The Busie Body. A Comedy.
By Susanna Centlivre

Transcription, correction, editorial commentary, and markup by Students and Staff of the University of Virginia, John O'Brien, Rachel Retica
     

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London, England : Printed for Bernard Lintott, at the Cross-Keys between the Two Temple-Gates in Fleet-street., 1709This text is based on transcriptions created by the Early English Books Online Texts Creation Partnership, a library-based project directed by the University of Michigan and Oxford University. Ann Arbor, MI; Oxford, UK: Text Creation Partnership, 2011-12Text for this digital edition drawn from http://name.umdl.umich.edu/004774088.0001.000

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Citation

Centlivre, Susanna. The Busie Body. A Comedy, Printed for Bernard Lintott, at the Cross-Keys between the Two Temple-Gates in Fleet-street., 1709 . Literature in Context: An Open Anthology. http://anthology.lib.virginia.edu/work/Centlivre/centlivre-busie. Accessed: 2024-03-02T10:18:02.258Z

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[TP] THE BUSIE BODY: A COMEDY. As it is Acted at the THEATRE-ROYAL IN DRURY-LANE, By Her Majesty's Servants. Written by Mrs. SUSANNA CENTLIVRE. The Second Edition. Quem tulit ad scenam ventoso Gloria curru, Exanimat lentus Spectator, sedulus inflat. Sic Leve, sic parvum est, animum quod laudis avarum Subruit aut resicit— Horat. Epist. Lib. II. Ep. 1. LONDON, Printed for BERNARD LINTOTT, at the Cross-Keys between the TWO Temple-Gates in Fleet-street. TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE JOHNLordSOMMERS,Lord-President of Her MAJESTY's most Honourable Privy-Council. May it please your Lordship, AS it's an Establish'd Custom in these latter Ages, for all Writers, particularly the Poetical, to shelter their Productions under the Protection of the most Distinguish'd, whose Approbation pro duces a kind of Inspiration, much superior to that which the Heathenish Poets pretended to derive from their Fictitious Apollo: So it was my Ambition to Address one of my weak Performances to Your Lordship, who, by Universal Consent, are justly allow'd to be the best Judge of all kinds of Writing. I was indeed at first deterr'd from my Design, by a Thought that it might be accounted unpardonable Rudeness to obtarude a Trifle of this Nature to a Person, whose sublime Wisdome moderates that Council, which at this Critical Juncture, over-rules the Fate of all Europe. But then I was encourag'd by Reflecting, that Lelius and Scipio, the two greatest Men in their Time, among the Romans,both for Political and Military Virtues, in the height of their important Affairs, thought the Perusal and Improving of Terence 's Comedies the noblest way of unbinding their Minds. I own I were guilty of the highest Vanity, should I presume to put my Composures in Parallel with those of that Celebrated Dramatist; But then again, I hope that Your Lordship's native Goodness and Generosity, in Condescention to the Taste of the Best and Fairest part of the Town, who have been pleas'd to be diverted by the following SCENES, will excuse and overlook such Faults as your nicer Judgment might discern. And here, my Lord, the Occasion seems fair for me to engage in a Panegyrick upon those Natural and Acquired Abilities, which so brightly Adorn your Person: But I shall resist that Temptation, being conscious of the Inequality of a Female Pen to so Masculine an Attempt; and having no other Ambition than to Subscribe my self, My Lord, Your Lordship's Most Humble and Most Obedient Servant, SUSANNA CENTLIVRE. PROLOGUE. THO' modern Prophets were expos'd of late, The Author cou'd not Prophesy his Fate: If with such Scenes an Audience had been fir'd, The Poet must have really been Inspir'd. But these, alas! are Melancholy Days For Modern Prophets and for Modern Plays. Yet since Prophetick Lyes please Fools o' Fashion, And Women are so fond of Agitation; To Men of Sense I'll Prophesy anew, And tell you wond'rous things that will prove true; Undaunted Colonels will to Camps repair, Assur'd, there'll be no Skirmishes this Year; On our own Terms will flow the wish'd-for Peace, All Wars, except 'twixt Man and Wife, will cease. The Grand Monarch may wish his Son a Throne, But hardly will advance to lose his own. This Season most things bear a smiling Face; But Play'rs in Summer have a dismal Case, Since your Appearance only is our Act of Grace. Court Ladies will to Country Seats be gone, My Lord can't all the Year live Great in Town; Where wanting Opera's, Basset, and a Play, They'll sigh, and stitch a Gown, to pass the time away. Gay City-Wives at Tunbridge will appear, Whose Husbands long have labour'd for an Heir; Where many a Courtier may their Wants relieve, But by the Waters only they Conceive. The Fleet-street Sempstress—Toast of Temple Sparks, That runs Spruce Neckcloths for Attorney's Clerks; At Cupid 's Gardens will her Hours regale, Sing fair Dorinda, and drink Bottl'd Ale. At all Assemblies Rakes are up and down. And Gamesters, where they think they are not known. Shou'd I denounce our Author's Fate to Day, To cry down Prophecies, you'd damn the Play: Yet Whims like these have sometimes made you Laugh, 'Tis Tattling all, like Isaac Bickerstaff. Since War and Places claim the Bards that write, Be kind and bear a Woman's Treat to Night; Let your Indulgence all her Fears allay, And none but Woman-Haters damn this Play. EPILOGUE. IN me you see one Busie-Body more; Tho' you may have enough of one before. With Epilogues, the Busie-Body's Way, We strive to help, but sometimes mar a Play. At this mad Sessions, half condemn'd e'er try'd, Some, in three Days, have been turn'd off, and dy'd. In spight of Parties, their Attempts are vain, For like false Prophets, they ne'er rise again. Too late, when cast, your Favour one beseeches, And Epilogues prove Execution-Speeches. Yet sure I spy no Busie-Bodies here, And one may pass since they do ev'ry where. Sowr Criticks Time and Breath and Censures waste, And baulk your Pleasures to refine your Taste. One busie Don ill-tim'd high Tenets Preaches, Another yearly shows himself in Speeches. Some snivling Cits would have a Peace for spight, To starve those Warriors who so bravely fight. Still of a Foe upon his Knees afraid, Whose well-bang'd Troops want Money, Heart and Bread. Old Beaux, who none, not ev'n themselves can please, Are busie still, for nothing—but to teize The Young; so busie to engage a Heart; The Mischief done, are busy most to part. Ungrateful Wretches, who still cross one's Will, When they more kindly might be busie still! One to a Husband, who ne'er dreamt of Horns, Shows how dear Spouse with Friend his Brows adorns. Th' Officious Tell-tale Fool (he shou'd repent it) Parts three kind Souls that liv'd at Peace contented. Some with Law-Quirks set Houses by the Ears. With Physick one what he would heal impairs. Like that dark mob'd up Fry, that neighb'ring Curse, Who to remove Love's Pains bestow a worse. Since then this medling Tribe infest the Age, Bear one awhile expos'd upon the Stage. Let none but Busie-Bodies vent their Spight, And with good Humour Pleasure crown the Night. Dramatis Personae. MEN
Acted by Mr. Wilks.
Sir George Airy. A Gentleman of Four Thou sand a Year in Love, with Miranda.
Sir Francis Gripe. Guardian to Miranda and Marplot, Father to Charles, in Love with Miranda. Mr Estcourt.
Charles. Friend to Sir George, in Love with Isabinda. Mr. Mills.
Sir Jealous Traffick. A Merchant that had liv'd sometime in Spain, a great Admirer of the Spanish Customs, Father to Isabinda. Mr. Bullock.
Marplot, A sort of a silly Fellow, Cowardly, but very Inquisitive to know every Body's Business, generally spoils all he undertakes, yet without Design. Mr.Pack.
Whisper. Servant to Charles. Mr. Bullockjun.
WOMEN.
Miranda. An Heiress, worth Thirty Thou sand Pound, really in Love with Sir George, but pretends to be so with her Guardian Sir Francis. Mrs. Cross.
Isabinda. Daughter to Sir Jealous, in Love with Charles, but design'd for a Spa nish Merchant by her Father, and kept up from the sight of all Men. Mrs. Rogers.
Patch. Her Woman. Mrs. Saunders.
Scentwell. Woman to Miranda. Mrs. Mills.
1 THE BUSIE BODY. ACT I. SCENE The Park. Sir George Airy meeting Charles.
Cha.
HA! Sir George Airy! A Birding thus early, what forbidden Game rouz'd you so soon? For no lawful Occasion cou'd invite a Person of your Figure abroad at such unfashionable Hours.
Sir Geo.
There are some Men, Charles, whom Fortune has left free from Inquietudes, who are diligently studious to find out Ways and Means to make themselves uneasie.
Cha.
Is it possible that any thing in Nature can ruffle the Temper of a Man, whom the four Seasons of the Year com pliment with as many thousand Pounds, nay! and a Father at Rest with his Ancestors.
Sir Geo.
Why there 'tis now! a Man that wants Money thinks none can be unhappy that has it; but my Affairs are in such a whimsical Posture, that it will require a Calculation of my Nativity to find if my Gold will relieve me or not.
Cha.
Ha, ha, ha, never consult the Stars about that; Gold has a Power beyond them; Gold unlocks the Midnight Coun cils; Gold out-does the Wind, becalms the Ship, or fills her Sails; Gold is omnipotent below; it makes whole Armies fight, or fly; it buys even Souls, and bribes the Wretches to 2 betray their Country: Then what can thy Business be, that Gold won't serve thee in?
Sir Geo.
Why, I'm in Love.
Cha.
In Love!—Ha, ha, ha, ha; In Love, Ha, ha, ha, with what, prithee, a Cherubin?
Sir Geo.
No, with a Woman.
Cha.
A Woman, Good, Ha, ha, ha, and Gold not help thee?
Sir Geo.
But suppose I'm in Love with two—
Cha.
Ay, if thou'rt in Love with two hundred, Gold will fetch 'em, I warrant thee, Boy. But who are they? who are they? come.
Sir Geo.
One is a Lady whose Face I never saw, but witty as an Angel; the other beautiful as Venus—
Cha.
And a Fool—
Sir Geo.
For ought I know, for I never spoke to her, but you can inform me; I am charm'd by the Wit of One, and dye for the Beauty of the Other?
Cha.
And pray, which are you in Quest of now?
Sir Geo.
I prefer the Sensual Pleasure, I'm for her I've seen, who is thy Father's Ward, Miranda.
Cha.
Nay, then I pity you; for the Jew my Father will no more part with her, and 30000 Pound, than he wou'd with a Guinea to keep me from starving.
Sir Geo.
Now you see Gold can't do every thing, Charles.
Cha.
Yes, for 'tis her Gold that bars my Father's Gate a gainst you.
Sir Geo.
Why, if he is this avaricious Wretch, how cam'st thou by such a liberal Education?
Cha.
Not a Souse out of his Pocket, I assure you? I had an Uncle who defray'd that Charge, but for some little Wild nesses of Youth, tho' he made me his Heir, left Dad my Guar dian till I came to Years of Discretion, which I presume the old Gentleman will never think I am; and now he has got the Estate into his Clutches, it does me no more good, than if it lay in Prester John 's Dominions.
Sir Geo.
What can'st thou find no Stratagem to redeem it?
Cha.
I have made many Essays to no purpose; tho' Want, the Mistress of Invention, still tempts me on, yet still the old Fox is too cunning for me—I am upon my last Project, which if it fails, then for my last Refuge, a Brown Musquet.
Sir Geo.
What is't, can I assist thee?
Cha.
Not yet, when you can, I have Confidence enough in you to ask it.
Sir Geo.
I am always ready, but what do's he intend to do with Miranda? Is she to be sold in private? or will he put her up by way of Auction, at who bids most? If so, Egad, I'm for him; my Gold, as you say, shall be subservient to my Pleasure.
Cha.
To deal ingenuously with you, Sir George, I know very little of Her, or Home; for since my Uncle's Death, and my Return from Travel, I have never been well with my Father; he thinks my Expences too great, and I his Allowance too little; he never sees me, but he quarrels; and to avoid that, I shun his House as much as possible. The Report is, he intends to marry her himself.
Sir Geo.
Can she consent to it?
Cha.
Yes faith, so they say; but I tell you, I am wholly ignorant of the matter. Miranda and I are like two violent Members of a contrary Party; I can scarce allow her Beauty, tho' all the World do's; nor she me Civility, for that Con tempt: I fancy she plays the Mother-in-law already, and sets the old Gentleman on to do mischief.
Sir Geo.
Then I've your free Consent to get her.
Cha.
Ay and my helping-hand, if occasion be.
Sir Geo.
Pugh, yonder's a Fool coming this way, let's avoid him.
Cha.
What Marplot, no no, he's my Instrument; there's a thousand Conveniencies in him, he'll lend me his Money when he has any, run of my Errands and be proud on't; in short, he'll Pimp for me, Lye, for me, Drink for me, do any thing but fight for me, and that I trust to my own Arm for.
Sir Geo.
Nay then he's to be endur'd; I never knew his Qualifications before.
4 Enter Marplot with a Patch cross his Face.
Marpl.
Dear Charles, your's,—Ha! Sir George Airy, the Man in the World, I have an Ambition to be known to (aside.) Give me thy Hand, dear Boy—
Cha.
A good Assurance! But hark ye, how came your Beautiful Countenance clouded in the wrong place?
Marpl.
I must confess 'tis a little Mal-a-propos, but no mat ter for that; a Word with you, Charles; Prithee, introduce me to Sir George— he is a Man of Wit, and I'd give ten Guineas to—
Cha.
When you have 'em you mean.
Marpl.
Ay, when I have 'em; pugh, pox, you cut the Thread of my Discourse—I wou'd give ten Guineas, I say, to be rank'd in his Acquaintance: Well, 'tis a vast Addition to a Man's Fortune, according to the Rout of the World, to be seen in the Company of Leading Men; for then we are all thought to be Politicians, or Whigs, or Jacks, or High-Flyers, or Low-Flyers, or Levellers—and so forth; for you must know, we all herd in Parties now.
Cha.
Then a Fool for Diversion is out of Fashion, I find.
Marpl.
Yes, without it be a mimicking Fool, and they are Darlings every where; but prithee introduce me.
Cha.
Well, on Condition you'll give us a true Account how you came by that Mourning Nose, I will.
Marpl.
I'll do it.
Cha.
Sir George, here's a Gentleman has a passionate Desire to kiss your Hand.
Sir Geo.
Oh, I honour Men of the Sword; and I presume this Gentleman is lately come from Spain or Portugal— by his Scars.
Marpl.
No really, Sir George, mine sprung from civil Fury, happening last Night into the Groom-Porters—I had a strong Inclination to go ten Guineas with a sort of a, sort of a—kind of a Milk Sop, as I thought: A Pox of the Dice, he flung out, and my Pockets being empty, as Charles 5 knows they sometimes are, he prov'd a surly North-Britain, and broke my Face for my Deficiency.
Sir Geo.
Ha! ha! and did not you draw?
Marpl.
Draw, Sir, why, I did but lay my Hand upon my Sword to make a swift Retreat, and he roar'd out. Now the Deel a Ma sol, Sir, gin ye touch yer Steel, Ise whip mine through yer Wem.
Sir Geo.
Ha, ha, ha,
Cha.
Ha, ha, ha, ha, safe was the Word, so you walk'd off, I suppose
Marpl.
Yes, for I avoid fighting, purely to be serviceable to my Friends you know—
Sir Geo.
Your Friends are much oblig'd to you, Sir, I hope you'll rank me in that Number.
Marpl.
Sir George, a Bow from the side Box, or to be seen in your Chariot, binds me ever yours.
Sir Geo.
Trifles, you may command 'em when you please.
Cha.
Provided he may command you—
Marpl.
Me! why I live for no other purpose—Sir George, I have the Honour to be caress'd by most of the reigning Toasts of the Town, I'll tell 'em you are the finest Gentle man—
Sir Geo.
No, no, prithee let me alone to tell the Ladies—my Parts—can you convey a Letter upon Occasion, or deliver a Message with an Air of Business, Ha!
Marpl.
With the Assurance of a Page and the Gravity of a Statesman.
Sir Geo.
You know Miranda!
Marpl.
What, my Sister Ward? Why, her Guardian is mine, we are Fellow Sufferers: Ah! he is a covetous, cheat ing, sanctify'd Curmudgeon; that Sir Francis Gripe is a damn'd old—
Cha.
