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Fair. No, in truth, friend Giles; but I men-| tioned our affair at a distance; and I think there is no fear.
Giles. That's right-and when shall usYou do know I have told you my mind often and often.
Fair. Farmer, give us thy hand; nobody doubts thy good will to me and my girl; and you may take my word, I would rather give her to thee than another; for I am main certain thou wilt make her a good husband.
Giles. Thanks to your kind opinion, master Fairfield; if such be my hap, I hope there will be no cause of complaint.
Re-enter PATTY from the Cottage. Fair. Patty, child, why wouldst not thou open the door for our neighbour Giles? Fair. And I promise thee my daughter will Pat. Really, father, I did not know what make thee a choice wife. But thou know'st, was the matter. friend Giles, that I, and all belongs to me, Fair. Well, our neighbour Giles will be have great obligations to lord Aimworth's fa-here another time; he'll be here again premily; Patty, in particular, would be one of sently. He's gone up to the castle, Patty: the most ungrateful wretches this day breath-thou know'st it would not be right for us to ing, if she was to do the smallest thing do any thing without giving his lordship incontrary to their consent and approbation. telligence, so I have sent the farmer to let Giles. Nay, nay, 'tis well enough known to him know that he is willing, and we are all the country she was the old lady's darling. willing, and, with his lordship's approbation-Fair. Well, master Giles, I'll assure thee Pat. Oh, dear father-what are you going she is not one whit less obliged to my lord to himself. When his mother was taken off so suddenly, and his affairs called him up to a London, if Patty would have remained at the his lordship beforehand. castle, she might have had the command of all; or if she would have gone any where else, he would have paid for her fixing, let the cost be what it would.
Fair. Nay, child, I would not have stirr'd step for fifty pounds, without advertising
Pat. But surely, surely, you have not done this rash, this precipitate thing?
Fair. How rash, how is it rash, Patty? I don't understand thee.
Giles. Why, for that matter, folks did not Pat. Oh, you have distress'd me beyond spare to say, that my lord had a sort of a imagination-but why would you not give sneaking kindness for her himself: and I re- me notice, speak to me first? member, at one time, it was rife all about| the neighbourhood, that she was actually to be our lady.
Fair. Pho, pho! a pack of woman's tales. Giles. Nay, to be sure they'll say any thing. Fair. My lord's a man of a better way of thinking, friend Giles-but this is neither here nor there to our business-Have you been at the castle yet?
Giles. Who, I! bless your heart I did not hear a syllable of his lordship's being come down, till your lad told me.
Fair. Why han't I spoken to thee an hundred times? No, Patty, 'tis thou that wouldst distress me, and thou'ft break my heart. Pat. Dear father!
Fair. All I desire is to see thee well set
tled; and now that I am likely to do so, thou art not contented. I am sure the farmer is as sightly a clever lad as any in the country; and is he not as good as we?
Pat. 'Tis very true, father, I am to blame; pray forgive me.
Fair. Forgive thee! Lord help thee, my Fair. No! why then go up to my lord, let child, I am not angry with thee; but quiet him know you have a mind to make a match thyself, Patty, and thou'lt see all this will with my daughter, hear what he has to say turn out for the best. to it, and afterwards we will try if we can't Pat. What will become of me?-My lord settle matters.
Giles. Go up to my lord? Icod, if that be all, I'll do it with the biggest pleasure in life. -But where's miss Pat? Might not one ax her how she do?
Fair. Never spare it; she's within there. Giles. I sees her-old rabbit it, this hatch is locked now-miss Pat-miss Patty--she makes believe not to hear me.
Fair. Well, well, never mind, thou'lt come and eat a morsel of dinner with us. Giles. Nay, but just to have a bit of with her at present-miss Pat, I say you open the door?
