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Minc. My lady would speak with Mrs Poible, riemelis "Keds
. My friend, Mrs Fainall ? your hus
but a book of poems-So long as it was not a part with my plate and my jewels, ard ruin my Bible oath, we may break it with a safe conscience. niece, and all little enough.
Mrs Fain. This discovery is the most oppur- Mirs Fuin. I am wronged and abused, and so tune thing I could wish.—Now, Mincing ! are you. 'Tis a false accusation, as false as hell,
as false as your friend there, ay, or your friend's MINCING enters.
friend, my false . Mr Mirabell is with her ; he has set your band my friend! what do you mean? spouse at liberty, Mrs Foible, and would have Mrs Fuin. I know what I mean, madam, and you hide yourself in my lady's closet, till my old so do you; and so shall the world, at a time conlady's anger is abated." o, my old lady is in a venient. perilous passion at something Mr Fainall has Mrs Jar. I am sorry to see you so passionate, said ; he swears, and my old lady cries. There's madam. More temper would look more like ina fearful hurricane, I vow. He says, mem, bow
But I have done. I am sorry my that he'll have my lady's fortune made over to zeal to serve your ladyship and family should adhim, or he'll be divorced.
mit of misconstruction, or make me liable to afMrs Fuin. Does your lady or Mirabell know fronts. You will pardon me, madanı, il I medthat?
dle no more with an affair in wbich I ain not Minc. Yes, mem, they have sent me to see if personally concerned. Sir Wilfull be sober, and to bring him to them. L. Wish. 0, dear friend, I am so ashamed that My lady is resolved to have him, I think, rather you should meet with such returns.—You ought than lose such a vast sum as six thousand to ask pardon on your knees, ungrateful creapounds. O, come, Mrs Foible, I hear my old ture ; she deserves more from you than all your lady.
life can accomplish.—0, don't leave me destitute Alrs Tuin. Foible, you must tell Mincing that in this perplexity: no, stick to me, my good genius. she must prepare to vouch when I call her. Mrs Fain. I tell you, madam, you're abused Foi. Yes, yes, madam.
-Stick to you! ay, like a leech, to suck your Minc. O'yes, mem, I'll vouch any thing for bost blood-she'll drop off when she’s full. Mayour ladyship's service, be what it will.
dan, you sha'n't pawn a bodkin, nor part with a (L.reunt FOIBLE und MINCING. brass counter, in composition for nie. I defy 'em
all. Let them prove their aspersions : I know Lady WISIIFORT and Nirs MARWOOD enter.
my own innocence, and dare stand a trial. (Exit. L. Il'ish. O, my dear friend, how can I
L. Wish. Why, if she should be innocent, if merate the benefits that I have received from she should be wronged after all, ha? I don't your goodness? To you I owe the timely dis- know what to think—and I promise you, her covery of the false vows of Mirabell; to you education has been very unexceptionable-i may I owe the detection of the impostor Sir Row-say it; for 1 chiefly made it my own care to ini. land; and now you are become an intercessor tiäte her very infancy in the rudiments of virtue, with my son-in-law, to save the honour of my and to impress upon her iender years a young bousc, and compound for the frailties of myodium and aversion to the very sight of mendaughter. Well, friend, you are enough to re- ay, friend, she would ha' shrieked if she had but concile me to the bad world, or else I would re- scen a man, till she was in her teens. As I'm a tire to deserts and solitudes, and feed harmless person, 'tis true--She was never suffered to play sheep by groves and purling streams. Dear Mar- with a male-child, though but in coats; nay, her wood, let us leave the world, and retire by our- very babies were of the feminine gender-0, selves, and be slicpherdesses.
she never looked a man in the face, but her own Mrs Mar. Let us first dispatch the affair in father, or the chaplain, and him we made a shift hand, madam. We shall have leisure to think to put upon her for a woman, by the help of his of retirement afterwards. Here is one who is long garments and his sleek face, till she was concerned in the treaty.
