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LIONEL AND CLARISSA:
A SCHOOL FOR FATHERS:
A COMIC OPERA,
IN THREE ACTS.
BY ISAAC BICKERSTAFF, Esq.
REMARKS. THIS Opera was first performed at Covent Garden, in 1768; and afterwards altered and revived at Drury Lane nith the new title of the School for Fathers, which is now usually added to its original name. The Author asserted the entire originality of his production, having borrowed neither character, language, nor incident, from any otlier writer. Be this as it may, the piece has considerable claims, not merely as a medium for vocal ability, but from its good sense.
Lionel and his Clarissa, whose delicacy of love is well portrayed, are sure to gain the sympathy of their younger auditors and readers.-Colonel Oldboy supports the old English strength of character, in admirable contrast with the effeminate Mr. Jessamy, who is a good caricature of the modern breed of useless triflers, neither male nor female in their ideas or pursuits, but a nauseous compound of the worst parts of both.—Diana, Sir John Flowerdale, Lady Mary Oldboy, and the other characters, are in good keeping with the general tone of this agreeable drama.
Col. O. Well said, Dy, thank you, Dy. SCENE 1.-A Chamber in Colonel OldBoy's daughter entertain me every morning at break
This, Master Jenkins, is the way I make my House.
fast. Come here and kiss me, you slut; come COLONEL OLDBOY is discovered at breakfust, here and kiss me, you baggage. reading a newspaper ; at a little distance from Diana. Lord, papa, you call one such the tea-table sits JENKINS; and on the opposite names side. DIANA, who appears pluying or a harpsi Col. O. A fine girl, Master Jenkins, a devilchord; a Girl atlending.
ish fine girl! she has got my eye to a twinkle.
There's tire for you-spirit !--Idesign to marry Diana. Ah, how delightful the morning, How sweet are the prospects it yields !
her to a duke: how much money do you think
a duke would expect with such a wench ? Summer luxuriant adorning The gardens, the groves, and the fields. think there is no occasion to go out of our
Jenk. Why, colonel, with submission, I Be grateful to the season,
own country here; we have never a duke in Ils pleasures let's employ ;
it, I believe, but we have many an honest genKind nature gives, and reason
tleman, who, in my opinion, might deserve the Permits us to enjoy.
Col. O. So you would have me marry Dy to a Col. (. Well, Master Jenkins! don't you country squire, eh! How say you to this, Dy? think now that a nobleman, a duke, an earl, would not you rather be married to a duke? or a marquis, might be content to share his
Diana. So my husband's a rake, papa, Ititle—I say, you understand me-with a don't care what he is.
sweetener of thirty or forty thousand pounds, Col. 0. A rake! you damned, confounded, to pay off' mortgages ? Besides, there's a proslittle baggage; why, you would not wish to pect of my whole estate; for 1 dare swear her marry a rake, would you? So her husband is brother will never have any children. a rake, she does not care what he is ! Ha, ha, Jenk. I should be concerned at that, colonel, ha, ha!
when there are two such fortunes to descend Diana. Well, but listen to me, papa-When to his heirs, as yours and Sir John Floweryou go out with your gun, do you take any dale's. pleasure in shooting the poor tame ducks and Col. 0. Why look you, Master Jenkins, chickens in your yard?" No, the partridge, Sir John Flowerdale is an honest gentleman; the pheasant, the woodcock, are the game; our families are nearly related; we have been there is some sport in bringing them down, neighbours time out of mind ; and if he and I because they are wild; and it is just the same have an odd dispute now and then, it is not with a husband, or a lover. I would not waste for want of a cordial esteem at bottom. He is powder and shot, to wound one of your sober, going to marry his daughter to my son; she is pretty-behaved gentlemen ; but to hit a liber- a beautiful girl, an elegant girl, a sensible tine, extravagant, madcap fellow, to take him girl, a worthy girl, and—a word in your earupon the wing
damn me if I an't very sorry for her. Col. 0. Do you hear her, Master Jenkins ? Jenk. Sorry, colonel ? Ha, ha, ha!
