« PreviousContinue »
SENT BY AN UNKNOWN HAND, AND SPOKEN BY MR POWELL.
As when, in hostile times, two neighbouring states To virgin favours, fools have no pretene; Strive by themselves, and their confederates ; For maidenheads were made for men of senje. The war at first is made with awkward skill, 'Tis not enough to have a horse well bred, And soldiers clumsily each other kill,
To shew his mettle, he must be well fel: Till time, at length, their untaught fury tames, Nor is it all in provender and breed; And into rules their heedless rage reclaims; He must be try'd, and strain’d to mend 'vis speed: Then every science by degrees is made
A favour'd poet, like a pamper'd horse, Subservient to the man-destroying trade; Will strain his eye-balls out to win the course. Wit, wisdom, reading, observation, art ;, Do you but in your wisdoms vote i 'it A well-turn'd head to guide a generous heart : To yield due succours to this war of wit, So it may prove with our contending stages, The buskin with more grace should tread the If you will kindly but supply their wages;
stage, Which you with ease may furnish, by retrenching Love sigh in softer strains, heroes less rage: Your superfluities of wine and wenching. Satire shall show a triple row of teeth, Who'd grudge to spare, from riot and hard drink. And comedy shall laugh your fops to death : ing,
Wit shall refine, and Pegasus shall foam, To lay it out on means to mend his thinking ? And soar in search of ancient Greece and Rome, To follow such advice you should have leisure, And, since the nation's in the conquering fit, Since what refines your sense, refines your plea- As you by arms, we'll vanquish France in wit : sure :
The work were over, could our poets write Women, grown tame by use, each fool can get, With half the spirit that our soldiers fight, But cuckolds are all made by men of wit,
Planters, Indians, Negroes, Men, Women, and
The SCENE,-Surinam, a colony in the West-Indies; at the time of the action of this Tragedy,
in the possession of the English,
as long as they live, and poor women be thought SCENE I.
decaying and unfit for the town at one or two
and twenty. I'm sure we were not seven years Enter WELLDON following LUCY.
in London. Lucy. What will this come to? What can it Well. Not half the time taken notice of, sister. end in? You have persuaded me to leave dear The two or three last years we could make noEngland, and dearer London, the place of the thing of it, even in a vizard mask; not in a viworld most worth living in, to follow you a bus- zard mark, that has cheated many a man into at band-hunting into America: I thought husbands old acquaintance. Our faces began to be as famigrew in these plantations.
liar to the men of intrigue, as their duns, and Well. Why, so they do, as thick as oranges,
as much avoided. We durst not appear in public ripening one under another. Week after week places, and were almost grudged a gallery in the they drop into some woman's mouth : 'Tis but churches : Even there they had their jests upon a little patience, spreading your apron in expec us, and cried,-she's in the right on't, good gedu tation, and one of 'em will fall into your lap at tlewoman! since no man considers her body, ske last.
does very well indeed to take care of her soul. Lucy. Ay, so you say, indeed.
Lucy. Such unmannerly fellows there will alWell, But you have left dear London, you say: Pray, what have you left in London that was Well. Then you may remember, we were levery dear to you, that had not left you before? duced to the last necessity, the necessity of nonLucy. Speak for yourself, sister.
king silly visits to our civil acquaintance, to bring Weil. Nay, I'll keep you in countenance. The us into tolerable company. Nay, the young ines young fellows, you know, the dearest part of the of-court beaux, of but one term's standing in the town, and without whom London had been a fashion, who knew nobody, but as they were shewe wilderness to you and me, had forsaken us a 'em by the orange-women, had nicknames for us:
How often have they laughed out,,There goes Lucy. Forsaken us ! I don't know that they my landlady; is not she come to let lodgings ever had us.
yet? Well, Forsaken us the worst way,
Lucy. Young coxcombs, that knew no better. is, did not think us worth having; they neglected Weil. And that we must have come to. For us
, no longer designed upon us, they were tired your part, what trade could you set up in You of us. Women in London are like the rich silks, would never arrive at the trust and credit of a they are out of fashion a great while before they guinea-bawd: You would have too much busi
ness of your own, ever to mind other people's
. Lucy. The devil take the fashion, I say.
