Retaliation, a farce, in two acts: as it is performed, with universal applause, at the Theatre Royal, Covent Garden. By Leonard MacNally, Esq.





RETALIATION, A FARCE, IN TWO ACTS, As it is performed, with univerſal Applauſe, at the THEATRE ROYAL, COVENT GARDEN.




To the great exertions of the performers, and the excellence of their theatrical abilities, the author imputes the approbation with which RETALIATION has been received by the public, and he thanks them for the generous emulation with which they ſupported the piece.




THE kind attention with which you brought forward the following piece, claims my moſt warm and grateful thanks. You will excuſe me for taking this public manner of aſſuring you how ſenſible I am of the obligation; and I hope you will believe me to be,

Your ſincere humble ſervant, LEONARD MAC NALLY.

May 10, 1782.


TRITE ſeems our Author's Taſk, when all Creation
Obey the Maxims of Retaliation.
The old, the young, the rich, poor, great, and ſmall,
Are governe'd by retorting one and all.
Lord Dangle would intrigue to cut a Figure,
For Treach'ry makes your Folks of Rank look bigger—
My Lady's ſtung, and ſo, 'twixt Vice and Whim
Intrigues—and thus retaliates on him.
Jane, was a Draper's Wife, and Jane within her
Felt ſtrong Temptation to become a Sinner;
Not from Caprice nor Whim—but mark—th' Event is
She lik'd, and ſcarce knew why—the elder 'Prentice—
The Huſband hears, and curſing at the Slur,
Reſolves to break his vow as well as her—
So lifts his Maid to fill his Spouſe's Station,
A bleſſed Inſtance of Retaliation.
Nor yet to private Life confine this Notion,
It ſpreads expanſive as the boundleſs Ocean:
Retaliate, ſpeaks the hoſtile Cannon's roar—
Retaliate echo's from the Britiſh Shore—
The Genius of the Iſle is now awake,
Speaks like brave Ruſſel, frowns like noble Blake;
Calls forth ſuch Spirits, as of old were known,
When England's King was crown'd on Gallia's Throne—
When Holland pray'd to ſuccour her, diſtreſt,
And Spaniſh Pride had ſtruck her lofty Creſt.
"Vict'ry" ſhe ſays "ſhall ſmile, fell Diſcord ceaſe,
"And War produce the Olive Branch of Peace.
"Britain ſecure from all inteſtine Harms,
"Is confident againſt the World in Arms.
"Now, Britiſh Minds, with Britiſh Hearts unite,
"Mature the Council, and direct the Fight:
"Again ſhall Britain mighty Deeds perform,
"Ride on the Whirlwind, and direct the Storm;
[Page] "Serenely brave, ſmile while the Thunder's hurl'd,
"And undivided, face the threat'ning World."
To Strains ſo hold our Author dare not riſe—
He views that Ardor glowing in your Eyes.
There needs no "Muſe of Fire" to rouſe the Nation,
You're all united for Retaliation.
This, as a firſt Eſſay, our Bard ſubmits—
To deal in Brokers, Bankrupts, Lawyers, Cits—
His Bales are claſs'd with his beſt Skill and Care—
His ardent Wiſh is—that you like his Ware—
And ſince to pleaſe you fills his ev'ry Feature,
Then pray retaliate with your beſt Good-Nature.

Dramatis Perſonae.

  • OLD REBATE, Mr. Quick.
  • TRUEMAN, Mr. Whitfield.
  • FRANK, Mr. Robſon.
  • SERVANT, Mr. Newton.
  • AMELIA, Mrs. Mattocks.
  • LUCY, Mrs. Wilſon.



1.1. ACT I.

SCENE. A Hall in Mr. FAIRPORT's Houſe.
FRANK ſitting reading a News-Paper, LUCY working—Bottle and Glaſſes on the Table.
Frank. O We are ruined, Lucy!—We are undone!
Lucy. Speak for yourſelf, Frank, heigho!— I am neither ruined nor undone.
Frank. Here's a paragraph confirms all (reads) "We hear that a great houſe not one hundred miles from Leadenhall-ſtreet, ſtopped payment yeſterday for a conſiderable ſum."—It muſt be our houſe!
Lucy. Yes, it muſt be our houſe;—but pray, Frank, who is this we, who pretends to know ſo much about maſter's affairs?
Frank. Who is we?—Why in truth, Lucy, I don't rightly know who we is; but we is ſomebody [Page 12] who knows, or pretends to know, every body, and every thing—we uſed to abuſe oppoſition—we now are come over with miniſtry—we writes againſt men on one ſide, and we writes againſt meaſures on the other—we attacks majority in one paper, and we cuts up minority in another—we puffs admirals and demireps—we ridicules generals and women of character—we is an critic who tears authors to pieces—it is we who ſtrives to write players out of their bread.
Lucy. Then is we an ill-natured, crabbed, unconſcionable fellow—I love play actors in my heart—they ſay ſo many good things I can't think they do any thing bad.
Frank. As I live here comes Mr. Trueman—
Lucy. And Miſs Amelia with him—there will be a match, Frank.
Tru. Your hand, honeſt Frank—the Weſt-India fleet's arrived!
Frank. Bravo!
Tru. And the homeward-bound Eaſt-Indiamen are all ſafe in port.
Frank. Braviſſimo!
Tru. And Mr. Fairport has traced the report of our houſe's failure up to old Rebate, the moneylender.
Amelia. What motive could have urged his malice to ſuch premeditated villainy?
Tru. The worſt of motives, madam, reſentment and avarice—your uncle reſcued a diſtreſſed young gentleman from his uſurious demands, and is indebted to him eleven thouſand pounds.
Ame. But what brings him here?
Tru. Your uncle being denied to him in town, he left a memorandum that he ſhould come here [Page 13] to ſeek him; and I am commiſſioned to give the raſcal an anſwer to one of the moſt impudent propoſals that ever inſolence dictated.
Ame. Pray what is it, Mr. Trueman?
Lucy. Ah! dear ſir, what is it?
Tru. No leſs than a written propoſal of marriage, between his ſon and your couſin Auguſta
(to Amelia.)
Lucy. O! Mercy!
Tru. Accompanied with a threat to lay on an execution immediately, in caſe of a refuſal; and a diſcharge in full of all demands, as a bribe, in caſe of compliance.
Frank. I know Praecipe his ſon well, ſir—he's as precious a twig of the law as ever ſwitched a client through Weſtminſter hall.
Ame. The old man knows, I ſuppoſe, that my couſin's fortune is independent of her father—
Lucy. But for Heaven's ſake, ſir, how did my young lady receive the propoſal?
Tru. Laughed at it—ſhe is a generous-hearted girl, and offered the whole of her fortune to ſupport her father's credit.
Ame. This is city ſentiment—the uncourtly citizens, not only ſpeak as they think, but act as they ſpeak.
Tru. And I wiſh, madam, every other claſs of men, would make their public actions the criterion of their public profeſſions.—Take care Lucy, old Rebate's a terrible fellow, tormented with as inſatiable an appetite for young girls as for money —the monſter would devour a virgin every morning for breakfaſt.
Frank. I remember when he was partner in a regiſter-office, for the purpoſe of ruining young creatures out of place.