Col. 0. Ay-between ourselves, Master Jenk. Well but, good colonel, what do you Jenkins, my son wont do. say to my worthy and honourable pat here,
Jenk. How do you mean? Sir John Flowerdale? He has an estate of Col. 0. I tell you, Master Jenkins, he wont eight thousand pounds a year as well paid do—he is not the 'thing, a prig—At sixteen rents as any in the kingdom, and but one only years old, or thereabouts, he was a bold, daughter to enjoy it; and yet he is willing, sprightly boy, as you should see in a thouyou see, to give this daughter to your son. sand; could drink his pint of port, or his
Diana. Pray, Mr. Jenkins, how does Miss bottle of claret-now he mixes all his wine
he will ne'er make the worse husband, I'll quainted with that did not make love to me. answer for it. Col. 0. Ay, Master Jenkins, who is this
Col. O. You know my wife is a woman of Lionel? they say he is a damned, witty, know- quality,I was prevailed upon to send him to ing fellow; and, 'egad, I think him well enough be brought up by her brother, Lord Jessamy, for one brought up in a college.
who ha.I no children of his own, and promised Jenk. His father was a general officer, a
to leave him an estate—he has got the estate particular friend of Sir John's, who, like many indeed, but the fellow has taken his lordship’s more brave men, that live and die in defend name for it. Now, Master Jenkins, I would ing their country, left little more than honour be glad to know how the name of Jessamy is behind him. Sir John sent this young man, better than that of Oldboy. at his own expense, to Oxford. During the Jenk. Well but, colonel, it is allowed on all vacation he is come to pay us a visit, and Sir hands that his lordship has given your son an John intends that he shall shortly take orders excellent education. for a very considerable benefice in the gift of Col. 0. Pshaw! he sent him to the univer. the family, the present incumbent of which is sity, and to travel forsooth ; but what of that? an aged man.
I was abroad, and at the university myself, Diana. The last time I was at your house, and never a rush the better for either. I he was teaching Miss Clarissa mathematics quarrelled with his lordship, about six years and philosophy. Lord, what a strange brain before his death, and so had not an opportuI have! If I was to sit down to distract my- nity of seeing, how the youth went on ; if I self with such studies
had, Master Jenkins, I would no more have Col. O. Go, hussy, let some of your brother's suffered him to be made such a monkey of rascals inform their master he has been long He has been in my house but three days, and enough at his toilet; here is a message from it is all turned topsy-turvey by him and his Sir John Flowerdale-You a brain for mathe- rascally servants—ihen his chamber is like a matics indeed! We shall have women wanting perfumer's shop, with wash-balls, paste, and to head our regiments to-morrow or next day. pomatum-and do you know he had the im
Diana. Well, papa, and suppose we did. I pudence to tell me yesterday, at my own table, believe, in a battle of the sexes, you men
that I did not know how to behave myself? would hardly get the better of us.
Jenk. Pray, colonel, how does my lady
Mary? To rob them of strength, when wise nature
Col. 0. What, my wife? In the old way,
Master Jenkins; always complaining; ever thought fit, By women to still do her duty,
something the matter with her head, or her Instead of a sword she endu'd them with wit, back, or her legs—but we have had the
devil And gave them a shield in their beauty.
to pay lately—she and I did not speak to one
another for three weeks. Sound, sound then the trumpet, both sexes to Jenk. How so, Sir?
Our tyrants at once and protectors ! [arms Col. 0. A little affair of jealousy-you must Wo quickly shall see, whether courage or know my gamekeeper's daughter has had a Decide for the Helens or Hectors. (charms child, and the plaguy baggage takes it into
[Exit. her head to lay it to me-Upon my soul, it is
a fine, fat, chubby infant as ever I set my eyes , handsomest and richest in this country, and on; I have sent it to nurse ; and, between you more than he deserves. and me, I believe I shall leave it a fortune. Mr. J. That's an exceeding fine china jar
Jenk. Ah, colonel, you will never give over. your ladyship has got in the next room; I saw Col. 0. You know my lady has a pretty vein the fellow of it the other day at Williams's, of poetry; she writ me an heroic epistle upon and will send to my agent to purchase it: it it, where she calls me her dear, false Damon; is the true matchless old blue and white. so I let her cry a little, promised to do so nó Lady Betty Barebones has a couple that she more, and now we are as good friends as ever. gave a hundred guineas for, on board an In
Jenk. Well, colonel, I must take my leave; diaman ; but s'e reckons them at a hundred I have delivered my message, and Sir John and twenty-five, on account of half a dozen may expect the pleasure of your company to plates, four nankeen beakers, and a couple dinner.
of shaking mandarins, that the custom-house Col. O. Ay, ay, we'll come-pox o'cere- officers took from under her petticoats. mony among friends. But wont you stay and Col. O. Did you ever hear the like of this ? see my son ; I have sent to him, and suppose He's chattering about old china, while I am he will be here as soon as his valet-de-chambre talking to him of a fine girl. I tell you what, will give him leave.
