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cradle, and fed that pretty mouth with a spoon!] Did not I work that waistcoat to make you genteel? Did not I prescribe for you every day, and weep while the receipt was operating?
Tony. Ecod! you had reason to weep, for you have been dosing me ever since I was born. I have gone through every receipt in the Complete Housewife ten times over; and you have thoughts of coursing me through Quincey next spring. But, ecod! I tell you, I'll not be made a fool of no longer.
Mrs. Hardcastle. Wasn't it all for your good, viper? Wasn't it all for your good?
Tony. I wish you'd let me and my good alone, then. Snubbing this way when I'm in spirits. If I'm to have any good, let it come of itself; not to keep dinging it, dinging it into one so.
Mrs. Hardcastle. That's false; I never see you when you're in spirits. No, Tony, you then go to the alehouse or kennel. I'm never to be de lighted with your agreeable wild notes, unfeeling|
Hastings. To me she appears sensible and silent.
Tony. Ay, before company. But when she's with her playmate, she's as loud as a hog in a gate.
Hastings. But there is a meek modesty about her that charms me.
Tony. Yes, but curb her never so little, she kicks up, and you're flung in the ditch.
Hastings. Well, but you must allow her a little beauty.-Yes, you must allow her some beauty.
Tony. Band-box! She's all a made-up thing, mum. Ah! could you but see Bet Bouncer of these parts, you might then talk of beauty. Ecod, she has two eyes as black as sloes, and cheeks as broad and red as a pulpit cushion. She'd make two of she.
Hastings. Well, what say you to a friend that would take this bitter bargain off your hands? Tony. Anan?
Hastings. Would you thank him that would take Miss Neville, and leave you to happiness and
Tony. Ecod! mamma, your own notes are the your dear Betsy? wildest of the two.
Tony. Ay; but where is there such a friend,
Mrs. Hardcastle. Was ever the like? but I see for who would take her? he wants to break my heart; I see he does.
Hastings. Dear madam, permit me to lecture the young gentleman a little. I'm certain I can persuade him to his duty.
Hastings. I am he. If you but assist me, I'll engage to whip her off to France, and you shall never hear more of her.
Tony. Assist you! Ecod I will, to the last drop Mrs. Hardcastle. Well, I must retire. Come, of my blood. I'll clap a pair of horses to your Constance, my love. You see, Mr. Hastings, the chaise that shall trundle you off in a twinkling, wretchedness of my situation: was ever poor wo- and may-be get you a part of her fortin besides in man so plagued with a dear, sweet, pretty, provok-jewels that you little dream of. ing, undutiful boy?
[Exeunt Mrs. Hardcastle and Miss Neville.
Tony [singing]. "There was a young man riding by, and fain would have his will. Rang do didlo dee."Don't mind her. Let her cry. It's the comfort of her heart. I have seen her and sister cry over a book for an hour together; and they said they liked the book the better the more it made them cry.
Hastings. Then you're no friend to the ladies, I find, my pretty young gentleman?
Tony. That's as I find 'um.
Hastings. Not to her of your mother's choosing,
I dare answer? And yet she appears to me a
pretty well-tempered girl.
Hastings. My dear 'Squire, this looks like a lad of spirit.
Tony. Come along, then, and you shall see more of my spirit before you are done with me. [Singing.
Hardcastle. WHAT could my old friend Sir Tony. That's because you don't know her so Charles mean by recommending his son as the well as I. Ecod! I know every inch about her; modestest young man in town? To me he apand there's not a more bitter cantackerous toad in pears the most impudent piece of brass that ever all Christendom. spoke with a tongue. He has taken possession of Hastings [aside]. Pretty encouragement this the easy chair by the fire-side already. He took for a lover! off his boots in the parlour, and desired me to see Tony. I have seen her since the height of that. them taken care of. I'm desirous to know how She has as many tricks as a hare in a thicket, or a his impudence affects my daughter. She will colt the first day's breaking.
certainly be shocked at it.
Enter MISS HARDCASTLE, plainly dressed.
Hardcastle. Well, my Kate, I see you have changed your dress, as I bid you; and yet, I believe, there was no great occasion.
