The true-born Irishman: or, Irish fine lady. A comedy of two acts. By Charles Macklin.

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THE TRUE-BORN IRISHMAN; OR, IRISH FINE LADY. A COMEDY 0F TWO ACTS.

By CHARLES MACKLIN.

DUBLIN: SOLD BY THE BOOKSELLERS, M, DCC, LXXXIII.

[Price, a Britiſh Sixpence.]

Dramatis Perſonae

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MEN.

  • MURROGH O'DOGHERTY,
  • Count MUSHROOM,
  • Counſellor HAMILTON,
  • Major GAMBLE,
  • PAT FITZMUNGREL,
  • JAMES,
  • JOHN,
  • WILLIAM.
  • WOMEN.
  • Mrs. DIGGERTY,
  • Lady KINNEGAD,
  • Lady BAB FRIGHTFUL,
  • Mrs. GAZETTE,
  • Mrs. JOLLY,
  • KATTY FARREL.

Scene, Dublin.—A Room in Mr. O'Dogherty's Houſe.

Time, from Noon to Evening.

1. THE True-born Iriſhman.

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1.1. ACT I.

Enter O'Dogherty and Servant.
O'Dogh. WHO's there?
Serv. Sir.
O'Dogh. Is John come in yet?
Serv. No, Sir.
O'Dogh. Be ſure ſend him to me as ſoon as he comes in.
[Exit Serv.
Enter John.
John. I am here, Sir.
O'Dogh. Well, John, how is my brother after his journey?
John. The counſellor gives his compliments to you, ſir, and thanks you for your enquiry: He is very well, and will wait on you as ſoon as he is dreſſed.
O'Dogh. Mighty well—what is that you have in your hand, John?
[Page 6] John. It is nothing for you, Sir—it is a card for my miſtreſs, from Madam Mulroony; her man gave it me as I came in.
O'Dogh. Pray, let me ſee it— "Mrs. Mulroony makes her compliments to Mrs. Murrogh O'Dogherty, and likewiſe to Mr. Murrogh O'Dogherty, and hopes to have the favour of their company on Sunday the 17th inſtant, to play at cards, ſup, and ſpend the evening, with Lady Kinnegad, Mrs. Cardmark, Miſs Brag, Mr. Muſhroom, Cornet Baſiliſk, Sir Anthony All-Night, Major Gamble, and a very jolly party."—Here, John, take it to your miſtreſs—I have nothing to ſay to it. (Exit John)—Well done Mrs. Mulroony—faith, and it well becomes your father's daughter, and your huſband's wife, to play at cards upon a Sunday. She is another of the fine ladies of this country, who, like my wife, is ſending her ſoul to the devil, and her huſband to a gaol as faſt as ſhe can. The booby has ſcarce a thouſand pounds a year in the world, yet he ſpends above two thouſand in equipage, taſte, high life, and jolly parties—beſides what his fool of a wiſe loſes to that female ſharper, my Lady Kinnegad and her jolly party; which, if I may judge by my own wife, is at leaſt a good two thouſand more; ſo that by the rule of ſubtraction, take four thouſand pounds a year out of one, and in a very little time nothing will remain but a goal, or an eſcape in the packet on Connaught Monday.
[Page 7] Enter William ſhewing in Counſellor Hamilton.
Will. Counſellor Hamilton.
[Exit William.
O'Dogh. Counſellor, you are welcome to Dublin.
Coun. Brother, I am extremely glad to ſee you.
O'Dogh. By my faith, and ſo am I you. Odzooks give us a kiſs, man: I give you my honour I am as glad to ſee you in Dublin at this juncture, as I ſhould to ſee a hundred head of fat bullocks upon my own land, all ready for Ballinaſloe Fair.
Coun. Sir, your humble ſervant. That is a great compliment from you, brother, I know.
O'Dogh. It is a very true one I aſſure you.
Coun. Well, I ſee by the news-papers that my ſiſter is returned from her coronation frolie, and in health I ſuppoſe, or you would have wrote me word had it been otherwiſe.
O'Dogh. Yes, yes, ſhe is in health indeed, and returned with a vengeance.
Coun. Pray what is the matter?
O'Dogh. Ogho! enough is the matter, the devil an inhabitant in Swift's Hoſpital for Lunatics, is in a worſe pickle than ſhe is.
Coun. You ſurpriſe me!—in what reſpect, pray?
O'Dogh. Why, with a diſtemper that ſhe has brought over with her from England, which will, in a little time, I am afraid, infect the whole nation.
Coun. Pray, what may that be?
[Page 8] O'Dogh. Sir, it is called the Iriſh Fine Lady's delirium, or the London vertigo; if you were to hear her when the ſit is upon her—oh, ſhe is as mad—the devil a thing in this poor country but what gives her the ſpleen, and the vapours—then ſuch a phrenzy of admiration for every thing in England—and, among the reſt of her madneſs, ſhe has brought over a new language with her.
Coun. What do you mean by a new language?
O'Dogh. Why a new kind of a London Engliſh, that's no more like our Iriſh Engliſh, than a coxcomb' fine gilded chariot like a Glaſſmanogue noddy.—Why what name do you think ſhe went by when ſhe was in England?
Coun. Why, what name dare ſhe go by but Dogherty?
O'Dogh. Dogherty!—ogho—upon my honour ſhe ſtartles when ſhe hears the name of Dogherty, and bluſhes, and is as much aſhamed as if a man had ſpoke bawdy to her.—No, no, my dear, ſhe is no longer the plain, modeſt, good-natured, domeſtic, obedient Iriſh Mrs. O'Dogherty, but the travelled, rampant, high-liſ'd, prancing Engliſh Mrs. Diggerty.
Coun. Ha, ha, ha! Mrs. Diggerty! ridiculous!
O'Dogh. Ay, ridiculous indeed! to change her name—was there ever ſuch impertinence? But do you know, brother, among the reſt of your ſiſter's whims and madneſſes, that ſhe is turned a great politician too concerning my name.
Coun. Ha, ha, ha! a politician I—Why how in the name of wonder and common ſenſe can [Page 9] politics and the name of Dogherty be connected?
O'Dogh. O it's a wonder indeed!—but ſtrange as it is, they are connected—but very ridiculouſly as you may imagine.
Coun. But, prithee, by what means?
O'Dogh. Why, you muſt know, we are to have an election ſhortly for the county that I live in, which young Lord Turnabout wants to carry for one of his own gang; and as the election in a great meaſure depends upon my intereſt, the young fox, knowing the conceit and vanity of my wife, has taken her by her favourite ſoible, and tickled it up, by telling her that if I direct my intereſt properly, it would not be difficult to procure me a title. Now, ſir, this piece of flattery has ſtirred up ſuch a rage of quality and title in her giddy head, that I cannot reſt night or day for her importunity—in ſhort, ſhe would have me deſert my friends, and ſell myſelf, my honour, and my country, as ſeveral others have done before me, merely for a title, only that ſhe may take place of a parcel of fooliſh idle women, and ſink the antient name of Dogherty in the upſtart title of Lady Thingum, my Lady Fiddle F addle, or ſome ſuch ridiculous nonſenſe.
Coun. But, ſir, pray pauſe a little upon this buſineſs—my ſiſter's vanity, I grant you, may be ridiculous—but though you deſpiſe titles and oftentation, yet, as your intereſt can certainly make the member, were I in your circumſtances, I would have a voice in the ſenate of my [Page 10] country—go into parliament for the county yourſelf.
O'Dogh. Ogh, I have been among them already, and I know them all very well. What ſignifies my ſitting among hundreds of people with my ſingle opinion all alone. When I was there before I was ſtigmatized as a ſingular blockhead, an impracticable fellow, only becauſe I would not conſent to ſit like an image, and when the maſter of the puppets pulled the ſtring of my jaw on one ſide, to ſay aye, and on t'other ſide, to ſay no, and to leap over a ſtick backwards and forwards, juſt as the faction of party and jobbers, and leaders, and political adventurers directed—ah, brother, brother, I have done with them all—oh, I have done with them all.
Coun. What, and after all your expence of oppoſing government right or wrong, and ſupporting your patriots, will you give them all up?
