« PreviousContinue »
a fit of the cholic, to excuse my lying down upon Læt. Indeed, my dear, I was but just come your bed; hoping that, when she heard of it, her down stairs, when you knocked at the door; and good-nature would bring her to administer reme the maid told me Mr Spintext was ill of the cho dies for my distemper. You know what might lic upon our bed.And won't you speak to me, have followed-But, like an uncivii person, you cruel Nykin? indeed I'll die, if you don't. knocked at the door before your wife was come Fond. Ah! No, no, I cannot speak, my heart's to me.
so full-I have been a tender husband, a tender Fond. Ha! This is apocryphal; I may choose yoke-fellow, you know I have—but thou hast whether I will believe it or no.
been a faithless Dalilah, and the Philistines have Bell. That you may, faith, and I hope you won't been upon thee. Heh! Art thou not vile and believe a word on't--but I cann't help telling the unclean, heh ? speak.
[Weeping truth for my life.
(Sighing Fond. How! would you not have me believe, Fond. Oh, that I could believe thee ! say you?
Lat. Oh, my heart will break.
(Seeming to faint. part with your wife, and there will be some hopes Fond. Heh, how! No, stay, stay, I will believe of having her
upon the public; then the encou thee, I will -Pray bend her forward, sir. ragement of a separate maintenance
Lat. Oh! oh! where is my dear? Fond. No, no, for that matter-when she and Fond. Here, here ; I do believe thee I won't I part, she'll carry her separate maintenance believe my own eyes. about her.
Bell. For my part, I am so charmed with the Lat. Ah, cruel dear, how can you be so bar love of your turtle to you, that I'll go and solicit barous ? You'll break my heart, if you talk of matrimony with all my might and main. parting.
[Cries. Fond. Well, well, sir; as long as I believe it, Fond. Ah! dissembling vermin!
’tis well enough. No thanks to you, sir, for her Bell. How canst thou be so cruel, Isaac? Thou virtue.-But, I'll show you the way out of my hast the heart of a mountain-tiger. By the faith of house, if you please. Come, my dear. Nay, I a sincere sinner, she's innocent for me. Go to will believe thee, I do, i'feck. him, madam, Aling your snowy arms about his Bell. See the great blessing of an easy faith; stubborn neck; (She goes, and hangs upon his neck, opinion cannot err. and kisses him. BELL. kisses her hand behind For. No husband, by his wife, can be deceived; DLEWIFE's back.] bathe his relentless face in your She still is virtuous, if she's so believed. salt trickling tears.—So, a few soft words, and a
(Exeunt, kiss, and the good man melts. See how kind nature works, and boils over in him,
Lucy. An executioner, qualified to do your SCENE I.-The Street.
business. He has been lawfully ordain'd.
Heart. I'll pay him well, if you'll break the Enter BELLMOUR in funutic Habit, and SETTER.
matter to him. Bell. Setter! well encounter'd.
Lucy. I warrant you-Do you go and prepare Set. Joy of your return, sir. Have you made
(Exit HEARTWELL. a good voyage? Or have you brought your own Bell
. Humph, sits the wind there? --What lading back?
a lucky rogue am I! Oh, what sport will be here, Bell
. No, I have brought nothing but ballast if I can persuade this wench to secrecy! back- made a delicious voyage, Setter; and might Lucy. Sir: reverend sirhave rode at anchor in the port till this time, but Beil. Madam.
[Discovers himself. the enemy surprised us~I would unrig.
Lucy. Now, goodness have mercy upon me!
Mr Bellmour, is it you?
Lucy. Think! that I should not believe my Bell. Ha! Is not that Heartwell at Silvia's eyes, and that you are not what you seem to be. door? Begone quickly, I'll follow you :-I would Bell. True. But, to convince thee who I am, not be known. '[Exit SETTER.] Pox take 'em ! thou knowest my old token.
[Kisses her. they stand just in my way.