Miss Hardcastle. I find such a pleasure, sir, in obeying your commands, that I take care to observe them without ever debating their propriety. Hardcastle. And yet, Kate, I sometimes give you some cause, particularly when I recommended my modest gentleman to you as a lover to-day. Miss Hardcastle. You taught me to expect something extraordinary, and 1 find the original exceeds the description.
Hardcastle. I was never so surprised in my life! He has quite confounded all my faculties! Miss Hardcastle. I never saw any thing like it: and a man of the world too!
Hardcastle. Ay, he learned it all abroad-what a fool was I, to think a young man could learn modesty by travelling. He might as soon learn wit at a masquerade.
Miss Hardcastle. It seems all natural to him. Hardcastle. A good deal assisted by bad company and a French dancing-master.
Miss Hardcastle. Sure you mistake, papa! A French dancing-master could never have taught him that timid look-that awkward address-that bashful manner
Hardcastle. Whose look? whose manner, child? Miss Hardcastle. Mr. Marlow's : his mauvaise honte, his timidity, struck me at the first sight.
Hardcastle. Then your first sight deceived you; for I think him one of the most brazen first sights that ever astonished my senses.
Miss Hardcastle. Sure, sir, you rally! I never saw any one so modest.
Hardcastle. And can you be serious? I never saw such a bouncing, swaggering puppy since I was born. Bully Dawson was but a fool to him.
Miss Hardcastle. Surprising! He met me with a respectful bow, a stammering voice, and a look fixed on the ground.
Hardcastle. He met me with a loud voice, a lordly air, and a familiarity that made my blood freeze again.
at making punch. Yes, Kate, he asked your father if he was a maker of punch!
Miss Hardcastle. One of us must certainly be mistaken.
Hardcastle. If he be what he has shown himself, I'm determined he shall never have my consent..
Miss Hardcastle. And if he be the sullen thing I take him, he shall never have mine. Hardcastle. In one thing then we are agreedto reject him.
Miss Hardcastle. Yes: but upon conditions. For if you should find him less impudent, and I more presuming: if you find him more respectful, and I more importunate-I don't know-the fellow is well enough for a man-Certainly we don't meet many such at a horse-race in the country.
Hardcastle. If we should find him so-But that's impossible. The first appearance has done my business. I'm seldom deceived in that.
Miss Hardcastle. And yet there may be many good qualities under that first appearance.
Hardcastle. Ay, when a girl finds a fellow's outside to her taste, she then sets about guessing the rest of his furniture. With her, a smooth face stands for good sense, and a genteel figure for every virtue.
Miss Hardcastle. I hope, sir, a conversation begun with a compliment to my good sense, won't end with a sncer at my understanding?
Hardcastle. Pardon me, Kate. But if young Mr. Brazen can find the art of reconciling contradictions, he may please us both, perhaps.
Miss Hardcastle. And as one of us must be mistaken, what if we go to make further discoveries? Hardcastle. Agreed. But depend on't I'm in the right.
Miss Hardcastle. And depend on't I'm not much in the wrong. [Exeunt.
Enter TONY, running in with a casket.
Tony. Ecod! I have got them. Here they are. mother shan't cheat the poor souls out of their forMy cousin Con's necklaces, bobs and all. My tin neither. O! my genus, is that you?
Miss Hardcastle. He treated me with diffidence and respect; censured the manners of the age; admired the prudence of girls that never laughed; Hastings. My dear friend, how have you mantired me with apologies for being tiresome; then aged with your mother? I hope you have amused left the room with a bow, and "Madam, I would her with pretending love for your cousin, and that not for the world detain you." you are willing to be reconciled at last? Our horses will be refreshed in a short time, and we shall soon be ready to set off.
Hardcastle. He spoke to me as if he knew me all his life before; asked twenty questions, and never waited for an answer: interrupted my best Tony, And here's something to bear your remarks with some silly pun; and when I was in charges by the way [giving the casket-your my best story of the Duke of Marlborough and sweetheart's jewels. Keep them; and hang those, Prince Eugene, he asked if I had not a good hand I say, that would rob you of one of them.