[Page 14] Tru. And though he'd impoſe upon his neareſt friend to obtain money, he'd laviſh the earnings of his avarice with prodigality to deſtroy innocence.
Ame. And ſhan't we be reveng'd on him?— Suppoſe I was to throw myſelf in his way, and ſeduce him into an intrigue.
Tru. If you do, I'll take a part in the farce, and we'll retaliate on him with a vengeance.
Lucy. And leave the young lawyer to me—never fear, I'll bring him to the ſtool of repentance (knocking without.)
Frank. Perhaps here they come.
Ame. Then, I'll let them in, and give the antiquated Adonis a moſt encouraging reception— Come, Mr. Trueman. (going.)
Tru. I attend you, madam.
Lucy. Strike him at once, madam, with a languiſhing look. (Exeunt Amelia and Trueman) La, Frank, there's a ſcheme in my head—but I'm aſhamed to tell you—Well, I'll hide my face (throws her apron over her face) Suppoſe you were to introduce me to the young attorney as my lady.
Frank. An excellent thought, my ſprightly girl! —run and communicate it to Mr. Trueman and Miſs Amelia—But I muſt have a kiſs. (kiſſes her.)
Reb. To her! to her! Hey! hey! Egad, tho' the circulation of caſh has ſtopped here, the circulation of the blood flows in a warm tide of wantonneſs. (Exit. Lucy, Rebate viewing her through a glaſs) Neat limbed—ſlender waiſted—elaſtic in her feet, with a noble protuberance in front, and a moſt enticing rotunda in the rear; no cork or whalebone in her compoſition, I warrant.—Your ſervant, young [Page 15] man, your ſervant—Pray who is the elegant young lady who gave me admittance?
Frank. I ſuppoſe it was Miſs Amelia, ſir, my maſter's niece—I thought you knew her.
Reb. No, I'm unacquainted with the females of your family. She is really a charming girl, with a pair of as piercing, ſparkling rogueiſh eyes, as ever ſported in amorous glance—A good fortune, I ſuppoſe?
Frank. Not a ſhilling, ſir; Miſs Amelia is dependent on my maſter.
Reb. Poor girl—a delicious morſel! but muſt now ſeek for a new protector.—Your maſter's broke, young man—Have you ſeen the public prints?
Frank. The public prints, ſir—there's no believing the public prints! It was but the other day the General Advertiſer made the combined fleets ſixty-ſix ſail of the line—the Courant encreaſed them to eighty ſail—the Poſt anchored them in Nubibus—the Herald wind-bound them in Breſt harbour—the Gazetteer loſt them in a fog—the Public Advertiſer brought them into Plymouth Sound —the Chronicle ſent them to the Land's-end, and the Ledger aſſured us they were not ſhips, but ſixty whales, which had made the coaſt, and that the expreſs had been brought up to London-Bridge by Lieutenant Grampus.
Rebate. Ah! ha! ha! ha! You're a wag—but there's no joke in the loſs of the Eaſt and Weſt-India ſhips—You're maſter's ruined by it, and I have his bond for eleven thouſand.
[Page 16] Enter PRAECIPE.
Praecipe. On which I have adviſed you repeatedly, that you may take out a fi. fa. ad ſatisfaciendum—for it is laid down in Viner's Abridgement of the Law, volume the thirty-ſixth, page one thouſand and ſeventy nine, letter A. that —
Rebate. Silence, I ſay, (ſtopping Praecipe's mouth.)
Praecipe. You ſhould never command ſilence, but with an oyez! oyez! oyez! (in a court crier's tone.)
Rebate. O! confound your tongue—its your mother's to an inch—I'll cut it out, you dog.
Praecipe. Cut out my tongue!—mayhem—death by the Coventry act.
Frank. But do you think, Sir, we ſhall be declared bankrupt?
Rebate. I hope not; for as your bankrupt commiſſion buſineſs falls into the hands of the lawyers, it generally conſumes the beſt part of the effects.
Praecipe. Actionable words—let me ſee—to call a lawyer ambodexter, or double handed, is—
Rebate. Calling him by his right name, you raſcal.
Enter Servant.
Servant. Mr. Trueman—Sir, my maſter's clerk, requeſts your company in the parlor.
Rebate. Mr. Trueman, my buſineſs is with your maſter, not with his clerk; and in his preſent indigent circumſtances, it was his duty to have attended me—but I'll follow you. (Exit ſervant.) You live in ſplendor here, young man, (to Frank) a noble houſe—magnificent furniture—Heavens! what luxury!—The Augſburgh merchant, who lent half a million to an emperor on his bond, and [Page 17] afterwards, at an entertainment, burned his ſecurity in a fire of cinnamon, had not a more ſuperb dwelling. — Mercy! What a ſide-board of plate!
Praecipe. My walk down here, as a body may ſay, has created me a voracious appetite—but I never travel without belly munition (takes out bread and meat) and yet, as the ſaying is, I'm thin as parchment.
Frank. And it being as neceſſary to moiſten the clay, as to manure the ſoil—what think you, Sir, of a glaſs of nice Madeira?
Praecipe. A good motion for ſtaying—as my Maſter Stripclient ſays, it's all the ſame to me, whether I drink at the ſuit of the plaintiff, or at the ſuit of the defendant.
Frank. (Bringing a bottle from the table) Here's Madeira has croſſed the Line twice, bright as a topaz, (filling a glaſs) and generous as an old maid on the day of marriage.
Praecipe. Marriage—that's in point—I am come down, do you ſee me, to marry Miſs Fairport; that is, to file a declaration of love, over-rule her demurrer, and ſo join iſſue.
Frank. You have ſeen her, I ſuppoſe?
Praecipe. No, never ſaw her.
Frank. Why ſhe left the room juſt as you came in.
Praecipe. Is that ſhe? Egad, ſhe's a fine girl, and ſaluted me with a moſt condeſcending ſmile.
Frank. Lucy, I ſee, has begun the attack. (aſide.) Another glaſs—Mr. Praecipe, you're a man of gallantry no doubt.
Praecipe. I plead guilty to the indictment— Keep as ſmart a piece as you'd lay eye on in a whole circuit.
[Page 18] Frank. And live pleaſantly. (helping him.)
Praecipe. In a funny ſtile, as a body may ſay— Poll lodges at Iſlington, ſo I travel down to her every Saturday afternoon—take tea with Poll, ſpend my evening at the Angel—Next morning riſe from Poll, ſwallow rum and milk at the Angel—breakfaſt with Poll, take my whet and jill at the Angel—Dine with Poll, ſpend my afternoon at the Angel—Take tea with Poll, ſpend my evening at the Angel—Sup with Poll, take my Punch at the Angel—So on Monday morning, leave Poll betimes, take the ſtage at the Angel, and am at chambers by eight.
Frank. Really, Sir, between Miſs Poll and the Angel, you lead a deviliſh angelic life—But I fear, Mr. Praecipe, there is a fatal objection to your marrying Miſs Fairport.
Praecipe. You mean my connection with Poll; but I can ſoon get rid of her, and provide for her into the bargain—Mark a writ againſt her, move her by Habeas Corpus into the King's Bench, and there, though wives are not permitted to live with their huſbands, a demirep may make a fortune.
Frank. You miſtake my young lady's objection —ſhe has vowed never to marry a lawyer.
Praecipe. Aye!
Frank. True indeed—But if you're not afraid of a frolic, I'll put you in a way of carrying her.
Praecipe. Afraid! Never fear me, I love a frolic in my heart; nevertheleſs, and always providing, that the ſaid frolic is not contrary to law—Caveat actor, do you underſtand me, is my maxim.
Frank. Then your father muſt not know a word of the buſineſs.
Praecipe. Right—we'll ouſt him from the ſuit, and then he'll have no concern in the fortune.
[Page 19] Enter SERVANT.
Servant. A Quaker-man, Mr. Frank, deſires to ſpeak with Mr. Rebate, or his ſon.
Praecipe. Shew him in. I know his buſineſs.
Exit Servant.
Frank. I'll ſtep into the next room and lay out a cold veniſon-paſty, and if you're the man of ſpirit I take you for, Miſs Fairport and her fortune will be both your own. Exit.
Praecipe. I'll be with you in a twinkling, as the ſaying is
Ah friend Ezekiel Spotleſs, welcome from Amſterdam—What news? Eh.
Ezekiel. There's no time to ſpeak of news—I have a large ſum to pay unto thy father.
Praecipe. Or to me—It is the ſame in law, friend Ezekiel, whether you pay the attorney, or the principal.
Ezekiel. True, true, friend Praecipe, but that is where the attorney hath a principle. The clerk informed me at thy houſe of thy coming here—But where's thy father.
Praecipe. My father—why—my father—O my father's gone a little farther into the country with the gentleman of the houſe.
Ezekiel. Then will I deliver the monies to thee, being obliged to go for Oſtend this night, having collected ſome material intelligence. Here read — (delivers a letter to Praecipe.)
Praecipe. (reads) Signed "Primitive Tribulation" dated "Amſterdam, March 26 1782" Friend [Page 20] Rebate, I take the opportunity of the bearer, Ezekiel Spotleſs, to inform thee, that the copper and gunpowder, conſigned by thee unto my care, on board the good ſhip Contraband from Corke, arrived in due time, and, according to thy directions, I remit unto thee the amount of the ſales thereof, in Bank of England notes, which I found difficult to procure here. The bearer will alſo deliver unto thy hands the diamonds, which I adviſed thee of, ſome time ago, and which thou art to diſpoſe of for my account.—Thy Friend.
Ezekiel. Here are the notes, and here are the diamonds—Sign this receipt (Praecipe ſigns) farewell, peace be to thy ſpirit. Exit.
Praecipe. Here are the notes—here are the diamonds, (looking at them) and poſſeſſion, as the ſaying is, is the eleventh point of the law—The devil a ſhilling ſhall my honeſt father ever touch of theſe bills—And the devil a ſhilling ſhall his honeſt correſpondent. Tribulation, ever touch of the produce of theſe diamonds. (looks at them) He, he, he, egad, there's more argument in the brilliancy of their ſparkle, than in the tongues of the whole bar, and they ſhall be my counſel with Miſs Fairport—This letter will keep my father ſilent—high treaſon to correſpond with the enemy— but this is loſing time, and I long to be up to the elbows in the veniſon-paſty.
Exit looking at the diamonds.
[Page 21] SCENE. A Chamber.
Rebate. And ſo, this young lady, this Miſs Amelia, Mr Fairport's niece, is entirely dependant on his bounty.
Trueman. Yes, poor lady; her father, on his return from India, died at Amſterdam; he had converted his effects into diamonds, but it could never be diſcovered what became of them.
Rebate. No.
Trueman. No, Sir—But there is a ſtrong ſuſpicion that they were ſtolen by a Quaker, at whoſe houſe he lodged.
Rebate. Aye—Theſe diamonds muſt be the very ſame of which Primitive Tribulation has adviſed me (aſide) —So you ſay her fortune was in diamonds—well, well—but to the buſineſs I'm come upon—I am ready to ſettle your maſter's affairs, if he agrees to marry his daughter to my ſon.
Trueman. And if not, you are ready to ſeize upon his effects.
Rebate. I am ready to ſecure my property, young man—will he accede to my propoſal, he can have no doubt upon my ſufficiency, he knows me to be a good man.
Trueman. A good man, Sir—Yes, you are a good man, Sir, and I wiſh many whom I know to be good men, in money tranſactions, were good men in the diſcharge of every other moral obligation.
Rebate. I don't comprehend you, young man.
Trueman. Then I'll be explicit, old gentleman— What good does your boaſted goodneſs ariſe from —Is it from tranſacting buſineſs with the neceſſitous, [Page 22] upon ſuch terms of hardſhip, as cramp every effort of induſtry? Is it from advancing money on the jointures of diſtreſſed widows—the commiſſions of reduced officers—and the livings of poor clergymen?
Rebate. Eh.
Trueman. Do you conſider yourſelf a good man, becauſe you can make good bargains? or is it becauſe you can laugh with good humour at every man's diſtreſs? I have known the enormous wealth of ſuch good men, who while living never did a generous action, bequeathed at the hour of death to build an hoſpital, wherein the poor have languiſhed for want of common neceſſaries, while the ſtewards and domeſtics have feaſted and fattened upon the revenues.
Rebate. Do you forget I have your maſter's bond for eleven thouſand, and could overwhelm him with ruin?
Trueman. I tell you, Sir, Mr. Fairport rejects your propoſal with contempt—What would the world ſay, ſhould a Britiſh merchant act with ſuch diſhonor.
Rebate. Diſhonor! Why, man, there is no ſuch thing as diſhonor in a tranſaction of traffic; this is the golden age, in which every thing is bought and ſold.
Trueman. But conſcience, Mr. Rebate—conſcience the eſtimate of juſtice—ſhe is a judge whoſe admonitions are not to be ſilenced, and rectitude alone can ſave us from the poignancy of her ſtings.
Rebate. Conſcience may be a judge for aught I know; but eleven thouſand pounds would effectually ſilence her accuſations—many a judge has held his tongue for half the money—But I ſhall [Page 23] wait to ſee your maſter, young man, ſo will take a turn in the garden, and, no doubt, will find the elegance of his improvements equal to the magnificence of his manſion.
Trueman. Sir, your ſervant.
Rebate. Your moſt obedient ſweet-ſcented Sir (Exit Trueman) What an impudent moralizing raſcal—this fellow is not one of your cloven-tongued gentry, with one tongue for his public, and another tongue for his private principles—he ſhould have been bred to the church—But how am I to act? intereſt and paſſion poſſeſs me—This Amelia monopolizes my mind—Let me conſider; her father died at Amſterdam in the houſe of a Quaker—aye, it's plain my correſpondent, Tribulation, was the plunderer of his diamonds, and theſe diamonds he was to conſign to me for ſale—the uncle's ruined, and could I perſuade the niece to come under my protection, this would turn out an Argonaut expedition, and I ſhould have the ſheering of a golden fleece—Let me ſee— (Muſing)
Enter Lucy.
Lucy. So! here he is—Have at you, old rogue —Hem! hem!
Rebate. (Turning about ſuddenly.) Ah! ha! my girl (Takes Lucy's hand.) Egad, you are all beauties in this houſe.
Lucy. Beauties, Sir—Miſs Amelia, my maſter's niece, is beautiful indeed.
Rebate. And a witty rogue, I dare ſay.
