The runaway, a comedy: as it is acted at the Theatre-Royal in Drury-Lane.
Cowley, Mrs. (Hannah), 1743-1809.
SCENE, Lady DINAH's Dressing-Room.
Lady Dinah dressing, Susan attending.
Lady Dinah.

Both in the garden—and in deep conversa|tion!

Susan.

It appear'd so, my Lady, as I saw them from the window—he looked eagerly in her face; and she blush'd, and seem'd confused.

Lady D.

Confused indeed!—yes, so the Impertinent af|fected to appear last night—tho' it was evident she had neither eyes nor thoughts but for Mr. Hargrave's Son—who paid her those attentions which, from the present habits of life, are paid to every Woman—tho', I think, Mr. George Hargrave should be superior to these modern gallantries.

Sus.

I dares to say she is some impostor—Husbands in good truth are not so plenty, that a woman need run away to escape one.

Lady D.

I have no doubt of her being a low person—and as to her prettiness, 'tis of the kind one sees in wooden Dolls—cherry-colour cheeks, and eyes, that from the total absence of expression might be taken for glass.

Sus.

I wonder Mr. Hargrave did not stand by his own opinion, and let her stay where she was; but whatever Mr. Drummond says is law here.

Lady D.

Because Mr. Hargrave imagines he'll make his Son his heir—but if he does, he'll only share with the paupers of the neighbouring villages; for these Mr. Drummond seems to consider his family; and I am mistaken, if he does n't find it a pretty expensive one.

Sus.

Oh, Ma'am, he believes every melancholy tale that's told him as a proof of his piety—Here's the Bow, my Lady—but as he fancies her prettyness was in danger, he had better have kept her in his own house, and stood guard himself.

Lady D.

Aye—that employment, or any other that would keep him at home, might be useful—Want of rest

[looking in the glass]
absolutely transforms me—the detestable Horns, and their noisy accompanyment, waked me from the most delight|ful dream—How do I look to-day, Susan?

Sus.

Oh, charmingly, my Lady.

Page  19
Lady D.

'Tis a most provoking circumstance, the colour of my hair should be so soon changed—but Mrs. Gibson's Liquid entirely hides that accident, I believe.

Sus.

Entirely, my Lady—and then, her Bloom, it is im|possible to distinguish from nature.

Lady D.

You need not speak so loud. In compliance with the custom of modern times, a woman is forced to keep the use of these sort of things as secretly as she would an Ille|gitimate Birth. It was not so among the Antients—The Roman Ladies made a point of excelling in Arts of this kind; and the Empress Poppea was not ashamed to carry in her train five hundred Asses, in whose milk she bathed every morning for the benefit of her complexion.

Sus.

Five hundred Asses in one Lady's train!—thank Heaven, we have no such engrossing now-a-days—our Toasts have all their full share.

Lady D.

Indeed! Mrs. Susan,

[half smiling]
this wench has ideas. Pray, what do you think of the young Collegian?

Sus.

Oh, my Lady, he is the sweetest, smartest Man—I think he is exactly like the picture of your Ladyship's Brother, that died when he was eighteen.

Lady D.

People used to say that Brother, and myself, bore a strong resemblance.

Sus.

I dare to say you did, my Lady; for there's something in the turn of young Mr. Hargrave's face, vastly like your Ladyship's.

[laughing behind her.]
Lady D.

Well, Susan—I believe I may trust you—I think you can be faithful.

Sus.

Most surely, my Lady—I would rather die than be|tray your Ladyship.

Lady D.

Well, then—I protest I hardly know how to ac|knowledge it—But—

Susan.

But what, my Lady?—your Ladyship alarms me.

Lady D.

I too am alarm'd—but I know your faith—

[sighs.]
There will soon be a most intimate and never to be dissolved connexion between me—and—young Mr. Har|grave.

Sus.

Young Mr. Hargrave, Madam!

Lady D.

Yes, Young Mr. Hargrave, Madam—What dost stretch thy eyes so widely at, wench?—Mr. George Hargrave, I say, is to be my Husband—I am to be his Wife—Is it past thy comprehension?

Page  20
Sus.

I most humbly beg your Ladyship's pardon—it was my surprise—the whole house concludes your Lady|ship is to marry Old Mr. Hargrave—but, to be sure, the Son is a much more suitable match for your Ladyship.

Lady D.

Old Mr. Hargrave, indeed!—the whole house is very impertinent in its conclusions—Go, and bring the Bergamot hither.

[Exit Sus.]
I marry Old Mr. Hargrave! monstrous absurdity! and by so preposterous an union to be|come the mother of that fine fellow, his Son!—'twould be insupportable—no, Mistress Susan, 'tis Young Mr. Har|grave I am to marry.
[Enter Susan with the Bergamot.]
—Here, scent that handkerchief, while I write to my agent to prepare matters for the writings.

[Exit. Susan alone, scent|ing the handkerchief.
Sus.

To prepare matters for the writings! a very fine business indeed; and what you'll sorely repent of, my good Lady, take my word for it—All those scented waters, nor any other waters, will be able to keep up your spirits this time twelvemonth—A "never to be dissolved connexion," between fifty and twenty-one, ha! ha! ha!—I shall burst with the ridiculous secret—I must find Jarvis, and give it vent—"never to be dissolved connexion!"—ha, ha, ha!

[Exit.