Hark! 'tis I, your own true lover;
will certainly imagine this is done with my consent-Well, is he not himself going to be married to a lady, suitable to him in rank, suitable to him in fortune, as this farmer is to me; and under what pretence can I refuse the husband my father has found for me? Shall I say that I have dared to raise my inclinations above my condition, and presumed to love where my duty taught me only gratitude and respect? Alas! who could live in the house with lord Aimworth, see him, converse with him, and not love him! I have this consolation, however, my folly is yet undiscover'd to any; else, how should I be ridiculed and despised! nay, would not my lord himself despise me, especially if he knew that I have more than once construed his natural affability and politeness into sentiments as unworthy of him, as mine are bold and extravagant. Unexampled vanity.
SCENE II.-A Chamber in LORD AIMWORTH'S
Enter SIR HARRY SYCAMORE and THEODOSIA.
Theo. Her fondness indeed is very exiraordinary.
Sir H. Besides, could you give up the prospect of being a countess, and mistress of this fine place?
Theo. Yes, truly, could I.
With the man that I love, was I destin'd to
On a mountain, a moor, in a cot, in a cell;
Enter LADY SYCAMORE.
Lady S. Sir Harry, where are you?
Theo. Pardon me, papa, it is not I am unreasonable, but you; when I gave way to my Insensible creatures! 'tis all they can taste. inclinations for Mr. Mervin, he did not seem less agreeable to you and my he was acceptable to me. It is therefore you have been unreasonable, in first encouraging Mr. Mervin's addresses, and afterwards for- Lady S. 1 am just come from looking over bidding him your house; in order to bring his lordship's family trinkets.-Well, miss Syme down here, to force me on a gentleman-camore, you are a happy creature, to have Sir H. Force you, Dossy 1), what do you diamonds, equipage, title, and all the blessings mean? By the la, I would not force you on of life poured thus upon you at once. the czar of Muscovy. Theo. Blessings, madam! Do you think Theo. And yet, papa, what else can I call then I am such a wretch as to place my it? for though lord Aimworth is extremely at-licity in the possession of any such trumpery? tentive and obliging, I assure you he is by Lady S. Upon my word, miss, you have no means one of the most ardent of lovers. a very disdainful manner of expressing yourSir H. Ardent, ah! there it is; you girls self; I believe there are very few young wonever think there is any love, without kissing men of fashion, who would think any sacriand hugging; but you should consider, child, fice they could make too much for them.my lord Aimworth is a polite man, and has Did you ever hear the like of her, sir Harry? been abroad in France and Italy, where these Sir H. Why, my dear, I have just been things are not the fashion: I remember when talking to her in the same strain, but whaton my travels, among the madames ever she has got in her headand signoras, we never saluted more than the tip of the ear.
Theo. Really, papa, you have a very strange opinion of my delicacy.
Sir H. Well come, my poor Dossy, you are chagrin'd, but you know it is not my fault; on the contrary, I assure you, I had always a great regard for young Mervin, and should have been very glad
Lady S. Oh, it is Mr. Mervin, her gentleman of Bucklersbury.-Fie, miss, marry a cit! Were is your pride, your vanity; have you nothing of the person of distinction about you?
Sir H. Well but, my lady, you know I am a piece of a cit myself, as I may say, for my great-grandfather was a dry-salter.
Theo. And yet, madam, you condescended
to marry my papa.
Theo. How then, papa, could you join in Lady S. Well, if I did, miss, I bad but five forcing me to write him that strange letter, thousand pounds to my portion, and sir Harry never to see me more? or how indeed could knows I was past eight-and-thirty before 1 I comply with your commands? what must would listen to him. he think of me?
Sir H. Nay, Dossy, that's true, your mamSir H. Ay, but hold, Dossy, your mamma ma own'd eight-and-thirty before we were convinced me that he was not so proper a married: but by the la, my dear, you were son-in-law for us as lord Aimworth. a lovely angel; and by candle-light nobody Theo. Convinced you! Ah, my dear papa, would have taken you for above five-andyou were not convinced. twenty.
Sir H. What, don't I know when I am convinced?
Lady S. Sir Harry, you remember the last time I was at my lord duke's.
