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The Band in a most learned plea,
Made up of deep philosophy,
Told her, if she would please to wed
A reverend beard, and take instead

Of vigorous youth,

Old solemn truth,
With books and morals, into bed,

How happy she would be.
The Bob, he talked of management,
What wond'rous blessings heaven sent
On care, and pains, and industry;
And truly he must be so free
To own he thought your airy beaux,
With powdered wigs, and dancing shoes,
Were good for nothing (mend his soul!)
But prate, and talk, and play the fool.
He said 'twas wealth gave joy and mirth,
And that to be the dearest wife
Of one, who labour'd all his life
To make a mine of gold his own,
And not spend sixpence when he'd done,
Was heaven upon earth.

When these two blades had done, d'ye see,
The Feather (as it might be me),
Steps out, sir, from behind the skreen,
With such an air and such a mien-
Look you, old gentleman,-in short
He quickly spoild the statesman's sport.

It proved such sunshine weather
That, you must know, at the first beck
The lady leapt about his neck,

And off they went together,

WILLIAM CONGREVE.

BORN 1669.-DIED 1729.

FROM THE MOURNING BRIDE. Almeria meeting her husband Alphonso, whom she had imagined

to be dead, now disguised as the captive Osmyn, at the tomb of his father Anselmo.

Enter. ALMERIA and LEONORA., Alm. It was a fancied noise, for all is hushed. Leon. It bore the accent of a human voice.

Alm. It was thy fear, or else some transient wind Whistling through hollows of this vaulted aisle. We'll listen

Leon. Hark!
Alm. No, all is hushed, and still as death-'tis

dreadful !
How reverend is the face of this tall pile,
Whose ancient pillars rear their marble heads,
To bear aloft its arched and ponderous roof,
By its own weight made stedfast and immoveable,
Looking tranquillity. It strikes an awe
And terror on my aching sight; the tombs

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And monumental caves of death look cold,
And shoot a chillness to my trembling heart.
Give me thy hand, and let me hear thy voice;
Nay, quickly speak to me, and let me hear
Thy voice my own affrights me with its echoes.

Leon. Let us return; the horror of this place,
And silence, will increase your melancholy.

Alm. It may my fears, but cannot add to that. No, I will on; shew me Anselmo's tomb, Lead me o'er bones and skulls, and mouldering

earth, Of human bodies; for I'll mix with them, Or wind me in the shroud of some pale corpse, Yet green in earth, rather than be the bride Of Garcia's more detested bed: that thought Exerts my spirits, and my present fears Are lost in dread of greater ill. Then shew me, Lead me, for I am bolder grown: lead on Where I may kneel, and pay my vows again, To him, to Heaven, and my Alphonso's soul, Leon. I go; but Heaven can tell with what regret.

[Exeunt. Enter HELI. Heli. I wander through this maze of monuments, Yet cannot find him-Hark! sure 'tis the voice Of one complaining—There it sounds l_I'll follow it.

[Exit.

SCENE II. - Opening, discovers a place of Tombs :

one Monument, fronting the view, greater than the rest.

Enter ALMERIA and LEONORA. Leon. Behold the sacred vault, within whose

womb The

poor remains of good Anselmo rest, Yet fresh and unconsumed by time or worms. What do I see? Oh, Heaven! either my eyes Are false, or still the marble door remains Unclosed; the iron gates, that lead to death Beneath, are still wide stretched upon their hinge, And staring on us with unfolded leaves !

Alm. Sure 'tis the friendly yawn of death for me; And that dumb mouth, significant in show, Invites me to the bed, where I alone Shall rest; shews me the grave, where nature,

weary And long oppressed with woes and bending cares, May lay the burthen down, and sink in slumbers Of peace eternal. Death, grim death, will fold Me in his leaden arms, and press me close To his cold clayey breast: My father, then, Will cease his tyranny; and Garcia, too, Will fly my pale deformity with loathing. My soul, enlarged from its vile bonds, will mount, And range the starry orbs, and milky-ways, Of that refulgent world, where I shall swim In liquid light, and Aoat, on seas of bliss, To my Alphonso's soul. Oh, joy too great!

Oh, ecstacy of thought! Help me, Anselmo;
Help me, Alphonso; take me, reach thy hand;
To thee, to thee I call; to thee, Alphonso:
Oh, Alphonso !

Osmyn ascending from the tomb. Osm. Who calls that wretched thing that was

Alphonso? Alm. Angels, and all the host of heaven, support

me! Osm. Whence is that voice, whose shrillness,

from the grave, . And growing to his father's shroud, roots up Alphonso?

Alm. Mercy! Providence ! Oh, speak,
Speak to it.quickly, quickly; speak to me,
Comfort me, help me, hold

me,
hide
me,
hide

me, Leonora, in thy bosom, from the light, And from my eyes!

Osm. Amazement and illusion !
Rivet and nail me where I stand, ye powers,

[Coming forward.
That, motionless, I may be still deceived!
Let me not stir, nor breathe, lest I dissolve
That tender, lovely form of painted air,
So like Almeria... Ha! it sinks, it falls;
I'll catch it ere it goes, and

grasp

her shade! 'Tis life ! 'tis warm! 'tis she, 'tis she herself! Nor dead, nor shade, but breathing and alive! It is Almeria, it is my wife!

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