Page images

To such faint stomach-qualms; no cordials comfort The business of thy thoughts, for aught I see: What ails thee, man? be merry, hang up jea

lousies. Liv. Who, I? I jealous? no, no, here's no cause In this place; 'tis a nunnery, a retirement For meditation; all the difference extant But puzzles only bare belief, not grounds it. Rich services in plate, soft and fair lodgings, Varieties of recreations, exercise Of music in all changes, neat attendance, Princely, nay royal furniture of garments, Satiety of gardens, orchards, waterworks, Pictures so ravishing, that ranging eyes Might dwell upon a dotage of conceit, Without a single wish for livelier substance!The great world, in a little world of Fancy, Is here abstracted: no temptation proffer'd, But such as fools and mad folks can invite to;

And yet

Troy. And yet your reason cannot answer Th’ objections of your fears, which argue danger. Liv. Danger? dishonour, Troylo: were my

sister In safety from those charms, I must confess I could live here for ever.

Troy. But you could not, I can assure you; for ’twere then scarce possible A door might open t’you, hardly a loop-hole.

Liv. My presence then is usher to her ruin, And loss of her, the fruit of my preferment?

Troy. Briefly partake a secret; but be sure
To lodge it in the inmost of thy bosom,
Where memory may not find it for discovery;
By our firm truth of friendship, I require thee.

Liv. By our firm truth of friendship, I subscribe To just conditions.

Troy. Our great uncle-marquis,
Disabled from his cradle, by an impotence
In nature first, that impotence since seconded
And render'd more infirm, by a fatal breach
Received in fight against the Turkish gallies,
Is made incapable of

any faculty
Of active manhood, more than what affections
Proper unto his sex, must else distinguish;
So that no helps of art can warrant life,
Should he transcend the bounds his weakness

Liv. On; I attend with eagerness.

Troy. 'Tis strange
Such natural defects at no time check
A full and free sufficiency of spirit,
Which flows, both in so clear and fix'd a strength,
That to confirm belief, it seems, where nature
Is in the body lame, she is supplied
In fine proportion of the mind; a word
Concludes all—to a man his enemy,
He is a dangerous threat'ning; but to women,
However pleasurable, no way cunning
To shew abilities of friendship, other
Than what his outward senses can delight in,
Or charge and bounty court with.

Liv. Good, good— Troylo. Oh, that I had a lusty faith to credit it, Though none of all this wonder should be possible!

Troy. As I love honour, and an honest name, I faulter not, my Livio, in one syllable. Liv. News admirable ! ’tis, 'tis so-pish, I know

itYet he has a kind heart of his own to girls, Young, handsome girls; yes, yes, so he may; 'Tis granted:—he would now and then be piddling, And play the wanton, like a fly that dallies About a candle's flame; then scorch his wings, Drop down, and creep away, ha ?

Troy. Hardly that too; To look upon fresh beauties, to discourse In an unblushing merriment of words,. To hear them play or sing, and see them dance; To

pass the time in pretty amorous questions, Read a chaste verse of love, or prattle riddles, Is th' height of his temptations.

Liv. Send him joy on't!

Troy. His choices are not of the courtly train, Nor city's practice; but the country's innocence; Such as are gentle born, not meanly; such, To whom both gawdiness and ape-like fashions Are monstrous; such as cleanliness and decency' Prompt to a virtuous envy; such as study A knowledge of no danger, but themselves. Liv. Well, I have liv'd in ignorance: the an

cients, Who chatted of the golden age, feign'd trifles.

[ocr errors]

me, his

Had they dreamt this, they would have truth'd it

heaven;' I mean an earthly heaven; less it is not!

Troy. Yet is this bachelor-miracle not free
From the epidemical headach.

Liv. The yellows?
Troy. Huge jealous fits; admitting none to

enter But


and barber, with an eunuch, And an old guardianess. It is a favour Not common, that the license of your visits To your own sister, now and then, is wink'd at. Liv. But why are you his instrument? his ne

'Tis ominous in nature.

Troy. Not in policy:
Being his heir, I may take truce a little,
With mine own fortunes.

Liv. Knowing how things stand too.
Troy. At certain seasons, as the humour takes

A set of music are permitted peaceably
To cheer their solitariness, provided
They are strangers, not acquainted near the city;
But never the same twice, pardon him that:-
Nor must their stay exceed an hour, or two
At farthest, as at this wise wedding; wherefore

? They would have truth'd it heaven.] Our poet uses truth, whether as a substantive (vol. i. p. 16), or, as in this place, a verb, in a way somewhat peculiar to himself

. It here means, they would have affirmed, maintained, as a truth, that this society was heaven.

His barber is the master to instruct
The lasses both in song and dance, by him


in either quality Liv. A caution Happily studied.

Troy, Farther to prevent Suspicion, he has married his


To the old matron, and withal is pleased
Report should mutter him a mighty man
For th' game, to take off all suspicion
Of insufficiency; and this strict company
He calls his Bower of Fancies.

Liv. Yes, and properly,
Since all his recreations are in fancy.
I am infinitely taken.-Sister! marry,
Would I had sisters in a plenty, Troylo,
So to bestow them all, and turn them Fancies !-
Fancies! why 'tis a pretty name, methinks.
Troy. Something remains, which in conclusion

shortly, Shall take thee fuller.

[Music within. -Hark, the wedding jollity! With a bride-cake on my life, to grace the nuptials! Perhaps the ladies will turn songsters. Liv. Silence !

A SONG within.
After which, enter in procession, with the bride-cake,

Secco and MOROSA, with CastAMELA, FLORIA,
CLARELLA, Silvia, SPADONÈ, and Musicians.
Sec. Passing neat and exquisite, I protest, fair

I creatures. These honours to our solemnity are

« PreviousContinue »