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Title: The Man's bewitch'd; or, The Devil to do about Her

Date of first publication: 1760

Author: Susanna Centlivre (1667-1723)

Date first posted: Dec. 14, 2023

Date last updated: Dec. 14, 2023

Faded Page eBook #20231220

This eBook was produced by: Delphine Lettau & the online Distributed Proofreaders Canada team at https://www.pgdpcanada.net

Book cover


The MAN'S bewitch'd;


The Devil to do about Her.


As it is ACTED at the

By Her MAJESTY'S Servants.


Dramatis Personæ.


I Shou'd not have troubled my courteous Reader with a Preface, had I not lain under the Necessity of clearings myself of what some People have been pleased to charge me with, viz. of being the Author of a Paper call'd, The Female Tatler, consequently of a Paragraph in that of the 14th Instant, relating to this Comedy; tho' I think no reasonable Person will believe I could be guilty of so much Folly. Tho' Vanity is said to be the darling Vice of Womankind, yet nothing but an Ideot would express themselves so openly; and I hope the World won't think me guilty of printing, what I must blush to read, nor imagine it wrote even by any Friend of mine, for two Reasons: First, the Grossness of the Flattery; Secondly, the Injury it must of course do me, in the Run of my Play, by putting those People out of Humour, whose Action was to give Life to the Piece. I suppose these Reasons are sufficient to convince the judicious Part, that I was no ways concerned in those Reflections, but own I was treated with all the seeming Civility in the World, till the second Night of my Comedy. I willingly submitted to Mr. Cibber's superior Judgment in shortening the Scene of the Ghost in the last Act, and believed him perfectly in the Right, because too much Repetition is tiresome. Indeed, when Mr. Estcourt sliced most of it out, I could not help interposing my Desires to the contrary, which the rest readily comply'd with; and I had the Satisfaction to see I was not deceived in my Opinion, of its pleasing. This Passage I happen'd to mention among my Acquaintance; for 'tis natural to have a kind of a Tender for our own Productions, but especially if they have the good Fortune to divert others. Now, if from this the Author of the Tatler gather'd his Accounts, I am guilty of speaking, but not designedly; for who they are that write that Paper, or how distinguish'd, I am perfectly ignorant, and declare I never was concerned, either in writing or publishing any of the Tatlers.

I never had the Vanity to think, much less to publish, that any thing I am capable of doing, could support the Stage, tho' I have had the good Fortune to please, or to find the Town willing to be pleased; tho', at present, it seems, a certain Author has entered a Caveat against all Plays running to a sixth Night, but his own. Tho' an Opera interfer'd with this Comedy, yet brought above Forty Pounds the second Night, which shew'd it had some Merit; for I have known a Play kept up, that fail'd of half that Money the second Night. Now, by the Rules of the House, it ought to have been play'd on: But who can secure the Life of a Play, when that of a Man is often sacrificed to the Malice of Parties? This Play met with a kind Reception in general, and notwithstanding the Disadvantages it had to struggle with, by raising the Prices the first Day, and the Nearness of Christmas, it would have made its way to a sixth Night, if it had had fair Play. Mistake me not, I do not mean from the Representation; for I must do the Players Reason: Had I search'd all the Theatres in the World, I could not have selected a better Company, nor had more Justice done me in the Action, tho' they have not dealt honourably by me in my Bargain; for they ought not to have stop'd the Run, upon any Pique whatever. 'Tis small Encouragement to write for the Stage, when the Actors, according to the Caprice of their Humours, maugre the Taste of the Town, have Power to sink the Reputation of a Play; for if they resolve not to act it, the Town can't support it.

Well, if there is any Merit in suffering wrongfully, I shall find my Account in't one time or other; in the mean while I intreat the Female Tattler to be witty no more at my Expence. I desire I may not be rank'd in the Number of those that support the Stage, since the Stage is become a Noun Substantive, and resolves to shew it is able to stand by itself.



Spoken by Mr. WILKS.

Our female Author trembling stands within,
Her Fear arises from another's Sin;
One of her Sex has so abus'd the Town,
That on her Score she dreads your angry Frown:
Tho' I dare say, poor Soul, she never writ}
Lampoon, or Satyr on the Box or Pit;
A harmless hum'rous Play is her Extent of Wit.
Tho' Bickerstaff's vast Genius may engage,
And lash the Vice and Follies of the Age;
Why shou'd tender Delia tax the Nation;}
Stickle, and make a Noise for Reformation,
Who always gave a Loose, herself, to Inclination?
Scandal and Satyr's thrown aside to-day,
And Humour the sole Business of our Play.
Beaux may dress on to catch the Ladies Hearts,
And good Assurance pass for mighty Parts:
The Cits may bring their Spouses without Fear,}
We shew no Wife that's poaching for an Heir,
Nor teach the Use of fine Gause Handkerchier.
Cowards may huff, and talk of mighty Wonders,
And Jilts set up—for Twenty thousand Pounders.
Our Author, even tho' she knows full well,
Is so good-natur'd, she forbears to tell
What Colonels, lately, have found out the Knack
To muster Madam, still, by Ned, or Jack.
To keep their Pleasures up; a frugal Way,
They give her—Subaltern's Subsistence for her Pay.
In short, whate'er your Darling Vices are,
They pass untouch'd in this Night's Bill of Fare.
But if all this can't your Good-Nature wake,}
Tho' here and there, a Scene should fail to take,
Yet spare her for the Busie-Body's sake.

Dramatis Personæ.

Sir Jeffrey Constant, Father to Captain Constant. Mr. Bowman.
Captain Constant, in Love with Belinda. Mr. Mills.
Lovely, Friend to Captain Constant. Mr. Husband.
Faithful, a Gentleman of Fortune in Love with Laura. Mr. Wilks.
Sir David Watchum, Guardian to Laura. Mr. Johnson.
Trusty, Steward to Sir Jeffrey. Mr. Estcourt.
Num, A Country Squire in Love with Belinda. Mr. Dogget.
Slouch, Servant to Num. Mr. Cross.
Clinch, Servant to Captain Constant. Mr. Pinkeman.
Roger, Farmer to Sir Jeffrey. Mr. Bullock.
Manage, Servant to Faithful. Mr. Cibber.
Coachman. Mr. Harris.
Another Servant.  
Belinda, Suppos'd Daughter to Trusty. Mrs. Oldfield.
Laura, An Heiress in Love with Faithful. Mrs. Cross.
Maria, A Gentlewoman of Fortune. Mrs. Porter.
Dorothy, Belinda's Maid. Mrs. Saunders.
Lucy, Laura's Maid. Mrs. Bicknell.

SCENE, the Minster-yard in Peterborough.
The Hour, Six in the Morning.


SCENE I. The Minster-Yard in Peterborough.

Enter Captain Constant, and Clinch in Mourning,
with Riding-Habit over it

Capt. CLINCH! Where are you, Sirrah? Why don't you come along?

Clin. Ah! Pox of this riding Post—Look ye, Captain; if you have threescore Miles farther to go, I am your humble Servant.

Capt. No, Sirrah, I am at my Journey's End—This Town of Peterborough is the Bound of all my Wishes.

Clin. Say you so, Sir! Pray be pleas'd to make it mine too.

Capt. Why? What is your Wish?

Clin. Why, with Submission, Sir, to know the Reason of your Expedition, and Gravity of Habit: Have you a mind to set up the Business of an Undertaker here in the Country?

Const. No, Clinch, my Business is with the Living, not with the Dead, I'll assure you.

Clin. Then can't I for my Blood imagine why you are thus dress'd; your Father, nay, your whole Family are well; not so much as a Nephew, or second Cousin dead; nay, nor no fear of Peace—Then why the Devil are we in black? You laugh—Can these Clothes cause Joy, without the Perquisite that belongs to it? 'Tis a mournful Equipage, and shocks my Soul, I am sure.

Const. Perquisite! Why what Perquisite does Mourning bring with it to cause Joy? ha!

Clin. Oh, Sir, several:—As when a Wife buries her Husband, she has Sorrow in one Hand, and Joy in t'other; a short Widowhood cures such a Grief.—Or a rich Heir at the last Gasp of his Parent, where there is a Year's Rent in the Steward's Hands—But, Sir, to the Point; either let me into the Secret, or discharge me.

Const. Ha, ha, ha! Why then if I must tell thee; this Habit, if Fortune favours me, will be worth to me two thousand Pounds.

Clin. Say you so, Sir; and pray how much will it be worth to me? For I am dress'd like you—If I have not the same Privilege, why should I be confin'd to the same Garb?

Const. Oh! you shall have your Part, Clinch, never fear.

Clin. Ay, Sir, but there are some Parts I don't care for—I hope you have no Design to rob upon the Highway.

Const. Rascal!

Clin. Nay, ben't angry, Sir; if there should be Peace, 'tis what many an honest Gentleman must come to: I have no Aversion for the Name; but I have for the Punishment—I'll not strike a Stroke—therefore what good can I do you?

Const. Ha, ha, ha! I shall have more Occasion for your Eyes than your Arm—You can weep, Sirrah, can't you?

Clin. Ay, Sir, I shall weep, that's certain to see you come to the Gallows—

Const. Ye Dog you, I tell you there is no Danger.

Clin. No Danger—Why then shall I weep for Joy, Sir.—But how, Sir, how; must I roar, or shed Tears?

Const. So you do but counterfeit well, no matter which.

Clin. Ah, let me alone for counterfeiting, I defy a Woman to outdo me in that.—Look ye, Sir, you shall hear—hem, hem. [Roars out.

Const. Very well—be sure when I weep—

Clin. I'll make terrible Faces—What think you, Sir, is not my Pipe very musical for weeping?

Const. Oh! Excellent.

Clin. But what does this signify! Where lies the Mystery?

Const. Well then—Since you must know it; You are not insensible how my Father has treated me, ever since I refus'd to marry Mrs. Homebred, whose Manners suited with her Name, and her Face was coarser than either; and because I drew a Bill upon him for fifty Pounds last Campaign, he threatens to disinherit me; nay, and swears, that if for the future I don't make it appear I live upon half my Pay, he'll make my Serjeant his Heir, who was once his Footman. In short, I can bear his ill Usage no longer.

Clin. Ah! Sir, had you married that Lady with twenty thousand Pounds, you need not have drawn upon him for fifty.

Const. If she had twenty Times as much, I shou'd refuse her for Belinda's Sake.

Clin. But Sir Jeffry resolves against that Match—You must not marry his Steward's Daughter.

Const. I hope, to prove you a Lyar, Sir; and by this Dress to carry my Design; which is to persuade Trusty, that my Father dy'd of an Apoplexy, by which means he must account with me for the half Year's Rent, he sent the old Gentleman Word was ready for him. Two thousand Pound, Clinch—This Letter I surpriz'd by an Accident; 'tis from my Father to him.


Mr. Trusty,
"The several Sums which you have return'd me without any Receipt, amount to eight hundred Pounds; there remains behind two thousand two hundred Pounds, which you tell me is ready for me; don't give yourself any Trouble about remitting that, for I design to be down myself in a Fortnight; and then the Leases which you mention'd, shall be renewed."
You need write no more, till you see
Your real Friend,
Jeffrey Constant.

Clin. Excellent, Sir! Why here may be a pretty Penny towards, if the Devil don't cross it. But, Sir, if my old Master should take a Maggot, and write to Trusty, to return his Money after all—His Letter and our Story wou'd have small Connexion; we shou'd be oblig'd to alter our Note. I wou'd advise you to take the old Steward to the Tavern, and stay as little in his House as you can, for fear of discovery: Besides, Sir, a Glass of Wine and a Fowl, makes Business go on chearfully, Sir.

Const. Chearfully, Sirrah!—You don't consider that it is not my Business to be chearful—I admire Faithful stays so long.

Clin. Perhaps he can't find Mr. Lovely, Sir.

Const. I directed him to the Coffee-house, where he seldom fails to be at this Time of the Morning.

Clin. Poor Gentleman! I warrant he's ruminating upon his Misfortunes. Well! 'tis sometimes a Blessing to want Money—You 'scap'd the Highway-men, Sir!

Const. What am I the better for that, Sirrah? My Pockets are as empty as my Friends, who fell into their Hands: But here comes my fellow Traveller—and Lovely with him; he has found him at last—Dear Lovely, how is't?

Enter Lovely, Faithful, and Manage, in riding Habit.

Lov. Captain Constant, welcome! Who expected to see you here? Why did not you send me Word of your coming?

Clin. He hardly knew it himself two Hours before he got on Horseback, Sir; nay, I much question if he knows it yet.

Const. My Journey indeed was something precipitate.

Clin. Ay, Sir; don't you see we are in Mourning?

Lov. Mr. Faithful has inform'd me of every Particular; and I wish I cou'd really give thee Joy of six thousand a Year, Boy.

Clin. At the rate of half a Year's Rent you may—If Fortune proves not an errant Jilt indeed, Sir.

Lov. Come, Gentlemen; what think you of my House? I'll get something for Breakfast, whilst you change your Linnen.

Const. 'Tis near Six—I have a mind to see if Belinda comes to Church this Morning.

Lov. She seldom fails—

Faith. Prithee, Lovely; can you inform me, if a young Lady that lives at Sir David Watchum's will be here too?

Lov. Mrs. Laura Wealthy, your Mistress, you mean.

Faith. The same.

Lov. We have heard of the Lady; but I believe no-body in Peterborough has seen her, except his own Servants.

Const. What kind of a Temper is the old Fellow of?

Lov. The most peevish, splenetick, mistrustful, ill-natur'd Wretch in the whole County: He comes to the Coffee-house every Morning in an old rusty Chariot for haste, the longest Journey he takes in the Year: He seldom comes to Church; nay, since that Lady came, he has not once been seen there; we fancy he dare not stay two Hours from home, for fear she should be stol'n away.

Man. Ah, Sir! This Account is most uncomfortable in our Affairs.—

Faith. It gives me more chagrin, than the Rogues did, when they stripp'd me of my Money this Morning—Which way shall I give Laura Notice of my being in Town?

Const. Have Courage, Faithful; I warrant we prosper.

Lov. Nothing like a good Heart; you shall not want a small Sum of Money, Sir.

Faith. I thank you, Sir.

Const. I'll be as diligent in thy Affairs, as in my own—If any lucky Opportunity offers, I'll be ready to serve thee.

Lov. I'll be the same to both.

Const. I know it; and when I am able, I hope, if my Design succeeds, thou shalt meet Returns in me.

Faith. I am oblig'd to both.—But who have we here?

Several People cross the Stage to Church.

Lov. Here comes Belinda, and with her my Tyrant Maria.

Faith. Well, Gentlemen, you'll best entertain your Mistresses alone; I'll back to the Coffee-house, and over a Dish of Tea think what course to steer.—

Const. Mind if the Courant be there, wherein I got my Father's Death inserted, the better to savour my Plot.

Faith. I will, Captain, and be sure to confirm the News.

[Exit Faithful and Manage.

Lov. We'll call on you there presently.—

The Bell rings.

Const. But is Maria obdurate still, Lovely?

Lov. Not in reality, Constant—But she has so much of the Woman in her, to keep up her Rule till the last.

Enter Belinda and Maria.

Const. Ladies, good Morrow! The Sound of the Saint's Bell brings Angels abroad. [Salutes 'em.

Bel. Constant! and in Mourning! Pray who's dead?

Const. One for whom I ought to grieve, did it not smooth a Passage to Belinda's Arms, through the Hearts of our inexorable Parents.

Bel. Your Father! Sir.

Clin. The same, Madam! He's as dead as an Herring, I promise you.—

Mar. Now don't I know, whether I had best say I'm sorry for your Loss, or wish you much Joy of your Gain.

Clin. I dare swear, Madam, he can't tell you yet.

Const. Peace, Blockhead.

Mar. Mr. Lovely, are you for Prayers?

Const. You are the Shrine he kneels to, Madam; if you'll vouchsafe to hear him, he can pray most devoutly.

Mar. And dissemble most fervently—

Lov. No faith, Madam, that Quality does not belong to us—that is the Womens Prerogative.

Bel. And do you never encroach upon our Privileges, sweet Sir?

Lov. Yes, yes, faith; I have encroach'd upon some of the Sex's Privileges in my Time, I must own. Curiosity—Madam, seldom leads us to put on masking Habits; but a Lady cannot dress without 'em; Dissimulation is as necessary as her Patches.

Bel. Ay! How do you prove that?

Lov. Why thus; When you wou'd gain a Man you like, you appear what you are not—We believe you Angels, but don't always find you so.

Mar. We always find you Angels, but of the fal'n Kind.

Const. 'Tis impossible to be otherwise, whilst Beauty keep her Court below; you charm our Eyes, and all our Senses wait you.

Lov. Pride and Vanity predominate in your Sex, and like Centinels relieve one another; Pride has made a Lady swear she has hated such a Man, tho' she was dying for the Sight of him.—And Vanity made her caress a Fop, that at the same Time she wish'd at the Devil.

Mar. And are not you even with us? Will not you sigh, ogle, cringe, flatter, swear, kneel, nay, give it under your Hand, you love to Desperation? But let the poor mistaken Nymph once yield, and you'd give Bond and Judgment to that old Gentleman you nam'd but now, in two Days to take her off your Hands.

Const. I hope you don't include the whole Sex, Madam?

Lov. That she does not, I'm sure; for she knows I never swore any thing to her, but what I'm ready to make good—And if she be not the most unconscionable Woman, she will own I love her heartily.

