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3d Pri. I was a contractor. Cor. Conviction, in a word. Maj. These are poor devils. Have you nothing better; nothing more showy, nothing highercrested, Signior Jeronimo?
Tor. I knew it; ardent spirits; every soul of them-seizers1).
Maj. Caesars! Well done. This is our man-[To the Hussars]—I like the fellowhe's the freshest rascal!
Jail. Better! I hope you don't mean to Tor. Jailor, I will not be disturbed for any burt my feelings, Major. Nothing better! man. Why am I brought out before these, never had a finer family since-fellows in livery? This gaol is my house;
Cor. Billiards and the brogue1) came into my freehold; my goods and chattels. My fashion, Major O'Shannon.
Maj. Hazard and high life will do just as well, Cornet Count Carmine. [Imitating. Jail. [Pondering]-Yet, what was I thinking of? there's one, a famous fellow, a first rate-brought in last night-an old acquaintance-the most dashing dog about town-a tip-top-gallant; a supernaculum.
Col. Out with him at once, were he the Grand Turk.
very straw's my own; untouchable, but by myself-and the rats.
Maj. Here's a freeholder!
Col. With a vote for the galleys. Tor. [Turning to the Prisoners, harangues burlesquely]-Gentlemen of the jail[Prisoners cheer.
Col. A decided speech!
Cor. Out of the orator's way! Muffs and meerschaums! [The Prisoners lift Torrento
Maj. Show your lion. Turn him out of on a Bench, laughing and clamouring. his cage. Tor. [Haranguing]-Are we to suffer ourCor. Yes, if he be not-indelicately ragged. selves to be molested in our retirement, in [Lazaro goes,-a Noise is heard within. our domestic circle; in the loveliness of our Jail. Now, he's coming; but take care, private lives; in our otium cum dignitate? stand back, gentlemen. He's a desperate dog; Gentlemen of the jail! [Cheering]-Is not fierce as a tiger. Last night he broke the our residence here for our country's good? heads of the whole patrol. Here he comes, [Cheering]-Would it not be well for the in full roar. country if ten times as many, that hold their [Torrento, with his dress torn from the heads high, outside these walls, were now inlast night's riot, is dragged in by the side them?— [Cheering]—I scorn to appeal Turnkeys-he resists, clamouring outside to your passions, but shall we suffer our as he comes.] honourable straw, our venerable bread and Tor. Why, you scoundrels, you renega- water, our virtuous slumbers, and our useful does, you dogs in office-what's this for? To days, to be invaded, crushed, and calcitrated, be dragged out of my first sleep in my dun- by the iron boot-heel of arrogance and auda. geon, to look in the faces of such a confound- city? [Cheering]-No! freedom is like the edly ugly set of cannibals. air we breathe, without it we die!-No! every
Jail. Bring him along. [He is forced in. man's cell is his castle. By the law, we live Tor. [Continuing to Struggle] - Cannot here; and should not all that live by the law, I sleep, or starve as I like? I'll blow up the die by the law?-Now, gentlemen, a geneprison. I'll massacre the jailor. I'll do worse ral cheer! here's Liberty, Property, and Pu-I'll let the law loose on you-Villains. rity of principle! Gentlemen of the jail![They carry him round the Hall. Loud Cheering.
Jail. Poh! Master Torrento, you need not be in such a passion. You used to have no objection to good company-ba, ha, ha! He Jail. Out with ye, ye dogs! No rioting! has been moulting his feathers a little last Turnkeys [Calls]-The black hole, and double night. [To the Hussars. irons. [He drives them off, and follows them. Tor. Company-Banditti! Who are those Cor. A dungeon-Demosthenes! Muffs and fellows? Are they all hangmen? meerschaums. [Looking at the Hussars. Maj. A mighty handsome idea, by the glory of the Twentieth. [Laughing.
Col. Sirrah! you must see that we are of ficers. Take care.