Mr. Jessamy, since that's the name you choose Jenk. There is no occasion, good Sir : pre- to be called by, I have a good mind to knock sent my humble respects, that's all.
you down. Cul. o. Well but, zounds, Jenkins, you Mr. J. Knock me down, colonel! What do must not go till you drink something-let you you mean? I must tell you, Sir, this is a lanand I have a bottle of hock
guage to which I have not been accustomed ; Jenk. Not for the world, colonel : I never and, if you think proper to continue to repeat touch any thing strong in the morning, it, I shall be under the necessity of quitting
Col. 0. Never touch any thing strong! Why your house. one bottle wont hurt you, man; this is old, Col. O. Quitting my house? and mild as milk.
Mr. J. Yes, Sir, incontinently. Jenk. Well but, colonel, pray excuse me. Col. 0. Why, Sir, am not I your father,
Sir, and have I not a right to talk to you as I To tell you the truth,
liké? I will, sirrah. But, perhaps, I mayn't In the days of my youth,
be your father, and I hope not. As mirth and nature bid,
Lady M. Heavens and earth, Mr. Oldboy! I lik'd a glass,
Col. 0. What's the matter, Míadam? I mean, And I lov'd a lass,
Madam, that he might have been changed at And I did as younkers did.
nurse, Madam ; and I believe he was.
Mr. J. Huh, huh, huh!
Col. 0. Do you laugh at me, you saucy
jackanapes ? At sixty-three,
Ludy M. Who's there? somebody bring me 'Twixt you and me,
a chair. Really, Mr. Oldboy, you throw my A man grows worse for wear. [Exit. weakly frame into such repeated convul.
sions-but I see your aim ; you want to lay Enter Mx, JessAMY, LADY MARY OLDBOY, and Maid.
me in my grave, and you will very soon have
that satisfaction. Lady M. Shut the door, why don't you shut Col. 0. I can't bear the sight of him. the door there? Have you a mind I should Ludy M. Open that window, give me air, catch my death? This house is absolutely the or I shall faint. cave of olus; one had as good live in the
Mr. J. Hold, hold, let me tie a handkerEddystone, or in a windmill.
chief about my neck first. This cursed, sharp, Mr. J. l' thought they told your ladyship north wind--Antoine, bring down my muff. that there was a messenger here from Sir John Col. (. Ay, do, and his great coat. Flowerdale.
Col. 0. Well, Sir, and so there was; but Enter ANTOINE, with Great Coat and Muff. he had not patience to wait upon your curling Lady M. Marg'ret, some hartshorn. My irons. Mr. Jenkins was here,. Sir John dear Mr. Oldboy, why will you fly out in this Flowerdale's steward, who has lived in the way, when you know how it shocks my tender family these forty years.
nerves? Mr. J. And pray, Sir, might not Sir John
Col. O. 'Sblood, Madam, it's enough to Flowerdale have come himself, if he had been make a man mad. acquainted with the rules of good breeding, Lady M. Hartshorn! hartshorn! he would have known that I ought to have been visited.
Enter Maid. Lady M. Upon my word, colonel, this is a Mr. J. Colonel ! solecism.
Col. 0. Do you hear the puppy? Col. O. 'Sblood, my lady, it's none. Sir Mr. J. Will you give me leave to ask you John Flowerdale came but last night from his one question ? sister's seat in the west, and is a little out of
Col. 0. I don't know whether I will or not. order. But I suppose he thinks he onght to Mr. J. I should be glad to know, that's all, appear before him with his daughter in one what single circumstance in my conduct, carhand, and his rent-roll in the other, and cry, riage, or figure, you can possibly find fault Sir, pray do me the favour to accept them. with--Perhaps I may be brought to reform
Lady M. Nay but, Mr. Oldboy, permit me Pr’ythee let me hear from your own mouth, to say
then, seriously what it is you do like, and Col. 0. He need not give himself so many what it you do not like. affected airs ; I think it's very well if he gets Col. 0. Hum! such a girl for going for ; she's one of the Mr. J. Be ingenuous, speak and spare not
that I perceive already; I wish it was over ;
I dread it as much as a general election. (Exit. Zounds, Sir! then I'll tell you without any jest,
[test; SCENE II.-A Study in Sir John FLOWERThe thing of all things, which I hate and de
Two Charrs, a Table, Globes, and Mathematical
Enter CLARISSA, followed by Jenny.
Clar. Immortal powers, protect me,
Assist, support, direct me;.
kelieve a heart oppress'd :
Ab! why this palpitation ?
Cease, busy perturbation,
Aud let me, let me rest.
Jenny. My dear lady, what ails you?
