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Har. Alas! I have too much cause for my| Charles. I can assure you, sir, that your uneasiness. Who knows what that vile lord daughter is entirely— has done with my father?

Oak. Be comforted, madam; we shall soon hear of Mr. Russet, and all will be well, I dare say

Har. You are too good to me, sir; I shall never forgive myself for having disturbed the peace of such a worthy family.

Maj O. Don't mind that, madam; they'll be very good friends again. This is nothing among married people-'Sdeath, here she is -No-its only Mrs. Toilet.

Re-enter TOILET.

Oak. Well, Toilet, what now? [Toilet whispers] Not well? Can't come down to dinner? Wants to see me above?-Harkye, brother, what shall I do?

Maj. O. If you go, you are undone.

Har. Go, sir, go to Mrs. Oakly-Indeed you had better

Maj. O. 'Sdeath, brother, don't budge a foot -This is all fractiousness and ill humourOak. No, I'll not go-Tell her I have company, and we shall be glad to see her here. [Exit Toilet.

Maj. O. That's right. Oak. Suppose I go and watch how she proceeds?

Maj. O. What d'ye mean? You would not go to her? Are you mad?

Oak. By no means go to her-I only want to know how she takes it. I'll lie perdue in my study, and observe her motions.

Rus. You assure me! You are the fellow that has perverted her mind-That has set my own child against me

Charles. If you will but hear me, sir— Rus. I won't hear a word you say. I'll have my daughter-I won't hear a word.

Maj. O. Nay, Mr. Russet, hear reason. you will but have patience


Rus. I'll have no patience, I'll have my daughter, and she shall marry sir Harry to-night. Lord T. That is dealing rather too much en cavalier with me, Mr. Russet, 'pon honour. You take no notice of my pretensions, though my rank and family

Rus. What care I for rank and family? I don't want to make my daughter a rantipole woman of quality. I'll give her to whom I please. Take ker away, sir Harry; she shall marry you to-night.

Maj. O. Only three words, Mr. Russet-
Rus. Why don't the booby take her?

Sir H. Hold hard! Hold hard!) You are all on a wrong scent; Hold hard! Í say, hold hard!-Harkye, squire Russet.

Rus. Well, what now?

Sir H. It was proposed, you know, to match me with miss Harriot-But she can't take kindly to me.-When one has made a bad bet, it is best to hedge off, you know-and so I have e'en swopped 2) her with _lord Trinket here for his brown horse, Nabob.

Rus. Swopped her? Swopped my daughter for a horse! Zounds, sir, what d'ye mean? Maj. Ö. I don't like this pitiful ambuscade Sir H. Mean? Why I mean to be off, to work-this bush fighting. Why can't you stay be sure-It won't do I tell you it won't do here?-Ay, ay!-I know how it will be--First of all I knocked up myself and my She'll come bounce in upon you with a tor- horses, when they took for London-and now rent of anger and passion, or, if necessary aI have been stewed aboard a tender-I have whole flood of tears, and carry all before her wasted three stone at least-If I could have rid my match it would not have grieved me And so, as I said hefore, I have swopped her for Nabob.

at once.

Oak. You shall find that you are mistaken, major. Now I am convinced I'm in the right, I'll support that right with ten times your steadiness.

Maj. O. You talk this well, brother.

Oak. I'll do it well, brother.

Maj. O. If you don't, you are undone.
Oak. Never fear, never fear.

Maj. O. Well, Charles.




Rus. The devil take Nabob, and yourself, and lord Trinket, and

Lord T. Pardon! je vous demande pardon, monsieur Russet, 'pon honour.

Rus. Death and the devil! I shall go distracted! My daughter plotting against me -the

Charles. I can't bear to see my Harriot so Maj. O. Come, come, Mr. Russet, I am your go immediately in quest of Mr. man after all. Give me but a moment's hearRusset. Perhaps I may learn at the inn where ing, and I'll engage to make peace between his lordship's ruffians have carried him. you and your daughter, and throw the blame Rus. [Without] Here! Yes, yes, I know where it ought to fall most deservedly. she's here well enough. Come along, sir Harry, come along.