Lucy. A fool, your honor; for I have heard her ſay, ſhe'd prefer an old man to a young one.
Rebate. You joke, huſſey; you joke.
[Page 24] Lucy. Not I indeed, Sir—Then ſometimes ſhe's half mad.
Rebate. Fooliſh and inſane!—Both in my favour. Aſide.
Lucy. Then to be ſure, Sir, as ſhe is fooliſh and maddiſh, if ſhe was to marry an old gentleman, now ſuppoſe ſuch a healthy old gentleman as you, Sir, he might lock her up, you know, to preſerve her from young gallants.
Rebate. Egad you're a wit, my girl.
Lucy. Who I? No, indeed, your honor—I am but young, fooliſh, and flighty myſelf; yet I think if a huſband was to lock me up, to preſerve my virtue, I'd be tempted to turn ſo troubleſome a companion out of my company.—But as I was going to ſay, I do think Miſs Amelia has as delicate a ſhape as any lady in England.
Rebate. So ſhe has, ſo ſhe has, you baggage, and as inticing a look.—Could you now contrive to introduce me to this fooliſh, half-mad Amelia? Eh.—
Lucy. La, Sir, if I was found out in ſuch a buſineſs, it would for ever ruin my reputation.
Rebate. But it would get you money, huſſey— and thoſe who have money are above reputation, or what would become of parties in crim. con.?
Lucy. Then, your honor, my conſcience.
Rebate. Conſcience! Why conſcience, child, is expelled from both ends of the town, or we ſhould not get an enemy's ſhip inſured for love or money; the whole ſyſtem of ſtock-jobbing would be overturned; the lottery offices might put out their lamps, and the deluded people would no longer be led to deſtruction by authorized jack-a-lanterns.
Lucy. But my honeſty.
[Page 25] Rebate. Honeſty! Honeſty, my lamb, is a material drawback on pleaſure and profit. Thoſe who never deviate from the paths of honeſty, move like ſnails through the world; they leave a ſhining track behind, but make a very ſlow progreſs in the road to preferment.
Lucy. But what right have you to expect I ſhould be your friend with the lady? (Holding out her hand and rubbing the palm.)
Rebate. When I have given you nothing.—Eh! Well, well; here, here's a retainer for you. (Gives her money.)
Lucy. O dear, your honor (Holding up the money and looking at it.) I ſee the matter now quite in a new light.
Rebate. And don't let me find you one of thoſe voluble advocates who ſay a great deal to little purpoſe, or one of thoſe tacit pleaders who pocket their clients fee, and ſay nothing.
Lucy. Well, Sir, ſtep into the parlour on the left ſide of the hall, I'll attend you immediately, and will render you every ſervice in my power (Going) but, Sir, remember now you muſt be very ſecret— There's no lover a woman admires ſo much as a ſecret one.
Rebate. Secret! never fear me, I'm ſilent as an air gun, which does execution without making a report—But before you go, egad, I muſt have—
Lucy. (curtſeying and wiping her mouth) A kiſs, your honor— (kiſs) O dear! dear! I ſee you'll carry the lady.
Rebate. Well, I'll wait in the parlor—and ſee, find out my ſon, and tell him I deſire he may return to London—How ſweet the little huſſey kiſſes! —nothing ſo renovating to age, as the breath of a young female—its more vivifying than the perfumes [Page 26] of the Spice Iſlands, or the odoriſerous breezes of Arabia Felix. Exit.
Lucy. Oh! here come the lovers— (retires)
Amelia. Nay, prithee peace now—ſurely this is no time to ſpeak of love.
Lucy. (coming forward and ſtanding between them) Indeed, Ma'am, but it is—the preſent time is always the beſt to ſpeak of love, and I know the captain loves you in his ſoul.
Trueman. The captain! Lucy—What captain?
Lucy. What captain but yourſelf—are you not in the military 'ſociation? Well I never thought the 'ſociators would grow ſo ſtout—Indeed, Madam, they ſhoot cannons— (Looking at Amelia) O how Mr. Trueman loves you! don't bluſh, Ma'am—"Would ſhe but marry me, my dear Lucy" ſaid he, when he gave me this ring—"If I had but the good fortune to gain her conſent"— (Looking at Trueman) La', don't look ſo ſheepiſh, Mr. Trueman—Now I'd leave nothing to Fortune.
Trueman. You are right, Lucy, Fortune's a gay coquet, and neglects the ſoldier or lover, who depends too much upon her ſmiles. My dear Amelia, will you give me an anſwer?
Amelia. An anſwer—You have'nt aſked me the queſtion.
Lucy. Lord! Lord! Ma'am, can you look in his face and ſay ſo? are not his eyes twinkling out this very inſtant, will you marry me, will you marry me? Take her hand, Mr. Trueman; ſhe told me this very day you had her heart.
Amelia. And I ſaid true— (gives her hand) but you muſt procure my uncle's conſent. I have ever [Page 27] found in him the attention and affection of a father, and am bound to obey him from gratitude, as well as duty.
Trueman. My dear Amelia, I admire your candor—When a woman approves the honeſt addreſſes of a man who loves her, ſure there can be no indelicacy in confeſſing that ſhe's ſenſible of his paſſion.
Lucy. O! O! O! there's no ſtanding this tender ſcene— may, may, may heaven bleſs you both!— (ſobbing)
Enter FRANK.
Frank. I'm as full of intelligence as an Extraordinary Gazette!
Trueman. Pray don't be a Gazette on the occaſion, let us have the whole truth.
Frank. I have left Maſter Praecipe in the pantry, where he gormandizes with the appetite of a cormorant, and drinks like a fiſh. I have fully perſuaded him that Lucy is your couſin Auguſta, and ſhall preſently introduce him to an interview with her, quite in a new character.
Lucy. The old gentleman has ſwallowed every thing I've told him, and believes you, Ma'am, to be a half witted kind of a flighty hair-brained gentlewoman—his paſſion has made a fool of him, and as this is a trial of ſkill between Frank and me, I'll try if I can't get him to take up a new character, as well as his ſon.
Trueman. Why, Lucy, you're a perfect miſtreſs of intrigue.
Lucy. I lived two years at a French boarding-ſchool, Sir—beſides, women were always better negotiators than men; and were half a dozen briſk girls [Page 28] like me, ſent out commiſſioners to America, we'd ſoon ſettle buſineſs with the Congreſs.
Trueman. I have no doubt of your ability.
Lucy. Doubt, Sir—La! I wiſh we had the ſettling of the Iriſh affairs.
Amelia. Come, let us retire to our ſeveral duties.
Lucy. I'll go prepare the old man.
Frank. And I the young one.
Trueman. And never fear, they ſhall both have a ſurfeit of amours. Exeunt.

1.2. ACT II.

[Page 29]
SCENE. A Dreſſing-room, a Table, Dreſſing-Glaſs, and Chair.
Enter REBATE, and LUCY, carrying an uniform ſuit.
Lucy. YOUR ſon, Sir, is gone to town, and ſo is Mr. Trueman; and my maſter has ſent word he won't be here this evening, and I've put all the ſervants out of the way; and ſo we'll have a clear coaſt to ourſelves.
Reb. Well, well, that's right, my girl, that's right—But, Lucy, I can ſcarcely credit what you tell me of Amelia's diſpoſition.
