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pired.

against my prayers, had I the will to pray. Il cannot bear it. Sure 'tis the worst of torments

Enter TRUEMAN. to behold others enjoy that bliss, which we must Lucy. Heart-breaking sight!- Oh, wretchnever taste.

ed, wretched Millwood! Officer. The utmost limit of your time is ex True. How is she disposed to meet her fate?

Blunt. Who can describe unutterable woe? Mill. Encompassed with horror, whither must Lucy. She goes to death encompassed with I go? I would not live--nor die That I could horror, loathing life, and yet afraid to die. No cease to be or ne'er had been !

tongue can tell her anguish and despair. Barn. Since peace and comfort are denied her True. Heaven be better to her than her fears ! here, may she find mercy where she least expects May she prove a warning to others, a monument it, and this be all her hell! From our example of mercy in herself! may all be taught to fly the first approach of vice: Lucy. Oh, sorrow insupportable! Break, break, but if o'ertaken,

my heart! By strong temptation, weakness, or surprise, True. In vain, Lament their guilt, and by repentance rise. With bleeding hearts, and weeping eyes, we The impenitent alone die unforgiven :

show To sin's like men, and to forgive like Heaven. A humane, generous sense of others' woe;

(Exeunt. Unless we mark what drew to ruin on,
. And, by avoiding that, prevent our own.

(Ereunt omnes.

EPILOGUE.

BY COLLEY CIBBER.-SPOKEN BY MARIA. SINCE fate has robb'd me of the hapless youth,' 'Tis very well, enjoy the jest:- but you, For whom my heart had hoarded up its truth; Fine powder'd sparks,-nay, I am told 'tis true,By all the laws of love and honour, now,

Your happy spouses- can make cuckolds too. I'm free again to chuse and one of you. 'Twixt you and them the difference this perhaps : But soft- With caution first I'll round me The cit's ashamed whene'er his duck he traps ; peep:

But you, when madam's tripping, let her fall, Maids, in my case, should look before they leap. Cock up your hats, and take no shame at all. Here's choice enough, of various sorts and hue, What if some favour'd poet I could meet, The cit, the wit, the rake cock'd up in cue, Whose love would lay his laurels at my feet? The fair spruce mercer, and the tawny Jew. No-painted passions real love abhors

Suppose I search the sober gallery-No; His fame would prove the suit of creditors. There's none but 'prentices, and cuckolds all-a Not to detain you then with longer pause, row;

In short, my heart to his conclusion draws; And these, I doubt, are those that make them so. I yield it to the hand that's loudest in applause.

[Painting to the bores. I

FATAL CURIOSITY.

LILLO.

PROLOGUE.

BY HENRY FIELDING.

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THE Tragic Music has long forgot to please, Virtue distrest in humble state support;
With Shakespeare's nature and with Fletcher's Nor think she never lives without the court.
ease :

T Though to our scenes no royal robes belong,
No passion mov'd, through five long acts you.sit, And though our little stage as yet be young,
Charm'd with the poet's language or his wit. Throw both your scorn and prejudice aside,
Fine things are said, no matter whence they fall; Let us with favour, not contempt, be tried ;
Each single character might speak them all. Through the first acts a kind attention lend,
* But from this modern fashionable way,

The growing scene shall force you to attend;
To-night our author begs your leave to stray. Shall catch the eyes of every tender fair,
No fustian hero rages here to-night ;.

And make them charm their lovers with a tear. No armies fall to fix a tyrant's right:

The lover too by pity shall impart From lower life we draw our scene's distress : His tender passion to his fair one's heart: . -Let not your equals move your pity less ! The breast which others' anguish cannot move,

| Was ne'er the seat of friendship, or of love,

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ACT I..
SCENE I.-WILMOT's House. Posterity perhaps may do thee justiee,

And praise thy courage, learning, and integrity,
Old Wilmot alone.

