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SPOKEN BY MRS OLDFIELD.
METHINK I hear some powdered critics say, But modern consorts are such high-bred crea-
features ; Have gratified her softer inclination;
That nothing more proclaims a reigning beauty, Have tipt her a gallant, and clinch'd the provo- Than that she never was reproached with duty; cation.
And that the greatest blessing Heaven e'er sent, But there our bard stopt short; for 'twere uncivil is in a spouse incurious and content. T' have made a modern belle all o'er a devil ! To give such dames a different cast of thought, He hop'd, in honour of the sex, the age By calling home the mind, these scenes were Would bear one mended woman-on the stage. wrought.
From whence you see by common sense's rules If with a hand too rude the task is done, Wives might be govern'd, were not husbands We hope the scheme by Lady Grace laid down fools.
Will all such freedom with the sex atone; Whate'er by Nature dames are prone to do,
That virtue there unsoil'd by modish art, They seldom stray but when they govern you ; Throws out attractions for a Manly's heart. When the wild wife perceives her deary tame, You, you, then, ladies, whose unquestioned No wonder then she plays him all the game.
lives But men of sense meet rarely that disaster; Give you the foremost fame of happy wives, Women take pride where merit is their master : Protect, for its attempt, this helpless play, Nay, she that with a weak man wisely lives,
Nor leave it to the vulgar taste a prey; Will seem t'obey the due commands he gives ! Appear the frequent champions of its cause; Happy obedience is no more a wonder,
Direct the crowd, and give yourselves applause. When men are men, and keep them kindly under:
With smart toupees and powdered clothes, That for a duchess I might pass :
At rivals I'll turn up my nose: Oh, could I see the day !
Oh, could I see the day! Would Fortune but attend my call,
I'll dart such glances from these eyes, At park, at play, at ring, at ball,
Shall make some lord or duke my prize, I'd brave the proudest of them all,
And then, oh! how I'll tyrannize, With a Stand by-Clear the way.
With a Stand by —Clear the way.
Oh, could I see the day !
With a Stand by-Clear the way.
Now luck for us, and a kind hearty pit ; They cheat, but still from cheating sires they For he who pleases never fails of wit.
come; Honour is yours,
They drink, but they were christ'ned first in mum, And you, like kings at city treats, bestow it; Their patrimonial sloth
the Spaniards keep, The writer kneels, and is bid rise a poet : And Philip first taught Philip how to sleep. But you are fickle sovereigns, to our sorrow; The French and we still change, but here's the You dub to-day, and hang a man to-morrow;
curse, You cry the same sense up and down again, They change for better, and we change for worse; Just like brass money once a-year in Spain : They take up our old trade of conquering, Take you i' the mood, whate'er base metal come, and we are taking theirs, to dance and sing, You coin as fast as groats at Birmingham ; Our fathers did, for change, to France repair, Though 'tis no more like sense in ancient plays, And they, for change, will try our English air.
Than Rome's religion’s like St Peter's days: As children, when they throw one toy away, In short, so swift your judgments turn and wind, Strait a more foolish gewgaw comes in play ; You cast our fleetest wits a mile behind. So we, grown penitent, on serious thinking, 'Twere well your judgments but in plays did Leave whoring, and devoutly fall to drinking. range,
Scowring the watch grows out-of-fashion wit: But even your follies and debauches change Now we set up for tilting in the pit, With such a whirl, the poets of your age
Where 'tis agreed by bullies, chicken-hearted, Are tired, and cannot score them on the stage, To fright the ladies first, and then be parted. Unless each vice in short-hand they indite, A fair attempt has twice or thrice been made Even as notch'd 'prentices whole sermons write. To hire night-murderers, and make death a trade. The heavy Hollanders no vices know,
When murder's out, what vice can we advance ? But what they us'd a hundred years ago ;
Unless the new-found pois’ning trick of France : Like honest plants, where they were stuck they And when their art of rats-bane we have got, grow.
By way of thanks, we'll send them o'er our Plot.
Gomez, an old Usurer.
Enter BERTRAN, attended.
(To PED. ALPHONSO and Pedro meet, with Soldiers on Now, colonel, have you disposed your men,
all night. each side, Drums, &c.
That you stand idle here? Alph. Stand! give the word.
Ped. Mine are drawn off, Ped. The queen of Arragon.
To take a short repose. Alph. Pedro ?how goes the night?
Bert. Short let it be; Ped. She wears apace.
For from the Moorish camp, this hour and more, Alph. Then welcome day-light. We shall have There has been heard a distant humming noise, warm work on't :
Like bees disturbed, and arming in their hives. The Moor will 'gage
What courage in our soldiers ? Speak! What His utmost forces on this next assault,
hope? To win a queen and kingdom.
Ped. As much as when physicians shake their Ped. Pox o' this lion way of wooing though! heads, Is the queen stirring yet?
And bid their dying patient think of Heaven. Alph. She has not been a-bed, but in her cha- Our walls are thinly manned ; our best men slam; pel
The rest, an heartless number, spent with watchAll night devoutly watch’d, and brib'd the saints ing, With vows for her deliverance.
And harassed out with duty. Ped. Oh, Alphonso,
Bert. Good night all then. I fear they come too late : her father's crimes Ped. Nay, for my part, 'tis but a single life Sit heavy on her, and weigh down her prayers. I have to lose: I'll plant my colours down A crown usurp’d, a lawful king deposid, In the mid-breach, and by them fix my foot; In bondage held, debarr’d the common light; Say a short soldier's prayer, to spare the trouble His children murdered, and his friends destroyed, of my few friends above, and then expect What can we less expect than what we feel? The next fair bullet. And what we fear will follow.
