Page images

Lady Town. No matter : It will come round does less : And sure the dissolute avowed, as sorc. presently : I shall have it from my lord, without ly wrongs my honour and my quiet. losing a word by the way, I'll warrant you.

Lady Town. I see, my lord, what sort of wife Trus. O lud! madam? here's my lord just co- might please you. ming in.

Ld Town. Ungrateful woman! could you have Ludy Town. Do you get out of the way then. seen yourself, you in yourself

had seen her-I am (Exit Trusty.) I am afraid I want spirits, but he amazed our legislature has left no precedent of a will soon give 'em me.

divorce for this more visible injury, this alultery

of the mind, as well as that of the person! When Enter Lord TOWNLY.

a woman's whole heart is alienated to pleasures Ld Town. How comes it, madam, that a trades. I have no share in, what is’t to me whether a black Dian dares be clamorons in my house, for money ace or a powdered coxcomb has possession of it? due to him from you ?

Lady Town. If you have not found it yet, my Lady Town. You don't cxpect, my lord, that I lord, this is not the way to get possession of mine, should answer for other people's impertinence ? depend upon it.

Ld Town. I expect, madam, you should answer Ld Town. That, madam, I have long despaired for your own extravagancies, that are the occasion of; and since our happiness cannot be mutual, 'tis of it --I thought I had given you money three fit that with our hearts our persons too should months ago to satisfy all these sort of people. separate - This house you sleep no more in !

Ludy Town. Yes, but you see they never are to Though your content might grossly feed upon the be satisfied.

dishonour of a husband, yet my desires would Li Town. Nor am I, madam, longer to be abu. starve upon the features of a wife. sed thus! What's become of the last five hundred Lady Town. Your style, my lord, is much of the I gave you?

same delicacy with your sentiments of honour. Lady Town. Gone.

Ld Town. Madam, inadam! this is no time for Ld Town. Gone! What way, madam? compliments--I have done with you.

Lady Town. Half the town over, I believe, by Lady Town. If we had never met, my lord, I this time.

had not broke my heart for it! But have a care! Ld Town. 'Tis well! I see ruin will make no I may not, perhaps, be so easily recalled as you impression, 'till it falls upon you.

imagine. Lady Town. In short, my lord, if money is al Ld Town. Recalled !-Who's there? ways the subject of our conversation, I shall make

Enter a Servant. you no answer.

Ld Town. Madam, madam! I will be heard, Desire my sister and Mr Manly to walk up. and make you answer.

Ludy Town. My lord, you may proceed as you Lady Town. Make me! Then I must tell you, please, but pray what indiscretions have I commy lord, this is a language I have not been used initted, that are not daily practised by a hundred to, and I won't bear it.

other women of quality? Ld Town. Come, come, madam, you shall bear Ld Town. 'Tis not the number of ill wives, a great deal more, before I part with you. madain, that makes the patience of a husband

Lady Town. My lord, if you insult me, you will less contemptible; and though a bad one may have as much to bear on your side, I can assure be the best man's lot, yet he'll make a better you.

figure in the world that keeps his misfortunes Ld Town. Pooh! Your spirit grows ridiculous out of doors, than he that tamely keeps thern - you have neither honour, worth, or innocence, within. to support it!

Lady Town. I don't know what figure you Ludy Town. You'll find, at least, I have resent may make, my lord, but I shall have no reason ment;

and do you look well to the provocation ! to be ashamed of mine, in whatever company Ld Town. After those you have given me, ma I may meet you. dam, 'tis almost infamous to talk with you. Town. Be sparing of your spirit, madam;

Lady Town. I scorn your imputation and your you'll need it to support you. menaces! The narrowness of your heart's your monitor!'Tis there! there, my lord, you are wound

Enter Ludy GRACE und MANLY. ed. You have less to complain of than many hus Mr Manly, I have an act of friendship to beg of bands of an equal rank to you.

