Imagens da página
PDF
ePub

Once on the margin of a fountain stood, And cavill'd at his image in the flood. " The deuce confound,” he cries, "these drumstick

shanks, They never have my gratitude nor thanks ; They're perfectly disgraceful! strike me dead! But for a head, yes, yes, I have a head. How piercing is that eye, how sleek that brow! My horns !—I'm told horns are the fashion now.” Whilst thus he spoke, astonish’d, to his view, Near, and more near, the hounds and huntsmen

drew; Hoicks! hark forward! came thund'ring from be

hind, He bounds aloft, outstrips the fleeting wind : He quits the woods, and tries the beaten ways; He starts, he pants, he takes the circling maze. At length, his silly head, so prized before, Is taught his former folly to deplore; Whilst his strong limbs conspire to set him free, And at one bound he saves himself, like me.

[Taking a jump through the stage door.

No judges, fiddlers, dancing-masters,
No pickpockets or poctasters,
Are known to honest quadrupeds,
No single brute his fellow leads.
Brutes never meet in bloody fray
Nor cut each other's throats for pay.
Of beasts, it is confest, the ape
Comes nearest us in human shape :
Like man he imitates each fashion,
And malice is his ruling passion;
But both in malice and grimaces,
A courtier any ape surpasses.
Behold him humbly cringing wait
Upon the minister of state;
View him soon after to inferiors
Aping the conduct of superiors :
He promises with equal air,
And to perform takes equal care.
He in his turn finds imitators:
At court, the porters, lacqueys, waiters,
Their masters' manners still contract,
And footmen, lords, and dukes can act.
Thus at the court, both great and small
Behave alike, for all ape

all.

THE LOGICIANS REFUTED,

IN IMITATION OF DEAN SWIFT. LOGICIANS have but ill defined As rational the human mind; Reason, they say, belongs to man, But let them prove it if they can. Wise Aristotle and Smiglesius, By ratiocinations specious, Have strove to prove with great precision, With definition and division, Homo est ratione præditum ; But for my soul I can not credit 'em; And must in spite of them maintain, That man and all his ways are vain; And that this boasted lord of nature Is both a weak and erring creature. That instinct is a surer guide, Than reason, boasting mortals' pride; And that brute beasts are far before 'em, Deus est anima brutorum. Who ever knew an honest brute At law his neighbour prosecute, Bring action for assault and battery, Or friend beguile with lies and flattery? O'er plains they ramble unconfin'd, No politics disturb their mind; They eat their meals, and take their sport, Nor know who's in or out at court; They never to the levee go, To treat as dearest friend, a foe; They never importune his grace, Nor ever cringe to men in place Nor undertake a dirty job, Nor draw the quill to write for Bob: Fraught with invective they ne'er go To folks at Pater-Noster Row;

STANZAS

ON THE TAKING OF QUEBEC. Amidst the clamour of exulting joys,

Which triumph forces from the patriot heart, Grief dares to mingle her soul-piercing voice, And quells the raptures which from pleasure

start, O Wolfe! to thee a streaming flood of woe,

Sighing we pay, and think e'en conquest dear; Quebec in vain shall teach our breast to glow,

Whilst thy sad fate extorts the heart-wrung tear. Alive, the foe thy dreadful vigour fled,

And saw thee fall with joy-pronouncing eyes : Yet they shall know thou conquerest, though dead!

Since from thy tomb a thousand heroes rise.

ON A BEAUTIFUL YOUTH

STRUCK BLIND BY LIGHTNING,
SURE 'twas by Providence design'd,

Rather in pity, than in hate,
That he should be, like Cupid, blind,

To save him from Narcissus' fate.

A SONNET WEEPING, murmuring, complaining,

Lost to every gay delight; Myra, too sincere for feigning,

Fears th' approaching bridal night. Yet why impair thy bright perfection?

Or dim thy beauty with a tear? Had Myra follow'd my direction,

She long had wanted cause of fear.

