Obrazy na stronie

his philosophy, as the fool calls it. I humour him with his rubbishy stuff about surplus population, which has made him as mad as the fellows are that are trying to discover the longitude, and he really thinks that I half starve from the patriotic motive of insuring their continence!

my servants pure tile about this girl, ads and see what he's

[ocr errors]


BARE. The three men, Sir, say they're hungry and dry SIR G. Send one of them to the Inn for a gallon of beer and a gallon of gin, and get a pound or two of cheap cheese and a loaf. I may want them by-andby. [Exit Barebone.

[ocr errors]


SCENE III.-The best room : the walls smoky, with torn paper; no fire, no curtains, old broken chairs, and a ragged carpet. SQU. THIMBLE sitting at a table with papers and pamphlets. "Sat. Turm. Well, [looking round him,] if this be the best room, the worst must be some degrees worse than a..

Enter SIR GRIPE...

Sov. THIM. [Rising and bowing.] I was just saying to myself what a beautiful house this is, how tranquil, how admirably calculated for study, and especially for that species of study which I delight in; for you must know that London does....

SIR. G. [Aside.] Oh! the Devil!

Sev. Tum.....not favour the flow of ideas like this quiet

SIR G. [Aside.] By

they sha'nt flow here!


SQU. THIM..... place; and I am resolved to finish my treatise on checking population before I go back.

SIR G. But where's your Remedy against Breeding, that I asked you to bring up with you?

SQU. THIM. Here 'tis. [Giving it to Sir G.]

[ocr errors]

SIR G. [Reads to himself, while Thimble sits and looks eagerly at him. Admirable, admirable! Delightfu!! Here are granimar, logic, philosophy, eloquence, elegance, clearness, strength, and in short....

SQU. THIM. Oh, no! The essay is well enough, but nothing like equal to that which I have now in hand: I'll read you a passage of it....

SIR G. [Raising his voice.] "Well enough," do you call it! I say, that the man that that ought to be prime minister.

SQU. THIM. Oh, no! you flatter me; but do, then, let me read you à passage from my new work; for, as as you will see,....

SIR G. No: you sha'nt, you sha'nt: I wo'nt hear a word of it till it comes out: I'll hav't all together: a taste beforehand would spoil my feast.

Sou. THIM. Well, then, let us talk of what ought to be done as well as written. SIR G. Yes, I like doing.

Squ. This. These positions are clear: first, part of the people must be sent out of the country; or, second, the millions must be made to live on potatoes, fike the Irish; or, third, their breeding must be checked; or, fourth, those who live on tithes and taxes must be compelled to work for their bread.

SIR G. As to the first, they wo'nt go; as, to the second, they will burn up the country rather than submit to it; as to the fourth, it is not to be thought of; and, therefore, it must be the third.

not to

SQU. THIM. So say I, and, therefore, I am labouring, first to persuade them and next to teach them how to avoid having live children, if they be married, and, SIR G. [aside] What a d

th marry at a d

fool it is!


[ocr errors]




SQU. TAIM. Have we not, under our eyes, a proof of the necessity of my labours de Fon look at this young woman, who is going to be married tomorrow, and who, probably, without my lessons, might breed twenty one poor creatures as her mother has donesb☎ 9vad I 28 nedilloW Dail

Stu: G. Ah! a striking instance indeed and all this litter is to be kept, tob, out of my estate, or my farms and my woods are to be burnt is of a boog SOU. THIM. Aaman might as well have no property it is not property: you have your estate in common with this devouring herds190 MIAT UD2 SIR G. Aye, and they leave me here, you see,s with chardlyda bit of bread to put in my mouth. SOU. THIM. It is not only your duty, then, buts your interest also, to aid me sqirk) vi¿ JO67192 TUOY : Woα in my labours, and, when my essay is finished, which, in this tranquil abode, will be in about, a month, you will see that procreation will be effectually checked. You sos aliquidoud to eyn


SIR G. No doubt; but, in the meanwhile, this brace of breeders get together. Now, I'm a practical man; I hold that an ounce of prevention is worthta spound of cure; and, therefore, I'm for sending the girl away, and to-night too. SOU. THIM. To-night!: 1: Sou. G. Yes, to-night, and I shall want your assistance.bood & aworɔ & not blow yard, meds Joanew II'I,asique o SIR THIM. My assistance!

