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SCENE I.-An apartment in LOVEmore's house.
Enter Muslin. WILLIAM and SIDEBOARD discovered at a game Mus. There's a couple of you, indeed! You of cards.
are so fond of the vices of your betters, that you Wil. A PLAGUE go with it! I have turned out are scarce out of your beds, but you must imitate my game : Is forty-seven good?
them and their profligate ways. Set you up, forSide. Equal
sooth! Wil. Confound the cards ! tierce to a queen ? Wil. Prithee be quiet, woman, do. Eighteen. Side. Equal.
(Plays. Wil. There again ! ruined, stock and block : Mus. Upon my word !-With your usual ease, nothing can save me. I don't believe there is a Mr Coxcomb. footman in England plays with worse luck than Wil. Manners, Mrs Muslin : you see Mr Sidemyself. Four aces are fourteen.
board here; he is just come on a message from Side. That's hard ; cruel, by Jupiter ! Aces sir Bashful Constant. Have some respect for a against me every time.
stranger. Nineteen, clubs.
[Plays. Wil. Four aces are fourteen : fifteen. [Plays. Mus. It would become Mr Sideboard to go Side. There's your equality.
back with his answer; and it would become you Wil. Very well: I turned out my point. Six- to send my lady word tecn; (Plays.] seventeen. (Plays.)
Wil. Command your tongue, Mrs Muslin :
made me up
you'll put me out. What shall I play!--He will Mus. Upon my word, Mr Powder-Puff! go back with his answer in good time. Let bis Will. I have not, indeed; and Aesh and blood, master wait till it suits our conveniency. Nine- let me tell you, can't hold it always at this rate. teen, clubs : where shall I go now?
I can't be for ever a slave to Mr Lovemore's Mus. Have done with your folly, Mr Imperti- eterual frolics, and to your second-hand airs. nent! My lady desires to know
Mus. Second-hand airs ! Wil. I tell you, woman, my master and I de- Wil. Yes, second-hand airs ! you take them sire to have nothing to do with you and your lady. at your ladies' toilets with their cast gowns, and Twenty, diamonds.
[Plays. so you descend to us with them.-And then, on Mus. But I tell you, Mr Brazen, that my lady the other hand, there's my master !-Because he desires to know at what hour your master came chooses to live upon the principal of his health, home last night, and how he does this morning and so run out his whole stock as fast as he can,
Wil. Ridiculous! Don't disturb us with that he must have my company with him in his devil's nonsense now; you see I am not at leisure. I dance to the other world! Never at home till and my master are resolved to be teased no more three, four, five, six in the morning. by you; and so, Mrs Go-between, you may re- Mus. Ay, a vile, ungrateful man! always turn as you came. What the devil shall I ranging abroad, and no regard for a wife that play? We will have nothing to do with you, I dotes upon him. And your love for me is all of
a piece. I have no patience with you both; Mus. You'll have nothing to do with us? But a couple of false, perfidious, abandoned profliyju shall have to do with us, or I'll know the gates! reason why.
Wil. Hey! where is your tongue running? My [She snatches the cards from him, and throws master, as the world goes, is a good sort of a them about.]
civil kind of a husband; and I, heaven help me! Wil. Death and fury! this meddling woman a poor simpleton of a constant, amorous puppy, has destroyed my whole game. A man might who bears with all the whims of my little tyrant as well be married, as be treated in this fashion. here. Come and kiss me, you jade; come and
Side. I shall score you for this, Mr William : kiss me. I was sure of the cards, and that would have Mus. Paws off, Cæsar. Don't think to make
me your dupe. I know when you go with Wil. No, you'll score nothing for this. You him to this new lady, this Bath acquaintance; win too much of me. I am a very pretty an- and I know you are as false as my master, nuity to you.
and give all my dues to yours Mrs Miguionet Side. Annuity, say you? I lose a fortune to there. you in the course of the year. How could you, Wil. Hush! not a word of that. I am ruinMrs Muslin, behave in this sort to persons of our ed, pressed, and sent on board a tender directly, dignity?
if you blab that I trusted you with that secret.Mus. Decamp with your dignity; take your But to charge me with falsehood !-injustice answer to your master : turn upon your rogue's and ingratitude !—My master, to be sure, does heel, and rid the house.
