Εικόνες σελίδας
PDF
Ηλεκτρ. έκδοση

sary questions. For, I must tell you, (not Dam. Stay! who be these, I pray you? out of mine own dictamen, but the author's) Boy. Because it is your first question, a good play is like a skain of silk; which, if (and these be the prime persons,) it would in you take by the right end, you may wind oti civility require an answer : but I have heard at pleasure, on the bottom or card of your the poet affirm, that to be the most unlucky discourse, in a tale or so ; how you will: but scene in a play, which needs an interpreter; if you light on the wrong end, you will pull especially, when the auditory are awake: all into a knot or elfe-lock; which nothing and such are you, he presumes ; ergom but the sheers, or a candle, will undo or separate.

ACT I.

Com. W

SCENE I.
Compass, Ironside,
NELCOME, good captain

Ironside, and brother; You shall along with me. I'm lodg'd hard by Here, at a noble lady's house i' the street, The lady Loadstone's (one will bid us welcome),

[guests, Where there are gentlewomen and male Of several humours, carriage, constitution, Profession too; but so diametral One to another, and so much oppos'd, As if I can but hold them all together, And draw 'ein to a sufferance of themselves, But till the dissolution of the dinner, I shall have just occasion to believe My wit is magisterial; and ourselves Take infinite delight i' the success. Iron. Troth, brother Compass, you shall

pardon me ; I love not so to multiply acquaintance At a meal's cost; 'twill take off o' my freedom

(vance. So much; or bind me to the least obserCom. Why, Ironside, you know I am a

scholar, And part a soldier ; I have been employ'd By some the greatest statesmen o' the kingdom,

[vers'd These many years; and in my time conWith sundry humours, suitng so myself To company, as honest men, and knaves, Good-fellows, hypocrites, all sorts of people, Though never so divided in themselves, Have studied to agree still in the usage And handling of me (which hath been fair

too.) Iron. Sir, I confess you to be one well

read In men, and manners; and that usually, The most ungovern'd persons, you being

present,

Rather subject themselves unto your censure,
Than give you least occasion of distaste,
By making you the subject of their mirth :
But (to deal plainly with you, as a brother)
When ever l'distrust i' my own valour,
I'll never bear me on another's wit,
Or offer to bring off, or save myself,
On the opinion of your judgment, gravity,
Discretion, or what else. But being away)
You're sure to have less wit-work, gentle

brother, My humour being as stubborn as the rest, Aud as unmanageable.

Com. You do mistake My caract of your friendship all this while ! Or at what rate I reckon your assistance, Knowing by long experience, to such animals,

[fox there, Half-hearted creatures, as these are, your Uukennel'd with a choleric, ghastly aspect, Or two or three comminatory terms, Would run their fears to any hole of shelter, Worth a day's laughter! Iam for the sport : For nothing else.

Iron. But, brother, I ha' seen A coward meeting with a man as valiant As our St. George (not knowing him to be

such, Or having least opinion that he was so) Set to him roundly, I, and swinge him

soundly : And i' the virtue of that error, having Once overcome, resolv'd for ever after Toerr; and think no person, nor no creature More valiant than bimself.

Com. I think that too : But, brother, (could I over entreat you) I have some little plot upon the rest, If you would be contented to endure A sliding reprehension at my hands, To hear yourself or your profession glanc'd

at In a few slighting terms; it would beget Me such a main authority, o' the bye,

causes

And do yourself no disrepute at all !

And drink a health or two more to the bu. Iron. Compass, I know that universal

siness.

[youth,

Iron. This is a strange put-off ! a reverend In nature produce nothing, but as meeting You use him most surreverently methinks ! Particular causes to determine those,

What call you him? Palate Please? or And specify their acts. This is a piece

Parson Palate ? Of Oxford science, stays with me e'er since Com. All's one, but shorter! I can gi' you I left that place; and I have often found

his character. The truth thereof, in my private passions : He is the prelate of the parish, here, For I do never feel myself perturb’d And governs all the dames, appoints the With any general words 'gainst my profes

cheer,

(guests, sion,

Writes down the bills of fare, pricks all the Unless by some smart stroke upon myself Makes all the matches and the marriage, They do awake, and stir me: else, to wise

feasts * And well-experienc'd men, words do not Within the ward; draws all the parish-wills

, signify;

marians, Designs the legacies, and strokes the gills They have no power, save with dull gram- Of the chief mourners: and (whoever Whose souls are nought but a Syntaxis of

lacks) them.

[Palate here, Of all the kindred, he hath first his blacks. Com. Here comes our parson, parson

I bus holds he weddings up, and burials, A venerable youth! I must salute him, As his main tithing; with the gossips stalls, And a great clerk! he's going to the ladies : Their pews; he's top still, at the public And tho you see him thus, without his cope,

mess ; I do assure you he's our parish-pope !

