Page images
PDF
EPUB

liberty to tell you, you carry things too far, fools and libertines. Let us be careful to distinand go from one extreme to another.-What! guish between virtue and the appearance of it. because a worthless wretch has imposed upon Guard, if possible, against doing honour to hypoyou, under the fallacious shew of austere gri- crisy.—But, at the same time, let us allow there inace, will you needs have it every body is like is no character in life greater or more valuable him? confound the good with the bad, and con than that of the truly devout-nor any thing clude there are no truly religious in the world? more noble, or more beautiful, than the fervour Leave, my dear sir, such rash consequences to of a sincere piety.

(Exeunt omnes.

THE

CONSTANT COUPLE.

BY FARQUHAR.

PROLOGUE.

BY A FRIEND.

Poets will think nothing so checks their fury At night with empty bowels grumbles o'er the As wits, cits, beaux, and women for their jury.

play. Our spark's half dead to think what medley's And now the modish 'prentice he implores, come, .

Who, with his master's cash, stol’n out of doors, With blended judgments, to pronounce his doom. Employs it on a brace of-honourable whores : 'Tis all false fear; for in a mingled pit,

While their good bulky mother pleas'd, sits by, Why, what your grave Don thinks but dully writ, Bawd regent of the bubble gallery: His neighbour i' tli' great wig may take for wit. Next to our mounted friends we humbly move, Some authors court the few, the wise, if any; Who all your side-box tricks are much above, Our youth's content, if he can reach the many, And never fail to pay us with your love. Who go with much like ends to church and play, Ah, friends! poor Dorset garden-nouse is gone; Not to observe what priests or poets say ; Our merry meetings there are all undone : No! no! your thoughts, like theirs, lie quite Quite lost to us, sure for some strange misdeeds, another way

That strong dog Sampson's pull'd it o'er our The ladies safe may smile, for here's no slander,

heads, No smut, no lewd-tongu’d" beau, no double en Snaps rope like thread; but when his fortune's tendre.

told him, 'Tis true, he has a spark just come from France, He'll hear, perhaps, of rope will one day hold But then so far from beau—why, he talks sense!

him: Like coin oft carry'd out, but-seldom brought At least, I hope, that our good-natur’d town from thence.

Will find a way to pull his prices down. There's yet a gang to whom our spark submits, Your elbow-shaking fool, that lives by's wits, Well, that's all! Now, gentlemen, for the play, That's only witty though, just as he lives, by fits. On second thoughts, I've but two words to say, Who, lion-like, through bailiffs scours away, Such as it is, for your delight design’d, Hunts, in the face, a dinner all the day, Hear it, read, try, judge, and speak as you find.

MEN. Sir HARRY WILDAIR, Beau CLINCHER. Colonel STANDARD. Alderman SMUGGLER. CLINCHER junior. VIZARD.

DRAMATIS PERSONÆ.

Dicky.
Tom ERRAND.

WOMEN.
ANGELICA.
Lady DARLING.
PARLY.
Lady LUREWELL:

ACT I.

vant.

bastian, laden with Portugal wines : now the imSCENE I.-The Park.

pudent rogue of a tide-waiter has the face to afEnter VIZARD with a Letter, his Servant fol- indicted me upon the statute -Oh, conscience !

firm it is French wines in Spanish casks, and has lowing:

conscience! these tide-waiters and surveyors Vis. Angelica send it back unopened ! say you? plague us more with their French wines than the Serv. As you see, sir.

war did with French privateers-Ay, there's Viz. The pride of these virtuous women is another plague of the nationmore insufferable than the immodesty of prosti

Enter Colonel STANDARD. tutes—After all my encouragement, to slight me thus?

A red coat and feather, Sero. She said, sir, that imagining your morals Viz. Colonel Standard, I'm your humble sersincere, she gave you access to her conversation; but that your late behaviour in her company has Stand. May be not, sir. convinced her that your love and religion are Viz. Why so? both hypocrisy, and that she believes your letter Stand. Because I'm disbanded. like yourself, "fair on the outside, and foul with Viz. How! Broke? in: so sent it back unopened.