Const. That I dare witness for thee, Lovely.

Bel. Ay! Why, what Proofs has he given?

Lov. Proofs! Why I talk of her all Day—And dream of her all Night—When she's absent, sigh for her; and am transported when I see her. If these be not Proofs of Love, let the Parson say Grace, and I'll give her better.

Bel. All this may be done without one Grain of Love, may it not, Captain?

Const. Not when you are the Object, Madam; and you are too well acquainted with my Heart, to ask that Question out of scruple, I'm certain.

Mar. These are no Proofs; you must grow lean and meagre—Eat little, and sleep less—Write fifty Letters in a Day, and burn them all again—Then start up, and draw your Sword; hold it to your Breast; then throw it away again—Then take your Pen and write your last Farewel—Dispatch it to your Mistress—Then take a Turn by some melancholy purling Stream, with Hat pull'd o'er your Eyes, in deep Contemplation resolve thro' what Door to let in Death, if the Messenger return without Success—When I see you do this, I'll write Lover upon your Brow.

Lov. When I do, you shall write Fool on my Forehead.

Hang this whining Way of wooing,
Loving was design'd a Sport, &c. [Sings.

Const. Come, come, Madam, a Truce; you know he loves you.

Lov. As well as I know she loves me; we were born for one another, Child; no Man in the Kingdom shall have thee but thyself—Then if you will eat Chalk, and die of the Pip, I can't help it: Ha, ha, ha!

Mar. Be not so positive, Lovely.—One Sect of Philosophers tell us, we ought to doubt of every Thing.

Lov. But the Topic was not a Woman in that Assertion; but if it were, Women in their Days were no more like Women in ours, than a Clodhopper is to a Captain o'Foot. Our Ladies are like two Negatives, to be understood in the Affirmative; ha, ha! Madam, does, not my Friend here look like one of those Lovers you describ'd? Faith, I think a Woman cannot wish a simpler Figure—Now has he a thousand Things to say to Belinda alone.

Const. You guess right, Lovely—I am going to your Father's, Madam, to settle our Accounts; I hope you'll return as soon as Prayers are over.

Bel. Directly—

Const. Oh Belinda!
Now is the Crisis of our good or ill;
Turn for me, Fate, or let thy Wheel stand still.

Lov. You'll remember us in your Prayers, Ladies.—

Mar. Amongst Jews, Turks and Infidels. [Exit.

Lov. Come, now for my House—We'll call on Faithful.

Const. Lead on—I'll change my Linen, and to Trusty's immediately—But hold—Clinch, hark ye.

Clin. Sir.—

Const. I had no Opportunity to inform Belinda of my Project; you must away to Trusty's and let her Maid into the Secret, I wou'd not impose upon her—The Man that truly loves, cannot deceive the Object of his Vows.

He never felt the Force of Cupid's Dart,
Who lets his Tongue run counter to his Heart;
Or ever can deserve the charming Maid,
That is by Falshood to his Arms betray'd.
For mutual Passions in all States agree,
And lines the Yoke with true Felicity.
She shall my Project with my Love compare,}
If she approves it, I'm indeed an Heir.
Clin. Or at the worst, we are but as we were.

Enter 'Squire Num, and his Man Slouch.

Num. What think you, Slouch! Had we best go into the Minster, or tarry here whilst Mrs. Belinda comes out; for her Maid says she's here: Lord, Lord, how religious Folks are in this Town! Why they rise as early to Church here, as our Parson's Wife does to milking, I think—Well, but what had we best to do, ha?

Slou. Why go in, I think—Or tarry here; which you will, Master.

Num. Nay, nay, mun, I don't know which is best, that makes me ask you; for I know, Slouch, you understand Breeding and Haviours; for you have been at London with fat Bullocks, and so was never I; but I resolve to go next time, ha! Slouch!

Slou. Ay, Master; but an you marry this same Mrs. Belinda, as sure as your Name, is 'Squire Num, she'll not let you budge a Step.

Num. Marry her! Nay, nay, I shall marry her, that's sure enough, I think; and yet I'll see London for all that—Why, what dost thou think I'll be ty'd to a Wife's Tail all Days of my Life? No, no; the Family of the Nums won't be Wife rid, Slouch—But hark ye, an her Father shou'd chop up the Wedding to Day, before my new Clothes are made; for he likes me woundily, mun.

Slou. Od, well thought on, Master! Don't go into the Church, I say; who knows, but when the Parson has done his Prayers, but he may begin your Plagues, Master, ha!

Num. Od, that's smart now—Ha, ha; hush, hush, Slouch, they are here—Now show your Manners—

Enter Trusty, Belinda and Maria. Several others cross the
Stage as from Church.

Tru. I have met a Report in the Church, that the News says Sir Jeffrey Constant is dead; if it be true, there's a better Husband for Belinda than this Fool—Od! I'll for London as soon as I have din'd; my Heart akes; pray Heaven he settled his Affairs before he died: I have no Receipt for the Money I paid him.

Num. Sir, your Servant; Father has sent me agen to see Mrs. Belinda, and bid me tell you, That he wou'd come over himself, I think, next Week, and do what you wou'd have him to do, I think—And so, I suppose, we are agreed, Forsooth—Only I must desire you to stay till my new Clothes are made. Father bought the Cloth last Sturbich Fair; and the Taylor comes To-morrow, don't he, Slouch?

Slou. Ay, and his Man Staytape, too; and he works like a Dragon—My Master will soon be fit, Forsooth.

Mar. Fit, quotha! for what? ha, ha.

Num. For what! Nay, nay, let me alone for that, an I don't show her for what, when I have her once, I'll be flea'd.

Mar. Heaven defend me from the Trial!

Tru. Sir, since I saw you last, I have consider'd my Daughter is no proper Match for you; and therefore I desire you to return with all possible Speed, and acquaint your Father, that he may not undertake any unnecessary Journey.

Bel. Ten thousand Blessings on that Voice.

Num. Hey-day: What's the Matter now! Why you don't pretend to make a Fool of me, do ye?

Mar. No, thou art made to his Hands—ha, ha, ha—

Num. Who speaks to you, Mistress; I was not made for you, I'm sure.

Mar. No, I thank my Stars!

Num. I'll not be chous'd at this rate, mun: Did you not tell me, if my Father wou'd settle so, and so, that I shou'd have her—And now you come with a consider—when it has cost me the Lord knows what in Journeys, as Slouch can testify.

Slou. Yes, with a safe Conscience, I can swear it has cost my Master—and me, above thirty Shillings upon you.

Bel. What, did you club with your Master then, Mr. Slouch?

Slou. Now and then, for a Flaggon of Ale, an it please you.

Bel. Oh you shall be no Loser, Friend—There's something to defray your Expences—

[Gives him Money.

Slou. Thank you kindly, Forsooth—Od, this 'tis to be sharp—Now wou'd I give Six-pence to know if this be a good Guinea, or a Counter— [Aside.

Tru. As to your Charges, Mr. Num—if you please to give me a Bill, they shall be discharg'd—But for my Daughter, I have design'd her otherways.

Num. A Bill! I scorn your Words; I'm as well able, de you see, to spend thirty Shillings as you, for ought I know; yet I'm not angry neither; only what makes me mad, is, that you shou'd think me such a Fool to be fob'd off I know not how—Why mun, all our Town knows that I'm to have her, and they have promis'd me the Bells shou'd ring a whole Day—And now you'd have me go home with a Tale of a Tub, like a Dog that has lost his Ears—What did you come bouncing to our House for! and say I shou'd have your Daughter I did not come after her, nor you neither, mun.

Tru. What I said I thought at that Time, Sir; but no Man can blame me for changing my Mind to Advantage in disposing of my Child—I have a better Prospect both in Birth and Estate, than you, or your Father can offer. Therefore I say, without any Passion, I desire you'd give yourself no farther Trouble about this Matter, Mr. Num.

Bel. Birth, and Estate! What means my Father? How I tremble!

Mar. He has certainly heard of Sir Jeffrey's Death, and designs to make thee happy.

Bel. Impossible! he was in the Minster before us.

Num. Birth, and Estate! Slouch, come hither, Sirrah! Han't my Father a Thousand a Year?

Slou. Yes, that he has, an more too: He has ten Hundred, I'll swear it.

Num. I believe he has, as you say, Slouch.

Omnes Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!

Num. An I am all the Children he has, am I not, Slouch?

Slou. Ay, all that he dares own, Sir.

Num. Look ye there, now! An I'll hold you a Bottle of Cyder that I'm as well born as he; my Father's Churchwarden, and Captain of the Militia, as 'tis known very well; and I'm call'd the young Captain, so I am.

Slou. Aye, that every body knows.

Tru. Sir, I have nothing to say to that, and am your humble Servant—Come Belinda.

Bel. I wish you a good Journey, Sir.

Mar. Captain, your Servant. [Exit.

Num. A murrain take your Fleer—

Slou. You may go to London now, Sir.

Num. Go to London, go to the Devil! 'Slife I'll follow them mun, may hap he do's but joke; and Father will break my Head, because I did not understand a Joke—Therefore come along, Slouch.



SCENE, Sir David Watchum's House.

Enter Sir David into a Garden before the Door.

Sir Dav. I have survey'd my House round and round to Night, from Door to Door, and Gate to Gate—He that wou'd keep a handsome Woman of twenty thousand Pound, must learn the Gamester's Art, to live without Sleep—Methought, from my Garret-Window, I saw a Man sauntring about my Ground, and seem'd to pry too narrowly into my House—It may be a Rogue—I would not lose Mrs. Laura; for, if possible, she shall fill no Arms but mine. I have kept her from the Sight of Man these twelve Months; and now I design to offer her Liberty, provided she'll consent to be my Wife; if she refuses, I'll have the Lights quite stop'd up, and she shall not so much as see the Sun—Ha! who's here! Ho, 'tis Lucy, her Maid; I wish I cou'd make this Jade of my Interest—What the Vengeance does she do up so early?

Enter Lucy.

Lucy. This old Fellow is certainly the Devil—One can go no where, but one is sure to meet him.

Sir Dav. What makes you here, ha, Mistress?—Now am I afraid of venturing to the Coffee-house, tho' my Coach is at the Door.

Lucy. Too much Sleep is unwholesome, you know, Sir, by your own Rule; so hearing the Door open, I came down to breathe the Morning Air.

Sir. Dav. That you might have done at your Window; no, no, you have some Plot in Hand now, I warrant! Where's your Mistress?

Lucy. In her Chamber: Where shou'd she be?

Sir Dav. In her Bed wou'd be a fitter Place—Women of Virtue, that have no Intrigues, are fast asleep in their Beds at this Time a-day.

Lucy. Asleep! That's impossible in this House—Pray how can any body sleep, as long as you are awake; are you not rambling all Night; up Stairs, down Stairs, locking one Door, and opening another; hemming, coughing, spitting, sneezing, yawning, stamping, mutt'ring?—One no sooner shuts one's Eyes—but flap goes a Door, clatter goes a Key—down tumbles a Stool, bow-wow goes the Dog—This is the constant Musick you make, Sir: 'Slife, if one were a Slave in Turkey, one should sometimes rest in quiet.

Sir Dav. Good lack, good lack, all this I get for my Care—Why all this is for your Lady's Good, Lucy.

Lucy. Nay, if you call this Good! Then pray, Sir, employ your Study for the future, to do her ill Offices; for nothing can be more disagreeable, than your present Treatment both to my Lady and me.

Sir Dav. Say you so! What, you don't like your way of living then? ha.

Lucy. Not at all, I assure you, Sir—Living! d'ye call it—We wou'd have Liberty, Sir.

Sir Dav. You shall have Liberty, if your Lady is not her own Enemy—and for your Part, if you please, you may serve yourself and her, by being serviceable to me.

Lucy. Which Way, pray Sir? For there are not many Things I wou'd refuse to procure my Lady her dear, dear Liberty; pray inform me, I'm impatient to know it.

Sir Dav. Why thus—I have a very cordial Affection for Mrs. Laura, out of pure Consideration of her Youth—I wou'd not have a young Woman fall into ill Hands at first; therefore I design to marry her myself.

Lucy. Heaven forbid! That wou'd be falling into ill Hands, indeed. [Aside.

Sir Dav. Now. I wou'd have you break this Matter to her; and second it with all the Force of Argument you are capable of—When we are married, you shall take what Liberty you please.

Lucy. Why, sure a Person of your experienc'd Years, wou'd not be guilty of such a Folly.

Sir Dav. What do you call Folly? I had no Children by my last Wife, and I wou'd willingly have an Heir to keep up my Name—and do you call this Folly?

Lucy. Heirs! Why, do you hope for an Heir of your own getting, Sir?

Sir Dav. Why not, pray?

Lucy. What, upon such a fine Woman as she is—In my Conscience, were I in your Place, I shou'd dread being the errantest, you know what, in Christendom.

Sir Dav. Oh Mrs. Pert! that's not your Business, I shall dread no such Thing—All I desire of you, is to tell her, my Estate, Prudence, Wisdom and Temperance, outweighs Youth, Folly, Titles and Debauchery.

Lucy. Yes, for one that is in love with her Grave. Certainly, Sir, you are not in your right Senses—Why, your Request is so abominable, so vile, so ridiculous, and so unjust; that I wou'd not be concern'd in it for a thousand Pounds—Indeed, you have pitch'd upon the wrong Person, Sir.

Sir Dav. Say you so! Good lack—So I have pitch'd upon the wrong Person you say! ha! If I had desir'd you to say your Prayers, I'll be hang'd if I had not pitch'd upon the wrong Person too, Gossip prate-a-pace—but I'll hamper ye, I warrant you; I'll cross your Designs, till I have finish'd my own—go, get out of my Sight.

Lucy. Well, surely this Life won't last always. [Exit.

Enter Manage.

Man. My Master stays at the Coffee-house, and has sent me to survey this Dome, and try to give Mrs. Laura's Maid Notice of his Arrival; but how far I may be serviceable to him, I know not—Ha! who have we yonder? The old Guardian himself, I doubt—So, he has found me—What the Duce must I pretend now?

Sir Dav. What do you want, Friend, ha?

Man. Good-morrow, Sir.

Sir Dav. Well, Good-morrow; what more?

Man. I hope you are well, Sir.

Sir Dav. Yes, thank Heaven, Sir! What then?

Man. Why, then I am very glad of it, Sir.

Sir Dav. You are very glad of it, Sir! Why, what a Pox is my Health to you? Who are you? What are you? And from whence come you, ha, Sir?

Man. Faith, Sir, your Questions are so copious, that they require a considerable Study to answer: Let me recollect a little—I have gone through so many Trades, that without my Diary (which I have not about me at present) I can't remember half of them; nor indeed can I tell how to stile myself otherwise than an universal Man—The World is my Country; and for want of an Estate, I live by my Wits.

Sir Dav. A Rogue, I warrant him. [Aside.

Man. Sometimes an honest Man, sometimes a Knave; just as Occasions fall out.

Sir Dav. Ay! and you oftener happen to be a Knave, than an honest Man, I doubt, Friend.

Man. Why look ye, Sir, that is just as I abound, or want Money; for my present Profession is Physick—Now, when my Pockets are full, I cure a Patient in three Days; when they are empty, I keep him three Months.

Sir Dav. An excellent Principle, truly—But, pray what is your Business at my House?—We are all in a good State of Health at present.

Man. Nay, no very great Business, only I look'd in as I pass'd by, Sir, that's all.

Sir Dav. Now in my Opinion you have another Reason; for you have the Aspect of those Sparks that come in at a Window, or down a Chimney at two in the Morning.—

Man. Have a care what you say, Sir, I'm known very well not far off.

Sir Dav. Ay, too well perhaps! Zounds, Sir, what Business have you here? speak.

Man. A queer old Duke this—Why, Sir, if you must know, I am in search of some Simples, which I have occasion for.—

Sir Dav. Simples!

Man. Yes, Sir.

Sir Dav. Simples! A very simple Excuse, Faith—

Man. Sir, I have many Years practis'd Chymistry, and there's scarce any Disease incident to Humanity, but I have cur'd; Stone, Gravel, Spleen, Vapours, Fits of the Mother, and so forth—

Sir Dav. Rather Fits of the Father, I fancy.

Man. I had attained to such Perfection in the Chymical Art, that I wanted but one Degree of Heat to reach the Philosopher's Stone.

Sir Dav. That Habit, methinks, does not answer this mighty Skill.

Man. Oh! Sir, Skill does not lie in Clothes—And the most ingenious are not always the most fortunate—I have had many Crosses in my Time—which has reduc'd me much below my Birth, I assure you—I serve an Officer at present, in the Quality of a Valet de Chambre, whose Life I sav'd at the Battle of Audenard, when he was shot thro' with a Cannon-ball.

Sir Dav. How! shot through with a Cannon-ball?

Man. Yes, Sir; what, do you wonder at that? Why, Sir, I have a Water, that if your Head were off, I'd but wash it with that, and clap it upon your Shoulders again, and you shou'd grow as perfectly well in Half an Hour, as ever you was in your Life; I have made the Experiment upon Thousands; my Master's Brother was one of them.—

Sir Dav. If you were in Petticoats, I shou'd take you for the Kentish Miracle—What is this Officer's Name, Friend, that you serve?

Man. Captain Bounce, Sir.

Sir Dav. Bounce! I fancy you are related to him; are you not, Friend?

Man. No, Sir, not at all; indeed he uses me more like a Relation, than a Servant, for the Reason beforementioned.