O'Dogh. Indeed I will—I was patriot mad I own, like a great many other fools in this diſtracted country—ſir, I was ſo mad that I hated the very name of a courtier as much as an illiterate lay-ſwaddling methodiſt does that of a regular clergyman. But I am cured of that folly; for now I find that a courtier is juſt as honeſt a man as a patriot—my dear, they are both made of the ſame ſtuff; ah, I have at laſt found out what ſort of an animal a patriot is.
Coun. Ay!—and pray, brother, what ſort of an animal is he?
O'Dogh. Why he is a ſort of a political weathercock, that is blown about by every wind of ſociety, which the fooliſh people are always [Page 11] looking up at, and ſtaring, and diſtracting themſelves with the integrity of its viciſſitudes—to-day it is blown by the rough, rattling, tempeſt of party; next day by the trade-wind of fly, ſubtle, veering faction; then by the headlong hurricane of the people's hot foggy breath; huzza boys, down with the courtier, up with the patriot, 'till at laſt the ſmooth, ſoft, gentle warm breeze of intereſt blows upon it, and from that moment it ruſts to a point, and never ſtirs after—ſo there is your puff patriot for you—ogh, to the devil I pitch them all.
Coun. Ha, ha, ha! I am glad to find, brother, that you are come to that way of thinking at laſt, and I wiſh you had had the ſame notions years ago, it would have ſaved you many thouſands.
O'Dogh. Indeed, and that it would—however experience is an excellent tutor, and as you are a young man, and juſt coming into the world, mine may be of ſome ſervice to you; take this judgment from me then, and remember that an honeſt quiet country gentleman who out of policy and humanity eſtabliſhes manufactories, or that contrives employment for the idle and the induſtrious, or that makes but a blade of corn grow where there was none before, is of more uſe to this poor country than all the courtiers, and patriots, and politicians, and prodigals that are unhanged;—ſo there let us leave them and return to my wife's buſineſs.
Coun. With all my heart, I long to have a particular account of her conduct.
[Page 12] O'Dogh. O, brother, I have many grievances to tell you of, but I have one that's more whimſical than all the reſt.
Coun. Pray what is it?
O'Dogh. Why you muſt know, brother, I am going to be a cuckold as faſt as I can.
Coun. Ha, ha, ha! that's a comical grievance indeed.
O'Dogh. O ſtay 'till you hear the ſtory, and I'll engage you will ſay it is as comical a cuckoldom as ever was contrived.
Coun. I am glad to find, ſir, it is of ſo ſacetious a nature—pray let me hear this buſineſs?
O'Dogh. Sit down then, brother, for I have got a little touch of my gout, let us ſit down for a moment, and I will let you into the whole affair.
Coun. Pray do, ſir, for you have really raiſed my curioſity.
(ſits.)
O'Dogh. You muſt know, brother, there is an Engliſh coxcomb in this town juſt arrived among us, who thinks every woman that ſees him is in love with him, and this ſpark, like another Paris of Troy, has taken it into his head to make a Helen of my wife, and a poor cuckoldy Menelaus of me.
Coun. Ha, ha, ha! Pray who is the ſpark?
O'Dogh. Why the name of this cuckoldmaker is Muſhroom, but from his conceit and impertinence, the women and jokers of this town have dignified him with the title of Count Muſhroom. Sir, he is the ſon of a pawn-broker in London, who having a mind to make a gentleman of his ſon, ſent him to the univerſity [Page 13] of Oxford; where, by mixing in the follies and vices of irregular youth, he got into a moſt ſanguine friendſhip with young Lord Old-Caſtle, who you know has a large eſtate in this country, and of whoſe anceſtors mine have held long and profitable leaſes, which are now near expiring—in ſhort, ſir, this ſame Count Muſhroom and my Lord became the Pylades and Oreſtes of the age, and ſo very fond was my Lord of him, that out of ſheer friendſhip to the Count, he got his ſiſter with child.
Coun. Ha, ha, ha! that was friendly indeed.
O'Dogh. O yes, it was what you may call modern friendſhip, taſte, and bun tun; and my Lord being a man of gratitude, in return made him his agent in this country, and ſent him over to ſettle his affairs here. And the Count and I being in treaty to renew the leaſes with my Lord, and we not being able to agree upon the terms, the coxcomb ſends my wife a warm billedoux, in which he very gallantly tells her, that ſhe ſhall decide the difference between us, and ſettle the leaſes at her own price, only upon the trifling condition that he may be permitted now and then to be the occaſional lord of her ladyſhip's matrimonial manor.
Coun. Impudent raſcal! And, pray, what ſays my ſiſter to all this?
O'Dogh. Why ſhe does not know a word of the matter.
Coun. No! pray how came you to be acquainted with his letter then, and his deſigns upon my ſiſter?
[Page 14] O'Dogh. Why there is the joke: it was by the help of Katty Farrel, my wife's woman, by whoſe aſſiſtance I carry on a correſpondence with the fellow in my wife's name, unknown to her; and by that means I ſhall not only detect and expoſe the fellow, but get an excellent bargain of the leaſes, which are to be ſigned this very day.
Coun. But, ſir, I hope you wont accept of leaſes upon thoſe terms.
O'Dogh. O, I have no time to moralize with you on that point, but depend upon it I will convince you before I ſleep of the propriety of my taking the leaſes: Lord, what ſignifies it; it is only a good bargain got from a fooliſh lord by the ingenuity of a knaviſh agent, which is what happens every day in this country, and in every country indeed.
Enter John.
John. Sir, Mr. Muſhroom and Mr. Sharp the attorney are below.
O'Dogh. O, they are come about the leaſes. I will wait on them, John.
[Exit John.
Now, brother, you ſhall ſee one of the perteſt and moſt conceited impudent coxcombs that has ever yet been imported into this land, or that diſgraced humanity.
Muſhroom without.
Muſh. My compliments, Mrs. Katty, to your lady, I will be with her in the twinkling of a [Page 15] ſtar, or in leſs time than a ſingle glance of her own immortal beauty can paſs to the centre of an amorous heart.
O'Dogh. Orra now did you ever hear ſuch curſed nonſenſe.
Enter Muſhroom.
Muſh. My dear Diggerty, I kiſs your hands. I am come on purpoſe—I beg ten thouſand pardons—I underſtood you were alone—you are buſy I preſume.
O'Dogh. Indeed, Count, we are not. This gentleman is a relation—my wife's brother—counſellor Hamilton, whom you have ſo often heard me talk of, and with whom I deſire you will be acquainted.
Muſh. Sir, I feel a ſuperlative happineſs in being known to you, I have long expected and long wiſhed for it with a lover's appetite; therefore without waiting for the dull avocation of experience, or the pedantic forms of ceremony, I beg you will honour me with a niche in your eſteem, and regiſter me in the ſelect catalogue of your moſt conſtant and moſt ardent friends and admirers.
Coun. O dear ſir, you are ſuperabundantly obliging—this is ſuch a favour—
Muſh. No, no, no—none, none—give me your hand, Hamilton, you are my friend Diggerty's friend, and that's enough—I'll ſerve you—ſay no more—I'll ſerve you—rely upon me—I live in this town quite en famille—I go about every where, am of no party but thoſe of love, [Page 16] pleaſure and gallantry—the women like and command me at cards, tea, ſcandal and dancing—the men, at wit, hazard, jolly parties, a late hour and a bottle—I love eaſe, hate ceremony, and am at home wherever I go—that's my ſyſtem, Hamilton—ha, is not that taſte, life, philoſophy, and ſummum bonum—ha, my dear, at home wherever I go, an't I, Diggerty.
O'Dogh. O, indeed, to give you your due, Count, you are never baſhful in any place.
