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her tell it you.
Sir John. No, I believe my wife's religion will Con. I'll hold you a guinea you don't make keep her honest.
Heart. And what will make her keep her re Sir John. I'll hold you a guinea I do. ligion?
Con. Which way? Sir John. Persecution; and therefore she shall Sir John. Why, I'll beg her not to tell it me. have it.
Heurt. Nay, if any thing does it, that will. Heart. Have a care, knight; women are tend Con. But do you think, sirer things.
Sir John. 'Oons, sir, I think a woman and a seSir John. And yet, methinks, 'tis a hard mat- cret are the two impertinentest themes in the ter to break their hearts.
universe : therefore, pray let's hear no more of Con. Fy, fy! you have one of the best wives my wife, nor your mistress. Damn them both, in the world, and yet you seem the most uneasy with all my heart, and every thing else, that husband.
daggles a petticoat, except four generous whores, Sir John. Best wives !—the woman's well who are drunk with my lord Rake and I, ten enough; she has no vice, that I know of, but times in a fortnight. she's a wife, and--damn a wife! if I were married
[Erit Sir Jown. to a hogshead of claret, matrimony would make Con. Here's a dainty fellow for you! And me hate it.
the veriest coward, too. But his usage of his Heart. Why did you marry then? You were wife makes me ready to stab the villain. old enough to know your own mind.
Heart. Lovers are short-sighted : all their Sir John. Why did I marry? I married, be senses run into that of feeling. This proceeding cause I had a 'mind to lie with her, and she of his is the only thing on earth can make your would not let me.
fortune. If any thing can prevail with her to acHeart. Why, did you ravish her?
cept of a gallant, 'tis his ill usage of her. Prie Sir John. Yes, and so have hedged myself into thee, take heart, I have great hopes for you: forty quarrels with her relations, besides buying and, since I can't bring you quite off her, I'll enmy pardon: but, more than all that, you must deavour to bring you quite on; for a whining loknow I was afraid of my soul in those days; for ver is the damned'st companion upon earth. I kept sneaking, cowardly, company; tellows, Con. My dear friend, flatter me a little more that went to church, said grace to their meat, with these hopes; for, whilst they prevail
, I have and had not the least tincture of quality about Heaven within me, and could melt with joy. them.
Heart. Pray, no melting yet; let things go Heart. But I think you are got into a better farther first. "This afternoon, perhaps, we shall gang, now.
make some advance. In the mean while, let's Sir John. Zoons, sir, my lord Rake and I are go dine at Locket's, and let hope get you a stohand and glove: I believe we may get our bones mach.
[Exeunt. broke together, to-night; have you a mind to share a frolic?
SCENE II.-Lady FANCIFUL's house.
Enter Lady Fanciful, and MadEMOISELLE.
say. Will you come and portune, mademoiselle? drink with me this afternoon?
Madem. Inteed, matam, to say de trute, he Con. I can't drink to-day, but we'll come want leetel good-breeding. and sit an hour with you, if you will.
Lady Fan. Good-breeding! He wants to be Sir John. Phugh! pox, sit an hour! why can't caned, mademoiselle: an insolent fellow! and
yet, let me expose my weakness, 'tis the only man Con. Because I am to see my mistress. on earth I could resolve to dispense my favours Sir John. Who's that?
on, were he but a fine gentleman. Well! did Con. Why, do you use to tell ?
men but know how deep an impression a fine Sir John. Yes.
gentleman makes in a lady's heart, they would Con. So wont I.
reduce all their studies to that of good-breeding Sir John. Why?
alone. Con. Because, 'tis a secret. Sir John. Would my wife knew it! 'twould be
Enter Servant. no secret long.
Serv. Will your ladyship please to dine yet? Con. Why, do you think she can't keep a se Lady Fun. Yes, let them serve. [Erit Sera cret?
vant.] Sure this Heartfree has bewitched me, Sir John. No more than she can keep Lent. Mademoiselle. You can't imagine how oddly he Heart. Prithee, tell it her to try, Constant. mixt himself in my thoughts, during my rapture,
Sir John. No, prithee don't, that I mayn't be even now. I vow 'tis a thousand pilies he is not plagued with it.
more polished; don't you think so?