Stund. This very morning, in Hyde-Park, my Viz. May obstinacy guard her beauty till brave regiment, a thousand nien, that looked like wrinkles bury it; then may desire prevail to lions yesterday, were scattered, and looked as make her curse that untimely pride her disap- poor and simple as the herd of deer that grazed pointed age repents !-I'll be revenged the very beside them. first opportunity:—Saw you the old Lady Dar Smug. Tal, al, deral. (Singing.) I'll have a ling, her mother?

bonfire this night as high as the monument. Serv. Yes, sir, and she was pleased to say Stand. A bonfire! Thou dry, withered, illmuch in your commendation.

nature; had not those brave fellows' swords deViz. That's my cue-An esteem grafted in old fended you, your house had been a bonfire ere age is hardly rooted out; years stiffen their opi- this about your ears.—Did we not venture our nions with their bodies, and old zeal is only to be lives, sir ? cozened by young hypocrisy. [Asude.] Run to the Sinug. And did we not pay for your lives, sir? Lady Lurewell's, and know of her maid whicther | Venture your lives! I'm sure we ventured our her ladyship will be at home this evening. Her money, and that's life and soul to me.--Sir, beauty is sufficient cure for Angelica's scorn. we'll maintain you no longer.

[Exit Sercant. VIZARD pulls out a book, Stand. Then your wives shall, old Actæon.reads, and walks about,

There are five-and-thirty strapping officers gone

this morning to live upon free quarter in the city. Enter SMUGGLER.

Smug. Oh, Lord! Oh, Lord : Ishall have a son Smug. Ay, there's a pattern for the young men within these nine months, born with a leading-staff o'th' times ; at his meditation so early ; some in his hand. -Sir, you arebook of pious ejaculations, I'm sure.

Stand. What, sir?
Viz. This llobbes is an excellent fellow! (Aside.) Smug. Sir, I

say
that

you are
Oh, uncle Smuggler ! To find you at this end o Stund. What, sir?
th' town is a miracle.

Smug. Disbanded, sir, that's allSmug. I have seen a miracle this morning in- lawyer yonder.

[Exit. deed, cousin Vizard.

Viz. Sir, I'm very sorry for your misfortune. Viz. What is it, pray, sir?

Stand. Why so? I don't come to borrow mo. Smug. A man at his devotion so near the ney of you; if you're my friend, meet me this court-I'm very glad, boy, that you keep your evening at the Rummer; I'll pay my foy, drink a sanctity untainted in this infectious place; the health to my king, prosperity to my country, and very air of this park is heathenish, and every away for Hungary to-morrow morning. man's breath I meet scents of atheism.

Viz. What !

you won't leave us ? Viz. Surely, sir, some great concern must Stand. What! a soldier stay here, to look like bring you to this unsanctified end of the town. an old pair of colours in Westminster-Hall, rag

Smug. A very unsanctified concern truly, cou- ged and rusty! No, no I met yesterday a broken sin.

lieutenant; he was ashamed to own that he wantViz. What is it?

ed a dinner, but begged eighteen-pence of me to Smug. A law-suit, boy-Shall I tell you?-- buy a new scabbard for his sword. My ship, the Swan, is newly arrived from St Se Viz. Oh, but you have good friends, colonel !

I see my

ever.

Stand. Oh, very good friends! My father's a Wild. Who thought to find you out of the Rulord, and my elder brother a beau; mighty good bric so long? I thought thy hypocrisy had been friends indeed!

wedded to a pulpit-cushion long ago.—Sir, if I Viz. But your country may perhaps want your mistake not your face, your name is Standard ? sword again.

Stand. Sir Harry, I'm your humble servant. Stand. Nay, for that matter, let but a single Wild. Come, gentlemen, the news, the news drum beat up for volunteers between Ludgate o'th' town, for I'm just arrived. and Charing-Cross, and I shall undoubtedly hear Viz. Why, in the city-end o'th' town we're it at the walls of Buda.

playing the knave, to get estates. Viz. Come, come, colonel, there are ways of Štand. And in the court-end playing the fool, making your fortune at home-Make your ad-in spending them. dresses to the fair ; you're a man of honour and Wild. Just so in Paris. I'm glad we're grown courage.

so modish. Stand. Ay, my courage is like to do me wond Viz. We are so reformed, that gallantry is tarous service with the fair. This pretty cross ken for vice. cut over my eye will attract a duchess- I war Stand. And hypocrisy for religion. rant 'twill be a mighty grace to my ogling-Had Hild. A-la-mode de Paris again. I used the certain stratagem of a brother colonel Viz. Not one whore between Ludgate and of ininc, I might succeed.

