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vanity ought to be satisfied; and this, perhaps, / rosity to a usurer, honesty to a lawyer, than disyou might bring about upon pretty reasonable cretion to a woman I see has once set her heart terms.

upon playing the fool. L. Fun. And pray at what rate would this indifference be bought off, if one should have so de.

Enter CONSTANT. praved an appetite to desire it?

Morrow, Constant. Heart. Why, madam, to drive a quaker's bar- Con. Good morrow, Jack: What are you dogain, and make but one word with you, if I do ing here this morning ? part with it, you must lay down your affecta- Heart. Doing! guess, if you can.—Why, I tion.

have been endeavouring to persuade my Lady L. Fan. My affectation, sir !

Fanciful that she's the most foolish woman about Heart. Why I ask you nothing but what you town. may very well spare.

Con. A pretty endeavour truly. L. Fun. You grow rude, sir. Come, Made- Heart. I have told her, in as plain English as moiselle, it is high time to be gone.

I could speak, both what the town says of her, Madem. Allons, allons, allons !

and what I think of her. In short, I have used Heurt. (Stopping them.] Nay, you may as well her as an absolute king would do Magna Charta. stand still; for hear me you shall, walk which Con. And how does she take it? way yon please.

Heart. As children do pills; bite them, but L. Fan. What mean you, sir?

cann't swallow them. Heart. I mean to tell you, that you are the most Con. But pr’ythee, what has put it into your ungrateful woman !pon earth.

head, of all mankind, to turn reformer? L. Fun. Ungrateful! to whom?

Heart. Why, one thing was, the morning hung Heart. To uature.

upon my hands, I did not know what to do with L. Fun. Why, what has nature done for me? myself; and another was, that, as little as I care

Heart. What you have undone by art ! It made for women, I could not see with patience one you handsome: it gave you beauty to a miracle, a that Heaven had taken such wondrous pains shape without a fault, wit enough to make them about, be so very industrious to make herself the relish, and so turned you loose to your own dis- Jack-pudding of the creation. cretion; which has made such work with you, Con. Well, now could I almost wish to see that you are become the pity of our sex, and the my cruel mistress make the self-same use of jest of your own. There is not a feature in your what Heaven has done for her, that so I might face, but you have found the way to teach it some be cured of the same disease that makes me so affected convulsion; your feet, your hands, your very uneasy ; for love, love is the devil, Heartvery fingers’ends, are directed never to move with free. out some ridiculous air or other; and your lan- Heart. And why do you let the devil govern guage is a suitable trumpet, to draw people's eyes you? upon the raree-show.

Con. Because I have more Aesh and blood Mudem. (Aside.] Est ce qu'on fait l'amour en than grace and self-denial. My dear, dear misAngleterre comme ça ?

tress, 'sdeath! that so genteel a woman should L. Fan. (Aside.) Now could I cry for madness, be a saint, when religion's out of fashion ! but that I know he'd laugh at me for it.

Heart. Nay, she's much in the wrong truly ; Heart. Now do you hate me for telling you but who knows how far time and good example the truth, but that's because you don't believe may prevail? 'tis so; for, were you once convinced of that, you'd Con. O! they have played their parts in vain reform for your own sake.

already ; 'tis now two years since the fellow her L. Fan. Every circumstance of nice breeding husband invited me to his wedding; and there must needs appear ridiculous to one who has so was the first time I saw that charming woman, natural an antipathy to good manners.

whom I have loved ever since; but she is cold, Heart. But, suppose I could find the means to my friend, still cold as the northern star. convince you that the whole world is of my opi- Heart. So are all women by nature, which nion ?

makes them so willing to be warmed. L. Fan. Sir, though you, and all the world you Con. O don't profane the sex; pr’ythee think talk of, should be so impertinently officious as to them all angels for her sake; for she's virtuous think to persuade me I don't know how to behave even to a fault. myself, I should still have charity enough for my Heurt. A lover's head is a good accountable own understanding, to believe myself in the right, thing truly; he adores his mistress for being virand all you in the wrong.

tuous, and yet is very angry with her because she Madem. Le voilà mort.

won't be kind. (Ereunt Lady FANCIFUL and MADEMOISELLE. Con. Well, the only relief I expect in my mi

Heart. (Gazing at her.] There her single clap- sery, is to see thee some day or other as deeply per has published the sense of the whole sex engaged as myself, which will force me to be Well, this once I have endeavoured to wash the merry in the midst of all my misfortunes. black-moor white, but henceforward I'll sooner Heart. That day will never come, be assured, undertake to teach sincerity to a courtier, gene- Ned: not but that I can pass a night with a wo

a woman.