Maj. A regular 2) field preacher, on my conscience.
Coi. [To Tor.]-So then, we must not fix our head-quarters here.
Tor. Confound me if I care, if your beadHo-quarters and all your other quarters were
Tor. Officers!-aye, sheriff's Officers. nest housekeepers, with very rascally coun- fixed here.
Cor. Muffs and meerschaums!-Very inpudently conjectured.
Tor. Well then, parish Officers! Hunters of brats, beggars, and light bread. Maj.[Laughing]-Another guess for your life. Col. Insolence! Sirrah, we are in Ilis Majesty's service.
Col. No insolence, Sir. What are you? Tor. A gentleman. [Haughtily. Cor. Psha! every body's a gentleman now. Col. Aye, that accounts for the vices of the age.
Tor. A gentleman, Sir, by the old title of liking pleasure more than trouble; play more than money; love more than marriage; fightTor. Oh! I understand-Custom-house Of-ing more than either; and any thing more ficers. Tubs, tabacco, and thermometers. than the unparalleled impudence of your ques[They murmur. tions. Cor. Cut off the scoundrel's head! [Half drawing his Sabre. I'll—
1) The Irish have a peculiar accent in speaking English: they pronounce some of the letters very strangely, and this is called the brogue,
Maj. Sirrah! do you mean this to me?
Tor. Aye, Sirrah! and to every honourable 1) Excise Officers.
2) The word regular is sometimes slang for complete.
person present. I never drink a health with- say? [To the Major]-I will reconnoitre the out sending the toast round. In matiers of lady. contempt, I make it a point of honour to be Lor. You shall have five hundred crowns! impartial. Maj. The Governor will take my word for Col. [To Tor.]-Be quiet, fellow. [To the your re-appearance, and I shall rely upon Major]-Are you hit, Major? ha, ha, ha! We yours-with proper attendance. have a service for you. [To Torrento. Tor. Undoubtedly. I shall be tired of the Cor. On the staff,1) 'pon honour. world; that is, of fools and fresh air, in half Tor. A constable. [Contemptuously. the time. But if you catch me here again— Col. A constable of France, if you like. You [Aside. shall be major, colonel, or general, just as you Lor. [To the Hussars]-Can we trust this please. You shall have a week's liberty, and fellow?-Who are you? [To Torrents. five hundred crowns for your campaign. Tor. By St. Agatha, I don't know. I may
Tor. A general! What high-road am I to be the son of a king or a cobbler, for any invade? Look ye, Sirs, I am a soldier: un- thing I can tell. I am at this hour without lucky a little, I own.-1 am here for running purse, profession, or prospect. A sort of halfa puppy through the lungs, who insulted me. pay animal on the muster-roll of human nature. [Looking at the Cornet] But whatever comes Cor. How did the dog escape suspension of that affair, I will do nothing further to dis- so long? grace my cloth.
Cor. Considering, present appearances, it would be superlatively difficult. Maj. To retrieve your character, you must turn your coat, my dear.
Tor. To your business, whose throat am I
to your business;
Maj. You must marry a prodigiously fine woman; young, and so forth.
Cor. Lead to "The Hymeneal Altar." "Happy man, blushing bride," 2) and so forth. Col. Rich besides-worth a plum. Cor. The Grocer!-Worth a great many, I dare say. Tor. Is that the affair? Good night to you, gentlemen. [Going] I have reasons against it. am better engaged. Marry! - when I can be hanged any time I like. If it were in England, indeed, I could put a rope round her neck-3)
Lor. No equivocation, Sir. You have served? Was it in the Sicilian?
Tor. Yes, in every service in its turn. I smoked my first campaign in Algiers; fiddled my second in Italy; quadrilled my third in France; and diced, drank, boxed and billiarded my fourth in England; and to this hour I cannot tell in which of them all-Impudence is the best talent-a Lie the most current coin -or Canting the most in fashion.
Cor. Surprising-you did'nt make your fortune.