drink an agreeable dish of tea with the widow. Side. I shan't dispute with you. I hate wrangl. He has been there every evening this month ing : I leave that to lawyers and married people; past. How long things are to be in this train, they have nothing else to do. Mr William, iHeaven only knows. But he does visit there, and shall let sir Bashful know, that Mr Lovemore I attend him. I ask my master, sir, says I, what will be at home for him. When you come to time will you please to want me? He fixes the our house, I'll give you your revenge. We can hour, and I strut by Mrs Mignionet, without sa have a snug party there, and I promise you a much as tipping her a single glance. She stands glass of choice Champaigne : it happens to be a watering at the mouth, and a pretty fellow that, good batch; sir Bashful gets none of it: I keep says she : Ay gaze on, say I, gaze on: I know it for my own friends. Au revoir. [Exit. what you would be at: you would be glad to Wil
. (To Muslin.) You see what mischief bave 'ine : but sour grapes, my dear; and so you have made.
home I come, to cherish my own lovely little Mus. Truce with your foolery; and now, sir, wanton: you know I do, and after toying with be so obliging as to send my lady an answer to thee, I fly back to my master, later indeed than her questions : How and when your rakehelly he appoints, but always too soon for him. He master came home last night?
is loth to part: he lingers and dangles, and I Wil. I'll tell you one thing, Mrs Muslin; you stand cooling my heels. Oh ! to the devil I and my master will be the death of me at last. In pitch such a life! the name of charity, what do you both take me Mus, Why don't you strive to reclaim the vile for? Whatever appearances may be, I am but man? of mortal mould; nothing supernatural about Wil. Softly; not so fast. I have my talent to
be sure; yes, I must acknowledge some talent, But can you suppose that I have power to turn
Enter LOVEMORE and Sir Brilliant. the drift of his inclinations? Can I give him a new taste, and lead him as I please? And to Love. My dear sir Brilliant, I must both pity whom? To his wife? Ridiculous! A wife has no and laugh at you. Thou art metamorphosed inattraction now; the spring of the passions flies to the most whimsical being ! back; it won't do.
Sir Bril. If your raillery diverts you, go on Mus. Fine talking! and you admire yourself with it. This is always the case : apply for sober for it, don't you? Can you proceed, sir? advice, and your friend plays you off with a joke.
Wil. I tell you a wife is out of date ; the Love. Sober advice ! very far gone, indeed.time was--but that's all over; a wife is a drug There is no such thing as talking soberly to the now; mere tarwater, with every virtue under tribe of lovers. That eternal absence of mind heaven, but nobody takes it.
that possesses you all! There is no society with Mus. Have done, or I'll print these ter nails you. I was damnable company myself, when I upon your rogue's face.
was one of the pining herd: but a dose of matriWii. Come and kiss me, I say.
mony has cooled me pretty handsomely; and Mus. A fiddlestick for your kisses, while you here comes repetatur haustus. encourage your master to open rebellion against the best of wives.
Enter Muslin. Wil. I tell you 'tis all her own fault. Why Mus. My lady sends her compliments, and does not she'study to please him as you do begs to know how you do this morning. me. Come and throw your arms about my Love. (Aside to Sir BRILLIANT.] The novelty neck.
of the compliment is enlivening-It is the devil Mus. As I used to do, Mr Impudence? to be teased in this manner. What did you say,
Wil Then I must force you to your own child? good. (Kisses her.] Pregnant with delight! egad, Mus. My lady hopes you find yourself well if my master was not in the next room
(Bell rings. Love. Ay, your lady: give her my compliMus. Hush! my lady's bell : how long has he ments, and tell her and tell her 1 hope she is been up?
(Yauns. Wil. He has been up--[Kisses her.) 'Sdeath! Mus. She begs you won't think of going out, you have set me all on fire. [Kisses her. without seeing her.
Mus. There, there; have done now; the bell Lode. To be sure, she has such variety every rings again. What must I say? When did he time one sees her-my head aches woefullycome home?
tell your lady-I shall be glad to see her; I'll Wil. He came home-[Kisses her.] he came wait on her-[Yawns.}-tell her what you will. home at five this morning; damned himself for Mus. A brute ! I shall let my lady know, sir. a blockhead; [Kisses.] went to bed in a surly
[Exit Mus. humour; was tired of himself and every body Lode. My dear sir Brilliant, you see me an exelse, (Bell rings, he kisses her.] and he is now ample before your eyes. Put the widow Belltip-toe spirits with sir Brilliant Fashion in that mour out of your head, and let my lord Etheroom yonder.
ridge be the victim for you. Mus. Sir Brilliant Fashion ! I wish my lady Sir Bril. Positively no; my pride is picqued. would mind what he says to her--You great My lord Etheridge shall find me a more formibear! you have given me such a flush in my dable rival than he imagines. By the way, how face! [Takes a pocket looking-glass.) I look long has the noble peer been in England ? pretty well, I think. There (Kusses him.], have Love. His motions are unknown to me. (Aside.] done, and let me be gone.