Comforts the widow, and the fatherless, God save my reverend clergy, parson Palate. In funeral sack: sits 'bove the alderman;

For of the wardmote quest, he better can SCENE II.

The mystery, than the Levitic law:

That piece of clerkship doth his vestry awe. Palate, Compass, Ironside.

He is as he conceives himself, a fine

Well furnish'd, and apparelled divine. Pal. The witty Mr. Compass ! how is't Iron. Who made this epigram, you? with you?

(counsel, Com. No, a great clerk Com. My lady stays for you, and for your As any's of his bulk (Ben Jonson) made it. Touching her niece, Mrs. Placentia Steel ! Iron. But what's the other character, Who strikes the fire of full fourteen to-day,

doctor Rut? Ripe for a husband.

Com. The same man made 'em both: Pal. I, she chimes, she chimes.

but his is shorter, Saw you the doctor Rut, the house-phy- And not in rhime, but blanks. I'll tell you sician?

that, too. He's sent for too.

Rut is a young physician to the family: Com. To council? time you were there. · That, letting

God alone, ascribes to nature Make haste, and give it a round quick dis- More than her share ; licentious in dispatch,

course,
That we may go to dinner betimes, parson ; And in his life a profest voluptuary;

To wise
And well-experienc'd men, words do BUT SIGNIFY;

They have no poruer, sade with dull grammarians.) The meaning of this sentence is not very clear; if we adhere to the present pointing, the word but in the first line, I apprehend, should be changed to not : and the sense will then be, that general words can make little or no impression upon wise and well-experienc'd persons.

-To wise
And well-experienc'd men, words do not signify:
If we retain the present reading, it seems necessary to remove the stop after the word
signify, and the whole will run thus;

-To wise
And well-experienc'd men,, words do but signify i. e. shew

They have no power, save with dull grammarians. The sentiment is much the same, if we prefer this reading, though possibly the former may render it easier and more exact. * That, letting God alone, ascribes to nature Acre than her share.) The poet in this

, and the preceding character of the parson, imitates the manner and the sentiments of Chaucer: but we must not think that our author's description was intended to comprehend the faculty in general. As to the remark above, something of the same kind is observed by lord Bacon; and our old bard too tells us of his physician, that

“His study was but lytel on the Ryble.”

The slave of money, a buffoon in inanners ; My brother brooks him not, because he Obscene in language, which he vents for

thinks wit;

He is by me assigned for my

niece: Is saucy in his logicks, and disputing; He will not hear of it. Is any thing but civil, or a man.

Rut. Not of that ear: See, here they are ! and walking with my But yet your ladyship doth wisely in itlady,

Pal. 'I will make him to lay down the In consultation, afore the door;

portion sooner,

[lawyer. We will slip in, as if we saw 'em not. If he but dream you'll match her with a

Lud. So Mr. Compass says. It is between SCENE III.

The lawyer, and the courtier, which shall

have her. Lady, Palate, Rut.

Pal. Who, sir Diaphanous Silkworm

Rut. A fine gentleman, Lad. I, 'tis his fault, she's not bestow'd, Old Mr. Silkworm's heir. My brother Interest's.

Pal. And a neat courtier, Pal. Who, old sir Aloth?

Of a most elegant thread. Lad. He keeps off all her suitors, keeps Lad. And so my gossip

[Polish, the portion

Polish assures me.

Here she comes! good Still in his hands; and will not part withal, Welcome in troth! how do'st thou, gentle On any terms.

Polish?
Pal.' Hinc illæ lachrymice ; (vance. Rut. Who's this?
Thence flows the cause o' the main grie- Pal. Dame Polish, her she-parasite,
Rut. That

Her talking, soothing, sometime governing It is a main one! how much is the portion ?

gossip. Lad. No petty sum. Pal. But sixteen thousand pound.

SCENE IV. Rut. He should be forc'd, madam, to lay it down.

Polish, Lady, Palate, Rut. When is it payable?

Pol. Your ladyship is still the lady LoadLad. When she is married.

stone,

[all sorts : Pal. Marry her, marry her, inadam. That draws, and draws unto you, guests of Rut. Get her married.

The courtiers, and the soldiers, and the Lose not a day, an hour

scholars, Pal. Not a minute.

The travellers, physicians, and divines, Pursue your project real, Mr. Compass As doctor Ridley writ, and doctor Barlow. Advis’d you to. He is the perfect Instru- They both have wrote of you, and Mr. ment

Compass.

* [it be long. Your ladyship should sail by.

Lad. We mean, they shall write more, ere Rut. Now, Mr. Compass

Pol. Alas, they are both dead, and 't Is a fine witty man; I saw him go in, now.

please you; but

[well, Lad. Is he gone in ?

Your ladyship means well, and shall mean Pal. Yes, and a feather with him, So long as I live. How does your fine niece, He seems a soldier.