Har. He's here!- My father; I know his voice. Where is Mr. Oakly? O, now, good sir, [To the Major] do but pacify him, and you'll be a friend indeed.



Sir H. Ay, ay, that's right. Put the saddle on the right horse, my buck!

Rus. Well, sir-What d'ye say?-Speak
I don't know what to do.

Maj. O. I'll speak the truth, let who will be offended by it.-I have proof presumptive and positive for you, Mr. Russet. From his lordship's behaviour at lady Freelove's, when my nephew rescued her, we may fairly conclude Lord T. There, sir-I told you it was so! that he would stick at no measures to carry Rus. Ay, ay, it is too plain.-O you pro- his point-there's proof presumptive.-But, sir, voking slut! Elopement after elopement! can give you proof positive too-proof And at last to have your father carried off by under his lordship's own hand, that he likeviolence! to endanger my life! Zounds! I am wise was the contriver of the gross affront so angry I dare not trust myself within reach that has just been offered you.


of you.

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Rus. Hey! how?

Maj. O. How easy, impudent, and familiar!


Lady F. Lord Trinket here too! I vow I

Lord T. Every syllable romance, 'pon honour. Maj. O. Gospel, every word on't. Charles. This letter will convince you, sir! did not see your lordship before. In consequence of what happened at lady Freelove's, his lordship thought fit to send me a challenge; hut the messenger blundered, and gave me this letter instead of it. [Giving the Letter] I have the case which enclosed it in my pocket.

Lord T. Your ladyship's most obedient slave.

Lord T. Forgery from beginning to end, 'pon honour.

Maj. O. Truth, upon my honour.-But read, read, Mr. Russet, read, and be convinced.


Lady F. You seem grave, my lord! Come, come, I know there has been some difference between you and Mr. Oakly-You must give me leave to be a mediator in this affair.

Lord T. Here has been a small fracas, to be sure, madam!-We are all blown 1), 'pon honour.

Lady F. Blown! what do you mean, my

Rus. Let me see-let me see-[Reads]-lord? Um-um-um-um-so, so-um-um-um- Lord T. Nay, your ladyship knows that I damnation! Wish me success obedient never mind these things, and I know that slave-TRINKET-Fire and fury! How dare they never discompose your ladyship - But you do this? things have happened a little en travers-The

Lord T. When you are cool, Mr. Russet, little billet I sent your ladyship has fallen I will explain this matter to you. into the hands of that gentleman-[Pointing to Charles]-and so there has been a little brouillerie about it-that's all.

Rus. Cool! 'Sdeath and hell!-I'll never be cool again-I'll be revenged-So my Harriot, my dear girl, is innocent at last. Say so, my Harriot; tell me your are innocent.

[Embraces her Har. I am indeed, sir, and happy beyond expression at your being convinced of it. Rus. I am glad on't-I am glad on't-I believe you, Harriet!-You was always a good girl.

Maj. O. So she is, an excellent girl!Worth a regiment of such lords and baronets -Come, sir, finish every thing handsomely at once.-Come, Charles will have a handsome fortune.

Rus. Marry!-she durst not do it.

Lady F. You talk to me, my lord, in a very extraordinary style-If you have been guilty of any misbehaviour, I am sorry for it; but your ill conduct can fasten no imputation on me.-Miss Russet will justify me sufficiently.

Maj. O. Had not your ladyship better appeal to my friend Charles here?-The letter, Charles-Out with it this instant!

Charles. Yes, I have the credentials of her lady ship's integrity in my pocket.—Mr. Russet, the letter you read a little while ago was enclosed in this cover, which also I now think it my duty to put into your hands..

Rus. [Reading] To the Right Honourable Maj. O. Consider, sir, they have long been Lady Freelove-'Sdeath and hell!-and now fond of each other-old acquaintance-faith-I recollect, the letter itself was pieced with ful lovers-turtles-and may be very happy. scraps of French, and madam, and your ladyRus. Well, well-since things are so- -Iship-Fire and fury! madam, how came you love my girl.-Harkye, young Oakley, if you to use me so? I am obliged to you, then, don't make her a good husband, you'll break for the insult that has been offered me! my heart, you rogue.