going in ber fifteen. L. Wish. O, daughter, daughter, is it possible Nirs Mur. 'Twas much she should be deceithou shouldst be my child, bone of my bone, and ved so long. flesh of my flesh, and, as I may say, ancther me, L. Wish. I warrant you, or she would never and yet transgress the minutest particle of severe have borne to have been catechized by him; and virtue? Is it possible you should lean aside to ini- have heard his long lectures against singing and quity, who have been cast in the direct mould of dancing, and such debaucheries ; and going to virtue ? I have not only been a mould, but a pat- filthy plays, and profane music-meetings, where tern for you, and a model for you, after you were the lewd trebles squeak nothing but bawdy, and brought into the world.
the basses roar blasphemy. 0, she would have Mrs Fain. I don't understand your ladyship. swooned at the sight or name of an obscene play
L. Wish. Not understand! Why, have you not book-and can I think, after all this, that my been naught? have you not been sophisticated ? daughter can be naught? What, a whore ! and Not understand ! Here I am ruined, to compound thought it excommunication to set her foot with. for your caprices, and your cuckoldoms. I must in the door of a play.house. 0, dear friend, I
cann't believe it. No, no; as she says, let him L. Wish. Ay, that's true; but in case of neccsprove it, let him prove it.
sity, as of health, or some such emergency-Mrs Mar. Prove it, madam ? what, and have Fain. O, if you are prescribed marriage, you your name prostituted in a public court ! yours shall be considered; I will only reserve to myself and your daughter's reputation worried at the bar the power to choose for you. If your physic be by a pack of bawling lawyers ! to be ushered in wliolesomc, it matters not who is your apothecawith an 0-yes of scandal, and have your case ry. Next, my wife shall settle on me the remainopened by an old fumbling lecher in a coif, like der of her fortune, not made over already; and a man-midwife, to bring your daughter's infamy for her maintenance depend entirely on my disto light; to be a theme for legal punsters and cretion. quibblers by the statute, and become a jest, against L. Wish. This is most inhumanly savage; exá rule of court, where there is no precedent for a ceeding the barbarity of a Muscovite husband. jest in any record; not even in Doomsday-book ; Fain. I learned it from his Czarish majesty's to discompose the gravity of the bench, and pro- retinue, in a winter evening's conference over voke naughty interrogatories in more naughty law brandy and pepper, amongst other secrets of maLatin; while the good judge, tickled with the pro-trimony and policy, as they are at present pracceeding, simpers under a grey beard, and fidgets tised in the northern hemisphere. But this must off and on his cushion, as if he had swallowed be agreed unto, and that positively. Lastly, I cantharides, or sate upon cow-itch.
will be endowed, in right of my wife, with that I.. Wish. O, 'tis very hard !
six thousand pounds which is the moiety of Mrs Mrs Mar. And then to have my young revel. Millamant's fortune in your possession, and which lers of the temple take notes, like 'prentices at a she has forfeited (as will appear by the last will conventicle; and after talk it over again in com- and testament of your deceased husband, Sir Jomons, or before drawers in an eating-house. nathan Wishfort) by her disobedience in contractL. Wish. Worse and worse.
ing herself against your consent or knowledge Mrs Mar. Nay, this is nothing; if it would and by refusing the offered match with Sir Wilend here 'twere well. But it must, after this, be full Witwould, which you, like a careful aunt, had consigned by the short-land writers to the pub provided for her. hic press; and from thence be transferred to the L. Wish. My nephew was non compos, and hands, nay, into the throats and lungs of hawkers, could not make his addresses. with voices more licentious than the loud floun- Fain. I come to make demands I'll hear no der-man's; and this you must hear till you are objections. stunned ; nay, you must hcar nothing else for L. Wish. You will grant me time to consider? some days.
Fain. Yes, while the instrument is drawing, to L. Wish. O, 'tis insupportable! No, no, dear which you must set your hand till more sufficient friend, make it up, make it up; ay, ay, I'll com- deeds can be perfected, which I will take care shall pound. I'll give up all, myself and my all, my be done with all possible speed. In the mean while niece and her all—any thing, every thing for com- I will go for the said instrument, and, till my reposition.
turn, you may balance this matter in your own Mrs Mar. Nay, madam, I advise nothing; I discretion.