When thou art past hearing : thy successful eneThe day is far advanced. The chearful sun

mies, Pursues with vigour his repeated course: Much sooner paid, have their reward in hand, No labour lessens, nor no time decays

And know for what they labour'd.-Such events
His strength, or splendour : evermore the same, Must, questionless, excite all thinking men,
From age to age his influence sustains

To love and practise virtue!
Dependent worlds, bestows both life and motion |_ Rund. Nay, 'tis certain,
On the dull mass, that forms their dusky orbs, That virtue ne'er appears so like itself,
Chears them with heat, and gilds them with his | So truly bright and great, as when opprest.
brightness.

0. Wilm. I understand no riddles. Yet man, of jarring elements composed,

Where is your mistress? Who posts from change to change, from the first Rand. I saw her pass the High-street, towards hour

the Minster. Of his frail being to his dissolution,

0. Wilm. She is gone to visit Charlotte. She Enjoys the sad prerogative above him,

doth well. To think and to be wretched !—What is life | In the soft bosom of that gentle maid To him, that's born to die !

There dwells more goodness than the rigid race Or, what the wisdom, whose perfection ends Of moral pedants e'er believed, or taught. In knowing, we know nothing !

With what amazing constancy and truth, Mere contradiction all! A tragic farce,

Doth she sustain the absence of our son, Tedious, though short, elaborate without art, Whom more than life she loves ? How shun for Ridiculously sad

him,

Whom we shall ne'er see more, the rich and Enter RANDAL.

great, Where hast been, Randal ?

Who own her charms, and sightomake her happy! Rand. Not out of Penryn, sir; but to the Since our misfortunes we have found no friend, strand,

None who regarded our distress, but her; To hear what news from Falmouth, since the | And she, by what I have observed of late, storm

Is wearied, or exhausted. Curst condition ! Of wind last night.

To live a burden to one only friend, 0. Wilm. It was a dreadful one.

And blast her youth with our contagious woe! Rand. Some found it so. A noble ship from Who, that had reason, soul, or sense, would India,

bear it Entering the harbour, run upon a rock,

A moment longer? Then this honest wretch ! And there was lost.

I must dismiss him-Why should I detain 0. Wilm. What became of those on board her? | A grateful, generous youth to perish with me? Rand. Some few are sav'd, but much the His service may procure him bread elsewhere, greater part,

Though I have none to give him.-Prithee, Ran'Tis thought, are perish'd.

dal, 0. Wilm. They are past the fear

How long hast thou been with me? Of future tempests, or a wreck on shore:

Rand. Fifteen years. These, who escaped, are still expos'd to both.

I was a very child, when first you took me, Rand. But I've heard news, much stranger | To wait upon your son, my dear young master. than this shipwreck

I oft have wish'd I'd gone to India with him, Here in Cornwall. The brave Sir Walter Ra- | Though you, desponding, give him o'er for lost.leigh,

* Old WILMOT wipes his eyes, Being arriv'á at Plymouth from Guiana, I am to blame: this talk revives your sorrow A most unhappy voyage, has been betray'd For his long absence. By base Sir Lewis Stukely, his own kinsman, 0. Wilm. That cannot be revived, And seiz'd on by an order from the court; Which never died. And 'tis reported he must lose his head,

Rand. The whole of my intent To satisfy the Spaniards.

Was to confess your bounty, that supplied 0. Wilm. Not unlikely;

The loss of both my parents: I was long His martial genius does not suit the times. The object of your charitable care. There's now no insolence that Spain can offer, 0. Wilm. No more of that: Thou hast serv'd But, to the shame of this pacific reign,

me longer since Poor England must submit to.-Gallant man! Without reward; so that account is balanced,

Or rather I'm thy debtor. I remember,

Rand. You mock me, sure! When poverty began to show her face

0. Wilm. I never was more serious. Within these walls, and all my other servants, Rand. Why should you counsel what you Like pamper'd vermin from a falling house,

scorn'd to practise? Retreated with the plunder they had gain'd, 0. Wilm. Because that foolish scorn has been And left me, too indulgent and remiss

my ruin. For such ungrateful wretches, to be crush'd I've been an idiot, but would have thee wiser, Beneath the ruin they had help'd to make, And treat mankind, as they would treat thee, : That you, more good than wise, refus'd to leave

Randal, me.