I suppose, Friend, you forget that he is my Father—
Marpl.
I ask your Pardon, Charles, but it is for your sake I hate him. Well, I say, the World is mistaken in him, his Out side Piety, makes him every Man's Executor, and his In side Cunning, makes him every Heir's Jaylor. Egad, Charles, I'm half persuaded that thou'rt some Ward too, and never of 6 his getting: For thou art as honest a Debauchee as ever Cuc kolded Man of Quality.
Sir Geo.
A pleasant Fellow.
Cha.
The Dog is Diverting sometimes, or there wou'd be no enduring his Impertinence: He is pressing to be employ'd and willing to execute, but some ill Fate generally attends all he undertakes, and he oftner spoils an Intreague than helps it—
Marpl.
If I miscarry 'tis none of my Fault, I follow my Instructions.
Cha.
Yes, witness the Merchant's Wife.
Marpl.
Pish, Pox, that was an Accident.
Sir Geo.
What was it, prithee?
Cha.
Why, you must know, I had lent a certain Merchant my hunting Horses, and was to have met his Wife in his Ab sence: Sending him alone with my Groom to make the Com plement, and to deliver a Letter to the Lady at the same time; what does he do, but gives the Husband the Letter, and offers her the Horses.
Marpl.
I remember you was even with me, for you deny'd the Letter to be yours, and swore I had a design upon her, which my Bones paid for.
Cha.
Come, Sir George, let's walk round, if you are not ingag'd, for I have sent my Man upon a little earnest Busi ness, and I have order'd him to bring me the Answer into the Park.
Marpl.
Business, and I not know it, Egad I'll watch him.
Sir Geo.
I must beg your Pardon, Charles, I am to meet your Father.
Cha.
My Father!
Sir Geo.
Aye! and about the oddest Bargain perhaps you ever heard of; but I'll not impart till I know the Success.
Marpl.
What can his Business be with Sir Francis? Now would I give all the World to know it; why the Devil should not one know every Man's Concern. (Aside.
Cha.
Prosperity to't whate'er it be, I have private Affairs too; over a Bottle we'll compare Notes.
Marpl.
Charles knows I love a Glass as well as any Man, I'll make one; shall it be to Night? Ad I long to know their Secrets. (Aside.
Enter Whisper.
Whis.
Sir, Sir, Mrs. Patch says Isabinda 's Spanish Father has quite spoil'd the Plot, and she can't meet you in the Park, but he infallibly will go out this Afternoon, she says; but I must step again to know the Hour.
Marpl.
What did Whisper say now? I shall go stark mad, if I'm not let into this Secret. (Aside.
Cha.
Curst Misfortune, come along with me, my Heart feels Pleasure at her Name. Sir George, yours; we'll meet at the old Place the usual Hour.
Sir Geo.
Agreed; I think I see Sir Francis yonder.
Cha.
Marplot, you must excuse, I am engag'd.
Marpl.
Engag'd, Egad I'll engage my Life I'll know what your Engagement is.
Miran.
(Coming out of a Chair.) Let the Chair wait: My Servant, that dog'd Sir George, said he was in the Park. Ha! Mis Patch alone! did not you tell me you had con triv'd a way to bring Isabinda to the Park?
Patch.
Oh, Madam, your Ladiship can't imagine what a wretched Disappointment we have met with: Just as I had fetch'd a Suit of my Cloaths for a Disguise, comes my old Master into his Closet, which is right against her Chamber-Door; this struck us into a terrible Fright—At length I put on a grave Face, and ask'd him if he was at leisure for his Chocolate, in hopes to draw him out of his Hole; but he snap'd my Nose off; No, I shall be busie here this two Hours; at which my poor Mistress seeing no way of Escape, order'd me to wait on your Ladiship with the sad Relation.
Miran.
Unhappy Isabinda! Was ever any thing so unac countable as the Humour of Sir Jealousie Traffick.
Patch.
Oh, Madam, it's his living so long in Spain, he vows he'll spend half his Estate, but he'll be a Parliament-Man, on purpose to bring in a Bill for Women to wear Veils, and the other odious Spanish Customs—He swears it is the height of Impudence to have a Woman seen bare-fac'd even at Church, and scarce believes there's a true begotten Child in the City.
Miran.
Ha, ha, ha, how the old Fool torments himself! Suppose he could introduce his rigid Rules—does he think we could not match them in Contrivance? No, no; Let the Tyrant Man make what Laws he will, if there's a Wo man under the Government, I warrant she finds a way to break 'em: Is his Mind set upon the Spaniard for his Son-in-law still?
Patch.
Ay, and he expects him by the next Fleet, which drives his Daughter to Melancholy and Despair: But, Ma dam, I find you retain the same gay, cheerful Spirit you had, when I waited on your Ladiship.—My Lady is mighty good humour'd too; and I have found a way to make Sir Jealousie believe I am wholly in his Interest, when my real Design is to serve her; he makes me her Jaylor, and I set her at Li berty.
Miran.
I knew thy Prolifick Brain wou'd be of singular Ser vice to her, or I had not parted with thee to her Father.
Patch.
But, Madam, the Report is that you are going to marry your Guardian.
Miran.
It is necessary such a Report shou'd be, Patch.
Patch.
But is it true, Madam?
Miran.
That's not absolutely necessary.
Patch.
I thought it was only the old strain, coaxing him still for your own, and railing at all the young Fellows about Town: In my Mind, now, you are as ill plagu'd with your Guardian, Madam, as my Lady is with her Father.
Miran.
No, I have Liberty, Wench, that she wants; what would she give now to be in this dissabilee, in the—open Air, nay more, in pursuit of the young Fellow she likes, for that's my Case, I assure thee.
Patch.
As for that, Madam, she's even with you; for tho' 9 she can't come abroad, we have a way to bring him home in spight of old Argus.
Miran.
Now Patch, your Opinion of my Choice, for here he comes—Ha! my Guardian with him; what can be the meaning of this? I'm sure Sir Francis can't know me in this Dress—Let's observe 'em.
Enter Sir Francis Gripe and Sir George Airy.
Sir Fran.
Verily, Sir George, thou wilt repent throwing a way thy Money so, for I tell thee sincerely, Miranda, my Charge do's not love a young Fellow, they are all vicious, and seldom make good Husbands; in sober Sadness she can not abide 'em.
Miran.
(Peeping.) In sober Sadness you are mistaken—what can this mean?
Sir Geo.
Look ye, Sir Francis, whether she can or cannot abide young Fellows is not the Business; will you take the fifty Guineas?
Sir Fran.
In good truth—I will not, for I knew thy Fa ther, he was a hearty wary Man, and I cannot consent that his Son should squander away what he sav'd, to no purpose.
Mirand.
(Peeping.) Now, in the Name of Wonder, what Bargain can he be driving about me for fifty Guineas?
Patch.
I wish it ben't for the first Nights Lodging, Madam.
Sir Geo.
Well, Sir Francis, since you are so conscientious for my Father's sake, then permit me the Favour, Gratis.
Miran.
(Peeping.) The Favour! O' my Life, I believe 'tis as you said, Patch.
Sir Fran.
No verily, if thou dost not buy thy Experience, thou wilt never be wise; therefore give me a Hundred and try Fortune.
Sir Geo.
The Scruples arose, I find, from the scanty Sum—Let me see—a Hundred Guineas— (Takes 'em out of a Purse and chinks 'em.) Ha! they have a very pretty Sound, and a very pleasing Look—But then, Miranda— But if she should be cruel—
Miran.
(Peeping.) As Ten to One I shall—
Sir Fran.
Ay, do consider on't, He, he, he, he.
Sir Geo.
No, I'll do't.
Patch.
Do't, what, whether you will or no, Madam?
Sir Geo.
Come to the Point, here's the Gold, sum up the Condition—
Sir Fran.
Miran.
(Peeping.) Ay for Heaven's sake do, for my Ex pectation is on the Rack.
Sir Fran.
Well at your own Peril be it.
Sir Geo.
Aye, aye, go on.
Sir Fran.
Imprimis, you are to be admitted into my House in order to move your Suit to Miranda, for the space of Ten Minutes, without Lett or Molestation, provided I remain in the same Room.
Sir Geo.
But out of Ear shot—
Sir Fran.
Well, well, I don't desire to hear what yousay, Ha, ha, ha, in consideration I am to have that Purse and a hundred Guineas.
Sir Geo.
Take it —Gives him the Purse,
Miran.
(Peeping.) So, 'tis well it's no worse, I'll fit you both—
Sir Geo.
And this Agreement is to be perform'd to Day.
Sir Fran.
Aye, aye, the sooner the better, poor Fool, how Miranda and I shall laugh at him—Well, Sir George, Ha, ha, ha, take the last sound of your Guineas, Ha, ha, ha. (Chinks 'em.)
Miran.
(Peeping.) Sure he does not know I am Miranda.
Sir Geo.
A very extraordinary Bargain I have made truly, if she should be really in Love with this old Cuff now—Psha, that's morally impossible—but then what hopes have I to succeed, I never spoke to her—
Miran.
(Peeping.) Say you so? Then I am safe.
Sir Geo.
What tho' my Tongue never spoke, my Eyes said a thousand Things, and my Hopes flatter'd me hers answer'd 'em. If I'm lucky—if not, 'tis but a hundred Guineas thrown away.
Miran.
Upon what Sir George?
Sir Geo.
Ha! my Incognito— upon a Woman, Madam.
Miran.
They are the worst things you can deal in, and damage the soonest; your very Breath destroys 'em, and I fear you'll never see your Return, Sir George, Ha, ha!
Sir Geo.
Were they more brittle than China, and drop'd to pieces with a Touch, every Atom of her I have ventur'd at if she is but Mistress of thy Wit, balances Ten times the Sum—Prithee let me see thy Face.
Miran.
By no means, that may spoil your Opinion of my Sense—
Sir Geo.
Rather confirm it, Madam.
Patch.
So rob the Lady of your Gallantry, Sir.
Sir Geo.
No Child, a Dish of Chocolate in the Morning never spoils my Dinner; the other Lady, I design a set Meal; so there's no danger—
Miran.
Matrimony! Ha, ha, ha; what Crimes have you committed against the God of Love, that he should revenge 'em so severely to stamp Husband upon your Forehead—
Sir Geo.
For my Folly in having so often met you here, without pursuing the Laws of Nature, and exercising her command—But I resolve e'er we part now, to know who you are, where you live, and what kind of Flesh and Blood your Face is; therefore unmask and don't put me to the trouble of doing it for you.
Miran.
My Face is the same Flesh and Blood with my Hand, Sir George, which if you'll be so rude to provoke.
Sir Geo.
You'll apply it to my Cheek—The Ladies Fa vours are always Welcome; but I must have that Cloud with drawn. (Taking hold of her) Remember you are in the Park, Child, and what a terrible thing would it be to lose this pretty white Hand.
Miran.
And how will it sound in a Chocolate-House; that Sir George Airy rudely pull'd off a Ladies Mask, when he had given her his Honour, that he never would, directly or in directly endeavour to know her till she gave him Leave.
Patch.
I wish we were safe out.
Sir Geo.
But if that Lady thinks fit to pursue and meet me at every turn like some troubled Spirit, shall I be blam'd 12 if I inquire into the Reality? I would have nothing dissa tisfy'd in a Female Shape.
Miran.
What shall I do? (Pause.
Sir Geo.
Ay, prithee consider, for thou shalt find me very much at thy Service.
Batch.
Suppose, Sir, the Lady should be in Love with you.
Sir Geo.
Oh! I'll return the Obligation in a Moment.
Patch.
And marry her?
Sir Geo.
Ha, ha, ha, that's not the way to love her, Child.
Miran.
If he discovers me I shall die—Which way shall I escape?—Let me see. (Pauses.)
Sir Geo.
Well, Madam—
Miran.
I have it—Sir George, 'tis fit you should allow something; if you'll excuse my Face, and turn your Back (if you look upon me I shall sink, even mask'd as I am) I will confess why I have engaged you so often, who I am, and where I live?
Sir Geo.
Well, to shew you I'm a Man of Honour I accept the Conditions. Let me but once know those, and the Face won't be long a Secret to me.
Patch.
What mean you, Madam?
Miran.
To get off.
Sir Geo.
'Tis something indecent to turn ones Back upon a Lady; but you command and I obey. (Turns his Back.) Come, Madam, begin—
Miran.
First then it was my unhappy Lot to see you at Paris. (Draws back a little while and speaks) at a Ball upon a Birth-day; your Shape and Air charm'd my Eyes; your Wit and Complaisance my Soul, and from that fatal Night I lov'd you. (Drawing back.) And when you left the Place, Grief seiz'd me so—No Rest my Heart, no Sleep my Eyes cou'd know.— Last I resolv'd a hazardous Point to try, And quit the Place in search of Liberty.
Sir Geo.
Excellent—I hope she's Handsome—Well, Now, Madam, to the other two Things: Your Name, and where you live?—I am a Gentleman, and this Confessi on will not be lost upon me.—Nay, prithee don't weep, but go on—for I find my Heart melts in thy Behalf—speak quickly or I shall turn about—Not yet.—Poor Lady, she expects I shou'd comfort her; and to do her Justice, she has said enough to encourage me. (Turns about.) Ha? gone! The Devil, jilted? Why, what a Tale has she invent ed—of Paris, Balls, and Birth-Days.—Egad I'd give Ten Guineas to know who this Gipsie is.—A Curse of my Folly—I deserve to lose her; what Woman can forgive a Man that turns his Back. The Bold and Resolute, in Love and War, To Conquer take the Right, and swiftest Way; The boldest Lover soonest gains the Fair, As Courage makes the rudest Force obey, Take no denial, and the Dames adore ye, Closely pursue them and they fall before ye.
The End of the First ACT.
14 ACT the Second. Enter Sir Francis Gripe, Miranda.
Sir Fran.
HA, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha.
Miran.
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha; Oh, I shall die with Laughing.—The most Romantick Adventure: Ha, ha! What does the odious young Fop mean? A Hundred Pieces to talk an Hour with me; Ha, ha.
Sir Fran.
And I am to be by too; there's the Jest: Adod, if it had been in Private, I shou'd not have car'd to trust the young dog.
Mirand.
Indeed and Indeed, but you might Gardy— Now methinks there's no Body Handsomer than you: So Neat, so Clean, so Good-Humour'd, and so Loving.—
Sir Fran.
Pritty Rogue, Pritty Rogue, and so thou shalt find me, if thou do'st prefer thy Gardy before these Caperers of the Age, thou shalt out-shine the Queen's Box on an Opera Night; thou shalt be the Envy of the Ring (for I will carry thee to Hide-Park ) and thy Equipage shall Surpass, the what—d'ye call 'em Ambassadors.
Miran.
Nay, I'm sure the Discreet Part of my Sex will Envy me more for the Inside Furniture, when you are in it, than my Outside Equipage.
Sir Fran.
A Cunning Baggage, a faith thou art, and a wise one too; and to shew thee thou hast not chose amiss, I'll this moment disinherit my Son, and Settle my whole Estate up on thee.
Miran.
There's and old Rogue now: (Aside.) No, Gardy, I would not have your Name be so Black in the World—You know my Father's Will runs, that I am not to possess my Estate, without your Consent, till I'm Five and Twenty; you shall only abate the odd Seven Years, and make me Mi stress of my Estate to Day, and I'll make you Master of my Person to Morrow.
Sir Fran.
Humph? that may not be safe—No, Chargy, I'll Settle it upon thee for Pin-money; and that will be every bit as well, thou know'st.
Miran.
Unconscionable old Wretch, Bribe me with my own Money—Which way shall I get out of his Hands? (Aside.
Sir Fran.
Well what art thou thinking on, my Girl, ha? How to banter Sir George?
Miran.
I must not pretend to banter: He knows my Tongue too well: (Aside.) No, Gardy, I have thought of a way will confound him more than all I cou'd say, if I shou'd talk to him Seven Years.
Sir Fran.
How's that? Oh! I'm Transported, I'm Ravish'd, I'm Mad—
Miran.
It wou'd make you Mad, if you knew all, (Aside.) I'll not answer him one Word, but be Dumb to all he says—
Sir Fran.
Dumb, good; Ha, ha, ha. Excellent, ha, ha, I think I have you now, Sir George, Dumb! he'll go Di stracted—Well, she's the wittiest Rogue—Ha, ha, Dumb! I can but laugh, ha, ha, to think how damn'd Mad he'll be when he finds he has given his Money away for a Dumb Show. Ha, ha, ha.