Sir H. Yes, my love, it was the very day your little bitch Minxey pupt.
Theo. Why no, papa; because your good. nature and easiness of temper is such, that you pay more respect to the judgment of Lady S. And pray what did the whole fa mamma, and less to your own, than you mily say? my lord John, and my lord To ought to do. mas, and my lady duchess in particular? Cousin, says her grace to me-for she always called me cousin
Sir H. Well, but Dossy, don't you see how your mamma loves me? If the tip of my little finger does but ache, she's like a bewitched Theo. Well but, madam, to cut this matter woman; and if I was to die, I don't believe short at once, my father has a great regard she would outlive the burying of me: nay, for Mr. Mervin, and would consent to our she has told me as much herself.
1) Dossy is an abbreviation of Theodosia.
union with all his heart.
Sir H. Who I, love!
Lady S. Then all my care and prudence
are come to nothing.
Lord A. Upon my word, farmer, you have made an excellent choice-It is a god-daughter of my mother's, madam, who was bred up
Sir H. Well, but stay, my lady-Dossy, under her care, and I protest I do not know you are always making mischief.
Theo. Ah! my dear sweet
Lady S. Do, miss, that's right, coaxTheo. No, madam, I am not capable of any such meanness.
Lady S. 'Tis very civil of you to contradict me however.
Sir H. Eh! what's that-hand's off, Dossy, don't come near me.
Enter LORD AIMWORTH and GILES. Lord A. Come, farmer, you may come in, there are none here but friends. — Sir Harry, your servant,
a more amiable young woman.-But are you sure, farmer, that Patty herself is inclinable to this match?
Giles. O yes, my lord, I am sartain of that. Lord A. Perhaps then she desired you to come and ask my consent?
Giles. Why as far as this here, my lord; to be sure, the miller did not care to publish the bans, without making your lordship acquainted-But I hope your honour's not angry with I.
Lord A. Angry, farmer! why should you think so?-what interest have I in it to be angry?
Sir H. And so, honest farmer, you are going to be married to little Patty Fairfield? She's an old acquaintance of mine: how long have you and she been sweethearts?
Giles. Not a long while, an please your worship.
Sir H. Well, her father's a good warm fellow; I suppose you take care that she brings something to make the pot boil?
Lady S What does that concern you, sir Harry? How often must I tell you of meddling in other people's affairs?
Sir H. My lord, a penny for your thoughts 1). Lord A. I beg your pardon, sir Harry; Sir H. My lord, I kiss your lordship's hands upon my word, I did not think where I was. -I hope he did not overhear us squabbling. Giles. Well then, your honour, I'll make [Aside. bold to be taking my leave; I may say you Lord A. Well now, master Giles, what is gave consent for miss Patty and I to go on. it you have got to say to me? If I can do Lord A. Undoubtedly, farmer, if she apyou any service, this company will give you proves of it: but are you not afraid that her Leave to speak. education has rendered her a little unsuitable for a wife for you?
Giles. I thank your lordship; I has not got a great deal to say; I do come to your lordship about a little business, if you'll please to give me the hearing.
Lord A. Certainly, only let me know what
Giles. Why, an please you, my lord, being left alone, as I may say, feyther dead, and all the business upon my own hands, I do think of settling and taking a wife, and am come to ax your honour's consent.
Lord A. My consent, farmer! if that be necessary, you have it with all my heart-I hope you have taken care to make a prudent choice. Giles. Why I do hope so, my lord.
Lord A. Well, and who is the happy fair one? Does she live in my house?
Giles. No, my lord, she does not live in your house, but she's a parson of your acquaintance.
Lord A. Of my acquaintance!
Giles. No offence, 1 hope, your honour. Lord A. None in the least: but how is she an acquaintance of mine?
Lady S. Oh, my lord, if the girl's handySir H. Oh, ay-when a girl's handyGiles. Handy! Why, saving respect, there's nothing comes amiss to her; she's cute at every varsal kind of thing.
Odd's my life, search England over,
Giles. Your lordship do know miller Fair-er.