Muſh. Never, never, my dear.
O'Dogh. No faith, nor none of your family I believe.
Muſh. Ha, ha, ha! never, never, my dear Diggerty—baſhfulneſs is a mark of ignorance, an uncourtly, vulgar diſeaſe—what we men of the world are never infected with—but, my dear Diggerty, I am come on purpoſe to ſettle with you; my attorney with the leaſes is below, for as I know my lord would be loth to loſe you as a tenant, and as I am convinced it would be for his intereſt you ſhould have the lands, why we will even ſign and ſeal at once upon your own terms—for really I think tenants in Ireland want encouragement—they are rack'd too high—they are indeed—it is a ſhame they ſhould be rack'd ſo high.
O'Dogh. Faith, Count, there's many a true word poke in jeſt.
Muſh. Upon my honour I am ſerious—you want encouragement in trade too.
O'Dogh. But do you really think ſo?
[Page 17] Muſh. I do upon my honour, and I will ſpeak to ſome people of conſequence about it on the other ſide, as ſoon as I return.
O'Dogh. Orra but will you?
Muſh. I will upon my honour.
O'Dogh. O aye, you politicians promiſe us the devil and all while you are among us, but the moment you get o't'other ſide, you have deviliſh bad memories.
Coun. You ſeem to like Ireland, ſir.
Muſh. O immenſely, ſir—it is a damn'd fine country, ſir — and excellent claret — excellent claret upon my honour! 'tis true indeed it is not ſuch claret as we drink in London—however, upon the whole, it's a pretty, neat, light, ſoft, ſilky, palateable wine, and I like it mightily—but your fiſh in this here country is horrid. There you want taſte, Hamilton—that there is an article of the ſcavoir vivre, in which you are totally ignorant—quite barbarous—
Coun. Aye! in what reſpect, ſir?
Muſh. Oh, my dear Hamilton, how can you aſk ſuch a queſtion—you, you, now—who have been in London!—why you eat all your fiſh here too noo—
Coun. Too noo?
Muſh. Yes, all too noo—why you eat it the very day—nay, ſometimes the very hour it comes out of the water—now that there is a total want of taſte—quite barbarous.
O'Dogh. O yes, brother, we eat all our fiſh in this here country too noo—too noo a great deal. Now, I fancy, Count, we ſhould keep [Page 18] our fiſh before we dreſs it, as you keep your veniſon, till it has got the hot gout.
Muſh. Ha, ha, ha!—the hot gout—ha, ha, ha!—Oh, I ſhall expire—my dear Diggerty, I honour your hot gout—but your French is a little en Irlandois—en Provence—haut gout is the word.
O'Dogh. Yes, yes—I underſtand you—Fogo.
Muſh. Ha, ha, ha!—Hamilton, you are a little odd in this here country in ſome points—your friend there—is—you underſtand me—however upon the whole, take you altogether, you are a damn'd honeſt, tory rory, rantum ſcantum, dancing, ſinging, laughing, boozing, jolly, friendly, fighting, hoſpitable people, and I like you mightily.
Omnes. Ha, ha, ha!
Coun. Upon my word, ſir, the people of Ireland are much obliged to you for your helter ſkelter, rantum ſcantum portrait of them.
O'Dogh. Indeed and that we are; and ſo you like us mightily?
Muſh. I do upon honour, and I believe I ſhall marry one of your women here, grow domeſtic, and ſettle among you.
O'Dogh. Orra but will you do us that honour?
Muſh. I really intend it.
O'Dogh. Faith then you will be a great honour to us, and you will find a great many relations here, Count; for we have a large crop of the Muſhrooms in this here country.
Muſh. O, ſir, I don't doubt it, for we are a numerous family both in England and Ireland— [Page 19] but I beg pardon, my dear Diggerty, I muſt rob you of my company for a moment to pay my devoirs to your lady; I know ſhe is impatient to ſee me upon a particular affair—I will return upon the wings of diligence, then ſign, ſqueeze wax, and dedicate to wit, mirth, and convivial jollity—Hamilton, yours, yours—my dear Diggerty, give me thy hand—from this moment ſet me down as thy unalterable friend—for I intend to be well with thy wife this very evening.
[Exit.
O'Dogh. Sure there never was ſo conceited and ſo impertinent a coxcomb as this puppy.
Enter Katty Farrel.
Oh here is Katty Farrel. So, Katty, do you ſee who's here, child—your friend the counſellor.
Katty. Sir, your humble ſervant, I am glad to ſee you look ſo well. I hope all your good family are in health.
Coun. All very well, I thank you, Mrs. Katty.
O'Dogh. Well, well, now your ceremonies are over, let us to buſineſs—is your fine miſtreſs dreſſed yet?
Katty. Yes, ſir—but ſhe has had a ſad misfortune.
O'Dogh. What is that, Katty?
Katty. The money, ſir, that you gave her to pay the mercer's bill, from Covent-Garden, that was ſent after her, ſhe loſt laſt night to my Lady Kinnegad, and ſome more of them, at bragg—but do not take any notice that I have [Page 20] told you of it, for ſhe intends to borrow as much from Mr. Muſhroom for a day or two as will pay the bill.
Coun. Why the woman has loſt all ſenſe of ſhame.
(Aſide.)
O'Dogh. Katty, that muſt not be. She muſt not do ſo mean a thing upon any account, as to borrow money of Muſhroom. I will let you have the money to pay the bill, and do you ſay you borrowed it of your brother, or ſome friend or other, for her.
Katty. I will, ſir.
[Exit.
[Mrs. Diggerty, Muſhroom, &c. laugh very loud without.]
O'Dogh. So, the toilet council is broke up at laſt—here ſhe comes, as fantaſtically fine, as a fine lady in a play. Ogho, what a head ſhe has.
Enter Mrs. Diggerty and Muſhroom.
Mrs. Dig. Brother, I am veeſtly glad to ſee you.
Coun. Welcome from England, ſiſter.
Mrs. Dig. I am imminſely obligated to you, brother.
Coun. I hope it anſwered your expectation, ſiſter.
Mrs. Dig. Tranſcendantly.
Coun. I am glad it pleaſed you.
Mrs. Dig. Raviſhingly.
Coun. Indeed!
Mrs. Dig. Beyond all degrees of compiriſon.
[Page 21] O'Dogh. O yes—beyond all degrees of compiriſon.
Mrs. Dig. Veeſt! imminſe! extatic! I never knew life before—every thing there is high, tip top, the grand monde, the bun tun—and quite teeſty.
O'Dogh. O yes, every thing there is quite teeſty, brother.
Mrs. Dig. Well, Count, do you know that you pleaſed me veeſtly laſt night; I never ſaw you in ſuch high humour—brother, I believe you do not know Mr. Muſhroom, an Engliſh gentleman; pray let me have the honour of introducing him to you.
Coun. I have had that honour already, ſiſter.
Muſh. Yes, madam, Hamilton and I are old acquaintance.
O'Dogh. O yes they are old acquaintance, they have known each other above theſe two minutes.
Coun. Pray how do you like London, ſiſter?
Mrs. Dig. O the place of the world, brother.
Coun. Then Dublin I ſuppoſe—
Mrs. Dig. O, dear brother, don't neem them together.
O'Dogh. O no, you muſt not neem them together.
Mrs. Dig. Upon my honour, Dublin, after ſeeing London, looks like Iriſh-Town or Ring's-End: Oh, every thing I ſet my eyes on here gives me the ennui, and the countre cure.
O'Dogh. O yes, every thing here gives her the contre coeur; that is a diſeaſe ſhe has brought [Page 22] over with her from London that we know nothing of here.
Mrs. Dig. The ſtreets are ſo narrow, the houſes ſo dirty, and the people ſo ridiculous! then the women, Count! ha, ha, ha!—I can't help laughing when I think of them. Well, I am convinced that the women of this here country who have never travelled, have nothing of that—a—a—non-chalance, and that jenny-ſee-quee that we have in London.
O'Dogh. O no, brother! the women have nothing of that jenny-ſee-quee, that ſhe has brought over with her from London.
Mrs. Dig. But, Muſhroom—I don't know if what I am going to tell you be conceit or real; but, upon my honour, when I firſt came from England—you muſt know, brother, I came over in the picket.
O'Dogh. O yes, brother, ſhe came over in the picket.