Miran.
Nay, Gardy, if he did but know my Thoughts of him, it wou'd make him ten times Madder: Ha, ha, ha.
Sir Fran.
Ay, so it wou'd Chargy, to hold him in such Derision, to scorn to answer him, to be Dumb: Ha, ha, ha, ha.
Enter Charles.
Sir Fran.
How now, Sirrah, Who let you in?
Char.
My Necessity, Sir.
Sir Fran.
Sir, your Necessities are very Impertinent, and ought to have sent before they Entred.
Char.
Sir, I knew 'twas a Word wou'd gain Admittance no where.
Sir Fran.
Then, Sirrah, how durst you Rudely thrust that upon your Father, which no Body else wou'd admit?
Char.
Sure the Name of a Son is a sufficient Plea. I ask this Lady's Pardon if I have intruded.
Sir Fran.
Ay, Ay, ask her Pardon and her Blessing too, if you expect any thing from me.
Miran.
I believe yours, Sir Francis, in a Purse of Guinea's wou'd be more material. Your Son may have Business with you, I'll retire.
Sir Fran.
I guess his Business, but I'll dispatch him; I ex pect the Knight every Minute: You'll be in Readiness.
Miran.
Certainly! my Expectation is more upon the Wing than yours, old Gentleman.
Sir Fran.
Well, Sir!
Char.
Nay, it is very Ill, Sir; my Circumstances are, I'm sure.
Sir Fran.
And what's that to me, Sir: Your Management shou'd have made them better.
Char.
If you please to intrust me with the Management of my Estate, I shall endeavour it, Sir.
Sir Fran.
What to set upon a Card, and buy a Lady's Fa vour at the Price of a Thousand Pieces, to rig out an Equi page for a Wench, or by your carelessness enrich your Stew ard to fine for Sheriff, or put up for Parliament-Man.
Char.
I hope I shou'd not spend it this way: However, I ask only for what my Uncle left me; Your's you may dis pose of as you please, Sir.
Sir Fran.
That I shall, out of your Reach, I assure you, Sir. Adod these young Fellows think old Men get Estates for no thing but them to squander away, in Dicing, Wenching, Drinking, Dressing, and so forth.
Char.
I think I was born a Gentleman, Sir; I'm sure my Uncle bred me like one.
Sir Fran.
From which you wou'd infer, Sir, that Gaming, Whoring, and the Pox, are requisits to a Gentleman.
Char.
Monstrous! when I wou'd ask him only for a Sup port, he falls into these unmannerly Reproaches; I must, tho' against my Will, employ Invention, and by Stratagem relieve my self (Aside.
Sir Fran.
Sirrah, what is it you mutter, Sirrah, ha? (Holds up his Cane.) I say, you shan't have a Groat out of my Hands till I please—and may be I'll never Please, and what's that to you?
Char.
Nay, to be Robb'd, or have one's Throat Cut is not much—
Sir Fran.
What's that, Sirrah? wou'd ye Rob me, or Cut my Throat, ye Rogue?
Char.
Heaven forbid, Sir,—I said no such thing.
Sir Fran.
Mercy on me! What a Plague it is to have a Son of One and Twenty, who wants to Elbow one out of one's Life, to Edge himself into the Estate.
Enter Marplot.
Marpl.
Egad he's here—I was afraid I had lost him: His Secret cou'd not be with his Father, his Wants are Publick there—Guardian,—your Servant Charles, I know by that sorrowful Countenance of thine. The old Man's Fist is as close as his strong Box—But I'll help thee—
Sir Fran.
So: Here's another extravagant Coxcomb, that will spend his Fortune before he comes to't; but he shall pay swinging Interest, and so let the Fool go on—Well, what do's Necessity bring you too, Sir?
Marpl.
You have hit it, Guardian—I want a Hundred Pound.
Sir Fran.
For what?
Marpl.
Po'gh, for a Hundred Things. I can't for my Life tell you for what.
Char.
Sir, I suppose I have received all the Answer I am like to have.
Marpl.
Oh, the Devil, if he gets out before me, I shall lose him agen.
Sir Fran.
Ay, Sir, and you may be marching as soon as you please—I must see a Change in your Temper e'er you find one in mine.
Marpl.
Pray, Sir, dispatch me; the Money, Sir, I'm in mighty haste.
Sir Fran.
Fool, take this and go to the Cashier; I shan't be long plagu'd with thee. (Gives him a Note.
Marpl.
Devil take the Cashier, I shall certainly have Charles gone before I come back agen. (Rams out.
Char.
Well, Sir, I take my Leave—But remember, you expose an only Son to all the Miseries of wretched Po verty, which too often lays the Plan for Scenes of Mis chief.
Sir Fran.
Stay Charles, I have a sudden Thought come in to my Head, may prove to thy Advantage.
Char.
Ha, does he Relent?
Sir Fran.
My Lady Wrinkle, worth Forty Thousand Pound, sets up for a Handsome young Husband; she prais'd thee t'other Day; tho' the Match-makers can get Twenty Guinea's for a sight of her, I can introduce thee for nothing.
Char.
My Lady Wrinkle, Sir, why she has but one Eye.
Sir Fran.
Then she'll see but half your Extravagance, Sir.
Char.
Condemn me to such a piece of Deformity! Tooth less, Dirty, Wry-neck'd, Hunch-back'd Hag.
Sir Fran.
Hunch-back'd! so much the better, then she has a Rest for her Misfortunes; for thou wilt Load her swing ingly. Now I warrant you think, this is no Offer of a Fa ther; Forty Thousand Pound is nothing with you.
Char.
Yes, Sir, I think it is too much; a young Beautiful Woman with half the Money wou'd be more agreeable. I thank you, Sir, but you chose better for your self, I find.
Sir Fran.
Out of my Doors, you Dog; you pretend to med dle with my Marriage, Sirrah!
Char.
Sir, I obey: But—
Sir Fran.
But me no Buts—Be gone, Sir: Dare to ask me for Money agen—Refuse Forty Thousand Pound! Out of my Doors, I say, without Reply.
Enter Servant.
Serv.
One Sir George Airy enquires for you, Sir.
19 Enter Marplot Running.
Marpl.
Ha? gone! Is Charles gone, Guardian?
Sir Fran.
Yes; and I desire your wise Worship to walk af ter him.
Marpl.
Nay, Egad, I shall Run, I tell you but that. Ah, Pox of the Cashier for detaining me so long, where the De vil shall I find him now. I shall certainly lose this Se cret.
Sir Fran.
What is the Fellow distracted?—Desire Sir George to walk up—Now for a Trial of Skill that will make me Happy, and him a Fool: Ha, ha, ha, in my Mind he looks like an Ass already,
Enter Sir George.
Sir Fran.
Well, Sir George, Dee ye hold in the same Mind? or wou'd you Capitulate? Ha, ha, ha: Look here are the Guinea's, (Chincks them.) Ha, ha, ha.
Sir Geo.
Not if they were twice the Sum, Sir Francis: Therefore be brief, call in the Lady, and take your Post—if she's a Woman, and not seduc'd by Witchcraft to this old Rogue, I'll make his Heart ake; for if she has but one Grain of Inclination about her, I'll vary a Thousand Shapes, but find it. (Aside.
Enter Miranda.
Sir Fran.
Agreed —Miranda. There Sir George, try your Fortune, (Takes out his Watch.)
Sir Geo.
So from the Eastern Chambers breaks the Sun, Dispels the Clouds, and gilds the Vales below. (Salutes her.
Sir Fran.
Hold, Sir, Kissing was not in our Agreement.
Sir Geo.
Oh! That's by way of Prologue:—Prithee, Old Mammon, to thy Post.
Sir Fran.
Well, young Timon, 'tis now Four exactly; one Hour, remember, is your utmost Limit, not a Minute more. (Retires to the bottom of the Stage.
Sir Geo.
Madam, whether you'll Excuse or Blame my Love the Author of this rash Proceeding depends upon your Pleasure, as also the Life of your Admirer; your 20 sparkling Eyes speak a Heart susceptible of Love; your Vivacity a Soul too delicate to admit the Embraces of decay'd Mortality.
Miran.
(Aside.) Oh, that I durst speak—
Sir Geo.
Shake off this Tyrant Guardian 's Yoke, assume your self, and dash his bold aspiring Hopes; the Deity of his Desires, is Avarice; a Heretick in Love, and ought to be ba nanish'd by the Queen of Beauty. See, Madam, a faithful Servant kneels, and begs to be admitted in the Number of your Slaves.
Sir. Fran.
I wish I cou'd hear what he says now. (Running up.) Hold, hold, hold, no Palming, that's contrary to Arti cles—
Sir Geo.
Death, Sir, Keep your Distance, or I'll write ano ther Article in your Guts. (Lays his Hand to his Sword.)
Sir Fran.
(Going back.) A Bloody-minded Fellow!—
Sir Geo.
Not answer me! Perhaps she thinks my Address too grave: I'll be more free—Can you be so unconsciona ble, Madam, to let me say all these fine things to you with out one single Compliment in Return? View me well, am I not a proper Handsome Fellow, ha? Can you prefer that old, dry, wither'd, sapless Log of Sixty-five, to the vigorous, gay, sprightly Love of Twenty-four? With snoring only he'll awake thee, but I with ravishing Delight wou'd make thy Sen ses dance in Consort with the joyful Minutes—ha? Not yet? Sure she is dumb—Thus woul'd I steal and touch thy Beauteous Hand, (Takes hold of her Hand) till by degrees I reach'd thy snowy Breasts, then ravish Kisses thus, (Embraces her in Ecstasie.
Miran.
(Struggles and flings from him) O Heavens! I shall not be able to contain my self. (Aside.
Sir Fran.
(Running up with his Watch in his Hand) Sure she did not speak to him—There's Three Quarters of the Hour gone, Sir George— Adod, I don't like those close Conferences—
Sir Geo.
More Interruptions—You will have it, Sir, (Lays his Hand to his Sword.
Sir Fran.
(Going back.) No, no, you shan't have her nei ther. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Dumb still—Sure this old Dog has enjoin'd her silence; I'll try another way—I must conclude, Ma dam, that in Compliance to your Guardian's Humour, you refuse to answer me—Consider the Injustice of his In junction. This single Hour cost me a hundred Pound—and wou'd you answer me, I could purchase the 24 so: How ever, Madam, you must give me leave to make the best Inter pretation I can for my Money, and take the Indication of your silence for the secret Liking of my Person: Therefore, Ma dam, I will instruct you how to keep your Word inviolate to Sir Francis, and yet answer me to every Question: As for Example, When I ask any thing to which you would reply in the Affirmative, gently Nod your Head—thus; and when in the Negative, thus; (Shakes his Head) and in the doubtful, a tender Sigh, thus, (Sighs.
Miran.
How every Action charms me—but I'll fit him for Signs I warrant him. (Aside.
Sir. Fran.
Ha, ha, ha, ha, poor Sir George, Ha, ha, ha, ha. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Was it by his desire that you are dumb, Madam, to all that I can say?
Miran.
Sir Geo.
Very well! she's tractable I find—And is it possible that you can love him? Miraculous! ( Miran. Nods.) Pardon the bluntness of my Questions, for my Time is short; may I not hope to supplant him in your Esteem? ( Miran. Sighs.) Good; she answers me as I could wish—You'll not consent to marry him then? ( Miran. Sighs) How, doubtful in that—Undone again—Humph! but that may proceed from his Power to keep her out of her Estate till Twenty-five; I'll try that—Come, Madam, I can not think you hesitate on this Affair out of any Motive but your Fortune—Let him keep it till those few Years are expir'd; make me happy with your Person, let him enjoy your Wealth— ( Miran. holds up her Hands.) Why, 22 what Sign is that now? Nay, nay, Madam, except you ob serve my Lesson, I can't understand your meaning—
Sir Fran.
What a Vengeance, are they talking by Signs, 'ad I may be fool'd here; what do you mean Sir George?
Sir Geo.
To cut your Throat if you dare Mutter another Syllable.
Sir Fran.
Od! I wish he were fairly out of my House.
Sir Geo.
Pray, Madam will you answer me to the Purpose? ( Miran. shakes her Head, and points to Sir Francis.) What! does she mean she won't answer me to the Purpose, or is she afraid yon' old Cuff shou'd understand her Signs?—Aye, it must be that, I perceive Madam, you are too appre hensive of the Promise you have made to follow my Rules; therefore I'll suppose your Mind and answer for you—First, for my self, Madam, that I am in Love with you is an infallible Truth. Now for you: (Turns on her side.) In deed, Sir, and may I believe it—As certainly, Madam, as that 'tis Day-light, or that I Die if you persist in Silence—Bless me with the Musick of your Voice, and raise my Spirits to their proper Heaven: Thus low let me intreat; e'er I'm oblig'd to quit this Place, grant me some Token of a favourable Reception to keep my Hopes alive. (Arises hastily turns of her side.) Rise, Sir, and since my Guardian's Pre sence will not allow me Privilege of Tongue, Read that and rest assured you are not indifferent to me. (Offers her a Letter.) Ha! right Woman! But no (she strikes it down) matter, I'll go on.
Sir Fran.
Ha! what's that a Letter—Ha, ha, ha, thou art baulk'd.
Miran.
The best Assurance I ever saw— (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Ha? a Letter, Oh! let me Kiss it with the same Raptures that I would do the dear Hand that touch'd it. (Opens it.) Now for a quick Fancy, and a long Extempore— What's here? (Reads.) "Dear, Sir George, this Virgin Muse I consecrte to you, which when it has re ceived the Addition of your Voice, 'twill charm me into Desire of Liberty to Love, which you, and only you can 23 "fix. My Angel! Oh you transport me! (Kisses the Letter.) And see the Power of your Command; the God of Love has set the Verse already; the flowing Numbers Dance into a Tune, and I'm inspir'd with a Voice to sing it.
Miran.
I'm sure thou art inspir'd with Impudence enough.
Sir Geo.
Great Love inspire him; Say I admire him. Give me the Lover That can discover Secret Devotion From silent Motion; Then don't betray me, But hence convey me.
Sir Geo.
(Taking hold of Miranda. ) With all my Heart, this Moment let's Retire.
Sir Fran.
The Hour is expir'd, Sir, and you must take your leave. There, my Girl, there's the Hundred Pounds, which thou hast won, go, I'll be with you presently, Ha, ha, ha, ha.
Sir Geo.
Ads Heart, Madam, you won't leave me just in the Nick, will you?
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, ha, she has nick'd you, Sir George, I think, Ha, ha, ha: Have ye any more Hundred Pounds to throw away upon Courtship, Ha, ha, ha,
Sir Geo.
He, he, he, he, a Curse of your fleering Jests—Yet, however ill I succeeded, I'll venture the same Wager, she does not value thee a spoonful of Snuff—Nay more, though you enjoin'd her Silence to me, you'll never make her speak to the Purpose with your self.
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, ha, did not I tell thee thou would'st re pent thy Money? Did not I say she hated young Fellows, Ha, ha, ha.
Sir Geo.
And I'm positive she's not in Love with Age.
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, no matter for that, Ha, ha, she's not taken with your Youth, nor your Rhetorick to boot, ha, ha.
Sir Geo.
Whate'er her Reasons are for disliking of me, I am certain she can be taken with nothing about thee.
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, ha; how he swells with Envy!—Poor Man, poor Man—Ha, ha; I must beg your Pardon, Sir George; Miranda will be impatient to have her share of Mirth: Verily we shall laugh at thee most egregiously; Ha, ha, ha.
Sir Geo.
With all my Heart, faith—I shall laugh in my turn too—For if you dare marry her, old Belzebub, you would be Cuckolded most egregiously; Remember that, and Tremble— She that to Age her Beauteous Self resigns, Shews witty Management for close Designs. Then if thou'rt grac'd with fair Miranda 's Bed, Actaeon 's Horns she means shall crown thy Head.
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, ha; he is mad. These fluttering Fops imagine they can Wind, Turn, and Decoy to Love all Women-kind: But here's a Proof of Wisdom in my Charge, Old Men are Constant, Young Men live at large. The Frugal Hand can Bills at Sight defray, When he that Lavish is, has Nought to pay.
SCENE Changes to Sir Jealous Traffick 's House. Enter Sir Jealous, Isabinda, Patch following.
Sir Jeal.
What in the Balcone agen, notwithstanding my positive Commands to the contrary!—Why don't you write a Bill upon your Fore-head, to show Passengers there's some thing to be let—
Isab.