Lor. I cannot think of this insult, with com[Aside. mon calmness. Victoria, Victoria! [He takes out a Miniature]-Was this a face for treachery? [The Major takes it. Maj. A fine creature. She might make me treacherous any day in the week.
Lor. [Agitated]-I cannot talk of this. I submit all to your disposal; but let her be Cor. To extinguish-Ehtreated gently. She has made life hateful to Tor. What! in a commercial country.-me!-I am ashamed of this weakness. The No, no.-Sell her, make a quiet house, and pride of her upstart family cannot be too sefive shillings into the bargain. Glorious tri- verely punished. [To Torrento] - Offer her umph of reason! but the slightest insult, and I will hunt you through the world.-Would I were in my grave! [He rushes out. Tor. Gentlemen, there is no time to be lost. My toilette-my toilette!
Cor. A new idea, 'pon honour. A prodigious reconciler to matrimony. England; ah! do I mistake?-the Country, where they make the bank paper and bad port.
Tor. Aye, mermaids and members of par
LORENZO comes in.
Col. Lorenzo at last! Lor. I beg pardon, -I have been detained by-important business.
Maj. Poh! we understand. Examining whether Old Ventoso's premises are as accessible to you as to the rest of the world. Your wife's to be looked for there, my hero. [To Tor. Tor. Old Ventoso's! A capital expedient to see Leonora. [Aside]—How much did you
1) Staff of a regiment; and the staff of a constable.
2) The usual expressions in an account of a marriage inserted in the newspapers.
3) Alluding to the old existing law, intended to put in
is sold to the highest bidder;
Cor. The fellow shall have my whole warestablishment. My parade moustaches, my velvet boots, my embroidered toothpicks
Tor. But my stud, my, team, gentlemen. A swindler's nothing unless he drives four in hand.
Col. True, true! Major, you can lend him your bays for a day or two. Cor. Bays!) much more easily_lent than one's laurels, Major. [Laughing.
Maj. What, Sir? [The Colonel pacifies him]-I will lend him a sabre as long as the Straits of Gibraltar, and a meerschaum that smokes like Mount Etna;-a devilish deal more smoke than fire-like a young soldier, Cornet,
Col. He shall have my last uniform. the power of the poor man to get rid of a bad wife Tor. No, Colonel; my morals and my wardas well as the rich one. The woman must consent to robe may have sat light enough upon me, have a rope placed round her neck and to be brought but they shall both sit lighter, before I take and the buyer thus renders himself responsible for the up the abandoned habits of the Hussars. debts of the lady whom he has purchased; while the 'seller is happily delivered from them; for otherwise the man is always bound to pay his wife's debts, whether they live together or not.
1) Bay-horses, and a crown of honourable bays.
2) The left-off cloaths; and, bad conduct.
I must have carte-blanche for a hotel, an equipage, a wardrobe,—or here I stay.
Col. Carte-blanche! The fellow will make us bankrupt. He'll break the regiment. Tor. Break1) the regiment? No!—I don't aspire to be a national benefactor.
Maj. Bravo! your scheme?
Tor. The whole affair needs not cost you a sequin. It can be done on credit. Why, if it were not done on credit, nobody would take me for a man of fashion. When the cash is called for, you have only to follow the most approved examples; take the benefit2)of these walls, and,-sponge.
Maj. How the devil did he get his knowledge of first principles ?
Čor. The baut-ton to a hair.-How rapidly the rascal fashionizes!-You can give him the lady's picture, Major. It will be his com
Maj. Undoubtedly when he is ready to start. But what title shall we give our commissioner?
Cor. Let me see,-Duke of Monté-Pulciano, Sauterne, Côte rôtie, or Vin de Graves.
Nor love nor scorn can wring me more.
And die thy weeping martyr-LOVE.