Lucy. Nay, Mr Bellmour- Lard! I believe Heurt. I'm impatient till it be done.
you are a parson in good earnest, you kiss so deLucy. That may be, without troubling yourself voutly. to go again for your brother's chaplain. Don't Bell. Well, your business with me, Lucy ? you see that stalking form of godliness?
Lucy. I had none, but through mistake.
Bcll. Which mistake you must go through
with, Lucy- Come, I know the intrigue be Set. This afternoon, sir, about an hour before tween Heartwell and your mistress; and you mis- my master received the letter. took me for Tribulation Spintext, to marry 'em. Sharp. In my conscience, like enough. -Ha! Are not matters in this posture? Con Sel. Ay, I know her, sir; at least I'm sure I fess: -Come, I'll be faithful; I will i'faith.- can fish it out of her : she's the very sluice to her What, difhde in me, Lucy?
lady's secrets :—'Tis but setting her mill a-going, Lucy. Alas-a-day you and Mr Vainlove be- and I can drain her of 'em all. tween you have ruin'd my poor mistress: You Shurp. Here, Frank, your blood-hound has have made a gap in her reputation ; and can you made out the fault; this letter, that so sticks in blame her if she stop it up with a husband ? thy maw, is counterfeit; only a trick of Silvia in Bell. Well, is it as I say?
revenge, contrived by Lucy. Lucy. Well, it is then : But you'll be secret. Vain. Ha! it has a colour-But how do you
Bell. Pob, secret! ay :-und, to be out of thy know it, sirrah? debt, I'll trust thee with another secret. Your Set. I do suspect as much; because why, sirmistress must not marry Heartwell, Lucy. she was pumping me about how your worship’s Lucy. How! O Lord
affairs stood towards madam Araminta ; as, when Bell
. Nay, don't be in a passion, Lucy-I'll you had seen her last? when you were to see her provide a fitter husband for her.-Come, here's next? and where you were to be found at that earnest of my good intentions for thee too; let time? and such like. this mollify. (Gives her money.) Look you, Heart Vuin. And where did you tell her? well is my friend; and, though he be blind, I must Set. In the Piazza. not see him fall into the snare, and unwittingly Vain. There I received the letter-It must be marry a whore.
50—And why did you not find me out, to tell me Lucy. Whore ! I'd have you to know my mis- this before, sot? tress scorns
Set. Sir, I was pimping for Mr Bellmour. Bell. Nay, nay: Look you, Lucy; there are Shurp. You were well employed I think there whores of as good quality.—But to the purpose, no objection to the excuse. if you will give me leave to acquaint you with it. Vain. Pox o' my saucy credulity - If I have Do you carry on the mistake of me; I'll marry lost her, I deserve it. But if confession and re’em.-Nay, don't pause; If you do, I'll spoil all
. pentance be of force, l'll win her, or weary her - I have someprivate reasons for what I do, which into a forgiveness.
(Exit. I'll tell you within. In the mean time, I promise, Sharp. Methinks I long to see Bellmour come and rely upon me, to help your mistress to a hus- forth. band : Nay, and thee too, Lucy_here's my hand, I will; with a fresh assurance.
Enter BELLMOUR. (Gives her more money.
Set. Talk of the devil-see where he comes. Lucy. Ah, the devil is not so cunning !-You Shurp. Hugging himself in his prosperous misknow my easy nature.-Well, for once I venture chief-No real fanatic can look better pleased afto serve you; but if you do deceive me, the curse ter a successful sermon of sedition. of all kind, tender-hearted women light upon Bell. Sharper! fortify thy spleen: Such a you !
jest ! Speak when thou art ready. Bell. That's as much as to say,
the pox take Sharp. Now, were I ill-natured, would I utterly me-Well, lead on.