What harm can there be in a little fresh Air, Sir?
Sir Jeal.
Is your Constitution so hot, Mistress, that it wants Cooling, ha? Apply the virtuous Spanish Rules, banish your Taste, and Thoughts of Flesh, feed upon Roots, and quench your Thrist with Water.
Isab.
That and a close Room wou'd certainly make me die of the Vapours.
Sir Jeal.
No, Mistress, 'tis your High-fed, Lusty, Rambling, Rampant Ladies—that are troubled with the Vapours; 'tis your Ratifia, Persico, Cinnamon, Citron, and Spirit of Clary, cause such Swi—m—ing in the Brain, that carries many a Guinea full-tide to the Doctor. But you are not to be bred this way; no Galloping abroad, no receiving Visits at home; for in our loose Country, the Women are as dangerous as the Men.
Patch.
So I told her, Sir; and that it was not Decent to be seen in a Balcone—But she threatned to slap my Chaps, and told me, I was her Servant, not her Governess.
Sir Jeal.
Did she so? But I'll make her to know, that you are her Duenna: Oh that incomparable Custom of Spain! why here's no depending upon old Women in my Country—for they are as wanton at Eighty, as a Girl of Eighteen; and a Man may as safely trust to Asgill 's Translation, as to his great Grand-Mother's not marrying agen.
Isab.
Or to the Spanish Ladies Veils and Duennas, for the Safeguard of their Honour.
Sir Jeal.
Dare to ridicule the cautious Conduct of that wise Nation, and I'll have you lock'd up this Fortnight without a Peep-hole.
Isab.
If we had but the Ghostly Helps in England, which they have in Spain, I might deceive you if you did.—Sir, 'tis not the Restraint, but the Innate Principles, secures the Reputation and Honour of our Sex—Let me tell you, Sir, Confinement sharpens the Invention, as want of Sight strengthens the other Senses, and is often more pernicious, than the Recreation innocent Liberty allows.
Sir Jeal.
Say you so, Mistress; who the Devil taught you the Art of Reasoning? I assure you, they must have a greater Faith than I pretend to, that can think any Woman innocent who requires Liberty. Therefore, Patch, to your Charge I give her; Lock her up till I come back from Change: I shall have some sauntring Coxcomb, with nothing but a Red Coat and a Feather, think, by Leaping into her Arms, to Leap into my Estate—But I'll prevent them; she shall be only Signeur Babinetto 's.
Patch.
Really, Sir, I wish you wou'd employ any Body else in this Affair; I lead a Life like a Dog with obeying your Commands. Come, Madam, will you please to be Lock'd up.
Isab.
Ay, to enjoy more Freedom than he is aware of. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
I believe this Wench is very true to my Interest: I am happy I met with her, if I can but keep my Daughter from being blown upon till Signeur Babinetto arrives; who shall marry her as soon as he comes, and carry her to Spain as soon as he has married her; she has a pregnant Wit, and I'd no more have her an English Wife, than the Grand Sig nior's Mistress. (Exit.
Enter Whisper.
Whisp.
So, I see Sir Jealous go out; where shall I find Mrs. Patch now.
Enter Patch.
Patch.
Oh Mr. Whisper, my Lady saw you out at the Win dow, and order'd me to bid you fly, and let your Master know she's now alone.
Whisp.
Hush, speak softly; I go, I go: But hark'e Mrs. Patch, shall not you and I have a little Confabulation, when my Master and your Lady is engag'd?
Patch.
Ay, ay, Farewel. (Goes in and shuts the Door.
Re-enter Sir Jealous Traffick meeting Whisper.
Sir Jeal.
Sure whilst I was talking with Mr. Tradewel, I heard my Door clap. (Seeing Whisper. ) Ha! a Man lurking about my House; who do you want there, Sir?
Whisp.
Want—want, a pox, Sir Jealous! what must I say now?—
Sir Jeal.
Ay, want; have you a Letter or Message for any Body there?—O my Conscience, this is some He-Bawd—
Whisp.
Letter or Message, Sir!
Sir Jeal.
Ay, Letter or Message, Sir.
Whisp.
No, not I, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
Sirrah, Sirrah, I'll have you set in the Stocks, if you do'nt tell me your Business immediately.
Whisp.
Nay, Sir, my Business—is no great matter of Bu siness neither; and yet 'tis Business of Consequence too.
Sir Jeal.
Sirrah, don't trifle with me.
Whisp.
Trifle, Sir, have you found him, Sir?
Sir Jeal.
Found what, you Rascal.
Whisp.
Why Trifle is the very Lap-Dog my Lady lost, Sir; I fancy'd I see him run into this House. I'm glad you have him—Sir, my Lady will be overjoy'd that I have found him.
Sir Jeal.
Who is your Lady Friend?
Whisp.
My Lady Love-puppy, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
My Lady Love-puppy! then prithee carry thy self to her, for I know no other Whelp that belongs to her; and let me catch ye no more Puppy-hunting about my Doors, lest I have you prest into the Service, Sirrah.
Whisp.
By no means, Sir—Your humble Servant; I must watch whether he goes, or no, before I can tell my Ma ster. (Exit.
Sir Jeal.
This Fellow has the Officious Leer of a Pimp; and I half suspect a Design, but I'll be upon them before they think on me, I warrant 'em (Exit.
SCENE Charles 's Lodging. Enter Charles and Marplot.
Char.
Honest Marplot, I thank thee for this Supply; I ex pect my Lawyer with a Thousand Pound I have order'd him to take up, and then you shall be repaid.
Marpl.
Pho, pho, no more of that: Here comes Sir George Airy—
Enter Sir George. Cursedly out of Humour at his Disappointment; see how he looks! Ha, ha, ha.
Sir Geo.
Ah, Charles, I am so humbled in my Pretensions to Plots upon Women, that I believe I shall never have Cou rage enough to attempt a Chamber-maid agen.—I'll tell thee.
Char.
Ha ha; I'll spare you the Relation by telling you—Impatient to know your Business with my Father, when I saw you Enter, I slipt back into the next Room, where I over heard every Syllable.
Sir Geo.
That I said—But I'll be hang'd if you heard her Answer—But prithee tell me, Charles, is she a Fool?
Char.
I ne'er suspected her for one; but Marplot can in form you better, if you'll allow him a Judge.
Marpl.
A Fool! I'll justifie she has more Wit than all the rest of her Sex put together; why she'll Rally me, till I han't one word to say for my self.
Char.
A mighty Proof of her Wit truly—
Marpl.
There must be some Trick in't, Sir George, Egad I'll find it out if it cost me the Sum you paid for't.
Sir Geo.
Do and Command me—
Marpl.
Enough, let me alone to Trace a Secret.— The Devil! Whisper here agen, that Fellow never speaks out; is this the same, or a new Secret? Sir George, won't you ask Charles what News Whisper brings?
Sir Geo.
Not I, Sir; I suppose it does not relate to me.
Marpl.
Lord, Lord, how little Curiosity some People have! Now my chief Pleasure lies in knowing every Body's Busi ness.
Sir Geo.
I fancy, Charles, thou hast some Engagement up on thy Hands: I have a little Business too. Marplot, if it falls in your way to bring me any Intelligence from Miranda, you'll find me at the Thatch'd House at Six—
Marpl.
You do me much Honour.
Char.
You guess right, Sir George, wish me Success.
Sir Geo.
Better than attended me. Adieu.
Char.
Marplot, you must Excuse me—
Marpl.
Nay, nay, what need of any Excuse amongst Friends! I'll go with you.
Char.
Indeed you must not.
Marpl.
No, then I suppose 'tis a Duel, and I will go to se cure ye.
Char.
Secure me? Why you won't fight?
Marpl.
What then! I can call People to part ye.
Char.
Well but it is no Duel, consequently no Danger. Therefore prithee be answer'd.
Marpl.
What is't a Mistress then?—Mum—You know I can be silent upon occasion.
Char.
I wish you could be civil too: I tell you, You nei ther must nor shall go with me. Farewel.
Marpl.
Why then—I must and will follow you.
The End of the Second Act.
ACT the Third. Enter Charles.
Char.
WELL, here's the House, which holds the lovely Prize quiet and serene; here no noisy Footmen throng to tell the World, that Beauty dwells within; no Ce remonious Visit makes the Lover wait; no Rival to give my Heart a Pang; who would not scale the Window at Midnight without fear of the jealous Father's Pistol, rather than fill up the Train of a Coquet, where every Minute he is jostled out of Place. (Knocks fostly.) Mrs. Patch. Mrs. Patch.
Enter Patch.
Patch.
Oh, are you come, Sir? All's safe.
Char.
So in, in then.
30 Enter Marplot.
Marpl.
There he goes: Who the Devil lives here? Except I can find out that, I am as far from knowing his Business as ever; gad I'll watch, it may be a Bawdy-House, and he may have his Throat cut, if there shou'd be any Mischief, I can make Oath he went in. Well, Charles, in spight of your Endeavour to keep me out of the Secret, I may save your Life for ought I know: At that Corner I'll plant my self, there I shall see whoever goes in, or comes out. Gad, I love Discoveries. (Exit.
SCENE Draws. Charles, Isabinda, and Patch.
Isab.
Patch. look out sharp; have a care of Dad.
Patch.
I warrant you.
Isab.
Well, Sir, if I may judge your Love by your Courage, I ought to believe you sincere; for you venture into the Lions Den when you come to see me.
Char.
If you'd consent whilst the furious Beast is abroad, I'd free you from the Reach of his Paws.
Isab.
That would be but to avoid one Danger by running into another; like the poor Wretches who fly the Burning Ship, and meet their Fate in the Water. Come, come, Charles, I fear if I consult my Reason, Confinement and Plenty is bet ter than Liberty and starving. I know you'd make the Fro lick pleasing for a little time, by saying and doing a World of tender things; but when our small Substance is once ex hausted, and a Thousand Requisits for Life are wanting, Love, who rarely dwells with Poverty, wou'd also fail us.
Char.
Faith, I fancy not; methinks my Heart has laid up a Stock will last for Life; to back which, I have taken a Thousand Pound upon my Uncle's Estate; that surely will support us, till one of our Fathers relent.
Isab.
There's no trusting to that my Friend, I doubt your Father will carry his Humour to the Grave, and mine till he sees me settled in Spain.
Char.
And can ye then cruelly resolve to stay till that 31 curs'd Don arrives, and suffer that Youth, Beauty, Fire and Wit to be sacrific'd to the Arms of a dull Spaniard, to be im mur'd and forbid the sight of any thing that's Humane.
Isab.
No, when it comes to the Extremity, and no Strata gem can relieve us, thou shalt list for a Soldier, and I'll carry thy Knapsack after thee.
Char.
Bravely resolv'd; the World cannot be more savage than our Parents, and Fortune generally assists the Bold; therefore consent now: Why should we put it to a future Hazard? Who knows when we shall have another Oppor tunity?
Isab.
Oh you have your Ladder of Ropes, I suppose, and the Closet Window stands just where it did; and if you han't forgot to write in Characters, Patch will find a way for our Assignations. Thus much of the Spanish Contrivance my Fa ther's Severity has taught me, I thank him; tho' I hate the Nation, I admire their Management in these Affairs.
Enter Patch.
Patch.
Oh, Madam, I see my Master coming up the Street.
Char.
Oh the Devil, wou'd I had my Ladder now, I thought you had not expected him till Night; why, why, why, why, what shall I do; Madam?
Isab.
Oh! for Heaven's sake! don't go that way, you'll meet him full in the Teeth: Oh unlucky Moment!—
Char.
Adsheart, can you shut me into no Cupboard, Ram me into no Chest, ha?
Patch.
Impossible, Sir, he searches every Hole in the House.
Isab.
Undone for ever! if he sees you, I shall never fee you more.
Patch.
I have thought on't: Run you to your Chamber, Madam; and Sir, come you along with me, I'm certain you may easily get down from the Balcone.
Char.
My Life, Adieu— Lead on, Guide.
Isab.
Heaven preserve him.
32 SCENE Changes to the Street. Enter Sir Jealous, with Marplot behind him.
Sir Jeal.
I don't know what's the matter, but I have a strong suspicion all is not right within; that Fellow's sauntring about my Door, and his Tale of a Puppy had the Face of a Lye methought. By St. Jago, if I should find a Man in the House, I'd make Mince-meat of him—
Marpl.
Ah poor Charles— ha? Agad he is old—I fancy I might bully him, and make Charles have an Opinion of my Courage.
Sir Jeal.
My own Key shall let me in; I'll give them no Warning. (Feeling for his Key.
Marpl.
What's that you say, Sir? (Going up to Sir Jealous.
Sir Jeal.
What's that to you, Sir? (Turns quick upon him.
Marpl.
Yes, 'tis to me Sir; for the Gentleman you threaten is a very honest Gentleman. Look to't; for if he comes not as safe out of your House as he went in, I have half a dozen Mirmidons hard by shall beat it about your Ears.
Sir Jeal.
Went in? What is he in then? Ah! a Combination to undo me—I'll Mirmidon you, ye Dog you—Thieves, Thieves. (Beats Marplot all this while he cries Thieves.
Marpl.
Murder, Murder; I was not in your House, Sir.
Enter Servant.
Serv.
What's the matter, Sir?
Sir Jeal.
The Matter, Rascals? Have you let a Man into my House; but I'll flea him alive; follow me, I'll not leave a Mousehole unsearch'd; if I find him, by St. Jago I'll equip him for the Opera.
Marpl.
A Duce of his Cane, there's no trusting to Age—what shall I do to relieve Charles? Egad, I'll raise the Neigh bourhood—Murder, Murder— ( Charles drops down upon him from the Balcone.) Charles, faith I'm glad to see thee safe out with all my Heart.
Char.
A Pox of your Bawling: How the Devil came you here?
Marpl.
Here, gad, I have done you a piece of service; I told the old Thunderbolt, that the Gentleman that was gone in was—
Char.
Was it you that told him, Sir? (Laying hold of him.) S'death, I cou'd crush thee into Atoms.
Marpl.
What will you choak me for my Kindness?—will my enquiring Soul never leave searching into other People's Affairs, till it gets squeez'd out of my Body? I dare not fol low him now, for my Blood, he's in such a Passion—I'll to Miranda; if I can discover ought that may oblige Sir George, it may be a means to reconcile me agen to Charles. (Exit.
Enter Sir Jealous and Servants.
Sir Jeal.
Are you sure you have search'd every where?
Serv.
Yes, from the Top of the House to the Bottom.
Sir Jeal.
Under the Beds, and over the Beds?
Serv.
Yes, and in them too, but found no Body, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
Why, what cou'd this Rogue mean?
Enter Isabinda and Patch.
Patch.
Take Courage, Madam, I saw him safe out. (Aside to Isab.
Isab.
Bless me! what's the matter, Sir?
Sir Jeal.
You know best—Pray where's the Man that was here just now?
Isab.
What Man, Sir? I saw none!
Patch.
Nor I, by the Trust you repose in me; do you think I wou'd let a Man come within these Doors, when you were absent?
Sir Jeal.
Ah Patch, she may be too cunning for thy Honesty; the very Scout that he had set to give Warning discover'd it to me—and threaten'd me with half a Dozen Mirmidons— But I think I maul'd the Villain. These Afflictions you draw upon me, Mistress!
Isab.
Pardon me, Sir, 'tis your own Ridiculous Humour draws you into these Vexations, and gives every Fool pretence to banter you.
Sir Jeal.
No, 'tis your idle Conduct, your Coquetish Flurting into the Balcone—Oh with what Joy shall I resign thee into the Arms of Don Diego Babinetto.
Isab.
And with what Industry shall I avoid him! (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Certainly that Rogue had a Message from some body or other; but being baulk'd by my coming, popt that Sham upon me. Come along ye Sots, let's see if we can find the Dog again. Patch, lock her up; D'ye hear?
Patch.
Yes, Sir—ay, walk till your Heels ake, you'll find no Body, I promise you.
Isab.
Who cou'd that Scout be, which he talks of?
Patch.
Nay, I can't imagine, without it was Whisper.
Isab.
Well, dear Patch, let's employ all our Thoughts how to escape this horrid Don Diego, my very Heart sinks at his Terrible Name.
Patch.
Fear not, Madam, Don Carlo shall be the Man, or I'll lose the Reputation of Contriving; and then what's a Chambermaid good for?
Isab.