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

AS PERFORMED AT THE THEATRE-ROYAL, COVENT GARDEN

[blocks in formation]

AND

SPOKEN BY MR. BENSLEY.

When I undertook to write a comedy, I confess

WRITTEN BY DR. JOHNSON, I was strongly prepossessed in favour of the poets of the last age, and strove to imitate them. The term, genteel comedy, was then unknown amongst us, and little more was desired by an audience, than nature and humour, in whatever walks of life Prest by the load of life, the weary mind they were most conspicuous. The author of the Surveys the general toil of human kind; following scenes never imagined that more would be With cool submission joins the lab’ring train, expected of him, and therefore to delincate charac. And social sorrow loses half its pain; ter has been his principal aim. Those who know Our anxious baru without complaint

, may share any thing of composition, are sensible that, in pur- This bustling season's epidemic care, suing humour, it will sometimes lead us into the Like Cæsar's pilot, dignified by fate, recesses of the mean; I was even tempted to look Tost in one common storm with all the great ; for it in the master of a spunging-house; but in Distrest alike, the statesman and the wit, deference to the public taste, grown of late, per- When one a borough courts, and one the pit. haps, too delicate, the scene of the bailiffs was re- The busy candidates for power and fame trenched in the representation. Ir. deference also Have hopes and fears, and wishes, just the same ; to the judgment of a few friends, who think in a Disabled both to combat or to fly, particular way, the scene is here restored. The Must bear all taunts, and hear without reply. author submits it to the reader in his closet; and Uncheck’d, on both loud rabbles vent their rage, hopes that too much refinement will not banish hu- As mongrels bay the lion in a cage. mour and character from ours, as it has already Th' offended burgess holds his angry tale, done from the French theatre. Indeed, the French For that blest year when all that vote may rail; comedy is now become so very elevated and senti-Their schemes of spite the poet's foes dismiss, mental, that it has not only banished humour and Till that glad night, when all that hate may hiss. Moliere from the stage, but it has banished all “ This day the powder'd curls and golden coat,”. spectators too.

Says swelling Crispin, "begg'd a cobbler's vote." Upon the whole, the author returns his thanks "This night our wit,” the pert apprentice cries, to the public for the favourable reception which "Lies at my feet-I hiss him, and he dies.” “The Good-Natured Man” has met with; and to The great, 'tis true, can charm th’ electing tribe ; Mr. Colman in particular, for his kindness to it. The bard may supplicate, but can not bribe. It may not also be improper to assure any, who Yet judged by those, whose voices ne'er were sold, shall hereafter write for the theatre, that merit, or He feels no want of ill-persuading gold ; supposed merit, will ever be a sufficient passport to But confident of praise, if praise be due, his protection.

Trusts, without fear, to merit, and to you.

[ocr errors]

has only served to spoil him. This same philosophy DRAMATIS PERSONÆ.

is a good horse in the stable, but an arrant jade on

a journey. For my own part, whenever I hear MEN.

him mention the name on't, I'm always sure he's MR. HONEYWOOD

Mr. POWELL.

going to play the fool. CROAKER

MR. SHUTER.

Sir William. Don't let us ascribe his faults to LOFTY.

Mr. Woodward. his philosophy, I entreat you. No, Jarvis, his SIR WILLIAM HONEYWOOD Mr. CLARKE.

good-nature arises rather from his fears of offending LEONTINE.

Mr. BENSLEY.

the importunate, than his desire of making the deJAKVIS

MR. DUNSTALL.

serving happy. BUTLER

MR. CUSHING.

Jarvis. What it arises from, I don't know. BAILIFF

MR. R. SMITH.

But to be sure, every body has it, that asks it. DOBARDIEU

Mr. HOLTAM.

Sir William. Ay, or that does not ask it. I POSTBOY

MR. QUICK.

have been now for some time a concealed spectator WOMEN.

of his follies, and find them as boundless as his disMiss RICHLAND

sipation.

Mrs. BULKLEY. OLIVIA . .

MRS. MATTOCKS.

