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meant :

Yet whims like these have sometimes made you In pity of my pains and doubt,

And try if you can't find me out. "Tis tattling all like Isaac Bickerstaff.

Poor soul! he seems indeed in dismal plight; Since war and places claim the bards that write, Let's see! it can't be, sure, from th' upper flight, Be kind, and bear a woman's treat to-night; No, no—that's plain-for-none of them can Let your indulgence all her fears allay, Nor can I think it from the middle fell, (write: And none but wonian-haters damn this play. For I'm afraid as few of them can spell;

Beside, their haggling passions never gain

Beyond the passage-walking nymphs of Drury$ 24. Prologue to The Man's Bewitch d. 1710.

lane :

[rovers, CentLIVRE. And then the pit's more stock'd with rakes and Our female author trembling stands within, Than any of these senseless, whining lovers. Her fear arises from another's sin :

The backs o’th' boxes too seem mostly lind One of her sex hias so abus'd the town, With souls whose passion's to themselves conThat on her score she dreads your angry


fin'd. Though I dare say, poor soul, she never writ In short, I can't perceive,'mongst all your sparks, Lampoon, or satire, on the box or pit; The wretch distinguish'd by these bloody A harmless hum'rous play is her extent of wit.


mands, sir, Though Bickerstaff's vast genius may engage,

But since the town has heard your kind comAnd lash the vice and follies of the age;

The town shall e'en be witness of my answer. Why should the tender Delia tax the nation, First then, beware you prove no spark in red, Stickle and make a noise for reformation, With empty purse and regimental head; Who always gave a loose herself to inclination? That thinks no woman can refuse t'engage in't, Scand avid satire's thrown aside to-day,

While love's advanc'd with offer'd bills on And humor's the sole business of our play.

agent ;

fing, Beaux may dress on, to catch the ladies' hearts, That swears he'll settle from his joys commencAnd good assurance pass for mighty parts : Aud make the babe, the day he's born, an enThe cits may bring their sponses without fear; Nor could I bear a titled beau, that steals [sign. We show no wise that's poaching for an heir, From fasting spouse her matrimonial meals; Nor teach the use of fine gauze bandkerchier.

That modish sends next morn to her apartment Cowards may huff, and talk of mighy wonders, A civil how d'ye—far, alas! from ih' heart And jilts set up-fortwenty-thousand-pounders. Our author, even though she knows full well, Then powder'd for th' ensuing day's delights, Is so good-natur’d, she forbears to tell, Bows through his crowd of duns, and drives to What colonels, lately, have found out the knack

White's. To muster macam, still, by Ned or Jack;

Nor could I like the wretch that all night plays, To keep their pleasures up, a frugal way,

And only takes his rest on winning davs; They give her subaltern's subsistence for her Then sets up, from a lucky hit, his rattler ; pay.

Then's trac'd from his orig'nal-in the Tatler. In short, whate'er your darling vices are, To tell


all that are my fix'd aversion, They pass untouch'd in this night's bill of fare. Would iire the tongue of malice or aspersion : But if'all this can't your good-nature wake,

But if I find 'mongst all one gen'rous heart, Though here and there a scene should fail to That, deaf to stories, takes the stage's part; Yet spare her for the Busybody's sake. [take, That thinks that purse deserves to keep the plays,

Whose fortune's bound for the support of operas;

That thinks our constitution here is justly tix'd, $ 25. Epilogue to the same. Spoken ly Mrs. And now no more with lawyers' brau is perOldfield. 1710. CENTLIVRE.

plex'd; [ A Porter delivers a Letler, just as

lle, I declare, shall my whole heart receive; she is going to speak.

And (what's more strange) I'll love him while

I live. What's this? a billet-doux from hands un

known? "Tis new to send it thus 'fore all the town : But since the poor mau's so agog,

§ 26. Prologue to Cuto. 1713. Pope. I'll read it out, by way of epilogue.

To wake the soul by tender strokes of art,

[Reads. To raise the genius, and to mend the beart; Madam,

To make mankind, in conscious virtue bold, Permit a wretch to let you know, Live o'er each scene, and be what they behold: That he's no more in statu quo;

For this the tragic muse first trod the stage, Ms ruin from this night commences, Commanding tears to stream through ev'ry age; Unless your smiles refind my senses ; Tyrants no more their savage nature kept, For, with one thrust of Cupid's dart, And foes to virtue wonder'd how they wept. You've whipp'd your slave quite through Our author shuns by vulgar springs to move the heart :

The hero's glory, or the virgini's love; Therefore, I beg you, cast your eye In pitying love, we but our weakness show, O'er boxes, pit, and gallery,

And wild ambition well deserves its woe.

Here tears shall flow from a moregen'rous cause, For these she fell; while, with too weak a hand,
Such tears as patriots shed for dying laws : She strove to save a blind ungrateful land.
He bids your breasts with ancient ardor rise, But thus the secret laws of fate ordain,
And calls forth Roman drops from British eyes.


great hand was doom'd to break that Virtue confessd in human shape he draws,

chain, What Plato thought, and godlike Cato was: And end the hopes of Rome's tyrannic reign. No common object to your sight displays, For eier as the circling years reiurn, But what with pleasure Heaven itself surveys, Ye grateful Britons! crown the hero's urn; A brave man struggling in the storms of fate, To his just care you ev'ry blessing owe, And greatly falling with a falling state. Which or his own, or following reigns bestow; While Cató gives his little senate laws, Though his hard tate a father's name denied, What bosom beats not in his country's cause? To you a father, he that loss supplieil. Who sees him act, but envies ev'ry deed ? Then while you view the royal line's increase, Who hears him groan, and does not wish to And count the pledges of your future peace, bleed ?

[cars, From this great stock while still new glories Even when proud Cæsar, 'midst triumphal Conquest abroad, and liberty at home;[come, The spoils of nations, and the pomp of wars,



behold the beautiful and brave, Ignobly vain, and impotently great,

Bright princesses to grace you, kings to save, Show'd Rome her Cato’s figure drawn in state: Enjoy the gift, but bless the hand that gave. As her dead father’s rev'rend image pass'd, The pomp was darken'd, and the day o'ercast ; The triumph ceas’d, tears gush d from ev'ry eye; The world's great victor pass'd unheeded by; § 28. Epilogue to the Cruel Gift. Spoken ly Her last good man dejected Rome ador'd,

Mrs. Oldfield. 1717. Rowe. And honor'd Cæsar's less than Cato's sword. Well,'twas a narrow'scape my lover made

Britons, attend; be worth like this approv'd, That cup and message I was sore afraid ! And show you have the virtue to be mov'd. Was that a present for a new-nade widow, With honest scorn the first fam'd Cato view'd | All in her dismal dumps, like doleful Dido? Rome learning arts from Greece, whom she When one peep'd in—and hop'd for something subdued :

Our scene precariously subsists too long There was-0 gad! a nasty heart and blood".
On French translation, and Italian song If the old man had show'd himself a father,
Dare to have sense yourselves; assert the stage, His bowl should have inclos'd a cordial rather;
Be justly warm’d with your own native rage : Something to cheer me up amidst my trance,
Such plays alone should please a British ear, L'eau de Barlude-or comfortable Nantzt.
As Cato's self had not disdain'd to hear.

He thought be paid it off with being sinart,
And, to be witty, cried, he'd send the heart.
I could have told bis gravity, moreover,

Were I our sex's secrets to discover, $ 27. Prologue to Lady Jane Grey. 1715.

'Tis what we never look for in a lover. Rowe.

Let but the bridegroom prudently provide TO-NIGHT the noblest subject swells our All other matters fitting for a bride, scene,

So he make good the jewels and the jointure, A heroine, a martyr, and a queen;

To miss the heart does seldom disappoint her. And though the poet dares not boast his art, Faithi, for the fashion hearts of late are made in, The very theme shall something great impart, They are the vilest bauble we can trade in. To warin the gen rous soul, and touch the ien- Where are the tough brave Britons to be found, der heart.

