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Don. Louisa. . Thus crown'd with dance and song,
The hours shall glide along,
With a heart at ease, merry, merry glces
Can never fail to please.
Don Ferd. Each bride with blushes glowing,
Our wine as rosy flowing,
Let us laugh and play, so blithe and gay,
Till we banish care away. Don Ant. Then healths to every friend
The night's repast shall end,
With a heart at ease, merry, merry glees
Can never fail to please. Don. Clara. Nor, while we are so joyous,
Shall anxious fear annoy us ;
Let us laugh and play, so blithe and gay,
Till we banish care away.
Don Jer. • •
For generous guests like these
Accept the wish to please,
So we'll laugh and play, so blithe and gay,
Vour smiles drive care away [Exeunt omnes
AS ORIGINALLY ACTED AT DRURY-LANE THEATRE IN 1777. Sir PETER TEAZLE . Mr. King. CRABTREE
Mr. Parsons. SIR OLIVER SURFACE Mr. Yates. ROWLEY
Mr. Aickin. Sir HARRY BUMPER. Mr. Gawdry. MOSES .
Mr. Baddeley. SIRBENJAMINBACK
Mr. Lamash. BITE.
LADY TEAZLE Mrs. Abington. JOSEPH SURFACE Mr. Palmer. LADY SNEERWELL. Miss Sherry. CHARLES SURFACE. Mr. Smith, MRS. CANDOUR .
Mr. Farren. MARIA.
Miss P. Hopkins. SNAKE.
Mr. Packer. Gentlemen, Maid, and Servants.
ADDRESSED TO MRS. CREWE, WITH THE COMEDY OF THE SCHOOL
BY R. B. SHERIDAN, ESQ.
Tell me, ye prim adepts in Scandal's school,
Who rail by precept, and detract by rule,
Lives there no character, so tried, so known,
So deck'd with grace, and so unlike your own,
That even you assist her fame to raise,
Approve by envy, and by silence praise !
Attend ! —a model shall attract your views
Daughters of calumny, I summon you !
You shall decide if this a portrait prove,
Or fond creation of the Muse and Love.
Attend, ye virgin critics, shrewd and sage,
Ye matrọn censors of this childish age,
Whose peering eye and wrinkled front declare
A fix'd antipathy to young and fair ;
By cunning, cautious; or by nature, cold,
In maiden madness, virulently bold -
Attend, ye skill'd to coin the precious tale,
Creating proof, where innuendos fail !
Whose practised memories, cruelly exact,
Omit no circumstance, except the fact lamme
Attend, all ye who boast, -or old or young,
The living libel of a slanderous tongue !
So shall my theme as far contrasted be,
As saints by fiends, or hymns by calumny.
Come, gentle Amoret (for 'neath that name
In worthier verse is sung thy beauty's fame);
Come-for but thee who seeks the Muse? and while
Celestial blushes check thy conscious smile,
With timid grace, and hesitating eye,
The perfect model, which I boast, supply -
Vain Muse ! couldst thou the humblest sketch create
Of her, or slightest charm couldst imitate-
Could thy blest strain in kindred colours trace
The faintest wonder of her form and face-
Poets would study the immortal line,
And Reynolds own his art subdued by thine ;
That art, which well might added lustre give
To Nature's best, and Heaven's superlative:
On Granby's cheek might bid new glories rise,
Or point a purer beam from Devon's eyes !
Hard is the task to shape that beauty's praise,
Whose judgment scorns the homage flattery pays ?
But praising Amoret we cannot err,
No tongue o'ervalues Heaven, or flatters her!
Yet she by fate's perverseness-she alone
Would doubt our truth, nor deem such praise her own!
Adorning fashion, unadorn'd by dress,
Simple from taste, and not from carelessness;
Discreet in gesture, in deportment mild,
Not stiff with prudence, nor uncouthly wild :
No state has Amoret; no studied mien ;
She frowns no goddess, and she moves no queen.
The softer charm that in her manner lies
Is framed to captivate, yet not surprise ;
It justly suits the expression of her face,-
'Tis less than dignity, and more than grace !
