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A COMIC OPERA.
AS ORIGINALLY ACTED AT COVENT-GARDEN THEATRE, NOV. 21, 1775. DON FERDINAND. Mr. Mattocks. LOPEZ
Mr. Wewitzer. DON JEROME
Mr. Wilson. DON ANTONIO. . Mr. Dubellamy. DONNA LOUISA Mrs. Mattocks. DON CARLOS Mr. Leoni. DONNA CLARA. Mrs. Cargill. ISAAC MENDOZA Mr. Quick. THE DUENNA Mrs. Green. FATHER PAUL . Mr. Mahon.
ATHER FRANCIS . Mr. Fox. Masqueraders, Friars, Porter, Maid, FATHER AUGUSTINE Mr. Baker.
and Servants. SCENE.-SEVILLE.
SCENE I.-The Street before DON JEROME's House.
Enter LOPEZ, with a dark lantern. Lop. Past three o'clock !-So! a notable hour for one of my regular disposition, to be strolling like a bravo through the streets of Seville ! Well, of all services, to serve a young lover is the hardest.--Not that I am an enemy to love; but my love and my master's differ strangely.-Don Ferdinand is much too gallant to eat, drink, or sleep :-now my love gives me an appetite—then I am fond of dreaming of my mistress, and I love dearly to toast her.—This cannot be done without good sleep and good liquor: hence my partiality to a feather-bed and a bottle. What a pity, now, that I have not further time for reflections ! but my master expects thee, honest Lopez, to secure his retreat from Donna Clara's window, as I guess.[Music without.] Hey! sure, I heard music! So, so! Who have we here? Oh, Ďon Antonio, my master's friend, come from the masquerade, to serenade my young mistress, Donna Louisa, I suppose : so! we shall have the old gentleman up presently.Lest he should miss his son, I had best lose no time in getting to my post.
Enter DON ANTONIO, with MASQUERADERS and music.
Who sings - who sighs below,
Thus, may some vision whisper more
Than ever I dare speak before. i Mas. Antonio, your mistress will never wake, while you sing so dolefully; love, like a cradled infant, is lulled by a sad melody
Don Ant. I do not wish to disturb her rest.
i Mas. The reason is, because you know she does not regard you enough to appear, if you awaked her. Don Ant. Nay, then, I'll convince you.
I feel no day, I own no light.
Waking, the dawn did bless my sight ;
Don JEROME-from a window.
To such deceitful stuff?
Quick, from the window fly!
We soon, perhaps, may meet again.
For though hard fortune is our foe,
The god of love will fight for us.
Reach me the blunderbuss.
The god of love, who knows our pain-
SCENE II.-A Piazza.
Enter Don FERDINAND and LOPEZ. Lop. Truly, sir, I think that a little sleep once in a week ni
Don Ferd. Peace, fool! don't mention sleep to me.
Lop. No, no, sir, I don't mention your lowbred, vulgar, sound sleep; but I can't help thinking that a gentle slumber, or half an hour's dozing, if it were only for the novelty of the thing-
Don Ferd. Peace, booby, I say !--Oh Clara, dear, cruel disturber of my rest ! Lop. And of mine too.
[Aside. Don Ferd. 'Sdeath, to trifle with me at such a juncture as this !--now to stand on punctilios !--Love me! I don't believe she ever did. Lop. Nor I either.
Aside. Don Ferd. Or is it, that her sex never know their desires for an hour together ? Lop. Ah, they know them oftener than they'll own them.
[Aside. Don Ferd. Is there, in the world, so inconsistent a creature as Clara ? Lop. I could name one.
[Aside. Don Ferd. Yes; the tame fool who submits to her caprice. Lop. I thought he couldn't miss it.
[Aside. Don Ferd. Is she not capricious, teasing, tyrannical, obstinate, perverse, absurd ? ay, a wilderness of faults and follies; her looks are scorn, and her very smiles—’Sdeath! I wish I hadn't mentioned her smiles ; for she does smile such beaming loveliness, such fascinating brightness-Oh, death and madness! I shall die if I lose her. Lop. Oh, those damned smiles have undone all ! [Aside.
AIR.- Don Ferd.
Forgetting every charm,
The tyrant love disarm :
Each failing of her mind,
And sees—while reason's blind.
Lop. Ah, those cursed smiles !
(Exit. Enter DON ANTONIO. Don Ferd. Antonio, Lopez ' tells me he left you chanting before our door—was my father waked ?
Don Ant. Yes, yes; he has a singular affection for music, so I left him roaring at his barred window, like the print of Bajazet in the cage. And what brings you out so early ?
Don Ferd. I believe I told you, that to-morrow was the day fixed by Don Pedro and Clara's unnatural stepmother, for her to enter a convent, in order that her brat might possess her fortune: made desperate by this, I procured a key to the door, and bribed' Clara's maid to leave it unbolted ; at two this morning, I entered, unperceived, and stole to her chamberI found her waking and weeping.
Don Ant. Happy Ferdinand !
Don Ferd. 'Sdeath! hear the conclusion.— I was rated as the most confident ruffian, for daring to approach her room at that hour of night.
Don Ant. Ay, ay, this was at first.
Don Ferd. No such thing ! she would not hear a word from me, but threatened to raise her mother, if I did not instantly leave her.
Don Ant. Well, but at last ?
Don Ferd. At last ! why I was forced to leave the house as I came in.
Don Ant. And did you do nothing to offend her ?
Don Ferd. Nothing, as I hope to be saved I believe, I might snatch a dozen or two of kisses.
Don Ant. Was that all ? well, I think, I never heard of such assurance !
Don Ferd. Zounds ! I tell you I behaved with the utmost respect.
Don Ant. O Lord ! I don't mean you, but in her. But, hark ye, Ferdinand, did you leave your key with them?
Don Ferd. Yes; the maid, who saw me out, took it from the door.
Don Ant. Then, my life for it, her mistress elopes after you.
Don Ferd. Ay, to bless my rival, perhaps. I am in a humour to suspect everybody.-You loved her once, and thought her an angel, as I do now.
Don Ant. Yes, I loved her, till I found she wouldn't love me, and then I discovered that she hadn't a good feature in her face.
that would not look on mc ;
That heaving bosom sigh for me.
Don Ferd. As far as I can, consistently with the honour of our family, you know I will ; but there must be no eloping.
Don Ant. And yet, now, you would carry off Clara ?
Don Ferd. Ay, that's a different case !we never mean that others should act to our sisters and wives as we do to others'. -But, to-morrow,
Clara is to be forced into a convent. Don Ant. Well, and am not I so unfortunately circumstanced? To-morrow, your father forces Louisa to marry Isaac, the Portuguese—but come with me, and we'll devise something I warrant.
Don Ferd. I must go home.
Don Ferd. But, Antonio, if you did not love my sister, you have too much honour and friendship to supplant me with Clara
But if beauty disapprove,
In the heart that's true to love.
As a civil oath I view;
(Exit. Don Ferd. There is always a levity in Antonio's manner of replying to me on this subject that is very alarming.—'Sdeath if Clara should love him after all !