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within there? I charge you come out, in the Are. Sir, I hope my husband's company is not king's name, and submit yourselves to our royal criminal ! authority.

Arg. Your husband! who's your husband, 2 Mob. This is the gentleman that was killed, housewife? that scoundrel? Captain-Out of my an't please your worship.

sight, thou ungracious wretch ! I'll go make

my will this instant and you, you villain ! how Enter ARGUS.

dare you look me in the face after all this? Arg. O neighbours ! I'm ruined and undone for I'll have you hanged, sirrah! I will so. ever! They have taken away all that's dear to Hear. O fie, brother Argus ! moderate your me in the world.

passion. It ill becomes the friendship you owe 1 Mob. That's his money; 'tis a sad covetous Ned Worthy; to vilify and affront liis only child, dog.

and for no other crime than improving that friendRob. Why, what's the matter? What have ship which has ever been between us. they done?

Arg. Ha! my dear friend alive! I heard thou Arg. O, they have taken my child from me, wert dead in the Indies-And is that thy son? and my Thusy!

my godson, too, if I am not mistaken? Rob. Good lack !

Hear. The very same—the last and best re3 Mob. Marry come up, what valuation can mains of our family; forced by my wife's cruelty, she be?“-But, have they taken nothing else? and my absence, to the army. My wife is since

Arg. Would they had stript my house of every dead, and the son she had by her former huspennyworth, so they had left my child !

band, whom she intended to heir my estate ; but 1 Mob. That's a lie, I believe; for he loves fortune guided me by chance to my dear boy, his money more than his soul, and wouid sooner who, after twenty years absence, and changing part with that than a groat.

iny name, knew me not, till I just now discovered Arg. This is the captain's doings, but I'll have myself to him and your fair daughter, whom I him hanged.

will make him deserve by thirty thousand pounds, Rob. But where are the thieves?

which I brought from India, besides what real Arg. Gone, gone, beyond all hopes of pur- estate I may leave at my death. suit.

Arg. And to match that, old boy, my daughter 2 Mob. What! are they gone? Then, come shall have every penny of mine, besides her unneighbours, let us go in, and kill every mother's cle's legacy —Ah! you young rogue, had I child of them.

known you, I would not have used you so roughRob. Hold; I charge you to commit no mur-ly!--Ilowever, since you have won my girl so der; follow me, and we'll apprehend them. bravely, take her, and welcome-But you must

Arg. Go, villains, cowards, scoundrels, or I excuse all faults--the old man meant all for shall suspect you are the thieves that mean to rob the best ; you must not be angry. me of what is yet left. How brave you are, now Rov. Sir, on the contrary, we ought to beg all the danger's over! Oh, sirrah, you dog! your pardon for the many disquiets we have given (Looking at Robin.] you are that rogue, Robin, you; and, with your pardon, we crave your blessthe captain's man. Seize him, weighbours, seize ing,

[They kneel. him!

Arg. You have it, children, with all iny heart. Rob. [Aside.] I don't care what you do, for Adod, I a'n so transported, I don't know whether the job's over; I see my master a-coming.

I walk or fly! Arg. Why don't you seize him, I say?

Are. May your joy be everlasting ! Mob. Not we; we have lost too much time about an old fool already.

Rovewell and ARETHUSA, embracing. 2 Mob. Ay; the next time you're bound and

DUETTO, gagged, you shall lie and be damned for me! 3 Mob. Ay, and me, too; come along, neigh

Thus fondly caressing, bours, come along.

[Ereunt Mob. My idol, my treasure, Enter RoveweLL, HEARTY, ARETH USA, and

llow great is the blessing!

How sweet is the pleasure !
BETTY. .

With joy I bebold thee,
Arg. Bless me! who have we got here? O And doat on thy charms;
Thusy! Thusy! I had rather never have seen Thus while I entold thee,
thee again, than have found you in such com-

I've heaven in my arms. pany.

[E.seunt omnes.

THE

DEVIL TO PAY;

OR,

THE WIVES METAMORPHOSED.

BY

COFFEY.

DRAMATIS PERSONÆ.

MEN.

WOMEN. Sre John LOVERULE, an honest country gentle- Lady LOVERULE, wife to Sir John, a proud, man, beloved for his hospitality.

canting, brawling, fanatical shrew. BUTLER,

Lucy,

her maids. Cook,

LETTICE, servants to Sir John. FOOTMAN,

Nell, Jobson's wife, an innocent country girl. COACHMAN,

Tenants, servants. Jobsox, a psalm-singing cobler, tenant to SIR

Joun. DOCTOR.