My charge, mistress Placentia Steel? Rut. Some new suitor, madam.

Lad. She is not well. Lad. I am beholding to him; he brings Pol. Not well?

Lad. Her doctor says so.

[buts, Variety of good persons to my table,

Rut. Not very well; she cannot shoot at And I must thank him, tho' my brother Or manage a great horse, but she can cranch Interest

A sack of small-coal, eat you lime, and hair, Dislike of it a little.

Soap-ashes, loam, and has a dainty spice Pal. He likes nothing

O'the green-sickness ! That runs your way.

Pol. 'Od shield ! Rut. Troth, and the other cares not.

Rut. Or the dropsy!

[here, He'll

go his own way, if he think it right. A toy, a thing of nothing. But my lady, Lad. He's a true friend ! and there is Her noble aunt. Mr. Practice,

[house : Pol. She is a noble aunt! The fine young man of law, comes to the And a right worshipful lady, and a virtuous; As doctor RIDLEY writ, and doctor Barlow,

They both hade wrote of you, and Mr. Compass.] Doctor Barlow discovered many uses of the magnet, or load-stone, which were unknown before his time, and was the first inventor of the compass-bor, as it is now used at sea : in 1616 he published a book called Magnetical Advertisement, &c. which was soon after animadverted upon by Dr. Mark Ridley, a physician. To this dispute our author makes an allusion in these lines. Dr. Barlow died in 1625.

ever

I know it well!
Rut. Well, if you know it, peace.

SCENE V.
Pal. Good sister Polish, hear your betters
speak.

[To them.] Compass, Ironside. Pol. Sir, I will speak, with my good lady's Pol. You knew her, Mr. Compass ? leave,

Com. Spare the torture, And speak, and speak again ; I did bring up I do confess without it, My lady's niece, Mrs. Placentia Steel, Fol. And her husband,

[they liv'd With my own daughter (who's Placentia What a fine couple they were and how too)

Com. Yes.

sturtles! And waits upon my lady, is her woman : Pol. And lov'd together like a pair of Her ladyship well knows Mrs. Placentia

Com. Yes. Steel (as I said) her curious niece, was left

Pol. And feasted all the neighbours. A legacy to me, by father and mother,

Com. Take her off With the nurse Keep that tended her: her Somebody that hath mercy. mother

Rut. O he knows her, She died in child-bed of her, and her father It seems! Liv'd not long after: for he lov'd her mo. Com. Or any measure of compassion : ther!

Doctors, if you be Christians, undertake They were a godly couple! yet both dy'd, One for the soul, the other for the body! (As we must all.). No creature is immortal, Pol. She would dispute with the doctors I have heard our pastor say: no, not the

of divinity,

[chers! faithful !

At her own table and the Spittle preaAnd they did die (as I said) both in one Aud find out the Armenians ? month.

Rut. The Armenians ? Rut. Sure she is not long-liv'd, if she Pol. I say, the Armenians. spend breath thus.

Com. Nay, I say so too! [menians! Pol. And did bequeath her to my care Pol. So Mr. Polish call'd 'em, the Arand hand,

Com. And Medes and Persians, did he To polish and bring up. I moulded her,

not? And fashion'd her; and form'd her; she Pol. Yes, he knew 'em, had the sweat

[it) And so did mistress Steel: she was his pupil. Both of my brows and brains (my lady knows The Armenians, he would say, were worse Since she could write a quarter old.

than papists : Lad. I know not

And then the Persians were our Puritans, That she could' write so early, my good Had the fine piercing wits ! gossip.

Com. And who, the Medes ?
But I do know she was so long your care, Pol. The middle men, the luke-warm
Till she was twelve year old ; that I callid

Protestants.
for her,
Polish, Rut. Out, out.

[branching : And took her heme; for which I thank you, Pol. Sir, she would find them by their And am beholden to you.

Their branching sleeves, brancht cassocks, Rut. I sure thought

and brancht doctrine, She had a lease of talking for nine lives

Beside their texts. Pal. It may be she has.

Rut. Stint, karlin: I'll not hear. Pol. Sir, sixteen thousand pound

Confute her, parson. Was then her portion! for shie was, indeed, Pol. I respect no parsons, Their only child! and this was to be paid Chaplains, or doctors, I will speak. Upon her marriage, so she married still Lad. Yes, so't be reason, With my good lady's liking here, her aunt: Let her. (I heard the will read) Mr. Steel, her father, Rut. Death, she cannot speak reason. The world condemn'd him to be very rich, Com. Nor sense, if we be masters of our And very hard; and he did stand con

senses !