Lucy. That is true, indeed, Weil. You may tumble 'em over and over at Well. Then, as a certain sign that there was their first coming up, and never disparage their nothing more to be hoped for, the maids at the price; but they fall upon wearing immediately, chocolate houses found us out, and laugh'd lower and lower in their value, till they come to us : our billets-doux lay there neglected for wastethe broker at last.
paper: we were cry'd down so low, we could Lucy. Ay, ay, that's the merchant they deal not pass upon the city; and became so notorious with. The men would have us at their own scan in our galloping way, from one end of the town dalous rates : their plenty makes them wanton, to t’other, that at last we could hardly compass and in a little time, I suppose, they won't know a competent change of petticoats to disguise us what they would have of the women themselves. | to the hackney-coachmen: and then it was near
Well. O yes, they know what they would have. walking afoot indeed. They would have a woman give the town a pat Lucy. Nay, that I began to be afraid of. tern of her person and beauty, and not stay in it so Weil. To prevent which, with what youth and long to have the whole piece worn out. They beauty was left, some experience, and the small not the folly that commonly goes along with it. which amounted to bare two hundred between They say there is a vast stock of beauty in the us both, I persuaded you to bring your person nation, but a great part of it lies in unprofitable for a venture to the Indies. Every thing has suo hands; therefore, for the good of the public, ceeded in our voyage: I pass for your brother: they would have a draught made once a quarter, One of the richest planters
here happening to die send the decaying beauties for breeders into the just as we landed, I have claimed kindred with country, to make room for new faces to appear, him: So, without making his will, he has left us to countenance the pleasures of the town. the credit of his relation to trade upon: We pass
Lucy. 'Tis very hard, the men must be young for his cousins, coming here to Surinam chiefly
upon his invitation : We live in reputation; have together, sister. (Exit Lucy.] What am I drawthe best acquaintance of the place; and we shall ing upon myself here?
Aside. see our account in't, I warrant you.
Wid. You have taken a very pretty house here; Lucy. I must rely upon you.
every thing so neat about you already. I hear
you are laying out for a plantation. Enter Widow LACKITT.
Well. Why, yes truly, I like the country, and Wid. Mr Welldon, your servant. Your ser would buy a plantation, if I could reasonably. vant, Mrs Lucy. I am an ill visitor, but 'tis not too Wid. Ó! by all means, reasonably, late, I hope, to bid you welcome to this side of Well. If I could have one to my mind, I would the world.
(Salutes Lucy. țhink of settling among you. Well Gad so, I beg your pardon, widow, I Wid. O! you can't do better. Indeed we should have done the civilities of my house be- can't pretend to have so good company for you, fore: But, as you say, 'tis not too late I hope. as you had in England; but we shall make very
[Going to kiss her. much of you. For my own part, I assure you, I Wid. What! You think now this was a civil shall think myself very happy to be more particuway of begging a kiss ? and, by my troth, if itlarly known to
you. were, I see no harm in't; 'tis a pitiful favour in Well, Dear Mrs Lackitt, you do me' too much deed that is not worth asking for: though I have honour. known women speak plainer before now, and Wid. Then, as to a plantation, Mr Welldon, not understood neither.
you know I have several to dispose of. Mr LackWell. Not under my roof. Have at you, wi- itt, I thank him, has left, though I say it, the dow !
richest widow upon the place: therefore I may Wid. Why, that's well said ; spoke like a afford to use you better than other people can. younger brother, that deserves to have a widow. You shall have one upon any reasonable terms. (He kisses her.) You're a younger brother, I Well. That's a fair offer indeed. know, by your kissing.