SceneA country village.

ACT I.

SCENE I.-The cobler's house. Don't you know, hussy, that I am king in my

own house, and that this is treason against my Jobson and NELL.

majesty? Nell

. Peither, good Jobson, stay with me Nell. Did ever one hear such stuff! But, I to-night, and for once make merry at home. pray you now, Jobson, don't go to the alehouse

Job. Peace, peace, you jade, and go spin; for, to-night! if I ack any thread for my stitching, I will pu- Job. Well, I'll humour you for once; but don't nish you by virtue of my sovereign authority. grow saucy upon't; for I am invited by sir John Nell

. Ay, marry, no doubt of that; whilst you Loverule's butler, and am to be princely drunk take your swing at the alehouse, spend your sub- with punch, at the hall place; we shall have a stance, get drunk as a beast, then come home bowl large enough to swim in. like a sot, and use one like a dog.

Nell. But they say, husband, the new lady will not Job. Nounz! do you prate? Why, how now, suffer a stranger to enter her doors; she grudges brazen-face, do you speak ill of the government? even a draught of small beer to her own servants; Vol. III.

E

ness.

and several of the tenants have come home with y galley, than in our family: Our master, indeed, broken heads from her ladyship’s own hands, only is the worthiest gentleman---nothing but sweetfor smelling strong beer in the house.

ness and liberality. Job. A pox on her for a fanatical jade! she Foot. But bere's a house turned topsy-turvy, has almost distracted the good knight : But she's from heaven to hell, since she came hither. now abroad, feasting with her relations, and will Lucy. His former lady was all virtue and mildscarce come home to-night; and we are to have much drink, a fiddle, and merry gambols!

But. Ay, rest her soul, she was so; but this Nell. O dear husband ! let me go with you ; is inspired with a legion of devils, who make her we'll be as merry as the night's long !

lay about her like a tury. Job. Why, how now, you bold baggage ! would Lucy. I am sure I always feel her in my bones : you be carried to a company of smooth-faced, if her complexion don't please her, or she looks eating, drinking, lazy serving-men? no, no, you yellow in a morning, I am sure to look black and jade, I'll not be a cuckold.

blue for it berore night. Nell. I'm sure they would make me welcome; Cook. Pox on her! I dare not come within her you promised I should see the house, and the fa- reach. I have some six broken heads already. inily has not been here before, since you married A lady, quotha! a she-bear is a civiler animal. and brought me home.

Foot. Ileaven help my poor master! this deJob. Why, thou most audacious strumpet, dar'st vilish termagant scolding woman will be the death thou dispute with me, thy lord and master? Get of him; I never saw a man so altered all the days in and spin, or else my strap shall wind about of nay life. thy ribs most confoundedly.

Cook. There's a perpetual motion in that tongue

of hers, and a damned shrill pipe, enough to AIR.—The Twitcher.

break the drum of a man's ear.

He that has the best wife,

Enter blind Fiddler, Jobson, and neighbours. She's the plague of his life; But for her that will scold and will quarrel, But. Welcome, welcome all; this is our wish! Let hiin cut her off short

Honest old acquaintance, goodman Jobson ! how Of her meat and her sport,

dost thou ? And ten times a day hoop her barrel, brave boys ! Job. By my troth, I am always sharp set toAnd ten times a day hoop her barrel.

wards puuch, and am now come with a firm re

solution, though but a poor cobler, to be as richNell. Well, we poor women must always be ly drunk as a lord. I am a true English heart, slaves, and never have any joy ; but you men and look upon drunkenness as the best part of run and ramble at your pleasure.

the liberty of the subject. Job. Why, you most pestilent baggage, will you But. Come, Jobson, we'll bring out our bowl be hooped? Be gone.

of punch in solemn procession; and then for a Nell. I must obey.

(Going song to crown our happiness. Job. Stay! now I think on't, here's sixpence [They all go out, and return with a bowl of for you; get ale and applcs, stretch and puff thy

punch.] self up with lamb's-wool, rejoice and revel by thyself, be drunk, and wallow in thy own sty, like

AIR.-Charles of Sueden. grumbling sow as thou art.

Come jolly Bacchus, god of wine, He that has the best wife,

Crown this night with pleasure;
She's the plague of his life, &c. [Ereunt. Let pone at cares of life repine,

To destroy our pleasure :
SCENE II.Sir John's house.