Say'st thou so, my Girl: Then— Let Dad be Jealous, multiply his Cares, While Love instructs me to avoid the Snares; I'll, spight of all his Spanish Caution show How much for Love a British Maid can do.
SCENE Sir Francis Gripe 's House. Sir Francis and Miranda meeting.
Miran.
Well, Gardee, how did I perform my Dumb Scene?
Sir Fran.
To Admiration—Thou dear little Rogue, let me buss thee for it: Nay, adod, I will, Chargee, so muzle, and tuzle, and hug thee; I will, I faith, I will. (Hugging and Kissing her.
Miran.
Nay, Gardee, don't be so lavish; who wou'd Ride Post, when the Journey lasts for Life?
Sir Fran.
Ah wag, ah wag—I'll buss thee agen for that.
Miran.
Faugh! how he stinks of Tobacco! what a delicate Bedfellow I shou'd have!
Sir Fran.
Oh I'm Transported! When, when, my Dear wilt thou convince the World of thy Happy Day? when shall we marry, ha?
Miran.
There's nothing wanting but your Consent, Sir Francis.
Sir Fran.
My Consent! what do's my Charmer mean?
Miran.
Nay, 'tis only a Whim: But I'll have every thing according to form—Therefore when you sign an Authentick Paper, drawn up by an able Lawyer, that I have your Leave to marry, the next Day makes me yours, Gardee.
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, ha, a Whim indeed! why is it not De monstration I give my Leave when I marry thee.
Miran.
Not for your Reputation, Gardee; the malicious World will be apt to say, you trick'd me into Marriage, and so take the Merit from my Choice. Now I will have the Act my own, to let the idle Fops see how much I prefer a Man loaded with Years and Wisdom.
Sir Fran.
Humph! Prithee leave out Years, Chargee, I'm not so old, as thou shalt find: Adod, I'm young; there's a Caper for ye. (Jumps.
Miran.
Oh never excuse it, why I like you the better for being old—But I shall suspect you don't love me, if you Re fuse me this Formality.
Sir Fran.
Not Love thee, Chargee! Adod I do love thee better than, than, than, better than—what shall I say? Egad, better than Money, I faith I do—
Miran.
That's false I'm sure (Aside.) To prove it'do this then.
Sir Fran.
Well, I will do it, Chargee, provided I bring a License at the same time.
Miran.
Ay, and a Parson too, if you please; Ha, ha, ha, I can't help Laughing to think how all the young Coxcombs about Town will be mortify'd when they hear of our Mar riage.
Sir Fran.
So they will, so they will; Ha, ha, ha.
Miran.
Well, I fancy I shall be so happy with my Gardee!
Sir Fran.
If wearing Pearls and Jewels, or eating Gold, as the old Saying is, can make thee happy, thou shalt be so, my Sweetest, my Lovely, my Charming, my—verily I know not what to call thee,
Miran.
You must know, Gardee, that I am so eager to have this Business concluded, that I have employ'd my Womans Brother, who is a Lawyer in the Temple, to settle Matters 36 just to your Liking, you are to give your Consent to my Marriage, which is to your self you know: But Mum, you must take no notice of that. So then I will, that is, with your Leave, put my Writings into his Hands; then to Morrow we come slap upon them with a Wedding that no body thought on; by which you seize me and my Estate, and I suppose make a Bonfire of your own Act and Deed.
Sir Fran.
Nay, but Chargee, if—
Miran.
Nay, Gardee, no Ifs—Have I refus'd three Nor thern Lords, two British Peers, and half a score Knights, to have you put in your Ifs?—
Sir Fran.
So thou hast indeed, and I will trust to thy Ma nagement. Od, I'm all of a Fire.
Miran.
'Tis a wonder the dry Stubble does not blaze.
Enter Marplot.
Sir Fran.
How now! who sent for you, Sir? What's the Hundred Pound gone already?
Marpl.
No, Sir, I don't want Money now.
Sir Fran.
No; that's a Miracle! But there's one thing you want, I'm sure.
Marpl.
Ay, what's that, Guardian?
Sir Fran.
Manners; what, had I no Servants without?
Marpl.
None that cou'd do my Business, Guardian, which is at present with this Lady.
Miran.
With me, Mr. Marplot! what is it, I beseech you?
Sir Fran.
Ay, Sir, what is it? any thing that relates to her may be deliver'd to me.
Marpl.
I deny that.
Miran.
That's more than I do, Sir:
Marpl.
Indeed, Madam; why then to proceed: Fame says that you and my most conscionable Guardian here design'd, contriv'd, plotted and agreed, to chouse a very civil, honou rable, honest Gentleman, out of a Hundred Pound.
Miran.
That I contriv'd it!
Marpl.
Ay you—You said never a Word against it, so far you are Guilty.
Sir Fran.
Pray tell that civil, honourable, honest Gentle man, 37 that if he has any more such Sums to fool away, they shall be received like the last; Ha, ha, ha, ha, chous'd, quotha! But hark ye, let him know at the same time, that if he dare to report I trick'd him of it, I shall recommend a Law yer to him shall shew him a Trick for twice as much; D'ye hear? Tell him that.
Marpl.
So, and this is the way you use a Gentleman, and my Friend.
Miran.
Is the Wretch thy Friend?
Marpl.
The Wretch! Look ye, Madam, don't call Names; Egad I won't take it.
Miran.
Why you won't beat me, will you? Ha, ha.
Marpl.
I don't know whether I will or no.
Sir Fran.
Sir, I shall make a Servant shew you out at the Window, if you are sawcy.
Marpl.
I am your most humble Servant, Guardian; I design to go out the same way I came in. I wou'd only ask this La dy, if she do's not think in her Soul Sir George Airy is not a fine Gentleman.
Miran.
He dresses well.
Sir Fran.
Which is chiefly owing to his Taylor, and Valet de Chambre.
Miran.
And if you allow that a Proof of his being a fine Gentleman, he is so.
Marpl.
The judicious part of the World allow him Wit, Courage, Gallantry and Management; tho' I think he sorfei ted that Character, when he flung away a hundred Pound up on your dumb Ladiship.
Sir Fran.
Does that gaul him? Ha, ha, ha.
Miran.
So Sir George remaining in deep Discontent, has sent you his trusty Squire to utter his Complaint: Ha, ha, ha.
Marpl.
Yes, Madam; and you, like a cruel, hard-hearted Jew, value it no more—than I wou'd your Ladiship, were I Sir George, you, you, you—
Miran.
Oh, don't call Names. I know you love to be employ'd, and I'll oblige you, and you shall carry him a Mes sage from me.
Marpl.
According as I like it: What is it?
Miran.
Nay, a kind one you may be sure—First tell him, I have chose this Gentleman to have, and to hold, and so forth. (Clapping her Hand into Sir Francis 's
Sir Fran.
Oh the dear Rogue, how I dote on her! (Aside.
Miran.
And advise his Impertinence to trouble me no more, for I prefer Sir Francis for a Husband before all the Fops in the Universe.
Marpl.
Oh Lord, O Lord! She's bewitch'd, that's certain; Here's a Husband for Eighteen—Here's a Shape—Here's Bones ratling in a Leathern Bag. (Turning Sir Francis about.) Here's Buckrum and Canvass, to scrub you to Repentance.
Sir Tran.
Sirrah, my Cane shall teach you Repentance presently.
Marpl.
No faith, I have felt its Twin-brother from just such a wither'd Hand too lately.
Miran.
One thing more, advise him to keep from the Garden Gate on the left Hand; for if he dare to saunter there, about the Hour of Eight, as he used to do, he shall be saluted with a Pistol or a Blunderbuss.
Sir Fran.
O monstrous! why Chargee; did he use to come to the Garden Gate?
Miran.
The Gardner describ'd just such another Man that always watch'd his coming out, and fain wou'd have brib'd him for his Entrance—Tell him he shall find a warm Recepti on if he comes this Night.
Marpl.
Pistols and Blunderbusses! Egad, a warm Reception indeed; I shall take care to inform him of your Kindness, and advise him to keep farther off.
Miran.
I hope he will understand my meaning better, than to follow your Advice. (Aside.
Sir Fran.
Thou hast sign'd, seal'd, and ta'en Possession of my Heart, for ever, Chargee, Ha, ha, ha; and for you, Mr. Sauce-box, let me have no more of your Messages, if ever you design to inherit your Estate, Gentleman.
Marpl.
Why there 'tis now. Sure I shall be out of your Clutches one Day.—Well, Guardian, I say no more; but if you be not as errant a Cuckold, as e'er drove Bargain upon 39 the Exchange, or paid Attendance to a Court, I am the Son of a Whetstone; and so your humble Servant.
Miran.
Don't forget the Message; Ha, ha,
Sir Fran.
I am so provok'd!—'tis well he's gone.
Miran.
Oh mind him not, Gardee, but let's sign Articles, and then—
Sir Fran.
And then—Adod, I believe I am Metamor phos'd; my Pulse beats high, and my Blood boils, methinks— (Kissing and Hugging her.
Miran.
Oh fye, Gardee, be not so violent; Consider the Market lasts all the Year—Well, I'll in and see if the Law yer be come, you'll follow.
Sir Fran.
Ay, to the World's End, my Dear. Well, Frank, thou art a lucky Fellow in thy old Age, to have such a delicate Morsel, and Thirty Thousand Pound in love with thee; I shall be the Envy of Batchelors, the Glory of Mar ry'd Men, and the Wonder of the Town. Some Guardians wou'd be glad to compound for part of the Estate, at dis patching an Heiress, but I engross the whole: O! Mihi prae teritos referet si Jupiter Annos.
SCENE Changes to a Tavern; discovers Sir George and Charles with Wine before them, and Whisper waiting.
Sir Geo.
Nay, prithee don't be Grave, Charles; Misfortunes will happen, Ha, ha, ha, 'tis some Comfort to have a Compa nion in our Sufferings.
Char.
I am only apprehensive for Isabinda, her Father's Humour is implacable; and how far his Jealousie may trans port him to her Undoing, shocks my Soul to think.
Sir Geo.
But since you escap'd undiscover'd by him, his Rage will quickly lash into a Calm, never fear it.
Char.
But who knows what that unlucky Dog, Marplot, told him; nor can I Imagine what brought him hither; that Fellow is ever doing Mischief; and yet, to give him his due, he never designs it. This is some Blundering Adventure, 40 wherein he thought to shew his Friendship, as he calls it: A Curse on him.
Sir Geo.
Then you must forgive him; what said he?
Char.
Said! nay, I had more mind to cut his Throat, than hear his Excuses.
Sir Geo.
Where is he?
Whisp.
Sir, I saw him go into Sir Francis Gripe 's just now.
Char.
Oh! then he is upon your Business, Sir George; a thousand to one but he makes some Mistake there too.
Sir Geo.
Impossible, without he huffs the Lady, and makes Love to Sir Francis.
Enter Drawer.
Draw.
Mr. Marplot is below, Gentlemen, and desires to know if he may have Leave to wait upon ye.
Char.
How civil the Rogue is when he has done a fault!
Sir Geo.
Ho! Desire him to walk up. Prithee, Charles, throw off this Chagreen, and be good Company.
Char.
Nay, hang him, I'm not angry with him. Whisper, fetch me Pen, Ink, and Paper.
Whisp.
Yes Sir.
Enter Marplot.
Char.
Do but mark his sheepish Look, Sir George.
Marpl.
Dear Charles, don't o'rwhelm a Man—already un der insupportable Affliction. I'm sure I always intend to serve my Friends; but if my malicious Stars deny the Happiness, is the fault mine?
Sir Geo.
Never mind him, Mr. Marplot; he is eat up with Spleen. But tell me, what says Miranda?
Marpl.
Says—nay, we are all undone there too.
Char.
I told you so; nothing prospers that he undertakes.
Marpl.
Why can I help her having chose your Father for Better for Worse?
Char.
So: There's another of Fortune's strokes. I suppose I shall be edg'd out of my Estate with Twins every Year, let who will get 'em.
Sir Geo.
What is the Woman really possest?
Marpl.
Yes with the Spirit of Contradiction, she rail'd at you most prodigiously.
Sir Geo.
That's no ill Sign.
Enter Whisper, with Pen, Ink and Paper.
Marpl.
You'd say it was no good Sign, if you knew all.
Sir Geo.
Why prithee?
Marpl.
Hark'e, Sir George, Let me warn you, pursue your old Haunt no more, it may be dangerous.
Sir Geo.
My old Haunt, what d'you mean?
Marpl.
Why in short then, since you will have it, Miranda vows if you dare approach the Garden-Gate at Eight a Clock, as you us'd, you shall be saluted with a Blunderbuss, Sir. These were her Words; nay, she bid me tell you so too.
Sir George,
Ha! The Garden-Gate at Eight, as I us'd to do! There must be a Meaning in this. Is there such a Gate, Charles?
Char.
Yes, yes; it opens into the Park, I suppose her Lady ship has made many a scamper through it.
Sir Geo.
It must be an Assignation then. Ha, my Heart springs with Joy, 'tis a propitious Omen. My dear Marplot, let me embrace thee, thou art my Friend, my better An gel—
Marpl.
What do you mean, Sir George?
Sir Geo.
No matter what I mean. Here take a Bumper to the Garden-Gate, ye dear Rogue, you.
Marpl.
You have Reason to be transported, Sir George; I have sav'd your Life.
Sir Geo.
My Life! thou hast sav'd my Soul, Man. Charles, if thou do'st not pledge this Health, may'st thou never taste the Joys of Love.
Char.
Whisper, be sure you take care how you deliver this (gives him the Letter) bring me the Answer to my Lodgings.
Whisp.
I warrant you, Sir.
Marpl.
Whither does that Letter go?—Now dare I not ask for my Blood.
Char.
Now I'm for you.
Sir Geo.
To the Garden-Gate at the Hour of Eight, Charles, along, Huzza!
Charl.
I begin to conceive you.
Marpl.
That's more than I do, Egad—to the Garden-Gate, Huzza, (Drinks.) But I hope you design to keep far enough off on't, Sir George.
Sir Geo.
Ay, ay, never fear that; she shall see I despise her Frowns, let her use her Blunderbuss against the next Fool, she shan't reach me with the Smoak, I warrant her, Ha, ha, ha.
Marpl.
Ah, Charles, if you cou'd receive a Disappoint ment thus En Cavalier, one shou'd have some comfort in being beat for you.
Char.
The Fool comprehends nothing.
Sir Geo.
Nor wou'd I have him; prithee take him along with thee.
Char.
Enough: Marplot, you shall go home with me.
Marpl.
I'm glad I'm well with him however. Sir George, yours. Egad, Charles, asking me to go home with him, gives me a shrewd Suspicion there's more in the Garden-Gate than I comprehend. Faith, I'll give him the drop, and away to Guardians, and find it out.
Sir Geo.
I kiss both your Hands—And now for the Garden-Gate. It's Beauty gives the Assignation there, And Love too powerful grows t' admit of Fear.
The End of the Third Act.
43 ACT the Fourth. SCENE the Outside of Sir Jealous Traffick 's House, Patch peeping out of Door. Enter Whisper.
Whisp.
HA, Mrs. Patch, this is a lucky Minute, to find you so readily, my Master dies with Impatience.
Patch.
My Lady imagin'd so, and by her Orders I have been scouting this Hour in search of you, to inform you that Sir Jealous has invited some Friends to Supper with him to Night, which gives an Opportunity to your Master to make use of his Ladder of Ropes: The Closet Window shall be open, and Isabinda ready to receive him; bid him come im mediately.
Whisp.
Excellent! He'll not disappoint, I warrant him: But hold, I have a Letter here, which I'm to carry an Answer of. I can't think what Language the Direction is.
Patch.
Pho, 'tis no Language, but a Character which the Lovers invented to avert Discovery. Ha, I hear my old Ma ster coming down Stairs, it is impossible you shou'd have an Answer; away, and bid him come himself for that—Be gone, we are ruin'd if you're seen, for he has doubl'd his Care since the last Accident.
Whisp.
I go, I go.
Patch.
There go thou into my Pocket. (Puts it besides, and it falls down.) Now I'll up the Back-Stairs, lest I meet him. Well, a dextrous Chamber-maid is the Ladies best Utensil, I say.
Enter Sir Jealous with a Letter in his Hand.
Sir Jeal.