Lord A. Well
Giles. And Patty Fairfield, his daughter, my lord?
Lord A. Ay, is it her you think of marrying? Giles. Why if so be as your lordship has no objection; to be sure we will do nothing without your consent and approbation.
1) A young lady being once melancholy and thoughtful in the presence of a gentleman for whom she had a sort of a tendre, which was returned on his part also, though neither party knew the sentiments of the other, was thus accosted by the gentleman; "A penny for your thoughts." (I will give you a penny for your thoughts.) For the other odd (remaining) eleven pence you shall have thoughts and thinker," answered the lady; the gentleman produced a shilling, and the lady consented to marry him.This is now often used, but not necessarily implying this meaning.
Lord A. Nobody doubts, sir Harry, that have not something to spare for poor Fanny you are very clear-sighted.
Sir H. Yes, yes, let me alone, I know what's Ralph. I tell you, Fan, the gentleman bas what; I was a young fellow once myself; no change about him; why the plague will and I should have been glad of a tenant to you be so troublesome?
take a pretty girl off my hands now and then, Fan. Lord, what is it to you, if his booas well as another. our has a mind to give me a trifle? Do pray, gentleman, put your hand in your pocket.
Lord A. I protest, my dear friend, I don't understand you.
Lady S. Nor nobody else-Sir Harry, you Mer. I am almost distracted! Ungrateful are going at some beastliness now. Theodosia, to change so suddenly, and write Sir H. Who I, my lady? Not I, as I hope me such a letter! However, I am resolved to live and breathe; 'tis nothing to us you to have my dismission face to face; this letknow, what my lord does before he's married: ter may be forced from her by her mother, when I was a bachelor, I was a devil among who I know was never cordially my friend: the wenches myself; and yet I vow to George, I could not get a sight of her in London, but my lord, since I knew my lady Sycamore, here they will be less on their guard; and and we shall be man and wife eighteen years, see her I will, by one means or other, if we live till next Candlemas-day, I never Fan. Then your honour will not extend had to doyour charity?
Lady S. Sir Harry, come out of the room, I desire.
Sir H. Why, what's the matter, my lady, I did not say any harm?
Lady S. I see what you are driving at, you want to make me faint.
Sir H. I want to make you faint, my lady? Lady S. Yes, you do-and if you don't come out this instant I shall fall down in the chamber-I beg, my lord, you won't speak to him. Will you come out, sir Harry? Sir H. Nay but, my lady!
Lady S. No. I will have you out.
[Exeunt Sir Harry and Lady Sycamore. Lord A. This worthy baronet and his lady are certainly a very whimsical couple; how
I am young, and I am friendless,
[Mervin gives her Money.
May you, possessing every blessing,
[Exit. Ralph. Now I'll go and take that money ever, their daughter is perfectly amiable in from her; and I have a good mind to lick every respect and yet I am sorry I have her, so I have.
brought her down here; for can I in honour Mer. Pho, pr'ythee stay where you are. marry her, while my affections are engaged Ralph. Nay, but I hate to see a toad so to another? To what does the pride of con- devilish greedy. dition and the censure of the world force me! Mer. Well, come, she has not got a great Must I then renounce the only person that deal, and I have thought how she may do me can make me happy; because, because what? a favour in her turn. because she's a miller's daughter? Vain pride and unjust censure! Has she not all the graces that education can give her, sex, improved by a genius seldom found among the highest? Has she not modesty, sweetness of temper, the devil. and beauty of person, capable of adorning a Mer. Oh, she is-I fancy I understand you. rank the most exalted? But it is too late to Well, in that case, friend Ralph-Your nathink of these things now; my hand is pro-me's Ralph, I think?
Ralph. Ay, but you may put that out of your head, for I can tell you she won't Mer. How so?
Ralph. How so, why she's as cunning as
mised, my honour engaged: and if it was not Ralph. Yes, sir, at your service, for want so, she has engaged herself; the farmer is a of a better. person to her mind, and I have authorized their union by my approbation.