As they deserve, and I've been treated by them: Rand. Nay, I beseech you, sir !

Thou'st seen by me, and those who now despise 0. Wilm. With my distress,

me, In perfect contradiction to the world,

How men of fortune fall, and beggars rise. Thy love, respect, and diligence, increas'd. Shun my example; treasure up my precepts; Now, all the recompence within my power, The world's before thee: be a knave, and prosIs to discharge thee, Randal, from my hard,

per ! Unprofitable service.

What, art thou dumb? (After a long pause. Rand. Heaven forbid !

Rand. Amazement ties my tongue ! Shall I forsake you in your worst necessity ? Where are your former principles? Believe me, sir, my honest soul abhors

0. Wilm. No matter : The barbarous thought.

Suppose I have renounced them : I have passions, 0.5Wilm. What! canst thou feed on air? And love thee still ; therefore would have thee I have not left wherewith to purchase food

think, For one meal more.

The world is all a scene of deep deceit, Rand. Rather than leave you thus,

And he, who deals with mankind on the square, I'll beg my bread, and live on others' bounty, Is his own bubble, and undoes himself While I serve you.

Farewell, and mark my counsel, boy. [Exit. 0. Wilm. Down, down my swelling heart, Rand. Amazement ! Or burst in silence ! 'Tis thy cruel fate

Is this the man I thought so wise and just ? Insults thee by his kindness-He is innocent What! teach and counsel me to be a villain! Of all the pain it gives thee.-Go thy ways; Sure grief has made him frantic, or some fiend I will no more suppress thy youthful hopes Assum'd his shape ! I shall suspect my senses. Of rising in the world.

High-minded he was ever, and improvident; Rand. 'Tis true, I'm young,

But pitiful and generous to a fault. And never tried my fortune, or my genius, Pleasure he lov'd, but honour was his idol. Which may perhaps find out some happy means, O fatal change ! O horrid transformation! As yet unthought of, to supply your wants. So a majestic temple, sunk to ruin, 0. Wilm. Thou tortur'st me: I hate all obliga Becomes the loathsome shelter and abode tions

Of lurking serpents, toads, and beasts of prey; Which I can ne'er return-And who art thou, | And scaly dragons hiss, and lions roar, That I should stoop to take them from thy hand? Where wisdom taught, and music charm'd, beCare for thyself, but take no thought for me;

fore.

[Erit. I will not want thee—trouble me no more. Rand. Be not offended, sir, and I will go.

SCENE II.-CHARLOTTE's House.
I ne'er repin'd at your commands before;
But, Heaven's my witness, I obey you now

Enter CHARLOTTE and MARIA.
With strong reluctance, and a heavy heart! Char. What terror and amazement must they
Farewell, my worthy master!

(Going.

feel, 0. Wilm. Farewell!-Stay !

Who die by shipwreck! As thou art yet a stranger to the world,

Mar. 'Tis a dreadful thought !
Of which, alas ! I've had too much experience, Char. Aye! is it not, Maria ?-To descend,
I should, methinks, before we part, bestow Living and conscious, to the watery tomb!-
A little counsel on thee.-Dry thy eyes :

Alas! had we no sorrows of our own,
If thou weep'st thus, I shall proceed no farther. The frequent instances of others' woe
Dost thou aspire to greatness, or to wealth ? Must give a generous mind a world of pain.
Quit books, and the unprofitable search

But you forget you promis'd me to sing.
Of wisdom there, and study human kind : Though cheerfulness and I have long been stran-
No science will avail thee without that;

gers, But that obtain'd, thou need'st not any other. Harmonious sounds are still delightful to me. This will instruct thee to conceal thy views, There's sure no passion in the human soul, And wear the face of probity and honour, But finds its food in music. I would hear Till thou hast gain'd thy end: which must be The song, composed by that unhappy maid, ever

Whose faithful lover 'scap'd a thousand perils, Thy own advantage, at that man's expence, From 'rocks, and sands, and the devouring deep; Who shall be weak enough to think thee honest. And, after all, being arrived at home,

Passing a narrow brook, was drowned there, Your patience, constancy, and resignation,
And perished in her sight.