you, which wants more apologies than words Ld Town. Death, madam! do you presume

can make for it. upon your corporal merit? that your person's less Mun. Then pray make none, my lord, that I tainted than your mind? Is it there, there alone may have the greater merit in obliging you. an honest husband can be injured ? Have you not Li Town. Sister, I have the same excuse to every other vice that can debase your birth, or entreat of you too. stain the heart of woman? Is not your health, your L. Grace. To your request I beg, my lord. beauty, husband, fortunc, family disclaimed, for Ld Town. Thus then-As you both were prenights consumed in riot and extravagance? The sent at my ill-considered marriage, I now desire wanton does no more; if she concenis her shame, you each will be a witness of my determined se

paration. I know, sir, your good nature and Lady Town. Support me! save me! hide me iny sister's must be shocked at the office I im- from the world! (Balls on Lady GRACE's neck. pose on you ; but as I don't ask your justifica Ld Town. (Returning.)-1 bad forgot me, tion of my cause, so I hope you are conscious— You have no share in my resentment; therefore, that an ill woman cann't reproach you, if you as you have lived in friendship with her, your are silent upon her side.

parting may admit of gentler terus than suit the Man. My lord, I never thought, 'till now, it honour of an injured husband. [Offers to go out. jould be difficult to oblige you..

Man. [Interposing.] My lord, you must not, L. Grace. [Aside.) Heavens! how I tremble! shall not leave her thus ! One moment's stay can

La Town. For you, my lady Townly, I need do your cause no wrong. If looks can speak the not here repeat the provocations of my parting anguish of the heart, I'll answer with my life with you—the world, I fear, is too well inform’d there's something labouring in her mind, that, of them-For the good lord, your dead father's woull you bear the hearing, might deserve it. sake, I will still support you as his daughter- La Town. Consider ! Since we no more can As the lord Townly's wife, you have had every meet, press not my staying, to insult her. thing a fond husband could bestow, and (to our Lady Town. Yet stay, my lord—the little I mutual shame I speak it) more than happy wives would say will not deserve an insult; and undedesire-But those indulgencies must end! State, served, I know your nature gives it not. But as equipagc, and splendour but ill become the vices you've called in friends to witness your resentthat misuse 'em-The decent necessaries of life ment, let them be equal hearers of my last reply. shall be supplied—but not one article to luxury ! Ld Town. I sha'n't refuse you that, madam Not even the coach that waits to carry you from-be it so. hence shall you ever use again! Your tender Lady Town. My lord, you ever have complainaunt, my lady Lovemore, with tears, this morn ed I wanted love; but as you kindly have allosing, has consented to receive you where, if time ed I never gave it to another, so when you hear and your condition brings you to a due reflcc the story of my heart, though you may still comtion, your allowance shall be increased—But if plain, you will not wonder at my coldness. you still are lavish of your little, or pine for past L. Grace. This promises a reverse of temper. licentious pleasures, that little shall be less ! 'nor

(apart will I call that soul my friend, that names you in Mun. This, my lord, you are concerned to hear. my hearing !

La Town. Proceed ; I am attentive. L. Grace. My heart bleeds for her. (clside. Lauy Town. Before I was your bride, my lord,

Ld Town. O, Manly! look there! turn back the flattering world had talked me into beauty, thy thoughts with me, and witness to my grow- which, at my glass, my youthful vanity confirm. ing love ! There was a time when I believed that ed: Wild with that fanie, I thought mankind form incapable of vice or of decay! There I my slaves ; I triumphed over bearts, while all my proposed the partner of an easy hone! There pleasure was their pain; yet was my own so I for ever hoped to find a cheerful companion, equally insensible to all, that whien a father's firm an agreeable intimate, a faithful friend, a useful comniands enjoined me to make choice of one, I help-mate, and a tender mother-But oh! how even there declined the liberty lie gave, and to his bitter now the disappointment!

own election yielded up my youth--His tender Man. The world is different in its sense of care, my lord, directed him to you— Our hands happiness. Offended as you are, I know you were joined; but still my heari was wedited to its will still be just.

folly! My only joy was power, command, society, Ld Town. Fear me not.

profuseness, and to lead in pleasures! The hus

. Man. This last reproach, I see, has struck band's right to rule I thought a vulgar law, which her.

