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'TIS PITY SHE'S A WHORE.

ACT I.

SCENE I.

Friar BONAVENTURA's Cell.

Enter FRIAR and GIOVANNI.

Friar. DISPUTE no more in this ; for know, young

man, These are no school points; nice philosophy May tolerate unlikely arguments, But Heaven admits no jest: wits that presumed On wit too much, by striving how to prove There was no God, with foolish grounds of art, Discover'd first the nearest way to hell ; And fill'd the world with devilish atheism. Such questions, youth, are fond:' far better 'tis To bless the sun, than reason why it shines; Yet He thou talk'st of, is above the sun. No more! I may not hear it. Gio. Gentle father,

I have unclasp'd my burden'd soul, Emptied the storehouse of my thoughts and heart,

To you

1

Fond.) i. e. idle, unprofitable. ? Far better 'tis.] The 4to. reads for. ----Reed.

K

Made myself poor of secrets; have not left
Another word untold, which hath not spoke
All what I ever durst, or think, or know;
And yet is here the comfort I shall have ?
Must I not do what all men else may,--love?

Friar. Yes, you may love, fair son.

Gio. Must I not praise
That beauty, which, if fram'd anew, the gods
Would make a god of, if they had it there;
And kneel to it, as I do kneel to them?

Friar. Why, foolish madman !-

Gio. Shall a peevish' sound, A customary form, from man to man, Of brother and of sister, be a bar ”Twixt my perpetual happiness and me? Say that we had one father, say one womb (Curse to my joys!) gave both us life and birth; Are we not, therefore, each to other bound So much the more by nature? by the links Of blood, of reason? nay, if you will have it, Even of religion, to be ever one, One soul, one flesh, one love, one heart, one all ? Friar. Have done, unhappy youth! for thou art

lost. Gio. Shall, then, for that I am her brother born, My joys be ever banished from her bed ? No, father; in your eyes I see the change Of pity and compassion; from your age, As from a sacred oracle, distils

3

Peevish.] Weak, trilling, unimportant. See Mass. vol. i. p. 71.

The life of counsel: tell me, holy man,
What cure shall give me ease in these extremes ?

Friar. Repentance, son, and sorrow for this sin:
For thou hast mov'd a Majesty above,
With thy unranged (almost) blasphemy.

Gio. O do not speak of that, dear confessor.

Friar. Art thou, my son, that miracle of wit, Who once, within these three months, wert es

teem'd A wonder of thine age, throughout Bononia ? How did the University applaud Thy government, behaviour, learning, speech, Sweetness, and all that could make up a man! I was proud of my tutelage, and chose Rather to leave my books, than part with thee; I did so :--but the fruits of all my hopes Are lost in thee, as thou art in thyself. O Giovanni !+ hast thou left the schools Of knowledge, to converse with lust and death? For death waits on thy lust. Look through the

world, And thou shalt see a thousand faces shine More glorious than this idol thou ador'st: Leave her, and take thy choice, 'tis much less

sin;

Though in such games as those, they lose that win.

4 0 Giovanni !] Our old dramatists appear to have learned Italian entirely from books ; few, if any, of them pronounce it correctly. Giovanni is here used by Ford as a quadrisyllable, as it was by Massinger and others of his contemporaries.

Yet hear my

Gio. It were more ease to stop the ocean From floats and ebbs, than to dissuade my vows. Friar. Then I have done, and in thy wilful

flames Already see thy ruin; Heaven is just.

counsel. Gio. As a voice of life. Friar. Hie to thy father's house, there lock

thee fast Alone within thy chamber; then fall down On both thy knees, and grovel on the ground; Cry to thy heart; wash every word thou utter'st In tears (and if’t be possible) of blood : Beg Heaven to cleanse the leprosy of lust That rots thy soul; acknowledge what thou art, A wretch, a worm, a nothing; weep, sigh, pray Three times a-day, and three times every night: For seven days space do this; then, if thou find'st No change in thy desires, return to me; I'll think on remedy. Pray for thyself At home, whilst I pray for thee here.—Away! My blessing with thee! we have need to pray.

Gio. All this I'll do, to free me from the rod Of vengeance; else I'll swear my fate's

[Exeunt.

my god.

It is observed by Langbaine, that the loves of Giovanni and Annabella are painted in too beautiful colours : this, though it may, impeach the writer's taste in selecting such a subject, is yet complimentary to his judgment in treating it. What but the most glowing diction, the most exquisite harmony of versification, could hope to allure the reader through the dreadful display of vice and misery which lay before him ! With respect to the scene which

SCENE II.

The Street, before Florio's House, Enter GRIMALDI and VASQUES, with their Swords

drawn. Vas. Come, sir, stand to your tackling; if you prove craven, I'll make you run quickly.

Grim. Thou art no equal match for me.

Vas. Indeed I never went to the wars to bring home news; nor I cannot play the mountebank for a meal's meat, and swear I got my wounds in the field. See

you
these

grey hairs? they'll not flinch for a bloody nose.

Wilt thou to this gear? Grim. Why, slave, think'st thou I'll balance my reputation with a cast-suit ? Call thy master, he shall know that I dare

Vas. Scold like a cot-quean ;“—that's your profession. Thou poor shadow of a soldier, I will make thee know my master keeps servants, thy betters in quality and performance. Com'st thou to fight or prate ?

Grim. Neither, with thee. I am a Roman and

has just past, it is replete with excellence as a composition; it may be doubted, howeyer, whether it does not let us somewhat too abruptly into the plot, which, from its revolting nature, should have been more gradually opened. The character of the Friar is artfully drawn; pious, but gentle, irresolute, and, to speak tenderly, strangely indulgent; and thus we are prepared for his subsequent conduct, which involves the fate of his young charge.

Scold like a cot-quean.) A contemptuous term for one who concerns himself with female affairs; an effeminate meddler.

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