Hastings. But how have you procured them for them? Tell her they're lost. It's the only way from your mother? witness. to quiet her. Say they're lost, and call me to bear
Tony. Ask me no questions, and I'll tell you no fibs. I procured them by the rule of thumb. If I had not a key to every drawer in mother's bureau, how could I go to the alehouse so often as I do? An honest man may rob himself of his own at any time.
my dear, I'm only keeping them for you. So if I Mrs. Hardcastle [apart to Tony]. You know, say they're gone, you'll bear me witness, will you? He! he! he! Hastings. Thousands do it every day. "Tony. Never fear me. them taken out with my own eyes. Ecod! I'll say I saw be plain with you, Miss Neville is endeavouring to procure them from her aunt this very instant. If madam. Just to be permitted to show them as Miss Neville. I desire them but for a day, she succeeds, it will be the most delicate way at relics, and then they may be locked up again. least of obtaining them. Constance, if I could find them you should have Mrs. Hardcastle. To be plain with you, my dear them. They're missing, I assure you. Lost, for aught I know; but we must have patience, wherever they are.
Tony. Well, keep them, till you know how it will be. But I know how it will be well enough, she'd as soon part with the only sound tooth in her head.
Hastings. But I dread the effects of her resentment when she finds she has lost them.
Tony. Never you mind her resentment, leave me to manage that. I don't value her resentment the bounce of a cracker. Zounds! here they are. Morrice! Prance! [Exit Hastings.
TONY, MRS. HARDCASTLE, and MISS NEVILLE.
Miss Neville. I'll not believe it! this is but a too valuable to be so slightly kept, and as you are shallow pretence to deny me. I know they are to answer for the loss
Mrs. Hardcastle. Don't be alarmed, Constance. If they be lost, I must restore an equivalent. But my son knows they are missing, and not to be found.
Mrs. Hardcastle. Indeed, Constance, you amaze missing, and not to be found; I'll take my oath Tony. That I can bear witness to. They are me. Such a girl as you want jewels! It will be time enough for jewels, my dear, twenty years hence, when your beauty begins to want repairs. Miss Neville. But what will repair beauty at forty, will certainly improve it at twenty, madam. Mrs. Hardcastle. Yours, my dear, can admit of
my dear; for though we lose our fortune, yet we Mrs. Hardcastle. You must learn resignation, should not lose our patience. See me, how calm I am.
That natural blush is beyond a thousand the misfortunes of others. Miss Neville. Ay, people are generally calm at ornaments. Besides, child, jewels are quite out at present. Don't you see half the ladies of our ac-good sense should waste a thought upon such Mrs. Hardcastle. Now I wonder a girl of your quaintance, my Lady Kill-daylight, and Mrs. trumpery. We shall soon find them; and in the Crump, and the rest of them, carry their jewels to mean time you shall make use of my garnets till town, and bring nothing but paste and marcasites your jewels be found.
Miss Neville. But who knows, madam, but somebody who shall be nameless would like me best with all my little finery about me?
Mrs. Hardcastle. Consult your glass, my dear, and then see if with such a pair of eyes you want any better sparklers. What do you think, Tony, my dear? does your cousin Con want any jewels in your eyes, to set off her beauty?
Tony. That's as thereafter may be.
Miss Neville. I detest garnets.
the world to set off a clear complexion. You have
shan't stir.-Was ever any thing so provoking, to
Tony. Don't be a fool. If she gives you the
Miss Neville. My dear aunt, if you knew how garnets, take what you can get. The jewels are it would oblige me.
Mrs. Hardcastle. A parcel of old-fashioned rose and table cut things. They would make you look like the court of King Solomon at a puppet-show. Besides, I believe, I can't readily come at them. They may be missing, for aught I know to the contrary.
Tony [apart to Mrs. Hardcastle]: Then, why don't you tell her so at once, as she's so longing
bureau, and she does not know it. Fly to your
Miss Neville. My dear cousin!
Tony. Vanish. She's here and has missed how she fidgets and spits about like a catherine them already. [Exit Miss Neville.] Zounds! wheel.
asked me if you were the bar maid. He mistook you for the bar-maid, madam.
