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And hard of digeftion.

Mifs Farren.
Mrs Charteris,

ACT I.

SCENE, A Garden belonging to DON DIEGO's House,

TH

DON DIEGO enters mufing.
HOUGHTS to council-let me fee-
Hum. -to be or not to be
A hufband, is the queftion.
A cuckold! muft that follow?
Say what men will,
Wedlock's a pill

Bitter to fwallow,

But fear makes the danger feem double.
Say, Hymen, what mifchief can trouble

My

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My peace, fhould I venture to try you?
My doors fhall be lock'd,
My windows be block'd;
No male in my houfe,
Not fo much as a mouse:

Then horns, horns, I defy you.
Dieg. Urfula!

Enter Urfula.

Urf. Here, an't please your worship.
Dieg. Where is Leonora?

Urf. In her chamber, Sir.

Dieg. There is the key of it; there the key of the best hall; there the key of the door upon the first flight of ftairs; there the key of the door upon the second; this double-locks the hatch below, and this the door that opens into that entry.

Urf. I am acquainted with every ward of them.

Dieg. You know, Urfula, when I took Leonora from her father and mother, she was to live in the house with me three months; at the expiration of which time, I entered into a bond of four thoufand piftoles, either to return her to them spotless, with half that fum for a dowry, or make her my true and lawful wife.

Urf. And, I warrant you, they came fecretly to inquire of me whether they might venture to truft your worthip. Lord! faid I, I have lived with the gentleman nine years and three quarters, come Lammas, and never faw any thing uncivil by him in my life; nor no more I ever did: and to let your worship know if I had, you would have miftaken your perfon; for I blefs heaven, tho' I'm poor, I'm honeft, and would not live with any man alive that should want to handle me unlawfully.

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Dieg. Urfula, I do believe it: and you are particularly happy, that both your age and your perfon exempt you from any fuch temptation. But, be this as it will, Leonora's parents, after fome little difficulty, confented to comply with my propofal; and, being fully fatisfied with their daughter's temper and conduct, which I wanted to be acquainted with, this day being the expiration of the term, I am refolved to fulfil my bond, by marrying her to-morrow.

Urf. Heaven blefs you together..

Z 2

Dieg

Dieg. During the time fhe has lived with me, fhe has never been a moment out of my fight: and now, t‹l me, Urfula, what you have obferved in her.

Urf. All meekness and gentleness, your worship; and yet, 1 warrant you, fhrewd and fenfible; egad, when the pleafes, fhe can be as sharp as a needle.

Dieg. You have not been able to discover any parti. cular attachments?

Urf. Why, Sir, of late I have observed

Dieg. Eh! how! what?

Urf. That fhe has taken greatly to the young kitten.
Dieg. O! is that all?

Urf. Ay, by my faith, I don't think she is fond of any thing elfe.

Dieg. Of me, Urfula?

Urf. Ay, ay, of the kitten and your worship, and her birds, and going to mass. 1 have taken notice of late, that she is mighty fond of going to mafs as your worship lets her, early of a morning.

Dieg. Well! I am now going to her parents, to let them know my refolution; I will not take her with me, because, having been used to confinement, and it being the life I am determined fhe fhall lead, it will be only giving her a bad habit. I fhall return with the good folks to-morrow morning; in the mean time, Urfula, I confide in your attention; and take care, as you would merit my favour.

Urf. I will indeed, your worship; nay, if there is a widow gentlewoman in all Salamanca fitter to look after a young maiden

Dieg. Go, and fend Leonora to me.

Urf. I know the world, Sir, tho' I fay't:

I'm cautious and wife;
And they who surprise
My prudence nodding,
Muft fit up late,
Never fear, Sir,
Your fafety's here, Sir;
Yes, yes,

I'll anfwer for Mifs:
Let me alone,

I warrant my care

Shall

As much as your own.

[Exit Urfula. Dieg. I dreamt last night that I was going to church with Leonora to be married, and that we were met on the road by a drove of oxen -Oxen. I don't like oxen! I wish it had been a flock of sheep. Enter Leonora with a bird on her finger, which she holds in the other hand by a string.

Leon. Say, little, foolish, fluttering thing,
Whither, ah! whither would you wing
Your airy flight?

Shall weigh to a hair

Stay here and fing,

Your mistress to delight.

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No, no, no,
Sweet Robin, you fhall not
go:
Where, you wanton, could you
Half fo happy as with me?
Dieg. Leonora!

Leon. Here I am.

Dieg. Look me in the face, and liften to me attentive]

ly.

Dieg. What do you figh for?

Leon. I don't know.

be,

Leon. There.

Dieg. I am going this evening to your father and mother, and I fuppofe you are not ignorant of the cause of my journey. Are you willing to be my wife?

Leon. I am willing to do whatever you and my father and my mother please.

Dieg. But that's not the thing; do you like me?
Leon. Y-es.

Dieg. When you came hither, you were taken from a mean little houfe, ill fituated, and worse furnished; you had no fervants, and were obliged, with your mother, to do the work yourself.

Leon. Yes; but when we had done, I could look out at the window, or go a-walking in the fields.

Dieg. Perhaps you diflike confinement?
Leon. No, I don't, I am fure.

Dieg. I fay, then, I took you from that mean habitation and hard labour, to a noble building, and this fine garden; where, fo far from being a flave, you are

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abfolute

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abfolute miftrefs; and inftead of wearing a mean ftuff
gown, look at yourself, I beseech you; the dress you
have on is fit for a princess.

Leon. 'Tis very fine, indeed.

Dieg. Well, Leonora, you know in what manner you have been treated fince you have been my companion; afk yourself again now, whether you can be content to lead a life with me according to the fpecimen you have had?

Leon. Specimen!

Dieg. Ay, according to the manner I have treated you
according-

Leon. I'll do whatever you please.

Dieg. Then, my dear, give me a kiss.
Leon. Good b'ye to you.
Dieg. Here, Urfula.

By fome I am told,

That I'm wrinkled and old;

But I will not believe what they say:
1 feel my blood mounting,
Like streams in a fountain,

That merrily fparkle and play.
For love I have will

And ability ftill;

Odfbobs, I can fcarcely refrain!
My diamond, my pearl-
Well, be a good girl,
Until I come to you again.

[Exit Don Diego. Leon. Heigho! I think I am fick.-He's very good to me, to be fure; and 'tis my duty to love him, because we ought not to be ungrateful; but I wish I was not to marry him for all that, though I'm afraid to tell him fo. Fine feathers, they fay, make fine birds; but I am fure they don't make happy ones; a fparrow is happier in the fields than a goldfinch in a cage. There is fomething makes me mighty uneafy. While he was talking to me, I thought I never faw any thing look fo ugly in my life O dear now, why did I forget to afk leave to go mafs to-morrow? I fuppofe, because he's abroad, Ur. fula won't take me-I wish I had asked leave to go to mafe.

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