(Exeunt. disappoint thy mirth : Hear thee tell thy mighty
jest, with as much gravity as a bishop hears veneEnter VAINLOVE, SHARPER, and SETTER.
real causes in the spiritual court: Not so much Sharp. Just now, say you, gone in with Lucy? as wrinkle my face with one smile; but let thee Set. I saw him, sir, and stood at the corner look simply, and laugh by thyself.
found me, and overheard all they said. Bell. Pshaw, no; I have a better opinion of Mr Bellmou is to marry 'em.
thy wit-Gad, 1 defy theeSharp. Ha, ha! 'Twill be a pleasant cheat Sharp. Were it not loss of time, you should I'll plague Heartwell when I see him. Pr'ythee, make the experiment. But honest Setter here Frank, let's teaze him, make him fret till he foam overheard you with Lucy, and has told me all. at the mouth, and disgorge bis matrimonial oath Bell. Nay then, I thank thee for not putting with interest.-Come, thou’rt so musty.
me out of countenance. But, to tell you someSet. [To SHARPER.) Sir, a word with you. thing you don't know, I got an opportunity (af
[Whispers him. ter I married 'em) of discovering the cheat to Vain. Sharper swears she has forsworn the let- Silvia. She took it at first, as another woman ter~I'm sure he tells me truth; but I am not would the like disappointment; but my promise sure she told him truth : Yet she was unaffect- to make her amends quickly with another husedly concerned, he says, and often blush'd with band, somewhat pacified her. anger and surprise.-And so I remember, in the Sharp. But how the devil do you think to acPark. She had reason, if I wrong her I beo quit yourself of your promise? 'Will you marry gin to doubt?
her yourself? Sharp. Say'st thou so !
Bell, I have no such intentions at present
Prythee, wilt thou think a little for me? I am Sharp. Well, I'll go and inform your master ; sure the ingenious Mr Setter will assist.
and do you press her to make all the haste imaSet. O Lord, sir !
[Exit. Bell. I'll leave him with you, and go shift my
Set. Were I a rogue now, what a noble prize habit.
(Erit. could I dispose of ! A goodly pinnace, richly laEnter Sir JOSEPH and BLUFFE.
den, and to launch forth under my auspicious Sharp. Heh! Sure Fortune has sent this fool convoy. Twelve thousand pounds, and all her hither on purpose. Setter, stand close; seem
rigging; besides what lies concealed under hatches. not to observe 'em, and, hark'e [Whispers.
Ha! All this committed to my care! Avaunt, Bluff Fear him not. I am prepared for him temptation!
-Setter, shew thyself a person of now; and he shall find he might have safer
roused worth; be true to thy trust, and be reputed hoa sleeping lion !
nest. Reputed honest! hum! Is that all ? Ay: Sir Jos. Hush, hush! don't you see him ?
For to be honest is nothing; the reputation of it Bluff. Shew him to me. Where is he?
is all. Reputation! What have such poor rogues Sir Jos. Nay, don't speak so loud I don't
as I to do with reputation ? 'tis above us; and for jest, as I did a little while ago — Look yondertion is een as foolish as honesty. And for my
men of quality, they are above it; so that reputa'Egad, if he should hear the lion roar, he'd cudgel him into an ass, and his primitive braying.
part, if I meet Sir Joseph with a purse of gold in Don't you remember the story in Æsop's Fables,
his hand, I'll dispose of mine to the best advanbully?' 'Egad, there are good morals to be pick'd
tage. out of Æsop's Fables, let me tell you that; and
Sir Jos. Heh, heh, heh! Here 'tis for you, Reynard the Fox too.
i'faith, Mr Setter. Nay, I'll take you at your
word. Bluff. Damn your morals !
Chinking a purse. Sir Jos. Pr’ythee, don't speak so loud.
Set. Sir Joseph and the captain too ! Undone, Bluff, Damn your morals! I must revenge the undone! I'm undone, my master's undone, my affront done to my honour. (In a low voice. lady's undone, and all the business is undone. Sir Jos. Ay: Do, do, captain, if you think fit
Sir Jos. No, no, never fear, man, the lady's buting-You may dispose of
siness shall be done. What-Come, Mr Setown flesh as you
your think fitting, d’ye see! But, by the Lord Harry, of time; but, if there be occasion, let these worthy
ter, I have overheard all, and to speak is but loss I'll leave you. (Stealing away upon his tip-toes. Bluff: Prodigious! What, will
gentlemen intercede for me. [Gives him gold.
you friend in extremity? You cann’t in honour refuse
Set. O Lord, sir, what do you mean? Corrupt to carry him a challenge?
-They have indeed very persua(Almost whispering, and treading softly after ding faces. But
Sir Jos. 'Tis too little; there's more, man. him. Sir Jos. Prythee, what do
Set. Well, Sir Joseph, you have such a winis your province, captain ; take it-All the world ning way with you know me to be a knight, and a man of worship.
Sir Jos. And how, and how, good Setter, did Set. I warrant you, sir, I'm instructed.
the little rogue look, when she talk'd of Sir JoSharp. Impossible ! Araminta take a liking to seph? Did not her eyes twinkle, and her mouth a fool !
water? Did not she pull up her little bubbies ? Set. Her head runs on nothing else, nor she And—'egad, I'm so overjoy'd--and stroke down can talk of nothing else.
her belly? and then step aside to tie her garter, Sharp. I know she commended him all the when she was thinking of her love, heh, Setter? while we were in the Park; but I thought it had
Set. Oh, yes, sir ! been only to make Vainlove jealous
Sir Jos. How now, bully? What, melancholy, Sir Jos. How's this! Good bully, hold your l'Il make your peace“I know they were a little
because I'm in the lady's favour?-No matter, breath, and let's hearken. 'Egad this must be I.Sharp. Death, it cann't be. -An oaf, an idi- smart upon you
-But I warrant I'll bring you ot, a wittol.
into the lady's good graces. Sir Jos. Ay, now it's out; 'tis I, my own indi.
Bluff: Pshaw, I have petitions to show from
other-guess toys than she. Look here; these Sharp. A wretch, that has flown for shelter to were sent me this morning—There, read, (Shows the lowest shrub of mankind, and seeks protec- letters
. That-that's a scrawl of quality. Here, tion from a blasted coward.
here's from a countess too. Hum No, hold Sir Jos. That's you, bully Back.
-that's from a knight's wife; she sent it me by (BLUFFE frowns upon Sir JOSEPH. her husband-But here-But these are from perSharp. She has given Vainlove her promise to
sons of great quality. marry him before to-morrow morning. -Has
Sir Jos. They are either from persons of great the not?
quality, or no quality at all, 'tis such a damn'd Set. She has, sir; and I have it in charge to at ugly hand. tend her all this evening, in order to conduct her
(While Sir JOSEPH reads, BLUFFE whispers to the place appointed.
you see in
Set. Captain, I would do any thing to serve you; but this is so difficult
SETTER entering. Bluff. Not at all! Don't I know him?
Set. Some by experience find those words mise Set. You'll remember the conditions ?
placed ; Bluff. I'll give't you under my band -In the
At leisure married, they repent in haste. mean time, here's earnest. įGives him money.)- As I suppose my master Heartwell. Come, knight, I'm capitulating with Mr Setter Sharp. Here again, my Mercury !
Set. Sublimate, if you please, sir; I think my Sir Jos. Ah, honest Setter -Sirrah, I'll give achievements do deserve the epithet-Mercury thee any thing but a night's lodging. [Exeunt. was a pimp too, but, though I blush to own it, at
this time, I must confess I am somewhat fallen Enter SHARPER, tugging in HEARTWELL.
from the dignity of my function, and do condeSharp. Nay, pr’ythee leave railing, and come scend to be scandalously employed in the promoalong with me : May be she mayn't be within ; tion of vulgar matrimony. 'tis but to yon corner-house.