So, this is some Comfort; this tells me that Seig nior Don Diego Babinetto is safely arriv'd; he shall marry my Daughter the Minute he comes, ha. What's here (takes up the Letter Patch drop'd) A Letter! I don't know what to 44 make of the Superscription. I'll see what's within side, [opens it] humph; 'tis Hebrew I think. What can this mean. There must be some trick in it; this was certainly design'd for my Daughter, but I don't know that she can speak any Lan guage but her Mother-Tongue. No matter for that, this may be one of Love's Hieroglyphicks, and I fancy I saw Patch 's Tail sweep by. That Wench may be a Slut, and in stead of guarding my Honour, betray it; I'll find it out I'm resolv'd; who's there? What answer did you bring from the Gentlemen I sent you to invite?
Serv.
That they'd all wait of you, Sir, as I told you be fore, but I suppose you forgot, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
Did I so, Sir, but I shan't forget to break your Head, if any of them come, Sir.
Serv.
Come, Sir, why did you not send me to desire their Company, Sir?
Sir Jeal.
But I send you now to desire their Absence; say I have something extraordinary fallen out, which calls me abroad contrary to Expectation, and ask their Pardon, and d'ye hear, send the Butler to me.
Serv.
Yes, Sir.
Enter Butler.
Sir Jeal.
If this Paper has a Meaning I'll find it. Lay the Cloath in my Daughter's Chamber, and bid the Cook send Supper thither presently.
Butl.
Yes, Sir,—hey day, what's the Matter now?
Sir Jeal.
He wants the Eyes of Argus, that has a young handsome Daughter in this Town, but my Comfort is, I shall not be troubl'd long with her. He that pretends to rule a Girl once in her Teens, had better be at Sea in a Storm, and would be in less Danger. For let him do, or Counsel all he can, She thinks and dreams of nothing else but Man.
45 SCENE Isabinda 's Chamber, Isabinda and Patch.
Isab.
Are you sure, no Body saw you speak to Whisper?
Patch.
Yes, very sure Madam, but I heard Sir Jealous coming down Stairs, so I clapt this Letter into my Pocket. (feels for the Letter.
Isab.
A Letter! give it me quickly.
Patch.
Bless me! what's become on't—I'm sure I put it— (Searching still.
Isab.
Is it possible, thou could'st be so careless—Oh! I'm undone for ever if it be lost.
Patch.
I must have drop'd it upon the Stairs. But why are you so much alarm'd, if the worst happens no body can read it, Madam, nor find out whom it was design'd for.
Isab.
If it falls into my Father's Hands the very Figure of a Letter will produce ill Consequences. Run and look for it upon the Stairs this Moment.
Patch.
Nay, I'm sure it can be no where else.— (As she's going out of the Door meets the Butler.) How now, what do you want?
Butl.
My Master order'd me to lay the Cloth here for his Supper.
Isab.
Ruin'd past Redemption— (Aside.
Patch.
You mistake sure; what shall we do?
Isab.
I thought he expected Company to Night—Oh! poor Charles— Oh! unfortunate Isabinda.
Butl.
I thought so too, Madam, but I suppose he has alter'd his Mind. (Lays the Cloth, and Exit.
Isab.
The Letter is the Cause; this heedless Action has un done me: Fly and fasten the Closet Window, which will give Charles notice to retire. Ha, my Father, oh! Confusion.
Enter Sir Jealous.
Sir Jeal.
Hold, hold, Patch, whither are you going. I'll have no body stir out of the Room till after Supper.
Patch.
Sir, I was only going to reach your easie Chair—Oh! wretched Accident!
Sir Jeal.
I'll have no body stir out of the Room. I don't want my easy Chair.
Isab.
What will be the event of this? (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Heark ye, Daughter; do you know this Hand?
Isab.
As I suspected—Hand do you call it, Sir? 'Tis some School-boy's Scraul.
Patch.
Oh! Invention, thou Chamber-maids best Friend, assist me.
Sir Jeal.
Are you sure you don't understand it?
Isab.
Do you understand it, Sir?
Sir Jeal.
I wish I did.
Isab.
Thank Heaven you do not. (Aside.) Then I know no more of it than you do indeed, Sir.
Patch.
Oh Lord, Oh Lord, what have you done, Sir? Why the Paper is mine, I drop'd it out of my Bosom. (Snatching it from him.
Sir Jeal.
Ha! yours, Mistress.
Isab.
What does she mean by owning it. (Aside.
Patch.
Yes, Sir, it is.
Sir Jeal.
What is it? Speak,
Patch.
Why, Sir, it is a Charm for the Tooth-ach—I have worn it this seven Year, 'twas given me by an Angel for ought I know, when I was raving with the Pain; for no body knew from whence he came, nor whither he went, he charg'd me never to open it, lest some dire Vengeance befal me, and Heaven knows what will be the Event. Oh! cruel Misfortune that I should drop it, and you should open it—If you had not open'd it—
Isab.
Excellent Wench. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Pox of your Charms and Whims for me; if that be all, 'tis well enough; there, there, burn it, and I warrant you no Vengeance will follow.
Patch.
So, all's right again thus far. (Aside.
Isab.
I would not lose Patch for the World—I'll take cou rage a little. (Aside.) Is this Usage for your Daughter, Sir? Must my Virtue and Conduct be suspected? For every Trifle, you immure melike some dire Offender here, and deny me 47 all Recreations which my Sex enjoy, and the Custom of the Country and Modesty allow; yet not content with that, you make my Confinement more intolerable by your Mistrusts and Jealousies; wou'd I were dead, so I were free from this. (Weeps.
Sir Jeal.
To morrow rids you of this tiresome Load, —Don Diego Babinetto will be here, and then my Care ends, and his begins.
Isab.
Is he come then? Oh how shall I avoid this hated Marriage? (Aside.
Enter Servants with Supper.
Sir Jeal.
Come will you sit down?
Isab.
I can't eat, Sir.
Patch.
No, I dare swear he has given her Supper enough. I wish I cou'd get into the Closet— (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Well, if you can't eat, then give me a Song whilst I do.
Isab.
I have such a Cold I can scarce speak, Sir, much less sing. How shall I prevent Charles coming in. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
I hope you have the use of your Fingers, Ma dam. Play a Tune upon your Spinnet, whilst your Woman sings me a Song.
Patch.
I'm as much out of Tune as my Lady, if he knew all. (Aside.
Isab.
I shall make excellent Musick. (Sits down to play.
Patch.
Really, Sir, I'm so frighted about your opening this Charm, that I can't remember one Song.
Sir Jeal.
Pish, Hang your Charm; come, come, sing any thing.
Patch.
Yes, I'm likely to sing truly, (Aside) humph, humph, bless me, Sir, I cannot raise my Voice, my Heart pants so.
Sir Jeal.
Why, what does your Heart pant so that you can't play neither? Pray what Key are you in, ha?
Patch.
Ah, wou'd the Key was turn'd of you once. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Why don't you sing, I say?
Patch.
When Madam has put her Spinnet in Tune, Sir, humph, humph—
Isab.
I cannot play, Sir, whatever ails me. (Rising.
Sir Jeal.
Zounds sit down, and play me a Tune, or I'll break the Spinnet about your Ears.
Isab.
What will become of me? (Sits down and plays.
Sir Jeal.
Come Mistress. (To Patch
Patch.
Yes, Sir. (Sings, but horridly out of Tune.
Sir Jeal.
Hey, hey, why you are a top of the House, and you are down in the Cellar. What is the meaning of this? Is it on purpose to cross me, ha?
Patch.
Pray Madam, take it a little lower, I cannot reach that Note—nor any Note I fear.
Isab.
Well, begin—Oh! Patch we shall be discover'd.
Patch.
I sink with the Apprehension, Madam,—humph, humph— (Sings) ( Charles pulls open the Closet Door.
Char.
Musick and Singing 'Tis thus the bright Coelestial Court above, Beguiles the Hours with Musick and with Love. Death! her Father there, (The Women shriek) then I must fly—
Sir Jeal.
Hell and Furies, a Man in the Closet—
Patch.
Ah! a Ghost, a Ghost—he must not enter the Closet—
Sir Jeal.
The Devil! I'll make a Ghost of him I warrant you. (Strives to get by.
Patch.
Oh hold, Sir, have a care, you'll tread upon my La dy—who waits there? Bring some Water: Oh! this comes of your opening the Charm: Oh, oh, oh, oh. (Weeps aloud.
Sir Jeal.
I'll charm you, House-wife, here lies the Charm, that conjur'd this Fellow in I'm sure on't, come out you Ras cal, do so: Zounds take her from the Door, or I'll spurn her from it. and break your Neck down Stairs.
Isab.
Oh, oh, where am I—He's gone, I heard him leap down. (Aside to Patch.
Patch.
Nay, then let him enter—here, here Madam, smell to this; come give me your Hand; come nearer to the Win dow, the Air will do you good.
Sir Jeal.
I wou'd she were in her Grave. Where are you, Sirrah? Villain, Robber of my Honour! I'll pull you out of your Nest. (Goes into the Closet.
Patch.
You'l be mistaken, old Gentleman, the Bird is flown.
Isab.
I'm glad I have 'scap'd so well. I was almost dead in earnest with the Fright.
Re-enter Sir Jealous out of the Closet.
Sir Jeal.
Whoever the Dog were he has escap'd out of the Window, for the Sash is up. But tho' he is got out of my Reach, you are not: And first Mrs. Pandor, with your Charms for the Tooth-ach, get out of my House, go, troop; yet hold, stay, I'll see you out of my Doors my self, but I'll se cure your Charge e'er I go.
Isab.
What do you mean, Sir? Was she not a Creature of your own providing?
Sir Jeal.
She was of the Devil's providing for ought I know.
Patch.
What have I done, Sir, to merit your Displeasure?
Sir Jeal.
I don't know which of you have done it; but you shall both suffer for it, till I can discover whose Guilt it is: Go, get in there, I'll move you from this side of the House (Pushes Isabinda in at the other Door, and locks it; puts the Key in his Pocket.) I'll keep the Key my self: I'll try what Ghost will get into that Room. And now forsooth I'll wait on you down Stairs.
Patch.
Ah, my poor Lady—Down Stairs, Sir, but I won't go out, Sir, till I have look'd up my Cloaths.
Sir Jeal.
If thou wer't as naked as thou wer't born, thou should'st not stay to put on a Smock. Come along, I say; when your Mistress is marry'd you shall have your Rags, and every thing that belongs to you; but till then— (Exit pulling her out.
Patch.
Oh! barbarous Usage for nothing.
Re-enter at the lower end.
Sir Jeal.
There, go, and come no more within sight of my Habitation, these three Days, I charge you. (Slaps the Door after her.
Patch.
Did ever any Body see such and old Monster!
Enter Charles.
Patch.
Oh! Mr. Charles your Affairs and mine are in an ill Posture.
Char.
I am immur'd to the Frowns of Fortune: But what has befal'n thee?
Patch.
Sir Jealous, whose suspicious Nature's always on the Watch; nay, even whilst one Eye sleeps, the other keeps Sentinel; upon sight of you, flew into such a violent Passion, that I cou'd find no Stratagem to appease him, but in spight of all Arguments, lock'd his Daughter into his own Apartment and turn'd me out of Doors.
Char.
Ha! oh, Isabinda.
Patch.
And swears she shall neither see Sun or Moon, till she is Don Diego Babinetto 's Wife, who arrived last Night, and is expected with Impatience.
Char.
He dies, yes, by all the Wrongs of Love he shall; here will I plant my self, and thro' my Breast he shall make his Passage, if he enters.
Patch.
A most heroick Resolution. There might be ways found out more to your Advantage. Policy is often preferr'd to open force.
Char.
I apprehend you not.
Patch.
What think you of personating this Spaniard, im posing upon the Father, and marrying your Mistress by his own Consent.
Char.
Say'st thou so my Angel! Oh cou'd that be done, my Life to come wou'd be too short to recompence thee: But how can I do that, when I neither know what Ship he came in, nor from what part of Spain; who recommends him, nor how attended.
Patch.
I can solve all this. He is from Madrid, his Fa ther's Name Don Pedro Questo Portento Babinetto. Here's a Letter of his to Sir Jealous, which he dropt one Day; you understand Spanish, and the Hand may be counterfeited: You conceive me, Sir.
Char.
My better Genius, thou hast reviv'd my drooping Soul: I'll about it instantly. Come to my Lodgings, and we'll concert Matters.
(Exeunt.
SCENE a Garden Gate open, Scentwell waiting within. Enter Sir George Airy.
Sir Geo.
So, this is the Gate, and most invitingly open: If there shou'd be a Blunderbuss here now, what a dreadful Ditty wou'd my Fall make for Fools; and what a Jest for the Wits; how my Name wou'd be roar'd about Streets! Well I'll venture all.
Scentw.
Hist, hist, Sir George Airy—
Sir Geo.
A Female Voice, thus far I'am safe, my Dear.
Scentw.
No, I'm not your Dear, but I'll conduct you to her, give me your Hand; you must go thro' many a dark Passage and dirty Step before you arrive.—
Sir Geo.
I know I must before I arrive at Paradise; there fore be quick, my charming Guide.
Scentw.
For ought you know; come, come your Hand and away.
Sir Geo.
Here, here Child, you can't be half so swift as my Desires.
SCENE the House. Enter Miranda.
Miran.
Well let me reason a little with my mad self. Now don't I transgress all Rules to venture upon a Man, without the Advice of the Grave and Wise; but then a rigid knavish Guar dian who wou'd have marry'd me! To whom? Even to his nau seous self, or no Body. Sir George is what I have try'd in Con versation, inquir'd into his Character, am satisfied in both. Then his Love! Who wou'd have given a hundred Pound only to have seen a Woman he had not infinitely loved? So I find my liking him has furnish'd me with Arguments enough of his side; and now the only Doubt remains whether he will come or no.
52 Enter Scentwell.
Scentw.
That's resolv'd, Madam, for here's the Knight.
Sir Geo.
And do I once more behold that lovely Object, whose Idea fills my Mind, and forms my pleasing Dreams!
Miran.
What beginning again in Heroicks!—Sir George, don't you remember how little Fruit your last Prodigal Ora tion produc'd, not one bare single Word in answer.
Sir Geo.
Ha! the Voice of my Incognita— Why did you take Ten Thousand ways to captivate a Heart your Eyes alone had vanquish'd.
Miran.
Prithee, no more of these Flights; for our Time's but short, and we must fall into Business: Do you think we can agree on that same terrible Bugbear, Matrimony, without heartily repenting on both sides.
Sir Geo.
It has been my wish since first my longing Eyes beheld ye.
Miran.
And your happy Ears drank in the pleasing News, I had Thirty Thousand Pound.
Sir Geo.
Unkind! Did I not offer you in those purchas'd Minutes to run the risque of your Fortune, so you wou'd but secure that lovely Person to my Arms.
Miran.
Well, if you have such Love and Tenderness, (since our Woing has been short) pray reserve it for our future Days, to let the World see we are Lovers after Wedlock; twill be a Novelty—
Sir Geo.
Haste then, and let us tye the Knot, and prove the envy'd Pair—
Miran.
Hold! not so fast; I have provided better than to venture on dangerous Experiments headlong—My Guar dian, trusting to my dissembled Love, has given up my For tune to my own dispose; but with this Proviso, that he to Morrow Morning weds me. He is now gone to Doctors-Com mons for a License.
Sir Geo.
Ha, a License!
Miran.
But I have planted Emissaries that infallibly take him down to Epsom, under pretence that a Brother Usurer of 53 his is to make him his Executor; the thing on Earth he covets.
Sir Geo.
'Tis his known Character.
Miran.
Now my Instruments confirm him this Man is dy ing, and he sends me word he goes this Minute; it must be to Morrow e'er he can be undeceiv'd. That time is ours.
Sir Geo.
Let us improve it then, and settle on our coming Years, endless, endless Happiness.
Miran.
I dare not stir till I hear he's on the Road—then I and my Writings, the most material point, are soon re mov'd.
Sir Geo.
I have one Favour to ask, if it lies in your power, you wou'd be a Friend to poor Charles, tho' the Son of this tenacious Man: He is as free from all his Vices, as Nature and a good Education can make him; and what now I have Vanity enough to hope will induce you, he is the Man on Earth I love.
Miran.
I never was his Enemy, and only put it on as it help'd my Designs on his Father. If his Uncle's Estate ought to be in his Possession, which I shrewdly suspect, I may do him a singular piece of Service.
Sir Geo.
You are all Goodness.
Enter Scentwell.
Scentw.