man, and for the time, perhaps, make myself as Heart. And just now he was sure time could good sport as you can do. Nay, I can court a do nothing. woman too, call her nymph, angel, goddess, what Con. Yet not one kind glance in two years is you please : but here's the difference between somewhat strange. you and I ; I persuade a woman she's an angel, Heart. Not strange at all ; she don't like you, and she persuades you she's one. But pr’ythee that's all the business. let me tell you how I avoid falling in love; that Con. Pr’ythee don't distract me. which serves me for prevention, may chance to Heurt. Nay, you are a good handsome young serve you for a cure.

fellow; she might use you better. Come, will Con. Well, use the ladies moderately then, you go see her ? perhaps she may have changed and I'll hear you.

her mind; there's some hopes, as long as she's Heart. That using them moderately undoes us all: but I'll use them justly, and that you Con, 0, 'tis in vain to visit her: sometimes to ought to be satisfied with. I always consider a get a sight of her, I visit that beast her husband, woman, not as the tailor, the shoe-maker, the tire- but she certainly finds some pretence to quit the woman, the semstress, and (which is more than room as soon as I enter. all that) the poet makes her; but I consider her Heurt. It's much she don't tell him you have as pure nature has contrived her, and that more made love to her too; for that's another goodstrictly than I should have done our old grand natured thing usual amongst women, in which mother Eve, had I seen her naked in the garden; they have several ends. Sometimes 'tis to refor I consider her turned inside out. Her heart commend their virtue, that they may be kind well examined, I find there pride, vanily, covet- with the greater security. Sometimes 'tis to ousness, indiscretion, but, above all things, ma- make their husbands fight, in hopes they may be lice: plots eternally forging to destroy one ano- killed, when their affairs require it should be so: ther's reputations, and as honestly to charge the but most commonly 'tis to engage two men in a levity of inen's tongues with the scandal; hourly quarrel, that they may bave the credit of being debates how to make poor gentlemen in love fought for; and if the lover's killed in the busiwith them, with no other intent but to use them ness, they cry, Poor fellow, he had ill luck!—and like dogs when they have done; a constant de- so they go to cards. sire of doing more mischief, and an everlasting Con. Thy injuries to women are not to be forgiwar waged against truth and good-nature. ven. Look to't, if ever you fall into their hands

Con. Very well, șir ; an admirable composition, Heart. They cann't use me worse than they truly!

do you, that speak well of 'em. O ho! here Heart. Then for her outside, I consider it comes the knight. merely as an outside ; she has a thin tiffany co

Enter Sir John BRUTE. vering; just over such stuff as you and I are made on. As for her motion, her mien, her airs, Heart. Your humble servant, Sir John, and all those tricks, I know they affect you Sir John. Servant, sir. mightily. If you should see your mistress at a Heart. How does all your family? coronation, dragging her peacock's train, with all Sir John. Pox on my family! her state and insolence about her, 'twould strike Con. How does your lady? I ha'n't seen her you with all the awful thoughts that Heaven it- abroad a gooil while. self could pretend to form you: whereas I turn Sir John. Do! I don't know how she does, the whole matter into a jest, and suppose her not I; she was well enough yesterday; I ha'n't strutting in the self-same stately manner, with been at home to.night. nothing on but her stays, and her scanty quilted Con. What, were you out of town? under-petticoat.

Sir John. Out of town! No, I was drinking. Con. Hold thy profane tongue; for I'll hear Con. You are a true Englishman ; don't know no more!

your own happiness. If I were married to such Heart. What, you'll love on then ?

a woman, I would not be from her a night for Con. Yes.

all the wine in France. Heart. Yet have no hopes at all ?

Sir John. Not from her!-'Oons-what a time Con. None.

should a man have of that ! Heart. Nay, the resolution may be discreet Heart. Why, there's no division, I hope. enough; perhaps you have found out some new Sir John. No; but there's a conjunction, and philosophy, that love, like virtue, is its own re- that's worse; a pox of the parson—why the ward: so you and your mistress will be as well plague don't you two marry? I fancy I look like content at a distance, as others that have less the devil to you. learning are in coming together.

Heart. Why, you don't think you have horns, Con. No; but if she should prove kind at last, do you? my dear Heartfree?

(Embracing him. Sir John. No, I believe my wife's religion will Heart. Nay, pr’ythee don't take me for your keep her honest. mistress; for lovers are very troublesome.. Heurt. And what will make ber keep her re

Con. Well, who knows what time may do? ligion?

a

437

THE PROVOKED WIFE.

VANBURGA.)

a

let me.