Sharp. As how, dear dexterous pimp? Heurt. Whither? Whither? Which corner Sct. Why, to be brief, (for I have weighty affairs house?
depending, our stratagem succeeded as you in. Sharp. Why, there: The Two White Posts. tended-Bluffe turns arrant traitor; bribes me
Heurt. And who would you visit there, say to make a private conveyance of the lady to him, you ?-O’ons, how my heart aches !
and put a sham-settlement upon Sir Joseph. Sharp. Pshaw! thou’rt so troublesome and Sharp. O rogue! Well, but I hopeinquisitive Why, I'll tell you ; 'tis a young Set. No, no; never fear me, sir- - I privately creature that Vainlove debauch’d, and has for informed the knight of the treachery; who has saken. Did you never hear Bellmour chide him agreed seemingly to be cheated, that the captain about Silvia ?
may be so in reality. Heart. Death and hell, and marriage! My Sharp. Where's the bride? wife!
Set. Shifting cloaths for the purpose, at a Sharp. Why, thou art as musty as a new-mar friend's house of mine. Here's company coming ; ried man, that had found his wife knowing the if you'll walk this way, sir, I'll tell you.' (Ereunt. first night. Heart. Hell and the devil! Does he know it?
Enter BELLMOUR, BELINDA, ARAMINTA, and But hold—if he should not, I were a fool to
VAINLOVE. discover it'll dissemble, and try him. [ Aside.]
Vain. Oh, 'twas a frenzy all : Cannot you forHa, ha, ha! Why, Tom, is that such an occa- give it?-Men in madness have a title to your sion of melancholy? Is it such uncommon mis. pity.
[To ARAMINTA. chief?
Aram. Which they forfeit, when they are reShurp. No, faith ; I believe not.—Few women stored to their senses. but have their year of probation, before they are Vuin. I am not presuming beyond a pardon. cloister'd in the narrow joys of wedlock. But, Aram. You who could reproach me with one pr’ythee, come along with me, or I'll go and have counterfeit, how insolent would a real pardon the lady to myself by the way, George. (Going. make you! But there's no need to forgive what Hruri. O torture! How he racks and tears is not worth my anger.
-Death! Shall I own my shame, or wit Belin. O' my conscience, I could find in my tingly let him go and whore my wife ? No, that's heart to marry thee, purely to be rid of thecinsupportable -Oh, Sharper !
At least, thou art so troublesome a lover, there's Sharp. How now?
hopes thou'lt make a more than ordinary quiet Heuri. Oh, I am-married !
[To BELLMOUR. Sharp. Now hold, spleen !- Married !
Bell. Say you so ? --Is that a maxim among Heart, Certainly, irrecoverably married. Sharp. Heaven forbid, man! How long? Belin. Yes ; you flattering men of the mode
Heart. Oh, an age, an age! I have been mar have made marriage a mere French dish. ried these two hours.
Bell. I hope there's no French sauce. [Aside. Sharp. My old bachelor married ! that were a Belin. You are so curious in the preparation, jest. lla, ha, ha!
that is, your courtship, one would think you meant Heart. Death! D’ye mock me? Hark ye, if a noble entertainment; but when we come to either you esteem my friendship, or your own feed, 'tis all froth, and poor, but in show: nay, safety, come not near that house—that corner. often only remains, which have been I know not house—that hot brothel. Ask no questions. how many times warmed for other company, and
[Erit. at last served up cold to the wife. Sharp. Mad, by this light.
Bill. That were a miserable wretch indeed, Thus grief still treads upon the heels of plea who could not afford one warm dish for the wife
of his bosom—But you timorous virgins form a Married in haste, we may repent at leisure. dreadful chimcra of a husband, as of a creature
contrary to that soft, humble, pliant, easy thing, a wife, or say a civil thing to any body else. Jesu ! lover, so guess at plagues in matrimony, in oppo how he looks already. `Ha, ha, ha! sition to the pleasures of courtship. Alas! court Bell. Ha, ha, ha! ship to marriage, is but as the music in the play Heart. Death! am I made your laughing-stock? house, till the curtain's drawn; but that once up, For you, sir, I shall find a time; but take off your then opens the scene of pleasure.
wasp here, or the clown may grow boisterous :Belin. Oh, foh-no: rather, courtship to mar- I have a fly-flap. riage, is a very witty prologue to a very dull play. Belin. You have occasion for't; your wife has
been blown upon. Enter SHARPER.