Madem. Matam, s tink it so great pity, dat if Lady Fan. Why, truly, satire has ever been of I was in your ladyship's place, I take hiin home wondrous use to reform ill manners. Besides, in my house, i lock him np in my closet, and I 'tis my particular talent to ridicule folks. I can never let him go till I teach him every ting dat be severe, strangely severe, when I will, madefine laty expect from fine gentelioan.
moiselle. Give me the pen and ink-I find myLady Fan. Why, truly, I believe I should soon self whimsical--I'll write to him—or, I'll let it subdue his brutality; for, without doubt, he has alone, and be severe upon him that way. [Sita strange penchant to grow fond of me, in spite ting down to write, rising up again.) Yet acof his aversion to the sex, else he would ne'er tive severity is better than passive. [Sitting have taken so much pains about me. Lord, how down.] 'Tis as good to let it alone, too; for proud would some poor creatures be of such a every Tash I give him, perhaps he'll take for a faconquest! but I, alas ! I don't know how to re vour. Yet, 'tis a thousand pities so much satire ceive as a favour, what I take to be so infinitely should be lost. [Sitting:] But, if it should have my due. But what shall I do to new-mould him, a wrong effect upon him, 'twould distract me.mademoiselle? for, till then, he is my utter aver [Rising.) Well, I must write though, after all. sion.
[Silting. Or, I'll let it alone, which is the same Madem. Matam, you must laugh at him in all thing. [Rising.) de place dat you meet him, and turn into de re Madem. La voilà determinée. ticule all he say, and all he do.
spleen ! 'Oons-[Aside.)-If a man had got the
head-ache, they would be for applying the same Sir Joun, Lady BRUTE, and Belinda rising remedy. from the table.
Lady Brute. You have done a great deal, BeSir John. Hure; take away the things; I ex- linda, since yesterday. pect company. But first bring me a pipe; I'll Bel. Yes, I have worked very hard; how do smoke.
[To a servunt. you like it?' Lady Brute. Lord, Sir John, I wonder you Lady Brute. Oh, 'tis the prettiest fringe in the won't leave that nasty custom.
world! Well, cousin, you have the happiest fanSir John. Prithec, don't be impertinent. cy: prithee, advise ine about altering my crim
Bel. [To Lady BRUTE.] I wonder who those son petticoat. are, he expects this afternoon?
Sir John. A pox o' your petticoat! here's such Lady Brute. I would give the world to know : a prating, a man can't digest his own thoughts perhaps 'tis Constant; he comes here sometimes; if it does prove him, I am resolved I'll Lady Brute. Don't answer him.—[Aside.]-share the visit.
Well, what do you advise me? Bel. We'll send for our work, and sit here. Bel. Why, really, I would not alter it at all, Lady Brute. He'll choak us with his tobacco. Methinks, 'tis very pretty as it is.
Bel. Nothing will choak us, when we are do Lady Brute. Aye, that's true: but, you know, ing what we have a mind to. Lovewell! one grows weary of the prettiest things in the
world, when one has had them long. Enter LOVEWELL.
Sir John. Yes, I have taught her that. Love. Madam.
Bel. Shall we provoke him a little? Lady Brute. Here; bring my cousin's work Lady Brute. With all my heart. Belinda, and mine hither.
don't you long to be married ? [Erit LOVEWELL, and re-enters with their work. Bei. Why, there are some things in it which
Sir John. Why, pos, can't you work somewhere I could like well enough. else?
Lady Brute. What do you think you should Lady Brute. We shall be careful not to dis- dislike? turb you, sir.
Bel. My husband, a hundred to one else. Bel. Your pipe would make you too thought Lady Brute. O ye wicked wretch! sure you ful, uncle, if you were left alone; our prittle don't speak as you think? prattle will cure your spleen.
Bel. Yes, I do: especially if he smoked toSir John. Will it so, Mrs Pert! Now I believe bacco?
[He looks earnestly at them. it will so increase it, [Sitting and smoking.] I Lady Brute. Why, that many times takes off shall take my own house for a paper-mill. worse smells.
Lady Brute. (To BELINDA aside.] Don't let's Bel. Then he must smell very ill indeed. mind him ; let him say what he will.
