my niece; I'll make her confess. I conjure 685 you, Sir Rowland, by all your love, not to fight.
WAIT. I am, charmed madam, I obey. But some proof you must let me give you; -- I'll go for a black box, which contain the writings of my whole estate, and deliver that into your hands. 690
LADY WISH. Ay, dear Sir Rowland, that will be some comfort; bring the black box.
WAIT. And may I presume to bring a contract to be signed this night? May I hope so far?
LADY WISH. Bring what you will; but come 695 alive, pray come alive. Oh, this is a happy discovery!
WAIT. Dead or alive I'll come -- and married we will be in spite of treachery; ay, and get an heir that shall defeat the last remaining glimpse of 700 hope in my abandoned nephew. Come, my buxom widow:
E'er long you shall substantial proof receive
That I'm an arrant1 knight -----
FOIB. [aside]. Or arrant knave. Exeunt. 705
LADY WISHFORTand FOIBLE.
LADY WISH. Out of my house, out of my house, thou viper, thou serpent, that I have fostered! thou bosom traitress, that I raised from nothing! -- begone, begone, begone, go, go! -- that I took from washing of old gauze and weaving of dead hair,25 with a bleak blue nose, over a chafing-dish of starved embers, and dining behind a traverse rag, in a shop no bigger than a bird-cage, -- go, go, starve again, do, do!
FOIB. Dear madam, I'll beg pardon on my 10 knees.
LADY WISH. Away, out, out, go set up for yourself again! -- do, drive a trade, do, with your three- penny worth of small ware, flaunting upon a packthread, under a brandy-seller's bulk,3 or against 15 a dead wall by a ballad-monger! Go, hang out an old Frisoneer gorget,4 with a yard of yellow colberteen5 again! do! an old gnawed mask, two rows of pins, and a child's fiddle; a glass necklace with the beads broken, and a quilted nightcap with one 20 ear! Go, go, drive a trade! -- These were your commodities, you treacherous trull, this was your merchandise you dealt in, when I took you into my house, placed you next myself, and made you governante6 of my whole family! You have forgot 25 this, have you, now you have feathered your nest?
FOIB. No, no, dear madam. Do but hear me, have but a moment's patience -- I'll confess all. Mr. Mirabell seduced me; I am not the first that he has wheedled with his dissembling tongue; your 30 ladyship's own wisdom has been deluded by him, -- then how should I, a poor ignorant, defend myself? O madam, if you knew but what he promised me, and how he assured me your ladyship should come to no damage! -- Or else the wealth of the Indies 35 should not have bribed me to conspire against so good, so sweet, so kind a lady as you have been to me.
LADY WISH. No damage? What, to betray me, to marry me to a cast servingman; to make me a receptacle, an hospital for a decayed pimp? No 40 damage? O thou frontless7 impudence, more than a big-bellied actress!
FOIB. Pray, do but hear me, madam; he could not marry your ladyship, madam. -- No indeed, his marriage was to have been void in law; for he was 45 married to me first, to secure your ladyship. He could not have bedded your ladyship; for if he had consummated with your ladyship, he must have run the risk of the law, and been put upon his clergy.8 --Yes indeed, I enquired of the law in that case 50 before I would meddle or make.
LADY WISH. What, then I have been your property, have I? I have been convenient to you, it seems, -- while you were catering for Mirabell, I have been broker for you? What, have you 55 made a passive bawd of me? -- This exceeds all precedent; I am brought to fine uses, to become a botcher9 of second-hand marriages between Abigails and Andrews!10 I'll couple you! Yes, I'll baste you together, you and your Philander!11 I'll Duke's 60 Place you,12 as I'm a person. Your turtle is in custody already; you shall coo in the same cage, if there be constable or warrant in the parish. Exit.
FOIB. Oh, that ever I was born! Oh, that I was ever married! -- A bride, ay, I shall be a Bride 65 well-bride.13 Oh!
Enter MRS. FAINALL.
MRS. FAIN. Poor Foible, what's the matter?
FOIB. O madam, my lady's gone for a constable; I shall be had to a justice, and put to Bridewell to beat hemp! Poor Waitwell's gone to prison already. 70____________________