Wid. You shall find me as easy as any body Well. How so, pray?
you can have to do with, I assure you. Pray try Wid. Why, you kiss as if you expected to be me, I would have you try me, Mr Welldon. paid fort ; you have birdlime upon your lips. Well, I like that name of yours exceedingly, Mr You stick so close, there's no getting rid of y
Welldon. Well. I am a-kin to a younger brother.
Well. My name? Wid. So much the better: we widows are Wid. O exceedingly ! if any thing could percommonly the better for younger brothers. suade me to alter my own name, I verily believe
Lucy. Better, or worse, most of you. But you nothing in the world would do it so soon, as to won't be much better for him, I can tell you. be called Mrs Welldon.
(Aside. Well. Why, indeed, Welldon does sound someWell. I was a younger brother; but an uncle thing better than Lackitt. of my mother's has maliciously left me an estate, Wid. O! a great deal better. Not that there and, I'm afraid, spoiled my fortune.
is so much in a name neither. But I don't know, Wid. No, no; an estate will never spoil your there is something: I should like mightily to be fortune. I have a good estate myself, thank called Mrs Welldon. Heav'n, and a kind husband that left it behind him. Well, I'm glad you like my name.
Well. Thank Heav'n, that took him away from Wid. Of all things. But then, there's the misit, widow, and left you behind him.
fortune; one can't change one's name, without Wid. Nay, Heav’n’s will must be done; he's changing one's condition. in a better place.
Well. You'll hardly think it worth that, I beWell. A better place for you, no doubt on't: lieve. now you may look about you; chuse for your Wid. Think it worth what, sir? Changing my self. 'Mrs Lackitt, that's your business ; for Icondition ? Indeed, sir, I think it worth every know you design to marry again.
thing. But, alas ! Mr Welldon, I have been a Wid. O dear! Not I, Í protest and swear; I widow but six weeks ; 'tis too soon to think of don't design it: but I won't swear neither; one changing one's condition yet; indeed it is : Pray does not know what may happen to tempt one.
don't desire it of me: Not but that you may Well. Why, a lusty young fellow may happen persuade me to any thing, sooner than
any perto tempt you.
son in the worldWid. Nay, I'll do nothing rashly: I'll resolve Well. Who, I, Mrs Lackitt? against nothing. The devil, they say, is very Wid. Indeed you may, Mr Welldon, sooner busy upon these occasions, especially with the than any man living. Lord, there's a great deal widows. But, if I am to be tempted, it must be in saving a decency: I never minded it before : with a young man, I promise you.—Mrs Lucy, Well, I am glad you spoke, first, to excuse my your brother is a very pleasant gentleman : I modesty. But what ! modesty means nothing, came about business to him, but he turns every and is the virtue of a girl, that does not know thing in merriment.
what she would be at; a widow should be wiser. Well. Business, Mrs Lackitt? Then, I know, Now I will own to you—but I won't confess neiyou would have me to yourself. Pray leave us ther-I have had a great respect for you a great
my way indeed.
while I beg your pardon, sir, and I must de devil for you. She'll cheat her son of a good clare to you, indeed I must, if you desire to dis estate for you; that's a perquisite of a widow pose of all have in the world, in an honourable portion always. way, which I don't pretend to be any way deser Well. I have a design, and will follow her ving vour consideration, my fortune and person, least, till I have a pennyworth of the plantat. if you won't understand me without telling you Stan. I speak as a friend, when I advise me 50,-are both at your service. Gad so! another to marry her. For ’tis directly against the stime
rest of my own family. My cousin Jack has a
laboured her a good while that way. Enter STANMORE to them.
Well. What! honest Jack! Üll not hipla Stan. So, Mrs Lackitt, your widowhood is him. I'll give over the thoughts of her. waning apace. I see which way 'tis going, Sian. He'll make nothing on't ; she does no Welldon, you're a happy man. The women and care for him. I'm glad you have her in your poen their favours come home to you.
