Marriage indeed may qualify the fury of his passion, but it
very rarely mends a man's manners.
You are the most mistaken in the world; there is no
creature perfectly civil but a husband. For in a little time he
grows only rude to his wife, and that is the highest good breeding,
for it begets his civility to other people. Well, I'll tell you
news; but I suppose you hear your brother Benjamin is landed? And
my brother Foresight's daughter is come out of the country: I
assure you, there's a match talked of by the old people. Well, if
he be but as great a sea-beast as she is a land-monster, we shall
have a most amphibious breed. The progeny will be all otters. He
has been bred at sea, and she has never been out of the country.
Pox take 'em, their conjunction bodes me no good, I'm sure.
Now you talk of conjunction, my brother Foresight has
cast both their nativities, and prognosticates an admiral and an
eminent justice of the peace to be the issue male of their two
bodies; 'tis the most superstitious old fool! He would have
persuaded me that this was an unlucky day, and would not let me come
abroad. But I invented a dream, and sent him to Artimedorus for
interpretation, and so stole out to see you. Well, and what will
you give me now? Come, I must have something.
Step into the next room, and I'll give you something.
Pooh! No, I thank you, I have enough to do to take care
of my own. Well, but I'll come and see you one of these mornings.
I hear you have a great many pictures.
I have a pretty good collection, at your service, some
Hang him, he has nothing but the Seasons and the Twelve
Caesars--paltry copies--and the Five Senses, as ill-represented as
they are in himself, and he himself is the only original you will
Ay, but I hear he has a closet of beauties.
Yes; all that have done him favours, if you will believe him.
Yes, faith; I can shew you your own picture, and most of your
acquaintance to the life, and as like as at Kneller's.
O lying creature! Valentine, does not he lie? I can't
believe a word he says.
No indeed, he speaks truth now. For as Tattle has pictures of
all that have granted him favours, he has the pictures of all that
have refused him: if satires, descriptions, characters, and
lampoons are pictures.
Yes; mine are most in black and white. And yet there are
some set out in their true colours, both men and women. I can shew
you pride, folly, affectation, wantonness, inconstancy,
covetousness, dissimulation, malice and ignorance, all in one piece.
Then I can shew you lying, foppery, vanity, cowardice, bragging,
lechery, impotence, and ugliness in another piece; and yet one of
these is a celebrated beauty, and t'other a professed beau. I have
paintings too, some pleasant enough.
Then I have a lady burning brandy in a cellar with a hackney
O devil! Well, but that story is not true.
I have some hieroglyphics too; I have a lawyer with a hundred
hands, two heads, and but one face; a divine with two faces, and one
head; and I have a soldier with his brains in his belly, and his
heart where his head should be.
Pooh, this is all invention. Have you never a poet?
Yes, I have a poet weighing words, and selling praise for
praise, and a critic picking his pocket. I have another large piece
too, representing a school, where there are huge proportioned
critics, with long wigs, laced coats, Steinkirk cravats, and
terrible faces; with cat-calls in their hands, and horn-books about
their necks. I have many more of this kind, very well painted, as
you shall see.
Well, I'll come, if it be but to disprove you.