Sir John. Persecution; and therefore she shall secret are the two impertinentest themes in the have it.

universe : therefore, pray let's hear no more of Heurt. Have a care, knight, women are ten- my wife nor your mistress. Damn 'em both with der things.

all my heart, and every thing else that daggles a Sir John. And yet, methinks, 'tis a hard mat- petticoat, except four generous whores who are ter to break their hearts.

drunk with my Lord Rake and I ten times in a Con. Fie, fie ! you have one of the best wives fortnight.

(Exit. in the world, and yet you seem the most uneasy Con. Here's a dainty fellow for you! and the husband.

veriest coward too. But his usage of his wife Sir John. Best wives !--the woman's well en- makes me ready to stab the villain. ough; she has no vice that I know of ; but she's Heurt, Lovers are short-sighted; all their sena wife, and—damn a wife! if I were married to ses run into that of feeling. This proceeding of a hogshead of claret, matrimony would make me his is the only thing on earth can make your forhate it.

tune. If any thing can prevail with her to accept Heart. Why did you marry then ? you were a gallant, 'tis his usage of her. Pr’ythee, take old enough to know your own mind.

heart; I have great hopes for you; and, since I Sir John. Why did I marry! I married because cann't bring you quite off her, I'll endeavour to I had a mind to lay with her, and she would not bring you quite on; for a whining lover is the

damnest companion on earth. Heart. Why did you not ravish her ?

Con. My dear friend, flatter me a little more Sir John. Yes; and so have hedged myself in. with these hopes; for whilst they prevail, I have to forty quarrels with her relations, besides buy- Elysium within me, and could melt with joy. ing my pardon: but, more than all that, you must Heart. Pray, no melting yet; let things go know I was afraid of being damned in those days, farther first. This afternoon, perhaps, we shall for I kept sneaking, cowardly company, fellows make some advance. In the mean while, let's go that went to church, said grace to their meat, and dine at Locket's, and let hope get you a stomach. had not the least tincture of quality about them.

(Exeunt.
Heurt. But I think you have got into a better
gang now.

SCENE II.—Lady FANCYFUL's House.
Sir John. Zoons, sir, my Lord Rake and I are
hand and glove: I believe we may get our bones

Enter Lady FANCYFUL and MADEMOISELLE.
broke together to-night. Have you a mind to L. Fan. Did you ever see any think so impor-
share a frolic?

tune, Mademoiselle?
Con. Not I, truly; my talent lies in softer ex- Madem. Indeed, matam, to say de trute, he
ercises.

want leetel goodl-breeding,
Sir John. What, a down bed and a strumpet ? L. Fan. Good-breeding! He wants to be ca-
A pox of venery, I say. Will you come and drink ned, Mademoiselle. An insolent fellow! and yet,
with me this afternoon?

let me expose my weakness, 'tis the only man on Con. I cann't drink to-day; but we'll come earth I could resolve to dispense my favours on, and sit an hour with you will.

were he but a fine gentleman. Well, did men Sir John. Pough, pox, sit an hour ! Why cann't but know how deep an impression a fine gentie

man makes in a lady's heart, they would reduce
Con. Because I'm to see my mistress. all their studies to that of good-breeding alone.
Sir John. Who's that?
Con. Why do you use to tell?

Enter Servant.
Sir John. Yes.

Serv. Will your ladyship please to dine yet?
Con. So won't I.

L Fan. Yes, let 'ein serve. (E.cit Serv.) Sure Sir John. Why?

this Heartfree has betwitched me, Mademoiselle. Con. Because it is a secret.

You cann't imagine how oddly be mixt himself Sir John. Would my wife knew it, 'twould be in my thoughts during my rapture e'en now. I no secret long.

vow 'tis a thousand pities he is not more polishCon. Why, do you think she cann't keep a se- ed; don't you think so? cret?

Mudem. Matam, I think it is so great pity, Sir John. No more than she could keep Lent. that, if I was in your ladyship’s place, I take him Heart. Pr’ythee, tell it her to try, Constant. home in my house, I lock him up in my closet,

Sir John. No, pr’ythee don't, that I mayn't be and I never let him go, till I teach him every ting plagued with it.

dat fine lady expect from fine gentleman. Con. I'll hold you a guinea you don't make her L. Fan. Why truly, I believe I should soon ell it you.

subdue his brutality; for, without doubt, he has Sir John. I'll hold you a guinea I do. a strange penchant to grow fond of me, in spite Con. Which way?