Alph. Never was known a night of such disAlph. Heaven avert it.
traction; Ped. Then Heaven must not be Heaven. Noise so confused and dreadful ; jostling crowds Judge the event
That run, and know not whither; torches gliding By what has pass’d. The usurper joy'd not long Like meteors, by each other in the streets. His ill-got crown. 'Tis true, he died in peace, Ped. I met a reverend, fat, old gouty friar,(Unriddle that, ye powers,) but left his daughter, with a paunch swoll'n so high, his double chiu Oar present queen, engaged, upon his death-bed, Might rest upon't; a true son of the church ; To marry with young Bertran, whosc cursed fa- Fresh colour'd, and well thriven on his trade, ther
Came puffing with his greasy bald-pate choir, Had helped to make him great.
And fumbling o'er his beads, in such an agons, Hence you well know this fatal war arose, He told them false for fear: about his neck Because the Moor Abdallah, with whose troops There hung a wench, the label of his function, The usurper gained the kingdom, was refused, Whom he shook off, i'faith, methought, unkindly. And, as an infidel, bis love despised.
It seems the holy stallion durst not score Alph. Well, we are soldiers, Pedro, and, like Another sin before he left the world.
lawyers, Plead for our pay.
Enter a Captain. Ped. A good cause would do well though; Capt. To arms, my lord, to arms! It gives my sword an edge. You see this Bertran From the Moors' camp the noise grows louder Has now three times been beaten by the Moors; still ; What hope we have is in young Torrismond,
Rattling of armour, trumpets, drums, and atabaYour brother's son.
les, Alph. He's a successful warrior,
And sometimes peals of shouts, that rend the And has the soldier's hearts. Upon the skirts
Heavens Of Arragon our squadron'd troops he rallies: Like victory: the groans again, and howlings, Our watchmen from the towers with longing eyes Like those of vanquish'd men; but every echo Expect his swift arrival.
Goes fainter off, and dies in distant sounds. Ped. It must be swift, or it will come too late. Bert. Some false attack: espect, on the other Alph. No more-Duke Bertran,
One to the gunners on St Jago's tower: bid | Is safe enough, I warrant him, for one : them, for shame,
At dawn of day our general cleft his pate, Level their cannon lower : on my soul, Spite of his woollen night-cap: a slight wound; They're all corrupted with the gold of Barbary, Perhaps he may recover. To carry over, and not hurt the Moor.
Alph. Thou revivest me.
Ped. By my computation now, the victory was Enter a Second Captain.
gained before the procession was made for it, 2 Capt. My lord, here's fresh intelligence ar- and yet it will go hard but the priests will make ‘rived.
a miracle of it. Our army, led by valiant Torrismond,
Lor. Yes, faith, we came, like bold intruding Is now in hot engagement with the Moors ;
guests, 'Tis said, within their trenches.
And took them unprepared to give us welcome. Bert. I think all fortune is reserved for him. Their scouts we killed, then found their body He might have sent us word though,
sleeping, And then we could have favoured his attempt And as they lay confused, we stumbled o'er them, With sallies from the town.
And took what joint came next-arms, heads, or Alph. It could not be:
legs, We were so close block'd up, that none could Somewhat undecently. But when men want light, peep
They make but bungling work.
Bert. No, 'tis too late; I will not hazard it: And bear the news.
This Torrismond begins to grow too fast;
He must be mine, or ruined.
(Aside. Alph. 'Tis a procession :
Lor. Pedro, a word. (Whisper.] The queen is going to the great cathedral,
[Exit BERTRAN, To pray for our success against the Moors. Alph. How swift he shot away! I find it stung
Ped. Very good : she usurps the throne, him, keeps the old king in prison, and, at the same In spite of his dissembling, time, is praying for a blessing: Oh, religion and (To Lor.) How many of the enemy are slain? roguery, how they go together!
Lor. Troth, sir, we were in haste, and could Shout and flourish of trumpets. not stay
To score the men we killed; but there they lie: A Procession of Priests and Choirislers in white, Best send our women out to take the tale ;
wilh tapers, followed by the Queen und Ladies, There's circumcision in abundance for them. goes over the stage ; the Choiristers singing.
(Turns to PEDRO again.
Alph. How far did you pursue them?
[To Ped.) Good store of harlots, say you, and Behold our tender virgins fears,
dog-cheap ? And with success our armies crown.
Pedro, they must be had, and speedily :
I've kept a tedious fast. Whispers again. Look down, ye bless'd above, look down ; Alph. When will he make his entry? He deOh, save us, save us, and our state restore ;
serves For pity, pity, pity we implore ;
Such triumphs as were given by ancient Rome. For pity, pily, pity we implore.
Ha, boy, what sayest thou ? [The Procession goes of, and shout within. Lor. As you say, sir, that Rome was very an
cient.-Enter Lorenzo, who kneels to Alphonso.
[To Pep.] I leave the choice to you; fair, black, Bert. (To ALPH.) A joyful cry; and see your tall, low; son, Lorenzo. Good news, kind Heav'n! Let her but have a nose. And you may tell her Alph. (To LoR.) Oh, welcome, welcome! Is I'm rich in jewels, rings, and bobbing pearls, the general safe?
Plucked from Moors' ears. How near our army? When shall we be succour- Alph. Lorenzo. ed?
Lor. Somewhat busy Or are we succour’d? Are the Moors removed ? About affairs relating to the public.Answer these questions first, and then a thou- A seasonable girl, just in the nick now. [To PED. sand more;
[Trumpets within. Answer them all together.
Ped. I hear the general's trumpet. Stand and Lor. Yes, when I have a thousand tongues, I mark will.
How he will be received: I fear but coldly: The general's well; his army too is safe There hung a cloud, methought, on Bertran's As victory can make them : the Moors' king