With hearts of oak, so much of old renown'd? To you, fair judges, we the cause submit; How many worthy gentlemen of late Your eyes

shall tell us how the tale is writ. Swore to be true to mother-church and state; If your soft pity waits upon our woe,

When their false hearts were secretly mainIf silent tears for suff'ring virtue flow;

taining Your grief the inuses' labor shall confess, Yon trim king Pepin, at Avignon reigning? The lively passions, and the just distress. Shame on the canting crèw of soul-insurers, O! could our author's pencil justl; paint, That Tyburu tribe of speech-making nonjurors, Such as she was in life, the beauteous saint; Who, in new-fangled terms old truths explainstrict attention might we claim,


meaning ! And bid you mark and copy out the dame. Teach honest Englishmen' damn'd doubleNo wand'ring glance one wanton thought con

()! would

you lost integrity restore,

And boast that faith your plain forefathers bore; No guilty wish inflam'd her spotless breast : What surer pattern can you hope to find The only love that warm'd her blooining youth, Than that dear pledge I your monarch left be. Was husband, England, liberty, and truth.

hind ? This tragedy was founded upon the story of Sigismunda and Guiscardo, out of Boccace's novels; wherein the heart of the lover is sent by the father to his daughter, as a present. t i. e. Citron-water and good brandy.

| The Prince of Wales, then present.

Boldly your

fess'd ;


See how his looks his honest heart explain, • Your fever's slight, not dangerous, I assure And speak the blessings of his future reign!


[cure you." In his each feature truth and candor trace, Keep warm, and repetatur haustus, Sir, will And read plain-dealing written in his face. Around the bed, next day, his friends are erying;

The patient dies; the doctor's paid for lying.
The poet, willing to secure the pit,

Gives out, his play has humor, taste, and wit: $ 29. Epilogue to the Pseudolus of Plautus. The cause comes on, and while the judges try,

Acted by the Scholars of Bury School, Nov. Each groan and cat-call gives the bard i he lie. 6, 1734.

Now let us ask, pray, what the ladies do: I have been peeping for these many days

They too will fib a little, entre nous. l'th' tail of all the Greek and Latin plays,

Lord !” says the prude (her face behind her And, after strictest search, to none can find

“ How can our sex have any joy in man? (fan) An epilogue, like dishclout, pinn'd behind. As for my part, the best could ne'er deceive me; Those ancient bards knew when the play was

And were the race extinct, 'twould never done,

grieve me! Nor, like Sir Martin Mar-all, still play'd on;

Their sight is odious, but their touch, O gad! They imitated nature in their plan,

The thought of that's enough to drive one mad." Nor made a monkey when they meant a man.

Thus rails at men the squeamish Lady Dainty, From modern fancy then this custom rose,

Yet weds at fifty-five a rake of twenty: Like whimsical toupees among the beaux :

In short, a beau's intrigues, a lover's sighs, Monstrous excrescences ! both which disgrace The courtier's promise, the rich widow's cries, (By being fix'd in an improper place)

And patriot's zeal, are seldom more than lies. Heaven's great production, man; inan's great Sometimes you'll see a man belie his nation, production, plays.

Nor to his country show the least relation. Yet must we, though as foolish we decry

For instance, nowThis mode, be fools in fashion, and comply;

A cleanly Dutchman, or a Frenchınan grare, For'rights, we know, howe'er absurdly gain'd A sober German, or a Spaniard brave, At first, with obstinacy are maintain'd: An Englishman, a coward or a slave. Since then this privilege you will not lose,

Mine, though a fibbing, was an honest art;
Let's hear what sort of epilogue you'll choose. I serv'd my master, play d a faithful part:
Are you for satire? No; why there you're right; | Rank me not, therefore, 'mongst the lying crew,

The wisest can't foresee where that may light. For though my tongue was false, my heart wag
Are ye for politics? There we cry, No,
Where that may light-you easily may know.
Another topic then, pray, ladies, hear;
Suppose a panegyric on the fair.

