Mal. Yes, I intend to be there, if I do not go to court. Cap. I am glad of it with all my heart- -Saunter

There's my lady, to be sure she'll not fail. Saunt. But will you go, Malagene? Goodvile and you are at a distance.

Mal. Whoo! pox! that's nothing; I'll go for all that: but faith, I should meet my lord

at court to-night. Besides, I han't been in the drawingroom these three days; the company will wonder what's become of me.


She here! nay then-
Cap. Madam, your ladyship’s most humble servant.

[Congees affectedly. Lady Squ. Mr. Caper, your most devoted. -Oh dear Mr. Saunter! a thousand thanks to you for my song

Saunt. Your ladyship does your servant too much honour.

[Sings, As Chloe full of, &c. Lady Squ. Mr. Caper, you are a stranger indeed, I have not seen you these two days: Lord, where d'ye live?

Cap. I should have waited on your ladyship, but was so tired at the masquerade at my lord Flutter's t'other night.

Dances and capers. Saunt. Madam, madam, Mr. Goodvile gives a ball to-night; will your ladyship be there?

Lady Squ. Yes; I heard of it this morning; Victoria sent me word.

Cap. Oh, madam, d'ye hear the news? Goodvile makes a ball to-night: I hope I shall have the honour of your ladyship's company.

Lady Squ. Oh, by all means, Mr. Caper, pray don't you fail us.

Oh Lord, Mr. Malagene, I beg your pardon, upon my honour, I did not see you; I was so engaged in the civilities of these gentlemen.

C ?

Mal. Your wit and beauty, madam, must command the honour and admiration of all the world. But when did your ladyship see Mr. Valentine ?

Lady Squ. Oh, name him not. Mr. Malagene, he's the unworthiest, basest fellow- -besides, he has no principles, nor breeding: I wonder you gentlemen will keep him company; I swear he's enough to bring an odium on the whole sex.

Mal. The truth on't is, madam, I do drink with him now and then, because the fellow has some wit, but it is when better company is out of the way; and faith he's always very

civil to me as can be: I can rule him. Lady Squ. Oh Lord, 'tis impossible. Wit! why he was abroad but two years, and all that time too in an academy; he knows nothing of the intrigues of the French court, and has the worst mien in the world: he has a sort of an ill-natured way of talking indeed, and they say makes bold with me sometimes, but I'll assure you,

i scorn him. Mal. Truly he has made very

bold with is foully belied: ha, ha, ha.

[Aside. Lady Squ. They say he's grown a great admirer of madam Camilla of late, who passes for a wit forsooth. 'Tis true, she's well enough, but I suppose is not the first that has been troubled with his impertinent addresses.

Mal. Indeed he would not let me alone, till I brought him acquainted there: he owes that happiness to me. But methinks your ladyship speaks with something of beat- -by heaven she's jealous ! [Aside.

Lady Squ. No, I'll assure you, sir, I am not concerned at it in the least. But did you ever hear 'em discourse any thing of me?

Mal. Never any ill, madam; only a little idle raillery now and then ; but Truman and he are wont to be something lavish when they have been drunk in my company.

"Twill work. Lady Squ. Nay, I know he has spoken dishonourably of me behind my back, because he failed in his filthy designs. Madam Camilla may deserve better of him, I doubt

you, or he

not: but if I am not revenged on his falshood. Aside. Mr. Caper.

Cap. and Saunt. Madam.
Lady Squ. Where do you go to-day?
Cap. Will your ladyship be at the new play?
Lady Squ. No, I saw it the first day, and don't like it.
Mal. Madam, it has no ill character about the town.

Lady Squ. O Lord, sir, the town is no judge. 'Tis a tragedy, and I'll assure you there's nothing in it that's moving. I love a tragedy that moves, mightily.

Saunt. Does your ladyship know who writ it?

Lady Squ. Yes, the poet came and read it to me at my lodgings ; he is but a young man, and I suppose he has not been a writer long ; besides, he has had little or no conversation with the court, which has been the reason he has committed a great many indecorums in the conduct of it.

Saunt. I did not like it neither, for my part; there was never a song in it, ha!

Cap. No, nor so much as a dance.

Mal. Oh, 'tis impossible it should take, if there were neither song nor dance in it.

