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Miss. In troth, you are afraid of your friends, and none of them near you.
Ld. Sparkish. Well said, girl! [Giving her a chuck.] take that: they say a chuck under the chin is worth two kisses.
Lady Answ. But, Mr Neverout, I wonder why such a handsome, straight, young gentleman as you, don't get some rich widow.
Ld. Sparkish. Straight ! ay, straight as my leg, and that's crooked at knee.
Neverout. Faith, madam, if it raind rich widows, none of them would fall upon me. Egad, I was born under a three-penny planet, never to be worth a groat.
Lady Answ. No, Mr Neverout; I believe you were born with a caul on your head, you are such a favourite among the ladies : but what think you of widow Prim? she's immensely rich.
Neverout. Hang her! they say her father was a baker.
Lady Smart. Ay; but it is not what is she, but what has she, now-a-days.
Col. Tom, faith, put on a bold face for once, and have at the widow. I'll speak a good word for
Lady Answ. Ay; I warrant you'll speak one word for him, and two for yourself.
Miss. Well, I had that at my tongue's end.
Lady Answ. Why, miss, they say good wits jump
Neverout. Faith, madam, I had rather marry a woman I loved in her smock, than widow Prim if she had her weight in gold.
Lady Smart. Come, come, Mr Neverout, marriage is honourable, but housekeeping is a shrew.
Lady Answ. Consider, Mr Neverout, four bare legs in a bed; and you are a younger brother.
you to her.
Col. Well, madam, the younger brother is the better gentleman: however, Tom, I would advise you to look before you leap.
Ld. Sparkish. The colonel says true; besides, you can't expect to wive and thrive in the same year.
Miss. [Shuddering.] Lord! there's somebody walking over my grave.
Col. Pray, Lady Answerall, where was you last Wednesday, when I did myself the honour to wait on you? I think your ladyship is one of the tribe of Gad.
Lady Answ. Why, colonel, I was at church.
Col. Nay, then will I be hang’d, and my horse too.
Neverout. I believe her ladyship was at a church with a chimney in it.
Miss. Lord, my petticoat! how it hangs by jommetry!
Neverout. Perhaps the fault may be in your shape.
Miss. [Looking gravely.] Come, Mr Neverout, there's no jest like the true jest; but I suppose you think my back's broad enough to bear every thing
Neverout. Madam, I humbly beg your pardon. Miss. Well, sir, your pardon's granted.
Neverout. Well, all things have an end, and a pudding has two, up-up-on me-my-my word.
[Stutters. Miss. What! Mr Neverout, can't you speak without a spoon?
Ld. Sparkish. [To Lady Smart.] Has your ladyship seen the duchess since your falling out?
Lady Smart. Never, my lord, but once at a vi
sit, and she look'd at me as the devil look'd over Lincoln. *
Neverout. Pray, miss, take a pinch of my snuff.
Miss. What ! you break my head, and give me a plaster; well, with all my heart; once, and not
Neverout. Well, miss, if you wanted me and your victuals, you'd want your two best friends.
Col. [To Neverout.] Tom, miss and you must kiss and be friends.
Neverout salutes Miss.
Miss. Any thing for a quiet life: my nose itch'd, and I knew I should drink wine, or kiss a fool.
Col. Well, Tom, if that ben't fair, hang fair. Neverout. I never said a rude thing to a lady in
Miss. Here's a pin for that lie ; l'm sure liars had need have good memories. Pray, colonel, was not he very uncivil to me but just now?
Lady Answ. Mr Neverout, if miss will be angry for nothing, take my counsel, and bid her turn the buckle of her girdle behind her.
Neverout. Come, lady Answerall, I know better things; miss and I are good friends; don't put tricks upon travellers.
*“Some refer this to Lincoln-minster, over which, when first finished, the devil is supposed to have looked with a fierce and terrific countenance, as incensed and alarmed at this costly instance of devotion. Ray thinks it more probable that it took its rise from a small image of the devil, placed on the top of Lincoln College, Oxford, over which he looks, seemingly with much fury."Grose's Provincial Glossary, with a Collection of Local Proverbs. Lond, 1787-8
Col. Tom, not a word of the pudding, I beg you.
Lady Smart. Ah, colonel ! you'll never be good, nor then neither.
Ld. Sparkish. Which of the goods d’ye mean? good for something, or good for nothing ?
Miss. I have a blister on my tongue, yet I don't remember I told a lie.
Lady Answ. I thought you did just now.
Ld. Sparkish. Pray, madam, what did thought do ?
Lady Smart. Well, for my life, I cannot conceive what your lordship means.
Ld. Sparkish. Indeed, madam, I meant no harm.
Lady Smart. No, to be sure, my lord ! you are as innocent as a devil of two years old.
Neverout. Madam, they say ill-doers are illdeemers; but I don't apply it to your ladyship.
Miss, mending a hole in her lace. Miss. Well, you see I'm mending; I hope I shall be good in time ; look, Lady Answerall, is it not well mended ?
Lady Answ. Ay, this is something like a tansy.
Neverout. Faith, miss, you have mended as a tinker mends a kettle ; stop one hole and make two.
Lady Smart. Pray, colonel, are you not very much tann'd ?
Col. Yes, madam ; but a cup of Christmas ale will soon wash it off.
Ld. Sparkish. Lady Smart, does not your ladyship think Mrs Fade is mightily alter'd since her marriage ?
Lady Answ. Why, my lord, she was handsome
in her time; but she cannot eat her cake and have her cake; I hear she's grown a mere otomy.
Lady Smart. Poor creature ! the black ox has set his foot upon her already.
Miss. Ay; she has quite lost the blue on the plum.
Lady Smart. And yet, they say, her husband is very fond of her stili.
Lady Answ. O, madam, if she would eat gold, he would give it her.
Neverout. [To Lady Smart.] * Madam, have you heard that Lady Queasy was lately at the playhouse incog. ?
Lady Smart. What! Lady Queasy of all women in the world! do you say it upon rep. ?
Neverout. Poz, I saw her with my own eyes; she sat among the mob in the gallery ; her own ugly phiz : and she saw me look at her.
Col. Her ladyship was plaguily bamb’d; I warrant it put her into the hips.
Neverout. I smoked her huge nose, and, egad, she put me in mind of the woodcock, that strives to hide his long bill, and then thinks nobody sees him.
Col. Tom, I advise you, hold your tongue; for you'll never say so good a thing again.
Lady Smart. Miss, what are you looking for? Miss. O, madam, I have lost the finest needle
Lady Ansu. Why, seek till you find it, and then you won't lose your labour.
Neverout. The loop of my hat is broke, how shall I mend it ? [He fastens it with a pin.] Well, hang him, say I, that has no shift.
* Here the author, for variety, runs into some cant words.Orig. Note.