(Aside. only the deformed or meanly-spirited obeyed. Ld Town. No, let me not, (though I this mo I knew no directors but my passions; no niasment cast her from my heart for ever,) let me ter but my will! Even you, my lord, some time not urge her punishment beyond her crimes-1 o'ercome by love, was pleased with my delights

, know the world is fond of any tale that feeds its nor then foresaw this mad misuse of jour indul appetite of scandal; and as I am conscious se gence- And though I call myself ungrateful verities of this kind seldom fail of imputations while I own it, yet, as a truth, it cannot be de*too gross to mention, I here, before you both, nied--that kind indulgence has rodone me! It acquit her of the least suspicion raised against added strength to my habitual failings; and in a the honour of my bed. Therefore, when abroad heart thus warm, in wild unthinking life, wo wonher conduct may be questioned, do her fame der if the gentler sense of love was lost. that justice.

Ld Town. O, Manly! where has this creature's Lady Town. O sister!

heart been buried ?

(purl. (Turns to Lady GRACE, weeping, Man. If yet recoverable -how vast a trcaLd Toron. When I am spoken of where with sure ?

1.1part. out favour this action may be canvassed, relate Lady Town. What I have said, my lord, is but half my provocations, and give me up to cen not my excuse, but my confession! My errors

(Going (give 'em, if you pleasc, a harder namne) cannot be

[ocr errors]

defended! No! What's in its nature wrong, no their admittance to-night, it seems, upon a partiwords can palliate, no plea can alter! What then cular occasion.--Say we will wait upon then remains in my condition, but resignation to your instantly.

[Erit Servant. pleasure ? Tiine only can convince you of my fu Lady Town. I shall be but ill company to iure conduct: Therefore, till I have lived an ob them. ject of forgiveness, I dare not hope for pardon La Town. No matter: not to see them would The penance of a lonely contrite life were little on a sudden be too particular. Lady Grace wild to the innocent; but to have deserved this sepa- assist you to entertain them. ration will strew perpetual thorns upon my pillow. Lady Town. With her, my lord, I shall be al

L. Grace. O happy, heavenly hearing! ways easy-Sister, to your unerring virtue I now

Lady Town. Sister, farewell! [Kissing her.] commit the guidance of my future days. Your virtue needs no warning from the shame Never the paths of pleasure more to tread, that falls on me; but when you think I have But where your guarded innocence shall lead; atoned my follies past-persuade your injured For in the marriage state the world must own, brother to forgive them.

Divided happiness was never known: La Town. No, madam! Your errors, thus re. To make it mutual, Nature points the way : nounced, this instant are forgotten! So deep, so Let husbands govern; gentle wives obey. due a sense of them has made you what my ut

[Exeunt. most wishes formed, and all my heart has sighed for.

The SCENE opening to another Apartment, disLady Town. (Turning to Lady GRACE.) How covers a great number of people in masquerade, odious does this goodness make me !

talking all to ether, and playing upon one L. Grace. How amiable your thinking so! another - Laay WRONGHIEAD as a shepherdless;

Ld Town. Long parted friends, that pass through JENNY as a nun ; dhe Squ reus u running footeasy voyages of life, receive but common glad man ; and the Count in a domino. After someness in their meeting; but from a shipwreck time, Lord and Lady TOWNLY, with Ludy saved, we mingle tears with our embraces!