[Erit. Jenny. Pardon me, Madam, there is someMr. J. What's the matter with the colonel, all the grandeur and riches in this world, if
thing ails you indeed. Lord! what signities Madam; does your ladyslip know? Lady M. Heigho! don't be surprised, my
they can't procure one content. I am sure it dear ; it was the same thing with my late dear dear, sweet, worthy, young lady, as you are,
vexes me to the heart, so it does, to see such a brother, Lord Jessamy; they never could agree: pining yourself to death. that good-natured friendly soul, knowing the delicacy of my constitution, has oft
Clar. Jenny, you are a good girl, and I am
said, sister Mary, I pity you.—Not but your father very much obliged to you for feeling so much has good qualities; and I assure you I re: shall be easier.'
on my account; but in a little time I hope I member him a very fine gentleman himself. When he first paid his addresses to me, he was
Jenny. Why now, here to-day, Madam, for called agreeable Jack Oldboy, though I mar- there's a fine
gentleman coming to court you ;
sartain you ought to be merry to-day, when ried him without the consent of your noble but, if you like any one else better, I am sure grandfather. Mr. J. I think he ought to be proud of me;
I wish you had him, with all my soul. I believe there's many a duke, nay, prince, as to like a man without my father's approba
Clar. Suppose, Jenny, I was so unfortunate who would esteem themselves happy in hav- tion ; would you wish me married to him? ing such a son Lady M. Yes, my dear; but your sister was dam, that could make you happy.
Jenny. I wish you married to any one, Maalways your father's favourite: he intends to
Clar. Heigho! give her a prodigious fortune, and sets his
Jenny. Madam ! Madam! yonder's Sir John heart
and Mr. Lionel on the terrace: I believe they He should wish to see her look a little like a gentlewoman first. When she was does not seem to be in over great spirits either,
are coming up here. Poor dear Mr. Lionel, be in London last winter, I am told she was taken To be sure, Madam, it's no business of mine; but notice of by a few men. But she wants air, I believe if
' the truth was known, there are those
in the house who would give more than ever I Lady M. And has not a bit of the genius of shall be worth, or any the likes of me, to preour family, and I never knew a woman of it vent the marriage of a sartain person that shall but herself without. I have tried her : about be nameless. three years ago, I set her to translate a little French song : I found she bad not even an
Clar. What do you mean? I don't underidea of versification; and she put down love and joy for rhyme-so I gave her over.
Jenny. I hope you are not angry, Madamı ?
Clar. Ah! JennyMr. J. Why, indeed, she appears to have more of the Thalestris than the Sappho about Mr. Lionel's a clergyman, he'll be obliged to
Jenny. Lauk! Madam, do you think, when her.
cut off his hair? I'm sure it will be a thousand Lady M. Well, my dear, I must go and dress myself
, though I'protest l'am fitter for my bed pities, for it is the sweetest colour ! and your than any coach. And condescend to the col. spoil his shape, and the fall of his shoulders.
great pudding-sleeves, Lord! they'll quite onel a little-Do, my dear, if it be only
to Well, Madam,' if I was a lady of large foroblige your mamma.
Mr. J. Let me consider: I am going to visit tune, I'll be hanged if Mr. Lionel should be a a country baronet here, who would fain pre- | parson, if I could help it. vail upon me to marry his daughter : the old seems then Mr. Lionel is a great favourite of
Clar. I am going into my dressing-room-It gentleman has heard of my parts and understanding ; Miss, of my figure and address. talk in this manner to any one else.
yours; but pray, Jenny, have a care how you But suppose I should not like her when I see her ? Why, positively, then I will not have knew me better ; and, my dear lady, keep up
Jenny. Me talk, Madam! I thought you her; the treaty's at an end, and, sans compli: your spirits. I'm sure I have dressed you toment,
we break up the congress. But wont day as nice as hands and ping can make you. that be cruel, after having suffered her to flatter herself with hopes, and showing myself I'm but a poor servant, 'tis true, Ma'am; to her? She's a strange dowdy, I dare believe: But was I a lady like you, Ma'am, however, she brings provision with her for a In grief would I sit! The dickens a bit; separate maintenance.-Antoine, apprêtez la No, faith, I would search the world through, toilet. I am going to spend a cursed day; To find what my liking could hit. (D1a'am,
Set in case a young man,
to him ; and will return to you again in a In my fancy there ran;
(Exit. It might anger my friends and relations ; Lion. To be a burden to one's self, to wage But if I had regard,
continual war with one's own passions, It should go very hard,
forced to combat, unable to overcome! But Or I'd follow my own inclinations.
see, she appears, whose presence turns all my (Exeunt. sufferings into transport, and makes even
misery itself delightful. Enter Sir John FLOWERDALE and Lionel.
