British Dramatists from Dryden to Sheridan

By George Henry Nettleton; Arthur Eillicot Case | Go to book overview
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POLLY. ----- My distresses are doubled.

LUCY. When you come to the tree, should the

hangman refuse, 65
These fingers, with pleasure, could fasten the noose.

POLLY. I'm bubbled, etc.

Mach. Be pacified, my dear Lucy -- this is all a fetch1 of Polly's to make me desperate with you in

case I get off. If I am hanged, she would fain 70
have the credit of being thought my widow. -- Really, Polly, this is no time for a dispute of this sort; for whenever you are talking of marriage, I am thinking of hanging.

POLLY. And hast thou the heart to persist in 75
disowning me?

Mach. And hast thou the heart to persist in persuading me that I am married? Why, Polly, dost thou seek to aggravate my misfortunes?

LUCY. Really, Miss Peachum, you but ex­ 80
pose yourself. Besides, 'tis barbarous in you to worry a gentleman in his circumstances.

POLLY. Cease your funning,
Force or cunning

Never shall my heart trapan.285
All these sallies
Are but malice
To seduce my constant man.
'Tis most certain,
By their flirting, 90
Women oft have envy shown; Pleased, to ruin
Others' wooing;
Never happy in their own!

POLLY. Decency, madam, methinks, might 95
teach you to behave yourself with some reserve with the husband, while his wife is present.

Mach. But, seriously, Polly, this is carrying the joke a little too far.

LUCY. If you are determined, madam, to 100
raise a disturbance in the prison, I shall be obliged to send for the turnkey to show you the door. I am sorry, madam, you force me to be so ill-bred.

POLLY. Give me leave to tell you, madam, these

forward airs don't become you in the least, 105
madam. And my duty, madam, obliges me to stay with my husband, madam.

AIR XXXVIII. Good-morrow, gossip Joan.

LUCY. Why, how now, Madam Flirt?
If you thus must chatter;

And are for flinging dirt, 110
Let's try who best can spatter! Madam Flirt!

POLLY. Why, how now, saucy jade;
Sure, the wench is tipsy!

(To him.) How can you see me made 115
The scoff of such a gipsy?

(To her.) Saucy jade!


SCENE XIV

LUCY, Macheath, POLLY, PEACHUM.

Peach. Where's my wench? -- Ah, hussy! hussy! Come you home, you slut; and when your fellow is hanged, hang yourself, to make your family some amends.

POLLY. Dear, dear father, do not tear me from 5
him -- I must speak; I have more to say to him. -- Oh! twist thy fetters about me, that he may not haul me from thee!

Peach. Sure all women are alike! If ever they

commit the folly, they are sure to commit an­ 10
other by exposing themselves. -- Away -- not a word more -- you are my prisoner now, hussy.

____________________
1
Trick.
2
Beguile.

-556-

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British Dramatists from Dryden to Sheridan
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