[Erit. I don't like that question. His lordship is in Wil. There goes high and low life contrasted France, is not he? in one person. She has not dived to the bottom Sir Bril. No; he is certainly returned. The of my master's secrets; that's one good thing.-match is to be concluded privately. He visits What she knows, she'll blah. We shall hear of her incog. this widow from Bath: but the plot lies deeper Jove. (Forcing a laugh.] Oh! no; that canthan they are aware of. Inquire they will; and not be; my lord Etheridge loves parade. I canlet them, say I; their answer will do them no not help laughing. The jealousy of you lovers good. Mr Loremore visit the widow Bell- is for ever conjuring up phantoms to torment mour? We know no such person.' That's yourselves. My dear sir Brilliant, wait for what they'll get for their pains. Their puzzle realities; there are enough in life, and you may will be greater than ever, and they may sit down teach your fancy to be at rest, and give you no to chew the cud of disappointed malice. Hush! further trouble. my master and sir Brilliant ; I'll take care of a Sir Bril. Nay, don't let your fancy run away single rogue, and get me out of their way. with you. What I tell you, is the real truth.
(E.rit. Love. Well, if it be true, and if lord Etheridge is come to England to marry, do you go to Love. Well, that's generous—hush! I hear France not to marry, and you will have the best him coming. Sir Brilliant, I admire your amoof the bargain.
rous charity of all things ! Enter WILLIAM.
Enter SIR BASHFUL CONSTANT. Wil. Sir Bashful Constant is in his chariot at Sir Bash. Mr Lovemore, I have taken the lithe upper end of the street, and if your honour is berty—but you seem to be busy, and I intrude, at leisure, he will wait upon you.
perhaps. Love. Have not I sent him word I should be Love.. Oh, by no means : walk in, Sir Bashat home? Let him come as soon as he will.- ful. [Exit William.) Another instance, sir Bril- Sir Bash. Gir Brilliant, I am glad to see you. liant, to deter you from all thoughts of matri
[Bows awkwardly. mony.
Sir Bril. You do me honour, sir. I hope you Sir Bril. Po! hang him! he is no precedent left my lady well. for me. A younger brother, who lived in mid- Sir Bash. I can't say, sir; I am not her phydling life, comes to a title and an estate on the sician. death of a consumptive baronet; marries a wo- Sir Bril. [Aside.] An absurd brute! Loveman of quality, and now carries the primitive more, I'll just step and pay a short visit to our ideas of his narrow education into high life.- friend over the way. Don't you remember, when he had chambers in Love. Why in such a hurry? Fig-tree-court, and used to saunter and lounge Sir Bril. I shall return immediately. I'll be away bis time in Temple coffee-houses? The fel- with you before you are dressed. Sir Bashful, I low is as dull as a bill in Chancery.
kiss your hand.
[Erit. Love. But he is improved since that time. Sir Bush. I am glad he is gone. I have some
Sir Bril. Impossible; don't you see how he thing, Mr Lovemore, that I want to advise with goes on? He knows nothing of the world; if his you about. eyes meet yours, he blushes up to his ears, and Love. Have you? looks suspicious, as if he imagined you had a de- Sir Bash. I have had another brush with my sign upon him.
wife. Love. I can explain that part of his character. Love. I am sorry for it," sir Bashful. [Aside.] I He has a mortal aversion to wit and raillery, and am perfectly glad of it. dreads nothing so much as being laughed at for Sir Bash. Pretty warm the quarrel was. She being particular.
took it in a high tone. “Sir Bashful,' says she, Sir Bril. And so, fearing to be ridiculous, he. I wonder you will disgrace yourself at this becomes substantially so every moment.
rate. You know my pin-money is not sufficient. Love. Even so; and if you look at him, heThe mercer and every body dunning me! I shrinks back from your observation, casting a
can't go on after this fashion,' says she, and sly, slow, jealous eye all around hiin, like Miss then something about her quality. You know, Bumpkin in a country village, awkwardly endea- Mr Lovemore, (Smiling.) she is a woman of high vouring to conceal what the increase of her quality. shape discovers to the whole parish.
Love. Yes, and a very fine woman. Sir Bril. And then bis behaviour to his lady! Sir Bash. No, no, no; not much of that
Love. Why, as to that point, I don't think he and yet (Looks at him and smiles.] Do you think hates her. His fear of ridicule may be at the her a fine woman? bottom. He has strange notions about the dig- Love. Undoubtedly; where do you see any nity of a husband. There is a secret, which he body that outshines her? would fain tell me, and yet he is shy, and he Sir Bash. Why to be sure- -[Smiling.) one hints, and he hesitates, and then he retreats back does not often see her eclipsed. I think she is into himself, and ends just where he began. But what you may call a fine woman. She keeps with all his' faults, he has fits of good nature. good company. There; his chariot's at the door.
best. Sir Bril. Lady Constant, you mean, has fits Sir Bash. Yes, yes; your tiptop, none else. of good nature. Have you made any progress And yet to encourage her too far were dangethere?
rous. Too complying a husband makes but a Lode. That's well from you, who are the for- sorry figure in the eyes of the world. midable man in that quarter.
