The Spanish wives a farce, as it was acted by His Majesty's servants at the theatre in Dorset-Garden.
Pix, Mary, 1666-1720., Brémond, Gabriel de. Pelerin.

SCENE, a Palace.

Enter Count Camillus, and Friar Andrew.
Friar.

Well, my Lord! now we are come to Barcellona, I fear this Devil of a Marquess will be too hard for us.

Camil.

How, Father Andrew, desponding! — 'Twas but this Morning, over your Malaga, you swore by the Eleven Thousand Virgins, and all your Catalogue of Saints, you'd bring my Elenora to my Arms.

Friar.

And by Fifty Thousand more, so I will, if it be pos∣sible: If not, my Oath is void: You know the Marquess hates me heartily, as I do him, because once he caught me carrying your Letter to his Wife.

Page  5
Cam.

For the good Office, I think, us'd ye most scur∣vily.

Friar.

Scurvily! basely, barbarously; without respect to these sacred Robes; toss'd me in a Blanket; cover'd me with Filth and Dust; and so sent me by force to our Covent. For which, and my natural Inclination to Cuckoldom, I have joyn'd in your Attempts, and waited on you to Barcellona, to be reveng'd.

Cam.
You know there's Justice in my Cause. —
Elenora was, by Contract, mine, at Rome;
Before this old Marquess had her. And cou'd I agen
Recover her: I don't question but to get Leave of his Holiness
For a Divorce, and marry her my self.
Friar.

Nay, that's as you please; when she's in your pos∣session, marry, or not, 'tis all one to Father Andrew; it never shall trouble my Conscience. I must own, were I in your Condition, I should not marry; because daily Experience shows, a Wife's a Cloy, and a Mistress a Pleasure.

Cam.

Well, we'll discourse that when we have the Lady; and in the mean time, good Father, be diligent.

Friar.

I think I am diligent; I am sure, I am worn to meer Skin and Bone in your service. This morning I found for ye a Mercury, a Letter-Carrier, that can slip thro' a Key∣hole, to deliver a Billetdoux to a fair Lady,

Cam.

I wish he were return'd; I far some Misfortune has befallen him.

Friar.
O! here he comes, sound Wind and Limb!
[Enter Hidewell (the Country Fellow before.]
— So, my dear Tool of Gallantry! how hast thou sped?
Hidewell.

Gad, the hardest Task I ever undertook.— Sir, you gave me five Ducats, —as I hope for Preferment, and to be made Pimp-master general, it deserves double th Sum.

Page  6
Cam.

Nor shalt thou fall of it, Boy, if thou hast suc∣ceeded.

Hidew.

First then, the damn'd old jealous Marquess caught me, and notwithstanding my counterfeit Speech and Simplicity, had me amongst his Varlets, to be search'd. They knew his Custom, and no sooner enter'd, but they flew upon me like so many Furies: I fear'd it had been to tear me Limb from Limb; but it prov'd only to tear my Clothes off; which was done in a twinkling, and I left as naked as my Mother bore me; whilst the old Marques, grovel'd all over my habi∣liments, and run Pins in 'em, so thick, that a poor Louse wou'd not have 'scap'd spitting. The only thing which pleas'd me, was to observe a Peep-hole the Maids (knowing this to be their Master's Searching-room) had made; and sometimes one Eye, sometimes another, viewing my Proportions.