GRACE, enter to them unmasked. (Embrucing Lady Townly. Lady Town. What words what love, what Ld Town. So! here's a great deal of compaduty can repay such obligations ?

ny. id Town. Preserve but this desire to please, L. Grace. A great many people, my lord, but your power is endless.

no company-as you'll find—for here's one Lady Town. Oh!—'till this moment, never now that seems to have a mind to entertain us. did I know, my lord, I had a heart to give you ! [A Mask, after some affected gesture, makes

Ld Town. By Heaven! this yielding hand, up to Lady TowNLY. when first it gave you to my wishes, presented not Mask. Well, dear Lady Townly, sha'n't we a treasure more desirable! O Manly! sister! as see you by and by ? you have often shared in my disquiet, partake of Lady Town. I don't know


madam. my felicity-my new-born joy! See here the Mask. Don't you, seriously? bride of my desires ! This may be called my wed

(In a squeaking tone. ding-day!

Lady Town. Not I, indeed. L. Grace. Sister, (for now, methinks, that Musk. Well, that's charming; but cann't you name is dearer to my heart than ever,) let me guess ? congratulate the happiness that opens to you. Ludy Town. Yes, I could guess wrong, I beMan. Long, long and mutual may it flow.

lieve. Ld Town. To make our happiness complete, Musk. That's what I'd have you do. my dear, join here with me to give a hand that Ludy Town. But, madam, if I don't know you amply will repay the obligation.

at all, is not that as well ? Lady Town. Sister, a day like this

Níusk. Ay, but you do know me. L. Gruce. Admits of no excuse against the Lady Town. Dear sister, take her off my general joy. (Gives her hund to MANLY. hands; there's no bearing this. [Apurt.

Mun. Å joy like mine—despairs of words to L. Grace, I fancy I know you, madam. speak it.

Mask. I fancy you don't : What makes you Ld Town. O Manly! how the name of friend think you do? endears the brother! [Embracing him. L. Gruce. Because I have heard


talk. Mun. Your words, my lord, will warm me to


don't know my voice, I'm deserve them.

L. Grace. There is something in your wit and Enter a Servant.

humour, madam, so very much your own, it is Sero. My lord, the apartments are full of mas impossible you can be any body but my lady queraders And some people of quality there Trifle. desire to see your lordship and my lady.

Musk. [Unmasking.] Dear Lady Grace, thou Ludy Town. I thought, my lord, your orders art a charming creature. had forbid this revelling:

L. Grace. Is there nobody else we know Ld Town. No, my dear; Manly has desired | here?

Mask. Ay,



Mas'. O dear, yes: I have found out fifty al. rious characters.] This was a favour extraordiready.

nary. L. Grace. Pray, who are they?

Enter MANLY. Mask. O, charming company! There's Lady Ramble-Lady Riot-Lady Kill-care O, Manly! I thought we had lost you. Lady Squander Lady Strip-Lady Pawn Man. 'I ask pardon, my lord; but I have been and the duchess of Single-Guinea.

obliged to look a little alter ivy country family. Ld Town. Is it not hard, my dear, that peo

Ld Town. Well, pray what have you done with ple of sense and probity are sometimes forced them? to seem fond of such company? (.part.

Man. They are all in the house here, among Lady Town. My lord, it will always give me the masks, my lord: if your lordship has curiopain to remember their acquaintance, but none to sity enough to step into a lower apartment, in drop it immediately.

(Apart. three minutes I'll give you an ample account of: 1. Grace. But you have given us no account

them. of the men, madam. Are they good for any

Ld Town. O, by all means; we will wait upon thing?

you. [The scene shuts upon the Masks, to a Musk. O yes. You must know I always find

sinuller apartment. out them by their endeavours to tind out me.

MANLY re-enters, with Sir Francis WRONGL. Grace. Pray, who are they?