Aldgate. Viz. What was it, pray ?:

Stand. But ten times more cuckolds than Stand. Why, to save his pretty face for the women, he always turned his back upon the ene Viz. Nothing like an oath in the city. my.-He was a man of honour for the ladies. Stund. That's a mistake; for my major swore

Viz. Come, come, the loves of Mars and Ve a hundred and fifty last night to a merchant's nus will never fail; you must get a mistress. wife in her bed-chamber.

Stand. Pr’ythee, no more on't-You have Wild. Pshaw ! this is trifling; tell me news, awakened a thought, from which, and the king- gentlemen. What lord has lately broke his fordom, I would have stolen away at once.To tune at the Groom-Porter's? or his heart at Newbe plain, I have a mistress.

market, for the loss of a race? What wife has Viz. And she's cruel ?

been lately suing in Doctor's-Commons for aliStand. No.

mony; or what daughter run away with her faViz. Her parents prevent your happiness? ther's valet? What beau gave the noblest bali at Stand. Not that.

the Bath, or had the finest coach in the ring? I Viz. Then she has no fortune ?

want news, gentlemen. Stand. A large one. Beauty to tempt all man Stund. Faith, sir, there are no news at all. kind, and virtue to beat off their assaults. Oh, Viz. But pray, Sir Harry, tell us some news Vizard ! such a creature !

of your travels.

Wild. With all my heart.—You must know Enter Sir HARRY WILDAIR, crosses the Stage then, I went over to Amsterdam in a Dutch ship: singing, with Footmen afiler him.

I there had a Dutch whore for five stivers. I Hey-day! Who the devil have we here? went from thence to Landen, where I was hear

Viz. The joy of the play-house, and life of tily drubbed in the battle with the butt-end of a the Park; Sir Flarry Wildair, newly come from Swiss musket. I thence went to Paris, where I Paris.

had half a dozen intrigues, bought half a dozen Stand. Sir Harry Wildair ! Did not he make new suits, fought a couple of duels, and here I a campaign in Flanders some three or four years am again in statu quo. ago?

Viz. But we heard that you designed to make Viz. The same.

the tour of Italy; what brought you back so Stund. Why, he behaved himself very bravely. soon?

Viz. Why not? Dost think bravery and gaiety Wild. That which brought you into the world, are inconsistent ? He's a gentleman of most hap- and may perhaps carry you out of it,-a woman, py circumstances, born to a plentiful estate; has Stand. What! quit the pleasures of travel for had a genteel and easy education, free from the a woman! rigidness of teachers, and pedantry of schools. His Wild. Ay, colonel, for such a woman! I had florid constitution being never ruffled by misfor- | rather see her ruclle than the palace of Lewis le tune, nor stinted in its pleasures, has rendered Grand. There's more glory in her smile, than him entertaining to others, and easy to himself; in the jubilee at Rome; and I would rather kiss turning all passion into gaiety of humour, by her hand, than the pope's toc. which he chooses rather to rejoice with his friends, Viz. You, colonel, have been very lavish in than be hated by any; as you shall see. the beauty and virtue of your mistress; and Sir

Harry here has been no less eloquent in the Re-enter WILDAIR.

praise of his. Now will I lay you both ten guiWild. Ha, Vizard !

neas a-piece, that neither of 'em is so pretty, so Viz. Sir Harry!

witty, or so virtuous, as mine,

Viz. Ay, ay,

Stand. 'Tis done.

man, if ladies were to be gained by sword and Wild. I'll double the stakes—But, gentlemen, pistol only, what the devil should all we beaus now I think on't, how shall we be resolved ? Fordo? I know not where my mistress may be found; Viz. I'll try him farther. (Aside.] But would she left Paris about a month before me, and I not you, Sir Harry, fight for this woman you so had an account

much admire ? Stand. How, sir! left Paris about a month Wild. Fight! Let me consider. I love herbefore you?

that's true ;--but then I love honest Sir Harry Wild. Yes, sir, and I had an account that she Wildair better. The Lady Larewell is divinely lodged somewhere in St James's.

charming—-right—but then a thrust i'th' Viz. How! somewhere in St James's, say guts, or a Middlesex jury, is as ugly as the devil. you?