$31. Epilogue to Ignoramus, acted at IT este So, I perceive, I've touch'd the ticklish place;

minster School in Decemler 1747. Spoken And clearly read consent in ev'ry face.

by Ignoramus and Musæus. O fie! consent so soon ? that can't be right; I hate such coming ladies--so good night. Ign. Peace, bookworm! bless me, what a

clerk have I !
A strange place, sure—this university !

What's learning, virtue, modesty, or sense? $30. Epilogue to the Lying Valet. 1740.

Fine words to hear—but will they turn the pence? GARRICK

These stiff pedantic notions—far outweighs That I'm a lying rogue you all agree ; [see, That one short, comprehensive thingmatice. And yet, look round the world, and you shall Go, match it if you can with all your rules That many more, my betters, lic as fast as me. Of Greek or Roman, old or modern schools : Against this vicc we all are ever railing, The total this of Ignoramus' skill, And yet, so tempting is it, so prevailing, To carve his fortune-place him where you wiil. You'll find but few without this useful failing. For not in law alone could I appear; Lady or Abigail, my Lord or Will,

My parts would shine alike in any sphere. The lie goes round, and the ball's never still. You've heard my song in Rosabella's praise: My lies were harmless, told to show my parts, You'll see me soon—a rival for the bays. And not like those when tongues belie their Or, I could turn a journalist, and write hearts.

With little wit, but large recruits of spite : In all professions you will find this flaw; Abuse and blacken—just as party swaysAnd in the gravesi too, in physic and in law. And lash my betters—these are ihriving ways. The gouty sergeant cries, with formal

pause, My mind to graver physic would I bend, “ Your plea is good, my friend, don't starve Think you I'd study Greek, like Mead or Friend? the cause :"

No-with some nostrum I'd ensure my fees, Bat when my lord decrees for t’other side, Without the help of learning or degrees : Your costs of suit convince you—that he lied. On drop or pill securely I'd rely, A doctor comes, with formal wig and face, And shake my head at the whole faculty. First feels your pulse, then thinks, and knows Or would I take to orders your case,

Mus. Orders; how?


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Ign. One not too scrupulous a way might Existence saw him spurn her bounded reign, know:

And panting Time toil'd after him in vain : "Twere but the forging of a hand--or so. His pow'rful strokes presiding Truth impress’d, In orders too my purposes I'd serve ;

And unresisted Passion storm'i the breast. And if I could not rise, I would not starve. Then Jonson came,instructed from the school, With lungs and face I'd make my butchers To please in method, and invent by rule: Or publish--that I'd marry at May-fair. (stare, His studious patience, and laborious art, These, these are maxims, that will stand the By regular approach assay'd the heart : test :

Cold approbation gave the ling’ring bays; Both universities—are all a jest.

For those who durst not censure scarce could Mus. I grant, a prodigy we sometimes view, praise. Whom neither of our scats of learning knew. A mortal born, he met the gen'ral doom, Yet sure none shine more eminently great, But left, like Egypt's kings, a lasting tomb. In law or physic, in the church or state,

The wits of Charles found easier ways to Than those who early drank the love of fame

fame, At Cam's fair bank, or Isis' silver stream. Nor wish'd for Jonson's art, nor Shakspeare's Look round-here's proof enough this point

Aame; to clear.

Themselves they studied, as they felt they writ; Ign. Bless me!-what;—not one Ignora- Intrigue was plot, obscenity was wit. mus here?

Vice always found a sympathetic friend; I stand convicted-what can I say more? They pleas'd their age, but did not aim to See, my face fails, which never fail'd before. mend. How great soe'er I seem in Dulman's eye, [by. Yet bards like these aspir’d to lasting praise, Yet Ignorance must blush-when Learning's And proudly hop'd to pimp in future days:

Their cause was gen'ral, their supports were


Their slaves were willing, and their reign was $ 32. Epilogue to Agamemnon. Thomson. Till shame regaind the post that sense betray'd,

long; Our bard, to modern epilogue a foe,

And virtue call'd oblivion to her aid. Thinks such mean mirth but deadens gen'rous Then crush'd by rules, and weaken'd as rewoe;

fin'd, Dispels in idle air the moral sigh,

For years the pow'r of Tragedy declin'd: And wipes the tender tear from pity's eye :

From bard to bard the frigid caution crept, No more with social warmth the bosom burns; Till declamation roar'd whilst passion slept ; But all th' un feeling, selfish man returns.