Mask. Why, for your men of tip-top wit and pleasure about town, there's my lord-Bite Sir Fran. Well, cousin, you have made my -Lord Arch-wag

-Young Brazenwit very hair stand on end. Waunds ! if what you Lord Timberdown--Lord Joint-Life--and tell me be true, I'll stuff my whole family into a

-Lord Mortgage. Then for your pretty fel. stage-coach, and trundle them into the country lows only—there's Sir Powder-Peacock-Lord again on Monday morning. Lapwing—Billy Magpye-Beau Frightful-Sir Man. Stick to that, sir, and we may yet find Paul Piaister-crown, and the marquis of Mon a way to redee! all. In the mean time, place keyman.

yourself behind this screen, and for the truth of L. Gruce. Right! and these are the fine gen. what I have told you, take the evidence of your tlemen that never want elbow-room at ar. asscm own senses; but be sure you keep close till I give bly.

you the

signal. Mask. The rest, I suppose, by their tawdry Sir Frun. Sir, I'll warrant you-Ah, my hired habits, are tradesmen's wives, inns-of-court lady, my lady Wronghead, what a bitter busibeaux, Jews, and kept mistresses.

ness have you drawn me into! Ld Town. An admirable collection !

Mun. Hiush! to your post : here comes one L. Grace. Well, of all our public diversions, couple already. (Sir FRANCIS relires behind the I am amazed how this, that is so very expensive,

Exit MANLY. and has so little to shew for it, can draw so much

Enter MYRTILLA, with Squire RICHARD. company together,

Ld Town. O, if it were not expensive, the bet Sq. Rich. What! is this the doctor's chanuber? ter sort would not come into it; ard because Myr. Yes, yes--speak softly. money can purchase a ticket, the common people Sq. Rich. Well, but where is he? scorn to be kept out of it.

Myr. He'll be ready for us presently; but he Mask. Right, my lord. Poor Lady Grace, I says he cann't do us the good turn without witsuppose you are under the same astonishment nesses; so, when the count and your sister come, that an opera should draw so much good company. you know he and you may be fathers for one

L. Gruce. Not at all, madam; it's an easier another. matter, sure, to gratify the ear than the under Sq. Rich. Well, well, tit for tat; ay, ay, that standing. But have you no notion, madam, of will be friendly. receiving pleasure and profit at the same time? Myr. And see, here they come.

Mask. O, quite none, unless it be sometimes winning a great stake. Laying down a vole, suns

Enter Count BASSET and Miss JENNY. prendre, may come up to the profitable pleasure C. Bus. So, so, here's your brother and his you were speaking of.

bride before us, my dear. La Town. You seem attentive, my dear. Jen. Well, I vow my heart's at my mouth still.

(Apart. I thought I should never bave got rid of mamma; Lady Town. I am, my lord ; and amazed at but while she stood gaping upon the dance, my own follies, so strongly painted in another gave her the slip. Lawd ! do but feel how it

(Apurt. beats here. L. Grace. But see, my lord, we had best ad. C. Bas. O, the pretty flutterer ! I protest, ny journ our debate, I believe; for here are some dear, you have put mine into the same palpica. masks that seem to have a mind to divert other tion. people as well as themselves.

Jen. Ah, you say so--but let's see now id Town. The least we can do is to give them O lud ! I vow it thumps purely-Well, well, I see a clear stage then. (A dance of masks here, in oi

it will do, and so where's the parson ?



head! my

C. Bas. Mrs Myrtilla, will you be so good as to see if the doctor's ready for us?

Enter MANLY. Myr. He only staid for you, sir: I'll fetch him Sq. Rich. O lawd ! O lawd! he has beaten immediately.

[Exit. my brains out! Jen. Pray, sir, am not I to take place of mamma, Mun. Hold, hold, Sir Francis; have a little when I'm a countess?

mercy upon my poor god-son, pray, sir. C. Bas. No doubt on't, my dear.

irun. Waunds, cozen, I ha'n't patience. Jen. O lud! how her back will be up then, C. Bas. Manly! Nay, then, I'm blown to the when she meets me at an assembly, or you and devil.

(Aside. I, in our coach and six, at Hyde Park together! Sq. Rich. O my

head! C. Bus. Ay, or when she hears the box-keepers at an opera call out- The countess of Basset's

Enler Lady WRONGHEAD. servants !