Are lovers' oaths! There's not a light in heaven
Tor. No, no. Those are "familiar as household names;" they are in every body's mouth. Maj. I have it.-There's the old Prince de To love me, serve me, through all sorrows, Pindemonté, that all Naples was talking about a year or two ago. He has been roving Eu-Aye, though I trampled him: and yet one rope for some stray son of his. You have no objection to be the heir? Spoke, too, in maiden duty, casts him off, [To Torrento. Like a loos'd falcon! No! he never loved.
Tor. The heir? I'll be the Prince himself, or nothing. Prince de Pindemonté! the very title for me. Brilliant-irresistible! My principality is settled. I'll be a model to the blood! [Parading about. Col. I see a difficulty in this: suppose the Prince should hear of this assumption of his name?
Cor. Or the son, by accident, know his own father?
Maj. Poh, poh!—a mighty unlikely sort of thing in this country.
Col. Well, Major, to our quarters, and let us give this diplomatist his final instructions. Maj. [Calls]-A word, Signior Jeronimo.
Leon. Victoria! sister! there's a sight abroad-
Vic. [Embarrassed]-Girl, 'tis nothing-
Leon. Nothing, sweet sister! here are heavy
[Laughing. Of a pained spirit; sighs upon your lips,
[The Major converses with him. Jail. You will be responsible, Major?—A week! You may be wanted, you know, [To Torrento] by that time. Good night, your honours. Sure to see them again, some time or other.-la, ba! [Aside. Exit. Maj. [To Tor.] Forwards. Come, Cupid. Cor. Cupid, ha, ha, ha! Follow us.
Vic. Let's rail at love.
Worth all the faithless lovers in the world!
Vic. Love is the lightest folly of the earth; [To Torrento. An infant's toy, that reason throws away; Tor. [Pushing forwards]-Follow? Do A dream, that quits our eyelids with a touch; you know to whom you speak? Follow me; A music, dying as it leaves the lip; Hussars, follow the Prince de Pindemonté. A morning cloud, dissolv'd before the sun; Cor. The Prince !-Muffs and meerschaums! Love is the very echo of weak hearts; [Exeunt, laughing. The louder for their emptiness; a shade, A colour of the rainbow;-vanity! [world. Leon. [Laughing]-She will forswear the [A flourish of distant Music. Ven. [Outside, Calling] Marcello-PedroVic. My father's voice-'tis angryHere's a shade. We can escape. [They go behind the Screen.
SCENE I.-An Apartment, with a Balcony.
Farewell! I've broke my chain at last!
1) To break the funds of the regiment; and to break, or
9) Alluding to the insolvent debtor's act.
VENTOSO comes in.
Ven. More plagues for me; they'll have my life at last.
[Calls]-Pisanio! Fabian! Pestilence on your tribe;
Would I were rid of you.
A Noble's life!
That bring lean beggary within the house!
Vic. [Coming from behind the Screen.] 'Tis some new trouble, we must quiet him. What has displeased you, Sir? [To Ventoso. Ven. Look there-look there
The road is full of soldiers, coming straightLeon. Where, my dear father?
[She runs to the Window. Where, but to this house? Where else can any mischief light on earth? I'll welcome them. [Calls] Marcello, load the
Ven. Let me go down! What clamour's in the house?
Coun. You'd have it, that we must be all undone,―
A bye-word!-not a husband would be found In Sicily for one of us! Look here, Here is the letter; the despatch; the prize! (They gather round to look over it; she repels them.)
Keep off your hands, no soul shall read a line; I have perus'd it; 'tis a prodigy! [She reads. "His Highness the Prince de Pindemonte, Duke of Tofaro, Count of Vendittá." (And twenty other names besides.) [Reads] "To the Count Ventoso, these. Having heard of the rare beauty of the Signora your daughter; we are disposed to honour your house with the alliance of our illustrious family. We shall, therefore, in pursuance of this our princely inclination, go to your Palazza this evening; and, having approved of your daughter, shall forthwith marry her." Signed-“PINDEMONTE," et caetera, et caetera, et caetera. Vic. Most sovereign insolence! Send his letter back.