Jarvis. And yet, faith, he has some fine name

or other for them all. He calls his extravagance, MRS, CROAKER

Mrs. Pitt. GARNET

Mrs. GREEN

generosity; and his trusting every body, universal

benevolence. It was but last week he went seLANDLADY

MRS. WHITE.

curity for a fellow whose face he scarce knew, and Scene-London.

that he called an act of exalted mu-mu-munificence; ay, that was the name he gave it.

Sir William. And upon that I proceed, as my THE GOOD-NATURED MAN. last effort, though with very little hopes to reclaim

him. That very fellow has just absconded, and I ACT I.

have taken up the security. Now, my intention is

to involve him in fictitious distrese, before he has SCENE-AN APARTMENT IN YOUNG HONEYWOOD's plunged himself into real calamity: to arrest him for

that very debt, to clap an officer upon him, and

then let him see which of his friends will come to Enter SIR WILLIAM HONEYWOOD, JARVIS.

his relief. Sir William. Good Jarvis, make no apologies Jarvis. Well, if I could but any way see him for this honest bluntness. Fidelity, like yours, is thoroughly vexed, every groan of his would be muthe best excuse for every freedom.

sic to me; yet faith, I believe it impossible. I have Jarvis. I can't help being blunt, and being very tried to fret him myself every morning these three angry too, when I hear you talk of disinheriting so years; but instead of being angry, he sits as calmly good, so worthy a young gentleman as your ne- to hear me scold, as he does to his hair-dresser. phew, my master. All the world loves him. Sir William. We must try him once more,

Sir William. Say rather, that he loves all the however, and I'll go this instant to put my scheme world; that is his fault.

into execution : and I don't despair of succeeding, Jarvis. I am sure there is no part of it more as, by your means, I can have frequent opportunidear to him than you are, though he has not seen ties of being about him without being known. you since he was a child.

What a pity it is, Jarvis, that any man's good-will Sir William. What signifies his affection to to others should produce so much neglect of himme; or how can I be proud of a place in a heart, self, as to require correction! Yet we must touch where every sharper and coxcomb finds an easy his weaknesses with a delicate hand. There are entrance ?

some faults so nearly allied to excellence, that we Jarvis. I grant you that he is rather too good- can scarce weed out the vice without eradicating natured; that he's too much every man's man; that the virtue.

(Exit. he laughs this minute with one, and cries the next Jarvis. Well, go thy ways, Sir William Howith another; but whose instructions may he thank neywood. It is not without reason, that the world for all this?

allows thee to be the best of men, But here comes Sir William. Not mine, sure? My letters to his hopeful nephew; the strange, good-natured, him during my employment in Italy, taught him foolish, open-hearted—And yet, all his faults are only that philosophy which might prevent, not de- such that one loves him still the better for them. fend his errors.

Enter HONEYWOOD.
Jarvis. Faith, begging your honour's pardon,

Honeywood. Well, Jarvis, what messages from P'm sorry they taught him any philosophy at all; it my friends this morning?

HOUSE.

Jarvis. You have no friends.

Jarvis. Ay, it's the way with them all, from the Honeywood. Well; from my acquaintance then? scullion to the privy-counsellor. If they have a bad

Jarvis. (pulling out bills.] A few of our master, they keep quarrelling with him; if they usual cards of compliment, that's all. This bill have a good master, they keep quarrelling with one from your tailor; this from your mercer; and this another. from the little broker in Crooked-lane. He says he

Enter BUTLER, drunk. has been at a great deal of trouble to get back the Butler. Sir, I'll not stay in the family with Jongmoney you borrowed.

than; you must part with him, or part with me, Honeywood. That I don't know; but I am sure that's the ex-ex-exposition of the matter, sir. we were at a great deal of trouble in getting him to Honeymoood. Full and explicit enough. But lend it.

what's his fault, good Philip? Jarvis. He has lost all patience.

Butler. Sir, he's given to drinking, sir, and I Honeywood. Then he has lost a very good thing. shall have my morals corrupted by keeping such

Jarvis. There's that ten guineas you were company. sending to the poor gentleman and his children in Honeywood. Ha! ha! he has such a diverting the Fleet. I believe that would stop his mouth for waya while at least.