Oh, Madam, my Master and Mr. Marplot are just coming into the House.
Miran.
Undone, undone! if he finds you here in this Cri sis, all my Plots are unravell'd.
Sir Geo.
What shall I do! can't I get back into the Garden?
Scentw.
Oh, no! he comes up those Stairs.
Miran.
Here, here, here! can you condescend to stand be hind this Chimney-Board, Sir George?
Sir Geo.
Any where, any where, dear Madam, without Ce remony.
Scentw.
Come, come, Sir; lie close—
54 Enter Sir Francis and Marplot: Sir Francis peeling an Orange.
Sir Fran.
I cou'd not go, tho' 'tis upon Life and Death, without taking leave of dear Chargee. Besides this Fellow buz'd in my Ears, that thou might'st be so desperate to shoot that wild Rake which haunts the Garden-Gate; and that wou'd bring us into trouble, dear—
Miran.
So, Marplot brought you back then: I am oblig'd to him for that, I'm sure— (Frowning at Marplot aside.
Marpl.
By her Looks she means she is not oblig'd to me. I have done some Mischief now, but what I can't imagine.
Sir Fran.
Well, Chargee, I have had three Messengers to come to Epsom to my Neighbour Squeezum 's, who, for all his vast Riches, is departing. (Sighs.
Marpl.
Ay, see what all you Usurers must come to.
Sir Fran.
Peace, ye young Knave! Some Forty Years hence I may think on't—But, Chargee, I'll be with thee to Mor row, before those pretty Eyes are open; I will, I will, Chargee, I'll rouze you, I faith.—Here Mrs. Scentwell, lift up your Lady's Chimney-Board, that I may throw my Peel in, and not litter her Chamber.
Miran.
Oh my Stars! what will become of us now?
Scentw.
Oh, pray Sir give it me; I love it above all things in Nature, indeed I do.
Sir Fran.
No, no, Hussy; you have the Green Pip already, I'll have no more Apothecary's Bills. (Goes towards the Chimney.
Miran.
Hold, hold, hold, dear Gardee, I have a, a, a, a, a Monkey shut up there; and if you open it before the Man comes that is to tame it, 'tis so wild 'twill break all my China, or get away, and that wou'd break my Heart; for I am fond on't to distraction, next thee dear Gardee. In a flattering Tone.
Sir Fran.
Well, well, Chargee, I won't open it; she shall have her Monkey, poor Rogue; here throw this Peel out of the Window.
Marpl.
A Monkey, dear Madam, let me see it; I can tame 55 a Monkey as well as the best of them all. Oh how I love the little Miniatures of Man.
Miran.
Be quiet, Mischief, and stand farther from the Chim ney—You shall not see my Monkey—why sure— (Striving with him.
Marpl.
For Heaven's sake, dear, Madam, let me but peep, to see if it be as pretty as my Lady Fiddle-Faddle 's. Has it got a Chain?
Miran.
Not yet, but I design it one shall last its Life-time: Nay, you shall not see it—Look, Gardee, how he teazes me!
Sir Fran.
(Getting between him and the Chimney.) Sirrah, Sirrah, let my Chargee 's Monkey alone, or Bambo shall fly about your Ears, What is there no dealing with you?
Marpl.
Pugh, pox of the Monkey! here's a Rout: I wish he may Rival you.
Enter a Servant.
Serv.
Sir, they put two more Horses in the Coach, as you order'd, and 'tis ready at the Door.
Sir Fran.
Well, I am going to be Executor, better for thee, Jewel. B'ye Chargee, one buss!—I'm glad thou hast got a Monkey to divert thee a little.
Miran.
Thank'e, dear Gardee.— Nay, I'll see you to the Coach.
Sir Fran.
That's kind, adod.
Miran.
Come along, Impertinence. (To Marplot.
Marpl
(Stepping back.) Egad, I will see the Monkey now. (Lifts up the Board, and discovers Sir George. ) Oh Lord, Oh Lord! Thieves, Thieves, Murder!
Sir Geo.
Dam'e, you unlucky Dog! 'tis I, which way shall I get out, shew me instantly, or I'll cut your Throat.
Marpl.
Undone, undone! At that Door there. But hold, hold, break that China, and I'll bring you off. (He runs off at the Corner, and throws down some China.
Re-enter Sir Francis, Miranda, and Scentwell.
Sir Fran.
Mercy on me! what's the matter?
Miran.
Oh you Toad! what have you done?
Marpl.
No great harm, I beg of you to forgive me: Long ing to see the Monkey, I did but just ràise up the Board, and it flew over my Shoulders, scratch'd all my Face, broke yon' China, and whisk'd out of the Window.
Sir Fran.
Was ever such an unlucky Rogue! Sirrah, I for bid you my House. Call the Servants to get the Monkey again; I wou'd stay my self to look it, but that you know my earnest Business.
Scentw.
Oh my Lady will be the best to lure it back; all them Creatures love my Lady extremely.
Miran.
Go, go, dear Gardee; I hope I shall recover it.
Sir Fran.
B'ye, b'ye, Dear'e. Ah, Mischief, how you look now! B'ye, b'ye.
Miran.
Scentwell, see him in the Coach, and bring me word.
Scentw.
Yes, Madam,
Miran.
So, Sir, you have done your Friend a signal piece of Service, I suppose.
Marpl.
Why look you, Madam! if I have committed a fault, thank your self; no Man is more Serviceable when I am let into a Secret, nor none more unlucky at finding it out. Who cou'd divine your Meaning, when you talk'd of a Blunderbuss, who thought of a Rendevous? and when you talk'd of a Mon key, who the Devil dreamt of Sir George?
Miran.
A sign you converse but little with our Sex, when you can't reconcile Contradictions.
Enter Scentwell.
Scentw.
He's gone, Madam, as fast as the Coach and Six can carry him.
Enter Sir George.
Sir Geo.
Then I may appear.
Marpl.
Dear, Sir George, make my Peace! On my Soul, I did not think of you.
Sir Geo.
I dare swear thou didst not. Madam, I beg you to forgive him.
Miran.
Well, Sir George, if he can be secret.
Marpl.
Ods heart, Madam, I'm as secret as a Priest when I'm trusted.
Sir Geo.
Why 'tis with a Priest our Business is at present.
Scentw.
Madam, here's Mrs. Isabinda 's Woman to wait on you.
Miran.
Bring her up, How do'e Mrs. Patch, what News from your Lady?
Patch.
That's for your private Ear, Madam. Sir George, there's a Friend of yours has an urgent Occasion for your Assistance.
Sir Geo.
His Name.
Patch.
Charles.
Marpl.
Ha! then there is something a-foot that I know no thing of. I'll wait on you, Sir George.
Sir Geo.
A third Person may not be proper perhaps; as soon as I have dispatch'd my own Affairs, I am at his Service. I'll send my Servant to tell him, I'll wait upon him in half an Hour.
Miran.
How come you employ'd in this Message, Mrs. Patch?
Patch.
Want of Business, Madam. I am discharg'd by my Master, but hope to serve my Lady still.
Miran.
How! Discharg'd! you must tell me the whole Story within.
Patch.
With all my Heart, Madam.
Marpl.
Pish! Pox, I wish I were fairly out of they House. I find Marriage is the end of this Secret: And now I am half mad to know what Charles wants him for. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Madam, I'm doubly press'd, by Love and Friend ship: This Exigence admits of no delay. Shall we make Marplot of the Party?
Miran.
If you'll run the Hazard, Sir George; I believe he means well.
Marpl.
Nay, nay, for my part, I desire to be let into no thing: I'll be gone, therefore pray don't mistrust me. (Going.
Sir Geo.
So now has he a mind to be gone to Charles: But not knowing what Affairs he may have upon his Hands at 58 present, I'm resolv'd he shan't stir: No, Mr. Marplot, you must not leave us, we want a third Person. (Takes hold of him.
Marpl.
I never had more mind to be gone in my Life.
Miran.
Come along then; if we fail in the Voyage, thank your self for taking this ill starr'd Gentleman on Board.
Sir Geo.
That Vessel ne'er can Unsuccessful prove, Whose Freight is Beauty, and whose Pilot Love.
The End of the Fourth ACT.
ACT the Fifth. Enter Miranda, Patch, and Scentwell.
Miran.
WELL, Patch, I have done a strange bold thing! my Fate is determin'd, and Expectation is no more. Now to avoid the Impertinence and Roguery of an old Man, I have thrown myself into the Extravagance of a young one; if he should despise, slight or use me ill, there's no Re medy from a Husband, but the Grave; and that's a terrible Sanctuary to one of my Age and Constitution.
Patch.
O fear not, Madam, you'll find your Account in Sir George Airy; it is impossible a Man of Sense shou'd use a Woman ill, indued with Beauty, Wit and Fortune. It must be the Lady's fault, if she does not wear the unfashionable Name of Wife easie, when nothing but Complaisance and good Humour is requisite on either side to make them happy.
Miran.
I long till I am out of this House, lest any Acci dent shou'd bring my Guardian back. Scentwell, put my best Jewels into the little Casket, slip them into thy Pocket, and let us march off to Sir Jealous 's.
Scentw.
It shall be done, Madam.
Patch.
Sir George will be impatient, Madam; if their Plot succeeds, we shall be well receiv'd; if not, he will be able to protect us. Besides, I long to know how my young Lady fares.
Miran.
Farewel, old Mammon, and thy detested Walls; 'twill be no more sweet Sir Francis, I shall be compell'd to the odious Task of Dissembling no longer to get my own, and coax him with the wheedling Names of my Precious, my Dear, dear Gardee. O Heavens!
Enter Sir Francis behind.
Sir Fran.
Ah, my sweet Chargee, don't be frighted. (She starts.) But thy poor Gardee has been abus'd, cheated, fool'd, betray'd, but no body knows by whom.
Miran.
(Aside.) Undone! past Redemption.
Sir Fran.
What won't you speak to me, Chargee!
Miran.
I'm so surpriz'd with Joy to see you, I know not what to say.
Sir Fran.
Poor, dear Girl! But do'e know that my Son, or some such Rogue, to rob or murder me, or borh, contriv'd this Journey? For upon the Road I met my Neighbour Squese zum well, and coming to Town.
Miran,
Good lack, good lack! what Tricks are there in this World!
Enter Scentwell, with a Diamond Necklace in her Hand; not seeing Sir Francis.
Scentw.
Madam be pleas'd to tye this Neck-lace on, for I can't get it into the— (Seeing Sir Francis.
Miran.
The Wench is a Fool, I think! cou'd you not have carried it to be mended, without putting it in the Box?
Sir Fran.
What's the matter?
Miran.
Only Dear'e, I bid her, I bid her—Your ill Usage has put every thing out of my Head. But won't you go, Gardee, and find out these Fellows, and have them punish'd! and, and—
Sir Fran.
Where shou'd I look them, Child? No I'll sit me down contented with my Safety, nor stir out of my own Doors, till I go with thee to a Parson.
Miran.
(Aside.) If he goes into his Closet I am ruin'd. Oh! bless me in this Fright, I had forgot Mrs. Patch.
Patch.
Ay, Madam, and I stay for your speedy Answer.
Miran.
(Aside.) I must get him out of the House. Now assist me, Fortune.
Sir Fran.
Mrs. Patch, I profess I did not see you: How dost thou do, Mrs. Patch? Well, don't you repent leaving my Chargee?
Patch.
Yes, every body must love her—but I came now—Madam, What did I come for? My Invention is at the last Ebb. (Aside to Miranda.
Sir Fran.
Nay, never whisper, tell me.
Miran.
She came, dear Gardee to invite me to her Lady's Wedding, and you shall go with me Gardee, 'tis to be done this Moment to, a Spanish Merchant; Old Sir Jealous keeps on his Humour, the first Minute he sees her, the next he marries her.
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, ha, I'd go if I thought the sight of Matri mony wou'd tempt Chargee to perform her Promise: There was a smile, there was a consenting Look with those pretty Twinklers, worth a Million. Ods precious, I am happier than the Great Mogul, the Emperor of China, or all the Poten tates that are not in Wars. Speak, confirm it, make me leap out of my Skin.
Miran.
When one has resolv'd, 'tis in vain to stand shall I, shall I; if ever I marry, positively this is my Wedding Day.
Sir Fran.
Oh! happy, happy Man—Verily I will beget a Son, the first Night shall disinherit that Dog Charles. I have Estate enough to purchase a Barony, and be the immortalizing the whole Family of the Gripes.
Miran.
Come then Gardee, give me thy Hand, let's to this House of Hymen. My Choice is fix'd, let good or ill betide,
Sir Fran.
The joyful Bridegroom I,
Miran.
And I the happy Bride.
61 Enter Sir Jealous meeting a Servant.
Serv.
Sir, here's a couple of Gentlemen enquire for you; one of them calls himself Seignior Diego Babinetto.
Sir Jeal.
Ha! Seignior Babinetto! Admit 'em instantly—Joyful Minute; I'll have my Daughter marry'd to Night.
Enter Charles in Spanish Habit, with Sir George drest like a Merchant.
Sir Jeal.
Senior, beso Las Manos vuestra merced es muy bien venido en esta tierra.
Char.
Senhor, soy muy humilde, y muy obligado Cryado de vuestra merced: Mi Padre Embia a vuestra merced, los mas pro fondos de sus respetos; y a Commissionado este Mercadel Ingles, de concluyr un negocio, que me Haze el mas dichoso hombre del mundo, Haziendo me su yerno.
Sir Jeal.
I am glad on't, for I find I have lost much of my Spanish. Sir, I am your most humble Servant. Seignior Don Diego Babinetto has informed me that you are commission'd by Seignior Don Pedro, &c. his worthy Father.
Sir Geo.
To see an Affair of Marriage consummated be tween a Daughter of yours, and Seignior Diego Babinetto his Son here. True, Sir, such a Trust is repos'd in me as that Let ter will inform you. I hope 'twill pass upon him. (Aside.) (Gives him a Letter.
Sir Jeal.
Ay, 'tis his Hand. (Seems to read.
Sir Geo.
Good—you have counterfeited to a Nicety, Charles. (Aside to Charles.
Char.
If the whole Plot succeeds as well, I'm happy.
Sir Jeal.
Sir I find by this, that you are a Man of Honour and Probity; I think, Sir, he calls you Meanwell.
Sir Geo.
Meanwell is my Name, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
A very good Name, and very significant.
Char.
Yes Faith, if he knew all. (Aside
Sir Jeal.
For to Mean-well is to be honest, and to be honest is the Virtue of a Friend, and a Friend is the Delight and Support of Human Society.
Sir Geo.
You shall find that I'll discharge the part of a Friend in what I have undertaken, Sir Jealous.
Char.
But little does he think to whom. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Therefore, Sir, I must intreat the Presence of your fair Daughter, and the Assistance of your Chaplain; for Seignor Don Pedro strictly enjoyn'd me to see the Marriage Rites perform'd as soon as we should arrive, to avoid the Accidental Overtures of Venus.
Sir Jeal.
Overtures of Venus.
Sir Geo.
Ay, Sir, that is, those little Hawking Females that traverse the Park, and the Play-house to put off their da mag'd Ware—they fasten upon Foreigners like Leeches, and watch their Arrival as carefully, as the Kentish Men do a Ship-wreck. I warrant you they have heard of him al ready.
Sir Jeal.
Nay, I know this Town swarms with them.
Sir Geo.
Ay, and then you know the Spaniards are natu rally Amorous, but very Constant, the first Face fixes 'em, and it may be dangerous to let him ramble e'er he is tied.
Char.
Well hinted. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Pat to my Purpose—Well, Sir, there is but one thing more, and they shall be married instantly.
Char.
Pray Heaven, that one thing more don't spoil all. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Don Pedro writ me Word in his last but one, that he design'd the Sum of Five Thousand Crowns by way of Joynture for my Daughter; and that it shou'd be paid into my Hand upon the Day of Marriage.
Char.
Oh! the Devil. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
In order to lodge it in some of our Funds, in case she should become a Widow, and return for England.
Sir Geo.
Pox on't, this is an unlucky Turn. What shall I say? (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
And he does not mention one Word of it in this Letter.
Char.
I don't know how he should.
Sir Geo.
Humph! True, Sir Jealous, he told me such a Thing, but, but, but, but—he, he, he, he—he did not imagine that you wou'd insist upon the very Day, for, for, for, for Money you know is dangerous returning by Sea, an, an, an, an—
Char.