Sir Dav. Ha! And where is he, pray?

Man. At the Talbot, Sir; if you please I'll fetch him hither?

Sir Dav. By no means, Sir; but what Business have you here in Peterborough?

Man. We have been raising Recruits, Sir—A Pox of this old Dog; how many impertinent Questions does he ask?—Here's no Hopes of seeing Lucy.—

Sir Dav. Well, Sir, I desire you'd look your Simples elsewhere; for I don't like you, notwithstanding your fair Pretences.

Man. Sir I shall obey you—But pray who does this House belong to?

Sir Dav. Why, this House belongs to—its Master.

Man. Indeed, Sir—Pray who is that Master, if I may be so bold to ask?

Sir Dav. Why that Master is—a Man, Friend.

Man. Really Sir! your Answers are so concise and so ingenious, that it is impossible to quit your Company—We design for Cambridge to-night, pray what Time do you think we shall get in?

Sir Dav. The Town-Clock will tell you, when you come there.

Man. Is it possible!—I humbly thank you, Sir—one Thing more I wou'd gladly be resolv'd—I have a Brother bound for Portugal, pray is the Wind fair, Sir?

Sir Dav. What do you take me for, a Weather-cock, Sirrah! Hark ye, the Wind will blow you no good, if you don't get about your Business; remember that, and so farewel. [Exit.

Man. Very well—this must be Sir David his ownself—'Egad he has all his Paces, it will be hard to bring Matters about here; I'm just as wise as I was when I came—and have told fifty Lyes to no Purpose—Ha! his Coach at the Door, I'll watch whither he goes, I'm resolv'd.—

Re-enter Sir David.

Sir Dav. What, are you not gone yet, Sirrah? I'll have you laid by the Heels, if you don't get off my Ground this Moment.

Man. Sir, I am going this Moment—A Pox of his Leathern Jaws—Well, I'll inform my Master what has pass'd, and leave him to think on what's to come.— [Exit.

Sir Dav. So, he is gone—I don't like the Countenance of this Fellow—Sam

Enter Servant.

Sam. Sir.

Sir Dav. Lock my Doors, d'ye hear; till I return from the Coffee-house, let no Body in or out.—

Sam. I shall observe, Sir. [Exeunt severally.


SCENE changes to the Coffee-house; Lovely, Constant, and Faithful.

Faith. I have confirm'd the whole Town in the Belief of thy Father's Death.

Const. Then thou hast done me Service—Come, you'll both go with me to Trusty's

Faith. No, I have a Mind to stay here; to see if Sir David comes; this Morning I will try to get acquainted with him; perhaps my being a Stranger, he may invite me to Dinner.

Lov. Ha, ha! He wou'd as soon give thee his Estate.

Enter Manage.

Faith. Ha! Manage, what News? Hast thou seen Lucy?

Man. No, Sir, but I have seen the Knight.

Faith. Well, and what have you discover'd?

Man. That it was not worth your while to come Post from London, to return the same Way—Ah! Pox of the last Horse I rid; what a cursed Fall had I in Stangate-hole—don't you remember, Sir, how I lay over Head and Ears in Mire; whilst the Gentlemen of the Pad disburthen'd you of a hundred Pounds?

Faith. Hang your unseasonable Memory, Sirrah; leave fooling, and tell me—You saw Sir David, did you speak to him?

Man. Yes, Sir, but he answer'd me with a damn'd sour Air; and I assure you it will require Cannon to reduce his Citadel.

Faith. Love has taught me to surmount all Difficulties.

Man. But here the Knight will be immediately; for I heard him give Orders to lock up the Doors, till he return'd from the Coffee-house.

Lov. Ay, that's right Sir David! ha, ha.

Faith. Lock up the Doors! Ah poor Laura! how shall I give thee Notice of my being here?—

Const. I have a Thought in my Head, if it cou'd be put in Practice—Hark, I hear the Coach—ha! here's no body in the Room to discover the Trick—Let us pretend a Quarrel—Draw, Faithful.

Faith. To what Purpose?

Const. You shall know instantly—Lovely, do you seem to part us; he's here—Damn you, Sir, you lye. (Draws.) I have not lost, nor will I pay—

Faith. Take your Lye back, Sir. [Seem to fight.

Enter Sir David.

Lov. Why Gentlemen, Gentlemen, what do you mean?

Faith. Damn you, Sir, you shall pay me—

Const. There is the Money then, you have it—pretend to be wounded with that Thrust, Faithful. [Aside to him.

Faith. I am wounded—pray help to lead me home.

Lov. Oh Friend! what have you done?

Sir Dav. What's here, Murder?

Const. I hope the Wound's not mortal—Curse on my unlucky Arm; how dost thou, Ned?

Sir Dav. Do quotha! If the Gentleman is wounded, I must secure you, Sir.

Const. Secure me, Sir! Alas! Sir, I don't intend to fly; a Pox of all Wagers, I say.

Faith. Pray lead me to my Inn, for I feel my Spirits very faint.

Lov. Lead you! Alas, I doubt you cannot walk so far.

Const. What, is there not a Chair or a Coach to be got?

Lov. Sir David has a Coach at the Door, if you could prevail with him to lend it you a little.

Const. Sir, pray oblige us with your Coach, it shall return immediately.

Sir Dav. With all my Heart.—

[Goes to the Door, and speaks to his Coachman aloud.

Tom, here, carry this Gentleman home—d'ye hear, and make Haste back again.

Faith. Oh! Friend, I understand you now; my Soul dances with the bare Idea.

Const. It has succeeded to my Wish—Lovely, help lead him to the Coach.

Sir Dav. If there be any Danger, Mr. Lovely, take care to secure the Murderer.

Lov. Oh! they are intimate Friends, Sir David, he won't flinch, I know.

Sir Dav. Well, well, look you to that.—

[Exit into the House.

Const. Manage! Come you along with us, I have some Instructions for you.


SCENE changes to the Outside of Trusty's House.

Enter Lovely, Constant, Clinch and Manage.

Lov. He'll certainly get Admittance to his Mistress by this Stratagem; but if the Knight should find him there, how will he come off?

Const. Nay, let him look to that—but Manage shall take Clinch's great Coat, 'tis like a Livery.—Sweet Sir, can you condescend to wear a Livery an Hour or two?

Man. To serve my Master's Amour I will, Sir—else I scorn a Livery—I must have that black Wig too.

Const. Well, well! Here, Clinch, change, change with him.

[They change Clothes.

Clin. So Sir! Now I am your Valet de Chambre.

Man. Well, Sir, what am I to do now?

Const. Why, go watch about Sir David's Door, and as you see occasion, employ your Wits.

Man. Very well, Sir, let me alone for that; your humble Servant, Gentlemen. [Exit.

Enter Dolly, out of the House.

Dolly. Oh! Are you come, Captain; I have told my Mistress every Particular—Please to walk in, Sir, I'll inform my Matter you are here.

[They go in.

The SCENE draws, and discovers them in a Room.

Lov. 'Tis an admirable Project, Captain, if you are not discover'd; but your Father will certainly know it in a little Time.

Const. If possible, I'll marry the Woman to-night.

Lov. I fear Sir Jeffrey will resent the Trick.

Const. I hope to convince him the Trick was upon Trusty; for he may recover the Money of him, if he pleases, and with me it may pass for his Daughter's Portion: but rather than fail, I'll give the Steward my Bond, when 'tis discover'd, to refund the Money, when I become Master of my Father's Estate; for without Belinda, nothing can make me happy.

Clin. Ah, Sir, you'll scarce find a Man in the Army of your Mind—Prefer a Woman to Money! Why, Sir, Money is the very Hinge the whole World turns upon—A Soldier, and not love Money!—Money has Power to alter all Constitutions, and in spite of Custom, stamp what Form it pleases—'Twill make an honest Man a Knave; nay, 'twill make a Knave an honest Man—'twill make a Coward valiant—an old Woman young—a young Woman a Saint—a Lawyer just—a Statesman loyal—and a Courtier keep his Word.

Lov. Ha, ha, Clinch is a Wit.

Clin. Faith, I always thought so by my Poverty.

Const. Well hinted Clinch—I'm in thy Debt—

[Gives him half a Guinea.

Clin. Oh Sir, I am yours in all Respects—Oh! this dear Colour!

What can there be that this dear Coin can't buy?
For thee Men toil and sweat, swear, cheat and lye;
For thee does Friend his dearest Friend betray,
And Women give their very Souls away.
Join but Ambition to this glitt'ring Evil,
And in an Instant Man is made a Devil.

Const. Ha, ha, ha!

Lov. Ha, ha, ha!

Const. Ad's-heart, Sir, set your weeping Face in order—Here comes the Steward—

Enter Trusty.

Tru. Captain Constant, your Servant! you are welcome into the Country. What, you are in want of Men; I warrant you are going to raise Recruits.

Const. Not at this Time, Sir; 'tis a more unwelcome Accident that brought me down.

[Takes out a Handerchief, and seems to weep.

Trust. Good lack! the News is really true then, Sir Jeffrey is dead.

Clin. Ay, poor Gentleman, he's laid low—

Trust. I confess I heard so, but I hop'd it might be Report only; I, did design to have set out for London as soon as I had din'd—My Heart akes—Bless me! What have I paid without any Receipt?—I lov'd Sir Jeffrey like a Brother; truly I am very much troubled—

[Seems to weep.

Clin. Grief is very catching, I find; it makes me weep too—Be comforted, Sir, (To Constant.) Fathers must go as well as Sons—Why do you afflict yourself at this rate, Sir? Since Death is Death, who can help it?

Lov. Pray be comforted, Sir John[To Constant.

Trust. Pray of what Distemper did he die?

Clin. Ah! Duce on't! What was that hard Word? Now can't I think on't, as I hope to be Great—

Lov. Of an Apoplexy—A Pox on the Doctors, for giving Death so many strange Names. [Aside.

Clin. Right, Sir—He died of an Apoplexy, Sir.

Tru. Of an Apoplexy! Why then I doubt he died suddenly.

Const. In a Moment's Time, Sir, he was alive and dead—

Clin. Ay, without ever speaking one Word, Sir—

Tru. (Rears out.) Oh, oh, oh. Did he settle his Affairs in his Health? Did he make any Will?—

Const. Not any, Sir.

Clin. No, Sir; he has left all at Sixes and Sevens.

Tru. Oh, oh, oh— [Faints.

Lov. Ha! Help, Clinch, I hope he is not dead.

Clin. No, no, he breathes, thank Heaven; pray you look up, Sir.

Const. Why are you thus concern'd?

Lov. You really encrease Sir John's Grief, Sir.

Tru. Oh! what have I lost?

Const. I know you have lost a Friend in my Father; but you shall find him again in me.

Tru. Oh, but he has left all Things at sixes and sevens, Clinch says—Did he say nothing to you about me before he dy'd?

Const. Not a Syllable—But I suppose your Concern proceeds from having paid him Money without any Thing to show for it under his Hand.

Tru. Ay, Sir, there's my Misfortune—Oh, oh.

Clin. 'Tis the Money, not the Man—Let not that trouble you, Sir, my young Master has been inform'd to a Farthing what it was—Tell him, tell him, Sir, your Father appear'd, and let me alone to clinch it.

[Aside to Constant.

Tru. Inform'd!

Const. Yes, Mr. Trusty; my Father cou'd not rest till he had disclos'd your Affair.

Clin. Ah, good honest Soul; seeing he was snatch'd away so suddenly, he has several Times appeared.

Tru. How! appear'd, say you?

Clin. Ask my Master else!

Const. Most certain, Sir.—

Clin. He haunted us six Days like the Devil; sometimes like a shag Dog—Sometimes like a white Pidgeon—At last he took his own Shape. Clinch, said he, don't you know me? Then addressing himself to my Master, don't be afraid, said he, I come to tell you, that at several Times I have received from Mr. Trusty

Tru. Ah dear Ghost, dear Ghost; how much did he say?

Const. Eight hundred Pound.

Tru. Right to a Penny; look ye there now, see what it is to deal with honest Men; one loses nothing by them, tho' in their Graves.

Clin. Oh, the Dead, Sir, are always generous; they value Money no more than that—

[Snapping his Fingers.

Tru. Poor Gentleman, that he shou'd take a Journey from the other World upon my Account.

Clin. Ah, Sir, the Dead ride Post upon the Winds—He charg'd me to tell you, for your Satisfaction, he wou'd come and give you an Acquittance himself.

Tru. By no means, I am content; let the Dead visit who they will for me.

Const. Oh, fear not, Sir, he'll not trouble you; but to our Business, Sir, what you have paid I will discount.

Tru. And the rest of the Money is at your Service, and my Daughter too, Sir John, if you have not lost the Remembrance of her.

Const. To show you that I have not, Mr. Trusty, I assure you she will be the welcomed Present of the two.

Lov. Thy Business is done, Constant.

Tru. Say you so, Sir John! Well, I'll fetch the Writings, and dispatch some Affairs, and then I'll carry you to my Daughter—But upon second Thoughts, please to walk into my Study, 'tis more convenient.

Const. With all my Heart, I'll follow you.— [Exit Trusty.

Lov. Matters go as you cou'd wish; you'll be married to-night, Captain.

Const. I wish 'twere over; Egad I'd rather fight half a dozen Men, than descend to this rascally Way of Lying, were there any Help for it; it is beneath a Soldier.—

A Soldier scorns the whining Lover's Art;
His Courage takes Possession of the Heart:
Disdains by Treachery to raise his Name,}
But boldly owns the bright ambitious Flame,
And courts his Mistress as he courts his Fame.


SCENE, Trusty in his Study, with Constant, Lovely and Clinch. Papers and Money upon the Table.

Trusty. There, Sir John, there are in these Bags Two and twenty hundred Pounds, which, with the Eight hundred I remitted Sir Jeffrey, is just Three thousand Pound; if you please, you may count it, 'tis most in Gold.

Const. No, I'll take your Word for't; here, Clinch, carry it to Drive the Carrier, he is just now going to London; order him where to pay it in, d'ye hear?

Clin. Yes, Sir—

[Exit with the Bags.

Lov. He is loaden with it; ha, ha, ha.—

Tru. Poor Sir Jeffrey, rest his Soul, did promise to bate me twenty Pound a Year; for I have paid him two hundred Pounds a Year these sixteen Years, for that Land which is not worth an Hundred and four-score.

Lov. Say you so, Mr. Trusty? Then you must perform your Father's Promise, Sir John.

Const. Ay, when he has paid me as much as he has my Father.

Lov. Come, shall I settle Matters between you? Advance Sir John a hundred Pounds; you know he has been kept short, and doubtless has Occasion for ready Money, and he shall bate you twenty Pound a Year.

Tru. Oh, that's all one, Mr. Lovely—I can't do that.

Const. Nay, since Mr. Lovely has propos'd it, if you won't do that—

Tru. Well, but Sir John, perhaps you'll expect a large Fortune with my Daughter; I can't tell you how to—

Const. I ask you for none, Sir.

Tru. Why then there's the hundred Pound; but you must signify at the Bottom of this Lease our Bargain.

Enter Roger, a Farmer.

Const. Give it me, I'll do't.—

[Sits down to write.

Rog. Morrow Landlord, I ha' brought you a little Rent, and in troth 'tis but a little neither; for we ha' had but a sorry Crop of Barley, and the Crows, a Murrain take 'em, ha' eat up all my Beans, I think.

Tru. But you have a new Landlord, Roger. Old Sir Jeffrey is dead, and there's his Son.

Rog. Say you so, Master! Bless you, Sir, I did not know your Father, not I, tho' I have paid him many a fair Pound—Nor I dan't know you; but an you be my Landlord, I'm an honest Man; and tho' I say it, pay my Rent as well as any body.

Const. I don't doubt it, Friend—I am sorry your Harvest has not prov'd so good as you expected.

Rog. I hope, Master, for Luck's sake now, you'll 'bate, me something of my Rent.

Const. I can't do that, Roger—For the taxes take away all my Money.—

Rog. Nay, as you say, Master, these Taxes are sad Things, that's the Truth on't—Od they find out strange Ways; they had got a Trick here once to make one pay for one's Head—Mercy on us, I was afraid they wou'd make one pay for one's Tail too—My Neighbour What de call um—says it cost him the Lord knows what in Buryings and Christnings—Adod 'tis a sore Thing, a Man must pay for lying with his own Wife.

Lov. Ha, ha, ha, 'twas a Grievance indeed; but Taxes can't be help'd, so long as the Wars continue.

Rog. Wars! Why what need there be any Wars? Can't People live peaceably and quietly among themselves—If they will squabble and play the Rogue, let 'em go to Law; can't they set the Lawyers to work? I warrant they'll quickly make them as quiet as Lambs.

Const. Ha, ha, ha; but we are at Wars with a Prince that cares for no Laws but his own; nay, he breaks them too, when 'tis his Interest.—

Rog. Why then Mercy upon us, I say—Well an how! may one wish you much Joy? Ha, you got a Wife, Landlord? By the Mess you are a pretty Man.—

Const. I'm not so happy yet, Roger.

Rog. Say you so? Good lack, I'm sorry for't.—Why now here's Master Trusty has a good sweatly look'd Gentlewoman to his Daughter—What think you of her, Landlord?—Od, and all Parties were agreed, she'd make a rare Bedfellow, I'm persuaded.

Lov. I believe Sir John is of your Mind; have you any Interest with her Father?

Rog. Not I, in troth, Master Lovely—but the Gentlewoman is of a sweet Temper.