Lucy. Indeed, Sir, it is true; ſhe loves the army above all things, and will ſometimes ſpeak for an hour together, particularly in the full of the moon, Sir, about battles, and ſoldiers, and cutting of throats. Here are Mr. Trueman's 'ſociation regimentals—pay your addreſſes to her in them, Sir, and you'll carry the day.
Reb. Then leave them on the chair, and as there's no one in the houſe to ſee me play the fool with this mad girl, egad I'll e'en attack her a la militaire.
Lucy. And while you're dreſſing, I'll prepare your miſtreſs to receive you— (Going, ſhe returns) But remember, you are to perſuade Miſs Amelia, that you've loved her a long time, and that hearing of her uncle's failure, you're come to offer her your heart and fortune. Exit.
Reb. Fooliſh and inſane as this young lady may be, it is rather extraordinary that ſhe ſhould [Page 30] prefer age to youth. (takes off his coat) As to her liking ſoldiers better than men of any other profeſſion, that's common—your green-girls bite as voraciouſly at a red rag as mackarel. (takes off his waiſtcoat) But what ſhould become of me, if in her madneſs ſhe ſhould take a ſudden averſion to ſcarlet, and fly at me like a turkey-cock? (puts on the uniform waiſtcoat) I cannot think ſhe has preference for old man (puts on the coat, and looks in the glaſs) yet why not? Love is a capricious paſſion, and not always the conſequence of beauty or aſſiduity—This dreſs really becomes me— (looks in the glaſs) and I have known one lucky moment often produce, what years of ſolicitation, rivers of tears, and ſtorms of ſighs, could never bring about. (Puts on the helmet)
Enter LUCY.
Lucy. La, Sir!—You are quite the thing! I have prepared Miſs Amelia, and indeed—O! ſhe looks charming.
Reb. But have you been feeling the pulſe of her affections, how do they beat? Eh, Lucy— eh, eh— (ſeizing Lucy's hand)
Lucy. Mercy, Sir, let go my hand—La, Sir, why are you ſo warm?
Reb. Warm! I'm all fire!—irritation, like rubbing a dry ſtick, ſets me in a blaze!—Let us be going— (going)
Lucy. Yes, Sir, but remember you muſt uſe her gently—ſhe's of a mild, religious diſpoſition.
Reb. Religious! That's fuel to my fire—No pleaſure gives ſuch exquiſite ſatisfaction to a man of gallantry, as ruining a devotee— (aſide) But how do I look, Lucy? eh!
[Page 31] Lucy. Look! your honour looks killingly— (walks round him) Theſe light-horſemen are ſo ſmart about the head, ſo ſpurred upon the heel, wear their cloaths ſo neat to their ſhapes, and have their ſkirts ſo trimmed to their hips, they always appear ready for action, like ſo many game-cocks cut out of feather for fighting—But your cheeks are not half red, Sir— (brings a box from the toilet and paints him) And your eye-brows muſt be blackened— (brings another box and blackens his eye-brows) Now, your honour, you've a noble ſoldierly appearance.
Reb. Theſe ſwingeing eye-brows give me too fierce a countenance—but then, they ſet off a ſmile (grins in the glaſs)
Lucy. Good-day, how amiable you look! But you muſt hold up your head thus— (puts up his head) And wear your helmet over your left eye thus— (ſettles his helmet) And keep your arms thus— (ſettles his arms) And I muſt tighten your ſtock. (tightens his ſtock.)
Reb. Zounds! Lucy, you'll ſtrangle me!
Lucy. Never fear, your honour—A ſoldier ſhould always wear his ſtock tight enough to force a colour into his face—a tight ſtock is a ſoldier's dram—You ſee the guards appear as ruddy in the face, and as ſtiff in the ſhoulders as if they had been exerciſed in a pillory—You muſt turn out your toes (turns out his toes with her feet) Keep your breaſt full out thus— (Bends him back) March thus— (takes him under the arm and marches) To the right about— (they face the audience) —Aye, now you appear perfectly at eaſe.
Reb. At eaſe!—Egad, my muſcles are cracking with exquiſite torture. But I like this maſquerading, it ſeaſons an amour to the higheſt goüt, and is the very ſpice, the poignant ſauce of an intrigue—I ſhall reward you liberally!
[Page 32] Lucy. And I ſha'n't oppoſe your honour's liberality—to be proof againſt a bribe, would ſhew a vulgar education—
Reb. True—And perſons of the firſt rank are rewarded under the head of ſecret ſervice. But here— (gives her a purſe) You have no more ſcruples now, I hope, about conſcience, honour, and honeſty.
Lucy. No indeed, your honour, they are your's, you have bought them, and may diſpoſe of them as you think proper.
Reb. Then I'll give them to thoſe who want them—Honour to the Gamblers—Conſcience to the Methodiſts—and Honeſty to the Jews.
Lucy. Nay, your honour, keep a little of each for us poor chriſtians.
Reb. Egad, my girl, I ſee you're no novice.
Lucy. A novice at eighteen! No no, we have more experience at that age in London, than country girls at twenty-five. City roſes blow apace, and it's generally ſummer with us, before it ſhould be ſpring—I ſhot my firſt arrow at ſixteen, hit my man, and he turning falſe, I have ever ſince carried two ſtrings to my bow— But it's time, colonel, I ſhould introduce you.
Reb. Lead on, I follow— (They march off, Lucy humming a march.)
(PRAECIPE in an old faſhioned naval uniform and hat, a ſword, ſtick, and black patch on one eye.)
Frank. This uniform fits you exactly, Sir, I borrowed it from an old ſea officer in the neighbourhood—You really look as brave, and ſeaman-like, as if you were one of the Admirals in [Page 33] Weſtminſter Abbey, deſcended from his monument.
Praecipe. I wiſh ſome of them had deſcended, they have been wanting Maſter Frank—But I object to this black patch on my eye, it brings me under ſtatute ninth of George the firſt, chapter twenty-ſecond, which makes it felony without clergy to go with the face diſguiſed.
Frank. That act muſt have loſt its force, Sir, or what would become of the painted beauties of London?
Praecipe. Then, as a body may ſay, I am only a ſeaman by fiction; but the law ſays, fictions are beneficial—But then, ſays the law again, no fiction ſhall work an injury. Very well, there can be no injury in my marrying a woman of fortune.
Frank. True, Sir.
Praecipe. Let us moot the caſe—In fiction ſubſiſts equity and juſtice, ſay the books—then will I marry Miſs Fairport in the equity of fiction, and afterwards be happy.—
Frank. In reality, Sir?—
Praecipe. If not happy, we can ſeparate by fiction—I'll ſtate you a caſe in point—A brings his action of crim. con. againſt B; now though the cauſe of action had been tranſacted in the moſt loving manner between B, and the wife of A, yet muſt A ſtate in his declaration, that the ſaid B did wickedly and maliciouſly, with force and arms, that is to ſay, with ſticks, clubs, ſtaves, ſwords, guns, and other offenſive weapons, ſeduce and—et caetera, the wife of the ſaid A— Do you underſtand me?
Frank. Perfectly.
Praecipe. But this is not all—for though A and wife had lived together, like cat and dog, as the ſaying is, yet muſt A aver, that B deprived [Page 34] him of all worldly comfort. —Oh, Maſter Frank, many a good fortune has been made by the fiction of crim. con. but now a plaintiff can ſcarce recover a ſhilling.