Mrs. Dig. Yes, ſir, I came over in the picket, and we had a great orage—I don't believe, Mr. Diggerty, you know what an orage is.
O'Dogh. Indeed you may take your oath I don't, my dear.
Mrs. Dig. That is, ſir, becaſe you have not been in foreign parts—then I will tell you what an orage is—ſir, an orage is a ſtorum.
O'Dogh. Madam, I thank you for your intelligence—indeed you are very learned and very obliging.
Mrs. Dig. And ſo, as I was ſaying, Count, we had a great ſtorum, and the picket—I ſhall never forget it—the picket landed us about [Page 23] twenty miles from Dublin—and ſo, do you know, I ſay, Muſhroom, that I fancied, being juſt come from England, that the very dogs here when they barked, had the brogue, ha, ha, ha!
Omnes. Ha, ha, ha!
Muſh. Why then, by all that's gothic, madam, I have thought ſo a thouſand times.
Mrs. Dig. You have!
Muſh. I have, upon honour.
Mrs. Dig. Have you ever obſerved it, brother? Mr. Diggerty, what do you think? Hav'n't the dogs of this here country the brogue?
O'Dogh. Indeed and that they have, my dear, and the cows too, and the ſheep, and the bullocks, and that as ſtrong as ever your own mother had it, who was an O'Gallagher.
Mrs. Dig. Oh!
G'Dogh. Not two of whoſe anceſtors could ever ſpeak three words of Engliſh to be underſtood.
Mrs. Dig. You are a ſtrange rude man, Mr. Diggerty, to tell me of my mother's family—you know I always deſpiſed my mother's family—I hate the very name of Gallagher, and all the old Iriſh whatever.
Coun. The preſent company excepted, ſiſter—your huſband, you know—
Mrs. Dig. O, I never think of him.
Coun. Ha, that's polite indeed.
O'Dogh. O no, ſhe never thinks of me.
Coun. Well, but ſiſter, you have given us no account of the coronation, no doubt you were there.
[Page 24] Mrs. Dig. There! O Moundew!—What a quiſtion! Why I was in every part of it—ax Muſhroom elſe.
Muſh. Every where, every where—ſhe was every where, and with every body.
O' Dogh. Well, well—then I ſuppoſe it was very fine; but after all now, was it as fine as our riding the fringes here, or the lord lieutenant going to the parliament houſe.
Mrs. Dig. He, he, he! O ſhocking! don't neem them together—now that is ſo Iriſh—but, brother, what would have afforded you the higheſt entertainment, was the city feaſt. O that there was imminſe.
O' Dogh. O yes, that there was imminſe, brother, and much finer than this here.
Coun. Then you were at the city feaſt too, ſiſter?
Mrs. Dig. O dear, yes! the court never ſtirred without me.
O'Dogh. No, indeed, the court never ſtirred without her.
Mrs. Dig. And the lord mayor made a point of having me there: ſo I went with her Grace, a friend of mine, and a party of the court, as one of the houſhold—but the minute I went in every eye was upon me: Lord, it was veeſtly pleaſant to ſee how the ſhe grocers, the ſhe mercers, the ſhe dyers, the ſhe hoſiers, and the ſhe taylors did ſtare at me—I was very brilliant that's certain—rather more ſo than I was at the wedding.
O'Dogh. O indeed I don't doubt but you were a ſight.
[Page 25] Mrs. Dig. O pray, Mr. Diggerty, be quiet, and don't interrupt me.—Well, but, brother, as I was ſaying, it was imminſely entertaining to hear the awkward city creatures whiſper and give their vardee upon me, in their city manner—Lord, is this the handſome Iriſh woman?—the famous Iriſh toaſt? the celebrated Mrs. Diggerty—ha!—I don't think ſhe is ſo handſome, ſays one—hum!—well enough, ſays another, only I don't like her noſe—pray, doesn't ſhe ſquint? ſays a third—O yes, ſhe certainly ſquints, ſays a fourth—and ſhe is a little crooked—but ſhe is genteel—O yes, yes, the city creatures all allowed I was genteel.
O'Dogh. O yes, yes, to be ſure they all allowed ſhe was genteel.
Mrs. Dig. But, brother—O Lud! I had like to have forgot—do you know that the Count is one of the prettieſt poets in England, aye, or in Ireland either.
Muſh. O heavens! madam!
Mrs. Dig. He is, by my honour.
Coun. I do not doubt the gentleman's talents in the leaſt, ſiſter.
Muſh. Sir, you are very polite, the lady is pleas'd to rally, that's all, for my muſe is but a ſmatterer—a ſlattern—a meer ſlip-ſhod lady.
Mrs. Dig. Do not mind him, brother, what I ſay is true. He is a mighty pretty poet, and to convince you that he is, I will ſhew you ſome verſes that he indited upon me, as I was dancing at court—(Pulls them out).—Here they are, brother: Count, will you be ſo obliging as to read them to my brother?
[Page 26] Muſh. Madam, as the ſublime bard politely ſings, the nod of beauty ſways both gods and men, and I obey. Gentlemen, the title will at once let you into the whole of what you are to expect in this little production. "An extempore on the famous Mrs. O'Diggerty's dancing at court."—Now attend—
"When beauteous Diggerty leads up the dance
"In fair Britannia's court,
"Then ev'ry heart is in a prance,
"And longs for Cupid's ſport.
"Beaux ogle, and pant and gaze,
"Belles envy and ſneer, yet praiſe,
"As Venus herſelf were there;
"And prudes agree, it muſt be ſhe,
"It muſt be ſhe—or Diggerty,
"It muſt be ſhe—or Diggerty,
"Or Diggerty, the fair."
[Bows very low to Mrs. Diggerty.
That's all, gentlemen, that's all—only a jeu d'eſprit, as I told you; a ſlight effort of a muſe, bound in the ſilken chains of beauty and delight.
[He bows, ſhe curtſies.
Coun. Conceited coxcomb!
(Aſide.)
Muſh. And now, madam, I have a favour to beg of you.
Mrs. Dig. O command it—what is it?
Muſh. Why, madam, as the celebrated doctor Thomas Auguſtus Arne has honoured this haſty offspring with an alliance of his harmonious mule, and as your ladyſhip has frequently here-tofore enlivened it with your vocal glee, ſhall we beg that you will once more animate theſe [Page 27] verbal images with a touch of your Promethean pipe.
Mrs. Dig. O dear, Count, you are veeſtly panegyrical.
Coun. Aye, aye, come, ſiſter, as you have the tune oblige us with it.
Mrs. Dig. I will try, brother, what I can do—but, by my honour, I have a great big cold—hem, hem!—
Muſh. The worſe your voice, madam, the more your taſte will ſhine.
Mrs. Dig. Nay, Count, voice or no voice I will make an effort—Sol-la-mi-fa-ſol, &c.—Upon my honour I have no more voice than a killing.
SONG. [During the ſong Muſhroom beats time conceitedly, but ſo as not to interrupt her, or interfere with her acting it.]
Muſh. Bravo! braviſſimo! cariſſimo! novelliſſimo! tranſcendiſſimo! and every ſuperlativiſſimo in the ſublime region of excellentiſſimo!
O'Dogh. Come, Count, now if you pleaſe we will go down, and ſign the leaſes, and diſpatch the attornies.
Muſh. With all my heart.
[Exit O'Dogh.
Mrs. Dig. You dine here, Count.
Muſh. Do I breathe! do I exiſt! I will but juſt ſtep down, ſign the leaſes, and return on the wings of inclination—ma chere belle ſans, adieu.
[Exit.
[Page 28] Mrs. Dig. Au revoir—well, he is a moſt humourous creature, and mighty witty: don't you think ſo, brother?
Coun. Very witty, indeed, and I ſuppoſe underſtands a lady's toilet—
Mrs. Dig. The beſt of any man in the world, the moſt handy-creature about a woman—and ſuch teeſt—but, brother, you muſt ſup with us to-night—I have a few friends—a private peerty this evening: Lady Kinnegad, Lady Pam, old Lady Bab Frightful, Mrs. Gazette, Mr. Muſhroom, Pat Fitzmungrel, Major Gamble, Mrs. Cardmark, and half a ſcore more—quite a private peerty—you muſt be with us, brother—we are to have a little gambling and dancing, and are to be mighty jolly—I ſhall expect you—yours, yours—I muſt go finiſh my toilet.
[Exit.
Coun. What a ſtrange turn this woman's mind has taken—ſhe is far gone I ſee, and muſt be pinched to the quick—and ſhall this very night.
[Exit.

