they have got on their lips; money! they always speak of money. That is their chief argument, money.

Valère. I have never heard a more impertinent answer than that. A great wonder to dish up something good with plenty of money! It is the easiest thing in the world; any fool can do as much; but a clever man should speak of dishing up something good with little money.

Jacques. Something good with little money!

Valère. Yes.

Jacques (to Valère). Upon my word, Master Steward, you would oblige us by showing us that secret, and by taking my place as cook; you that are meddling with everything in this house, and playing the factotum.

Harpagon. Hold your tongue. What shall we want?

  By PanEris using Melati.

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