Well, I may be able to serve him. Wid. A fiddle of favour, Mr Stanmore: I am Stan. Here's a ship come into the river; IE a lone woman, you know it, left in a great deal in hopes it had been from England. of business, and business must be followed or Well, From England ! lost. I have several stocks and plantations up Stan. No, I was disappointed; I long to say on my hands, and other things to dispose of, this handsome cousin of yours: the picture which Mr Welldon may have occasion for. gave me of her has charmed me.
Well. We were just upon the brink of a bar Well. You'll see whether it has flattered gain, as you came in.
or no, in a little time, if she be recovered of Stun. Let me drive it on for you.
illness, that was the reason of her staying behr! Well. So you must, I believe, you or somebo us. I know she will come with the first oppady for me.
tunity. We shall see her, or hear of her death Star. I'll stand by you: I understand more of Stan. We'll hope the best. The ships from this business than they can pretend to.
England are expected every day. Well. I don't pretend to't; 'tis quite out of Well. What ship is this?
Stan. A rover, a buccaneer, a trader in slave: Stan If the widow gets you to herself, she that's the commodity we deal in, you know. I will certainly be too hard for you: I know her you have a curiosity to see our manner of miza of old : she has no conscience in a corner ; a ketting, I'll wait upon you. very Jew in a bargain, and would circumcise you Well. We'll take my sister with us. [Eseze. to get more of you. Well, Is this true, widow?
SCENE II.-An open Place. Wid. Speak as you find, Mr Welldon: I have offered you very fair: think upon't, and let me
Enter Lieutenant-Governor and BLANDFORD hear of you: the sooner the better, Mr Welldon. Goo. There's no resisting your fortune, Blar
(Erit. ford; you draw all the prizes. Stan. I assure you, my friend, she'll cheat
you Blun. I draw for our lord governor, you know, if she can.
his fortune favours me. Well, I don't know that; but I can cheat her, Gov. I grudge him nothing this time; but i if I will.
fortune had favoured me in the last sale, dhe Stan. Cheat her? How?
fair slave had been mine; Clemene had beer Well. I can marry her; and then I'm sure I mine. have it in my power to cheat her.
Blan. Are you still in love with her? Stan. Can you marry her?
Gov. Every day more in love with her. Well. Yes, faith, so she says: her pretty person and fortune (which, one with the other, you
Enter Cuptuin DRIVER, teazed and pulled übret know, are not contemptible) are both at my ser
by Widow LACKITT and several planters. Es vice.
ter at another duur, WELLDON, LUCY, STAN Stun. Contemptible ! very considerable, egad;
MORE. very desirable: Why, she's worth ten thousand Wid. Here have I six slaves in my lot, and pounds, man, a clear estate: no charge upon't, not a man among 'em; all women and children! but a boobily son: he indeed was to have half; what can I do with 'em, captain ? Pray consider; but his father begot him, and she breeds him up, I am a woman myself, and can't get my oza not to know or have more than she has a mind
slaves, as some of my neighbours do. to: and she has a mind to something else, it i Plan. I have all men in mine: pray, cap
tain, let the men and women be mingled toge Well. There's a great deal to be made of this ther, for procreation's sake, and the good of the
(Musing. plantation. Stan. A handsome fortune may be made on't ; 2 Plan. Ay, ay, a man and woman, captain, and I advise you to't, by all means.
for the good of the plantation. Well. To marry her! an old wanton witch!
Capt. Let 'em mingle together and be damned, I hate her.
what care I? would you have me pimp for the Stun. No matter for that: let her go to the good of the plantation !
i Plan. I am a constant customer, captain. Stan. Jack, you are answered, I suppose. Wid. I am always ready money to you, captain. J. Stan. I'll have another pluck at her.
1 Plan. For that matter, mistress, my money Wid. Mr Welldon, I am a little out of order; is as ready as yours.
but pray bring your sister to dine with me.Wid. Pray hear me, captain.
Gad's my life! I'm out of all patience with that Capt. Look you, I have done my part by you; pitiful fellow; my flesh rises at him : I can't stay I have brought the number of slaves you bar in the place where he is.