Mer. I say then, friend Ralph, in that case, we will remit the favour you think of, till the lady is in a more complying humour, and try if she cannot serve me at present in some other capacity-There are a good many gipsies hereabout, are there not?
Ralph. Softly-I have a whole gang of them here in our barn; I have kept them about the place these three months, and all on account of she.
but for your life don't say a word of it to any Christian-I am in love with her.
Ralph. Feyther is as mad with me about it as old Scratch; and I gets the plague and all of anger; but I don't mind that.
Mer. Well, friend Ralph, if you are in Fan. love, no doubt you have some influence over your mistress; don't you think you could prevail upon her, and her companions, Fan. supply me with one of their habits, and let me go up with them to-day to my lord Giles. Aimworth's?
Ralph. Why, do you want to go a mum-Ralph. ming? We never do that here but in the Christmas holidays.
Mer. No matter; manage this for me, and manage it with secrecy, and I promise you Pat. shall not go unrewarded.
Ralph. Oh, as for that, sir, I don't look for any thing: I can easily get you a bundle of their rags; but I don't know whether you'll Fan. prevail on them to go up to my lord's, because they are afraid of a big dog that's in Ralph. the yard; but I'll tell you what I can do; Fan. can go up before you and have the dog fast- Giles. ened, for I know his kennel. [Exit. Pat. Mer. That will do very well-By means of All. this disguise I shall probably get a sight of her; and I leave the rest to love and fortune.
Why quits the merchant, blest with ease,
Midst freezing cold, or scorching heat?
Enter PATTY, RALPH, GILES, and FANNY.
This is a thing the most oddest,
Why now that's right;
My heart it surprises,
I can't keep it down, though I'd never
What torments exceeding, what joys
The pains and the pleasures that wait
SCENE I-A marble Portico, ornamented
Enter LORD AIMWORTH, reading,
Lord A. In how contemptible a light would the situation I am now in show me to most of the fine men of the present age? In love with a country girl; rivalled by a poor fellow, one of my meanest tenants, and uneasy at it! Giles. So his lordship was as willing as If I had a mind to her, I know they would the flowers in May-and as I was coming tell me I ought to have taken care to make along, who should I meet but your father-myself easy long ago, when I had her in my and he bid me run in all haste and tell you power. But I have the testimony of my own for we were sure you would be deadly heart in my favour; and I think, was it to do glad.
Pat. I know not what business you had to go to my lord's at all, farmer.
Giles. Nay, I only did as I was desiredMaster Fairfield bid me tell you moreover, as how he would have you go up to my lord, out of hand, and thank him.
Ralph. So she ought; and take off those clothes, and put on what's more becoming her station: you know my father spoke to you of that this morning too.
Pat. Brother, I shall obey my father. QUARTETTO.-PATTY, GILES, RALPH, and
Lie still, my heart; oh! fatal stroke, That kills at once my hopes and me. Giles. Miss Pat!
again, I should act as I have done. Let's see what we have here. Perhaps a book may compose my thoughts. [Reads, and throws the Book away] It's to no purpose; I can't read, I can't think, I can't do any thing.
Ah! how vainly mortals treasure
Ways to ruin,
Pat. Now comes the trial: no, my sentence is already pronounced, and I will meet my fate with prudence and resolution,
Lord A. Who's there?
Pat. My lord!
Lord A. Patty Fairfield!
Pat. I humbly beg pardon, my lord, for 1) The mummers are generally a number of young men who go about in the country towns, dressed up with pressing so abruptly into your presence: but fine gold and silver paper sewed to their cloaths. I was told I might walk this way; and I am at Christmas time, to get something for repeating an old come by my father's commands to thank your mystery in rhyme, something about St. George and lordship for all your favours. the Dragon,-1 remember a couple of lines thus: "I am the bold St. George, the knight, Go forth with sword and shield to fight."
Lord A. Favours, Patty; what favours? I have done you none: but why this metamor