[ocr errors]



[ocr errors]

SIR G. You know, my dear Thimble, what a regard I have for you, and how sincerely I admire your talents. You are fit for the highest posts in the State. You only want to be in parliament to make your surprising talents known; and when I am made a peer, you shall take SOU. THIM. [Getting up and taking him by the hand. Thank you, thank my place. you; I always thought that this would be the case; but. SIR G. What I intend is this; to get a post chaise and four horses of at midnight, clap her and you into it, and let them carry you off, like the wind, to London, where you can deposit her in my house at Pimp-Place, under the care of little PANDER, who, you know, breathes only through my nostrils. SOU. THIM. But what would the world say SIR G. World! Did you ever know the world find wrong any thing by a man with forty thousand a year in land!

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

over here


SQU. THIM. But I have not forty thousand a year, and should never dare show my face again; for the newspapers. SIR G. A handful of guineas would bribe them all to silence. However, if you do not choose to oblige me.... SQU. THIM. Pray do not put it in that way I do choose it; but let us dade Botels Ban 1289digged doula little time to think of it.

us take a SIR G. And they get to breeding in the meanwhile?n tedy dog word ពោធ * SOU. THIM. Besides, I meant to stay here to finish my essay. SIR G. That's out of the question, for I mean to shut the house up and to go and live with my friends a few days, till I go to London. SQU. THIM. You know, dear Sir Gripe, that it would be violation, that wait, would be cassault at the least; and that there would be such an outcry; and then Leasingdist es bud


bad to-morrow,

SIR G. Very true, very true; you are right, and great as will be the evil to my estate I

SIRnd to my country, must, upon reflection, give up my intention,

and let the devouring devils breed away.

SOU. THIM. I hope you don't think that

SG. Oh, no, no, no, no not at all, not at all!

[ocr errors]


You're o
ite right; do
w see the dang

quite right; and I really am glad that you refused; for I now see

But, how will you get back?

SQU. THIм. Óh! I shall go off by the mall,


which stops' he

which stops here at the Grindum
I wond boy hom a sde

SER Gie And what time shall you get into town?sw 9vAH.... MIRT .002. SourTand Why, let me see; the mail comes about one, and I shall get in about six ba91d genees you juodiwyldadong,odw baswortom;

[ocr errors]

SIR G. Well, then, as I have a deal to do here, I'll send you a letter down to the farm, which, when you get out of the mail in Piccadilly you'll be so good as to carry directly (it's in your way) to Pimp-Place, and give it to little Pander. But, you'll be sure to deliver it without a moment's delay 002 SQU. THIM. Certainly [Rising, and gathering up his papers.} You'll send down the detters by tenor eleven o'clock. [Pulls out his watch.] It is past eight now your servant, Sir Gripe. Exit, bowing.

SIR G [Looking contemptuously after him.] Oh! your servant, Mr. Stitch-louse! Here's a pretty scoundrel! He has openly advised women to procure abortion; which is murder; and now he has his qualms of conscience! As Richard says of Buckingham, in the play, "I'll henceforth deal with shorter-sighted villains:" And here they are at hand, in the three respectable personages that my friend, Lord Rottenborough, has had down at his election, and who have dropped in as old acquaintances, on their way back to London. They will have no scruples, I'll warrant them: they would cut the throats of their own mothers for a crown a head.nkisch wh{ "H

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]



[ocr errors]

BETA SCENE I. Mrs. Birch's cottage: MRS. BIRCH, BETSEY, and DICK

see, here are beautiful flowers that aunt Martha has sent us to strew up to the church-door; and there are brothers Tom and Jack coming, and many more lads, and all the girls in the village; and they are to walk armin-arm before us, and do, Richard, look at these true-lovers'-knots, that Patty Primrose has sent me!