Jarvis. O, quite amusing. Honeywood. Ay, Jarvis, but what will fill their Butler. I find my wine's a-going, sir; and limouths in the meantime ? Must I be cruel, because quors don't go without mouths, sir; I hate a drunkhe happens to be importunate ; and, to relieve his ard, sir. avarice, leave them to insupportable distress? Honeywood. Well, well, Philip, I'll hear you

Jarvis. 'Sdeath! sir, the question now is how upon that another time; so go to bed now. to relieve yourself; yourself.—Haven't I reason to Jarris. To bed! let him go to the devil. be out of my senses, when I see things going at Butler. Begging your honour's pardon, and beg sixes and sevens?

ging your pardon, Master Jarvis, I'll not go to bed, Honeywood. Whatever reason you may have nor to the devil neither. I have enough to do to for being out of your senses, I hope you'll allow mind my cellar. I forgot, your honour, Mr. that I'm not quite unreasonable for continuing in Croaker is below. I came on purpose to tell you. mine.

Honeywood. Why didn't you show him up, Jarvis. You are the only man alive in your pre

blockhead? sent situation that could do so.-Every thing upon Butler. Show him up, sir! With all my heart, the waste. There's Miss Richland and her fine sir. Up or down, all's one to me. [Erit. fortune gone already, and upon the point of being Jarvis. Ay, we have one or other of that family given to your rival.

lin this house from morning till night. He comes Honeywood. I'm no man's rival.

on the old affair, I suppose. The match between Jarvis. Your uncle in Italy preparing to disin- his son that's just returned from Paris, and Miss herit you; your own fortune almost spent; and no- Richland, the young lady he's guardian to. thing but pressing creditors, false friends, and a Honeymoood. Perhaps so. Mr. Croaker knowpack of drunken servants that your kindness has ing my friendship for the young lady, has got it made unfit for any other family.

into his head that I can persuade her to what I Honeytood. Then they have the more occasion please. for being in mine.

Jarvis. Ah! if you loved yourself but half as Jarris. Soh! What will you have done with well as she loves you, we should soon see a marhim that I caught stealing your plate in the pan- riage that would set all things to rights again. try? In the fact; I caught him in the fact. Honeywood. Love ine! Sure, Jarvis, you dream.

Honeywood. In the fact ? If so, I really think No, no; her intimacy with me never amounted to that we should pay him his wages, and turn him more than friendship-mere friendship. That she ofl.

is the most lovely woman that ever warmed the Jarvis. He shall be turned off at Tyburn, the human heart with desire, I own. But never let dog; we'll hang him, if it be only to frighten the me harbour a thought of making her unhappy, by rest of the family.

a connexion with one so unworthy her merits as I Honeywood. No, Jarvis ; it's enough that we am. No, Jarvis, it shall be my study to serve her, have lost what he has stolen; let us not add to it even in spite of my wishes; and to secure her hap the loss of a fellow creature!

piness, though it destroys my own. Jarvis. Very fine! well, here was the footman Jarvis. Was ever the like? I want patience. just now, to complain of the butler : he says he Honeymood. Besides, Jarvis, though I could obdoes most work, and ought to have most wages. tain Miss Richland's consent, do you think I could

Honeywood. That's but just; though perhaps succeed with her guardian, or Mrs. Croaker, his bere comes the butler to complain of the footman. wife ; who, though both very fine in their way, are

hear you.

are yet a little opposite in their dispositions, you Richland and my son much relished, either by one know.

side or t’ other. Jarris. Opposite enough, Heaven knows! the

Honeywood. I thought otherwise. very reverse of each other : she, all laugh and no

Croaker. Ah, Mr. Honeywood, a little of your joke; he always complaining and never sorrowful ; fine serious advice to the young lady might go far: a fretful poor soul, that has a new distress for every I know she has a very exalted opinion of your unbour in the four-and-twenty

derstanding. Honeywood, Hush, hush, he's coming up, he'll

Honeywood. But would not that be usurping an

authority that more properly belongs to yourself? Jarvis. One whose voice is a passing-bell