of his aversion to the sex, else he would ne'er Sir John. Why, I'll beg her not to tell it me. have taken so much pains about me. Lord, how Heurt. Nay, if any thing does it, that will. proud would some poor creatures be of such a Con. But do you think, sir

conquest ! but I, alas ! I don't know how to reSir John. 'Oons, sir, I think a woman and a ceive as a favour, what I take to be so infinitely

if you

a

you drink?

my due. But what shall I do to new mould him, and be severe upon him that way. (Sitting down Mademoiselle; for, till then, he's my utter aver- to write, rising up again.)-Yet active severity sion ?

is better than passive. (Sitting down.]—'Tis as Mudem. Matem, you must laugh at him in all good to let it alone too: for every lash I give him, de places dat you meet him, and turn into de ri- perhaps he'll take for a favour.-[Rising.) Yet 'tis dicule all he say and all he do.

a thousand pities so much satire should be lost. L. Fan. Why truly, satire has ever been of (Sitting.)-But if it should have a wrong effect wondrous use to reform ill manners. Besides, upon him, 'twould distract me. (Rising.)– Well, I 'tis my particular talent to ridicule folks. I can must write though, after all, (Sitting.-or I'll let be severe, strangely severe, when I will Mademoi- it alone, which is the same thing. (Rising.) selle-Give me the pen and ink-I find myself Mudem. La voilà determinée. (Exeunt. whimsical l'll write to him-or I'll let it alone,

ACT III.

L. Brute. O ! 'tis the prettiest fringe in the SCENE I.-Opens and discovers Sir John, La- world. Well, cousin, you have the happiest fan

dy Brute, and BELINDA, rising from the cy: pr’ythee advise me about altering my crimtable.

son petticoat.

Sir John. A pox o' your petticoat ! here's such Sir John. Here; take away the things : I cx- a prating, a man cann't digest his own thoughts pect company. But first bring me a pipe ; I'n for you. smoke. (To a Serrunt.]

1. Brule. Don't answer him. (Aside.)-Well, L. Brule. Lord, Sir John, I wonder you won't what do you advise me? leave off that nasty custom.

Bel. Why, really, I would not alter it at all. Sir John. Pr’ythee don't be impertinent. Methinks 'tis very pretty as it is.

Bel. (To L. BRUTE.) I wonder who those are L. Brute. Ay, that's true: but you know one he expects this afternoon.

grows weary of the prettiest things in the world, L. Brule. I'd give the world to know. Per- when one has had 'em long. haps ’lis Constant; he comes here sometimes; if Sir John. Yes, I have taught her that. it does prove him, I'm resolved I'll share the vi- Bel. Shall we provoke him a little ? sit.

L. Brule. With all my heart. Belinda, don't Bel. We'll send for our work and sit here. you long to be married ? L. Brute. He'll choke us with his tobacco. Bel. Why, there are some things in it which I

Bel. Nothing will choke us when we are do- could like well enough. ing what we have a mind to. Lovewell

L. Brute. What do

you
think

you

should dise like? Enter LOVEWELL.

Bel. My husband, a hundred to one else. Lore. Madam.

L. Brute. O ye wicked wretch! Sure you don't L. Brute. Here; bring my cousin's work and speak as you think? mine hither.

Bel. Yes I do: especially if he smoked tobac[Exit Love., and re-enters wilh their work.

(IIe looks earnestly at them. Sir John. Why, pox,

cann't

you
work somc-

L. Brute. Why, that many times takes off where else?

worse smells. L. Brute. We shall be careful not to disturb Bel. Then he must smell very ill indeed.

L. Brute. So some men will, to keep their Bel. Your pipe would make you too thought-wives from coming near them. ful, uncle, if you were left alone; our prittle Bel. Then those wives should cuckold 'em at prattle will cure your spleen.

a distance. [He rises in a fury, throus his pipe Sir John. Will it so, Mrs Pert? Now I believe

ut them, and drives them out. it will so increase it, (Sitting and smoking.] 1 shall take my own house for a paper-mill.

As they run off, enter Constant and HEART. L. Brute (To BEL. aside.] Don't let's mind

FREE; Lady BRUTE runs aguinst CONSTANT. him; let him say what he will.

Sir John. 'Oons, get you gone up stairs, you Sir John. A woman's tongue a cure for the confederating strumpets you, or I'll cuckold youl, spleen ! 'oons—[Aside.) if a man had got the with a vengeance ! head-ach, they'd be for applying the same reme- L. Brute. O lord, he'll beat us, he'll beat us! dy

Dear, dear Mr Constant, save us ! L. Brule. You have done a great deal, Belin

(Exeunt L. BRUTE and BEL. da, since yesterday.