Bell. That's home. Sharp. Hist, Bellmour ! if you'll bring the Heart. Not fiends or furies could have added ladies, make haste to Silvia's lodgings, before to my vexation, or any thing but another woman Heartwell has fretted himself out of breath. I'm You've wrecked my patience: Begone, or in haste now, but I'll come in at the catastrophe. by
[Exit. Bell. Hold, hold !-What the devil, thou wilt Bell. You have an opportunity now, madam, not draw upon a woman ! to revenge yourself upon Heartwell, fór affront Vain. What's the matter? ing vour squirrel.
[To BELINDA. Aram. Bless me! what have you done to him? Belin. O the filthy rude beast !
Belin. Only touched a gall'd beast till he Aram. 'Tis a lasting quarrel: I think he has winced. never been at our house since.
Vuin. Bellmour, give it over ; you vex him too Bell. But give yourselves the trouble to walk much; 'tis all serious to him. to that corner. house, and I'll tell you by the way Belin. Nay, I swear, I begin to pity him myself. what may divert and surprise you. (Exeunt. Heart. Damn your pity !-But let me be calmı
a little-How have I deserved this of you? Any SCENE II.-Changes to Silvia's Lodging.
of ye !-Sir, have I impaired the honour of your
house, promised your sister marriage, and whored Enter HEARTWELL and Boy.
her ? —Wherein have I injured you? Did I bring
a physician to your father, when he lay expiring, Heart. Gone forth, say you, with her maid ? and endeavour to prolong his life, and you one
Boy. There was a man, too, that fetched 'em and-twenty ?–Madam, have I had an opportuniout-Setter, I think, they called him.
ty with you and baulked it ? Did you ever offer Heart. So-h-That precious pimp too me the favour that I refused it! Ör-Damn'd, damn'd strumpet ! Could she not con Belin. Oh foh! What does the filthy fellow tain herself on her wedding-day! Not hold out mean? Lard, let me be gone! till night! Leave me. (Exit Boy.] O cursed state ! Aram. Hang me if I pity you ; you are right How wide we err, when, apprehensive of the load enough served.
Bell. This is a little scurrilous though. -We hope to find Vuin. Nay, 'tis a sore of your own scratching That help which nature meant in woman-kind! -Well, George, To man that supplemental self design'd,
Heurt. You are the principal cause of all my But proves a burning caustic when apply'd; present ills. If Silvia had not been your whore, And Adam sure could, with more ease, abide my wife might have been honest. The bone when broken, than when made a bride. Vain. And if Silvia had not been your wife,
my whore might have been just—There we are Enter BELLMOUR, BELINDA, VAINLOVE, and even-But have a good heart: I heard of your ARAMINTA.
misfortune, and come to your relief. Bell. Now, George ! what, rhyming ? I thought Hearl. When execution's over, you offer a rethe chimes of verse were past, when once the prieve. doleful marriage-knell was rung;
Vain. What would you give ? Heart, Shame and confusion! I am exposed. Heart. Oh! any thing, every thing, a leg or
(VAINLOVE and ARAMINTA talk apurt. an arm: Nay, I would be divorced from my viriBelin. Joy, joy, Mr Bridegroom ! I give you lity, to be divorced from my wife. joy, sir !
Vain. Faith that's a sure way–But here's one Belin. Ha, ha, ha!-0 Gad ! men grow such
freedom better cheap. clowns when they are married
Sharp. Vainlove, I have been a kind of a godBell. That they are fit for no company but father to you yonder ; I have promised and vowtheir wives.
ed some things in your name, which I think you Belin. Nor for them neither, in a little time are bound to perform. I swear, at the month's end, you shall hardly find Vain. No signing to a blank, friend. A married man that will do a civil thing to his Sharp. No, I'll deal fairly with you-'Tis a