Enter CLARISSA. Sir J. Indeed, Lionel, I will not hear of it. Perhaps, Madam, you are not at leisure now; What! to run from us all of a sudden this way, otherwise, if you' ihought proper, we would and at such a time too; the eve of my daugh- resume the subject we were upon yesterday. ter's wedding, as I may call it; when your
Clar. I am sure, Sir, I give you a great company must be doubly agreeable, as well deal of trouble." as necessary to us? Lion. Upon my word, Sir, I have been so should think every hour of my life happily em
Lion. Madam, you give me no trouble; I long from the university, that it is time for me ployed in your service ; and as this is probably to think of returning. It is true, I have no the last time I shall have the honour of atabsolute studies; but really, Sir, I shall be tending you upon the same occasionobliged to you, if you will give me leave to go. Sir J. Come, come, my dear Lionel, I have myself extremely obliged to you ; and shall
Clar. Upon my word, Mr. Lionel, I think for some time observed a more than ordinary ever consider the enjoyment of your friendgravity growing upon you, and I am not to shiplearn the reason of it: I know, to minds seri. ous, and well inclined, like yours, the sacred little moment to you ; but if the most perfect
Lion. My friendship, Madam, can be of functions you are about to embraceLion. Dear Sir, your goodness to me, of licity, though I should never be witness of
adoration, if the warmest wishes for your leevery kind, is so great, so unmerited! Your | it-it' these, Madam, can have any merit to condescension, your friendly attentions-in continue, in your remembrance, a man once short, Sir, I want words to express my sense honoured with a share of your esteemof obligations
Clar. Hold, Sir-I think I hear somebody. Sir J. Fy, fy, no more of them. By my
Lion. If you please, Madam, we will resume last letters, I find that my old friend, the rector, still continues in good health, considering left you yesterday?
our studies-Have you looked at the book I his advanced years. You may imagine I am far from desiring the death of so wortly and turbed in my thoughts for these two or three
Çlur. Really, Sir, I have been so much dispious a man; yet I must own, at this time, 1 days past, that I have not been able to look could wish you were in orders, as you might at any thing. then perform the ceremony of my daughter's
Lion. I am sorry to hear that, Madam ; I marriage; which would give me a secret satis- hope there was nothing particular to disturb faction.
you. The care Sir John takes to dispose of Lion. No doubt, Sir, any office in my power, your hand in a manner suitable to your birth that could be instrumental to the happiness of and fortuneany in your family, I should perform with
Clar. I don't know, Sir ;-) own I am displeasure.
turbed; I own I am uneasy; there is some. Sir J. Why really, Lionel, from the charac- thing weighs upon my heart, which I would ter of her intended husband, I have no room fain disclose. to doubt but this match will make Clarissa
Lion. Upon your heart, Madam! did you perfectly happy: to be sure, the alliance is the
say your heart? most eligible for both families.
Ciar. I did, Sir,-1Lion. If the gentleman is sensible of his
Enter JENNY. happiness in the alliance, Sir. Sir J. The fondness of a father is always
Jenny. Madam! Madam! here's a coach suspected of partiality; yet I believe 1 may and six driving up the avenue : it's Colonel venture to say, that few young women will be Oldboy's family, and I believe the gentlefound more unexceptionable than my daugh- man is in it, that's coming to court you.-ter: her person is agreeable, her temper sweet, Lord, I must run and have a peep at him out ber understanding good; and with the obliga- of the window.
[Exit. tions she has to your instruction
Lion. Madam, I'll take my leave. Lion. You do my endeavours too much hon
Clar. Why so, Sir?-Bless me, Mr. Lione), our, Sir; I have been able to add nothing to what's the matter ?—You turn pale. Miss Flowerdale's accomplishments, but a lit Lion. Madam! tle knowledge in matters of small importance Clar. Pray speak to me, Sir.—You tremble. to a mind already so well improved.
-Tell me the cause of this sudden change.-Sir J. I don't think so; a little know ledge, How are you ?-Where's your disorder? even in those matters, is necessary for a wo Lion. Oh fortune! fortune! man, in whom I am far from considering ig
You ask me in vain, norance as a desirable characteristic : when
Of what ills I complain, intelligence is not attended with impertinent
Where harbours the torment I find ; affectation, it teaches them to judge with pre
In my head, in my heart, cision, and gives them a degree of solidity
It invades ev'ry part, necessary for the companion of a sensible man. Lion. Yonder's Mr. Jenkins : I fancy he's
And subdues both my body and mind. looking for you, Sir.
Fach effort I try,