POLLY. I, like a ship in storms, was tossed; Yet afraid to put in to land; 115 For seized in the port the vessel's lost, Whose treasure is contraband. The waves are laid, My duty's paid, Oh joy beyond expression! 120 Thus, safe ashore, I ask no more, My all is in my possession.
PEACH. I hear customers in t'other room. Go, talk with 'em, Polly; but come to us again, as 125 soon as they are gone. -- But, hark ye, child, if 'tis the gentleman who was here yesterday about the repeating watch, say, you believe we can't get intelligence of it till tomorrow. For I lent it to Suky Straddle, to make a figure with it tonight at a 130 tavern in Drury Lane. If t'other gentleman calls for the silver-hilted sword, you know Beetle-browed Jemmy hath it on, and he doth not come from Tunbridge till Tuesday night, so that it cannot be had till then. 135
PEACHUM, MRS. PEACHUM.
PEACH. Dear wife, be a little pacified. Don't let your passion run away with your senses. Polly, I grant you, hath done a rash thing.
MRS. PEACH. If she had had only an intrigue with the fellow, why the very best families have ex 5 cused and huddled up a frailty of that sort. 'Tis marriage, husband, that makes it a blemish.
PEACH. But money, wife, is the true fuller's earth for reputations: there is not a spot or a stain but what it can take out. A rich rogue now-a-days is fit 10 company for any gentleman; and the world, my dear, hath not such a contempt for roguery as you imagine. I tell you, wife, I can make this match turn to our advantage.
MRS. PEACH. I am very sensible, husband, 15 that Captain Macheath is worth money, but I am in doubt whether he hath not two or three wives already, and then if he should die in a session or two, Polly's dower would come into dispute.
PEACH. That, indeed, is a point which ought 20 to be considered.
A fox may steal your hens, sir, A whore your health and pence, sir, Your daughter rob your chest, sir, Your wife may steal your rest, sir, 25 A thief your goods and plate. But this is all but picking, With rest, pence, chest, and chicken; It ever was decreed, sir, If lawyer's hand is fee'd, sir, 30 He steals your whole estate.
The lawyers are bitter enemies to those in our way. They don't care that anybody should get a clandestine livelihood but themselves.
MRS. PEACHUM, PEACHUM, POLLY.
POLLY. 'Twas only Nimming Ned. He brought in a damask window-curtain, a hoop-petticoat, a pair of silver candlesticks, a periwig, and one silk stocking, from the fire that happened last night.
PEACH. There is not a fellow that is cleverer in 5 his way, and saves more goods out of the fire than Ned. But now, Polly, to your affair; for matters must not be left as they are. You are married then, it seems?
POLLY. Yes, sir. 10