MRS. BIRCH. And look at this fine gammon of bacon and these plums, that Mrs. Stiles es has sent vi

DICK. Ah! she's the woman! And now I must go home to bed, for I'm to get up at one o'clock to carry Squire Thimble's portmanteau up to the Grindum Arms.

[ocr errors]

BET, Well, good by; but I wish it was over, for my heart does sink so!?
DICK. What for? What can you be afraid of?

[ocr errors]

BET. Why, I'm so afraid that something will happen: it seems to be too much happiness; and there's that shocking old villain sent for mother (and you; and there's the rent to pay; and he is such a spiteful monster, and so cunning

DICK. But what can the villain do?

MRS. BIRCH. There, never mind her qualms: go home to-bed, Richard; for you must be tired to death. [Exit Dick.] And now, my child, let us go to bed and get some rest; and, as to the rest, Farmer Stiles says, that old rascal shall not turn us into the road, if he turn him out of his farm for saving us. So, as I told the old skin-and-bone miser, the Lord will protect the widow and the fatherless.

[ocr errors]

ofSCENE 11. room in Gripe Hall: SIR GRIPE and the three London bullies, Bludgeon, „noisasını vGυZZLE, and SLANG, all seated: a bottle of gin and a glass on the table. SIR G. You know where the cottage is? BLUP, Yes we came by it in the morning, and saw a young chap and a 1girl at the door.

SIR G. With

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

and bright eyes, eyes, and hed 19% soy lliw wod,jud SLANG, Yes: a nice piece enough, ora y lo og lede 1 120 IRT.002 yd SIR G. She's mad, you

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

we understand all about it. 1910led as dire SIR G. Here's my old friend, Bludgeon, did such a job for me once before, and he knows I paid him well.

how did that turn out, Sir Gripe 30

SIR G. Very well, very well; she got quite cured in time!

sails 200 BLUD. And is now upon the town; for I met her in Drury-lane only about a month ago, but so altered quo quid on blood song

1 SIR G. The chaise will come over from Rottenborough, and will be at the corner of the lane just at twelve o'clock to sens so g BLUD. We'll knock them up by telling them that the intended is taken and then seize her, and....

GUZZLE. Ram a handkerchief into her mouth; to...
SLANG. Tow, or cotton-wool, is better.

[ocr errors]


SIR G. Give the two post-boys a guinea, instead of a crown; and be sure to say that it is a mad woman that you are taking to St. Luke's., BLUD. Leave that to us, Sir.

SIR G. One of you ride on the box, and the other two in the chaise; and when you come to Stains, go across to Kingston, and lop gently along till you get to Mrs. LYNX's.

LUD. I know it, you know Sir, in Dismal-lane?

SIR G. Yes, the same place; and, now, go and get some supper, and then I will give you money to pay your, expenses on the road.

GUZZLE. It will want a pretty deal, Sir: four horses, you know, and two post-boys, and 'tis dry work, as the saying is.

SIR G. I shall be in town the day after to-morrow, and if you do your job well, I'll give you five guineas a-piece. SIR G. Calling them back.] Oh! here, I had forgotten:

[blocks in formation]

SIR G. Barebone, take Stiles's. [Barebone going.] BARE. Sir?


[merged small][ocr errors]

[They go out have you got

[They go out; he rings.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

this letter down to Squire Thimble, at farmer And do you hear, Barebone?

SIR G. If any one call to-morrow, be it who it may, tell him, or her, that I am not at home, that I am gone to the county-election, to work in the cause of Parliamentary Reform. What o'clock is it now, Barebone?