Lov. Do you think you cou'd persuade her to run away with him?

Rog. Wou'd I cou'd, Sir—for a pretty Woman is the best Luggage in the World—for when a Man is weary, he may rest upon it; ha, ha.

Const. You are waggish, Roger.

Trusty. Yes, yes, Roger will joke; there's your Acquittance, if Sir John please to sign it.—

Const. 'Tis the same Thing if you sign it, Mr. Trusty.

[Signs the Note.

Trusty. I find my Daughter stands fair in your Opinion, Roger.

Rog. Look ye, Sir—I hope you ar'n't angry! I meant no harm—I spoke as I thought; an I had a hundred Daughters—my Landlord, and Mr. Lovely should have them all, an they wou'd; ha, ha.

Const. I am obliged to you truly.

Lov. Oh! a hundred wou'd be too many.

Const. Prithee hast thou never a single one at present?

Rog. Not that I know of, in troth, Sir; but an you'll do me a small Kindness, Sir, I may chance to get you one about fourteen Years hence.

Lov. That will be something too long to stay.

Const. But what can I serve thee in, Roger?

Rog. Why; Mrs. Belinda has a kind of a Maid called Dorothy; I have had a hankering Mind after her these two Years; but the sliving Baggage will not come to a Resolution yet.

Tru. You must apply yourself to my Daughter, Roger, she'll be the best Advocate; but I doubt she's too fine for you.

Rog. Too fine! nay, nay, I'll never quarrel with her for that; an she can win Gold, as the Saying is, e'en let her wear it.

Tru. But I doubt you are not fine enough for her.

Rog. Mayhap so, as you say; indeed, I have not such gay Clothes as these Gentlefolk have, because I can't afford it, de ye see? else I shou'd like 'em well enough—. In troth, I believe I have some Seeds of a Gentleman in me; for methinks now I like broad Cloath better than my Leathern Breeches; and a Holland Shirt, far before a Hempen one—adod methinks, I, I, I, cou'd be well enough contented with a Bottle of Wine every Day—I am mainly inclin'd to strong Beer—and don't care a Farthing if I never were to drink any small.

Lov. Oh! extraordinary Symptoms of a Gentleman, I'll assure you—Well, we'll speak to Dolly for you.

Tru. Ay, ay, we'll all speak for you; go, go into the Cellar then, and drink thy Belly full.

Con. Be sure to drink Dolly's Health.

Rog. Thank you kindly, Sir—Ay, ay, Master, that I will, I promise you, in a full Horn—So, Landlord, good-by to you with all my Heart. [Exit.

Tru. Now, Sir John, I'll send my Daughter to keep you Company, till I look for some Leases your Father order'd me to get drawn, which, if you think fit to sign—

Con. If the Tenants are able Men, with all my Heart.

Tru. Oh! very sufficient Men, Sir John. [Exit Trusty.

Lov. Well, thou hast secured the Money, Constant; and my Advice is to dispatch the Woman, as fast as you can, and find some Pretence to defer these Leases for two or three Days—Sir Jeffrey is whimsical, and if he shou'd alter his Mind, and come down.—

Con. Here wou'd be no staying for me, if he shou'd; therefore I design to be as quick as possible—but here comes the Star that guides me to Happiness.

Enter Belinda and Maria.

Lov. And my Pilot—

Mar. What Voyage are you for, pray?

Lov. The everlasting Voyage of Matrimony, Child:—And your Eyes are two such dangerous Rocks, that nothing but your Tongue can steer me into Harbour.

Mar. But any of my Sex can steer you out; you'll be for cruising from Port to Port, to make that everlasting Voyage agreeable.

Lov. No, Faith, where I drop my Anchor, there my Vessel is moor'd for Life.—Well, Constant, what says the Lady? will she let thy Habeas Corpus remove her?

Bel. Out of one Prison into another, is it not so, Constant?

Lov. Interrogating! Nay, then 'tis proper to be alone; there is a very pretty Collection of Prints in the next Room, Madam, will you give me leave to explain them to you?

Mar. Any Thing that may divert your Love-Subject. [Exit.

Con. Can Belinda term my Arms a Prison?

Bel. But Marriage is a Fetter, Constant.

Con. I'll not make it one; I'm a true British Subject, I'm for Liberty and Property.—

Bel. And Self-interest, for they are inseparable.

Con. I hope our Interests are the same, and when link'd, will be the stronger. Come, Madam, consider our Opportunity may be short, we ought to be quick, to prevent Discovery; I have your Father's Consent.

Bel. Discovery! why, what is it you fear? 'tis but reasonable I be let into the Secret, if I'm in Danger of sharing the Punishment, Sir John.

Con. Why that Sir John, Belinda? I know you are inform'd of all, then do not ridicule my ardent Passion; 'twas my Love for you that first inspir'd me with this Stratagem; then prithee come, my dearest.—

[Taking her Hand.

Bel. Not a Step, sweet Servant—I'll know upon what Terms I capitulate, e'er I surrender.

Con. Terms! Madam! Has not Dolly told you of the Plot?

Bel. Yes, upon your Father and mine, Captain, but I don't think it safe to join in it! Suppose my Father be oblig'd to pay back this Money; may not that be Provocation enough to disown me? and if your's shou'd for this Trick disinherit you?—What Jointure can you make me?

Con. My Heart, Madam.

Bel. Pshaw! that is the slippery'st Piece in all Fortune's Treasure—we never can be certain of that—

Con. Then my Soul.

Bel. Where shall I find it? The Learned can't agree where to place it; therefore I'll have no trouble about that.

Con. Then take my Body for Bail, that I'm sure is forth-coming.

Bel. Ay, but there's No—Ne exeat Regnum in Love's Court.—

Con. To cut off all Objections, I settle this Money upon you; and either put it out to Interest, or purchase some pretty Retirement; where, if Belinda loves but half so well, as I flatter'd myself she did, I can forsake all Courts and Company—and prefer a Grott with her, before all the Trappings of the Fools of Fortune.—

Bel. Generously said! I have try'd thee, Constant; and, find thy Nature like thy Name; there, take my Hand—my Heart was thine before.

Con. 'Tis Sympathy of Souls that joins us two,}
 Death only shall our Gordian Knot undo,
Bel. Until that Hour, Belinda will be true.

Re-enter Lovely and Maria.

Lov. Joy to thee, my Friend; and you, Madam, we over-heard your Protestations.—

Con. Prithee let's fetch the Parson this Minute.

Lov. To chuse—Ladies, we'll return instantly. [Exit.

Mar. Prosperity to Belinda!

Bel. Dare not you bear me Company, Girl? Have you the Heart, to let me run this Hazard alone?

Mar. Why, what wou'd you have me do?

Bel. Even what I design to do—Marry—for I'm sure thou lov'st that handsome young Fellow.

Mar. I find you understand your own Constitution, Belinda.

Bel. So well; that if you follow my Example, you'll act as resolutely.

Mar. Thine is a rash Venture, if Sir Jeffrey shou'd not forgive him.

Bel. The more honourable; we have Love, and that's the best Estate in a married Life.

Mar. True, but what can we poor Women do, whose Parents are not inclin'd to gratify our Wishes;—you know mine are set against the Match.—

Bel. Pugh, Parents will relent in Time—If not, Mr. Lovely has Fortune enough to make you happy—You love him, and he loves you; were I in your Place, I'd fain see a third shou'd part us.

Mar. True, I do love him—but will not marry him, without a Portion; he shall never throw that in my Dish, I resolve.

Bel. An admirable Resolution truly—Then you'll go on; hang your Head, cross your Arms, sigh your Soul into the Air—sit up all Night like a Watch-Candle, and distil your Brains through your Eye-lids—for so I have done—no, no, Girl, e'en let us save our Tears, till we are married.

Mar. What, you think like most Wives, we shall have Occasion for them then, ha, ha.

Bel. As it may fall out—Then let us marry whilst we are young, that we may be able to bear it with the better Courage.—But here's my Father over Head and Ears in Papers; I tremble though, to think what he will say when he finds the Cheat.

Enter Trusty, with Papers in his Hand.

Mar. And see who is behind him—

Enter Num and Slouch.

Bel. I have a sudden Thought how to divert my Father's Anger; when all's discover'd, I'll put it in practice.—Sir, your humble Servant.

Num. Od, she speaks, Slouch—Nay, Madam, I'm your humble Servant.

Tru. Ha! what's that?—Why, Sir, I admire—hey-day, where are the Gentlemen, Daughter?

Num. Gentlemen, Sir, why here is one Gentleman; indeed I can't say much for Slouch

Tru. Why don't you answer me, ha?

Bel. I know not, Sir, they went out soon after we entered.

Mar. They whisper'd, Sir, and left the Room.

Tru. Ah! I don't like that—

Slou. May-hap they are gone to fight for Mrs. Belinda. An she'd marry you, Master, now, how rarely they'd be chous'd, ha, ha.

Num. Od, so they wou'd, as you say, Slouch—Madam, what say you? Mr. Trusty, shall we make an end on't? I know you are a merry Man, and did but joke wi' me.

Tru. Say you so! I doubt you won't find it so, Sir.

Num. No! Why I verily believe the Gentlewoman has a Kindness for me, by her Looks; how say you, Mistress? speak the Truth, and shame the Devil, as the Saying is—han't you?

Bel. Well, if I must speak the Truth, 'Squire, I have as much Kindness for you, as for any body; my Father commanded me to love.

Trusty. Ay! why what say you to Sir John Constant? Don't you like him better?

Bel. I did once, Sir, but I don't remember I ever had your Consent in that.

Trusty. You have it now then—'Tis time enough; it is good to know what one has to trust to.

Bel. Your Leave now, Sir, comes too late, he may have chang'd his Mind.

Trusty. No, no, you shall be married to Night, he shan't have time to think of Change.

Num. Look ye, Sir, fair and softly—he shall not have her to Night, may-hap—for all your haste; Slouch, stand by me.

Slou. That I will, Master, in any Ground in England.

Mar. Humph! I guess her drift— [Aside.

Bel. Then 'tis time for me to think on't, Sir.

Trusty. Hey-day, what's here now!

Bel. I don't like Matches huddled up in haste; and I learnt from your Instructions, Sir, to consult my future Happiness in a marry'd State.

Num. Good again, I'faith, ha, ha.

Trusty. Your future Happiness! Why, what can cross your future Happiness, Mistress?

Num. What, will they quarrel about me now, Slouch, ha?

Slou. The Woman has a woundy Mind to you, I see that, Master.

Bel. Sir John's Carriage is more loose and familiar than formerly—from which I draw this Conclusion, Sir; that he thinks his Quality may now command, and when a Lover loses Respect, his Sincerity quickly follows. I like not the Method of our Quality—The Name of Husband without the Fondness, is like a Title without an Estate, of no value with the Wife.

Mar. I am of her Opinion, Sir.

Num. And I too, Faith—Od, she talks rarely; I shall have her, I find—In my Confidence I love her ten times the better, because I see she loves me—and let me tell you, Sir, your Daughter is honester than you are—Why shou'd you pretend to cross her Will? You plainly see, she has a Mind to no body but me—Mun—

Tru. I plainly see you are a Fool, and she's another—

Num. Look ye, say what you will o' me, but don't affront her; for all you are her Father, I won't let my Wife be call'd Names, de ye see.

Tru. Zounds, get out of my Doors.

Num. Ay, but who is the Fool then?

Bel. Pray be calm; since you once lik'd the Squire for a Son-in-law, I hope I shan't disoblige you in preferring him before Sir John for a Husband.

Num. Disoblige him! who cares if it does, Madam: Come along—

Mar. Ha, ha. If thy Father shou'd take thee at thy Word, Belinda?

Bel. My Stars forbid—

Tru. Did you ever see such a provoking Creature?

Enter Constant and Lovely.

Oh, Sir John, 'tis well you are come—Where have you been? You are in Danger of losing your Mistress here.

Con. I hope, Sir, I have taken the best Way to secure her.

Lov. If the Parson can do it, for we have got him in the next Room.

Bel. [To Constant.] Humour what I say—

Tru. Now Mistress, you had best bring your Objections again, and spoil your Fortune.

Bel. [To Num.] If you dare maintain your Claim to me I am yours—I say again, Sir, I like the Squire best.

Num. Dare! od, I, I, I, I, dare a, a.

Con. What dare you do, Sir?

Num. What a Plague do you stare at so?

Con. What was that you mutter'd! What dare you do?

Num. I dare do as much as you dare do—What a Pox, I'm not to be frighted wi' Looks, mun.

Slou. Od, take heed, Master, he has a woundy long Sword.

Num. A Sword! I care not a—for his Sword, nor him neither.

[Walks about in a Heat.

Mar. Ha, ha, ha.

Bel. Ha, ha, ha, Sir John, this Gentleman is a Person whom I esteem.

Num. Ay, Sir, and one that she intends to marry too.

Con. Marry! when, Sir?

Num. When she pleases, Sir; now, an you'll lend us your Parson?

Lov. Ay, 'tis fit you ask him Leave indeed!

Con. I'll lend you my Sword in your Guts first.

Num. Your Sword in my Guts—Slouch, give me your Cudgel.

[Snatches his Stick.

Slou. Ads Blead, clear the Way, clear the Way; I'll turn the 'Squire loose to any Man in Zomersetshire.

Num. Come, out with your Spit, mun—Wounds, and I don't make ye put it up again, I'll ne'er strike stroke more.

Con. The Devil, he'll knock me down.

[Lays his Hand on his Sword.

Tru. Oh don't draw, Sir John—Lay down your Stick, Sir, and get you about your Business, or you'll oblige me to use you worse than I am willing to do.

Mar. Excellent Sport, ha, ha.

Lov. Incomparable, ha, ha.

Bel. Who cou'd have thought the Lout so courageous—Oh pray let us have no fighting.

Tru. You have had your Answer, Sir, therefore pray be gone quietly.

Bel. You 'fright me out of my Wits, 'Squire; pray go out of my Father's House peaceably; if you love me, do, we'll find some other Way.

Num. Love ye, yes, I do love you; or what makes me in such a Passion, think you? Well, well, I will go out—Look ye, Sir, an you be a Man, follow me; I'll box fairly with you now for half a Crown, and this Gentleman shall hold Stakes, and see fair Play—If you dare now?

Lov. Fie, fie, 'Squire, Gentlemen don't use to box.

Con. Box, ye Blockhead, ha, ha, ha.

Num. Blockhead!—Zounds, I'll learn you to call Names.

[Strips off his Coat.

Slou. Come on, Sirrah, I'll fight with you at the same Time—(begins to strip.) I'll stand by my Master, for the Honour of Zomersetshire.

Clin. Death, you shamble-ham'd Dog! I'll beat your Head off—

[Gives him a Box of the Ear.

Num. Ay! are you there? Faith, come on—come on.

[Falls foul upon Clinch.

Lov. Hold, hold, two to one is odds.

[Parts them.

Clin. Let me alone, Sir, egad I'll fight 'em both.

Bel. Ha, ha, ha, what do you do, 'Squire, fight with a Footman! Pray leave off, or you'll disoblige me for ever.

Tru. Oh Lord, oh Lord! What shall I do?

Num. What care I.

Mar. What don't you care for your Mistress?

Num. Yes, yes, but I won't be made a Fool on; but I will go—an I were sure you wou'd not be forc'd to marry this same Spark—I won't leave you in the Lurch, Madam.

Bel. No, no, 'Squire, they shall not force me, I promise you.

Num. Then I go—but look to't, an I catch you out of this House, by the Mass I'll rib you.


Omnes Ha, ha, ha.

Tru. Adod, I was out of all Patience with the Fool—Come, take her by the Hand, Sir John, you shall be married this Minute, we'll settle Business afterward.

Bel. Indeed, Sir, you'll repent this hasty Match.

Con. What means Belinda?

Bel. You shall know within.

Tru. Get along—In my Soul, I think the whole Composition of Women is Contradiction.

[Exeunt omnes.

SCENE Sir David's House.

Enter Faithful and Coachman.

Faith. There, honest Coachman, drink my Health; but pray can't I speak with the Gentlewoman of the House?

Coach. Sir David has no Wife, Sir; but here is a young Lady, I'll call her Maid; Mrs. Lucy, Mrs. Lucy, here is a Gentleman wou'd speak with your Mistress—

Enter Lucy.

Lucy. A Gentleman! bless me, how came you to let a Man in, Thomas, in Sir David's Absence?

Coach. Sir David bid me himself, or you may be sure I had not done it—I thank you, Sir.

[Exit Coachman.

Lucy. What do I see? Mr. Faithful!

Faith. The same! How fares my Love, my dearest Laura? Quick, bring me to her, I am impatient till I see her.

Lucy. Nay, nay, she wou'd be as impatient as you, if she knew you were here—But by what Miracle did you prevail with Sir David?

Faith. Prithee ask no Questions—I'll inform thy Lady; haste, my Time's but short, therefore must improve it.

Lucy. Well, follow me then.


The SCENE draws, and discovers Mrs. Laura at her Spinet.

After the Song, enter Lucy and Faithful.

Lau. What did that Blockhead bawl so for, Lucy?

Lucy. To have an Acquaintance of yours admitted, Madam.

Lau. An Acquaintance of mine!—Ha! my dear Faithful! Am I awake? and is it really he?

Faith. My dearest Love—(Run into one another's Arms.) Oh let me hold thee here for ever, for ever taste the Nectar on these Lips—There is still the same Fragrancy, as when we parted last.

