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Esop. I mean, Sir, have you any occasion for my waters!
Drunken Man. Yes, great occasion, if you'll do me the favour to qualify them with some good arrack and orange juice.
Drunken Man. Sir!-don't stare so, old gentleman let us have a little conversation with you.
Esop. I would know if you have any thing oppresses your mind, and makes you unhappy.
Drunken Man. You are certainly a very great fool, old gentleman; did you ever know a man drunk and unhappy at the same time.
Esop. Never otherwise, for a man who has lost his senses
Drunken Man. Has lost the most troublesome companions in the world, next to wives and bum-bailiffs.
Esop. But pray, what is your business with me?
are an ass
Esop. Your humble servant.
Drunken Man. And to shew you, that whilst I can get such liquor as I have been drinking all night, I shall never come for your water specifics against care and tribulation : however, old gentleman, if you'll do one thing for me, I shau't think my time and conversation thrown away upon you.
Esop. Any thing in my power.
Drunken Man. Why, then, here's a small matter for you; and, do you hear me? get me one of the best whores in your territories.
Esop. What do you mean?
Drunken Man. To refresh myself in the shades kere after my journey–Suppose now you introduce me to Proserpine, who knows how far my figure and address may tempt her; and if her majesty is over nice, shew me but her maids of lionor, and I'll warrant you they'll snap at a bit of fresh mortality.
Esop. Monstrous !
Drunken Man. Well, well, if it is monstrous, I say no more ;-if her majesty and retinue are so very virtuous-I say no more ;--but I'll tell you what, old friend, if you'll lend me your wife for half an hour; when you make a visit above, you shall have mine as long as you please; and Vor, L B
if upon trial you should like mine better than your own, you shall carry her away to the devil with you, and ten thousand thanks into the bargain.
Esop. This is not to be borne; either be silent, or you'll repent this druriken insolence.
Drunken Man. What a cross old fool it is !-I presume, Sir, from information of your hump, and your wisdoin, that your name is is what the devil is it?
Esop. Esop, at your service
Drunken Man. The same, the same, I knew you well enough, you old sensible pimp you—many a time has my fiesh felt birch upon your account; prithee, what possess'd thee to write such foolish old stories of a cock and a bull, and I don't know what, to plague poor innocent lads with? it was damn'd cruel in you, let me tell you that.
Esop. I am now convir:c'd, Sir, I have written 'em to very littile purpose.
Drunken Man. To very little I assure you But never mi!d it-Damn it, you are a fine old Grecian for all that, (ilups bim on the back) Come here, Snip-is not he a fine oid Grecian? -And tho' he is not the handsomest, or best dri ss'd man in the world, he has ten times more sense than either you or I have
Tayl. P'ray, neighbour, introduce me.
Drunken Mun. I'll do it, Mr Esop, this sneaking gentleman is my taylor, and an honest man he was, while he lov'd his bottle; but since he turn’d Methodist, and took to preaching, ke has cabbag'd one yard in six from his customers; now you know him, here what he has to say, while I go and pick up in the wood here-Upon my soul, you are a fine old Grecian !
[Exit Drunken Man. Esop. [To Taylor] Come, friend, don't be dejected; what is your business?
Tuy. I am troubled in mind.
Tuy. No, indeed, I believe is is pretty general in ohr parish.
Esop. What is it? speak out, friend.
Esop. Have a care, friend, jealousy is a rank weed, and chiefly takes root in a barren soil.
Tay. I am sure my head is full of nothing see
Esop. But how came you to a knowledge of your misfortune? has not your wife as much wit as you ?
Tay. A great deal more, Sir; and that is one reason for my believing myself dishonoured
Esop. Tho' your reason has some weight in it, yet it does not amount to a conviction.
Tay. I have more to say for myself, if your worship will but hear me.
Esop. I shall attend to you.
Tay. My wife has such very high blood in her, that she is lately turn's Papist, and is always railing at me and the government—The priest and she are continually laying their heads together, and I am afraid he has persuaded her, that it will save her precious soul, if she cuckolds a heretic taylor
Esop. Oh, don't think so hardly of 'em.
Tay. Lord, Sir, you don't know what tricks are going forward above! religion, indeed, is the outside stuff, but wiekedness is the lining.
Esop. Why, you are in a passion, friend; if you would but exert yourself thus at a proper time, you might keep the fox from your poultry.
Tay. Lord, Sir, my wife has as much passion again as I have; and whenever she's up, I curb my temper, sit down and say nothing.
Esop. What remedy have you to propose for this misfortune?
Tay. I would propose to dip my head in the river, to wash away my fancies- -and if you'll let me take a few bottles to my wife, if the water is of a cooling nature, I may perhaps be easy that way; but I shall do as your worship pleases.
Esop. I am afraid this method won't answer, friend; suppose therefore you drink to forget your suspicions, for they are nothing more, and let your wife drink to forget your uneasiness—A mutual confidence will succeed, and consequently mutual happiness.
Tay. I have such a spirit, I cannot bear to be dishonoured in my bed.
Esop. The water will cool your spirit, and if it can but lower your wife's, the business is done-Go for a moment
to your companion, and you shall drink presently; but do nothing rashly,
Tay. I can't help it, rashness is my fault, Sir; but age and more experience, I hope, will cure me Your servant, Sir-Indeed he is a fine old Grecian! [Exit Taylor, Esop. Poor fellow I pity him.
Enter MERCURY. Mer. What can be the meaning, Esop, that there are no more mortals coming over? I perceive there is a great bustle on the other side the Styx, and Charon has brought his boat over without passengers. Esop. Here he is to answer for himself.
Enter CHARON, laug bing.
Cbar. Why there's the devil to do among the mortals yonder; they are altogether by the ears.
Esop. What's the matter?
Cbar. There are some ladies who have been disputing so long and so loud, about taking place and precedency, that they have set their relations a tilting at one another, to support their vanity; the standers-by are some of them 30 frighted, and some of them so diverted at the quarrel, that they have not time to think of their misfortunes; so I e'en left them to settle their prerogatives by themselves, and be friends at their leisure.
Mer. What is to be done, Esop.
Esop. Discharge these we have, and finish the business of the day.
Enter DRUNKEN MAN and Mrs Riot. Drunken Man. I never went to pick up a whore in my life, but the first woman I laid hold of was my dear virtuous wife, and here she is
Esop. Is that lady your wife?
Drunken Man. Yes, Sir; and yours, if you please to accept of her
Esop. Tho' she has formerly given too much into fashionable follies, she now repents, and will be more prudent for the future. Drunken Man, Lookee, Mr Esop, all your preaching
t age - ser lor.
and morality signifies nothing at all—but since your wisdom seems bent upon our reformation, I'll tell you the only way, old boy, to bring it abjut. Let me have enough of your water to settle my head; and throw madam into the river.
Esop. 'Tis in vain to reason with such beings; therefor, Mercury, summon the mortals from the grove, and we'll dismiss them to earth, as happy as Lethe can make.
are Teat ght
S O N G
To mirtb, und joy, and jollity :
Sball vex tbe jovial beart again.