Maj. O. I'll cut his throat if he don't. Charles. Do not doubt it, sir! my Harriot has reformed, me altogether.

Rus. Has she?-Why then-there-heaven bless you both-there-now there's an end on't. Sir H. So, my lord, you and I are both distanced1)-A hollow thing, damme.

Lord T. N'importe.

Sir H. Now this stake is drawn, my lord may be for hedging off, mayhap. Ecod! I'll go to Jack Speed's, secure Nabob, and be out of town in an hour, [Aside, and exit.

Lady F. What is all this? Your obligations to me, Mr. Russet, are of a nature, that

Rus. Fine obligations! I dare say, I am partly obliged to you too for the attempt on my daughter by that thing of a lord yonder at your house. Zounds, madam! these are injuries never to be forgiven-They are the grossest affronts to me and my family-All the world shall know them-Zounds! -I'll—

Lady F. Mercy on me! how boisterous are these country gentlemen! Why, really, Mr. Russet, you rave like a man in Bedlam-I am afraid you'll beat me-and then you swear most abominably.-How can you be so vulgar?-I see the meaning of this low malice-But Lady F. My dear miss Russet, you'll excuse-the reputations of women of quality are not Charles. Mrs. Oakly, at your ladyship's,



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so easily impeached-My rank places me above
the scandal of little people, and I shall meet
such petty insolence with the greatest ease
and tranquillity. But you and your simple
girl will be the sufferers.-I had some thoughts
of introducing her into the first company-
But now, madam, I shall neither receive nor
return your visits, and will entirely withdraw
my protection from the ordinary part of the

than all the rest.
Rus. Zounds, what impudence! that's worse

1) What we would do is made public.

sure, as you say, and make my friends welcome. Mrs. O. Excellent raillery! Lookye, Mr. Oakly, I see the meaning of all this affected coolness and indifference.

Oak. Before all this company! Fie!

Lord T. Fine presence of mind, faith! The true French nonchalance-But, good folks, why such a deal of rout and tapage about nothing at all?-If mademoiselle Harriot had rather be Mrs. Oakly than lady Trinket- Oak. My dear, consider where you areWhy-I wish her joy-that's all.-Mr. Rus- Mrs. O. You would be glad, I find, to get set, I wish you joy of your son-in-law-Mr. me out of your house, and have all your flirts Oakly, I wish you joy of the lady-and you, about you. madam, [To Harriot] of the gentleman-And, in short, I wish you all joy of one another, 'pon honour! [Exit Rus. There's a fine fellow of a lord now! The devil's in your London folks of the first fashion, as you call them. They will rob you of your estate, debauch your daughter, or lie with your wife- and all as if they were doing you a favour-pon honour!

Maj. O. Hey! what now?

Mrs. O. But I'll disappoint you, for I shall remain in it, to support my due authority— as for you, major Oakly—

Maj. O. Hey-day! What have I done? Mrs. O. I think yon might find better employment, than to create divisions between married people-and you, sir!

Ook. Nay but, my dear!-

Mrs. O. Might have more sense, as well as
[Bell rings violently. tenderness, than to give ear to such idle stuff.
Oak. Lord, Lord!
Re-enter OAKLY.

Oak. D'ye hear, major, d'ye hear? Maj. O. Zounds! what a clatter! pull down all the bells in the house.

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Mrs. O. You and your wise counsellor there, suppose, think to carry all your points with me-

Oak. Was ever any thing

Mrs. O. But it won't do, sir.

You shall

Oak. My observations since I left you, have confirmed my resolution. I see plainly that find that I will have my own way, and that her good humour, and her ill humour, her I will govern my own family. smiles, her tears, and her fits, are all calcu- Oak. You had better learn to govern yourlated to play upon me. self, by half. Your passion makes you ridiMaj. O. Did not I always tell you so? It's culous. Did ever any body see so much fury the way with them all-they will be rough and violence; affronting your best friends, and smooth, and hot and cold, and all in a breaking my peace, and disconcerting your breath. Any thing to get the better of us. own temper. And all for what? For nothing. Oak. She is in all moods at present, I'Sdeath, madam! at these years you ought to promise you-There has she been in her know better.