Miss Hardcastle. Did he? Then as I live I'm resolved to keep up the delusion. Tell me, Pimple, how do you like my present dress? Don't you think I look something like Cherry in the Beaux Stratagem?
Maid. It's the dress, madam, that every lady wears in the country, but when she visits or receives company.
Miss Hardcastle. And are you sure he does not remember my face or person?
Maid. Certain of it.
Miss Hardcastle. I vow I thought so; for though we spoke for some time together, yet his fears were such that he never once looked up during the interview. Indeed, if he had, my bonnet would have kept him from seeing me.
Maid. But what do you hope from keeping him in his mistake?
Mrs. Hardcastle. I tell you, Tony, by all that's precious, the jewels are gone, and I shall be ruined Miss Hardcastle. In the first place, I shall be for ever. scen, and that is no small advantage to a girl Tony. Sure I know they are gone, and I'm to who brings her face to market. Then I shall per
Mrs Hardcastle. My dearest Tony, but hear me. They're gone, I say.
Tony. By the laws, mamma, you make me for to laugh, ha ha! I know who took them well enough, ha ha! ha!
Mrs. Hardcastle. Was there ever such a block
head, that can't tell the difference between jest and earnest? I tell you I'm not in jest, booby.
haps make an acquaintance, and that's no small victory gained over one who never addresses any but the wildest of our sex. But my chief aim is to take my gentleman off his guard, and like an invisible champion of romance, examine the giant's force before I offer to combat.
Maid. But are you sure you can act your part, and disguise your voice so that he may mistake that, as he has already mistaken your person? Miss Hardcastle. Never fear me. I think I
Tony. That's right, that's right: you must be in a bitter passion, and then nobody will suspect have got the true bar cant-Did your honour call? either of us. I'll bear witness that they are gone.-Attend the Lion there.-Pipes and tobacco for Mrs. Hardcastle. Was there ever such a cross-the Angel.—The Lamb has been outrageous this grained brute, that won't hear me? Can you bear half hour.
witness that you're no better than a fool? Was Maid. It will do, madam. But he's here. ever poor woman so beset with fools on one hand, and thieves on the other?
Tony. I can bear witness to that.
Mrs. Hardcastle. Bear witness again, you blockhead you, and I'll turn you out of the room directly. My poor niece, what will become of her! Do you laugh, you unfeeling brute, as if you enjoyed my distress?
Tony. I can bear witness to that. Mrs. Hardcastle. Do you insult me, monster? I'll teach you to vex your mother, I will. Tony. I can bear witness to that.
[He runs off, she follows him.
Enter MISS HARDCASTLE and MAID. Miss Hardcastle. What an unaccountable creature is that brother of mine, to send them to the house as an inn, ha! ha! I don't wonder at his impudence.
Maid. But what is more, madam, the young gentleman, as you passed by in your present dress,
Marlow. What a bawling in every part of the house. I have scarce a moment's repose. If I go to the best room, there I find my host and his story; if I fly to the gallery, there we have my hostess with her courtesy down to the ground. I have at last got a moment to myself, and now for recollection. [Walks and muses. Miss Hardcastle. Did you call, sir? Did your honour call?
Marlow [musing]. As for Miss Hardcastle, she's too grave and sentimental for me. Miss Hardcastle. Did your honour call?
[She still places herself before him, he turning away.
Marlow. No, child. [Musing.] Besides, from the glimpse I had of her, I think she squints. Miss Hardcastle. I'm sure, sir, I heard the bell ring.
Marlow. No, no. [Musing.] I have pleased my ha! ha! A mere awkward squinting thing; no, father, however, by coming down, and I'll to-mor- no. I find you don't know me. I laughed and row please myself by returning.
[Taking out his tablets, and perusing. Miss Hardcastle. Perhaps the other gentleman called, sir?
Marlow. I tell you no.
rallied her a little; but I was unwilling to be too severe. No, I could not be too severe, curse me! Miss Hardcastle. O then, sir, you are a favourite, I find, among the ladies?