Fill up the mighty sparkling bowl,

That every true and loyal soul BUTLER, Cook, Footman, Coacuman, Lucy, May drink and sing without controul, LETTICE, &c.

To support our pleasure. But. I would the blind Gddler and our dancing Thus, mighty Bacchus, shalt thou be neighbours were here, that we might rejoice a Guardian of our pleasure ; little, while our termagant lady is abroad; I have That, under thy protection, we made a most sovereigu bowl of punch.

May enjoy new pleasure. Lucy. We had need rejoice soinetimes, for And as the hours glide away, our devilish new lady will never suffer it in her We'll, in thy name, invoke their stay, hearing.

And sing thy praises, that we may But. I will maintain, there is more inirth in a Live and die with pleasure.

a

But. The king and the royal family, in a brim- I'll teach you to junket thus, and steal my provimer

sions; I shall be devoured at this rate. AIR.

But. I thought, madam, we might be merry

once upon a holiday. Here's a good health to the king,

Lady. Holiday, you popish cur! Is one day And send him a prosperous reign;

more holy than another? and if it be, you'll be O'er hilis and high mountains,

sure to get drunk upon it, you rogue! [Beats him.] We'll drink dry the fountains,

You minx, yon impudent Alirt, are you jigging it Until the sun rises again, brave boys !

after an abominable fiddle? all dancing is u horish, Until the sun rises again.

hussy!

[Lugs her by the ears. Lucy. O lud! she has pulled off both

my ears. Then, here's to thee, my boy boon,

Sir John. Pray, madam, consider your sex and Aud here's to thee, my boy boon;

quality! I blush for your behaviour. As we've tarried all day

Lady. Consider your incapacity; you shall not For to drink down the sun,

instruct me.

Who are you, thus muftled? you So we'll tarry and drink down the moon, brave buzzard ! [She beats them all; Jobson steals by. boys!

Job. I am an honest, plain, psalm-singing cobSo we'll tarry and drink down the moon. bler, madam; if your ladyship would but go to

church, you might hear me above all the rest Omnes. Huzza!

there.

Lady. I'll try thy voice here first, villain ! Enter Sir Jonn, and LADY.

Strikes him.

Job. Nounz! what a pox, what a devil ails Lady. O Ileaven and earth! What's here with you? in my doors? Is hell broke loose? What troops Lady. () profane wretch! wicked varlet ! ot tiends are here? Sirrah, you impudent rascal, Sir John. For shame! your behaviour is monspeak!

strous ! Sir John. For shame, my dear! As this is Lady. Was crer poor lady so miserable in a a time of mirth and jollity, it has always been brutish husband as I am? I, that am so pious, and the custom of my house, to give my servants li- so religious a woman! berty in this seasoli, and to treat my country neighbours, that with innocent sports they may Job. [Sings.] He that has the best wife, divert theinselves.

She's the plague of his life, Lady. I say, meddle with your own affairs; I But for her that will scold and will quarrel will govern my own house, without your putting

[Exit Job. in an oar.

Shall I ask leave to correct my own Lady. O rogue, scoundrel, villain ! servants?

Sir John. Remember mortesty. Sir John. I thought, madam, this had been Lady. I'll rout you all with a vengeance; I'll my house, and these my tenants and servants. spoil your squeaking trehle.

Lady. Did I bring a fortune, to be thus abused, [Beats the fiddle about the blind man's head. and snubbed before people? Do you call my au

Fid. ( murder, murder! I am a dark man; thority in question, ungrateful man? Look you which way shall I get hence? Ob Heaven! she to your dogs and horses abroad, but it shail be has broke my fiddle, and undone me and my wife mny province to govern here; nor will I be con- and children. trovied by e'er a hunting, hawking knight in Sir John. Here, poor fellow! take your staff Christendom.

and be gone: There's money to buy you two such;

Erit fiddler. AIR.-Set by MR SEEDO.

Laily. Methinks you are very liberal, sir; must my estate maintain

you in

your profuseness? Sir John. Ye gods! you gave to me a wife, Sir John. Go up to your closet, pray, and comOut of your grace and favour,

pose your mind.
To be the comfort of my life,

Lady. O wicked man! to bid me pray!
And I was glad to have her:

Sir John. A man can't be completely curst, I
But if your Providence Divine, see, without marriage ; but, since there is such

For greater bliss design her, a thing as separate maintenance, she shall to-
To ubey your wills at any time morrow enjoy the benefit of it.
I am ready to resign her.