Lau. Oh! it was a fatal Parting—Say, my Love, how cam'st thou here? for the old Monster allows no Mortal to visit me.

Faith. By Stratagem, my Dear; he sent me hither in his Coach, yet knows not I am come; thou shalt have the Story at more convenient Leisure; but now let us employ our Time to advantage.

Lau. Heavens! how I tremble! He'll soon be back, for he's never out above half an Hour.—Lucy, watch below. [Exit.] What can this short Interview avail us? which Way shall I get out of his Power? The nauseous Goat told Lucy he design'd to marry me himself—and calls such loving Looks every time he sees me, that I am half distracted, lest he should give his horrid Passion vent.

Faith. Ha! Confound his Passion with himself—Consent to fly with me to a Friend's House in Town, where we'll be married, and put it out of his Power to confine thee.

Lau. With all my Heart—My Prison is so odious to me, I need but small Intreaties to make me quit it—This is the Closet he keeps my Writings in; if we cou'd contrive to get them along with us, or he'll give us Trouble enough to get 'em out of his Hand; here—don't you think one might wrinch it open?

Faith. So he may prosecute us for a Robbery.

Lau. Let him, I'll meddle with nothing of his.

Enter Lucy hastily.

Lucy. Oh, Madam! there's Sir David in a violent Passion, beating all the Servants in before him.

Lau. Undone! What shall I say? what will become of thee?

Faith. Sink the Villain—Have Patience, my dearest, take no Thought for me; seem not to know me; pretend Surprize, and beg me to be gone; leave the rest to me.

Enter Sir David, beating his Men in upon the Stage.

Sir Dav. Ye Dogs, what have you done, ha?

Coach. What do you beat me for? Did you not bid me carry him home?

Sir Dav. Zounds, not to my Home, you Rascal.

[Beats him.

Faith. What do you mean, Madam, by saying you don't know me? 'Sdeath, did not I lodge here last Night?

Sir Dav. How's this? how's this?

Lau. No indeed, Sir, I never saw you before; neither do we let Lodgings, then pray be answer'd.

Faith. A very pretty Trick, faith! What have you a Mind to cheat me of my Horses, and Portmanteau—Look ye, Madam, this won't pass upon me.

Sir Dav. No, nor upon me, neither, Sir.

Faith. Sir, your humble Servant; I think I have had the Honour to see you somewhere. I am in dispute with this Gentlewoman here; she'd fain persuade me I have mistook my Inn—and that I did not lie here last Night.

Sir Dav. Lie here! Why, do you take this Lady for an Hostess, Sir?

Faith. Nay, Sir, she is very handsome—but why the Devil must Beauty make her deny her Calling?—Ad, you Country Gentlemen do so kiss and flatter your Land-ladies, that egad, they don't know where their Tails hang—but we make them know themselves in London—Once more, will you call your Servants?

Sir Dav. Oh the Devil! ye Dogs, I'll be reveng'd on you.

[Beats his Servants, they run off.

Sam. The Fault's not mine, Sir; Thomas bid me let him in.

Faith. What, no Attendance yet? So, ho, Tapster, Chamberlain—Pray Sir, sit down—I warrant I'll make somebody hear—Heark ye, you Mistress—You are not above your Business too, are you? [To Lucy.

Sir Dav. Oh, oh, oh, I shall go distracted.

Lucy. Pray, Sir, know your Way out, don't think I'm one of your Wenches.

Faith. Good lack; ha, ha, what are you a fine Lady too? The Devil! Sure this is a Bawdy-house—

Sir Dav. I dare swear you'd make it one if you cou'd—

Faith. Sir, I take this for an extraordinary Inn—Pray do me the Favour to sit—I'll beat the Chamber down, but I'll make somebody come up. So, ho, the House here.— [Stamps.

Sir Dav. A plague split you, what do you make all this Noise for? Oh, oh.

Lau. Pray, Sir David, humour the Gentleman, for I fancy he is a little beside himself.

Sir Dav. Humour the Devil! Hell and Furies! This must be some Rogue—Here, where are you, Rascals?

Enter Servants.

Faith. Ay, Scoundrels, where are you? Ye Dogs, what is the Reason we can have no Attendance? (Strikes one of them.) Fetch us a Bottle of Claret, Sirrah, and bring us Word what we can have to eat—

Sir Dav. Bring a Bottle of Claret! bring a Halter—What do you strike my Servants for! ha, Sir.

Faith. Your Servants, Sir! They are my Servants, as long as I pay for what I call for—Ho! I find you are the Landlord of this well-govern'd Inn—Make your People more tractable, do you hear, Sir? Or I shall not only beat them, but you too—Death, ye Villains, why don't you stir?

[Strikes another.

Lau. What will be the End of this? All my Comfort lies in his Assurance.—

Sir Dav. Zounds, let him stir if he dares—Get out of my House, Sirrah, or I'll lay you by the Heels; don't put your Shams upon us—Don't bully here; I thought you was wounded when I lent you my Coach—But I find you are a Rogue, and either designed to rob my House, or ravish this Lady—Fetch me a Constable quickly; the Devil! I'll box with you, if you're for Boxing—Get into that Room, Laura, I'll deal with him I warrant ye—

[Puts Laura in.

Lau. Oh unfortunate! How shall I ever see him again?


Faith. I'll be here about an Hour hence before this Door.

[To Lucy.

Lucy. Ah! but to what Purpose?

Sir Dav. I thought you was wounded when I lent you my Coach.

Faith. Wounded, Sir! why so I am, and my Wounds bleed afresh with Vexation—Was it your Coach? I find I was mistaken then, you are not my Landlord; I ask your Pardon, Sir.

Enter Manage, running.

Sir Dav. Rot your Pardon—How now, who the Devil are you, Sir?

Man. I am this Gentleman's Servant—Bless me, Sir, what do you do here? Why Sir John and Mr. Lovely have been searching all the Town for you; they brought a Surgeon to the Talbot, and not finding you there, nor no where else, sent me to ask this Gentleman's Coachman, where he drove you to, and swear if you be not found presently, they'll indict the Coachman for your Murther.

Sir Dav. I wou'd you were all hang'd for Company; why what a plaguy Mistake was here?—

Faith. Ha! A lucky Hint—Bless me. Sir, I am under the greatest Confusion imaginable; can you forgive me, Sir? Upon my Honour, I thought I had been in my Inn; I ask a thousand Pardons, pray excuse me to the Lady.

Sir Dav. Oh, Sir, never trouble your Head about the Lady.

Faith. Why, Sir, I'm a Gentleman.

Sir Dav. A Gentleman, Sir! And what then, Sir?

Faith. And am Master of an Estate to support that Character, Sir.

Sir Dav. Zounds, was ever Man so plagu'd, to have his Servants kick'd about like Foot-balls, his House thunder'd about his Ears like a common Inn, then to be told impudently, I'm a Gentleman, and have an Estate to support that Character?

Faith. I ask your Pardon agen, Sir, for the unlucky Accident, in mistaking your House; but cannot apprehend what Crime I have committed in my Apology.

Sir Dav. Sir, without any manner of Apology, I wou'd be very proud to wait on you down Stairs.

Faith. By no means, Sir—I must not permit that.

Sir Dav. Death and the Devil, be gone without it, then.

Faith. That I will, Sir; but intreat the Favour of seeing the Lady first; upon Honour I was never so concern'd in my Life: I wou'd not for five hundred Pound quit the House, till I have convinc'd her of my Error, and made my Acknowledgment upon my Knees.

Sir Dav. Zounds, here's the Devil to do about her—Which Way shall I get rid of him?

Faith. Pray Mistress, inform the Lady of my Resolution.

[To Lucy.

Sir Dav. Hark ye, Huswife, stir out of this Place, and I'll break your Neck down Stairs.

Faith. Why then I must be guilty of a second Rudeness to acquit myself of the first, I think that's the Room the Lady went into, Sir.

[Going towards the Door.

Sir Dav. Hold, hold, hold, Sir; where the Devil are you going?—Zounds, advance one Step farther, and I'll indict you for a Robbery.

Faith. Well, since you are so positive, Sir, I will be gone; but pray, Sir, is that Lady your Grand-daughter, Daughter, Niece, Cousin, or, or—

Sir Dav. 'Tis my Wife, my Wife, my Wife, my Wife, Sir, do you hear that and tremble.

Faith. Ods my Life, Sir, I beg your Pardon with all my Heart and Soul—Your most Obedient, humble Servant.


Sir Dav. The Devil go with you.

Man. (To Lucy.) My Master has not a Souse of Money, else you wou'd not want your Fee. We were robb'd coming down.


Sir Dav. Zounds, Sir, what do you loyter here for? Why don't you get after your Master? Goe troop.

[Turns him out.

Sir Dav. What do you sauntring here, get in to your Mistress! What, does your Chops water at the Sight of a Man, ha?

Lucy. I'm sure you are the worst Sight I cou'd have seen at present.


Sir Dav. I don't understand this Mistake tho'—He is a strapping young Dog; I wish Laura had not seen him—But I'll go see if he is gone, lest there shou'd be more Roguery at the Bottom.



Enter on one Side Faithful and Manage; on the other Constant and Clinch.

Con. Faithful, well met, I was going in search of thee; my Affairs are ended, what Hopes of thine. Did the Project turn to thy Advantage?

Faith. It gave me Entrance to the charming Fair, who receiv'd me with equal Transport; but just as she consented to come away with me, the old Fox return'd—A Curse of his Diligence—

Man. I came timely to my Master's Rescue, Sir; and when his Pockets are replenish'd, I hope he'll own it.

Faith. That I will, Manage.

Con. 'Tis now in my Power to lend thee Twenty Pieces, Friend—There they are—

[Gives Money.

Faith. I thankfully accept them; and next the finishing my own Wishes, I am pleas'd thou hast gain'd thine; but after what Method to pursue mine, Heaven knows; I told Lucy I wou'd be about the Door in an Hour, but I know not if 'twill be in Laura's Power to get out, or what can disguise me; Sir David will certainly know me again, if he sees me—The Time is well nigh expir'd.

Man. I have a Thought!—Cou'd you procure my Master a red, or blue Coat, in this Town, think you, Sir?

Con. I have my Regimental Surtout I rid down in, you know.

Man. Right, that will do; I told him I serv'd an Officer; I warrant we'll pass upon him—Come, strip Clinch, strip; give me my Cloaths again—(Strips and changes with Clinch again.) But 'tis necessary, Sir, that you change your Wig too.

Con. And what if you put a Patch cross your Cheek, like a Scar?

Faith. With all my Heart—I must, and will redeem her, or cut his Throat.

Con. Nay, Twenty thousand Pound gives an Edge to Invention.

Clin. So now I am in Statu quo.

Faith. Were she not Mistress of a Groat, I shou'd prefer her before the most celebrated Beauty in the Kingdom; our Infant Years first sowed the Seeds of Love, which, as we grew, ripen'd to a perfect Passion; her Parents dying, left her to the Care of mine; oh, in what Pleasure have we past the Day, and quarrell'd with the Night that call'd us from each other! Whilst I made the Campaign with you, Captain, my Father died! Oh fatal Thought, her Friends remov'd her to this Sir David Watchum's, 'tis twelve Months since, during which Time, till now, I never cou'd find Means to see or hear from her.

Con. I know the Story perfectly well, and wish thou may'st succeed with all my Soul; but I find he is upon his Guard—

Faith. If he cou'd summon Hell to guard her, I will by Policy or Force release her.

Man. Why then, pray resolve upon which immediately; shall we lay open Siege, or blockade his Citadel. The Head must always work before the Hand—Now 'tis necessary, e'er we attempt, to know the weakest and strongest Parts; then we open our Trenches and cannonade the Place, ruin their Ramparts, make a Breach, and then give the Assault, take the old Rogue by the Throat, plunder his Castle, and carry off the Booty—Which is the Lady, Sir?—

Con. Ha, ha, ha, Manage talks like a Soldier.

Faith. Ah, if we cou'd do that, Manage! I have good Interest in the Town—And they have Notice of my coming—

Man. So much the better; the more Friends we have in the Garrison, the sooner we shall become Masters of it—Well, as I am chief Engineer, and have the Artillery, I must survey the Ground to find the most convenient Place to raise my Battery. But away, away, Sir, and disguise yourself; the Drum beats—leave the rest to Fortune, she cannot always run against us—I have known the Sun rise upon a private Centinel—who before his Setting was a Captain of Foot—Nothing like Diligence and Courage to nick the fickle Jade.

Con. Come, thou shalt be dress'd in a Moment.

[Exeunt omnes

SCENE, The Out-side of Sir David's House; Sir David in the Garden before his Door.

Sir Dav. I remember a Saying of a certain Philosopher, That nothing is harder to keep than a Secret; but I think 'tis ten Times harder to keep a handsome Woman—I am strangely affected with this last Accident; and then the t'other Rogue that was here in the Morning, that serves an Officer—A Pox on these Officers—for they have more Stratagems in their Heads, than all the Kingdom besides. But I have order'd the Smith to barricade my Windows, from the Cellar to the Garret; he'll be here immediately, but Laura must not see him—Poor Girl, she's terribly frighted at my Dog of a Coachman's Mistake; I have invited her into the Garden, here she and her Maid comes.

Enter Laura and Lucy.

Lau. What favourable Devil, Lucy, has procur'd us this Liberty? It happens as I wou'd have it, if Faithful be but here now.

Lucy. I'm amaz'd—For 'tis the first fresh open Air you have breath'd these twelve Months, Madam. But suppose Mr. Faithful shou'd be here! Yonder's the old Argus, he resolves to watch you, I see.

Lau. Nay then!

Sir Dav. Well, Madam, how do you after your Fright? I sent for you into the Garden, to take the Air—The Air is good after a Fright—

Lau. Ay, if one cou'd change the Place too, Sir David; but the Air of my Chamber and this is much the same—But let me be where I will, if you are there, I find no Difference in the Air—I know not what ails me, but when I see you, I sigh as often as I draw Breath.

Sir Dav. Ha! she loves me! Oh happy David—Indeed, Madam! And are those Sighs pleasant or painful, pray?

Lau. Oh, very painful, Sir—

Sir Dav. Then you must have a Husband to cure those Sighs, Child.

Faithful and Manage appear between the Scenes.

Faith. She's here! Oh the charming Maid—but that old Monster is with her.

Sir Dav. What think you of a married Life, Laura?

Lau. Of nothing better—I might dissemble like many of my Sex; exclaim against Marriage and Mankind; profess to die in a Cloyster, or a Maid at large—Mask my real Inclinations, feign Indifference to Love, and place all my Happiness in my own Sex—but I have a Heart too sincere; and therefore frankly own, that the utmost of my Ambition is to be a Wife.

Faith. To me, she means—Oh, how shall I deliver her!

Lucy. Well said, Madam; why shou'd a Lady lose the Prime of her Youth, when she may do so much in her Generation? I resolve to follow your Example to a Hair.

Sir Dav. Good Wits jump—I resolve to marry too; I have every Day fresh Offers, very advantageous Offers, but my Heart is prepossess'd, dear Laura, for I will own it now, I love you exceedingly.

Lucy. So, now 'tis out.

Sir Dav. More, if possible, than you love me.

Lau. That's very possible, truly.

Faith. Love her! Oh the rank old Goat; Death! that Confession has made me lose all Patience.

Man. Hold, hold, Sir, pray be content a little.

Sir Dav. Come, don't blush, Laura, thy Sighs betray'd thy Love, but I'm discreet.

Faith. Now do I long to tell him he lyes in his Throat.

Man. 'Egad, Sir, you had better lose your Longing at this Time.

Lau. What do you say, Sir—that I love you! your Opinion is small Proof of your Discretion.

Sir Dav. Why so, Child?

Lau. Because you never was more mistaken in your Life; for instead of loving you, I hate you mortally.

Faith. Oh, blessed Sound!

Sir Dav. Really! but why so, prithee?

Lau. Nay, you love without Reason; and perhaps I hate by the same Rule.

Lucy. Well, Sir, if her Declaration be not so kind as you wou'd have it, it is not the less sincere.

Sir Dav. Is it not, Gilflirt, after what I have done for her?

Lau. Yes, you have done for me, I thank you, Sir.

Lucy. Nay, pray be not angry, but state the Case right.

Lau. If Love has render'd me charming in your Eyes, consider how he has drawn you in mine.

Lucy. She's amiable, you ugly—She's gay, you morose—She's generous, you a Miser—She's sixteen, you sixty—She has the finest Teeth in the World, you but one in your Head, and that shakes; and the first Fit of Coughing, good-by to it.

Man. A Devilish Wench—She has drawn him to a Hair.

Lau. Mark Lucy's Description, and then tell me if these be not irresistible Charms, for one of my Age and Constitution.

Lucy. What Woman do you think, Sir, on this side four-score, wou'd have such a Bedfellow?

Sir Dav. She shall, Mistress, or she shall have no-body, mark that; and your Witticisms, Mrs. Frippery, shall get you nothing—How now! who do you want?

Faithful and Manage come forward.

Lau. My dear Faithful! I know him in all Disguises; how shall I forbear running into his Arms?

Lucy. Have a care, Madam, if you discover you know him, you'll never see him more; Manage has some Plot in his Head, by his winking.

Sir Dav. What is it you look at, Sir! why don't you speak?

Man. Be calm, Sir, and take no notice of the Lady.

Faith. I was so charm'd with the Fineness of the Prospect in that Moment you spoke, Sir, I was not Master of my Tongue.