1.2. ACT II.

[Page 29]
Enter Mr. and Mrs. O'Dogherty.
O'Dogh. WELL, but, my dear, why will you be in ſuch a paſſion? Why will you not hearken to reaſon?
Mrs. Dig. Mr. Diggerty, I will hear no reaſon; there can be no reaſon againſt what I ſay—you are the ſtrangeſt man—not be a lord—ſir, I inſiſt upon it—there's a neceſſity for a peerage.
O'Dogh. O! then only ſhew me the neceſſity, and all my objections will vaniſh.
Mrs. Dig. Why, ſir, I am affronted for want of a title: a parcel of upſtarts, with their crownets upon their coaches, their chairs, their ſpoons, their handkerchiefs—nay, on the very knockers of their doors—creatures that were below me but t'other day, are now truly my ſuperiors, and have the precedency, and are ſet above me at table.
O'Dogh. Set above you at table?
Mrs. Dig. Yes, ſir, ſet above me at table wherever I go.
O'Dogh. Upon my honour then that's a great ſhame. Well, well, my dear—come, come, my dear, don't be in ſuch a fluſter.
Mrs. Dig. Fluſter! why ſir, I tell you I am ready to expire when ever I go into the great world.
[Page 30] O'Dogh. At what, my dear?
Mrs. Dig. At what—Egh! how can you ax ſuch an ignorant quiſtion? Can there be any thing more provoking to a woman of my teeſt and ſpirit, than to hear the titles of a parcel of upſtart ugly creatures bawled in one's ears upon every occaſion—my Lady Kinnegad's coach there—my Lady Kilgobbin's chair there—my Lady Caſteknock's ſervants there—my Lady Tanderagee's chariot there. And after all theſe titles only conſider how my vile neem founds— (cries) Mrs. Diggerty's ſervants there—Mrs. Diggerty's chair there—Mrs. Diggerty's coach there—it is ſo mean and beggarly I cannot bear it—the very thought of it makes me ready to burſt my ſtays, and almoſt throws me into my hyſterics.
(throws herſelf into a couch.)
O'Dogh. Nay, my dear, don't be working yourſelf up to your ſits, your hyſterics, and your tantrums now.
Mrs. Dig. My life is miſerable (riſes). You croſs me in every thing, you are always finding fault with my routs, and my drums, and my fancy ball—t'other night you would not make up a dreſs for it, nor appear at it—O fie, fie, fie—but you are true Iriſh to the very bone of you.
O'Dogh. Indeed I am, and to the marrow within the bone too; and what is more, I hope I ſhall never be otherwiſe.
Mrs. Dig. Ridiculous weakneſs! Pray, ſir, do not you think, the Engliſh love their country as well as the Iriſh do theirs?
[Page 31] O'Dogh. O indeed I believe they do, and a great deal better; though we have a great many among us that call themſelves patriots and champions, who, at the ſame time, would not care if poor old Ireland was ſqueezed as you ſqueeze an orange—provided they had but their ſhare of the juice.
Mrs. Dig. Pooh, pooh! nobody minds what you ſay—you are always abuſing every body in power—well, ſir, you ſee the Engliſh are improving in teeſt every day, and have their burlettas and their operas, their Cornelys, their Almacks, their macaronies—
O'Dogh. O my dear, I tell you again and again, that the Engliſh can never be precedent to us. They, by their genius and conſtitution, muſt always run mad about ſomething or other, either about burlettas, pantomimes, a man in a bottle, a Cock-lane ghoſt, or ſomething of equal importance. But, my dear, they can afford to run mad after ſuch nonſenſe; why they owe more money than we are worth; ſtay 'till we are as rich as they are, and then we may be allowed to run mad after abſurdities as well as they.
Mrs. Dig. Mighty well, ſir, mighty well! Oh mighty well.
O'Dogh. Heyday, what's the matter now?
Mrs. Dig. But I ſee your deſign—you have a mind to break my heart— (ſobs and cries)—yes, you argue and contradict me for no other end—you do every thing to fret and vex me.
O'Dogh. Pray explain, my dear? What is it you mean?
[Page 32] Mrs. Dig. Why, ſir, ever ſince I returned to this odious country I have been requeſting and begging, and praying, that you would ſend to London only for the ſet of long-tailed horſes, that I told you I admired ſo—but no, I cannot prevail, though you know my Lady Kilgobbin, my Lady Balruddery, my Lady Caſtleknock, and, in ſhort, every lady of figure all run upon long tails—nobody but doctors, apothecaries, lawyers, cits, and country ſquires drive with ſhort tails now—for my part, you know I deteſt a ſhort tail.
O'Dogh. Well, my dear, I have ſent for your brother to town, on purpoſe to ſettle all theſe points between us, and if he thinks it proper that you ſhould have long tails, you may have them as long as my Lady Kilgobbin's, my Lady Balruddery's tails, or any tails in the univerſe; and as to the title, if it can be had, why we will ſubmit that to him likewiſe.
Mrs. Dig. I know it can be had—and ſo let me have no more trouble about it, for a title I will have—I muſt be a lady as well as other people—I can't bear being a plain Mrs. Diggerty any longer.
(cries.)
O'Dogh Well, well, my dear, we will try what we can do—you muſt be a lady! yes, yes, you ſhall be a lady; but by the blood of the O'Doghertys, it ſhall be a broken-back'd lady. A hump ſhall be your patent, my dear.
(aſide.)
[Exit.
Mrs. Dig. An obſtinate man! not accept of a title—in ſhort, there is no living without it. Who's there?
[Page 33] Enter John.
John. Madam!
Mrs. Dig. Nobody come yet?
John. No, madam.
Mrs. Dig. What's o'clock?
John. A quarter paſt ſeven, madam.
Mrs. Dig. Are the candles lit, and the cards ready?
John. They have been ready this half hour, madam.
Mrs. Dig. Shew the company into this room?
John. Yes, madam.
[A loud knocking, three ſervants, without.]
Will. Lady Kinnegad.
James. Lady Kinnegad.
John. Lady Kinnegad.
Enter John, ſhewing in Lady Kinnegad.
John. Lady Kinnegad, madam.
[Exit.
L. Kin. My dear Diggy—what, all alone—nobody come?
Mrs. Dig. Not a mortal, I have been ſretting this hour at being alone, and had nothing to divert me but a quarrel with my huſband.
L. Kin. The old fogrum! what, he won't open, his purſe ſtrings, I ſuppoſe—but you ſhould, make him, for he is as rich as a Jew.
Mrs. Dig. Aye, but he is as cloſe-ſiſted as an old judge—Lord, he has no notion of any thing [Page 34] in life, but reading muſty books, draining bogs, planting trees, eſtabliſhing manufactories, ſetting the common people to work, and ſaving money.
L. Kin. Ha, ha, ha! the monſter!
[A loud knocking.]
Will. Major Gamble.
James. Major Gamble.
John. Major Gamble.
Enter John and Major Gamble.
John. Major Gamble, madam.
[Exit.
Mrs Dig. Major, how is your gout to-day?
Major. I don't know how the devil it is, not I—hobbling up your ſtairs has made me ſweat—Lady Kinnegad, I kiſs your hands; I aſk your pardon, but I muſt ſit down—I cannot ſtand—I got cold laſt night, and I feel it to-day—what, is there nobody come yet but us—nothing going forward.
[Loud knocking.]
Will. Lady Bab Frightful.
James. Lady Bab Frightful.
John. Lady Bab Frightful.
L. Kin. Here ſhe comes, as Muſhroom ſays, Nature's contradiction—youth and age, froſt and-fire, winter and ſummer, an old body and a young mind.
[Page 35] Enter John and Lady Bab Frightful.
John. Lady Bab Frightful, madam.
[Exit.
Mrs. Dig. My dear Lady Bab!
L. Bab. My dear Diggy—Lady Kinnegad, I kiſs your hands—O, major—why you had like to have ruined us all laſt night—the bank was juſt broke—well, I am a perfect rake—I think I was one of the laſt this morning. I danced till five.
L. Kin. As the old ſaying is, Lady Bab—you can never do it younger—Live while we live, that's the rule of happineſs, you have good ſpirits, a good jointure, and nobody to controul you—you amiable creature.
L. Bab. Yes, I thank my ſtars, I never want ſpirits, tol, lol, lol, (ſings)—I could dance till morning.
[Loud knocking.]
Will. Mrs. Jolly.
James. Mrs. Jolly.
John. Mrs. Jolly.
Enter John and Mrs. Jolly.
John. Mrs. Jolly, madam.
[Gives a card to Mrs. Dig. and exit.
Mrs. Jolly. So, good folks.
Mrs. Dig. Madam, your moſt obedient.
Mrs. Jolly. What, all idle!—no loo—no brag—no hazard—nor no dancing begun yet, [Page 36] and Lady Bab here—but where's Muſhroom—I've ſuch a ſtory for him.—Where's the Count, Diggerty?
Enter John with a note and exit.
Mrs. Dig. O he will be here, never fear, madam—O this is a card from Gazette, (reads) "Dear Dig, I cannot be with you at ſeven;" but before you have play'd two hands, expect "me—three ſhort viſits at the Green, one in" Merrion-ſtreet, two in the Mall, in Britain-ſtreet, "three words at the caſtle with his" excellency, and then I am yours for the "night, and whilſt I am—Gazette."
L. Kin. Well ſaid, Gazette!—ſhe will ſpread more ſcandal in theſe ſhort viſits than truth can remove in a twelvemonth.
[Loud knocking.]
Will. Mr. Fitzmungrel.
James. Mr. Fitzmungrel.
John. Mr. Fitzmungrel.
L. Kin. O, here's Fitzmungrel! drunk, I ſuppoſe, according to cuſtom.
L. Bab. And brutal, according to nature; yes, yes, he's drunk I ſee. I will be gone, for I know he will be rude.
L. Kin. No, no, ſtay—let us all ſhare in his abuſe, pray.
Enter John.
John. Mr, Fitzmungrel, madam.
[Page 37] Enter Fitzmungrel, drunk and ſinging.
Fitz. My dear, Mrs. O'Dogherty — but I know you do not love to be called O'Dogherty, and therefore I will call you by your Engliſh name, Mrs. Diggerty—my dear Diggerty, I have not been in bed ſince I ſaw you.
Mrs. Dig. Why where have you been, Fitz?