Frank. And is this law, Sir?
Prae. Yes, it is law, but nothing to what they do at the Admiralty, where the whole ocean's brought upon dry land—It was but the other day a pirate was tried for feloniouſly robbing the good ſhip St. Joſeph, on the high ſeas, four leagues off Cape St. Vincent, in the county of Norfolk.
Frank. Now you joke indeed, Mr. Praecipe!
Praecipe. Joke! The devil a joke! Why man it has been proved to the ſatisfaction of the civilians and the bar, that the Thirteen Colonies of America are ſituate in, and part of the county of Kent.
Frank. I think I hear Miſs Fairport's foot coming down ſtairs.
Praecipe. Then I'm off—You'll break the ice for me—
Frank. Never fear—She's a good creature, and as familiar with me as if I was her fellow-ſervant.
Praecipe. But won't it ſeem odd if I don't court her myſelf?
Frank. Bleſs me! —no—it's quite faſhionable to make love by proxy.
Praecipe. Well then, be my amicus curiae, and I'll take another glaſs or two—a man ſhould always appear full of ſpirits before his miſtreſs.
Exeunt Praecipe.
Enter LUCY, laughing.
Lucy. Ha, ha, ha, I've had a peep at my ſwain, and he looks as tremendous as the head of a Dutch ſhip—
[Page 35] Frank. Formidable as he looks, Lucy, if you regard your own intereſt you'll make your fortune of him—I ſay marry him, marry him!
Lucy. Marry him!
Fran. Yes you ſhall marry him—I ſay you ſhall marry him—Mr.Trueman ſays you ſhall marry him —and Miſs Amelia ſays you ſhall marry him— Come, no denial, I have ſent to town for a ſpecial licence and the Curate will be here preſently to tack you together.
Lucy. La Frank! why the fellow's a fool.
Frank. No ſuch thing;—the gentleman has wit.
Lucy. In his cups—drinking is of the ſame uſe to his brain, as travelling to a blockhead; it heightens his impertinence, and transforms him from a drowſy fool into a prating coxcomb.
Frank. Or, it improves his underſtanding as bottling improves ſmall beer, which then becomes briſk without growing ſtronger.
Lucy. And you inſiſt on my marrying him?
Frank. I do—
Lucy. Then ſhall you be my father on the occaſion;—and ſee, Frank I'll learn French and cotillions, and dance perhaps with an Alderman, at a Lord Mayor's ball.—Then I'll pretend to be half blind, and ſpy at the play-actors through my glaſs (imitating) and I'll walk as if I wanted the uſe of my limbs (imitating) and ſpeak ſo nice, that no one ſhall underſtand me. (imitating.)
Frank. Nay, but this is loſing time, Lucy.
Lucy. And I'll blacken my eye-brows, pinkify my hair, rouge my cheeks, and pearl powder my neck—Then I'll flaunt every ſummer at the reviews in the artillery ground, and go up the river every autumn a ſwan hopping. (running off.)
Frank. A brave girl, faith, come I'll bring you to your lover, and make the beſt uſe of your time.
[Page 36] SCENE. A Chamber, AMELIA and REBATE diſcovered ſitting on a ſofa.
Reb. Ha! ha! ha! Egad, madam you are a perfect ſoldier, and have given me as accurate a deſcription of a camp, as I could have given myſelf who have ſeen ſervice.
Ame. Seen ſervice!—to me, ſir, you appear a veteran, worn out in the ſervice;—but are you really a colonel? Colonels are in general ſo young, and ſubalterns ſo old, that from your age I took you to be a lieutenant.
Reb. We were ſpeaking of the qualities neceſſary to form a commander, madam.
Ame. True, I was going to communicate to you a receipt for making commanders; I had it from a learned phyſician, who though not diploma'd from a Univerſity to kill by the regular rules of art—
Reb. Is a licenſed quack, I ſuppoſe, madam, and murders under the authority of letters patent.
Ame. A ceſſation of wit, and liſten to my receipt, ſir.—Take ten drops of Marlborough ſpirit —one ounce flower of Ligonier—two drams powder of Granby—one ſcruple of Wolfe's laurel, and a ſingle grain of Cumberland oak bark; let theſe ingredients be put in a braſs mortar, mix them up with oil of Andrè, marine eſſence of Farmer and alkaline ſalt of Pierſon, and they'll produce an inſpiring draught, of ſufficient power to infuſe a courageous ſoul into the moſt inanimate body.
Reb. Why, madam you are a perfect political Eſculapius!
Ame. Yes, colonel, and our new ſtate phyſicians have ordered my preſcription to be taken in large doſes by every commander at ſea and land.
[Page 37] Reb. Let us return to my ſuit, fair creature— your uncle is undone—you have no friend;—put yourſelf under my protection, and we'll live—
Ame. (riſing ſuddenly) In the country! For I am enraptured with the ſports of the field, and glory in the pleaſures of the chace—Not a fortnight ſince I rode a day's ſport after twenty couple of hounds, ſtaunch tartars as ever yelp'd or run a drag—took a flying leap acroſs a ſtream—daſhed thro' two quickſets, and leaped three five bar gates.
Reb. Aye!
Ame. We unkennelled Reynard before eight, had a view hollow by ten—Tallee ho, ho ho ho— hoick forward—wind him, the villain, wind him. At eleven he took the water, we plunged after— croſſed the Thames—at twelve the whole pack cloſe in with him, you could cover them with a ſheet, and we killed him exactly at nineteen minutes three ſeconds after one.
Reb. Why, madam you're not only an Amazon, but a Diana.
Ame. Then I can ſhoot ſitting or flying—kill a trout or ſalmon with a ſingle hair—bit a horſe for the field, break him in for the carriage—ſtaunch a pointer, and underſtand the odds and chances at horſe-racing, cards, hazard, paſs-dice, Pharoah and E O, as well as any black-leg of the turf, or judge in the ſtand at Newmarket.
Reb. Egad, madam, all the amiable qualities of a modern high-blooded fine lady ſeem to be centered in you.
Ame. Dear Colonel you don't know half—In driving a phaeton I'll back my ſkill againſt any titled or untitled female in the kingdom, and am ready to lay you three to two, play or pay, that I drive four hunters from London to Bath, without [Page 38] once loſing the whip-hand of the road, and turn them on the breadth of a ſhilling's edge.
Reb. Why! you're an Olympic charioteer, madam.
Ame. And I ſay done firſt.
(knocking, Amelia goes to the door.)
Reb. It will do—it will do—aye, aye, ſhe's half mad, and when wearied of her I'll ſoon find a doctor ſhall make her compleatly ſo. (aſide)
Enter FRANK, (Rebate conceals his face with his hat.)
Frank. News! madam, news! I bring news will delight your ear, and charm your heart: Mr. Trueman is returned from town, and brings word, that the Weſt India fleet's arrived, that the Eaſt Indiamen are in port;—but, madam, he is here, and there, and every where, foaming with rage, and roaring out horrid vengeance againſt old Rebate.
Reb. O! Mercy! I'm loſt. (aſide.)
Ame. Do you know that old villain, Rebate, Colonel?
Reb. No, madam, I'm acquainted with no old villains. (in an under voice.)
