She Stoops to Conquer

By Oliver Goldsmith; C. Moore Smith | Go to book overview

We now and then take down a hearty cup.
What shall we do? If Comedy forsake us,
They'll turn us out, and no one else will take us!
But why can't I be moral? Let me try:--
My heart thus pressing--fix'd my face and eye--
With a sententious look that nothing means,
(Faces are blocks in sentimental scenes,)
Thus I begin:--"All is not gold that glitters,
"Pleasures seem sweet, but prove a glass of bitters.
"When Ign'rance enters, Folly is at hand:
"Learning is better far than house and land.
"Let not your virtue trip; who trips may stumble,
"And Virtue is not Virtue, if she tumble."

I give it up--morals won't do for me;
To make you laugh, I must play tragedy.
One hope remains:--hearing the maid was ill,
A Doctor comes this night to show his skill:
To cheer her heart, and give your muscles motion,
He, in Five Draughts prepar'd, presents a potion--
A kind of magic charm--for, be assur'd,
If you will swallow it, the maid is cur'd:
But desp'rate the Doctor's and her case is,
If you reject the dose, and make wry faces!
This truth he boasts, will boast it while he lives,
No pois'nous drugs are mix'd in what he gives.
Should he succeed, you'll give him his degree;
If not, within he will receive no fee!
The College, you, must his pretensions back,
Pronounce him Regular, or dub him Quack.

-8-

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She Stoops to Conquer
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page 3
  • [dedication] to Samuel Johnson, Ll.D. 5
  • Dramatis Personæ. - [the Cast of the Characters at Covent Garden in 1773.] 7
  • Prologue. 8
  • Act I 9
  • Act II 30
  • Act III 64
  • Act IV 82
  • Act V 104
  • Epilogue. 125
  • Epilogue, 127
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