On her pure cheek the native hue is such,
That, form'd by Heaven to be admired so much,
The hand divine, with a less partial care,
Might well have fix'd a fainter crimson there,
And bade the gentle inmate of her breast-
Inshrined Modesty--supply the rest.
But who the peril of her lips shall paint?
Strip them of smiles-still, still all words are faint ,
But moving Love himself appears to teach
Their action, though denied to rule her speech;
And thou who seest her speak, and dost not hear,
Mourn not her distant accents 'scape thine ear;
Viewing those lips, thou still may’st make pretence
To judge of what she says, and swear 'tis sense :
Clothed with such grace, with such expression fraught,
They move in meaning, and they pause in thought !
But dost thou farther watch, with charm'd surprise,
The mild irresolution of her eyes,
Curious to mark how frequent they repose,
In brief eclipse and momentary close-
Ah ! seest thou not an ambush'd Cupid there,
Too tim'rous of his charge, with jealous care
Veils and unveils those beams of heavenly light,
Too full, too fatal else, for mortal sight?
Nor yet, such pleasing vengeance fond to meet,
In pard’ning dimples hope a safe retreat.
What though her peaceful breast should ne'er allow
Subduing frowns to arm her alter'd brow,
By Love, I swear, and by his gentle wiles,
More fatal still the mercy of her smiles !
Thus lovely, thus adorn'd, possessing all
Of bright or fair that can to woman fall,
The height of vanity might well be thought
Prerogative in her, and Nature's fault.
Yet gentle Amoret, in mind supreme
As well as charms, rejects the vainer theme;
And, half mistrustful of her beauty's store,
She barbs with wit those darts too keen before :
Read in all knowledge that her sex should reach,
Though Greville, or the Muse, should deign to teach,
Fond to improve, nor timorous to discern
How far it is a woman's grace to learn ;
In Millar's dialect she would not prove
Apollo's priestess, but Apollo's love,
Graced by those signs which truth delights to own,
The timid blush, and mild submitted tone:
Whate'er she says, though sense appear throughout,
Displays the tender hue of female doubt;
Deck's with that charm, how lovely wit appears,
How graceful science, when that robe she wears!
Such too her talents, and her bent of mind,
As speak a sprightly heart by thought refined :
A taste for mirth, by contemplation school'd,
A turn for ridicule, by candour ruled,
A scorn of folly, which she tries to hide ;
An awe of talent, which she owns with pride !
Peace, idle Muse ! no more thy strain prolong,
But yield a theme, thy warmest praises wrong;
Just to her merit, though thou canst not raise
Thy feeble verse, behold th' acknowledged praise
Has spread conviction through the envious train,
And cast a fatal gloom o'er Scandal's reign !
And lo! each pallid hag, with blister'd tongue,
Mutters assent to all thy zeal has sung-
Owns all the colours just—the outline true;
Thee my inspirer, and my model-Crewe !
A School for Scandal ! tell me, I beseech you,
Needs there a school this modish art to teach you?
No need of lessons now, the knowing think;
We might as well be taught to eat and drink.
Caused by a dearth of scandal, should the vapours
Distress our fair ones—let them read the papers ;
Their powerful mixtures such disorders hit;
Crave what you will—there's quantum sufficit.
“Lord !" cries my Lady Wormwood (who loves tattle,
And puts much salt and pepper in her prattle),
Just risen at noon, all night at cards when threshing
Strong tea and scandal—“Bless me, how refreshing !
Give me the papers, Lisp-how bold and free! [Sips.
Last night Lord L. [Sips] was caught with Lady D.
For aching heads what charming sal volatile ! [Sips.
If Mrs. B. will still continue flirting,
We hope she'll DRAW, or we'll UNDRAW the curtain.
Fine satire, poz-in public all abuse it,
But, by ourselves [Sips], our praise we can't refuse it.
Now, Lisp, read you—there, at that dash and star."
“ Yes, ma'am-À certain lord had best beware,
Who lives not twenty miles from Grosvenor Square ;
For should he Lady W. find willing,
Wormwood is bitter''. “Oh! that's me! the villain !
Throw it behind the fire, and never more
Let that vile paper come within my door.”