chamber, fuming and fretting, and dispatching Mrs. O. At these years!-Very fine!-Am a messenger to me every two minutes-servant I to be talked to in this manner? after servant-now she insists on my coming Oak. Talked to!-Why not? - You have to her now again she writes a note to entreat talked to me long enough-almost talked me -then Toilet is sent to let me know that she to death-and I have taken it all, in hopes of is ill, absolutely dying-then the very next making you quiet-but all in vain. Patience, minute, she'll never see my face again-she'll I find, is all thrown away upon you; and go out of the house directly. [Bell rings] henceforward, come what may, I am resolved Again! now the storm rises!

Maj. O. It will soon drive this way now, brother, prove yourself a man have gone too far to retreat.

to be master of my own house.

then- Mrs. O. So, so!- Master, indeed! - Yes, You sir; and you'll take care to have mistresses enough too, I warrant you.

Oak. Retreat! Retreat! No, no!- I'll preserve the advantage I have gained, I am determined.

Oak. Perhaps I may; but they shall be quiet ones, I can assure you.


Mrs. O. Indeed! And do you think I am. Maj. O. Ay, ay!-keep your ground!-fear such a tame fool, as to sit quietly and bear nothing-up with your noble heart! Good all this? You shall know, sir, that I will discipline makes good soldiers; stick close to resent this behaviour my advice, and you may stand buff to a have a spirittigress

Oak. Here she is, by heavens! now, brother!
Maj. O. And now, brother!-Now or never!
Re-enter MRS. OAKLY.

Oak. Of the devil.


You shall find that I

Mrs. O. Intolerable! - You shall find then that I will exert that spirit. I am sure I have need of it. As soon as the house is once cleared again, I'll shut my doors against all company. You shan't see a single soul for

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Mrs O. I think, Mr. Oakly, you might have had humanity enough to have come to this month. see how I did. You have taken your leave, Oak. 'Sdeath, madam, but I will!—I'll keep I suppose, of all tenderness and affection-open house for a year.-I'll send cards to the but I'll be calm-I'll not throw myself into a whole town-Mr. Oakly's rout!—All the world passion-you want to drive me out of your will come-and I'll go among the world toosee what you aim at, and be I'll be mewed up no aforehand with you-let me keep my temper! I'll Mrs. O. Provoking insolence! This is not send for a chair, and leave the house this instant. to be endured-Lookye, Mr. OaklyOak. True, my love: I knew you would Oak. And lookye, Mrs. Oakly, I will have not think of dining in your chamber alone, my own way. when I had company below. You shall sit at the head of the table, as you ought, to be

Mrs. O. Nay, then let me tell you, sir—
Oak. And let me tell you, madam, I

Mrs. O. You was here yesterday, sir? Rus. Yes; I came after Harriot. I thought should find my young madam with my young sir here.


will not be crossed-I won't be made a fool. had ruined my girl. But it's all over now, Mrs. O. Why, you won't let me speak. and soOak. Because you don't speak as you ought. Madam, madam! you shan't look, nor walk, nor talk, nor think, but as I please. Mrs. Ó. Was there ever such a monster! I can bear this no longer. [Bursts into Tears] 0 vile man! I can see through your you design-you cruel, barbarous, inhuman-such usage to your poor wife!-you'll be the death of her.

Oak. She shan't be the death of me, I am determined.

Mrs. O. That it should ever come to this!To be contradicted - [Sobbing]—insultedabused-hated-'tis too much-my heart will burst with-oh-oh!—

[Falls into a Fit. Harriot, Charles,

elc. run to her assistance.

Oak. [Interposing] Let her alone.
Har. Sir, Mrs. Oakly-

Mrs. O. With Charles, did you say, sir? Rus. Ay, with Charles, madam! The young rogue has been fond of her a long time, and she of him, it seems.

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Mrs. O. I fear I have been to blame. [Aside. Ras. I ask pardon, madam, for the disturbance I made in your house.

Har. And the abrupt manner in which I came into it demands a thousand apologies. But the occasion must be my excuse.