Frank. And one of the ſervants, madam, has told Mr. Trueman that this officer's with you, and he's mad jealous, (goes up to Rebate) Lord your honour, I would not be in your coat for a thouſand pounds; ſo to prevent two murders, I'll ſeek old Rebate, and get him out of the way. Exit.
Amelia. I'll lock myſelf up in this cloſet.
Reb. And I'll follow you—
Ame. Not for the world—you muſt ſtay here and defend me.
Frank. (within) Sir—Sir—you can't come in here—
[Page 39] Tru. (within) Frank, I will have entrance—
Ame. Mercy here he comes!
(retires into the cloſet, and ſhuts the door.)
Reb. So I'm to be aſſaſſinated!—is there no place of retreat? (looking about.)
Frank. (within). Put up your ſword, dear ſir.
Ame. (looking out of the cloſet) Inſiſt upon fighting him with piſtols, colonel;—at ſwords, its nothing with him, but ha, ha, ha, and he whips his antagoniſt, quart over the arm, through the lungs.
Reb. Quart over the arm, and through the lungs!—with a ha!—O my lungs! (coughs) what will become of me?
Ame. (looking out) And, Colonel, don't fight him with his own piſtols, with them he can ſtrike the ſpot out of an ace of diamonds, or kill a ſwallow flying with a ſingle ball. (ſhuts the door)
Reb. Kill a ſwallow flying—then if he kills me it ſhall be flying. (going.)
Enter TRUEMAN with two ſwords.
Tru. They are of one length, ſir, take your choice; (preſenting the ſwords) you have injured me in the tendereſt point, injured me in my love —knowing I was a citizen, you preſumed I would not reſent an affront from a ſoldier; but I will convince you, ſir, that in this country, a ſoldier and a citizen are one character.
Reb. Sir, (biding his face with his hat.)
Tru. Sir—
Reb. Sir—hem—ſir—Having unfortunately received a wound in this arm—I—hem—hem—I—I cannot hold a ſword. (diſtorting his arm.)
Tru. Then, ſir, take your choice of theſe (producing a caſe of piſtols.) they are Tower-proof, and kill point-blank at thirty yards.
[Page 40] Reb, I am an old man—I've been uſed to fight for my countrymen not againſt them
(going towards the door.)
Tru. (intercepting him) If you have not ſpirit to meet a man, how dare you face a woman.— Heavens, what a figure! withered like a winter apple (Rebate walks, Trueman follows him, ſtill keeping him from the door) ſhrivelled and decayed like an autumnal pear—weak and bowed down by infirmities—a living hoſpital of old diſorders—a martyr to diſeaſes, cramps, aches, pains, ſpaſms, agues, contractions, rheums, and paroxyſms.
Reb. I know of nothing that ails me but a little cough (coughs) pray let me paſs. (bowing.)
Tru. Are you not taped, ſpliced, ſpiced, and glewed together like an Egyptian mummy?
(Rebate walking, Trueman following.)
Reb. (Bowing very low) What you pleaſe—what you pleaſe.
Tru. Are you not a burden to yourſelf, a nuiſance to your acquaintance, an evil example to youth, and a ſcandal to old age?
Reb. A nuiſance!—then pray let me remove the nuiſance. (going)
Tru. Get home, purchaſe flannel, and engage a nurſe to ſwaddle you. But if I ever catch you again poaching on this ground, I'll ſhow you no more mercy than a country juſtice ſhews a peaſant who kills partridge—I'll truſs you up as warreners truſs up kites, a horrid ſcarecrow to birds of prey.
Reb. Truſs me up!—O you damned villain. (very loud and threatning with his hand) Yes, raſcal! If ever you catch me here again, you may truſs me up, and quarter me into the bargain—O plague on this lobſter's ſhell! (tearing open his coat) I ſhall be [Page 41] the laughing ſtock of the whole town. But ſoftly, let me ſee, he miſtakes me for an officer; ſo I'll ſeek Lucy, change my cloaths, and make my eſcape to town.—O woman! woman! you make idiots of the wiſeſt and oldeſt of us—Why can't I ſhake off this paſſion for the ſex? Surely! ſurely! the greateſt curſe under heaven is to be afflicted with an appetite we can neither ſatisfy nor get rid of.
Enter LUCY, with PRAECIPE, intoxicated.
Lucy. And ſo you've deceived me? I have married an attorney and not a captain?
Prae. There's no difference I tell you between them. I've a caſe in point—Styles, verſus Nokes on the Game Laws. John a Nokes was indicted by Tom a Styles for having a hare in his poſſeſſion. Nokes gave in evidence that the hare was killed in his garden by a hog, and the judge would have non-proſs'd Styles, had not a learned ſerjeant argued contra, that the game laws were not made againſt hogs, nor made againſt dogs, but were made againſt perſons having game in their poſſeſſion, and therefore quo ad hoc a hog was a dog, and a dog was a hog—
Lucy. What! would you make a hog or a dog of me?—
Prae. No—no—I am only proving, do you ſee me, that as captains and attornies have the ſame end in marrying, ſo in our caſe, as in the caſe of the hog and the dog, caeteris paribus, with a quo ad hoc, an attorney is a captain and a captain is an attorney.
Lucy. But my father, I fear, will be dreadfully angry—
Prae. Never mind your father; your fortune is in your own poſſeſſion—your father never aſked your conſent to marry, and why ſhould you aſk his?— [Page 42] But here my dear Auguſta Fairport—alias Auguſta Rebate—alias my love—alias my charmer— I endow you with theſe diamonds, and bank notes (gives the caſkets and pocket book) and take care of this letter; it contains evidence to hang my father, if he ſhould take exceptions:
Enter FRANK.
Lucy: Well Mr. Frank, we have made up every thing, and we have determined to ſport a vis a vis of the brimſtone, and a tim whiſkey of the emperor's eye.
Praecipe. Yes; we will have a vis and a timmy, and never be without wine in the cellar, and cold meat in the pantry—and now I am married, I'll drink— (ſings.)
Drink and ſet your heart at reſt,
Of a bad bargain make the beſt.
Frank. Bravo, Sir. But, Madam, it is time you ſhould introduce the old gentleman, Mr. Praecipe's prepared, I hope.
Lucy. Yes, yes, I have inſtructed him. Well, adieu!—Heigh-ho! Exit.
Praecipe. Adieu! Heigh-ho!—your hand honeſt Frank—I have been drinking moſt devoutly— toaſting on my knees, drinking and courting—and ſmoaking and kiſſing—and every thing goes round. (Sings.) ‘Round the world thus we march with merry glee.’ You ſhall always be welcome to victuals and drink at our houſe—I play as merry a knife and fork as an overſeer of the poor. (Sings.)
O the roaſt beef of Old England,
O the old Engliſh roaſt beef.
Frank. Remember you are to paſs upon your father as lieutenant of a man of war, ſpeak loud, diſguiſe your voice, and flouriſh your ſtick.
[Page 43] Praecipe. Never fear me. Then I have been drinking, as my ſchool-maſter uſed to ſay, grammatically—drinking through the tenſes—drinking like a camel, for the time paſt, the time preſent, and the time to come. (Sings.)
Fill me a bowl, a mighty bowl,
Large as my capacious ſoul.
Enter LUCY.
Lucy. Here comes the old gentleman raving with anger—My love, ſtand you here.