Sir Dav. And now you are Master of it, Sir, what have you to say?

Faith. Nothing, Sir; only having the Misfortune to break my Chariot—I took a Walk this Way, till it is put in order again; and coming by this House, my Man told me that you entertain'd some hard Thoughts of him, from some Discourse that pass'd between you to-day—So I presum'd to call, to clear his Reputation.

Sir Dav. This is the Officer! A Rogue in red now; and the Simple-hunter with him—I don't like 'em—As for that, Sir, you need not give yourself farther Trouble, for I have nothing to do with his Reputation, nor yours neither.

Faith. I hope 'tis no Offence to look about me a little; this House is finely situated—'Tis the best Air I have breath'd this Twelve-month.

Sir Dav. Pox o' your Compliment—That's your Mistake, Sir; 'tis the worst Air in the Universe—Let me advise you to get out of it as fast as you can; for 'tis very fatal to Strangers.

Lau. He tells you Truth, Sir; for ever since I breath'd this Air, I have neither eat, drank, or slept with Ease.

Faith. I am sorry for that, Madam; but I find a quite contrary Effect; methinks I feel new Life, and I have a strong Hope to carry off the Health I wish.

Sir Dav. I wish, Sir, your Legs wou'd be pleas'd to carry off your Body.

Faith. Sir, I will not be troublesome—but I desire you wou'd give me Leave to take a View of your Gardens; I have bought me a small Seat in a Country Village, and I design to have a pretty Garden made.

Sir Dav. Ah! wou'd you were buried in the Garden—go, get in, Gentlewoman, go—he has no Business with you, you don't belong to the Garden.

Man. (To Lucy.) Find some Way to bring your Lady down again; do you hear? let her pretend—

[Whispers to Lucy.

Lucy. Yes, yes, I hear; but how to put it in Practice, I know not.

Lau. I am distracted! Oh Invention! where art thou? Help me Brains, or cease to think.

Sir Dav. What do you loiter for, ha? get in—

Lucy. Sir David, you use us like Slaves; send us in and out at Pleasure—Is my Lady a Person to be treated so by her Guardian? These twelve Months we have not seen the Shadow of any Hat but yours—I'm sure nothing that's Male has reach'd our Eyes.

Sir Dav. Why how now, Mrs. Prate-a-pace? if you don't like your living, troop off. Go—There are more Servants to be had.

Faith. I shall certainly discover myself, if he goes on at this Rate—Sir, I had rather quit this Place immediately, than you shou'd incommode the Ladies.

Lau. Pray, Sir David, mind your own Servants, you shall never have any Power over mine. Let me advise you to tarry till to-morrow; 'tis dangerous travelling too late; let me intreat you to stay in this Town till to-morrow.—What said Manage to you, Lucy?

Lucy. Ay, pray take my Lady's Advice, Sir. You shall know within; take Courage, Madam.

Sir Dav. Zounds, get in, I believe you want to lie with him all Night, you are so concern'd for his Stay.

Lucy. I hope some brave Man will attempt the Rescue of my Mistress.

[He pushes 'em in.

Faith. My Heart swells at these Indignities, and I cou'd shake his detested rotten Soul, out of his wither'd sapless Carcase.

Man. Be easy, Sir, Passion will do us no good—I have something in my Head may hit, perhaps.

Faith. I am sorry, Sir, I shou'd be the Cause of your being angry with your Daughter.

Sir Dav. My Daughter?

Faith. I ask your Pardon, Sir, may be 'tis your Wife.

Sir Dav. She shall be e'er long, Sir.

Faith. You shall be Worms Meat first. (Aside.) I had better knock him down, and fetch her out this Moment.

Man. And the next Moment fetches you to Gaol. Indeed, Sir, you had better keep your Temper—You have made a very excellent Choice, Sir; wou'd all Husbands manage their Wives so, we shou'd not have so many Coquets abroad.

Sir Dav. I don't design my Wife shall follow the Way of the World.

Man. Second him; Sir; keep him in Talk a little—

Faith. You do well, Sir, 'tis below a Man to let his Wife rule, and rattle where she pleases; to visit, and be visited by half the Fops of the Nation; for my Part, had I a Wife, I shou'd follow your Method.

Sir Dav. 'Egad, I believe I was mistaken in this Gentleman. I wish, Sir, I had this Lecture read to some that blame me for my Conduct.

Man. If you please; Sir, I'll go into your House, and write it down this Moment! it shan't cost you a Farthing, Sir.

Sir Dav. I'll not give you the Trouble, Sir, I shall remember it.

Enter Lucy hastily.

Lucy. Oh! undone; undone; help, help; oh Sir David! what have you brought upon us?

Sir Dav. What the Devil do you bawl so for?

Lucy. Oh! the saddest Accident has befallen my poor Lady!—

Faith. Ha! her Lady, said she?

Man. Peace, Sir, and mind the Plot— (Aside to Faithful.)

Sir Dav. What Accident, ha? You roar as if she had broke a Leg, or an Arm.

Lucy. Worse, Sir, worse, much worse; She's mad, Sir—

Sir Dav. Mad!

Lucy. Ay, distracted, Sir—When you thrust us in, she found the Smith barricading her Windows; as soon as ever she laid her Eyes upon the Iron Bars, her Looks grew wild; her sudden Starts and broken Speeches convince me of her Brain being turn'd—When, before I was aware—she catch'd up an Iron Bar, and broke the Blacksmith's Pate; she beat her Head against the Wall—runs, skips, sings, dances, stamps, raves, and throws all the Things about the Room—I wou'd have shut her in, but she set up such a Roar, that I left the Door open, and fled for my Life—Make the best of your Plot, Manage— (Aside.)

Man. Ay, ay, let me alone.

Sir Dav. Mercy on us; what shall I do?

Lucy. Here she comes, oh my poor Lady!—with your great Base Viol in her Hand; oh, oh, oh!

Sir Dav. Oh the Devil! if me breaks my Base, I had rather lose five Pounds: Oh, oh, oh.

Man. Have Patience, Sir, I may be serviceable to you in this Affair, as little Opinion as you had of my Skill to-day.

Enter Laura, with a Base and Papers; her Clothes aukwardly hanging.

Lau. Give me Liberty and Love,
Give me Love and Liberty,
From an Iron Grate,
And the Man I hate,
Dear Fortune set me free.

Faith. What Design you by this, Manage?

Man. To put you in Possession of your Mistress, before I have done, Sir, if you'll be quiet.

Lau. What, are you a Blacksmith? [To Sir David.

Sir Dav. Oh, pox o' the Blacksmith, how she harps upon him!—

Lau. Ho! now I know you, you are a Singing-master.

Sir Dav. A Singing master! good lack, good lack—

Lau. Here is a Piece of Musick, which I have just now received from London; 'tis Part of the last new Opera—there, there, there's a Part for you. (Gives Sir David a Paper.) Ha! are not you the new Eunuch? Ay, 'tis he! here, here, here's your Part.

[Gives Faithful a Letter.

Faith. A Letter, Oh! for an Opportunity to read it.

[Draws off by Degrees.

Lau. Give me Liberty and Love,
Give me Love and Liberty

Come, why don't you sing. (To Sir David.)

She beats Time all this while, with her Hand upon his Head, and with her Foot upon his Toes.

Sir Dav. Poor Laura, I can't sing, Child—Zounds, Death and the Devil, she has kill'd my Toe.

Lau. What, won't you sing, I'll break the Fiddle then.

Lucy. Pray, Sir David, humour her.

Man. Let me advise you to comply with her, Sir; she's possess'd, and with a very mischievous Dæmon.

Lau. Come, begin; Give me Liberty and Love.

Sir Dav.    }
Lucy.Give me Liberty and Love.

[They all sing whilst Faithful reads.

Faith. (Reads.) Dear Faithful, find some Way to deliver me, or what I now act in jest, will follow in earnest; I have all my Jewels and Writings about me; for I have broke the old Man's Closet for them, and I'll find a Way to get Money presently.
Yours entirely,
Yes, I will deliver thee, or die for it. Manage, read that.

[Gives him the Letter.

Man. Recommend me for a white Witch to Sir David; let me alone for the rest.

Faith. Poor Lady! I am extremely concern'd for her, Sir; pray consult my Servant about her Distemper; in my Opinion she's bewitch'd.

Sir Dav. I doubt so too, Sir; has he really Skill in these Matters?

Faith. No Man in the Kingdom more, I assure you; he has cur'd several, to my Knowledge, both in Spain and Flanders.

Lau. Why do you look at me so? Did you never see an old Woman before? I'd have you to know, Mistress, I have been as handsome as you—but age alters every body—I have been the Mother of sixteen Children—all Boys—Hark ye, let me counsel you—don't marry an old Fellow.

Lucy. No, why so, pray?

Lau. Because your Youth will renew his Age—and you'll be plagu'd with him to Eternity—I married an old fusty Guardian, because I cou'd not get out of his Hands; which is the Reason why you see so many Wrinkles in my Face, ha, ha, ha. In my Conscience there he stands—What, can I go no where, but you must follow me—you old crippling Cuckold you—Look ye how angry he is now at being call'd Cuckold—Yet he wou'd marry a young Wife—ha, ha, ha.

Sir Dav. Mercy upon us! how do such Things come in her Head?

Faith. The Wildness of her Fancy.

Enter Manage.

Man. I'll do your Business for you, Sir; I have consulted the Stars, and find she is bewitch'd by an old Woman.

Sir Dav. By an old Woman! Ay, indeed, she talks of an old Woman.

Man. It is a very troublesome Spirit that is in her, and must be charm'd out into another, or she can't be cur'd.—Tell me, Sir, can you procure any body for that Purpose?

Sir Dav. Here's her Maid, won't she do?

Lucy. What! Do you think I'd have the Devil put into me, Sir, I ask your Pardon for that.

Lau. Hark! There's my Drum beating up for Volunteers—What say you, my Lads, are you for the Wars? Her Majesty has honour'd me with a Colonel's Commission; I'm just now raising my Regiment—you shall all serve under me. Come—hold, now I think on't, I want a hundred Guineas to raise Men with—Hark ye, won't you lend me a hundred Guineas?

[To Sir David.

Sir Dav. Lack-a-day, it makes me weep, to see how many sorts of Madnesses possess her.

Man. A good Thought for some Money—Humour her, Sir, whatever she asks for, let her have.

Lau. Lend me a hundred Guineas, I say, or my Soldiers shall batter your House about your Ears.

Lucy. For Heavens sake, Sir, give 'em her, you'll have them again safe.

Faith. I wou'd advise you to let her have 'em, Sir.

Sir Dav. Well, be sure you take care of them; there, there is threescore in that Purse, you may tell her there is a hundred; but take care I have them again.

[To Lucy.

Man. Ay, when we have nothing else to do with 'em. (Aside.)

Lau. Give it me—so, now my Boys will you serve the Queen?

Man. Ay, with all my Heart, under you, Sir.

Lau. There then, there's Gold for you, Sirrah; (Gives him a Guinea.) and what say you, you are a handsome proper Fellow, six Foot high—I'll make you Serjeant of the Grenadiers—What say you, will you serve under me?

Man. Humph! He wou'd rather serve her another Way, I dare swear. (Aside.)

Faith. And know no Joy beyond it; serve ye!—by Heaven, that I will, with my Life; command me, Colonel, I'll follow you through all Difficulties and Danger; and die by your Side, or bring you off safe.

Lau. Then there's Money, my Hero, to forward our Designs.

[Gives him the Purse.

Sir Dav. Hold, hold, Laura, you must not give away your Money! Lucy take care on't. I hope, Sir, you'll return the Money.

Faith. Certainly, Sir.

Lucy. I'll see to that, Sir.

Lau. Return the Money, to whom? They are my Soldiers, and the Money mine—I borrow'd it of the most confounded old Rogue in Peterborough; tell him I say so—but you look like an honest Man, I'll make you a Corporal—Come, let me see you exercise, Serjeant.

Sir Dav. Oh Lord, oh Lord!

Lau. Serjeant take heed; to the right and left by half Flanks—form Files upon the Flanks of the Battalion—March—ha, ha, you are cursed dull, Serjeant—

Faith. I am a little aukward at first, Colonel, but I shall learn. [Stamps.

Sir Dav. Oh, oh, oh!

Lau. Well, well, I'll teach you then—Silence, Join your right Hand to your Firelock—Cock your Firelock—Present; Fire—Excellent.

Give me Liberty and Love,
Give me Love and Liberty.(Sings.)

Sir Dav. Oh sad, oh sad! what shall I do? Pray Sir desire your Man to try his skill.

Faith. Manage, the Gentleman implores your Aid.

Man. I am ready, if he can find any body to make the Experiment; it must be a Man, Sir—will you endure it yourself?

Sir Dav. No, faith and troth not I!

Faith. Well, Sir, to do you and the Lady service, I'll venture—but take care, Manage, that you bring the Devil out of me again—

Man. Yes, Sir, that I can easily; for he is not half so hard to get out of a Man, as he is out of a Woman.

Sir Dav. Good lack! what shou'd the Reason of that be, I wonder! (Aside.) Sir, I thank you heartily—a very worthy Gentleman this—Well, what must I do, Sir?

Man. Stand still, I charge you—And do you fetch us an easy Chair, Mistress.— [To Lucy.

Lucy. Yes, Sir.


Man. Stay, I must limit your Bounds; there Sir, you must not for your Life cross this Circle.

Sir Dav. Well, Sir, I shall observe you.

Enter Lucy with a Chair.

Lucy. Here, Sir.

Man. Very well; pray, Madam, be pleas'd to sit down.

Lau. Sit down! why, is Dinner coming?—Ho, cry a Mercy! you are a Barber; hold, hold, you shall shave my Corporal first, to try your Razor.

Sir Dav. Oh Lord, oh Lord! what shall I say to her?

Man. Keep your Place, Sir—No, no, Sir, I am a Shoe-maker, and if I fit your Foot, and please you, I desire your Honour wou'd let me have the Business of your Regiment.

Lau. With all my Heart.

Man. Then pray sit down, Sir, that I may take Measure. (She sits down.) Now for you, Sir, you must kneel right before her—closer—closer yet; there, look full in her Eyes—Clasp both her Hands in yours.

[Manage pulls a Book out of his Pocket, and looks on't.

Lau. Give me Liberty and Love,
Give me Love and Liberty.(Sings.)

Faith. My charming Angel! Oh, let me kneel here for ever, for ever gaze on those dear Eyes; how I have languish'd for thee, Heaven only knows.

Lau. And what I have born for thee, Hell cannot match! Oh, if Manage fail in his Plot, I'm undone for ever.

Faith. Fear not, my Love, he is lucky at Contrivance.

Sir Dav. What are they doing?

Man. Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta.

Sir Dav. Bless me, what are those the Names of the Spirits?

Man. Philo se en pasias, glossais, kai en to panti poto, kai en to panti topo—Now do you be well, Madam; and, do you seem to be mad, Sir, quick, quick—

Sir Dav. Why, what a many Devils there are! certainly she has a Legion in her.

Lau. Where am I, Lucy? Methinks I wake from some untoward Dream.

Lucy. She recovers, Sir. How do you, Madam?

Sir Dav. I'm glad on't. How dost thou do, Laura?

Lau. Pretty well.

Man. Death, Sir, keep your Place, or you'll spoil all.

Faith. Ha! my Brain-pan splits—I'm all a-flame, my Blood boils o'er, give me Room, I'll scale the Region of the Air, and pull the Winds down head-long on us all.

Sir Dav. Oh, oh, oh, he's stark mad! What shall we do with him now?

Man. We shall do well enough with him; but keep your Place, for he's very desperate.

Lau. Defend me Heaven, what ails the Gentleman?

Lucy. He'll kill us; the Man's bewitch'd.

Man. Here, here, Ladies, stand in this Circle, and don't cross it for your Lives.

[Sets 'em in a Circle.

Sir Dav. Oh, pray Sir, read again—

Faith. What's here, old Belzebub! No, 'tis his Squib and Cracker; I'll set fire to it and blow it up—Ho, lo, where are you Scoundrels, Dogs, Rogues, Cooks, the Devil wants his Dinner, and you must spit this Swine, Hell dines on Hog's Flesh to-day.

[Draws his Sword.

Man. Undone, undone; the Spirit grows too strong for my Art! Fly, fly, Sir, for Life—

Sir Dav. Oh, oh, oh, save me, save me.

[Runs in and slaps the Door.

Man. Now, now, make your Escape; he has slap'd the Door after him—Quick, quick—

Faith. My Life, my Soul!

Lau. My Angel, my All. [Embraces.

Man. Oh, the Devil! Don't stand Lifeing and Dearing now, but make Haste to Mr. Trusty's, I'll bring the Parson after you.

Lucy. Ay, good Madam, be quick.

Lau. Any where, good Manage.

Faith. Fly Manage, and bring Lovely with thee too, to be Witness of my good Fortune, this Hour makes thee mine for ever:

Now in thy Arms immortal Joys I'll taste,
And quite forget our anxious Sorrows past.

Lucy. Now Heav'n be prais'd, we've Liberty at last.


Sir David above.

Sir Dav. Oh, I'm robb'd, ravish'd, dead and buried—My Closet is broke open, and all my Writings gone; Mr. Conjurer, Mr. Conjurer, can you help me to the Thief? Ha! no body to be seen! Bless me—LucyLaura, why Laura? Ah! Murder, Murder, Thieves, Thieves.