Leon. This is bold wooing, sister!
There's no talk Of dower, of borrowing money,-let me see[He takes the Letter.
'Tis writ like a grandee.
The finest thing
I ever read. Saints! how it smells of musk! 'Tis true court-language, birth in every line; He is my son-in-law. Now, listen all: [To Leon] You to your chamber, till you're sent for, child.
Yes; to get your pearls,
Vic. I shall go with her.
Leon. [Laughing] Must I have no chance? Coun. Wise mothers all push off the elder first,
Else she may hang upon their hands for life. [To Vic.] Curl those wild locks. Heaven help me, here's a head!
[The Countess enters, holding up a large Letter, wrapped in Silk. She urges [To Ven.] I'll give the answer to the Page
come round her.]
Victoria and Leonora
Coun. What rabble? You are wise, And all the world are fools! This letter, Count, Comes from
Blushing, forsooth! that colour's out of date,
Aye, rack your brains; I'll sift this Page's brains. [Going, he returns.
I'm but a simple woman, have no head,
Some noble fête?
Coun. Count, read this name.
That low-blooded strappado, that half-pay, The world must go to wreck. My Lady there [To Victoria. Forswore her meals, and march'd in tears to bed. And you, you wisehead, second Solomon[Ventoso trying to escape, she stands in
No feedings of this most illustrious-fool,
[He goes toward the Door. Coun. We'll try that point. [Half aside. [She rings. Servants come in.] [up; Where are your brother knaves? Let all come I'll have a fete to night. Take out the bowls; The silver gilt; we sup in the purple room: I'll show his Highness plate. Fabricio, fly And hire the opera singers
[Ventoso, returning in great Agitation. Ven. Have I ears?
Victoria and Leonora approach him
Vic. Shall we attend
PRIDE SHALL HAVE A FALL.
Ven. Stay with that mad woman! The Why, there was not a hill-top round the Bay,
Princes and fêtes in old Ventoso's house?
I'll die not worth a ducat. Plague on plague! Upon yon mount our cottage should be built,
Vic. Who is this Prince? Be sure the man is young, Leon. Handsome, and rich, who has so wise a taste. Lorenzo too will suffer, 'tis revenge.
Return'd at last?
I'll wed this Prince, were he the lowest slave Or give it without words.
Pisan. My lady waits your presence
Revenge! if there is wit in woman.
Leon. [To Victoria]
For the fête!
[To Victoria. Look!
'Tis a lamp
[She points to the Window]
The bridal star is lighted.
Lit in a sepulchre.
Wherever human hearts can heave,
Life, but a lengthened chain;
Yet there's a rest!
Where earthly agonies.
In the cold breast.
Tell us, thou glorious Star of eve!
Sees not thine eye
Some spot, where hearts no longer heave,
Where Anguish weeps no more,
SCENE II.—A chamber in LORENZO's Quarters,
VVhere it lay ever, my companion sweet,
[He rises, and goes to the Casement.
Vere uttered in the presence of the moon!
Fill all the casements, from which chaplets
Then, the companies
Lor. [Musing]-Ventoso's house?
This bitter week, but found me at its gate,
Spa. Nay, I saw the lady come, Ready to make a love march.
Lor. She could not [To Spado]
Spa. Twelve hours
The very day I landed.
Truth! sink so deep. [Aside. When was this seen? before you hired me. 'Twas the day,
Woman, woman! This was your fainting; this the secret shame, That chok'd your voice, filled your sunk eyes with tears, Made your cheek burn, then take death's sudden hue; This was the guilty memory, that shook Your frame at sight of me. [To Spado]
What did you hear? Spa. Nothing! but that some luckless, loving dog,
Some beggar suitor, some old hanger-on, Was just kick'd out amid the general laugh. Lor. Insult and infamy!
For what? for whom? [Half aside.