Yet still did virtue deign the stage to tread, Thus he began : and you approv’d the strain, Philosophy remain'd, though nature fled. Till the next couplet sunk to light and vain. But forc'd at length her ancient reign to quit, You check'd him there—to you, to reason, just, She saw great Faustus lay the ghost of wit : He owns he triumph'd in your kind disgust. Exulting Folly hail'd the joyful day, Charm'd by your frown, by your displeasure And Pantomime and Song confirmi'd her


But who the coming changes can presage, He hails the rising virtue of your taste.

And mark the future periods of the stage ? Wide willits influencespread, as soon as known; Perhaps, if skill could distant times explore, Truth, to be lov'd, need only to be shown. New Bebns, new Durfeys, yet remain in store; Confirm it, once, the fashion to be good Perhaps, where Lear has rar'd, and Hamlet (Since fashion leads the fool, and awes the rude) died, No petulance shall wound the public ear; On Aying cars new sorcerers may ride ; No hand applaud what honor shuns to hear; Perhaps (for who can guess th' effects of No painful blush the modest cheek shall stain; chance?) The worthy breast shall heave with no disdain. Here Hunt may box, or Mahomet may dance. Chastis'd to decency, the British stage

Hard is his lot that, here by fortune plac'd,
Shall oft invite the fair, invite the sage: [part; Must watch the wild vicissitudes of taste;
Both shall attend well pleas'd, well pleas'd de- With every meteor of caprice must play,
Or, if they doom the verse, absolve the heart. And chase the new-born bubble of ihe day:

Ah! Ict not censure term our fate our choice,
The stage but echoes back the public voice;

The Drama's laws the Drama's patrons give, § 33. Prologue spoken by Mr. Garrick at the For we that live to please, must please to live.

Then prompt no more the follies you decry, opening of the Theatre in Drury-lane, in the Year 1747.


As tyrants doom their tools of guilt to die; "Tis

yours this night to bid the reign commence When Learning's triumph o'er her barb'rous Of rescued nature, and reviving sense ; [show, foes

To chase the charms of sound, the pomp of First rear'd the stage, immortal Shakspeare rose; For useful inirth and salutary woe; Each change of many-color'd life he drew,

Bid Scenic Virtue form the rising age, Exhausted worlds, and then imagin’d new : And Truth diffuse her radiance from the Stage.


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§ 34. Epilogue to Shakspeare's First Part of Learn here that peace from innocence must

King Henry IV. Spoken ly Mr. J. Y. in the Character of Falstaff, 1748. Acted ly | All else is empty sound, and idle show. (join; young Gentlemen at Mr. Newcome's School | But truths like these with pleasing language at Hackney.

HOADLEY. Ennobled, yet unchang’d, it Nature shine: [Push'd in upon the Stage by Prince Henry.] Nor gods his heroes, nor his lovers fools ;

If no wild draught depart from Reason's rules, A PLAGUE upon all cowards, still I say, Intriguing wits! bis artiess plot forgive; Old Jack must bear the heat of all the day, And spare him, beauties! tho' his lovers live. And be the master-fvol beyond the play- Be this at least his praise, be this his pride; Amidst hot-blooded Hotspur's rebel strife, To force applause no modern arts are tried. By miracle of wit I sav'd my life;

Should partial cat-calls all his hopes confound, And now stand foolishly expos'd again He bids no trumpet quell the fatal sound; To th' hissing bullets of the critic's brain. Should welcome sleep relieve the weary wit,

