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to himself. What partial judges are all fathers in regard to all of us young men, in thinking it reasonable for us to become old men all at once from boys, and not to participate in those things which youth is naturally inclined to. They regulate us by their own desires,--such as they now are,--not as they once were. If ever I have a son, he certainly shall find in me an indulgent father. For the means both of knowing and of pardoning1 his faults shall be found by me; not like mine, who by means of another person, discloses to me his own sentiments. I'm plagued to death,--when he drinks a little more than usual, what pranks of his own he does relate to me! Now he says, "Take warning from others of what may be to your advantage." How shrewd! He certainly does not know how deaf I am at the moment when he's telling his stories. Just now, the words of my mistress make more impression upon me. "Give me this, and bring me that," she cries; I have nothing to say to her in answer, and no one is there more wretched than myself. But this Clinia, although he, as well, has cares enough of his own, still has a mistress of virtuous and modest breeding, and a stranger to the arts of a courtesan. Mine is a craving, saucy, haughty, extravagant creature, full of lofty airs. Then all that I have to give her is--fair words2--for I make it a point not to tell her that I have nothing. This misfortune I met with not long since, nor does my father as yet know any thing of the matter. (Exit.)
1 Of knowing and of pardoning: There is a jingle intended here in the resemblance of the words "cognoscendi," "knowing," and "ignoscendi," "pardoning."
2 Is--fair words: "Recte est." It is supposed that he pauses before uttering these words, which mean "very well," or "very good," implying the giving.an assent without making a promise; he tells the reason, in saying that he has scruples or prejudices against confessing that he has got nothing to give her.
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