British Dramatists from Dryden to Sheridan

By George Henry Nettleton; Arthur Eillicot Case | Go to book overview
Save to active project

EPILOGUE

SPOKEN BY MRS. CLIVE.1

Ladies! I've had a squabble with the poet
About his characters -- and you shall know it.
'Young man,' said I, 'restrain your saucy satire!
My part's ridiculous -- false -- out of nature.

Fine draughts indeed of ladies! sure you hate 'em! 5
Why, sir! -- My part is scandalum magnatum.'2

'Lord, ma'am,' said he, 'to copy life my trade is,
And poets ever have made free with ladies!
One Simon -- the deuce take such names as these! --

A hard Greek name -- O -- ay -- Simonides3 -- 10
He showed -- our freaks, this whim and that desire,
Rose first from earth, sea, air, nay, some from fire;
Or that we owe our persons, minds, and features
To birds, forsooth, and filthy four-legg'd creatures.

'The dame, of manners various, temper fickle, 15
Now all for pleasure, now the conventicle! Who prays, then raves, now calm, now all commotion,
Rises, another Venus, from the ocean.

'Constant at every sale, the curious fair,

Who longs for Dresden, and old China ware; 20
Who dotes on pagods,4 and gives up vile man
For niddle-noddle figures from Japan;
Critic in jars and josses,5 shows her birth
Drawn, like the brittle ware itself, from earth.

'The flaunting she, so stately, rich and vain, 25
Who gains her conquests by her length of train; While all her vanity is under sail,
Sweeps, a proud peacock, with a gaudy tail.

' Husband and wife, with sweets! and dears! and loves!

What are they, but a pair of cooing doves? 30
But seized with spleen, fits, humors, and all that, Your dove and turtle turn to dog and cat.

'The gossip, prude, old maid, coquette, and trapes,6
Are parrots, foxes, magpies, wasps, and apes:

But she, with ev'ry charm of form and mind, 35
Oh! she's -- sweet soul -- the phoenix of her kind. ((The phoenix of her kind! upon my word,
He's a sly wretch -- pray -- is there such a bird?'))

This his apology! -- 'Tis rank abuse --

A fresh affront, instead of an excuse! 40
His own sex rather such description suits: Why don't he draw their characters -- the brutes!
Ay, let him paint those ugly monsters, men!
Meantime -- mend we our lives -- he'll mend his pen.

____________________
37-38] OID include; O2O3O4 omit the couplet.
1
Catharine ('Kitty') Clive ( 1711-1785) appeared as Lady Freelove in the first performance.
2
A law term for slander of high personages.
3
A Greek poet (circ. 660 B.C.), who satirized women by comparing them to various animals.
4
Pagodas.
5
Chinese idols.
6
Sluttish woman (cf. the character of Diana Trapes in The Beggar's Opera).

-712-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
British Dramatists from Dryden to Sheridan
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen
/ 960

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?