(Exit. only lay before you, as a friend, the inconvenien- L. IVish. This insolence is beyond all precedent, cies which perhaps you have overscen. Here all parallel. Must I be subject to this merciless comes Mr Painall-If he will be satisfied to hud villain ? de up all in silence, I shall be glad. You must Mrs Mur. 'Tis severe indeed, madam, that think I would rather congratulate than condole you should smart for your daughter's failings. with you.
L. Wish. 'Twas against my consent that she
married this barbarian; but she would have him, FAINALL enters.
though her year was not out--Ah! her first husL. Wish. Ay, ay, I do not doubt it, dear Mar-band, my son Languish, would not have carried wood : no, no, I do not doubt it.
it thus. Well, that was my choice, this is hers; Fain. Well, madam ; I have suffered myself to she is matched now with a witness-I shall be be overcome by the importunity of this lady, your mad, dear friend: is there no comfort for me? friend; and am content you shall enjoy your own
Must I live to be confiscated at this rebel rate? proper estate during life; on condition you oblige Here come two more of my Egyptian plagues too. yourself never to marry, under such penalty as I shall think convenient.
Mrs MILLAMANT and Sir WILFULL enter. L. Wish. Never to marry !
Sir Wil. Aunt, your servant. Fain. No more Sir Rowlands—the next im- L. Wish. Out, caterpillar! call not me aunt; I posture may not be so timely detected.
know thee not. Mrs Mar. That condition, I dare answer, my
Sir Wil. I confess I have been a little in disa lady will consent to without difficulty ; she has guise, as they say—'Sheart! and I'm sorry fort, already but too much experienced the perfidious- What would you have? I hope I committed no ness of men.' Besides, madain, when we retire offence, aunt-and if I did, I am willing to make to our pastoral solitude, we shall bid adieu to all satisfaction; and what can a man say fairer? If I other thoughts.
have broke any thing, I'll pay for't, an it cost a
pound; and so let that content for what's past, dain-I come not to plead for favour ; nay, not and make no more words--For what's to come, for pardon; I am suppliant only for pity.--I am to pleasure you, I'm willing to marry my cousin. going where I never shall behold you more.So pray let's all be friends: she and I are agreed Sir Wil. How, fellow-traveller !--you shall go upon the matter before a witness.
by yourself then. L. Wish. How's this, dear niece? have I any Miru. Let me be pitied first, and afterwards comfort! can this be true.
forgotten i ask no more. Mill. I am content to be a sacrifice to your re- Sir Wil. By’r lady, a very reasonable request, pose, madam; and to convince you that I had no and will cost you nothing, aunt-Come, come, hand in the plot, as you were misinformed. I forgive and forget, aunt; why, you must, an you have laid my commands on Mirabell to come in are a Christian. person, and be a witness that I give my hand to Mira. Consider, madam, in reality, you could this flower of knighthood; and for the contract not receive much prejudice; it was an innocent that passed between Mirabell and me, I have ob- device ;--though I confess it had a face of guiltiliged him to make a resignation of it in your laily- ness; it was at most an artifice which love conship's presence
-he is without, and waits your trived--and errors which love produces have ever leave for admittance.
been accounted venial. At least think it is ptL. Wish. Well, I'll swear I am something re- nishment enough, that I have lost what in my ved at this testimony of your obedience; but I heart I hold most dear; that to your cruel indigcannot admit that traitor- - I fear I cannot for nation I have offered up this beauty, and with tify myself to support his appearance. He is as her my peace and quiet; nay, all my hopes of futerrible to me as a Gorgon; if I see him I fear I ture comfort. shall turn to stone, and petrify incessantly. Sir Wil. An he does not move me, would I
Mill. If you disoblige him, he may resent your may never be o'the quorum. An it were not as refusal, and insist upon the contract still. Then, good a deed as to drink, to give her to him again 'tis the last time he will be offensive to you. - I would I might never take shipping: Aunt, L. Wish. Are you sure it will be i he last time? | if you don't forgive quickly, I shall melt, I can
-If I were sure of that shall I never see tell you that.--My contract went no farther than him again?
a little month-glue, and that's hardly dry ;-one Mill. Sir Wilfull, you and he are to travel to- doleful sigh more from my fellow-traveller, and gether, are you not?
'tis dissolved. Sir Wil. 'Sheart, the gentleman's a civil gen- L. Wish. Well, nephew, upon your accounttleman, aunt; let him come in; why, we are sworn Ah, he has a false, insinuating tongue. Well, sir
, brothers and fellow-travellers. We are to be I will stifle my just resentment, at my nephew's Pylades and Orestes, he and I-He is to be my request-I will endeavour what I can to forget, interpreter in foreign parts. He has been over- --but on proviso that you resign the contract seas once already, and with proviso that I marry with my niece immediately. my cousin, will cross 'em once again, only to bear Mira. It is in writing, and with papers of conme company.—'Sheart, i'll call him in,-an I set
cern; but I have sent my servant for it, and will on't once, he shall come in; and see who'll hin- deliver it to you, with all acknowledgments for der him.
[Goes tv lie door and hems. your transcendent goodness. Mis Mar. This is precious fooling, if it would L. Wish. Oh, he has witchcraft in his eyes pass; but I'll know the bottom of it.
and tongue :--when I did not see him, I could L. Wish. O, dear Marwool, you are not go have bribed a villain to his assassination; but his ing?
appearance rakes the embers which have so long Mrs Mar. Not far, madam ; I'll return imme- lain smothered in my breast.
FAINALL and Mrs MARWOOD enter. MIRABELL entcrs.
Fain. Your debate of deliberation, madam, is Sir Wil. Look up, man; I'll stand by you; expired. Here is the instrument; are you pre’sbud, an she do frown, she cann't kill you ; pared to sign? besides—harkee, she dare not frown desperately, L. Wish. If I were prepared, I am not embecause her face is none of her own; 'slicart, an powered. My niece exerts her lawful claim, hashe should, her forehead would wrinkle like the ving matched herself, by my direction, to Sir Wilcoat of a crcam-cheese ; but mum for that, fellow- | full. traveller.
Fain. That sham is too gross to pass on meMira. If a deep sense of the many injuries I though 'tis imposed on you, madam. have offered to so good a lady, with a sincere re- Mill. Sir, I have given my consent. morse, and a hearty contrition, can but obtain Miru. And I, sir, have resigned my pretensions. the least glance of compassion, I am too happy. Sir Wil. And, sir, I assert my right, and will
-- Ah, madam, there was a time--but let it be maintain it, in defiance of you, sir, and of your forgotten-1 confess I have deservedly forfeited instrument. 'Sheart, an you talk of an instruthe high place I once held, ot sighing at your ment, sir, I have an old fox by my thigh shall hack feet; nay, kill me not, by turning from me in dis- your instrument of ram velluin to shreds, sir. It shall not be sufficient for å miltimus, or a tailor's false ? My friend deceive me! Hast thou been a measure; therefore withdraw your instrument, wicked accomplice with that profligate man?' or, by'r lady, I shall draw mine.
Mrs Mar. Have you so much ingratitude and L. Wish. Hold, nephew, hold.
injustice, to give credit, against your friend, to Mill. Good Sir Wilfull, respite your valour. the aspersions of two sach mercenary trulls?
Fain. Indeed! are you provided of your guard, Mine. Mercenary, mem! I scorn your words. with your single beef-eater there ? But I am pre- 'Tis true we found you and Mr Fainall in the pared for you, and insist upon my first proposal: blue garret ; by the same token, you swore us to You shall submit your own estate to my manage- secrecy upon Messalia's poems. Mercenary ! ment, and absolutely make over my wife's to my No, if we would have been mercenary, we should sole use, as pursuant to the purport and tenour of have held our tongues ; you would have bribed this other covenant. I suppose, madam, your lis sufficiently. consent is not requisite in this case; nor, Mr Fuin. Go ; you are an insignificant thing. Well, Mirabell, your resignation; nor, Sir Wilfull, your what are you the better for this ? Is this Mr Miright-You may draw your fox, if you please, sir, rabeil's expedient? P'll be put off no longer-You and make a Bear-garden flourish somewhere else; thing, that was a wife, shall smart for this. I for here it will not avail. This, my lady Wishfort, will not leave thce wherewithal to hide thy must be subscribed, or your darling daughter's shame: Your person shall be naked as your reputurned adrift, like a leaky hulk, to sink or swim, tation. as she and the current of this lewd town can Mrs Fain. I despise you, and defy your maagree.
lice-You have aspersed me wrongfully—I have L. Wish. Is there no means, no remedy, to proved your falsehood-Go, you and your treachstop my ruin? Ungrateful wretch! Dost thou erous-I will not name it-but starve together not owe thy being, thy subsistence to my daugh. Perish. ter's fortune
Fain. Not while your are worth a groat, indeed, Fain. I'll answer you when I have the rest of my dear.-Madam, I'll be fooled no longer. it in my possession.
L. Iish. Ah, Mr Mirabell, this is small comMira. But that you would not accept of a re- fori, the detection of this affair. medy from my hands-Town I have not deserved Miru. O, in good time-Your leave for the you should owe any obligation to me; or else otiier offender and penitent to appear, madam. perhaps I could adviseL. Wish. O, what? what? to save me and my
WAITWELL enters with a box of writings. child from ruin, from want, I'll forgive all that's L. Wish. O, Sir Rowland-Well, rascal. past; nay, I'll consent to any thing to come, to Wait. What your ladyship pleases.-I have be delivered from this tyranny.
brought the black box at last, madam. Mira. Ay, mudam ; but that is too late; my Mira. Give it me. Madam, you remember reward is intercepted. You have disposed of her your promise. who only could have made me a compensation L. Wish. Ay, dear sir. for all my services;—but be it as it may, I'm re- Mira. Where are the gentlemen ? solved I'll serve you ; you shall not be wronged in Wait. At hand, sir, rubbing their eyes—just this savage manner.
risen from sleep. L. Wish. How! Dear Mr Mirabell, can you be Fain. 'Sdeath ! what's this to me? I'll not so generous at last ! But it is not possible. wait your private concerns. Harkee, I'll break my nephew's match; you shall have my niece yet, and all her fortune, if you
PETULANT and WITWOULD enter. can but save me froin this imminent danger.
Pet. How now? what's the matter whose Mira. Will yon? I take you at your word. I hand's out ? ask no more. I must have leave for two crimi- Wit. Hey-day! what are you all together, like nals to appear.
players at the end of the last act ? L Wish. Ay, ay, any body, any body.
Mira. You may remember, gentlemen, I once Mira. Foible is one, and a penitent.
requested your hands as witnesses to a certain
parchment. Mrs FAINALL, Foible, and MINCING enter.
Wit. Ay, I do; my hand I remember. PetuMrs Mar. O, my shame! (MIRABELL and | lant set his mark. Lady Wish. go to Mrs FAINALL und FOIBLE.] Mira. You wrong him; his name is fairly These corrupt things are brought hither to ex- written, as shall appear You do not remember, pose me.
[To Fainall. gentlemen, any thing of what that parchment Fain. If it must all come out, why, let 'em contained.
[Undoing the box. know it; 'tis but “ The Way of the World.” That Wit. No, shall not urge me to relinquish or abate one tittle Pet. Not I. I writ; I read nothing. of my terins; no, I will insist the more.
Mira. Very well, now you shall know.—MaFoi. Yes indeed, madam, I'll take my Bible dam, your promise. , oath of it.