Go to, old lad, 'tis time that thou wert wiser- He rolls not thunders o'er the drowsy pit; Thou art not fram’d for an epiloguizer. No snares to captivate the judgment spreads; There's Hal, now, or hisnimbleshadow, Poins, Nor bribes your eyes to prejudice your heads. Straight in the back, and lissome in the loins, Unmov'd tho' willings sneer, and rivals rail; Who wears his boot smooth as his mistress' skin, Studious to please, yet not ashamed to fail, And shining as the glass she dresses in ; Hescorns the meck address, the suppliant strain, Can bow and cringe, fawn, flaiter, cog, and liew With merit needless, and without it rain. Which honest Jack could never do-not l. In Reason, Nature, Truth, he dares to trust; Hal's heir-apparent face might stand it buff, Ye fops, be silent; and ye wits, Le just. And make (ha! ha! ha!) a saucy epilogue

enough. But I am old and stiff-nay, bashful grown, For Shakspeare's humor is not now my own.

$36. Prologue lo Comus, for the Benefit of I feel myself a counterfeiting ass ;

Milton's Grand-duughter. 1750. Spoken And if for sterling wit I give you brass,


JOHNSON. It is his royal image makes it pass.

Ye patriot crowds who burn for England's Fancy now works; and here I stand and stew fame,

(name, lo mine own greasy fears, which set to view Ye nymphs whose bosoms beat at Nilen's Eleven buckram critics in each man of you ;

Whose gen'rous zeal, unbought by Hart'ring Wights, who with no out-facings will be rhymes, shamın'd,

Shames the mean pensions of Augustan times; Nor into risibility be bamm’d, [ureason, Immortal patrons of succeeding days, Will, tho' she shake their sides, think Nature Attend this prelude of perpetual praise ; And see one damn'd-ere laugh without a Let wii, condenn'd the feeble war to wage

[speed, With close malevolence, or publie rage : Then how shall one, not of the virtuous, Let study, worn with virtue's fruitless lore ; Who merely has a wicked wit to plead- Behold this Theatre, and griere no more. (tell Wit without measure, humor without rule, This night, distinguish'd by your smiles, si.all Unfetter'd laugh, and lawless ridicule? That never Briton can in vain excel; Faith! try him by his peers, a jury chosen- The slighted Arts futurity shall trust, The kingdom will, I inivk, scarce raise the And rising ages hasten to be just. dozen.

At length our mighty baru's victorious lars
So-be but kind, and countenance the cheat, Fill the loud voice of universal praise ;
I'll in, and say to Hal, I've done the feat. And baffled spite, with hopele sanguish dumb,

Yields to renown the centuries to come;
With ardent haste each candidate of time

Ambitious catches at his tow'rin; name; $35. Prologue to Irene. 1749. Johnson. He sees, and pitying sets, raiu wealth bestour

Those pageant honors which he scorn'd below, Ye glitt'ring traiu! whom lace and velvet While crowds aloft the laureat bust behold, bless,

Or trace his form on circulating gek. Suspend the soft solicitudes of dress;

Unknown, unheeded, long his tyring !-5, From gror'ling business and superfluous care, And want hung threat'ning o'er her slow decas. Ye sons of Ivarice! a moment spare:

What tho'she shine with no fire, Vot'ries of Fame, and worshippers of Pow'r ! No fav'ring muse her morning dreams inszire, Dismiss the plasing phantoms for an hour. Yet sufier claims the melting beart en liten Our daring bard, with spirit unconsin'd, Her youth laborious, and hier islameless inter Spreads wide the mighty moral of mankind. Hers the mild merits oi donosiic life, . Learn here bow Heaven supports the virtuous The patieni sufferer, and the faithful wife. mind,

Thusgrac'd with humblı virtue's nativecharn:s, Daring, tbo' calm; and vig'rous, tho' resign'd.) Her Grandsire leaves her in Britanvia's arms; Learn here what anguish racks theguilty breast, Secure with peace, with competence, to dwell, In pow'r dependent, in success deprest, While tutelary nations guard her cell.


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