L. I'rong. What's the matter here, gentleJen. Well, I say it, that will be delicious; and men? For Heaven's sake! What are you mure then, mayhap, to have a fine gentleman, with a dering my children? star and what-d'ye-call-um ribbon, lead me to my Con. No, no, nadam; no murder; only a little chair, with his hat under his arm all the way! suspicion of felony, that's all. Hold up, says the chairman ; and so, says I, my Sir Frun. (To Jes. And for you, Mrs Hotlord, your humble servant. I suppose, madam, upon't, I could find in my heart to make

you wear says he, we shall see you at my lady Quadrille's? that habit as long as you live, you jade you. Do Ay, ay, to be sure, my lord, says I-So in swops you know, hussy, that you were within two mi. me, with my boop stuffed up to my forehead ; nutes of marrying a pickpocket? and away they trot, swing swang! with my tas C. Bas. So, so, all's out, I find. [Aside. sels dangling, and my flambeaux blazing, and Jen. O the inercy! Why, pray, papa, is not Oh, it's a charming thing to be a woman of qua- the count a man of quality then lity!

Sir Fran. O yes; one of the unhanged ones, C. Bas. Well, I see that plainly, my dear- it seems. there's ne'er a duchess of 'em all will become an L. Wrong. (Aside.] Married ! O the confident equipage like you.

thing! There was his urgent business thenJen.

Well, well, do you find equipage, and I'll Slighted for her! I ha’n’t patience !—and for find airs, I warrant you.

[Sings.ought I know, I have been all this while making Sg. Rich. Troth, I think this masquerading's a friendship with a highwayman. the merriest game that ever I saw in my life; Mun. Mr Constable, secure there. thof, in my mind, an there were but a little Sir Fran. Ah, my lady, my lady! this comes wrestling or cudgel-playing now, it would help it of your journey to London ; but now I'll have a hugely. But what a-rope makes the parson stay so frolic of my own, madam; therefore pack up C. Bas. Oh, here he comes, I believe.

your trumpery this very night; for the moment

my horses are able to crawl, you and your brats Enter MYRTILLA, with a Constable.

shall make a journey into the country again. Con. Well, madam, pray which is the party L. Wrong. Indeed you are mistaken, Sir Franthat wants a spice of my office here?

cis-I shall not stir out of town yet, I promise Myr. That's the gentleman.

you. [Pointing to the Count. Sir Frun. Not stir! Waunds ! Madam C. Bas. Hey-day! What, in masquerade, doc Mun. Hold, sir!-If you'll give me leave a tor?

little--I fancy I shall prevail with my lady to Con. Doctor! Sir, I believe you have mistaken think better on't. your man : But if you are called Count Basset, I Sir Fran. Ah, cousin, you are a friend indeed. have a billetdoux in my hand for you, that will Man. (Apart to my Ludy.) Look you, madam ; set you right presently.

as to the favour you designed me, in sending this c. Bas. What the devil's the meaning of all spurious letter inclosed to my ladly Grace, all the this?

revenge I have taken is to have saved your son Con. Only my lord-chief-justice's warrant a and daughter from ruin; now, if you will take gainst you for forgery, sir.

them fairly and quietly iņto the country again, I C. Bas. Blood and thunder !

will save your ladyship from ruin. Con. And so, sir, if you please to pull off your L. Wrong. What do you mean, sir ? fool's frock there, I'll wait upon you to the next Man. Why, Sir Francis—shall never know justice of peace immediately.

what is in this letter : look upon it: How it came Jen. Odear me! What's the matter?

into my hands you shall know at leisure.

[Trembling. L. Wrong. Ha! my billetdoux to the count, C. Bas. O, nothing: only a masquerading fro- and an appointment in it! I shall sink with conlie, my dear.

fusion ! Sq. Rich. Oh ho, is that all ?

Mun. What shall I say to Sir Francis, madam ? Sir Fran. No, sirrah, that is not all.

L. Wrong. Dear sir, I am in such a trembling! [Sir FRANCIS coming softly behind the Squire, Preserve my honour, and I am all obedience. knocks him down with his cane,

[ Apart to MANLY,

« PreviousContinue »