L. Wish. Ay, ay, sir, upon my honour. Minc. And so will I, mem.
Mira. Mr Fainall, it is now time that you L. Wish. O, Marwood, Marwood, art thou should know that your lady, while she was at her own disposal, and before you had by your insi-, ry. My cousin's a fine lady, and the gentleman nuations wheedled her out of a pretended settle loves her, and she loves him, and they deserve ment of the greatest part of her fortune- one another; my resolution is to see foreign Fain. Sir! pretended !
parts--I have set on't—and when I'm set on't, I Mira. Yes, sir, I say that this lady, while a must do't. And if these two gentlemen would widow, having, it seems, received some cautions travel too, they might be spared. respecting your inconstancy and tyranny of tem- Pet. For my part, I say little—I think things per, which, from her own partial opinion and are best off or on. fondness of you she could never have suspected Wuit. 'Egad, I understand nothing of the mat-She did, I say, by the wholesome advice of ter.— I'm in a maze yet, like a dog in a dancing, friends, and of sages learned in the laws of this school. land, deliver this same as her act and deed to me L. Wish. Well, sir, take her, and with her all in trust, and to the uses within mentioned. You the joy I can give you. may read if you please—(Holding out the parch- Mill. Why does not the man take me? Would ment]—though perhaps what is written on the you have me give myself to you over again? back may serve your occasions.
Mira. Ay, and over and over again; (Kisses Fain. Very likely, sir. What's here ? Dam- her hand;} I would have you as often as possibly nation! (Reads.] “ A deed of conveyance of the I can. Well, Heaven grant I love you not too whole estate real of Arabella Languish, widow, well, that's all my fear. in trust, to Edward Mirabell.”—Confusion ! Sir Wil. 'Sheart, you'll have time enough to
Mira. Even so, sir: 'tis “The Way of the toy after you're married; or if you will toy now, World,” sir; of the widows of the world. I sup- let us have a dance in the mean time, that we pose this deed may bear an elder date than what who are not lovers may have some other emyou have obtained from your lady.
ployment, besides looking on. Fain. Perfidious fiend! then thus I'll be re- Mira. With all my heart, dear Sir Wilfull.venged- [Offers to run at Mrs FAINALL. What shall we do for music?
Sir Wil. Hold, sir; now you may make your Foi. O, sir, some that were provided for Sir Bear-garden flourish somewhere else, sir. Rowland's entertainment are yet within call
. Fain. Mirabell, you shall hear of this, sir, be
(A dance. sure you shall.—Let me pass, oaf. [Exit. L. Wish. As I am a person, I can hold out no
Mrs Fain. Madam, you seem to stifle your longer-I have wasted my spirits so to-day al. resentment: you had better give it vent.
ready, that I am ready to sink under the fatigue ; Mrs Mar. Yes, it shall have vent—and to your and I cannot but have some fears upon me yet, .confusion, or I'll perish in the attempt.. [Exit. that my son Fainall will pursuc some desperate
L. Wish. O, daughter, daughter! 'tis plain thou hast inherited thy mother's prudence. Mira. Madam, disquiet not yourself on that Mrs Fain. Thank Mr Mirabell
, a cautious account; to my knowledge his circunstances are friend, to whose advice all is owing.
such, he must of force comply. For my part, I L. Wish. Well, Mr Mirabell, you have kept will contribute all that in nie lies to a re-union : your promise—and I must perform mine.—First, in the mean time, madam, [To Mrs FAINALL} i pardon for your sake Sir Rowland there and let me, before these witnesses, restore to you this Foible. The next thing is to break the matter to deed of trust; it may be a means, well managed, my nephew—and how to do that
to make you live easily together. 'Mira. For that, madam, give yourself no trouble-let me have your consent —Sir Wilfull is from hence let those be warned who mean to my friend; he has had compassion upon lovers, wed, and generously engaged a volunteer in this action, Lest mutual falschood stain the bridal bed; for our service, and now designs to prosecute bis For each deceiver to his cost may find, travels.
That marriage frauds too oft are paid in kind. Sir Wil. 'Sheart, aunt, I have no mind to mar.
AITER our epilogue this crowd dismisses, There are some critics so with spleen diseased, I'm thinking how this play'll be pulled to pieces. They scarcely come inclining to be pleased : But pray consider, ere you doom its fall, And sure he must have more than mortal skill, How lurd a thing 'twould be to please you all. Who pleases any one against his will.