(to bait? lemn'd

(after, Iro. What mad woman ha’ they got here With that vain world, till, as 'twas proved Pol. Sir, I am mad in truth, and to the He left alınost as much inore to good uses

purpose; In sir Moth Interest's hands, iny lady's And cannot but be mad, to hear my lady's brother,

Dead sister slighted, witty Mrs. Steel. Whose sister he had manica: he holds all Iro. If she had a wit, death has gone near In his close gripe. But Mr. Steel was liberal,

to spoil it, Ani a fine man; and she a dainty dame, Assure yourself. And a religious, and a bountiful

Pol. She was both witty and zealous, * Rut. The ARMENIANS ?] The folio of 1640, the Arminians. But the present reading with the interrogative point, is more humorous, as it preserves the blunder; though the Arminians are intended."

[ocr errors]

now

And lighted all the tinder o the truth
(As one said) of religion, in our parish;

SCENE VI.
She was too learned to live long with us !
She could the Bible in the holy tongue,

[To them] Sir Diaplanous, Practise. And read it without pricks ; had all her Com. No, here they come: the prime Masoreth;

[gent.
magnetick guests

tick! Knew Burton and his Bull, and scribe Prin, Our lady Loadstone so respects: the ArcPræsto-be-gon, and all the Pharisees '. And th’ Antarctick ! sir Diaphanous SilkLad. Dear gossip,

worm ! Be you gone, at this time, too, and vouch. A courtier extraordinary; who by diet safe

Of meats and drinks, his temperate exercise, To see your charge, ny niece.

Choice musick, frequent baths, his horary Pol. I shall obey,

shifts

(talize If your wise ladyship think fit: I know Of shirts, and waistcoats, means to immor. To yield to my superiors.

Mortality itself, and makes the essence Lad. A good woman !

Of his whole happiness the trim of court. But when she is impertinent, grows earnest,

Dia. I thank you, Mr. Compass, for your A little troublesome, and out of season:

short Her love and zeal transport her.

Encomiastick. Com. I am glad

Rut. It is much in little, sir. That any thing could port her hence. We Pal. Concise and quick; the true style of

an orator.

[lawyer, Have hope of vinner, after her long grace.

Com. But Mr. Practise here, my lady's I have brought your ladyship a hungry guest Or man of law, (for that is the true writing) here,

A man so dedicate to his profession, A soldier, and my brother, captain Ironside : And the preferments go along with it, Who being by custom grown a sanguinary, As scarce the thund'ring bruit of an invasion, The solemn and adopted son of slaughter, Another eighty-eight, threat'ning his country Is more delighted i' the chase of an enemy,

With ruin, would no more work upon him, An execution of three days and nights, Than Syracusa's sack on Archimede: Than all the hope of numerous succession, So much he loves that night-cap! the benchOr happiness of issue could bring to himn.

gown!

[a man Rut. He is no suitor then?

With the broad guardo' th' back! these shew Pal. So it should seein.

Betroth'd unto the study of our laws ! Com. And if he can get pardon at heaven's Pra. Which you but think the crafty imhand

positions For all his murthers, is in as good case Of subtile clerks, feats of fine understanding, As a new christen’d infant: (his employ- To abuse clots and clowns with, Mr. Comments

pass, Continu'd to him, without interruption, Having no ground in nature to sustain it, And not allowing him or time or place Or light, from those clear causes; to the To commit any other sin, but those :)

inquiry

[head Please you to inake him welcome for a meal, And search of which, your niathematical madam.

Hath so devow'd itself. Lad. Thenobleness of his profession makes Com. Tut, all men are Ilis welcome perfect ; tho' your coarse Philosophers, to their inches. There's within description

Sir Interest, as able a philosopher, Would seem to sully it.

In buying and selling ! has reduc'd his thrift Iro. Never, where a beam

To certain principles, and i' that method, Of so much favour doth illustrate it,

As he will tell you instantly, by logarithms, Right knowing lady.

The utmost profit of a stock enıployed : Pal. She hath cur'd all well.

(Be the commodity what it will) the place, Rut. And he hath fitted well the compli- Or time, but causing very, very little, ment.

Or, I may say, no parallax at all, * Knew Burton and his Bull, and SCRIBE Prin, gent.

PRÆSTO-BE-GON, and all the Pharisees.] Henry Burton published a tract in the year 1627, intitled The baiting of the Pope's Bull, 4to. This was the person wbo lost his ears with Pryn and Bastwick. - Dr. Grey.

The voluminous Pryn is rightly characterized by the title of Scribe; and perhaps he is again alluded to, in the description of one who suffers without any shame, or sense of his sufferings; where there seems also to be a reference to his Histrio-mastir;

“ One that hath lost his ears by a just sentence
“ O'the Star-chamber, a right valiant knave,

“ And is a histrionical contempt.”-Act. 3. sc. 5. If our author means any particular person by the term Præsto-be-gon, one may imagine he alludes to the famous Dr. Preston, at that time the head of the Presbyterian party,

« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »