Page images

Lord. O monstrous beaft! how like a swine he lies! Grim death, how foul and loathsome is thine image Şirs, I will practise on this drunken man. What think you, if he were convey'd to bed, Wrapt in sweet cloaths; rings put upon his fingers; A moft delicious banquet by his bed, And brave attendants near him, when he wakes ; Would not the beggar then forget himself?

i Hun. Believe me, Lord, I think he cannot chuse. 2 Hun. It would seem strange unto him, when he wak'd.

Lord. Even as a flattering dream, or worthless fancy. Then take him up, and manage well the jest : Carry him gently to my faireft chamber, And hang it round with all my wanton pi&tures ; Balm his foul head with warm distilled waters, And burn sweet wood to make the lodging sweet. Procure me musick ready, when he wakes, To make a dulcet, and a heav'nly found; And if he chance to speak, be ready ftraight, And with a low submissive reverence, Say, what is it your Honour will commande Let one attend him with a silver bafon Full of rose-water, and bestrew'd with flowers ; Another bear the ewer; a third a diaper ; And say, wilt please your Lordship cool your hands Some one be ready with a costly suit, And ask him what apparel he will wear: Another tell him of his hounds and horse, And that his Lady mourns at his diseafe; Persuade him that he hath been lunatick. And when he fays he is,-fay, that he dreams ; For he is nothing but a mighty Lord : This do, and do it kindly, gentle Sirs.: It will be pastime passing excellent, If it be husbanded with modefty.

I Hun. My Lord, I warrant you, we'll play our past, As he fall think by our true diligence, He is no less than what we say he is. Lord. Take him up gently, and to bed with him ;


Sirrah, go

And each one to his office, when he wakes.

[Some bear out Sly. Sound Trumpets,

see what trumpet 'tis that sounds. Belike, some noble gentleman that means, [Ex. Servant, Travelling some journey, to repose him here.

Re-enter Servant.
How now? who is it?

Ser. An't please your Honour, players
That offer service to your Lordship.
Lord. Bid them come near : -

Enter Players.
Now, fellows, you are welcome.

Play. We thank your Honour. . Lord. Do you intend to stay with me to-night? 2 Play. So please your Lordfhip to accept our duty.

Lord. With all my heart. This fellow I remember, Since once he play'd a farmer's eldest fon; 'Twas where you woo'd the gentlewoman fo well : I have forgot your name; but, fure, that part Was aptly fitted, and naturally perform’d.

Sim, I think, 'twas Soto that your Honour means, (4) Lord. 'Tis very true; thuy didit it excellent : Well, you are come to me in happy time, The rather for I have some sport in hand, Wherein your cunning can aßift me much. There is a Lord will hear you play to night: But I am doubtful of your modesties, Left, over-eying of his odd behaviour, (For yet his Honour never heard a play,) You break into fome merry paflion, And fo offend him: For I tell you, Sirs, If you should smile, he grows impatient.

(4). I think, 'twas Soto.] I take our author here to be paying & compliment to Beaumont and Fletcher's women pleas'd, in which co. medy there is the character of Soto, who is a farmer's fon, and a very facetious serving-man. Mr. Rowe and Mr. Pope prefix the name of Sim to the line here spoken; but the firft folio has it Sincklo; which, no doubt, was the name of one of the players here introducid, and who had play'd the part of Soto with applause.


Play. Fear not, my Lord, we can contain ourselves ; Were he the verieft antick in the world.

2 Player. [to the other. ] Go get a dishclout to make clean your shoes, and I'll speak for the properties.

[Exit Player, My Lord, we must have a shoulder of mutton for a property, and a little vinegar to make our devil roar,

Lord. Go firrah, take them to the buttery, And give them friendly welcome, ev'ry one : Let them want nothing that the house affords.

[Exit one with the Players. Sirrah, go you to Bartholm.ew my page, And see him drest in all suits like a Lady. That done, conduct him to the drunkard's chamber, And call him Madam, do him all obeisance, Tell him from me, (as he will win my love) He bear himself with honourable action, Such as he hath observ'd in noble Ladies Unto their Lords, by them accomplished ; Such duty to the drunkard let him do, With soft low tongue, and lowly courtesy; And say ; what is't your Honour will command, Wherein your Lady, and your humble wife, May shew her duty, and make known her love ? And then with kind embracements, tempting kisses, And with declining head into his bosom, Bid him shed tears, as being overjoy'd To see her noble Lord restor'd to health, Who for twice seven years hath esteem'd himself (5) (5) Who for these seven years bath esteemid himself

No better iban a poor and loatblom beggar. I I have ventur’d to alter a word here, against the authority of the printed copies ; and hope, I shall be justified in it by two subsequent passages. That the poet design'd, the tinker's suppos'd lunacy should be of fourteen years åtanding at least, seems to me evident upon these testimonies.