Fitz. At the Curragh, my dear, with Pat Wildſire, Sir Anthony All-Night, Sir Toby Ruin, Dick Baſhaw, and half a ſcore more, and a fine chaſe we had—haux, haux, my honies—over, over, haux—but I was reſolved to be with you, my little Diggerty, becauſe I promiſed, ſo I ſmoaked it away to town—drove myſelf in my own Phaeton, and was over-turned juſt as I came to dirty Dublin.
Mrs. Dig. Why you are all dirty?
Fitz. Yes, I had a fine ſet down in the dirtieſt ſpot of the whole road.
Mrs. Dig. I hope you are not hurt?
Fitz. Not I, my dear—haux—haux—whoop—no, no, my dear Diggerty, I am like a cat—I always light upon my legs—haux—haux—whoop—ha, my dear angelic couſin, Lady Bab Frightful—by Heavens, you are a beautiful creature, and look like the picture of good luck—well, ſhall we have another bank to night?—here, take this note into your bank (gives a note) I will go take a nap in the next room in my old chair, and when you have made it five hundred, wake me, my little babby—do you hear—
[Page 38] L. Bab. I will, I will—that's a good man, go, and take a nap.
Fitz. My dear couſin, thou'rt the beauty of our family.
L. Bab. Well, well—go ſleep—go ſleep.
Fitz. The beauty of our family, Bab—another Venus—as handſome as Meduſa, and you are beſides a good-natured, old, young, middleaged, giggling girl of three-ſcore—ſo I'll go take my nap—haux—haux—tally ho—whoop—
[Exit.
Mrs. Dig. He is horrid drunk.
L. Kin. And what is worſe, he is a greater brute ſober than drunk.
[Loud knocking.]
Will. Mrs. Gazette.
James. Mrs. Gazette.
John. Mrs. Gazette.
L. Kin. Here ſhe comes, that knows every body's buſineſſ but her own, ha, ha, ha!
Major. I will ſwear ſhe is in as many houſes every day as Faulkner's Journal.
Enter John and Mrs. Gazette.
John. Mrs. Gazette, madam.
[Exit.
Mrs. Gaz. My dear Diggerty, you got my billet—I came to you as ſoon as poſſible—but where's Muſhroom—I do not ſee him.
Mrs. Dig. He will be here, Madam.
Mrs. Gaz. My dear Jolly, why you look in high bloom to night—Major, how's your gout— [Page 39] Lady Kinnegad, your moſt devoted—Oh, but Diggerty, I have a piece of news-—they ſay your huſband's to have a peerage.
Omnes. Ha, ha, ha!
Mrs. Dig. It is very true, madam, very true—we are to be entitled.
Mrs. Gaz. Why not? I am ſure there are thoſe, that have not half your fortune, who have got peerages. And pray, my dear, what is your title to be—you muſt conſult me upon it.
Mrs. Dig. Why, I have thought of ſeveral, but know not which to pitch upon—I am diſtracted about it, I have thought of nothing elſe this week—I wiſh you would all adviſe me—it muſt be ſomething new, elegant, and uncommon—and teeſty—yes, I muſt have it teeſty—ſee, here is the lift of titles—if you will all ſtep into the drawing-room, we will determine upon one, and then ſit down to our peerties—come, alons—ſans ceremonie—I'll ſhew you the way—come, major—
[Exeunt, all but the Major.
Major. Aye, aye, pack along—I'll hobble after you—get the hazard ready—but I muſt ſit by the fire—I am curſed lame—'ſblood, I have trod upon ſome damn'd ſhell or pebble—O damn it—curſe the ſhell—but Lady Bab's bank will be worth touching.
[Exit.
Enter O'Dogherty and Katty Farrel.
O'Dogh. They are all gone to their nightly devotions—well, and what did ſhe ſay when you gave her the money?
[Page 40] Katty. O ſir, ſhe was overjoy 'd, and ſo thankful—but ſhe will loſe it all again to that Lady Kinnegad.
O'Dogh. Not to night, Katty; her brother was in the room before them to prevent her playing; he is reſolved to ſettle all affairs with her this very night. But what makes this Muſhroom ſtay ſo long? Sure he will come.
Katty. O never fear, ſir—you never ſaw a man ſo eager, and ſo full of expectation.
O'Dogh. And ſo you have really dreſſed him up in your lady's cloaths.
Katty. I have, ſir, indeed—and he is ten times fonder of himſelf (if poſſible) as a woman, I think, than he was as a man.
O'Dogh. Ogh I will engage I will cure him of his paſſion for himſelf, and for all Iriſh women, as long as he lives.
Katty. Here comes my miſtreſs, and her brother with her, ſir.
O'Dogh. Come, come, quick; let us get out of their way, for he is reſolved to ſtartle the lady, and waken her, if poſſible. Let us leave them to themſelves, for I reckon they will have a ſharp bruſh.
[Exeunt.
Enter Mrs. Diggerty and Hamilton.
Coun. Madam, madam, you ſhall hear me.
Mrs. Dig. Was there ever ſo, rude, ſo abrupt a behaviour—to force me from my company thus.
Coun. Tis what your inſolent diſeaſe demands; the ſuddenneſs and abruptneſs of the [Page 41] ſhock is the chief ingredient in the remedy that muſt cure you.
Mrs. Dig. What do you mean, ſir?
Coun. I will tell you, madam—you are not ignorant that your huſband took you without a fortune; that he generouſly gave the little our father left you to your younger ſiſter, with the benevolent addition of two thouſand pounds—you know too, that by marriage articles, upon a ſeparation or your huſband's death, you are entitled only to a hundred pounds a year; which cautious pittance his prudence wiſely inſiſted on, as a neceſſary check upon the conduct of giddy, female youth, and thoughtleſs vanity, when matched with the tempered age of ſobriety and diſcretion—now, madam, I am commiſſioned to inform you, that the doors are open, and that the ſtipulated ſum will be punctually paid you, as your vicious appetite ſhall demand; for know, that neither your huſband's love, my affection, nor a reſidence in this houſe can be enjoyed by you another hour, but on the hard condition of a thorough reformation.
Mrs. Dig. Sir!
Coun. Madam, it is true; for if female vanity will be mad, huſbands muſt be peremptory.
Mrs. Dig. Pray, ſir, do not ſpeak ſo loud.
Coun. Why not?
Mrs. Dig. The company will hear you.
Coun. I know it—and I intend they ſhall.
Mrs. Dig. Oh, oh, oh! I ſhall be aſhamed for ever—pray do not ſpeak ſo loud—bleſs me, brother, you ſtartle me—what is it you mean?
[Page 42] Coun. Will you hear what I have to ſay? will you attend to the dictates of a brother's love, with modeſt patience, and virtuous candour?
Mrs. Dig. I will.
Coun. Sit down—know then, in your huſband's judgment, the ſums you have ſquandered, and thoſe you have been cheated of by your female friends, is your leaſt offence—it is your pride, your midnight revels, inſolence of taſte, rage of precedency, that grieve him; for they have made you the ridicule of every flirt and coxcomb, and the ſcorn and pity of every ſober perſon that knows your folly; this reflects diſgrace upon your friends, contempt upon the ſpirit and credit of your huſband, and has furniſhed whiſpering ſuſpicion with ſtories and implications, which have ſecretly fixed an infectious ſtain upon your chaſtity.
(both riſe)
Mrs. Dig. My chaſtity! I defy the world!
Coun. Aye, madam, you may defy it; but ſhe who does, will find the world too hard a match for her.
Mrs. Dig. I care not what ſlander ſays—I will rely upon my innocence.
Coun. But I will not, madam, nor ſhall you—it is not ſufficient for my ſiſter, your huſband's wife, or female reputation, to rely on innocence alone—women muſt not only be innocent, they muſt appear ſo too.
Mrs. Dig. Brother, I don't know what you mean by all this. I beg you will explain.
Coun. I will—know then, this coxcomb Muſhroom—
[Page 43] Mrs. Dig. Muſhroom!
Coun. Muſhroom!—as a man of wit and ſpirit, thought himſelf obliged to take ſome hints your levity had given him.
Mrs. Dig. I give him hints—brother, you wrong me.
Coun. Pray hear me—this ſpark, I ſay, like a true man of intrigue, not only returns your hints with a letter of gallantry, but bribes your own woman to deliver it.
Mrs. Dig. My woman!
Coun. The ſame.
Mrs. Dig. I am ignorant of all this, and will turn her out of the houſe this inſtant.
Coun. Softly! hear the whole! the maid, inſtead of carrying the letter to you, delivers that, and many others, to her maſter, who, in your name, hand, ſtile, and ſentiment, has anſwered them all, and carried on an amorous correſpondence with the gentleman, even up to an aſſignation; and, now, at this very inſtant, the ſpark is preparing for the happy interview, and has made the town the confidants of his good fortune.
Mrs. Dig. O heavens!
Coun. Now judge what your huſband, brother, and your friends muſt feel, and what the world muſt think of her, whoſe conduct could entitle a coxcomb to ſuch liberties.
Mrs. Dig. Brother, I ſhall make no defence—the ſtory ſhocks me! and though I know my own intentions, yet what people may ſay—but, be aſſured, I ſhall be more prudent for the future—perhaps I have been to blame—pray [Page 44] adviſe me—only ſay what I ſhall do to be revenged upon the fellow for his impudence, and what will convince my huſband, you, and all the world of my innocence, and I will do it. I proteſt you have given ſuch a motion to my heart, and ſuch a trouble and a trembling, as it never felt before.
Coun. It is a virtuous motion—encourage it—for the anxiety and tears of repentance, though the rareſt, are the brighteſt ornaments a modern fine lady can be deck'd in.
Katty and O'Dogherty without.
O'Dogh. I ſhall be in here with the counſellor, Katty, and the moment he comes, bring me word.
Katty. I ſhall, ſir.
Coun. Here your huſband comes.
Mrs, Dig. I am aſhamed to ſee him.
Enter O'Dogherty.
O'Dogh. Well, brother, have you ſpoke to her?
Coun. There ſhe is, ſir—and as ſhe ſhould be—bathed in the tears of humility and repentance.
O'Dogh. Ogh! I am ſorry to ſee this indeed—I am afraid you have gone too far. If I had been by, I aſſure you, brother, you ſhould not have made her cry.—Yerrow, Nancy, child, turn about, and don't be crying there.
Mrs, Dig. Sir, I am aſham'd to ſee your face—my errors I acknowledge—and for the future—
[Page 45] O'Dogh. Pooh, pooh—I will have no ſubmiſſions nor acknowledgments; if you have ſettled every thing with your brother, that is ſufficient.
Mrs. Dig. I hope he is ſatisfied—and it ſhall be the buſineſs of my life—
O'Dogh. Pooh, pooh! ſay no more I tell you, but come, give me a kiſs, and let us be friends at once—there—ſo, in that kiſs, now, let all tears and uneaſineſs ſubſide with you, as all fears and reſentment ſhall die with me.
Coun. Come, ſiſter, give me your hand, for I muſt have my kiſs of peace too. I own I have been a little fevere with you, but your diſeaſe required ſharp medicines.
O'Dogh. Now we are friends, Nancy, I have a favour or two to beg of you.
Mrs. Dig. Pray, command them.
O'Dogh. Why, then, the firſt thing that I aſk, is, that you will ſend away that French raſcal the cook, with his compots and combobs, his alamodes and aladobes, his crapandoes and frigandoes, and a thouſand outlandiſh kickſhaws, that I am ſure were never deſigned for Chriſtian food; and let the good rough rumps of beef, the jolly ſurloins, the geefe and turkies, cram fowls, bacon and greens; and the pies, puddings and paſties, that uſed to be perfectly ſhoving one another off of the table, ſo that there was not room for the people's plates; with a fine large cod too, as big as a young alderman—I ſay, let all thoſe French kickſhaws be baniſhed from my table, and theſe good old Iriſh diſhes [Page 46] be put in their places; and then the poor every day will have ſomething to eat.
Mrs. Dig. They ſhall, ſir.
O'Dogh. And as to yourſelf, my dear Nancy, I hope I ſhall never have any more of your London Engliſh; none of your this here's, your that there's, your winegars, your weals, your vindors, your toaſteſſes, and your ſtone poſteſſes; but let me have our own good plain, old Iriſh Engliſh, which I inſiſt upon is better than all the Engliſh Engliſh that ever coquets and coxcombs brought into the land.
Mrs. Dig. I will get rid of theſe as faſt as poſſible.
O'Dogh. And pray, above all things, never call me Mr. Diggerty—my name is Murrogh O'Dogherty, and I am not aſhamed of it; but that damn'd name Diggerty always vexes me whenever I hear it.
Mrs. Dig. Then, upon my honour, Mr. O'Dogherty, it ſhall never vix you again.
O'Dogh. Ogh, that's right, Nancy—O'Dogherty for ever—O'Dogherty!—there's a found for you—why they have not ſuch a name in all England as O'Dogherty—nor as any of our fine ſounding Mileſian names—what are your Jones and your Stones, your Rice and your Price, your Heads and your Foots, and Hands and your Wills, and Hills and Mills, and Sands, and a parcel of little pimping names that a man would not pick out of the ſtreet, compared to the O'Donovans, O'Callaghans, O'Sullivans, O'Brallaghans, O'Shaghneſſes, O'Flahertys, O'Gallaghers, and O'Doghertys, [Page 47] —Ogh, they have courage in the very ſound of them, for they come out of the mouth like a ſtorm; and are as old and as ſtout as the oak at the bottom of the bog of Allen, which was there before the flood—and though they have been diſpoſſeſſed by upſtarts and foreigners, buddoughs and ſaſſanoughs, yet I hope they will flouriſh in the Iſland of Saints, while graſs grows or water runs.
Enter Katty.
Katty. Mr. Muſhroom is come, ſir.
O'Dogh. What, in his woman's cloaths?
Katty. Yes, ſir.
O'Dogh. Impudent raſcal! and where have you put him, Katty?
Katty. In the back parlour, ſir.
O'Dogh. Odzooks! Katty, go down, and ſhew him up here—this is the largeſt room to exerciſe the gentleman in—begone, quick, and leave all the reſt to me.
Katty. I am gone, ſir.
[Exit.
O'Dogh. My dear, you muſt act a part in this farce; the better to bring the raſcal into ridicule.
Mrs. Dig. Any thing to be revenged of him for his ill opinion of me.
O'Dogh. Step into your own room, then, and I will come and inſtruct you how to behave.
[Exit Mrs. Dig.
And, brother, do you go and open the affair to the company, and bring them here to liſten to [Page 48] the Count's gallantry, and to be witneſſes of his making me a cuckold.
Coun. I warrant you I will prepare them for the ſcene. But, brother, be ſure you make the gentleman ſmart.
[Exit.
O'Dogh. Ogh, leave him to me—by the honour of the whole Iriſh nation I will make him remember the name of Diggerty, as ſenſibly as ever his ſchool-maſter did hic, haec, hoc, genitivo hujus—an impudent raſcal! make a cuckold of an Iriſhman—what, take our own trade out of our hands—and a branch of buſineſs we value ourſelves ſo much upon too—why, ſure that and the Linen Manufacture are the only free trade we have.—O, here the company come.
Enter all the Company.
L. Kin. Well, where is this Count, this hero of intrigue?
O'Dogh. Below ſtairs.
L. Bab. And in woman's cloaths, Mr. Dogherty?
O'Dogh. And in woman's cloaths, Lady Bab, come to make a cuckold of me; and if you will all hide yourſelves in the next room, you may ſee how the operation proceeds—huſh—here he comes—get in, get in—and do not ſtir—here he is—begone.
[They all retire.—Exit O'Dogh.
[Page 49] Enter Katty, and Muſhroom in woman's cloaths.
Katty. Step into this room for a moment, ſir, and I will let my miſtreſs know you are here—I proteſt I ſhould not have known you.
Muſh. Should not you? Ha, ha, ha! Why I think I do make a handſome woman, Mrs. Katty.
Katty. Handſome! why you are a perfect. beauty! you are the very picture of a Connaught lady, that viſits my miſtreſs—well, I will go and ſee if the coaſt is clear, and let her know you are come.
Muſh. Do, dear Mrs. Katty, and tell her my ſoul is all rapture, extacy, and tranſport, and rides upon the wings of love.
Katty. I will, I will, ſir.
[Exit
Muſh. A man muſt ſpeak nonſenſe to theſe creatures, or they will not believe he loves them. I ſhall have more intrigues upon my hands in this country than I ſhall know what to do with; for I find the women all like me. As to Lady Kinnegad, I ſee ſhe is determined to have me.
L. Kin. Indeed! Conceited puppy!
Muſh. But ſhe is groſs, coarſe, and ſtinks of ſweets intolerably.
L. Kin. Raſcal!
Muſh. Gazette is well enough; I am ſure I can have her. Yes, ſhe's a blood, but ſhe won't do above once and away.
Gazette. Saucy fellow!—but once indeed—I aſſure you!
[Page 50] Muſh. Jolly has ſome thoughts of me too, I ſee—but ſhe's an idiot, a fool—damned ſilly.
Mrs. Jolly. Mighty well, ſir—very well—
Muſh. But of all the ſpectacles that ever attempted to awaken gallantry, ſure Nature never formed ſuch another antidote as poor Lady Bab.
L. Bab. Oh the villain!—an antidote—an antidote—
Muſh. She always puts me in mind of an old houſe newly painted and white waſhed.
L. Bab. I will go tear his eyes out.
Muſh. Then ſhe is continually feeding that noſe of hers, and ſmells ſtronger of rappee than Lady Kinnegad does of the Spice Iſlands.
L. Kin. Oh, the raſcal!
Muſh. That Kinnegad is a damned tartar; ſhe and Mrs. Cardmark have fleeced poor Diggerty horridly—when I get Diggerty to England, I will introduce her to my Lord; for by that time I ſhall be tir'd of her. Oh, here the party comes.
Enter Mrs. Diggerty and Katty.
My angel! my goddeſs!
Mrs. Dig. O dear Mr. Muſhroom, how could you venture ſo? I am ready to die with apprehenſion, leſt my huſband ſhould diſcover you.
Muſh. Never fear, my charmer; love deſpiſes all dangers, when ſuch beauty as your's is the prize.
[Page 51] Mrs. Dig. But I hope, Mr. Muſhroom, your paſſion is ſincere?
Muſh. Madam, the winged architect of the Cyprian goddeſs has fabricated a pathetic ſtructure in this breaſt, which the iron teeth of Time can never deſtroy.
Mrs. Dig. O dear Mr. Muſhroom, you are veeſtly kind.
Katty. Come, come, madam, do you loſe no time, retire to your chamber, there you will be ſafe, here you may be interrupted.
Mrs. Dig. Do you ſtep and ſend the ſervants out of the way.
Muſh. Do, do, dear Mrs. Katty.
Katty. I will, I will.
[Exit.
Muſh Dear creature, do but lay your hand upon my heart, and feel what an alarm of love and gratitude it beats.
Katty and O'Dogherty without.
O'Dogh. Well, but Katty, if ſhe is ſo very ill, that is the very reaſon why I muſt ſee her.
Muſh. Zounds! your huſband's voice!
Mrs. Dig. O heavens!
Enter Katty.
Katty. My maſter, my maſter!
Mrs. Dig. What will become of me?
Katty. Run you down the back ſtairs, madam, and leave him to me.
Mrs. Dig. Dear ſir, farewel; for heaven's ſake, don't diſcover yourſelf.
[Page 52] Muſh. No, no, madam, never fear me, not for the world.
Mrs. Dig. Adieu.
[Exit.
Muſh. What the devil ſhall I do, Mrs. Katty?
Katty. Sit you ſtill, ſir, at all events—I will put out the candles. (Puts them out.)—He will take you for my miſtreſs; pretend to be very ill; leave the reſt to me. Sure you can mimic a fine lady that has the vapours or the cholic.
Muſh. O nobody better!—nobody better—
Enter O'Dogherty with a Piſtol.
O'Dogh. Heyday! what in the dark, my dear?
Katty. Yes, ſir, my miſtreſs is very ill, and cannot bear the light.
O'Dogh. What is her complaint?
Katty. The cholic, ſir.
O'Dogh. The cholic, ſir! and what good can darkneſs do the cholic, ſir—get candles.
Muſh. Oh, oh!—no candles—no lights, pray my dear, no lights.
Katty. No, no lights—my lady has the headache, as well as the cholic, and the lights make her much worſe; therefore, pray let her ſit in the dark, ſhe will ſoon be well—are you any better, madam?
Muſh. A great deal, but no lights, pray—oh, oh, —no lights! no lights!