[Cries out till he comes down.

Enter Sir David.

Here, where are all my Servants? (Enter Servants.) Run some one Way, some another; make Enquiry thro' the whole Town for Mrs. Laura; she is carry'd away by two Rogues or Devils, I know not which, run, run—

Serv. Why, if the Devil has carry'd her away, Sir, where can we run?

Sir Dav. To Hell, ye Dog, do you stand to prate?—

[Beats him.

Serv. Marry, look her there yourself an you will—


Sir Dav. Oh, that I shou'd believe these Conjuring, soldiering Rascals; but I'll find 'em, if they are above Ground; and if they are mortal, I'll hang 'em, that's my Comfort.



SCENE, The Street before Mr. Trusty's Door;
Roger comes out of the House with a Pitchfork on his Shoulder, and a Lanthorn in his Hand.

Rog. It will be very dark e'er I get home—Od, I'm main merry. Master Trusty, keeps rare nappy Ale, and Dick the Butler is an honest Fellow; Lord, Sirs, how bravely these Gentlefolk live—Methinks I like it hugely; and I'm persuaded, I was design'd for a Gentleman, but was spoil'd in the making; nay, nay, I was made well enough too, that's the Truth on't; but 'tis that damn'd Jade Fortune that has spoil'd me; for an I had an Estate now, I know how to live like a Gentleman—I cou'd scorn the Poor, and screw up my Tenants, and wou'd sooner give Ten Pound to a Wench, than Twopence for Charity; I cou'd quickly turn—my Cart into a Coach, and my Man Plod into a Coachman—I cou'd hurry into the Tradesmen's Books—Wear fine Clothes, and never pay for them—Lie with their Wives, and make my Footmen beat their Husbands, when they come to ask me for Money. Get drunk with Lords, and break the Watchmen's Heads—Scour the Streets, and sleep in a Bawdy-house—Sell my Lands, and pay no Debts—Get a Charge of Bastards for the Parish to maintain—Then, by the Help of a Commission, transport myself out of their Reach.—

Enter Sir Jeffrey Constant, in a riding Habit.

Sir Jeff. Do you hear, Friend?

Rog. Mayhap I do—And mayhap I do not; What then, Sir?

Sir Jeff. Nay, the Matter's not great—Do you live at that House?

Rog. I did a little while ago—When I was in the Cellar.

Sir Jeff. A comical Fellow. Then you don't serve Mr. Trusty?

Rog. No, Sir, I serve his Master, tho' as most Farmers do their Landlords.

Sir Jeff. I understand you: You rent one of the Knight's Farms?

Rog. Ay, and a plaguy dear one too.—

Sir Jeff. Say you so! That's a Pity; I'll speak a good Word for thee—Is Mr. Trusty at home?

Rog. I thank you heartily. Yes, Sir, he's at home. (Runs to the Door and knocks. Trusty opens the Door and shrieks out, and throws it to again.) Wookers, what's the Matter now?

Sir Jeff. Was not that Mr. Trusty?

Rog. Yes, Sir, I think so.

Clin. (Within.) Oh undone, undone; (Clinch peeps out as affrighted.) here's my old Master.

Sir Jeff. What's that?

Rog. Nay, I heard a Noise, but can't tell what they said—But an you please to come wi' me, Sir, I'll carry you in the Back-way.

Sir Jeff. The Back-way—What can be the Meaning of this? Why shou'd he start at sight of me? There must be something more in it than I can fathom; and yet I think he's an honest Man. I never found any Thing to the contrary. Prithee, Friend, knock again.

[Roger knocks, then listens.

Rog. They are all asleep, Sir—For I cannot so much as hear a Mouse stir—

Sir Jeff. Asleep! That's impossible—But come, Friend, shew me the Back-door you spoke of—

Rog. Ay, Sir: But upon second Thoughts—I must be a little wary too. Are not you some Rogue, that comes to rob the House with half a dozen Pistols about you? For look ye, I'm an honest Man, and won't be drawn in for a Halter.

Sir Jeff. You Rascal, do I look like a Thief?

Rog. Nay, nay, as for Looks—That's no Matter, de ye see—I have known many a Rogue with as good a Countenance—No Disparagement in your's, I promise you. So that I shall not stir one Step without you'll stand search—

Sir Jeff. I shall break your Head, Sirrah, if you provoke me, I tell you but that.

Rog. And what must I be doing in the mean Time—Ha! old Gentleman? Break my Head, quotha!—You are mistaken—We don't use to take broken Heads in our Country, mun—Ha, ha, I won't shew you the Back-door now, and how will you help yourself?—

Sir Jeff. I know all the Doors of this House as well as you—And can shew myself in— (Going.)

Rog. Can you so—but I'll watch you—I wonder who this old Fellow is.

Sir Jeff. Sure some Madness has seiz'd the Family; for certainly I'm not chang'd—Without Dispute, Trusty knows me; but I'll find the Cause presently.


Rog. And so will I.—


Enter out of the House, Captain Constant, Lovely and Clinch.

Clin. So, Sir, here's Musick to your Wedding, with a Witness. What do you intend to do now?—Do you think it possible to persuade your Father too, that he died of an Apoplexy?

Lov. I fear, Clinch, that's beyond the Art of thy Impudence to do—

Clin. Nay, this Plot was none of my Impudence's contriving, that's my Comfort—I'm but a Servant; my Master told me, he was in Mourning for his Father—And, Faith, I resolve not to believe the Father to the contrary: Such an entire Deference have I for all your Commands, Sir.

Const. Why thou can'st not sure have the Confidence to stand it out to his Face.

Clin. Never fear me, Sir—You don't know what I can do—What say you, Sir? Shall we persuade the old Gentleman into a Ghost; or will you own your Fault, and refund the Money?

Const. Neither, Clinch—I have more Duty, than to attempt the one; and more Necessity, than to submit to the other.—

Clin. Nay, if you be so divided—What do you propose?

Const. I know not what to do—I'm glad the Ceremony was over, before he came.

Lov. And the Money sent away—What think you of my House, till the Heat of the Discovery be over? 'Tis my Opinion your Presence won't be proper—I warrant Sir David will be in Pursuit of Mrs. Laura presently too—But we have seen her fairly married; so that Faithful is out of Danger; we'll leave him here.—

Const. Shall I not take Belinda with us? I fear as much for her, as for myself—

Clin. So there's no-body fears for me, I find—(Aside.) I am like to have my Part, truly.

Lov. No, trust to her Management—She turn'd the Act upon her Father, you know, and made him impose her own Choice upon her. Let Clinch stay and use his own Discretion—If he can banter Sir Jeffrey, and save his Bones, let him: But be sure to give us Notice of all that passes.

Clin. What if my Bones are broke?—I thank you heartily for your Love, Sir.

Const. No, no, Clinch; take Heed you keep out of the Reach of his Cane.

Clin. Or he'll make me feel he's Flesh and Blood.—Hark, I hear him coming, Good-bye to you, Sir—

[Runs in.

Lov. 'Tis Time for us to fly.—


Enter Dolly.

Dolly. Well, I'm glad my Lady's marry'd; for if this old Spark had come three Hours sooner, I wou'd not have ventur'd Two to Ten of the Match—I can't imagine where the Bridegroom's gone—Nor what he will do, when my Master comes to have a right Understanding; but I resolve to keep him ignorant as long as I can. Ho, here he comes.

Enter Trusty.

Oh, Sir, I am frighted out of my Wits; I went to serve my Lady's Italian Greyhound, and I found a great swinging Dog, as large as an Ox, with two great Eyes, as big as Bushels; and before I could call out—Whip it was vanish'd—

Trust. Mercy upon us—'Twas certainly Sir JeffreyClinch.

Enter Clinch.

Clin. Sir, did you call—

Trust. Did not you say your old Master appear'd in the Shape of a Dog?

Clin. Ay, Sir, several Times.

Dolly. In a huge great Dog?

Trust. As big as an Ox.

Clin. Ay, Sir, as big as an Elephant.

Dolly. Ah! then it was certainly him I saw. Oh dear, oh dear, if the House be haunted, I must leave it. I cannot live in't, if I might have a thousand Pounds; and may be, he'll appear to no body but me—I am sure I never did him any Harm; 'tis true, I did not love him, because he was something stingey—He never gave me a Farthing in his Life—

Trust. Nay, for that Matter, I have got many a fair Pound by him, and yet he appeared to me to-day.

Clin. Indeed, Sir! In what Shape, pray?

Dolly. Like an Ox, or an Elephant.

Trust. No, in his own Shape; but I wish I may never see him more, for I was horribly scar'd.

Clin. What, had he a cloven Foot, Sir, did you mind?

Trust. Nay, for my Part,—I know not whether he had any Feet or no—Ha! bless me, defend me,—protect me—Avoid, Satan—(Retreating all this while.) I never wrong'd that Form, which thou hast ta'en; so tell him—And for my Money, I have accounted for that! and all Things are rectify'd—


Enter Sir Jeffrey, amaz'd.

Dolly. Oh! shield me ye Stars. [Runs in.

Clin. O Legs! save me, save me. [Runs in.

Enter Roger.

Sir Jeff. What! Am I become a Monster? Do I affright all I come near? What can be the Reason of this? The Doors are all barricaded; and when I knock, none will answer—Prithee, Friend, ask somebody the Cause of these Disorders?

Rog. No! Sir, I'll not budge a Foot; for I dan't know what to say to you. The Family were all well, and in their right Senses, when I left them; and how, upon Sight of you, they are all distracted, I think—I wish you be'n't a Coujurer, or hark ye, Sir,—Is not your Name Emmes—Rais'd by the French Prophets to Life again?

Sir Jeff. Sirrah, I believe you are the Devil: This Fellow will make me mad. This must be some Stratagem to abuse me; and this Rogue is in their Interest. Why don't you go about your Business, Sirrah? What do you hanker after me for?

Rog. Nay—an you go to that, what do you lounge about this House for?—Oh! Dolly, are you there; here's an old Gentleman is quite out of Patience.

Dolly. (Trembling above.) Oh, oh, oh, oh—

Rog. Hey day! What have you got the Palsy?

Sir Jeff. What ails you, to tremble so, Sweetheart? Is Mr. Trusty within?

Dolly. I, I, I, I, I, o, o, o, o, Roger—Ha, ha, have a care, ca, care—Don't yo, yo, you come near him—Nor let him to, to, to, touch you, even with his little Finger—

Sir Jeff. Bless me! What ails the Wench?

Rog. No, why what's the Matter? He has not the Plague about him, has he? Or is he a Spy from the King of France—Od an he be, I'll maul him—

Dolly. Oh, oh,—'tis a, a, Ghost.

Rog. The Devil it is—

Takes his Pitchfork off his Shoulder, and holds it out at Sir Jeffrey.

Sir Jeff. A Ghost, where?—Who—What's a Ghost? Death, what means she?

Rog. Od's flesh, my Hair stands an end. Look ye—Keep off Mr. Belzebub, or—or—

Sir Jeff. Look ye, Sweetheart, what Frenzy has possess'd you, I know not—But if you take me for a Ghost—you are deceiv'd. Therefore look well at me—Do I not appear like Flesh and Blood?

Dolly. Ay, bo, bo, bo, but we, we, we know yo, yo, you a, a, a, a, are not so, Sir—

Sir Jeff. Zounds, will they persuade me out of my Life? See, Friend—Do I walk like a Spirit? Do the Dead move, and talk as I do?

Rog. When I am dead,—if you ask me, I'll resolve you, if I can.

Sir Jeff. Why! Feel me, feel me.

Rog. Feel the Devil,—Mercy upon me—Keep off, I say—will ye—Or I'll stick your Ghostship thro' the Guts—

Sir Jeff. What shall I do?—Nay, prithee, Friend.

Rog. Friend me no Friends—Look ye, I am not to be coax'd by the Devil, when I know 'tis the Devil. Indeed, when you are got into a Lawyer, or an handsome Woman, one may be trapan'd.

Sir Jeff. Why will you be so positive? Has any body impos'd upon you?—Pray who told you I was dead?

Dolly. Those that knew very well, Sir.

Enter Clinch.

But I am not able to bear the Sight of you any longer—Now let Clinch take his Part.

Sir Jeff. Go to be hang'd—Hell and Furies!—Ha, what do I see—My Son's Man! Sirrah, Sirrah, what makes you here?—

Clin. Mercy upon me—

Sir Jeff. What do you stare at, Rascal, ha?

Clin. But that I believe you are dead, Sir, or I shou'd swear you are alive—

Sir Jeff. You believe I am dead, Rogue—How dare you believe such an impudent Lye? Where's the Rake, your Master? I find now who has rais'd this Report. Sirrah, what's your Business here?

Clin. To wait on my Master, Sir—

Sir Jeff. To wait on your Master—And where is your Master, pray?

Clin. Nay, for my Part, Sir, I am not qualify'd to answer a Spirit—There's Mr. Anthem, the Afternoon Lecturer, within. He has just marry'd Mr. Faithful to a great Heiress, which he brought in just now—Roger here may step and call him out a little.

Rog. With all my Heart—If there be any Thing that troubles his Mind, I'll go this Minute—

Sir Jeff. Sirrah—I'll qualify you for an Hospital—I will, ye Dog—

[Runs after him.

Clin. Oh, oh, oh.

Rog. Well run, Clinch; well run, Ghost!—Ad, 'tis a plaguy malicious Spirit tho'.

Clin. Oh, oh, oh.

[Runs in.

Rog. I'll venture to speak to it once more—In the Name of Goodness—What is it that disturbs your Rest? Pray tell me; and as I'm an honest Man, I'll do you Justice as far as Twenty Pounds a Year Free-Land, and all the Crops of my Farm goes—For I perceive you was my Landlord, whilst you was living; and tho' your Son seems to be a very honest Gentleman, yet I don't know what he may prove for a Landlord—Then pray speak, can I serve you?

Sir Jeff. 'Tis in vain to be angry—I must seem to comply with this Fellow—Yes, Friend, it is in thy Power to serve me; if thou can'st procure me the Sight of Mr. Trusty, 'tis with him my Business is.

Rog. I'll do my best Endeavours, Sir—but keep your Distance—(He goes a little Way, then turns back.) But hark ye, Sir, suppose he won't come out, can't I tell him your Mind?

Sir Jeff. No, no, I must speak with him myself—Death!—

Rog. Good lack—what, perhaps—your Soul won't rest else—

Sir Jeff. Heaven give me Patience!

Rog. (Going, turns back.) But after you have spoken with him, will you be quiet, and haunt this House no more? that's the Question, look ye!

Sir Jeff. A Pox of thy impertinent Interrogations; no—

Rog. That's enough!—but hold, must he come out, or speak to you through the Window?

Sir Jeff. Any Way, so I do but speak to him—Oh, oh!—

Rog. Very well, very well. (Going.) But hark ye, Sir Ghost—you'll be here—or Mr. Trusty will be woundy angry with me.

Sir Jeff. Oh Patience, Patience; or I shall burst. (Aside.) Ay, ay, I'll not stir.

Rog. Well, I'll take your Word. (Going.) Hold, hold, one Thing more, and I ha' done—Pray tell me the Nature of a Ghost—do you troubled Spirits fly in the Air, or swim in the Water, pray?

Sir Jeff. Oh! the Devil—

Rog. Mercy upon us! what are you the Devil, say you? Oh, Heaven help you! Well then, are you sure he will see you? for every body can't see a Ghost, they say, especially if the Devil be in't.

Sir Jeff. Zounds, I tell you, he'll see me as plain as you see me.

Rog. Nay, nay, that's plain enough—Well, I'll knock, but, but, but don't you come an Inch nearer me, I charge you. (Knocks.)

Sir Jeff. Wou'd I had been an hundred Miles off, when I first saw thee. What has my graceless Son been doing?

Dolly. Who's there?

[Speaks within.

Rog. 'Tis I, Dolly, prithee tell Master Trusty that he must speak to this Ghost, or there's nothing to be done—

Dolly. I doubt he will not be persuaded to it.

Rog. Why, let him speak to it through the Window, or from the Top of the House—so he does but speak to it; but in short, it must be spoke to, and by him, for it is a confounded sullen Spirit, and will tell its Mind to no-body else—He smells cursedly of Brimstone—Look ye, if Master will come out, it shan't hurt him—for I'll keep it off with my Fork, so tell him, Dolly.

Dolly. I'll inform him.

Trusty opens the Window.

Rog. So, I have done it, you see—Here's Master Trusty.

[Going towards the Window.

Sir Jeff. I thank you.

Trust. I am not able to stand, if it comes near me—Why are you thus disturb'd, Sir Jeffrey?—I assure you, your Son has done every Thing very justly.

Sir Jeff. Why are you thus impos'd upon, Mr. Trusty, to believe I am dead?—My Son, quotha!—Oh that I had never got that Son— (Weeps.)

Trust. I know not what to think; sure 'tis no Ghost.

Rog. Well, this Thing is the likest Flesh and Blood, that ever I saw—

Sir Jeff. Pray do but touch me, Mr. Trusty—'tis very odd, you will not be persuaded to touch me.

[Puts out his Hand towards the Window.

Rog. Take Heed, Mr. Trusty.

Trust. Why shou'd I fear, I never wrong'd him—I'll venture; but first—(Holds up his Hand as if he pray'd.) now—ha! 'tis a real Hand,—He's living;—Sir, I am convinc'd.

Rog. Say you so—why then if you are alive, the Fright's over, and I'm glad on't with all my Heart.