Thefe fifteen years you bave been in a dream,

Or, when you wak'd, so wak'd as if you sept. Sly. These fifteen years! by my fay, a goodly nap.. And again, Sly afterwards says to the Page, whom he takes to be his Lady

Madum wife, tbey fej, téar I bave driam'd and Sept above fome fifteen gears and



No better than a poor and loathsome beggar:
And if the boy have not a woman's gift
To rain a shower of commanded tears,
An onion will do well for such a shift;
Which, in a napkin being close convey'd,
Shall in despight enforce a wat’ry eye.
See this dispatch’d, with all the hafte thou canst ;
Anon I'll give thee more instructions. [Exit Servant,
I know, the boy will well usurp the grace,
Voice, gait, and action of a gentlewoman.
I long to hear him call the drunkard, husband;
And how my men will stay themselves from laughter,
When they do homage to this simple peasant;
I'll in to counsel them : Haply, my presence
May well abate the over-merry spleen ;
Which otherwise would go into extremes.

[Exit Loria SCENE changes to a Bedchamber in the

Lord's House. Enter Sly with attendants, fome with apparel, bason and ewer,

and other appurtenances. Re-enter Lord. OR God's fake a pot of small ale.

1 Ser. Will't please your Lordship drink a cup of fack? 2 Serv. Will’t please your Horour taste of these con.

serves : 3 Serv. What raiment will your Honour wear to-day!

Sly. I am Christophero Sly, call not me hon ur, nor Lordship: I ne'er drank fack in my life: And if you give me any conserves, give me conserves of beef: Ne’er ask me what raiment l'lï wear, for I have no more doublets than backs, no more stockings than legs, nor no more shoes than feet ? nay, sometimes, more feet than shoes ; or such shoes as my toes look through the over-leather, Lord. Heav'n cease this idle humour in


Oh, that a mighty man of such descent,
Of such possessions, and so high esteem,
Should be infused with so foul a spirit.

sly. Fo

[ocr errors]


Sly. What, would you make me mad? am not ! Christophero Sly, old Sly's fon of Burton-heath, by birth a pedlar, by education a card-maker, by transmutation a bearherd, and now by present profesion a tinker ! alk Marian Hacket, the fat ale-wife of Wincot, if she know me not; if she say, I am not fourteen pence on the score for sheer ale, score me up for the lying it knave in christendom. What, I am not bestraught : here's—

1 Man. Oh, this it is, that makes your Lady mourn. 2 Man. Oh, this it is that makes your servants droop.

Lord. Hence comes it that your kindred fhun your house, As beaten hence by your strange lunacy. Oh, noble Lord, bethink thee of thy birth, Call home thy ancient thoughts from banishment, And banith hence these abject lowly dreams, Look, how thy servants do attend on thee ; Each in his office ready at thy beck, Wilt thou have mufick? hark, Apollo plays ; [Mufick, And twenty caged nightingales do fing. Or wilt thou Neep? we'll have thee to a couch, Softer and sweeter than the luftful bed On purpose trimm'd up for Semiramis. Say, thou wilt walk, we will bestrow the ground: Or wilt thou ride? thy horses shall be trapp'd, Their harness studded all with gold and pearl, Dost thou love hawking ? thou hast hawks will soar Above the morning lark. Or wilt thou hunt? Thy hounds shall make the welkin answer them, And fetch Ihrill echoes from the hollow earth.

1 Man. Say, thou wilt course, thy greyhounds are as As breathed stags; ay, fleeter than the roe. [swift

2 Man. Dost thou love pictures ? we will fetch thee Adonis, painted by a running brook ;

(ttrait And Citherea all in sedges hid Which seem to move, and wanton with her breath, Ev'n as the waving fedges play with wind.

Lord. We'll thew thee is, as the was a maid, And how she was beguiled and surpris'd, As lively painted as the deed was done. 3 Man. Or Daphne roaming through a thorny wood,


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »