The guardian, a comedie acted before Prince Charls, His Highness at Trinity-Colledg in Cambridge, upon the twelfth of March, 1641
Cowley, Abraham, 1618-1667.

Act. 3. Scaen. 7.

Blade, Widow, Truman pater, Dogrel, Truman filius, Lucia.

Welcome, kinde Neece; you see I live still: there were Antidotes as well as Poisons.


He has been a loving Uncle to you, Mistress Lucia: he might have deserv'd better at your hands: you might had Master Truman, I warrant you, had you but held up your finger to him: he would not ha' seen you perish, Mistris Luia; I may say I know him so far. Speak, Mistris Lucia, speak for your self, good chuck; your Uncle will forgive you: we'll all speak for you: He shall forgive you, that he shall: he knows we have all our faults.


I understand the language of her si∣lence; it's strong and good. You bound your son, Sir, to an oath never to see nor hear her without your commission: 'tis that troubles her conscience; she has a tender one.

Tru p.

I bound 'um? Well, I absolve 'um then; what's that to you, Sir? I'll binde 'um again, if 't be my pleasure so: if not, a fig for you; that's all I care. I love to speak my minde; you must pardon me, I ha' spoke to as good as you i my days.


D'ye speak thus always? I'll ha' you in a Play if you do.

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Tru. p.

I'm glad you are so religious, Sir; did I bind you too to silence? Go too, Sir; I told you what your may bees would bring you to, you'll always be wiser then your father: Nay, you may speak, and your Mi∣nion too, if she pleases.

Lucia, pulls off her vail.

Does any man here accuse me of any thing?


We, and your conscience do.

My Conscience? 'tis as pure as Sythian Christal,
From any spot; I can see through't at plea∣sure.
Whatever crime you mean, (for yet I know not)
Would it were written in my face.

Thou'dst be blacker then a Moor if 'twere. Did not you consent with that damn'd Physitian to give me poyson?

There was none given you, I call God to witness:
If such a thought had slipt into my dream,
The horror would have wak'd me, and I fear'd
Ever to sleep again. No; what we did, Sir,
Was but to fright you with a painted danger;
That the just terror of your own destruction
Might call to your remembrance my dead father:
For sure, Sir, you forgot him when you thought
To match his onely child with one of these
Fellowes that live extempore; whose fortunes
Are patch'd up like their wit by several pa∣tons.
Should I have married thus, (but I would sooner
Endure the shameful end which they de∣serve)
Your conscious Ghost would start to meet my fathers,
And look more pale then death it self hath made it.

Let her alone, she'll call names and fling stones about anon.


Alas poor soul! you may see she's not her own woman.

Tru. p.

What a poor excuse she made! a very idle simple excuse; have you never a better for us?

Tru f.

No, she says true.

Tru p.

You wo'nt bite off my nose? will ye, Sir? pray do not bite off my nose, I pray, Sir, do not?