Trust. I ask your Pardon, Sir; I have been abus'd—grosly abus'd; Sir Jeffrey, your Son, came down in Mourning, and assur'd me you was dead.

Sir Jeff. I'll make him mourn for something, I warrant you.

Trust. Ah! that he does already, Sir, for I have paid him all the Rents in my Hands.

Sir Jeff. Have you so?—'Tis the last Rents he shall ever take for any Land of mine—I'll disinherit him this Day.

Trust. Oh! undone, undone for ever—Oh, oh, oh! (Weeps.)

Rog. Here's small Mirth towards, as far as I can find. I'll e'en take t'other Horn of Ale, and t'other Buss of Dolly

[Exit into the House.

(Clinch, listening.)

Sir Jeff. What has that Rogue's Extravagance cost me? But if he starves for the future, I care not; he never shall get a Groat from me.

Clin. Nay, then we may all go for Soldiers. (Aside.)

Sir Jeff. Where is he?

Trust. Oh, oh, oh! I know not; but wherever he is—I am wretched, he has made me miserable, I'm sure. Oh, oh, oh!

Sir Jeff. No, Mr. Trusty; though you have us'd me dirtily, in making me the Jest of your Family; for you might have discover'd the Imposture with less Precaution; yet I'll not take that Advantage which the Laws allow. You have serv'd me long, and I believe you honest. I'll discharge you from what you have paid my undutiful Child—Let him take what he has got, and make the best on't.

Clin. That's something, however. (Aside.)

Trust. You are generous, Sir Jeffrey, even beyond my Hopes: But Oh! there is yet a greater Offence behind, which cuts me deeper than the Money—Alas! my Daughter—

Sir Jeff. What of her?

Trust. Is married to your Son; Oh; oh, oh!

Sir Jeff. Then he is compleatly wretched—A Wife, and no Estate; ha, ha, ha; I'm glad on't with all my Heart.

Clin. There's a kind Father now—I must give my Master Notice of his good Fortune.


Trust. Oh! say not so, Sir; be not glad of my Child's Ruin; had I known you liv'd, the Match had never been.

Sir Jeff. Go; you are not the Man I took you for—you are but a Knave. You ought to have been as just to my Heir, as to myself—What, was your Blood fit to be popt into my Estate? Ha! or have you been really a Steward, and cheated me out of a Fortune for your Daughter?

Trust. Sir, what I am Master of, I got fairly under you, Part, and Part under my Lord Belville in Ireland, whom I serv'd twenty Years in the same Post I do you; when he died, he trusted me with a Secret, which yet I have divulged to no Man; and when I do, the World will say I am an honest Man. Love first join'd their Hearts, and my Ignorance their Hands; use me as you please, but pardon them.

Enter Lovely, &c.

Lov. I must become an Intercessor in that too, Sir Jeffrey; Love is the great Cementer of the Marriage-State; it reconciles all Differences—it bends the Stubborn—and it tames the Bold, it wins the Haughty, softens the Savage, and reclaims the Libertine! then will you cast off your Son for a Vertue, you ought rather to prize him for?

Sir Jeff. That Love can never be a Vertue, Mr. Lovely, that teaches a Child to trick his Parents.

Lov. Stratagems ever were allow'd of in Love and War; Sir, you must forgive him.

Enter Captain Constant, Belinda and Maria.

Mar. And I must second Mr. Lovely, Sir; the Captain has married a virtuous Woman, and I believe you'll confess a handsome one too.

Sir Jeff. Nay, I have nothing to say against her Virtue, nor her Beauty neither; she's a pretty Woman, that's the Truth on't; if she had married any body's Son but mine, I shou'd have wish'd her joy with all my Heart—Oh thou graceless Wretch, get out of my Sight.

Con. (Kneeling.) I confess, Sir, I am unworthy of your Mercy, but throw myself wholly upon your Good-Nature and fatherly Affection, with this Resolution, never to attempt aught against your Pleasure more.

Sir Jeff. No, Sir, nothing you can do for the future, shall either please, or displease me; mark that.

Bel. Give us but your Blessing, Sir, and we shall never quarrel with Fortune for her Favours: Love shall supply that Defect; my chief Concern shall be to shew my Duty, and by my Care to please you, prove the entire Affection I have for your Son; and that Way make up the Inequality of my Birth and Fortune.

Sir Jeff. You shall never make up any Thing with me, I promise you, Madam, whilst he is your Father—Death, marry my Slave?

Trust. The Name of Slave belongs not to us free-born People, Sir Jeffrey; but were I your Slave, she is not; for since the Truth must out, she is no Child of mine, but Daughter to my Lord Belville; which I have brought up ever since she was three Days old; her Mother dying in her Labour, and her Marriage being private, because she was much below my Lord's Quality; and he at that Time under the Tuition of a Father: He never made it publick, but put her into my Hands to breed up as my own. When he came to his Estate, he purchas'd a thousand Pounds a Year, and settled it on her; which I have manag'd ever since, and now will deliver it up to Captain Constant. This I had told in the Infancy of their Loves; but that I saw your Son was not well with you, and did not then think him a Match good enough for her; but since he has over-reach'd me, I hope you'll prove a Father.

Sir Jeff. Is it possible! Od, Madam, I wish you Joy with all my Soul, Faith, I do; and if this is Matter of Fact, you shall find me a Father: Jack, you shall go to Flanders no more.

Lov. Dear Constant, I congratulate thy good Fortune—

Mar. And I your's, Madam, since I no more must call you Cousin.

Bel. Still let me hold that Name; for since I never knew my Father, I shall acknowledge this good Man as such.

Mar. Sir Jeffrey, I was positive you wou'd not repent.

Sir Jeff. You, that are so positive in these Matters; why don't you and Mr. Lovely strike up a Bargain? he has follow'd you a considerable Time.

Lov. That Question is à-propos, Sir Jeffrey. What can you say, Madam? must I dangle after you two or three Years longer? Faith, I wish I hold out.

Trust. Give him thy Hand, Girl; I'll engage to reconcile thy Father, or give thee a Portion myself.

Sir Jeff. Why, what Objections can he make against Mr. Lovely?

Trust. Only Principles: Her Father's a violent Tory, and this honest Gentleman's a Whig, that's all.

Sir Jeff. Ha, ha, a strong Reason, Faith.

Trust. I'll bring him over, I warrant thee, Girl.

Mar. Upon that Condition, there's my Hand.

Lov. And here's my Heart. (Embrace.)

Sir Jeff. Why, that's well said—we only want the Man in Black now.

Enter Faithful and Laura, Lucy and Manage.

Faith. We have just done with ours; he is within still.

Tru. Dear Mr. Faithful, I wish thee Joy with all my Heart; and you, Madam.

Omnes We all do the same.

Faith. I thank you all, and heartily return the same to each of you; I wou'd have the whole Race of Mankind bless'd, now I am so.

Lau. There cannot be a Joy beyond what I am posses'd of.

Bel. I hope, Madam, we shall be better acquainted for the Future.

Lau. I shall be very ambitious of the Honour.

Enter Sir David.

Sir Dav. Ho! have I found you, Villains? I charge you all in the Queen's Name, to assist me in securing this Couple.

Trust. Why Faith, Sir David, they are secure enough, for they are lawfully link'd in the Chains of Matrimony, I'm witness.

Sir Dav. Marry'd! the Devil they are.

Mar. Yes, Sir, I'll swear to it, if occasion be.

Lucy. So will I too, Sir David.

Lau. And with my own Consent, I assure you—You may barricade your Windows now, Sir David, I shall run mad no more; Ha, ha, ha!

Faith. I shall trouble your House no more, Sir, I am disposses'd, Sir David, you need not run from me now; ha, ha, ha!

Con. And he will know his Inn for the future; ha, ha, ha!

Faith. And am perfectly recover'd of my Wound, Sir; and shall have no Occasion to borrow your Coach again; without you'll do me the Favour to let it carry my Wife to London.

Sir Dav. Carry her to Hell—Here's a shuffling cutting Rascal in all his Tropes and Figures: Zounds, how I am trick'd! But you have robb'd me, Mistress.

Lau. Of nothing but my Writings, Sir, mark that.

Sir Dav. The Law shall tell you that; and so, may the Itch of Variety seize you, and the Curse of Cuckoldom, fall on him; Arrests and Poverty on you all.


Trust. Ha, ha, ha! now Lovely, for the Parson.

Enter 'Squire Num and Slouch.

Num. Hold! I forbid the Banns; you shan't have her, mun, for all you are so cock-sure.

Sir Jeff. What Banns do you forbid, Friend?

Num. Why, Mr. Trusty's Daughter's Banns.

Omnes Ha, ha, ha, ha!

Lov. Alas! 'Squire, you come too late; she that was Mr. Trusty's Daughter, is marry'd; and I am just going to't.

Num. That was! What do you mean?

Lov. Why, I mean that Mrs. Belinda, that has snapt your Heart, 'Squire, proves to be a Lord's Daughter, and not Mr. Trusty's, as you believe; and now is Captain Constant's Wife, here.

Num. A Lord's Daughter! Nounds, I'm glad I'm rid of her—Captain, I wish you much joy with all my Heart—Od, I'll engage she shakes your Commission for you; ha, ha.

Omnes Ha, ha, ha, ha!

Num. Why, what Luck have I had, Slouch! Mercy on us; what a Ruin had I brought upon all our Country Gentlemen innocently? For she wou'd have corrupted all their Wives; the Devil a one wou'd have made her own Butter, after being acquainted with her.

Bel. Oh! you mistake, 'Squire, I am an excellent Housewife; ha, ha, ha!

Num. Yes, yes, some in our Country know by woful Experience, what Housewifes you Quality make; Nounds, 'twou'd undo the High Sheriff of the County to find you in clean Cards; then your plaguy outlandish Liquors, your Coffee and Tea, sucks up she Cream of a whole Dairy, and your Suppers and Dinners for your Gossips wou'd confound all the Eggs and Pullen; and the Money you game away, wou'd ruin a Lord of a Manor. No, no, no Quality Breed for us Country Gentlemen; 'egad, that wou'd be worse than double Taxes; ha, ha.

Con. Ha, ha! Well then, 'Squire, I have done you a Piece of Service; I hope all Animosities are forgot.

Num. They are i'faith, Sir; and if you'll give me Leave, I'll be heartily merry with you.

Trust. You shall be heartily welcome, 'Squire; I sent for the Musick—Hark, I hear them tuning their Instruments.

Num. Musick! 'Egad, if they can play my Tune, I'll give you a Jig.

Trust. Come, let's in then, and begin.


SCENE, The Inside of the House, and discovers them dancing.

Enter Roger and Dolly.

Rog. Save you all—Master and Landlord that was, and Master and Landlord that is, I'm glad to hear all is over, with all my Soul—I hope you'll not forget your Promise tho' to your poor Tenant Roger—which was to speak to Master—no, no, speak to yourself now, Sir—My Farm is woundy dear.

Trust. You are wondrous merry, Roger.

Rog. So is every body you know, Sir, when they are prepared for the Parson; are they not, Mrs. Belinda? I hope I shall have your Consent; for I have got Dolly in the Mind at last.

Bel. I wish you Joy with all my Heart, Roger.

Con. I'm glad to see you follow your Lady's Example, Mrs. Dorothy.

Dolly. She set too good a Pattern, not to imitate, Sir.

Con. Here remains three to be provided for yet; which is Clinch, Lucy and Manage.

Lucy. The best Provision I desire, is to wait on my Lady still, Sir.

Man. And I on my Master; who knows but Time may chop up a Wedding between you and I, Child? [To Lucy.

Faith. Your Desires are granted; what says Clinch?

Clin. I had a kind of a Tender for Dolly; but since she's dispos'd of, I'll stand as I do.

Const. Then we are all agreed.

Sir Jeff. Well, honest Roger, if thou'lt give us a Song to your Dance now, I'll be as good as my Word, and make thy Farm easy in the Rent for the next Year.

Rog. Say you so? I thank you heartily, Master, I'll do my best, I can't sing like your Londoners—But 'tis a new Ballad, and 'twas made at London, by a very honest Country Gentleman, last Sessions of Parliament. Hum, hum.


Slouch. Ads Blead, you sing, Sir, and the 'Squire by, that's more than any Man in Zomersetshire will venture to do; Master, Ods Wounds, hold your own, Master.

A SONG, by the Author, and sung by Mr. Dogget.

Wou'd you chuse a Wife for a happy Life,
Leave the Court, and the Country take;
Where Dolly and Sue, young Molly and Prue,
Follow Roger and John, whilst Harvest goes on,
And merrily, merrily rake.

Leave the London Dames, be it spoke to their Shames,
To lig in their Beds till Noon;
Then get up and stretch, then paint too and patch,
Some Widgeon to catch, then look on their Watch,
And wonder they rose up so soon.

Then Coffee and Tea, both Green and Bohea,
Is serv'd to their Tables in Plate;
Where their Tattles do run, as swift as the Sun,
Of what they have won, and who is undone,
By their gaming, and sitting up late.

The Lass give me here, tho' brown as my Beer,
That knows how to govern her House;
That can milk her Cow, or farrow her Sow;
Make Butter, or Cheese, or gather green Pease,
And values fine Clothes not a Louse.

This, this is the Girl, worth Rubies and Pearl;
This the Wife that will make a Man rich:
We Gentlemen need no Quality Breed,
To Squander away what Taxes would pay,
In truth we care for none such.

Con. Now I am happy—
Belinda mine, and you my Faults forgive;
'Tis from this Moment I begin to live.
Love sprang the Mine, and made the Breach in Duty,
No Cannon-Ball can execute like Beauty,
But I'll no more in search of Pleasures rove,
Since ev'ry Blessing is compriz'd in Love.



Spoken by Mrs. OLDFIELD.

Written by Mr. CIBBER.

A Porter delivers a Letter just as she is going to speak.

What's this? a Billet-Doux? from Hands unknown?
'Tis new to send it thus 'fore all the Town:
But since the poor Man's Passion's so agog,
I'll read it out by way of Epilogue.


Permit a Wretch to let you know,
That he's no more in Statu Quo.
My Ruin from this Night commences,
Unless your Smiles refund my Senses;
For with one Thrust of Cupid's Dart,
You've whip'd your Slave quite thro' the Heart:
Therefore, I beg you, cast your Eye
O'er Boxes, Pit and Gallery,
In Pity of my Pains and Doubt,
And try if you can find me out.

Poor Soul! He seems indeed in dismal Plight;}
Let's see! it can't be, sure! from th' upper Flight;
No, no—that's plain—for—None of them can Write:
Nor can I think it from the Middle fell;
For I'm afraid—as few of them can Spell:
Beside, their haggling Passions never gain,
Beyond the Passage-walking Nymphs of Drury-Lane:
And then the Pit's more stock'd with Rakes and Rovers,
Than any of these senseless, whining Lovers.
The Backs o' th' Boxes too seem mostly lin'd
With Souls, whose Passion's to themselves confin'd.
In short, I can't perceive, 'mongst all you Sparks,
The Wretch distinguish'd, by these bloody Marks.

But since the Town has heard your kind Commands, Sir,
The Town shall e'en be Witness of my Answer.
First then, beware you prove no Spark in Red,
With empty Purse, and regimental Head;
That thinks no Woman can refuse t' engage in't,
While Love's advanc'd with offer'd Bills on Agent;
That swears he'll settle from his Joy's commencing,
And make the Babe, the Day he's born, an Ensign,
Nor cou'd I bear a titl'd Beau, that steals
From fasting Spouse her matrimonial Meals;
That Modish sends next Morn to her Apartment,
A civil How d'ye—far alas! from th' Heart meant:
Then powder'd for th' ensuing Day's Delights,
Bows thro' his Croud of Duns, and drives to White's.
Nor cou'd I like the Wretch, that all Night plays,
And only takes his Rest on winning Days;
Then sets up from a lucky Hit, his Rattler,
Then's trac'd from his Orig'nal—in the Tattler.
To tell you all that are my fixt Aversion,
Wou'd tire the Tongue of Malice, or Aspersion.
But if I find 'mongst All one generous Heart,
That deaf to Stories takes the Stage's Part;
That thinks that Purse deserves to keep the Plays,
Whose Fortune's bound for the Support of Opera's;
That thinks our Constitution here is justly fixt,
And now no more with Lawyers Brawls perplext;
He, I declare, shall my whole Heart receive;
And (what's mere strange) I'll love him while I live.



Contemporary spelling has generally been retained; this includes contractions now uncommon, such as cou'd and han't, and words that may initially be misunderstood, but become clear from the context.

However, a small number of obvious misprints due to broken or reversed type, or simply human error, have been corrected, specifically:
"Gaol" (for Goal in "And the next Moment fetches you to Gaol."),
"wi'" (for wo' in the passage: "But an you please to come wi' me, Sir, I'll carry you in the Back-way.")

The abbreviations used for character names are not uniform, and hyphenation is inconsistent.

Two words no longer in common use are:
"lig", a dialect variant of "lie", and
"sliving", a Northern/Scottish word meaning to sneak; skulk; proceed in a sly way; creep.

The source for this text is:


Printed for J. Knapton, C. Hitch and L. Hawes, J. and R. Tonson, S. Crowder; W. Bathoe, T. Lownds, T. Caslon, H. Woodgate and S. Brooks, and G. Kearsley MDCCLX

[The end of The Man's bewitch'd; or, The Devil to do about Her by Susanna Centlivre]