Croaker. My dear friend, you know but little of Honeywood. Well, well; go, do.

my authority at home. People think, indeed, beJarris. A raven that bodes nothing but mischief;

cause they see me come out in a morning thus, with a coffin and cross bones; a bundle of rue; a sprig of a pleasant face, and to make my friends merry, that deadly night-shade; a- [Honeywood stopping all's well within. But I have cares that would his mouth, 4 last pushes him off.

break a heart of stone. My wife has so encroachExit JARVIS.

ed upon every one of my privileges, that I'm now Honeywood. I must own my old monitor is not no more than a mere lodger in my own house. entirely wrong. There is something in my friend Honeywood. But a little spirit exerted on your Croaker's conversation that quite depresses me. side might perhaps restore your authority. His very mirth is an antidote to all gaiety, and Croaker. No, though I had the spirit of a lion! his appearance has a stronger effect on my spirits I do rouse sometimes. But what then? always than an undertaker's shop.—Mr. Croaker, this is haggling and haggling. A man is tired of getting such a satisfaction

the better before his wife is tired of losing the Enter CROAKER.

victory. Croaker. A pleasant morning to Mr. Honey Honeywood. It's a melancholy consideration inwood, and many of them. How is this! you look deed, that our chief comforts often produce our most shockingly to-day, my dear friend. I hope greatest anxieties, and that an increase of our posthis weather does not affect your spirits. To be sessions is but an inlet to new disquietudes. sure, if this weather continues—I say nothing- Croaker. Ah, my dear friend, these were the But Gol send we be all better this day three months. very words of poor Dick Doleful to me not a week

Honeycood. I heartily concur in the wish, before he made away with himself. Indeed, Mr. though, I own, not in your apprehensions. Honeywood, I never see you but you put me in

Croaker. May-be not. Indeed what signifies mind of poor Dick. Ah, there was merit neglected what weather we have in a country going to ruin for you! and so true a friend! we loved each other like ours? taxes rising and trade falling. Money for thirty years, and yet he never asked me to lend flying out of the kingdom, and Jesuits swarming him a single farthing. into it. I know at this time no less than a hundred Honeywood. Pray what could induce him to comand twenty-seven Jesuits between Charing-cross mit so rash an action at last ? and Temple-bar.

Croaker. I don't know: some people were maHoneywoud. The Jesuits will scarce pervert licious enough to say it was keeping company with you or me, I should hope.

me; because we used to meet now and then and Crouker. May-be not. Indeed, what signifies open our hearts to each other. To be sure I loved whom they pervert in a country that has scarce any to hear him talk, and he loved to hear me talk; religion to lose! I'm only afraid for our wives and poor dear Dick. He used to say that Croaker rhymed daughters.

to joker; and so we used to laugh-Poor Dick. Honeywood. I have no apprehensions for the

[Going to cry. ladies, I assure you.

Honeywood. His fate affects me. Croaker. May-be not. Indeed, what signifies Croaker. Ay, he grew sick of this miserable life, whether they be perverted or no? the women in my where we do nothing but eat and grow hungry. time were good for something. I have seen a lady dress and undress, get up and lie down; while readrest from top to toe in her own manufactures for- son, that should watch like a nurse by our side, merly. But now-a-days, the devil a thing of their falls as fast asleep as we do: own manufacture's about them, except their faces. Honeywood. To say truth, if we compare that

Honerdood. But, however these faults may be part of life which is to come, by that which we have practised abroad, you don't find them at home, past, the prospect is hideous. either with Mrs. Croaker, Olivia, or Miss Richland ? Croaker. Life at the greatest and best is but a

Croaker. The best of them will never be canon-froward child, that must be humoured and coaxed ized for a saint when she's dead. By the by, my a little till it falls asleep, and then all the care is dear friend, I don't find this match between Miss is over.

« AnteriorContinuar »