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Dame. Alas, brother, what would you have me to do? I cannot help it. You see my brother brings them in here: they are his friends.
Down. His friends! his fiends! 'Slud, they do nothing but haunt him up and down, like a sort of unlucky spirits, and tempt him to all manner of villainy that can be thought of. Well, by this light, a little thing would make me play the devil with some of them! and 't were not more for your husband's sake, than any thing else, I'd make the house too hot for the best on 'em. They should say, and swear, hell were broken loose, ere they went hence. But, by God's will, 'tis nobody's fault but yours; for an' you had done as you might have done, they should have been parboiled, and baked too, every mother's son, ere they should ha' come in, e'er a one of 'em.
Dame. God's my life! did you ever hear the like? What a strange man is this ! Could I keep out all them, think you? I should put myself against half a dozen men, should I ? Good faith, you'd mad the patient'st body in the world, to hear you talk so without any sense or reason!
Enter Mrs. BRIDGET, MR. MATTHEW, WELLBRED, STEPHEN, YOUNG KNO'WELL, BOBADIL, and CASH.
Bridg. Servant, in troth, you are too prodigal Of your wit's treasure, thus to pour it forth Upon so mean a subject as my worth. Mat. You say well, mistress, and I mean as well. Down. Heyday, here is stuff!
Well. O, now.stand close. Pray Heaven she can get him to read: he should do it of his own natural impudence.
Bridg. Servant, what is this same, I pray you ?
Mat. Marry, an elegy! an elegy! an odd toy-I'll read it if you please.
Bridg. Pray you do, servant.
Down. O, here's no fuppery! Death, I can endure the stocks better.
Y. Kno. What ails thy brother? Can he not bear the reading of a ballad ?
Well. O no, a rhyme to him is worse than cheese, or a bagpipe.-But, mark, you lose the protestation.
Bridg. Come, servant, I pray read it.
Bob. Master Matthew, you abuse the expectation of your dear mistress, and her fair sister. Fic, while you live, avoid this prolixity. Mat. I shall, sir.
Rare creature, let me speak without offence,
Y. Kno. 'Slight, he shakes his head like a bottle, to feel an' there be any brain in it!
Well. Sister, what ha' you here? Verses ? Pray you let's see. Who made these verses? they are excellent good.
Mat. 0, Master Wellbred, 'tis your disposition to say so, sir: they were good i’the morning; I made them extempore this morning.
Well. How, extempore !
Mat. I would I might be hang’d else; ask Captain Bobadil. He saw me write them at them (pox on it) the Star yonder.
Step. Cousin, how do you like this gentleman's verses?
Y. Kno. O, admirable ! the best that ever I heard,
Step. Body o'Cæsar! they are admirable ! The best that ever I heard, as I am a soldier.
Down. I am vexed; I can hold ne'er a bone of me still !—’Heart! I think they mean to build and breed here.
Well. Sister Kitely, I marvel you get you not a servant that can rhyme, and do tricks too.
Down. O, monster! Impudence itself! Tricks ! Come, you might practise your ruffian tricks somewhere else, and not here. This is no tavern, nor drinking school, to vent your exploits in.
Well. How now! whose cow has calved?
Down. Marry, that has mine, sir, Nay, boy, never look askance at me for the matter; I'll tell you of it; ay, sir, you and your companions; mend yourselves, when I ha' done?
Well. My companions !
Down. Yes, sir, your companions, so I say; I am not afraid of you nor them neither, your hang-bys here. You must have your poets, and your potlings, your soldados and foolados; to follow you up and down the city.—Sirrah, you ballad singer; and, slops, your fellow there, get you out; get you home; or, by this steel, I'll cut off your ears, and that presently.
Well. 'Slight, stay, and let's see what he dare do. Cut off his ears! cut a whetstone! You are an ass, do you see; touch any man here, and by this hand, I'll run my rapier to the hilts in
you. Down. Yea, that would I fain see, boy.
[They all draw, and they of the House make out to Dame. Oh, Jesu! Murder ! Thomas ! Gasper! Bridg. Help, help, Thomas.
Bob. Sirrah! You Holofernes ! by my hand, I will pink your flesh full of holes with my rapier, for this : I will, by this good Heav'n. Nay, let him come, gentlemen, by the body of St. George, I'll not kill him.
[They offer to fight again, and are parted,
Cash. Hold, hold, good gentlemen.
the stir here?
Cash. Here, sir.
Well. Come, let's go'; this is one of my brother's a cient humours, this.
[Exit. Step. I am glad nobody was hurt by his ancient humour,
[Erit. Kite. Why, how now, brother, who enforced this brawl?
.. Down. A sort of lewd rake-hells, that care neither for God nor the devil. And they must come here to read ballads, and roguery, and trash! I'll mar the knot of 'em ere I sleep, perhaps; especially Bob there, he that's all manner of shapes; and songs and sonnets, his fellow. But I'll follow 'em.
[Exit. Bridg. Brother, indeed you are too violent, Too sudden in your humour. There was one a civil gentleman, And very worthily demean'd himself.
Kite. Oh, that was some love of yours, sister.
Bridg. A love of mine! I would it were no worse, brother! You'd pay my portion sooner than you think for.
[Exit. Dame. Indeed, he seemed to be a gentleman of exceeding fair disposition, and of very excellent good parts. What a coil and stir is here!
[Erit. Kite. Her love, by Heav'n! my wife's minion ! Death, these phrases are intolerable! Well, well, well, well, well, well! It is too plain, too clear. Thomas, come hither, What are they gone?
Cash. Ay, sir, they went in.
Kite. Are any of the gallants within?
Kite. What gentleman was it that they praised so,
Cash. One, they call him Master Kno'well, a handsome young gentleman, sir. Kite. Ay, I thought so. My mind gave me as
much. I'll die, but they have hid him in the house, Somewhere; I'll go and search. Go with me, Tho
Be true to me, and thou shalt find me a master.
Y. Kno. Well, Brainworm, perform this business happily, and thou makest a purchase of my love for
Well. I'faith, now let thy spirits use their best faculties; but, at my hand, remember the message to my brother : for there's no other means to start bim out of his house.
Brain. I warrant you, sir, fear nothing. I have a nimble soul, has waked all forces of my phantys by this time, and put them in trụe motion.