Lady Squ. And then their comedies now-a-days are the filthiest things, full of bawdy and nauseous doings, which they mistake for raillery and intrigue: besides, they have no wit in 'em neither; for all their gentlemen and men of wit, as they style 'em, are either silly, conceited, impudent coxcombs, or else rude, ill-mannerly, drunken fellows--fough-I am ashamed any one should pretend to write a comedy, that does not know the nicer rules of the court, and all the intrigues and gallantries that pass, I vow.

Mal. Who would improve in those things, must consult with your ladyship.

Lady Squ. I swear, Mr. Malagene, you are an obliging person; I wonder the world should be so malicious to give you so undeserving a character as they do: I always found you extremely generous, and a person of worth,

Mal. In troth, madam, your ladyship and myself are the subjects of abundance of envy; for I love to be malicious now and then; and faith, am the very scourge of the court: they all stand in awe of me, for I must speak what I know, though sometimes I am used a little scurvily for it; but faith I can't help it, 'tis my way.

Lady Squ. Ha, ha, ha, really I love scandal extremely too sometimes, so it be decently managed.- -But as I was saying, there is not a person in the world understands the intrigues of the court better than myself; I am the general confident of the drawing-room, and know the loves of all the people of quality in town.

Cap. Dear madam, how stands the affair between my lord Supple and madam Lofty ?

Lady Squ. Worse than ever; 'tis very provoking to see how she uses the poor creature: bụt the truth is, she can never be at rest for him; he's more troublesome than an old husband; continually whispering his softness and making his vows, till at last she is forced to fly to me for shelter, and then we do so laugh-which the goodnatured creature takes so patiently--I swear, I pity him.

Saunt. But my lady Colt, they say, is kinder to the sparkish Mr. Pruneit.

Lady Squ. O Lord, Mr. Saunter, that you should understand no better; to my knowledge it is all false ; I know all that intrigue from the beginning to the ending; it has been off this month—besides, he keeps a player again---Oh, Mr. Saunter! whatever you do, never concern yourself with those players.

Saunt. Madam, I have left the folly long since; when first I came to town, I must confess I had a gallantry there. But since I have been acquainted with your ladyship’s wit and beauty, I have learned to lay out my heart to better advantage

-I think that was finely said.

Lady Squ. I'll swear, Mr. Saunter, you have the most court-like way of expressing yourself

Saunt. Oh Lord, madam! [Bows and cringes. Lady Squ. Mr. Malagene, these are both my intimate acquaintance, and I'll swear I am proud of 'em. Here is Mr. Saunter sings the French manner better than ever I heard any English gentleman in my life. Besides, he pronounces his English, in singing, with a French kind of a tone or accent, that gives it a strange beauty, Sweet sir, do me the favour of the last new song.

Saunt. Let me die! Your ladyship obliges me beyond expression -Malagene, thou shalt hear me.

(Sings a Song in a French tone. Mal. What a devil was this? I understand not a word on't.

Saunt. Ha, Malagene, ha.
Lady Squ. Did you ever hear any thing so fine?

Mal. Never, madam, never: I swear your ladyship is a great judge.

Lady Squ. But how plain and distinctly too every word was pronounced ! Mal. Oh, to admiration, to admiration.

[Makes mouths aside. Lady Squ. Well, Mr. Saunter, you are a cliarming creature -- sad, Mr. Caper, I long till night comes: I'll dance with nobody but you to-night, for, I swear, I believe I shall be out of humour.

Mal. That's more than she ever was in her life, so long as she had a fool or a fiddle in her company.

Lady Squ. Tho' really I love dancing immoderately -But now you talk of intrigues, I am mistaken if you don't see something where we are going to-night.

Mal. What, Goodvile is to commence cuckold, is it not so ?

Lady Squ. Oh, fy, Mr. Malagene, fy! I vow you'll make me hate



talk so strangely, -but let me die, I can't but laugh-ha, ha, ha-Well, gentlemen, you shall dine with me to-day-what say you, Mr. Malagene, will you go?

Mal. Your ladyship may be sure of me; I hate to break good company. Lady Squ. And pray now let us be very severe,

and talk maliciously of all the town. Mr. Caper, your

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