Lady Brute. So some men will, to keep their Sir John. A woman's tongue a cure for the wives from coming near them,
Bel. Then those wives should cuckold them at Heart. And be kind. a distance,
Con. What's the matter? does it go the wrong [He rises in a fury, throws his pipe at them, way?
and drives them out. As they run off, Con Sir John. If I had love enough to be jealous, I STANT and HEARTFREE enter. LADY BRUTE should take this for an ill omen: for I never runs against Constant.]
drank my wife's health in my life, but I puked in Sir John. 'Oons, get you up stairs, you confe- the glass. derating strumpets, you; or I'll cuckold you
with Con. Oh, she's too virtuous to make any reaa vengeance!
sonable man jealous. Lady Brute. O Lord, he'll beat us, he'll beat Sir John. Pox of her virtue! If I could but us! Dear, dear Mr Constant, save us.
catch her adulterating, I might be divorced from
[Ereunt. her by law. Sir John. I'll cuckold you, with a pox!
Heart. And so pay her a yearly pension, to be Con. Heaven! sir John, what's the matter? a distinguished cuckold.
Sir John. Why, these two gentlewomen did but hear me say I expected you here this after
Enter Servant. noon; upon which, they presently resolved to take up the room, o' purpose to plague me and Ser. Sir, there's my lord Rake, colonel Bully,
and some other gentlemen, at the Blue Posts, de Con. Was that all? Why, we should have been sire your company. glad of their company.
Sir John. Cod's so, we are to consult about Sir John. Then I should have been weary of playing the devil to-night. yours; for I can't relish both together. They Heart. Well, we won't hinder business. found fault with my smoking tobacco, too; and Sir John. Methinks, I don't know how to leave said men stunk, But I have a good mind—to you two: but, for once, I must make bold. Or say something
look you ; may be the conference may'nt last Con. No, nothing against the ladies, pray. long : so, if you'll wait here half an hour, or an
Sir John. Split the ladies! Come, will you sit hour; if I don't come then—why then-I won't down? Give us some wine, fellow. You won't come at all. smoke?
Heart. (To Constant.) A good modest proCon. No, nor drink neither, at this time; I position, truly!
[ Aside. must ask your pardon.
Con. But let's accept on't, however.
Who Sir John. What, this mistress of yours runs in knows what may happen? your head! I'll warrant it's some such squeamish Heart. Well, sir, to shew you how fond we minx as my wife, that's grown so dainty of late, are of your company, we'll expect your return as she finds fault even with a dirty shirt.
long as we can. Heart, That a woman may do, and not be very Sir John, Nay, may be I may'nt stay at all; dainty neither.
but business, you know, must be done. So, Sir John. Pox of the women! let's drink. your servant
have a mind Come, you shall take one glass, though I send to take a frisk with us, I have an interest with for a box of lozenges to sweeten your mouth af- my lord; I can easily introduce you, ter it,
Con. We are much beholden to you; but, for Con. Nay, if one glass will satisfy you, I'll | my part, I am engaged another way. drink it, without putting you to that expence. Sir John. What! to your mistress, I'll war
Sir John, Why, that's honest. Fill some wine, rant. Prithee, leave your nasty punk to entersirrah :
: so here's to you, gentlemen—a wife's the tain herself with her own lewd thoughts, and devil. To your being both married.
make one with us to-night. (They drink.
Con. Sir, 'tis business that is to employ me. Heart. 0, your most humble servant, sir. Heart, And me; and business must be done, Sir John. Well, how do you like my wine? Con. 'Tis very good, indeed.
Sir John. Aye, women's business, though the Heart. 'Tis admirable.
world were consumed for it. Sir John. Then give us t'other glass.
[Erit SiR JOHN, Con. No, pray excuse us now: we'll come Con, Farewell, beast; and now, my dear another time, and then we won't
it. friend, would my mistress be but as complaisant Sir John. This one glass, and no more. Come, as some men's wives, who think it a piece of good it shall be your mistress's health : and that's a breeding to receive the visits of their husband's great compliment from me, I assure you. friend, in his absence !
Con. And 'tis a very obliging one to me: so Heart. Why, for your sake, I could forgive give us the glasses.
her, though she should be so complaisant to reSir John. So; let her live. [Sir John coughsceive something else in his absence, But what in the glass.]
way shall we invent to see her?
as vain as wishes.
upon us !
Con. Oh, ne'er hope it: invention will prove Lady Brute. But was you never in love, sir?
Heart. No, I thank Heaven, madam.
