Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

Sir Greg. {To Boncour.) Why Bhould there go so many words to a bargain: let us have the wedding directly.

Sir Geo. Wedding, directly! what, do you think you are coupling some of your animals in the country? Do you think that a union of bodies is all that is requisite in a state, wherein there can be no happiness without a union of minds too? Go, and redeem past time: your son is not yet too old to learn: employ some able man to cultivate the share of understanding that nature gave him; to weed out all the follies and fopperies that he has pick'd up in the tour of Europe, as he calls it: then, when he appears to be a rational creature, and not till then, let him pay his addresses to my niece.

Young Ken. So, then, I find I am not a rational creature! and faith, I begin to think so myself. And whose fault was that, father, but yours, that did not give me a rational education.

Sir Greg. Why, you dog, I gave you the same education I had myself: would you have had a better education than your father, sirrah? But did not I send you, besides, to travel, to finish your education? and when an education is finish'd, is not that enough? what signifies what the beginning was? But never fear them, Greg; with such an education as I had, I got twenty thousand pounds with my wife; and you who have travelled may, I think, expect more. Never fear 'em, boy, the acres, the acres will do the business.

Sir Geo. There you may find yourself mistaken; for I have some dirty acres to add to my niece's fortune that may chance to weigh against your scale. Her behaviour this day has pleas'd me: and I never will consent to see her wedded to any one, who has not understanding enough to know her value.

Young Ken. Oh! heavens! I'll do any thing to mend

N

my understanding rather than lose the only woman I can love; and though I have hated books as I do the devil, if that be the only way to improve it, I'll pore my eyes out rather than lose her.

Bone. Why, this must be a work of time; and whenever you render yourself worthy of her, you may have a chance to succeed.

Enter Servant.

Serv. Sir, my lady has sent me to acquaint your honour, that supper is on table.

Bone. We will attend her. [Exit Servant.

Sir Geo. Well, brother, I think you begin to find already the good effects of my advice to you: your wife, you see, civilly sends in, instead of rushing herself into company with the scream of, 'Why must not I be let 'into the secret?'

Bone. Sir George, I thank you; and am now convine'd, that a little exertion of a proper authority on my part will soon make my wife act like a rational woman.

Sir Geo. Well, George, your behaviour this day has, I confess, wiped away some part of the very bad opinion I had of you; and if you will cast off your follies, and turn away your wench, I have a wife in view for you, the same that your father intended to propose, who will make you amends for the one you have lost: and in that case, to make you more worthy of her, I don't care if I settle the best part of my estate on you.

Young Bone. Sir, I know that professions, on such occasions, often pass only for words of course; but you will see, by a total reformation of my past conduct, that the whole study of my life hereafter shall be to please so generous an uncle, and so good a father.

Sir Geo. What a variety of strange events has this day produced! I can't help thinking, that they might furnish out a good subject for a comedy.

Bone. Only a catastrophe would be wanting; because you know it is a constant rule, that comedies should end in a marriage.

Sir Geo. That's true; but if the performer, who is to represent your character, should only step forward at the end, and make a smooth speech or so, an English audience is generally so good natur'd, that they would pass over that, and all the other faults that might be in the piece for the sake of the Good-natur'd Man.

[ocr errors]
[merged small][ocr errors]

Prologues and Epilogues—to speak the phrase

Which suits the warlike spirit of these days

Are cannon charg'd, or shou'd be charg'd, with wit,
Which, pointed well, each rising folly hit;
By a late Gen'ral who commanded here,
And fought our bloodless battles many a year!
'Mongst other favours were conferr'd on me,

He made me Captain of Artillery!

At various follies many guns I fir'd,
Hit 'em point blank, and thought the foe retir'd,—
But vainly thought—for to my great surprize,
They now are rank and file before my eyes!

Nay, to retreat may even me oblige;

The works of Folly stand the longest siege!
With what brisk firing, and what thunder-claps,
Did I attack those high-built castle—caps!
But tow'ring still, they swell in lofty state,
Nor strike one riband to capitulate ;—
Whilst beaus behind, thus peeping, and thus bent,
Are the besieg'd, behind the battlement:
But you are conquerors, Ladies—have no dread,
Henceforth in peace enjoy the cloud-cap'd-head!
We scorn to ape the French, their tricks give o'er,
Nor at your rigging fire one cannon more!
And now ye Bucks and Buddings of the age,
Tho' caps are clear, your hats shall feel my rage;

The high-cock'd, half-cock'd quaker, and the slouch,

Have at ye all ?—I'll hit you, though ye crouch;

We read in history—one William Tell,

An honest Swiss, with arrows shot so well,

On his son's head, he aim'd with so much care,

He'd hit an apple, and not touch one hair:

So I, with such-like skill, but much less pain,

Will strike your hats off, and not touch your brain:

To curse our head-dress! an't you pretty fellows!

Pray who can see thro' your broad-brim'd umbrellas?

That pent-house worn by slim Sir Dainty Dandle!

Seems to extinguish a poor farthing candle—

We look his body thro'—But what fair she,

Thro' the broad cloud that's round his head can see?

Time was, when Britons to the boxes came,

Quite spruce, and chapeau has! address'd each dame.

Now in flapt hats, and dirty boots they come,

Look knowing thus—to every female dumb;

But roar out—Hey, Jack! so, Will! you there, Tom?

Both sides have errors, that there's no concealing;

We'd low'r our heads, had but men's hearts some feeling.

Valence, my spark, play'd off his modish airs,

But nature gave us wit to cope with theirs;

Our sex have some small faults won't bear defending,

And tho' near perfect, want a little mending;

Let Love step forth, and claim from both allegiance,

And bring back caps and hats to due obedience.

« AnteriorContinuar »