Enter REBATE, (in a rage.)
Rebate. My cloaths gone—O fool! fool! (beats his head.)
Frank. (Taking Rebate aſide.) Keep your temper, colonel; here's a lieutenant of the navy as furious as a hurricane, and unrelenting as a great gun—he is your rival too, and half drunk.
Rebate. (Stamping.) O blockhead, blockhead, blockhead.
Praecipe. Blockhead! Let him keep a civil tongue or I'll make him ſkip—it was me he called blockhead, (drawing his hanger.)
Lucy. Indeed, lieutenant, it is not you the colonel calls blockhead—begin—begin, (puſhing Praecipe.)
Lucy. Noble lieutenant, don't draw blood here.
Frank. The fellow muſt be a coward by his noiſe—ſuppoſe you put his mettle to the proof.
(Aſide to Rebate.)
Rebate. I ſee you don't know me, Frank— O ſhame! ſhame!—I am Old Rebate.
Frank. (Affecting ſurprize.) Bleſs me! Mr. Rebate.
Praecipe. Let me at him, I ſay, (pretending to ſtruggle with Lucy.)
Rebate. Protect me from that bloody-minded ſeamonſter— here, here, (gives money.)
[Page 44] Frank. Keep up your ſpirits, Sir, and I will.
Praecipe. See, old codger, if paſſion has kicked up a riot in your brain, you had beſt call in your prudence as a conſtable to keep the peace.
Rebate. You really miſtake me, noble lieutenant, (bowing.)
Praecipe. That won't do—you ſhan't get at the blind ſide of me—I have but one eye, 'tis true; but it's an eye would frighten the French, the Dutch and the Spaniards—it's a Hawke's eye—damn me, it's a Hawke's eye—it's a Hawke's eye.
Enter FRANK with a blunderbuſs, which he gives to REBATE.
Frank. (Aſide.) Here, Sir, now defend yourſelf, it's charged up to the muzzle with ſwan ſhot.
Praecipe. Fire and ſtorms.
Rebate. (Kneeling and preſenting the blunderbuſs.) Out of the way and let me paſs, or I'll make a riddle of your carcaſe.
Praecipe. (Turning ſuddenly about, falls.) Murder! mercy! ſpare me; (pulls off his hat and black patch,) conſider, dear father, it you fire, though you ſhould miſs me, the very intention is death by the black act.
Rebate. My graceleſs ſon in conſpiracy againſt me!—O you unnatural villain!—But here comes another tormenter, (ſtill kneeling.)
Enter TRUEMAN. He ſtands between REBATE and PRAECIPE.
Trueman. What, colonel! I thought you had left the houſe.
Praecipe. I'll make affidavit he's no more a colonel than I am.
Trueman. And who are you, Sir?
Praecipe Praecipe Rebate, at your ſervice— ſpare me, and hereafter I'll live an honeſt attorney.
[Page 45] Lucy. Live an honeſt attorney!—No, no, my love, you ſhan't live an original character.
Trueman. Which deſerves chaſtiſement moſt, the father or ſon? (looks at them alternately.) You are equally deſerving; for I know of none who merit ſeverer puniſhment than thoſe who aſſume his majeſty's livery, and put on the inſignia of a ſoldier, without poſſeſſing that dignity, honor and courage, which are eſſential to a military character.
Lucy. And heaven knows, Sir, there are plenty of ſuch uncommiſſioned coxcombs about town. But pray riſe, your honor, (to Rebate) this is honeſt Mr. Rebate, equipt in your 'ſociation uniform.
Praecipe. Caught with the maner—that is to ſay, with the property upon you (to his father.)
Praecipe. But ſee, I have done my buſineſs without your aſſiſtance. I have married Miſs Fairport (puts his hand under Lucy's arm) here ſhe ſtands; her fortune's mine, I am her baron, ſhe's my feme, and under my coverture.
Lucy. It is true, indeed, Sir, I am your daughter, but not Miſs Fairport; and as to fortune, mine lies in a deal-box.
Praecipe. So—I have ſtultified myſelf in open court—But father I'm not an old fool—and we have money enough, and diamonds too—and give me your hand, bone of my bone.
(to Praecipe)
In marriage you know a captain's an attorney, and an attorney's a captain— So by the ſame rule a gentlewoman's a waiting maid, and a waiting maid a gentlewoman.
Praecipe. A clear caſe, caeteris paribus, with a quo ad hoc.
[Page] Enter AMELIA.
Amelia. My dear Mr. Trueman, read this letter.
Lucy. Which I received from my ſpouſe.
Trueman. Here is evidence of the blackeſt crime can be committed by a ſubject againſt his king and country—giving ſuccour to their enemies.
Praecipe. High-treaſon! as I always told you father when you quoted the Dutch as a precedent for having, when at war, ſold powder and ball to the enemy to pepper their own carcaſes.
Trueman. Mr. Rebate—This letter is directed to you, Sir, and from its contents, I have reaſon to conclude, that the diamonds you have received from Amſterdam, are the property of this lady.
Rebate. Diamonds!
Amelia. Yes Sir, diamonds—This letter is certainly written by the Quaker, at whoſe houſe my father lodged.
(Looking at the letter)
O! I ſhall run mad.
Lucy. Here are the diamonds, Madam (delivering the caſe)
Rebate. And did you, idiot, give a receipt for thoſe monies and diamonds in my name? (to Praecipe)
Praecipe. I am an Engliſhman, and not bound to anſwer perſonal interrogatories.
Rebate. I'll hang you for the forgery, you dog.
Praecipe. I defy your indictment—I acted as your lawful attorney; or if I had not, a Quaker is your only witneſs; and your Quakers are ſo conſcientious, they would let the worſt of rogues eſcape, ſooner than take an oath.
Rebate. Oh! you raſcal—Peter the Great was right, when having but two lawyers in his dominions, he hung one as an example to the other.
[Page 47] Praecipe. You may abuſe the law, father; but we ſhould not have impoſing lawyers, if there were not litigious clients.
(Standing on his left hand.)
Remember your advice to me, ‘be aſhamed of nothing, Lucy, but being poor—the rich are above ſhame.’
(Standing on his right hand.)
And remember, that the credit of a merchant, like the virtue of a woman, or the courage of a ſoldier, is his point of honor; and that as no recompenſe can ſatisfy the loſs of credit, no puniſhment is too ſevere for the villain who dares to traduce it.
Rebate. I'll ſtay no longer—I'll convert all my effects into caſh, and fly to Holland, where every man who has money may be ſure of protection.
Praecipe. Wait for your cloaths, father—my wife ſhall recover your ſuit—.
Trueman. What we have experienced will, I hope, teach us this moral—that while virtue guides our paſſions, happineſs is the certain conſequence, and that miſery is ever the reſult of ſubmitting to vicious habits. May every Briton bring theſe precepts into practice—and may every Briton alſo remember, that as the credit, the wealth, the ſtrength, the dignity of the Britiſh empire flow from commerce, to ſupport and extend commerce is the indiſpenſible duty of every Britiſh ſubject. Exeunt.

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Price 2s. 6d. ſewed, The SECOND EDITION, of SENTIMENTAL EXCURSIONS TO WINDSOR, and other Places. A SHANDEAN BAGATELLE, under various HEADS and TALES, viz.

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