AIR.—Of all comforts I miscarried.
This it is to be married to a continual tempest. Of the states in life so various,
Sirfe and noise, canting and hypocrisy, are eter- Marriage, sure, is most precarious ;
nally atloat.-' is impossible to bear it long. 'Tis a maze so strangely winding,
Lody. Ye filthy scoundrels, and odious jades! Still we are new mazes finding;

2

that's your way

'Tis an action so severe,

Doc. Thank you heartily, good woman, and That nought but death can set us clear. to requite your civility, I'll tell you your fortune. Happy's the man, from wedlock free,

Nell. , pray do, sir ; I never had my fortune Who knows to prize his liberty :

told me in my life. Were man wary

Doc. Let me behold the lines of your face. How they marry,

Nell. I'm afraid, sir, 'tis none of the cleanest; We should not be by half so full of misery. I have been about dirty work all this day.

Doc. Come, come, 'tis a good face; be not (Knocking at the door.] Here, where are my ser- ashamed of it; you shall shew it in greater places vants? Must they be frighted from me!-Within suddenly. there-see who knocks.

Nell. O dear sir, I shall be mightily ashamed! Lady. Within there!-Where are my sluts? Ye I want dacity when I come before great folks. drabs, ye queans Lights there !

Doc. You must be confident, and fear no

thing; there is inuch happiness attends you. Enter Servants sneaking, with candles.

Nell. Oh me! this is a rare man! Heaven be But, Sir, it is a doctor that lives ten miles off; thanked ! he practises physic, and is an astrologer : your Doc. To morrow, before sunrise, you shall be worship knows himn very well; he is a cunding the happiest woman in this country, man, makes almanacks, and can help people to Nell. How! by to-morrow? alack-a-day! sir, their gouds again.

how can that be? Enter Doctor.

Doc. No more shall you be troubled with a

surly husband, that rails at, and straps you. Doc. Sir, I humbly beg your honour's pardon Nell. Lud! how came he to know that? he for this unseasonable intrusion ; but I am be must be a conjurer! Indeed my husband is somenighted, and 'lis so dark that I can't possibly find what rugged, and in his cups will beat me, but my way home; and knowing your worship’s hos- it is not much. He's an honest pains-taking man, pitality, desire the favour to be harboured under and I let him have bis way. Pray, sir, take the your roof to-night.

other cup of ale. Lady. Out of my house, you lewd conjurer, you Doc. I thank you.—Believe me, to-morrow magician !

you shall be the richest woman in the hundred, Doc. Here's a turn!-Here's a change !-Well, and ride in your own coach. if I have any art, ye shall smart for this. (Aside. Nell. O father! you jeer me.

Sir John. You see, friend, I am not master of Doc. By my art, do not. But mark my my own house; therefore, to avoid any uneasi- words; be confident, and bear all out, or worse ness, go down the lane about a quarter of a mile, will follow. and you'll see a cobler's cottage; stay there a Nell. Never fear, sir, I warrant youJittle, and I'll send my servant to conduct you to gemini! a coach! a tenant's house, where you'll be well entertained.

AIR.—Send home my long-strayed eyes. Doc. I thank you, sir ; I'm your most humble servant.--But, as for your lady there, she shall My swelling heart now leaps for joy, this night feel my resentment.

[Erit. And riches all my thoughts employ; Sir John. Come, madam; you and I must have No more shall people call me Nell, some conference together.

Her ladyship will do as well.
Lady. Yes, I will have a conference and a re- Decked in my golden, rich array,
formation, too, in this house, or I'll turn it up- I'll in my chariot roll away,
side down-I will.

And shine at ring, at ball, and play.
AIR.--Contented country farmer.

Enter Jobson.

Job. Where is this quean? Here, Nell! What Sir John. Grant me, ye powers, but this request, a pox, are you drunk with your lamb's-wool?

And let who will the world contest; Nell. O husband! here's the rarest man-he
Convey her to some distant shore, has told me my fortune!
Where I may ne'er behold her more: Job. Has he so ? and planted my fortune, too!
Or let me to some cottage fly,

a lusty pair of horns upon my head !- Eh?- Is In freedom's arms to live and die. it not so?

[Ereunt. Doc. Thy wife is a virtuous woman, and thou SCENE III.—The Cobler's.

wilt be happy.

Job. Come out, you hang.dog, you juggler, you Nell, and the Doctor.

cheating, bainboozling villain ! inust I be cuckoldNell. Pray, sir, mend your draught, if you ed by such rogues as you are ? mackmaticians, please ; you are very welcome, sir.

and almanack-makers !

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