(Erit. gained for; if your lots have not pleased you, Blan. Captain, you have used the widow very you must draw again among yourselves.
familiarly. 3 Plan. I am contented with my lot.
Capt. This is my way; I have no design, and 4 Plan. I am very well satisfied.
therefore am not over civil. If she had ever a 3 Plan. We'll have no drawing again. handsome daughter, to wheedle her out of; or if
Capt. Do you hear, mistress ? you may hold I could make any thing of her booby sonyour tongue: for my part, I expect my money. Well. I may improve that hint, and make Wid. Captain, no body questions or scruples something of him.
[Aside. the payment. But I won't hold my tongue; 'tis Gov. She's very rich. too much to pray and pay too: one may speak Capt. I'm rich myself. She has nothing that for one's own, I hope.
I want: I have no leaks to stop. Old women Capt. Well , what would you say?
are fortune-menders. I have made a good voyWid. I say no more than I can make out. age, and would reap the fruits of my labour. We Capt. Out with it then.
plough the deep, my masters, but our harvest is on Wid, I say, things have not been so fair car shore. I'm for a young woman. ried as they might have been. How do I know Stan. Look about, captain, there's one ripe, but you have juggled together in my absence and ready for the sickle. You drew the lots before I came, I'm sure. Capt. A woman? indeed! I will be acquaint
Capt. That's your own fault, mistress : you ed with her : Who is she? might have come sooner.
Well. My sister, sir. Wid. Then here's a prince, as they say, among Capt. Would I were a-kin to her! If she were the slaves, and you set him down to go as a my sister, she should never go out of the family.
What say you, mistress? You expect I should Cupt. Have you a mind to try what a man he marry you, I suppose. is? you'll find him no more than a common man Luc. I shan't be disappointed if you don't. at your business.
[Turning away. Wid. Sir, you're a scurvy fellow to talk at Well. She won't break her heart, sir. this rate to me. If my husband were alive, Capt. But I mean
(Following her. gadsbodikins ! you would not use me so.
Well. And I mean [Going between him and Cupt. Right, mistress, I would not use you at Lucy.) that you must not think of her without all.
marrying. Wid. Not use me! your betters every inch of Capt. I mean so too. you, I would have you to know, would be glad Well. Why then your meaning's out. to use me, sirrah. Marry come up here, who Capt. You're very short. are you, I trow? You begin to think yourself a Well. I will grow, and be taller for you. captain, forsooth, because we call you so. You Capt. I shall grow angry, and swear. forget yourself as fast as you can; but I remem Well. You'll catch no fish, then. ber you; I know you for a pitiful paltry fellow, Capt. I don't well know whether he designs as you are; an upstart to prosperity; one that to affront me, or no. is but just come acquainted with cleanliness, and Stan. No, no, he's a little familiar; 'tis his that never saw five shillings of your own, with way. out deserving to be hanged for 'em.
Capt. Say you so ? nay, I can be as familiar Gov. She has given you a broadside, captain; as he, if that be it. Well, sir, look upon me you'll stand up to her.
full: What say you? How do you like me for a Capt. Hang her, stink-pot, I'll come no nearer. brother-in-law ?
Wid. By this good light, it would make a wo Well. Why, yes, faith, you'll do my business, man do a thing she never designed; marry again, (Turning him about.) if we can agree about my though she were sure to repent it, to be reven sister's. ged of such a
Capt. I don't know whether your sister will J. Stan. What's the matter, Mrs Lackitt; like me or not: I can't say much to her: but I can I serve you?
have money enough; and if you are her brother, Wid. No, no, you can't serve me: you are as you scem to be a-kin to her, I know that will for serving yourself, I'm sure. Pray, go about recommend me to you. your business, I have none for you: you know Well. This is your market for slaves; my sisÍ have told you so. Lord! how can you be so ter is a free woman, and must not be disposed troublesome? nay, so unconscionable, to think of in public. You shall be welcome to my
house that every rich widow must throw herself away if you please; and, upon better acquaintance, if upon a young fellow that has nothing ?
my sister likes you, and I like your offers