Merit a better fate.
SONG.

Char. So pride would tell me,

And vain self-love; but I believe them not : Mar. Cease, cease, heart-easing tears ! And if, by wanting pleasure, I have gain'd Adieu, you fiattering fears,

Humility, I'm richer for my loss.
Which seven long tedious years

Mar. You have the heavenly art still to improve
Taught me to bear. -

Your mind by all events. But here comes one, Tears are for lighter woes ;

Whose pride seems to increase with her misforFear no such danger knows,

tunes.
As fate remorseless shews,

Her faded dress, unfashionably fine,
Endless despair!

As ill conceals her poverty, as that
Dear cause of all my pain,

Strain'd complaisance her haughty, swelling heart.
On the wide stormy main,

Though perishing with want, so far from asking,
Thou wast preserved in vain,

She ne'er receives a favour uncompelled,
Though still adored.

And, while she ruins, scorns to be obliged :
Hadst thou died there unseen,

Let me depart; I know she loves me not.
My wounded eyes had been

[Erit MARIA.
Sav'd from the direst scene
Maid e'er deplored.

· Enter AGNES.

Char. This visit's kind. [CHARLOTTE finds a lelter. | Agn. Few else would think it so: Char. What's this ?-A letter superscribed to Those who would once have thought themselves me!

much honour'd None could convey it here but you, Maria. By the least favour, though 'twere but a look, Ungenerous, cruel maid ! to use me thus ! I could have shewn them, now refuse to see me. To join with flattering men to break my peace, 'Tis misery enough to be reduced And persecute me to the last retreat!

To the low level of the common herd, Mar, Why should it break your peace, to hear Who, born to beggary, envy all above them; the sighs

But 'tis the curse of curses, to endure Of honourable love? This letter is

The insolent contempt of those we scorn. Char. No matter whence : return it back un Char. By scorning, we provoke them to con opened:

tempt, I have no love, no charms, but for my Wilmot, | And thus offend, and suffer in our turns. Nor would have any.

We must have patience. Mar. Alas! Wilmot's dead;

Agn. No, I scorn them yet! Or, living, dead to you.

But there's no end of suffering : Who can say, Char. I'll not despair : Patience shall cherish Their sorrows are complete My wretched hushope;

band, Nor wrong his honour by unjust suspicion. Tired with our woes, and hopeless of relief, I know his truth, and will preserve my own. Grows sick of life, But, to prevent all future vain, officious importu And, urged by indignation and despair, nity,

Would plunge into eternity at once,
Know, thou incessant foe to my repose,

By foul self-murder !
Whether he sleeps secure from mortal cares, Char. Gracious Heaven support him!
In the deep bosom of the boisterous mair,

Agn. His fixed love for me,
Or, tost with tempest, still endures its rage ; Whom he would fain persuade to share his fate,
No second choice shall violate my vows.

And take the same, uncertain, dreadful course, High Heaven, which heard them, and abhors the Alone withholds his hand. perjur d,

Char. And may it ever! Can witness, they were made without reserve; Agn. I've known with him the two extremes Never to be retracted, ne'er dissolv'd

of life, By accident or absence, time or death.

| The highest happiness, and deepest woe, Mar. And did your vows oblige you to sup- With all the sharp and bitter aggravations port

Of such a vast transition-Such a fall His haughty parents, to your utter ruin?

In the decline of life I have as quick, Well may you weep to think on what you've As exquisite, a sense of pain as he, done!

And would do any thing, but die, to end it ; Char. I weep to think, that I can do no more But there my courage fails. Death is the worst For their support. What will become of them! That fate can bring, and cuts off every hope. The hoary, helpless, miserable pair!

Char. We must not chuse, but strive to bear Mar. What I can't praise, you force me to ad

our lot

Without reproach, or guilt. By one rash act And mourn for you, as you lament for them. Of desperation, we may overthrow

mire,

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