Viz. Ay, Sir Harry, 'twere a dangerous cast }'ild. Ay, sir, but I know not where, and per- for a beau-baronet to be tried by a parcel of haps mayn't find her this fortnight.

greasy, grumbling, bartering boobies, who would Stund. Her name, pray, Sir Harry.

hang you, purely because you're a gentleman. her name; perhaps we know her. Wild. Ay, but on t'other hand, I have money Wild. Her name! Ay,—she has the softcst, enough to bribe the rogues with : so, upon mawhitest hand that e'er was made of flesh and ture deliberation, I would fight for her. But no blood: her lips so balmy sweet

more of her. Pr’ythee, Vizard, cann't you recomSiand. But her name, sir.

mend a friend to a pretty mistress by the bye, till I Wild. Then her neck and breast ;- her can find my own? You have store, I'm sure ; you breasts do so heave, so heave. [Singing. cunning poaching dogs make surer game than Viz. But her name, sir; her quality.

we that hunt open and fair. Pr’ythee now, good Wild. Then her shape, colonel !

Vizard. Stand. But her name I want, sir.

Viz. Let me consider a little.-Now love and Wild. Then her eyes, Vizard !

revenge inspire my politics !

[Aside. Slund. Pshaw, Sir Harry! her name, or no [Pauses, whilst Sir HARRY walks singing. thing.

Wild. Pshaw ! thou’rt as long studying for a Wild. Then, if you must have it, she's called new mistress, as a drawer is piercing a new pipe. the Lady--But then her foot, gentlemen ; she Viz. I design a new pipe for you, and wholedances to a miracle. Vizard, you have certainly some wine; you'll therefore bear a little expeclost your wager.

tation. Viz. Why, you have certainly lost your sen Wild. Ha! say'st thou, dear Vizard ? ses; we shall never discover the picture, unless Viz. A girl of sixteen, Sir Harry. you subscribe the name.

Wild. Now sixteen thousand blessings light Wild. Then her name is Lurewell. Stand. 'Sdeath, my mistress. Aside. Viz. Pretty and witty. Viz. My mistress, by Jupiter. Aside. Wild. Ay, ay, but her name, Vizard. Wild. Do you know her, gentlemen ?

Viz. Her name! yes--she has the softest Stand. I have seen her, sir.

whitest hand that e'er was made of flesh and Wild. Canst tell where she lodges ? Tell me, blood; her lips so balmy sweetdear colonel.

Wild. Well, well, but where shall I find her, Stand. Your humble servant, sir. (Exit. Wild. Nay, hold, colonel : I'll follow you, and Viz. Find her! but then her foot, Sir Harwill know.

[Runs ont. ry; she dances to a miracle. Viz. The Lady Lurewell his mistress ! lle Wild. Pr’ythee don't distract me. loves her: but she loves inc. -But he's a ba Viz. Well then, you must know, that this lady ronet, and I plain Vizard; he has a coach and is the greatest beauty in town; her name's Ansix, and I walk on foot; I was bred in London, gelica: she that passes for her mother is a priand he in Paris. - That very circumstance has vate bawd, and called the Lady Darling ; she murdered me. - Then some stratagem must goes for a baronet's lady, (no disparagement to be laid to divert his pretensions.

your honour, Sir Harry,) I assure you.

Wild. Pshaw, hang my honour! but what Re-enter WILDAIR.

strect, what house? JVild. Pry'thec, Dick, what makes the colonel Viz. Not so fast, Sir Harry; you must have so out of hiunour?

my passport for your admittance, and you'll find Viz. Because he's out of pay, I suppose. my recommendation in a line or two will procure

I'ild. 'Slife, that's true; I was beginning to you very civil entertainment; I suppose twenty mistrust some rivalship in the case.

or thirty pieces handsomely placed, will gain the Viz. And suppose there were, you know the point: I'll insure her sound. colonel can fight, Sir Harry.

Ilild. Thou dearest friend to a man in neces. Wild. Fight ! Pshaw-but he cann't dance, sity! Here, sirrah, order my coach about to St ha!- We contend for a woman, Vizard. 'Slife, Jaines's; I'll walk across the Park.

[To his servant.

on thee!

man?

« PreviousContinue »