O'Dogh. Well, my dear, you ſhall have no lights, you ſhall have no lights—leave us, Katty—I have ſome buſineſs with your miſtreſs.
[Exit Katty.
How are you, my dear? are you any better?
[Page 53]
Muſh. Oh, a great deal, my dear.
O'Dogh. I am mighty glad of it, my ſoul. But now, my dear, I have long wanted to have a little ſerious converſation with you upon a buſineſs that has given me the utmoſt uneaſineſs, nay indeed the utmoſt torture of mind; ſo without farther ceremony, and in one word, to come to the point—I am jealous, my dear.
Muſh. How! jealous!
O'Dogh. Indeed I am, as are half the huſbands of this town, and all occaſioned by one man, which is that coxcomb, Count Muſhroom.
Muſh. He is a very great coxcomb, I own, my dear.
O'Dogh. You may ſay that with a ſafe conſcience—and a great jackanapes he is too into the bargain; though, I muſt own, the fellow has ſomething genteel in him notwithſtanding.
Muſh. O yes, my dear, he is a very pretty fellow—that all the world allows.
O'Dogh. It is very true, but his prettineſs will be his ruin; for as he makes it his buſineſs and his glory to win the affections of women, wherever he goes, and as he has made conqueſts of ſeveral married women in this town, there are half a dozen huſbands of us that have agreed to poiſon him.
Muſh. How! poiſon him! O horrid! why that will be murder, my dear.
O'Dogh. O that is none of our buſineſs—let him look to that—we muſt leave that to the law—the fellow is always following you to the play-houſe, balls, and routs, and is conſtantly ſmiling at you, and ogling, and ſighing—but [Page 54] if ever I catch him at thoſe tricks again, as ſure as his name is Muſhroom, I will put the lining of this little piſtol into the very middle of his ſcull.
Muſh. Oh, oh, oh!
O'Dogh. He told me this morning that he had a new intrigue upon his hands this afternoon—I wiſh I knew where it was; by all that's honourable, I would help the huſband to put eight or ten inches of cold iron into the raſcal's bowels.
Muſh. Oh, oh, oh!
O'Dogh. What is the matter, my dear? what makes you ſtart and cry out ſo?—give me your hand—why you are all in a tremor!—ogho, why you have got the ſhaking ague.
Muſh. I am mighty ill—mighty ill—
O'Dogh. Why you are all in a cold ſweat—you had beſt go up ſtairs and lie down.
Muſh. No, no, no, —oh, no!—
O'Dogh. Why you ſhall have ſome immediate help—here, Katty — John — William—who's there?
Enter William.
Will. Did your honour call, ſir?
O'Dogh. Fly this minute to the next ſtreet to Mr. Carnage the ſurgeon, and bid him haſten hither to bleed my wife; then run as faſt as you can to doctor Fillgrave, and tell him my wife is very ill, and muſt be bliſtered directly. Begone—fly—
Will. I will, ſir.
[Exit.
[Page 55]
Muſh. Soh! what the devil ſhall I do now, I ſhall certainly be diſcovered.
(Aſide.)
O'Dogh. How are you now, my dear?
Muſh. O better, better, a great deal.
O'Dogh. Oh, but for fear of the worſt, I will have you bled plentifully, my dear, and half a ſcore good rouſing bliſters laid on by way of prevention; for it is a very ſickly time, my life.
Muſh. Aye, ſo it is, my ſoul. But, my dear, I begin to be a little better; pray ſend the maid hither.
O'Dogh. What do you want with the maid, my angel?
Muſh. I want her upon a particular occaſion, my love—oh, oh, oh—
O'Dogh. Very well, my dear, I'll ſend her to you. I think we have the Count of the three blue balls in a fine pickle; but I have not done with him yet. I have laid a ridiculous ſnare for him, if he will but fall into it, that will not only expoſe him to the world, but cure him for ever, I think, of treſpaſſing upon matrimonial premiſſes.
[Exit.
Muſh. Was ever poor devil ſo ſweated! I wiſh I were out of the kingdom! I ſhall certainly be poiſoned among them! they are a damned barbarous people. I have often heard of the wild Iriſh, but never believed there were ſuch till now. Poiſon a man, only for having an intrigue with a friend's wife. Zounds, we never mind ſuch things in England; but they are unpoliſhed beings here.
[Page 56] Enter Katty with two candles.
Muſh. Oh! Mrs. Katty, get me out of the houſe, or I am a dead man—he ſuſpects I have a deſign upon his wife, and carries a loaded piſtol to ſhoot me.
Katty. O heavens, ſir—I don't know what to do with you—here comes my poor miſtreſs, frighted out of her wits too.
Enter Mrs. Diggerty.
Muſh. O, madam! if you don't contrive to convey me out of the houſe ſome way or other, I ſhall be detected, poiſoned, ſhot, or run through the vitals.
Mrs, Dig. I am ſo diſtracted, I cannot think—you muſt even diſcover yourſelf to him, and ſay you came hither in that diſguiſe out of a frolic.
Muſh. Zounds, a frolic! Madam, he is as jealous as a Spaniſh miſer, or an Italian doctor; he has a piſtol in his pocket loaden with a brace of balls—he would ſhoot me, run me through the body, or poiſon me directly, ſhould he diſcover me—have you no cloſet, or cup-board? dear, Mrs. Katty, cannot you contrive to get me out of the houſe in ſome ſhape or other?
Katty. Why yes, ſir, I have a contrivance that I think might ſave you.
Muſh. What is it ? what is it? quick, quick, for heaven's ſake; for he certainly has a piſtol in his pocket—he ſhewed it to me.
[Page 57] Katty. Why, ſir, I have a large portmanteau trunk, by the help of which, I think, you might be ſafely conveyed out of the houſe, if you would but ſubmit to be ſhut up in it.
Muſh. Submit! zounds! any thing, any thing, dear Mrs. Katty, to ſave my own life and a lady's honour. Why, child, it is an excellent contrivance, and, in my condition, perhaps the only one that could relieve me. For heaven's ſake, let me ſee it—where is it?
Katty. It ſtands juſt without the door here in the paſſage— (Brings it in.) Here it is, ſir, if it is but big enough—that's all the danger.
Muſh. Zounds! let me try it—let me try it—quick—quick—put in my cloaths—there—cram me in—buckle me up—ſtay, ſtay—leave this end a little open for air, or I ſhall be ſtifled—very well—excellent well—Mrs. Katty—there—cram me in—it will do—ſnug—ſnug—damned ſnug—
Mrs. Dig. Now call the men to carry it up to your room.
Katty. Here, John, William—
Servants without.
Serv. Madam.
Katty. Come here quickly.
Enter John and William.
Katty. Here take this portmanteau on your ſhoulders, and carry it up to my room—make haſte.
[Page 58] [The ſervants turn it up endways, with Muſhroom's head to the ground, then raiſe it on their ſhoulders.]
Enter O'Dogherty.
O'Dogh. Where are you going with that portmantle?
John. Up to Mrs. Katty's room.
O'Dogh. Set it down here—what have you got in this portmantle, Katty?
Katty. It is, ſir—it is—
O'Dogh. What, what is it?
Katty. Why it is—it is—
O'Dogh. Speak this minute, or I will put my ſword up to the hilts in it.
Muſh. Ah! Hold, hold—my dear Diggerty, hold—'tis I—'tis I—
O'Dogh. I—who the devil is I?—
Muſh. Muſhroom—your friend Muſhroom.
O'Dogh. What! Count Muſhroom!
Muſh. The ſame—the very ſame.—
O'Dogh. Hold the candle—aye, it is my friend the Count indeed.
Muſh. Zounds, my dear Diggerty—you have dropped the hot wax on my face—do pray let me out.
O'Dogh. And ſo this was the new intrigue you told me of this afternoon.
Muſh. Ah, my dear Diggerty, I was but in jeſt, upon my honour.
O'Dogh. Aye, now you are right, Count—the intrigue was but in jeſt on my wife's ſide, indeed—here, ladies, come hither, and ſee this [Page 59] hero of intrigue and taſte that they all admire ſo much.
Mujh. Ah, dear Diggerty, don't expoſe me.
Enter the Company.
Omnes. Ha, ha, ha!
O'Dogh. Here, John—ſet him upon his legs on the ground—ſo—there—Lady Kinnegad, pray let me introduce you to the knight of the leathern portmantle.
L. Kin. Count, your moſt obedient—I would ſalute you, but I am coarſe and ſtink of ſweets.
Muſh. Ah, my dear Lady, that was only the wanton vanity of a coxcomb upon the verge of paradiſe as he thought.
Mrs. Jolly. Your humble ſervant, Count—I would ſtrive to extricate you, but, you know, I am an idiot, a fool—ha, ha, ha!
Muſh. O dear Mrs. Jolly—
L. Bab. Yes, and I am like an old houſe newly painted and white-waſhed, and I ſtink of rappee. I think a little rappee would not be amiſs to clear your eyes, and refreſh your ſpirits, and there is ſome for you.
(Throws ſnuff in his face.)
Muſh. O dear Lady Bab, this is (ſneezes) cruel—(ſneezes) indelicate—(ſneezes) and intolerable—(ſneezes) but I beg you will let me out of this conſinement.
O'Dogh. Indeed I will not, for I intend that other people ſhall enjoy your ſituation as well as I—this is Lady High-Life's night—all the world is there—ſo here, John, take this portmantle [Page 60] on your ſhoulders to Lady High-Life's, with my compliments, and never ſtop till you take it up ſtairs to the ball-room, and there ſet it down—they will be extremely glad to ſee their old friend, the Count of the three blue balls.
Muſh. Mr. Diggerty—madam—ladies—
Omnes. Ha, ha, ha! away with him—away with him.
Muſh. Mr. Diggerty, you ſhall anſwer for this.
Omnes. Away with him—away with him. Ha, ha, ha!
[He is carried off.
O'Dogh. Now, gentlemen and ladies, you may go plunder one another at cards and dice as faſt as you can—and, like the Count, make yourſelves objects for a farce.—If every fine lady and coxcomb in this town were turned into a farce, faith we ſhould be the merrieſt people in all Europe—but ours is over for to-night, and pretty well upon the whole.

Indeed, I think 'tis very fairly ended: The coxcomb's puniſh'd; The fine Iriſh lady's mended.

FINIS.