Zounds, say we have brought it in Commodities. (Aside to Sir George.
Sir Geo.
And so Sir, he has sent it in Merchandize, Tobac co, Sugars, Spices, Limons, and so forth, which shall be turn'd into Money with all Expedition: In the mean time, Sir, if you please to accept of my Bond for Performance.
Sir Jeal.
It is enough, Sir, I am so pleas'd with the Coun tenance of Seignior Diego, and the Harmony of your Name, that I'll take your Word, and will fetch my Daughter this Moment. Within there (Enter Servant) desire Mr. Tackum my Neighbour's Chaplain to walk hither.
Serv.
Yes, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
Gentlemen, I'll return in an Instant.
Char.
Wondrous well. Let me embrace thee.
Sir Geo.
Egad that 5000 l. had like to have ruin'd the Plot.
Char.
But that's over! And if Fortune throws no more Rubs in our way.
Sir Geo.
Thou'lt carry the Prize—but hist, here he comes.
Enter Sir Jealous, dragging in Isabinda.
Sir Jeal.
Come along, you stubborn Baggage you, come along.
Isab.
Oh hear me, Sir! hear me but speak one Word,Do not destroy my everlasting Peace; My Soul abhors this Spaniard you have chose, Nor can I wed him without being curst.
Sir Jeal.
How's that!
Isab.
Let this Posture move your tender Nature. (Kneels. For ever will I hang upon these Knees;Nor loose my Hands till you cut off my hold,If you refuse to hear me, Sir.
Char.
Oh! that I cou'd discover my self to her. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Have a care what you do. You had better trust to his Obstinacy, (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Did you ever see such a perverse Slut, Off I say. Mr. Meanwell pray help me a little.
Sir Geo.
Rise, Madam, and do not disoblige your Father, who has provided a Husband worthy of you, one that will Love you equal with his Soul, and one that you will Love, when once you know him.
Isab.
Oh! never, never. Cou'd I suspect that Falshood in my Heart, I wou'd this Moment tear it from my Breast, and streight present him with the Treacherous Part.
Char.
Oh! my charming faithful Dear. (Aside.
Sir Jeal.
Falshood! why, who the Devil are you in Love with? Ha! Don't provoke me, for by St. Jago I shall beat you, Housewife.
Char.
Heaven forbid; for I shall infallibly discover my self if he should. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Have Patience, Madam! and look at him: Why will you prepossess your self against a Man that is Master of all the Charms you wou'd desire in a Husband?
Sir Jeal.
Ay, look at him, Isabinda, Senior pase vind adelante.
Char.
My Heart bleeds to see her grieve, whom I imagin'd would with Joy receive me. Senior a obligue me vuestra mer ced de sumano.
Sir Jeal.
(Pulling up her Head.) Hold up your Head, hold up your Head, Housewife, and look at him: Is there a pro perer, handsomer, better shap'd Fellow in England, ye Jade you? Ha! see, see the obstinate Baggage shuts her Eyes; by St. Jago, I have a good mind to beat 'em out. (Pushes her down.
Isab.
Do then, Sir, kill me, kill me instantly.'Tis much the kinder Action of the Two,For 'twill be worse than Death to wed him.
Sir Geo.
Sir Jealous, you are too passionate. Give me leave, I'll try by gentle Words to work her to your Purpose.
Sir Jeal.
I pray do, Mr. Meanwell, I pray do; she'll break my Heart. (Weeps) There is in that, Jewels of the Value of 3000 l. which were her Mother's; and a Paper wherein I have settled one half of my Estate upon her now, and the whole when I dye. But provided she marries this Gentleman, else by St. Jago, I'll turn her out of Doors to beg or starve. Tell her this, Mr. Meanwell, pray do. (Walks off.
Sir Geo.
Ha! this is beyond Expectation—Trust to me, Sir, I'll lay the dangerous Consequence of disobeying you at this Juncture before her, I warrant you.
Char.
A sudden Joy runs thro' my Heart like a propitious Omen. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
Come, Madam, do not blindly cast your Life a way just in the Moment you would wish to save it.
Isab.
Pray cease your Trouble, Sir, I have no wish but sudden Death to free me from this hated Spaniard. If you are his Friend inform him what I say; my Heart is given to another Youth, whom I love with the same strength of Pas sion that I hate this Diego; with whom, if I am forc'd to wed, my own Hand shall cut the Gordian Knot.
Sir Geo.
Suppose this Spaniard which you strive to shun should be the very Man to whom you'd flye?
Isab.
Ha!
Sir Geo.
Would you not blame your rash Result, and curse those Eyes that would not look on Charles.
Isab.
On Charles! Oh you have inspir'd new Life, and collected every wandring Sense. Where is he? Oh! let me flye into his Arms (Rises.
Sir Geo.
Hold, hold, hold, S'Death, Madam, you'll ruin all, your Father believes him to be Seignor Barbinetto. Com pose your self a little, pray Madam. (He runs to Sir Jealous.
Char.
Her Eyes declare she knows me. (Aside.
Sir Geo.
She begins to hear Reason, Sir, the fear of being turn'd out of Doors has done it. (Runs back to Isabinda.
Isab.
'Tis he, oh! my ravish'd Soul.
Sir Geo.
Take heed, Madam, you don't betray your self. Seem with Reluctance to consent, or you are undone, (runs to Sir Jealous ) speak gently to her, Sir, I'm sure she'll yield, I see it in her Face.
Sir Jeal.
Well, Isabinda, can you refuse to bless a Father, whose only Care is to make you happy, as Mr. Meanwell has inform'd you. Come, wipe thy Eyes; nay, prithee do, or thou wilt break thy Father's Heart; see thou bring'st the 66 Tears in mine to think of thy undutiful Carriage to me. (Weeps.
Isab.
Oh! do not weep, Sir, your Tears are like a Pon yard to my Soul; do with me what you please, I am all O bedience.
Sir Jeal.
Ha! then thou art my Child agen.
Sir Geo.
'Tis done, and now Friend the Day's thy own.
Char.
The happiest of my Life, if nothing Intervene.
Sir Jeal.
And wilt thou love him?
Isab.
I will endeavour it, Sir.
Enter Servant.
Serv.
Sir, Here is Mr. Tackum
Sir Jeal.
Shew him into the Parlour —Senior tome vind sueipora; cete Momento les Juntta les Manos. (Gives her to Charles.
Char.
Oh! transport —Senior yo la recibo Como se deve un Teforo tan Grande. Oh! my Joy, my Life, my Soul. (Embrace.
Isab.
My Faithful everlasting Comfort.
Sir Jeal,
Now, Mr. Meanwell let's to the Parson, Who, by his Art will join this Pair for Life, Make me the happiest Father, her the happiest Wife.
SCENE Changes to the Street before Sir Jealous 's Door. Enter Marplot, Solus.
Marpl.
I have hunted all over the Town sor Charles, but can't find him; and by Whisper 's scouting at the End of the Street, I suspect he must be in the House again. I'm inform'd too that he has borrow'd a Spanish Habit out of the Play house: What can it mean? Hark'e, Sir, do you belong to this House?
Serv.
Yes, Sir.
Marpl.
Pray can you tell if there be a Gentleman in it in Spanish Habit?
Serv.
There is a Spanish Gentleman within, that is just a going to marry my young Lady, Sir.
Marpl.
Are you sure he is a Spanish Gentleman?
Serv,
I'm sure he speaks no English, that I hear of.
Marpl.
Then that can't be him I want; for 'tis an English Gentleman, tho' I suppose he may be dress'd like a Spaniard, that I enquire after.
Serv.
Ha! who knows but this may be an Impostor? I'll inform my Master; for if he shou'd be impos'd upon, he'll beat us all round, (Aside.) Pray, come in, Sir, and see if this be the Person you enquire for.
SCENE Changes to the Inside of the House. Enter Marplot.
Marpl.
So, this was a good Contrivance: If this be Charles, now will he wonder how I found him out.
Enter Servant and Sir Jealous.
Sir Jeal.
What is your earnest Business, Blockhead, that you must speak with me before the Ceremony's past? Ha! who's this?
Serv.
Why this Gentleman, Sir, wants another Gentleman in Spanish Habit, he says.
Sir Jeal.
In Spanish Habit! 'tis some Friend of Seignior Don Diego 's, I warrant. Sir, I suppose you wou'd speak with Seignior Barbinetto—
Marpl.
Hy-day! what the Devil does he say now!—Sir, I don't understand you.
Sir Jeal.
Don't you understand Spanish, Sir?
Marpl.
Not I indeed, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
I thought you had known Seignior Barbinetto.
Marpl.
Not I, upon my word, Sir.
Sir Jeal.
What then you'd speak with his Friend, the English Merchant, Mr. Meanwell.
Marpl.
Neither, Sir; not I.
Sir Jeal.
Why who are you then, Sir? And what do you want? (In an angry Tone.
Marpl.
Nay, nothing at all, not I, Sir. Pox on him! I wish I were out, he begins to exalt his Voice, I shall be beaten agen.
Sir Jeal.
Nothing at all, Sir! Why then what Business have you in my House? ha?
Serv.
You said you wanted a Gentleman in Spanish Habit.
Marpl.
Why, ay, but his Name is neither Barbinetto nor Meanwell.
Sir Jeal.
What is his Name then, Sirrah, ha? Now I look at you agen, I believe you are the Rogue threatned me with half a Dozen Mirmidons— Speak, Sir, who is it you look for? or, or—
Marpl.
A terrible old Dog!—Why, Sir, only an honest young Fellow of my Acquaintance—I thought that here might be a Ball, and that he might have been here in a Mas querade; 'tis Charles, Sir Francis Gripe 's Son, because I know he us'd to come hither sometimes.
Sir Jeal.
Did he so?—Not that I know of, I'm sure. Pray Heaven that this be Don Diego— If I shou'd be trick'd now—Ha! my Heart misgives me plaguily—within there! stop the Marriage—Run, Sirrah, call all my Servants! I'll be satis fy'd that this is Seignior Pedro 's Son e'er he has my Daughter.
Marpl.
Ha, Sir George, what have I done now?
Enter Sir George with a drawn Sword between the Scenes.
Sir Geo.
Ha! Marplot, here—Oh the unlucky Dog—what's the matter, Sir Jealous?
Sir Jeal.
Nay, I don't know the matter, Mr. Meanwell.
Marpl.
Upon my Soul, Sir George— (Going up to Sir Geo.
Sir Jeal.
Nay then, I'm betray'd, ruin'd, undone: Thieves, Traytors, Rogues! (Offers to go in.) Stop the Marriage, I say—
Sir Geo.
I say, go on Mr. Tackum— Nay, no Ent'ring here, I guard this Passage, old Gentleman; the Act and Deed were both your own, and I'll see 'em sign'd, or die for't.
Enter Servant.
Sir Jeal.
A pox on the Act and Deed!—Fall on, knock him down.
Sir Geo.
Ay, come on, Scoundrils! I'll prick your Jackets for you.
Sir Jeal.
'Zounds, Sirrah, I'll be reveng'd on you. (Beats Marplot.
Sir Geo.
Ay, there your Vengeance is due; Ha, ha.
Marpl.
Why what do you beat me for? I han't marry'd your Daughter.
Sir Jeal.
Rascals! why don't you knock him down?
Serv.
We are afraid of his Sword, Sir; if you'll take that from him, we'll knock him down presently.
Enter Charles and Isabinda.
Sir Jeal.
Seize her then.
Char.
Rascals, retire; she's my Wife, touch her if you dare, I'll make Dogs meat of you.
Sir Jeal.
Ah! downright English:— Oh, oh, oh, oh!
Enter Sir Francis Gripe, Miranda, Patch, Scentwell, and Whisper.
Sir Fran.
Into the House of Joy we enter without knock ing: Ha! I think 'tis the House of Sorrow, Sir Jealous.
Sir Jeal.
Oh Sir Francis! are you come? What was this your Contrivance, to abuse, trick, and chouse me of my Child!
Sir Fran.
My Contrivance! what do you mean?
Sir Jeal.
No, you don't know your Son there in Spanish Habit.
Sir Fran.
How! my Son in Spanish Habit. Sirrah, you'll come to be hang'd; get out of my sight, ye Dog! get out of my sight.
Sir Jeal.
Get out of your sight, Sir! Get out with your Bags; let's see what you'll give him now to maintain my Daughter on.
Sir Fran.
Give him! He shall be never the better for a Penny of mine—and you might have look'd after your Daughter better, Sir Jealous. Trick'd, quotha! Egad, I think you design'd to trick me: But look ye, Gentlemen, I believe I shall trick you both. This Lady is my Wife, do you see? And my Estate shall descend only to the Heirs of her Body.
Sir Geo.
Lawfully begotten by me—I shall be extremely oblig'd to you, Sir Francis.
Sir Fran.
Ha, ha, ha, ha, poor Sir George! You see your Project was of no use. Does not your Hundred Pound stick in your Stomach? Ha, ha, ha.
Sir Geo.
No faith, Sir Francis, this Lady has given me a Cordial for that. (Takes her by the Hand.
Sir Fran.
Hold, Sir, you have nothing to say to this Lady.
Sir Geo.
Nor you nothing to do with my Wife, Sir.
Sir Fran.
Wife, Sir!
Miran.
Ay really, Guardian, 'tis even so. I hope you'll forgive my first Offence.
Sir Fran.
What have you chous'd me out of my Consent, and your Writings then, Mistress, ha?
Miran.
Out of nothing but my own, Guardian.
Sir Jeal.
Ha, ha, ha, 'tis some Comfort at least to see you are over-reach'd as well as my self. Will you settle your Estate upon your Son now?
Sir Fran.
He shall starve first.
Miran.
That I have taken care to prevent. There, Sir, is the Writings of your Uncle's Estate, which has been your due these three Years. (Gives Char. Papers.
Char.
I shall study to deserve this Favour.
Sir Fran.
What have you robb'd me too, Mistress! Egad I'll make you restore 'em.—Huswife, I will so.
Sir Jeal.
Take care I don't make you pay the Arrears, Sir. 'Tis well its no worse, since 'tis no better. Come, young Man, seeing thou hast out-witted me, take her, and Bless you both.
Char.
I hope, Sir, you'll bestow your Blessing too, 'tis all I'll ask. (Kneels.
Sir Fran.
Confound you all!
Marpl.
Mercy upon us! how he looks! (Exit.
Sir Geo.
Ha, ha, ne'er mind his Curses, Charles; thou'lt thrive not one jot the worse for 'em. Since this Gentleman is reconcil'd, we are all made happy.
Sir Jeal.
I always lov'd Precaution, and took care to avoid Dangers. But when a thing was past, I ever had Philosophy to be easie.
Char.
Which is the true sign of a great Soul: I lov'd your Daughter, and she me, and you shall have no reason to re pent her Choice.
Isab.
You will not blame me, Sir, sor loving my own Country best.
Marpl.
So here's every body happy, I find, but poor Pil garlick. I wonder what Satisfaction I shall have, for being cuff'd, kick'd, and beaten in your Service.
Sir Jeal.
I have been a little too familiar with you, as things are fallen out; but since there's no help for't, you must forgive me.
Marpl.
Egad I think so—But provided that you be not so familiar for the future.
Sir Geo.
Thou hast been an unlucky Rogue.
Marp.
But very honest.
Char.
That I'll vouch for; and freely forgive thee.
Sir Geo.
And I'll do you one piece of Service more, Mar plot, I'll take care that Sir Francis make you Master of your Estate.
Marpl.
That will make me as happy as any of you.
Patch.
Your humble Servant begs leave to remind you, Madam.
Isab.
Sir, I hope you'll give me leave to take Patch into favour again.
Sir Jeal.
Nay, let your Husband look to that, I have done with my Care.
Char.
Her own Liberty shall always oblige me. Here's no Body but honest Whisper and Mrs. Scentwell to be provided for now. It shall be left to their Choice to Marry, or keep their Services.
Whisp.
Nay then, I'll stick to my Master.
Scentw.
Coxcomb! and I prefer my Lady before a Foot man.
Sir Jeal.
Hark, I hear Musick, the Fidlers smell a Wed ding. What say you young Fellows, will ye have a Dance?
Sir Geo.
With all my Heart; call 'em in.
A DANCE.
Sir Jeal.
Now let us in and refresh our selves with a chearful Glass, in which we'll bury all Animosities: And By my Example let all Parents move, And never strive to cross their Childrens Love; But still submit that Care to Providence above.
FINIS.

Footnotes