BARE. 'Tis a good bit past eleven, Sir, by the church clock. [Exit Barebone, SIR G. I'll now go and prime these fellows with money. Let me see: they will be at Old Moll's about eight; Thimble will be in about six ; so that there will be plenty of time for Pander to get to Old Moll's with my letter of instructions. What a thing is forty thousand a year! All these devils hate me; nay, despise me; and they crouch to me like so many spaniels! Yet, in one thing, I'm a slave too: I know that this Reform of Parliament will strip of my power; I detest it accordingly, and yet I'm compelled to work for it.

SCENE III.-Stiles's Parlour: THIMBLE packing up his papers.


BARE. A letter, Sir, from Sir Gripe.



[ocr errors]

SOU. THIM. What, you're going to shut the Hall up to-morrow, are you, young man?

[ocr errors]

BARE. Not that I know of, Sir I have not heard any-thing about it. SQU. THIM. No! [Exit Barebone] This is a lie, then, invented to get rid of me, when he found that I would not be his pimp! But opening the letter]

let's see what he says here.




"My dear Thimble, I'm sorry that imperious cirL

cumstances separate ear in malf what I ought from your instructive


winch will surely be yours. Pray do not fail to deliver the letter to Pander the very mos ment that you arrive; and up Joy 915 New GRIPE GRINDUM. and believe me, always t truly yours,

Body vlna punt-run ni je tam not, wool side one won a

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

"P. S. If Pander should not be up, go up to his bed-room and give him the letter for, it is of the greatest possible

might be ruinous to the cause of

[ocr errors]

What a minute's delay! Why, and a minute's delay

[ocr errors]

Enter Mrs. STILES.

MRS. STILES. Won't you take something, Sir, before you set off?Tis a any-thing upon the road?

arpish m

and you

hank you; I'll take an egg.

MRS. STILES. And a glass of something, Sir?

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

SOU. THIM. "A minute's delay ruinous to the cause of Reform! There's

[merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][subsumed][merged small]

Soy. Tum. What is it o'clock, good woman! MRS. STILES. Just struck twelve, Sir. SQU. THIM. I've a great mind to open this letter. What secrets ought they to keep from me about the cause of Reforin? The rascals, who owe the power they have to me. I can do it up again; so, as old Knowell says, in the play, By your leave, soft wax." [Opens the letter and reads to himself] Oh! the dd perfidious villain. [Reads out.] "That stupid coxcomb Thimble is here, and was going to make my house his study; and I was afraid I must have Swingged it in order to get him out. He will carry you this letter... go over to old Moll.... three trusty fellows.. post-chaise and four.. start from here at twelve o'clock at night."-Oh! the d-d villain! [A screaming in the kitchen he runs out.]

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

SCENE IV.-The Farm Kitchen: the Farmer, his Wife, Men and Boys, a little Boy and Girl of Mrs. Birch's crying.

LIT Boy. And there's poor Mammy lying dead upon the floor, and there's little Harry and little Sally crying and screaming! O Lord, what shall we do! LIT. GIRL. And poor sister Betsey's gone! Oh, dear, oh dear!

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

PATTY. Three fellows come and knocked at the door, put a pistol to their heads, and dragged Betsey away; and.....

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

MARY. They took her off in a postchaise; mother looked out of the window, heard a screaming, and she knowed Betsey's voice, and saw then go up the lane as fast as they could drive, and . . . .

[DICK comes down stairs in his trousers and shirt. SQU. THIM. They're gone to London with her, I tell you. I have a letter here, [Dick runs out of the house,] that I have opened: I will tell you all about it by-and-by by; but, get horses and go after them; or never will you see her STILES. Boys, men, all of you, and get the nag, and, Tom, you get on as fast as

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

YOU STILES. I go up to poor Mrs. Birch, and keep her as quiet as I can.


[ocr errors]
« PoprzedniaDalej »