Bel. Pray, where got you your learning, then? Enter LADY BRUTE and BELINDA.
Heart. From other people's expence.
Bel. That's being a spunger, sir, which is
scarce honest: If you'd buy soine experience with Con. I think I shall swoon.
your own money, as 'twould be fairlier got, so Heart. I'll speak first, then, whilst you fetch | 'twould stick longer by you. breath. Lady Brute. We think ourselves obliged, gen
Enter FOOTMAN. tlemen, to come and return you thanks for your knight errantry. We were just upon being de Foot. Madam, here's my lady Fancyful, to voured by the fiery dragon.
wait upon your ladyship. Bel. Did not his tumes almost knock you Lady Brute, Shield ine, kind Heaven! What down, gentlemen?
an inundation of impertinence is here coming Heart. Truly, ladies, we did undergo some hardships; and should have done more, if some greater heroes than ourselves, hard by, had not
Enter LADY FANCYFUL, who runs first to LADY diverted him.
BRUTE, then to BELINDA, kissing them. Con. Though I am glad of the service you are Lady Fan. My dear lady Brute, and sweet pleased to say we have done you, yet I am sor
Belinda, methinks, 'tis an age since I saw you ! ry we could do it in no other way, than by ma Lady Brute. Yet 'tis but three days; sure you king ourselves privy to what you would, perhaps, have passed your time very ill, it seems so long have kept a secret.
to you. Lady Brute. For sir John's part, I suppose he Lady Fan. Why, really, to confess the truth designed it no secret, since he made so much to you, I am so everlastingly fatigued with the noise. And, for myself, truly, I am not much addresses of unfortunate gentlemen, that, were concerned, since 'tis fallen only into this gentle- it not for the extravagancy of the example, I man's hands and yours; who, I have many rea- should e'en tear out these wicked eyes with my sons to believe, will neither interpret nor report own fingers, to make both myself and mankind any thing to my disadvantage.
easy. What think you on't, Mr Heartfree, for I Con. Your good opinion, madam, was what take you to be my faithful adviser ? I feared I never could have merited.
Heart. Why, truly, madam -I think Lady Brute. Your fears were vain then, sir ; every project, that is for the good of mankind, for I'm just to every body.
ought to be encouraged. Heart. Prithee, Constant, what is't you do to Lady Fan. Then I have your consent, sir? get the ladies' good opinions; for I'm a novice at Heurt. To do whatever you please, madam. it?
Lady Fan. You had a much more limited comBel. Sir, will you give me leave to instruct plaisance this morning, sir. Would you believe
it, ladies? The gentleman has been so exceeding Heart. Yes, that I will, with all my soul, generous, to tell me of above fifty faults, in less madam.
time than it was well possible for me to commit Bel. Why, then, you must never be slovenly; two of them. never be out of humour, never smoke tobacco, Con. Why, truly, madam, my friend there is Dor drink but when you are dry.
apt to be something familiar with the ladies. Heart. That's hard.
Lady Fan. He is indeed, sir ; but, he's wonCon. Nay, if you take his bottle from him, drous charitable with it: He has had the goodyou break his heart, madam.
ness to design a reformation, even down to my Bel. Why, is it possible the gentleman can fingers ends.—'Twas thus, I think, sir, [Openlove drinking?
ing her fingers in an awkward manner. you'd Heart. Only by way of antidote.
have them stand-My eyes, too, he did not Bel. Against what, pray?
like: How was't you would have directed them? Heart. Against love, madam.
Thus, I think. [Staring at him.]— Then there was Lady Brute Are you afraid of being in love, something aniiss in my gaite, too: I don't know sir?
well how 'twas, but, as I take it, he would have Heart. I should, if there were any danger of me walk like him. Pray, sir, do me the favour it.
to take a turn or two about the room, that the Lady Brute. Pray, why so?
company may see you-He's sullen, ladies, and Heart. Because I always had an aversion to won't. But, to make short, and give you as true being used like a dog.
an idea as I can of the matter, I think 'twas Bel. Why, truly, men in love are seldom used much about this figure in general, he would have better,
moulded me to; but I was an obstinate woman,
and could not resolve to make myself mistress of suffer them together any longer. Mr Heartfree, his heart, by growing as awkward as his fancy. do you know, that you and I must have no quar
[She walks awkwardly about, staring and rel for all this? I can't forbear being a little se
looking ungainly; then changes, on a vere now and then: But women, you know, may
Heart. Up to a certain age, madam, Heart. Just thus women do, when they think Lady Fun. Which I'm not yet past, I hope. we are in love with them, or when they are so Heart. [Aside.) Nor ever will, I dare swear.