Love. The world will talk, sir Bashful. Sir Bril. Oh! no; positively, no pretence, no Sir Bash. Too fast, Mr Lovemore. Their colour for it.
tongues will run on, and one does not like to give Love. Don't I know that you have made ad- them a subject. I answered her stoutly: Mavances?
dam, says I, a fig for your quality : I am master Sir Bril . Advances ! I pity my lady Con- in my own house, and who do you think
[Winks at LoVEMORE.) putting myself in a pas
sion, you know—Who do you think is to pay Sir Bash. It does not signify. A foolish affor your cats, and your dogs, and your monkeys, fair; I won't trouble you. and your squirrels, and your gaming debts ? Love. Nay, that's unkind. It will be no
Love. How could you ? That was sharply said. trouble.
Sir Bash. Yes; I gave it her. But, for all that, Sir Bash. Well, well, I-I-Do you think I am main good-natured at the bottom.
Muslin did not overhear us? Love. You was not in earnest, then ?
Love. Not a syllable. Come, we are safe. Sir Bash. No, no; that's the point: a man
Sir Bash. I don't know but let me ask you a must keep up his own dignity. I'll tell you what question first. Have you any regard for your I did.
lady? Love. Well;—you did what's proper, I dare Love. The highest value for her. But then, say.
you know, appearancesSir Bash. I hope you'll think so. Don't laugh Sir Bash. Right !- I repose it with you. You at me. -Come, I will tell you. I went to must know, Mr Lovemore, as I told you, I am at her mercer slily, and paid him the money.
the bottom very good natured, and though it may
[Smiling. be thought we are interrupted again, Love. Did you ! Sir Bash. [Looking alarmed.] Was not it
Enter SIR BRILLIANT. right? Love. It was elegant.
Sir Bril. Lovemore, I have paid my visit. Sir Bash. I am glad you approve. I took care
Lode. Pshaw !- this is unlucky-You are as to save appearances. One would not have the good as your word, sir Brilliant. world know it.
Sir Bril. Perhaps you have business? Love. By no means.
Sir Bash. No, no business—[Turns to Love.] Sir Bash. It would make them think me too there's no proceeding now- I was going, sir uxorious.
Brilliant. Mr Lovemore, I wish you a good day. Love. So it would. (Aside.) I must encourage
Love. Po! Prithee, you shan't leave me yet. that notion. While you live, guard against being Sir Bash. I must; I can't stay. (Aside to Love.] too uxurious. Though our wives deserve our Another time. Suppose you call at my house at fondness the world will laugh at us; and hark one o'clock? ye, if our wives don't deserve it, they'll laugh at
Love. With all
heart. us the more.
Sir Bash. Do so; nobody shall interrupt us. Sir Bash. I know it. And so, says I, Mr Mr Lovemore, I take my leave. Sir Brilliant, I Lutestring, there's your money, but tell no body kiss your hand. You won't forget, Mr Lovethat I paid it slily. Love. Why, that's doing a genteel thing by
Love. Ob! no; depend upon me. stratagem. Admirably contrived!
Sir Bash. A good morning. He is the only Sir Bash. I think it was. But I have a deep- friend I have. er secret for you.
[Erit SiR BASH. Love. Have you?
Love. Ha, ha! you bruke in, in the most critiSir Bash. I have. May I trust you? cal moment! He was just going to be delivered
Love. Now, there you hurt me. I feel that, of his secret. sir Bashful.
Sir Bril. I beg your pardon. How could you Sir Bash. I beg your pardon. I know you are
let me ? my friend. I have great confidence in you. You Love. Nay, no matter. I shall worm it out of must know-look ye, Mr Lovemoreknow
Mus. My lady, sir, is quite impatient.
Love. Po! for ever teasing ! I'll wait upon her Mus. My lady desires to know if you chuse a presently.
(Exit Mus. dish of tea this inorning:
Sir Bril. I'll step and chat with her while you Love. Po ! ridiculous !-tell your mistress-go dress. May I take the liberty? about your business.
[Turns her out. Lo You know you may: no ceremony. How Sir Bash. I see how it is. He does not care a could you ask me such a question ?- -Apropos, cherry-stone for his wife.
sir Brilliant, I want a word with you. Step with Love. Such impertinence !--Well, sir Bash me into the study for a moment. ful?
Sir Bril. I attend you.
[Aside. diculous, unaccountable-What does he mean? Love. Well, I am all attention.
[Exeunt. Vol. II.
-you must him.