Mrs. O. How have I been mistaken! [Aside] But did not I overhear you and Mr. Oakly[To Harriot. Har. Dear madam! you had but a partial hearing of our conversation. It related entirely this gentleman.

Charles. For heaven's sake, sir, she will be-to
Oak. Let her alone-let her alone.
Har. Pray, my dear sir, let us assist her.
She may-

Oak. I don't care-Let her alone, I say. Mrs. O. [Rising] 0, you monster!-you villain!-you base man!-Would you let me die for want of help?-would you

Charles. To put it beyond doubt, madam, Mr. Russet and my guardian have consented to our marriage; and we are in hopes that you will not withhold your approbation.

Mrs. O. I have no further doubt-I see you are innocent, and it was cruel to suspect youYou have taken a load of anguish off my mindand yet your kind interposition comes too late; Mr. Oakly's love for me is entirely

Oak. Bless me! madam, your fit is very violent-take care of yourself. Mrs. O. Despised, ridiculed but I'll be destroyed. revenged-you shall see, sir

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Oak. Tol-de-rol lol-de-rol lol-de-rol lol.


[Weeping. [Apart. [Apart.

Oak. I must go to herMaj. O. Not yet!-Not yet! Har. Do not disturb yourself with such Mrs. O. What, am I made a jest of? Ex-apprehensions; I am sure Mr. Oakly loves posed to all the world? If there's law or you most affectionately, justiceOak. I can hold no longer. [Going to her] Oak, Tol-de-rol lol-de-rol lol-de-rol lol. M affection for you, madam, is as warm as [Singing. ever. My constrained behaviour has cut me Mrs. O. I shall burst with anger. Have a to the soul-for it was all constrained--and it care, sir; you may repent this.-Scorned and was with the utmost difficulty that I was able made ridiculous!-No power on earth shall to support it. hinder my revenge!

[Going. Mrs. O. O, Mr. Oakly, how have I exposed myself! What low arts has my jealousy induced me to practise! I see my folly, and fear that you can never forgive me.

Har. [Interposing] Stay, madam.
Mrs. O. Let me go. I cannot bear this place.
Har. Let me beseech you, madam.
Maj. O. Courage, brother! you have done

Oak. Forgive you!--This change transports [Apart. me!-Brother! Mr. Russet! Charles! Harriot! Oak. I think she'll have no more fits. Apart. give me joy!-I am the happiest man in the Har. Stay, madam-Pray stay but one world!

moment. I have been a painful witness of Maj. O. Joy, much joy, to you both! though, your uneasiness, and in great part the innocent by-the-by, you are not a little obliged to me occasion of it. Give me leave thenfor it. Did not I tell you I would cure all

Mrs. O. I did not expect, indeed, to have the disorders in your family? I beg pardon, found you here again. But however- sister, for taking the liberty to prescribe for Har. I see the agitation of your mind, and you. My medicines have been somewhat it makes me miserable. Suffer me to tell the rough, I believe, but they have had an adreal truth. I can explain every thing to your mirable effect, and so don't be angry with satisfaction.

your physician.

Mrs. Ŏ. I am indeed obliged to you, and I feel

Oak. Nay, my dear, no more of this. All that's past must be utterly forgotten.

Mrs. O. May be so-I cannot argue with you. Charles. Pray, madam, hear her for my sake-for your own-dear madam! Mrs. O. Well, well-proceed. Har. I understand, madam, that your first | Mrs. O. I have not merited this kindness, alarm was occasioned by a letter from my but it shall hereafter be my study to deserve father to your nephew. it. Away with all idle jealousies! And since Rus. I was in a bloody passion, to be sure, my suspicions have hitherto been groundless, madam! The letter was not over civil, I am resolved for the future never to suspect believe. I did not know but the young rogue at all.

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Comedy by W. Congreve, acted at the Theatre Royal 169. This is the second play this author wrote; the characters of it are strongly drawn, the wit is genuine and original, the plot finely laid, and the conduct inimitable yet such is, and ever has been, the capricious disposition of audiences, that it met not equal encouragement with his Old Bacheler (in some respects a much more exceptionable play), nor had it the same success with his later performances.