Lady Fan. (To Lady Brutr.] Come, madam, [Here Constant and Lady Brute talk to will your ladyship be witness to our reconciliagether apart.
tion Ludy Fan. 'Twould, however, be less vanity Lady Brute. You, agree, then at last ? for me to conclude the former, than you the lat Heart. [Slightingly. We forgive.
Lady Fan. (Aside.] That was a cold, ill-naHeart. Madam, all I shall presume to con
tured reply. clude, is, that, if I were in love, you'd find the Lady Brute. Then there's no challenges sent means to make me soon
between you ? Lady Fan, Not by over-fondness, upon my
Heart. Not from me, I promise. [ Aside to word, sir. But, pray, let's stop here; for you ConstaNT.] But that's more than I'll do for her; are so much governed by instinct, I know you'll for I know she can as well be damned as forbear grow brutish at last.
writing to me. Bel. [ Aside. Now am I sure she's fond of him: Con. That I believe. But I think we had best I'll try to make her jealous. Well, for my part, be going, lest she should suspect something, and I should be glad to find some-body would be so be malicious. free with me, that I might know my faults, and Heart. With all my heart. mend them.
Con. Ladies, we are your humble servants. I Lady Fun. Then, pray let me recommend this see sir John is quite engaged, 'twould be in vain to gentleman to you: I have known him some time, expect him. Come, Heartfree. [E.rit Constant, and will be surety for him, that, upon a very li Heart. Ladies, your servant. [To BELINDA.] mited encouragement on your side, you shall find I hope, madam, you won't forget our bargain; an extended impudence on his.
I'm to say what I please to you. Heart. I thank you, madam, for your recom
[Erit HeartfrEE. mendation : But hating idleness, I'm unwilling Bel. Liberty of speech, entire, sir. to enter into a place, where I believe there would Lady Fan. [ Aside.] Very pretty, truly-But be nothing to do. I was fond of serving your how the blockhead went out languishing at her ; ladyship, because I knew you'd find me constant and not a look toward me-Well, people may employment
talk, but miracles are not ceased. For it is more Lady Fan. I told you he'd be rude, Belinda. than natural, such a rude fellow as he, and such
Bel. 0, a little bluntness is a sign of honesty, a little impertinent as she, should be capable of which makes me always ready to pardon it. So, making a woman of my sphere uneasy! But I sir, if you have no other exceptions to my ser can bear her sight no longer -methinks she's vice, but the fear of being idle in it, you may grown ten times uglier than Cornet. I must venture to list yourself: I shall find you work, Í home, and study revenge. [TO LADY Brute.] warrant you.
Madam, your humble servant; I must take my Heart. Upon those terms I engage, Madam; leave. and this, with your leave, I take for earnest. Lady Brute. What, going already, madam?
[Offering to kiss her hand. Lady Fun. I must beg you'll excuse me this Bel. Hold there, sir; I'm none of your earnest once; for really I have eighteen visits to return givers. But, if I'm well served, I give good wa this afternoon : So you see I'm importuned by ges, and pav punctually.
the women as well as the men. [HEARTFREE and Belinda seem to continue Bel. (Aside.) And she's quits with them both. talking familiarly.
Lady Fan. (Going.] Nay, you shan't go one Lady Fan. [ Aside.] I don't like this jesting step out of the room. between them--Methinks the fool begins to look, Lady Brute. Indeed, I'll wait upon you down. as if he were in earnest-but then he must be a Lady Fan. No, sweet lady Brute, you know I fool indeed.-Lard, what a difference there is swoon at ceremony. between me and her! [ Looking at BELINDA Lady Brute. Pray give me leave. scornfully.] How I should despise such a thing, Lady Fan. You know I won't. if I were a man !-What a pose she has What Ludy Brute. Indeed I must. a chin- What a neck--Then her eyes--And the Lady Fan. Indeed you shan't. worst kissing lips in the universe --No, no, he Lady Brute. Indeed I will. can never like her, that's positive-Yet I can't Lady Fan. Indeed you shan't,