Sir John. I'll cuckold you, with a pox! Bel. Yes, I have worked very hard; how do Con. Heaven ! Sir John, what's the matter? you like it?

Sir John. Sure, if women had been ready cre

CO.

you, sir.

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my friends.

a

ated, the devil, instead of being kicked down in- Heart. And so pay her a yearly pension, to to hell, had been married.

be a distinguish'd cuckold. Heurt. Why, what new plagues have you found now?

Enter a Servunt. Sir John. Why, these two gentlewomen did Serv. Sir, there's my Lord Rake, Colonel but hear me say I expected you here this after- Bully, and some other gentlemen, at the Blue noon; upon which, they presently resolved to Posts, desire your company. take up the room, o' purpose to plague me and Sir John. God's so, we are to consult about

playing the devil to-night. Con. Was that all? Why, we should have been Heurt. Well, we won't hinder business. glad of their company.

Sir John. Methinks I don't know how to leave Sir John. Then I should have been weary of you too: but for once I must make bold. Or, yours ; for I cann’t relish both together. They look you—may be the conference mayn't last found fault with my smoking tobacco too, and long ! So, if you'll wait here half an hour, or an said men stunk. But I have a good mind-to hour, if I don't come then-why then—I won't say something

come at all. Con. No, nothing against the ladies, pray. Heurt. (To Constant.] A good modest proSir John. Split the ladies' Come, will you sit position, truly.

(Aside down ?--Give us some wine, fellow.—You won't Con. But let's accept on't, however. Wbo smoke!

knows what may happen? Con. No, nor drink neither, at this time ; I Heart. Well, sir, to shew you how fond: we must ask your pardon.

are of your company, we'll expect your return as Sir John. What? this mistress of yours runs long as we can. in your head; l'll warrant it's some such squeam. Sir John. Nay, may be ' mayn't stay at all :

1 ish minx as my wife, that's grown so dainty of but business, you know, must he done. So, your late, she finds fault even with a dirty shirt. servant. Or, hark you, if you have a mind to

Heart. That a woman may do, and not be very take a frisk with us, I have an interest with my dainty neither.

lord; I can easily introduce you. Sir John. Pox o' the women ! let's drink. Con. We are much beholden to you; but, for Come, you shall take one glass, though I send my part, I'm engaged another way. for a box of lozenges to sweeten your mouth af- Sir John, What! to your mistress, I'll warter it.

rant? Pr’ythee leave your nasty punk to enterCon. Nay, if one glass will satisfy you, I'll tain herself with her own wicked thoughts, and drink it, without putting you to that expence.

make one with us to-night. Sir John. Why, that's honest. Fill some wine, Con. Sir, 'tis business that is to employ me. sirrah. So, here's to you, gentlemen.-A wife's Hrart. And me; and business must be done, the devil.—To your both being married.

[They drink. Sir John. Ay, women's business, though the Heart. O, your most humble servant, sir. world were consumed for't.

(Exit. Sir John. Well, how do you like my wine? Cor. Farewell, beast; and now, my dear friend, Con. 'Tis very good, indeed.

would my mistress be but as complaisant as sone Heart. 'Tis admirable.

men's wives, who think it a piece of good-breedSir John. Then give us t'other glass.

ing to receive the visits of their husbands' friends Con. No, pray excuse us now: we'll come in his absence.another time, and then we won't spare it.

Hrart. Why, for your sake, I could forgive ber, Sir John. This one glass, and no more. Come, though she should be so complaisant to receive it shall be your mistress's health; and that's a something else in his absence. But what way great compliment from me, I assure you. shall we invent to see her?

Con. And 'tis a very obliging one to me; so Con. () ne'er hope it; invention will prove as give us the glasses.

vain as wishes. Sir John. So; let her live(He coughs in the glass.

Enter Lady BRUTE and BELINDA. Heart. And be kind.

Heart. What do you think now, friend? Con. What's the matter ? Does it go the

wrong

Con. I think I shall swoon. way?

Heart. I'll speak first, then, while you fetch Sir John. If I had love enough to be jealous, I breath. should take this for an ill omen: for I never L. Brute. We think ourselves obliged, gentle. drank my wife's health in my life, but I puked in men, to come and return you thanks for your my glass.

knight-errantry. We were just upon being deCon. O she's too virtuous to make any rea- vour'd by the fiery dragon. sonable man jealous.

Bel. Did not his fumes almost knock you down, Sir John. Pox of her virtue! If I could catch gentlemen ? her adulterating, I might be divorced from her by Heart. Truly, ladies, we did undergo some law.

hardships; and should have done more, if some

you know,

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