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SCENE.-4 Gallery in LORD TOUCHWOOD's House, with Chambers adjoining.


'egad, I could not have said it out of thy

SCENE 1-4 Gallery in LORD TOUCHWOOD's company. Careless, ha?


CARELESS crosses the Stage, as just risen
from Table; MELLEFONT following.
Mel. NED, Ned, whither so fast? What,
turned flincher? 1) Why, you wo'ndt leave us?
Care. Where are the women? I'm weary
of drinking, and begin to think them the
better company.

Mel. Then thy reason staggers, and thou'rt almost tipsy.

Care. Hum, ay, what is't?

Brisk. O mon coeur! What is't? Nay, 'gad, I'll punish you for want of apprehension: the deuce take me, if I tell you.

Mel. No, no, hang him, he has no taste. But, dear Brisk, excuse me; I have a little business.

Care. Pr'ythee, get thee gone; thou seest

we are serious.


Mel. We'll come immediately, if you'll but go in and keep up good humour and sense in Care. No, faith, but your fools grow noisy; the company; pr'ythee do, they'll fall asleep else. and if a man must endure the noise of words Brisk. Egad, so they will. Well, I will, without sense, I think the women have more I will: 'gad, you shall command me from the musical voices, and become nonsense better. zenith to the nadir. But, the deuce take me, Mel. Why, they are at the end of the if I say a good thing till you come. gallery, retired to their tea and scandal. But pr'ythee, dear rogue, make haste; pr'ythee, I made a pretence to follow you, because I make haste, I shall burst else; and yonder had something to say to you in private, and your uncle, my lord Touchwood, swears he'll I am not like to have many opportunities disinherit you; and Sir Paul Pliant threatens this evening to disclaim you for a son-in-law; and my Care. And here's this coxcomb most criti-lord Froth won't dance at your wedding tocally come to interrupt you.

Enter BRISK.


Brisk. Boys, boys, lads, where are you? What, do you give ground? Mortgage for bottle, ha? Careless, this is your trick; you're always spoiling company by leaving it.

Care. And thou art always spoiling company by coming into't.


morrow; nor, the deuce take me, I won't write your epithalamium; and see what a condition you're like to be brought to.

Mel. Well, I'll speak but three words, follow you.


Brisk. Enough, enough. Careless, bring your apprehension along with you. Care. Pert coxcomb!


Mel. Faith, 'tis a good-natured coxcomb, Brisk. Pho! ha, ha, ha! I know you envy and has very entertaining follies; you must Spite, proud spite, by the gods, and be more humane to him; at this juncture it burning envy. I'll be judged by Mellefont will do me service. I'll tell you, I would here, who gives and takes raillery better, you have mirth continued this day at any rate, or I. Pshaw, man, when I say you spoil though patience purchase folly, and attention company by leaving it, I mean you leave be paid with noise: there are times when nobody for the company to laugh at. I think sense may be unseasonable, as well as truth: there I was with you. Ha, Mellefont? pr'ythee, do thou wear none to-day; but allow Mel. O'my word, Brisk, that was a home Brisk to have wit, that thou may'st seem thrust: you have silenced him.

a fool.

Brisk. O, my dear Mellefont, let me perish, Care. Why, how now? Why this extraif thou art not the soul of conversation, the vagant proposition?

very essence of wit, and spirit of wine. The Mel. O, I would have no room for serious deuce take me, if there were three good design, for I am jealous of a plot. I would things said, or one understood, since thy have noise and impertinence, to keep my lady amputation from the body of our society. He! Touchwood's head from working.

I think, that's pretty, and metaphorical enough: Care. I thought your fear of her had been over. Is not to-morrow appointed for your 1) To he afraid of drinking half a dozen bottles of claret at a sitting, used to be called flinching from marriage with Cynthia? and her father, sir bottle; but very happily at the present day, drinking Paul Pliant, come to settle the writings this is not one of the necessary accomplishments; and a day, on purpose? party of Englishmen can meet together now, enjoy


themselves, and separate, without being any thing more Mel. True; but you shall judge whether I have not reason to be alarmed. None, besides

than a little merry.

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