Marlow. Yes, my dear, a great favourite. And
Miss Hardcastle. I should be glad to know, sir. yet, hang me, I don't see what they find in me to We have such a parcel of servants! follow. At the ladies' club in town I'm called Marlow. No, no, I tell you. [Looks full in her their agreeable Rattle. Rattle, child, is not my face.] Yes, child, I think I did call. I wanted-real name, but one I'm known by. My name is I wanted-I vow, child, you are vastly handsome. Solomons-Mr. Solomons, my dear, at your serMiss Hardcastle. O la, sir, you'll make one vice. [Offering to salute her. ashamed.
Marlow. Never saw a more sprightly malicious eye. Yes, yes, my dear, I did call. Have you got any of your-a-what d'ye call it in the house?
Miss Hardcastle. No, sir; we have been out of that these ten days.
Marlow. One may call in this house, I find to very little purpose. Suppose I should call for a taste, just by way of trial, of the nectar of your lips; perhaps I might be disappointed in that too. Miss Hardcastle. Nectar! nectar! That's a liquor there's no call for in these parts. French, I suppose. We keep no French wines here, sir. Marlow. Of true English growth, I assure you. Miss Hardcastle. Then its odd I should not know it. We brew all sorts of wines in this house, and I have lived here these eighteen years.
Marlow. Eighteen years! Why one would think, child, you kept the bar before you was born. How old are you?
Miss Hardcastle. O! sir, I must not tell my age. They say women and music should never be dated.
Marlow. To guess at this distance you can't be much above forty. [Approaching.] Yet nearer I don't think so much. [Approaching.] By coming close to some women, they look younger still; but when we come very close indeed.
[Attempting to kiss her. Miss Hardcastle. Pray, sir, keep your distance. One would think you wanted to know one's age as they do horses, by mark of mouth.
Marlow. I protest, child, you use me extremely ill. If you keep me at this distance, how is it possible you and I can ever be acquainted?
Miss Hardcastle. And who wants to be acquainted with you? I want no such acquaintance, not I. I'm sure you did not treat Miss Hardcastle, that was here awhile ago, in this obstropalous manner. I'll warrant me, before her you looked dashed, and kept bowing to the ground, and talked for all the world as if you were before a Justice of Peace.
Marlow [aside]. Egad, she has hit it, enough! [To her.] In awe of her, child?
Miss Hardcastle. Hold, sir; you are introducing me to your club, not to yourself. And you're so great a favourite there, you say?
Marlow. Yes, my dear. There's Mrs. Mantrap, Lady Betty Blackleg, the Countess of Sligo, Mrs. Langhorns, old Miss Biddy Buckskin, and your humble servant, keep up the spirit of the place.
Miss Hardcastle. Then it is a very merry place, I suppose?
Marlow. Yes, as merry as cards, supper, wine, and old women can make us.
Miss Hardcastle. And their agreeable Rattle, ha! ha! ha!
Marlow [aside]. Egad! I don't quite like this chit. She looks knowing, methinks. You laugh, child?.
Miss Hardcastle. I can't but laugh to think what time they all have for minding their work or their family.
Marlow [aside]. All's well; she don't laugh at me. [To her.] Do you ever work child?
Miss Hardcastle. Ay, sure. There's not a screen or a quilt in the whole house but what can bear witness to that.
Marlow. Odso! then you must show me your embroidery. I embroider and draw patterns myself a little. If you want a judge of your work, you must apply to me. [Seizing her hand. but the colours do not You shall see all in the [Struggling.
Miss Hardcastle. Ay, look well by candle-light. morning.
Marlow. And why not now, my angel? Such beauty fires beyond the power of resistance.Pshaw! the father here? My old luck: I never nicked seven that I did not throw ames ace three times following. [Exit Marlow.
Enter HARDCASTLE, who stands in surprise.
Hardcastle. So, madam. So I find this is your modest lover. This is your humble admirer, that kept his eyes fixed on the ground, and only adored at humble distance. Kate, Kate, art thou not ashamed to deceive your father so?
Miss Hardcastle. Never trust me, dear papa,