Cam.
But had you any Letter? was that safe?
Satisfie me there.
Hidew.
Pray let me take my own method.—
Nothing being found, they gave me again my Clothes,
And the Marquess a Ducat for my Trouble:
Yet I had a Letter —
Cam.
Which thou ingeniously swallow'dst.
Hidew.
No; which I more ingeniously brought.
Cam.
What, in thy Hat?
Hidew.
My Hat had the same severe Tryal.
Cam.
Thy Shoes —
Hidew.
They pass'd the same Scrutiny,— impossible in any of them to hide a Scrip, the least shread of Paper.
Cam.
How then?
Hidew.
My Lord, do ye observe this Stick?
Cam.
(viewing it)
Yes, 'tis an honest Crabtree-stick —
I see no more in it.
Friar.
(taking the Stick, and putting on his Spectacles to view it)
Come, come, let me see it; I can smell ou a Note that comes from a fair Hand; — By St. Dominick, here's neither Paper nor Writing upon it.
Page  7
Hidew.
Give it me.
(He unskrews the Ferrule at the bottom, takes out the Letter, and gives it to Camillus.)
Friar.
Thou dear Abstract of Invention, let me kiss thee.
Cm.
Excellent Hdewell! if thou wilt stay with me, whilst
I am in Barcellona, I'll satisfie thy utmost Wishes.
Hidew.
Most willingly.
Cam.
Here Father, here dear Confident! Orada writes
That the tormented Marquess has remo'd her
From those Apartments that were next the Streets,
To some that overlook the Gardens, — thither,
She says, my Elenora would have me come this night;
And if they can find a place to 'scape at,
Before the Lodgings are better secur'd, they will:
If not, we shall hear of them, — a gentle Whistle
Is the Sign.— Hidewell, you shan't appear in this,
Because if seen, you'd be known agen.
Friar.
Pray let me go: Gad, if the Business should be done
Without my Help, I shou'd take it very ill.
Cam.
Well, well, we'l in, and consider on't.
Exeunt.
Scene draws, and discovers the Governor, his Lady, Collonel Pere∣grine, several Gentlemen and Ladies.
A SONG.
I.
ALas! when Charming Sylvia's gone,
I sigh, and think my self undone:
But when the lovely Nymph is here,
I'm pleas'd, yet grieve and hope, yet fear
Thoughtless of all but her I rove;
Ah! tell me, is not this to love?
Page  8II.
Ah me! what Power can move me so?
I dye with Grief when she must go;
But I revive at her return;
I smile, I freeze, I pant, I burn:
Transports so sweet, so strong, so new,
Say, Can they be to Friendship due?
III.
Ah! no, 'tis Love, 'tis now too plain,
I feel, I feel the pleasing Pain:
For, who e'er saw bright Sylvia's Eyes,
But wish'd, and long'd, and was her Prize?
Gods if the Truest must be blest,
Oh! let her be by me possest.
Collonel Peregrine and the Governor's Lady dance; all the Time the Governor cries,
Ha boy, Tittup!
Well done, Tittup!
Ha boy, Tittup!
Gov.
The Dance done, he goes to her, — You are hot, you are hot Child.
Lady.
A little warm.
Gov.
Well, Tittup, do but carry thy Body swimmingly,
Without tripping, and we'l begin a Reformation
In Barcellona, shall thou go thro' Spain,
The Ladies shall live like Cherubims, —
But have a care, Tittup, have a care of a faux pas.
Lady.
Fear not, Deary.
Gov.
Come, now let's sit down, and see the rest perform—
Let me have some lively Songs —
Collonel Peregrine goes to sit next the Governor's Lady.
—Hold, Friend, hold! I have not learnt so much
Of your English Fashion yet, to let another man
Sit by my Wife, and I decently keep at a distance.
Coll.
I beg your Pardon, Sir.
Page  9
Gov.
Nay, — no harm; —
(Sings)
If an old man has a beauteous Treasure,
Let her sing, and dance, and laugh without measure,
And then she'l think of no other Pleasure.
Col.
Your own, Sir?
Gov.
Ay, ay Boy; I have a Thousand of 'em
In a day, ex tempore.
Col.
Is't possible?
Gov.
Come, now I ha' done, do you strike up. —
(Songs and Dances.)
The Musick ended, enter a Servant.
Serv.
My Lord, there is to wait on your Honour,—
His Excellency the Duke Gonsalvo de Medina, de Sidoni, de
Gov.
Hold, hold, enough, enough, —Where is he?
Serv.
In the Hall of Ceremonies.
Gov.
Gadso! I must go to him, sit you merry,
I'll be with you presently.
Exeunt all but Collonel Peregrine, the Lady, and Spywell.
Lady.
Spywell, stand at yonder Door, and give me informati∣on, as soon as ever my Lord comes up the great Stairs.
Spywell.
I will, Madam.
Col.
My Angel! by Heaven I am raging mad;
Burnt up with violent Love. — Thy Shape —
Thy every Motion fires me, — but thy Eyes —
They set me in a Blaze — Oh! I must dye,
Unless the Cordial of returning Kindness save me!
Lady.
Can you be so Ungenerous to wrong this noble Gover∣nor, who is so fond of you, and even dotes on me?
Col.
He wrong'd thee more, when he condemn'd thy lovely
Youth to wither'd Sapless Arms. — Can little foolish Tricks
Of fondness make amends for Extasies, Pantings,
The Joys unutterable of vigorous Love?
Lady.
I must not hear ye.
Col.
You must, you must — I'll, kneeling, fix Ten thousand
Burning Kisses on thy Beauteous Hand;
And the little wanton God swims and revels in thy spritely Eys.
Page  13
Lady.
Why am I fasten'd here! — too Rigorous Heaven!
Take from this wondrous Stranger his Conquering Charms,
Or give me more Insensibility!
Enter Spywell.
Spyw.
Madam, my Lord's upon the Stairs.
Lady.
Away, away; mark what I say, and keep up the Discourse.
Coll.
This is but living upon the Rack;
You might contrive a better Opportunity.
Lady.
Peace, and observe. — But are your Ladies then so free
And yet so innocent in England? —
Gov.
(peeping)
—Gadso, — they are together; tho' I am not jealous, 'tis convenient to hear a little what their Con∣versation is.
Coll.

— Chaster in their Thoughts than your Nuns, yet merrier: more frollicksome than your Carnavals.

Lady.
Very pleasant! just so I wou'd live, — yet
If a bold encourag'd Wretch once offer'd at my Honour,
I wou'd not stay to use my Husband's Sword, — but
With my own Hands stab the vile Presumer.
Coll.
You need not, Madam, talk of Weapons; your Eyes,
Tho' they roul in Fire, yet shoot chaste Beams,
And show your Heart as cold as Ice.
Gov.
So, so; very, very well, by th' Mass!
How is't my Ganymede o' the War, who look'st
Fitter to storm Hearts than Towns.—Yet, igad, you English Boys
Fear not their pretty Faces, but Fight like rugged Romans,
Or the old rough Gauls.
Coll.
You compliment us, my Lord.
Gov.
No faith, I hate 'em. — Well, Tittup, are ye almost ready for your Dinner?
Lady.
When you please, Deary.
Gov.
I warrant the Marquess wou'd not let his Wife dine with us for the King of Spain's next Plate-Fleet.
Page  11
Lady.
He has let me see her but once; — when I offer'd it again, he plainly told me, my Company was unfit for her: — rude Brute!
Coll.
To us who have been bred otherwise it seems a Miracle,
That men can be so barbarous to the Fair Sex.
Gov.
But I'll set 'em an Example, if Tittup holds her Ground.
— Come along —
(Sings.)
Merrily, merrily let's pass our Time,
In Freedom, Ioy and Plenty:
At Sixty appear but in our Prime,
Whilst the Thinking Sot is old at Twenty.
Exeunt.